Arabian Nights translated by Richard Francis Burton and A S Byatt: A Review


A spicy blend of wit, humour, fatansy, adventure, wisdom and thrill is what we have as Arabian Nights. The timeless stories, packed with the horse sense and creativity of the east have enamoured people since ages and I am no exception. The narratives takes you to the splendid world of imagination, where Kings, vaziers, merchants, princes and princesses, fairies, genii-all play a power packed, adventurous, daredevil and venturous acts leading the way to some of the most thrilling experiences that beholds your attention and keeps you glued to the book. Of course, the some stories are long and the book needs to be covered in parts, reading some portion of it daily in order to absorb the previous chunk. Nevertheless, these so called stories of the east give a peeping view of the culture, life, polity, commerce, society and history of the medieval Islamic world of the Middle East including in some part of India where influenced by Islam. As they were translated, these stories became a part of life of the people both to its east and west, evolving on the way as they went by, moulding itself as per the needs of the region in question. In my opinion, stories are an important part of life and it would not be wrong to say that stories are something that make us, shapes ourselves and defines our personality. That is why all important cultures chose stories, allegories, narratives etc. to pass on their wisdom to the future generations and in the way furnishing tremendous joy and entertainment to its readers.
A word about translation: The stories are translated in an excellent way, using simple english, thus making the journey seamless and smooth, enabling to focus more on the joy rather than getting lost in heavy-weight words and consulting dictionary again and again. Overall, a highly likeable experience and a must-recommended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *