From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

"The seven basic plots in story-telling" is not a fact[edit]

"The seven basic plots in story-telling" is a hypothesis by Christopher Booker, but I don't think it can be used as fact in this article. Read a critic's review of Booker's idea. Lackthereof 23:57, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

I saw the same thing (this is all in the "Meaning" section) and just edited out the "7 basic plots" reference, leaving in the basic "rags to riches" observation although I'm not sure I buy it. I then came here to point out that the entire subsequent paragraph is all based on Booker's evaluation. Really that whole section needs to be redone: "Meaning" is too vague for a section--scholarly interpretations might be better. The material currently there is just a Jungian interpretation based, it appears, largely on Booker's Jungian literary criticism. -- LQ 15:17, 17 September 2006 (UTC)
I have added a couple of references to Jung's theories - without taking any of Jung's ideas too seriously I think this is none the less useful.

Soundofmusicals 03:13, 7 July 2007 (UTC)


This version of Aladdin sounds an awful lot like the Disney movie. Does it match the version in the Arabian Nights? —Frecklefoot 20:41, 7 Oct 2003 (UTC)

Yes, it does. The reason that it sounds so much like the movie is that it's lacking in detail, so it doesn't mention some of the key parts of the story that weren't in the movie; like Aladdin's mother, and the second genie. (Although I notice it does mention that the original story is set in China.) —Paul A 07:16, 8 Oct 2003 (UTC)
Well, I haven't read the original story, so I don't know all the details. I just doubted that Disney got it right (they tend to modify stories quite a bit to make them suitable for children). It sounds like you know more of the details of the story—care to fill them in in the article? —Frecklefoot 17:07, 8 Oct 2003 (UTC)
The story in multiple sources says that Alladin had a Genie of the Ring, it was the one to free him from the Cave, not the Genie of the Lamp. Alladin discovered the Genie of the Lamp when he stole it home and shined it up by rubbing it. The Genie of the Ring is infact weaker then the Lamp's and could only do so much compared the Genie of the Lamp.link25 21:05 2/25/2005
I've read the entire translation of 1001 nights based on the Bulak edition (Cairo 1835) and the story of Aliddin didn't appear in it. The original story of Aladdin was published by Galland in 1712 after he had published Les Mille et Une Nuits. I propose that the relation in the article between Aladdin and Thousand and one night changes. Venijnkonijn 1:18, 29 august 2008. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)
Read the article - this is fact made clear at the outset (i.e. that Aladdin is not really from the 1001 nights at all). How exactly would you change the "relation" in the article? 1001 nights needs to be mentioned, as so many people think of it as being part of the collection.--Soundofmusicals (talk) 02:07, 1 September 2008 (UTC)

The story has since this been expanded a little (although it is still very much simplified), among other things to point out where the Disney version deviates from the original line.

Soundofmusicals 02:52, 7 July 2007 (UTC)


Was "China" the same area for Arab listeners (in which century?) than for us? -- Error

It was more like "India" for 17th century European listeners: a mythic far-off place, definitely eastwards... --Wetman 05:25, 24 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Do you have evidence of this? China has been well connected with Arabia since the Tang dynasty and Arabs were quite prominent in China from the Tang to Ming dynasties (see: [1]). -AjaxSmack 15:58, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Hugh Honour, Chinoiserie: The Vision of Cathay (1961). Section I "The Imaginary Continent" will give you some basic grounding in this quite familiar stretch in the history of ideas. --Wetman 16:11, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, should be the same China. To the west of China there are people who speak a Turkic language (Uyghur) and are also muslim, so it really isn't very far-fetched that Aladdin is "Chinese" in the sense that he lived in China. It might not be as imaginary as you might think. Chunlong (talk) 01:44, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

"China" was synonymous with "far away land" used by French and other European fairy tale authors ALL THE TIME. It has little to do with the real China, as we know it today. The story was added by Europeans, and the alleged Syrian originals could have been completely different in the details, such as the setting. It's absurd to speculate about the real place of the story, considering the accepted literary device which "China" was. Many of the stories set in "China" are obviously taking place in either the Mughal Empire or Persia. It was an European thing, not Arab. If an Arab story happened in a faraway place unknown to Europeans, it was just translated as China, it's as simple as that. (talk) 13:31, 5 November 2015 (UTC)


Umm, "genii"? that's the plural of genius, not Genie.. which is anglicized form of djinn...

A Djinn/Genie (pronounced 'Jinn') is a creature that was (and still is) believed to exist (both on earth and in this universe) by people (in the past and also now) mainly in asia. Their powers are greater than humans but their interaction with this planet and humans is very limited. The woman (who created the 1001nights Tales) needed a creature with greater powers than normal humans and that was propably why she chose the Djinn (known and rumoured to exist when she told the tale - so very convenient for the story).(Anonymous)

Question, then. Why does the second section of the article refer to them as "genies." Since the previous section referred to them as the ring djinn and the lamp djinn, the subsequent sections, should use the original plural, "djinni", not "genies." 10:43, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

(in arabic, the word Djinn is used in english the word Genie) Propably just a mixup by the author.


Yes, It is set in China. There is an error here "...Aladdin keeps the lamp for himself, and discovers that it contains two evil genii that are bound to do the bidding of the person holding the lamp." only one Djinni is evil & "of the lamp", the other is "a servent of Solomon" & is "of the Ring". (he comes form a magical ring like the other comes from a magical lamp.)

If this is in the original version as transcribed by Antoine Galland, then it should be changed in the article. Modern riffs on Aladdin themes wouldn't affect the discussion of Aladdin. --Wetman 01:47, 8 August 2005 (UTC)
Aladdin was living in China, but was he a Chinese? If yes, what's that? -- Jerry Crimson Mann 16:13, 7 August 2005 (UTC)
Fantasy China, not actual geographic China. See above. --Wetman 01:47, 8 August 2005 (UTC)
Aladdin Chinese? If Aladdin was Chinese, then why do you list him as a fictional Arab? Incidentally, I take this is the reason Jason Scott Lee played him in the tv version.
Fantasy China, not actual geographic China, as above. -See article. - Wetman 11:53, 23 August 2005 (UTC)

There is nothing evil about the Djinns. They are powerful beings who are bound to a certain object and have to obey the orders of the person who has the object. If an evil person has the object they would obey his orders becuase they have to, not becuase they are evil in themselves. Adam Keller 00:15, 5 May 2006 (UTC)

Aladdin was Arabic and not chinese. more so, he was from Baghdad. Aladdin is fictional and the story was told by a woman who created the Arabian Tales.(Anon.)

The "woman" Sheheradaze, is herself a fiction, in what grownups call a "framing device". --Wetman 16:20, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

The China Aspect[edit]

What exactly is "Fantasy China"? If it were to really assume India, then why wasn't Alladin stated as being from India? (Anon.)

Fantasy China is the imaginary land of chinoiserie. See also Cathay. Real China may be found at China. The origin for the tale of Aladdin is right there in the article Aladdin: a Syrian tale-teller from Aleppo and a French amanuensis named Antoine Galland. The Baghdad of Disney's Aladdin similarly has little to do with any historical "real" Baghdad. For a story-teller in Aleppo, Baghdad is not a distant mythical place: but "China" is. Is this really so extremely difficult to comprehend? --Wetman 12:11, 21 May 2006 (UTC)
Well the concept is comprehensible, but its still difficult to fully make sense of. In essence, the story of Alladin refers to the actual country of China, but in a "fantasy-like" way. Sort of like King Arthur of England, whereas it takes place in England, but in a "fantasy England". Am I getting it so far? (Anon.)
You got it. Simple, really. --Wetman 16:20, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

If Aladdin is from the 'Far East' and (china did not exist then), it does not mean that you should give him the nationality of a 'Far East' country that currently exists. The fact that the main characters have arabic names (except for the jew) and the lifestyle described in the story is arabian in style, shows that this story was set in an arabic country (and so could not have been set in china). An arab living in china, does not solve this error in your argument. Stating 'Far East' does not create a argument for china. China did not exist then, and so the word (itself) would not have existed. The essence of your argument is: alladin lived in the far east, and the far east now is china. If we use your argument, then if china changes it's name, Aladdin's nationality changes too. this is wrong when transtating stories (and is the cause of many stories being lost/changed in time), the actor's should be given the nationality of the country that once existed (and should not be updated with new country names that now exist). If china changed it's name to another word now, Alladin's nationality would not change, because he does not exist now. If you are insisting on 'Far east', find out the name of the country that existed in the far east (and this will not be the word 'China') and give him, that nationality (at least then, your argument will be consistent).

>>>Read the article. The Arabs knew about China and called it the far east. Even the Romans and Greeks knew about China, calling it "Seres." There are many famous Muslims in China, such as Zheng He. The original story had Aladdain taking place in China, but of course, we can always count on the Disney to deviate from the original plot. -intranetusa

>>>> The article was changed to incoparate "The Arabs knew about China and called it the far east" after the user wrote the above comment. You cant tell a person to read something that wasnt written at the time that the comment is posted.

A confusion about China[edit]

The Article is incorrect by saying Alladin lives in china.

