Home Poem Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves poem

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves poem

Once, a very long time ago, two brothers lived in one Persian city – Qasim and Ali Baba. When their father died, they divided the money that remained after him, and Qasim began to sell expensive fabrics and silk robes in the market. He knew how to praise his goods and invite customers, and there were always a lot of people in his shop. Qasim became increasingly rich and, when he had accumulated a lot of money, married the daughter of the chief justice, whose name was Fatima.
And Ali Baba did not know how to trade and make money, and he was married to a poor girl named Zeinab. They quickly used up almost everything they had, and one day Zainab said:
– Listen, Ali Baba, we will soon have nothing to eat. You have to come up with something, or we’ll starve to death.
“Okay,” Ali Baba replied, “I’ll think about what we should do.
He went out into the garden, sat under a tree and began to think. Ali Baba thought for a long time and finally came up with it. He took his remaining money, went to the market and bought two donkeys, an axe and a rope.

And the next morning he went out of town, to a high mountain overgrown with dense forest, and spent the whole day chopping wood. In the evening, Ali Baba tied the wood in bundles, loaded his donkeys with them and returned to the city. He sold firewood in the market and bought bread, meat and herbs.
Since then, Ali Baba went to the mountain every morning and chopped wood until the evening, and then sold it in the market and bought bread and meat for himself and for Zeinab.

And then one day he was standing under a tall tree, about to cut it down, and suddenly he noticed that dust had risen on the road all the way to the sky. And when the dust dissipated, Ali Baba saw that a detachment of horsemen dressed in shells and chain mail was rushing directly at him; spears were tied to the saddles, and long sharp swords sparkled on their belts. Ahead galloped on a tall white horse a one-eyed man with a black beard.

Ali Baba was very frightened. He quickly climbed to the top of the tree and hid in its branches. And the riders drove up to the place where he had just stood and came down to the ground. Each of them removed a heavy bag from the saddle and put it on his shoulders; then they stood in a row, waiting to be ordered by the one-eyed chieftain.
“What kind of people are they and what do they have in their bags? Ali Baba thought. “They’re probably thieves and robbers.”
He counted the people, and it turned out that there were exactly forty of them, except for the chieftain. The chieftain stood in front of his men and led them to a high rock in which there was a small door of steel; it was so overgrown with grass and thorns that it was almost invisible.
The Chieftain stopped in front of the door and shouted loudly:
– Simsim, Open the Door!
And suddenly the door in the rock swung open, the chieftain entered, and his men entered behind him, and the door slammed shut behind them again.
“Here’s a miracle! Ali Baba thought. – After all, simsim is a small plant. I know they squeeze oil out of it, but I didn’t know it could open doors!”
Ali Baba really wanted to take a closer look at the magic door, but he was so afraid of robbers that he did not dare to get off the tree.

A little time passed, and suddenly the door swung open again, and forty robbers came out with empty bags. As before, the one-eyed chieftain walked in front. The robbers tied empty bags to the saddles, jumped on their horses and jumped away.
Then Ali Baba, who was already tired of sitting crouching on a tree, quickly descended to the ground and ran up to the rock.
“What happens if I also say, ‘Simsim, open the door?'” he thought. – Will the door open or not? I’ll try!”

He mustered up the courage, inhaled more air and shouted at the top of his voice:
– Simsim, Open the Door!
And immediately the door swung open in front of him, and the entrance to a large cave opened.
Ali Baba entered the cave and as soon as he crossed the threshold, the door slammed shut behind him again. Ali Baba became a little scared: what if the door no longer opens and he cannot leave? But he still walked forward, looking around in surprise.
He saw that he was in a large room and against the walls there were many tables lined with gold dishes under silver lids. Ali Baba smelled delicious food and remembered that he had not eaten anything in the morning. He went to one table, removed the lids from the dishes, and his drool flowed , on the dishes were all the dishes that you could wish for: fried chickens, rice pilaf, pancakes with jam, halva, apples and many other delicious things.
