The princess then led him to the spot where the harmonious tree was planted; and there the emperor heard a concert, different from all he had ever heard before; and stopping to see where the musicians were, he could discern nobody far or near, but still distinctly heard the music which ravished his senses. "My daughter," said he to the princess, "where are the musicians whom I hear? Are they under ground, or invisible in the air? Such excellent performers will hazard nothing by being seen; on the contrary, they would please the more."
"I examined the mountain, and found it to be situated betwixt the sea and the town, but without any passage to or communication with the latter; the rocks on the sea side being high and perpendicularly steep. I prostrated myself on the shore to thank God for this mercy, and afterward entered the cave again to fetch bread and water, which I ate by daylight with a better appetite than I had done since my interment in the dark cavern.
THE STORY OF ALADDIN; OR, THE WONDERFUL LAMP
"One day, after dinner, while she was at the bath, I found myself inclined to repose, and lay down upon a sofa. Two of her ladies, who were then in my chamber, came and sat down, one at my head and the other at my feet, with fans in their hands to moderate the heat, and to prevent the flies from disturbing me. They thought I was asleep, and spoke in whispers; but as I only closed my eyes, I heard all their conversation.
"Mother," answered Aladdin, "I foresaw all that you have said, or can say: and tell you that neither your discourse nor your remonstrances shall make me change my mind. I have told you that you must ask the princess in marriage for me. I beg of you not to refuse, unless you would rather see me in my grave, than by your compliance give me new life."
"After what I have seen," said the sultan to the vizier, "it will not be possible for me to be easy; these fish, without doubt, signify something extraordinary." He sent for the fisherman, and when he came, said to him: "Fisherman, the fish you have brought us make me very uneasy; where did you catch them?" "Sir," answered he, "I fished for them in a lake situated betwixt four hills, beyond the mountain that we see from hence." "Know'st thou not that lake?" said the sultan to the vizier. "No," replied the vizier, "I never so much as heard of it, although I have for sixty years hunted beyond that mountain." The sultan asked the fisherman how far the lake might be from the palace. The fisherman answered it was not above three hours' journey; upon this assurance the sultan commanded all his court to take horse, and the fisherman served them for a guide. They all ascended the mountain, and at the foot of it they saw, to their great surprise, a vast plain that nobody had observed till then, and at last they came to the lake, which they found to be situated betwixt four hills, as the fisherman had described. The water was so transparent that they observed all the fish to be like those which the fisherman had brought to the palace.
The princess, who knew nothing of these particulars, gave very little attention to what Aladdin could say. The fright and amazement of so surprising an adventure had alarmed her so much that he could not get one word from her. Badroulboudour never passed a night so ill in her life; and if we consider the condition in which the genie left the grand vizier's son, we may imagine that the new bridegroom spent it much worse.
Having finished this complaint, he fretfully threw away the basket, and, washing his nets from the slime, cast them a third time, but brought up nothing except stones, shells, and mud. No language can express his disappointment; he was almost distracted. However, when day began to appear, he did not forget to say his prayers like a good Mussulman, and he added to them this petition: "Lord, thou knowest that I cast my nets only four times a day; I have already drawn them three times, without the least reward for my labour: I am only to cast them once more; I pray thee to render the sea favourable to me, as thou didst to Moses."下载
The nearer the sultan approached Aladdin's palace, the more he was struck with its beauty, but was much more amazed when he entered it; and could not forbear breaking out into exclamations of approbation. But when he came into the hall, and cast his eyes on the windows, enriched with diamonds, rubies, emeralds, all large perfect stones, he was so much surprised, that he remained some time motionless. After he recovered himself, he said to his vizier; "Is it possible that there should be such a stately palace so near my own, and I be an utter stranger to it till now?" "Sir," replied the grand vizier, "your majesty may remember that the day before yesterday you gave Aladdin, whom you accepted for a son-in-law, leave to build a palace opposite your own, and that very day at sunset there was no palace on this spot, but yesterday I had the honour first to tell you that the palace was built and finished." "I remember," replied the sultan, "but never imagined that the palace was one of the wonders of the world; for where in all the world besides shall we find walls built of massy gold and silver, instead of brick, stone, or marble; and diamonds, rubies, and emeralds composing the windows!"
This proclamation inspired Aladdin with eager curiosity to see the princess's face, which he could not do without admission into the house of some acquaintance, and then only through a window; but to gratify his curiosity, he presently thought of a scheme, which succeeded; it was to place himself behind the door of the bath, which was so situated that he could not fail of seeing her face.