Aladdin is arabic (and from baghdad) but modern society have decided to change him to chinese (because of all the stigma against Asia (and more specifically the middle east). If you dont believe me, find a 1001 Nights book and read it (make sure it is not a 'Modernised' book with changes made to all the stories. In it you will find (in different stories) characters from different regions of the world (that were known then) and you will see that Alladin is Arabic. (Anonymous)

The note above is presumably from a very poorly read child (or perhaps an American?) - the story IS set in "China". The "China" of the story, as is explained in the article, bears MUCH closer resemblance to an Arab or Persian country than to any "real" China - in EXACTLY the same way that some western fairy stories make up a "China" that is much more like France or Demark than the real China. Silly, silly silly. Disney didn't make up "Aladin" - it is a much older tale. Its author, all those centuries ago, set it in China. He either didn't know much about the real China, or chose to make it much more like a Muslim country than it was for humorous effect, or perhaps even a bit of both. It is, after all, a folk story - and the original author was a simple story teller, not a scholar or geographical authority. Soundofmusicals 05:15, 6 April 2007 (UTC)
This is ignorant of the documented history of the story, as it appears in the Western collewction, called The Thousand and One Nights. Many simple readers cannot tell the difference between the setting of a tale and its cultural origin. I shall revert the anonymous deletions. --Wetman 16:20, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

According to Wetman's argument, the story's setting is the 'Far east'. If Wetman is correct about 'Far east' then aladdin's nationality is not updated to the nationality of a far eastern country that now exists. I will clarify my point with this example, If aladdin is Babylonian, it is incorrect of a modern transtator to change this to the current name of Babylon (e.g. Iraq) because Babylon no longer exists and Iraq does. In the same way, it is incorrect of Wetman (and may other writers) to change aladdin's nationality to chineese (because china now exists and the far eastern country did not and its name was unknown)!

Again - silly, silly silly!! China existed and and still exists - the "far Eastern country" is an imaginary "China" which perhaps has little to do with the real China, but is none the less supposed to be far off, distant etc. Nobody has "changed Aladin's nationality". The author of the original tale (NOT anyone connected with the Disney organisation) called him "Chinese".
Actually, wasn't china referred to as "cathay" or something back then?
the term China/Cathay refers to the empire of qin (the first 'empire' here) which is a couple of thousand years old, it is in fact a misnorm to use china to descript what is today as it is no longer the qin empire, which is now known as zhongguo, or the middle country. Akinkhoo (talk) 23:52, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

As written by someone in the main document: "For a narrator unaware of the existence of America, Aladdin's land would represent "the Utter East" while the sorcerer's homeland of Morocco represented "the Utter West" (the name "Morocco" is itself a corruption of the Arabic for "West", and the story introduces the sorcerer as "a westerner"). " States he is a westener. With Al-Maghrib (morocco) being the utter/far west. When translating a story, you do not change a character's nationality to a more western country that now exists (e.g. America). You keep the nationalities as they were written. If you change the story's location to suit the current world (as you have done by setting the story in China) then Aladdin should be an arab living in Russia (since russia is the 'far-east' and further to the east than China) and the sorcerer should be a Jew living in America (since America is more to the west than Morocco). The story should be kept as it was written (which is an Arab living in the East) and not by adding modern country names as suits the translator.

The article is being degraded bit by bit by editors who have never actually read this tale in its pre-Disney version. A clean-up is in order. --Wetman 09:29, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Wow, people here are retards. The Disney version is NOT the original version and DEVIATES severly from the plot. Wetman, please do clean up the mess that these people have made. -intranetusa

If this is even remotely helpful in the debate: Trivial Pursuit features the question, "In what country does Alladin take place?" And, the answer is China. I don't presume to use Trivial Pursuit as a literary authority, but one would assume they research the answers to their questions. Also, I used this as a trivia question at the coffee shop where I work and not one person got it right and numerous people argued with me about it.


I didn't realise Jews were infallible:(although propagating negative stereotypes does no one any good)

The original full text includes a very antisemitic episode, usually omitted in the bowdlerized versions, in which the naïve Aladdin is cheated and exploited by a treacherous Jewish merchant, and is saved by the Jew's honest and upright Muslim competitor.

Surely these members of society are capable of committing crimes, fictional or not, no more or less evil than the rest. Is ANY depiction of a contemptuous black person an act of white supremacy?

Response: While there are those among any nationality or race who will commit wrong doings, they do not create these stereotypes. Rather the existence of a stereotype pushes individuals until they emulate it. This, in addition to the fact that it is perhaps a bit unnecessary to include nationality/religion/race with a criminal of certain practice. This inclusion seems to serve no narrative purpose other than to rally the reader, actively or passively against a common enemy. This is antisemitism in practice.

Etymological Error[edit]

The article's current version ( as of 25 Dec 15:30 GMT)contains an etymological error, asserting Morocco, the English rendering of the North African country's name, is a deformation of "al Maghrib (al Aqsaa)." It is not. It is a deformation of Marrakech, via Spanish or perhaps Italian, Marrakech the city name being applied to the counfsdfasftry for a period when two of the ruling dynasties were largely based there. This should be edited. collounsbury 15:34, 25 December 2006 (UTC)

Morrocco is the english word for the country and not the word used in the arabic tale (which is Al-Maghreb). Though the english word may orriginate from spanish/italian, the tale is arabic and it is the arabic word (Al-Maghreb) that is used in the original tale. The above stated error (and request for a change) is invalid.


I have fleshed this out just a little, although it is still a pretty bare outline. "Djinn" is in fact the plural of "Djinni" (isn't it?). In English I ould wprefer "Genie" really - but I've let that pass.

Soundofmusicals 05:56, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

Aladdin with the Nickname Beauty Spot[edit]

The article starts:

Aladdin (an adaptation of the Arabic name Alāa ed-Dīn, Arabic: علاء الدين literally "nobility of faith") is one of the tales with an Ancient Arabian origin[1] in The Book of One Thousand and One Nights.

There are two stories with "Aladdin" in their titles in 1001 Nights. The quote above says flatly that there is only one. Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp is by far the best known of the two, but should the other be totally discounted?

The other Aladdin is a beautiful boy who deftly manipulates various men by hinting at, but not quite promising, sexual favors which he never delivers.

--Klausok 06:59, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Really? I'm intrigued, but I can't find any references to this at all... --Oolong (talk) 22:30, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
Nor can any of us - which is why this stays on this page - otherwise it would belong in the article. There are actually some quite sallacious tales in the (full, unexpurgated) 1001 nights - so this is far from impossible, but seems a bit unlikely. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 23:18, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

"Meaning" is unsourced and not encyclopedic[edit]

The current "Meaning" section with a Jungian analysis of the story does not reference a source and may be the contributor's own analysis/opinion. Regardless, this is pretty far afield from what should appear in the entry for a folktale. There is not evidence (nor even a claim) that the story is primarily allegorical or a fable, so referencing a meaning, especially in terms of modern psychology, would appear to be irrelevant. I'm not an expert on Jung, so it's possible I'm misunderstanding what this portion of the article is trying to say. If they are explaining that Jungian thought uses the Aladdin story as an example (and can offer a footnote to support this claim), then referencing it in the Aladdin article could be justifiable. But in that case, the heading "Meaning" is not appropriate and the section should appear further down under a heading like "Referenced in Jungian analysis." Again, if it isn't used in this way, then the section should just come out.Ftjrwrites (talk) 16:33, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

On reflection, I tend to agree that this section is not very relevant - in fact I have cut it (with the Jung references belonging to it!!) If anyone wants to defend its reinstatement - please do so here at least in the first instance. Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:11, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

Antoine Galland[edit]

The recent addition to the lead repeated information in a footnote to the lead, as well as quite detailed information in the body of the article. Perhaps a very brief mention of the interpolated nature of the tale in the 1001 nights does none the less belong in the lead itself?? Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:11, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

"Muslim"?? "Inevitable"??[edit]

This folk tale has no religious theme - so calling it "Muslim" is not appropriate - nor can one assume that all Middle Eastern people are (and always have been) Muslim - there are in fact substantial Christian and Jewish minorities, and both these religions have been there longer than Islam. "Inadvertent" means "accidental, without conscious intent". It is used correctly in the story synopsis, and there is no need to change it to "inevitable", which means something quite different anyway. These changes have therefore been reversed.--Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:05, 13 August 2008 (UTC)

Unsourced speculation re. setting of Aladdin[edit]

The story itself very simply says "China". There is absolutely no internal reason to believe that any other country is intended. This is a medieval folk tale - not a modern geographical treatrise. Anyone who has found a serious source that the tale was specifically set in a different country please raise this here first. After all the silly rubbish about it being set in "Agrabar" (following Disney) we really don't need this kind of thing. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:58, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

It is a story by Galland added to his French edition of the 1001 tales (which was a common practise in the 17th century and romanticist literature). It has no proven oriental or medieval origin whatsoever. -- (talk) 16:49, 11 November 2017 (UTC)

Recent edits by exult[edit]

These edits were very probably made in good faith BUT have been reverted because:

1. The first edit changes the sense of a cited statement while leaving the citation intact. Think about it for a moment and you will see why this just can't be - we are saying the source said something he probably didn't say at all - an originally accurate (we hope!) citation has (very probably) become less accurate. A cited statement should generally be left alone unless you have a better cite for a different statement (in which case include your new cite and delete the old cite with the old statement).

