The Slave-Market.

Joseph is brought to the slave-market and is put up to auction, and excites an immense competition to obtain one who is endowed with so many excellencies. But Zulaikha cannot bear the idea of losing him. She pours out all her treasure, and persuades Potiphar to go to the King, who wishes to purchase him, and make his request, that, in reward of his long services, he will permit him to become the purchaser, and adopt him as his son. The King gives his consent, and so Joseph is introduced into Potiphar’s house to the great content of Zulaikha, who expresses her satisfaction in very animated and beautiful language.

“Am I, O Heaven, awake or asleep,
That my soul hath obtained my soul’s desire!
In my dark nights however could I hope,
That one day would dawn upon me this auspicious morning!
The moon of victory hath broken upon my night,
My night-and-day-grief and mourning are come to an end!
Once my own tenderness was my sole companion,
Now it is but right that I confess the tenderness of Fate!
Who in this abode of sorrow is so happy as I am?
Who after such a withering hath bloomed again like me?
For I was like a fish deprived of water,
Palpitating in the drought on the arid sand,
When from the cloud of benignity poured down a torrent,
Which bore me back from the sand into the sea of preservation.
I was as one who hath lost his way in the darkness of the night,
Whose life-breath in his bewilderment is come to his lip,
When a beaming moon hath risen in my horizon,
And showed me the path to the valley of felicity.
Can I regret a casket of jewels,
When a mine of jewels is come to my hand?
What are jewels beside the wares of the soul?
Whatever it be, be it given for a friend!
For some dead fossils I have bought a soul,
In heaven’s-name, could I have bought anything cheaper?”