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Addiscombe, i

B ooJl: of mitu, tho worn and old.

Oft as I peruse thy pages,

L I find some Jewel rare

T tusted to thy guardian care;

O r some precept of the Sages

N o.c ht'iome transmuted gold.


ental Bookseller
St. Rusiell Street
N DO N. W.C. I



T^lLli OF THE ©iliJOl] I-.






( f^'cU^ )






1; '

It is, perhaps, quite unnecessary to inform our
readers, that Sir Charles Morell, which has
so long appeared on the title-page of these Tales,
•was an assumed name. The real author was Mr.
Mr. James Ridley, eldest son of the Rev. Dr.
Gloucester Ridley, a clergyman of considerable
eminence, and the author of a very elaborate life
of his great ancestor, the celebrated martyr. Bi-
shop Ridley.

James Ridley was educated at Winchester, and
New College, Oxford; and, after taking orders
succeeded his father in the living of Rumford in
I Essex. In the year 17G1, while attending his
duty as chaplain to a marching regiment at the
siege of Belleisle, he laid the foundation of some
disorders, from which, to the unspeakable grief of
his family and friends, he never recovered, and
which, some years after, being then happily mar-
ried and preferred in the church, terminated his
life in February 1765.

He wrote the Schemer, a very humorous perio-
dical paper, for the London Chronicle, but after-
wards collected into a volume and published. He
was also the author of the History of James Love-
grove, Esq. : but the Tales now presented to the
reader, is the work on which his fame principally
rests ; and the many editions through which it
has passed, sufficiently attests its popularity.



Tlie Life of Horam . . .1


Tlie Talisman of Oromancs; or, the Adven-
tures of the Merchant Abudah . . 2G

The Dervise Alfouran , . .80

History of Hassan Assar, Caliph of Bagdat 92

Kelaun and Guzzarat . . , 103


The Adventures of L^rad ; or, the Fair Wan-
derer 133


The Enchanters ; or, Misnar the Sultan of

Persia . . . . V

The History of Mahoud . . .11

The History of the Princess of Cassimir 2G2


Sadakand Kalasrade ; or, the Waters of Ob-
livion . . . .2

Mir^lip the Persian ; or, Phesoj Ecneps the
Dervise of the Groves ; including the Ad-
ventures of Adhim the Magnificent . 354


During my long and painful residence in many
different parts of Asia, botli in the Mogul's domi-
nions, and in those of the Ottoman Empire, it was
my fortune, several times, to meet with a small
jPersian work, entitled, 'The Delightful Lessons
[of Horam the son of Asmar :' a book of great note
[both at Isaphan and Constantinople, and frequently
[read by the religious teachers of Mahomet to their
I disciples, to excite them to works of morality and

I I confess, being chiefly conversant in trade, I had
very little appetite to read the religious doctrines
of Pagans ; and it was not till I had met with the
work in almost every part of Asia, that I was
tempted to examine a book recommended on the
score of their religion. But a few hours reading in
it made me repent my former want of curiosity ; as
the descriptions were lively, the tales interesting
and delightful, and the morals aptly and beauti-
fully couched under the most entertaining images
of a romantic imagination.

Having got this treasure into my possession, it
was my next study to translate it into my native
language; intending it, when completed, as a pre-
sent to my wife and family in England. But, busi-
ness calling me to Forte St. George, 1 unfortunately
left a part of the manuscript behind me at Bombay,
I was sensibly affected at tliis less, and the more so,
as I found it impossible, through the multiplicity
of my affairs, to replace my tianslation : so I gave
over all thoughts of my intended present, and con-
tented myself with frequently reading the enchant-
ing original


But if my voyage to Forte St. George deprive
my family of the translation, it doubly repaid m
loss, by the addition of a very valuable frieijd, wit
whom I got acquainted at Fort St. George. Thi
was no other than the great Horam, and author o
the book in question, who then resided in th
Blacks J'own, and was esteemed as a saint by a
denominations, both Pagans and Mohammedan
and who was very intimate with the English be
longing to the Fort.

