The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1 Page-193

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

A plain and literal translation of the arabian nights entertainments

And aloes-wood mere fuel is upon its native ground: And gold shall win his highest worth when from his goal ungoal’d; * And aloes sent to foreign parts grows costlier than gold.” When he ended his verse he bade one of his pages saddle him his Nubian mare￾mule with her padded selle. Now she was a dapple-grey, [FN#372] with ears like reed-pens and legs like columns and a back high and strong as a dome builded on pillars; her saddle was of gold-cloth and her stirrups of Indian steel, and her housing of Ispahan velvet; she had trappings which would serve the Chosroes, and she was like a bride adorned for her wedding night. Moreover he bade lay on her back a piece of silk for a seat, and a prayer-carpet under which were his saddle-bags. When this was done he said to his pages and slaves, “I purpose going forth a-pleasuring outside the city on the road to Kalyub-town, [FN#373] and I shall lie three nights abroad; so let none of you follow me, for there is something straiteneth my breast.” Then he mounted the mule in haste; and, taking with him some provaunt for the way, set out from Cairo and faced the open and uncultivated country lying around it. [FN#374] About noontide he entered Bilbays-city, [FN#375] where he dismounted and stayed awhile to rest himself and his mule and ate some of his victual. He bought at Bilbays all he wanted for himself and forage for his mule and then fared on the way of the waste. Towards nightfall he entered a town called Sa’adiyah [FN#376] where he alighted and took out somewhat of his viaticum and ate; then he spread his strip of silk on the sand and set the saddle-bags under his head and slept in the open air; for he was still overcome with anger. When morning dawned he mounted and rode onward till he reached the Holy City, [FN#377] Jerusalem, and thence he made Aleppo, where he dismounted at one of the caravanserais and abode three days to rest himself and the mule and to smell the air. [FN#378] Then, being determined to travel afar and Allah having written safety in his fate, he set out again, wending without wotting whither he was going; and, having fallen in with certain couriers, he stinted not travelling till he had reached Bassorah-city albeit he knew not what the place was. It was dark night when he alighted at the Khan, so he spread out his prayer-carpet and took down the saddle-bags from the back of his mule and gave her with her furniture in charge