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The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 1 by Richard F. Burton

Part 9 out of 9

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[FN#479] Here good blood, driven to bay, speaks out boldly. But,
as a rule, the humblest and mildest Eastern when in despair turns
round upon his oppressors like a wild cat. Some of the criminals
whom Fath Ali Shah of Persia put to death by chopping down the
fork, beginning at the scrotum, abused his mother till the knife
reached their vitals and they could no longer speak.

[FN#480] These repeated "laughs" prove the trouble of his spirit.
Noble Arabs "show their back-teeth" so rarely that their laughter
is held worthy of being recorded by their biographers.

[FN#481] A popular phrase, derived from the Koranic "Truth is
come, and falsehood is vanished: for falsehood is of short
continuance" (chapt. xvii.). It is an equivalent of our
adaptation from 1 Esdras iv. 41, "Magna est veritas et
prćvalebit." But the great question still remains, What is Truth?

[FN#482] In Night lxxv. these lines will occur with variants.

[FN#483] This is always mentioned: the nearer seat the higher the

[FN#484] Alluding to the phrase "Al-safar zafar" = voyaging is
victory (Pilgrimage i., 127).

[FN#485] Arab. "Habb;" alluding to the black drop in the human
heart which the Archangel Gabriel removed from Mohammed by
opening his breast.

[FN#486] This phrase, I have said, often occurs: it alludes to
the horripilation (Arab. Kush'arírah), horror or gooseflesh
which, in Arab as in Hindu fables, is a symptom of great joy. So
Boccaccio's "pelo arriciato" v., 8: Germ. Gänsehaut.

[FN#487] Arab. "Hasanta ya Hasan" = Bene detto, Benedetto! the
usual word-play vulgarly called "pun": Hasan (not Hassan, as we
will write it) meaning "beautiful."

[FN#488] Arab. "Loghah" also = a vocabulary, a dictionary; the
Arabs had them by camel-loads.

[FN#489] The seventh of the sixteen "Bahr" (metres) in Arabic
prosody; the easiest because allowing the most license and,
consequently, a favourite for didactic, homiletic and gnomic
themes. It means literally "agitated" and was originally applied
to the rude song of the Cameleer. De Sacy calls this doggrel "the
poet's ass" (Torrens, Notes xxvi.). It was the only metre in
which Mohammed the Apostle ever spoke: he was no poet (Koran
xxxvi., 69) but he occasionally recited a verse and recited it
wrongly (Dabistan iii., 212). In Persian prosody Rajaz is the
seventh of nineteen and has six distinct varieties (pp. 79-81),
"Gladwin's Dissertations on Rhetoric," etc. Calcutta, 1801). I
shall have more to say about it in the Terminal Essay.

[FN#490] "Her stature tall--I hate a dumpy woman" (Don Juan).

[FN#491] A worthy who was Kazi of Kufah (Cufa) in the seventh
century. Al-Najaf, generally entitled "Najaf al-Ashraf" (the
Venerand) is the place where Ali, the son-in-law of Mohammed,
lies or is supposed to lie buried, and has ever been a holy place
to the Shi'ahs. I am not certain whether to translate "Sa'alab"
by fox or jackal; the Arabs make scant distinction between them.
"Abu Hosayn" (Father of the Fortlet) is certainly the fox, and as
certainly "Sha'arhar" is the jackal from the Pehlevi Shagál or

[FN#492] Usually by all manner of extortions and robbery,
corruption and bribery, the ruler's motto being

Fiat injustitia ruat Cœlum.

There is no more honest man than the Turkish peasant or the
private soldier; but the process of deterioration begins when he
is made a corporal and culminates in the Pasha. Moreover official
dishonesty is permitted by public opinion, because it belongs to
the condition of society. A man buys a place (as in England two
centuries ago) and retains it by presents to the heads of
offices. Consequently he must recoup himself in some way, and he
mostly does so by grinding the faces of the poor and by spoiling
the widow and the orphan. The radical cure is high pay; but that
phase of society refuses to afford it.

[FN#493] Arab. "Malik" (King) and "Malak" (angel) the words being
written the same when lacking vowels and justifying the jingle.

[FN #494] Arab. "Hurr"; the Latin "ingenuus," lit. freeborn;
metaph. noble as opp. to a slave who is not expected to do great
or good deeds. In pop. use it corresponds, like "Fatá," with our

[FN#495] This is one of the best tales for humour and movement,
and Douce and Madden show what a rich crop of fabliaux, whose
leading incident was the disposal of a dead body, it produced.

[FN#496] Other editions read, "at Bassorah" and the Bresl. (ii.
123) "at Bassorah and Kájkár" (Káshghár): somewhat like in Dover
and Sebastopol. I prefer China because further off and making the
improbabilities more notable.

[FN#497] Arab. "Judri," lit. "small stones" from the hard
gravelly feeling of the pustules (Rodwell, p. 20). The disease is
generally supposed to be the growth of Central Africa where it is
still a plague and passed over to Arabia about the birth-time of
Mohammed. Thus is usually explained the "war of the elephant"
(Koran, chaps. cv.) when the Abyssinian army of Abrahah, the
Christian, was destroyed by swallows (Abábíl which Major Price
makes the plural of Abilah = a vesicle) which dropped upon them
"stones of baked clay," like vetches (Pilgrimage ii. 175). See
for details Sale (in loco) who seems to accept the miraculous
defence of the Ka'abah. For the horrors of small-pox in Central
Intertropical Africa the inoculation, known also to the Badawin
of Al-Hijáz and other details, readers will consult "The Lake
Regions of Central Africa" (ii. 318). The Hindus "take the bull
by the horns" and boldly make "Sítlá" (small-pox) a goddess, an
incarnation of Bhawáni, deëss of destruction-reproduction. In
China small-pox is believed to date from B.C. 1200; but the
chronology of the Middle Kingdom still awaits the sceptic.

[FN#498] In Europe we should add "and all fled, especially the
women." But the fatalism inherent in the Eastern mind makes the
great difference.

[FN#499] Arab. "Uzayr." Esdras was a manner of Ripp van Winkle.
He was riding over the ruins of Jerusalem when it had been
destroyed by the Chaldeans and he doubted by what means Allah
would restore it; whereupon he died and at the end of a hundred
years he revived. He found his basket of figs and cruse of wine
as they were; but of his ass only the bones remained. These were
raised to life as Ezra looked on and the ass began at once to
bray. Which was a lesson to Esdras. (Koran, chaps. ii.) The oath
by the ass's hoofs is to ridicule the Jew. Mohammed seems to have
had an idée fixe that "the Jews say, Ezra is the son of God"
(Koran ix.); it may have arisen from the heterodox Jewish belief
that Ezra, when the Law was utterly lost, dictated the whole anew
to the scribes of his own memory. His tomb with the huge green
dome is still visited by the Jews of Baghdad.

