Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Story of Scheherazade

Scheherazade is a legendary Persian Queen and the storyteller of all but the main story in the Arabian Nights, also called One Thousand and One Nights. The legend centers on King Shahryar who is disillusioned by sexual infidelity of women caused by his first wife who had been unfaithful to him. So every night he will wed a new virgin only to have her beheaded the next day. He had killed three thousand such women by the time he was introduced to the beautiful vizier's daughter, Scheherazade.

Scheherazade is very well-educated, having studied the legends, histories and stories about proceeding Kings and humankind in general. She had perused the works of poet and learned arts, sciences, philosophy and accomplishment. She was pleasant and polite, wise and witty, well read and well bred.

Against her father will, Scheherazade volunteered to wed the King. As she bid one last farewell to her beloved sister, Dinarzade, secretly ask her to tell a story during the long night. King Shahryar lay awake and listened in awe as Scheherazade spun a fascinating, adventurous tale, which she quit speaking before the story finished as it was almost dawn. So the King spared her life for one day to finish the story the next night.

This strategy of anticipation continues for a thousand nights, with Scheherazade telling her husband a new tale every night, but stopping just before dawn with a cliffhanger. By the end of one thousand and one nights, Scheherazade had no more stories to tell the King. However the King had fallen in love with her and they had three sons. The King forgave her and made her his Queen, for Scheherazade not only entertained her husband with her tales, but she had also educated the man in kindness and morality.

She was an inspirational character to me not to mentioned that I really love Persian jewelry, I really had to post the story of her. This Persian storyteller, Scheherazade had been acknowledge by many of feminist scholars for being the greatest female strategist of all time. Her story is more than a morality tale indeed.




Leinaala Mitchell said...

Thank you for sharing her story. I have always been so inspired by her. Leinaala

Maggie said...

She's an amazing character isn't she Leinaala? I used to read One Thousand and One Nights during my childhood years and was absolutely amazed by the book illustration as well. So now I'm re-telling her story here on my blog..:) Glad we share the same inspiration...

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