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To The Book Of The Thousand
And One Nights With Notes
Anthropological And

Richard F. Burton

Privately Printed By The Burton Club

I Inscribe This Final Volume
The Many Excellent Friends
who lent me their valuable aid in copying
and annotating
The Thousand Nights and a Night

Contents of the Sixteenth Volume.

1. The Say of Haykar the Sage
2. The History of Al-Bundukani or, The Caliph Harun Al-Rashid
and the Daughter of King Kisra
3. The Linguist-Dame, the Duenna and the King's Son
4. The Tale of the Warlock and the Young Cook of Baghdad
5. The Pleasant History of the Cock and the Fox
6. History of What Befel the Fowl-let with the Fowler
7. The Tale of Attaf
The Tale of Attaf by Alexander J. Cotheal
8. History of Prince Habib and what Befel Him with the Lady
Durrat Al-Ghawwas
a. The History of Durrat Al-Ghawwas


Notes on the Stories Contained in Volume XVI, by W. F. Kirby
Index to the Tales and Proper Names
Index to the Variants and Analogues
Index to the Notes of W. A. Clouston and W. F. Kirby
Alphabetical Table of Notes (Anthropological, &c.)
Additional Notes on the Bibliography of the Thousand and One
Nights, by W. F. Kirby
The Biography of the Book and Its Reviewers Reviewed
Opinions of the Press

The Translator's Foreword.

This volume has been entitled "THE NEW ARABIAN 1 NIGHTS," a name
now hackneyed because applied to its contents as far back as 1819
in Henry Weber's "Tales of the East" (Edinburgh, Ballantyne).

The original MS. was brought to France by Al-Kahin Diyanisias
Shawish, a Syrian priest of the Congregation of St. Basil, whose
name has been Frenchified to Dom Dennis (or Denys) Chavis. He was
a student at the European College of Al-Kadis Ithanasius (St.
Athanasius) in Rumiyah the Grand (Constantinople) and was
summoned by the Minister of State, Baron de Breteuil, to Paris,
where he presently became "Teacher of the Arabic Tongue at the
College of the Sultan, King of Fransa in Baris (Paris) the
Great." He undertook (probably to supply the loss of Galland's
ivth MS. volume) a continuation of The Nights (proper), and wrote
with his own hand the last two leaves of the third tome, which
ends with three instead of four couplets: thus he completed Kamar
al-Zaman (Night cclxxxi.- cccxxix.) and the following tales:--

The History of the Sleeper and the Waker (Nights
The History of Warlock and the Cook (ccclxxx.-cd.).
The History of the Prisoner in the Bimaristan or Madhouse
The History of Ghanim the Thrall o' Love (cdxxviii.-cdlxxiv.).
The History of Zayn al-Asnam and the King of the Jann
The History of Alaeddin (cdxcii.-dlxix.), and
The History of Ten Wazirs (dlxx.).

The copy breaks off at folio 320, r in the middle of Night
dcxxxi., and the date (given at the end of Night cdxxvii., folio
139) is Shubat (February), A.D. 1787. This is the MS. numbered
Supplement Arabe, No. 1716.

In Paris, Dom Chavis forgathered with M. Cazotte, a litterateur
of the category "light," an ingenieux ecrivain, distinguished for
"gaiety, delicacy, wit and Attic elegance," and favorably known
for (inter alia) his poem "Olivier," his "Diable Amoureux," "The
Lord Impromptu," and a travesty of The Nights called "The
Thousand and One Fopperies." The two agreed to collaborate, the
Syrian translating the Arabic into French, and the Parisian
metamorphosing the manner and matter to "the style and taste of
the day"; that is to say, working up an exaggerated imitation, a
caricature, of Galland. The work appeared, according to Mr. A. G.
Ellis, of the British Museum, who kindly sent me these notes, in
Le Cabinet | des Fees, | ou | Collection choisie | des Contes des
Fees, | et autres contes merveilleux, | ornes de figures. | Tome
trente-huitieme--(quarante-unieme). | A Geneve, | chez Barde,
Manget et Compagnie, | Imprimeurs-Libraires. | Et se trouve a
Paris | Rue et Hotel Serpente. | 1788-89, 8 [FN#1] . The
half-title is Les Veilliees Persanes, and on the second title-
page is Les Veilliees | du | Sultan Schahriar, avec | la Sultane
Scheherazade; | Histoires incroyables, amusantes, et morales, |
traduites de l'Arabe par M. Cazotte et | D. Chavis. Faisant suite
aux mille et une Nuits. | Ornees de I2 belles gravures. | Tome
premier (--quatrieme) | a Geneve, | chez Barde, Manget et Comp' |
1793. This 8vo[FN#2] bears the abridged title, La Suite des mille
et une Nuits, Contes Arabes, traduits par Dom Chavis et M.
Cazotte. The work was printed with illustrations at Geneva and in
Paris, MDCCLXXXVIII., and formed the last four volumes (xxxviii.-
xli.) of the great Recueil, the Cabinet des Fees, published at
Geneva from A.D. 1788 to 1793.

The following is a complete list of the histories, as it appears
in the English translation, lengthily entitled, "Arabian Tales; |
or, | a Continuation | of the | Arabian Nights Entertainments. |
Consisting of | Stories | Related by the | Sultana of the Indies
| to divert her Husband from the Performance of a rash vow; |
Exhibiting | A most interesting view of the Religion, Laws, |
Manners, Customs, Arts, and Literature | of the | Nations of the
East, | And | Affording a rich Fund of the most pleasing
Amusement, | which fictitious writings can supply. | In Four
Volumes | newly translated from the original Arabic into French |
By Dom Chavis | a native Arab and M. Cazotte, Member | of the
Academy of Dijon. | And translated from the French into English |
By Robert Heron. | Edinburgh: | Printed for Bell and Bradfute, J.
Dickson, E. Balfour, | and P. Hill, Edinburgh, | and G. G. J. and
J. Robinson, London | MDCCXCIl."

1. The Robber-Caliph; or, adventures of Haroun-Alraschid, with
the Princess of Persia and the fair Zutulbe.[FN#3]
2. The Power of Destiny, or, Story of the Journey of Giafar to
Damascus comprehending the Adventures of Chebib (Habib) and
his family.
3. The Story of Halechalbe (Ali Chelebi) and the Unknown Lady;
or, the Bimaristan.
4. The Idiot; or, Story of Xailoun.[FN#4]
5. The Adventures of Simustafa (="Si" for Sidi "Mustafa") and
the Princess Ilsatilsone (Lizzat al-Lusun = Delight of
6. Adventures of Alibengiad, Sultan of Herat, and of the False
Birds of Paradise.
7. History of Sankarib and his two Viziers.
8. History of the Family of the Schebandad (Shah-bander =
Consul) of Surat.
9. The Lover of the Stars: or, Abil Hasan's Story.
10. History of Captain Tranchemont and his Brave Companions:
Debil Hasen's Story.
11. The Dream of Valid Hasan.
12-23. Story of Bohetzad and his Ten Viziers (with eleven
subsidiary tales).[FN#5]
24. Story of Habib and Dorathal-Goase (=Durrat al-Ghawwas the
Pearl of the Diver); or, the Arabian Knight.
25. Story of Illabousatrous (?) of Schal-Goase, and of
26. Story of the Lady of the Beautiful Tresses.
27. The History of Habib and Dorathal-Goase; or, the Arabian
Knight continued.
28. History of Maugraby (Al Magnrabi=the Moor); or, the
29. History of Halaiaddin ('Ala al-Din, Alaeddin, Aladdin),
Prince of Persia.
30. History of Yemaladdin (Jamal al-Din), Prince of Great Katay.
31. History of Baha-Ildur, Prince of Cinigae.
32. History of Badrildinn (Badr al-Din), Prince of Tartary.
33. History of the Amours of Maugraby with Auhata al-Kawakik ( =
Ukht al-Kawakib, Sister of the Planets), daughter of the
King of Egypt.
34. History of the Birth of Maugraby.

Of these thirty four only five (MS. iv., vi., vii., xxvii. and
xxxii.) have not been found in the original Arabic.

Public opinion was highly favourable to the "Suite" when first
issued. Orientalism was at that time new to Europe, and the
general was startled by its novelties, e.g. by "Women wearing
drawers and trousers like their husbands, and men arrayed in
loose robes like their wives, yet at the same time cherishing, as
so many goats, each a venerable length of beard." (Heron's
Preface.) They found its "phaenomena so remote from the customs
and manners of Europe, that, when exhibited as entering into the
ordinary system of human affairs, they could not fail to confer a
considerable share of amusive novelty on the characters and
events with which they were connected." (Ditto, Preface.)
Jonathan Scott roundly pronounced the continuation a forgery. Dr.
Patrick Russell (History of Aleppo, vol. i. 385) had no good
opinion of it, and Caussin de Perceval (pere, vol. viii., p.
40-46) declared the version eloignee du gout Orientale; yet he
re-translated the tales from the original Arabic (Continues,
Paris, 1806), and in this he was followed by Gauttier, while
Southey borrowed the idea of his beautiful romance, "Thalaba the
Destroyer," now in Lethe from the "History of Maughraby." Mr. A.
G. Ellis considers these tales as good as the old "Arabian
Nights," and my friend Mr. W. F. Kirby (Appendix to The Nights,
vol. x. p. 418), quite agrees with him that Chavis and Cazotte's
Continuation is well worthy of republication in its entirety. It
remained for the Edinburgh Review, in one of those ignorant and
scurrilous articles with which it periodically outrages truth and
good taste (No. 535, July, 1886), to state, "Cazotte published
his Suite des Mille et une Nuits, a barefaced forgery, in 1785."
A barefaced forgery! when the original of twenty eight tales out
of thirty four are perfectly well known, and when sundry of these
appear in MSS. of "The Thousand Nights and a Night."

The following is a list of the Tales (widely differing from those
of Chavis and Cazotte) which appeared in the version of Caussin
de Perceval.


Les | Mille et une Nuits | Contes Arabes, | Traduits en Francais
| Par M. Galland, | Membre de l'Academie des Inscriptions et |
Belles-Lettres, Professeur de Langue Arabe | au College Royal, |
Continues | Par M. Caussin de Perceval, | Professeur de Langue
Arabe au College Imperial. | Tome huitieme. | a Paris, | chez Le
Normant, Imp.-Libraire, | Rue des Pretres Saint-Germain-l
'Auxerrois. | 1806.

1. Nouvelles aventures du calife Haroun Alraschid; ou histoire
de la petite fille de Chosroes Anouschirvan.
Gauttier, Histoire du Khalyfe de Baghdad: vol. vii. II7.)
2. Le Bimaristan, ou histoire du jeune Marchand de Bagdad et de
la dame inconnue.
3. Le medecin et le jeune traiteur de Bagdad
4. Histoire du Sage Hicar.
(Gauttier, Histoire du Sage Heycar, vii. 313.)
5. Histoire du roi Azadbakht, ou des dix Visirs.
6. Histoire du marchand devenu malheureux.
7. Histoire du imprudent et de ses deux enfants.
8. Histoire du d' Abousaber, ou de l'homme patient.
9. Histoire du du prince Behezad.
10. Histoire du roi Dadbin, ou de la vertueuse Aroua.
11. Histoire du Bakhtzeman.
12. Histoire du Khadidan.
13. Histoire du Beherkerd.
14. Histoire du Ilanschah et d'Abouteman.
15. Histoire du Ibrahim et de son fils.
16. Histoire du Soleiman-schah.
17. Histoire du de l'esclave sauve du supplice.


18. Attaf ou l'homme genereux.
(Gauttier, Histoire de l'habitant de Damas, vii. 234.)
19. Histoire du Prince Habib et de Dorrat Algoase.
20. Histoire du roi Sapor, souverain des iles Bellour; de Camar
Alzemann, fille du genie Alatrous, et Dorrat Algoase.
(Gauttier, vii. 64.)
21. Histoire de Naama et de Naam.
22. Histoire du d'Alaeddin.
23. Histoire du d'Abou Mohammed Alkeslan.
24. Histoire du d'Aly Mohammed le joaillier, ou du faux calife.

I need hardly offer any observations upon these tales, as they
have been discussed in the preceding pages.

