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10 Pages

Aladdin: The Audacity of Wildest Wishes

ByJennifer Veninga

Oehlenschläger’s Aladdin, set in Ispahan, Persia, rather than in China as it is in Galland’s text, is the story of a merry and handsome but lazy young man whose luck brings him unexpected fortune. When Aladdin meets antagonist Noureddin, an African magician, the young man is playing with his friends as they attempt to catch oranges (pomerants), which are being thrown from the window of a local merchant. Aladdin catches all three in his turban, a scene which is captured in Danish popular imagination through the proverb, få en appelsin i turbanen, which literally means “to get an orange in one’s turban” and indicates that one is lucky.