Motif Index of The Thousand and One Nights

Motif Index of The Thousand and One Nights

by Hasan M. El-Shamy


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In 1704 the French Orientalist Antoin Galland introduced to the Western world a translation of The Thousand and One Nights. Over the course of two subsequent centuries, numerous editions followed. Many of these, like Galland’s, included texts of stories not found in the indigenous manuscripts of the Nights but selected by the European editors from other literary and oral collections of ordinary folktales and legends. Thus, the original work acquired a Western designation as The Arabian Nights, a title unknown among the masses in Arab lands. Now, three centuries later, original publication of The Thousand and One Nights is being celebrated with widespread, renewed interest in the work. Hasan El-Shamy’s motif-index, based on an authentic folk edition of Alf laylah wa laylah, provides scholars of various fields accurate information about the content of this classic piece of Arabic folk tradition.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780253348340
Publisher: Indiana University Press
Publication date: 10/01/2006
Pages: 696
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.59(d)

About the Author

Hasan El-Shamy is Professor of Folklore, Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, and African Studies at Indiana University. He is author of several books, including Types of the Folktale in the Arab World (IUP, 2004), Tales Arab Women Tell (IUP, 1999), and Folk Traditions of the Arab World: A Guide to Motif Classifications (IUP, 1995).

Table of Contents

A Note on Transliteration
List of Abbreviations and Signs
A Note on Data Presentation, Abbreviations
A. Mythological and Related Belief Motifs
B. Animals
C. Tabu
D. Magic and Similar Supernatural Occurrences
E. The Dead
F. Marvels
G. Ogres and Satan
H. Tests
J. The Wise and the Foolish
K. Deceptions
L. Reversal of Fortune
M. Ordaining the Future
N. Chance and Fate
P. Society
Q. Rewards and Punishments
R. Captives and Fugitives
S. Unnatural Cruelty
T. Sex
U. The Nature of Life
V. Religion and Religious Services
W. Traits of Character
X. Humor
Z. Miscellaneous Groups of Motifs
Other References to Motifs
Titles of Tales according to Burton's Translation (Nos. 1-169)
Alphabetical Index of Motifs
Register of Tale-types
References to Tale-types
Appendix: Titles of Tales 170-262 in Burton's Translation
General Index

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