By an error of the late M. Reinaud (for which see p. 39 His toire
d' 'Ala al-Din by M. H. Zotenberg, Paris, Imprimerie Na tionale,
MDCCCLXXXVIII.) the MS. Supplement Arabe, No. I7I6, in the
writing of Dom Chavis has been confounded with No. 1723, which is
not written by the Syrian priest but which contains the originals
of the Cazotte Continuation as noted by M. C. de Perceval (Les
Mille et une Nuits, etc., vol. viii. Pref. p. I7, et seqq.) It is
labelled Histoires tirees la plupart des Mille et une Nuits |
Supplement Arabe | Volume de 742 pages. The thick quarto measures
centimetres 20 long by I6 wide; the binding is apparently
Italian and the paper is European, but the filegrane or water-
mark, which is of three varieties, a coronet, a lozenge-shaped
bunch of circles and a nondescript, may be Venetian or French. It
contains 765 pages, paginated after European fashion, but the
last eleven leaves are left blank reducing the number written to
742; and the terminal note, containing the date, is on the last
leaf. Each page numbers IS lines and each leaf has its catchword
(mot de rappel). It is not ordered by "karras" or quires; but is
written upon 48 sets of 4 double leaves. The text is in a fair
Syrian hand, but not so flowing as that of No. 1716, by Shawish
himself, which the well-known Arabist, Baron de Slane, described
as Bonne ecriture orientale de la fin du XVIII Siecle. The
colophon conceals or omits the name of the scribe, but records
the dates of incept Kanun IId. (the Syrian winter month January)
A.D. 1772; and of conclusion Naysan (April) of the same year. It
has head-lines disposed recto and verve, e.g.,

Haykar -------------------- Al-Hakim,

and parentheses in the text after European fashion with an
imperfect list at the beginning. A complete index is furnished at
the end. The following are the order and pagination of the
fourteen stories:--

1. The King of Persia and his Ten Wazirs . . . . . .pp. 1 to 62
2. Say of the Sage Haykar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .140
3. History of King Sabur and the Three Wise Men. . . . . . .183
4. The Daughter of Kisra the King (Al Bundukani) . . . . . .217
5. The Caliph and the Three Kalandars. . . . . . . . . . . .266
6. Julnar the Sea born . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .396
7. The Duenna, the Linguist-dame and the King's Son. . . . .476
8. The Tale of the Warlock and the young Cook of Baghdad . .505
9. The Man in the Bimaristan or Madhouse . . . . . . . . . .538
10. The Tale of Attaf the Syrian. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .588
11. The History of Sultan Habib and Durrat al-Ghawwas . . . .628
12. The Caliph and the Fisherman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .686
13. The Cock and the Fox. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .718
14. The Fowl-let and the Fowler . . . . . . . 725 to 739 (finis)

Upon these tales I would be permitted to offer a few
observetions. No. i. begins with a Christian formula:--"In the
name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost"
(Ruhu'l-Kudus); and it is not translated, because it is a mere
replica of the Ten Wazirs (Suppl. vol. i. 55-151). The second,
containing "The Sage Haykar," which is famous in folk-lore
throughout the East, begins with the orthodox Moslem "Bismillah,"
etc. "King Sapor" is prefaced by a Christian form which to the
Trinitarian formula adds, "Allah being One"; this, again, is not
translated, because it repeats the "Ebony Horse" (vol. v. 1). No
iv., which opens with the Bismillah, is found in the Sabbagh MS.
of The Nights (see Suppl. vol. iii.) as the Histoire de Haroun
al-Raschid et de la descendante de Chosroes. Albondoqani (Nights
lxx.-lxxvii.). No. v., which also has the Moslem invocation, is
followed by the "Caliph and the Three Kalandars," where, after
the fashion of this our MS., the episodes (vol. i., 104-130) are
taken bodily from "The Porter and the Three Ladies of Baghdad"
(i. 82), and are converted into a separate History. No. vi. has
no title to be translated, being a replica of the long sea-tale
in vol. vii., 264. Nos. vii., viii., ix., x. and xi. lack
initiatory invocation betraying Christian or Moslem provenance.
No. viii. is the History of Si Mustafa and of Shaykh Shahab al-
Din in the Turkish Tales: it also occurs in the Sabbagh MS.
(Nights ccclxxxvi.-cdviii.). The Bimaristan (No. ix.), alias Ali
Chalabi (Halechalbe), has already appeared in my Suppl. vol. iv.
35. No. xii., "The Caliph and the Fisherman," makes Harun
al-Rashid the hero of the tale in "The Fisherman and the Jinni"
(vol. i. 38); it calls the ensorcelled King of the Black Islands
Mahmud, and his witch of a wife Sitt al-Muluk, and it also
introduces into the Court of the Great Caliph Hasan Shuman and
Ahmad al-Danaf, the prominent personages in "The Rogueries of
Dalilah" (vol. vii. 144) and its sister tale (vii. 172). The two
last Histories, which are ingenious enough, also lack initial

Dr. Russell (the historian of Aleppo) brought back with him a
miscellaneous collection comprising--

Al-Bundukani, or the Robber Caliph;
The Power of Destiny (Attaf the Syrian);
Ali Chelebi, or the Bimaristan;
King Sankharib and the Sage Haykar;
Bohetzad (Azadbakht) and the Ten Wazirs; and, lastly,
Habib, or the Arabian Knight.

The Encyclopedia Britannica (ixth edit. of MDCCCLXXVI.), which
omits the name of Professor Galland, one of the marking
Orientalists in his own day, has not ignored Jacques Cazotte,
remarkable for chequered life and noble death. Born in 1720, at
Dijon, where his father was Chancellor for the Province of
Burgundy, he studied with the Jesuits at home; and, having passed
through the finishing process in Paris, he was introduced to
public life by the Administration de la Marine. He showed early
taste for poetry as well as prose, and composed songs, tales, and
an opera--"The Thousand and One Fopperies." His physique is
described as a tall figure, with regular features, expressive
blue eyes, and fine hair, which he wore long. At twenty seven he
became a commissary in the office and was presently sent as
Comptroller to the Windward Islands, including the French Colony
Martinique, which then as now was famous for successful woman-
kind. At these head-quarters he became intimate with Pere
Lavalette, Superior of the S. J. Mission, and he passed some
years of a pleasant and not unintellectual career. Returning to
Paris on leave of absence he fell in with a country-woman and an
old family friend, Madame La Poissonnier, who had been appointed
head nurse to the Duke of Burgundy; and, as the child in her
charge required lulling to sleep, Cazotte composed the favourite
romances (ballads), Tout au beau milieu des Ardennes, and Commere
II faut chauffer le lit. These scherzi, however, brought him more
note than profit, and soon afterwards he returned to Martinique.

During his second term of service Cazotte wrote his heroic comic-
poem, the Roman d'Olivier, in twelve cantos, afterwards printed
in Paris (2 vols. 8vo, 1765); and it was held a novel and
singular composition. When the English first attacked (in 1759)
Saint Pierre of Martinique, afterwards captured by Rodney in
1762, the sprightly litterateur showed abundant courage and
conduct, but over-exertion injured his health, and he was again
driven from his post by sickness. He learned, on landing in
France, that his brother, whilome Vicar-General to M. de
Choiseul, Bishop of Chalons-sur-Marne, had died and left him a
fair estate, Pierry, near Epernay; he therefore resigned his
appointment and retired with the title "Commissary General to the
Marine." But presently he lost 50,000 ecus--the whole fruit of
his economies--by the speculations of Pere Lavalette, to whose
hands he had entrusted his estates, negroes, and effects at
Martinique. These had been sold and the cheques had been
forwarded to the owner: the S. J., however, refused to honour
them. Hence the scandal of a law-suit in which Cazotte showed
much delicacy and regard for the feelings of his former tutors.

Meanwhile Cazotte had married Elizabeth Roignon, daughter to the
Chief Justice of Martinique; he returned to the Parisian world
with some eclat and he became an universal favourite on account
of his happy wit and humour, his bonhomie, his perfect frankness,
and his hearty amiability. The vogue of "Olivier" induced him to
follow it up with Le Diable Amoureux, a continuation or rather
parody of Voltaire's Guerre civile de Geneve: this work was so
skilfully carried out that it completely deceived the world; and
it was followed by sundry minor pieces which were greedily read.
Unlike the esprits forts of his age, he became after a gay youth-
tide an ardent Christian; he made the Gospel his rule of life;
and he sturdily defended his religious opinions; he had also the
moral courage to enter the lists with M. de Voltaire, then the
idol-in-chief of the classes and the masses.

In later life Cazotte met Dom Chavis, who was translating into a
curious jargon (Arabo-Franco-Italian) certain Oriental tales;
and, although he was nearing the Psalmist's age-term of man, he
agreed to "collaborate." The Frenchman used to take the pen at
midnight when returning from "social pleasures," and work till
4-5 a.m. As he had prodigious facility and spontaneity he
finished his part of the task in two winters. Some of the tales
in the suite, especially that of "Maugraby," are attributed
wholly to his invention; and, as a rule, his aim and object were
to diffuse his spiritual ideas and to write treatises on moral
perfection under the form of novelle.

Cazotte, after a well-spent and honourable life, had reason to
expect with calmness "the evening and ending of a fine day." But
this was not to be; the Great Revolution had burst like a
hurricane over the land, and he was doomed to die a hero's death.
His character was too candid, and his disposition too honest, for
times which suggested concealment. He had become one of the
Illuminati, and La Harpe ascribed to him the celebrated prophecy
which described the minutest events of the Great Revolution. A
Royalist pur sang, he freely expressed his sentiments to his old
friend Ponteau, then Secretary of the Civil List. His letters
came to light shortly after the terrible day, August IO, 1792: he
was summarily arrested at Pierry and brought to Paris, where he
was thrown into prison. On Sept. 3, when violence again waxed
rampant, he was attacked by the patriot-assassins, and was saved
only by the devotion of his daughter Elizabeth, who threw herself
upon the old man crying, "You shall not reach my father's heart
before piercing mine." The courage of the noble pair commanded
the admiration of the ruffians, and they were carried home in

For a few weeks the family remained unmolested, but in those days
"Providence" slept and Fortune did not favour the brave. The
Municipality presently decreed a second arrest, and the venerable
litterateur, aged seventy two, was sent before the revolutionary
tribunal appointed to deal with the pretended offences of August
10. He was subjected to an interrogatory of thirty-six hours,
during which his serenity and presence of mind never abandoned
him and impressed even his accusers. But he was condemned to die
for the all-sufficient reason:--"It is not enough to be a good
son, a good husband, a good father, one must also prove oneself a
good citizen." He spent his last hours wit'. his confessor, wrote
to his wife and children, praying his family not to beweep him,
not to forget him, and never to offend against their God; and
this missive, with a lock of his hair for his beloved daughter,
he finally entrusted to the ghostly father. Upon the scaffold he
turned to the crowd and cried, "I die as I have lived, truthful
and faithful to my God and my King." His venerable head, crowned
with the white honours of age, fell on Sept. 25, 1792.

Cazotte printed many works, some of great length, as the OEuvres
Morales, which filled 7 vols. 8vo in the complete edition of
1817; and the biographers give a long list of publications,
besides those above-mentioned, romantic, ethical, and spiritual,
in verse and in prose. But he wrote mainly for his own pleasure,
he never sought fame, and consequently his reputation never
equalled his merit. His name, however, still smells sweet,
passing sweet, amid the corruption and the frantic fury of his
day, and the memory of the witty, genial, and virtuous
litterateur still blossoms in the dust.

During my visit to Paris in early 1887, M. Hermann Zotenberg was
kind enough to show me the MS., No. 1723, containing the original
tales of the "New Arabian Nights." As my health did not allow me
sufficient length of stay to complete my translation, Professor
Houdas kindly consented to copy the excerpts required, and to
explain the words and phrases which a deficiency of dictionaries
and vocabularies at an outlandish port-town rendered
unintelligible to me.

In translating a MS., which has never been collated or corrected
and which abounds in errors of omission and commission, I have
been guided by one consideration only, which is, that my first
and chiefest duty to the reader is to make my book readable at
the same time that it lays before him the whole matter which the
text offered or ought to have offered. Hence I have not hesitated
when necessary to change the order of the sentences, to delete
tautological words and phrases, to suppress descriptions which
are needlessly reiterated, and in places to supply the connecting
links without which the chain of narrative is weakened or broken.
These are liberties which must be allowed, unless the
translator's object be to produce a mutilated version of a

Here also I must express my cordial gratitude to Mr. Alexander J.
Cotheal, Consul-General for Nicaragua, in New York. This
distinguished Arabist not only sent to me across the seas his MS.
containing, inter alia, "The Tale of Attaf," he also under took
to translate it for my collection upon my distinct assurance that
its many novelties of treatment deserved an especial version. Mr.
W. F. Kirby has again conferred upon my readers an important
service by his storiological notes. Lastly, Dr. Steingass has
lent me, as before, his valuable aid in concluding as he did in
commencing this series, and on putting the colophon to

The Sixteenth Volume


The Thousand Nights and a Night.


United Service Club, August 1st, 1888.

Supplemental Nights

To The Book Of The

Thousand Nights And A Night

The Say of Haykar the Sage.[FN#6]

In the name of Allah, the Compassionating, the Compassionate, the
Eternal One, the Termless, the Timeless, and of Him aidance we
await. And here we begin (with the assistance of Allah Almighty
and his fair furtherance) to invite the Story of Haykar the Sage,
the Philosopher, the Wazir of Sankharib[FN#7] the Sovran, and of
the son of the wise man's sister Nadan[FN#8] the Fool.

