Page:The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night - Volume 3.djvu/19

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her mischief!"; and I shrieked and wept till my voice failed and I remained without power to breathe or to move. Then she again whetted the knife and said to the slave girls, "Uncover him." Upon this the Lord inspired me to repeat to her the two phrases my cousin had taught me, and had bequeathed to me, and I said, "O my lady, dost thou not know that Faith is fair, Unfaith is foul?" When she heard this, she cried out and said, "Allah pity thee, Azizah, and give thee Paradise in exchange for thy wasted youth! By Allah, of a truth she served thee in her life time and after her death, and now she hath saved thee alive out of my hands with these two saws. Nevertheless, I cannot by any means leave thee thus, but needs must I set my mark on thee, to spite yonder brazen faced piece, who hath kept thee from me." There upon she called out to the slave women and bade them bind my feet with cords and then said to them, "Take seat on him!" They did her bidding, upon which she arose and fetched a pan of copper and hung it over the brazier and poured into it oil of sesame, in which she fried cheese. [1] Then she came up to me (and I still insensible) and, unfastening my bag trousers, tied a cord round my testicles and, giving it to two of her women, bade them trawl at it. They did so, and I swooned away and was for excess of pain in a world other than this. Then she came with a razor of steel and cut off my member masculine, [2] so that I remained like a woman: after which she seared the wound with the boiling and rubbed it with a powder, and I the while unconscious. Now when I came to myself, the blood had stopped; so she bade the slave girls unbind me and made me drink a cup of wine. Then said she to me, "Go now to her whom thou hast married and who grudged me a single night, and the mercy of Allah be on thy cousin Azizah, who saved thy life and never told her secret love! Indeed, haddest thou not repeated those words to me, I had surely slit thy weasand. Go forth this instant to whom thou wilt, for I needed

  1. As a styptic. The scene in the text has often been enacted in Egypt where a favourite feminine mode of murdering men is by beating and bruising the testicles. The Fellahs are exceedingly clever in inventing methods of manslaughter. For some years bodies were found that bore no outer mark of violence, and only Frankish inquisitiveness discovered that the barrel of a pistol had been passed up the anus and the weapon discharged internally Murders of this description are known in English history; but never became popular practice.
  2. Arab. "Zakar," that which betokens masculinity. At the end of the tale we learn that she also gelded him; thus he was a "Sandal)," a rasé.