Ali Baba grabbed the chicken and instantly devoured it. Then I started to pile up, and when I was done with it, I ran my hands into the halva, but I could not eat a single piece – before that it was full. After resting for a while, he looked around and saw the entrance to another room. Ali Baba walked in and closed his eyes. The room was all sparkling and shining – so mThere was gold and jewels in it. Gold dinars and silver dirhams in piles lay right on the ground, like stones on the seashore. Precious utensils – cups, trays, dishes decorated with expensive stones – stood in all corners. Bales of silk and fabrics – Chinese, Indian, Syrian, Egyptian – lay in the middle of the room; sharp swords and long spears hung along the walls, which would be enough for an entire army.
Ali Baba’s eyes widened, and he did not know what to do: he tried on a red silk robe, then grabbed a golden tray and looked into it as in a mirror, then collected a handful of gold coins and poured them.
Finally he calmed down a bit and said to himself:
– This money and jewelry were probably looted, and they were put here by robbers who were just here. These riches do not belong to them, and if I take a little gold, there will be nothing wrong with it. After all, there is so much of it here that it is impossible to count.
Ali Baba shook the floors of his robe and, kneeling, began to pick up gold. He found two empty bags in the cave, filled them with dinars, dragged them to the door and shouted:
– Simsim, Open the Door!
The door immediately swung open.
Ali Baba came out of the cave and the door slammed shut behind him. Thorny bushes and branches intertwined and hid her from view. Ali Baba’s donkeys were grazing on the lawn. Ali Baba put bags of gold on them, covered them with firewood on top and drove home.
When he returned, it was already night and an alarmed Zeinab was waiting for him at the gate.
What have you been doing in the woods for so long? She asked. – I thought you were torn apart by wolves or hyenas. Why did you bring the firewood home instead of selling it?
“Now you will find out everything, Zeinab,” Ali Baba said. – Help me bring these bags into the house and do not make noise, so that the neighbors will not hear us.
Zeinab silently placed one of the bags on her back, and she and Ali Baba entered the house. Zeinab tightly closed the door behind her, lit the lamp and untied the bag. Seeing the gold, she turned pale with fear and shouted:
– What have you done, Ali Baba? Who did you rob?
“Don’t worry, Zeinab,” Ali Baba said. – I did not rob anyone and now I will tell you what happened to me today.
He told her about the robbers and the cave and, finishing his story, said:
– Look, Zeinab, hide this gold and don’t tell anyone about it. People will think that we have really robbed someone, and they will report on us to the sultan, and then he will take all the gold from us and put us in a dungeon. Let’s dig a hole and hide the gold there.
They went out into the garden, dug a hole in the light of the moon, put all the gold there, and then again threw the hole with earth. Zeinab also lay down, but she tossed and turned from side to side for a long time and thought:
“How much gold did Ali Baba bring? As soon as dawn breaks, I will count all the coins to the last!”
The next morning, when Ali Baba, as always, left for the mountain, Zeinab ran to the pit, dug it up and began to count the dinars.
But there were so many of them that Zainab could not count. She didn’t count very well and kept getting confused. Finally she got fed up with it and said to herself:
– I’d rather take a measure and measure the gold. But I don’t have a measure. I’ll have to ask Fatima.

Qasim and Fatima lived in the house next door. Zaynab immediately ran to them. She walked into the canopy and said to Fatima:
– Do me a favor, lend me a measure for a while. I’ll give it back to you today.
“Okay,” Fatima replied, “but my measure is with the neighbor. Now I’m going to go get it and give it to you. Wait here in the canopy, your feet are dirty and I just put clean mats.
Fatima made it all up. And the measure with which the cereal was measured hung in its place – in the kitchen, above the hearth, and it had not changed the mat for ten days. In fact, she just really wanted to know why Zeinab suddenly needed a measure, because Fatima knew well that Ali Baba had not had any cereal in the house for a long time. And she did not want to ask Zeinab: let Zeinab not imagine that Fatima was interested in her affairs. And she came up with a way to find out without asking. She smeared the bottom of the measure with honey and then took it out to Zeinab and said:
– Nah, take it. Just look, don’t forget to bring it back intact and no later than sunset. I need to measure lentils myself.
