Supplemental Nights, Volume 6
by Richard F. Burton
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[FN#397] Gauttier, vii. 71. Les Isles Bellour. see vol. iii. 194.

[FN#398] Heron's "Illabousatrous"(?).

[FN#399] In text "Zayjah," from Pers. "Zaycheh" = lit. a horoscope, a table for calculating nativities and so forth. In page 682 of the MS. the word is used = marriage-lines.

[FN#400] In text "Snsal," for "Salsal " = lit. chain.

[FN#401] In Sindbad the Seaman I have shown that riding men as asses is a facetious exaggeration of an African practice, the Minister being generally the beast of burden for the King. It was the same in the Maldive Islands. "As soon as the lord desires to land, one of the rhief Catibes (Arab. Khatib = a preacher, not Katib = a writer) comes forward to offer his shoulder (a function much esteemed) and the other gets upon his shoulders; and so, with a leg on each side, he rides him horse fashion to land, and is there set down." See p. 71, "The Voyage of Francois Pyrard," etc. The volume is unusually well edited by Mr. Albert Gray, formerly of the Ceylon Civil Service, for the Hakluyt Society, MDCCCLXXXVII: it is, however, regretable that he and Mr. Bell, his collaborateur, did not trace out the Maldive words to their "Aryan" origin showing their relationship to vulgar Hindostani as Mas to Machhi (fish) from the Sanskrit Matsya.

[FN#402] In text "Ghayth al-Hatil = incessant rain of small drops and widely dispread. In Arab. the names for clouds, rain and all such matters important to a pastoral race are well nigh innumerable. Poetry has seized upon the material terms and has converted them into a host of metaphors; for "the genius of the Arabic language, like that of the Hebrew, is to form new ideas by giving a metaphorical signification to material objects (e.g. 'Azud, lit. the upper arm; met. a helper)." Chenery, p. 380.

[FN#403] In the text "To the palace:" the scribe, apparently forgetting that he is describing Badawi life, lapses at times into "decorating the capital" and "adorning the mansion," as if treating of the normal city-life. I have not followed his example.

[FN#404] Heron translates "A massy cuirass of Haoudi."

[FN#405] In text, "Inbasata 'l-Layl al-Asa," which M. Houdas renders et s'etendit la nuit (mere) de la tristesse.

[FN#406] "Rauzah" in Algiers is a royal park; also a prairie, as "Rauz al-Sanajirah," plain of the Sinjars: Ibn Khaldun, ii. 448.

[FN#407] The "Miskal" (for which see vols. i. 126; ix. 262) is the weight of a dinar = 1 dirham = 71-72 grains avoir. A dose of 142 grains would kill a camel. In 1848, when we were marching up the Indus Valley under Sir Charles Napier to attack Nao Mall of Multan, the Sind Camel Corps was expected to march at the rate of some 50 miles a day, and this was done by making the animals more than half drunk with Bhang or Indian hemp.

[FN#408] In text, "Yakhat," probably clerical error for "Yakhbut," lit. = he was panting in a state of unconsciousness: see Dozy, Suppl. s. v.

[FN#409] In text "Al-Dan, which is I presume a clerical error for "Al-Uzn" = ear. ["Dan," with the dual "Danayn," and "Wudn," with the plural "Audan," are popular forms for the literary "Uzn."- -ST.]

[FN#410] This name has occurred in MS. p. 655, but it is a mere nonentity until p. 657—the normal incuriousness. Heron dubs him "Rabir."

[FN#411] In the text "Zimmat" = obligation, protection, clientship.

[FN#412] "Sahha 'alakah" (=a something) "fi haza 'l-Amri." The first word appears de trop being enclosed in brackets in the MS.

[FN#413] "Wa yabki 'alaykum Mabalu-h." [For "Mabal" I would read "Wabal," in the sense of crime or punishment, and translate: "lest the guilt of it rest upon you."—ST.)

