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- Types of Children's Literature - 60/107 -


time the magician paid her a visit; and she had understood by some of the women, who knew him again, that it was he who had taken the old lamp in exchange for a new one, which rendered the sight of him more abhorred. However, the opportunity of taking the revenge he deserved made her resolve to gratify Aladdin. As soon, therefore, as he was gone, she sat down to dress, and was attired by her women to the best advantage in the richest habit of her wardrobe. Her girdle was of the finest and largest diamonds set in gold, her necklace of pearls, six on a side, so well proportioned to that in the middle, which was the largest ever seen, and invaluable, that the greatest sultanesses would have been proud to have been adorned with only two of the smallest. Her bracelets, which were of diamonds and rubies intermixed, corresponded admirably to the richness of the girdle and necklace.

When the princess Buddir al Buddoor was completely dressed, she consulted her glass and women upon her adjustment; and when she found she wanted no charms to flatter the foolish passion of the African magician, she sat down on a sofa expecting his arrival.

The magician came at the usual hour, and as soon as he entered the great hall where the princess waited to receive him, she rose with an enchanting grace and smile, and pointed with her hand to the most honorable place, waiting till he sat down, that she might sit at the same time, which was a civility she had never shown him before.

The African magician, dazzled more with the luster of the princess's eyes than the glittering of the jewels with which she was adorned, was much surprised. The smiling and graceful air with which she received him, so opposite to her former behavior, quite fascinated his heart.

When he was seated, the princess, to free him from his embarrassment, broke silence first, looking at him all the time in such a manner as to make him believe that he was not so odious to her as she had given him to understand hitherto, and said, "You are doubtless amazed to find me so much altered today; but your surprise will not be so great when I acquaint you, that I am naturally of a disposition so opposite to melancholy and grief, sorrow and uneasiness, that I always strive to put them as far away as possible when I find the subject of them is past. I have reflected on what you told me of Aladdin's fate, and know my father's temper so well, that I am persuaded with you he could not escape the terrible effects of the sultan's rage: therefore, should I continue to lament him all my life, my tears cannot recall him. For this reason, since I have paid all the duties decency requires of me to his memory, now he is in the grave I think I ought to endeavor to comfort myself. These are the motives of the change you see in me; I am resolved to banish melancholy entirely; and, persuaded that you will bear me company tonight, I have ordered a supper to be prepared; but as I have no wines but those of China, I have a great desire to taste of the produce of Africa, and doubt not your procuring some of the best."

The African magician, who had looked upon the happiness of getting so soon and so easily into the princess Buddir al Buddoor's good graces as impossible, could not think of words expressive enough to testify how sensible he was of her favor: but to put an end the sooner to a conversation which would have embarrassed him, if he had engaged farther in it, he turned it upon the wines of Africa, and said, "Of all the advantages Africa can boast, that of producing the most excellent wines is one of the principal. I have a vessel of seven years old, which has never been broached; and it is indeed not praising it too much to say it is the finest wine in the world. If my princess," added he, "will give me leave, I will go and fetch two bottles, and return again immediately." "I should be sorry to give you that trouble," replied the princess; "you had better send for them." "It is necessary I should go myself," answered the African magician; "for nobody but myself knows where the key of the cellar is laid, or has the secret to unlock the door." "If it be so," said the princess, "make haste back; for the longer you stay, the greater will be my impatience, and we shall sit down to supper as soon as you return."

The African magician, full of hopes of his expected happiness, rather flew than ran, and returned quickly with the wine. The princess, not doubting but he would make haste, put with her own hand the powder Aladdin had given her into the cup set apart for that purpose. They sat down at the table opposite to each other, the magician's back towards the beaufet. The princess presented him with the best at the table, and said to him, "If you please, I will entertain you with a concert of vocal and instrumental music; but as we are only two, I think conversation may be more agreeable." This the magician took as a new favor.

After they had eaten some time, the princess called for some wine, drank the magician's health, and afterwards said to him, "Indeed you had a full right to commend your wine, since I never tasted any so delicious." "Charming princess," said he, holding in his hand the cup which had been presented to him, "my wine becomes more exquisite by your approbation." "Then drink my health," replied the princess; "you will find I understand wines." He drank the princess's health, and returning the cup, said, "I think myself fortunate, princess, that I reserved this wine for so happy an occasion; and own I never before drank any in every respect so excellent."

