The Thousand and One Days

The Thousand and One Days

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Excerpt: ... 178 IV. THE WISE DEY. Chaaban, Dey of Algiers, being dead, the Turkish janissaries bethought themselves of electing a new dey; and their intention was to place in this high station an inert, weak, and indolent man, who would allow them to be their own masters, to act as they pleased either with or without justice, and who would never inflict any punishment upon them. Passing through the streets of Algiers, they beheld Hadgi-Achmet, a man of ripe age, seated peaceably at the door of his dwelling, and carefully mending his old slippers, without taking any part either in the outcries, the conversation, or the gossiping going on all around him. Hadgi-Achmet seemed to them to be just the sort of apathetic man they were in search of, a man who would never interfere with any one, would allow them to do exactly as they pleased, and who, in short, would be but the shadow of a dey. They therefore laid hold of Hadgi-Achmet, tore him from his work, led him to the divan, and elected him dey in spite of himself. Hadgi-Achmet, thus forced to assume the reins of government, wisely examined into the duties of his new position, and set himself to fulfil them with as much assiduity and zeal as he had employed in the humbler task of mending his old slippers. He watched over the interests of the country, and over those of justice, and punished severely all misdeeds which came under Pg 179 his observation; having a stern, strange habit of knitting his shaggy eyebrows and flashing his brilliant eyes whenever any thing mean or wicked came under his notice. All this was very displeasing to the Turkish janissaries, and to several members of the divan. Four of these latter formed a species of plot with the design of bringing Hadgi-Achmet into contempt in the eyes of the public. Now as it was the pleasure of the dey to administer justice himself, and to enquire into the smallest matter that concerned the interests of the people, they thought to render him ridiculous, more

Product details

  • Paperback
  • 189 x 246 x 6mm | 213g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236690400
  • 9781236690401