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Bagh O Bahar, Or Tales of the Four Darweshes by Mir Amman of Dihli

Part 4 out of 5

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'On the opposite side [of the city] is a large garden, its name is
_Dil-kusha_, or "Delight of the Heart." Go you there. A person named
_Kaikhusru_ is the superintendent [of the garden]; deliver into his
hands the ring, and bless him for me, and ask a reply to this note,
but return quick, as if you ate your dinner there and drank your
wine here; [370] you will see what a reward I shall give you for this
service.' I took my leave, and went along inquiring my way. When I had
gone about two _/kos_, I saw the garden. When I reached it, an armed
man seized me, and led me into the garden gate. I saw there a young
man with the looks of a lion; he was seated on a stool of gold, with
an air of state and dignity, having on an armour [forged] by _Da,ud_,
[371] with breast plates, and a steel helmet. Five hundred young men,
holding each in his hands a shield and sword, and equipped with bows
and arrows, were drawn up in a line, and ready [to execute his orders].

"I made him my _salam_, and he called me to him; I delivered him the
ring, and, paying him many compliments, I showed him the handkerchief,
and mentioned also the circumstance of having brought him a note. The
moment he heard me, he bit his finger with his teeth, and slapping his
head, he said, 'Perhaps your evil destiny hath brought you here. Well,
enter the garden; an iron cage hangs on a cypress tree, in which
a young man is confined; give him this note, receive his answer,
and return quickly.' I immediately entered the garden; what a garden
it was! you might say that I had entered alive into Paradise. Every
individual parterre bloomed with variegated flowers; the fountains
were playing, and the birds were warbling [on the trees]. I went
straight on, and saw the cage suspended from the tree, in which I
perceived a very handsome young man. I bent my head with respect,
and saluted him, and gave him the sealed and enveloped note through
the bars of the cage. That young man opened the note and read it,
and inquired of me about the princess with great affection.

"We had not yet done speaking, when an army of negroes appeared,
and fell on me on all sides, and began to attack me without delay
with their swords and spears; what could one single unarmed man
do? In a moment they covered me with wounds; I had no sensation or
recollection of myself. When I recovered my senses, I found myself on
a bed, which two soldiers were carrying along [on their shoulders];
they were speaking to each other; one said, 'Let us throw the corpse
of this dead man on the plain; the dogs and crows will soon eat
it up.' The other replied, 'If the king should make investigation,
and learn this circumstance, he will bury us alive, and grind our
children to paste; what! are our lives become a burthen to us, that
we should act so rashly?'

"On hearing this conversation, I said to the two [ruffians] Gog and
Magog, 'for God's sake take some pity on me, I have still a spark of
life left; when I die, do with me what you please; the dead are in
the hands of the living; [372] but tell me what has happened to me;
why have I been wounded, and who are you? pray explain thus much to
me.' They then having taken pity on me, said, 'The young man who is
confined in the cage is the nephew of the king of this country; and
his father was previously on the throne. At the time of his death he
gave this injunction to his brother: 'My son, who is heir to my throne,
is as yet young and inexperienced; do you continue to guide the affairs
of state with zeal and prudence; when he is of age, marry your daughter
to him, and make him master of the whole empire and treasury.'

"After saying this his majesty died, and the younger brother became
king; he did not attend to the [late king's] last injunctions; on
the contrary, he gave it out that [his nephew was] mad and insane,
and put him into a cage, and has placed such strict guards on the four
sides of the garden that no bird can there flap its wing; and many a
time he has administered to [his nephew] the poison called _halahal_;
[373] but his life is stronger and the poison has had no effect. Now
the princess and this prince are lover and mistress; she is distracted
at home, and he in the cage; she sent him a love-letter by your hands;
the spies instantly conveyed intelligence [of this circumstance]
to the king; a body of Abyssinians were ordered out and treated you
thus. The king has consulted his _wazir_ on the means of putting to
death this imprisoned prince, and that ungrateful wretch has persuaded
the princess to kill the innocent prince with her own hands in the
king's presence.'

"I said, 'Let us go, that I may see this scene even in my dying
moments.' They at last agreed [to my request], and the two soldiers
and myself, though wounded, went to the scene and stood in silence in
a retired corner. We saw the king seated on his throne; the princess
held in her hand a naked sword; the prince was taken out of the iron
cage, and made to stand before [the king]; the princess, becoming an
executioner, advanced with the naked sword to kill her lover. When
she drew near the prince, she threw away the sword and embraced
him. Then that lover said to her, 'I am willing to die thus; here,
indeed, I desire thee,--there, also, I shall wish for thee.' [374] The
princess said, 'I have come, under this pretext to behold thee.' The
king, on seeing this scene, became greatly enraged, and reproached the
_wazir_, and said, 'Hast thou brought me here to see this sight?' The
[princess's] confidential servant separated the princess from the
prince, and conducted her to the seraglio. The _wazir_ took up the
sword, and flew with rage at the prince to end with one blow his
unfortunate existence. As he lifted up his arm to strike, an arrow
from an unknown hand pierced his forehead, so that [his head] was
cleft in twain, and he fell down.