“Thank you, Fatima,” Zeinab said and ran home. She raked all the gold out of the pit and began to hurriedly measure it, all the time looking around.
There were ten measures of gold and another half a measure.
Zeinab returned the measure to Fatima and left, bowing to the ground. Fatima immediately grabbed the measure and looked into it. And suddenly she saw: a small light circle stuck to the bottom of the measure. It was a brand new gold dinar.
Fatima couldn’t believe her eyes. She turned the coin between her fingers and even tried it on the tooth: is it fake? But the dinar was the real one, made of pure gold.
– So what a cereal it is! Fatima shouted. – They are so rich that Zeinab even measures gold by measure. Perhaps they robbed someone, and they themselves pretend to be poor. Qasim would rather come back from the shop! I’ll tell him everything. Let him go to Ali Baba and threaten him well! Ali Baba will probably share it with him.
Fatima sat at the gate all day, waiting for Qasim. When it began to get dark, Qasim returned from the shop, and Fatima, not even allowing him to remove his turban, shouted:
– Listen, Qasim, what news do I have! Your brother Ali Baba pretends to be a poor man, and he, it turns out, is richer than you and me!
– What have you made up! Qasim angrily said. – There is no one richer than me on our street, and in the whole block. No wonder I was chosen as a market sergeant.
-You don’t believe me? Fatima was offended. – Well, tell me, how do you count the money when you calculate the proceeds in the evenings?
“I usually think so,” Qasim replied. – I put the dinars and dirhams in piles and count it. And as I count a hundred, I bend my finger so as not to make a mistake. Why are you asking such nonsense?
– No, not stupidity! Fatima shouted. – You count dinars into tens and hundreds, and Zeinab, your brother’s wife, counts measures. Here’s what she left in my yardstick.
And Fatima showed him the dinar that stuck to the bottom of the measure.
Qasim examined him from all sides and said:
– Don’t let my name be Qasim if I don’t question where Ali Baba got the money. By cunning or force, but I’ll take them away from him!
And he immediately went to his brother. Ali Baba had just returned from the mountain and was resting on a stone bench in front of the house. He was very happy with Qasim and said:
– Welcome to you, Qasim! You don’t visit me often. What brought you to me today, and even at such a late hour?
“Good evening, my brother,” Qasim said importantly. – I was very offended by you.
Grievance? Ali Baba wondered. – How could I, a poor lumberjack, offend a market sergeant?
“You are now richer than me,” Qasim said. – You measure gold by measure. Here’s what my wife found at the bottom of the yardstick she lent to your wife Zainab. Don’t lie to me: I know everything! Why did you hide from me that you got rich? Did you rob someone?
Ali Baba realized that Qasim had learned his secret and decided to confess everything.
“O my brother,” he said, “I did not mean to deceive you at all.
I just didn’t tell you anything because I was afraid of thieves and robbers who could kill you.
And he told Qasim about the cave and the robbers. Then he held out his brother’s hand and said:
– O my brother, you and I are both sons of the same father and of the same mother. Let’s bisect everything I bring from the cave. I know how to get in there and how to protect myself from robbers. Take half of the money and treasure – this will be enough for you for a lifetime.
– I don’t want half, I want all the money! Qasim shouted and pushed Ali Baba’s hand away. – Tell me how to enter the cave, and if you don’t tell, I will report you to the sultan, and he tells you to cut off your head.
– Why are you threatening me with a sultan? Ali Baba said. – Go to the cave if you want, but you still can’t take all the money and treasure. Even if you drove gold and silver from the cave for a whole year, without resting either day or night, then you would not take away even half of what is there!
He told Qasim how to find the cave and told him to remember the words well, “Simsim, open the door!”
“I won’t forget,” Qasim said. – Simsim… simsim… It seems to be a plant, like hemp. I’ll remember.
The next morning, Qasim saddled ten mules, placed two large chests on each mule, and set out into the woods. He let his mules graze on the edge of the forest, found a door in the rock and stood in front of it, shouted with all his might:
– Hey Simsim, Open the Door!
