Arabian Nights, in 16 volumes: Volume V, Volume 5

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Cosimo, Inc., Dec 1, 2008 - Literary Collections - 420 pages
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Notorious for the delight he took in tweaking the sexual taboos of the Victorian age-as well as the delight he took in the resulting shock of his bashful peers-British adventurer, linguist, and author CAPTAIN SIR RICHARD FRANCIS BURTON (1821-1890) is perhaps best remembered for his unexpurgated translation of the Eastern classic The One Thousand and One Nights, more famously known today as The Arabian Nights. Originating in Persian, Indian, and Arabic sources as far back as the ninth century AD, this collection of bawdy tales-which Burton was the first to bring to English readers in uncensored form-has exerted incalculable influence on modern literature. It represents one of the earliest examples of a framing story, as young Shahrazad, under threat of execution by the King, postpones her death by regaling him with these wildly entertaining stories over the course of 1,001 nights. The stories themselves feature early instances of sexual humor, satire and parody, murder mystery, horror, and even science fiction. Burton's annotated 16-volume collection, as infamous as it is important, was first published between 1885 and 1888, and remains an entertainingly naughty read. Volume V includes: [ "The Loves of the Boy and Girl at School" [ "The Caliph Harun Al-Rashid and the Three Slave-Girls" [ "The Water-Carrier and the Goldsmith's Wife" [ "The Woman's Trick Against Her Husband" [ "The Devout Woman and the Two Wicked Elders" [ "The Mad Lover" [ "The Angel of Death and the Rich King" [ "The Shipwrecked Woman and Her Child" [ "The Pious Black Slave" [ "The Blacksmith Who Could Handle Fire Without Hurt" [ "The Queen of Serpents" [ and many others.
 

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Contents

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About the author (2008)

Richard Francis Burton 1821-1890 Sir Richard Burton, the explorer, adventurer, translator, and student of Eastern sexual customs, was born in Torquay, England. He received an irregular education, which included an expulsion from Oxford University. In 1842 Burton enlisted in army of the East India Company and went to India, where he learned the Persian, Hindustani, Afghan, and Arabic languages. Burton was the first European to reach Harar, the religious capital of Somaliland. He was the discoverer of Lake Tanganyika and explored in the Congo, the Cameroons, Dahomey, and Brazil. He was a pioneer ethnologist and anthropologist. Burton was a linguist of dazzling ability, speaking 29 languages and 11 dialects. He wrote 43 books on his travels and two volumes of poetry. In addition to translating The Arabian Nights, he translated six volumes of Portuguese literature, two volumes of Latin poetry, and four volumes of Neapolitan, African, and Hindu folklore. Burton, together with Forster Fitzgerald Arbuthnot, created The Kama Shastra Society to print and circulate books that would be illegal to publish in public. This society fulfilled his ability to write about his deep interest in sexuality. Best known in this vein is his translation of The Kama Sutra, printed by the society in 1883. He was working on an English translation from the French edition of the arabic erotic guide called The Perfumed Garden. His manuscript entitled The Scented Garden was burned after his death by his wife, Isabel Arundel. It is rumored that Burton wanted this book to be published after his death to provide an income for Isabel, but she destroyed it in an effort to preserve his reputation. Burton died of a heart attack on October 20, 1890. Both Burton and his wife are buried in a tomb that is shaped like a Bedouin tent, designed by Isabel. The tomb is in St. Mary Magdalen's Roman Catholic Church Mortlake, southwestern London.

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