Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

The Arabian Nights Entertainments Complete by Anon.

Part 27 out of 28

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 3.0 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

water over themselves and at each other. When satiated with
frolic they came out of the water, sat for some time on the
verdant margin, then dressed themselves, and adjusting their
robes to the air, soared aloft, and were soon far from the sight
of the enamoured Mazin, who followed them till his eyes could
stretch no farther; then despairing of ever again beholding the
object of his affections, he fainted on the grass, and it was
some time before he recovered his senses. He returned melancholy
to the palace, and spent the night in reposeless agitation.

The following morning the seven sisters returned; and she who had
first welcomed him to their abode, and had ever since retained
for Mazin the purest affection, ran with eagerness to inquire
after his health. Great was her affliction on beholding him upon
his bed, pale, and apparently in a state of rapid decay. After
many kind questions, to which he returned no answers, she
entreated earnestly, by the vow of brotherly and sisterly
adoption which had past between them, that he would inform her of
the cause ot his unhappy dejection; assuring him that she would
use every exertion to remove it, and gratify his wishes, be they
what they might, however difficult to be obtained. Mazin upon
this, in a feeble tone, related his adventure in the garden; and
declared that unless the beautiful (he supposed celestial) damsel
could be obtained for him he must die of grief. The sister bade
him be comforted, for in a short time his desires should be
satisfied, which revived his spirits, and he accompanied his kind
hostess to welcome home her sisters, who received him with their
usual hospitality, but were grieved and alarmed at the sad
alteration in his appearance, of which they inquired the reason,
and were informed that it was the effect of absence from his
generous patronesses.

The next morning the sisters went upon a hunting excursion for
ten days, only one (his kindest friend) remained in the palace,
under pretence of attending Mazin, whose health, she said, was
too delicate to bear the exercise of the chase. When the others
were departed, she informed Mazin that the beautiful beings he
had seen in the garden were of a race of genie much more powerful
than her own, that they inhabited a country surrounded by seas
and deserts not to be approached by human exertion, that the
ladies he beheld were sisters to the queen of these genii, whose
subjects were entirely female, occasionally visited by male
genii, with whom they were in alliance for the sake of
population, and to whom all the males were sent away as soon as
born. She further told him, that these females had the power,
from their silken robes, of soaring through the air with a flight
an hundred times swifter than that of any bird, that they were
fond of recreating in verdant spots, and bathing in the clearest
waters, and that the garden he had seen them in was a favourite
place of their resort, so that they would probably soon visit it
again. "Possibly," continued she, "they may recreate themselves
there to-day; we will be on the watch, and if they appear, you
must fix your eye on your favourite, mark where she places her
robes, and while they are in the water seize and conceal them,
for deprived of these she cannot fly away, and you may make her
your prisoner. Bring her to the palace, and endeavour by
tenderness and endearing attention to gain her affection and
consent to marriage; but remember when she is in your power to
keep her robes from her, for should she regain possession of them
she would certainly return to the Flying Islands, and you would
see her no more."

Mazin and his adopted sister now repaired to the garden, and
seated themselves in the alcove, nor had they been there long
when the fair genii appeared as before, descended on the margin
of the basin, and all having undressed, each laying her robes by
themselves, rushed playfully into the water, in which they began
to swim, dive, and besprinkle playfully each other. Mazin, whose
eager eye had ardently watched his beloved, swiftly, but
cautiously, snatching up the robes of his mistress, conveyed them
to the alcove unobserved by the fair bathers; who, when they had
sufficiently amused themselves, quitted the water, and ascending
the bank, began to dress; but how can we describe the distressful
confusion of the unhappy genie whose robes had been stolen? Big
tears rolled down her beautiful cheeks, she beat her bosom, tore
her hair, and uttered loud shrieks, while her sisters, instead of
consoling her, were concerned only for their own safety, and
dressing themselves with confused haste, bade her farewell,
mounted into the air, and disappeared. On their departure, Mazin
and his adopted sister approached, and saluting the disconsolate
genie endeavoured to console her, but for the present in vain,
her mind being intent only on the sad captivity she thought
awaited her, and the loss of her native country and relations.
They led her gently to the palace, and Mazin, retiring
respectfully, left her to the care of his adopted sister, who by
a thousand endearments and attentions so gained upon her, that in
two days the genie began to recover her spirits, and consented to
receive Mazin as her husband, when the ladies should return from
the chase. On their arrival at the palace they were informed by
their sisters of what had happened, and introduced to the fair
stranger; who, diverted by their company and attentions, now
scarcely regretted her captivity. Preparations were made for the
nuptials, and in a short time Mazin was made happy in the
possession of his beloved genie. A round of festivities succeeded
their marriage, and the seven sisters strove with each other who
should by invention of new amusements make their residence among
them most delightful to the happy pair Mazin, however, now began
to think of his mother and his native city with fond regret, and
at length begged leave of his kind patronesses to return home, to
which request they, from admiration of his filial love, though
unwilling to part, consented, and a day was fixed for his
departure. The time being arrived, the sisters beat their magical
drum, when several camels appeared at the gates of the palace
heavily laden with the richest goods, a large sum of money,
valuable jewels, and refreshments for the journey, led by proper
attendants. One camel carried a splendid litter for the
conveyance of his wife, and another was richly caparisoned for
the use of Mazin, who, having taken an affectionate leave of his
generous benefactresses, whom he promised to revisit at some
future time, departed, and pursued the route back towards the sea
shore, where he had disembarked with the magician. On the journey
nothing remarkable occurred, and on their arrival at the coast
they found a vessel ready to receive them, when the wind proving
fair, a short time carried them safely to Bussorah, where Mazin
had the satisfaction of finding his mother alive, though greatly
wasted with constant grief and lamentation for his loss. To
describe the joy of their meeting is impossible, for never was
there more tender affeftion between parent and child than
subsisted between Mazin and his mother. She seemed to gain new
life from his recovery, and again to grow young. The fair genie,
who was now in the way of being a mother, appeared perfectly
contented in her situation, and Mazin, so unexpectedly restored
to his country, was happy in the possession of all he wished; for
the generous sisters had bestowed such wealth upon him, that, in
addition to the domestic felicity he enjoyed, he was now one of
the richest persons in all Bussorah.

Three years had rolled away in undisturbed happiness, during
which the fair genie had borne him two sons, when Mazin thought
it grateful to perform his promise to the seven sisters, the
benevolent foundresses of his good fortune. Having accordingly
made preparations for his journey, he committed his wife's native
robes to the care of his mother, giving her the key of a secret
recess in which he had lodged them, but with a strict charge not
to let the genie put them on, lest an irresistible impulse might
inspire her to fly away to her own country; for though in general
she had seemed contented, he had heard her now and then express a
wish to be again with her own friends and species. The mother
promised obedience, and Mazin having taken an affectionate leave
of her, his wife and children, with assurances of speedy return,
embarked on board a vessel and pursued his voyage, which was
uncommonly prosperous. On his landing he found camels waiting his
arrival on the beach, for the genie ladies, by magic arts, knew
of his coming, and had stationed them for his conveyance to their
palace, which he reached in safety, and was received with the
most aftectionate welcomes and hospitality.

Some time after the departure of Mazin, his wife requested her
mother-in-law's permission to amuse herself at a public bath, and
the old lady willingly accompanied her and the children to the
most celebrated humnaum in the city, which was frequented by the
ladies and those of the chief personages of the court, the caliph
Haroon al Rusheed then happening to be at Bussorah. When they
reached the bath there were then in it some of the principal
female slaves, attendants of Zobeide, who, on the entrance of
Mazin's wife, were struck with her uncommon beauty, and instantly
collecting round her, rapturously gazed upon her as she was

The slaves of Zobeide did not cease to admire Mazin's wife till
she left the hummaum, and even followed her till she entered her
own house, when dusk had begun to gloom, and they became
apprehensive of their mistress's being displeased at their long
absence, and so it happened.

Upon entering into her presence, Zobeide exclaimed, "Where have
ye loitered, and what has been the cause of your unusually long
stay at the hummaum?" Upon which they looked confusedly at each
other, and remained silent. The sultana then said in anger,
"Instantly inform me of the cause of your delay!" when they
related the wonderful beauty of Mazin's wife, and dwelt so much
upon her charms, that Zobeide was overcome by curiosity to behold
them. On the follow ing day she sent for the mother of Mazin, who
obeyed the summons with fear and trembling, wondering what could
have made the caliph's consort desirous of seeing a person of her
inferior rank.

Mazin's mother prostrated herself, and kissed the feet of the
sultana, who graciously raising her, said, "Am Mazin, our wish is
that you introduce to me your son's wife, of whose beauty I have
heard such a description, that I long to behold her."

When the mother of Mazin heard these words, her heart sunk within
her, she trembled, but dared not refuse the command of Zobeide,
and she said, "To hear is to obey!" after which she took leave,
with the usual ceremony of prostration before the throne of the

When the mother of Mazin left the princess Zobeide she returned
towards her own house; and when she had reached it. entered to
her son's wife, and said, "Our sultana Zobeide hath invited thee
to an entertainment." The wife of Mazin was delighted, instantly
rose up, arrayed herself in the richest apparel she was mistress
of, and dressed her two children in their choicest garments and
ornaments Then with them, the mother of her husband, and a black
slave, she proceeded, till they reached the palace of the
princess Zobeide, which they entered, and found her sitting in
impatient expectation. They kissed the ground be fore her, and
prayed for her prosperity.

When the sultana Zobeide beheld the wife of Mazin her senses were
confounded, her heart fluttered, she was astonished at her
beauty, elegance, graceful stature, and blooming complexion, and
exclaimed, "Gracious heaven! Where could such a form as this have
been created?" Then she seated her guests, and ordered a
collation to be brought in, which was done immediately, when they
ate and were satisfied, but Zobeide could not keep her eyes from
the wife of Mazin of Bussorah. She kissed her, and questioned her
concerning what had befallen herself and her husband. Her
astonishment was redoubled on the relation of their adventures.

The wife of Mazin then said, "My princess, if you are thus
surprised, though you have not seen me in my native robes, how
would you be delighted at my appearance in them! If, therefore,
you wish to gratify your curiosity by beholding a miracle, you
must command the mother of my husband to bring my country dress.
"Upon this Zobeide commanded the mother of Mazin to fetch the
flying robes, and as she dared not disobey the sultana of the
caliph, she went home, and speedily returned with them. Zobeide
took them into her hands, examined them, and was surprised at
their fashion and texture. At length she gave them to the wife of

When the wife of Mazin had received the robes, she unfolded them,
and going into the open court of the palace, arrayed herself in
them, then taking her children in her arms, mounted with them
suddenly into the air. When she had ascended to about the height
of sixty feet, she called out to the mother of her husband,
saying, "Give my adieu, dear mother, to my lord, and tell him,
should ardent love for me affect him he may come to me in the
islands of Waak al Waak." After this speech she soared towards
the clouds, till she was hidden from their eyes, and speeded to
her own country.

When the mother of Mazin beheld her in the air, she beat her
cheeks, scattered dust upon her head, and cried aloud to the
princess Zobeide, "This is thy mischief." Zobeide was not able to
answer or reprove her boldness from the excess of her sorrow and
regret, which made her repent, when repentance could not avail.
The old lady returned in despair to her own habitation.

