The Book of the Thousand Nights and One Night - II
But when the hundred-and-seventieth night had come
Little Dunyazad, who could not contain her impatience, rose from her carpet and said to Shahrazad:
‘Sister, I pray you hasten to tell us the tale which you have promised; for its title alone has filled my heart with joy.’
Shahrazad smiled at her sister, saying: ‘I wait the good pleasure of the King.’
King Shahryar, who that night had hurried over his usual embrace because of his anxiety to hear the story, said: ‘O Shahrazad, you may begin the fairy tale which you have so agreeably announced.’
So Shahrazad told the following tale:
It is related, O auspicious King, that there was once, in the antiquity of time, a sultan called Shahriman, master of armies and great wealth, who ruled over the land of Khalidan. Although he was in all other things happy, and possessed seventy concubines and four wives, he suffered the grief of being childless; for he had ...