Then he assembled his friends and the notables of the reign and the merchants of Bassorah and when all stood before him he said to them, "I had a brother who was Wazir in the land of Egypt, and Allah Almighty blessed him with two sons, whilst to me, as well ye wot, He hath given a daughter.

Hearing the merchant's speech the captain came up to me and considered me straitly awhile, after which he said, "What was the mark on thy bales?" "Thus and thus," answered I, and reminded him of somewhat that had passed between him and me, when I shipped with him from Bassorah.

In these days the journey between Bagdad and Bassorah, a distance of some three hundred miles, involves a long detour to the east along the foot of the mountains, in order to avoid impassable marshes and bands of wandering Arabs devoted to murder and pillage.

So making up my mind I laid in great plenty of goods suitable for a sea-voyage and repairing to Bassorah, went down to the shore and found there a fine ship ready to sail, with a full crew and a numerous company of merchants, men of worth and substance; faith, piety and consideration.

And thus Allah gave him abundant fortune; and a marvellous coincidence occurred. And a story is also current of Among these slave-borns was a girl of Bassorah, hight Mahbubah, the Beloved, who was of surpassing beauty and loveliness, elegance and voluptuous grace.

We see, therefore, that when Chaldæa received its first inhabitants it was sensibly smaller than it is to-day, as the district of which Bassorah is now the capital and the whole delta of the Shat-el-Arab were not yet in existence. The Five Great Monarchies of the Ancient Eastern World; or, The History, Geography, and Antiquities of Chaldæa, Assyria, Babylon, Media, and Persia.

We will conclude the list of celebrated travellers living between the first and ninth centuries, by giving a short account of Soleyman, a merchant of Bassorah, who, starting from the Persian Gulf, arrived eventually on the shores of China.

Then he went in to the Sultan and acquainted him with what had happened and wrote letters and dispatches, which he sent by running footmen to his deputies in every province. But during the twenty days of his brother's absence Nur al-Din had travelled far and had reached Bassorah; so after diligent search the messengers failed to come at any news of him and returned.

So the Caliph wrote to the Viceroy of Bassorah, to send him Ibrahim bin Siyyar the prosodist, who was the first man of his day in argument and eloquence and poetry and logic, and bade him bring with him readers of the Koran and learned doctors of the law and physicians and astrologers and scientists and mathematicians and philosophers; and Ibrahim was more learned than all.

We were perfectly secured at Bassorah, by having frighted away the rogues, our comrades; and we had nothing to do but to consider how to convert our treasure into things proper to make us look like merchants, as we were now to be, and not like freebooters, as we really had been.