Thus it happened to the persons above mentioned, but how was it
with the affairs of Mazin? He did not cease travelling for some
time, till he arrived at the palace of the seven sisters, and
paid his respefts. They were rejoiced at his arrival, and
inquired after his wife, when he informed them she was well, and
that God had blessed him with two children, both sons, which
added to their satisfaction. He remained with them for some time,
after which he entreated their permission to depart. They took a
tender leave of him, when he bade them farewell, and returned
towards his own country; nor did he halt till he arrived in
safety at Bussorah. When he entered his house he found his mother
alone, mournfully weeping and lamenting what had happened in his
absence. Seeing her in this state, he inquired the cause, upon
which she informed him of all that had occurred, from the
beginning to the conclusion.

When Mazin had heard the unwelcome intelligence, he cried out in
an agony of distress for the loss of his wife and children, fell
fainting to the ground, and forgot his own existence. His mother,
on beholding his condition, beat her cheeks, and sprinkled water
upon his face till he came to himself, when he wept and said to
his mother, "Inform me what my wife may have spoken on her
departure." She repeated her farewell words: upon hearing which
his distress and ardent longing for his wife and children was
redoubled. He remained mournfully at home for the space of ten
days, after which he resolved upon the journey to the islands of
Waak al Waak, distant from Bussorah one hundred and fifty years
of travel.

Mazin departed from his mother after he had taken leave and
entreated her prayers for his success, but the aged matron was so
affected that she ordered her tomb to be prepared, and did
nothing but weep and lament night and day for her son, who did
not halt till he had reached the palace of the seven sisters.
When they saw him they were surprised, and said to one another,
"There must be some urgent cause for his returning so speedily."
They saluted him, and inquired after his affairs: upon which he
informed them of the desertion of his wife, what she had said at
going away, and of his resolves to travel to the islands of Waak
al Waak. The seven ladies replied, "This expedition is impossible
to be accomplished either by thee or any of thy race; for these
islands are distant a hundred and fifty years' journey, so that
thou canst not live to reach them." Mazin exclaimed, "My
attempting it, however, is incumbent upon me, though I may perish
on the road: if God has decreed my reunion with my wife I shall
meet her again; but if not, I shall die and be received into the
mercy of the Almighty." The sisters did not cease to importune
him to lay aside the journey, but it was impossible for him to
obey them or remain at ease; upon which their grief for his
situation increased. They knew that the distance was such as he
could never overcome by human aid, or rejoin his wife, but they
respected his ardent love for her and his children.

On this account they consulted with one another how to assist him
on the journey. He remained with them a month, but unable to
repose or enjoy their entertainments. The sisters had two uncles,
one named Abd al Kuddoos, and the other Abd al Sulleeb, who lived
at three months distance from them, to whom they wrote in
recommendation of Mazin as follows.

"The bearer is our friend Mazin of Bussorah. If you can direct
him how to reach the islands of Waak al Waak, assist him; but if
not, prevent him from proceeding, lest he plunge himself into
destruction. At present he will not attend to our advice or
reproofs, from excess of love to his wife and children, but
through you there may finally occur to him safety and success."

When they had sealed this letter they gave it to Mazin, and
bestowed also upon him, of water and provisions, what would
suffice for three months' consumption, laden upon camels, and a
steed for his conveyance, upon which he took leave of them with
many thanks, fully resolved to pursue his journey to the islands
of Waak al Waak.

With much pain and difficulty he pursued his journey, nor had he
any pleasure either in eating or drinking during the three months
of his pilgrimage. At length he reached a verdant pasturage, in
which was a variety of flowers, flocks of sheep, and cattle
feeding. It was indeed a paradise upon earth. In one part of it
he perceived a pleasant eminence on which were buildings: he
advanced to them, and entered a court. Within it he beheld a
venerable looking personage, his beard flowing to his middle,
whom he saluted; when the sage returned his compliments, welcomed
him with respectful demeanour, and congratulated him on his
arrival. He seated him, and laid before him a collation, of which
they both ate till they were satisfied.

Mazin lodged with him that night, and in the morning the sage
inquired of him his situation, and the reason of his coming to
such a sequestered spot.

Mazin informed him; and, behold! this personage was Abd al
Kuddoos; who, when he heard his guest mention particulars of his
brother's children, redoubled his attentions to him, and said,
"Did they give you any letter?" Mazin replied, "Yes." He eagerly
exclaimed, "Give it to me." He gave it him, when he opened it,
read it to himself, and considered the contents word byword.

Abd al Kuddoos gazed earnestly at Mazin; reflected on his
adventures, at which he was astonished; and how he had plunged
himself into danger and difficulty in such a wild pursuit. He
then said to him, "My son, my advice is, that thou return by the
way which thou hast come, and no longer vex thy soul on account
of impossibilities, for this business thou canst not accomplish.
I will write to the daughters of my brother what shall make thee
happy with them, and restore thy peace. Return then to them, and
perplex not thyself farther, for between this spot and the
islands of Waak al Waak is the distance of a hundred and fifty
years' journey. On the way also are numerous perils, for in it
are the abodes of genii, the haunts of wild beasts, and monstrous
serpents, and some parts also where food cannot be had or thirst
be gratified. Have compassion then, my son, upon thyself, and
rush not on destruction."

Abd al Kuddoos continued to dissuade him from his resolution
during three days, but he would not hear advice or reproof. On
the third he prepared to depart, being sufficiently refreshed;
upon which the old man, seeing his steadiness, arose, kindled a
fire, cast into it some perfumes, and uttered incantations, to
Mazin unintelligible; when suddenly appeared a genie, in stature
forty cubits; he was one of the subdued spirits of our lord
Solomon. He muttered and growled, saying, "For what, my lord,
hast thou summoned me here? shall I tear up this eminence by the
roots, and hurl it beyond the mountains of Kaaf?"

Abd al Kuddoos replied, "God be merciful to thee; I have occasion
for thee, and request that thou wilt accomplish my wish in one
day:" upon which the genie answered, "To hear is to obey."

Abd al Kuddoos then said to the genie, "Take up this young man,
and convey him to my brother Abd al Sullecb." He consented,
though the distance was a common journey of seventy years. The
genie advanced, seized Mazin, and placing him upon his shoulders,
soared with him through the air from morning till sunset, when he
descended before Abd al Sulleeb, paid his respects, and informed
him of the commands of his brother Abd al Kuddoos. Upon this he
greeted Mazin, who presented him the letter from the daughters of
his brother, which he opened and read. When he had examined the
contents, he was astonished at the circumstances which had
befallen Mazin, his arrival with him, and his resolve to
penetrate to the islands of Waak al Waak. He then said to him,
"My son, I advise that thou vex not thyself with these
difficulties and dangers, for thou canst never attain thy object,
or reach these islands."

Mazin now began to despair, and at the remembrance of his wife
and children to weep bitterly, insomuch that he fainted, which,
when Abd al Sulleeb beheld, his heart sympathized with his
unhappy condition. He perceived that he would not return from his
pursuit, or be controlled, and therefore thought it best to
assist his progress towards the islands. Going into another
apartment, he kindled a fire, over which he sprinkled some
perfumes, and uttered incantations; when, lo! ten genii presented
themselves before him, and said, "Inform us, my lord, what thou
desirest, and we will bring it thee in an instant." He replied,
"May God be gracious unto you!" and related to them the story of
Maxin, his wife, and children.

When the ten genii had heard the narration, they exclaimed, "This
affair is wonderful and miraculous; however, we will take and
convey him safely over the mountains and deserts, to the extent
of our country and dominion, and leave him there, but cannot
promise further assistance, as we dare not pass a step beyond our
own territories, for the land belongs to others. In it are
innumerable horrors, and we dread the inhabitants." Mazin having
heard what they said, exclaimed, "I accept your offer with

The ten genii now took up Mazin, soared with him through tnc air
for a night and day, till they came to the limits of their
territories, and then set him down in a country called the land
of Kafoor, took, their leaves, and vanished from his sight. He
walked onwards, and did not neglect to employ his tongue in
prayer, beseeching from God deliverance and the attainment of his
wishes. Often would he exclaim, "O God, deliverer from bondage,
who canst guide in safety over mountains, who feedest the wild
beasts of the forest, who decreest life and death, thou canst
grant me if thou choosest relief from all my distress, and free
me from all my sorrows."

In this manner did he travel onwards during ten days; on the last
of which he beheld three persons contending with each other, each
man trying to kill his fellow. He was astonished at their
conduit, but advanced towards them. Upon his approach they
desisted from combat, and one and all exclaimed, "We will be
judged before his young man, and whoever contradicts his opinion
shall be deemed in the wrong." To this they agreed, and coming up
to Mazin, demanded from him a just arbitration in their dispute.
They then displayed before him a cap, a small copper drum, and a
wooden ball, saying, "We are three brothers, by the same father
and mother, who are both received into the mercy of God, leaving
behind them these articles. They are three, and we are three; but
a dispute hath fallen out among us respecting their allotment, as
each of us says, ‘I will have the cap.' Our contention made us
proceed to blows, but now we are desirous that thou shouldst
arbitrate between us, and allot an article to each of us as thou
shall judge best, when we will rest satisfied with thy decision,
but should either contradict it he shall be adjuged an offender."

When Mazin heard the above he was surprised, and said to himself,
"These articles arc so paltry and of such trifling value as not
to be worth an arbitration; for surely this shabby cap, the drum,
and the wooden ball, cannot be worth altogether more than half a
deenar; but I will inquire farther about them." He then said, "My
brethren, wherein lies the value of these three things about
which you were contending, for to me they appear of very little
worth." They replied, "Dear uncle, each of them has a property
worth treasuries of wealth, and to each of them belongs a tale so
wonderful, that wert thou to write it on a tablet of adamant it
would remain an example for those who will be admonished."

Mazin then requested that they would relate to him the stories of
the three articles, when they said, "The eldest brother shall
first deliver the account of one, its properties, what can be
gained from them, and we will not conceal any thing from thee."

"This cap," said the elder brother, "is called the cap of
invisibility, by which, whoever possesseth it may become
sovereign of the world. When he puts it on, he may enter where he
pleases, for none can perceive him, either genii or men, so that
he may convey away whatever he chooses, unseen, in security. He
may enter the cabinets of kings and statesmen, and hear all they
converse upon respecting political intrigues. Does he covet
wealth, he may visit the royal treasuries, and plunder them at
his pleasure; or does he wish for revenge, he can kill his enemy
without being detected. In short, he may act as he pleases
without fear of discovery.'

Mazin now said to himself, "This cap can become nobody but me, to
whom it will be most advantageous in the object of my expedition.
Perhaps it may conduct me to my wife and children, and I may
obtain from its possession all I wish. It is certainly one of the
wonders of the world and rarities of the age, not to be found
among the riches of kings of the present day." When he had
ruminated thus, he said, "I am acquainted with the properties of
the cap, what are those of the drum?"

The second brother began, saying, "Whoever has this drum in his
possession, should he be involved in a difficult situation, let
him take it out of its case, and with the sticks gently beat upon
the characters engraven on the copper; when, if his mind be
collected and his courage firm, there will appear to him
wonderful matters. The vurtue of it consists in the words
inscribed upon it, which were written by our lord Solomon Bin
David in talismanic characters, each of which has control over
certain spirits and princes of the genii, and a power that cannot
be described in speech. Hence, whoever is master of this drum may
become superior to all the monarchs of the present day, for, on
his beating it in the manner alreadv described, when he is
pressed for help, all the princes of the genii, with their sons,
will appear also their troops and followers, ready to obey his
commands. Whatever he may order them to execute they will perform
by virtue of the talisman of our lord Solomon Bin David."