[FN#500] Arab. "Bádhanj," the Pers. Bád. (wind) -gír (catcher): a
wooden pent-house on the terrace-roof universal in the nearer

[FN#501] The hunchback, in Arabia as in Southern Europe, is
looked upon by the vulgar with fear and aversion. The reason is
that he is usually sharper-witted than his neighbours.

[FN#502]Arab. "Yá Sattár" = Thou who veilest the discreditable
secrets of Thy creatures.

[FN#503] Arab. "Nasráni," a follower of Him of Nazareth and an
older name than "Christian" which (Acts xi., 26) was first given
at Antioch about A.D. 43. The cry in Alexandria used to be "Ya
Nasráni, Kalb awáni!"=O Nazarene! O dog obscene! (Pilgrimage i.,
160).). "Christian" in Arabic can be expressed only by "Masíhi" =
follower of the Messiah.

[FN#504] Arab. "Tasbíh," = Saluting in the Subh (morning).

[FN#505] In the East women stand on minor occasions while men
squat on their hunkers in a way hardly possible to an untrained
European. The custom is old. Herodotus (ii., 35) says, "The women
stand up when they make water, but the men sit down." Will it be
believed that Canon Rawlinson was too modest to leave this
passage in his translation? The custom was perpetuated by
Al-Islam because the position prevents the ejection touching the
clothes and making them ceremonially impure; possibly they
borrowed it from the Guebres. Dabistan, Gate xvi. says, "It is
improper, whilst in an erect posture, to make water, it is
therefore necessary to sit at squat and force it to some
distance, repeating the Avesta mentally."

[FN#506] This is still a popular form of the "Kinchin lay," and
as the turbands are often of fine stuff, the petite industrie
pays well.

[FN#507]Arab. "Wali" =Governor; the term still in use for the
Governor General of a Province as opposed to the "Muháfiz," or
district-governor. In Eastern Arabia the Wali is the Civil
Governor opposed to the Amir or Military Commandant. Under the
Caliphate the Wali acted also as Prefect of Police (the Indian
Fanjdár), who is now called "Zábit." The older name for the
latter was "Sáhib al-Shartah" (=chief of the watch) or
"Mutawalli"; and it was his duty to go the rounds in person. The
old "Charley," with his lantern and cudgel, still guards the
bazaars in Damascus.

[FN#508] Arab. "Al-Mashá ilí" = the bearer of a cresses (Mash'al)
who was also Jack Ketch. In Anglo-India the name is given to a
lower body-servant. The "Mash'al" which Lane (M. E., chaps. vi.)
calls "Mesh'al" and illustrates, must not be confounded with its
congener the "Sha'ilah" or link (also lamp, wick, etc.).

[FN#509] I need hardly say that the civilised "drop" is unknown
to the East where men are strung up as to a yardarm. This greatly
prolongs the suffering.

[FN#510] Arab. "Lukmah"; = a mouthful. It is still the fashion
amongst Easterns of primitive manners to take up a handful of
rice, etc., ball it and put it into a friend's mouth honoris
causâ. When the friend is a European the expression of his face
is generally a study.

[FN#511] I need hardly note that this is an old Biblical
practice. The ass is used for city-work as the horse for fighting
and travelling, the mule for burdens and the dromedary for the
desert. But the Badawi, like the Indian, despises the monture and

The back of the steed is a noble place
But the mule's dishonour, the ass disgrace!

The fine white asses, often thirteen hands high, sold by the Banu
Salíb and other Badawi tribes, will fetch Ł100, and more. I rode
a little brute from Meccah to Jedda (42 miles) in one night and
it came in with me cantering.

[FN#512] A dry measure of about five bushels (Cairo). The
classical pronunciation is Irdabb and it measured 24 sa'a
(gallons) each filling four outstretched hands.

[FN#513] "Al-Jawáli" should be Al-Jáwali (Al-Makrizi) and the Bab
al-Nasr (Gate of Victory) is that leading to Suez. I lived in
that quarter as shown by my Pilgrimage (i. 62).

[FN#514] Arab. "Al-'ajalah," referring to a saying in every
Moslem mouth, "Patience is from the Protector (Allah): Hurry is
from Hell." That and "Inshallah bukra!" (Please God tomorrow.)
are the traveller's bętes noires.

[FN#515] Here it is a polite equivalent for "fall to!"

[FN#516] The left hand is used throughout the East for purposes
of ablution and is considered unclean. To offer the left hand
would be most insulting and no man ever strokes his beard with it
or eats with it: hence, probably, one never sees a left handed
man throughout the Moslem east. In the Brazil for the same reason
old-fashioned people will not take snuff with the right hand. And
it is related of the Khataians that they prefer the left hand,
"Because the heart, which is the Sultan of the city of the Body,
hath his mansion on that side" (Rauzat al-Safá).

[FN#517] Two feminine names as we might say Mary and Martha.

[FN#518] It was near the Caliph's two Palaces (Al Kasrayn); and
was famous in the 15th century A. D. The Kazi's Mahkamah (Court
house) now occupies the place of the Two Palaces

[FN#519] A Kaysariah is a superior kind of bazaar, a "bezestein."
That in the text stood to the east of the principal street in
Cairo and was built in A. H. 502 (=1108-9) by a Circassian Emir,
known as Fakhr al-Din Jahárkas, a corruption of the Persian
"Chehárkas" = four persons (Lane, i. 422, from Al-Makrizi and Ibn
Khallikan). For Jahárkas the Mac. Edit. has Jirjís (George) a
common Christian name. I once lodged in a 'Wakálah (the modern
Khan) Jirjis." Pilgrimage, i. 255.

[FN#520]Arab. "Second Day," i.e. after Saturday, the true
Sabbath, so marvellously ignored by Christendom.

[FN#521] Readers who wish to know how a traveller is lodged in a
Wakálah, Khan, or Caravanserai, will consult my Pilgrimage, i.

[FN#522] The original occupation of the family had given it a
name, as amongst us.

[FN#523] The usual "chaff" or banter allowed even to modest women
when shopping, and--many a true word is spoken in jest.

[FN#524] "La adamnák" = Heaven deprive us not of thee, i.e. grant
I see thee often!

[FN#525] This is a somewhat cavalier style of advance; but
Easterns under such circumstances go straight to the point,
hating to filer the parfait amour.

