Matured Stories

Arabian night (+16) – Episode 6

(The Story of the Greek King and the Physician

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In the country of Zouman, in Persia, there
lived a Greek king. This king was a leper,
and all his doctors had been unable to
cure him, when a very clever physician
came to his court.
He was very learned in all languages, and
knew a great deal about herbs and
As soon as he was told of the king’s
illness he put on his best robe and
presented himself before the king. “Sire,”
said he, “I know that no physician has
been able to cure your majesty, but if
you will follow my instructions, I will
promise to cure you without any
medicines or outward application.”
The king listened to this proposal.
“If you are clever enough to do this,” he
said, “I promise to make you and your
descendants rich for ever.”
The physician went to his house and
made a polo club, the handle of which he
hollowed out, and put in it the drug he
wished to use. Then he made a ball, and
with these things he went the next day to
the king.
He told him that he wished him to play
at polo. Accordingly the king mounted his
horse and went into the place where he
played. There the physician approached
him with the bat he had made, saying,
“Take this, sire, and strike the ball till
you feel your hand and whole body in a
glow. When the remedy that is in the
handle of the club is warmed by your
hand it will penetrate throughout your
body. The you must return to your
palace, bathe, and go to sleep, and when
you awake to-morrow morning you will
be cured.”
The king took the club and urged his
horse after the ball which he had thrown.
He struck it, and then it was hit back by
the courtiers who were playing with him.
When he felt very hot he stopped
playing, and went back to the palace,
went into the bath, and did all that the
physician had said. The next day when he
arose he found, to his great joy and
astonishment, that he was completely
cured. When he entered his audience-
chamber all his courtiers, who were
eager to see if the wonderful cure had
been effected, were overwhelmed with
The physician Douban entered the hall
and bowed low to the ground. The king,
seeing him, called him, made him sit by
his side, and showed him every mark of
That evening he gave him a long and rich
robe of state, and presented him with
two thousand sequins. The following day
he continued to load him with favours.
Now the king had a grand-vizir who was
avaricious, and envious, and a very bad
man. He grew extremely jealous of the
physician, and determined to bring about
his ruin.
In order to do this he asked to speak in
private with the king, saying that he had
a most important communication to
“What is it?” asked the king.
“Sire,” answered the grand-vizir, “it is
most dangerous for a monarch to confide
in a man whose faithfulness is not
proved, You do not know that this
physician is not a traitor come here to
assassinate you.”
“I am sure,” said the king, “that this man
is the most faithful and virtuous of men.
If he wished to take my life, why did he
cure me? Cease to speak against him. I
see what it is, you are jealous of him; but
do not think that I can be turned against
him. I remember well what a vizir said to
King Sindbad, his master, to prevent him
from putting the prince, his son, to
What the Greek king said excited the
vizir’s curiousity, and he said to him,
“Sire, I beg your majesty to have the
condescension to tell me what the vizir
said to King Sindbad.”
“This vizir,” he replied, “told King
Sindbad that one ought not believe
everything that a mother-in-law says, and
told him this story.”

Also Read:   Venomously Yours - Season 1 - Episode 36
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