The door swung open. Qasim entered and the door slammed shut behind him again. Qasim saw a cave full of treasures and completely lost his head in joy. He danced on the spot, then rushed forward and began to grab everything that came to hand – armfuls of expensive fabrics, pieces of gold, jugs and dishes, then threw them and tore golden swords and shields from the walls, grabbed handfuls of money and put them by the sinus. So he rushed around the cave for an hour, but could not take everything that was there. Finally he thought:
“I have a lot of time. I’ll take bag after bag out of here until I load all the mules, and then I’ll come again. I will go here every day,I won’t take everything to the last coin!”
He grabbed a bag of money and dragged it to the door. The door was locked. Qasim wanted to say the magic words that opened the door, but suddenly it turned out that he had forgotten them. He remembered only that it was necessary to say the name of some plant. And he shouted:
– Peas, Open the Door!
But the door didn’t open. Qasim was a little scared. He thought and shouted again:
– Wheat, open the door!
The door didn’t move. Qasim couldn’t remember anything out of fear and shouted the names of all the plants he knew:
– Oats, Open the Door!
– Hemp, open the door!
– Barley, open the door!
But the door wouldn’t open. Qasim realized that he would never get out of the cave again. He sat on a bag of gold and started crying.
At this time, robbers robbed rich merchants, took away a lot of gold and expensive goods from them. They decided to hide it all in a cave. Approaching the forest, the chieftain noticed mules on the edge, which were peacefully plucking the grass.
– What are these mules? The chieftain said. – Chests are tied to their saddles. Probably, someone found out about our cave and wants to rob us!
He ordered the robbers not to make noise and, approaching the door, said quietly:
The door opened and the robbers saw Qasim trying to hide behind a bag of money. The Chieftain rushed forward, waved his sword and cut off Qasim’s head.
The robbers left the body of Qasim in the cave, and they themselves caught the mules and, chasing them in front of them, jumped away.
And Fatima sat by the window all day – everyone waited for mules with chests full of gold to appear. But time passed, and Kashim was still gone. Fatima waited for the day, waited for the night, and in the morning ran to Ali Baba crying.
Ali Baba said:
– Don’t worry, Fatima. I’m going to go to the mountain myself and find out what happened to Qasim.
He immediately got on a donkey and drove into the woods, straight to the cave. And as soon as he entered the cave, he saw that his brother was lying dead on bags of money.
Ali Baba carried Qasim’s body out of the cave, put it in a bag and sadly drove home, thinking to himself:
“That’s what Kashima’s greed has brought! If he had agreed to share the money with me and hadn’t wanted to take it all, he would still be alive.”
Ali Baba gave Qasim a lavish funeral, but did not tell anyone how his brother had died. Fatima told everyone who escorted Qasim to the cemetery that her husband had been torn apart in the forest by wild beasts.
When Qasim was buried, Ali Baba said to Fatima:
– You know what, Fatima, sell me your house, and we will live together. Then I will not have to build a new house, and you will not be so afraid to live alone. Ok?
“O Ali Baba,” Fatima said, “my house is your home, and everything I have belongs to you. Let me live with you – I don’t need anything else.
“Well, that’s good,” Ali Baba said, and he and Zeinab and Fatima lived together.
Ali Baba went to the cave several more times and took out a lot of gold, precious clothes, carpets and dishes. Every day, his kitchen prepared food not only for himself, Zeinab and Fatima, but for all his poor neighbors who had nothing to eat. And when the neighbors thanked him, he said:
– Come tomorrow and bring all the poor with you. And there’s nothing to be thankful for. I treat you with the money of my brother Kashim, who was eaten on the mountain by wolves. He was a rich man.
Soon all the poor and beggars began to come to the house of Ali Baba for lunch and dinner, and the inhabitants of the city loved him very much.
That’s what happened to Ali Baba, Zeinab and Fatima.
As for the robbers, a few days later they again came to the cave and saw that the body of their enemy had disappeared, and bags of money were scattered on the ground.