When Mazin of Bussorah had heard the above, he said to himself,
"This drum is fitting only for me, as I have much more need of it
than the brothers. It will protect me from all evil in the
islands of Waak al Waak, should I reach them, and meet with my
wife and children. It is true, if I take only the cap I may be
able to enter all places, but this drum will keep injury from me,
and with it I shall be secure from all enemies' After this, he
said, "I have been informed of the virtues of the cap, and the
properties of the drum, there now only remains the account of the
wooden ball, that I may give judgment between you, therefore let
the third brother speak. He an swercd, "To hear is to obey."

The third brother said, "My dear uncle, whoever possesses this
ball will find in it wonderful properties, for it brings distant
parts near, and makes near distant, it shortens long joumeys, and
lengthens short ones If any person wish to perform one of two
hundred years in two days, let him take it from its case, then
lay it upon the ground and mention what place he desires to go,
it will instantly be in motion, and rush over the earth like the
blast of the stormy gale. He must then follow it till he arrives
at the place desired, which he will have the power to do with

When the youth had concluded his description of the virtue of the
wooden ball, Mazin resolved within himself to take this also from
the brothers, and said, "If your wish be that I should arbitrate
between you, I must first prove the virtues of these three
articles, and afterwards let each take that which may fall to him
by decision." The three brothers exclaimed, "We have heard, and
we consent; act as thou thinkest best, and may God protect thee
in thy undertakings!" Mazin then put on the cap, placed the drum
under his vestband, took up the ball and placed it on the ground,
when it speeded before him swiftly as the gale. He followed it
till it came to the gate of a building which it entered, and
Mazin also went in with it. The brothers ran till they were
fatigued, and cried out, "Thou hast sufficiently tried them;" but
in vain, for by this time there was between him and them the
distance of ten years' journey. Mazin now rested, took the drum
in his hands, rubbed his fingers over the talismanic characters,
hesitated whether he should strike them with the sticks, then
labored lightly upon them, when, lo! a voice exclaimed, "Mazin,
thou hast gained thy desires.

"Thou wilt not, however," continued the voice, "arrive at thy
object till after much trouble, but take care of the ball in this
spot, for thou art at present in the land of the evil genii."
Upon this, Mazin took up the ball and concealed it in his
clothes; but he was overcome with astonishment at hearing words
without seeing the speaker, and exclaimed, "Who art thou, my
lord?" "I am," replied the voice, "one of the slaves of the
characters which thou seest engraved upon the drum, and
unremittingly in attendance; but the other servants will not
appear except the drum be beaten loudly, when three hundred and
sixty chiefs will attend thy commands, each of whom has under his
authority ten thousand genii, and every individual of them
numerous followers."

Mazin now inquired the distance of the islands of Waak al Waak;
to which the voice replied, "Three years' journey:" upon which he
struck the ball before him, and followed it. He next arrived in a
region infested by serpents, dragons, and ravenous beasts, in the
mountains of which were mines of copper. He now again tabored
gently upon the drum, when the voice exclaimed, "I am ready to
obey thy commands."

"Inform me," said Mazin, "what is the name of this country?" "It
is called," answered the voice, "the Land of Dragons and Ravenous
Animals. Be careful then of thyself, and make no delay, nor
regard fatigue, for these mountains are not to be passed without
a chance of trouble from the inhabitants, who are genii, and in
their caves are furious wild beasts." Upon this he struck the
ball afresh, and followed it unceasingly, till at length he
reached the sea shore, and perceived the islands of Waak al Waak
at a distance, whose mountains appeared of a fiery red, like the
sky gilded by the beams of the setting sun. When he beheld them
he was struck with awe and dread; but recovering, he said to
himself, "Why should I be afraid? since God has conducted me
hither, he will protect me; or, if I die, I shall be relieved
from my troubles, and be received into the mercy of God." He then
gathered some fruits, which he ate, drank some water, and having
performed his devotions, laid himself down to sleep, nor did he
awake till the morning.

In the morning Mazin had recourse to his drum, which he rubbed
gently, when the voice inquired his commands. "How am I," said
he, "to pass this sea, and enter the islands?" "That is not to be
done," replied the voice, "without the assistance of a sage who
resides in a cell on yonder mountains, distant from hence a day's
journey, but the ball will conduct thee there in half an hour.
When you reach his abode, knock softly at the door, when he will
appear, and inquire whence you come, and what you want. On
entering he will receive thee kindly, and desire thee to relate
thy adventures from beginning to end. Conceal nothing from him,
for he alone can assist thee in passing the sea "

Mazin then struck the ball, and followed it till he arrived at
the abode of the hermit, the gate of which he found locked He
knocked, when a voice from within said, "Who is at the gate?" "A
guest," replied Mazin upon which the sage arose and opened the
door, admitted him, and entertained him kindly for a whole night
and day, after which Mazin ventured to inquire how he might pass
the sea The sage replied, "What occasions thy searching after
such an object?" Mazin answered, "My lord, I intend to enter the
islands, and with that view have I travelled far distant from my
own country." When the sage heard this, he stood up before him,
took a book, opened it, and read in it to himself for some time,
every now and then casting a look of astonishment upon Mazin. At
length he raised his head and said, "Heavens! what troubles,
disasters, and afflictions in exile have been decreed to this
youth in the search of his object!" Upon this Mazin exclaimed,
"Wherefore, my lord, did you look at the book and then at me so
earnestly?" The sage replied, "My son, I would instruct thee how
to reach the islands, since such is thy desire, but thou canst
not succeed in thy desires till after much labour and
inconvenience. However, at present relate to me thy adventures
from first to last" Mazin rejoined, "My story, my lord, is such a
surprising one, that were it engraven on tablets of adamant, it
would be an example for such as would take warning."

When he had related his story from beginning to end, the sage
exclaimed, "God willing thou wilt attain thy wishes:" upon which
Mazin inquired concerning the sea surrounding the islands, and
how he could overcome such an impediment to his progress; when
the sage answered, "By God's permission, in the morning we will
repair to the mountains, and I will shew thee the wonders of the

When God permitted morning to dawn the hermit arose, took Mazin
with him, and they ascended the mountains, till they reached a
structure resembling a fortress, which they entered, and
proceeded into the inmost court, in which was an immense colossal
statue of brass, hollowed into pipes, having in the midst of it a
reservoir lined with marble, the work of magicians. When Mazin
beheld this he was astonished, and began to tremble with fear at
the vastness of the statue, and what miraculous power it might
contain. The hermit now kindled a fire, threw into it some
perfumes, and muttered some unintelligible words, when suddenly
dark clouds arose, from which burst out eddies of tempestuous
wind, lightnings, claps of thunder, groans, and frightful noises,
and in the midst of the reservoir appeared boiling waves, for it
was near the ocean surrounding the islands. The hermit did not
cease to utter his incantations, until the hurricane and noises
had subsided by his authority, for he was more powerful than any
of the magicians, and had command over the rebellious genii. He
now said to Mazin, "Go out, and look towards the ocean
surrounding the islands."

Mazin repaired to the summit of the mountain, and looked towards
the sea, but could not discover the smallest trace of its
existence: upon which he was astonished at the miraculous power
of the hermit. He returned to him, exclaiming, "I can behold no
remains of the ocean, and the islands appear joined to the main
land;" when the sage said, "My son, place thy reliance on God and
pursue thy object," after which he vanished from sight.

Mazin now proceeded into the islands, and did not stop till he
had reached a verdant spot watered by clear rivulets, and shaded
by lofty trees. It was now sunrise, and among the wonders which
he beheld was a tree like the weeping willow, on which hung, by
way of fruit, beautiful damsels, who exclaimed, "Praised be God
our creator, and former of the islands of Waak al Waak." They
then dropped from the tree and expired. At sight of this prodigy
his senses were confounded, and he exclaimed, "By heavens, this
is miraculously surprising!" When he had recovered himself, he
roamed through the groves, and admired the contrivances of the
Almighty till sunset, when he sat down to rest.

He had not sat long when there approached towards him a
masculinely looking old woman of disagreeable countenance, at
sight of whom Mazin was alarmed. The matron guessing that he was
in fear of her, said to him, "What is thy name, what are thy
wants? art thou of this country? Inform me; be not afraid or
apprehensive, for I will request of God that I may be the means
of forwarding thy wishes." On hearing these words the heart of
Mazin was encouraged, and he rerelated to her his adventures from
first to last. When she had heard them, she knew that he must be
husband to the sister of her mistress, who was queen of the
islands of Waak al Waak, and said, "Thy object is a difficult
one, but I will assist thee all in my power."

The old woman now conducted Mazin through by-paths to the capital
of the island, and led him unperceived in the darkness of night,
when the inhabitants had ceased to pass through the streets, to
her own house. She then set before him refreshments, and having
eaten and drunk till he was satisfied, he praised God for his
arrival; when the matron informed him concerning his wife, that
she had endured great troubles and afflictions since her
separation, and repented sincerely of her flight. Upon hearing
this, Mazin wept bitterly, and fainted with anguish. When revived
by the exertions of the old woman, she comforted him by promises
of speedy assistance to complete his wishes, and left him to his

Next morning the old woman desiring Mazin to wait patiently for
her return, repaired to the palace, where she found the queen and
her sisters in consultation concerning the wife of Mazin, and
saying, "This wretch hath espoused a man, by whom she has
children, but now she is returned, we will put her to death after
divers tortures." Upon the entrance of the old lady they arose,
saluted her with great respect, and seated her, for she had been
their nurse. When she had rested a little, she said, "Were you
not conversing about your unfortunate sister? but can ye reverse
the decrees of God?" "Dear nurse," replied they, "no one can
avoid the will of heaven, and had she wedded one of our own
nature there would have been no disgrace, but she has married a
human being of Bussorah, and has children by him, so that our
species will despise us, and tauntingly say, ‘Your sister is a
harlot.' Her death is therefore not to be avoided." The nurse
rejoined, "If you put her to death your scandal will be greater
than hers, for she was wedded lawfully, and her offspring is
legitimate; but I wish to see her." The eldest sister answered,
"She is now confined in a subterraneous dungeon;" upon which the
nurse requested permission to visit her, which was granted, and
one of the sisters attended to conduct her to the prison.

The nurse, on her arrival at the prison, found the wife of Mazin
in great distress from the cruelty of her sisters. Her children
were playing about her, but very pallid, from the closeness of
their confinement. On the entrance of the nurse she stood up,
made her obeisance, and began to weep, saying, "My dear nurse, I
have been long in this dungeon, and know not what in the end may
be my fate." The old woman kissed her cheeks, and said, "My dear
daughter, God will bring thee relief, perchance on this very

When the wife of Mazin heard this, she said, "Good heavens! your
words, my dear nurse, recall a gleam of comfort that last night
struck across my mind from a voice, which said, ‘Be comforted, O
wife of Mazin, for thy deliverance is near.'" Upon this the old
woman replied, "Thou shalt indeed be comforted, for thy husband
is at my abode, and will speedily release thee." The unfortunate
prisoner, overcome with joy, fainted away, but was soon restored
by the nurse's sprinkling water upon her face, when she opened
her eyes and said, "I conjure thee by heaven, my dear nurse,
inform me if thou speakest truth, or dissemblest." "I not only
speak truth," answered the nurse, "but by God's help thou shalt
meet thy husband this day." After this she left her.