They relate that during the days of Sankharib the King, lord of
Asur[FN#9] and Naynawah,[FN#10] there was a Sage, Haykar hight,
Grand Wazir of that Sovran and his chief secretary, and he was a
grandee of abundant opulence and ampliest livelihood: ware was he
and wise, a philosopher, and endowed with lore and rede and
experience. Now he had interwedded with threescore wives, for
each and every of which he had builded in his palace her own
bower; natheless he had not a boy to tend, and was he sore of
sorrow therefor. So one day he gathered together the experts,
astrologers and wizards, and related to them his case and
complained of the condition caused by his barrenness. They made
answer to him, "Get thee within and do sacrifice to the Godheads
and enquire of them and implore their favour when haply shall
they vouchsafe unto thee boon of babe." He did whatso they bade
and set corbans and victims before the images and craved their
assistance, humbling himself with prayer and petition; withal
they vouchsafed to him never a word of reply. So he fared forth
in distress and disappointment and went his ways all
disheartened. Then he returned in his humiliation to Almighty
Allah[FN#11] and confided his secret unto Him and called for
succour in the burning of his heart, and cried with a loud voice
saying, "O God of Heaven and Earth, O Creator of all creatures, I
beg Thee to vouchsafe unto me a son wherewith I may console my
old age and who may become my heir, after being present at my
death and closing my eyes and burying my body." Hereat came a
Voice from Heaven which said, "Inasmuch as at first thou
trustedst in graven images and offeredst to them victims, so
shalt thou remain childless, lacking sons and daughters.
However, get thee up and take to thee Nadan, thy sister's child;
and, after taking this nephew to son, do thou inform him with thy
learning and thy good breeding and thy sagesse, and demise to him
that he inherit of thee after thy decease." Hereupon the Sage
adopted his nephew Nadan, who was then young in years and a
suckling, that he might teach him and train him; so he entrusted
him to eight wet-nurses and dry-nurses for feeding and rearing,
and they brought him up on diet the choicest with delicatest
nurture and clothed him with sendal and escarlate[FN#12] and
dresses dyed with Alkermes,[FN#13] and his sitting was upon
shag-piled rugs of silk. But when Nadan grew great and walked and
shot up even as the lofty Cedar[FN#14] of Lebanon, his uncle
taught him deportment and writing and reading[FN#15] and
philosophy and the omne scibile. Now after a few days Sankharib
the King looked upon Haykar and saw how that he had waxed an old
old man, so quoth he to him, "Ho thou excellent companion,[FN#16]
the generous, the ingenious, the judicious, the sagacious, the
Sage, my Secretary and my Minister and the Concealer of my
secrets and the Councillor of my kingdom, seeing how so it be
that thou art aged and well shotten in years and nigh unto thy
death and decease, so tell me[FN#17] who shall stand in my
service after thy demise?" Made answer Haykar, "O my lord the
King, may thy head live for ever and aye! that same shall be this
Nadan, son to my sister, whom I have taken to myself as mine own
child and have reared him and have taught him my learning and my
experience, all thereof." "Bring him to the presence," quoth the
King, "and set him between my hands, that I look upon him; and,
if I find him fitting, I will stablish him in thy stead. Then do
thou wend thy ways and off-go from office that thou take thy rest
and tend thine old age, living the lave of thy life in the
fairest of honour." Hereupon Haykar hied him home and carried his
nephew Nadan before the King, who considered him and was pleased
with the highmost of pleasure and, rejoicing in him, presently
asked the uncle, "Be this thine adopted son, O Haykar? I pray
Allah preserve him; and, even as thou servedst my sire
Sarhadun[FN#18] before me, even so shall this thy son do me suite
and service and fulfil my affairs and my needs and my works, to
the end that I may honour him and advance him for the sake of
thee." Thereat Haykar prostrated himself before the presence and
said, "May thy head live, O my lord, for evermore! I desire of
thee to extend the wings of thy spirit over him for that he is my
son, and do thou be clement to his errings, so that he may serve
thee as besitteth." The King forthwith made oath that he would
stablish the youth amongst the highmost of his friends and the
most worshipful of his familiars and that he should abide with
him in all respect and reverence. So Haykar kissed the royal
hands and blessed his lord; then, taking with him Nadan his
nephew, he seated him in privacy and fell to teaching him by
night as well as by day, that he might fill him with wisdom and
learning rather than with meat and drink; and he would address
him in these terms.[FN#19] "O dear my son,[FN#20] if a word come
to thine ears, suffer it to die within thy heart nor ever
disclose it unto other, lest haply it become a live coal[FN#21]
to burn up thy tongue and breed pain in thy body and clothe thee
in shame and gar thee despised of God and man. O dear my son, an
thou hear a report reveal it not, and if thou behold a thing
relate it not. O dear my son, make easy thine address unto thine
hearers, and be not hasty in return of reply. O dear my son,
desire not formal beauty which fadeth and vadeth while fair
report endureth unto infinity. O dear my son, be not deceived by
a woman immodest of speech lest her snares waylay thee[FN#22] and
in her springes thou become a prey and thou die by ignominious
death. O dear my son, hanker not after a woman adulterated by
art, such as clothes and cosmetics, who is of nature bold and
immodest, and beware lest thou obey her and give her aught that
is not thine and entrust to her even that which is in thy hand,
for she will robe thee in sin and Allah shall become wroth with
thee. O dear my son, be not like unto the almond-tree[FN#23]
which leafeth earlier than every growth and withal is ever of the
latest to fruit; but strive to resemble the mulberry-tree which
beareth food the first of all growths and is the last of any to
put forth her foliage.[FN#24] O dear my son, bow thy head before
thine inferior and soften thine utterance and be courteous and
tread in the paths of piety, and shun impudence and louden not
thy voice whenas thou speakest or laughest; for, were a house to
be builded by volume of sound, the ass would edify many a mansion
every day.[FN#25] O dear my son, the transport of stones with a
man of wisdom is better than the drinking of wine with one blamed
for folly. O dear my son, rather pour out thy wine upon the tombs
of the pious than drain it with those who give offence by their
insolence. O dear my son, cleave to the sage that is Allah-
fearing and strive to resemble him, and approach not the fool
lest thou become like unto him and learn his foolish ways. O dear
my son, whenas thou affectest a friend or a familiar, make trial
of him and then company with him, and without such test nor
praise him nor divulge thy thoughts unto one who is other than
wise. O dear my son, as long as thy boot is upon thy leg and
foot, walk therewith over the thorns and tread a way for thy sons
and thy sons' sons; and build thee a boat ere the sea break into
billows and breakers and drown thee before thou find an ark of
safety. O dear my son, when the richard eateth a snake, folks
shall say that 'tis of his subtilty; but when a pauper feedeth
upon it, the world shall declare 'tis of his poverty. O dear my
son, be content with thy grade and thy good, nor covet aught of
thy fellow. O dear my son, be not neighbourly with the ignorant
nor do thou break with him bread, and joy not in the annoy of
those about thee and when thy foe shall maltreat thee meet him
with beneficence. O dear my son, fear the man who feareth not
Allah and hold him in hate. O dear my son, the fool shall fall
when he trippeth; but the wise man when he stumbleth shall not
tumble and if he come to the ground he shall rise up quickly, and
when he sickeneth he shall readily heal himself, whereas to the
malady of the ignorant and the stupid there is no remedy. O dear
my son, when a man lesser than thyself shall accost thee, prevent
him in standing respectfully before him, and if he suffice thee
not the Lord shall suffice thee in his stead. O dear my son,
spare not blows to thy child,[FN#26] for the beating of the boy
is like manuring to the garden and binding to the purse-mouth and
tethering to the cattle and locking to the door. O dear my son,
withhold thy child from wickedness, and discipline him ere he wax
great and become contumacious to thee, thus belittling thee
amongst thine equals and lowering thy head upon the highways and
in the assemblies, and thou be described as an aider in his
wrongous works. O dear my son, let no word escape thy lips
without consulting thy heart; nor stand up between two
adversaries, for out of converse with the wicked cometh enmity,
and from enmity is bred battle, and from battle ariseth
slaughter, when thy testimony shall be required; nay, do thou fly
therefrom and be at rest. O dear my son, stand not up against one
stronger than thyself; but possess thy soul in patience and and
long-suffering and forbearance and pacing the paths of piety, for
than this naught is more excellent. O dear my son, exult not over
the death of thy enemy by cause that after a little while thou
shalt become his neighbour. O dear my son, turn thou a deaf ear
to whoso jeereth thee, and honour him and forego him with the
salam-salutation. O dear my son, whenas the water shall stand
still in stream and the bird shall fly sky-high and the black
raven shall whiten and myrrh shall wax honey-sweet, then will the
ignorant and the fool comprehend and converse. O dear my son, an
thou would be wise restrain thy tongue from leasing and thy hand
from thieving and thine eyes from evil glancing; and then, and
then only, shalt thou be called a sage. O dear my son, suffer the
wise man strike thee with his staff rather than the fool anoint
thee with his sweetest unguent.[FN#27] O dear my son, be thou
humble in thy years of youth, that thou may be honoured in thine
old age. O dear my son, stand not up against a man in office and
puissance nor against a river in its violence, and haste not in
matters of marriage; for, an this bring weal, folk will not
appraise thee and if ill they will abuse thee and curse thee. O
dear my son, company with one who hath his hand fulfilled and
well-furnisht and associate not with any whose hand is fist-like
and famisht. O dear my son, there be four things without
stability: a king and no army,[FN#28] a Wazir in difficulty for
lack of rede; amongst the folks villainy and over the lieges
tyranny. Four things also may not be hidden; to wit, the sage and
the fool, the richard and the pauper."[FN#29] Now when Haykar had
made an end of these injunctions and instances addrest to Nadan
his nephew, he fondly deemed in mind that the youth would bear in
memory all his charges, and he wist not that the clean contrary
thereof to him would become manifest. After this the older
Minister sat in peace at home and committed to the younger all
his moneys and his negro slaves and his concubines; his horses
and camels, his flocks and herds, and all other such whereof he
was seized. Also bidding and forbiddal were left in the youth's
hand and he was promoted and preferred by the monarch like his
maternal uncle and even more, whilst the ex-Wazir took his rest
in retirement, nor was it his habit to visit the King save once
after a while, when he would fare forth to salute him with the
salam and forthwith return home. But when Nadan made sure of all
commandment being in his own hand, he jeered in public at his
uncle and raised his nose at him and fell to blaming him whenever
he made act of presence and would say, "Verily Haykar is in age
and dotage and no more he wotteth one thing from other thing."
Furthermore he fell to beating the negro slaves and the
handmaidens, and to vending the steeds and dromedaries and
applied him wilfully to waste all that appertained to his uncle
who, when he saw this lack of ruth for the chattels and the
household, incontinently drove him ignominiously from his place.
Moreover he sent to apprize the King thereof; to wit, that he
would assuredly[FN#30] resume all his belongings and provision;
and his liege, summoning Nadan, said to him, "So long as Haykar,
shall be in life, let none lord it over his household or meddle
with his fortune." On this wise the youth's hand was stayed from
his uncle and from all his good and he ceased to go in to him and
come out from him, and even to accost him with the salam.
Presently Haykar repented of the pains and the trouble he had
taken with Nadan and he became perplext exceedingly. Now the
youth had a younger brother, Naudan[FN#31] hight, so Haykar
adopted him in lieu of the other and tendered him and honoured
him with highmost honour and committed to him all his possessions
and created him comptroller of his household and of his affairs.
But when the elder brother beheld what had betided him, he was
seized with envy and jealousy and he fell to complaining before
all who questioned him, deriding his benefactor; and he would
say, "Verily my maternal uncle hath driven me from his doors and
hath preferred my brother before me; but, an Almighty Allah
empower me, I will indeed cast him into doom of death." Hereat he
fell to brooding over the ruin of his relative, and after a long
while he went, one day of the days, and wrote a letter to Akhyash
Abna Shah,[FN#32] physician to the King of Persia and 'Ajam or
Barbaria-land, and the following were its contents. "All salams
that befit and greetings that are meet from part of Sankharib,
King of Assyria and Niniveh, and from his Wazir and Secretary
Haykar unto thee, O glorious monarch, and salutations be betwixt
me and thee. And forthright, when this missive shall have reached
thee, do thou arise in haste and come to meet me and let our
trysting-place be the Buk'at Nisrin, the Lowland of the
Eglantine[FN#33] of Assyria and Niniveh, that I may commit to
thee the kingdom sans fight or fray." Furthermore he wrote a
second letter in Haykar's name to Pharaoh,[FN#34] lord of
Misraim,[FN#35] with this purport:[FN#36]--"Greetings between me
and thee, O mighty potentate; and do thou straightway, on receipt
of this epistle, arise and march upon the Buk'at Nisrin to the
end that I make over to thee the kingdom without battle or
slaughter." Now Nadan's handwriting was the likest to that of his
mother's brother. Then he folded the two missives and sealed them
with Haykar's signet and cast them into the royal palace, after
which he went and indited a letter in the King's name to his