– Someone came into our cave again! The chieftain shouted. – I recently killed one enemy, but it turns out there are several! May I not be Hassan the One-Eyed unless I kill anyone who wants to profit from our prey. Brave robbers! Is there a brave soul among you who will not be afraid to go to the city and find our offender? Let him not take up this matter as a coward or a weak man! Only the cunning and dexterous can fulfill it.
“O chieftain,” said one of the robbers, “no one but me will go to the city and track down our enemy. No wonder my name is Ahmed Daredevil. And if I don’t find it, do what you want with me.
“Okay, Ahmed,” the chieftain said. – I’ll give you one day to the term. If you find our enemy, I will appoint you as my assistant, and if you do not find it, it is better not to return. I’ll chop off your head.
– Be calm, Chieftain, it won’t be a day before you know where to find his enemy,” Ahmed said. – Wait for me tonight here in the woods.
He threw off his robber’s dress, put on a blue silk robe, red saffiano boots and a skullcap and went into town.
It was early morning. The market was still empty and all the shops were closed; only the old shoemaker sat under his canopy and, having laid out the tools, waited for the customers.
Ahmed Daredevil approached him and bowed and said:
– Good morning, Uncle. How early you got to work! If I hadn’t seen you, I would have had to wait a long time for the market to open.
– What do you need? An old shoemaker named Mustafa asked.
“I’m a stranger in your city,” Ahmed replied. – Only tonight I came here and waited until dawn, until the city gates were opened. In this city lived my brother, a rich merchant. I came to him from distant lands to see him, and as I approached the city, I heard that he had been found dead in the woods. Now I don’t know how to find his family to cry for him with them.
– Are you saying your brother was a rich merchant? The shoemaker asked. – A merchant was recently buried in our city, and I was at the funeral. The merchant’s wife said that he was torn apart by wolves, but I heard from one man that this was not true, and that this merchant was actually found dead in the forest, without a head, and secretly brought home in a bag.
Ahmed Daredevil head was very happy. He realized that this rich merchant was the man who was killed by the chieftain.
– Can you take me to his house? Ahmed asked the shoemaker.
“I can,” the shoemaker replied. – But what about work? What if someone comes to the market and wants to order me shoes, and I will not be there?
“Here’s a dinar for you,” Ahmed said. – Take it for the losses, and when you show me my brother’s house, I will give you another dinar.
– Thank you for your generosity! A delighted Mustafa exclaimed. – To earn this dinar, I need to put patches on my shoes for a whole month. Come along!
And the shoemaker led Ahmed to the house where Qasim lived.
– Here is the house where the murdered merchant lived. His brother has now settled here,” Mustafa said.
“That’s what I need!” thought Ahmed. He gave Mustafa the dinar and Mustafa left bowing and thanking. All the houses in this city were surrounded by high walls, so that only the gates faced the street. Remembering an unfamiliar house was not easy.
“It is necessary to note this house,” Ahmed said to himself, “in order to get to know it later.
He pulled a piece of chalk out of his pocket and placed a cross on the gate of the house. And then he went back and happily said to himself:
– Now I will remember this house and bring my comrades to it tomorrow. To be my assistant chieftain!
As soon as Ahmed had time to leave, Ali Baba’s maid named Marjana, an intelligent and brave girl, came out of the house. She was going to go to the market for bread and meat for dinner. Closing the gate, she turned around and suddenly saw a cross painted with chalk on the gate.
“Who bothered to stain our gates? She thought. – Probably street boys. No, the cross is too high! It was drawn by an adult, and this man conceived an evil case against us. He wants to remember our house in order to kill or rob us. I need to confuse him.”
Marjane returned home, took out a piece of chalk and placed crosses on all the neighboring houses. And then she went about her business.
And the robber ran into the cave and shouted:
– Listen, Chieftain! Listen to everything! I found the house of our enemy and marked it with a cross. I’ll show it to you tomorrow.
– Well done, Ahmed Daredevil! The chieftain said. – Get ready by tomorrow morning. We will hide sharp knives under our bathrobes and go with Ahmed to our enemy’s house.