As I was extremely desirous of his acquaintance
and very assiduous in pleasing him, he soon distin
gtiished me from the rest of my countrymen ; an
he would often, in our walks through the gardens
at the back of the Fort, entertain me with his ele
pant and instructive conversation. At these time
J did not fail, at proper intervals, to lament hi
disbelief of our Holy Christian Faith. To tliis, fo
some time he made no answer; but wheneve
it was mentioned, he seemed more thoughtful an
reserved. But I considered the subject of to
much consequence to be laid aside, merely on
point of punctilio, and therefore seldom omitted t
brinsr it up in all our private conversations; till a
length, one day, after I had been for some tim
expatiating on the blessings of Christianity, h
stopped short, and falling prostrate on the sand
walk, in a solemn and audible voice pronounced a
follows, in the Persian language : —

< O Alia ! thou most powerful and mercifi
Being ; who, although thou spannest the heaven
with thine hand, dost nevertheless endue the pis
mire and the bee with wisdom and knowledge
vouchsafe also to enlighten the understanding c
the reptile that adores thee ; and if it be thy wil
wdio canst cause the light to rise out of darkne
that these men should teach that with their lips ft


ruth, which they will not acknowledge by their
ives, have mercy both on me and them : — on me,
fho cannot be convicted by precept without ex-
mple; and on them, who mock and deny thee,
inder the semblance of faith and obedience! Are
lot the Christian vices, O Alia, more hateful in thy
i2;htthan Pagan blindness? and the eyesof those
vho boast superior light, more dim than the eyes
>f him who gropeth in darkness and error ? Are
hese men, who are hliarp and greedy in worldly
^ain. lavish and profuse of heavenly riches? And
vould they who covet the dust of India, oflFer us an
iternal exchange for our mouldering possessions?
5urely the purest and wisest religion cannot be
•evealed to the most unthankful and ignorant of
nankind. The pearl would not be cast to the
iwine, and the children of Alia be deprived of their
nheritance. But the worm must not fly, the
gnorant must not judge, nor dust presume \"

After saying this, which, 1 confess affected me
trongly, he continued some time in awful silence,
irostrate on the ground; and at length arose, with
ears in his eyes, saying, * Be the will of Alia, the
aw of his creature !' — It was some minutes before I
ould muster up words and resolution to answer
Horam, so much was I awed by his just, though
severe imprecations : but observing him still con-
inue his meditations, I ventured to begin.

' My friend,' said I, 'God is just, and man is
sinful. The Christian religion is professed by mil-
ions, and all are not like the merchants of India.
If these prefer wealth to religion, there are many
ivho have suffered for the cause of Christ ; who
iiave preferred an ignominious de-nth in his fai h,to
ill the glories of infidelity. I, indeed, am not like
roe of these; but I ti-ust, O Horam, that ray faith,
though wef'k, is not dead ; and that my obedience,


though imperfect, will yet be accepted, tlirouL:U
His merits whom I serve.'

' If all Christians were like my friend,' said Ho-
ram, ' Horam would embrace the faith of Christ:
but what are those who mingle with infidels, whose,
days are the days of riot, and whose nights are the
nights of intemperance and wantonness ? who teach!
truth, and practise deceit? who, calling themselves.
Christians, do deeds unworthy of Pagans ?'

* These,' said I, ' my friend, arc most of them
unhappy men of strong passions and small instruc
tion, who were sent here as forlorn hopes ; but ever
of these, many have turned out sober and religious
and have spent the latter part of their lives in pietj
and devotion.'

' What !' interrupted Horam, * they have servec
their lusts first, and their God last ! Alia, whom
worship, likes not such votaries; he requires thi
earliest offerings of a pious heart, and prayers an(
thanksgiving that arise to Heaven ere the dew
the night disappear. The man who serves the all
glorious Alia, must prostrate himself ere the watch
ful sun accuse him of sloth by his reviving pre
sence, and continue his adoration when the lam
of day is no longer seen. He must enter into th
society of the faithful, while manhood delays t
seal him for his own ; and persevere in his marcl;
as the Rajaputas of the East.'

*0 Horam,' answered I, 'were the God whoi*
we worship to be worshipped in perfectness, tl
whole length of our lives would not suffice 1
lie prostrate before him ; but our merciful Fath(
expects not more from us than we are able to pr
him. True it is, that we ought to begin early, ar
late take rest, and daily and hourly offer up oi'
praises and petitions to the throne of his grac'
But better is a late repentance than none ; and tl


jleventh hour of the day for work, than perpetual
i dleness unto the end of our time: and this is not
Obtained to us but through the mercies of our Lord
Smd Saviour J — not the Prophet only, as Mahomet
[•epresents him, but the King, the Priest, and the
i5aviour of mankind !'