[FN#414] In the text "Suwayda" literally "a small and blackish woman"; and "Suwayda al-Kalb" (the black one of the heart) = original sin, as we should say. [The diminutive of "Sayyid" would be "Suwayyid," as "Kuwayyis" from "Kayyis," and "Juwayyid" from "Jayyid" (comp. supra p. 3). "Suwayd" and "Suwayda" are diminutives of "Aswad," black, and its fem. "Sauda" respectively, meaning blackish. The former occurs in "Umm al-Suwayd" = anus. "Suwayda al-Kalb" = the blackish drop of clotted blood in the heart, is synonymous with "Habbat al-Kalb" = the grain in the heart, and corresponds to our core of the heart. Metaphorically both are used for "original sin."—ST.]

[FN#415] "Yakah Thiyabish;" the former word being Turkish (M. Houdas).

[FN#416] Arab. "Kaunayn" = the two entities, this world and the other world, the past and the future, etc. Here it is opposed to "'A'lamina," here 'Awalim = the (three) worlds, for which see vol. ii. 236.

[FN#417] In text "Changul," again written with a three-dotted Chim.

[FN#418] In text "Al-Mazrab" which M. Houdas translates cet endroit.

[FN#419] In text "Yabahh" = saying "Bah, Bah!"

[FN#420] In text "Bahr al-Azrak" = the Blue Sea, commonly applied to the Mediterranean: the origin of the epithet is readily understood by one who has seen the Atlantic or the Black Sea.

[FN#421] i.e. "The Stubborn," "The Obstinate."

[FN#422] In text "Al-Jawadit," where M. Houdas would read "Al-Hawadith" which he renders by animaux fraichement tues.

[FN#423] In the text "Kabad" = the liver, the sky-vault, the handle or grasp of a bow.

[FN#424] In the text "Mina" = a port both in old Egyptian and mod. Persian: see "Mitrahinna," vol. ii. 257.

[FN#425] "Al-Nakair," plur. of "Nakir" = a dinghy, a dug-out.

[FN#426] For this "Pa-andaz," as the Persians call it, see vol. iii. 141.

[FN#427] In text "Kataba Zayjata-ha," the word has before been noticed.

[FN#428] Again "Hiza bi-Zayjati-ha" = le bonheur de ses aventures.

[FN#429] This impalement ("Salb," which elsewhere means crucifying, vol. iii. 25) may be a barbarous punishment but it is highly cffective, which after all is its principal object. Old Mohammed Ali of Egypt never could have subjugated and disciplined the ferocious Badawi of Al-Asir, the Ophir region South of Al-Hijaz, without the free use of the stake. The banditti dared to die but they could not endure the idea of their bodies being torn to pieces and devoured by birds and beasts. The stake commonly called "Khazuk", is a stout pole pointed at one end, and the criminal being thrown upon his belly is held firm whilst the end is passed up his fundament. His legs and body are then lashed to it and it is raised by degrees and planted in a hole already dug, an agonising part of the process. If the operation be performed by an expert who avoids injuring any mortal part, the wretch may live for three days suffering the pangs of thirst; but a drink of water causes hemorrhage and instant death. This was the case with the young Moslem student who murdered the excellent Marshal Kleber in the garden attached to Shepherd's Hotel, Cairo, wherein, by the by, he suffered for his patriotic crime. Death as in crucifixion is brought on by cramps and nervous exhaustion, for which see Canon Farrar (Life of Christ, ii. 392 et seqq.).

[FN#430] Archaeological Review, July, 1888, pp. 331-342.

[FN#431] The proper names are overrun with accents and diaeretical points, of which I have here retained but few.

[FN#432] Particularly mentioning Syntipas, the Forty Vizirs, a Turkish romance relating to Alexander, in 120 volumes; and Mohammed al-'Aufi.

[FN#433] Probably similar to those described in the story of the Warlock and the Cook (antea, pp. 106-112)

[FN#434] The last clause is very short and obscure in the French "qu'il n'a pas son satire," but what follows shows the real meaning to be that given above. (W. F. K.)

[FN#435] This I take to be the meaning of the words, "une autre monde sous la terre par sept fois." (W.F.K.)

