Friday, November 7, 2008

Arabian Nights entrance Penguin

= This is a press release slash "article" (and is very problematic, but ok) that I found from July:

Arabian Nights entrance Penguin

Penguin Classics is publishing the first complete English translation for 120 years of The Arabian Nights as a luxury three-volume hardback box set.

The set, priced £125 and limited to 3,000 copies will be published on 27th November. It also includes English translations of the "orphan stories"—Tales from The Arabian Nights for which no original Arabic text remains. Penguin is also releasing Three Tales from the Arabian Nights, a £9.99 "sampler" hardback on the same date. The books have been translated by Malcolm and Ursula Lyons.

Adam Freudenheim, Penguin Classics publisher, said the scale of the project, which involved translating around one million words across three volumes, merited giving it the luxury treatment. "The sheer scale of the translation meant we couldn’t publish it in one volume," he said. "Two volumes would have been stretching the binding capacity to the fullest extent. Once we realised we would have to publish three volumes it automatically became something special."

Each volume is approximately one thousand pages. The foil embossed, quarter-bound covers and the box-set’s slipcase has been designed by Penguin’s Coralie Bickford-Smith, who, Freudenheim said, used the original covers of The Arabian Nights for inspiration.

The classic stories tell the tale of the vengeful King Shahriyar, who sleeps with a different virgin each night before slaying her in the morning. In order to save her own life Shahrazadm, the vizier’s daughter, begins to tell the king stories of adventures, love, riches and wonder.

Freudenheim said that the publisher plans to release an abridged selection of tales at a later date in another format and lower price point.

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