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    20- History of Ganem

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    Chapter 21
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    THE HISTORY OF GANEM, SON OF ABOU AYOUB, AND KNOWN BY THE SURNAME OF LOVE'S SLAVE.



    There was formerly at Damascus a merchant, who had by care and
    industry acquired great wealth, on which he lived in a very
    honourable manner. His name was Abou Ayoub, and he had one son
    and a daughter. The son was called Ganem, but afterwards surnamed
    Love's slave. His person was graceful, and the excellent
    qualities of his mind had been improved by able masters. The
    daughter's name was Alcolom, signifying Ravisher of hearts,
    because her beauty was so perfect that whoever saw her could not
    avoid loving her.

    Abou Ayoub died, and left immense riches: a hundred loads of
    brocades and other silks that lay in his warehouse were the least
    part. The loads were ready made up, and on every bale was written
    in large characters, "For Bagdad."

    Mahummud, the son of Soliman, surnamed Zinebi, reigned at that
    time at Damascus, the capital of Syria. His kinsman, Haroon al
    Rusheed, had bestowed that kingdom on him as his tributary.

    Soon after the death of Abou Ayoub, Ganem conversed with his
    mother about their domestic affairs, and concerning the loads of
    merchandize in the warehouse, asked her the meaning of what was
    written upon each bale. "My son," answered his mother, "your
    father used to travel sometimes into one province, and sometimes
    into another; and it was customary with him, before he set out,
    to write the name of the city he designed to repair to on every
    bade. He had provided all things to take a journey to Bagdad, and
    was on the point of setting out, when death"----She had not power
    to finish; the lively remembrance of the loss of her husband
    would not permit her to say more, and drew from her a shower of
    tears.

    Ganem could not see his mother so sensibly affected, without
    being equally so himself. They continued some time silent; but at
    length he recovered himself, and as soon as he found his mother
    calm enough to listen to him, said, "Since my father designed
    these goods for Bagdad, I will prepare myself to perform that
    journey; and I think it will be proper for me to hasten my
    departure, for fear those commodities should perish, or that we
    should lose the opportunity of selling them to the best
    advantage."

    Abou Ayoub's widow, who tenderly loved her son, was much
    concerned at this resolution, and replied, "My dear child, I
    cannot but commend you for designing to follow your father's
    example; but consider, that you are too young, inexperienced, and
    unaccustomed to the fatigue of travelling. Besides, can you think
    of leaving me, and adding to that sorrow with which I am already
    oppressed? Is it not better to sell those goods to the merchants
    of Damascus, and take up with a moderate profit, than expose
    yourself to the danger of perishing?"

    It was in vain for her to oppose Ganem's resolution by the
    strongest arguments; they had no weight with him. An inclination
    to travel, and to accomplish himself by a thorough knowledge of
    the world, urged him to set out, and prevailed over all his
    mother's remonstrances, her entreaties, and even her tears. He
    went to the market where slaves were sold, and bought such as
    were able-bodied, hired a hundred camels, and having provided all
    other necessaries, entered upon his journey, with five or six
    merchants of Damascus, who were going to trade at Bagdad.

    Those merchants, attended by their slaves, and accompanied by
    several other travellers, made up such a considerable caravan,
    that they had nothing to fear from the Bedouin Arabs, who make it
    their only profession to range the country; and attack and
    plunder the caravans when they are not strong enough to repulse
    them. They had no other difficulty to encounter, than the usual
    fatigues of a long journey, which were easily forgotten when they
    came in sight of the city of Bagdad, where they arrived in
    safety.

    They alighted at the most magnificent and most frequented khan in
    the city; but Ganem chose to be lodged conveniently, and by
    himself. He only left his goods there in a warehouse for their
    greater security, and hired a spacious house in the
    neighbourhood, richly furnished, having a garden which was very
    delightful, on account of its many waterworks and shady groves.

    Some days after this young merchant had been settled in his
    house, and perfectly recovered of the fatigue of his journey, he
    dressed himself richly, and repaired to the public place, where
    the merchants met to transact business. A slave followed him,
    carrying a parcel of fine stuffs and silks.

    The merchants received Ganem very courteously, and their syndic,
    or chief, to whom he first made application, bought all his
    parcel, at the price set down in the ticket annexed to every
    piece of stuff. Ganem continued his trade so successfully, that
    he every day sold all the goods he exposed.

    He had but one bale left, which he had caused to be carried from
    the warehouse to his own house; he then went to the public
    rendezvous, where he found all the shops shut. This seemed
    somewhat extraordinary to him and having asked the cause, he was
    told, that one of the first merchants, whom he knew, was dead,
    and that all his brother traders were gone to his funeral.

    Ganem inquired for the mosque, where prayer was to be said, and
    whence the body was to be conducted to the grave; and having been
    informed, sent back his slave with the goods, and walked towards
    the mosque. He got thither before the prayers were ended, which
    were said in a hall hung with black satin. The corpse was taken
    up, and followed by the kindred, the merchants, and Ganem, to the
    place of burial, which was at some distance without the city. It
    was a stone structure, in form of a dome, purposely built to
    receive the bodies of all the family of the deceased, and being
    very small, they had pitched tents around, that all the company
    might be sheltered during the ceremony. The monument was opened,
    and the corpse laid in it, after which it was shut up. Then the
    imam, and other ministers of the mosque, sat down in a ring on
    carpets, in the largest tent, and recited the rest of the
    prayers. They also read the Fateah, or introductory chapter of
    the Koraun, appointed for the burial of the dead. The kindred and
    merchants sat round, in the same manner, behind the ministers.

    It was near night before all was ended: Ganem who had not
    expected such a long ceremony, began to be uneasy, and the more
    so, when he saw meat served up, in memory of the deceased,
    according to the custom of the Mahummedans. He was also told that
    the tents had been set up not only against the heat of the sun,
    but also against the evening dew, because they should not return
    to the city before the next morning. These words perplexed Ganem.
    "I am a stranger," said he to himself, "and have the reputation
    of being a rich merchant; thieves may take the opportunity of my
    absence, and rob my house. My slaves may be tempted by so
    favourable an opportunity; they may run away with all the gold I
    have received for my goods, and whither shall I go to look for
    them?" Full of these thoughts, he ate a few mouthfuls hastily,
    and slipped away from the company.

    He made all possible haste; but, as it often happens that the
    more a man hurries the less he advances, he went astray in the
    dark, so that it was near midnight when he came to the city gate;
    which, to add to his misfortune, was shut. This was a fresh
    affliction to him, and he was obliged to look for some convenient
    place in which to pass the rest of the night till the gate was
    opened. He went into a burial-place, so spacious, that it reached
    from the city to the very place he had left. He advanced to some
    high walls, which enclosed a small field, being the mausoleum of
    a family, and in which there was a palm-tree. Ganem, finding that
    the burial-place where the palm-tree grew was open, went into it,
    and shut the door after him. He lay down on the grass and tried
    to sleep; but his uneasiness at being absent from home would not
    permit him. He got up, and after having passed before the door
    several times, opened it, without knowing why, and immediately
    perceived at a distance a light, which seemed to come towards
    him. He was startled at the sight, closed the door, which had
    nothing to secure it but a latch, and got up as fast as he could
    to the top of the palm-tree; looking upon that as the safest
    retreat under his present apprehensions.

    No sooner was he up, than by the help of the light which had
    alarmed him, he plainly perceived three men, whom, by their
    habit, he knew to be slaves, enter into the burial-place. One of
    them advanced with a lantern, and the two others followed him,
    loaded with a chest, between five and six feet long, which they
    carried on their shoulders. They set it down, and then one of the
    three slaves said to his comrades, "Brethren, if you will be
    advised by me, we will leave the chest here, and return to the
    city." "No, no," replied another, "that would not be executing
    our mistress's orders; we may have cause to repent not doing as
    we were commanded. Let us bury the chest, since we are enjoined
    so to do." The two other slaves complied. They began to break
    ground with the tools they had brought for that purpose. When
    they had made a deep trench, they put the chest into it, and
    covered it with the earth they had taken out, and then departed.

    Ganem, who from the top of the palm-tree had heard every word the
    slaves had spoken, could not tell what to think of the adventure.
    He concluded that the chest must contain something of value, and
    that the person to whom it belonged had some particular reasons
    for causing it to be buried in the cemetery. He resolved
    immediately to satisfy his curiosity, came down from the palm-
    tree, the departure of the slaves having dissipated his fear, and
    fell to work upon the pit, plying his hands and feet so well,
    that in a short time he uncovered the chest, but found it secured
    by a padlock. This new obstacle to the satisfying of his
    curiosity was no small mortification to him, yet he was not
    discouraged, but the day beginning then to appear, he saw several
    great stones about the burial-place. He picked out one, with
    which he easily knocked off the padlock, and then with much
    impatience opened the chest. Ganem was strangely surprised, when,
    instead of money, he discovered a young lady of incomparable
    beauty. Her fresh and rosy complexion, and her gentle regular
    breathing, satisfied him she was alive, but he could not conceive
    why, if she were only asleep, she had not awaked at the noise he
    made in forcing off the padlock. Her habit was so costly, with
    bracelets and pendants of diamonds, and a necklace of pearls, so
    large, that he made not the least doubt of her being one of the
    principal ladies of the court. At the sight of so beautiful an
    object, not only compassion and natural inclination to relieve
    persons in danger, but something more powerful, which Ganem could
    not then account for, prevailed on him to afford the unfortunate
    beauty all the assistance in his power.

    He first shut the gate of the burial-place, which the slaves had
    left open; then, returning, took the lady in his arms, and laid
    her on the soft earth which he had thrown off the chest. As soon
    as she was exposed to the air, she sneezed, and, by the motion in
    turning her head, there came from her mouth a liquor, with which
    her stomach seemed to have been loaded; then opening and rubbing
    her eyes, she with such a voice as charmed Ganem, whom she did
    not see, cried out, "Zohorob Bostan, Shijher al Mirjaun, Casabos
    Souccar, Nouron Nihar, Nagmatos Sohi, Nonzbetos Zaman, why do you
    not answer? where are you?" These were the names of six female
    slaves that used to wait on her. She called them, and wondered
    that nobody answered; but at length looking about, and perceiving
    she was in a burial-place, was seized with fear. "What," cried
    she, much louder than before, "are the dead raised? Is the day of
    judgment come? What a wonderful change is this from evening to
    morning?"

    Ganem did not think fit to leave the lady any longer in her
    perplexity, but presented himself before her with all possible
    respect, and in the most courteous manner. "Madam," said he, "I
    am not able to express my joy at having happened to be here to do
    you the service I have, and to offer you all the assistance you
    may need under your present circumstances."