[FN#526] The peremptory formula of a slave delivering such a

[FN#527] This would be our Thursday night, preceding the day of
public prayers which can be performed only when in a state of
ceremonial purity. Hence many Moslems go to the Hammam on
Thursday and have no connection with their wives.

[FN#528] Lane (i. 423) gives ample details concerning the
Habbániyah, or grain-sellers' quarter in the southern part of
Cairo; and shows that when this tale was written (or
transcribed?) the city was almost as extensive as it is now.

[FN#529] Nakíb is a caravan-leader, a chief, a syndic; and "Abú
Shámah"= Father of a cheek mole, while "Abú Shámmah" = Father of
a smeller, a nose, a snout. The "Kuniyah," bye-name, patronymic
or matronymic, is necessary amongst Moslems whose list of names,
all connected more or less with religion, is so scanty. Hence
Buckingham the traveller was known as Abu Kidr, the Father of a
Cooking-pot and Haj Abdullah as Abu Shawárib, Father of
Mustachios (Pilgrimage, iii., 263).

[FN#530] More correctly Bab Zawilah from the name of a tribe in
Northern Africa. This gate dates from the same age as the Eastern
or Desert gate, Bab al-Nasr (A.D. 1087) and is still much
admired. M. Jomard describes it (Description, etc., ii. 670) and
lately my good friend Yacoub Artin Pasha has drawn attention to
it in the Bulletin de l'Inst. Egypt., Deuxičme Série, No. 4,

[FN#531] This ornament is still seen in the older saloons of
Damascus: the inscriptions are usually religious sentences,
extracts from the Koran, etc., in uncial characters. They take
the place of our frescos; and, as a work of art, are generally
far superior.

[FN#532] Arab. "Bayáz al-Sultání," the best kind of gypsum which
shines like polished marble. The stucco on the walls of
Alexandria, built by Alexander of the two Horns, was so
exquisitely tempered and beautifully polished that men had to
wear masks for fear of blindness.

[FN#533] This Iklíl, a complicated affair, is now obsolete, its
place having been taken by the "Kurs," a gold plate, some five
inches in diameter, set with jewels, etc. Lane (M. E. Appendix A)
figures it.

[FN#534] The woman-artist who applies the dye is called

[FN#535] "Kissing with th' inner lip," as Shakespeare calls it;
the French langue fourrée: and Sanskrit "Samputa." The subject of
kissing is extensive in the East. Ten different varieties are
duly enumerated in the "Ananga-Ranga;" or, The Hindu Art of Love
(Ars Amoris Indica) translated from the Sanskrit, and annotated
by A. F. F. and B. F. R It is also connected with unguiculation,
or impressing the nails, of which there are seven kinds;
morsication (seven kinds); handling the hair and lappings or
pattings with the fingers and palm (eight kinds).

[FN#536] Arab. "asal-nahl," to distinguish it from "honey" i.e.
syrup of sugar-cane and fruits

[FN#537] The lines have occurred in Night xii. By way of variety
I give Torrens' version p. 273.

[FN#538] The way of carrying money in the corner of a
pocket-handkerchief is still common.

[FN#539] He sent the provisions not to be under an obligation to
her in this matter. And she received them to judge thereby of his

[FN#540] Those who have seen the process of wine-making in the
Libanus will readily understand why it is always strained.

[FN#541] Arab. "Kulkasá," a kind of arum or yam, eaten boiled
like our potatoes.

[FN#542]At first he slipped the money into the bed-clothes: now
he gives it openly and she accepts it for a reason.

[FN#543] Arab. Al-Zalamah lit. = tyrants, oppressors, applied to
the police and generally to employés of Government. It is a word
which tells a history.

[FN#544] Moslem law is never completely satisfied till the
criminal confess. It also utterly ignores circumstantial evidence
and for the best of reasons: amongst so sharp-witted a people the
admission would lead to endless abuses. I greatly surprised a
certain Governor-General of India by giving him this simple

[FN#545] Cutting off the right hand is the Koranic punishment
(chaps. v.) for one who robs an article worth four dinars, about
forty francs to shillings. The left foot is to be cut off at the
ankle for a second offence and so on; but death is reserved for a
hardened criminal. The practice is now obsolete and theft is
punished by the bastinado, fine or imprisonment. The old Guebres
were as severe. For stealing one dirham's worth they took a fine
of two, cut off the ear-lobes, gave ten stick-blows and dismissed
the criminal who had been subjected to an hour's imprisonment. A
second theft caused the penalties to be doubled; and after that
the right hand was cut off or death was inflicted according to
the proportion stolen.

[FN#546] Koran viii. 17.

[FN#547] A universal custom in the East, the object being
originally to show that the draught was not poisoned.

[FN#548] Out of paste or pudding.

[FN#549] Boils and pimples are supposed to be caused by broken
hair-roots and in Hindostani are called Bál-tor.

[FN#550] He intended to bury it decently, a respect which Moslems
always show even to the exuvić of the body, as hair and nail
parings. Amongst Guebres the latter were collected and carried to
some mountain. The practice was intensified by fear of demons or
wizards getting possession of the spoils.

[FN#551] Without which the marriage was not valid. The minimum is
ten dirhams (drachmas) now valued at about five francs to
shillings; and if a man marry without naming the sum, the woman,
after consummation, can compel him to pay this minimum.

[FN#552] Arab. "Khatmah" = reading or reciting the whole Koran,
by one or more persons, usually in the house, not over the tomb.
Like the "Zikr," Litany or Rogation, it is a pious act confined
to certain occasions.

[FN#553] Arab. "Zirbájah" = meat dressed with vinegar, cumin-seed
(Pers. Zír) and hot spices. More of it in the sequel of the tale.

[FN#554] A saying not uncommon meaning, let each man do as he
seems fit; also = "age quad agis": and at times corresponding
with our saw about the cap fitting.

[FN#555] Arab. "Su'úd," an Alpinia with pungent rhizome like
ginger; here used as a counter-odour.

[FN#556] Arab. "Tá'ih" = lost in the "Tíh," a desert wherein man
may lose himself, translated in our maps 'The Desert of the
Wanderings," scil. of the children of Israel. "Credat Judćus."

[FN#557] i e. Ł125 and Ł500.

[FN#558] A large sum was weighed by a professional instead of
being counted, the reason being that the coin is mostly old and
worn: hence our words "pound" and "pension" (or what is weighed

[FN#559] The eunuch is the best possible go-between on account of
his almost unlimited power over the Harem.