“We listen and obey you, Chieftain,” the robbers said, and everyone began to congratulate Ahmed on his good luck.
And Ahmed Daredevil went around proud and said:
– See, I’ll be an assistant chieftain.
He did not sleep all night, waiting for the morning, and as soon as dawn broke, he jumped up and woke up the robbers. They put on wide Bukhara robes, white turbans and shoes with curved socks, hid knives under their robes and went to the city. And everyone who saw them said:
– These are Bukharans. They came to our city and inspected it.
Ahmed and the chieftain were in front of everyone. Ahmed drove his comrades around the city for a long time and finally found the right street.
“Look,” he said, “this is the house. See, there’s a cross on the gate.
“And here’s another cross,” said another robber. – In what house does our enemy live?
– Yes there is a cross on that house! And that’s it! And here is the cross! Yes, there are crosses on all the houses! – suddenly the rest of the robbers shouted.The ataman became angry and said: – What is thisoh so? Someone outsmarted you, Ahmed! You have not fulfilled the assignments, and you will not have to rob with us anymore. I’ll chop off your head myself!
And when they returned to the forest, the cruel chieftain cut off Ahmed’s head. And then he said:
– Who else will dare to find the house of our enemy? Who has the courage? Don’t let the lazy or weak try it!
“Let me try, O Chieftain,” said one of the robbers, Mohammad Pleshiviy. – I’m an old man, and I can’t be held that easily. And if I do not carry out the assignments, I will be executed just as you executed Ahmed.
“Go, Muhammad,” the chieftain said. – I’ll be waiting for you until tomorrow night. But look, if you do not find and show me the house of our enemy, you will have no mercy.
The next morning, Muhammad Pleshiviy went to the city. Ahmed told the robbers about Mustafa, and Muhammad went straight to the market to the old shoemaker. He had the same conversation with him as Ahmed and promised him two dinars if Mustafa showed him the house of the murdered merchant. And Mustafa, delighted, brought him all the way to the gate.
“I’ll have to mark the house somehow,” Muhammad thought. He took a piece of brick lying on the road and drew a small cross on the gate in the upper right corner.
“No one will see him here but me,” he thought. “I’ll run quickly after the chieftain and bring him here.”
And he quickly walked back to his comrades. And Marjana was just returning from the market. Seeing that a man had sneaked away from the gate of their house and ran down the road, she realized that something was wrong.
Marjana walked over to the gate, inspected it carefully, and saw a small red cross in the upper right corner.
“So, then, who puts crosses on our gates,” Marjana thought. “Wait, I’ll outsmart you.”
She picked up a piece of brick from the ground and placed the same crosses on the gates of all the houses of their street.
– Well, try to find our house now! She exclaimed. – You won’t be able to do it as well as yesterday!
And Muhammad pleshivy ran all the way, without stopping, and finally entered the cave, barely catching his breath.
– Let’s go soon! He shouted. – I marked this house in such a way that now our enemy cannot leave. Get ready soon, don’t hesitate!
The robbers wrapped themselves in cloaks and followed Muhammad. They were in a hurry to reach the city in the light, and came there just before sunset. Finding a familiar street, Muhammad Bald led the ataman to the largest and most beautiful gate and pointed his finger at the small red cross in the upper right corner of the gate.
“See,” he said, “here’s my mark.
– Whose is it? One of the robbers, who stopped at a nearby gate, asked. – There’s a cross drawn here too.
– Which cross? Muhammad shouted.
“Red,” the robber replied. – And on that gate it’s exactly the same. And on the contrary – too. While you were showing the chieftain your cross, I inspected all the adjacent gates.
“Well, Muhammad,” said the chieftain, “and you, therefore, were outsmarted?” Even though you are a good robber, and you did not fulfill the assignments. There will be no mercy for you!
And Muhammad died just like Ahmed. And there were not forty, but thirty-eight robbers in the ataman’s gang.
“I have to take on this difficult task myself,” the chieftain thought. “My people are good at fighting, stealing and robbing, but they are not good for cunning and deception.”