uncle, saying.--"All salutations to my Wazir and Secretary and
Concealer of my secret, Haykar; and do thou forthright on receipt
of this present levy thy host and all that be under thee with
arms and armour complete, and march them to meet me on
fifth-day[FN#37] at the Buk'at Nisrin. Moreover, when thou see me
approach thee make thy many prepare for mimic onset as they were
my adversaries and offer me sham fight; for that messengers from
Pharaoh, King of Egypt, have been sent to espy the strength of
our armies. Accordingly, let them stand in fear of us, for that
they be our foes and our haters." Presently, sealing this
epistle, he sent it to Haykar by one of the royal pages and
himself carrying the other letters he had addressed to the
Persian and the Egyptian, he laid them before the King and read
them aloud and showed their seals. But when Sankharib heard their
contents he marvelled with mighty great marvel and raged with
exceeding rage and cried out, saying, "What is it I have done
unto Haykar that he should write such a writ to mine adversaries?
Is this my reward for all the benefits I have lavished upon
Haykar?" The other replied, "Be not grieved, O King, and sorrow
not, nor be thou an-angered: rather let us fare on the morrow to
the Buk'at Nisrin and look into the matter, whether it be fact or
falsehood." So when Thursday came, Nadan arose, and taking the
King and his Wazirs and army-officers marched them over the
wastes to the Lowland of the Eglantine, and arrived there
Sankharib, the Sovran, looked upon Haykar and saw his host
aligned in battle against himself. And when the ex-Minister
beheld his King approaching, he bade his host stir for battle and
prepare to smite the opposing ranks; to wit, those of his liege
lord, even as he had been commanded by royal rescript, nor did he
ken what manner of pit had been digged for him by Nadan. But
seeing this sight the monarch was agitated and consterned and
raged with mighty great wrath. Then quoth Nadan, "Seest thou, O
King, what this sorry fellow hath done? But chafe not, neither be
thou sorrowful, but rather do thou retire to thy palace, whither
I will presently bring to thee Haykar pinioned and bearing
chains; and I will readily and without trouble fend off from thee
thy foe." So when Sankharib hied him home in sore anger with that
which his ancient Minister had done, Nadan went to his uncle and
said, "Indeed the King hath rejoiced with exceeding joy, and
thanketh thee for acting as he bade thee, and now he hath
despatched me to order that thy men be bidden to wend their ways,
and that thou present thyself before him pinioned and fettered to
the end that thou be seen in such plight of the envoys sent by
Pharaoh concerning whom and whose master our Monarch standeth in
fear." "To hear is to obey!" replied Haykar, and forthwith let
pinion his arms and fetter his legs; then, taking with him Nadan,
his nephew, he repaired to the presence, where he found the King
perusing the other forged letter also sealed with the ministerial
signet. When he entered the throne-room he prostrated himself,
falling to the ground upon his face, and the Sovran said to him,
"O Haykar, my Viceregent and Secretary and Concealer of my secret
and Councillor of my kingdom, say me, what have I wrought thee of
wrong that thou shouldst requite me with such hideous deed?" So
saying he showed him the two papers written in the handwriting
and sealed with the seal of the accused who, when he looked upon
them, trembled in every limb, and his tongue was knotted for a
while, nor could he find power to speak a word, and he was reft
of all his reason and of his knowledge. Wherefor he bowed his
brow groundwards and held his peace. But when the King beheld
this his condition, he bade them slay him by smiting his neck
without the city, and Nadan cried aloud, "O Haykar, O blackavice,
what could have profited thee such trick and treason that thou do
a deed like this by thy King?"[FN#38] Now the name of the Sworder
was Abu Sumayk the Pauper,[FN#39] and the monarch bade him strike
the neck of Haykar in front of the Minister's house-door and
place his head at a distance of an hundred ells from his
body.[FN#40] Hearing this Haykar fell prone before the King and
cried, "Live thou, O my lord the King, for ever and aye! An thou
desire my death be it as thou wilt and well I wot that I am not
in default and that the evil-doer exacteth according to his ill-
nature.[FN#41] Yet I hope from my lord the King and from his
benevolence that he suffer the Sworder make over my corpse to my
menials for burial, and so shall thy slave be thy sacrifice."
Hereat the Monarch commanded the Headsman do as he was desired,
and the man, accompanied by the royal pages, took Haykar, whom
they had stripped of his outer raiment, and led him away to
execution. But when he was certified of coming death, he sent
tidings thereof to his wife, Shaghaftini[FN#42] hight, adding,
"Do thou forthright come forth to meet me escorted by a thousand
maiden girls, whom thou shalt habit in escarlate and sendal, that
they may keen over me ere I perish; moreover dispread for the
Headsman and his varlets a table of food and bring an abundance
of good wine that they may drink and make merry."[FN#43] Haykar's
wife presently obeyed his orders for she also was ware and wise,
sharp-witted, experienced and a compendium of accomplishments and
knowledge. Now when the guards[FN#44] and the Sworder and his
varlets came to Haykar's door, they found the tables laid out
with wine and sumptuous viands; so they fell to eating and
drinking till they had their sufficiency and returned thanks to
the housemaster.[FN#45] Thereupon Haykar led the Headsman aside
into privacy and said to him, "O Abu Sumayk,[FN#46] what while
Sarhadun the King, sire of Sankharib the King, determined to slay
thee, I took thee and hid thee in a place unknown to any until
the Sovran sent for thee. Moreover I cooled his temper every day
till he was pleased to summon thee, and when at last I set thee
in his presence he rejoiced in thee. Therefore do thou likewise
at this moment bear in mind the benefits I wrought thee, and well
I wot that the King will repent him for my sake and will be wroth
with exceeding wrath for my slaughter, seeing that I be
guiltless; so when thou shalt bring me alive before him thy
degree shall become of the highest. For know thou that Nadan my
nephew hath betrayed me and devised for me this ill device; and I
repeat that doubtless my lord will presently rue my ruin. Learn,
too, that beneath the threshold of my mansion lieth a souterrain
whereof no man is ware: so do thou conceal me therein with the
connivance of my spouse Shaghaftini. Also I have in my prison a
slave which meriteth doom of death:[FN#47] so bring him forth and
robe him in my robes; then bid the varlets (they being drunken
with wine) do him die, nor shall they know whom they have slain.
And lastly command them to remove his head an hundred cubits from
his body and commit the corpse unto my chattels that they inter
it. So shalt thou store up with me this rich treasure of goodly
deeds." Hereupon the Sworder did as he was bidden by his ancient
benefactor, and he and his men repairing to the presence said,
"Live thy head, O King, for ever and aye!"[FN#48] And after this
Shaghaftini, the wife of Haykar, brought meat and drink to her
husband down in the Matamor,[FN#49] and every Friday she would
provide him with a sufficiency for the following week without the
weeting of anyone. Presently the report was spread and published
and bruited abroad throughout Assyria and Niniveh how Haykar the
Sage had been done to die and slain by his Sovran; and the lieges
of all those regions, one and all, keened[FN#50] for him aloud
and shed tears and said, "Alas for thee, O Haykar, and alack for
the loss of thy lore and thy knowledge! Woe be to us for thee and
for thy experience! Where now remaineth to find thy like? where
now shall one intelligent, understanding and righteous of rede
resemble thee and stand in thy stead?" Presently the King fell to
regretting the fate of Haykar whereof repentance availed him
naught: so he summoned Nadan and said to him, "Fare forth and
take with thee all thy friends to keen and make ceremonious
wailings for thy maternal uncle Haykar and mourn, according to
custom, in honour of him and his memory." But Nadan, the fool,
the ignorant, the hard of heart, going forth the presence to show
sorrow at his uncle's house, would neither mourn nor weep nor
keen; nay, in lieu thereof he gathered together lewd fellows and
fornicators who fell to feasting and carousing. After this he
took to himself the concubines and slaves belonging to his uncle,
whom he would scourge and bastinado with painful beating; nor had
he any shame before the wife of his adopted father who had
entreated him as her son; but solicited her sinfully to lie with
him. On the other hand Haykar, who lay perdu in his Silo, ever
praised Allah the Compassionate,[FN#51] and returned thanks unto
Him for saving his life and was constant in gratitude and instant
in prayer and in humbling himself before God. At times after due
intervals the Sworder would call upon him to do him honour due
and procure him pleasure, after which he would pray for his
release and forthright gang his gait. Now when the bruit spread
abroad over all the lands how that Haykar the Wise had been done
to die, the rulers everywhere rejoiced, exulting in the distress
of King Sankharib who sorely regretted the loss of his Sage.
Presently, awaiting the fittest season, the Monarch of Misraim
arose and wrote a writ to the Sovran of Assyria and Niniveh of
the following tenor:--"After salams that befit and salutations
that be meet and congratulations and veneration complete
wherewith I fain distinguish my beloved brother Sankharib the
King, I would have thee know that I am about to build a bower in
the air between firmament and terra firma; and I desire thee on
thy part to send me a man which is wise, a tried and an
experienced, that he may help me to edify the same: also that he
make answer to all the problems and profound questions I shall
propose, otherwise thou shalt deposit with me the taxes in
kind[FN#52] of Assyria and Niniveh and their money-tributes for
three years." Then he made an end of his writ and, sealing it
with his signet-ring, sent it to its destination. But when the
missive reached Sankharib, he took it and read it, he and his
Wazirs and the Lords of his land; and all stood perplext thereat
and sore confounded; whilst the King waxed furious with excessive
fury, and he was distraught as to what he should do and how he
should act. Anon, however, he gathered together all the Shaykhs
and Elders and the Olema and doctors of law and the physicists
and philosophers and the charmers[FN#53] and the astrologers and
all such persons which were in his realm, and he let read the
epistle of Pharaoh in their presence. Then he asked them, saying,
"Who amongst you shall repair to the court of Pharaoh, lord of
Misraim, and reply to his interrogations?" But they cried, "O our
lord the King, do thou know there be no one who can loose the
knot of these difficulties save only thy Wazir Haykar; and now
that none shall offer an answer save Nadan, the son of his
sister, whom he hath informed with all his subtilty and his
science. Therefore, do thou summon him and haply he shall unravel
for thee a tangled skein so hard to untwist." Sankharib did as
they advised, and when Nadan appeared in the presence said to
him, "Look thou upon this writ and comprehend its contents." But
when the youth read it he said to the Sovran, "O my lord the
King, leave alone this folk for they point to impossibilities:
what man can base a bower upon air between heaven and earth?" As
soon as King Sankharib heard these words of Nadan, he cried out
with a mighty outcry and a violent; then, stepping down from his
throne, he sat upon ashes[FN#54] and fell to beweeping and
bewailing the loss of Haykar and crying, "Alas, for me and woe
worth the day for thee, O Caretaker of my capital and Councillor
of my kingdom! Where shall I find one like unto thee, O Haykar?
Harrow now for me, O Haykar, Oh Saviour of my secret and
Manifester of my moot-points, where now shall I fare to find
thee? Woe is me for sake of thee whom I slew and destroyed at the
word of a silly boy! To him indeed who could bring Haykar before
me or who could give me the glad tidings of Haykar being on life,
I would give the half of my good; nay, the moiety of my realm.
But whence can this come? Ah me, O Haykar; happy was he who
looked upon thee in life that he might take his sufficiency of
thy semblance and fortify himself[FN#55] therefrom. Oh my sorrow
for thee to all time! Oh my regret and remorse for thee and for
slaying thee in haste and for not delaying thy death till I had
considered the consequence of such misdeed." And the King
persisted in weeping and wailing night and day on such wise. But
when the Sworder[FN#56] beheld the passion of his lord and his
yearning and his calling upon Haykar, he came to the presence and
prostrated himself and said, "O my lord, bid thy varlets strike
off my head!" Quoth the Monarch, "Woe to thee, what be thy sin?"
and quoth the Headsman, "O my lord, what slave ever contrarieth
the command of his master let the same be slain, and I verily
have broken thy behest." The King continued, "Fie upon
thee,[FN#57] O Abu Sumayk, wherein hast thou gainsaid me?" and
the other rejoined, "O my lord, thou badest me slay the Sage
Haykar; but well I wotted that right soon indeed thou wouldst
regret the death of him, and the more so for that he was a
wronged man; accordingly I fared forth from thee and hid him in a
place unbekncwn to any and I slew one of his slaves in his stead.
And at this moment Haykar is alive and well; and if thou bid me,
I will bring him before thee when, if thou be so minded, do thou
put me to death, otherwise grant me immunity." Cried the King,
"Fie upon thee, O Abu Sumayk, how durst thou at such time make
mock of me, I being thy lord?" but the Sworder replied, "By thy
life and the life of thy head, O my lord, I swear that Haykar is
alive and in good case!" Now when the Monarch heard these words
from the Sworder and was certified by him of the matter, he flew
for very gladness and he was like to fall a-swoon for the
violence of his joy. So he bade forthright Haykar be brought to
him and exclaimed to the Sworder, "O thou righteous slave an this
thy say be soothfast, I am resolved to enrich thee and raise thy
degree amongst all my companions;" and so saying and rejoicing
mightily he commanded the Sworder set Haykar in the presence. The
man fared to the Minister's house forthright, and opening the
souterrain went downstairs to the tenant whom he found sitting
