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The Arabian Nights: Tales from a Thousand and One Nights
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The Arabian Nights: Tales from a Thousand and One Nights

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  45,905 ratings  ·  1,206 reviews
Full of mischief, valor, ribaldry, and romance, The Arabian Nights has enthralled readers for centuries. These are the tales that saved the life of Shahrazad, whose husband, the king, executed each of his wives after a single night of marriage. Beginning an enchanting story each evening, Shahrazad always withheld the ending: A thousand and one nights later, her life was sp ...more
Paperback, 912 pages
Published April 10th 2001 by Modern Library (first published 900)
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Cibele Andrade The original 1001 Nights (or the compilations of it) are not what I would call children fairy tales. At least, i wouldn't give them to a child to…moreThe original 1001 Nights (or the compilations of it) are not what I would call children fairy tales. At least, i wouldn't give them to a child to read. You should give them a try. =)(less)
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Best Middle East Fiction
24th out of 251 books — 267 voters
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Ah, if only I could write like the late Sir Richard Burton! Normally I dislike translations, but to refuse to read The Arabian Nights on those grounds would be like refusing to read the Bible. I love parodying people's styles, and I have tried my utmost to parody Burton convincingly, but I can't do it. He's too clever. He has taken this unique book, a miraculous survival from the most ancient antiquity, and he has created a unique language to make it accessible to us: the backbone is a kind of S ...more
The more I read user reviews of The Arabian Nights, the more convinced I am that people are just posting negative things to be contrary. How can you not love this collection of stories?

Common complaints:

1)It's racist -- Yes, the work itself, by today's standards, could probably be considered racist. This work was originally written many thousands of years ago. Keep that in mind and get off your high horse.

2) It's misogynistic-- I disagree. That which would be considered misogynistic falls into
JG (The Introverted Reader)
For those 2 people who don't know, The Arabian Nights is sort of a collection of short stories told in the Arabian world, as I'm told it should be called, (which seems to include India and parts of China) waaaaaay back in the day. The framework of the story is about a sultan who caught his wife cheating on him. After he has her killed, he decides to take out his revenge on the entire sex, so he marries a different wife every day and has her killed the next morning. Scheherazade is the Grand Vizi ...more
As I say in my review, I wanted to write a parody of this wonderful book but was forced to admit defeat. Burton is too damn clever for a good parody to be possible. During my preliminary negotiations, I had however received a remarkable offer from Alfonso. A Burton parody without political incorrectness is unthinkable, and Alfonso bravely put himself forward to play the role of an evil blackamoor of hideous appearance.

It seems wrong that Alfonso's selfless devotion to literature should go unrew
K.D. Absolutely
Mar 12, 2011 K.D. Absolutely rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books; 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die
Oh, the wonders of literature! While reading this book I could not help but sing the songs or hum the tunes associated with the tales:
A whole new world
A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us no
Or where to go
Or say we're only dreaming
I grew up with mostly Filipino komiks around me. Only my father loved reading books and we had very few (compared to what I have now) classics and contemporary books at home. My parents did not read to me when I was young. Those are the reasons why I miss
I am planning to read through this whole book someday, I swear. But it's going to be a slow process. Here, in list form, are the reasons I may or may not finish The Arabian Nights.

Reasons I May Finish This Ridiculously Long Book:
-Scheherazade (or whichever of the twenty ways to spell her name you prefer) is kind of a badass genius. Since her father is the king's vizier, she gets exempted from said batshit crazy king's plan to marry and then kill every single available virgin in the city. But she
Destiny Dawn Long
This edition is a translation of the first 271 nights from the "1001 Nights" cycle.

One of my favorite aspects of this work is the role of Shahrazad. While many people discuss that she is telling the stories to save her own life, what people fail to recognize many times is that, really, she volunteers to be placed in the position in order to save her kingdom. She's a great literary heroine--saving the world through storytelling.

It also provides a great lens into a world that today is depicted i
Nov 30, 2011 Shovelmonkey1 rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: djinn, princess, enchanted fish and mermaids everywhere
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: 1001 books list and a love of all things from the orient
Having just re-read this book i'm reminded how the flowery wording and a hint of "eastern promise" manages to white wash over the actual issues of the story. Sheharezade is actually technically being kept hostage with a death penalty hanging over her head, forced to spin yarns to save not only her skin but that of all the other virgins in the vicinty. Her tales touch on marital rape, mass murder, theft, deception, fratricide, regicide, racism and necromancy. And you all thought American Psycho w ...more
I really need a 2.5 stars option, though I would end up using it on three-fourths of everything. As a generic, I can neither recommend nor disavow this book.