And the next morning, Hassan the One-Eyed, the chieftain of the robbers, went to the city himself. Trading in the market was in full swing. He found Mustafa the slipper and, crouching next to him, said:
– O Uncle, why are you so sad? Is there not enough work?
“I haven’t had a job for a long time,” the shoemaker replied. – I probably would have starved to death if fate had not sent me help. The day before yesterday, early in the morning, a generous man came to me and told me that he was looking for his brother’s relatives. And I knew where his brother’s house was, and I showed him the way, and the stranger gave me two dinars. Yesterday another stranger came to me and again asked me if I knew his brother who had recently died, and I brought him to the same house and again received two dinars. And today it’s noon, but no one has come to me. Apparently, the deceased has no more brothers.
Hearing mustafa’s words, the chieftain wept bitterly and said:
– What happiness that I met you! I am the third brother of this murdered man. I came from the Far West and only yesterday I learned that my dear brother had been killed. There were four of us brothers, and we all lived in different countries, and now we have converged in your city, but only to find our brother dead. Take me to his house, and I will give you as much as my brothers gave.
– Okay, the old man said happily. – Does he have no more brothers?
“No,” the chieftain replied, sighing heavily. – There were four of us, and now there are only three.
“It’s a pity that there are so few of you,” said the old Mustafa and sighed too. -Go.
He led the chieftain to Qasim’s house, received his payment, and left. And the chieftain counted and remembered well how many gates from the corner of the street to the gate of the house, so he did not need to mark the gate. Then he returned to his comrades and said:
– O robbers, I came up with one trick. If it succeeds, we will kill our enemy and take away all the riches he took away from the cave. Listen to me and do whatever I command.
And he told one of the robbers to go into town and buy twenty strong mules and forty jugs of butter.
And when the robber brought mules loaded with jugs, the chieftain ordered the robbers to get into the jugs. He himself covered the jugs with palm leaves and tied grass, and pierced air holes on top so that people would not suffocate. And in the remaining two jugs, I poured olive oil and smeared the rest of the jugs with it, so that people would think that oil was poured in all the jugs.
The chieftain himself put on the dress of a rich merchant and drove the mules into the city. Evening was coming, it was getting dark. The Chieftain went straight to Qasim’s house and saw a man sitting at the gate, cheerful and friendly. It was Ali Baba. The chieftain approached him and bowed low, touching the ground with his hand.
“Good evening, venerable merchant,” he said. – I am a stranger, from a distant country. I brought a supply of expensive oil and hoped to sell it in your city. But my mules were tired of the long journey and walked slowly. When I entered the city, it was already evening and all the shops had closed. I went around the city to find a place to sleep, but no one wanted to let a stranger in. And so I walked past you and saw that you are a friendly and welcoming person. Will you let me spend one night with you? I’ll stack my jugs in the yard and take them to the market early tomorrow morning and sell them. And then I’ll go back to my country and tell everyone about your kindness.
“Come in, stranger,” Ali Baba said. – I have a lot of space. Saddle the mules and give them food, and then we’ll have dinner. Hey Marjane, put the dogs on a chain so they don’t tempt our guest!
– Thank you, O venerable merchant! – said the chieftain of robbers. – Let your wishes come true, as you fulfilled my request.He brought his mules into the yard and unloaded them against the wall of the house, carefully removing the jugs so as not to bruise the robbers. And then he bent down to the jugs and whispered:
– Sit quietly and don’t move. At night I will come out to you and take you to the house myself.
And the robbers whispered from the jugs:
– Listen and obey, Chieftain!
The chieftain entered the house and went up to the room where the table for dinner was already prepared. Ali Baba was waiting for him, sitting on a low bench covered with carpet. Seeing the guest, he shouted to Mardjane:
– Hey Marjane, order you to fry the chicken and cook more pancakes with honey. I want my guest to be happy with our treat.
“I listen and obey,” Marjane said. – I’ll cook it all myself, with my own hands.
