The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1 Page-31

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

A plain and literal translation of the arabian nights entertainments

“Allah upon thee!” cried he in wrath exceeding that lacked no feeding, “O scanty of wit, expose not thy life to such peril! How durst thou address me in words so wide from wisdom and un far from foolishness? Know that one who lacketh experience in worldly matters readily falleth into misfortune; and whoso considereth not the end keepeth not the world to friend, and the vulgar say:- -I was lying at mine ease: nought but my officiousness brought me unease.” “Needs must thou,” she broke in, “make me a doer of this good deed, and let him kill me an he will: I shall only die a ransom for others.” “O my daughter,” asked he. “and how shall that profit thee when thou shalt have thrown away thy life?” and she answered, “O my father it must be, come of it what will!” The Wazir was again moved to fury and blamed and reproached her, ending with, “In very deed—I fear lest the same befal thee which befel the Bull and the Ass with the Husband man.” “And what,” asked she, “betel them, O my father?” Whereupon the Wazir began the Tale of the Bull[FN#23] and the Ass. Know, O my daughter, that there was once a merchant who owned much money and many men, and who was rich in cattle and camels; he had also a wife and family and he dwelt in the country, being experienced in husbandry and devoted to agriculture. Now Allah Most High had endowed him with under standing the tongues of beasts and birds of every kind, but under pain of death if he divulged the gift to any. So he kept it secret for very fear. He had in his cow house a Bull and an Ass each tethered in his own stall one hard by the other. As the merchant was sitting near hand one day with his servants and his children were playing about him, he heard the Bull say to the Ass, “Hail and health to thee O Father of Waking![FN#24] for that thou enjoyest rest and good ministering; all under thee is clean swept and fresh sprinkled; men wait upon thee and feed thee, and thy provaunt is sifted barley and thy drink pure spring water, while I (unhappy creature!) am led forth in the middle of the night, when they set on my neck the plough and a something called Yoke; and I tire at cleaving the earth from dawn of day till set of sun. I am forced to do more than I can and to bear all manner of ill treatment from night to night; after which they take me back with my sides