The nurse, upon her return home, inquired of Mazin if he had
skill to take his wife away, provided he was admitted into the
dungeon at night. He replied, "Yes." When night was set in, she
conducted him to the spot where she was confined, left him near
the gate, and went her way. He then put on his cap of
invisibility, and remained unperceived all night by any one.
Early in the morning the queen, his wife's eldest sister,
advanced, opened the gate of the prison, and entered, when he
followed unseen behind her, and seated himself in a corner of the
apartment. The queen went up to her sister, and beat her cruelly
with a whip, while her children wept around her, till the blood
appeared upon her body, when she left her hanging by her hair
from a pillar, went out, and locked the door of the dungeon.
Mazin now arose, unloosed his wife's hair, and pulling off the
cap, appeared before her, when she exclaimed, "From whence didst
thou come?" They then embraced each other, and he said. "Ah, why
didst thou act thus, leave me in such affliction, and plunge
thyself into such distress, which, indeed, thy conduct hath
almost deserved?" "It is true," replied she; "but what is past is
past, and reproach will not avail, unless thus canst effect our
escape:" upon which he exclaimed, "Does thy inclination really
lead thee to accompany me to my own country?" She answered,

"Yes; do with me what thou choosest."

They remained in endearment with their children until evening,
when the keeper of the dungeon approaching, Mazin put on his cap
of invisibility. The keeper having set down the provisions for
the night, retired into a recess of the dungeon and fell asleep;
when Mazin and his family sat down and refreshed themselves.
Perceiving the keeper asleep, Mazin tried the door and found it
unlocked; upon which, he, with his wife and children, left the
prison, and travelled as quickly as possible all night. When the
queen, in the morning, was informed of her sister's escape she
was enraged, and made incantations, on which seven thousand genii
attended, with whom she marched out in pursuit, resolved to cut
the fugitives in pieces.

Mazin, looking behind him, perceived a cloud of dust, and soon
appeared the forces of his wife's sister, who cried out on seeing
him, with dreadful howls, "Where will ye go, ye wretches, ye
accursed? where can ye hide yourselves?" Upon this Mazin took out
his drum, and beat it violently, when, lo! there appeared before
him legions of genii, in number more than could be reckoned, and
they fought with the armies of the queen, who was taken prisoner,
with her principal attendants.

When the wife of Mazin beheld her sister in this distress her
compassion was moved towards her, and she said to her husband,
"Hurt not my sister, nor use her ill, for she is my elder:" upon
which he treated her respectfully, and commanded tents to be
pitched for her and her court.

Peace being established, the sisters took an affectionate leave,
and Mazin, with his family, departed for the residence of Abd al
Sulleeb, which they speedily reached with the assistance of the
genii, and the directing ball. The old man received him kindly,
and inquired his adventures, when he related them to him; at
which he was surprised, especially at the account of the cap, the
drum, and the ball; of which last Mazin begged his acceptance,
being now near home, and having no farther occasion for its use.
Abd al Sulleeb was much pleased, and entertained him
magnificently for three days, when Mazin wishing to depart, the
old man presented him with rich gifts, and dismissed him.

Mazin was continuing his route, when suddenly a band of a hundred
banditti appeared, resolved to plunder and put him and his
companions to death, with which design they kept advancing. Mazin
called out to them, "Brother Arabs, let the covenant of God be
between you and me, keep at a distance from me." When they heard
this they increased their insolence, surrounded him, and supposed
they should easily seize all that he had; but especially when
they beheld his wife, and the beauty she was endowed with, they
said one to another, "Let us put him to death, and not suffer him
to live." Each man resolved within himself, saying," I will seize
this damsel, and not take the plunder."

When Mazin saw that they were bent upon attacking him, to seize
his wife and plunder his effects, he took out his drum and beat
upon it in a slight manner, when, behold! ten genii appeared
before him, requiring his commands. He replied, "I wish the
dispersion of yonder horsemen;" upon which one of the ten
advanced among the hundred banditti, and uttered such a
tremendous yell as made the mountains reverberate the sound.
Immediately as he sent forth the yell, the banditti, in alarm,
dispersed themselves among the rocks, when such as fell from
their horses' backs fled on foot; so that they lost their
reputation, and were ridiculed among the chiefs of the Abbasside
tribes. Mazin now pursued his journey, and did not halt till he
had reached the abode of Abd al Kuddoos, who advanced to meet him
and saluted him, but was astonished when he beheld his company,
and the wealth he had obtained. Mazin related what had befallen
him, of dangers, and hunger, and thirst; his safe arrival in the
islands of Waak al Waak; the deliverance of his wife from prison,
and the defeat of the army sent to oppose his return. He
mentioned also the reconciliation between the sisters of his
wife, and whatever had happened to him from first to last.

Abd al Kuddoos was greatly astonished at these adventures, and
said to Mazin of Bussorah, "Truly, my son, these events are most
surprising, and can have never occurred to any but thyself."
Mazin remained three days to repose himself, and was treated with
hospitality and respect until the fourth, when he resolved to
continue his journey, and took leave. He proceeded towards his
own country, and did not halt on the way till he arrived with the
seven sisters, the owners of the palace, who had so much
befriended him.

When Mazin of Bussorah arrived near the palace of the seven
sisters, they came out to meet him, saluted him and his wife, and
conducted them within; but they were astonished at his return,
and at first could scarcely believe his success, wondering that
he had not perished on the road, or been torn in pieces by the
wild beasts of the desert; for they had regarded it as impossible
that he should ever reach the islands of Waak al Waak.

When they were seated, they requested him to relate to them all
that had befallen him, which he did from first to last, and they
were more than ever astonished at his uncommon adventures. After
this they introduced a collation, and spread the cloth, when they
ate till they were satisfied, and then wrote a letter and
dispatched it to the mother of Mazin, congratulating her on the
health of her son, and his safe return with his wife and

Mazm remained with the ladies a month, enjoying himself in
feasting and amusements, after which he begged permission to
depart to his own country, for his heart was anxious for his
mother. They dismissed him, and he travelled unceasingly till he
arrived at Bussorah. He entered the city at sunset, and proceeded
to his own house, when his mother came out, saluted him, and
embraced him. She had erected her tomb in the court of her house,
and had wept night and day till she became blind, but when the
letter arrived from the sisters, from the rapture of joy her
sight returned unto her again. She beheld the children of her
son, embraced them, and that night was to her as an eed or

When God had caused the morning to dawn, the chief personages of
Bussorah visited Mazin to congratulate him on his return, and the
principal ladies came to his mother, and rejoiced with her on the
safety of her son. At length intelligence of it reached the
caliph Haroon al Rusheed, who sent for Mazin to his presence.
Having entered the audience chamber, he made the usual obeisance,
when the caliph returned his salute, and commanded him to sit.
When he was seated, the caliph demanded that he should relate the
whole of what had befallen him, to which he answered, "To hear is
to obey."

Mazin then recited his adventures from the time the fire-
worshipper who had stolen him from his mother by his stratagems,
the mode of his coming to the palace of the seven ladies, the
manner in which he obtained his wife, her flight from the palace
of the empress Zobeide, his journey to the islands of Waak al
Waak, also the dangers and difficulties he had encountered from
first to last. The caliph was astonished, and said, "The
substance of these adventures must not be lost or concealed, but
shall be recorded in writing." He then commanded an amanuensis to
attend, and seated Mazin of Bussorah by him, until he had taken
down his adventures from beginning to end.


In the capital of a sultan named Rammaud lived a barber, who had
a son growing up to manhood, possessing great accomplishments of
mind and person, and whose wit and humour drew numerous customers
to his shop. One day a venerable dervish entering it, sat down,
and calling for a looking glass, adjusted his beard and whiskers,
at the same time asking many questions of the young man; after
which he laid down a sherif, rose up, and departed. The next day
he came again, and for several days following, always finishing
his visit by leaving a piece of gold upon the looking-glass, to
the great satisfaction of the barber, who from his other
customers never usually received more than sonic coppers of
little value; but though he liked the gold, his suspicions were
raised against the generous donor, supposing him to be a
necromancer, who had some evil design against his son, whom,
therefore, he cautioned to be upon his guard. The visits of the
dervish were continued as usual for some time; when one day he
found the barber's son alone in the shop, and was informed that
his father had gone to divert himself with viewing some
experiments which the sultan was making of the mixture of various
metals, being an adept in chemistry, and eager in search of the
philosopher's stone. The dervish now invited the young man to
accompany him to the spot where the experiments were making, and
on their arrival they saw a vast furnace, into which the sultan
and his attendants cast pieces of metal of various sorts. The
dervish having taken a lump of ore from his wallet threw it into
the furnace; then addressing the young barber, said, "I must for
the present bid you farewell, as I have a journey to take; but if
the sultan should inquire after me, let him know I am to be found
in a certain city, and will attend his summons." Having said
this, the dervish presented the barber's son with a purse of
gold, took his leave, and the youth returned home. Great was the
surprise of the sultan, when the metals in the furnace were all
melted, to find them converted into a mass of solid gold, which
proved, on assay, to be of the purest quality. Every one was
questioned as to what he had cast into the furnace, when there
appeared no reason to suppose the transmutation could have been
effected by such an accidental mixture of metals. At length it
was remarked, that a dervish, accompanying the barber's son, had
cast in a lump of ore, and immediately disappeared. Upon this the
sultan summoned the youth to his presence, and inquiring after
his companion, was informed of the place of his residence, and of
what, on his departure, he had said to him. The sultan was
overjoyed at the welcome intelligence, and dispatched the young
man, with an honourable attendance, to conduct the venerable
dervish to his presence, where being arrived, he was received
with the most distinguishing attention, and the barber's son was
promoted to high office. After some days, the sultan requested
the dervish to instruct him in the transmutation of metals, which
he readily did, as well as in many other occult mysteries; which
so gratified his royal patron, that he trusted the administration
of government to his care. This disgusted the ministers and
courtiers, who could not bear to be controlled by a stranger, and
therefore resolved to effect his ruin. By degrees they persuaded
their credulous master that the dervish was a magician, who would
in time possess himself of his throne, and the sultan, alarmed,
resolved to put him to death. With this intention, calling him to
the presence, he accused him of sorcery, and commanded an
executioner to strike off his head. "Forbear awhile," exclaimed
the dervish, "and let me live till I have shown you the most
wonderful specimen of my art." To this the sultan consented, when
the dervish, with chalk, drew a circle of considerable extent
round the sultan and his attendants, then stepping into the
middle of it, he drew a small circle round himself, and said,
"Now seize me if you can;" and immediately disappeared from
sight. At the same instant, the sultan and his courtiers found
themselves assaulted by invisible agents, who, tearing off their
robes, whipped them with scourges till the blood flowed in
streams from their lacerated backs. At length the punishment
ceased, but the mortification of the sultan did not end here, for
all the gold which the dervish had transmuted returned to its
original metals. Thus, by his unjust credulity, was a weak prince
punished for his ungrateful folly. The barber and his son also
were not to be found, so that the sultan could gain no
intelligence of the dervish, and he and his courtiers became the
laughingstock of the populace for years after their merited


Mherejaun, sultan of Hind, was many years without any progeny,
and immersed in melancholy at the thought of his kingdom's
passsing to another family. One evening, while indulging his
gloomy thoughts, he dropped into a doze, from which he was roused
by a voice exclaiming, "Sultan, thy wife this night shall
conceive. If she bears a son, he will increase the glory of thy
house; but if a daughter, she will occasion thee disgrace and
misfortune." In due time the favourite sultana was delivered of a
daughter, to the great mortification of the parents, who would
have destroyed her had not her infant smiles diverted their
anger. She was brought up in the strictest privacy, and at the
end of twelve years the sultan had her conveyed to a strong
citadel erected in the middle of a deep lake, hoping in such a
confinement to prevent her from fulfilling the prediction which
had been made concerning her. Nothing could excel the
magnificence of her abode, where she was left only with female
attendants of the highest accomplishments, but no male was
allowed to approach even the borders of the lake, except when
supplies were conveyed for the use of its fair inhabitants, who
were then restricted to their apartments. The gate of the citadel
was entrusted to the care of an old lady, the princess's nurse.
For three years the fair Aleefa lived happy in her splendid
prison, but the decree of fate was not to be overcome, and an
event predestined by heaven overturned the cautious project of
sultan Mherejaun.

