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After these words, the magician drew a ring off his finger, and put it on one of Alla ad Deen's, telling him, that it was a preservative against all evil while he should observe what he had prescribed to him. After this instruction he said, “Go down boldly, child, and we shall both be rich all our lives."
Alla ad Deen jumped into the cave, descended the steps, and found the three halls just as the African magician had described. He went through them with all the precaution the fear of death could inspire ; crossed the garden without stopping, took down the lamp from the niche, threw out the wick and the liquor, and, as the magician had desired, put it in his vestband. But as he came down from the terrace, seeing it was perfectly dry, he stopped in the garden to observe the fruit, which he only had a glimpse of in crossing it. All the trees were loaded with extraordinary fruit, of different colours on each tree. | Some bore fruit entirely white, and some clear and transparent as crystal; some pale red, and others deeper ; some green, blue, and purple, and others yellow: in short, there was fruit of all colours. The white were pearls; the clear and transparent, diamonds; the deep red, rubies; the paler, balas rubies ;* the green, emeralds; the blue | turquoises; the purple, amethysts; and those that were of yellow
cast, sapphires. Alla ad Deen was altogether ignorant of their worth, and would have preferred figs and grapes, or any other fruits. But though he took them only for coloured glass of little value, yet he was so pleased with the variety of the colours, and the beauty and extraordinary size of the seeming fruit, that he resolved to gather some of every sort; and accordingly filled the two new purses his uncle had bought for him with his clothes. Some he wrapped up in the skirts of his vest, which was of silk, large and wrapping, and crammed his bosom as full as it could hold.
Alla ad Deen, having thus loaded himself with riches he knew not I the value of, returned through the three halls with the same precaution, made all the haste he could, that he might not make his uncle wait, and soon arrived at the mouth of the cave, where the African magician expected him with the utmost impatience. As soon as Alla ad Deen saw him, he cried out, “Pray, uncle, lend me your hand, to help me out.” “Give me the lamp first,” replied the magician ; "it will be troublesome to you." “ Indeed, uncle," answered Alla ad Deen, “I cannot now; it is not troublesome to me: but I will as soon as I am up." The African magician was so obstinate, that he would have the lamp before he would help him up; and Alla ad Deen, who had incumbered himself so much with his fruit that he could not well get at it, refused to give it to him till he was out of the cave. The African magician, provoked at this obstinate refusal, flew into a passion,
* Balas rubies are rubies of the brightest colour.
threw a little of his incense into the fire, which he had taken care to keep in, and no sooner pronounced two magical words, than the stone which had closed the mouth of the cave moved into its place, with the earth over it in the same manner as it lay at the arrival of the magician and Alla ad Deen.
This action of the African magician's plainly showed him to be neither Alla ad Deen's uncle, nor Mustapha the tailor's brother; but a true African. Africa is a country whose inhabitants delight most in magic of any in the whole world, and he had applied himself to it from his youth. After forty years' experience in enchantments, geomancy, fumigations, and reading of magic books, he had found out that there was in the world a wonderful lamp, the possession of which would render him more powerful than any monarch ; and by a late operation of geomancy, he had discovered that this lamp lay concealed in a subterraneous place in the midst of China, in the situation already described. Fully persuaded of the truth of this discovery, he set out from the farthest part of Africa ; and after a long and fatiguing journey, came to the town nearest to this treasure. But though he had a certain knowledge of the place where the lamp was, he was not permitted to take it himself, nor to enter the subterraneous place, but must receive it from the hands of another person. For this reason he had addressed himself to Alla ad Deen, whom he looked upon as a young lad whose life was of no consequence, and fit to serve his purpose, resolving, as soon as he should get the lamp into his hands, to sacrifice him to his avarice and wickedness, by making the fumigation mentioned before, and repeating two magical words, the effect of which would remove the stone into its place, so that no witness would remain of the transaction.
The blow he had given Alla ad Deen was intended to make him obey the more readily, and give him the lamp as soon as he should ask for it. But his too great precipitation, and his fear lest somebody should come that way during their dispute, and discover what he wished to keep secret, produced an effect quite contrary to what he had proposed to himself.
When the African magician saw that all his hopes were frustrated for ever, he returned the same day for Africa; but went quite round the town, and at some distance from it, lest some persons who had observed him walk out with the boy, on seeing him come back without him, should entertain any suspicions, and stop him.
According to all appearance, there was no prospect of Alla ad Deen being any more heard of. But the magician, when he had contrived his death, forgot the ring he had put upon his finger, which preserved him, though he knew not its virtue. It may seem astonishing that the loss of that, together with the lamp, did not drive the magician to
despair ; but magicians are so much used to misfortunes, and events contrary to their wishes, that they do not lay them to heart, but still | feed themselves, to the end of life, with unsubstantial notions and chimeras.
The surprise of Alla ad Deen, who had never suspected this treachery from his pretended uncle, after all his caresses and what he had done for him, is more easily to be imagined than expressed. When he found himself buried alive, he cried, and called out to his uncle, to tell him he was ready to give him the lamp; but in vain, since his cries could not I be heard. He descended to the bottom of the steps, with a design to
get into the garden, but the door, which was opened before by enchantment, was now shut by the same means. He then redoubled his cries and tears, sat down on the steps, without any hopes of ever seeing light again, and in a melancholy certainty of passing from the present darkness into that of speedy death. i Alla ad Deen remained in this state two days, without eating or drinking, and on the third looked upon death as inevitable. Clasping his hands with an entire resignation to the will of God, he said, “ There is no strength or power but in the great and high God.” In this action of joining his hands he rubbed the ring which the magician had put on his finger, and of which he knew not yet the virtue. Immediately a genie of enormous size and frightful aspect rose out of the earth, his head reaching the roof of the vault, and said to him, “What wouldst thou have ? I am ready to obey thee as thy slave, and the slave of all who may possess the ring on thy finger; I, and the other slaves of that ring."
At another time, Alla ad Deen, who had not been much used to such appearances, would have been so frightened at the sight of so extraordinary a figure that he would not have been able to speak; but the danger he was in made him answer without hesitation, “ Whoever thou art, deliver me from this place, if thou art able.” He had no sooner spoken these words, than he found himself on the very spot where the magician had caused the earth to open.
It was some time before his eyes could bear the light, after being so long in total darkness : but after he had endeavoured by degrees to support it, and began to look about him, he was much surprised not to find the earth open, and could not comprehend how he had got so soon out of its bowels. There was nothing to be seen but the place where the fire had been, by which he could nearly judge the situation of the cave. Then turning himself towards the town, he perceived it at a distance in the midst of the gardens that surrounded it, and saw the way by which the magician had brought him. Returning God thanks to find himself once more in the world, he made the best of his way home. When he got within his mother's door, the joy to see her and