2. The second edit simply deletes text without explanation. Here, a possible reason for the deletion might have been that the passage is really "original research" in the wiki sense - since a plausible (but uncited) reason is suggested for something (in this case the fact that the story is placed at the opposite ends of the story-tellers world). On the other hand this is so very plausible (ridiculously obvious?) that some might consider it fair enough. Or was it just that you didn't understand exactly what the original writer was driving at? Whatever: explaining exactly why you are making a deletion is generally better - if only because it makes it clear you are not just indulging in vandalism.

--Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:31, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

Panto and Disney[edit]

It would be very hard nowadays to put on an Aladdin panto without at least using character names from Disney - the kids would be bewildered otherwise. This is not really the kind of thing you could do a reference for - although perhaps a review of an Aladdin panto might give a single instance. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 06:48, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Nevertheless we have to try, otherwise the article is just the opinion of individuals. The claim was too broad: it should be better and you were wrong to revert my change. DBaK (talk) 12:03, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Fair comment. I didn't change your original (good faith) edit because I thought you were "wrong" to make it, but because on consideration I thought that the fact concerned is:
  • A pretty minor point really - worth mentioning in this context, perhaps, but only just. It is really not that notable. I think you may have come to this conclusion yourself in "backing off" from the argument.
  • VERY unsurprising. If you were in the habit of telling stories to grandchildren (as I am) you'd know that their tolerance for variations in well-loved tales can be quite low. The original story line is (opinion again) miles better than the Disney version, but during the height of the popularity of the movie, at least, most small children came to think of the Disney version as the "original", and many ignorant adults also knew no better. It will take many years for the original tale to reassert itself - although I'm sure it eventually will. Just look at the history of this article, and the attacks it has undergone at the hands of people who wanted to change details of the article (like its setting in China, and the names of the characters) to conform with Disney!!
  • Already pretty mildly worded. Your extra words (in my opinion - but then opinion DOES come into this) in practice adds more verbosity than extra meaning, although your intent was good. "Tend" is itself quite a gentle word and simply doesn't need qualification here - a tendency for something to happen is far from saying that it always happens that way, much less that we want it to!!
  • Finally - although we don't have an academic citation - an example of one "Disney influenced panto" is given, so the paragraph in its original form is far from being "pure invention", or "just" opinion. A "reference" to the website (if one exists) for this show may be appropriate - but I have real doubts about an academic study of this particular question has been made, or is likely to be made. "Good" citations are important and useful - citations added just because we haven't had one for a few lines tend (good word) in another direction altogether.
I'd like to stress that all the above is - when all is said and done - just my opinion, and that you have every right to disagree. I'd be very sad if I thought I'd done anything to make you "disillusioned, bitter or knackered" - Wiki needs people sincerely trying to improve it. Don't be too quick to back off from an argument if you are still sure you are right. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:35, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

Does this movie actually exist?[edit]

The article mentions a 1960s Bollywood film called "Aladdin and Sinbad", but I can't seem to find mention of it anywhere except for the exact paragraph from the article repeated elsewhere; and it's not listed on IMDB. So I'm wondering if it actually exists and if there's a dubbed/subtitled version available anywhere. I've found scattered references to a movie called "Sinbad, Ali Babba, and Aladdin" from the same period but that looks like something different. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:56, 13 March 2010 (UTC)


Exact provenance of this tale actually "unknown". It was (as described in the article) interpolated into the 1001 nights by a European editor. What this means is that it is NOT actually a 1001 Nights story at all. Therefore even if we called the 1001 Nights as a whole "Persian" (which is, incidentally, equally unlikely anyway) there would be no grounds for calling this one Persian. It is MOST PROBABLY from somewhere in the Middle East, but the oldest Arabic manuscript we have of it is suspiciously late - early eighteeth century (about the time it enetered the "nights" canon); it actually resembles a number of European fairy tales very closely, and of course there is the Chinese setting, which some scholars find puzzling - no other instances of this sort of thing in the Nights. Verdict : most probably Middle Eastern - but this is really based on the assumption that Galland was telling the truth about where he got the story from - there remains a (very faint) chance that he either made it up himself, or originally collected it in (let us say) France or England, or based it on one of a number of European fairy stories that share its basic outline - and edited it to resemble the other, genuine Nights tales in idiom. This is VERY speculative indeed, so much so that it doesn't even deserve a mention in the article - but no more does any crack-brain assumption that it might (or must) be "Persian". --Soundofmusicals (talk) 23:08, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

IPA / Transliteration[edit]

Shouldn't transliterations be in IPA as well? I'm not familiar with the status quo on this. Can you point me to a discussion or a policy page? Thanks. -- (talk) 19:55, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

The two are simply totally different things - IPA is an attempt to represent every sound in every language by a separate symbol - transliteration is a "translation" of each letter in one alphabet into its nearest equivalent in another alphabet. As well as different things, they have different functions - IPA representation is there to help a reader pronounce the word concerned correctly (assuming he knows IPA, or has access to a listing of IPA symbols) - transliteration just says how the word or name concerned is written in another alphabet. By all means add the IPA for "Aladdin" as pronounced in English if you think this is likely to be something anyone would want - or the IPA for "Aladdin" in Arabic if you think anyone wants to pronouce it that way. But if so this needs to be added AS WELL AS the transliteration, not instead of it - it is something else. The rule asking us to translate crude and ambiguous pronunciation guides with proper IPA is something else. This is NOT that, but a letter by letter representation of the arabic letters in the text. Its NOT there to help us pronounce Aladdin, but to show how the name is written in Arabic.--Soundofmusicals (talk) 01:13, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

Re-arrangement of graphics[edit]

With all due respect for the efforts of an editor to improve the "look" of this article, I have changed the "lead graphic" back to the original. This graphic actually illustrates a central incident from the story - and does NOT cary the risk of encouraging more attacks from sweet (young?) souls suffering from the delusion that the Walt Disney version of the tale is the "correct" one! By all means if you can find a graphic that actually illustrates the story, is not directly concerned with a version of the tale substantially differing from the original, and is aesthetically more pleasing that this one, do not feel anything is cast in stone here. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:38, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Hat note[edit]

I realise the recent edit to this was in the very best of good faith and I admit it is neater, but this is our main bulwark against another bout of (often well meant) attacks from young people to whom the story originates with the Disney organisation. They get upset by the "Chinese" setting, and want the flying carpet back in! The old hat note may seem a little clumsy, but it DOES need to be crystal clear!! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:12, 1 October 2011 (UTC)

Well, it seems like the long form of the hatnote is optimized for a particular group of editors, while the short form is optimized for the 1.5K/day ordinary readers of the article. It would be nice if there were a more comprehensive solution.
Come to think of it, the current "Adaptations" section is pretty long and list-ish. Perhaps it could be split into List of adaptations of Aladdin, and then the section could be trimmed down to focus on adaptations that made notable changes to the story? That way, people would be more likely to read it and notice where the flying carpet is inserted. Melchoir (talk) 22:58, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
I honestly don't think the current hatnote is really "too long" for anyone. Lots of people probably end up here when they are really looking for the Disney cartoon - even if they are not stupid enough to want to go editing this article. I think the hatnote probably needs to be a little longer than "average", just to make it clear to everyone just what this article is. I DON'T think we need to present any other versions of the story, or even go on at any great length about how different adaptations changed it (the Disney abomination is a special case) - generally the place for that sort of thing is the article for each other version. I DO agree that there are a few lines in that "adaptations" section that don't really belong there - they could go on the disambiguation page if they are not already there - perhaps we could put in a sub-heading or three - splitting pantos, music and literature, and movies (subdivided into animations and 'live'??) I'll have a shot at it when I have a moment to spare, or you might like to have a go? --Soundofmusicals (talk) 06:04, 3 October 2011 (UTC)

Exact quote that places it in china[edit]

I just checked 1001 nights on project Gutenberg and there is no reference to china in the Aladdin story. What is the exact source that places Aladdin in China? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:18, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

You haven't checked it very closely!--Soundofmusicals (talk) 20:57, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, that's a bit blunt. Try the first sentence of the story of Aladdin - from the original, or practically any retelling other than Disney!! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:19, 14 November 2011 (UTC)


"Alladin" (quite acceptably) has its own Anglicised pronunciation that is (quite naturally) nothing very much like the original Arabic. If we are going to go into this at all then this is plainly not the place (perhaps on the disambiguation page - or the article on the name itself?) Surely a frankly Anglicised version is less offensive than a "mock Arabic" one?

In any case it has no relevance to the story.