[FN#560] i.e., a slave-girl brought up in the house and never
sold except for some especial reason, as habitual drunkenness,

[FN#561] Smuggling men into the Harem is a stock "topic" of
eastern tales. "By means of their female attendants, the ladies
of the royal harem generally get men into their apartments in the
disguise of women," says Vatsyayana in The Kama Sutra, Part V.
London: Printed for the Hindoo Kamashastra Society. 1883. For
private circulation.

[FN#562] These tears are shed over past separation. So the
"Indians" of the New World never meet after long parting without
beweeping mutual friends they have lost.

[FN#563] A most important Jack in office whom one can see with
his smooth chin and blubber lips, starting up from his lazy
snooze in the shade and delivering his orders more peremptorily
than any Dogberry. These epicenes are as curious and exceptional
in character as in external conformation. Disconnected, after a
fashion, with humanity, they are brave, fierce and capable of any
villainy or barbarity (as Agha Mohammed Khan in Persia 1795-98).
The frame is unnaturally long and lean, especially the arms and
legs; with high, flat, thin shoulders, big protruding joints and
a face by contrast extraordinarily large, a veritable mask; the
Castrato is expert in the use of weapons and sits his horse
admirably, riding well "home" in the saddle for the best of
reasons; and his hoarse, thick voice, which apparently does not
break, as in the European "Cáppone," invests him with all the
circumstance of command.

[FN#564] From the Meccan well used by Moslems much like Eau de
Lourdes by Christians: the water is saltish, hence the touch of
Arab humour (Pilgrimage iii., 201-202).

[FN#565] Such articles would be sacred from Moslem eyes.

[FN#566] Physiologically true, but not generally mentioned in
describing the emotions.

[FN#567] Properly "Uta," the different rooms, each "Odalisque,"
or concubine, having her own.

[FN#568] Showing that her monthly ailment was over.

[FN#569] Arab "Muhammarah" = either browned before the fire or
artificially reddened.

[FN#570] The insolence and licence of these palace-girls was (and
is) unlimited, especially when, as in the present case, they have
to deal with a "lofty." On this subject numberless stories are
current throughout the East.

[FN#571] i.e., blackened by the fires of Jehannam.

[FN#572] Arab. "Bi'l-Salámah" = in safety (to avert the evil
eye). When visiting the sick it is usual to say something civil;
"The Lord heal thee! No evil befall thee!" etc.

[FN#573] Washing during sickness is held dangerous by Arabs; and
"going to the Hammam" is, I have said, equivalent to

[FN#574] Arab. "Máristán" (pronounced Múristan) a corruption of
the Pers. "Bímáristán" = place of sickness, a hospital much
affected by the old Guebres (Dabistan, i., 165, 166). That of
Damascus was the first Moslem hospital, founded by Al-Walid Son
of Abd al-Malik the Ommiade in A. H. 88 = 706-7. Benjamin of
Tudela (A. D. 1164) calls it "Dar-al Maraphtan" which his latest
Editor explains by "Dar-al-Morabittan" (abode of those who
require being chained). Al-Makrizi (Khitat) ascribes the
invention of "Spitals" to Hippocrates; another historian to an
early Pharaoh "Manákiyush;" thus ignoring the Persian Kings,
Saint Ephrem (or Ephraim), Syru, etc. In modern parlance
"Maristan" is a madhouse where the maniacs are treated with all
the horrors which were universal in Europe till within a few
years and of which occasional traces occur to this day. In A.D.
1399 Katherine de la Court held a "hospital in the Court called
Robert de Paris," but the first madhouse in Christendom was built
by the legate Ortiz in Toledo A. D. 1483, and was therefore
called Casa del Nuncio. The Damascus "Maristan" was described by
every traveller of the last century: and it showed a curious
contrast between the treatment of the maniac and the idiot or
omadhaun, who is humanely allowed to wander about unharmed, if
not held a Saint. When I saw it last (1870) it was all but empty
and mostly in ruins. As far as my experience goes, the United
States is the only country where the insane are rationally
treated by the sane.

[FN#575] Hence the trite saying "Whoso drinks the water of the
Nile will ever long to drink it again." "Light" means easily
digested water; and the great test is being able to drink it at
night between the sleeps, without indigestion

[FN#576] "Níl" in popular parlance is the Nile in flood; although
also used for the River as a proper name. Egyptians (modern as
well as ancient) have three seasons, Al-Shitá (winter), Al-Sayf
(summer) and Al-Níl (the Nile i.e. flood season' our mid-summer);
corresponding with the Growth months; Housing (or granary)-months
and Flood-months of the older race.

[FN#577] These lines are in the Mac. Edit.

[FN#587] Arab. "Birkat al-Habash," a tank formerly existing in
Southern Cairo: Galland (Night 128) says "en remontant vers

[FN#579] The Bres. Edit. (ii., 190), from which I borrow this
description, here alludes to the well-known Island, Al-Rauzah
(Rodah) = The Garden.

[FN#580] Arab. "Laylat al-Wafá," the night of the completion or
abundance of the Nile (-flood), usually between August 6th and
16th, when the government proclaims that the Nilometer shows a
rise of 16 cubits. Of course it is a great festival and a high
ceremony, for Egypt is still the gift of the Nile (Lane M. E.
chaps. xxvi--a work which would be much improved by a better

[FN#581] i.e., admiration will be complete.

[FN#582] Arab. "Sáhil Masr" (Misr): hence I suppose Galland's
villes maritimes.

[FN#583] A favourite simile, suggested by the broken glitter and
shimmer of the stream under the level rays and the breeze of

[FN#584] Arab. "Halab," derived by Moslems from "He (Abraham)
milked (halaba) the white and dun cow." But the name of the city
occurs in the Cuneiforms as Halbun or Khalbun, and the classics
knew it as {Greek Letters}, Beroca, written with variants.

[FN#585] Arab. "Ká'ah," usually a saloon; but also applied to a
fine house here and elsewhere in The Nights.

[FN#586] Arab. "Ghamz" = winking, signing with the eye which,
amongst Moslems, is not held "vulgar."

[FN#587] Arab. "Kamís" from low Lat. "Camicia," first found in
St. Jerome:-- "Solent militantes habere lineas, quas Camicias
vocant." Our shirt, chemise, chemisette, etc., was unknown to the
Ancients of Europe.

[FN#588] Arab. "Narjís." The Arabs borrowed nothing, but the
Persians much, from Greek Mythology. Hence the eye of Narcissus,
an idea hardly suggested by the look of the daffodil (or
asphodel)-flower, is at times the glance of a spy and at times
the die-away look of a mistress. Some scholars explain it by the
form of the flower, the internal calyx resembling the iris, and
the stalk being bent just below the petals suggesting drooping
eyelids and languid eyes. Hence a poet addresses the Narcissus:--

O Narjis, look away! Before those eyes * I may not kiss her
a-breast she lies.
What! Shall the lover close his eyes in sleep * While thine watch
all things between earth and skies?

