It would be a delightful task to any boy or girl to begin at the beginning and read the first English version of these famous stories, made from the collection of M. Galland, Professor of Arabic in the Royal College of Paris. The fact that they had passed from Arabic into French and from French into English did not prevent their instantaneous popularity. This was in 1704 or thereabouts, and the world was not so busy as it is nowadays, or young men would not have gathered in the middle of the night under M. Galland's window and cried: "O vous, qui savez de si jolis contes, et qui les racontez si bien, racontez nous en un!"
Within a few years afterward, the sultan died in a good old age, and as he left no male children, the Princess Badroulboudour, as lawful heir of the throne, succeeded him, and communicating the power to Aladdin, they reigned together many years, and left a numerous and illustrious progeny.
"We quitted the palace after the giant and came to the shore, where we had left our rafts, and put them immediately to sea. We waited till day, in order to get upon them in case the giant should come toward us with any guide of his own species; but we hoped if he did not appear by sunrise, and gave over his howling, which we still heard, that he would prove to be dead; and if that happened, we resolved to stay in that island, and not to risk our lives upon the rafts. But day had scarcely appeared when we perceived our cruel enemy, accompanied with two others almost of the same size, leading him; and a great number more coming before him at a quick pace.
The princess did all she could to dissuade Prince Perviz, conjuring him not to expose her to the danger of losing two brothers; but he was obstinate, and all the remonstrances she could urge had no effect upon him. Before he went, that she might know what success he had, he left her a string of a hundred pearls, telling her that if they would not run when she should count them upon the string, but remain fixed, that would be a certain sign he had undergone the same fate as his brother; but at the same time told her he hoped it would never happen, but that he should have the delight of seeing her again.
Aladdin was carried before the sultan, who waited for him, attended by the grand vizier; and as soon as he saw him he ordered the executioner, who waited there for the purpose, to strike off his head without hearing him, or giving him leave to clear himself. As soon as the executioner had taken off the chain that was fastened about Aladdin's neck and body, he made the supposed criminal kneel down, and tied a bandage over his eyes. Then drawing his sabre, he took his aim by flourishing it three times in the air, waiting for the sultan's giving the signal to strike.
In a town in Persia, there lived two brothers, one named Cassim, the other Ali Baba. Their father left them scarcely anything; but as he had divided his little property equally between them, it would seem that their fortune ought to have been equal; but chance determined otherwise.
"Good father," said the princess, "I have travelled a great way, and should be sorry to return without executing my design. You talk of difficulties and danger of life, but you do not tell me what those difficulties are, and wherein the danger consists. This is what I desire to know, that I may consider and judge whether I can trust my courage and strength to brave them."下载
Aladdin took his mother's advice, and ate and drank moderately. When he had done, "Mother," said he to her, "I cannot help complaining of you, for abandoning me so easily to the discretion of a man who had a design to kill me, and who at this very moment thinks my death certain. You believed he was my uncle, as well as I; and what other thoughts could we entertain of a man who was so kind to me? but I must tell you, mother, he is a rogue and a cheat, and only made me those promises to accomplish my death; but for what reason neither you nor I can guess. You shall judge yourself, when you have heard all that passed from the time I left you, till he came to the execution of his wicked design."
The chief cook, who had never heard of such a dish, started back, and showed his thoughts by his looks; which the princess penetrating, said: "I see you take me to be mad to order such a dish, which one may say with certainty was never made. I know this as well as you; but I am not mad, and give you these orders with the most perfect recollection. You must invent and do the best you can, and bring me back what pearls are left." The cook could make no reply, but took the box and retired; and afterward the princess gave directions to all the domestics to have everything in order, both in the house and gardens, to receive the emperor.