    In order to persuade the lady to repose confidence in him, he, in
    the first place, told her who he was, and what accident had
    brought him to that place. Next he acquainted her with the coming
    of the three slaves, and how they had buried the chest. The lady,
    who had covered her face with her veil as soon as Ganem appeared,
    was extremely sensible of the obligations she owed him. "I return
    thanks to God," said she "for having sent so worthy a person as
    you are to deliver me from death; but since you have begun so
    charitable a work, I conjure you not to leave it imperfect. Let
    me beg of you to go into the city, and provide a muleteer, to
    come with his mule, and carry me to your house in this chest;
    for, should I go with you on foot, my dress being different from
    that of the city ladies, some one might take notice of it, and
    follow me, which it highly concerns me to prevent. When I shall
    be in your house, I will give you an account of myself; and in
    the mean time be assured that you have not obliged an ungrateful
    person."

    Before the young merchant left the lady, he drew the chest out of
    the pit, which he filled up with earth, laid her again in the
    chest, and shut it in such a manner, that it did not look as if
    the padlock had been forced off; but for fear of stifling her, he
    did not put it quite close, leaving room for the admittance of
    air. Going out of the burial-place, he drew the door after him;
    and the city gate being then open, soon found what he sought. He
    returned with speed to the burial place, and helped the muleteer
    to lay the chest across his mule, telling him, to remove all
    cause of suspicion, that he came to that place the night before,
    with another muleteer, who, being in haste to return home, had
    laid down the chest where he saw it.

    Ganem, who, since his arrival at Bagdad, had minded nothing but
    his business, was still unacquainted with the power of love, and
    now felt its first attacks. It had not been in his power to look
    upon the young lady without being dazzled; and the uneasiness he
    felt at following the muleteer at a distance, and the fear lest
    any accident might happen by the way that should deprive him of
    his conquest, taught him to unravel his thoughts. He was more
    than usually delighted, when, being arrived safe at home, he saw
    the chest unloaded. He dismissed the muleteer, and having caused
    a slave to shut the door of his house, opened the chest, helped
    the lady out, gave her his hand, and conducted her to his
    apartment, lamenting how much she must have endured in such close
    confinement. "If I have suffered," said she, "I have satisfaction
    sufficient in what you have done for me, and in the pleasure of
    seeing myself out of danger."

    Though Ganem's apartment was very richly furnished, the lady did
    not so much regard its appearance, as she did the handsome
    presence and engaging mien of her deliverer, whose politeness and
    obliging behaviour heightened her gratitude. She sat down on a
    sofa, and to give the merchant to understand how sensible she was
    of the service done her, took off her veil. Ganem on his part was
    sensible of the favour so lovely a lady did in uncovering her
    face to him, or rather felt he had already a most violent passion
    for her. Whatever obligations she owed him, he thought himself
    more than requited by so singular a favour.

    The lady dived into Ganem's thoughts, yet was not at all alarmed,
    because he appeared very respectful. He, judging she might have
    occasion to eat, and not willing to trust any but himself with
    the care of entertaining so charming a guest, went out with a
    slave to an eating-house, to give directions for an
    entertainment. From thence he went to a fruiterer, where he chose
    the finest and best fruit; buying also the choicest wine, and the
    same bread that was eaten at the caliph's table.

    As soon as he returned home, he with his own hands made a pyramid
    of the fruit he had bought, and serving it up himself to the lady
    in a large dish, of the finest china-ware, "Madam," said he, "be
    pleased to make choice of some of this fruit, while a more solid
    entertainment, and more worthy yourself, is preparing." He would
    have continued standing before her, but she declared she would
    not touch any thing, unless he sat down and ate with her. He
    obeyed; and when they had eaten a little, Ganem observing that
    the lady's veil, which she laid down by her on a sofa, was
    embroidered along the edge with golden letters, begged her
    permission to look on the embroidery. The lady immediately took
    up the veil, and delivered it to him, asking him whether he could
    read? "Madam," replied he, with a modest air, "a merchant would
    be ill-qualified to manage his business if he could not at least
    read and write." "Well, then," said she, "read the words which
    are embroidered on that veil, which gives me an opportunity of
    telling you my story."

    Ganem took the veil, and read these words, "I am yours, and you
    are mine, thou descendant from the prophet's uncle." That
    descendant from the prophet's uncle was the caliph Haroon al
    Rusheed, who then reigned, and was descended from Abbas,
    Mahummud's uncle.

    When Ganem perceived these words, "Alas! madam," said he, in a
    melancholy tone, "I have just saved your life, and this writing
    is my death! I do not comprehend all the mystery; but it
    convinces me I am the most unfortunate of men. Pardon, madam, the
    liberty I take, but it was impossible for me to see you without
    giving you my heart. You are not ignorant yourself, that it was
    not in my power to refuse it you, and that makes my presumption
    excusable. I proposed to myself to touch your heart by my
    respectful behaviour, my care, my assiduity, my submission, my
    constancy; and no sooner have I formed the flattering design,
    than I am robbed of all my hopes. I cannot long survive so great
    a misfortune. But, be that as it will, I shall have the
    satisfaction of dying entirely yours. Proceed, madam, I conjure
    you, and give me full information of my unhappy fate."

    He could not utter those words without letting fall some tears.
    The lady was moved; but was so far from being displeased at the
    declaration he made, that she felt secret joy; for her heart
    began to yield. However, she concealed her feelings, and as if
    she had not regarded what Ganem had said. "I should have been
    very cautious," answered she, "of strewing you my veil, had I
    thought it would have given you so much uneasiness; but I do not
    perceive that what I have to say to you can make your condition
    so deplorable as you imagine."

    "You must understand," proceeded she, "in order to acquaint you
    with my story, that my name is Fetnah (which signifies
    disturbance), which was given me at my birth, because it was
    judged that the sight of me would one day occasion many
    calamities. Of this you cannot be ignorant, since there is nobody
    in Bagdad but knows that the caliph, my sovereign lord and yours,
    has a favourite so called.

    "I was carried into his palace in my tenderest years, and I have
    been brought up with all the care that is usually taken with such
    persons of my sex as are destined to reside there. I made no
    little progress in all they took the pains to teach me; and that,
    with some share of beauty, gained me the affection of the caliph,
    who allotted me a particular apartment adjoining to his own. That
    prince was not satisfied with such a mark of distinction; he
    appointed twenty women to wait on me, and as many eunuchs; and
    ever since he has made me such considerable presents, that I saw
    myself richer than any queen in the world. You may judge by what
    I have said, that Zobeide, the caliph's wife and kinswoman, could
    not but be jealous of my happiness. Though Haroon has all the
    regard imaginable for her, she has taken every possible
    opportunity to ruin me.

    "Hitherto I had secured myself against all her snares, but at
    length I fell under the last effort of her jealousy; and, had it
    not been for you, must now have been exposed to inevitable death.
    I question not but she had corrupted one of my slaves, who last
    night, in some lemonade, gave me a drug, which causes such a dead
    sleep, that it is easy to dispose of those who have taken it; for
    that sleep is so profound, that nothing can dispel it for the
    space of seven or eight hours. I have the more reason to judge
    so, because naturally I am a very bad sleeper, and apt to wake at
    the least noise.

    "Zobeide, the better to put her design in execution, has availed
    herself of the absence of the caliph, who went lately to put
    himself at the head of his troops, to chastise some neighbouring
    kings, who have formed a league of rebellion. Were it not for
    this opportunity, my rival, outrageous as she is, durst not have
    presumed to attempt any thing against my life. I know not what
    she will do to conceal this action from the caliph, but you see
    it highly concerns me that you should keep my secret. My life
    depends on it. I shall be safe in your house as long as the
    caliph is from Bagdad. It concerns you to keep my adventure
    private; for should Zobeide know the obligation I owe you, she
    would punish you for having saved me.

    "When the caliph returns, I shall not need to be so much upon my
    guard. I shall find means to acquaint him with all that has
    happened, and I am fully persuaded he will be more earnest than
    myself to requite a service which restores me to his love."

    As soon as Haroon al Rusheed's beautiful favourite had done
    speaking, Ganem said, "Madam, I return you a thousand thanks for
    having given me the information I took the liberty to desire of
    you; and I beg of you to believe, that you are here in safety;
    the sentiments you have inspired are a pledge of my secrecy.

    "As for my slaves, they may perhaps fail of the fidelity they owe
    me, should they know by what accident and in what place I had the
    happiness to find you. I dare assure you, however, that they will
    not have the curiosity to inquire. It is so natural for young men
    to purchase beautiful slaves, that it will be no way surprising
    to them to see you here, believing you to be one, and that I have
    bought you. They will also conclude that I have some particular
    reasons for bringing you home as they saw I did. Set your heart,
    therefore, at rest, as to that point, and remain satisfied that
    you shall be served with all the respect that is due to the
    favourite of so great a monarch as our sovereign the caliph. But
    great as he is, give me leave, madam, to declare, that nothing
    can make me recall the present I have made you of my heart. I
    know, and shall never forget, ‘that what belongs to the master is
    forbidden to the slave;' but I loved you before you told me that
    you were engaged to the caliph; it is not in my power to overcome
    a passion which, though now in its infancy, has all the force of
    a love strengthened by a perfect of situation. I wish your august
    and most fortunate lover may avenge you of the malice of Zobeide,
    by calling you back to him; and when you shall be restored to his
    wishes, that you may remember the unfortunate Ganem, who is no
    less your conquest than the caliph. Powerful as that prince is, I
    flatter myself he will not be able to blot me out of your
    remembrance. He cannot love you more passionately than I do; and
    I shall never cease to love you into whatever part of the world I
    may go to expire, after having lost you."

    Fetnah perceived that Ganem was under the greatest of
    afflictions, and his situation affected her; but considering the
    uneasiness she was likely to bring upon herself, by prosecuting
    the conversation on that subject, which might insensibly lead her
    to discover the inclination she felt for him; "I perceive," said
    she, "that this conversetion gives you too much uneasiness; let
    us change the subject, and talk of the infinite obligation I owe
    you. I can never sufficiently express my gratitude, when I
    reflect that, without your assistance, I should never again have
    beheld the light of the sun."

    It was happy for them both, that somebody just then knocked at
    the door; Ganem went to see who it was, and found it to be one of
    his slaves come to acquaint him that the entertainment was ready.
    Ganem, who, by way of precaution, would have none of his slaves
    come into the room where Fetnah was, took what was brought, and
    served it up himself to his beautiful guest, whose soul was
    ravished to behold what attention he paid her.

    When they had eaten, Ganem took away, as he had covered the
    table; and having delivered all things at the door of the
    apartment to his slaves, "Madam," said he to Fetnah, "you may now
    perhaps desire to take some rest; I will leave you, and when you
    have reposed yourself, you shall find me ready to receive your
    commands."

