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Main > Arabic folktales > Fairy tale "The Seven Stages of Roostem"

The Seven Stages of Roostem

When he was slain, the spell which created and preserved this band was broken, and they all expired.

Roostem found little difficulty after these seven days of toil, of danger, and of glory, in compelling Mazenderan to submit to Persia. The king of the country was slain, and Oulâd was appointed its governor as a reward for his fidelity.

The success of his arms had raised Ky-Kâoos to the very plenitude of power; not only men, but Deevs, obeyed his mandates. The latter he employed in building palaces of crystal, emeralds, and rubies, till at last they became quite tired of their toil and abject condition. They sought, therefore, to destroy him; and to effect this they consulted with the devil, who, to forward the object, instructed a Deev, called Dizjkheem, to go to Ky-Kâoos and raise in his mind a passion for astronomy, and to promise him a nearer view of the celestial bodies than had ever yet been enjoyed by mortal eyes. The Deev fulfilled his commission with such success that the king became quite wild with a desire to attain perfection in this sublime science. The devil then instructed Dizjkheem to train some young vultures to carry a throne upwards; this was done by placing spears round the throne, on the points of which pieces of flesh were fixed in view of the vultures, who were fastened at the bottom. These voracious birds, in their efforts to reach the meat, raised the throne.

Though he mounted rapidly for a short time, the vultures became exhausted, and finding their efforts to reach the meat hopeless, discontinued them; this altered the direction and equilibrium of the machine, and it tossed to and fro. Ky-Kâoos would have been cast headlong and killed had he not clung to it. The vultures, not being able to disengage themselves, flew an immense way, and at last landed the affrighted monarch in one of the woods of China. Armies marched in every direction to discover and release the sovereign, who, it was believed, had again fallen into the hands of Deevs.

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