The fashionable lover in the East must affect a frantic jealousy
if he does not feel it.

[FN#589] In Egypt there are neither bedsteads nor bedrooms: the
carpets and mattresses, pillows and cushions (sheets being
unknown), are spread out when wanted, and during the day are put
into chests or cupboards, or only rolled up in a corner of the
room (Pilgrimage i. 53).

[FN#590] The women of Damascus have always been famed for the
sanguinary jealousy with which European story-books and novels
credit the "Spanish lady." The men were as celebrated for
intolerance and fanaticism, which we first read of in the days of
Bertrandon de la Brocquičre and which culminated in the massacre
of 1860. Yet they are a notoriously timid race and make,
physically and morally, the worst of soldiers: we proved that
under my late friend Fred. Walpole in the Bashi-Buzuks during the
old Crimean war. The men looked very fine fellows and after a
month in camp fell off to the condition of old women.

[FN#591] Arab. "Rukhám," properly = alabaster and "Marmar" =
marble; but the two are often confounded.

[FN#592] He was ceremonially impure after touching a corpse.

[FN#593] The phrase is perfectly appropriate: Cairo without "her
Nile" would be nothing.

[FN#594] "The market was hot" say the Hindustanis. This would
begin between 7 and 8 a.m.

[FN#595] Arab. Al-Faranj, Europeans generally. It is derived from
"Gens Francorum," and dates from Crusading days when the French
played the leading part. Hence the Lingua Franca, the Levantine
jargon, of which Moličre has left such a witty specimen.

[FN#596] A process familiar to European surgery of the same date.

[FN#597] In sign of disappointment, regret, vexation; a gesture
still common amongst Moslems and corresponding in significance to
a certain extent with our stamping, wringing the hands and so
forth. It is not mentioned in the Koran where, however, we find
"biting fingers' ends out of wrath" against a man (chaps. iii.).

[FN#598] This is no unmerited scandal. The Cairenes, especially
the feminine half (for reasons elsewhere given), have always been
held exceedingly debauched. Even the modest Lane gives a
"shocking" story of a woman enjoying her lover under the nose of
her husband and confining the latter in a madhouse (chaps.
xiii.). With civilisation, which objects to the good old remedy,
the sword, they become worse: and the Kazi's court is crowded
with would-be divorcees. Under English rule the evil has reached
its acme because it goes unpunished: in the avenues of the new
Isma'iliyah Quarter, inhabited by Europeans, women, even young
women, will threaten to expose their persons unless they receive
"bakhshísh." It was the same in Sind when husbands were assured
that they would be hanged for cutting down adulterous wives: at
once after its conquest the women broke loose; and in 1843-50, if
a young officer sent to the bazaar for a girl, half-a-dozen would
troop to his quarters. Indeed more than once the professional
prostitutes threatened to memorialise Sir Charles Napier because
the "modest women," the "ladies" were taking the bread out of
their mouths. The same was the case at Kabul (Caboul) of
Afghanistan in the old war of 1840; and here the women had more
excuse, the husbands being notable sodomites as the song has it.

The worth of slit the Afghan knows;
The worth of hole the Kábul-man.

[FN#599] So that he might not have to do with three
sisters-german. Moreover amongst Moslems a girl's conduct is
presaged by that of her mother; and if one sister go wrong, the
other is expected to follow suit. Practically the rule applies
everywhere, "like mother like daughter."

[FN#600] In sign of dissent; as opposed to nodding the head which
signifies assent. These are two items, apparently instinctive and
universal, of man's gesture-language which has been so highly
cultivated by sundry North American tribes and by the surdo-mute
establishments of Europe.

[FN#601] This "Futur" is the real "breakfast" of the East, the
"Chhoti házri" (petit déjeűner) of India, a bit of bread, a cup
of coffee or tea and a pipe on rising, In the text, however, it
is a ceremonious affair.

[FN#602] Arab. "Nahs," a word of many meanings; a sinister aspect
of the stars (as in Hebr. end Aram.) or, adjectivally, sinister,
of ill-omen. Vulgarly it is used as the reverse of nice and
corresponds, after a fashion, with our "nasty."

[FN#603] "Window-gardening," new in England, is an old practice
in the East.

[FN#604] Her pimping instinct at once revealed the case to her.

[FN#605] The usual "pander-dodge" to get more money.

[FN#606] The writer means that the old woman's account was all
false, to increase apparent difficulties and pour se faire

[FN#607] Arab. "Yá Khálati" =mother's sister; a familiar address
to the old, as uncle or nuncle (father's brother) to a man. The
Arabs also hold that as a girl resembles her mother so a boy
follows his uncle (mother's brother): hence the address "Ya
tayyib al-Khál!" = 0 thou nephew of a good uncle. I have noted
that physically this is often fact.

[FN#608] "Ay w' Alláhi," contracted popularly to Aywa, a word in
every Moslem mouth and shunned by Christians because against
orders Hebrew and Christian. The better educated Turks now eschew
that eternal reference to Allah which appears in The Nights and
which is still the custom of the vulgar throughout the world of

[FN#609] The "Muzayyin" or barber in the East brings his basin
and budget under his arm: he is not content only to shave, he
must scrape the forehead, trim the eyebrows, pass the blade
lightly over the nose and correct the upper and lower lines of
the mustachios, opening the central parting and so forth. He is
not a whit less a tattler and a scandal monger than the old Roman
tonsor or Figaro, his confrčre in Southern Europe. The whole
scene of the Barber is admirable, an excellent specimen of Arab
humour and not over-caricatured. We all have met him.

[FN#610] Abdullah ibn Abbas was a cousin and a companion of the
Apostle, also a well known Commentator on the Koran and conserver
of the traditions of Mohammed.

[FN#611] I have noticed the antiquity of this father of our
sextant, a fragment of which was found in the Palace of
Sennacherib. More concerning the "Arstable" (as Chaucer calls it)
is given in my "Camoens: his Life and his Lusiads," p. 381.

[FN#612] Arab. "Simiyá" to rhyme with Kímiyá (alchemy proper). It
is a subordinate branch of the Ilm al-Ruháni which I would
translate "Spiritualism," and which is divided into two great
branches, "Ilwí or Rahmáni" (the high or related to the Deity)
and Siflí or Shaytáni (low, Satanic). To the latter belongs
Al-Sahr, magic or the black art proper, gramarye, egromancy,
while Al- Simiyá is white magic, electro-biology, a kind of
natural and deceptive magic, in which drugs and perfumes exercise
an important action. One of its principal branches is the Darb
al-Mandal or magic mirror, of which more in a future page. See
Boccaccio's Day x. Novel 5.