    Having thus spoken, he left her, and went to purchase two women-
    slaves. He also bought two parcels, one of fine linen, and the
    other of all such things as were proper to make up a toilet fit
    for the caliph's favourite. Having conducted home the two women-
    slaves, he presented them to Fetnah, saying, "Madam, a person of
    your quality cannot be without two waiting-maids, at least, to
    serve you; be pleased to accept of these."

    Fetnah, admiring Ganem's attention, said, "My lord, I perceive
    you are not one that will do things by halves: you add by your
    courtesy to the obligations I owe you already; but I hope I shall
    not die ungrateful, and that heaven will soon place me in a
    condition to requite all your acts of generosity."

    When the women-slaves were withdrawn into a chamber adjoining, he
    sat down on the sofa, but at some distance from Fetnah, in token
    of respect. He then began to discourse of his passion. "I dare
    not so much as hope," said he, "to excite the least sensibility
    in a heart like yours, destined for the greatest prince in the
    world. Alas! it would be a comfort to me in my misfortune, if I
    could but flatter myself, that you have not looked upon the
    excess of my love with indifference." "My lord," answered Fetnah
    "Alas! madam," said Ganem, interrupting her at the word lord,
    "this is the second time you have done me the honour to call me
    lord; the presence of the women-slaves hindered me the first time
    from taking notice of it to you: in the name of God, madam, do
    not give me this title of honour; it does not belong to me; treat
    me, I beseech you, as your slave: I am, and shall never cease to
    be so."

    "No, no," replied Fetnah, interrupting him in her turn, "I shall
    be cautious how I treat with such disrespect a man to whom I owe
    my life. I should be ungrateful, could I say or do any thing that
    did not become you. Leave me, therefore, to follow the dictates
    of my gratitude, and do not require of me, that I should
    misbehave myself towards you, in return for the benefits I have
    received. I shall never be guilty of such conduct; I am too
    sensible of your respectful behaviour to abuse it; and I will not
    hesitate to own, that I do not regard your care with
    indifference. You know the reasons that condemn me to silence."

    Ganem was enraptured at this declaration; he wept for joy, and
    not being able to find expressions significant enough, in his own
    opinion, to return Fetnah thanks, was satisfied with telling her,
    that as she knew what she owed to the caliph, he, on his part,
    was not ignorant "that what belongs to the master is forbidden to
    the slave."

    Night drawing on, he rose up to fetch a light, which he brought
    in himself, as also a collation.

    They both sat down at table, and at first complimented each other
    on the fruit as they presented it reciprocally. The excellence of
    the wine insensibly drew them both to drink; and having drunk two
    or three glasses, they agreed that neither should take another
    glass without first singing some air. Ganem sung verses ex
    tempore, expressive of the vehemence of his passion; and Fetnah,
    encouraged by his example, composed and sung verses relating to
    her adventure, and always containing something which Ganem might
    take in a sense favourable to himself; except in this, she most
    exactly observed the fidelity due to the caliph. The collation
    continued till very late, and the night was far advanced before
    they thought of parting. Ganem then withdrew to another
    apartment, leaving Fetnah where she was, the women slaves he had
    bought coming in to wait upon her.

    They lived together in this manner for several days. The young
    merchant went not abroad, unless upon of the utmost consequence,
    and even for that took the time when the lady was reposing; for
    he could not prevail upon himself to lose a moment that might be
    spent in her company. All his thoughts were taken up with his
    dear Fetnah, who, on her side, gave way to her inclination,
    confessed she had no less affection for him than he had for her.
    However, fond as they were of each other, their respect for the
    caliph kept them within due bounds, which still heightened their
    passion.

    Whilst Fetnah, thus snatched from the jaws of death, passed her
    time so agreeably with Ganem, Zobeide was not without some
    apprehensions in the palace of Haroon al Rusheed.

    No sooner had the three slaves, entrusted with the execution of
    her revenge, carried away the chest, without knowing what it
    contained, or so much as the least curiosity to inquire (being
    used to pay a blind obedience to her commands), than she was
    seized with a tormenting uneasiness; a thousand perplexing
    thoughts disturbed her rest; sleep fled from her eyes, and she
    spent the night in contriving how to conceal her crime. "My
    consort," said she, "loves Fetnah more than ever he did any of
    his favourites. What shall I say to him at his return, when he
    inquires of me after her?" Many contrivances occurred to her, but
    none were satisfactory. Still she met with difficulties, and knew
    not where to fix. There lived with her a lady advanced in years,
    who had bred her up from her infancy. As soon as it was day, she
    sent for her, and having entrusted her with the secret, said, "My
    good mother, you have always assisted me with your advice; if
    ever I stood in need of it, it is now, when the business before
    you is to still my thoughts, distracted by a mortal anxiety, and
    to show me some way to satisfy the caliph."

    "My dear mistress," replied the old lady, "it had been much
    better not to have run yourself into the difficulties you labour
    under; but since the thing is done, the best consolation is to
    think no more of it. All that must now be thought of, is how to
    deceive the commander of the believers; and I am of opinion, that
    you should immediately cause a wooden image resembling a dead
    body to be carved. We will shroud it up in linen, and when shut
    up in a coffin, it shall be buried in some part of the palace;
    you shall then immediately cause a marble mausoleum to be built,
    in the form of a dome, over the burial place, and erect a tomb,
    which shall be covered with embroidered cloth, and set about with
    great candlesticks and large wax tapers. There is another thing,"
    added the old lady, "which ought not to be forgotten; you must
    put on mourning, and cause the same to be done by your own and
    Fetnah's women, your eunuchs, and all the officers of the palace.
    When the caliph returns, and sees you all and the palace in
    mourning, he will not fail to ask the occasion of it. You will
    then have an opportunity of insinuating yourself into his favour,
    by saying, it was out of respect to him that you paid the last
    honours to Fetnah, snatched away by sudden death. You may tell
    him, you have caused a mausoleum to be built, and, in short, that
    you have paid all the last honours to his favourite, as he would
    have done himself had he been present. His passion for her being
    extraordinary, he will certainly go to shed tears upon her grave;
    and perhaps," added the old woman, ‘'he will not believe she is
    really dead. He may, possibly, suspect you have turned her out of
    the palace through jealousy, and look upon all the mourning as an
    artifice to deceive him, and prevent his making inquiries after
    her. It is likely he will cause the coffin to be taken up and
    opened, and it is certain he will be convinced of her death, as
    soon as he shall see the figure of a dead body buried. He will be
    pleased with all you shall have done, and express his gratitude.
    As for the wooden image, I will myself undertake to have it cut
    by a carver in the city, who shall not know the purpose for which
    it is designed. As for your part, madam, order Fetnah's woman,
    who yesterday gave her the lemonade, to give out, among her
    companions, that she has just found her mistress dead in her bed;
    and in order that they may only think of lamenting, without
    offering to go into her chamber, let her add, she has already
    acquainted you with the circumstance, and that you have ordered
    Mesrour to cause her to be buried."

    As soon as the old lady had spoken, Zobeide took a rich diamond
    ring out of her casket, and putting it on her finger, and
    embracing her in a transport of joy, said, "How infinitely am I
    beholden to you, my good mother! I should never have thought of
    so ingenious a contrivance. It cannot fail of success, and I
    begin to recover my peace. I leave the care of the wooden figure
    to you, and will go myself to order the rest."

    The wooden image was got ready with as much expedition as Zobeide
    could have wished, and then conveyed by the old lady herself into
    Fetnah's bed-chamber, where she dressed it like a dead body, and
    put it into a coffin. Then Mesrour, who was himself deceived by
    it, caused the coffin and the representation of Fetnah to be
    carried away, and buried with the usual ceremonies in the place
    appointed by Zobeide, the favourite's women weeping and
    lamenting, she who had given her the lemonade setting them an
    example by her cries and lamentations.

    That very day Zobeide sent for the architect of the palace, and,
    according to orders, the mausoleum was finished in a short time.
    Such potent princesses as the consort of a monarch, whose power
    extended from east to west, are always punctually obeyed in
    whatsoever they command. She soon put on mourning with all the
    court; so that the news of Fetnah's death was quickly spread over
    the city.

    Ganem was one of the last who heard of it; for, as I have before
    observed, he hardly ever went abroad. Being, however, at length
    informed of it, "Madam," said he to the caliph's fair favourite,
    "you are supposed in Bagdad to be dead, and I do not question but
    that Zobeide herself believes it. I bless heaven that I am the
    cause, and the happy witness of your being alive; would to God,
    that, taking advantage of this false report, you would share my
    fortune, and go far from hence to reign in my heart! But whither
    does this pleasing transport carry me? I do not consider that you
    are born to make the greatest prince in the world happy; and that
    only Haroon al Rusheed is worthy of you. Supposing you could
    resolve to give him up for me, and that you would follow me,
    ought I to consent? No, it is my part always to remember, ‘that
    what belongs to the master is forbidden to the slave.'"

    The lovely Fetnah, though moved by the tenderness of the passion
    he expressed, yet prevailed with herself not to encourage it. "My
    lord," said she to him, "we cannot obstruct the momentary triumph
    of Zobeide. I am not surprised at the artifice she uses to
    conceal her guilt: but let her go on; I flatter myself that
    sorrow will soon follow her triumph. The caliph will return, and
    we shall find the means privately to inform him of all that has
    happened. In the mean time let us be more cautious than ever,
    that she may not know I am alive. I have already told you the
    consequences to be apprehended from such a discovery."

    At the end of three months the caliph returned to Bagdad with
    glory, having vanquished all his enemies. He entered the palace
    with impatience to embrace Fetnah; but was amazed to see all the
    officers in mourning; and his concern was redoubled when,
    approaching the apartment of Zobeide, he beheld that princess
    coming to meet him in mourning with all her women. He immediately
    asked her the cause, with much agitation. "Commander of the
    believers," answered Zobeide, "I am in mourning for your slave
    Fetnah; who died so suddenly that it was impossible to apply any
    remedy to her disorder." She would have proceeded, but the caliph
    did not give her time, being so agitated at the news, that he
    uttered a feeble exclamation, and fainted. On recovering himself,
    he, with a feeble voice, which sufficiently expressed his extreme
    grief, asked where his dear Fetnah had been buried. "Sir," said
    Zobeide, "I myself took care of her funeral, and spared no cost
    to make it magnificent. I have caused a marble mausoleum to be
    built over her grave, and will attend you thither if you desire."