Eusuff, a dissipated young prince, son to the sultan of Sind,
having offended his father, fled from his court, and with a few
attendants reached the borders of the lake, in his way to seek an
asylum in the territories of Mherejaun. Curious to know who
inhabited the citadel in the midst of it, he swam over the lake,
and landed at the gate, which he found shut, but no one answered
his loudest call for admission. Upon this he wrote a note,
requesting compassion to a helpless stranger, and having fixed it
to an arrow, shot it over the battlements. It luckily for him
fell at the feet of the princess, then walking in one of the
courts of her palace. She prevailed upon her nurse to open the
gate, and at sight of Eusuff fell in love with him, as he did
with her. He was admitted, and the tenderest interviews took
place between them. Joy and pleasure prevailed in the citadel,
while the piince's attendants remained, expecting his return, on
the banks of the lake.

After some time, sultan Sohul wishing to be reconciled to his
son, and having learnt the route he had taken, dispatched his
nephew named Yiah to assure him of forgiveness, and invite him to
return to Sind. Yiah arriving at the lake, was informed by
Eusuff's attendants that the prince had entered the citadel,
since which they had not seen or heard anything of him. Yiah,
upon this, penned a note expressive of the sultan's forgiveness,
and his wish to see the prince, which he fixed to an arrow and
shot it into the palace, in the garden of which it fell, as
Eusuff and Aleefa were walking for their amusement. The prince,
on reading the note, overcome with joy at the intelligence of his
father's forgiveness of his errors, resolved to return home and
pay his duty to his parents. He communicated his design to the
princess, who was plunged into the deepest sorrow at the thought
of his departure, but he comforted her by assurances of his
speedy return, declaring that nothing but filial duty could have
torn him from her, even for a moment. She now implored him to to
take her with him, but Eusuff prudently represented that such a
step could only disgrace her fame and enrage her father, who, on
discovery of her flight, would invade the kingdom of Sind with
his powerful armies, and a scene of unnecessary bloodshed would
ensue. On the contrary, it they waited patiently, sultan
Mherejaun might be prevailed upon to consent to their union; but,
in the mean time, he would visit her often, while their meetings
might, through the fidelity of their mutual attendants, be kept
secret. Aleefa, though unwilling, was obliged to acknowledge the
justice of his reasoning, and consented to his departure; but on
his taking leave, with tears and embraces entreated him not to be
long absent, which he promised, and with truth, for his love was
sincere, and it was with difficulty he submitted to the call of
duty to a forgiving parent.

Eusuff having swam the lake with his bow and quiver upon his
head, as before, rejoined his companions, who rejoiced to see
him. He was received by his cousin Yiah with transports of
affection, and informed of what had happened since his departure
from court; after which the prince related his love adventure
with the fair Aleefa, at the same time requesting his secrecy,
and that he would charge the same on his attendants, as to his
having been in the citadel, which he should earnestly beg also of
his companions to observe. After a night's repose the two princes
marched towards Sind, and when within a day's distance from the
capital, dispatched a courier to give notice of their approach.
Sultan Sohul, overcome with joy at the recovery of his son,
having commanded the city to be ornamented and splendid
entertainments to be made for his triumphal entry, with his whole
court in their most magnificent array advanced to meet him. The
prince, on seeing his father's train, dismounted, fell on his
face, then running up, eagerly embraced the stirrup of the old
sultan, who threw himself upon his neck in a transport of joy,
and wept over him with tears of affectionate rapture. A horse
sumptuously caparisoned was now brought for the prince's
mounting, and the father and son rode side by side into the city,
amid the acclamations of all ranks of people; while, as they
proceeded, basins full of silver and gold, coined for the
occasion, were showered amongst the assembled crowds in the
streets. It is impossible to describe the tender interview
between the prince and the queen his mother, whose heart had been
nearly broken on the flight of her son, or the glad transports of
Eusuff's own ladies, who were in number three wives and forty
concubines. Suffice it to say, that all was joy and pleasure in
the palace, except in the breast of Eusuff; who mingled with the
satisfaction of return to his family an ardent desire to meet
again the beautiful Aleefa, so that the caresses of his women
gave him no pleasure; and when he retired to his apartment, he
did not, as was usual, call any of them to his presence, but
passed the night alone, thinking of his beloved. Morning invited
him to new scenes of festivity, prepared by his happy parents,
who little suspected how soon they were again to lose their son.

Eusuff having sacrificed a few days (to him long as the eve of
dissolution) to his sense of duty, could no longer restrain his
impatience, but with a faithful slave named Hullaul, mounted on a
favourite courser behind him, left the palace undiscovered in the
darkness of night, and speeded with the swiftness of the gale
towards the citadel of Aleefa. Being arrived on the banks of the
lake, he secured his saddle and bridle among some bushes, and was
carried with his attendant safely through the water by his noble
steed. Unbounded was the joy of the princess at again meeting her
faithful lover, nor was his rapture less than hers. Having
committed Hullaul to the care of the ladies of Aleefa, they
retired to their apartment. Thirty days rolled on almost
unpcrceived by Eusuff, who forgot his parents, his family, and
country, in the delights of love.

On the thirtieth evening, as Eusuff and Aleefa were viewing the
beautiful prospect from the terrace of the palace, they perceived
a boat sailing towards it, which, as it drew nearer, the princess
knew to belong to her father the sultan Mherejaun; upon which she
requested her lover to keep himself concealed from view, while
she received the persons in the vessel. Eusuff accordingly
withdrew into a chamber, the lattice of which looked upon the
lake; but how can we express his indignant surprise, and furious
jealousy, when he beheld landing from the boat two handsome young
men, into the arms of one of whom Aleefa threw herself with eager
transport, and after mutual embraces they withdrew together into
the palace. Without considering that his supposed rival might be
a near relation to the princess, as he in fact was, being her
first cousin, who had been brought up with her till her
confinement to the lake; EusufF suffered himself to be overcome
by unworthy suspicion, and resolved to quit for ever a faithless
mistress. Having written an angry letter upraiding her with
falsehood, and bidding her farewell, he with his attendant
Hullaul mounted his courser; then delivering his note to one of
the females, to be given to the princess, he swam over the lake
and speeded rapidly to his own country, where he was once more
joyfully received by his parents and family; and in order to
forget the charms of Aleefa, he indulged himself in mirth and
pleasure with his lately forsaken ladies, who, delighted with the
long-wished-for return of his affection, strove with each ether
who should please him best.

The unsuspecting Aleefa was engaged with her cousin Sohaul and
Ali Bin Ibrahim, a faithful eunuch who was his attendant, asking
a thousand questions and listening to the news of her father's
court, when Eusuff's letter was put into her hands. Rising up,
she withdrew into a closet, opened it, and was mnch vexed at its
ungrateful contents; but knowing herself innocent, and trusting
that her lover would return when convinced of his mistake, she
composed her mind as firmly as she, could till the departure of
her cousin, who after some days took leave and returned to the
capital of Mherejaun, leaving behind him the eunuch, to the great
satisfaction of the princess, who hoped to make him the mediator
between her and her beloved. Nor was she mistaken. When unfolding
to him the whole of her adventures with Eusuff, he agreed to be
the bearer of a letter, and explain to him the cause of his
needless suspicion. Having swam the lake with the fair Aleefa's
packet wrapped in his clothes upon his head, the faithful Ah in
twenty days reached the city of Sind, and demanding an audience
in private, which was readily granted, delivered his commission
to the prince. Eusuff, whose anger was now calmed, and who had
already begun to feel uneasy at absence from the still reigning
favourite of his heart, on perusing her letter was overcome with
joy. He listened eagerly to the account of his fancied rival by
the eloquent Ali Bin Ibrohim, to whom he expressed his conviction
of her constancy, his own sorrow for his unreasonable desertion
of her, and his intention of departing to visit her the next
night, till when he desired the eunuch to repose himself after
his fatigue. Ali Bin Ibrahim was then lodged, by the prince's
orders, in one of the most splendid apartments of the palace, and
respectfully waited upon by the domestics of his court. The night
following, EusufF having ordered his favourite Hullaul to make
preparations, departed from Sind as before, with the eunuch
mounted on a second courser. They in a few days reached the
borders of the lake, swam over, and to the great joy of the once
more happy Aleefa arrived at the citadel. The recollection of the
pains of absence added a zest to the transports of reunion, and
the lovers were, if possible, more delighted with each other than
before their separation. The faithful Ali Bin Ibrahim was now
dismissed with invaluable presents of precious stones, and
returned to the court of Mherejaun, the time for his stay at the
citadel of the lake being expired. On his arrival, the sultan,
anxious for intelligence of his daughter's health, took him into
his closet, and while he was questioning him, by some accident
the eunuch's turban unfortunately falling off, the precious
stones, which, with a summary of the adventures of Eusuff and
Aleefa, and his own embassy to Sind, were wrapped in the folds,
tumbled upon the floor. The sultan knew the jewels, and examining
the turban, to make farther discoveries, found the paper, which
he eagerly read; and furious was his wrath, when from the
contents it appeared that all his caution to guard against the
decrees of heaven had been vain, that the princess had been
seduced, and his house dishonoured. He sternly inquired of the
trembling Ali if Eusuff was yet with his daughter, and was
answered in the affirmative, when he immediately gave orders for
vessels to be prepared for his departure, hoping to take him
prisoner, and at the same time commanded his army to march along
the banks of the lake and encamp opposite the citadel. The
unfortunate eunuch was thrown into a dungeon and loaded with
heavy chains, after he had been bastinadoed almost to death; but
still faithful to the lovers, he prevailed upon his gaoler by a
large bribe during the night to permit him to dispatch a note by
a trusty messenger to the princess, apprising her of the
misfortune which had happened, in hopes that she would have time
to escape with Eusuff towards his own country before her father's
arrival. Fortunately for the lovers, this information reached
them the next morning, when they consulted what measures to
pursue, and it was agreed, that instead of both quitting the
citadel, only Eusuff and Hullaul should return to Sind, as the
princess was unequal to such a rapid journey, but that in order
to ensure her safety, the slaves should, on the sultan's arrival,
assure him that she had gone off with her lover, when he would
either return home or pursue the prince with his army; who,
however, mounted as he was on so swift a courser, could not be
overtaken. It was also settled that Eusuff, on his arrival in his
own country, should send an embassy to Mherejaun, declaring his
marriage with Aleefa, and requesting pardon, and leave to pay his
duty as his son-in-law. This stratagem had in part its effect,
but no precaution could ward off the fulfilment of the prediction
at the princess's birth, which was that she should occasion the
disgrace and death of her father.

Mherejaun armed at the citadel a few hours after Eusuff's escape,
and was informed by her attendants that she had also accompanied
him in his flight; upon which the enraged sultan, hurried on by
fate, without stopping to search the palace in which his daughter
was concealed, hastened to join his troops on the banks of the
lake, and with a vast army pursued the Sindian prince, who,
however, reached his capital in safety. On his arrival, having
informed his father of his adventures, the old sultan, eager to
gratify his son, approved of his additional marriage with the
fair Aleefa, and dispatched an embassy to Mherejaun, who by this
time was in the territory of Sind, laying it waste with fire and
sword, no troops scarcely being opposed to his sudden invasion.
He received the ambassador with mortifying haughtiness, bidding
him return to his master, and imform him that he never would
forgive the seduction of his daughter, in revenge for which he
had taken a solemn oath to overturn the kingdom of Sind, raze the
capital, and feast his eyes with the blood of the old sultan and
his son. On receipt of this ungracious reply to his proposals,
the sultan and Eusuff had no alternative but to oppose so
inveterate a foe. They collected their troops, by whom they were
much beloved, and marched to meet the enemy, whom, after an
obstinate battle, they defeated, and Mherejaun was slain in the
action. It is impossible to resist the decrees of heaven. From
God we came, and to God we must return.

