Tuesday, March 17, 2009

1400 to 1499. Arabian Nights' Entertainment to "Tale of the Third Calender."

Anonymous. Persian/Arab. 1450. Tales. The Arabian Nights’ Entertainment. Persian/Indian/Arabian tales. Scheherazade postpones her execution by telling her husband stories without revealing the climax until the following session. Includes Ali Baba; the Calenders; Magic Carpet; Sinbad the Sailor.

“Tales of the Calenders.” Begging order of dervishes founded in 13th century; obliged to be perpetual wanderers.

“Tale of the First Calender.” When his father dies, a prince’s right eye is pulled out by an evil vizier. He becomes a calender and tells his story.

“Tale of the Second Calender.” Robbed, turned into an ape by an evil genius, he is disenchanted by a sultan’s daughter who kills the evil genius, but who dies in the struggle. A spark from the conflict destroys the right eye of the calender. He is kicked out of the kingdom and tells his story.

“Tale of the Third Calender.” A lodestone draws nails from his ship. The king meets ten princes, each with their right eye knocked out. Left in a castle, the king can visit any room but one. He succumbs to temptation and a horse flies him to Baghdad. With a whisk of its tail, the horse knocks out the king’s right eye as it has done with the ten princes who were also guilty of curiosity.

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