Further, the "English" word "Aladdin" (pronounced as spelled) is worth defending. We have probably lost the good old English word "Quixote" (pronounced as spelled) to a twisted attempt to imitate the original Spanish "Key-Hotay", thus losing "Quixotic" and other fine derivatives. Any tendency to try to give "Aladdin" a quasi-Arabic pronunciation is also fundamentally pernicious, and not to be encouraged, especially as it hasn't happened yet. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 20:54, 14 November 2011 (UTC)

Of course the Arabic IPA is needed, there is the Arabic text, then the Strict translit. John Cengiz talk 22:11, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
This article is not about the Arabic name - but a very well known fairy story. How the name is pronouced in Arabic is pretty comprehensively irrelevant to this entry - how it is pronouced in English is very simply not a matter of controversy. It MAY be relevant in the article (there is one) about the name itself, although how notable even this is would be in an ENGLISH encyclopedia is very debatable.
That is your opinion, the pronunciation is relevant in Arabic, as is the Arabic script, as is the strict transliteration; Alāʼ ad-Dīn, the IPA explains the strict transliteration.
Wikipedia:Edit warring, all you can do is revert everything I am editing very rudely with your single minded opinion on Aladdin. You cannot have the courtesy to revert properly or validly explain with links to Wikipedia rules. John Cengiz talk 02:48, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
Would appreciate an answer to the point - this is an article about a fairy story that happens to have an Arabic name rather than an article about that name - in this context its pronunciation in Arabic seems unconnected to the matter in hand. This seems much more like common sense than the sort of thing likely to be covered by a rule. Sorry if this idea seems single minded, just that you won't say what is wrong with it. (Except to point out the obvious - that it is my opinion, well, so what, I have been known to be right as well as wrong!) As I've said more than once - no objection to whatsoever to a point about the arabic pronunciation at a more appropriate point - like say in the article about the name, or the disambiguation page. And I'm more than ready to admit myself wrong - if you can convince me by something other than just "reverting the reversion". Let's see if anyone else is interested, anyway. And please, let's keep it on the talk page. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:50, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
I still think having (Arabic) phonetic spelling in this article is a bit strange, but at least the original implication that we sould try to mimic the Arabic pronunciation in Engish (the main thing that upset me) is gone. But wouldn't a better place for this be the disambiguation article? --Soundofmusicals (talk) 14:15, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
Listing the IPA on the disambiguation page doesn't justify not having it on the story page, it's not really needed on a dab page. The '92 Disney flick butchers every Arabic name in it, which is why I thought most people would pronounce this one, the native way, where it originated. We'll leave the English IPA off then and just have the Arabic IPA next to the Arabic script and strict transliteration. Regards. John Cengiz talk 16:39, 15 November 2011 (UTC)

File:Aladdin 01.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:Aladdin 01.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Deletion requests April 2012
What should I do?

Don't panic; a discussion will now take place over on Commons about whether to remove the file. This gives you an opportunity to contest the deletion, although please review Commons guidelines before doing so.

  • If the image is non-free then you may need to upload it to Wikipedia (Commons does not allow fair use)
  • If the image isn't freely licensed and there is no fair use rationale then it cannot be uploaded or used.

To take part in any discussion, or to review a more detailed deletion rationale please visit the relevant image page (File:Aladdin 01.jpg)

This is Bot placed notification, another user has nominated/tagged the image --CommonsNotificationBot (talk) 02:15, 27 April 2012 (UTC)

How to describe the disney (per)version[edit]

Currently this is:

Another editor prefers:

I hold no brief for the Disney rubbish whatever - but it IS in fact by far the best known version (alas and alack and wailing and knashing of teeth) and we can't get away from the fact - to the extent that half the population (including many people old enough to know better) contest vociferously that it's set in China and doesn't have a flying carpet!!! Panto ought to redress the balance - except that panto currently flourishes only in the UK - the Australian Panto scene I enjoyed in my (long lost) youth is, alas, moribund or dead. And, and this is the real sad part, even Aladdin pantos are not what they were and often lean towards disney.

NOT saying our mention of disney couldn't be improved - but unpalatable facts should not be excised from an encyclopedia. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:25, 7 June 2012 (UTC)

The modern version is quite popular, or amongst the popular might be OK. But to say it is the most well known wouldn't be factual I feel unless you have some sort of data to back it up. Then again putting perhaps in the first one seems OK as well. What is not correct is to state outright it is the most well known, many kids are introduced to it via other means The ones I have seen were in China, the Disney one is Acraba? Pantos are still quite traditional in their storytelling, they do not resemble (legal action?) the Disney version. If it's a vote I vote for the second one.Halbared (talk) 07:58, 8 June 2012 (UTC)

Back to Walt Disney and hyper-ignorance!!!![edit]

Someone who doesn't even understand the difference between a "translation" and a "transliteration" has his/her teeth into this article, claiming (against all the facts, and, of course, without a cite) that something like Walt Disney is the original version of the tale. Please I may need some support here. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:24, 3 October 2012 (UTC)

Wikilink to "China"[edit]

Aladdin is "Chinese" (in a really weird sort of way) - but of course the original vague link to an disambiguation page was infinitely more appropriate than the page for the modern People's Republic! I have changed the reference to "Cathay" - among other things the name for the fictitious land of medieval Western (and Muslim) folklore - which is where Aladdin really comes from. PLEASE Mr. Disambiguation Crusader - consider for a nanosecond or two before you revert. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:46, 9 March 2013 (UTC)

Alternative plot lines[edit]

There are numerous versions of the story - in general I don't think these are in themselves particularly notatable, at least not here. Point is they could quite easily overwhelm the article, and be more a source of confusion than anything else. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:21, 27 March 2013 (UTC)

Disney link in hat note[edit]

As somebody very justly remarked, and as this article acknowledges, the best known version of the Aladdin story is (at least currently) the Disney animation. (Although some even dispute this, see above!) This however remains the original story, and it deserves (and has) its own article. The hatnote to this article already has a link to the disambiguation page which in turn has direct links to the several and various pages in Wikipedia relating directly and indirectly to the Disney animation, as well as to a good many articles concerning other uses and adaptations of the story, real and fictional people called Aladdin etc. Anyone finding this page will (we assume) very quickly realise that it is not the Disney version and will click on the disambiguation link provided in the existing hatnote - this provides in turn not only a quick link to what he is specifically after, but all the other possibilities, including special pages on particular aspects of the Disney version. Hatnotes are meant to be succinct and useful (as this one is) but not to assume that the user is a fool. Someone silly enough to NEED a direct link to find his favourite version of Aladdin will probably miss the hatnote altogether anyway. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:22, 24 July 2013 (UTC)

The shape of the lamp[edit]

Everybody "knows" what Aladdin's lamp looked like. Is it a traditional form of lamp that became associated with the Aladdin story, or did it originate with the story itself? Can the familiar shape be traced back to a particular book illustration? (talk) 23:07, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

Very possibly - or it may be taken from the traditional pantomime "prop". Want to do some research? That's what Wiki is all about! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:08, 8 November 2013 (UTC)

On that very point; and think not of this as 'original research'. It is, rather, an open invitation to seek relevant existing information that has not hitherto been identified in this article.

The biographical article on Antoine Galland (probable creator of Aladdin) suggests that his extensive compendium of information about Islamic culture influenced William Beckford in his oriental tale: Vathek. There are some allegorical similarities between Vathek and Aladdin in particular which indicate that their authors shared a common attachment to esoteric concepts that were only starting to surface in Europe during their lifetimes.

The Plot Summary for Vathek begins by relating that '..the Caliph Vathek...renounces Islam and engages with his mother, Carathis, in a series of licentious and deplorable activities designed to gain him supernatural powers.' then 'Vathek [is] addicted to the pleasures of the flesh' and 'He is intensely thirsty for knowledge...'

Corresponding to those details, in the earlier tale of Aladdin, the magic lamp and magic ring must each be rubbed to invoke the djinn (genie) concealed within. First Aladdin, trapped in a dark cave, rubs the ring, whereupon a genie appears and takes him home (still holding the lamp) to his mother. Next, when his mother rubs the lamp (to clean it), 'a second far more powerful' genie appears.

These details, too, imply an equivalent incestuous relationship between mother and son. The ring and the dark cave represent the mother's womanhood, while the slender lamp having an inflammable wick at its tip is Aladdin's manhood. The fact that the genie of the lamp is far more powerful than that of the ring is no more than an affirmation of the subservient role of women in Islam (as indeed in many societies of the period). And the requirement to rub the ring and the lamp to stimulate their genies to emerge simply reflects the circumlocuitous language of, say, Gnostic Christianity and Dualism. Note the (incongruous) similarity between Carathis (the name of Vathek's mother) and the Catharis, who were a Dualist sect in 12th and 13th Century Europe. However, the new movement for Hermeticism would take an opposing view, with a growing emphasis on the positive benefits of Sex magic, as with Vathek's aim of gaining supernatural powers.