[FN#613] Chap. iii., 128. See Sale (in loco) for the noble
application of this text by the Imam Hasan, son of the Caliph

[FN#614] These proverbs at once remind us of our old friend
Sancho Panza and are equally true to nature in the mouth of the
Arab and of the Spaniard.

[FN#615] Our nurses always carry in the arms: Arabs place the
children astraddle upon the hip and when older on the shoulder.

[FN#616] Eastern clothes allow this biblical display of sorrow
and vexation, which with our European garb would look absurd: we
must satisfy ourselves with maltreating our hats

[FN#617] Koran xlviii., 8. It may be observed that according to
the Ahádis (sayings of the Prophet) and the Sunnat (sayings and
doings of Mahommed), all the hair should be allowed to grow or
the whole head be clean shaven. Hence the "Shúshah," or topknot,
supposed to be left as a handle for drawing the wearer into
Paradise, and the Zulf, or side-locks, somewhat like the ringlets
of the Polish Jews, are both vain "Bida'at," or innovations, and
therefore technically termed "Makrúh," a practice not laudable,
neither "Halál" (perfectly lawful) nor "Harám" (forbidden by the
law). When boys are first shaved generally in the second or third
year, a tuft is left on the crown and another over the forehead;
but this is not the fashion amongst adults. Abu Hanifah, if I am
rightly informed, wrote a treatise on the Shushah or long lock
growing from the Násiyah (head-poll) which is also a precaution
lest the decapitated Moslem's mouth be defiled by an impure hand;
and thus it would resemble the chivalry lock by which the Redskin
brave (and even the "cowboy" of better times) facilitated the
removal of his own scalp. Possibly the Turks had learned the
practice from the Chinese and introduced it into Baghdad
(Pilgrimage i., 240). The Badawi plait their locks in Kurún
(horns) or Jadáil (ringlets) which are undone only to be washed
with the water of the she-camel. The wild Sherifs wear Haffah,
long elf-locks hanging down both sides of the throat, and shaved
away about a finger's breadth round the forehead and behind the
neck (Pilgrimage iii., 35-36). I have elsewhere noted the
accroche-cœurs, the "idiot fringe," etc.

[FN#618] Meats are rarely coloured in modern days; but Persian
cooks are great adepts in staining rice for the "Puláo (which we
call after its Turkish corruption "pilaff"): it sometimes appears
in rainbow-colours, red, yellow and blue; and in India is covered
with gold and silver leaf. Europe retains the practice in tinting
Pasch (Easter) eggs, the survival of the mundane ovum which was
hatched at Easter-tide; and they are dyed red in allusion to the
Blood of Redemption.

[FN#619] As I have noticed, this is a mixture.

[FN#620] We say:--

Tis rare the father in the son we see:
He sometimes rises in the third degree.

[FN#621] Arab. "Ballán" i.e. the body-servant: "Ballánah" is a

[FN#622] Arab. "Darabukkah" a drum made of wood or earthen-ware
(Lane, M. E., xviii.), and used by all in Egypt.

[FN#623] Arab. "Naihah" more generally "Naddábah" Lat. prćfica or
carina, a hired mourner, the Irish "Keener" at the conclamatio or
coronach, where the Hullabaloo, Hulululu or Ululoo showed the
survivors' sorrow.

[FN#624] These doggerels, which are like our street melodies, are
now forgotten and others have taken their place. A few years ago
one often heard, "Dus ya lalli" (Tread, O my joy) and "Názil
il'al-Ganínah" (Down into the garden) and these in due turn
became obsolete. Lane (M. E. chaps. xviii.) gives the former e.g.

Tread, O my joy! Tread, O my joy!
Love of my love brings sore annoy,

A chorus to such stanzas as:--

Alexandrian damsels rare! * Daintily o'er the floor ye fare:
Your lips are sweet, are sugar-sweet, * And purfled Cashmere
shawls ye wear!

It may be noted that "humming" is not a favourite practice with
Moslems; if one of the company begin, another will say, "Go to
the Kahwah" (the coffee-house, the proper music-hall) "and sing
there!" I have elsewhere observed their dislike to Al-sifr or

[FN#625] Arab. Khalí'a = worn out, crafty, an outlaw; used like
Span. "Perdido."

[FN#626] "Zabbál" is the scavenger, lit. a dung-drawer,
especially for the use of the Hammam which is heated with the
droppings of animals. "Wakkád" (stoker) is the servant who turns
the fire. The verses are mere nonsense to suit the Barber's

[FN#627] Arab. "Yá bárid" = O fool.

[FN#628] This form of blessing is chanted from the Minaret about
half-an-hour before midday, when the worshippers take their
places in the mosque. At noon there is the usual Azán or
prayer-call, and each man performs a two-bow, in honour of the
mosque and its gathering, as it were. The Prophet is then blessed
and a second Salám is called from the raised ambo or platform
(dikkah) by the divines who repeat the midday-call. Then an Imam
recites the first Khutbah, or sermon "of praise"; and the
congregation worships in silence. This is followed by the second
exhortation "of Wa'az," dispensing the words of wisdom. The Imam
now stands up before the Mihráb (prayer niche) and recites the
Ikámah which is the common Azan with one only difference: after
"Hie ye to salvation" it adds "Come is the time of supplication;"
whence the name, "causing" (prayer) "to stand" (i.e., to begin).
Hereupon the worshippers recite the Farz or Koran commanded
noon-prayer of Friday; and the unco' guid add a host of
superogatories Those who would study the subject may consult Lane
(M. E. chaps. iii. and its abstract in his "Arabian Nights," I,
p. 430, or note 69 to chaps. v.).

[FN#629] i.e., the women loosed their hair; an immodesty
sanctioned only by a great calamity.

[FN#630] These small shops are composed of a "but" and a "ben."
(Pilgrimage i., 99.)

[FN#631] Arab. "Kawwád," a popular term of abuse; hence the Span.
and Port. "Alco-viteiro." The Italian "Galeotto" is from
Galahalt, not Galahad.

[FN#632] i.e., "one seeking assistance in Allah." He was the son
of Al-Záhir bi'lláh (one pre-eminent by the decree of Allah).
Lane says (i. 430), "great- grandson of Harun al-Rashid,"
alluding to the first Mustansir son of Al-Mutawakkil (regn. A.H.
247-248 =861-862). But this is the 56th Abbaside and regn. A. H.
623-640 (= 1226-1242).