"The king, seeing this mysterious event, retired into his palace;
and they put the young prince again into the cage, and carried him
to the garden; I likewise came out from where I was. On the road,
a man called me and conducted me to the princess; seeing me severely
wounded, she sent for a surgeon, and enjoined him very strictly, 'cure
this young man quickly, and perform the ablution of recovery. Your
welfare depends on it; as much care and attention as you bestow on
him, so many presents and favours you will receive from me.' In short,
the surgeon used his skill and assiduity according to the princess's
injunctions, and at the end of forty days, having caused me to be
bathed and washed, he presented me to the princess. She asked me,
'Is there now anything else left to be done.' I replied, that through
her humanity I was quite recovered. The princess then gave me a
rich _khil'at_ and a large sum of money, as she had promised; yea,
she even gave me as much more, and then dismissed me.

"I took all my friends and servants with me, and set out from that
country [to return home]. When I reached this spot, I desired all of
them to return to their native country, and I erected on this hill
this building, and got a statue made of the princess. I took up my
residence here, and having rewarded my servants and slaves according
to their respective merits, I dismissed them, saying, whilst I live,
I leave it to you to provide me with food; beyond this act, you are
your own masters. They supply me with subsistence from gratitude,
and I, with heart at ease, worship this statue; whilst I live,
this will be my sole [care and] employment; these are my adventures
which you have just heard." O, _Darweshes_! on hearing his story, I,
having thrown the _kafni_ over my shoulders, and having put on the
habit of a pilgrim, set out with extreme desire to see the country
of the Franks. After long wandering over mountains and through woods,
I began to resemble _Majnun Farhad_.

At last, my strong desire carried me to the same [European] city
[where the old statue-worshipper had been]; I wandered through
its streets and lanes like a lunatic, and I often remained near
the seraglio of the princess; but I could get no opportunity to
have an introduction to her. I was greatly vexed that I should not
obtain the object for which I had undergone such misery and toil,
and come so far. On day, I was standing in the _bazar_ when all at
once the people began to run away, and the shopkeepers having shut
up their shops, also fled. What crowds there were [a moment before],
and how desert the place became [all of a sudden]! I soon perceived
a young man rushing forward from a side street; he was like _Rustam_
in appearance, and roared like a lion; he flourished a naked sword in
each hand; he was in armour, with a pair of pistols in his girdle,
and kept muttering something to himself like an inebriated maniac;
two slaves followed him, clothed in woollen, and bearing on their
heads a bier covered with velvet of _Kashan_.

On seeing this sight, I determined to proceed with it; those I met
dissuaded me from it, but I would not hear them. Pushing forward,
the young man went towards a grand mansion; I also went along with
him. He looked back, and perceiving me, he wished to give me a blow
and cut me in two; I swore to him that this was the very thing I
wished, saying, "I forgive you my blood; relieve me by some means or
other from the misery of life, for I am grievously afflicted; I have
knowingly and voluntarily put myself in your way; do not delay [my
execution]." Setting me determined to die, God infused compassion into
his heart, and his anger cooled, and he asked me with much kindness
and gentleness, "Who art thou and why art thou tired of life?"

I replied, "Sit down awhile that I may tell you; my story is very
long and tedious. I am caught in the claws of love, for which reason
I am desperate." On hearing this, he unfastened his waist band, and
having washed his hands and face, he took some food and gave me some
likewise. When he finished his meal, he said, "Say what has befallen
thee?" I related all the adventures of the old man and the princess,
and the cause of my going there, [i. e. to Europe]. On hearing them he
wept at first, and then said, "What numbers of homes this unfortunate
[princess] has ruined! Well, thy cure is in my hands; it is probable
that through the means of this guilty being thou wilt attain thy
wishes; do not give way to anxiety; be confident." He then ordered
the barber to shave me, and to apply to me the bath; [375] his slave
brought me a suit of clothes and dressed me: then the young man said
to me, "This bier which thou seest is that of the late young prince,
who was confined in the iron cage; another _wazir_ murdered him at last
through treachery; he indeed has obtained release though he has been
wrongfully slain. I am his foster brother; I put that _wazir_ to death
with a blow of my sword, and made the attempt to kill the king; but
he entreated mercy, and swore that he was innocent; I having spurned
him as a coward, allowed him to escape. Since then, my occupation has
been this, to carry the bier, in this manner, through the city, on the
first Thursday of every moon, and to mourn for the [murdered prince]."

