Accordingly, on the fourth day, I procured what was requisite, as usual, and soon after sunset she came, accompanied by a female wrapped in an izar, and they entered, until they mentioned Egypt; when one of my uncles said, The travellers assert, that there is not on the face of the earth a more agreeable country than Egypt with its Nile:- and my father added, He who hath not seen Cairo hath not seen the world: its soil is gold; its Nile is a wonder; its women are like the black-eyed virgins of Paradise; its houses are palaces; and its air is temperate; its odour surpassing that of aloes-wood, and cheering the heart: and how can Cairo be otherwise when it is the metropolis of the world? Did ye see its gardens in the evening (he continued), with the shade obliquely extending over them, ye would behold a wonder, and yield with ecstasy to their attractions.

When I heard these descriptions of Egypt, my mind became wholly engaged by reflections upon that country; and after they had departed to their homes, I passed the night sleepless from my excessive longing towards it, and neither food nor drink was pleasant to me. A few days after, my uncles prepared to journey thither, and I wept before my father that I might go with them, so that he prepared a stock of merchandise for me, and I departed in their company; but he said to them, Suffer him not to enter Egypt, but leave him at Damascus, that he may there sell his merchandise.

I took leave of my father, and we set forth from El-Mosil, and continued our journey until we arrived at Aleppo, where we remained some days; after which we proceeded thence until we came to Damascus; and we beheld it to be a city with trees and rivers and fruits and birds, as though it were a paradise, containing fruits of every kind. We took lodg-ings in one of the Khans, and my uncles remained there until they had sold and bought; and they also sold my merchandise, gaining, for every piece of silver, five, so that I rejoiced at my profit. My uncles then left me, and repaired to Egypt, and I remained and took up my abode in a handsome Ka'ah, such as the tongue cannot describe; the monthly rent of which was two pieces of gold.

Here I indulged myself with eating and drinking, squandering away the money that was in my possession; and as I was sitting one day at the door o f the Ka'ah, a damsel approached me, attired in clothing of the richest description, such as I had never seen surpassed in costliness, and I invited her to come in; whereupon, without hesitation, she entered; and I was delighted at her compliance, and closed the door upon us both. She then uncovered her face, and took off her izar, and I found her to be so surprisingly beautiful that love for her took possession of my heart: so I went and brought a repast consisting of the most delicious viands and fruit and everything else that was requisite for her entertainment, and we ate and sported together; after which we drank till we were intoxicated, and fell asleep, and so we remained until the morning, when I handed her ten pieces of gold; but she swore that she would not accept them from me, and said, Expect me again, O my beloved, after three days: at the hour of sunset I will be with thee: and do thou prepare for us, with these pieces of gold, a repast similar to this which we have just enjoyed. She then gave me ten pieces of gold, and took leave of me, and departed, taking my reason with her. And after the three days had expired, she came again, decked with embroidered stuffs and ornaments and other attire more magnificent than those which she wore on the former occasion. I had prepared for her what was required previously to her arrival; so we now ate and drank and fell asleep as before; and in the morning she gave me again ten pieces of gold, promising to return to me after three more days. I therefore made ready what was requisite, and after the three days she came attired in a dress still more magnificent than the first and secorid, and said to me, O my master, am I beautiful?-Yea, verily, I answered.- Wilt thou give me leave, she rejoined, to bring with me a damsel more beautiful than myself, and younger than I, that she may sport with us, and we may make merry with her? For she hath requested that she may accompany me, and pass the night in frolicking with us.-And so saying, she gave me twenty pieces of gold, desiring me to prepare a more plentiful repast, on account of the lady who was to come with her; after which, she bade me farewell, and departed.

Accordingly, on the fourth day, I procured what was requisite, as usual, and soon after sunset she came, accompanied by a female wrapped in an izar, and they entered, and seated themselves. I was rejoiced, and lighted the candles, and welcomed them with joy and exultation. They then took off their outer garments, and when the new damsel uncovered her face, I perceived that she was like the full moon: I never beheld a person more beautiful. I arose immediately, and placed before them the food and drink, and we ate and drank, while I continued caressing the new damsel, and filling the wine-cup for her, and drinking with her: but the first lady was affected with a secret jealousy.- By Allah, she said, verily this girl is beautiful! Is she not more charming than I?-Yea, indeed, I answered.-Soon after this I fell asleep, and when I awoke in the morning, I found my hand defiled with blood, and opening my eyes, perceived that the sun had risen; so I attempted to rouse the damsel, my new companion, whereupon her head rolled from her body. The other damsel was gone, and I concluded, therefore, that she had done this from her jealousy; and after reflecting a while, I arose, and took off my clothes, and dug a hole in the Ka'ah, in which I deposited the murdered damsel, afterwards covering her remains with earth, and replacing the marble pavement as it was before. I then dressed myself again, and, taking the remainder of my money, went forth, and repaired to the owner of the Ka'ah, and paid him a year's rent, saying to him, I am about to journey to my uncles in Egypt.