[FN#436] Galland writes "on fait un jeu de Giret (tournoi), etc." (W. F. K.)

[FN#437] Perhaps an error of Galland's. (W. F. K.)

[FN#438] I do not know the German edition referred to.

[FN#439] This great class of tales is quite as widely extended in the north of Europe and Asia, as in the south. We meet with them in Siberia, and they are particularly common in Lapland I believe, too, that the Indian story of the Red Swan (referred to by Longfellow, Hiawatha xii.) is only a Swan Maiden legend in a rather modified form. As usual, we find a bizarre form of the Swan Maiden story among the Samoghitians of Lithuania. The Zemyne is a one eyed venomous snake, with black blood which cures all diseases and neutralises all magic. It is an enchanted maiden; and sometimes the skin has been stolen, and she has reamed a man. But if she recovers her skin, she resumes her snake-form, and bites and kills her husband and children. Many other strange things are related of the Zemyne (Veckenstedt, Mythen, Sagen, und Legenden der Zamaiten, ii., pp. 149-152).]

[FN#440] About twenty pounds.

[FN#441] Spitta Bey (p. 27 note) suggests that this is a reminiscence of the ancient Egyptian idea of the Scarabaeus which typifies life.

[FN#442] Southey, in his story of the Young Dragon, relates how Satan, disapproving of the rapid conversion of the inhabitants of Antioch to Christianity, laid an egg, and hatched out a dragon, which he sent to destroy the inhabitants. But a Pagan whose Christian daughter was devoted to the dragon by lot, stole the thumb from a relic (the hand of John the Baptist), as he pretended to kiss it, and cast it into the mouth of the dragon, and blew him up.

[FN#443] This is a variant of the Nose-Tree; I do not remember another in genuine Oriental literature (cf. Nights, x., app., p. 449).]

[FN#444] How small the world becomes in this story!

[FN#445] It is evident that a young she-bear is all that is meant.

