The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night/Volume 3/9
|←8a|| The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night , translated by Richard Francis Burton
THE THIEF AND HIS MONKEY
THE THIEF AND HIS MONKEY 
A certain man had a monkey and that man was a thief, who never entered any of the street-markets of the city wherein he dwelt, but he made off with great profit. Now it came to pass one day that he saw a man offering for sale worn clothes, and he went calling them in the market, but none bid for them and all to whom he showed them refused to buy of him. Presently the thief who had the monkey saw the man with the ragged clothes set them in a wrapper and sit down to rest for weariness; so he made the ape sport before him to catch his eye and, whilst he was busy gazing at it, stole the parcel from him. Then he took the ape and made off to a lonely place, where he opened the wrapper and, taking out the old clothes, folded them in a piece of costly stuff. This he carried to another bazar and exposed for sale together with what was therein, making it a condition that it should not be opened, and tempting the folk with the lowness of the price he set on it. A certain man saw the wrapper and its beauty pleased him; so he bought the parcel on these terms and carried it home, doubting not that he had done well. When his wife saw it she asked, What is this? and he answered, It is costly stuff, which I have bought at lowest price, meaning to sell it again and take the profit. Rejoined she, O dupe, would this stuff be sold under its value, unless it had been stolen? Dost thou not know that whoso buyeth aught without examining it, falleth into error and becometh like unto the weaver? Quoth he, And what is the story of the weaver?; and quoth she:--I have heard this take of
- I have remarked (Pilgrimage iii.307) that all the popular ape-names in Arabic and Persian, Saadán, Maymún, Shádi, etc., express propitiousness -- probably euphemistically applied to our poor relation.