Eusuff, after the action, behaved with the greatest humility to
the conquered, and had the body of the unfortunate Mherejaun
embalmed and laid in a splendid litter, in which it was conducted
by a numerous escort, in respectful solemnity, to the capital of
Hind, and deposited with funeral pomp, becoming the rank of the
deceased, in a magnificent mausoleum, which had been erected by
himself, as is customary among the sovereigns of Asia. The
prince, at the same time, dispatched letters of condolence to the
mother of Aleefa, lamenting the fate of Mherejaun, whom he had
been, much against his will, necessitated to oppose in battle,
and expressing his ardent love for her daughter, a marriage with
whom was his highest hope, as it was his first wish to console
the mother of his beloved in her misfortunes.

The sultana, who had received intelligence of the decisive
victory and the death of her husband, and who expected, instead
of such conduct, to see the victor besieging her capital, felt
some alleviation of her sorrow in the prospect of saving her
people from destruction, by consenting to an union between Eusuff
and Aleefa. Her answer accordingly was favourable, upon which the
prince of Sind repaired to the lake, and conducting his willing
bride to the capital of Hind, at the expiration of the stated
time of mourning for Mherejaun, their nuptials were celebrated
with all possible magnificence, amid the united acclamations of
the subjects, who readily acknowledged his authority, and had no
cause to repent of their submission to his yoke. His next care
was to inform the caliph Mamoon, who was then commander of the
faithful at Bagdad, of the events which had happened,
accompanying his petition with a great sum of money, and
offerings of all the rarities the countries of Hind and Sind
afforded; among which were ten beautiful slaves, highly
accomplished in singing, dancing, and a talent for poetry. They
recited extempore verses before the caliph, but the subject of
each was so expressive of their wish to return to their beloved
sovereign, and delivered in so affecting a manner, that Mamoon,
though delighted with their wit and beauty, sacrificed his own
pleasure to their feelings, and sent them back to Eusuff by the
officer who carried the edict, confirming him in his dominions,
where the prince of Sind and the fair Aleefa continued long, amid
a numerous progeny, to live the protectors of their happy


A sultaness of China being seized with an alarming illness was
given over by the physicians, who declared her case incurable by
any other means than the water of life, which they feared it was
next to impossible to obtain before nature would be exhausted;
the country in which, if anywhere, it was to be found, being so
very distant. Such, however, was the affection of the sultaness's
three sons, that in hopes of saving their mother they resolved to
go in search of the precious medicine, and departed immediately
in the route pointed out by the physicians. After travelling
without success to their inquiries through divers countries, they
agreed to separate, in hopes that one of them at least might be
fortunate enough to procure the wished-for miraculous liquid, and
return home in time to save their mother. Having taken an
affectionate farewell, each pursued his journey alone. The
*eldest prince, after a fatiguing walk (for the brothers had
thought it prudent to lay aside their dignity, and as safest to
disguise themselves in mean habits) over a wild country, arrived
at last within sight of a large city, inhabited by blasphemous
Jews, near which, in a superb synagogue, he laid himself down on
a carpet to repose, being quite exhausted with toil and hunger.
He had not rested long, when a Jew rabbi entering the building,
the prince begged for the love of God a little refreshment; but
the wicked infidel, who hated true believers, instead of
relieving, cruelly put him to death with his sabre, and wrapping
the corpse in a mat, threw it into a corner of the synagogue. By
ill fortune, on the day following the second prince arrived, and
was treated in the same manner by the barbarous Jew, and on the
next came also the youngest brother to the same place, where he
was met by the base assassin, who would have killed him also, had
not the extraordinary beauty of the young prince struck his
covetous mind with the idea of making him a slave, and selling
him for a large sum of money. Speaking therefore to him in a kind
manner he brought him refreshments, and inquired if he was
willing to be his servant, and employ himself in cleaning the
synagogue and lighting the lamps; to which the prince, being in
an exhausted condition, seemingly assented, seeing no other means
of present support, but secretly resolved to escape when
recovered from his fatigue. The Jew now took him to his house in
the city, and showed him, apparently, the same tenderness as he
used towards his own children. The next day the prince repaired
to his allotted task of cleaning the synagogue, where, to his
grief and horror, he presently discovered the bodies of his
unfortunate brothers. While he lamented their unhappy fate with
showers of tears, the recollection of his own perilous situation,
in the power of their murderer, filled his mind with terror; but
after the agonies of thought were over, the natural courage of a
princely heart rose in his bosom, and he meditated how to revenge
the death of his brothers on the savage infidel. An opportunity
happened that same night. The prince having composed his mind,
finished his work, and when the Jew arrived to examine it,
dissembled so well, that no appearance of his inward melancholy
was displayed. The Jew applauded his diligence, and taking him
home, made him sit down to supper with himself and family,
consisting of a wife and two young lads. It being the middle of
summer, and the weather sultry, they retired to sleep on the open
terrace of the house, which was very lofty. In the dead of night,
when the Jew and his family were fast locked in the arms of
slumber, the prince, who had purposely kept himself awake, seized
the sabre of the treacherous infidel, and with a dexterous blow
struck off his head; then snatching up the two children, hurled
them headlong from the terrace, so that their brains were dashed
out on the stone pavement of the court below. He then uplifted
the sabre to destroy the Jew's wife, but the thought that she
might be of use to him withheld his hand. He awoke her gently,
commanded her to make no noise, and follow him down stairs,
where, by degrees, he informed her of his adventures, the
discovery he had made of the murder of his brothers, and his
revenge on her treacherous husband and ill-fated children, whom,
however, he would not have destroyed had he not been apprehensive
of their cries alarming the neighbourhood. The Moosulmaun woman,
for such she secretly was, did not regard the death of the wicked
Jew, who had married her against her will, and often used her
with great harshness, and her sorrows for the children were
softened by the salvation of her own life. She also felt
sentiments of tenderness towards the prince, whose injuries in
the murder of his unfortunate brothers had compelled him to
revenge, and felt herself obliged to his mercy in letting her
live. She now informed him that in the Jew's laboratory were many
valuable medicines, and among them the very water of life he was
in search of; which intelligence was most gratifying to the
prince, who offered to take the woman under his protection, and
she willingly consented to accompany him to a country inhabited
by true believers. Having packed up the medicines, with some
valuable jewels, and put them, with various refreshments and
necessaries, on two camels, they mounted and left the city
undiscovered, nor did any accident occur on their journey; but on
reaching the capital of China, the prince found that his father
was dead, while his mother, contrary to expectation, lingered in
painful existence. The ministers, who had with difficulty, in
hopes of the three brothers' arrival, kept the next relations of
the throne from disputing their right to ascend it, were rejoiced
at his return; and on being informed of the untimely end of the
two elder princes, immediately proclaimed him sultan. His first
care was to administer comfort and relief to his afflicted
mother, on whom the water of life had an instantaneous effect;
his next, to regulate the affairs of his government, which he did
with such ability, justice, and moderation, that he became
endeared to his subjects, and an example to other sovereigns.

As the sultan, some time after his accession, was one day amusing
himself in the chase, he saw a venerable Arab, accompanied by his
daughter, travelling on horseback. By accident the young female's
veil being blown aside, displayed such beauty to the eyes of the
sultan, as instantly fascinated his heart, and made him wish to
have her for his sultana. He immediately made offers to her
father of his alliance; but great was his mortification and
surprise when the Arab rejected them, saying, "That he had sworn
not to give his daughter to any one who was not master of some
useful trade, by which a livelihood might be earned." "Father,"
replied the sultan, "what occasion is there that I should learn a
mean occupation, when I have the wealth of a kingdom at my
command?" "Because," rejoined the Arab, "such are the
vicissitudes of the world, that you may lose your kingdom and
starve, if not able to work in some way for your living." The
sultan, unlike some princes, who would have seized the lady and
punished the Arab for his freedom, felt the force of his remark,
applauded his wisdom, and requested that he would not betroth her
to another, as he was resolved to make himself worthy of becoming
his son-in-law by learning some handicraft, till when he hoped
they would accept of an abode near the palace. To this the old
man readily consented; and in a short time the sultan, eager to
possess his bride, became such an adept in the handicraft of
making ornamental mats for sofas and cushions of cane and reeds,
that the Arab agreed to the nuptials, which were celebrated with
all possible splendour and rejoicing, while the subjects admired
more than ever the justice and moderation of their sovereign; so
true is it, that, unless in depraved states, a good prince makes
a good people.

Some years rolled on in uninterrupted felicity to the sultan and
his beloved partner. It was the custom of the former frequently
to visit in the disguise of a dervish the various quarters of the
city, by which means he learnt the opinions of the people, and
inspected the conduct of the police. One day in an excursion of
this sort he passed by a cook's shop, and being hungry, stepped
in to take some refreshment. He was, with seeming respect,
conducted to a back room spread with flowered carpeting, over
which was a covering of muslin transparently fine. Pulling off
his slippers, he entered the room and sat down upon a neat
musnud, but to his surprise and terror it instantly sunk under
him, and he found himself at the bottom of a dark vault, where by
a glimmering light he could discern several naked bodies of
unfortunate persons who had been murdered, and presently
appeared, descending from a narrow staircase, a black slave of
savage countenance, who, brandishing a huge cimeter, cried out,
"Wretch, prepare thyself to die!" The sultan was alarmed, but his
presence of mind did not forsake him. "What good," said he, "will
my death do you or your employers? I have nothing about me but
the humble habit I wear; but if you spare my life, I possess an
art that will produce your employers considerable wealth." Upon
this, the slave going to the master of the house informed him of
what the supposed dervish had said, when the treacherous cook
came to inquire after the promised riches. "Give me only some
reeds and canes, varnished of different colours," said the
sultan, "and I will make a mat, which if you carry to the palace
and present to the vizier, he will purchase it for a thousand
pieces of gold." The desired articles were furnished, and the
sultan setting to work, in a few days finished a mat, in which he
ingeniously contrived to plait in flowery characters, known only
to himself and his vizier, the account of his situation. When
finished, he gave it to his treacherous host, who admired the
beauty of the workmanship, and not doubting of the reward,
carried it to the palace, where he demanded admission, saying he
had a curiosity to offer for sale. The vizier, who was then
giving audience to petitioners, commanded him to be brought in;
but what was his astonishment when the mat was unfolded, to see
pourtrayed upon it the imminent danger of the sultan, whom he
supposed to be in his haram, and whose absence the sultana had,
in order to prevent confusion, commanded to be kept secret,
hoping for his speedy return. The vizier instantly summoning his
guards seized the villanous cook, and proceeding to his house,
released the sultan from his confinement. The house was razed to
the ground, and the abominable owner, with his guilty family, put
to death. The sultan exultingly felt the use of having learnt a
useful art, which had been the means of saving his life.