    The caliph would not permit Zobeide to take that trouble, but
    contented himself to have Mesrour to conduct him. He went thither
    just as he was, in his camp dress. When he saw the tomb, the wax-
    lights round it, and the magnificence of the mausoleum, he was
    amazed that Zobeide should have performed the obsequies of her
    rival with so much pomp; and being naturally of a jealous temper,
    suspected his wife's generosity and fancied his mistress might
    perhaps be yet alive; that Zobeide, taking advantage of his long
    absence, might have turned her out of the palace, ordering those
    she had entrusted to conduct her, to convey her so far off that
    she might never more be heard of. This was all he suspected; for
    he did not think Zobeide wicked enough to have attempted the life
    of his favourite.

    The better to discover the truth himself, he ordered the tomb to
    be removed, and caused the grave and the coffin to be opened in
    his presence; but when he saw the linen wrapped round the wooden
    image, he durst not proceed any farther. This devout caliph
    thought it would be a sacrilegious act to suffer the body of the
    dead lady to be touched; and this scrupulous fear prevailed over
    his love and curiosity. He doubted not of Fetnah's death. He
    caused the coffin to be shut up again, the grave to be filled,
    and the tomb to be made as it was before.

    The caliph thinking himself obliged to pay some respect to the
    grave of his favourite, sent for the ministers of religion, the
    officers of the palace, and the readers of the Koraun; and,
    whilst they were collecting together, he remained in the
    mausoleum, moistening with his tears the marble that covered the
    phantom of his mistress. When all the persons he had sent for
    were come, he stood before the tomb, and recited long prayers;
    after which the readers of the Koraun read several, chapters.

    The same ceremony was performed every day for a whole month,
    morning and evening, the caliph being always present, with the
    grand vizier, and the principal officers of the court, all of
    them in mourning, as well as the caliph himself, who all the time
    ceased not to honour the memory of Fetnah with his tears, and
    would not hear of any business.

    The last day of the month, the prayers and reading of the Koraun
    lasted from morning till break of day the next morning. The
    caliph, being tired with sitting up so long, went to take some
    rest in his apartment, and fell asleep upon a sofa, between two
    of the court ladies, one of them sitting at the bed's-head, and
    the other at the feet, who, whilst he slept, were working some
    embroidery, and observed a profound silence.

    She who sat at the bed's-head, and whose name was Nouron-Nihar,
    perceiving the caliph was asleep, whispered to the other, called
    Nagmatos Sohi,"There is great news! The commander of the
    believers our master will be overjoyed when he awakes, and hears
    what I have to tell him; Fetnah is not dead, she is in perfect
    health." "O heavens!" cried Nagmatos Sohi, in a transport of joy,
    "is it possible, that the beautiful, the charming, the
    incomparable Fetnah should be still among the living?" She
    uttered these words with so much vivacity, and so loud, that the
    caliph awoke. He asked why they had disturbed his rest? "Alas! my
    sovereign lord," answered the slave, "pardon me this
    indiscretion; I could not without transport hear that Fetnah is
    still alive; it caused such emotion in me, as I could not
    suppress." "What then is become of her," demanded the caliph, "if
    she is not dead?" "Chief of the believers," replied the other, "I
    this evening received a note from a person unknown, written with
    Fetnah's own hand; she gives me an account of her melancholy
    adventure, and orders me to acquaint you with it. I thought fit,
    before I fulfilled my commission, to let you take some few
    moments' rest, believing you must stand in need of it, after your
    fatigue; and----"

    "Give me that note," said the caliph, interrupting her eagerly,
    "you were wrong to defer delivering it to me."

    The slave immediately presented to him the note, which he opened
    with much impatience, and in it Fetnah gave a particular account
    of all that had befallen her, but enlarged a little too much on
    the attentions of Ganem. The caliph, who was naturally jealous,
    instead of being provoked at the inhumanity of Zobeide, was more
    concerned at the infidelity he fancied Fetnah had been guilty of
    towards him. "Is it so?" said he, after reading the note; "the
    perfidious wretch has been four months with a young merchant, and
    has the effrontery to boast of his attention to her. Thirty days
    are past since my return to Bagdad, and she now thinks of sending
    me news of herself. Ungrateful creature! whilst I spend the days
    in bewailing her, she passes them in betraying me. Go to, let us
    take vengeance of a bold woman, and that bold youth who affronts
    me." Having spoken these words, the caliph rose, and went into a
    hall where he used to appear in public, and give audience to his
    court. The first gate was opened, and immediately all the
    courtiers, who were waiting without, entered. The grand vizier,
    came in, and prostrated himself before the throne. Then rising,
    he stood before his master, who, in a tone which denoted he would
    be instantly obeyed, said to him, "Jaaffier, your presence is
    requisite, for putting in execution an important affair I am
    about to commit to you. Take four hundred men of my guards with
    you, and first inquire where a merchant of Damascus lives whose
    name is Ganem, the son of Abou Ayoub. When you have learnt this,
    repair to his house, and cause it to be razed to the foundations;
    but first secure Ganem, and bring him hither, with my slave
    Fetnah, who has lived with him these four months. I will punish
    her, and make an example of that insolent man, who has presumed
    to fail in respell to me."

    The grand vizier, having received this positive command, made a
    low prostration to the caliph, having his hand on his head, in
    token that he would rather lose it than disobey him, and
    departed. The first thing he did, was to send to the syndic of
    the dealers in foreign stuffs and silks, with strict orders to
    find out the house of the unfortunate merchant. The officer he
    sent with these orders brought him back word, that he had
    scarcely been seen for some months, and no man knew what could
    keep him at home, if he was there. The same officer likewise told
    Jaaffier where Ganem lived.

    Upon this information, that minister, without losing time, went
    to the judge of the police, whom he caused to bear him company,
    and attended by a great number of carpenters and masons, with the
    necessary tools for razing a house, came to Ganem's residence;
    and finding it stood detached

    from any other, he posted his soldiers round it, to prevent the
    young merchant's making his escape.

    Fetnah and Ganem had just dined: the lady was sitting at a window
    next the street; hearing a noise, she looked out through the
    lattice, and seeing the grand vizier, approach with his
    attendants, concluded she was their object as well as Ganem. She
    perceived her note had been received, but had not expected such a
    consequence, having hoped that the caliph would have taken the
    matter in a different light. She knew not how long the prince had
    been returned from his campaign, and though she was acquainted
    with his jealous temper, yet apprehended nothing on that account.
    However, the sight of the grand vizier, and the soldiers made her
    tremble, not indeed for herself, but for Ganem: she did not
    question clearing herself, provided the caliph would but hear
    her. As for Ganem, whom she loved less out of gratitude than
    inclination, she plainly foresaw that his incensed rival might be
    apt to condemn him, on account of his youth and person. Full of
    this thought, she turned to the young merchant and said, "Alas!
    Ganem, we are undone." Ganem looked through the lattice, and was
    seized with dread, when he beheld the caliph's guards with their
    naked cimeters, and the grand vizier, with the civil magistrate
    at the head of them. At this sight he stood motionless, and had
    not power to utter one word. "Ganem," said the favourite, "there
    is no time to be lost; if you love me, put on the habit of one of
    your slaves immediately, and disfigure your face and arms with
    soot. Then put some of these dishes on your head; you may be
    taken for a servant belonging to the eating house, and they will
    let you pass. If they happen to ask you where the master of the
    house is, answer, without any hesitation, that he is within."
    "Alas! madam," answered Harem, concerned for himself than for
    Fetnah, "you only take care of me, what will become of you?" "Let
    not that trouble you," replied Fetnah, "it is my part to look to
    that. As for what you leave in this house, I will take care of
    it, and I hope it will be one day faithfully restored to you,
    when the caliph's anger shall be over; but at present avoid his
    fury. The orders he gives in the heat of passion are always
    fatal." The young merchant's affliction was so great, that he
    knew not what course to pursue, and would certainly have suffered
    himself to be seized by the caliph's soldiers, had not Fetnah
    pressed him to disguise himself. He submitted to her persuasions,
    put on the habit of a slave, daubed himself with soot, and as
    they were knocking at the door, all they could do was to embrace
    each other tenderly. They were both so overwhelmed with sorrow,
    that they could not utter a word. Thus they parted. Ganem went
    out with some dishes on his head: he was taken for the servant of
    an eating-house, and no one offered to stop him. On the contrary,
    the grand vizier, who was the first that met him, gave way and
    let him pass, little thinking that he was the man he looked for.
    Those who were behind the grand vizier, made way as he had done,
    and thus favoured his escape He soon reached one of the gates,
    and got clear of the city.

    Whilst he was making the best of his way from the grand vizier,
    that minister came into the room where Fetnah was sitting on a
    sofa, and where there were many chests full of Ganem's clothes,
    and of the money he had made of his goods.

    As soon as Fetnah saw the grand vizier, come into the room, she
    fell upon her face, and continuing in that posture, as it were to
    receive her death; "My lord," said she, "I am ready to undergo
    the sentence passed against me by the commander of the believers;
    you need only make it known to me." "Madam," answered Jaaffier,
    falling also down till she had raised herself, "God forbid any
    man should presume to lay profane hands on you. I do not intend
    to offer you the least harm. I have no farther orders, than to
    intreat you will be pleased to go with me to the palace, and to
    conduct you thither, with the merchant that lives in this house."
    "My lord," replied the favourite, "let us go; I am ready to
    follow you. As for the young merchant, to whom I am indebted for
    my life, he is not here, he has been gone about a month since to
    Damascus, whither his business called him, and has left these
    chests you see under my care, till he returns. I conjure you to
    cause them to be carried to the palace, and order them to be
    secured, that I may perform the promise I made him to take all
    possible care of them."

    "You shall be obeyed," said Jaaffier, and immediately sent for
    porters, whom he commanded to take up the chests, and carry them
    to Mesrour.

    As soon as the porters were gone, he whispered the civil
    magistrate, committing to him the care of seeing the house razed,
    but first to cause diligent search to be made for Ganem, who, he
    suspected, might be hidden, notwithstanding what Fetnah had told
    him. He then went out, taking her with him, attended by the two
    slaves who waited on her. As for Ganem's slaves, they were not
    regarded; they ran in among the crowd, and it was not known what
    became of them.

    No sooner was Jaaffier out of the house, than the masons and
    carpenters began to demolish it, and did their business so
    effectually, that in a few hours none of it remained. But the
    civil magistrate, not finding Ganem, after the strictest search,
    sent to acquaint the grand vizier, before that minister reached
    the palace. "Well," said Haroon al Rusheed, seeing him come into
    his closet, "have you executed my orders?" "Yes," answered
    Jaaffier "the house Ganem lived in is levelled with the ground,
    and I have brought you your favourite Fetnah; she is at your
    closet door, and I will call her in, if you command me. As for
    the young merchant, we could not find him, though every place has
    been searched, and Fetnah affirms that he has been gone a month
    to Damascus."

