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 The Story of Sindbad the Sailor

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عدد الرسائل : 1652
الموقع : كتــــــــــــــــــــــــــانه
تاريخ التسجيل : 29/01/2008

مُساهمةموضوع: The Story of Sindbad the Sailor   الإثنين يونيو 23, 2008 4:09 am

The Story of Sindbad the Sailor


“Sindbad” entered into the Arabian Nights tradition after the original manuscript was created, and was one of the stories added by the Egyptian copyists (Haddawy xii). It originated in period when Baghdad and Basra (in modern Iraq) dominated trade and culture in Arabic world, and has affinities to the Odyssey, the stories of which were known to the Arabs (though Homer's work itself was not).
The frame, accentuated by the alternative title (“Sindbad the Seaman and Sindbad the Porter”), addresses the opposing aspects of the personality: “that which pushes him to escape into a faraway world of adventure and fantasy [Sindbad the Sailor], and the other part which keeps him bound to common practicality [Sindbad the Porter]” – i.e., the id and the ego (Bettelheim 83-84). Note the specific references within the story that equate the two Sindbads – they have the same name, same origin, and one calls the other brother.

The Seven Voyages of Sindbad the Sailor

They land on an island that is really a long-dormant fish. He is left to drown but survives to come to the land of King Mihrajan, who breeds ordinary mares with the sea-horses to produce a superior breed, and enters the King’s service. He is reunited with his original ship by chance and returns home enriched by the sale of his recovered merchandise.
He falls asleep on an island and is abandoned. He discovers an enormous egg, which belongs to a giant bird, the Rukh (Roc). Tying himself to the Rukh, he is transported to a ledge between a deep valley and an unclimbable mountain. He escapes by holding on to a sheep tossed into the valley by diamond merchants as a means of harvesting the gems on the valley floor. He returns home enriched by the gems he has picked up.
*The ship he is on is captured by apes from the Mountain of the Apes and its human crew abandoned on an island, where they take shelter in a stately mansion. The owner of this castle is a black giant, who eats the fattest member of the crew each night until they put his eyes out with a burning spit. They then flee on a raft as the giant and an even more horrible female giant throw great stones after them. After this adventure, only three are left and his two companions are eaten by a giant snake, which he foils by tying planks around himself. He is then rescued by a passing ship, which turns out to be the ship on which he made his second voyage, and returns home enriched by the sale of his recovered merchandise.
* He is shipwrecked and arrives with some of his companions at the demons’ castle, where all the rest eat and drink voraciously, thus causing them to become stupefied; when the companions get plump, they are killed and eaten. Sindbad, horrified, walks away until he comes to a group of men gathering peppercorns; they take him with him to their king, a raiser of magnificent horses. Sindbad shows the people the value of saddles for riding horses and makes a fortune as a saddle-maker. He is married to a local woman but, when she dies, is buried alive with her, as is the custom of the country. He kills other live burials to stay alive and robs corpses to enrich himself, then is rescued by a passing ship and returns home.
* He and his companions come to an island on which there is a Rukh’s egg; before he can stop them, his companions break the egg open, enraging the Rukh, which sinks their ship by dropping great stones on it. Cast adrift, he arrives on an island where there appears to be only one inhabitant, and old man who asks Sindbad to carry him on his back. When he obliges, the man refuses to let go, until Sindbad gets him drunk and frees himself. He then makes his way to the City of the Apes, where he learns to support himself by harvesting coconuts until he is able to take passage on a trading ship that will take him home.
They are first lost in a strange sea, then shipwrecked. Sindbad finds himself in a valley full of jewels, aloe wood, and raw ambergris. His companions all die and he resolves to escape by riding a raft down the stream that flows through the island, which takes him through a mountain until he comes to a city. He tells the city’s king about the wise caliph Harun al-Rashid and lives with his people until a ship headed for Basra arrives and takes him home.
As in the previous voyage, they enter into uncharted waters and are wrecked. Sindbad arrives at a large island with many streams and once again builds a raft to float downstream. The wood from which he makes the raft proves to be valuable sandalwood, which makes him rich when he finally arrives at a city. Some of the people in the city sprout wings once a month, and Sindbad convinces them to carry him with them; they drop him when he glorifies God, since they are demons. His father-in-law tells him their secret and urges him to flee with his wife back to Baghdad.
* Voyages 3, 4, and 5 all contain elements that were present in Homer's Odyssey: the story of the Cyclops in voyage 3, of the Lotos Eaters in voyage 4, and of the Old Man of the Sea in voyage 5.
After each voyage, Sindbad returns home and enjoys the fruits of his trading, but eventually "forgets" the hardships of the voyages and returns to sea again. This pattern of repeated risk-taking helps to make him the ideal protagonist for an emerging merchant society, which depends on the entrepreneurial spirit to survive and grow. His adventurousness is contrasted to the resignation of his namesake, Sindbad the Porter, who initially envies Sindbad's wealth but attributes it to the inscrutable workings of God; Sindbad the Sailor tells his tales in part to show that he has arrived at his good fortune through both the grace of God (who has kept him safe through all the shipwrecks) and through his willingness to undertake hardships. Both Sindbads, however, exhibit a properly Islamic submission to God, as the sailor fulfills the obligation to praise God and give alms after each of the voyages.
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The Story of Sindbad the Sailor
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