الْمَلِكُ مَيْدَاس

الْمَلِكُ مَيْدَاس

The King Midas

The following Arabic short story is an abridged one. It is from a series of long stories which Kamil Kilani wrote. The original text is in a more advanced Arabic. This version is a simplified one.

الْمَلِكُ مَيْدَاس

فِي قَدِيْمِ الزَّمَانِ، كَانَ هُنَالِكَ مَلِكٌ. كَانَ المَلِكُ يُحِبُّ الْذَّهَبَ كَثِيرًا. كَانَ اسْمُ هَذَا المَلِكِ مَيْدَاس. كَانَ مَيْدَاس يَجْمَعُ الْذَّهَبَ فِي غُرْفَةٍ. كَانَ مِيْدَاس يَجْلِسُ فِي الغُرْفَةِ وَيَنْظُرُ إِلَى الْذَّهَبِ وَيَبْتَسِمُ. ظَنَّ مِيْدَاس أَنَّ السَّعَادَةَ فِي الذَّهَبِ، لِذَلِك تَمَنَّى أَنْ يَتَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شَيْءٍ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ.

In ancient times, there was a king. The king used to love the gold dearly. This king’s name was Midas. He was collecting the gold in a room. He was sitting in the room, was looking at the gold, and was smiling. Midas thought that happiness was in the gold. So, he wished that everything changed into gold.

فِي يَوْمٍ مِنْ الْأَيَامِ، عِنْدَمَا كَانَ مَيْدَاس جَالِسًا فِي غُرْفَةِ الْذَّهَبِ، ظَهَرَ شَابٌ. كَانَ وَجْهُ الشَّابِ أّبْيَضَ كَالْفِضَّةِ، وَشَعْرُهُ أَصْفَرَ كالْذَّهَبِ. قَالَ الْشَّابُ: مَرْحَبًا يا صَدِيقِي مَيْدَاس! عِنْدَكَ ذَهَبٌ كَثِيْرٌ!

One day, when Midas was sitting in the gold room, a young man appeared. The young man’s face was as white as silver, and his hair was as yellow as gold. The young man said: “hello my friend Midas. You have a lot of gold!”

عَلِمَ مَيْدَاس أَنَّ الشَّابَ الْزَّائِرَ لَيْسَ إِنْسَانًا. قَالَ مَيْدَاس: إِنَّ ذَهَبِي لَيْسَ كَثِيرًا. قَدْ عَمِلْتُ لِسَنَواتٍ كَثِيرةٍ، لَكِنِّي لَمْ أَجْمَعْ الكَثِيْرَ مِنَ الذَّهَبِ. أَنَا غَيْرُ مَسْرُورٍ أّيُّها الْشَّاب!

Midas knew that the visiting young man was not human. Midas said: “my gold is not really plentiful. I have worked for many years, but I did not collect a lot of gold. I am not happy, young man.”

قَالَ الْشَّابُ: لَا تَحْزَنْ يَا مَيْدَاس. مَا أُمْنِيَّتُكَ؟ سَوْفَ أُحَقِّقُ لَكَ مَا تُرِيْد!

The young man said: “don’t be sad Midas. What is your wish? I will realize what you want for you.

صَاحَ مَيْدَاسُ: أُرِيدُ أَنْ يَتَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شَيْءٍ أَلْمِسُهُ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ!

Midas screamed: “I want everything I touch to change into gold!”

قَالَ الْشَّابُ: هَذِهِ أُمْنِيَّةٌ خَطِيرَةٌ وَغَيْرُ طَبِيْعِيَّةٍ يَا مَيْدَاس!

The young man said: “this wish is dangerous and not normal, Midas.”

