Arabian Nights/Trivia

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Trivia
 

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Aladdin's Lamp had the most expensive casting cost of any card at the time of its printing. When it was printed, the icon of 10 in a gray circle (representing a cost of 10 generic mana, or {10}) did not exist, so the casting cost was instead represented as {5}{5}.[1]
  • City in a Bottle is the only card in this set to reference the Sandman comic that inspired the set.[2]
  • Desert is the first common non-basic land.
  • Erg Raiders: "Erg" is translated from Arabic to mean "desert."
  • Erhnam Djinn has the greatest combined power and toughness among green creatures in Arabian Nights. "Erhnam" is an anagram of "Herman," Richard Garfield's brother-in-law.[2]
  • Ghazbán Ogre was the first card that changed control based on the state of the game. "Ghazbán" is translated from Arabic to mean "treacherous."
  • Hasran Ogress is one of a few cards that refers to the gender of the creature in its name. Modern cards tend to have gender-neutral names. "Hasran" is translated from Arabic to mean "hideous."
  • Hurr Jackal: "Hurr" is translated form Arabic to mean "gulch."
  • Junún Efreet: "Junún" is translated from Arabic to mean "nasty."
  • Juzám Djinn has the greatest combined power and toughness among black creatures in Arabian Nights. It was initially regarded as a bad card, as players did not immediately understand why one would want to play a card that damages its controller. "Juzám" is translated from Arabic to mean "evil." It has since inspired the creation of multiple cost-effective cards, including Balduvian Horde, Yukora, the Prisoner, and Plague Sliver.
    • The flavor text is part of a poem, written by an eleventh-century princess of Andalusia, most commonly known as Wallada bint al-Mustakfi.
  • Khabál Ghoul: "Khabál" is translated from Arabic to mean "night."
  • Kird Ape was banned in the Extended format when it was first created. "Kird" is translated from Arabic to mean "jungle."
  • Magnetic Mountain has the five common vowel letters (A, E, I, O, and U), in order, in its name.
  • Mijae Djinn shares the greatest combined power and toughness among red creatures in Arabian Nights with Ydwen Efreet.
    • Mijae (Djinn) and Ydwen (Efreet) are anagrams of "Jamie" and "Wendy," two of Garfield's friends who got married while he was designing the set.[2] He was the best man.
  • Nafs Asp: "Nafs" is translated from Arabic to mean "hidden."
  • Oubliette: An oubliette is a dungeon with an entrance only from above. Richard Garfield designed this card in part because of the movie Labyrinth, which used the term and stuck with him when he later found the term in 1001 Nights. Its rules were later rewritten to contain phasing,[3] and later rephrased again to contain exile.
  • Old Man of the Sea was printed as a "Summon Marid," Marid being Arabic for "rebel," and is related to the fact that in some versions of the 1001 Nights, this character is a djinn. It has since been updated with the djinn creature type.
  • Repentant Blacksmith is the first creature printed with protection from red, which was considered a powerful enough ability that the card was made uncommon.
  • Ring of Ma'rûf is the first card to allow interaction with cards outside the game. Its ability to retrieve a card from outside the game was unique until it inspired the creation of the cycle of Wishes in the Judgment expansion.
  • Rukh Egg was reprinted as Rukh Egg (8th Edition), nearly ten years after its original printing, but was almost not included in the set because of its complexity for beginners. It received errata early on to put a Rukh token into play only when it goes to the graveyard from play, not from anywhere as printed. The egg in the Arabian Nights art appears in the artwork of Dwarven Shrine. A "rukh" is also called a "roc."
  • Sandals of Abdallah inspired the creation of Lightning Greaves, as footwear was discovered to be a class of armor and weapons that had not been explored much in Magic when equipment was first being created.
  • Serendib Djinn and Serendib Efreet: Serendib is another name for the island Ceylon (now known as Sri Lanka), which has significance in both The Bible and "The Sixth Voyage of Sindbad." The English word "serendipity" was derived from the name Serendib.
  • Stone-Throwing Devils upset some people, as "stone-throwing devils" is sometimes used as a derogatory term for Palestinian protesters in Israel.
  • Wyluli Wolf: "Wyluli" is an anagram of "Lily Wu," the maiden name of Richard Garfield's wife.[2]
  • Ydwen Efreet shares the greatest combined power and toughness among red creatures in Arabian Nights with Mijae Djinn. "Ydwen" is an anagram of "Wendy," the wife of Richard Garfield's friend Jamie for whom he was best man at his wedding.

Literary allusions[edit | edit source]

This section describes the One Thousand and One Nights tales that influenced the cards of Arabian Nights. Note that not all cards are influenced by these tales.

  • Drop of Honey: A humorous anecdote about a farmer who finds a honeycomb in a beehive. He spills a drop, which causes a chain reaction which ends with the farmer's whole town in an uproar.
  • Ebony Horse: Created by a Persian magician, a horse made of ebony and ivory allowed its rider to fly and at incredible speeds. Prince Kamar al-Akmar uses the horse to elope with a princess from another kingdom.[4]
  • Fishliver Oil: Several characters in the folktales rub this oil over their bodies to gain the ability to breathe underwater.
  • Island Fish Jasconius: On one of Sinbad's voyages, he lands on a gigantic fish that appeared to be an island. When the fish dove, it left Sinbad adrift in the sea.
  • Old Man of the Sea: From one of Sinbad's voyages, the Old Man of the Sea attached himself to Sinbad's back and made Sinbad his slave.
  • Repentant Blacksmith: An evil blacksmith repented his ways and, as a result, found that he could handle fire and forge metal with his bare hands.
  • Ring of Ma'rûf: Ma'rûf is a poor Egyptian cobbler who finds a ring that allowed him to summon a wish granting djinn. He uses it to obtain incredible wealth and status.
  • Rukh Egg: Sinbad's crew finds a giant egg and wishes to make what's inside a meal. But the parent rukh attacks Sinbad's crew as a result.
  • Shahrazad: Another name for Scheherazade, the main character and storyteller in One Thousand and One Nights, whose tales throughout the text often contain tales themselves—the subgame mechanic emulates this story-within-a-story effect.
  • Singing Tree: From the story "The Sisters Who Envied", the singing tree is one of three rarities (along with the Talking Bird and the Golden Water) that was sought after by princess Perie-zadeh. The many leaves of the tree sang in harmony as if they were in concert.
  • Stone-Throwing Devils: This term comes directly from the One Thousand and One Nights. After publication, Garfield learned that this is apparently a derogatory term for Palestinian protesters in Israel.[2]

External links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Magic Arcana (July 15, 2004). "Fifty-Five Mana?". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  2. a b c d e f Words of Magic, by Allen Varney
  3. Magic Arcana (February 21, 2005). "Phasing to the Rescue?". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  4. About.com Classic Literature