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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
Originally published in 1909, this refurbished edition contains twelve stories adapted from Tales of a Thousand and One Nights, featuring the adventures of Ali Baba, Aladdin, and Sinbad and complemented by the work of a famous American artist.
This text contains four later tales from 'The Arabian Nights', in a new translation. The stories, a mixture of magic, humour and love, include 'The Story of Sindbad the Sailor', 'The Story of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves', 'The Story of Ala al-din and the Magic Lamp', and 'the Story of Qamar al-Zaman.

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