I ' What Saviour is this,' said Horam, ' of whom
j/ou speak so often, and in such raptures? Can one
t ;hen save another from the wrath of God, when you
jy'ourself acknowledge the best of men to be his
bnprofitable servants V

! 'Asa man only,' answered I, ' he cannot; but as
(God and man, he was able; and did offer a full atone-
; inent, not only for my sins, but for yours also.'
j ' It is certain,' said Horam, ' that all flesh is
I weak and corrupted; and, as the creatures of God,

I we cannot suppose that He, who is all goodness and
perfection, should make us unable to perform
what natural sense informs us, is our duty both to
, Alia and his creatures : that some supernatural
[power was necessary to relieve us, I grant ; but I
jee not why we should go so high as to suppose that
power must be Divine.'

' If the offence,' answered I, 'was against God,
God could only remit the punishment, and no
creature of God could possibly pay him more ser-
vice than was due from an entire dependent on his
Maker. Therefore, neither angel, nor saint, nor
prophet could redeem ; for all they could do,
was but the discharge of their own moral debts,
and cannot be called a work of mediation for an-
other. With regard to a prophet or any private
man ; give him the utmost power and favour with
God ; suppose him to be born perfect, to pay an
I unsinning obedience ; yet he still has paid but the
service of one man, and therefore can satisfy but
for one ; and with regard to angel, genius, or supe-


rior beitif^, though superior to man, he is but a ser-
vant of God, and a debtor to his Creator, to whom
he must for ever owo all possible service and obe-
dience. Considering an atonement in this light, O
Horam, you see no po^^sible Saviour but one equal
to Gi)d : *iind to suppose tliat there be many gods, is
to derogate from his honour, and to deny his
government and power. Tlierefore, we Christians
are taught that tlie Sou came from the Father; tiie
Messias, wlioin David wislied to see, and called him
Lord ; of whom all the prophets, in the books of
tlie prophecies of the Israelites, did prophesy; who
took upon him our flesh, that he misht be enabled
to siiffiT for the infirmities of mankind. And truly,
I think, O Horam, that this stupendous instance of
mercy cannot be looked upon as absurd or un-
reasonable, though it be the most supreme declara-
tion of God's mercy and forgiveness. For when God
condemns, who can ransom but God himself? or to
whom, think you, the glory of man's redemption
could be with any propriety attributed, but to the
Lord of all mercies V

' Mr. Morell,' said Horam, there is reason and
truth in the words of my friend ; but I am per-
suaded, few of the Christians I have seen, think so
seriously of these things as you do: profession
without practice, and faith (I think you call it so)
witliout a true belief, contents your brethren. If
your rcliuMou is true, how wicked are the greatest
part of the Europeans ! I can compare them only
to silly women, who strive to shut out the glories
of the meridian sim, that they may poke over the
dull light of an offensive lamp.'

My friend and I had many such conversations,
but this in particular I took down as soon as I left
him ; because, I confess, I was very much shocked
at his judicious remarks: and, I am. sure, if they


make as much impression on others as they did on
me, they will not be unserviceable to the world,
should ever these sheets see the public light.

And now I am in the vein of writing, and recol-
lecting these passages between Horam and myself
which give me great pleasure, I cannot omit men
tioning one particular, which passes between us pre-
viously to his relation of his own adventures to me.
We were disputing, as usual, on religion, and
, Horam was remarkably strenuous in contending for
his Prophet Mahomet; when I said to him, 'Tell
me then, Horam, since you are so bigoted to the
Mohammedan religion, what invitations have you
to propose, should I be willing to enter into your
faith V

*0, my friend,' answered Horam, shaking his

head, * I too well understand the meaning of your

deceitful request ! Yes,' continued he, ' I know,

\ the professors of my religion are apt to propose a

[ multitude of wives, and the pleasures of women, to

' those who will embrace our faith : but these, O

i Morell, I dare not promise, for I am scandalized

I at the Mohammedans, when I reflect, that worldly

pleasures are ail that we promise to those who will

take the name of Mahomet for their prophet : but

' surely the young only can propose such })leasurcs,

' and the young can only be captivated by them,

I Worldly jo\s aie mean incitements to the love of

I Alia, and impure embraces but little signs of purest

; faith. Had 1 an inestimable gem, should I honour

I it by placing it in the mire ? or would any one be-

■ licve that 1 had treasured it up amidst the filth of

I the earth V

\ The more I conversed with Horam, the more

reason had 1 to admire both his natural and

I acquired talents: he was a bigot to no religion, and

had as few prepossessions as ever I met with in man.


