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Each book in the collection includes the classic Easton Press qualities:
One Thousand and One Nights is a collection of stories collected over many centuries by various
authors, translators and scholars in various countries across the Middle East and South Asia. These collections of tales trace their roots back to ancient Arabia and Yemen, ancient Indian literature and Persian literature (especially the Sassanid era's Pahlavi work Hazār Afsān Persian: هزار افسان, lit. Thousand Tales), ancient Egyptian literature and Mesopotamian mythology, ancient Syria and Asia Minor, and medieval Arabic folk stories from the Caliphate era.
Though the oldest Arabic manuscript dates from the fourteenth century,
scholarship generally dates the collection's genesis to somewhere
between AD 800�900.
What is common throughout all the editions of The Nights is the initial frame story of the ruler Shahryar (from Persian: شهريار generally meaning king or sovereign) and his wife Scheherazade (from Persian: شهرزاده generally meaning townswoman)
and the framing device incorporated throughout the tales themselves.
The stories proceed from this original tale; some are framed within
other tales, while others begin and end of their own accord. Some
editions contain only a few hundred nights, while others include 1001
or more "nights."
The collection, or at least certain stories drawn from it (or
purporting to be drawn from it) became widely known in the West during
the nineteenth century, after it was translated � first into French and
then English and other European languages. At this time it acquired the
English name The Arabian Nights' Entertainment or simply Arabian Nights.
The best known stories from The Nights include "Aladdin's Wonderful Lamp," "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves," and "The Seven Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor."
Ironically these particular stories, while they are most probably
genuine Middle Eastern folk tales, were not part of the "Nights" in its
Arabic versions, but were interpolated into the collection by its early