    Never was passion equal to that of the caliph, when he heard that
    Ganem had made his escape. As for his favourite, believing that
    she had been false to him, he would neither see nor speak to her.
    "Mesrour," said he to the chief of the eunuchs, who was then
    present, "take the ungrateful and perfidious Fetnah, and shut her
    up in the dark tower." That tower was within the precinct of the
    palace, and commonly served as a prison for the favourites who
    any way offended the caliph.

    Mesrour being used to execute his sovereign's orders, however
    unjust, without making any answer, obeyed this with some
    reluctance. He signified his concern to Fetnah, who was the more
    grieved because she had assured herself, that the caliph would
    not refuse to speak to her. She was obliged to submit to her hard
    fate, and to follow Mesrour, who conducted her to the dark tower,
    and there left her.

    In the mean time, the enraged caliph dismissed his grand vizier,
    and only hearkening to his passion, wrote the following letter
    with his own hand to the king of Syria, his cousin and tributary,
    who resided at Damascus.

    "This letter is to inform you, that a merchant of Damascus, whose
    name is Ganem, the son of Abou Ayoub, has seduced the most
    amiable of my women slaves, called Fetnah, and is fled. It is my
    will, that when you have read my letter, you cause search to be
    made for Ganem, and secure him. When he is in your power, you
    shall cause him to be loaded with irons, and for three days
    successively let him receive fifty strokes of the bastinado. Then
    let him be led through all parts of the city by a crier,
    proclaiming, ‘This is the smallest punishment the commander of
    the believers inflicts on him that offends his lord, and
    debauches one of his slaves.' After that you shall send him to me
    under a strong guard. It is my will that you cause his house to
    be plundered; and after it has been razed, order the materials to
    be carried out of the city into the middle of the plain. Besides
    this, if he has father, mother, sister, wives, daughters, or
    other kindred, cause them to be stripped; and when they are
    naked, expose them three days to the whole city, forbidding any
    person on pain of death to afford them shelter. I expect you will
    without delay execute my command."

    The caliph having written this letter, dispatched it by an
    express, ordering him to make all possible speed, and to take
    pigeons along with him, that he might the sooner hear what had
    been done by Mahummud Zinebi.

    The pigeons of Bagdad have this peculiar quality, that from
    wherever they may be carried to, they return to Bagdad as soon as
    they are set at liberty, especially when they have young ones. A
    letter rolled up is made fast under their wing, and by that means
    advice is speedily received from such places as it is desired.

    The caliph's courier travelled night and day, as his master's
    impatience required; and being come to Damascus, went directly to
    king Zinebi's palace, who sat upon his throne to receive the
    caliph's letter. The courier having delivered it, Mahummud
    looking at it, and knowing the hand, stood up to shew his
    respect, kissed the letter, and laid it on his head, to denote he
    was ready submissively to obey the orders it contained. He opened
    it, and having read it, immediately descended from his throne,
    and without losing time, mounted on horseback with the principal
    officers of his household. He sent for the civil magistrate; and
    went directly to Ganem's house, attended by all his guards.

    Ganem's mother had never received any letter from him since he
    had left Damascus; but the other merchants with whom he went to
    Bagdad were returned, and all of them told her they had left her
    son in perfect however, seeing he did not return, she could not
    but be persuaded that he was dead, and was so fully convinced of
    this in her imagination, that she went into mourning. She
    bewailed Ganem as if she had seen him die, and had herself closed
    his eyes: never mother expressed greater sorrow; and so far was
    she from seeking any comfort, that she delighted in indulging her
    grief. She had caused a dome to be built in the middle of the
    court belonging to her house, in which she placed a tomb. She
    spent the greatest part of the days and nights in weeping under
    that dome, as if her son had been buried there: her daughter bore
    her company, and mixed her tears with hers.

    It was now some time since they had thus devoted themselves to
    sorrow, and the neighbourhood, hearing their cries and
    lamentations, pitied such tender relations, when king Mahummud
    Zinebi knocked at the door, which being opened by a slave
    belonging to the family, he hastily entered the house, inquiring
    for Ganem, the son of Abou Ayoub.

    Though the slave had never seen king Zinebi, she guessed by his
    retinue that he must be one of the principal officers of
    Damascus. "My lord," said she, "that Ganem you inquire for is
    dead; my mistress, his mother, is in that monument, lamenting
    him." The king, not regarding what was said by the slave, caused
    all the house to be diligently searched by his guards for Ganem.
    He then advanced towards the monument, where he saw the mother
    and daughter sitting on a mat, and their faces appeared to him
    bathed in tears. These poor women immediately veiled themselves,
    as soon as they beheld a man at the door of the dome; but the
    mother, knowing the king of Damascus, got up, and ran to cast
    herself at his feet. "My good lady," said he, "I was looking for
    your son, Ganem, is he here?" "Alas! sir," cried the mother, "it
    is a long time since he has ceased to be: would to God I had at
    least put him into his coffin with my own hands, and had had the
    comfort of having his bones in this monument! O my son, my dear
    son!" She would have said more, but was oppressed with such
    violent sorrow that she was unable to proceed.

    Zinebi was moved; for he was a prince of a mild nature, and had
    much compassion for the sufferings of the unfortunate. "If Ganem
    alone be guilty," thought he to himself, "why should the mother
    and the daughter, who are innocent, be punished? Ah! cruel Haroon
    al Rusheed! what a mortification do you put upon me, in making me
    the executioner of your vengeance, obliging me to persecute
    persons who have not offended you."

    The guards whom the king had ordered to search for Ganem, came
    and told him their search had been vain. He was fully convinced
    of this; the tears of those two women would not leave him any
    room to doubt. It distracted him to be obliged to execute the
    caliph's order. "My good lady," said he to Ganem's mother, "quit
    this monument with your daughter, it is no place of safety for
    you." They went out, and he, to secure them against any insult,
    took off his own robe, and covered them both with it, bidding
    them keep close to him. He then ordered the populace to be let in
    to plunder, which was performed with the utmost rapaciousness,
    and with shouts which terrified Ganem's mother and sister the
    more, because they knew not the reason. The rabble carried off
    the richest goods, chests full of wealth, fine Persian and Indian
    carpets, cushions covered with cloth of gold and silver, fine
    China ware; in short, all was taken away, till nothing remained
    but the bare walls of the house: and it was a dismal spectacle
    for the unhappy ladies, to see all their goods plundered, without
    knowing why they were so cruelly treated.

    When the house was plundered, Mahummud ordered the civil
    magistrate to raze the house and monument; and while that was
    doing, he carried away the mother and daughter to his palace.
    There it was he redoubled their affliction, by acquainting them
    with the caliph's will. "He commands me," said he to them, "to
    cause you to be stripped, and exposed naked for three days to the
    view of the people. It is with the utmost reluctance that I
    execute such a cruel and ignominious sentence." The king
    delivered these words with such an air, as plainly made it appear
    his heart was really pierced with grief and compassion. Though
    the fear of being dethroned prevented his following the dictates
    of his pity, yet he in some measure moderated the rigour of the
    caliph's orders, by causing large shifts, without sleeves, to be
    made of coarse horse-hair for Ganem's mother, and his sister.

    The next day, these two victims of the caliph's rage were
    stripped of their clothes, and their horse-hair shifts put upon
    them; their head-dress was also taken away, so that their
    dishevelled hair hung floating on their backs. The daughter had
    the finest hair, and it hung down to the ground. In this
    condition they were exposed to the people. The civil magistrate,
    attended by his officers, were along with them, and they were
    conducted through the city. A crier went before them, who every
    now and then cried, "This is the punishment due to those who have
    drawn on themselves the indignation of the commander of the
    believers."

    Whilst they walked in this manner along the streets of Damascus,
    with their arms and feet naked, clad in such a strange garment,
    and endeavouring to hide their confusion under their hair, with
    which they covered their faces, all the people were dissolved in
    tears; more especially the ladies, considering them as innocent
    persons, as they beheld them through their lattice windows, and
    being particularly moved by the daughter's youth and beauty, they
    made the air ring with their shrieks, as they passed before their
    houses. The very children, frightened at those shrieks, and at
    the spectacle that occasioned them, mixed their cries with the
    general lamentation. In short, had an enemy been in Damascus,
    putting all to fire and sword, the consternation could not have
    been greater.

    It was near night when this dismal scene concluded. The mother
    and daughter were both conducted back to king Mahummud's palace.
    Not being used to walk bare-foot, they were so spent, that they
    lay a long time in a swoon. The queen of Damascus, highly
    afflicted at their misfortunes, notwithstanding the caliph's
    prohibition to relieve them, sent some of her women to comfort
    them, with all sorts of refreshments and wine, to recover their
    spirits.

    The queen's women found them still in a swoon, and almost past
    receiving any benefit by what they offered them. However, with
    much difficulty they were brought to themselves. Ganem's mother
    immediately returned them thanks for their courtesy. "My good
    madam," said one of the queen's ladies to her, "we are highly
    concerned at your affliction, and the queen of Syria, our
    mistress, has done us a favour in employing us to assist you. We
    can assure you, that princess is much afflicted at your
    misfortunes, as well as the king her consort." Ganem's mother
    entreated the queen's women to return her majesty a thousand
    thanks from her and her daughter, and then directing her
    discourse to the lady who spoke to her, "Madam," said she, "the
    king has not told me why the chief of the believers inflicts so
    many outrages on us: pray be pleased to tell us what crimes we
    have been guilty of." "My good lady," answered the other, "the
    origin of your misfortunes proceeds from your son Ganem. He is
    not dead, as you imagine. He is accused of having seduced the
    beautiful Fetnah, the best beloved of the caliph's favourites;
    but having, by flight, withdrawn himself from that prince's
    indignation, the punishment is fallen on you. All condemn the
    caliph's resentment, but all fear him; and you see king Zinebi
    himself dares not resist his orders, for fear of incurring his
    displeasure. All we can do is to pity you, and exhort you to have
    patience."

    "I know my son," answered Ganem's mother; "I have educated him
    carefully, and in that respect which is due to the commander of
    the believers. He cannot have committed the crime he is accused
    of; I dare answer for his innocence. But I will cease to murmur
    and complain, since it is for him that I suffer, and he is not
    dead. O Ganem!" added she, in a transport of affection and joy,
    "my dear son Ganem! is possible that you are still alive? I am no
    longer concerned for the loss of my fortune; and how harsh and
    unjust soever the caliph's orders may be, I forgive him, provided
    heaven has preserved my son. I am only concerned for my daughter;
    her sufferings alone afflict me; yet I believe her to be so good
    a sister as to follow my example."

    On hearing these words, the young lady, who till then had
    appeared insensible, turned to her mother, and clasping her arms
    about her neck, "Yes, dear mother," said she, "I will always
    follow your example, whatever extremity your love for my brother
    may reduce us to."