لَمْ يَسْمَعْ مَيْدَاس كَلَامَ الْشَّابِ. قَالَ مَيْدَاس إَنَّ الأُمْنِيَّة حَكِيْمَةٌ وَغَيْرُ خَطِيْرَةٍ. تَحَقَّقَتْ أُمْنِيَّةُ مَيْدَاس فِي الْيَومِ الْتَّالي. تَحَوَّلَ فِرَاشُ مَيْدَاسَ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ أَصْفَرَ. فَرِحَ مَيْدَاس وَلَمِسَ الْسَّتَائِر فَتَحَوَّلَتْ إِلَى سَتَائِرَ ذَهَبِيَّةٍ. لَمِسَ مَيْدَاس كُلَّ شَيْءٍ فِي الْغُرْفَةِ فَتَحَوَّلَ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ. حَتَّى مَلَابِسِهِ تَحَوَّلَتْ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ.

Midas did not listen to the young man’s saying. He said that the wish was wise and not dangerous.” Midas’s wish was realized the following day. Midas’s mattress changed into yellow gold. He became happy and touched the curtains, and they changed into golden curtains. Midas touched everything in the room, and it changed into gold. Even his clothes changed into gold.

بَعْدَ أَنْ تَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شَيْءٍ فِي الغُرْفَةِ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ، خَرَجَ مَيْدَاسُ إِلَى الْحَدِيقَةَ. نَظَرَ مَيْدَاس إِلَى الْأّزْهَارَ وَاِبْتَسَمَ ثُمَّ لَمِسَهَا فَتَحَوَّلتْ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ. جَلَسَ مَيْدَاسُ يَنْظُرُ إِلَى الْذَّهَبِ مِنْ حَوْلِهِ بِسَعَادَةٍ. عِنْدَمَا جَاءتْ اِبْنَتُهُ مَرْيَمَ، كَانَتْ تَبْكي. سَألَهَا مَيْدَاسُ عَنِ الْسَبَبِ. قَالَتْ مَرْيَمُ: تَحَوَّلَتِ الْأَزْهَارُ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ يَا أَبي. قَدْ اِخْتَفَى جَمَالُهَا!

After everything in the room changed into gold, Midas went out to the garden. He looked at the followers and smiled. Then he touched them, and they changed into gold. Midas sat looking at the gold around him happily. When his daughter Mariam came, she was crying. Midas asked her about the reason. Mariam said: “the flowers have changed into gold, father. Their beauty has disappeared.”

بَكَتْ مَرْيَم وَلَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ مَيْدَاس أَنْ يُقْنِعَهَا أَنَّ الْذَّهَبَ جَمِيلٌ. جَلَسَ مَيْدَاس مَعَ اِبْنَتِهِ لِيَأكُلَا الْطَّعَامَ. عِنْدَمَا أَمْسَكَ مَيْدَاس الْكُوبَ، تَحَوَّلَ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ. اِبْتَسَمَ مَيْدَاس وَفَرِحَ، لَكِنَّهُ عَبَسَ عِنْدَمَا رَأَى الْقَهُوَةَ قَدْ تَحَوَّلَتْ إِلَى سَائِلٍ ذَهَبيٍّ ثُمَّ تَجَمَدتْ. تَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ طَعَامِ مَيْدَاس إِلَى ذَهَبٍ فَلَمْ يَأكُلْ مَيْدَاس شَيْئًا. عَرَفَ مَيْدَاس أَنَّ أُمْنِيَّتَهُ كَانَتْ غَيْرَ حَكِيْمَةٍ وَشَعَرَ بِالْنَّدَمِ. عِنْدَمَا رَأتْ مَرْيَمُ وَالِدَهَا غَيْرَ سَعِيْدٍ، جَلَسَتْ بِجَانِبِهِ. سَألَتْ مَرْيَمُ وَالِدَهَا: لِمَاذَا أَنْتَ حَزِينٌ يَا أَبي؟

Mariam cried, and Midas was not able to convince her that gold is beautiful. Midas sat with his daughter to eat food. When Midas took hold of the cup, it changed into gold. Midas smiled and became happy. But he frowned when he saw the coffee had changed into a golden liquid and solidified. Midas’s food all changed into gold, so he did not eat anything. Midas knew that his wish was not wise and felt remorse. When Mariam saw her father unhappy, she sat next to him. She asked him: why are you sad, father?”