When they had each drunk two or three cups more, the princess, who had completely charmed the African magician by her civility and obliging behavior, gave the signal to the slave who served them with wine, bidding her bring the cup which had been filled for herself, and at the same time bring the magician a full goblet. When they both had their cups in their hands, she said to him, "I know not how you express your loves in these parts when drinking together? With us in China the lover and his mistress reciprocally exchange cups, and drink each other's health:" at the same time she presented to him the cup which was in her hand, and held out her hand to receive his. He hastened to make the exchange with the more pleasure, because he looked upon this favor as the most certain token of an entire conquest over the princess, which raised his rapture to the highest pitch. Before he drank, he said to her, with the cup in his hand, "Indeed, princess, we Africans are not so refined in the art of love as you Chinese: and your instructing me in a lesson I was ignorant of, informs me how sensible I ought to be of the favor done me. I shall never, lovely princess, forget my recovering, by drinking out of your cup, that life, which your cruelty, had it continued, must have made me despair of."

The princess, who began to be tired with this impertinent declaration of the African magician, interrupted him, and said, "Let us drink first, and then say what you will afterwards;" at the same time she set the cup to her lips, while the African magician, who was eager to get his wine off first, drank up the very last drop. In finishing it, he had reclined his head back to show his eagerness, and remained some time in that state. The princess kept the cup at her lips, till she saw his eyes turn in his head, when he fell backwards lifeless on the sofa.

The princess had no occasion to order the private door to be opened to Aladdin; for her women were so disposed from the great hall to the foot of the staircase, that the word was no sooner given that the African magician was fallen backwards, than the door was immediately opened.

As soon as Aladdin entered the hall, he saw the magician stretched backwards on the sofa. The princess rose from her seat, and ran overjoyed to embrace him; but he stopped her, and said, "Princess, it is not yet time; oblige me by retiring to your apartment; and let me be left alone a moment, while I endeavor to transport you back to China as speedily as you were brought from thence."

When the princess, her women and eunuchs, were gone out of the hall, Aladdin shut the door, and going directly to the dead body of the magician, opened his vest, took out the lamp which was carefully wrapped up, as the princess had told him, and unfolding and rubbing it, the genie immediately appeared. "Genie," said Aladdin, "I have called to command thee, on the part of thy good mistress this lamp, to transport this palace instantly into China, to the place from whence it was brought hither." The genie bowed his head in token of obedience, and disappeared. Immediately the palace was transported into China, and its removal was only felt by two little shocks, the one when it was lifted up, the other when it was set down, and both in a very short interval of time.

Aladdin went to the princess's apartment, and embracing her, said, "I can assure you, princess, that your joy and mine will be complete tomorrow morning." The princess, guessing that Aladdin must be hungry, ordered the dishes, served up in the great hall, to be brought down. The princess and Aladdin ate as much as they thought fit, and drank of the African magician's old wine; during which time their conversation could not be otherwise than satisfactory, and then they retired to their own chamber.

From the time of the transportation of Aladdin's palace, the princess's father had been inconsolable for the loss of her. He could take no rest, and instead of avoiding what might continue his affliction he indulged it without restraint. Before the disaster he used to go every morning into his closet to please himself with viewing the palace; he went now many times in the day to renew his tears, and plunge himself into the deepest melancholy, by the idea of no more seeing that which once gave him so much pleasure, and reflecting how he had lost what was most dear to him in this world.

The very morning of the return of Aladdin's palace, the sultan went, by break of day, into his closet to indulge his sorrows. Absorbed in himself, and in a pensive mood, he cast his eyes towards the spot, expecting only to see an open space; but perceiving the vacancy filled up, he at first imagined the appearance to be the effect of a fog; looking more attentively, he was convinced beyond the power of doubt that it was his son-in-law's palace. Joy and gladness succeeded to sorrow and grief. He returned immediately into his apartment, and ordered a horse to be saddled and brought to him without delay, which he mounted that instant, thinking he could not make haste enough to the palace.

Aladdin, who foresaw what would happen, rose that morning at daybreak, put on one of the most magnificent habits his wardrobe afforded, and went up into the hall of twenty-four windows, from whence he perceived the sultan approaching, and got down soon enough to receive him at the foot of the great staircase, and to help him to dismount. "Aladdin," said the sultan, "I cannot speak to you till I have seen and embraced my daughter."

He led the sultan into the princess's apartment. The happy father embraced her with his face bathed in tears of joy; and the princess, on her side, showed him all the testimonies of the extreme pleasure the sight of him afforded her.

The sultan was some time before he could open his lips, so great was his surprise and joy to find his daughter again, after he had given her up for lost; and the princess, upon seeing her father, let fall tears of rapture and affection.

At last the sultan broke silence, and said, "I would believe, daughter, your joy to see me makes you seem as little changed as if no misfortune had befallen you; yet I cannot be persuaded but that you have suffered much alarm; for a large palace cannot be so suddenly transported as yours has been, without causing great fright and apprehension. I would have you tell me all that has happened, and conceal nothing from me."


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