    The mother and daughter thus interchanging their sighs and tears,
    continued a considerable time in such moving embraces. In the
    mean time the queen's women, who were much affected at the
    spectacle, omitted no persuasions to prevail with Ganem's mother
    to take some sustenance. She ate a morsel out of complaisance,
    and her daughter did the like.

    The caliph having ordered that Ganem's kindred should be exposed
    three days successively to the sight of the people, in the
    condition already mentioned, the unhappy ladies afforded the same
    spectacle the second time next day, from morning till night. But
    that day and the following, the streets, which at first had been
    full of people, were now quite empty. All the merchants, incensed
    at the ill usage of Abou Ayoub's widow and daughter, shut up
    their shops, and kept themselves close within their houses. The
    ladies, instead of looking through their lattice windows,
    withdrew into the back parts of their houses. There was not a
    person to be seen in the public places through which those
    unfortunate women were carried. It seemed as if all the
    inhabitants of Damascus had abandoned their city.

    On the fourth day, the king resolving punctually to obey the
    caliph's orders, though he did not approve of them, sent criers
    into all quarters of the city to make proclamation, strictly
    commanding all the inhabitants of Damascus, and strangers, of
    what condition soever, upon pain of death, and having their
    bodies cast to the dogs to be devoured, not to receive Ganem's
    mother and sister into their houses, or give them a morsel of
    bread or a drop of water, and, in a word, not to afford them the
    least support, or hold the least correspondence with them.

    When the criers had performed what the king had enjoined them,
    that prince ordered the mother and the daughter to be turned out
    of the palace, and left to their choice to go where they thought
    fit. As soon as they appeared, all persons fled from them, so
    great an impression had the late prohibition made upon all. They
    easily perceived that every body shunned them; but not knowing
    the reason, were much surprised; and their amazement was the
    greater, when coming into any street, or among any persons, they
    recollected some of their best friends, who immediately retreated
    with as much haste as the rest. "What is the meaning of this,"
    said Ganem's mother; "do we carry the plague about us? Must the
    unjust and barbarous usage we have received render us odious to
    our fellow-citizens? Come, my child," added she, "let us depart
    from Damascus with all speed; let us not stay any longer in a
    city where we are become frightful to our very friends."

    The two wretched ladies, discoursing in this manner, came to one
    of the extremities of the city, and retired to a ruined house to
    pass the night. Thither some Mussulmauns, out of charity and
    compassion, resorted to them after the day was shut in. They
    carried them provisions, but durst not stay to comfort them, for
    fear of being discovered, and punished for disobeying the
    caliph's orders.

    In the mean time king Zinebi had let fly a pigeon to give the
    caliph an account of his exact obedience. He informed him of all
    that had been executed, and conjured him to direct what he would
    have done with Ganem's mother and sister. He soon received the
    caliph's answer in the same way, which was, that he should banish
    them from Damascus for ever. Immediately the king of Syria sent
    men to the old house, with orders to take the mother and
    daughter, and to conduct them three days' journey from Damascus,
    and there to leave them, forbidding them ever to return to the
    city.

    Zinebi's men executed their commission, but being less exact
    their master, in the strict performance of the caliph's orders,
    they in pity gave the wretched ladies some small pieces of money,
    and each of them a scrip, which they hung about their necks, to
    carry their provisions.

    In this miserable state they came to the first village. The
    peasants' wives flocked about them, and, as it appeared through
    their disguise that they were people of some condition, asked
    them what was the occasion of their travelling in a habit that
    did not seem to belong to them. Instead of answering the
    question, they fell to weeping, which only served to heighten the
    curiosity of the peasants, and to move their compassion. Ganem's
    mother told them what she and her daughter had endured; at which
    the good countrywomen were sensibly afflicted, and endeavoured to
    comfort them. They treated them as well as their poverty would
    permit, took off their horse-hair shifts, which were very uneasy
    to them, and put on them others which they gave them, with shoes,
    and something to cover their heads, and save their hair.

    Having expressed their gratitude to those charitable women, Jalib
    al Koolloob and her mother departed from that village, taking
    short journeys towards Aleppo. They used at dusk to retire near
    or into the mosques, where they passed the night on the mat, if
    there was any, or else on the bare pavement; and sometimes rested
    in the public places appointed for the use of travellers. As for
    sustenance, they did not want, for they often came to places
    where bread, boiled rice, and other provisions are distributed to
    all travellers who desire it.

    At length they came to Aleppo, but would not stay there, and
    continuing their journey towards the Euphrates, crossed the
    river, and entered Mesopotamia, which they traversed as far as
    Moussoul. Thence, notwithstanding all they had endured, they
    proceeded to Bagdad. That was the place they had fixed their
    thoughts upon, hoping to find Ganem, though they ought not to
    have fancied that he was in a city where the caliph resided; but
    they hoped, because they wished it; their affection for him
    increasing instead of diminishing, with their misfortunes. Their
    conversation was generally about him, and they inquired for him
    of all they met. But let us leave Jalib al Koolloob and her
    mother, and return to Fetnah.

    She was still confined closely in the dark tower, since the day
    that had been so fatal to Ganem and herself. However,
    disagreeable as her prison was to her, it was much less grievous
    than the thoughts of Ganem's misfortune, the uncertainty of whose
    fate was a killing affliction. There was scarcely a moment in
    which she did not lament him.

    The caliph was accustomed to walk frequently at night within the
    enclosure of his palace, for he was the most inquisitive prince
    in the world, and sometimes, by those night-walks, came to the
    knowledge of things that happened in his court, which would
    otherwise never have reached his ear. One of those nights, in his
    walk, he happened to pass by the dark tower, and fancying he
    heard somebody talk, stops, and drawing near the door to listen,
    distinctly heard these words, which Fetnah, whose thoughts were
    always on Ganem, uttered with a loud voice: "O Ganem, too
    unfortunate Ganem! where are you at this time, whither has thy
    cruel fate led thee? Alas! it is I that have made you wretched!
    why did you not let me perish miserably, rather than afford me
    your generous relief? What melancholy return have you received
    for your care and respect? The commander of the faithful, who
    ought to have rewarded, persecutes you; and in requital for
    having always regarded me as a person reserved for his bed, you
    lose your fortune, and are obliged to seek for safety in flight.
    O caliph, barbarous caliph, how can you exculpate yourself, when
    you shall appear with Ganem before the tribunal of the Supreme
    Judge, and the angels shall testify the truth before your face?
    All the power you are now invested with, and which makes almost
    the whole world tremble, will not prevent your being condemned
    and punished for your violent and unjust proceedings." Here
    Fetnah ceased her complaints, her sighs and tears putting a stop
    to her utterance.

    This was enough to make the caliph reflect. He plainly perceived,
    that if what he had heard was true, his favourite must be
    innocent, and that he had been too hasty in giving such orders
    against Ganem and his family. Being resolved to be rightly
    informed in an affair which so nearly concerned him in point of
    equity, on which he valued himself, he immediately returned to
    his apartment, and that moment ordered Mesrour to repair to the
    dark tower, and bring Fetnah before him.

    By this command, and much more by the caliph's manner of
    speaking, the chief of the eunuchs guessed that his master
    designed to pardon his favourite, and take her to him again. He
    was overjoyed at the thought, for he respected Fetnah, and had
    been much concerned at her disgrace; therefore flying instantly
    to the tower, "Madam," said he to the favourite, with such an air
    as expressed his satisfaction, "be pleased to follow me; I hope
    you will never more return to this melancholy abode: the
    commander of the faithful wishes to speak with you, and I draw
    from this a happy omen."

    Fetnah followed Mesrour, who conducted her into the caliph's
    closet. She prostrated herself before him, and so continued, her
    face bathed in tears. "Fetnah," said the caliph, without bidding
    her rise, "I think you charge me with violence and injustice. Who
    is he, that, notwithstanding the regard and respell he had for
    me, is in a miserable condition? Speak freely, you know the
    natural goodness of my disposition, and that I love to do
    justice."

    By these words the favourite was convinced that the caliph had
    heard what she had said, and availed herself of so favourable an
    opportunity to clear Ganem. "Commander of the true believers,"
    said she, "if I have let fall any word that is not agreeable to
    your majesty, I most humbly beseech you to forgive me; but he
    whose innocence and wretched state you desire to be informed of
    is Ganem, the unhappy son of Abou Ayoub, late a rich merchant of
    Damascus. He saved my life from a grave, and afforded me a
    sanctuary in his house. I must own, that, from the first moment
    he saw me, he perhaps designed to devote himself to me, and
    conceived hopes of engaging me to admit his love. I guessed at
    this, by the eagerness which he shewed in entertaining me, and
    doing me all the good offices I so much wanted under the
    circumstances I was then in; but as soon as he heard that I had
    the honour to belong to you, ‘Ah, madam,' said he, ‘that which
    belongs to the master is forbidden to the slave.' From that
    moment, I owe this justice to his virtue to declare, his
    behaviour was always suitable to his words. You, commander of the
    true believers, well know with what rigour you have treated him,
    and you will answer for it before the tribunal of God."

    The caliph was not displeased with Fetnah for the freedom of
    these words; "But may I," said he, "rely on the assurance you
    give me of Ganem's virtue?" "Yes," replied Fetnah, "you may. I
    would not for the world conceal the truth from you; and to prove
    to you that I am sincere, I must make a confession, which perhaps
    may displease you, but I beg pardon of your majesty beforehand."
    "Speak, daughter," said Haroon al Rusheed, "I forgive you all,
    provided you conceal nothing from me." "Well, then," replied
    Fetnah, "let me inform you, that Ganem's respectful behaviour,
    joined to all the good offices he did me, gained him my esteem. I
    went further yet: you know the tyranny of love: I felt some
    tender inclination rising in my breast. He perceived it; but far
    from availing himself of my frailty, and notwithstanding the
    flame which consumed him, he still remained steady in his duty,
    and all that his passion could force from him were the words I
    have already repeated to your majesty, ‘That which belongs to the
    master is forbidden to the slave.'"

    This ingenuous confession might have provoked any other man than
    the caliph; but it completely appeased that prince. He commanded
    her to rise, and making her sit by him, "Tell me your story,"
    said he, "from the beginning to the end." She did so, with
    artless simplicity, passing slightly over what regarded Zobeide,
    and enlarging on the obligations she owed to Ganem; but above
    all, she highly extolled his discretion, endeavouring by that
    means to make the caliph sensible that she had been under the
    necessity of remaining concealed in Ganem's house, to deceive
    Zobeide. She concluded with the young merchant's escape, which
    she plainly told the caliph she had compelled him to, that he
    might avoid his indignation.

