Abu Hasan

A tale of time, and a tale of shame – a story from One Thousand and One Nights

Want to download the video?
Videos are provided free to view.

If you want to download one, I can arrange that. Just send me a mail telling me which story you’d like, and your reason for wanting a download.

This tale was included by Sir Richard Francis Burton in his ten-volume 1885 translation of the Arabian classic.

Since then, there has been considerable scholarly argument over whether or not Burton smuggled the story into his work. Prof. Ashliman, for one, accredits it on his page of Legendary Farts. But whatever its provenance, it is a great tale.

Although the story was part of my very first video recording, I have rarely told it in the intervening 30 years. I recently felt it was time to revisit an old friend!


The video clips here are all amateur quality, shot in various theatres or, as here, in my home studio.

Their intention is just to show the range of my storytelling and give a flavour of a live performance.

Permission is granted for use in non-commercial educational contexts.

The videos are © Richard Martin.

Professionally recorded CDs and DVDs are available here.

More comic tales

The video gallery has become very extensive. So if you would enjoy more tales like this, here are a few suggestions.

Go here for tales to watch

Go here for a list of all tales included on this site

Go here to receive an e-mail notification when new tales are added

Permission to tell outlines my views on copyright

For those who are teachers: Telling stories in the classroom: basing language teaching on storytelling