and praising Allah and rendering to Him thanksgivings; so he
cried out and said, "O Haykar, the blessedest of bliss hath come
to thee, and do thou go forth and gladden thy heart!" Haykar
replied, "And what is to do?" whereat the man told him the whole
tale, first and last, of what had befallen his lord at the hands
of Pharaoh; then, taking him, led him to the presence. But when
Sankharib considered him, he found him as one clean wasted by
want; his hair had grown long like the pelts of wild beasts and
his nails were as vulture's claws and his members were meagre
for the length of time spent by him in duresse and darkness, and
the dust had settled upon him and changed his colour which had
faded and waxed of ashen hue. So his lord mourned for his plight
and, rising up in honour, kissed him and embraced him and wept
over him saying, "Alhamdolillah--laud to the Lord--who hath
restored thee to me on life after death!" Then he fell to
soothing his sorrows and consoled him, praying pardon of him the
while; and after bestowing robes of honour upon the Sworder and
giving him due guerdon and lavishing upon him abundant good, he
busied himself about the recovery of Haykar, who said, "O my lord
the King, may thy head live for ever and aye! All this wrong
which befel me is the work of the adulterines, and I reared me a
palm-tree against which I might prop me, but it bent and brought
me to the ground: now, however, O my lord and master, that thou
hast deigned summon me before thee, may all passion pass away and
dolour depart from thee!" "Blessed and exalted be Allah,"
rejoined Sankharib, "who hath had ruth upon thee, and who, seeing
and knowing thee to be a wronged man, hath saved thee and
preserved thee from slaughter.[FN#58] Now, however, do thou
repair to the Hammam and let shave thy head and pare thy nails
and change thy clothes; after which sit at home in ease for forty
days' space that thy health be restored and thy condition be
righted and the hue of health return to thy face; and then (but
not till then) do thou appear before me." Hereupon the King
invested him with sumptuous robes, and Haykar, having offered
thanks to his liege lord, fared homewards in joyaunce and
gladness frequently ejaculating, "Subhana 'llahu ta'ala God
Almighty be glorified!" and right happy were his household and
his friends and all who had learned that he was still on life.
Then did he as the King had bidden him and enoyed his rest for
two-score days, after which he donned his finest dress and took
horse, followed and preceded by his slaves, all happy and
exulting, and rode to Court, while Nadan the nephew, seeing what
had befallen, was seized with sore fear and affright and became
perplexed and unknowing what to do. Now, when Haykar went in and
salamed to the King, his lord seated him by his side and said, "O
my beloved Haykar, look upon this writ which was sent to me by
the King of Misraim after hearing of thy execution; and in very
deed they, to wit he and his, have conquered and chastised and
routed most of the folk of our realm, compelling them to fly for
refuge Egyptwards in fear of the tax-tribute which they have
demanded of us." So the Minister took the missive and, after
reading and comprehending the sum of its contents, quoth he to
the King, "Be not wroth, O my lord: I will repair in person to
Egypt and will return a full and sufficient reply to Pharaoh, and
I will explain to him his propositions and will bring thee from
him all the tax-tribute he demandeth of thee: moreover, I will
restore all the lieges he hath caused fly this country and I will
humiliate every foe of thee by aidance of Almighty Allah and by
the blessings of thy Majesty." Now when the Sovran heard this
answer, he rejoiced and his heart was gladdened; whereupon he
gifted Haykar with a generous hand and once more gave immense
wealth to the Sworder. Presently the Minister said, "Grant me a
delay of forty days that I ponder this matter and devise a
sufficient device." As soon as Sankharib granted him the required
permission he returned homewards and, summoning his huntsmen,
bade them catch for him two vigorous young vultures;[FN#59] and,
when these were brought, he sent for those who twist ropes and
commanded them make two cords of cotton each measuring two
thousand ells. He also bade bring him carpenters and ordered them
to build for him two coffers of large size, and as soon as his
bidding was done he chose out two little lads, one hight Binuhal
and the other Tabshalim.[FN#60] Then every day he would let
slaughter a pair of lambs and therewith feed the children and the
vultures, and he mounted those upon the back of these, binding
them tight, and also making fast the cords to the legs of the
fowls. He would then allow the birds to rise little by little,
prolonging the flight every day to the extent of ten cubits, the
better to teach and to train them; and they learnt their task so
well that in a short time they would rise to the full length of
the tethers till they soared in the fields of air with the boys
on their backs, after which he would let hale them down. And when
he saw them perfect in this process, he taught the lads to utter
loud shouts what while they reached the full length of the cords
and to cry out, "Send us stones and mud[FN#61] and slaked lime
that we may build a bower for King Pharaoh, inasmuch as we now
stand here all the day idle!" And Haykar ceased not to accustom
them and to instruct them until they became dexterous in such
doings as they could be. Then he quitted them and presenting
himself before King Sankharib said, "O my lord, the work is
completed even as thou couldst desire; but do thou arise and come
with me that I may show thee the marvel." Thereupon the King and
his courtiers accompanied Haykar to a wide open space outside the
city whither he sent for the vultures and the lads; and after
binding the cords he loosed them to soar as high as the lanyards
allowed in the firmament-plain, when they fell to outcrying as he
had taught them. And lastly he haled them in and restored them to
their steads. Hereat the King wondered, as did all his suite,
with extreme wonderment, and kissing his Minister between his
eyes, robed him in an honourable robe and said to him, "Go forth
in safety, O my beloved, and boast of my realm, to the land of
Egypt[FN#62] and answer the propositions of Pharaoh and master
him by the power of Almighty Allah;" and with these words
farewelled him. Accordingly Haykar took his troops and guards,
together with the lads and the vultures, and he fared forth
intending for Egypt where on arrival he at once made for the
royal Palace. And when the folk of the capital understood that
Sankharib the King had commissioned a man of his notables to
bespeak their Sovran the Pharaoh, they entered and apprized their
liege lord who sent a party of his familiars summoning him to the
presence. Presently Haykar the Sage entered unto Pharaoh; and
after prostration as befitteth before royalty said, "O my lord,
Sankharib the King greeteth thee with many salutations and
salams; and hath sent me singlehanded sans other of his slaves,
to the end that I answer thy question and fulfil whatso thou
requirest and I am commanded to supply everything thou needest;
especially inasmuch as thou hast sent to the Monarch my master
for the loan of a man who can build thee a bower between
firmament and terra firma; and I, by the good aidance of Allah
Almighty and of thine august magnanimity, will edify that same
for thee even as thou desirest and requirest. But this shall be
upon the condition stablished concerning the tax-tribute of
Misraim for three years, seeing that the consent of the Kings be
their fullest securities. An thou vanquish me and my hand fall
short and I fail to answer thee, then shall my liege lord send
thee the tax-tribute whereof thou speakest; but if I bring thee
all thou needest, then shalt thou forward to my lord the
tax-tribute thou hast mentioned and of him demanded." Pharaoh,
hearing these words, marvelled and was perplexed at the eloquence
of his tongue and the sweetness of his speech and presently
exclaimed, "O man, what may be thy name?" The other replied, "Thy
slave is hight Abikam;[FN#63] and I am an emmet of the emmets
under Sankharib the King." Asked Pharaoh, "Had not thy lord one
more dignified of degree than thou, that he sent unto me an ant
to answer me and converse with me?" and Haykar answered, "I
humbly hope of the Almighty that I may satisfy all which is in
thy heart, O my lord; for that Allah is with the weakling the
more to astounding the strangling." Hereat Pharaoh gave orders to
set apart for Abikam his guest an apartment, also for the guards
and all that were with him and provide them with rations and
fodder of meat and drink, and whatso was appropriate to their
reception as properest might be. And after the usual three days
of guest-rite[FN#64] the King of Egypt donned his robes of
brightest escarlate; and, having taken seat upon his throne, each
and every Grandee and Wazir (who were habited in the same hue)
standing with crossed arms and feet joined,[FN#65] he sent a
summons to produce before him Haykar, now Abikam hight.
Accordingly he entered and prostrated in the King's presence and
stood up to receive the royal behest, when Pharaoh after a long
delay asked him, "O Abikam, whom do I resemble and what may these
my Lords and Ministers represent?" Hereto the envoy answered
saying, "O my lord, thou favourest Bel the idol[FN#66] and thy
chief-cains favour the servitors thereof!" Then quoth the King,
"Now do thou depart and I desire thee on the morrow come again."
Accordingly Abikam, which was Haykar, retired as he was ordered,
and on the next day he presented himself before Pharaoh and after
prostrating stood between his hands. The King was habited in a
red coat of various tincts and his mighty men were garbed in
white, and presently he enquired saying, "O Abikam, whom do I
resemble and what may these my Lords and Ministers represent?" He
replied, "O my lord, thou art like unto the sun and thy nobles
are like the rays thereof!" Then quoth the King, "Do thou retire
to thy quarters and tomorrow come hither again." So the other
fared forth and Pharaoh commanded and charged his head men to don
pure white, himself doing the same; and, having taken seat upon
his throne, he bade Abikam be brought into the presence and when
he appeared asked him, "Whom do I resemble, and what may these my
Grandees represent?" He replied, "O my lord, thou favourest the
moon and thy servitors and guards favour the stars and planets
and constellations." Then quoth the King, "Go thou until the
morrow when do thou come hither again;" after which he commanded
his Magnates to don dresses of divers colours and different
tincts whilst he wore a robe of ruddy velvet. Anon he seated him
upon his throne and summoned Abikam, who entered the presence and
prostrated and stood up before him. The King for a fourth time
asked him, "O Abikam, whom do I resemble and what may these my
guards represent?" and he answered, "O my lord, thou art like the
auspicious month Naysan,[FN#67] and thy guards and grandees are
like the white chamomile[FN#68] and his bloom." Hearing these
words Pharaoh rejoiced with extreme joy and said, "O Abikam, thou
hast compared me first with Bel the idol, secondly with the sun
and thirdly with the moon and lastly with the auspicious month
Naysan, and my lords with the chamomile and his flower. But say
me now unto what likenest thou Sankharib thy lord, and what
favour his Grandees?" Haykar made answer, "Heaven forfend I
mention my liege lord the while thou sittest on thy throne; but
rise to thy feet, and I will inform thee what my Master
representeth and what his court most resembleth." Pharaoh, struck
with astonishment at such heat of tongue and valiancy of speech,
arose from his seat and stood facing Haykar and presently said,
"Now tell me that I may learn what thy lord resembleth and what
his Grandees represent." The other made reply, "My lord
resembleth the God of Heaven, and his lords represent the
Lightning and Thunder. An it be his will the winds do blow and
the rains do fall; and, when he deign order, the leven playeth
and the thunder roareth and at his behest the sun would refuse
light and the moon and stars stand still in their several
courses. But he may also command the storm-wind to arise and
downpours to deluge when Naysan would be as one who beateth the
bough[FN#69] and who scattereth abroad the blooms of the
chamomile." Pharaoh hearing these words wondered with extreme
wonderment, then raging with excessive rage he cried, "O man,
tell me the real truth and let me know who thou art in very
sooth." "I am Haykar," quoth the other, "Chief Secretary and
especial to Sankharib the King; also his Wazir and Councillor of
his kingdom and Keeper of his secret." "Thou statest fact, O
Sage," quoth Pharaoh, "and this thy say is veridical: yet have we
heard that Haykar is dead indeed, withal here art thou alive and
alert." The Minister replied, "Yea, verily that was the case, but
Alhamdolillah--Glory to God, who knoweth all hidden things, my
master had in very deed doomed me die believing the reports of
certain traitors, but my Lord preserved me and well done to him
who relieth upon the Almighty!" Then quoth Pharaoh, "Go forth and
on the morrow do thou return hither and say me somewhat no man
hath ever heard, nor I nor my Grandees nor any of the folk in my
kingdom and my capital." Accordingly Haykar hied him home and
penned a paper wherein he said as follows: "From Sankharib, King
of Assyria and Naynawah, to Pharaoh King of Misraim:--Peace be
upon thee, O my brother! As well thou wottest, brother needeth
brother and the Kings require the aidance of other Kings and my
hope from thee is that thou wilt lend[FN#70] me the loan of nine
hundred-weight[FN#71] of gold which I require to expend on the
pay and allowances due to certain of my soldiery wherewith to
provide for them the necessaries of life." After this he folded
the writ and despatched it by a messenger on the next day to
Pharaoh, who perused it and was perplext and exclaimed, "Verily
and indeed never till now have I heard a saying like unto this at
all, nor hath anyone ever spoken[FN#72] to me after such
fashion!" Haykar replied, "'Tis fact, and 'tis well an thou own
thee debtor of such sum to my lord the King." Pharaoh accepted
this resolving of his proposition and said, "O Haykar, 'tis the
like of thee who suiteth the service of the Kings, and blessed be
Allah who perfected thee in wisdom and adorned thee with
philosophy[FN#73] and knowledge. And now remaineth to us only one
need of thee; to wit, that thou build us a bower between
firmament and terra firma." Haykar replied, "Hearkening and
obeying! I will edify it for thee e'en as thou wishest and thou