    When she had done speaking, the caliph said to her, "I believe
    all you have told me; but why was it so long before you let me
    hear from you? Was there any need of staying a whole month after
    my return, before you sent me word where you were?" "Commander of
    the true believers," answered Fetnah, "Ganem went abroad so very
    seldom, that you need not wonder we were not the first that heard
    of your return. Besides, Ganem, who took upon him to deliver the
    letter I wrote to Nouron Nihar, was a long time before he could
    find an opportunity of putting it into her own hands."

    "It is enough, Fetnah," replied the caliph; "I acknowledge my
    fault, and would willingly make amends for it, by heaping favours
    on the young merchant of Damascus. Consider, therefore, what I
    can do for him. Ask what you think fit, and I will grant it."
    Hereupon the favourite fell down at the caliph's feet, with her
    face to the ground; and rising again, said, "Commander of the
    true believers, after returning your majesty thanks for Ganem, I
    most humbly entreat you to cause it to be published throughout
    your do minions, that you pardon the son of Abou Ayoub, and that
    he may safely come to you." "I must do more," rejoined the
    prince, "in requital for having saved your life, and the respect
    he has strewn for me, to make amends for the loss of his fortune.
    In short, to repair the wrong I have done to himself and his
    family, I give him to you for a husband." Fetnah had no words
    expressive enough to thank the caliph for his generosity: she
    then withdrew into the apartment she had occupied before her
    melancholy adventure. The same furniture was still in it, nothing
    had been removed; but that which pleased her most was, to find
    Ganem's chests and bales, which Mesrour had received the caliph's
    orders to convey thither.

    The next day Haroon al Rusheed ordered the grand vizier, to cause
    proclamation to be made throughout all his dominions, that he
    pardoned Ganem the son of Abou Ayoub; but this proved of no
    effect, for a long time elapsed without any news of the young
    merchant. Fetnah concluded, that he had not been able to survive
    the pain of losing her. A dreadful uneasiness seized her mind;
    but as hope is the last thing which forsakes lovers, she
    entreated the caliph to give her leave to seek for Ganem herself;
    which being granted, she took a purse containing a thousand
    pieces of gold, and went one morning out of the palace, mounted
    on a mule from the caliph's stables, very richly caparisoned.
    Black eunuchs attended her, with a hand placed on each side of
    the mule's back.

    Thus she went from mosque to mosque, bestowing her alms among the
    devotees of the Mahummedan religion, desiring their prayers for
    the accomplishment of an affair, on which the happiness of two
    persons, she told them, depended. She spend the whole day and the
    thousand pieces of gold in giving alms at the mosques, and
    returned to the palace in the evening.

    The next day she took another purse of the same value, and in the
    like equipage as the day before, went to the square of the
    jewellers' shops, and stopping at the gateway without alighting,
    sent one of her black eunuchs for the syndic or chief of them.
    The syndic, who was a most charitable man, and spent above two-
    thirds of his income in relieving poor strangers, sick or in
    distress, did not make Fetnah wait, knowing by her dress that she
    was a lady belonging to the palace. "I apply myself to you," said
    she, putting the purse into his hands, "as a person whose piety
    is celebrated throughout the city. I desire you to distribute
    that gold among the poor strangers you relieve, for I know you
    make it your business to assist those who apply to your charity.
    I am also satisfied that you prevent their wants, and that
    nothing is more grateful to you, than to have an opportunity of
    relieving their misery." "Madam," answered the syndic, "I shall
    obey your commands with pleasure; but if you desire to exercise
    your charity in person, and will be pleased to step to my house,
    you will there see two women worthy of your compassion; I met
    them yesterday as they were coming into the city; they were in a
    deplorable condition, and it moved me the more, because I thought
    they were persons of rank. Through all the rags that covered
    them, notwithstanding the impression the sun has made on their
    faces, I discovered a noble air, not to be commonly found in
    those people I relieve. I carried them both to my house, and
    delivered them to my wife, who was of the same opinion with me.
    She caused her slaves to provide them good beds, whilst she
    herself led them to our warm bath, and gave them clean linen. We
    know not as yet who they are, because we wish to let them take
    some rest before we trouble them with our questions."

    Fetnah, without knowing why, felt a curiosity to see them. The
    syndic would have conducted her to his house, but she would not
    give him the trouble, and was satisfied that a slave should shew
    her the way. She alighted at the door, and followed the syndic's
    slave, who was gone before to give notice to his mistress, she
    being then in the chamber with Jalib al Koolloob and her mother,
    for they were the persons the syndic had been speaking of to
    Fetnah.

    The syndic's wife being informed by the slave, that a lady from
    the palace was in her house, was hastening to meet her; but
    Fetnah, who had followed the slave, did not give her time: on her
    coming into the chamber, the syndic's wife prostrated herself
    before her, to express the respect she had for all who belonged
    to the caliph. Fetnah raised her up, and said, "My good lady, I
    desire you will let me speak with those two strangers that
    arrived at Bagdad last night." "Madam," answered the syndic's
    wife, "they lie in those beds you see by each other." The
    favourite immediately drew near the mother's, and viewing her
    carefully, "Good woman," said she, "I come to offer you my
    assistance: I have considerable interest in this city, and may be
    of service to you and your companion." "Madam," answered Ganem's
    mother, "I perceive by your obliging offers, that Heaven has not
    quite forsaken us, though we had cause to believe it had, after
    so many misfortunes as have befallen us." Having uttered these
    words, she wept so bitterly that Fetnah and the syndic's wife
    could not forbear letting fall some tears.

    The caliph's favourite having dried up hers, said to Ganem's
    mother, "Be so kind as to tell us your misfortunes, and recount
    your story. You cannot make the relation to any persons better
    disposed to use all possible means to comfort you." "Madam,"
    replied Abou Ayoub's disconsolate widow, "a favourite of the
    commander of the true believers, a lady whose name is Fetnah, is
    the occasion of all our misfortunes." These words were like a
    thunderbolt to the favourite; but suppressing her agitation and
    concern, she suffered Ganem's mother to proceed in the following
    manner: "I am the widow of Abou Ayoub, a merchant of Damascus; I
    had a son called Ganem, who, coming to trade at Bagdad, has been
    accused of carrying off Fetnah. The caliph caused search to be
    made for him every where, to put him to death; but not finding
    him, he wrote to the king of Damascus, to cause our house to be
    plundered and razed, and to expose my daughter and myself three
    days successively, naked, to the populace, and then to banish us
    out of Syria for ever. But how unworthy soever our usage has
    been, I should be still comforted were my son alive, and I could
    meet with him. What a pleasure would it be for his sister and me
    to see him again! Embracing him we should forget the loss of our
    property, and all the evils we have suffered on his account.
    Alas! I am fully persuaded he is only the innocent cause of them;
    and that he is no more guilty towards the caliph than his sister
    and myself."

    "No doubt of it," said Fetnah, interrupting her there, "he is no
    more guilty than you are; I can assure you of his innocence; for
    I am that very Fetnah, you so much complain of; who, through some
    fatality in my stars, have occasioned you so many misfortunes. To
    me you must impute the loss of your son, if he is no more; but if
    I have occasioned your misfortune, I can in some measure relieve
    it. I have already justified Ganem to the caliph; who has caused
    it to be proclaimed throughout his dominions, that he pardons the
    son of Abou Ayoub; and doubt not he will do you as much good as
    he has done you injury. You are no longer his enemies. He waits
    for Ganem, to requite the service he has done me, by uniting our
    fortunes; he gives me to him for his consort, therefore look on
    me as your daughter, and permit me to vow eternal duty and
    affection." "Having so said, she bowed down on Ganem's mother,
    who was so astonished that she could return no answer. Fetnah
    held her long in her arms, and only left her to embrace the
    daughter, who, sitting up, held out her arms to receive her.

    When the caliph's favourite had strewn the mother and daughter
    all tokens of affection, as Ganem's wife, she said to them, "The
    wealth Ganem had in this city is not lost, it is in my apartment
    in the palace; but I know all the treasure of the world cannot
    comfort you without Ganem, if I may judge of you by myself. Blood
    is no less powerful than love in great minds; but why should we
    despair of seeing him again? We shall find him; the happiness of
    meeting with you makes me conceive fresh hopes. Perhaps this is
    the last day of your sufferings, and the beginning of a greater
    felicity than you enjoyed in Damascus, when Ganem was with you."

    Fetnah would have proceeded, but the syndic of the jewellers
    coming in interrupted her: "Madam," said he to her, "I come from
    seeing a very moving object, it is a young man, whom a camel-
    driver had just carried to an hospital: he was bound with cords
    on a camel, because he had not strength enough to sit. They had
    already unbound him, and were carrying him into the hospital,
    when I happened to pass by. I went up to the young man, viewed
    him attentively, and fancied his countenance was not altogether
    unknown to me. I asked him some questions concerning his family
    and his country; but all the answers I could get were sighs and
    tears. I took pity on him, and being so much used to sick people,
    perceived that he had need to have particular care taken of him.
    I would not permit him to be put into the hospital; for I am too
    well acquainted with their way of managing the sick, and am
    sensible of the incapacity of the physicians. I have caused him
    to be brought to my own house, by my slaves; and they are now in
    a private room where I placed him, putting on some of my own
    linen, and treating him as they would do myself."

    Fetnah's heart beat at these words of the jeweller, and she felt
    a sudden emotion, for which she could not account: "Shew me,"
    said she to the syndic, "into the sick man's room; I should be
    glad to see him." The syndic conducted her, and whilst she was
    going thither, Ganem's mother said to Jalib al Koolloob, "Alas!
    daughter, wretched as that sick stranger is, your brother, if he
    be living, is not perhaps in a more happy condition."

    The caliph's favourite coming into the chamber of the sick
    stranger, drew near the bed, in which the syndic's slaves had
    already laid him. She saw a young man, whose eyes were closed,
    his countenance pale, disfigured, and bathed in tears. She gazed
    earnestly on him, her heart beat, and she fancied she beheld
    Ganem; but yet she would not believe her eyes. Though she found
    something of Ganem in the objets she beheld, yet in other
    respects he appeared so different, that she durst not imagine it
    was he that lay before her. Unable, however, to withstand the
    earnest desire of being satisfied, "Ganem," said she, with a
    trembling voice, "is it you I behold?" Having spoken these words,
    she stopped to give the young man time to answer, but observing
    that he seemed insensible; "Alas! Ganem," added she, "it is not
    you that I address! My imagination being overcharged with your
    image, has given to a stranger a deceitful resemblance. The son
    of Abou Ayoub, however indisposed, would know the voice of
    Fetnah." At the name of Fetnah, Ganem (for it was really he)
    opened his eyes, sprang up, and knowing the caliph's favourite;
    "Ah! madam," said he, "by what miracle" He could say no more;
    such a sudden transport of joy seized him that he fainted away.
    Fetnah and the syndic did all they could to bring him to himself;
    but as soon as they perceived he began to revive, the syndic
    desired the lady to withdraw, lest the sight of her should
    heighten his disorder.

