Tales from the Thousand and One Nights

Tales from the Thousand and One Nights

Illustrator: William Harvey
Translator: N. J. Dawood

Additional Formats
  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780140442892
  • 416 Pages
  • Penguin Classics
  • Adult


The tales told by Scheherazade over a thousand and one nights to delay her execution by the vengeful King Shahryar have become among the most popular in both Eastern and Western literature. From the epic adventures of ‘Aladdin and the Enchanted Lamp’ to the farcical ‘Young Woman and her Five Lovers’ and the social criticism of ‘The Tale of the Hunchback’, the stories depict a fabulous world of all-powerful sorcerers, jinns imprisoned in bottles and enchanting princesses. But despite their imaginative extravagance, the Tales are also anchored to everyday life by their bawdiness and realism, providing a full and intimate record of medieval Eastern world.

Offering unexpurgated translations of the best-loved tales, including such classics as ‘Sindbad the Sailor’, Tales from the Thousand and One Nights - sometimes known as the Arabian Nights – is translated with an introduction by N.J. Dawood in Penguin Classics. In this selection, Dawood presents the reader with an unexpurgated translation of the finest and best-known tales, preserving their spirited narrative style in lively modern English. In his introduction, he discusses their origins in the East and their differences from Classical Arabic literature, and examines English translations of the tales since the eighteenth century.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

Table of Contents

Tales from the Thousand and One NightsIntroduction
The Tale of King Shahriyar and his Brother Shahzaman
The Fable of the Donkey, the Ox, and the Farmer

The Tale of the Hunchback
The Tailor’s Tale
The Tale of the Lame Young Man and the Barber of Baghdad
The Barber’s Tale
The Tale of Bakbook, the Barber’s First Brother
The Tale of Al-Haddar, the Barber’s Second Brother
The Tale of Bakbak, the Barber’s Third Brother
The Tale of Al-Kuz, the Barber’s Fourth Brother
The Tale of Shakashik, the Barber’s Sixth Brother

The Donkey

The Fisherman and the Jinnee
The Tale of King Yunan and Duban the Doctor
The Tale of King Sindbad and the Falcon
The Tale of the Enchanted King

The Young Woman and Her Five Lovers

Sindbad the Sailor and Sindbad the Porter
The First Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Second Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Third Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Fourth Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Fifth Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Sixth Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor
The Last Voyage of Sindbad the Sailor

The Historic Fart

Aladdin and the Enchanted Lamp

The Tale of Kafur the Black Eunuch

The Porter and the Three Girls of Baghdad
The Tale of the First Dervish
The Tale of the Second Dervish
The Tale of the Third Dervish
The Tale of the First Girl
The Tale of the Second Girl

The Tale of Khalifah the Fisherman

The Dream

The Tale of Judar and His Brothers

The Tale of Ma’Aruf the Cobbler


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