[FN#633] Arab. "Yaum al-Id," the Kurban Bairam of the Turks, the
Pilgrimage festival. The story is historical. In the "Akd," a
miscellany compiled by Ibn Abd Rabbuh (vulg. Rabbi-hi) of
Cordova, who ob. A. H. 328 = 940 we read:--A sponger found ten
criminals and followed them, imagining they were going to a
feast; but lo, they were going to their deaths! And when they
were slain and he remained, he was brought before the Khalifah
(Al Maamun) and Ibrahim son of Al- Mahdi related a tale to
procure pardon for the man, whereupon the Khalifah pardoned him.
(Lane ii., 506.)

[FN#634] Arab. "Nate' al-Dam"; the former word was noticed in the
Tale of the Bull and the Ass. The leather of blood was not unlike
the Sufrah and could be folded into a bag by a string running
through rings round the edges. Moslem executioners were very
expert and seldom failed to strike off the head with a single
blow of the thin narrow blade with razor-edge, hard as diamond
withal, which contrasted so strongly with the great coarse
chopper of the European headsman.

[FN#635] The ground floor, which in all hot countries is held,
and rightly so, unwholesome during sleep, is usually let for
shops. This is also the case throughout Southern Europe, and
extends to the Canary Islands and the Brazil.

[FN#636] This serious contemplation of street-scenery is one of
the pleasures of the Harems.

[FN#637] We should say "smiled at him": the laugh was not
intended as an affront.

[FN#638] Arab. "Fals ahmar." Fals is a fish-scale, also the
smaller coin and the plural "Fulús" is the vulgar term for money
(= Ital. quattrini ) without specifying the coin. It must not be
confounded with the "Fazzah," alias "Nuss," alias "Páráh"
(Turk.); the latter being made, not of "red copper" but of a vile
alloy containing, like the Greek "Asper," some silver; and
representing, when at par, the fortieth of a piastre, the
latter=2d. 2/5ths.

[FN#639] Arab "Farajiyah " a long-sleeved robe; Lane's
"Farageeyeh," (M. E., chaps. i)

[FN#640] The tailor in the East, as in Southern Europe, is made
to cut out the cloth in presence of its owner, to prevent

[FN#641] Expecting a present.

[FN#642] Alluding to the saying, "Kiss is the key to Kitty."

[FN#643] The "panel-dodge" is fatally common throughout the East,
where a man found in the house of another is helpless.

[FN#644] This was the beginning of horseplay which often ends in
a bastinado.

[FN#645] Hair-dyes, in the East, are all of vegetable matter,
henna, indigo-leaves, galls, etc.: our mineral dyes are, happily
for them, unknown. Herklots will supply a host of recipes The
Egyptian mixture which I quoted in Pilgrimage (ii., 274) is
sulphate of iron and ammoniure of iron one part and gall nuts two
parts, infused in eight parts of distilled water. It is innocuous
but very poor as a dye.

[FN#646] Arab. Amrad, etymologically "beardless and handsome,"
but often used in a bad sense, to denote an effeminate, a

[FN#647] The Hindus prefer "having the cardinal points as her
sole garment." "Vętu de climat," says Madame de Stael. In Paris
nude statues are "draped in cerulean blue." Rabelais (iv.,29)
robes King Shrovetide in grey and gold of a comical cut, nothing
before, nothing behind, with sleeves of the same.

[FN#648] This scene used to be enacted a few years ago in Paris
for the benefit of concealed spectators, a young American being
the victim. It was put down when one of the lookers-on lost his
eye by a pen-knife thrust into the "crevice."

[FN#649] Meaning that the trick had been played by the Wazir's
wife or daughter. I could mention sundry names at Cairo whose
charming owners have done worse things than this unseemly frolic.

[FN#650] Arab. "Shayyun li'lláhi," a beggar's formula = per amor
di Dio.

[FN#651] Noting how sharp-eared the blind become.

[FN#652] The blind in Egypt are notorious for insolence and
violence, fanaticism and rapacity. Not a few foreigners have
suffered from them (Pilgrimage i., 148). In former times many
were blinded in infancy by their mothers, and others blinded
themselves to escape conscription or honest hard work. They could
always obtain food, especially as Mu'ezzins and were preferred
because they could not take advantage of the minaret by spying
into their neighbours' households. The Egyptian race is
chronically weak-eyed, the effect of the damp hot climate of the
valley, where ophthalmia prevailed even during the pre-Pharaohnic
days. The great Sesostris died stone-blind and his successor lost
his sight for ten years (Pilgrimage ii., 176). That the Fellahs
are now congenitally weak-eyed, may be seen by comparing them
with negroes imported from Central Africa. Ophthalmia rages,
especially during the damp season, in the lower Nile-valley; and
the best cure for it is a fortnight's trip to the Desert where,
despite glare, sand and wind, the eye readily recovers tone.

[FN#653] i.e., with kicks and cuffs and blows, as is the custom.
(Pilgrimage i., 174.)

[FN#654] Arab. Káid (whence "Alcayde") a word still much used in
North Western Africa.

[FN#655] Arab. "Sullam" = lit. a ladder; a frame-work of sticks,
used by way of our triangles or whipping-posts.

[FN#656] This is one of the feats of Al-Símiyá = white magic;
fascinating the eyes. In Europe it has lately taken the name of

[FN#657] again by means of the "Símiyá" or power of fascination
possessed by the old scoundrel.

[FN#658] A formula for averting "Al-Ayn," the evil eye. It is
always unlucky to meet a one-eyed man, especially the first thing
in the morning and when setting out on any errand. The idea is
that the fascinated one will suffer from some action of the
physical eye. Monoculars also are held to be rogues: so the
Sanskrit saying "Few one-eyed men be honest men."

[FN#659] Al-Nashshár from Nashr = sawing: so the fiddler in
Italian is called the "village-saw" (Sega del villaggio). He is
the Alnaschar of the Englished Galland and Richardson. The tale
is very old. It appears as the Brahman and the Pot of Rice in the
Panchatantra; and Professor Benfey believes (as usual with him)
that this, with many others, derives from a Buddhist source. But
I would distinctly derive it from Ćsop's market-woman who kicked
over her eggs, whence the Lat. prov. Ante victoriam canere
triumphum = to sell the skin before you have caught the bear. In
the "Kalilah and Dimnah" and its numerous offspring it is the
"Ascetic with his Jar of oil and honey;" in Rabelais (i., 33)
Echephron's shoemaker spills his milk, and so La Perette in La
Fontaine. See M. Max Muller's "Chips," (vol. iii., appendix) The
curious reader will compare my version with that which appears at
the end of Richardson's Arabic Grammar (Edit. Of 1811): he had a
better, or rather a fuller MS. (p. 199) than any yet printed.