By his discourse, I found he had travelled into
many parts of the world ; and, by his sensible reflec-
tions, perceived that he had made a noble use of
his studies and travels. This made me very desirous
of hearinc? an account of his life; which, after some
lenjTth of acquaintance, he indulged me in.

I catne, (said he,) from the confines of the
Caspian Sea ; and the mother who bore me was the
widow of Adenam Asmar, the Iman of Ferabad:
she lived on the contribution of my father's friends,
who was adored, when living, for his piety and de-
votion ; and those who supported her, spared no
pains nor cost in my education, that I might tread in
the steps of Adenam my father. At twelve years of
age, my friends sent me in the caravan to Mousul,
to study under Acham, the most learned of the
teachers of the law of Mahomet. "With this sage I
continued for nine years, and officiated for him in
the mosques of Mousul; till Alhoun, the bashaw of
Diarbee, taking occasion to quarrel with our cadie,
marched towards Mousul, and utterly destroyed
the place ; carrying away with him four hundred of
the inhabitant*, whom he sold for slaves. Among
this number was Horam, the friend of thy bosom ;
who, though an Iman, was nevertheless sent to
Aleppo by the avaricious bashaw, and sold to an
English merchant. With this person, whose name
was Wimbleton, I lived for several years; and,
having a ready memory, I applied myself to lean>
the English language, and served him inthequalitv
of an interpreter. My master, finding me both
faithful and useful, soon employed me to traffick
for him in the inland countries; and I travelled
with the caravans into most parts of Amasia,
Turcomania, Armenia, Curdistan, and Persia : an I
executing my commissions to the satisfaction of my
master, he gave me my liberty, upon condition that


I would, during his life, serve him in the capacity
of a steward. I accepted with thanks his boun-
teous offer, and Alia made the time of my servi-
tude as the shadow before the sun.

Within two years my master died, and com-
manded me on his death- bed to make up his effects,
{■ and send or carry them to England to his brother,
who, he said, but little deserved them, (but the
grave should not be entered by those who were at
: enmity,) allowing me a quarter part for my sub-
' sistence : ' For freedom,' said he, ' without property,
\ is but an obligation to change, perhaps, a good
master for a worse.' — I was greatly affected at the
death of my master, and resolved to undertake
the journey to England in person; reserving only
one-tenth of my master's fortune, which was suf-
i ficient to satisfy the desires of one whose hope
[ was not fixed on the pleasures of life.
I Having collected my master's effects, I passed
t through the IMediterranean to Leghorn, and thence
it to Paris, and so by Calais to London. In the
I countries which I passed, I saw, with surprise, the
magnificence of the popish religion; where, how-
ever, ceremony seems to possess the seat of moral
duties, and superstition is clothed in the vestments
of faith. I was surprised to find such absurdities
in Europe, where I was warned by my master to
expect the most rational customs, and the purest
light of virtue and religion. But the female glance
will not always bear to be exposed, and the veils of
the East Avould well become the faces of the
European ladies. I often perceived a customary
monotony in the prayers of Christian priests, and
the fervour of devotion was buried in the un-
meaning gestures of its votaries. In the East we
fall low before Alia, we are earnest in our peti-
tions; but in Europe, Christians seem as uncon-


cerned in the temple as in their houses of refresh-
ment, and often as loquacious and familiar. But
this I have observed more frequent in England
than in any otl)cr part of the world. Indepd, the
English behave as though they were wiser than
the God they pretend to worship; they attend him
•with great inditference ; and it" the face is an index
of the mind, a bystander may perceive, that when
they meet together to worship tlieir Deity, they
think of every tiling but of relision. Perhaps, a
variety of attitudes is, amongst Christians, a mark
of the highest adoration ; if so, the English are
the most meritorious devotees 1 ever beheld. —
Some are sitting, some are standing, some are
lolling, some are yawning, some are even sleeping;
and all these varieties are to be met with in the
same part of their worship : so that a stranger
would imagine, that there was a great diversity of
opinion among Christians, even in the same
church, which was the most decent and becoming
posture for a sinner to use before a God of purity :
for so I think the Christians call their Deity. But
I will not trouble vou with my observations, which
were chiefly religious, as my first studies in life
naturally led me to observe the different modes of
religion among mankind.

