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The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened – About Hassan the Wag (Anonymous: ioth to 14th Century, A.D.)
The chief glory of Arabian prose literature is the celebrated collec-tion known to us as The Thousand and One Nights. Out of this volu-minous treasure store Abou Hassan the Wag has been chosen as an example of one of the numerous types of story to be found in it. This tale is rich in Oriental colour, furnishing as it does the humorous details of that craftiness which the Arab delights in—at least in the stories he tells and listens to. The story is among the best of the Nights.

The present version is translated by Edward William Lane, whose edition was first published in London in 1839. It is from the 271st to the 290th Night (Breslau ed.). The complete title is The Story of Abou Hassart the Wag, or The Sleeper Awakened.
The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened (From the Thousand and One Nights)
There was a merchant of Bagdad in the reign of the Caliph Haroun Alrashid, and he had a son named Abou Hassan the Wag. And this merchant died, leaving to his son his vast wealth; whereupon Abou Hassan divided his property into two equal portions, one of which he laid aside, and of the other he expended. He took as his familiar friends a number of the sons of the merchants, and others, and gave himself up to the delights of good drinking and good eating, until all the wealth that he had appropriated to this purpose was consumed.

And upon this he repaired to his associates, and relations, and boon- companions, and exposed to them his case, showing them how little property remained in his possession; but none of them paid any regard to him, or uttered a word in reply. So he returned 1o his mother with a broken heart, and told her of the treatment that he had experienced from his associates, that they would neither do him justice nor even reply to him. But she said, O Abou Hassan, thus are the sons of this age: as long as thou hast anything, they draw thee near to them; and when thou hast nothing, they cast thee off.. She was grieved for him, and he sighed and wept.

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 7

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It was then the close of the night, and Abou Hassan, awaking, and hearing the sounds of the lutes, and tambourines, and flutes, and the singing of the slave girls, cried out, O my...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 14

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The caliph then seated himself at the heads of the two pretended corpses, and said, By the tomb of the Apostle of Allah (God favor and preserve him!), and by the tombs of my...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 13

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They all four arose, laying wagers with each other, and went forth and walked from the gate of the palace until they entered the gate of the street in which dwelt Abou Hassan the...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 12

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Then Abou Hassan laid himself along, and Nouzatalfuad covered him, and bound his eyes and his feet, and seated herself at his head, weeping. And the old woman came in to Nouzatalfuad, and saw...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 11

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Accordingly, Nouzatalfuad extended herself, and Abou Hassan cov-ered her with her veil, and seated himself at her head, weeping. And lo Mesrour the eunuch came up into the house of Abou Hassan, and saluted...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 10

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And the Lady Zobeide re- joined, In truth he was not with thee, nor, didst thou see him; and none was with me just now but Nouzatalfuad, who was mourning and weeping, with her...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 9

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He then extended Nouzatalfuad, and did with her as she had done with him; after which he tore his vest, and plucked his beard, and dis-ordered his turban, and ran without stopping until he...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 8

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He answered, We will feign ourselves dead. I will die before thee, and lay myself out: then do thou spread over me a napkin of silk, and unfold my turban over me, and tie...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 6

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Then the slave girls led him by the hand to the drinking chamber, where he saw what astonished the mind; and he continued to say within himself, No doubt these are of the Genii,...

The Story of Abou Hassan the Wag or the Sleeper Awakened part 5

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And while he was in this state, lo, one of the mamlouks came in and said to him, O Prince of the Faithful, the chamberlain is at the door, requesting permission to enter. Let...

Treasures of Varna

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