[FN#660] Arab. "Atr" = any perfume, especially oil of roses;
whence our word "Otter,' through the Turkish corruption.

[FN#661] The texts give "dirhams" (100,000 = 5,000 dinars) for
"dinars," a clerical error as the sequel shows.

[FN#662] "Young slaves," says Richardson, losing "colour."

[FN#663] Nothing more calculated to give affront than such a
refusal. Richardson (p. 204) who, however, doubts his own version
(p. 208), here translates, "and I will not give liberty to my
soul (spouse) but in her apartments." The Arabic, or rather
Cairene, is, "wa lá akhalli rúhi" I will not let myself go, i.e.,
be my everyday self, etc.

[FN#664] "Whilst she is in astonishment and terror."

[FN#665] "Chamber of robes," Richardson, whose text has "Nám" for

[FN#666] "Till I compleat her distress," Richardson, whose text
is corrupt.

[FN#667] "Sleep by her side," R. the word "Name" bearing both

[FN#668] "Will take my hand," R. "takabbal" being also ambiguous.

[FN#669] Arab. "Mu'arras" one who brings about "'Ars," marriages,
etc. So the Germ. = "Kupplerinn" a Coupleress. It is one of the
many synonyms for a pimp, and a word in general use (Pilgrimage
i., 276).The most insulting term, like Dayyús, insinuates that
the man panders for his own wife.

[FN#670] Of hands and face, etc. See Night cccclxiv.

[FN#671] Arab. "Sadakah" (sincerity), voluntary or superogatory
alms, opposed to "Zakát" (purification), legal alms which are
indispensable. "Prayer carries us half way to Allah, fasting
brings us to the door of His palace and alms deeds (Sadakah)
cause us to enter." For "Zakát" no especial rate is fixed, but it
should not be less than one-fortieth of property or two and a
half per cent. Thus Al-lslam is, as far as I know, the only faith
which makes a poor-rate (Zakát) obligatory and which has invented
a property-tax, as opposed the unjust and unfair income-tax upon
which England prides herself.

[FN#672] A Greek girl.

[FN#673] This was making himself very easy; and the idea is the
gold in the pouch caused him to be so bold. Lane's explanation
(in loco) is all wrong. The pride engendered by sudden possession
of money is a lieu commun amongst Eastern story tellers; even in
the beast-fables the mouse which has stolen a few gold pieces
becomes confident and stout-hearted.

[FN#674] Arab. "al-Málihah" also means the beautiful (fem.) from
Milh=salt, splendour, etc., the Mac edit. has "Mumallihah" = a

[FN#675] i.e., to see if he felt the smart.

[FN#676] Arab. "Sardábeh" (Persian)=an underground room used for
coolness in the hot season. It is unknown in Cairo but every
house in Baghdad, in fact throughout the Mesopotamian cities, has
one. It is on the principle of the underground cellar without
which wine will not keep: Lane (i., 406) calls it a "vault".

[FN#677] In the orig. "O old woman!" which is insulting.

[FN#678] So the Italians say "a quail to skin."

[FN#679] "Amen" is the word used for quarter on the battle-field;
and there are Joe Millers about our soldiers in India mistaking
it for "a man" or (Scottice) "a mon."

[FN#680] Illustrating the Persian saying "Allah himself cannot
help a fool."

[FN#681] Any article taken from the person and given to a
criminal is a promise of pardon, of course on the implied
condition of plenary confession and of becoming "King's

[FN#682] A naďve proposal to share the plunder.

[FN#683] In popular literature "Schacabac.", And from this tale
comes our saying "A Barmecide's Feast," i.e., an illusion.

[FN#684] The Castrato at the door is still (I have said) the
fashion of Cairo and he acts "Suisse" with a witness.

[FN#685] As usual in the East, the mansion was a hollow square
surrounding what in Spain is called Patio: the outer entrance was
far from the inner, showing the extent of the grounds.

[FN#686] "Nahnu málihín" = we are on terms of salt, said and say
the Arabs. But the traveller must not trust in these days to the
once sacred tie; there are tribes which will give bread with one
hand and stab with the other. The Eastern use of salt is a
curious contrast with that of Westerns, who made it an invidious
and inhospitable distinction, e.g., to sit above the salt-cellar
and below the salt. Amongst the ancients, however, "he took bread
and salt" means he swore, the food being eaten when an oath was
taken. Hence the "Bride cake" of salt, water and flour.

[FN#687] Arab. "Harísah," the meat-pudding before explained.

[FN#688] Arab. "Sikbáj," before explained; it is held to be a
lordly dish, invented by Khusraw Parwiz. "Fatted duck" says the
Bresl. Edit. ii., 308, with more reason.

[FN#689] I was reproved in Southern Abyssinia for eating without
this champing, "Thou feedest like a beggar who muncheth silently
in his corner;" and presently found that it was a sign of good
breeding to eat as noisily as possible.

[FN#690] Barley in Arabia is, like our oats, food for horses: it
fattens at the same time that it cools them. Had this been known
to our cavalry when we first occupied Egypt in 1883-4 our losses
in horse-flesh would have been far less; but official ignorance
persisted in feeding the cattle upon heating oats and the riders
upon beef, which is indigestible, instead of mutton, which is

[FN#691] i.e. "I conjure thee by God."

[FN#692] i.e. "This is the very thing for thee."

[FN#693] i.e., at random.

[FN#694] This is the way of slaughtering the camel, whose throat
is never cut on account of the thickness of the muscles. "Égorger
un chameau" is a mistake often made in French books.

[FN#695] i.e. I will break bounds.

[FN#696] The Arabs have a saying corresponding with the dictum of
the Salernitan school:--

Noscitur a labiis quantum sit virginis antrum:
Noscitur a naso quanta sit haste viro;
(A maiden's mouth shows what's the make of her chose;
And man's mentule one knows by the length of his nose.)

Whereto I would add:--

And the eyebrows disclose how the lower wig grows.

The observations are purely empirical but, as far as my
experience extends, correct.

[FN#697] Arab. "Kahkahah," a very low proceeding.

[FN#698] Or "for every death there is a cause;" but the older
Arabs had a saying corresponding with "Deus non fecit mortem."

[FN#699] The King's barber is usually a man of rank for the best
of reasons, that he holds his Sovereign's life between his
fingers. One of these noble Figaros in India married an English
lady who was, they say, unpleasantly surprised to find out what
were her husband's official duties.

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