I waited upon the brother of my deceased master
with a faithful account of his effects, and informed
him how generous my master had been to me in
allotting to me one quarter of his effects. Mr.
Edward Wimbleton chan.:ed colour at my relation ;
the death of his brother did not seem to affect him
so much as my declaration, that my master had
been so beneficent to me. I was grieved to ob-
serve this behaviour in a Christian; and to find
that a man, in the most enlightened kingdom of
the earth, should think so avariciously of riches


and show so little respect to his benefactor and
brother. But I hastened to relieve his disquietude,
as it is my maxim to make every one as happy as
lean, leaving justice and judgment to the eternal

' Though my master has been thus indulgent,
sir,' said I, 'yet I did not think it decent in me to
reward myself so amply as his partial fondness
might fancy I deserved; and therefore I have only
taken one-tenth part, and the rest I am ready to
deliver up to you.'

Mr. Edward Wimbleton was pleased at my
answer. — ' Modesty and decency,' said he, ' are the
most useful attendants on those who were born to
serve; and I commend your fidelity to my brother,
in not presuming to take that, which sickness
only, and an impaired judgment, misht influence
him to lavish and squander away. He always was
too generous, — he hurt his fortune here in England
formerly by the same vice, and much good counsel
have I given him ere now on that topic, when he
wanted to persuade me to lend him money, to
make up his broken affairs ; but 1 rather advised
him to seek his fortune out of the kingdom ; and
if I had supplied him here, he never had gone to
Aleppo, or been the man he was when he died.' —
He then commended my fidelity to my master, and
commanded me to wait upon him the next morn-
ing. This I did, and took with me the will of the
deceased, wherein my legacy was specified ; and I
found it not useless to me.

Mr. Edward Wimbleton, when he saw me in the
morning, abused me much ; calling me many
names, which were a reflection on my country, and
my religion. These I submitted to patiently, con-
sidering how often the Christians are abused and
stigmatised by the followers of Mahomet. But


his threat3 were succeeded by more alarming
severities : for, opening his counting-house door,
he beckoned to some ruffians, who called them-
selves officers of justice ; and commanded them to
seize me, and carry me to prison, as a debtor to
him. I insisted that I owed no man any thing.
To this, my master's brother answered, that ' I
had cajoled him with a false story of my honesty
and moderation, and, under pretence of not taking
a quarter of his brother's fortune which was left
me, I had taken a tenth part, when in reality none
was left me.'

To this I answered, 'that I could produce my
master's will, which was poperly attested; and
that I had a friend in London, a gentleman who
had been long resident in Aleppo, who had
cautioned me to be watchful of his dealings ; that,
if the officers had the power of the law, they might
use it ; but if not my friend would inform against
Mr. VVimbletou, if he did not meet me on the
Exchange by two o'clock.'

At this instant we heard a violent knocking at
the door; at which Mr. Wimbleton turned pale ;
and the officers, if such they were, looked aghast.
1 took advantage of their consternation, and
hurried out of the counting-house to the street-
door, and saw my dear friend, with several gentle-
men behind him.

'Sir,' said I, 'you are come in time to save me
from the designs of several ill-looking men. Mr.
Wimbleton charges me with imposition ; but I
have in my pocket the will of my master.'

' Where is Mr. Wimbleton V said my friend ; ' is
there no servant in the house V and he knocked

' This sir,' said I, ' is the counting-house,' (point-
ing to the door ;) 'I left him in it with several


men, whom he called officers of justice.' — Myfrleud
then rapped at the door of the counting-house, and
was told from within, that Mr. Wimbleton saw no
company, nor did any business that day. * Well,'
answered ray friend, ' I am not much concerned
about that, as I have rescued a poor stranger from

We quitted the house of my master's brother,
and my friend carried me to the 'Change, and de-
clared to every one the usage I had met with, and
the right I had to insist on a quarter of my

Online LibraryCharles MorellThe tales of the genii → online text (page 1 of 32)