The exact origin of the Tales, which appear in the Arabic as "The Thousand and One Nights," is unknown. The Caliph Haroon al Rusheed, who, figures in so lifelike a manner in many of the stories, was a contemporary of the Emperor Charlemagne, and there is internal evidence that the collection was made in the Arabic language about the end of the tenth century.
rely delivered from the black vapour which disturbed it. Pray do me the favour to tell me why you were so melancholy, and wherefore you are no longer so."
The king of Tartary continued for some time as if he had been meditating and contriving what he should answer; but at last replied, "You are my sultan and master; but excuse me, I beseech you, from answering your question." "No, dear brother," said the sultan, "you must answer me, I will take no denial." Shaw- zummaun, not being able to withstand these pressing entreaties, replied, "Well then, brother, I will satisfy you, since you command me ;" and having told him the story of the queen of Samarcand's treachery "This," said he, "was the cause of my grief; judge whether I had not sufficient reason for my depression."
"O! my brother," said the sultan, (in a tone which shewed what interest he took in the king of Tartary's affliction), "what a horrible event do you tell me! I commend you for punishing the traitors who offered you such an outrage.