The Arabian Nights (1909)


Illustrated by Maxfield Parrish



To the left, we show a copy of The Arabian Nights, as illustrated by

Maxfield Parrish and published by Charles Scribner's Sons (New York)

in 1909.


This example retains the original black cloth cover with applied

illustrated paste-down.







On the right, we show the illustrated

Title Page to this 1st Edition.


The Arabian Nights (1909) is the 1st Edition of these classic tales - as edited by Kate Douglas Wiggin and Nora A Smith - that

is illustrated by Maxfield Parrish.


In her Preface, Douglas Wiggin provides an introduction to the history of the tales contained in this 1st Edition, including:

"The Talking Bird, the Singing Tree, and the Golden Water"; "The Story of the Fisherman and the Genie"; "The History of

the Young King of the Black Isles"; "The Story of Gulnare of the Sea"; "The Story of Aladdin; or, the Wonderful Lamp";

"The Story of Prince Agib"; "The Story of the City of Brass"; "The Story of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves"; "The History of

Codadad and His Brothers"; and "The Story of Sinbad the Voyager".


Parrish's illustrations are absolutely stunning and bring his own interpretation to the classic tales from the East.



Our Greeting Cards and Reproduction Prints



We have prepared sets of 13 Greeting Cards displaying each of the major colour images from The Arabian Nights (1909) and on the left, we show an example of how these Greeting Cards appear. Ordering one of those sets is as easy as selecting the "Add to Cart" feature below and following the prompts provided with our Shopping Cart secured through PayPal. Multiple purchases will be consolidated by that feature and shipping and handling costs to any destination in the world are accommodated by our flat-rate fee of US$20 for every US$200 worth of purchases.



Code: MP AN MS(13)
Price: US$65.00


When presented on Greeting Cards, these images are prepared as tipped-on plates - in hommage to the hand-crafted

approach typical of prestige illustrated publications produced in the early decades of the 20th Century.


Hand-finishing is used to replicate the visual appearance of a tipped-on plate and the images are presented on

Ivory card stock (in the case of colour illustrations) or White card stock (in the case of monotone illustrations)

with an accompanying envelope. We have left the cards blank so that you may write your own personal



Should you wish to order a Reproduction Print or an individual Greeting Card from this suite of images, we have

provided options below. Of course, should you require a customised preparation, we welcome your contact through


In the meantime, enjoy perusing these wonderful images from Maxfield Parrish.



The colour illustrations


The Arabian Nights


Cover Illustration



The Talking Bird, the Singing Tree

and the Golden Water


It will be sufficient to break off a branch

and carry it to plant in you garden

The Story of the Fisherman

and the Genie


The smoke ascended to the clouds,

and extending itself along the sea and

upon the shore formed a great mist



The History of the Young King

of the Black Isles


When he came to this part of the

narrative the young king could not

restrain his tears



Reproduction on 12x18" sheet

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The Story of Gulnare of the Sea


And she proceeded to burn perfume

and repeat spells until the sea foamed

and was agitated



The Story of Aladdin; or,

the Wonderful Lamp


At the same time the earth, trembling,

opened just before the magician, and

uncovered a stone, laid horizontally,

with a brass ring fixed into the middle



The Story of Prince Agib


And when the boat came to me I

found in it a man of brass, with a

tablet of lead upon his breast,

engraven with names and talismans

The Story of Prince Agib


At the approach of evening I opened

the first closet and, entering it, found

a mansion like paradise



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The Story of the City of Brass


And when they had ascended that mountain

they saw a city than which eyes had not

beheld any greater



The Story of Ali Baba and

the Forty Thieves


Cassim ... was so alarmed at the danger he

was in that the more he endeavoured to

remember the word Sesame the more his

memory was confounded



The History of Codadad

and His Brothers


As it drew near we saw ten or twelve

armed pirates appear on the deck

The Story of Sinbad the Voyager


The spot where she left me was encompassed

on all sides by mountains that seemed to

reach above the clouds, and so steep that

there was not possibility of getting out of

the valley

Reproduction on 12x18" sheet

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The Story of Sinbad the Voyager


Having finished his repast, he returned

to his porch, where he lay and fell asleep,

snoring louder than thunder




Reproduction on 12x18" sheet

Code: MP AN C13 12x18
Price: US$60.00



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Douglas Wiggin's Preface to The Arabian Nights


Little excuse is needed, perhaps, for any fresh selection from the famous "Tales of a Thousand and One Nights," provided

it be representative enough, and worthy enough to enlist a new army of youthful readers. Of the two hundred and

sixty-four bewildering, unparalleled stories, the true lover can hardly spare one, yet there must always be favourites, even

among these. We have chosen some of the most delightful, in our opinion; some, too, that chanced to appeal

particularly to the genius of the artist. If, enticed by our choice and the beauty of the pictures, we manage to attract

a few thousand more true lovers to the fountain-book, we shall have served our humble turn. The only real danger lies

in neglecting it, in rearing a child who does not know it and has never fallen under its spell


You remember Maimoune, in the story of Prince Camaralzaman, and what she said to Danhasch, the genie who had just

arrived from the farthest limits of china? "Be sure thou tellest me nothing but what is true or I shall clip thy wings!" This is

what the modern child sometimes says to the genies of literature, and his own wings are too often clipped in consequence.


