The Thief of Bagdad

The Thief of Bagdad

by Achmed Abdullah

PDF (Adobe) Publication Date: 15/03/2018


First published in 1924, The Thief of Bagdad has been reprinted only once in the past seventy-five years! Don't miss your chance to read this gorgeous, opulently-written fantasy classic. The story begins when Achmed, the most skillful thief in the city-state of Bagdad, steals into the Palace of the Caliph in search of loot; but one look at the city's Princess, and he discovers a greater treasure, for it is the Princess who becomes the thief, stealing his heart instead. Days later it is announced that the Princess, having reached marriageable age, according to ancient tradition, will meet the Princes of all the neighboring kingdoms and choose from among them the Prince who most moves her heart, to become her husband and the future ruler of Bagdad. Three famous Princes come to woo her: Bhartari-hari Vijramukut, Prince of Hindustan, Khalaf Mansur Nasir-ud-din Nadir Khan Kuli Khan Durani, Prince and King of Persia, and the evil, rapacious Cham Sheng, Prince of the Mongols, who has determined Bagdad shall be his, by marriage if possible, by conquest should the Princess choose otherwise. A fourth suitor comes too, the mysterious, resplendent "Ahmed, Prince of the Isles of the Sea and of the Seven Palaces," who is none other than the Thief of Bagdad, arrayed in stolen finery. He has come to steal from the Palace again, but this time his intended loot isn't gold and jewels but the Princess herself. But when the Princess falls in love with Achmed, he wakens to a sickening realization of how wrong it would be to take her from the world she lives in to his. Renouncing her love, Achmed wanders the streets despondent, until he encounters an ancient sage and confesses his love and sins. "If you love a Princess," the sage advises, "make yourself a Prince," and sets him on the path to a magic treasure, a secret that, if he survives the fearsome dangers that guard it, will make him a Prince. Meanwhile, the Princess, encouraged by the sage, determines to use all her wits to forestall her remaining suitors until Achmed returns. What neither counts on is the black magic and black treachery of Cham Sheng, Prince of the Mongols. Soon conflict is joined with flying carpets, cloaks of invisibility, all-seeing crystals; secret agents; and armies both real and magical. The Thief of Bagdad is the masterwork by the great English-Arabian writer, Syyed Shaykh Achmed Abdullah Nadir Khan el-Durani el-Iddrissyeh (1881-1945), himself the son of a Russian Grand Duke and an Arabian princess, one time officer with the British Army in India.

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