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Seven Adventures on the High Seas || Reading Notes: The Voyages of Sindbad Part B

How many times do you have to be shipwrecked before you learn that sailing may not be for you?

  • There seem to be a lot of islands within drift-able distance at any given point for Sindbad. I wonder if this is accurate for the area that he supposedly sails?
  • Sindbad always makes a point to say that, on returning to Bagdad, he gives lots of money to the poor. Is this something to do with the custom or religion of the time?
  • Sindbad's luck seems to only come in the extremes. Either it's extremely bad or extremely good.
  • How can a river that flows directly from a mountain and away from the ocean have a cave that is strewn with ambergris?
  • The dynamic of the man drawn to the sea but the sea that always seems to seek to kill the man is very interesting.
  • The story of the Old Man of the Sea was interesting. I feel like I've heard the phrase "Old Man of the Sea" used in other myths or stories but I cannot recall exactly where. 
    • I think there is a Greek myth about a titan or god or something that a hero wrestles with. I think that titan or god was also referred to as the "Old Man of the Sea"?
    • The influence of Greek mythology on the tales of Sindbad is fairly obvious earlier on, such as the cyclops, so this may be a similar retelling of a Greek myth.
  • Though, unlike many Greek myths, Sindbad always seems to get his happy ending. Always ending up back home in Bagdad, richer than when he last left. 
  • The way that the Roc's destroyed Sindbad's ship by dropping boulders on it reminded me of how Polyphemus destroyed Odysseus's ship by tossing boulders at it.
Polyphemus and Odysseus

  • All these references to past myths and legends make me wonder what other stories or legends Sindbad might be referring to or retelling in his adventures that I haven't read yet.
Unit: The Voyages of Sindbad
From: The Arabian Nights' Entertainments
By: Andrew Lang
Illustrator: H.J. Ford

Photo Credits:


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