choosest; but do thou get ready for me gypsum lime and ashlar-
stone and brick-clay and handicraftsmen, while I also bring
architects and master masons and they shall erect for thee whatso
thou requirest." So King Pharaoh gat ready all this and fared
forth with his folk to a spacious plain without the city whither
Haykar and his pages had carried the boys and the vultures; and
with the Sovran went all the great men of his kingdom and his
host in full tale that they might look upon the wonder which the
Envoy of Assyria was about to work. But when they reached the
place appointed, Haykar brought out of their boxes the vultures
and making fast the lads to their backs bound the cords to the
legs of the birds and let them loose, when they soared firmament-
wards till they were poised between heaven and earth. Hereat the
lads fell to crying aloud, "Send up to us the stones and the mud
and the slaked lime that we may build a bower for King Pharaoh,
forasmuch as here we stand the whole day idle." At this were
agitated all present, and they marvelled and became perplext; and
not less wondered the King and the Grandees his lieges, while
Haykar and his pages fell to buffeting the handicraftsmen and to
shouting at the royal guards, saying, "Provide the workmen with
that they want, nor hinder them from their work!" Whereupon cried
Pharaoh, "O Haykar, art thou Jinn-mad? Who is ever able to convey
aught of these matters to so far a height?" But he replied to the
King, "O my lord, how shall we build a bower in the lift on other
wise? And were the King my master here he would have edified two
such edifices in a single day." Hearing this quoth Pharaoh to
him, "Hie thee, O Haykar, to thy quarters, and for the present
take thy rest, seeing that we have been admonished anent the
building of the bower; but come thou to me on the morrow."
Accordingly, Haykar fared to his lodging, and betimes on the next
day presented himself before Pharaoh, who said to him, "O Haykar,
what of the stallion of thy lord which, when he neigheth in
Assyria and Nineveh, his voice is heard by our mares in this
place so that they miscarry?"[FN#74] Hereat Haykar left the King
and faring to his place took a tabby-cat and tying her up fell to
flogging her with a sore flogging until all the Egyptians heard
her outcries and reported the matter to the Sovran. So Pharaoh
sent to fetch him and asked, "O Haykar, for what cause didst thou
scourge this cat and beat her with such beating, she being none
other but a dumb beast?"[FN#75] He replied, "O my lord the King,
she hath done by me a wrongous deed and she hath amply merited
this whipping and these stripes." The King asked, "And what may
be this deed she did?" whereto Haykar made answer, "Verily my
master Sankharib the King had given me a beautiful cock who had a
mighty fine voice and a strong, and he knew the hours of darkness
and announced them. But as he was in my mansion this mischief-
making tabby fared there and fell upon him last night and tare
off his head; and for this cause when she returned to me I took
to punishing her with such blows and stripes." Pharaoh rejoined,
"O Haykar, indeed I see thou art old and doting! Between Misraim
and Nineveh lie eight hundred and sixty parasangs; so how could
this cat have covered them in one night and have torn off thy
chanticleer's head and have returned by morning to Egypt?" He
replied, "O my lord, seeing that between Egypt and Assyria is
such interval how then can the neighing of my lord the King's
stallion reach unto Nile-land and be heard by your mares so that
here they miscarry?" When Pharaoh had pondered these words, he
knew that the envoy had returned him a full and sufficient reply,
so quoth he, "O Haykar, 'tis my desire that thou make for me two
ropes of sand;" and quoth the other, "Do thou prescribe that they
bring me a cord from thy stores that I twist one like it." So
when they had done as he bade, Haykar fared forth arear of the
palace and dug two round borings equal to the thickness of the
cord; then he collected sand from the river-bed and placed it
therein, so that when the sun arose and entered into the
cylinder, the sand appeared in the sunlight like unto
ropes.[FN#76] Thereupon quoth he to Pharaoh, "Command thy slaves
take up these ropes and I will twist thee as many of them as thou
willest." Quoth Pharaoh, "O Haykar, we have before our eyes a
millstone which is broken; and I require of thee that thou sew up
the rent." Accordingly the Envoy looked about him and, seeing
there another stone, said to Pharaoh, "O my lord, here am I a
stranger man nor have I with me aught of darning-gear; but I
would have thee bid thy confidants amongst the cobblers to
provide me out of this other stone with shoemaker's awls and
needles and scissors wherewith I may sew up for thee the breach
in yon millstone." Hereat Pharaoh the King fell a-laughing, he
and his Grandees, and cried, "Blessed be Allah, who hath
vouchsafed to thee all this penetration and knowledge;" then,
seeing that the Envoy had answered all his questions and had
resolved his propositions he forthright confessed that he was
conquered and he bade them collect the tax-tribute of three years
and present it to him together with the loan concerning which
Haykar had written and he robed him with robes of honour, him and
his guards and his pages; and supplied him with viaticum, victual
and moneys for the road, and said to him, "Fare thee in safety, O
honour of thy lord and boast of thy liege: who like unto thee
shall be found as a Councillor for the Kings and the Sultans? And
do thou present my salam to thy master Sankharib the Sovran
saying, 'Excuse us for that which we forwarded to thee, as the
Kings are satisfied with a scanting of such
acknowledgment.'"[FN#77] Haykar accepted from him all this; then,
kissing ground before him, said, "I desire of thee, O my lord, an
order that not a man of Assyria and Nineveh remain with thee in
the land of Egypt but fare forth it with me homewards." Hereupon
Pharaoh sent a herald to make proclamation of all whereof Haykar
had spoken to him, after which the envoy farewelled the King and
set out on his march intending for the realm of Assyria and
Nineveh and bearing with him of treasures and moneys a mighty
matter. When the tidings of his approach came to the ears of
Sankharib, the King rode forth to meet his Minister, rejoicing in
him with joy exceeding and received him lovingly and kissed him,
and cried, "Well come and welcome and fair welcome to my sire and
the glory of my realm and the vaunt of my kingdom: do thou
require of me whatso thou wantest and choosest, even didst thou
covet one-half of my good and of my government." The Minister
replied, "Live, O King, for ever; and if thou would gift me
bestow thy boons upon Abu Sumayk, the Sworder, whose wise delay,
furthered by the will of Allah Almighty, quickened me with a
second life." "In thine honour, O my beloved," quoth the King, "I
will do him honour;" and presently he fell to questioning his
envoy concerning what had befallen him from Pharaoh and how the
Lord of the Misraim had presented him with the tax-tribute and
moneys and gifts and honourable robes; and lastly, he asked anent
the instances and secrets which ended the mission. So Haykar
related all that had betided, whereat Sankharib rejoiced with
mighty great joy; and, when the converse was concluded, the King
said to him, "O Haykar, take unto thee everything thou wishest
and wantest of all this, for 'tis in the grasp of thy hand."
Haykar answered, "Live, O King, for ever and aye; naught do I
require save thy safety and the permanency of thy rule: what
shall I do with moneys and such like? But an thou deign largesse
me with aught, make over to me in free gift Nadan, my sister's
son, that I requite him for that he wrought with me: and I would
that thou grant me his blood and make it lawfully my very own."
Sankharib replied, "Take him, for I have given to thee that
same." So Haykar led his nephew to his home[FN#78] and bound his
hands in bonds and fettered his feet with heavy chains; then he
beat him with a severe bastinado and a torturing upon his soles
and calves, his back, his belly and his armpits; after which
bashing he cast him into a black hole adjoining the jakes. He
also made Binuhal guardian over him and bade him be supplied day
by day with a scone of bread and a little water; and whenever the
uncle went in to or came forth from the nephew he would revile
Nadan and of his wisdom would say to him, "O dear my son, I
wrought with thee all manner of good and kindly works and thou
didst return me therefor evil and treason and death. O dear my
son, 'tis said in saws, 'Whoso heareth not through his ears,
through the nape of his neck shall he hear.'"[FN#79] Hereat quoth
Nadan, "O my uncle, what reason hast thou to be wroth with me?"
and quoth Haykar, "For that I raised thee to worship and honour
and made thee great after rearing thee with the best of rearing
and I educated thee so thou mightest become mine heir in lore and
contrivance and in worldly good. But thou soughtest my ruin and
destruction and thou desiredst for me doom of death; however, the
Lord, knowing me to be a wronged man, delivered me from thy
mischief, for God hearteneth the broken heart and abaseth the
envious and the vain-glorious. O dear my son,[FN#80] thou hast
been as the scorpion who when she striketh her sting[FN#81] upon
brass would pierce it. O dear my son, thou hast resembled the
Sajalmah-bird[FN#82] when netted in net who, when she cannot save
herself alive, she prayeth the partridges to cast themselves into
perdition with her. O dear my son, thou hast been as the cur who,
when suffering cold entereth the potter's house to warm himself
at the kiln, and when warmed barketh at the folk on such wise
that they must beat him and cast him out, lest after barking he
bite them. O dear my son, thou hast done even as the hog who
entered the Hammam in company with the great; but after coming
out he saw a stinking fosse a-flowing[FN#83] and went and therein
wallowed. O dear my son, thou hast become like the old and rank
he-goat who when he goeth in leadeth his friends and familiars to
the slaughter-house and cannot by any means come off safe or with
his own life or with their lives. O dear my son, a hand which
worketh not neither plougheth, and withal is greedy and
over-nimble shall be cut off from its armpit. O dear my son, thou
hast imitated the tree whom men hew down, head and branch, when
she said, 'Had not that in your hands been of me,[FN#84] indeed
ye would not have availed to my felling.' O dear my son, thou
hast acted as did the she-cat to whom they said, 'Renounce
robbing that we make thee collars of gold and feed thee with
sugar and almond cake!' But she replied, 'As for me, my craft is
that of my father and my mother, nor can I ever forget it.' O
dear my son, thou art as a dragon mounted upon a bramble-bush,
and the two a-middlemost a stream, which when the wolf saw he
cried, 'A mischief on a mischief and let one more mischievous
counsel the twain of them.' O dear my son, with delicate food I
fed thee and thou didst not fodder me with the driest of bread;
and of sugar and the finest wines I gave thee to drink, while
thou grudgedst to me a sup of cold water. O dear my son, I taught
thee and tendered thee with the tenderest of tending and garred
thee grow like the lofty cedar of Lebanon, but thou didst
incriminate me and confine me in fetters by thine evil
courses.[FN#85] O dear my son, I nourished a hope that thou
wouldst build me a strong tower wherein I might find refuge from
mine adversary and foil my foes; but thou hast been to me as a
burier, a grave-digger, who would thrust me into the bowels of
the earth: however, my Lord had mercy upon me. O dear my son, I
willed thee well and thou rewardedst me with ill-will and foul
deed; wherefore, 'tis now my intent to pluck out thine eyes and
hack away thy tongue and strike off thy head with the sword-edge
and then make thee meat for the wolves; and so exact retaliation
from thine abominable actions." Hereupon Nadan made answer and
said to Haykar his uncle, "Do with me whatso thy goodness would
do and then condone thou to me all my crimes, for who is there
can offend like me and can condone like thee? And now I pray thee
take me into thy service and suffer me to slave in thy house and
groom thy horses, even to sweeping away their dung, and herd thy
hogs; for verily I am the evil-doer and thou art the beneficent;
I am the sinner and thou art the pardoner." "O dear my son,"
rejoined Haykar, "Thou favourest the tree which, albe planted by
the side of many waters, was barren of dates and her owner
purposed to hew her down, when she said, 'Remove me unto another
stead where if I fruit not then fell me.' But he rejoined, 'Being
upon the water-edge thou gavest ne'er a date, so how shalt thou
bear fruit being in other site?' O dear my son, better the
senility of the eagle than the juvenility of the raven. O dear my
son, they said to the wolf, 'Avoid the sheep lest haply the dust
they raise in flight may do thee a damage;' but Lupus made
answer, 'Verily their dust is a powder good for the eyes.' O dear
my son, they brought the wolf to school that he might learn to
read; but, when quoth they to him, 'Say A, B, C, D,'[FN#86] quoth
he, 'Lamb, Sheep, Kid, Goat,[FN#87] even as within my belly.' O
dear my son, they set the ass's head beside a tray of meats, but
he slipped down and fell to rolling upon his back, for his nature
(like that of others) may never be changed. O dear my son, his
say is stablished who said, 'When thou hast begotten a child
assume him to be thy son, and when thou hast reared a son assume
him to be a slave.'[FN#88] O dear my son, whoso doeth good, good
shall be his lot; and whoso worketh evil, evil shall befal him;
for that the Lord compensateth mankind according to conduct. O
dear my son, wherewith shall I bespeak thee beyond this my
speech? and verily Allah knoweth concealed things and wotteth all
secret and hidden works and ways and He shall requite thee and
order and ordain between me and thee and shall recompense thee
with that thou deservest." Now when Nadan heard these words from
his uncle Haykar, his body began to swell and become like a
blown-up bag and his members waxed puffy, his legs and calves and
his sides were distended, then his belly split asunder and burst
till his bowels gushed forth and his end (which was destruction)
came upon him; so he perished and fared to Jahannam-fire and the
dwelling-place dire. Even so it is said in books:--"Whoever
diggeth for his brother a pit shall himself fall into it and
whoso setteth up a snare for his neighbour shall be snared
therein." And this much know we anent the Say of Haykar the Sage,
and magnification be to Allah for ever and ever Amen.



