The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Desire has a tattered history. For
over a century, it has been known in English through Sir Richard
Burton's bizarre translation (from the French) which consistently
elaborated and misrepresented the original. If ever a book needed
demystifying, it is this one. Although remarkably lewd at times, it
does not linger over details nor does it contrive to excite. It
does not, therefore, qualify as pornography. In fact,
"The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Desire" is nothing more than a
manual for the ordinary, married man of its author's time and place
(Tunisia, in the early fifteenth century) -- but one that is not
without some entertainment value. This translation is the first
English version based upon an established Arabic text, and the
first to be translated directly from the original Arabic.
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