The Empire of the Fairies is no more.

Reason has banished them from ev'ry shore;

Steam has outstripped their dragons and their cars,

Gas has eclipsed their glow-worms and their stars.


Édouard Laboulaye says in his introduction to Nouveaux Contes Bleus: "Mothers who love your children, to not set them

too soon to the study of history; let them dream while they are young. Do not close the soul to the first breath of poetry.

Nothing affrights me so much as the reasonable, practical child who believes in nothing that he cannot touch. These sages

of ten years are, at twenty, dullard, or what is still worse, egoists."


When a child has one read of Prince Agib, of Gulnare or Periezade, Sinbad or Codadad, in this or any other volume of its

kind, the magic will have been instilled into the blood, for the Oriental flavour in the Arab tales is like nothing so much as

magic. True enough they are a vast storehouse of information concerning the manners and the customs, the spirit and the

life of the Moslem East (and the youthful reader does not have to study Lane's learned foot-noted to imbibe all this), but

beyond and above the knowledge of history and geography thus gained, there comes something finer and subtler as well

as something more vital. The scene is Indian, Egyptian, Arabian, Persian; but Bagdad and Balsora, Grand Cairo, the silver

Tigris, and the blooming gardens of Damascus, though they can be found indeed on the map, live much more truly in that

enchanted realm that rises o'er "the foam of perilous seas in faery lands forlorn." What craft can sail those perilous seas like

the book that has been called a great three-decker to carry tired people to Islands of the Blest? "The immortal fragment,"

says Sir Richard Burton, who perhaps knew the Arabian Nights as did no other European, "will never be superseded in the

infallible judgment of childhood. The marvellous imaginativeness of the Tales produces an insensible brightness of mind

and an increase of fancy-power, making one dream that behind them lies the new and unseen, the strange and unexpected -

in fact, all the glamour of the unknown."


It would be a delightful task to any boy or girl to begin at the beginning and read the first English version of these famous

stories, made from the collection of M. Galland, Professor of Arabic in the Royal College of Paris. The fact that they had

passed from Arabic into French and from French into English did not prevent their instantaneous popularity. his was in

1704 or thereabouts, and the world was not so busy as it is nowadays, or young men would not have gathered in the

middle of the night under M. Galland's window and cried: "O vous, qui savez de si jolis contes, et qui les racontez si bien,

racontez nous en un!"


You can also read them in Scott's edition or in Lane's (both of which, but chiefly the former, we have used as the

foundation of our text), while your elders - philologists or Orientalists - are studying the complete versions of John Payne or

Sir Richard Burton. You may leave the wiseacres to wonder which were told in China or India, Arabia or Persia, and

whether the first manuscript dates back to 1450 or earlier.


We, like many other editors, have shortened the stories here and there, omitting some of the tedious repetitions that crept

in from time to time when Arabian story-tellers were adding to the text to suit their purposes.


Mr Andrew Lang says amusingly that he has left out of his special versions "all the pieces that are suitable only for Arabs and

old gentlemen," and we have done the same; but we have taken no undue liberties. We have removed no genies nor

magicians, however terrible; have cut out no base dead of Vizier nor noble deed of Sultan; have diminished the size of

no roc's egg, nor omitted any simple allusion to the great and only Haroun Al-raschid, Caliph of Bagdad, Commander of

the Faithful, who must have been a great inspirer of good stories.


Enter into this "treasure house of pleasant things," then, and make yourself at home in the golden palaces, the gem-studded

caves, the bewildering gardens. Sit by its mysterious fountains, hear the plash of its gleaming cascades, unearth its magic

lamps and talismans, behold its ensorcelled princes and princesses.


Nowhere in the whole realm of literature will you find such a Marvel, such a Wonder, such a Nonesuch of a book;

nowhere will you find impossibilities so real and so convincing; nowhere but in what Henley calls:


... that blessèd brief

Of what is gallantest and best

In all the full-shelved Libraries of Romance.

The Book of rocs,

Sandalwood, ivory, turbans, ambergris,

Cream-tarts, and lettered apes, and Calenders,

And ghouls, and genies - O so huge

They might have overed the tall Minster Tower,

Hands down, as schoolboys take a post;

In truth the Book of Camaralzaman,

Schemselnihar and Sinbad, Scheherezade

The peerless, Bedreddin, Badroulbadour,

Cairo and Serendib and Candahar,

And Caspian, and the dim, terrific bulk -

Ice-ribbed, fiend-visited, isled in spells and storms -

Of Kaf ... That centre of miracles

The sole, unparalleled Arabian Nights.




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