She ran to the kitchen, kneaded the dough vividly and was just about to fry, when suddenly she saw that the oil was all out and there was nothing to fry on.
– Wow! Marjana shouted. – What to do now? It’s night, oils can’t be bought anywhere. And you can’t get it from your neighbors, everyone has been sleeping for a long time. Here’s the trouble!
Suddenly, she slapped herself on the forehead and said:
– Stupid me! I grieve that there is no oil, and here, under the window, there are forty jugs, with oil. I’ll take some from our guest, and tomorrow I’ll buy a little oil at the market and a jug.
She lit the lamp and went out into the yard. The night was dark and overcast. Everything was quiet, only mules at the wells snorting and ringing bridles.
Marjana raised the lamp high above her head and walked over to the jugs.
And it just so happened that the nearest jug was with butter. Marjana opened it and began to pour the oil into her jug.
And the robbers are already very tired of sitting in jugs squirming. Their bones hurt so much that they couldn’t take it anymore. Hearing Mardjana’s footsteps, they thought it was the chieftain who came for them, and one of them said:
– You’ve Finally Come, Chieftain! Hurry up let us get out of these damn jugs and let us deal with the master of this house, our enemy.
Marjana, hearing a voice from a jug, almost fell in fear and dropped the lamp. But she was an intelligent and brave girl and immediately realized that the oil merchant was a villain and a robber, and his people were sitting in jugs and that Ali Baba was facing a terrible death.
She walked over to the jug from which the voice was heard and said:
– It’s about time. Be silent, or the dogs will hear you. They were put off the chain for the night.
Then she went to another jug and asked:
– Who’s here?
“Me, Hassan,” replied a voice from the jug.
– Be ready, Hassan, I’ll release you soon.
So she went around all the jugs and learned that in thirty-eight jugs there were robbers and only two jugs of oil poured.
Marjane grabbed a jug of butter, ran to the kitchen and heated the oil on the fire so that it boiled.
Then she splashed the boiling oil into the jug where the robber was sitting. He did not have time to shout – immediately died. Having finished with one enemy, Marjana took up others. She boiled the oil on the fire and poured it on the robbers until she killed everyone. And then she took a frying pan and fried a lot of rosy pancakes, laid them beautifully on a silver platter, poured oil on them and carried them upstairs to the room where Ali Baba and his guest were sitting. Ali Baba did not cease to treat the chieftain of the robbers, and soon he was so full that he could hardly move. He lay on the pillows with his hands folded over his stomach and breathed heavily.
Ali Baba saw that the guest was full and wanted to amuse him. He shouted to Mardjane:
– Hey Marjana, dance for our guest the best of your dances.
“I listen and obey, sir,” Marjane replied with a bow. – Let me just go and take the veil because I’ll be dancing with the veil.
“Go and come back,” Ali Baba said.
Marjana ran to her room, wrapped herself in an embroidered blanket and hid a sharp dagger under it.
And then she came back and started dancing.
Ali Baba and the chieftain of the robbers looked at her and shook their heads in pleasure.

And so Marjana in the middle of the dance began to come closer and closer to the chieftain. And suddenly, like a cat, she jumped on him and, waving her dagger, plunged it into the heart of the robber. The robber screamed loudly and died.
Ali Baba was stunned with horror. He thought Marjane was crazy.
– Woe is me! He shouted. – What have you done, madman? A stranger is killed in my house! Shame and shame on my head!
Marjane knelt down and said:
– Listen to me, sir, and then do whatever you want with me. If I’m guilty, kill me like I killed him.
And she told Ali Baba how she found out about the robbers and how she killed them all. Ali Baba immediately realized that these were the same robbers who came to the cave and who killed Qasim.
He lifted Marjana from his knees and shouted loudly:
– Get up, Zeinab, and wake Fatima up! We were threatened with a terrible death, and this brave and intelligent girl saved us all!
Zeinab and Fatima immediately ran and hugged Marjana tightly, and Ali Baba said:
– You won’t be a maid anymore, Marjane. From now on, you will live with us like our sister.
And since then, they have lived peacefully and happily.

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