My question is this: Does anyone know of sources that have not previously been recognised as linking the hitherto obscure references by Galland and Beckford to sex magic with its soon-to-emerge formal incorporation into organised Hermeticism? If so, then the main article may benefit from some surprising enhancements. --DStanB (talk) 14:00, 10 August 2014 (UTC)

You can read almost anything into a folk tale (and sooner or later some mad psychologist probably will!) - I seem to remember a Jungian interpretation of this one that got expunged as too esoteric for a general encyclopedia. Having said that - by all means go hunting, and if you find a good reference don't be shy of running it by us again! Good fun, anyway, even if we really don't want it here. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 23:30, 10 August 2014 (UTC)

Are we using the word 'esoteric' in the same way? Just to be clear, Soundofmusicals, do you mean that Wikipedia has no interest in the subject of Esotericism, and the history of its development? Or are you referring to arguments that are wooly and ill-defined? Its not yet clear, but the distinction is important. --DStanB (talk) 08:39, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

I have never heard of the word "esoteric" used in the sense you mention. The definition at the start of the esotericism article is much closer to what I meant - although I would expect someone of your erudition to have gathered this without my telling you. What I mean basically is that "strange" psychological theories (and other similar matter) would (perhaps - let's see them first) not add very much to an article on a specific literary work in a general encyclopedia. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 09:20, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

More Disney!!![edit]

A well meant little edit added some more details from the Disney plotline/characterisation. I cut these, basically because we have had a long and at times very acrimonious battle with Disney fans that seem want this page to morph into one about the Disney version. The Disney version and (for instance) the other many and varied various movies, adaptations, pantomimes etc that have been "based" (more or less) on the story ARE mentioned and briefly described here, as is quite right - but this remains the article about the original story, and adding more and yet more about any other version (especially one with, as it happens, its own page) would quickly start to stretch notability. The differences between the original and Disney versions of the story do not seem to rate high in the Disney article, for instance (and why should they). --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:16, 8 November 2013 (UTC)


Some time ago we had to answer people anxious to acquire this story for the canon of Persian folk-lore, and answered them thus:

Exact provenance of this tale actually "unknown". It was (as described in the article) interpolated into the 1001 nights by a European editor. What this means is that it is NOT actually a 1001 Nights story at all. Therefore even if we called the 1001 Nights as a whole "Persian" (which is, incidentally, equally unlikely anyway) there would be no grounds for calling this one Persian. It is MOST PROBABLY from somewhere in the Middle East, but the oldest Arabic manuscript we have of it is suspiciously late - early eighteeth century (about the time it enetered the "nights" canon); it actually resembles a number of European fairy tales very closely, and of course there is the Chinese setting, which some scholars find puzzling - no other instances of this sort of thing in the Nights. Verdict : most probably Middle Eastern - but this is really based on the assumption that Galland was telling the truth about where he got the story from - there remains a (very faint) chance that he either made it up himself, or originally collected it in (let us say) France or England, or based it on one of a number of European fairy stories that share its basic outline - and edited it to resemble the other, genuine Nights tales in idiom. This is VERY speculative indeed, so much so that it doesn't even deserve a mention in the article - but no more does any crack-brain assumption that it might (or must) be "Persian".

The above equally applies to assumptions that the tale is "Arabian". The oldest written version we have is Galland's French - there is no "Arabic version" that is not a "re-translation" of this. Giving Galland the benefit of the doubt, he probably collected it from a source that was at least Middle-Eastern, but we most certainly cannot be positive about the "Arabic" bit. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 03:28, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

The above theme has just been revisited by editor "Richard ruffian" with a couple of really savage (in fact rather overstated) edit summaries. Fortunately the edits themselves are fair enough - certainly not going to revert anything! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 14:15, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
On second thoughts I HAVE returned to the original (very short) lead - that the origins of Aladdin are other than "Middle Eastern" ("West Asian" if you prefer) is NOT something that (as far as I know) has ever been seriously disputed. Leaving this information out actually implies that it is a concoction by Galland and therefore, presumably, French - which would certainly be something we'd want a reference for before we could allow it! This is quite another matter from the unreferenced speculation that was (quite rightly) expunged from the "origins" section at the same time. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:18, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

"Since early the 1990s"???[edit]

Even "since early IN the 1900s" - which might have been what was meant - would have been no improvement over "Since the early 1900s" (as per text before the edit) - the best you could say about it was that it wasn't substantially worse. You could say the same about the rest of the changes proposed. "Editing" an article here is not just "retelling it in your own words" - this sort of thing has no value unless it genuinely corrects errors of fact or usage, clarifies things that are unclear, or reduces verbiage. Clear, factual English prose is really best left well alone - especially when there is so much useful editing to be done. Editing is not an ego trip. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 10:38, 21 December 2015 (UTC)

OK, I suppose it is in a way - BUT the the "ego" bit should never be the main point, far less the only one! "Editing is not JUST an ego trip" :) --Soundofmusicals (talk) 10:41, 21 December 2015 (UTC)
To be honest - the insistence on these edits is plain trolling. Rather than simply revert the lot again (as I should really) I have corrected the worst ones with explanatory edit summaries. I was also tempted to correct the childish "punctuation correction" that substituted a full stop where a semicolon is strictly correct (if a tiny bit pedantic) and inserted an awkward and quite unnecessary comma. In fact while a few of these edits are innoculous (the one about the Jewish merchant is actually slightly neater) not one of them was a real improvement on the original text - even the ones I couldn't be bothered changing. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:37, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

"Chinese" setting of Aladdin revisited![edit]

After fighting the misguided Disney fans who would have "corrected" this to a Middle-Eastern setting so vehemently and for so long I am rather embarrassed! Not that "a city in China" is not mentioned as Aladdin's home in the very first sentence of both Galland and Burton, but that is as far as any further mention of China, or anything inconsistent with a Persian or Arabian setting, goes. The ruler (Princess Badroulbadour's father) is referred to consistently as the "Sultan" for instance. Remembering that Shahryar himself is described as ruling "in China and India" I have a horrible feeling that, while we are quite justified in rejecting the Disney setting of "Agrabah" we do make altogether too much of the 'chinoiserie' of Aladdin. The Lane version, for what it is worth, seems to omit the word "Chinese" from the opening sentences, and to specifically imply at one stage that the story is set in Persia.

It may well be that the stress on the Chinese setting we give the story here stems more from our familiarity with the traditional pantomime version than the original story (regardless of whether it is as Galland claimed a genuine folk tale, or his own invention).

What to do? I feel that the "setting" bit probably needs at the very least a good old "pruning". Seeking some feedback from others before I "do the deed" however. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:02, 17 January 2016 (UTC)

The story is a work of Galland with a legend of being based on an oriental folk tale. Unless proven otherwise it is safe to assume that this origin is a narrator's legend. Therefore remove references to a Middle Eastern origin. It is set in an (indo)chinese fantasy land. -- (talk) 16:29, 11 November 2017 (UTC)
"Unless proven otherwise it is safe to assume" (!!) If Wikipedia was built like that it might be a damned good read, but an encyclopedia? Galland, who was a genuine scholar and by no means your typical 18th (NOT 17th) century hack, made no bones about Aladdin (and several other stories) having been based on tales he collected, rather than translated by him from Arabic manuscripts (as the bulk of his Mille Nuits indisputably is!). It is of course not really "safe to assume" that Galland was telling the plain ungarnished truth, but allowing the probable Middle Eastern origin is probably fair enough for the lead - especially as we give the full "known" facts under "sources", and add citations to dissenting voices. We go with consensus on Wikipedia unless there are very compelling reasons for not doing so (the whole point of WP:OR).
But sadly all this does little to assuage my worries about the "setting" section - in fact it is more or less totally off-topic. I quite agree that the story is (like most fairy stories, regardless of origin) actually firmly set in fairyland. For all the fuss that has been made about it being set in Arabia or China this is essentially a bit of a non-issue. But the way the Disney fans were going on at one stage about all the "mistakes" we were making, that stuff about Turkestan crept in. I may very well expunge THAT. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:37, 11 November 2017 (UTC)
Back again after a visit to the article - I have moderated our acceptance of Galland's truthfulness by adding a "probable" to the Middle Eastern thing. The "settings" remarks I have left "as is" - they are cited, while the remark abut the "real setting" being fairyland that I wanted to stick in WOULD have been WP:OR. It's not THAT bad, anyway. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:59, 11 November 2017 (UTC)

"See also"[edit]

A well meant edit to the (very short) "see also" list at the foot of the article added "Genie in popular culture" (a good call, although sadly it's not a very good article). Less useful is an "alphabeticisation" that put The Bronze Ring AFTER Jack and His Golden Snuff-Box (conventional alphabetic order ignores articles like "the" and "an"). But is the alphabet even useful in such a short list anyway? If it were longer we would probably hive off apparently "related stories" from the more general headings. I have split the list like this anyway - although adding sub-section headings seemed to be more bother than it might have been worth. I also cut the see also to the Thousand and one Nights - if only because there are already several links further up the page. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 03:29, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

See also lists are supposed to alphabetized according to MOS policy WP:SEEALSO, so I generally do this when I update such a list. But if there is a more compelling way to organize the links, fine by me. Incidentally, I came to this article through the redirect discussions for 'genie', magic lamp'. etc at the RfD page Wikipedia:Redirects_for_discussion/Log/2016_April_22. You look active with this topic and may want to weigh in. --Mark viking (talk) 03:40, 23 April 2016 (UTC)
MOS suggests alphabetical order as preferable or desirable rather than compulsory (which makes sense, especially for longer lists it is usually very helpful) - but even if such a short list would gain from this it would need to be done correctly. We don't (conventionally at least) count a word like "the" as part of a name or title for the purposes of alphabetical order. Another thing about arranging things by the alphabet is that this is really not helpful if some of the items in the list are apples and some are oranges. This is why I felt constrained to split "general headings" from "other similar stories". In fact if the list had been longer we may well have considered putting in subsection headings. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 05:10, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

"See below" in lead[edit]