[FN#446]These Vigilants and Purifiers, with that hypocritical severity which ever makes the worst sinner in private the most rigorous judge in public, lately had the imprudent impudence to summons a publisher who had reprinted the Decameron with the "objectionable passages" in French. Mr. Alderman Faudell Phillips had the good sense contemptuously to dismiss the summons. Englishmen are no longer what they were if they continue to tolerate this Ignoble espionnage of Vicious and prurient virtuous "Associations." If they mean real work why do they commence by condemning scholar-like works, instead of cleansing the many foul cesspools of active vice which are a public disgrace to London. [FN#447] It may serve the home-artist and the home-reader to point out a few of the most erroneous The harp (i. 143) is the Irish and not the Eastern, yet the latter has been shown In i. 228; and the "Kanun " (ii. 77) is a reproduction from Lane's Modern Egyptians. The various Jinnis are fanciful, not traditional, as they should be (see inter alia Doughty's Arabia Deserta, ii. 3, etc.). In i. 81 and ii. 622 appears a specimen bogie with shaven chin and "droopers" by way of beard and mustachios: mostly they have bestial or simiad countenances with rabbits' ears, goats' horns and so forth (i. 166, 169; ii. 97, 100), instead of faces more or less human and eyes disposed perpendicularly. The spreading yew-tree (i. 209) is utterly misplaced. In many the action is excessive, after the fashion of the Illustrateds (i. 281, 356, 410 and 565; ii. 366, 374). The scymitar and the knife, held in the left hand or slung by the left flank, are wholly out of order (i. 407 ii.281,374; iii.460) and in iii. 355, the blade is wider than the wielder's waist. In i. 374 the astrolabe is also held in the left hand. The features are classical as those of Arsinoe, certainly not Egyptian, in i. 15; i. 479 and passim. The beggar-women must not wander with faces bare and lacking "nose-bags" as in i. 512. The Shah (i. 523) wears modern overalls strapped down over dress-bottines: Moreover he holds a straight-bladed European court-sword, which is correct in i. 527. The spears (i. 531) are European not Asiatic, much less Arabian, whose beams are often 12-15 feet long. Aziz (i. 537) has no right to tricot drawers and shoes tightened over the instep like the chaussure of European moutards: his foot (i. 540) is wholly out of drawing, like his hand, and the toes are European distortions. The lady writing (i. 581) lacks all local colour; she should sit at squat, support the paper in the hollow of her left instead of using a portfolio, and with her right ply the reed or "pen of brass." In vol. ii. 57 the lion is an absurdum, big as a cow or a camel, and the same caricature of the King of Beasts occurs elsewhere (i. 531; ii. 557 and iii. 250). The Wazir (ii. 105) wears the striped caftan of a Cairene scribe or shopkeeper. The two birds (ii. 140) which are intended for hawks (see ii. 130) have the compact tails and the rounded-off wings of pigeons. I should pity Amjad and As'ad if packed into a "bullock trunk" like that borne by the mule in ii. 156. The Jew's daughter (ii. 185) and the Wali of Bulak (ii. 504) carry European candlesticks much improved in ii. 624. The Persian leach (ii. 195) is habited most unlike an 'Ajami, while the costume is correct in ii. 275. The Badawi mounts (ii. 263) an impossible Arab with mane and tail like the barb's in pictures. The street-dogs (ii. 265), a notable race, become European curs of low degree. The massage of the galleys (ii. 305) would suit a modern racing-yacht. Utterly out of place are the women's costumes such as the Badawi maidens (ii. 335), Rose-in Hood (ii. 565), and the girl of the Banu Odhrah (iii.250), while the Lady Zubaydah (ii. 369) is coiffee with a European coronet. The sea-going ship (ii. 615) is a Dahabiyah fit only for the Nile. The banana-trees (ii. 621) tower at least 80 feet tall and the palms and cocoa-nut trees (ii. 334; iii. 60) are indicated only by their foliage, not by their characteristic boles. The box (ii. 624) is European and modern: in the Eastern "Sakhkharah" the lid fits into the top, thus saving it from the "baggage-smasher." In iii. 76, the elephant, single-handed, uproots a tree rivalling a century-old English oak. The camel-saddle (iii. 247) is neither Eastern nor possible for the rider, but it presently improves (iii. 424 and elsewhere). The emerging of the Merfolk (iii. 262) is a "tableau," a transformation-scene of the transpontine pantomime, and equally theatrical is the attitude of wicked Queen Lab (iii. 298), while the Jinni, snatching away Daulat Khatun (iii.341), seems to be waltzing with her in horizontal position. A sun-parasol, not a huge Oriental umbrella, is held over the King's head (iii. 377). The tail-piece, the characteristic Sphinx (iii. 383), is as badly drawn as it well can be, a vile caricature. Khalifah the Fisherman wears an English night-gown (iii. 558) with the side-locks of a Polish Jew (iii. 564). The dancing- girl (iii. 660) is equally reprehensible in form, costume and attitude, and lastly, the Fellah ploughing (iii. 700) should wear a felt skull-cap instead of a turband, be stripped to the waist and retain nothing but a rag around the middle.

I have carefully noted these lapses and incongruities: not the less, however, I thoroughly appreciate the general excellence of the workmanship, and especially the imaginative scenery and the architectural designs of Mr. W. Harvey. He has shown the world how a work of the kind should be illustrated, and those who would surpass him have only to avoid the minor details here noticed.

[FN#448] See in M. Zotenberg's "Ala al-Din" the text generally; also p. 14.

[FN#449] Mr. Payne, in his Essay, vol. ix., 281, computes less than two hundred tales in all omitting the numerous incidentals; and he notices that the number corresponds with the sum of the "Night-stories" attributed to the Hazar Afsan by the learned author of the "Fihrist" (see Terminal Essay, vol. x. pp. 70). In p. 367 (ibid.) he assumes the total at 264.

[FN#450] This parlous personage thought proper to fall foul of me (wholly unprovoked) in the Athenaeum of August 25, '88. I give his production in full:—

Lord Stratford De Redcliffe.

August 18, 1888.

