One thousand and one Arabrian Nights
In 1932 the Parisian art publishers H.Piazza produced a luxury edition of 2,500 copies of Le Livre des Milles Nuits et Une Nuit, in 12 volumes. Translated from Arabic by Dr J. C. Mardrus, with ornamentation to the text designed by Racim Mohammed and original illustrations by the celebrated artist Léon Carré, the first 50 editions featured not only prints of these illustrations but also original watercolours by Carré. This group of lots features 15 of these original watercolours from the final volume of the book.
The tales from the Arabian Nights, also known as One Thousand and One
Nights, are among the worlds greatest literary treasures. These stories have existed for millennia, drawing from the folklore traditions of Persia, Arabia, India and Asia - this is reflected in the sweeping scope of settings found in the stories, which include Baghdad, Basrah, Cairo and Damascus, as well as China, Greece, India and North Africa. Their geographical variety is matched by their literary variety, ranging from fairy tales, fables, romances, legends and parables. Although the actual content of the stories varies from region to region, the main framework of the tale is the same.
A Persian King, disillusioned after discovering his wife's infidelity, decides that all women are the same and embarks on a course of marrying a succession of virgins only to execute each one the next morning, before they have a chance to dishonour him. The Vizier, whose duty it is to procure them, soon runs out of virgins, and his daughter Scheherazade offers to be the Sultan's next bride. On the night of their marriage Scheherazade begins to tell the Sultan a tale, but does not end it. He is forced to postpone her execution in order to hear the story's conclusion, and the next night she finishes her first tale but begins another, and once again the Sultan postpones the execution in his eagnerness to know the conclusion. This continues for 1,001 nights, and ends with the Sultan pardoning his wife and saving her life.
Carré's vibrant palette and exquisite attention to detail perfectly capture the mysterious and exotic world of Scheherezade's imagination.
And the kâdi himself appeared at the doorway, from 'The Story of Baïbars and the Police Captains'