A certain vizier, though perfectly loyal and of the strictest
integrity, having been falsely accused by his enemies, was,
without due examination of the charges brought against him,
thrown into prison, where, by orders from the sultan, he was
confined to a gloomy dungeon, and allowed only bread and water
for his daily food. In this wretched abode he lay for seven
years, at the expiration of which, the sultan his master, who was
in the habit of walking about the city in disguise to amuse
himself, chanced to pass by the house of his injured minister,
dressed as a dervish. To his surprise he saw it open, and a crowd
of domestics busy in cleaning the apartments, and preparing for
the reception of the owner, who, they said, had commanded them by
a messenger from the prison to put things in order, as he should
that day be restored to the sultan's favour, and return home. The
sultan, who, so far from intending to release the unfortunate
vizier, had almost erased the remembrance of him from his mind,
was astonished at the report of the domestics, but thought his
long confinement might possibly have disturbed the brain of his
prisoner, who in his madness might have fancied his deliverance
to be at hand. He resolved however to go and visit the prison
disguised as he was, and see the vizier. Having purchased a
quantity of bread and cakes, he proceeded to the gaol, and
requested, under pretence of fulfilling a vow he had made to feed
the prisoners, to be admitted, and allowed to distribute his
charity among them. The gaoler granted his request, and permitted
him to visit the different cells. At length he came to that of
the vizier, who was employed earnestly at his devotions, which on
the entrance of the supposed dervish he suspended, and inquired
his business. "I come," said he, "for though unknown to you I
have always prayed for your welfare, to congratulate you on your
approaching deliverance, which I understand you have announced to
your domestics, but fear without foundation, not having heard of
any orders for the purpose from the sultan." "That may be true,
charitable dervish," said the vizier, "but depend upon it before
night I shall be released and restored to office." "I wish it may
be so," replied the sultan; "but upon what ground do you build an
expectation, the gratification of which appears to me so
improbable?" "Be seated, good dervish, and I will tell you,"
rejoined the vizier, and began as follows: "Know then, my friend,
experience has convinced me that the height of prosperity is
always quickly succeeded by adverse fortune, and the depth of
affliction by sudden relief. When I was in office, beloved by the
people for my lenient administration, and distinguished by the
sultan, whose honour and advantage were the constant objects of
my care, and for whose welfare I have never ceased to pray even
in this gloomy dungeon, I was one evening taking the air upon the
river in a splendid barge with some favourite companions. As we
were drinking coffee, the cup I held in my hand, which was made
of a single emerald of immense value, and which I highly prized,
slipped from it and fell into the water; upon which I ordered the
barge to be stopped, and sent for a diver, to whom I promised an
ample reward should he recover the cup. He undressed, and desired
me to point out the place at which it fell; when I, having in my
hand a rich diamond ring, heedlessly, in a fit of absence, threw
it into that part of the river. While I was exclaiming against my
own stupidity, the diver made a plunge towards where I had cast
the ring, and in less than two minutes reappeared with the
coffee-cup in his hand, when to my great surprise within it I
found also my ring. I rewarded him liberally, and was exulting in
the recovery of my jewels, when it suddenly struck my mind, that
such unusual good fortune must speedily be followed by some
disaster. This reflection made me melancholy, and I returned home
with a foreboding sadness, nor without cause, for that very night
my enemies accused me falsely of treason to the sultan, who
believed the charge, and next morning I was hurried to this
gloomy cell, where I have now remained seven years with only
bread and water for my support. God, however, has given me
resignation to his decrees, and this day an accident occurred
which makes me confident of release before night, and restoration
to the sultan's favour, which, as I have always done, I will
endeavour to deserve. You must know, venerable dervish, that this
morning I felt an unconquerable longing to taste a bit of flesh,
and earnestly entreated my keeper, giving him at the same time a
piece of gold, to indulge my wish. The man, softened by the
present, brought me a stew, on which I prepared to make a
delicious meal; but while, according to custom before eating, I
was performing my ablutions, guess my mortification, when a huge
rat running from his hole leaped into the dish which was placed
upon the floor. I was near fainting with agony at the sight, and
could not refrain from tears; but at length recovering from the
poignancy of disappointment, the rays of comfort darted upon my
mind, and I reflected that as disgrace and imprisonment had
instantaneously followed the fortunate recovery of my cup and
ring, so this mortification, a greater than which could not have
happened, would be immediately succeeded by returning prosperity.
In this conviction I prevailed on the gaoler to order my
domestics to make ready my house and expect my return."

The disguised sultan, who, while the vizier was speaking, felt
every word impress him more and more with the conviction of his
innocence, had much difficulty to support his assumed character;
but not choosing his visit to the prison should be known at
present, he restrained his feelings, and when the minister had
finished took his leave, saying, he hoped his presage would be
fulfilled. He then returned undiscovered to the palace, and
entering his cabinet, resumed his usual habit; after which he
issued orders for the release of the vizier, sending him a robe
of honour and splendid attendants to escort him to court, at the
same time condemning to confiscation and imprisonment his
malicious accusers. On his arrival, the sultan received the
vizier with the most gracious distinction; and having presented
him with the canopy of state, the seal and the inkstand set with
rich jewels, the insignia of office, conducted him to a private
chamber, where falling upon his neck he embraced him, and
requesting him to forget past oppression, informed him of his
disguised visit to the prison; after which he dismissed him to
his own palace.


A virtuous lady of Cairo, who seldom left her house but upon
urgent business, one day returning from the bath, passed by the
tribunal of the cauzee just as it was breaking up, when the
magistrate perceived her, and struck with her dignity and
elegance of gait, from which he judged of her beauty, called her
to him, and in a soft whisper expressed his desire of a private
interview. The lady being resolved to punish him for his unworthy
conduct, seemingly consented, and desired him to repair to her
house that evening, which he gladly promised. She then pursued
her route homewards, but was on the way accosted by three other
men, who made her similar proposals, all which she accepted, and
fixed that evening for receiving their visits. The first of these
gallants was the customs tax-collector of Cairo, the second the
chief of the butchers, and the third a rich merchant.

When the lady returned to her house she informed her husband of
what had happened, and begged him to permit her to execute a
stratagem that she had formed to punish their insolence, which
would not only afford himself and her much laughable amusement,
but solid advantage, as doubtless the lovers would each bring
with him a handsome present. The husband, who knew he could trust
the virtue of his wife, readily consented, and the lady having
prepared a handsome entertainment, adorned herself in her richest
apparel, and seated herself to receive her guests. Evening had
just shut in, when the venerable cauzee having finished his
sunset devotions, impatiently repaired first to his mistress and
knocked at the door, which the lady opened and led him upstairs,
where he presented her with a rosary of valuable pearl; after
which she made him undress, and in place of his robes put on a
loose vest of yellow muslin, and a parti-coloured cap, her
husband all the while looking at them through the door of a
closet, and ready to burst his sides with laughter as he beheld
the tender grimaces of the enamoured magistrate. The happiness of
the venerable gallant was however soon changed to frightful
alarm, for he had scarcely sat down and begun to partake of some
refreshment, when a loud rap was heard at the door; upon which
the lady starting up in well-affected terror, cried out,
"Mahummud protect us! for this is my husband's knock, and if he
finds you here, he will put us both to death." The cauzee's heart
sank within him, and he became more dead than alive; but the lady
somewhat revived him by thrusting him into her bed-chamber,
desiring him to remain still, as possibly a way might be found
for his escape. He gladly retired, secretly vowing that if spared
from his present threatening distress, Satan should no more tempt
him to make love or break the sacred law.

The lady having disposed of the cauzee, hastened to the door,
where she found the expecting tax-collector, who brought with
him, as a present, a set of jewels. She shewed him upstairs, took
off his rich clothes, and made him put on a crimson vest, and a
green cap with black spots. He had scarcely sat down when the
door again resounded, and she played over the same game as she
had done with the cauzee, who on his also entering the bed-
chamber was somewhat pleased at seeing a brother magistrate in
the same ridiculous plight with himself. The venerable lovers
condoled by signs with each other, but dared not speak for fear
of discovery. The chief of the butchers, on his arrival, was next
ushered up stairs, and his present received, then made to undress
and put on a blue vest with a scarlet cap, ornamented with sea
shells and bits of tinsel; but he had scarce time to finish, when
a fourth loud rap was heard at the door, the scene of alarm was
renewed, and the frightened gallant hurried into the room to keep
company with his rivals. Now appeared the respectable merchant,
who presented the cunning lady with several rich veils, pieces of
silk, and embroidered muslins, after which he was asked to
undress and enrobe himself in a sky coloured vest and a cap
striped with red and white; which he had hardly put on when a
thundering knock at the gate put an end to his transports, and
the wife pretending great alarm, as it was her husband's rap,
forced him into the bed-chamber, where, to his surprise he
discovered three of his intimate acquaintance.

The husband, who had left his hiding place and knocked at the
door, now entered, and after saluting his wife, sat down, when
having partaken of the refreshments provided for the gallants,
the happy couple entered into conversation loud enough to be
overheard by the wretched inamorati, who were quaking for fear of
discovery. "Light of my eyes," said the husband, "didst thou meet
with any thing amusing to-day in thy visit to the bath? and if
so, divert me with an account of it." "I did, indeed," said the
lady, "for I met with four antic creatures, whom" (at hearing
this the unfortunate lovers gave themselves over for lost) "I had
a great inclination to bring home with me" (here they recovered a
little from their alarm) "to divert us, but fearful of your
displeasure I did not; however, if agreeable, we can send for
them to-morrow." The frighted gallants now indulged some hope of
escape through the kindness of their cunning mistress, and began
to breathe a little freer, but very short was the suspension of
their fears. "I am sorry thou didst not bring them," said the
husband, "because business will to-morrow call me from home, and
I shall be absent for some days." Upon this, the lady laughing,
said, "Well, then, you must know that in fact I have brought
them, and was diverting myself with them when you came in, but
fearful you might suspect something wrong I hurried them into our
bed-chamber, in order to conceal them till I had tried your
temper, hoping, should you not be in good humour, to find some
means of letting them out undiscovered." It is impossible to
describe the alarm into which the wretched gallants were now
plunged, especially when the husband commanded his wife to bring
them out one by one, saying, "Let each entertain us with a dance
and then recite a story, but if they do not please me, I will
strike off their heads." "Heaven protect us," said the cauzee,
"how can men of our gravity dance? but there is no resisting the
decrees of fate, nor do I see any chance of escape from this
artful baggage and her savage husband but by performing as well
as we can." His companions were of the same opinion, and mustered
what courage they could to act as they should be ordered.

The wife now entered the chamber, and putting a tambourine into
the cauzee's hands, led him out and began to play a merry tune
upon her lute, to which the affrighted magistrate danced with a
thousand antics and grimaces like an old baboon, beating time
with the tambourine, to the great delight of the husband, who
every now and then jeeringly cried out, "Really wife, if I did
not know this fellow was a buffoon, I should take him for our
cauzee; but God forgive me, I know our worthy magistrate is
either at his devotions, or employed in investigating cases for
to-morrow's decision." Upon this the cauzee danced with redoubled
vigour, and more ridiculous gestures, in hopes of evading
discovery. At length he was overpowered by such unusual exercise;
but the husband had no mercy upon his sufferings, and made him
continue capering by threatening the bastinado, till the tired
judge was exhausted, and fainted upon the floor in a bath of
perspiration, when they held him up, and pouring a goblet of wine
down his throat it somewhat revived him. He was now suffered to
breathe a little, and something given him to eat, which, with a
second cup of liquor, recovered his strength. The husband now
demanded his story; and the cauzee, assuming the gesture of a
coffee-house droll, began as follows.

The Cauzee's Story.

