Mar. 19th, 2013

transemacabre: (Rose Red)
Discovered a fascinating tale, told by the Iraqi poet and qadi al-Tanukhi (died 994 AD), which contains not only a sort of zombies (?!) but also a lurid tale of incest, and I thought, Self, the people on livejournal need to know about this.

Incest appears frequently in medieval story-telling; there's a 300+ page book, Incest and the Medieval Imagination (2001) by Elizabeth Archibald, which is just about the theme of incestuous desire in medieval literature. All this proves to me is that medieval people were every bit as kinky as their modern-day descendants on lj, just that they didn't have kink memes back then so had to disguise it as a good morality fable.

One night I (the narrator of this story) looked out of my house towards the cemetery [of al-Khayzuran], as I usually do when I cannot sleep. And look! The tombs opened up, and their occupants came out, with disheveled hair, dust-colored, barefoot, and naked, and they gathered in one place there. In the end there was no tomb left occupied. They made a lot of noise, crying, praying and beseeching God not to have that woman buried with them who was to be buried the following day.

Why has the zombies of Baghdad in such a tizzy? Well, the recently-deceased woman had, by means of a trick, slept with her own son, conceived a child, and then killed it at birth. Not satisfied with what she had done, the wicked woman slept with her son again, and conceived another child, a girl who was so beautiful that she could not bear to kill her. So the mother/grandmother arranged for the baby to be brought up by a poor family, and then brought her into her household at the age of nine and passed her off as a slave. After more stratagems, the brother-father married his sister-daughter, who gave birth to more children.
transemacabre: (Rose Red)
Y'all, is it really necessary to put a disclaimer on your Les Miz fic acknowledging that you didn't invent the characters and that you don't make any money from it? The fucking book was published in 1862! I'm pretty sure it's out of copyright by now! In fact, you probably could publish your fanfic and make money off it, if you wanted to and if anyone would buy it. If a zombified Victor Hugo rises from the dead and comes knocking on your door, you have bigger problems than worrying about him suing you, all right.

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