In the name of Allah the Compassionating, the Compassionate, we
here indite, by the aidance of the Almighty and His furtherance,
the History of the Caliph Harun Al-Rashid and of the Daughter of
Kisra the King.[FN#90]

It is related (but Allah is all-knowing of His secrets and all-
kenning in whatso hath passed and preceded and preterlapsed of
the annals of folk),[FN#91] that the Caliph (by whom I mean Harun
al-Rashid) was sitting on the throne of his kingdom one chance
day of the days which happened to be the fete of 'Arafat.[FN#92]
And as he chanced to glance at Ja'afar the Barmaki, he said to
him, "O Wazir, I desire to disguise myself and go down from my
palace into the streets and wander about the highways of Baghdad
that I may give alms to the mesquin and miserable and solace
myself with a sight of the folk: so do thou hie with me nor let
any know of our faring forth." "With love and good will," quoth
Ja'afar. So his lord arose and passed from the audience-room into
the inner palace where the two donned disguise and made small
their sleeves and breasts[FN#93] and issued forth to circle about
the thorough-fares of Baghdad and her market-streets,
distributing charity to the poor and the paupers, until the last
of the day. And whilst so doing, the Commander of the Faithful
chanced to espy a woman seated at the head of a highway who had
extended the hand of beggary, showing at the same time her wrist
and crying, "Give me somewhat for the sake of Allah Almighty!"
Hereat he considered her nicely and saw that her palm and her
wrist were like whitest crystal and yet more brilliant in
brightness. So he wondered thereat, and presently pulling a dinar
from his breast-pocket he handed it to Ja'afar and said, "Bestow
it upon yonder woman." The Minister took the ducat and leaving
his lord went up to her and placed it in her palm; and, when she
closed her fingers thereupon, she felt that the coin was bigger
than a copper or a silverling, so she looked thereat and saw that
it was of gold. Hereupon she called after Ja'afar who had passed
onwards, saying, "Ho, thou fair youth!" and when he came back to
her she continued, "The dinar wherewith thou hast gifted me, is
it for Allah's sake or for other service?" Said he, "'Tis not
from me, nay 'twas given by yonder Youth who sent it through me."
"Ask him," she rejoined, "and tell me what may be his purport."
Ja'afar hied him back to the Caliph and reported her words,
whereat his lord commanded him, "Go back and say thou to her 'tis
for Almighty Allah's sake." The Minister did his master's bidding
when she replied "His reward be upon the Almighty." Then the
Wazir returned and reported the woman's prayer to the Commander
of the Faithful, who cried, "Hie thee to her and enquire an she
be married or virginal; and, if she be unwedded, do thou ask her
an she be willing to wive with me."[FN#94] So Ja'afar fared to
her and questioned her, whereat she answered, "A spinster." Quoth
he, "The Youth who sent the dinar to thee desireth to mate with
thee;" and quoth she, "An he can pay me my dower and my money
down,[FN#95] I will become his bride." Hereat Ja'afar said in his
thought, "whence can the Prince of True Believers find her dower
and her money down? Doubtless we shall have to ask a loan for
him;"[FN#96] and presently he enquired of her what might be the
amount of both. Replied she, "As for the pin-money, this shall be
the annual revenue of Ispahan, and the income of Khorasan-city
shall form the settlement." So Ja'afar wagged his head and going
back to the Commander of the Faithful repeated her terms;
wherewith Harun was satisfied and bespake him, "Hie thee to her
and say, 'He hath accepted this and thou hast professed thyself
contented.'" Hearing his words she rejoined, "What be his worth,
yonder man, and how may he attain unto such sum?" and he
retorted, "Of a truth he is the Commander of the Faithful, Harun
al-Rashid." When this reply reached her ears she veiled her hands
and feet crying, "To Allah be laud and gratitude;" adding to
Ja'afar, "An he be the Prince of True Believers, I am satisfied
therewith." Accordingly the Wazir returned to the Caliph and
reported her consent, whereafter the twain repaired homewards and
the Caliph despatched to her a duenna and a train of handmaidens
who went and bore her to the Hammam within the palace and bathed
her. Then they brought her out and robed her in sumptuous
raiment, such as becometh the women of the Kings, and ornaments
and jewellery and what not: after which they led her to a fine
apartment which was set apart and private for her wherein also
were meat and drink and furniture, arras[FN#97] and curtains and
all necessaries of such sort. In fine they fared to the Caliph
and apprized him of what they had done and he presently gave
command to summon the four Kazis who wrote her marriage-lines.
When it was night he paid her the first visit and taking seat
opposite her he asked, "Daughter of whom mayst thou be amongst
the folk that thou demandedst of me this dower?" "Allah advance
in honour the Commander of the Faithful," answered she; "verily
thy hand-maid is of the seed of Kisra Anushirwan; but the shifts
of time and tide brought me down and low down." Replied he, "They
relate that thine ancestor, the Chosroe, wronged his lieges with
mighty sore wronging;"[FN#98] and she rejoined, "Wherefor and
because of such tyranny over the folk hath his seed come to beg
their bread at the highway-heads." Quoth he, "They also make
mention of him that in after-times he did justice to such degree
that he decided causes between birds and beasts;" and quoth she,
"Wherefor hath Allah exalted his posterity from the highway-head
and hath made them Harim to the Prince of True Believers."
Hearing this the Caliph was wroth with mighty great wrath[FN#99]
and sware that he would not go in unto her for full told year,
and arising forthright went forth from her. But when the
twelvemonth had passed and the fete-day of Arafat came round
again, the Commander of the Faithful donned disguise and taking
with him Ja'afar and Masrur the Eunuch, strolled out to wander
about the streets of Baghdad and her highways. And as they walked
along, the Caliph looked about him and beheld a booth wherein a
man was turning out Katifah-cakes[FN#100] and he was pleased to
admire his dexterity to such degree that, returning to the
Palace, he sent him one of his Eunuchs with the message, "The
Prince of True Believers requireth of thee an hundred pancakes,
and let each one of them, when filled and folded, fit into the
hollow of a man's hand." So the Castrato went and gave the order
as we have related and paid the price and, when the pastrycook
had made his requirement, he carried it away to the presence.
Then the Caliph took seat and bade bring sugar and pistachios and
all other such needs wherewith he fell to stuffing the pancakes
with his own hands and placing in each and every a golden dinar.
When this was done he despatched the same Eunuch to Kisra's
daughter with the message, "This night the Commander of the
Faithful proposeth to visit thee, the year of his oath having
expired, and he sendeth to thee saying, 'What is it thy heart
coveteth that he may forward it to thee?'" The Castrato set forth
upon this errand and received for all reply, "Say him my heart
desireth naught, for that all I require is with me nor is there
aught of deficiency." Accordingly, he returned and repeated her
words to the Caliph who bade him fare forth again to her and say
the same to her a second time, whenas she, "Let him send me a
thousand dinars and a duenna in whom he confideth, so that I may
disguise myself and go down with her and distribute gold to the
mean and the mesquin." Presently back came the slave bearing this
reply, whereat the Caliph ordered the moneys be sent to her and
the woman required; and the twain, Princess and duenna, went
forth and threaded the lanes of Baghdad and her great
thoroughfares whilst the young lady distributed her charity to
the Fakirs and the paupers. But when all the gold with her had
been expended and naught of it remained, they turned homewards
making for the Palace; and, the day being sultry, drowthiness
befel the young lady. So she said to her companion, "O mother
mine, I am athirst and want a draught of water to drink;" and
said the other, "We will call aloud to the Water-carrier[FN#101]
who shall give thee thy need." Replied the Princess, "Drinking
from the Waterman's jar will not be pleasant to my heart; nor
will I touch it, for 'tis like the whore[FN#102] whereinto some
man goeth every hour: let the draught of water be from a private
house and suffer that it be given by way of kindness." Hereupon
the old woman looked in front of her and saw a grand gateway with
a door of sandal-wood over which a lamp hung by a silken
cord[FN#103] and a curtain was drawn across it and it had two
benches of marble, the whole under the charge of a goodly
concierge. Then quoth she, "From this house I will ask a drink
for thee." So the two women went forward and stood before the
door and the duenna advancing rapped a light rap with the ring,
when behold, the entrance was opened and came forth a young man
in youthful favour fair and robed in raiments pure and rare and
said, "'Tis well!" Hereat the governante addressed him, "O my
son, indeed this my daughter is athirst and I crave of thy
kindness that thou give her a draught of water, seeing that she
will not drink from the Watercarrier." He replied, "With love and
goodwill;" and going within brought out what was required and
handed the cup to the old woman. She took it and passed it on to
her mistress and the young lady turning her face to the wall
raised her veil and drank her sufficiency without showing a
single feature.[FN#104] After this she returned the cup to the
old woman who took it and handed it back to the young man saying,
"Allah requite thee with all of weal, O my son!" whereto he
replied, "Health to you and healing!"[FN#105] And the two went
their way and returned to the Palace and entered therein. On such
wise fared it with these twain but as regards the Caliph, when he
had finished filling the pancakes, he ranged them in a large
charger of porcelain; then, summoning the Eunuch he said to him,
"Take up this and carry it to the daughter of Kisra and say her,
'Here be the sweetmeats of peace,' and let her know that I will
night with her this night." The Castrato did his lord's bidding;
and carrying the charger to the Princess's apartment handed it to
the duenna and delivered the message, whereupon she blessed and
prayed for the Commander of the Faithful and the slave departed.
Now he was angry and disappointed for that he could not eat one
pancake of them all because they had become big by stuffing and
he feared that if he touched any thereof its place would show
void. Presently it so befel that the young lady said to the old
woman, her governante, "Do thou take up this charger and carry it
to the youth who gave us the draught of water with the intent
that he may not claim an obligation or have aught to desire of
us." Accordingly, the ancient dame took the charger and walked
off with it. But on her way she longed for a Katifah and put
forth her hand to one and took it up when she saw that it left in
the line of pancakes a gap big as a man's palm. Hereat she feared
to touch it and replaced it saying, "'Twill be known that I
carried off one of them." Then after returning the pancake to its
place she passed on with the charger to the door of that young
man whom she suddenly sighted as he sat at the gateway. She
saluted him with the salam which he returned, and then said she,
"O my son, the young lady who drank the water hath sent thee all
these cates in acknowledgment for the draught thou gavest her to
drain." Said he, "Set it down on the door-bench;" and when she
did his bidding, he expressed his thanks to her and she ganged
her gait. Now as the youth still sat there, the Watchman of the
Ward suddenly stood before him blessing him and saying, "O my
lord, this be Arafat-day and to-night will be the Eve of the
'I'd, or Greater Festival; so I hope from the beneficence of my
master the Chamberlain and Emir Alaeddin (whom Allah Almighty
keep and preserve!) that he will deign order me a largesse
befitting the Fete wherewith I may buy sweetmeats for my wife and
children." The other replied, "Take this charger and wend thy
ways therewith;" so the Watchman kissed his hand and carrying it
off went home and showed it to his wife. But she cried, "O thou
miserable,[FN#106] whence gottest thou this charger: hast thou
wilfully stolen it or suddenly snatched it?"[FN#107] Replied her
mate, "This be the property of the Emir Alaeddin, the Chamberlain
(whom Allah preserve!), and he gave it to me as an alms-gift; so
come hither all of you that we eat, for the pancakes look
toothsome." Rejoined his wife, "Art thou Jinn-mad? Up with thee
and sell the charger and cates, for the worth must be some thirty
to forty dirhams which we will lay out for the benefit of the
little ones." He retorted, "O woman, suffer us eat of this food
wherewith the Almighty would feed us;" but she fell to wailing
and crying out, "We will not taste thereof while the children
lack caps and slippers."[FN#108] and she prevailed over him with
her opinion, for indeed women are mostly the prevailers. So
taking up the charger he fared with it to the market-place and
gave it for sale to a broker, and the man began crying, "Who will
buy this charger with whatso is thereon?" Hereat up came the
Shaykh of the Bazar who bid forty dirhams therefor, and a second
merchant raised its price to eighty, when a third hent it in hand
and turning it about espied graven upon the edge, "Made by
commandment of Harun al-Rashid, Commander of the Faithful."
Hereat the trader's wits fled him and he cried to the broker,
"Hast thou a will to work for my hanging in this matter of the
charger?" Quoth the other, "What may be the meaning of these
words?" and quoth the merchant, "This charger is the property of
the Prince of True Believers." The broker, dying of dread, took
the charger and repaired therewith to the Palace of the Caliphate
where he craved leave to enter; and, when this was accorded, he
went in and kissed ground before the presence and blessed the
Commander of the Faithful and lastly showed to him the charger.
But when the Caliph looked at it and considered it carefully, he
recognised it with its contents and he waxed wroth with exceeding
wrath and said in himself, "When I make aught for the eating of
my household, shall it be sent out and hawked about for sale?"
adding to the broker, "Who gave thee this charger?" "O my lord,
'twas the Watchman of one of the wards," replied he; and Harun
rejoined, "Bring him to me hither." So they fared forth and
fetched him bound in cords and saying in his mind, "The whore
would not suffer us eat of that was in the charger and enjoy its
sweetness, so this happened which hath happened to us; we have
eaten naught and have fallen into misfortune." But when they set
him between the hands of the Caliph the latter asked him, "Where
haddest thou yon charger? say me sooth or I will smite thy neck!"
The Watchman answered, "Allah prolong the life of our liege lord!
verily as regards this charger it was given to me by the Lord
Alaeddin, the junior Chamberlain." Hereat the Prince of True
Believers redoubled in rage and cried, "Bring me that Emir with
his turband in tatters, and drag him along on his face and
plunder his home." Accordingly the magnates fared forth with
their pages; and, reaching the house, knocked at the door, when
the owner came out and, seeing the officials, asked, "What is to
do?" "'Tis against thee," replied some of the Grandees, whereto
the Chamberlain rejoined, "Hearkening and obeying Allah and then
the Commander of the Faithful!" After this they bore him to the
Palace of the Caliphate and an Emir of them put forth his hand to
the Chamberlain's coat and tare it and rent his turband adown his
neck saying, "O Alaeddin,[FN#109] this is the behest of the
Prince of True Believers who hath enjoined that we do with thee
on such wise and we despoil thy house: yet there is bread and
salt between us albe we must do as we are bidden, for obedience
to royal behest is of the ways of good breeding." Then they
carried him into the presence of the Caliph and he, after he was
made to stand between the Sovran's hands, kissed ground and
blessed Harun and said, "Allah give aidance to our liege lord and
have him in His holy keeping: what may be the offence of thine
humble slave that he hath merited such treatment as this?" Harun
raised his head and asked, "Say me, knowest thou yon fellow?" and
the other looked and seeing the guardian of the gates corded and
pinioned made answer, "Yes indeed, I know him and he is the
Watchman of our ward." The Caliph resumed, "Whence came to thee
this charger?" and the Chamberlain replied, "Let the Commander of
the Faithful (to whom Almighty Allah vouchsafe furtherance!)
learn that I was sitting at home when there rapped a rap at the
door; and I, going forth to open, beheld an ancient dame who said
to me, 'O my son, this my daughter is athirst and I beg thee of
thy bounty to give her a draught of water for she will not take
drink from the public Sakka.' So I brought them out their
requirement and they satisfied themselves and went their ways.
After an hour or so I came forth and took seat by my house-door
when behold, up came the old woman bearing in hand yon charger
and said, 'O my son, the person to whom thou suppliedest drink
hath sent this to thee in requital for that thou gavest her of
water inasmuch as she is unwilling to be under an obligation.'
Quoth I, 'Set it down'; when she placed it upon the edge of the
Mastabah-bench and left me. Thereupon suddenly came up this
Watchman and craved from me the Sweetmeat of the Festival,
whereto I answered, 'Do thou take this charger and its contents'
(whereof by the bye I had not tasted aught); and he did so and
departed. This is all I know and--The Peace." Now when the
Commander of the Faithful heard this from the Chamberlain, his
heart was gladdened and he enquired, "O Alaeddin, what time the
young lady drank the draught of water didst thou see her face or
not?" and the Chamberlain replied in haste, "O Prince of True
Believers, indeed I did see it." Hereat Harun was wroth with
exceeding wrath and bade summon the daughter of Kisra and when
she came bade the twain be beheaded saying, "Thou farest forth to
do alms-deeds, and thou durst display thy features to this fellow
when thou drankest water at his hand!" Hereat she turned her
towards Alaeddin and replied, "Thou see my face! Nay, this is but
a lie that may work my death." He rejoined, "The Reed-pen wrote
what 'twas bidden write![FN#110] I designed to say, 'Verily I
beheld naught of her,' and my tongue ran as it did the sooner to
end our appointed life-term." Then having set the twain upon the
rug of blood the Sworder bound their hands and tearing off a
strip from their skirts bandaged their eyes, whereafter he walked
around them and said, "By leave of the Commander of the
Faithful;" and Harun cried, "Smite!" Then the Headsman paced
around them a second time saying, "By leave of the Commander of
the Faithful," and Harun again cried, "Smite!" But when the
executioner did in like manner for the third and last
time[FN#111] quoth he to Alaeddin, "Hast thou haply in heart
aught of regret or requirement that I may fulfil it to thee? Ask
of me anything save release, ere the Commander of the Faithful
say the word and forthright thy head fall before thy feet?" "I
desire," quoth the Chamberlain, "that thou unbind this bandage
from mine eyes so may I look one latest look at the world and at
my friends, after which do thou work thy will." The Sworder
granted this and Alaeddin glanced first to the right where he saw
none to aidance dight, and then to the left where he found all
favour reft; and the spectators each and every hung their heads
groundwards for awe of the Caliph, nor did any take upon himself
to utter a kindly word. Whereupon the Chamberlain cried out his
loudest saying, "A counsel, O Commander of the Faithful!" and
Harun regarding him asked, "What is it thou counsellest?" "A
respite of three days' space," rejoined the condemned, "when thou
shalt see a marvel, indeed a miracle of miracles;" and the Caliph
retorted, "After the third day, an I see not as thou sayest, I
will assuredly smite thy neck;" and bade them bear him back to
gaol. But when the appointed term ended the Caliph sprang up and
in his impatience to see what would befal him donned a dress
distinctive of his new calling,[FN#112] and thrusting his feet
into coarse shoon and high of heel[FN#113] and binding about his
brows a honey-coloured turband[FN#114] he hent in hand a pellet-
bow[FN#115] and slung its case over his shoulders: he also took
gold in pouch and thus equipped he left the palace. Then, as he
roamed about the lanes of Baghdad and her highways, giving alms
and saying in his mind, "Haply may I sight the wonder which the
Chamberlain Alaeddin announced to me," it befel about mid-
forenoon (and he still walking) that behold, a man came forth
from the Kaysariyah[FN#116] or chief mart of the merchants crying
aloud, "This be a marvel, nay a miracle of miracles." So the
Caliph questioned him saying "What be this wonder thou hast
seen?" and he answered, "Within yon Kaysariyah is a woman who
reciteth the Koran even as it was brought down,[FN#117] and
albeit she have not ceased declaiming from the hour of the dawn-
prayer until this time, yet hath none given her a single dirham:
no, nor even one mite;[FN#118] and what strangeness can be
stranger than this I tell thee?" The Caliph, hearing his words,
entered the mart wherein he descried an ancient dame sitting and
reciting the Koran and she had well nigh reached the end thereof.
He was charmed with the beauty of her lecture and stood there
until she had finished it and had blessed the by-standers, but
when he glanced round he saw nobody give her aught. So he thrust
his hand into his pouch saying in his mind, "Whatso[FN#119] of
coin remaineth in purse shall go to this woman." And he designed
to gift her with the gold when suddenly the old dame sprang from
her seat and going to a merchant's shop took seat beside the man
and said to him, "O my son, dost thou accept of a fair young
lady?" Said he, "Yea, verily," and she continued, "Up with thee
and come that I show thee a thing whose like thou hast never
seen." Now when the Caliph heard her words he said to himself,
"Look at yon foul old crone who playeth bawd when I held her to
be a devotee, a holy woman. Indeed I will not give her aught
until I see what work is wrought by these twain." The trader then
followed the old woman to her home wherein both, youth and crone,
entered and the Caliph who pursued them also went in privily and
took his station at a stead whence he could see without being
seen.[FN#120] Then lo and behold! the old trot called to her
daughter who came forth from the bower wherein she was, and the
Caliph looking at this young lady owned that he had never sighted
amongst his women aught fairer than this, a model of beauty and
loveliness and brilliancy and perfect face and stature of
symmetric grace. Her eyes were black and their sleepy lids and
lashes were kohl'd with Babylonian witchery, and her eyebrows
were as bows ready to shoot the shafts of her killing glances,
and her nose was like unto the scymitar's edge, and her mouth for
magical might resembled the signet-ring of Sulayman (upon whom be
The Peace!), and her lips were carnelians twain, and her teeth
union pearls and her mouth-dews sweeter than honey and more
cooling than the limpid fount; with breasts strutting from her
bosom in pomegranate-like rondure and waist delicate and hips of
heavy weight, and stomach soft to the touch as sendal with plait
upon plait, and she was one that excited the sprite and exalted
man's sight even as said a certain poet in song of her like,