A young tailor, whose shop was opposite the house of an officer,
was so attracted from his work by the appearance of a beautiful
young lady, his wife, in her balcony, that he became desperately
in love, and would sit whole days waiting her coming, and when
she showed herself make signs of his passion. For some time his
ridiculous action diverted her, but at length she grew tired of
the farce she had kept up by answering his signals, and of the
interruption it gave to her taking the fresh air, so that she
resolved to punish him for his presumption, and oblige him to
quit his stall. Having laid her plan, one day when her husband
was gone out for a few hours she dispatched a female slave to
invite the tailor to drink coffee. To express the rapture of the
happy snip is impossible. He fell at the feet of the slave, which
he kissed as the welcome messengers of good tidings, gave her a
piece of gold, and uttered some nonsensical verses that he had
composed in praise of his beloved; then dressing himself in his
best habit, he folded his turban in the most tasty manner, and
curled his mustachios to the greatest advantage, after which he
hastened exultingly to the lady's house, and was admitted to her
presence. She sat upon a rich musnud, and gracefully lifting up
her veil welcomed the tailor, who was so overcome that he had
nearly fainted away with excess of rapture. She desired him to be
seated, but such was his bashfulness that he would not approach
farther than the corner of the carpet. Coffee was brought in, and
a cup presented him; but not being used to such magnificence and
form, and his eyes, also, being staringly fixed on the beauties
of the lady, instead of carrying the cup to his mouth, he hit his
nose and overthrew the liquid upon his vest. The lady smiled, and
ordered him another cup; but while he was endeavouring to drink
it with a little more composure, a loud knock was heard at the
door, and she starting up, cried out with great agitation, "Good
heavens! this is my husband's knock; if he finds us together he
will sacrifice us to his fury!" The poor tailor, in terror, fell
flat upon the carpet, when the lady and her slave threw some cold
water upon his face, and when a little recovered hurried him away
to a chamber, into which they forced him, and desired him to
remain quiet, as the only means of saving his life. Here he
remained quivering and trembling, more alive than dead, but
perfectly cured of his love, and vowing never again to look up at
a balcony.

When the tailor was disposed of, the lady again sat down upon her
stool, and ordered her slave to open the gate. Upon her husband's
entering the room he was surprised at beholding things set out
for an entertainment, and inquired who had been with her; when
she replied tartly, "A lover." "And where is he now?" angrily
replied the officer. "In yonder chamber, and if you please you
may sacrifice him to your fury, and myself afterwards." The
officer demanded the key, which she gave him; but while this was
passing, the agony of the unfortunate tailor was worse than
death; he fully expecting every moment to have his head struck
off: in short, he was in a most pitiable condition. The officer
went to the door, and had put the key into the lock, when his
wife burst suddenly into a fit of laughter: upon which he
exclaimed angrily, "Who do you laugh at?" "Why, at yourself, to
be sure, my wise lord," replied the lady; "for who but yourself
could suppose a woman serious when she told him where to find out
a concealed lover? I wanted to discover how far jealousy would
carry you, and invented this trick for the purpose," The officer,
upon this, was struck with admiration of his wife's pleasantry
and his own credulity, which so tickled his fancy that he laughed
immoderately, begged pardon for his foolish conduct, and they
spent the evening cheerfully together; after which, the husband
going to the bath, his wife charitably released the almost dead
tailor, and reproving him for his impertinence, declared if he
ever again looked up at her balcony she would contrive his death.
The tailor, perfectly cured of love for his superior in life,
made the most abject submission, thanked her for his deliverance,
hurried home, prayed heartily for his escape, and the very next
day took care to move from so dangerous a neighbourhood.

The husband and wife were highly diverted with the cauze's story,
and after another dance permitted him to depart, and get home as
well as he could in his ridiculous habit. How he got there, and
what excuse he was able to make for so unmagisterial an
appearance, we are not informed; but strange whispers went about
the city, and the cauzee's dance became the favourite one or the
strolling drolls, whom he had often the mortification of seeing
taking him off as he passed to and from the tribunal, and not
unfrequently in causes of adultery the evidences and culprits
would laugh in his face. He, however, never again suffered Satan
to tempt him, and was scarcely able to look at a strange woman,
so great was his fear of being led astray.

When the cauzee was gone, the lady, repairing to the apartment,
brought out the grave tax-collector, whom her husband addressed
by name, saying, "Venerable sir, how long have you turned droll?
can you favour me with a dance?" The tax-collector made no reply,
but began capering, nor was he permitted to stop till quite
tired. He was then allowed to sit, some refreshment was given
him, and when revived he was desired to tell a story: knowing
resistance vain, he complied. After having finished he was
dismissed, and the other gallants were brought in and treated in
a like manner.


A certain rich merchant was constantly repining, because
Providence had not added to his numerous blessings that of a
child to inherit his vast wealth. This want destroyed the power
of affluence to make him happy, and he importuned heaven with
unceasing prayers. At length one evening, just as he had
concluded his devotions, he heard a voice, saying, "Thy request
has been heard, and thou wilt have a daughter, but she will give
thee much uneasiness in her fourteenth year by an amour with the
prince of Eerauk, and remember there is no avoiding the decrees
of fate."

The merchant's wife that same night conceived, and at the usual
time brought forth a daughter, who grew up an exquisite beauty.
No pains were spared in her education, so that at thirteen she
became most accomplished, and the fame of her charms and
perfections was spread throughout the city. The merchant enjoyed
the graces of his child, but at the same time his heart was heavy
with anxiety for her fate, whenever he called to mind the
prediction concerning her; so that at length he determined to
consult a celebrated dervish, his friend, on the possible means
of averting the fulfilment of the prophecy. The dervish gave him
but little hopes of being able to counteract the will of heaven,
but advised him to carry the beautiful maiden to a sequestered
mansion, situated among unfrequented mountains surrounding it on
all sides, and the only entrance to which was by a dark cavern
hewn out of the solid rock, which might be safely guarded by a
few faithful domestics. "Here," said the dervish, "your daughter
may pass the predicted year, and if any human care can avail she
may be thus saved from the threatened dishonour; but it is in
vain for man to fight against the arms of heaven, therefore
prepare thy mind for resignation to its decrees."

The merchant followed the advice of his friend, and having made
the necessary preparations, accompanied by him, and attended by
some white and black slaves of both sexes, arrived, after a
month's journey, with his daughter, at the desired mansion; in
which having placed her, he, after a day's repose, took his
departure homewards with the dervish. Ample stores of all
necessaries for her accommodation had been laid in, and slaves
male and female were left for her attendance and protection. Not
many days, had elapsed when an incident occurred, clearly proving
the emptiness of human caution against the predestination of
fate. The prince of Eerauk being upon a hunting excursion outrode
his attendants, and missing his way, reached the gate of the
cavern leading to the mansion, which was guarded by two black
slaves, who seeing a stranger, cried out to him to withdraw. He
stopped his horse, and in a supplicating tone requested
protection and refreshment for the night, as he had wandered from
the road, and was almost exhausted from weariness and want of
food. The slaves were moved by the representation of his
distress, as well as awed by his noble appearance, and
apprehending no danger from a single person, conducted him
through the cavern, into the beautiful valley, in which stood the
mansion. They then informed their mistress of his arrival, who
commanded him to be introduced into an apartment, in which an
elegant entertainment was provided, where she gave him the most
hospitable reception. To become known to each other was to love;
nor was it long ere the prediction respecting the merchant's
daughter proved fully verified. Some months passed in mutual
happiness; when the prince, becoming anxious to return to his
friends, took leave of his mistress, promising when he had seen
his family to visit her again, and make her his wife.

On his way he met the merchant, who was coming to see his
daughter. Halting at the same spot they fell into conversation,
in which each inquired after the other's situation, and the
prince, little aware to whom he was speaking, related his late
adventure. The merchant, convinced that all his caution had been
vain, concealed his uneasiness, resolved to take his daughter
home, make the best of what had happened, and never again to
struggle against fate. On his arrival at the cavern he found his
daughter unwell; and before they reached their own abode she was
delivered of a male infant, who, to save her credit, was left
exposed in a small tent with a sum of money laid under its
pillow, in hopes that the first passenger would take the child
under his care. It so happened, that a caravan passing by, the
leader of it, on examining the tent and seeing the infant, took
it up, and having no children adopted it as his own. The prince
of Eerauk having seen his parents, again repaired to visit his
beautiful mistress, and on his journey to the cavern once more
met the merchant, who, at his daughter's request, was travelling
towards Eerauk to acquaint him with her situation. The prince,
overjoyed, accompanied the merchant home, married the young lady,
and with her parents returned to his dominions. Their exposed
son, after long inquiry, was discovered, and liberal rewards
bestowed on the leader of the caravan, who at his own request was
permitted to reside in the palace of Eerauk, and superintend the
education of his adopted son.


In the capital of Bagdad there was formerly a cauzee, who filled
the seat of justice with the purest integrity, and who by his
example in private life gave force to the strictness of his
public decrees. After some years spent in this honourable post,
he became anxious to make the pilgrimage to Mecca; and having
obtained permission of the caliph, departed on his pious journey,
leaving his wife, a beautiful woman, under the protection of his
brother, who promised to respect her as his daughter. The cauzee,
however, had not long left home, when the brother, instigated by
passion, made love to his sister-in-law, which she rejected with
scorn; being, however, unwilling to expose so near a relative to
her husband, she endeavoured to divert him from his purpose by
argument on the heinousness of his intended crime, but in vain.
The abominable wretch, instead of repenting, a gain and again
offered his love, and at last threatened, if she would not accept
his love, to accuse her of adultery, and bring upon her the
punishment of the law. This threat having no effect, the
atrocious villain suborned evidences to swear that they had seen
her in the act of infidelity, and she was sentenced to receive
one hundred strokes with a knotted whip, and be banished from the
city. Having endured this disgraceful punishment, the unhappy
lady was led through Bagdad by the public executioner, amid the
taunts and scorns of the populace; after which she was thrust oat
of the gates and left to shift for herself. Relying on
Providence, and without complaining of its decrees, she resolved
to travel to Mecca, in hopes of meeting her husband, and clearing
her defamed character to him, whose opinion alone she valued.
When advanced some days on her journey she entered a city, and
perceived a great crowd of people following the executioner, who
led a young man by a rope tied about his neck. Inquiring the
crime of the culprit, she was informed that he owed a hundred
deenars, which being unable to pay, he was sentenced to be hung,
such being the punishment of insolvent debtors in that city. The
cauzee's wife, moved with compassion, immediately tendered the
sum, being nearly all she had, when the young man was released,
and falling upon his knees before her, vowed to dedicate his life
to her service. She related to him her intention of making the
pilgrimage to Mecca, upon which the young man requested to
accompany and protect her, to which she consented. They set out
on their journey; but had not proceeded many days, when the youth
forgot his obligations, and giving way to impulse, insulted his
benefactress by offering her his love. The unfortunate lady
reasoned with him on the ingratitude of his conduct, and the
youth seemed to be convinced and repentant, but revenge rankled
in his heart. Some days after this they reached the sea-shore,
where the young man perceiving a ship, made a signal to speak
with it, and the master letting down his boat sent it to land;
upon which the young man going on board the vessel, informed the
master that he had for sale a handsome female slave, for whom he
asked a thousand deenars. The master, who had been used to
purchase slaves upon that coast, went on shore, and looking at
the cauzee's wife, paid the money to the wicked young man, who
went his way, and the lady was carried on board the ship,
supposing that her companion had taken the opportunity of easing
her fatigue, by procuring her a passage to some sea-port near
Mecca: but her persecution was not to end here. In the evening
she was insulted by attentions of the master of the vessel, who

Book of the day:
Facebook Google Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Pinterest