The lead as a whole is a summary of the article. In general, every assertion in the lead is covered in the body of an article, and internal cross-references to specific sections of the article shouldn't be necessary. So I agree with User:Mezigue that "(see Sources and setting, below)" should be removed from the lead. Moreover, the footnote to Payne does not belong in the lead, but in the section discussing Payne in detail. --Macrakis (talk) 20:07, 28 July 2016 (UTC)

Exactly. It is the sort of clumsy thing that used to be all over Wikipedia years ago and still needs to be tidied. Mezigue (talk) 10:17, 29 July 2016 (UTC)
Perhaps originally a response to a stubborn "citation needed" freak? - cut it if you've nothing better to do I suppose. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 20:58, 29 July 2016 (UTC)
Well, while on Wikipedia, I have nothing better to do than improve articles, no. Mezigue (talk) 09:39, 30 July 2016 (UTC)

Three wishes origin?[edit]

Is there anything about when the "three wishes" element was added to Aladdin? It does not appear in the earliest known (French) source. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:16, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

Not relevant in this case as this article is about the original story - but this is just one of a number of other common fairy story elements added to retellings from time to time. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:37, 6 March 2018 (UTC)

Casual edits to Wikipedia[edit]

1. An edit that removes information from an article may very well be reverted, to restore the information. For instance. - discussing our sources for this tale we state No Arabic written source has been traced for the tale - this is not a casual detail to be deleted at a whim, it is the main point of the section (why it came up in the first sentence). At least bring something like this to this talk page - don't just re-delete it. If you didn't understand why the sentence is there then you can always ask. One of the things the talk page is for. 2. Substituting "virtually" for "practically" doesn't change the meaning, doesn't improve the flow of the prose, doesn't make anything one iota clearer (and in any case the passage concerned is already perfectly clear) - it doesn't exactly do any damage but it is totally useless too. It is a waste of time - not just yours, which is yours to waste, but a waste of time and effort for everyone who has this very popular article on his or her watchlist and will be looking at your edit and decided whether it should be allowed to stand. Unsurprisingly, the making of totally inconsequential edits like this is officially discouraged in our guidelines. Similarly "Muslims" (plural noun) and "Muslim" (adjective) - both, in that sentence, perfectly good grammar and identical in meaning. 3. Since the "most original" version of the story we have is Galland's French (see above) little quibbles about there being no sultans in Persia (any more than there are in China) are not frightfully helpful - worse, "Arab or Middle Eastern" does not read well - since one is a subset of the other. Perhaps "Arab or other Middle Eastern"? But then why not let the Persian stand? The point of the passage, really, is that the "Chinese" setting is singularly weak. Perhaps I am taking a sledgehammer to a walnut here? If so, I am sorry, I really don't mean to be unkind, but... ---Soundofmusicals (talk) 05:27, 23 July 2018 (UTC)

For the sources section, the source uses this phrasing:

...though the story was added to the collection[1]

It clearly mentions the Nights collection in its argument and wording, and not the vague "No Arabic written source has been traced for the tale". For the setting section, the latter part of the phrase "Arabian or Middle Eastern" is meant to imply the region as a whole, as in Arabian/Middle Eastern. This phrasing is quite common, take for example the name of this popular American restaurant chain "Tango's Italian & Mediterranean Restaurant"[2] And regarding the rest, I think you're being a bit too nitpicky. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 06:35, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
We have prior copyright on the relevant passage from the Mark Nepo work, as it was part of this article long before 2014. Just compare it with the text of our article - Nepo plainly plagiarises us! Regardless of the rights and wrongs of this we cannot use Nepo as a source here because that would be "circular referencing!"
No Arabic written source has been traced for the tale" is very important information in itself. The earliest version we have is Galland's French. This is by far the most important single fact in the whole section. Just think about it, please. There are a good many stories "in the nights but not part of the original collection" (for instance the entire Sinbad cycle) for which we DO have "an original Arabic text". How is is it "vague" for goodness sake, what is "non-specific" about it? This is a story universally (at least in the west) considered part of a classic Arabic work for which an Arabic text does not exist! What could possibly be more important and interesting?
"Arabian or Middle Eastern" is logical nonsense, EXCEPT (perhaps) in the phrase "Arabian or other Middle Eastern". Sometimes we may inadvertently include writing so bad it raises an indulgent smile from an intelligent reader, but not deliberately! Especially as a two-fold reversion. An encyclopedia and a restaurant sign are different things, with very different standards. Just "Middle Eastern" includes the whole lot, both logically and succinctly - although just "Arabian" would be another possibility.
I quite agree the minor changes you may were "nitpicky" - the question is "why did you make them then?" - as I tried to say in my first post, don't waste your own and everyone else's time with inconsequential rubbish like this, please! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 14:44, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
The phrase "The tale was not part of the original Nights collection" does not whatsoever precisely echo the source. It is not mentioned in the source. The phrasing is closer to what the source states, which is mandatory, even the lede of the One Thousand and One Nights article reads that the tale, among others, "were not part of The Nights". I do, however, see merit in the Sinbad argument. I suggest the phrasing to be something along the lines of "The tale was not part of the original Nights Arabic collection", similar to what's stated in the lede of the Nights article. As for the setting section, here's a reliable encyclopedic source using the "/" as a shorter substitute for the conjunction "or": "relationship between France/Europe and the United States"[3] pp.291. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 15:33, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
If I may be excused for butting in here. We very simply CAN'T use an author who plagiarises US as a "source" - the boot is on the other foot. Most, if not quite all the matter in Nepo on Aladdin (published in 2014 - long after this article took its current form) is copied from Wikipedia - a straight cut 'n paste job from us. The only things he didn't lift from this page that I can see is a couple of musings about how various people felt. So it just isn't a source. "We" are Nepo's (unacknowledged) source. He copied us, NOT the other way around! So we can't use him as a reference - we just can't. It's called circular referencing and doesn't prove "verifiability" (in fact it doesn't prove anything at all!!!!). Not up to us to adjust our (pre-2014) text to either resemble Nepo's text even more closely, nor is it for us to alter our text to conceal the so-called "source's" iniquities. All this makes your latest look very like deliberate "disruptive editing" to me - which is something else we don't do.
That was all I was going to say - but I don't think that the original form of the story being in French is irrelevant, nor is it a rather clumsy way of saying that it was an introduction of the story into the Arabian Nights by that French fellow. The two statements are quite different, although they are sort of linked.
All in all - I think I had better get the text here back into its former shape and give the two of you time to thrash this out properly - please don't go deleting information, nor re-adding unusable "sources". --WWIReferences (talk) 22:27, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
Hey WWIReferences, I replaced it with a Cambridge University source from 2005. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 22:54, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
Forgot to include the page number, my bad! Javiero Fernandez (talk) 23:05, 23 July 2018 (UTC)


  1. ^ Nepo, Mark (2014). The Endless Practice: Becoming Who You Were Born to Be. Simon & Schuster. p. 247. ISBN 9781476774640.

A longer lead section?[edit]

Started to compose a new second paragraph for the lead, briefly mentioning the life of the story as a part of European (especially English) culture. As it is its a bit terse. Very sick and very old and very tired, and I'm giving up and going to bed, so there! --Soundofmusicals (talk) 15:25, 23 July 2018 (UTC)


NONE of the citations currently given in this article are in approved form (true!). We seem to be agreed that the book that copied this article (!) could not be accepted - but we need to adopt the form with footnote style refs (with page numbers) and a proper bibliography (with full bib. details) - as in most wiki articles. That had better be my little project for the next few days(!) I will be working on this offline, and in my sandbox - so there may be a bit of a jump when I download the new version. I will also be contacting people who have made constructive edits in the past for their comments re the latest bout of disruption - hopefully we can get something that is at least properly referenced in the end. ta ta for now --Soundofmusicals (talk) 03:24, 24 July 2018 (UTC)

Soundofmusicals, you state in your edit summery "Actually it IS in a source - Hammady - cited for something else further down". I'm not sure what a an unpaged citation aligned to a completely different sentence has to do with anything? Anyways, I added another reliable source for the statement. Take your time with the citation forms and everything else. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 09:20, 24 July 2018 (UTC)

Complete reconstruction to Harvard format of all "book" references[edit]

The references in this article were in rather a muddled state - giving rise to various misunderstandings. They (at least the "book" ones) have all been regularised to Harvard format as far as I could manage - and there is now a proper bibliography. Any important "babies" thrown out with the "bath water" - please come here to discuss in the first instance, as any changes may involve loss of co-ordination with references. A very brief summary of the article has been added as a rudimentary "2nd paragraph" to the lead - this may need expansion. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 14:21, 31 July 2018 (UTC)

Hello again Soundofmusicals, thank you for taking the time for the formatting. However, you seem to have removed the Arbuthnot; Sutherland (1976) source in the process. I've reverted for now, since maybe it went over your head. Please format it and include it in your next edit along with the other sources. Thanks again. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 15:01, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
This reference was removed for the very good reason that it does not contain any relevant information. It is a very nice anthology of children's literature, and includes (starting on page 302) a retelling of Aladdin - with a short introductory note about Galland and his translation - however this note does not mention anything specific about Aladdin itself, nor any of the matter in the paragraph you applied it to. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:14, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
I replaced the source with a much more specified and detailed one. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 22:30, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
Having a look at it - no problems whatever with adding a good cite. -Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:46, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
OK, a good citation for once - I've added it in the same format as other cites (in conformity with WP:CITEVAR). It also mentions another pertinent fact that we were aware of, but hadn't mentioned before. In fairness, using the reference, we can't omit the fact. (That some scholars think the story is Galland's own work!). --Soundofmusicals (talk) 23:19, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
Haddawy is about the best source we have - his translation of One Thousand and One Nights is currently the most highly regarded - and in this instance talking directly to the subject - not peripherally to something else. Also - even more to the point - he does not contradict any of the other sources either. The important thing is NOT that we agree with a sources "phrasing" (in fact strictly following this too far is breaching copyright) but the facts as stated. As for the added bit - this is from YOUR source - you wanted me to add it - well I have. But nun raises the other fact and we can't ignore it!