    The young man having recovered, looked all around, and not seeing
    what he sought, exclaimed, "What is become of you, charming
    Fetnah? Did you really appear before my eyes, or was it only an
    illusion?" "No, sir," said the syndic, "it was no illusion. It
    was I that caused the lady to withdraw, but you shall see her
    again, as soon as you are in a condition to bear the interview.
    You now stand in need of rest, and nothing ought to obstruct your
    taking it. The situation of your affairs is altered, since you
    are, as I suppose, that Ganem, in favour of whom the commander of
    the true believers has caused a proclamation to be made in
    Bagdad, declaring, that he forgives him what is passed. Be
    satisfied, for the present, with knowing so much; the lady, who
    just now spoke to you, will acquaint you with the rest, therefore
    think of nothing but recovering your health; I will contribute
    all in my power towards it." Having spoke these words, he left
    Ganem to take his rest, and went himself to provide for him such
    medicines as were proper to recover his strength, exhausted by
    hard living and toil.

    During this time Fetnah was in the room with Jalib al Koolloob
    and her mother, where almost the same scene was acted over again;
    for when Ganem's mother understood that the sick stranger whom
    the syndic had brought into his house was Ganem himself, she was
    so overjoyed, that she also swooned away, and when, with the
    assistance of Fetnah and the syndic's wife, she was again come to
    herself, she would have arisen to go and see her son; but the
    syndic coming in, hindered her, representing that Ganem was so
    weak and emaciated, that it would endanger his life to excite in
    him those emotions, which must be the consequence of the
    unexpected sight of a beloved mother and sister. There was no
    occasion for the syndic's saying any more to Ganem's mother; as
    soon as she was told that she could not converse with her son,
    without hazarding his life, she ceased insisting to go and see
    him. Fetnah then said, "Let us bless Heaven for having brought us
    all together. I will return to the palace to give the caliph an
    account of these adventures, and tomorrow morning I will return
    to you." This said, she embraced the mother and the daughter, and
    went away. As soon as she came to the palace, she sent Mesrour to
    request a private audience of the caliph, which was immediately
    granted; and being brought into the prince's closet, where he was
    alone, she prostrated herself at his feet, with her face on the
    ground, according to custom. He commanded her to rise, and having
    made her sit down, asked whether she had heard any news of Ganem?
    "Commander of the true believers," said she, "I have been so
    successful, that I have found him, and also his mother and
    sister." The caliph was curious to know how she had discovered
    them in so short a time, and she satisfied his inquiries, saying
    so many things in commendation of Ganem's mother and sister, he
    desired to see them as well as the young merchant.

    Though Haroon al Rusheed was passionate, and in his heat
    sometimes guilty of cruel actions; yet he was just, and the most
    generous prince in the world, when the storm of anger was over,
    and he was made sensible of the wrong he had done. Having
    therefore no longer cause to doubt but that he had unjustly
    persecuted Ganem and his family, and had publicly wronged them,
    he resolved to make them public satisfaction. "I am overjoyed,"
    said he to Fetnah, "that your search has proved so successful; it
    is a real satisfaction to me, not so much for your sake as for my
    own. I will keep the promise I have made you. You shall marry
    Ganem, and I here declare you are no longer my slave; you are
    free. Go back to that young merchant, and as soon as he has
    recovered his health, you shall bring him to me with his mother
    and sister."

    The next morning early Fetnah repaired to the syndic of the
    jewellers, being impatient to hear of Ganem's health, and tell
    the mother and daughter the good news she had for them. The first
    person she met was the syndic, who told her that Ganem had rested
    well that night; and that his disorder proceeding altogether from
    melancholy, the cause being removed, he would soon recover his
    health.

    Accordingly the son of Abou Ayoub was speedily much amended.
    Rest, and the good medicines he had taken, but above all the
    different situation of his mind, had wrought so good an effect,
    that the syndic thought he might without danger see his mother,
    his sister, and his mistress, provided he was prepared to receive
    them; because there was ground to fear, that, not knowing his
    mother and sister were at Bagdad, the sight of them might
    occasion too great surprise and joy. It was therefore resolved,
    that Fetnah should first go alone into Ganem's chamber, and then
    make a sign to the two other ladies to appear, when she thought
    it was proper.

    Matters being so ordered, the syndic announced Fetnah's coming to
    the sick man, who was so transported to see her, that he was
    again near fainting away, "Well, Ganem," said she, drawing near
    to his bed, "you have again found your Fetnah, whom you thought
    you had lost for ever." "Ah! madam," exclaimed he, eagerly
    interrupting her, "what miracle has restored you to my sight? I
    thought you were in the caliph's palace; he has doubtless
    listened to you. You have dispelled his jealousy, and he has
    restored you to his favour."

    "Yes, my dear Ganem," answered Fetnah, "I have cleared myself
    before the commander of the true believers, who, to make amends
    for the wrong he has done you, bestows me on you for a wife."
    These last words occasioned such an excess of joy in Ganem, that
    he knew not for a while how to express himself, otherwise than by
    that passionate silence so well known to lovers. At length he
    broke out in these words: "Beautiful Fetnah, may I give credit to
    what you tell me? May I believe that the caliph really resigns
    you to Abou Ayoub's son?" "Nothing is more certain," answered the
    lady. "The caliph, who before caused search to be made for you,
    to take away your life, and who in his fury caused your mother
    and your sister to suffer a thousand indignities, desires now to
    see you, that he may reward the respect you had for him; and
    there is no question but that he will load your family with
    favours."

    Ganem asked, what the caliph had done to his mother and sister,
    which Fetnah told him; and he could not forbear letting fall some
    tears at the relation, notwithstanding the thoughts which arose
    in his mind at the prospect of being married to his mistress. But
    when Fetnah informed him, that they were actually in Bagdad, and
    in the same house with him, he appeared so impatient to see them,
    that the favourite could no longer defer giving him the
    satisfaction; and accordingly called them in. They were at the
    door waiting for that moment. They entered, went up to Ganem, and
    embracing him in their turns, kissed him a thousand times. What
    tears were shed amidst those embraces! Ganem's face was bathed
    with them, as well as his mother's and sisters; and Fetnah let
    fall abundance. The syndic himself and his wife were so moved at
    the spectacle, that they could not forbear weeping, nor
    sufficiently admire the secret workings of Providence which had
    brought together into their house four persons, whom fortune had
    so cruelly persecuted.

    When they had dried up their tears, Ganem drew them afresh, by
    the recital of what he had suffered from the day he left Fetnah,
    till the moment the syndic brought him to his house. He told
    them, that having taken refuge in a small village, he there fell
    sick; that some charitable peasants had taken care of him, but
    finding he did not recover, a camel-driver had undertaken to
    carry him to the hospital at Bagdad. Fetnah also told them all
    the uneasiness of her imprisonment, how the caliph, having heard
    her talk in the tower, had sent for her into his closet, and how
    she had cleared herself. In conclusion, when they had related
    what accidents had befallen them, Fetnah said, "Let us bless
    Heaven, which has brought us all together again, and let us think
    of nothing but the happiness that awaits us. As soon as Ganem has
    recovered his health, he must appear before the caliph, with his
    mother and sister; but I will go and make some provision for
    them."

    This said, she went to the palace, and soon returned with a purse
    containing a thousand pieces of gold, which she delivered to the
    syndic, desiring him to buy apparel for the mother and daughter.
    The syndic, who was a man of a good taste, chose such as were
    very handsome, and had them made up with all expedition. They
    were finished in three days, and Ganem finding himself strong
    enough, prepared to go abroad; but on the day he had appointed to
    pay his respects to the caliph, while he was making ready, with
    his mother and sister, the grand vizier, Jaaffier came to the
    syndic's house.

    He had come on horseback, attended by a great number of officers.
    "Sir," said he to Ganem, as soon as he entered, "I am come from
    the commander of the true believers, my master and yours; the
    orders I have differ much from those which I do not wish to
    revive in your memory; I am to bear you company, and to present
    you to the caliph, who is desirous to see you." Ganem returned no
    other answer to the vizier's compliment, than by profoundly
    bowing his head, and then mounted a horse brought from the
    caliph's stables, which he managed very gracefully. The mother
    and daughter were mounted on mules belonging to the palace, and
    whilst Fetnah on another mule led them by a bye-way to the
    prince's court, Jaaffier conducted Ganem, and brought him into
    the hall of audience. The caliph was sitting on his throne,
    encompassed with emirs, viziers, and. other attendants and
    courtiers, Arabs, Persians, Egyptians, Africans, and Syrians, of
    his own dominions, not to mention strangers.

    When the vizier had conducted Ganem to the foot of the throne,
    the young merchant paid his obeisance, prostrating himself with
    his face to the ground, and then rising, made a handsome
    compliment in verse, which, though the effusion of the moment,
    met with the approbation of the whole court. After his
    compliment, the caliph caused him to approach, and said, "I am
    glad to see you, and desire to hear from your own mouth where you
    found my favourite, and all that you have done for her." Ganem
    obeyed, and appeared so sincere, that the caliph was convinced of
    his veracity. He ordered a very rich vest to be given him,
    according to the custom observed towards those who are admitted
    to audience. After which he said to him, "Ganem, I will have you
    live in my court." "Commander of the true believers," answered
    the young merchant, "a slave has no will but his master's, on
    whom his life and fortune depend." The caliph was highly pleased
    with Ganem's reply, and assigned him a considerable pension. He
    then descended from his throne, and causing only Ganem and the
    grand vizier, follow him, retired into his own apartment.

    Not questioning but that Fetnah was in waiting, with Abou Ayoub's
    widow and daughter, he caused them to be called in. They
    prostrated themselves before him: he made them rise; and was so
    charmed by Jalib al Koolloob's beauty, that, after viewing her
    very attentively, he said, "I am so sorry for having treated your
    charms so unworthily, that I owe them such a satisfaction as may
    surpass the injury I have done. I take you to wife; and by that
    means shall punish Zobeide, who shall become the first cause of
    your good fortune, as she was of your past sufferings. This is
    not all," added he, turning towards Ganem's mother; "you are
    still young, I believe you will not disdain to be allied to my
    grand vizier, I give you to Jaaffier, and you, Fetnah, to Ganem.
    Let a cauzee and witnesses be called, and the three contracts be
    drawn up and signed immediately." Ganem would have represented to
    the caliph, that it would be honour enough for his sister to be
    one of his favourites; but he was resolved to marry her.

    Haroon thought this such an extraordinary story, that he ordered
    his historiographer to commit it to writing with all its
    circumstances. It was afterwards laid up in his library, and many
    copies being transcribed, it became public.

    End of Volume 1.
    Chapter 21
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