Okay so the beloved Arabian Nights, tales from a thousand and one nights. I should start with what this is NOT. This is not a linear story about a princess telling stories to a king. This is not a childrens' read involving genies, magic, and cyclopi (I refuse to spell this any other way, no matter the red line beneath it). This IS a collecti
What you thought was the Arabian Nights was more likely Richard Burton's bastardized, inflated 19th-century adaptation, which was as much about Richard Burton (and his weird ideas about sex) as it was about Arabia.

Which is sortof neither here nor there; there is no canonical version of Arabian Nights anyway. It's just an umbrella term for, basically, all of the Middle East's favorite stories. And if the version that heavily influenced guys like Borges was Burton's, isn't Burton's version the on
[As I have not read the Nights yet, this is not a commentary on them, but rather a comparison of the many translations available. This used to be a comment on my not-yet-review of the first volume of the Lyons translation of the Nights, but I thought it would be more helpful if it was a review. I've expanded on some of my earlier comments and tried to be more critical than "I like this one" or "this one seems odd", which was all I had time to write at the time I posted the comment. This is restr ...more
Henry Martin
The Tales from the Arabian Nights is probably the finest example of what a magical narrative should be. If I had to categorize this collection of tales, I would not call them fairy tales, but rather magical tales.

Since almost everyone is familiar with the premise behind these stories, I shall not go into detail concerning the backdrop for this fine collection. Rather, I shall express my opinion about them.

Aside from the impact these tales (once introduced in Europe) had on the western literary
“Shahrazad turned to King Shahrayar and said, ‘May I have your permission to tell a story?’ He replied, ‘Yes,’ and Shahrazad was very happy and said, “Listen”:

Of all of the world’s story collections, surely The Arabian Nights has the best framing device—the best fictional pretext by which to justify the telling of the other stories. I mean the story of Shahrazad (as this text transliterates her name), the daughter of the vizier to King Shahrayar. Bitter over his first wife’s betrayal, Shahrayar
Manar El-moselhey
اول كتاب عربي اقراه ...
من اكثر الكتب التي اثرت في اتجاهتي وميولي الادبية
خليط رائع من الثقافة العربية
والهندية و الخيال والاساطير
كتاب فعلا يستحق القراءة

كان من حسن حظي اني قريت نسخة نادرة ليه :
لم يعدل عليها كثيرا

عبارة عن 3 كتب كل منهم لا يقل عن 500-600 صفحة

اخذت قراءته منى حوالي سنة -على فترات متفرقة
This is a very sad book, in the sense that it makes you think, "What the hell happened to Baghdad?". Here, Baghdad is pretty much the most magical city in the world, and most of the Arabian Nights takes place in or around it. The world of the Arabian Nights is amazingly liberal compared to Europe of the same period (which is roughly the 13th century), especially when it comes to women. From the storytelling heroine Scheherazade on down, most of the women of the Arabian Nights are well-educated a ...more
The timing of this book coming into my life could not have been better. I picked it up on a whim at a used bookstore while on vacation and shortly after I returned home, the US started its war with Iraq. People of the Muslim faith were greatly misunderstood and images coming back from Baghdad and Mosul and Fallujah were of a bombed out seemingly third world country. Arabian Nights portrayed a much different civilization, one of culture, class, great faith, and a very advanced society. Ever exten ...more
مستحيل ان انتهي من قرائتها
ليست مجرد حكايا بل مرجع غني لكلمات اللغة العربية ولكل من يرغب بزيادة حصيلته اللغوية
مرجع حيوي ومشوق ليس مثل الأطالس والمعاجم الجامدة
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
Great book. Not one that can be read in one sitting, though. I really like the form of narrative, with a story leading into or encompassing another story. Most of this book is like onion layers. You really do want to have a bookmark handy if you put this one down. This was Scheherazade's tactic to keep King Shahryar's attention so that he couldn't have her executed the next morning. He was a very insane man who hated women to the degree that he would marry a virgin and have her killed the next m ...more
Ana Mardoll
The Arabian Nights / 0-486-22289-6

I'm a bit of an "Thousand Nights" enthusiast -- I enjoy the stories immensely and I have four separate translations in my personal library. Several friends have asked me to discuss the differences between the editions, so I thought I'd present a four-way comparison and then talk about which version is best for which audience.

