THE KING'S DAUGHTER AND THE APE.



There was once a Sultan's daughter, whose heart was taken with love of a black slave: he abated her maidenhead and she became passionately addicted to futtering, so that she could not do without it a single hour and complained of her case to one of her body women, who told her that no thing poketh and stroketh more abundantly than the baboon.[FN$438] Now it so chanced one day, that an ape-leader passed under her lattice, with a great ape; so she unveiled her face and looking upon the ape, signed to him with her eyes, whereupon he broke his bonds and chain and climbed up to the Princess, who hid him in a place with her, and night and day he abode there, eating and drinking and copulating. Her father heard of this and would have killed her;--And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased to say her permitted say.

When it was the Three Hundred and Fifty-sixth Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that when the Sultan heard of this work he would have slain his daughter; but she smoked his design; and, disguising herself in Mameluke's dress, mounted horse after loading a mule with gold and bullion, and precious stuffs past all account; then carrying with her the ape, she fled to Cairo, where she took up her abode in one of the houses without the city and upon the verge of the Suez-desert. Now, every day, she used to buy meat of a young man, a butcher, but she came not to him till after noonday; and then she was so yellow and disordered in face that he said in his mind, "There must indeed hang some mystery by this slave." "Accordingly (quoth the butcher) one day when she came to me as usual, I went out after her secretly, and ceased not to follow her from place to place, so as she saw me not, till she came to her lodging on the edge of her waste and entered; and I looked in upon her through a cranny, and saw her as soon as she was at home, kindle a fire and cook the meat, of which she ate enough and served up the rest to a baboon she had by her and he did the same. Then she put off the slave's habit and donned the richest of women's apparel; and so I knew that she was a lady. After this she set on wine and drank and gave the ape to drink; and he stroked her nigh half a score times without drawing till she swooned away, when he spread over her a silken coverlet and returned to his place. Then I went down in the midst of the place and the ape, becoming aware of me, would have torn me in pieces; but I made haste to pull out my knife and slit his paunch and his bowels fell out. The noise aroused the young lady, who awoke terrified and trembling; and, when she saw the ape in this case, she shrieked such a shriek that her soul well nigh fled her body. Then she fell down in a fainting-fit and when she came to herself, she said to me, 'What moved thee to do thus? Now Allah upon thee, send me after him!' But I spoke her fair for a while and pledged myself to stand in the ape's stead in the matter of much poking, till her trouble subsided and I took her to wife. But when I came to perform my promise I proved a failure and I fell short in this matter and could not endure such hard labour: so I complained of my case and mentioned her exorbitant requirements to a certain old woman who engaged to manage the affair and said to me, 'Needs must thou bring me a cooking-pot full of virgin vinegar and a pound of the herb pellitory called wound-wort.' [FN#439] So I brought her what she sought, and she laid the pellitory in the pot with the vinegar and set it on the fire, till it was thoroughly boiled. Then she bade me futter the girl, and I futtered her till she fainted away, when the old woman took her up (and she unconscious), and set her parts to the mouth of the cooking-pot. The steam of the pot entered her slit and there fell from it somewhat which I examined; and behold, it was two small worms, one black and the other yellow. Quoth the old, woman, ''The black was bred of the strokings of the negro and the yellow of stroking with the baboon.' Now when she recovered from her swoon she abode with me, in all delight and solace of life, and sought not swiving as before, for Allah had done away from her this appetite; whereat I marvelled"--And Shahrazad perceived the dawn of day and ceased saying her permitted say.

When it was the Three Hundred and Fifty-seventh Night,

She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the young man continued: "In truth Allah had done away from her this appetite; whereat I marvelled and acquainted her with the case. Thereupon I lived with her and she took the old woman to be to her in the stead of her mother." "And" (said he who told me the tale) "the old woman and the young man and his wife abode in joy and cheer till there came to them the Destroyer of delights and the Sunderer of societies; and glory be to the Ever-living One, who dieth not and in whose hand is Dominion of the world visible and invisible!'' [FN#440] And another tale they tell is that of