In the notice of Sir R. Burton's "Life" in to-day's Athenaeum it is mentioned that his biographer says that Capt. Burton proposed to march with his Bashi-bazuks to the relief of Kars, but was frustrated by Lord Stratford de Redcliffe, who, according to Sir Richard, "gained a prodigious reputation in Europe, chiefly by living out of it."

This is a strange inversion of facts. The proposal to relieve Kars by way of Redoutkale and Kutais originated, not with Capt. Burton, but with the Turkish Seraskier, who recommended for this purpose the employment of Vivian's Turkish Contingent and part of Beatson's Horse ("his Bashi-bazuks"), in which Capt. Burton held a staff appointment. In the last days of June, 1855, General Mansfield, Lord Stratford's military adviser, was in constant communication on this subject with the Turkish Ministers, and the details of the expedition were completely arranged to the satisfaction of military opinion, both British and Turkish, at Constantinople. Lord Stratford officially recommended the plan to his Government, and in his private letters to the Foreign Secretary strongly urged it upon him and expressed a sanguine hope of its success. But on July 14th, Lord Clarendon telegraphed: "The plan for reinforcing the army at Kars contained in your despatches of 30th June and 1st inst. is disapproved." Lord Panmure really "frustrated" the Turkish plan; Lord Stratford never "frustrated" any attempt to succour the Army of Asia, but, contrariwise, did all in his power to forward the object.

As to the amiable reference to the Great Elchi's reputation, no one knows better than Sir R. Burton by what queer methods reputations may be annexed, but it is strange that anyone with the reputation of a traveller should consider Constantinople to be "out of Europe."

S. Lane-Poole.

The following was my reply:—

Lord Stratford De Redcliffe and Mr. S. Lane-Poole.

London, Aug. 26, 1888.

Will you kindly spare me space for a few lines touching matters personal?

I am again the victim (Athenaeum, August 25) of that everlasting reclame. Mr. S. Lane-Poole has contracted to "do" a life of Lord Stratford, and, ergo, he condemns me in magistral tone and a style of uncalled-for impertinence, to act as his "advt." In relating how, by order of the late General Beatson, then commanding Bash-buzuk (Bashi-bazuk is the advertiser's own property), I volunteered to relieve Cars, how I laid the project before the "Great Eltchee," how it was received with the roughest language and how my first plan was thoroughly "frustrated." I have told a true tale, and no more. "A strange perversion of facts," cries the sapient criticaster, with that normal amenity which has won for him such honour and troops of unfriends: when his name was proposed as secretary to the R. A. S., all prophesied the speediest dissolution of that infirm body.

I am aware that Constantinople is not geographically "out of Europe." But when Mr. S. Lane-Poole shall have travelled a trifle more he may learn that ethnologically it is. In fact, most of South-Eastern Europe holds itself more or less non-European, and when a Montenegrin marries a Frenchwoman or a German, his family will tell you that he has wedded a "European."

"No one knows better than Sir R. Burton by what queer methods reputation may be annexed." Heavens, what English! And what may the man mean? But perhaps he alludes in his own silly, saltless, sneering way to my Thousand Nights and a Night, which has shown what the "Uncle and Master's" work should have been. Some two generations of poules mouillees have reprinted and republished Lane's "Arabian Notes" without having the simple honesty to correct a single bevue, or to abate one blunder; while they looked upon the Arabian Nights as their own especial rotten borough. But more of this in my tractate, "The Reviewer Reviewed," about to be printed as an appendix to my Supplemental Volume, No. vi.

Richard F. Burton.

And here is the rejoinder (Athenaeum, September 8):—

Lord Stratford and Sir R. Burton.

September 4, 1888.

Sir R. Burton, like a prominent Irish politician, apparently prefers to select his own venue, and, in order to answer my letter in the Athenaeum of August 25, permits himself in the Academy of September 1 an exuberance of language which can injure no one but himself. Disregarding personalities, I observe that he advances no single fact in support of the statements which I contradicted, but merely reiterates them. It is a question between documents and Sir R. Burton's word.