For the purposes of the four-way comparison, I will draw text from the opening tale of the two kingly brothers in order to highlight how e
Huda Aweys
Mar 03, 2015 Huda Aweys is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
لاقيتها على (ويكي مصدر ) كاملة على أربع اجزاء فرغت للآن من الجزء الأول اللى اكتشفت ان كل قصصه سبق لي و قرأتها منفردة زمان و انا طفلة معدة قصص للأطفال
و نصيب الأسد في القصص المعدة منها للأطفال كان لـ (كامل كيلاني) طبعا
و عموما مازلت مستمتعه بقراءتها زي أول مرة
الجزء الأول :
الجزء الثاني :
الجزء الثالث :
الجزء الرابع :
These stories were so much funnier and bawdier than I was expecting! I was expecting more adventurous stories - more akin to what I know of "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves" - yet a large number of these stories featured rather licentious women! It wasn't something I was expecting out of a set of stories being told by a woman to a man who was obsessed with the idea of unfaithful wives!

This particular edition is based off the core set of tales compiled by Muhsin Mahdi which reflect only the stori
Feb 16, 2008 HM marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
صد و شصت سال پس از ترجمه فارسی هزار ویک شب، یک ناشر و مترجم در ایران متن کامل و جامعی از این کتاب معروف را به زبان فارسی برگردانده اند. این ترجمه بر اساس متون معتبر عربی و با بهره گیری از ترجمه های معتبر انگلیسی و فرانسوی انجام شده است
نشر مرکز که از جمله ناشران با سابقه ایران است، از سال به ابراهیم اقلیدی، که در ادبیات عرب و جهانی دستی دارد، پیشنهاد داد برگردان فارسی کاملی از این کتاب را به دست بگیرد

اقلیدی نیز علاوه بر فراهم کردن منابع تحقیق و نسخه های معتبر این کتاب، تحقیقی جدی درباره کتاب و
[Name Redacted]
Sir Richard Francis Burton is an odd duck. He is often accused of inserting his "modern" Western prejudices into his work, and he does, but nowhere near the extent to which he is accused. FACT: Islamic cultures, like most cultures in the world, are openly and unabashedly racist, sexist and xenophobic. As a result, like much of our own, much of their great literature contains these elements in spades (Shylocke or Othello, anyone?). What is more, many of these stories did not originate within the ...more
Very entertaining and clever in the set up and framing of the stories. Some very funny and others devilishly wry, with only a one that just did not pull me in. I noticed two main themes among many others: 1. Men are constructed as the focus for most of the stories (yes, I know that Shahrazad is bold and takes a huge risk and a few female witches rear their crafty heads). Their pride and arrogance in their positions of power pretty much are the set up for the stories; and 2. The value of the stor ...more
I got this book for my 11th birthday and just started reading this at 27. Took me 16 years to want to actually read this book. I'm glad I read this at 27 and not at 11. At 11 I would not have understood most of the story. This is not an easy read. This is more difficult then I expected.

As much as it is difficult, this book is very enjoyable. It difficult in the same sense Canterbury Tales is difficult. It's a frame story. You have to remember Scheherazade's story while reading her tales. Sometim
I listened to this on audio and it took me 8-9 months to complete it. I was surprised of quite a few things:
1. Here you have the first cliffhanger in history (well, I knew that before, but it was still surprising how early in history this method had been invented). At the same time the method of a story within a story (and often within another stroy) is used, also probably for the first time ever.
2. We think we know many of the tales mentioned but in fact we hardly do: The stories we best know
This book is marvelous. I have read this one twice already, and I hope to read it several more times before the curtain falls. If you think about it this is the text that made magical realism popular. By the way the Burton translation, despite being from the Victorian era is the authoritative edition. Burton was a really interesting guy and a linguistic genius. (And a bit of a perv, but that is another tale. Society has many misconceptions about these stories. Disney distorts things. Aladdin was ...more
As sun comes down in the valley, bound by the Tigris and Eufrat
Submerges into dark the capital of Muslim Khalifat
The night descends on tired from the heat old city of Baghdad
Where spears of high-rising minarets reflect moon's cold yet tender light
The freshness of the breeze brings comfort and the leisure of delight
Unfolding fairy tale, being told to Shahryar by princess Scheherazade
Inspired by the need of her life saving plight
Comes up the fantasy, entailed in every one (of "Thousand And One")
Tales incomparably imaginative, wildly entertaining and fun!

I think these stories are best described as literary grunge. In nearly every aspect of their subjects and telling they defy the established order. Historically, the Arabic canon denounced The Tales because of their vulgar components. Neatly wrapped in Shahrazad's mission to save the virgin girls of Shahriyar's kingdom, these stories profess powerful jinnees, laymen rising to power which would humble royalty, men becoming beasts and seaf
"A character in a story invokes a character who tells a story about a character who has a story to tell... Everything proliferates. The Nights is a maze, a web, a network, a river with infinite tributaries, a series of boxes within boxes, a bottomless pool. It turns endlessly on itself, a story about storytelling."

Captain Burton's translation remains contested amongst scholars for its subjective commentary. Nevertheless, his was a critical and monumental 16-volume endeavor that brought to the En
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