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Codes - Passwords  & Combinations

"Open Sesame" - The aristocratic English detective Lord Peter Wimsey (starring Ian Carmichael) created by Dorothy L. Sayers - who adventures aired on the PBS series MYSTERY - used the very same phrase to open the inner door of his home safe. Edward Petherbridge later starred as Lord Peter Wimsey in the second group of stories, released in 1986. 

Sesame Street 'Open Sesame' dictionary

The children's series SESAME STREET/PBS/1969+ was inspired by the very same phrase. The term "Sesame" was chosen with the hopes that the program would "open up" the minds of the children who viewed the series.

TRIVIA NOTE: In children's literature, the phrase "Open Sesame" was the magical password spoken by the Ali Baba to open the entrance of a secret desert hideaway in "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves", a tale from The Arabian Nights.

Excerpt from Arabian Nights by Andrew Lang

One day, when Ali Baba was in the forest, he saw a troop of men on horseback, coming toward him in a cloud of dust. He was afraid they were robbers, and climbed into a tree for safety. When they came up to him and dismounted, he counted forty of them. They unbridled their horses and tied them to trees.

The finest man among them, whom Ali Baba took to be their captain, went a little way among some bushes, and said, "Open, Sesame!" so plainly that Ali Baba heard him.

A door opened in the rocks, and having made the troop go in, he followed them, and the door shut again of itself. They stayed some time inside, and Ali Baba, fearing they might come out and catch him, was forced to sit patiently in the tree. At last the door opened again, and the Forty Thieves came out. As the Captain went in last he came out first, and made them all pass by him; he then closed the door, saying, "Shut, Sesame!"

Every man bridled his horse and mounted, the Captain put himself at their head, and they returned as they came.

Then Ali Baba climbed down and went to the door concealed among the bushes, and said, "Open, Sesame!" and it flew open.

Ali Baba, who expected a dull, dismal place, was greatly surprised to find it large and well lighted, hollowed by the hand of man in the form of a vault, which received the light from an opening in the ceiling. He saw rich bales of merchandise -- silk, stuff-brocades, all piled together, and gold and silver in heaps, and money in leather purses. He went in and the door shut behind him. He did not look at the silver, but brought out as many bags of gold as he thought his asses, which were browsing outside, could carry, loaded them with the bags, and hid it all with fagots.

Using the words, "Shut, Sesame!" he closed the door and went home.


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