S. Lane-Poole.

It is not a question between documents and my word, but rather of the use or abuse of documents by the "biographer." My volunteering for the relief of Kars was known to the whole camp at the Dardanelles, and my visit to the Embassy at Constantinople is also a matter of "documents." And when Mr. S. Lane-Poole shall have produced his I will produce mine.

[FN#451] It appears to me that our measures, remedial and punitive, against "pornographic publications" result mainly in creating "vested interests" (that English abomination) and thus in fostering the work. The French printer, who now must give name and address, stamps upon the cover Avis aux Libraires under Edition privee and adds Ce volume ne doit pas etre mis en vente ou expose dans les lieux publics (Loi du 29 Juillet, 1881). He also prints upon the back the number of copies for sale We treat "pornology" as we handle prostitution, unwisely ignore it, well knowing the while that it is a natural and universal demand of civilised humanity; and whereas continental peoples regulate it and limit its abuses we pass it by, Pharisee-like, with nez en-l'air. Our laws upon the subject are made only to be broken, and the authorities are unwilling to persecute, because by so doing they advertise what they condemn. Thus they offer a premium to the greedy and unscrupulous publisher and immensely enhance the value of productions ("Fanny Hill" by Richard Cleland for instance) which, if allowed free publication, would fetch pence instead of pounds. With due diffidence, I suggest that the police be directed to remove from booksellers' windows and to confiscate all indecent pictures, prints and photographs; I would forbid them under penalty of heavy fines to expose immoral books for sale, and I would leave "cheap and nasty" literature to the good taste of the publisher and the public. Thus we should also abate the scandal of providing the secretaries and officers of the various anti-vice societies with libraries of pornological works which, supposed to be escheated or burned, find their way into the virtuous hands of those who are supposed to destroy them.

[FN#452] "Quand aux manuscrits de la redaction egyptienne, l'omission de cet episode parait devoir etre attribuee a la tendance qui les caracterise generalement, d'abreger et de condenser la narrative " (loc. cit. p. 7: see also p. 14).

[FN#453] Here I would by no means assert that the subject matter of The Nights is exhausted: much has been left for future labourers. It would be easy indeed to add another five volumes to my sixteen as every complete manuscript contains more or less of novelty. Dr. Pertsch, the learned librarian of Saxe-Gotha, informs me that no less than two volumes are taken up by a variant of Judar the Egyptian (in my vol. vi. 213) and by the History of Zahir and Ali. For the Turkish version in the Bibliotheque Nationale see M. Zotenberg (pp. 21-23). The Rich MS. in the British Museum abounds in novelties, of which a specimen was given in my Prospectus to the Supplemental Volumes.

In the French Scholar's "Ala al-Din" (p. 45) we find the MSS. of The Nights divided into three groups. No. i. or the Asian (a total of ten specified) are mostly incomplete and usually end before the half of the text. The second is the Egyptian of modern date, characterised by an especial style and condensed narration and by the nature and ordinance of the tales, by the number of fables and historiettes, and generally by the long chivalrous Romance of Omar bin al-Nu'uman. The third group, also Egyptian, differs only in the distribution of the stories.]

[FN#454] My late friend, who brought home 3,000 copies of inscriptions from the so-called Sinai which I would term in ancient days the Peninsula of Paran. and in our times the Peninsula of Tor.

[FN#455] See M. Zotenberg, pp. 4, 26.

[FN#456] M. Zotenberg (p. 5) wrote la seconde moitie du xive. Siecle, but he informed me that he has found reason to antedate the text.

[FN#457] I regret the necessity of exposing such incompetence and errors which at the time when Lane wrote were venial enough; his foolish friend, however, by unskilful and exaggerated pretensions and encomiums, compels me to lay the case before the reader.

[FN#458] This past tense, suggesting that an act is complete, has a present sense in Arabic and must be translated accordingly.

[FN#459] Quite untrue: the critic as usual never read and probably never saw the subject of his criticism. In this case I may invert one of my mottoes and write, "To the foul all things"


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