اِبْتَسَمَ مَيْدَاس وَقَالَ: لَسْتُ حَزيِنًا يا مَرْيَم!

Midas smiled and said: “I am not sad, Mariam!”

وَعِنْدَمَا أَمْسَكَ يَدَهَا، تَحَوَّلَتْ مَرْيَمُ إِلَى تِمْثَالٍ ذَهِبِي. صَاحَ مَيْدَاسُ وَبَكَى. لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ مَيْدَاسُ أَنْ يَأْكُلَ أَوْ يَشْرَبَ. كَانَ يَبْكِي بِجُوَارِ تِمْثَالِ اِبْنَتِهِ الْذَّهَبِي. ظَهَرَ الْشَّابُ بَعْدَ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَامٍ وَقَالَ: كِيْفَ حَالُكَ يَا مَيْدَاس؟

And when he held her hand, Mariam changed into a golden statue. Midas screamed and cried. He was not able to eat or drink. He was crying next to the golden statue of his daughter. The young man appeared after three days and said: “how are you Midas?”

صَاحَ مَيْدَاس وَقَال: أُرِيْدُ أَنْ تَعُوْدَ اِبْنَتِي إِلَيَّ. أَنَا حَزِيْنٌ جِدًّا. الْسَّعَادَةُ لَيْسَتْ فِي الْذَّهَبِ!

Midas screamed and said: “I wanted my daughter to come back to me. I am very sad. Happiness is not in the gold.”

اِبْتَسَمَ الْشَّابُ وَقَالَ: اِذْهَبْ إِلَى الْبُحَيْرَةِ يَا مَيْدَاسُ. اِغْتَسِلْ فِي مَاءِهَا، ثُمَّ خَذْ بَعْضَ المَاءَ واُسْكُبْ عَلى كُلَّ شَيْءٍ تَحَوَّلَ إِلَى ذَهَبٍ!

The young man smiled and said: “go the lake Midas. Wash yourself in the water. Then take some water and pour it on everything that changed into gold.”

فَرِحَ مَيْدَاسُ وَجَرَى إِلَى البُحَيْرَةِ سَرِيعًا. قَفَزَ مَيْدَاس فِي المَاءِ وَاِغْتَسَلَ. مَلَأَ جَرَّةً بِالْمَاءِ، ثُمَّ عَادَ إِلَى مَكَانِ تِمثَالِ اِبْنَتِهِ. سَكَبَ مَيْدَاس بَعْضَ الْمَاءِ عَلَى رَأْسِ تِمْثَالِ مَرِيْم، فَعَادَتْ مَرْيَم إِلَى الحَيَاةِ. عَرَفَ مَيْدَاسُ أَنَّهُ يُحِبُّ اِبْنَتَهُ أَكْثَرَ مِنْ الْذَّهَبِ. كَمَا عَرَفَ أَنَّ الْسَّعَادَةَ لَيْسَتْ فِي الذًّهَبِ.

Midas became delighted and ran to the lake quickly. He jumped into the water and washed up. He filled a jar with water. Then he returned to the place of his daughter’s statue. He poured some water on Mariam statue’s head; Mariam returned to life. Midas knew that he loved his daughter more than gold. Also, he knew that happiness is not in the gold.

Notes: 

  • The difference between أَنْ and أَنَّ:

(1) ظَنَّ مَيْدَاس أَنَّ السَّعَادَةَ فِي الذَّهَب.

(2) عَلِمَ مَيْدَاس أَنَّ الشَّابَ لَيْسَ إِنْسَانًا.

(3) عَرَفَ مَيْدَاس أَنَّ السَّعَادَة لَيْسَتْ فِي الذَّهَب.