I replaced the sources with established and specialized ones that talk "directly to the subject", even so more than Haddawy. I'm not familiar with the Harvard style, so feel free to format them. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 01:06, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

If you don't want Haddawy or Nun (both excellent sources - one of them nominated by yourself, and the other having been cited in this article for years) because they say something you don't like - then we can't really replace them with either of those sources, which do not, so far as I can tell, have anything specifically on Aladdin at all, much less "directly to the subject". I'm going to the trouble of getting complete transcripts of both through my University in order to be seen to be "assuming good faith" (may take a day or two) but I am coming close to an inevitable conclusion that you are either being mischievous or are having me on. Either one is likely to get you into trouble if you keep it up indefinitely. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 02:47, 1 August 2018 (UTC)
For the moment I will revert to the last "clean" edit one last time - if there IS an article on (say) Aladdin, or perhaps the "orphan" tales in general then we may well cite these - and if either comes up with any evidence that there really IS an authentic Arabic text - old enough perhaps to exonerate Galland from all suspicion of cooking up the story himself then we can write the section as you want it. Otherwise not. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 02:47, 1 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Firstly, it's not about wanting or liking, as said before, I replaced the sources with ones that are far more legitimate and specifically concern the topic of the origins (sources) of the Nights tales.
  • Secondly, the sources delve in full detail about the origins of the famous Nights tales, including Aladdin.
  • Lastly, regarding your second paragraph, what do you mean by "if there IS an article on (say) Aladdin, or perhaps the "orphan" tales in general then we may well cite these"? I'm pretty sure this article is "on Aladdin". The sources support the claim aligned to them, nothing more, nothing less.

Javiero Fernandez (talk) 03:07, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

  • Firstly - the sources are extensive collections of unrelated and highly academic articles about various topics connexted with the "Nights". Aladdin is pretty well discredited as "one of the nights" (although it remains a great fairy story - even if Galland did write it) and it is really not that high on the list of potential subjects for discussion under that heading.
  • Secondly - What "full detail"? They are unconnected papers on various subjects connected to the nights. There may well be an article on Aladdin there, or, as I said, about the orphan tales in general - that might just shed some light on the original source of Aladdin. It really is most highly unlikely though. Chances are the information they give will boil down to support for what we have. In any case neither of us has read them (yet) the extracts and things I HAVE read don't mention Aladdin at all.
  • Thirdly - sources say what they say - they have no obligation to back up what we might think. We follow them rather than the other way round (although WHAT they say rather than the words they say it in). None of the sources we have cited at any stage claim that there IS an authentic, original Arabic text for Aladdin - while most imply there is not, and a couple of them state flatly that the French version is our oldest and most original. In any case it remains the most important single fact connected with the sources of Aladdin that the oldest one is Galland's French. How you can can start a discussion of the sources of the tale as we have it without mentioning that fact I have no idea. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 03:32, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Referencing format[edit]

Soundofmusicals, you state above that "NONE of the citations currently given in this article are in approved form". However, per WP:CITESTYLE, Wikipedia does not have an "approved form". Furthermore, you mention that "Any important "babies" thrown out with the "bath water" - please come here to discuss in the first instance, as any changes may involve loss of co-ordination with references." I don't see the merit in complicating the mere process of adding a source. I suggest that the article's referencing format stay similar to that of closely related articles, such as Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood etc. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 16:14, 31 July 2018 (UTC)

The point is that the citations here were not in any kind of consistent "format" at all - some of the articles you hold up as models are in a similar state. WP:CITESTYLE specifically mentions that it is "generally considered helpful", and "standard practice" to impose "one style on an article with inconsistent citation styles". Not to mention "fixing errors in citation coding, including incorrectly used template parameters, and <ref> markup problems: an improvement because it helps the citations to be parsed correctly". --Soundofmusicals (talk) 21:30, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
Please read WP:CITEVAR thoroughly, it explains everything in detail. Also, you mentioned the "generally considered helpful" subsection, which comes after the "to be avoided" policies, please read those too. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 22:30, 31 July 2018 (UTC)
The guideline (YOU read it!!) refers to cases where a reasonably consistent and useful format has already been applied to the references for the article concerned. Since they have now been improved and regularised it is you who are now breaking the "to be avoided" policies anyway. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 22:44, 31 July 2018 (UTC)

Sources section[edit]

I added the fact that the tale does not have an Arabic source, it now reads:

"Known along with Ali Baba as the "orphan tales", the story was not part of the original Nights collection and has no authentic Arabic source, but was incorporated into the book Les Mille et Une Nuits by its French translator, Antoine Galland, who heard it from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo, Youhenna Diab"

This is ALL supported by the sources, please do not remove it. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 04:00, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

There IS a paper in The Arabian Nights in Transnational Perspective about Aladdin!! No help whatever with our current sources section - it will in fact need a section of its own! Quite a surprise (although I'm afraid it does mention that there is no Arabic source!) - but it does detail oral storytellers in rural Iran/Afghanistan that have traditional fairy stories, including a version of Aladdin!! Goes to show that I am not ALWAYS right, and am prepared to admit when I am wrong. All the same, it is not just a matter of plugging in the relevant cite - someone (I suppose me) will have to thoroughly go through this - the new section may be something like "Eastern Folk Versions". Exciting eh! perhaps some good can come of edit warring? Cranky old man makes loud happy noises! In the meantime - please leave it as it is for the moment if you can bear to, after all it is mainly you now anyway. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 04:43, 1 August 2018 (UTC)
Really super sources - at least one terrific paper - brilliant research, we're all proud of you! But I'm actually reading it now, and it has little or nothing to do with the sources of Aladdin - that's all said now, and in your very own deathless prose and with the sources we already had, which are just fine for that. OK? --Soundofmusicals (talk) 05:24, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

Both sources specifically concern the origins of the Nights tales, Aladdin being one of them. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 05:57, 1 August 2018 (UTC)

More sources[edit]

@Soundofmusicals and Javiero Fernandez: Thanks for your explanations. I just looked over the last section in talk and I'm still not sure what points are currently under dispute. The Sources section cites some solid sources, though I'm not sure what to make of the lack of citations for some of its portions. Are these based directly on Galland's diary and Payne's book? The use of the former seems descriptive enough to comply with WP:PRIMARY, but I'm not sure the latter qualifies as a RS. Here are excerpts from some other sources I have that can help us establish due WP:WEIGHT and perhaps replace or supplement the weakly sourced content. The new edition of Encyclopedia of Islam has an article on Alf Layla which should provide a more up-to-date account of the subject than EI2, but I don't have ready access to it.

As Elisseeff points out (op. cit., p. 168), none of these editions contains the tale of “ʿAlāʾ-al-dīn and the magic lamp” or that of “ʿAlī Bābā and the forty thieves;” their Arabic texts were published respectively by H. Zotenberg (Notice sur quelques manuscrits des Mille et une Nuits et la traduction de Galland, Paris, 1888) and D. H. Macdonald (JRAS, 1911, pp. 219-21, and 1913, p. 432); but their translation and popularity go back to Galland. Ch. Pellat, “ALF LAYLA WA LAYLA,” Encyclopædia Iranica, 1985.
Again Galland was completely out of material and stopped; he was also tired and disgusted with the whole matter. But in 1709 he met a certain Maronite from Aleppo, Hanna, brought to Paris by the traveller Paul Lucas, and at once recognized that he had got an oral source of the story material. Hanna told him stories in Arabic, and Galland inserted in his Journal abstracts of some of these. But Hanna also gave him transcripts of some. In this way the last four vols. of Galland's translation were filled out; his Journal gives full details. Hanna's transcripts have vanished, but two Arabic MSS of Aladdin have since come to light and one of Ali Baba. Encyclopedia of Islam, Brill, 2nd ed. Alf Layla wa Layla. E. Littman (1986) vol. 1 p. 359
Les Mille et une nuits introduced the stories of ‘Aladdin’, ‘Ali Baba’ and ‘Prince Ahmed and his Two Sisters’ to European audiences. The puzzling thing is that none of these stories has been found in any surviving Arabic manuscript written before Galland’s translation of the Nights was published. [...] Indeed, some eighteenth-century readers and critics went so far as to accuse Galland of having made up all the Nights stories himself [...] In the case of some stories there are indeed grounds for suspicion; for, although Arabic manuscript versions of ‘Aladdin’ and ‘Ali Baba’ have turned up, they post-date Galland’s Mille et une nuits and may have been translations into Arabic of Galland’s original French prose. Irwin, Robert. Arabian Nights, The: A Companion (Kindle Locations 426-438). I.B.Tauris. Kindle Edition. 1994
Another connection to oral traditions was introduced by Western translators and editors of Alf Layla, many of whom added new texts to their European editions. Antoine Galland acquired some of his tales, later to be coined “orphan tales,” from the Syrian storyteller Hannâ Diyâb, including some of the subsequently best-known stories of the Arabian Nights, such as ‘Alâ’ al-Dîn and ‘Alî Bâbâ and the Forty Thieves. The Oral Connections of the Arabian Nights. Hasan El-Shamy. In: The Arabian Nights Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. 2004