"Breeze-waved branch, full moon O' murk or sun of undurn sheeny
bright, * Which is she hight who all the three hath might to
place in pauper plight, ah!
Where on the bending branch alight with grace of stature like to
hers * Tho' be the branch by Zephyr deckt and in its
ornaments bedight, ah!
And how can fellowed be her brow with fullest moon that lights
the darks * When sun must borrow morning light from that
fair forehead dazzling bright, ah!
Were set in scales the fairest fair and balanced with a long
compare * heir boasts, thou haddest over-weight for beauty
and their charms were light, ah!"

Now when he considered her straitly, she captured the whole of
his heart. But the young lady had not upon her clothes enough for
concealment, and here and there her body showed bare; so when she
came forth and espied the young man standing by the old woman she
withdrew into her bower and said to her mother, "Allah
requite[FN#121] thee for that thou hast done. How can it be
allowed thee by the Almighty to set me in this state before a
stranger?" "Hold thy peace," said her parent; "man is allowed to
look, and if he have any art or part in the object looked at 'tis
well; but thereafter if he look without its being his lot, then
'twere unlawful. This youth hath gazed upon thee, and if he prove
to have a portion in thee let him take it, otherwise he may wend
his ways, nor is there a flaw in aught of legal observance."
Hereat the Caliph's heart was cheered, for he knew that the
ancient dame meant to marry the maid. Anon quoth the old mother
to the merchant, "Hast thou seen her?" and quoth he, "Yes." "Did
she please thee?" asked the crone, and he answered, "Yea verily,"
adding, "How much may be her actual marriage-settlement and her
contingent dower?" She replied, "The first shall consist of four
thousand dinars and the second shall be the same."' "This be
overmuch," rejoined the youth, "and more than all my good; to
wit, four thousand gold pieces, the gift of which will send me
forth to beg; but do thou take of me a thousand dinars, and upon
me be the arraying of the house and the maiden's raiment for
another thousand; so will I do business and trade with the
remainder." But the crone sware to him by Allah the
Almighty,[FN#122] that an the four thousand failed of a single
gold piece he should never see of the damsel a single hair. He
replied, "I have no power thereto and--good day to both of you;"
and he made for the door, but the Caliph forewent him to the
street and standing in a corner suffered him to pass and gang his
gait. After this Harun went back to the old woman, and entering
salam'd to her and she, returning his salutation, asked him,
"What dost thou want and what may be thy wish?" He answered, "The
young trader who went forth hence sent me to say that he hath no
intent to wed," and she rejoined, "On this mind the man hied away
from us." Then quoth the Caliph, "I will marry the maid, and by
me is all thou canst desire of gold and what not." She retorted,
"O Robber,[FN#123] all I see upon thee is not worth two hundred
dirhams: whence then canst thou procure four thousand dinars?"
Quoth he, "Hast thou grapes to sell, or wishest thou only to
breed a quarrel between me and the vineyard-keeper?"[FN#124] and
quoth she, "Doubtless I have and hold the grapes." "Then, I
possess all thou canst desire, said he, and said she, "Then, we
will wed thee when thou shalt have weighed out the gold." The
Caliph cried, "I accept;" and anon entering the lodging he took
seat at the head of the chamber and in its place of honour, and
said to the house-mistress, "Go thou to Kazi Such-an-one and tell
him that Al-Bundukani requireth him." "O Robber," said she, "will
the Kazi be content to come at thy bidding?" The Commander of the
Faithful laughed at these words and said, "Do thou go without
danger and bid him bring his ink-case and pens and paper." So she
went off saying to herself, "Verily, an the Judge accompany me,
this my son-in-law must be a Captain of Robbers."[FN#125] But
when at last she arrived at the Kazi's mansion she saw him
sitting in the middle of the room and surrounded by doctors of
divinity and a host of learned wights: so she feared to enter,
and fell to looking in through the doorway and she dreaded to
fare farther and stepped backwards; withal she kept saying, "How
shall I go home without speaking a word to the Kazi?" and the
thought would hearten her heart, so she would return to the
entrance and thrust in her head and then withdraw it. On such
wise she had done many a time when the Kazi, catching sight of
her, bade one of his messengers bring her within; so the man went
to her and said, "Bespeak the Kazi!" So she went in full of
affright and salam'd to the Judge who, returning her salutation,
asked her, "What is thy want, O woman?" She answered, "There is a
young man in my house who desireth that thou come to him;"
whereat he rejoined, "And who may be this youth that I in person

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