The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1 Page-113

The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1

A plain and literal translation of the arabian nights entertainments

grudge thus caused between us twain. So when I was set before him hand bound and pinioned, he straightway gave orders for me to be beheaded. I asked, “For what crime wilt thou put me to death?”; whereupon he answered, “What crime is greater than this?” pointing the while to the place where his eye had been Quoth I, “This I did by accident not of malice prepense;” and quoth he, “If thou didst it by accident, I will do the like by thee with intention.”[FN#195] Then cried he, “Bring him forward,” and they brought me up to him, when he thrust his finger into my left eye and gouged it out; whereupon I became one eyed as ye see me. Then he bade bind me hand and foot, and put me into a chest and said to the sworder, “Take charge of this fellow, and go off with him to the waste lands about the city; then draw thy scymitar and slay him, and leave him to feed the beasts and birds.” So the headsman fared forth with me and when he was in the midst of the desert, he took me out of the chest (and I with both hands pinioned and both feet fettered) and was about to bandage my eyes before striking off my head. But I wept with exceeding weeping until I made him weep with me and, looking at him I began to recite these couplets:— “I deemed you coat o’ mail that should withstand The foeman’s shafts, and you proved foeman’s brand I hoped your aidance in mine every chance Though fail my left to aid my dexter hand: Aloof you stand and hear the railer’s gibe * While rain their shafts on me the giber-band: But an ye will not guard me from my foes * Stand clear, and succour neither these nor those!” And I also quoted:— “I deemed my brethren mail of strongest steel * And so they were—from foes I to fend my dart!