Painting of society lady dressed as if she was in Arabian Nights
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Arabian Nights hugely popular in 18th Century Britain

When the first edition of the Arabian Nights arrived in Britain in 1706, it took the country by storm.

Translated from Arabic and in to French by French scholar Antoine Galland, it is believed he then added his own stories and embellished tales he had heard, before his book was translated in to English.

Richard E Grant found the high society of the 18th Century embraced Arabian fashions and style.

Secrets of The Arabian Nights is on BBC Four 21 April 2100 BST.

  • 21 Apr 2011