The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1 Page-289

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

A plain and literal translation of the arabian nights entertainments

lign-aloes, ambergris and musk unmixed, the whole worth fifty dinars. Now the time waxed strait and my heart straitened with it; so I said to him, “Take it all and finish shaving my head by the life of Mohammed (whom Allah bless and keep!).” “By Allah,” said he, “I will not take it till I see all that is in it.” So I bade the page open the box and the Barber laid down the astrolabe, leaving the greater part of my head unpolled; and, sitting on the ground, turned over the scents and incense and aloes wood and essences till I was well nigh distraught. Then he took the razor and coming up to me shaved off some few hairs and repeated these lines:— “The boy like his father shall surely show, * As the tree from its parent root shall grow.”[FN#620] Then said he, “By Allah, O my son, I know not whether to thank thee or thy father; for my entertainment this day is all due to thy bounty and beneficence; and, although none of my company be worthy of it, yet I have a set of honourable men, to wit Zantut the bath-keeper and Sali’a the corn-chandler; and Silat the bean-seller; and Akrashah the greengrocer; and Humayd the scavenger; and Sa’id the camel-man; and Suwayd the porter; and Abu Makarish the bathman;[FN#621] and Kasim the watchman; and Karim the groom. There is not among the whole of them a bore or a bully in his cups; nor a meddler nor a miser of his money, and each and every hath some dance which he danceth and some of his own couplets which he caroleth; and the best of them is that, like thy servant, thy slave here, they know not what much talking is nor what forwardness means. The bath keeper sings to the tomtom[FN#622] a song which enchants; and he stands up and dances and chants, ‘I am going, O mammy, to fill up my pot.’ As for the corn-chandler he brings more skill to it than any; he dances and sings,