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Now as sumptuously packaged as they are critically acclaimed—a new deluxe trade paperback edition of the beloved stories. The stories of ?The Arabian Nights ?(and stories within stories, and stories within stories within stories) are famously told by the Princess Shahrazad, under the threat of death should the king lose interest in her tale. Collected over the centuries from India, Persia, and Arabia, and ranging from adventure fantasies, vivacious erotica, and animal fables, to pointed Sufi tales, these stories provided the daily entertainment of the medieval Islamic world at the height of its glory. No one knows exactly when a given story originated, and many circulated orally for centuries before being written down; but in the process of telling and retelling, they were modified to reflect the general life and customs of the Arab society that adapted them—a distinctive synthesis that marks the cultural and artistic history of Islam. This translation is of the complete text of the Mahdi edition, the definitive Arabic edition of a fourteenth-century Syrian manuscript, which is the oldest surviving version of the tales and considered to be the most authentic.
Every night for three years the vengeful King Shahriyar sleeps with a different virgin, executing her the next morning. To end this brutal pattern and to save her own life, the vizier's daughter, Shahrazad, begins to tell the king stories of adventure, love, riches and wonder - tales of mystical lands peopled with princes and hunchbacks, the Angel of Death and magical spirits, tales of the voyages of Sindbad, of Ali Baba outwitting a band of forty thieves and of jinnis trapped in rings and in lamps. The sequence of stories will last 1,001 nights.
A generous and erudite book...We’re in the company of someone who loves The Arabian Nights, and who has generously shared that love with us through this companion.' - Michele Roberts, Independent on Sunday 'Superlative...just the sort of relaxed, informative book that Edmund Wilson might have written had he grown interested in the Middle East and its early literature.' - Michael Dirda, Washington Post 'Irwin organizes his material like a good storyteller...he gives us the crystallized sum of The Nights: ancedote, history, moral fable, aphorism, story after story, wonder upon wonder. This monumental, infinitely faceted gem should be every writer's bedtime sampler.' - Michael Moorcock, New Statesman & Society 'A work both learned and witty...Robert Irwin has wonderfully deepened the pleasures and the interest in reading The Arabian Nights as a supreme work of imaginative fiction.' - Marina Warner,TLS
The most comprehensive treatment of the Arabian Nights ever published, with more than 800 detailed encyclopedic entries and a wealth of authoritative essays and resources. * Includes 800+ encyclopedic entries covering all aspects of the Arabian Nights * Begins with a fascinating introduction and a variety of essays by renowned scholars, presenting areas of pivotal interest and concern * Includes a concordance of tales in different editions and translations * Provides an extensive bibliography, featuring reference works published in English and other languages
To commemorate the tercentenary of the first Western edition of The Arabian Nights, Yamanaka and Nishio marry Western and Japanese perspectives to analyze the rich cross-cultural fertilization that ensued. Arabian Nights and Orientalism examines narrative motifs, and relates them to other cultures, traditions, and forms of representation. The authors place the tales in a whole range of new contexts, from 19th century British feminism to ancient Greek romance. This lavishly illustrated book explores the interplay between image and text in various editions, and sheds new light on the tales' origin in the Persian professional storytelling tradition. Robert Irwin's foreword offers an overview of critical responses to The Arabian Nights, which highlights the originality of this volume.
Presents the classic Arabian folk tales about Aladdin with his magical lamp, the Enchanted Horse, the Princess Badoura, Sinbad the Sailor, and the Caliph of Bagdad, Haroun-al-Raschid.
Bawdy and exotic, 1001 Arabian nights features the wily and seductive Shahrazad, who saves her own life by telling tales of magical transformation, genies and wishes, flying carpets and fantastical journeys, terror and passion to entertain and appease the brutal King Shahryar. First introduced in the West in 1704, the stories of The Thousand and One Nights are most familiar to American readers in sanitized children's versions. This edition, based on Richard F. Burton's unexpurgated translation, restores the sensuality and lushness of the original Arabic.

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