By Sir Richard Francis Burton (Translator)

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Extra info for 1001 Arabian Nights - Volume 3

Sample text

And he charged the Chamberlain and Nuzhat al-Zaman with the care of his son and niece and wife, and this he continued to do nights and days till he fell sick and deemed surely that he was about to drink the cup of death; so he took to his bed, whilst the Chamberlain busied himself with ordering the folk and realm. At the end of the year, the King summoned his son Kanmakan and the Wazir Dandan and said, "O my son, after my death this Wazir is thy sire; for know that I am about to leave this house of life transitory for the house of eternity.

Then King Zau al-Makan summoned Rustam and Bahram and Tarkash, and when they were in presence bespoke them thus, "Know that we have lain here all these years and we have not won to our wish; nay, we have but gained increase of care and concern; for indeed we came, thinking to take our man bote for King Omar bin al-Nu'uman and in so doing my brother Sharrkan was slain; so is our sorrow grown to sorrows twain and our affliction to afflictions twain. All this came of the old woman Zat al-Dawahi, for it was she who slew the Sultan in his kingdom and carried off his wife, the Queen Sophia; nor did this suffice her, but she must put another cheat on us and cut the throat of my brother Sharrkan and indeed I have bound myself and sworn by the solemnest oaths that there is no help but I take blood wit from her.

So he rose to see who it was that spake these words, but saw none for the thickness of the gloom; whereupon passion increased on him and he was frightened and restlessness possessed him. He descended from his place to the sole of the valley and walked along the banks of the stream, till he heard the same voice sighing heavy sighs and reciting these couplets, "Tho' 'tis thy wont to hide thy love perforce, * Yet weep on day of parting and divorce! Twixt me and my dear love were plighted vows; * Pledge of reunion, fonder intercourse: With joy inspires my heart and deals it rest * Zephyr, whose coolness doth desire enforce.

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