Ali Baba and Forty Thieves


Ali Baba and Forty Thieves

As usual on one hot afternoon, Ali Baba, the poor lumberjack was cutting wood at the foot of the hill. Then he heard some horses’ hooves. Ducking out of sight, he watched. He saw a group of men coming galloping on the horses’ back carrying some bags and boxes.

He counted them. There were forty men including their kingpin who led the way. They paused before a boulder. The kingpin shouted, "Open Sesame!” The next moment, the rock slid sideways. There appeared a doorway! All of them went in. Ali Baba heard the kingpin saying, “Close Sesame!" The entry doorway was closed down. After some time, he heard him saying, “Open Sesame!” The rock opened up and all of them returned. Once outside, the kingpin bawled, “Close Sesame! ” The boulder glided back and the doorway was shut! Ali Baba saw them galloping away!

It did not take long for him to understand that those forty men were thieves and that they hid the booty inside this cave! Ali Baba climbed down. Taking a swift glance around, he shouted, “Open Sesame!” The big rock slithered and the doorway appeared as before!

Ali Baba stormed inside. “Close Sesame ” he bellowed. The rock sealed off the entry. Ali Baba glanced around. What he saw stunned him! Inside, there were mountain of gold, diamond and precious gems! Ali Baba caught his breath at the heap of fortune at one throw! Working quickly, he grabbed as much as he can in his bag and pockets. Then by shouting, “Open Sesame!” He came out. At the entrance, he paused and shouted, “Close Sesame! "The boulder slid back and shut!

At home, Ali Baba showed the valuable he had brought to his wife Margiana and narrated everything to her. “If so, did you steal all these?” she hesitated to touch them.

“Come on, Margiana. It is nobody’s property. It’s stolen property! There is nothing wrong in stealing from a thief. Isn’t it?” he spoke sense to her.

To measure the gold coins, Margiana went to the next house where Ali Baba’s elder brother Qasim lived. Though Qasim was a rich man, he never helped Ali Baba. Qasim’s wife was a jealousy woman. She hated Ali Baba and Margiana.

When Margiana went to borrow the scale, Qasim’s wife grew suspicious! “What are they going to measure?” she brooded over. To find out, she pasted a piece of tamarind at the bottom of the scale!

Not knowing this, when Margiana returned the scale after measuring, Qasim’s wife saw a gold coin stuck on the bottom of the scale! She told Qasim who in turn visited Ali Baba and asked about it. But All Baba was really kind-hearted. Hence he told about everything including the password.

"Open Sesame! "and “Close Sesame!!”

The greedy Qasim left for the cave the very next day. He located the hide-out and said the password and entered in.

On seeing the world of fortune, he got mad. He filled entire three bags with gold, diamond and gems “I will have to come tomorrow again!” he told himself and decided to go home. But he had forgotten the password to open the door-way!

Like a crazy fool, he begged the doorway to open! But nothing happened. Then he heard the horses’ hooves! Moments later, the forty thieves barged in. They were shocked to see a stranger (Qasim) inside keeping three bags of valuables!

"Behead that fellow. Hang his head and torso at the entrance. Let it be a lesson to others who dare to sneak in!” ordered the kingpin.

When Qasim did not return home in the evening, his wife approached Ali Baba and Margiana who were giving alms to the poor people at that time. When Ali Baba learned that Qasim did not return home, he mounted on his horse and dashed to the hills.

There he saw Qasim’s head and torso hanging at the entrance! Feeling sorry for his brother, he took the body and torso home.There he secretly arranged with a cobbler to stitch the head and torso, tipped him liberally and then arranged for the funeral. Qasim was buried with full religious rites.

“Greed had got the better of Qasim!” said Ali Baba in a hurt voice.

Ali Baba and Forty Thieves

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