The Prince of the Seas
“The Prince of the Seas:” Syrian Sinbad looks carefully into old books concerning journeys, merchant adventures, wars, diplomacy and amazing discoveries. He interacts with what he reads, becoming both a storyteller and a witness to what happened on these historic voyages. He visits China, riding on a cloud, witnessing the discovery of silk and the beginning of a love that will be crowned with a happy marriage between the Chinese princess who discovered silk by chance and an Indian prince who carries the civilization, heritage and history of his country on his shoulders. When Sinbad arrives in Persia, holding to how things are done and accomplished in his own country, he is surprised to find deadly war being waged between Persia and Rome over control of the Silk Road and for monopoly of the silk trade. He rests his eyes from the battle and returns to his papers.
The story of Trojan prince Paris’ kidnapping of Grecian princess Helen bursts forth from the pages, along with the full story of the senseless Trojan War, resulting only in destruction, death and many, many widows. Suddenly Zorba the Greek springs from the manuscript to mock the story through his world-famous dancing and his equally well-known philosophy glorifying and loving life no matter what losses come our way. Sinbad’s journey in books continues as he enters Andalus, along with Tareq Ibn Ziyad, and witnesses the intermarriage of Arabic Islamic culture and that of Spain, and the beginning of the poetic form, terza rima, as a result of this fascinating cultural fusion. Next, he visits Egypt and sees a theatrical rite which resurrects an ancient pharaonic story with Egyptian natives who are gathered around the storyteller and performers.
Then he enters Al-Sham at the moment of victory of Saif Al-Dawlah Al-Hamadany and his receiving of Arab delegations to congratulate him. From Al-Sham, he is given an overview of a sad stage of the history of Iraq. We watch with him as every Iraqi rises up with the will to resist and defeat their invaders no matter how deep their own injuries might be. From Iraq he crosses to the bright Arabian Gulf with its gentle customs on land and sea, and we notice the harmony of desert and sea life on the Arabian Gulf. Sinbad extends an invitation everywhere he goes to visit Syria and to learn of its history written in blood, sweat and the exertion of its people. Finally, we see one after the other of the prominent personalities that he visited come to see Syria, who are, as usual, met with open hearts and wishes of welfare and love by the citizens of Sham.