Eperoton (talk) 02:37, 4 August 2018 (UTC)

@Javiero - what do you think of Eperoton's suggestions above. Notice he has not only read his suggested sources, but includes quoted section from them. These would seem to be perfectly adequate for the section - although we could also keep both the current references and the previous ones in the Bibliography (perhaps under a "Further reading" section. I could actually copy similar passages from the "old" sources, or you could do the same from your new suggestions, and we could do a comparison of authority - but everything I have looked at "paints a very similar picture" - there is little or no conflict about facts involved. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:02, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
Since the portion about Galland's own diary complies with WP:PRIMARY, I don't see any problem there. As for the text regarding Payne, it does seem far more detailed and descriptive than the sources Eperoton listed and is very reliable. What I suggest is simply citing Payne's book in the unreferenced portion concerning it without changing the text. If the book is for some reason unobtainable however, then we cite one of Eperoton's sources, with changing the text according to the source of course. Javiero Fernandez (talk) 18:37, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
I've looked into this more. Payne was not a historian and his book is quite old, though Irwin writes that he consulted with leading orientalists of his age. So, in general it's reliable for some things, but we should use with caution. The main problem with how it's currently used is that it gives an impression of conveying some objective historical information about Galland beyond what's in his diary, but in fact it simply describes the diary as you can see here. It's fine to use Payne to source a description of Galland's diary, but we should present it for what it is. I agree with Javiero that we should simply cite Payne's book like the other sources.
My other concern is presenting the range of current scholarly views according to WP:NPOV, which includes not presenting a view broadly accepted in the field as personal opinion or vice versa. This is a little tricky. The first two sources I quoted, published 1985 and 1986, appear to take the two Arabic manuscripts of Aladdin at face value, but neither of them mentions Mahdi's work. Mahdi's edition originally came out in 1984. This was the first critical edition of Alf Layla and so those authors would have certainly cited it if they had it at their disposal at the time of writing. As Irwin writes, Mahdi is the one who showed those manuscripts to be forgeries. Irwin has a long and critical discussion of Mahdi's stemma (manuscript genealogy), but he states Mahdi's conclusion about forgery without qualification. I'm not aware of any scholarly source that puts it in doubt. Haddawy also states it as fact in his introduction, but he doesn't seem to have scholarly publications in this field, so it would be great if we can find consult other recent academic sources. Eperoton (talk) 22:39, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
I should also note that we have modern RSs which convert Galland's account into a factual narrative, so we could do that too with appropriate sourcing. Eperoton (talk)
Also, I haven't come across suggestions that Galland made up the stories among modern scholars. This passage from Irwin is about as far as it seems to go: "Comparing the notes which Galland took from dictation with the final printed versions of the stories, it is clear that Galland took extraordinary liberties with the stories he received from Diab. For example, when Galland came to transmit the story of ‘Prince Ahmed and the Peri Banou’, he added a great deal of additional picturesque material from a non-fictional account of a visit to India by a fifteenth-century Arab called Abd al-Razzaq. In the same story, he also slipped in a speech against the eighteenth-century French custom of arranged marriages." Eperoton (talk) 23:31, 5 August 2018 (UTC)


I have restored the full biography - as far as I know there is no necessity to restrict this to works actually cited as references - extra citations are always useful for "further reading". If such a paper is in either source then it needs to specifically cited, as part of the collection.--Soundofmusicals (talk) 09:48, 8 August 2018 (UTC)

OK I suppose there is something to be said for a separate "Further reading" - even if it isn't actually compulsory --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:43, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
I have with regret omitted the two collections (Marzolph and Makdisiare) as after considerable efforts I have not been able to locate a paper in either collection bearing on the topic under discussion. I assume there must be a specific article or two in one or both - and that you have been able to read them. If this is the case then the article or paper itself needs to be cited as part of the collection - to see how this is done look at the two encyclopedia articles we have now. In fact you could even use the "cite encyclopedia" template - it would make the correct layout, even though it's not strictly an encyclopedia. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:50, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
I've consulted on the question of manuscripts another source that was listed in the article, Makdisi, S., Nussbaum, F. (2008). The Arabian Nights in Historical Context. Oxford University Press. The relevant page is available in Google Books preview. This is a strong scholarly source and it also reports the forgeries as proven facts. Since our post-Mahdi RSs all treat this question in this way and we have no RSs to indicate that his conclusion is being contested by reputable scholars, qualifying it as the view of "some" modern scholars would not comply with NPOV, as we would not write "some modern scholars say the Earth is round". Javiero Fernandez, if you believe that our sample isn't properly reflecting the body of current RSs, you're welcome to undertake a broader literature review. With the sources we have, we should formulate the attribution as Irwin does, "Mahdi shows/has shown" -- if we use an attribution at all. I'll also link to that page in preview. Eperoton (talk) 04:14, 9 August 2018 (UTC)

Sources section[edit]

I have drafted a new "sources" section with three paragraphs:

  • A "section lead" summarising the facts.
  • Payne's accoumt - an old source this, but we are not necessarily endorsing its accuracy
  • Briefly recording modern reservation re. Payne's conclusions.

Each para. has a single ref. although we caould have added multiple ones this is not really necessary. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 10:02, 8 August 2018 (UTC)


Sorry about this, but I am an academic librarian - and we are well known for being pedantic about these things! As positively my very last edit of an article on a "literary" subject I have regularised the references here (even picked up the odd thing soundofmusic missed). I have been able to locate a few missing isbns - and fiddled one or two "encyclopedia" entries to give the proper author the credit. I have made absolutely no edits to the text of the article - nor have I added or deleted any cites. I have also resolved never to do a major edit of any kind anywhere but my sandbox. Good night all!!! WWIReferences (talk) 15:04, 9 August 2018 (UTC)

Etymology section[edit]

This is the article for the original ("folk-tale") version of the story. We do already have an article on the name itself (Aladdin (name)), which includes this information, and which seems the obvious place for it. I inadvertently reverted this well-meant edit without an appropriate edit summary. Maybe the "nobility of faith" bit needs to go back into the first line of the lead (it was there for years!) but I really cannot see that this is the place for the rest of the section. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 00:13, 23 August 2018 (UTC)

Encyclopedia citations in bibliography[edit]

The citations to encyclopedia articles in this article are just that - citations to specific "authored" articles - rather than to the encyclopedias themselves - the no doubt well-meant changes to the layout of the bibliography that obscured this were not at all helpful - so they have been restored to their original placing. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 16:07, 14 January 2019 (UTC)

Hanna Diab[edit]

The idea of "Hanna" as the "author" of Aladdin is a relatively recent thing - even if his autobiography is accepted as genuine we go overboard here, I feel, on what looks a lot like speculation. At the very least the "scholars" supporting the conclusion that he can be considered as the author - in which case Galland would be the editor - need to be named. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 11:50, 29 May 2019 (UTC)

uncle long con[edit]

  • Ok so how does the maghreb wizard pass himself off as Aladdin's paternal uncle if he's black? Wouldn't Aladdin's father either be arabic or chinese? --Meteor — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:44, 29 May 2019 (UTC)
He has lived in the Maghreb for many years - but that doesn't mean he was born there, or that he is necessarily "black" (or "blacker" than Aladdin). When you only have to rub your ring to instantly travel ten thousand miles you can be flexible about where you live! For what it is worth, many retellings of this (and other) stories have fun with their many implausibilities - in British pantomimes the usual explanation of this one is that neither Aladdin nor his mother are very bright. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 03:50, 30 May 2019 (UTC)

"Setting" section[edit]

This contains three paragraphs. The rationale behind what each contains are as follows.
1. Paragraph 1 is intended to answer the frequently asked question - is the story set in China (as in many older re-tellings, especially British pantomimes) or in an unnamed Middle Eastern country (as in a good many other re-tellings, in particular Disney, but including Lane)? The answer is that apart from the first sentence in the original, where "one of the cities of China" is clearly specified - there is little or nothing in the story itself that doesn't fit a Middle Eastern setting - and several things that jar a bit with a Chinese one, especially the fact that almost everyone in the story is presented as a Muslim.
2. Paragraph 2 raises an objection to the above - there are, and have been for a long time, many Muslims in China. Perhaps the 'real" setting is a Muslim majority area of China?
3. Paragraph 3 points out that the whole question is a bit thin - this is a fairy tale - and expecting its exotic setting to be consistent or accurate is like expecting its events to be plausible.
It is suggested that shuffling sentences here risks losing the whole point
This is in response to an obviously well-meant attempt to re-arrange the matter in the section. --Soundofmusicals (talk) 08:34, 4 June 2019 (UTC)