(4) لَمْ يُقْنِعْ مَيْدَاس مَرْيَم أَنَّ الذَّهَبَ جَمِيْلٌ.

The word أَنَّ (with a shaddah and fatHah over the ن) follows certain verbs (as in these sentences). It meant “that”, and it is followed by a nominal sentence جُمْلَة اِسْمِيَّة, that is subject مُبْتَدَأ + predicate خَبَر. For example, in (1) السَّعَادَة is subject and فِي الذَّهَب is a predicate.

(5) تَمَنَّى مَيْدَاس أَنْ يَتَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شِيْءٍ إِلَى ذَهَبِ.

(6) بَعْدَ أَنْ تَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شَيءٍ فِي الغُرْفَة إَلَى ذَهَب، خَرَجَ مَيْدَاس إِلَى الحَدِيْقَة.

(7) يُرِيْدُ مَيْدَاس أَنْ يَتَحَوَّلَ كُلُّ شَيءٍ أَلْمَسُهُ إِلَى ذَهَب.

(8) لَمْ يَسْتَطِع مَيْدَاس أَنْ يُقْنِعَ مَرْيَم.

On the other hand, the word أَنْ (with a sukuun) over the ن) is followed by a verbal sentence جُمْلَة فِعْلِيَّة, namely present tense verb فِعْلُ مُضَارِع. Like أَنَّ above, it follows certain verbs; however, it means “to”. For example, in (1) أَنْ is followed by a verbal sentence, i.e. يَتَحَوَّلُ كُلُّ شَيْءٍ إِلَى ذَهَبِ.

  • The difference between إِنَّ and أَنَّ:

(1) قَالَ مَيْدَاس إِنَّ الأُمْنِيَة حَكِيْمَة.

(2) إِنَّ مِيْدَاس يُحُبُّ الذَّهَب.

(3) قَالَتْ مَرْيَم إِنَّ الأَزْهَارَ لَيْسَتْ جَمِيْلَة.

The word إِنَّ with the hamza below the alif occurs at the start of the sentence and after the verb قَالَ, as in these sentences.

(4) ظَنَّ مُحَمَّد أَنَّ الاِمْتِحَانَ سَهْلٌ.

(5) عَرَفَ الأُسْتَاذ أَنَّ الطَّالِبَ مُجْتَهِدٌ.

(6) عَلِمَ مَرْيَم أَنَّ وَلِدَهَا حَزِيْنٌ.

The word أَنَّ with the hamza over the alif occurs after certain verbs like طَنَّ, عَرَفَ, عَلِمَ, among many others.

  • The use of غَيْر + adjective:

(1) الأُمْنِيَّة غَيْرُ طَبِيْعِيَّة. The wish is not normal

(2) أَنَا عَيْرُ مَسْرُور. I am not happy.

(3) الأُمْنِيَّة غَيْرُ خَطِيْرَة.  The wish is not dangerous

The word غَيْر is a noun. It has the same meaning as لَيْسَ, that is ‘not’. It is used before adjectives to give their opposite meanings.

 

The is difference between غَيْر and لَيْسَ is that the latter is used before nouns, more specifically before nominal sentences, while غَيْر is used before adjectives.

  • Negating the predicative adjective with غَيْر:
صِفَة مُثْبَتَة affirmative adjectiveصِفَة مَنْفِيَّة negative adjective
(1) شَرْحُ الأُسْتَاذ مَفْهُوم. The teacher’s explanation is understoodشَرْحُ الأُسْتَاذِ غَيْرُ مِفْهُوم. The teacher’s explanation is not understood
(2) الصَّوْرَةُ وَاضِحَة. The picture is clearالصُّوْرَةُ غَيْرُ وَاضِحَة. The picture is not clear
(3) الشَّنْطَةُ ثَقِيْلَة. The bag is heavyالشَّنْطَةُ غَيْرُ ثَقِيْلَة. The bag is not heavy
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