On hearing these circumstances, from his mouth, I attained some
consolation, saying, "If he should wish it, then my desires will be
accomplished; God has favoured me greatly, since he has made such
a mad man well inclined towards me; so true is it, that if God is
favourable, all goes well." When the evening came, and the sun set,
the young man took up the bier, and instead of one of the slaves,
he put it on my head and took me along with him. He said, "I am
going to the princess, and will plead for thee as much as I am able;
do not thou open thy lips, but remain silent and listen." I replied,
"Whatever you advise, I will strictly do; God preserve you, for you
feel pity on my case." That young man proceeded towards the royal
garden, and when we entered it, I perceived a marble platform of eight
sides, in an open space of the garden, on which was spread an awning
of silver tissue with pearl fringe, and erected on poles set with
diamonds; a rich brocade _masnad_, with pillows, was spread under
the awning. The bier was placed there, and we were both ordered to
go and sit under a tree [which he pointed out].

In a short time, the lights of flambeaux appeared, and the princess
herself arrived, accompanied by some female attendants before and
behind her; melancholy and anger were visible in her looks; she mounted
the platform and sat down [on the _masnad_]. The foster-brother
stood before her with folded arms, then sat down at a respectable
distance on a corner of the _farsh_. The prayer for the dead was read;
then the foster-brother said something; I having applied my ear, was
listening with attention. At last, he said, "O princess of the world,
peace be upon you! The prince of the kingdom of Persia, hearing, in
your absence, of your beauty and excellence, has abandoned his throne,
and becoming a pilgrim like _Ibrahim Adham_; [376] he is arrived here,
after overcoming many difficulties and undergoing great fatigue. The
pilgrim hath quitted _Balkh_ [377] for thee; he hath wandered for
some time through this city in distress and misery; at last, forming
the resolution to die, he joined me; I attempted to alarm him with my
sword; he presented his neck, and conjured me to strike without delay,
adding, that was his wish. In short, he is firmly in love with you;
I have proved him well, and have found him perfect in every way. For
this reason I have mentioned him to you; if you take pity on his case
and be kind to him, as he is a stranger, it would not be doing too much
[on the part] of one who fears God and loves justice."

On hearing this speech, the princess said, "Where is he? if he
is really a prince, then it does not signify, let him come before
us." The foster-brother got up and came [to where I was] and took me
with him. I, on seeing the princess, became exceedingly overjoyed,
but my reason and my senses departed. I became dumb; I had not power
to speak. The princess shortly after returned [to her palace], and the
foster-brother came to his own residence. When we reached his house,
he said, "I have related all the circumstances [you mentioned] to the
princess from beginning to end, and have likewise interceded for you;
now do you go there every night without fail and indulge in pleasure
and joy." I fell at his feet; [he lifted me up and] clasped me to his
bosom. All the day, I continued counting the hours until the evening
came, that I might go and see the princess. When the night arrived,
I took leave of that young man, and went to the princess's lower
garden; I sat down on the marble platform, reclining on my pillow.

A hour after, the princess came slowly, attended by one female servant
only, and sat down on the _masnad;_ it was through my happy destinies
that I lived to see this day! I kissed her feet; she lifted up my head,
and embraced me, and said, "Conceive this opportunity as fortunate;
mind my advice; take me from hence, and go to some other country." I
replied, "Come along." After having thus spoken, we both got out of
the garden, but we were so confused, through wonder and joy, that we
could not use our hands and feet, and we lost our road; we went along,
in another direction, but found not a place of rest. The princess
got angry, and said, "I am now tired, where is your house? hasten to
get there; otherwise what do you mean to do? My feet are blistered;
I shall [be obliged to] sit down somewhere on the road."

I replied, "My slave's house is near; we have now reached it; be easy
in your mind, and march on." I indeed told a falsehood, but I was
at a loss where to take her. A locked door appeared on the road; I
quickly broke the lock, and we entered the place; it was a fine house,
laid out with carpets, and flasks full of wine were arranged in the
recesses, and bread and roast meat were ready in the kitchen. We were
greatly fatigued, and drank each of us, a glass of Portugal wine with
our meat, and passed the whole night together in mutual bliss. In this
scene of felicity when the morning dawned, an uproar was raised in the
town that the princess had disappeared. Proclamations were issued in
every district and street; and bawds and messengers were despatched
with orders, that wherever she was to be found, she might be seized
[and brought to the king]; and guards of royal slaves were posted at
all the gates of the city. Those guards received orders not to let
an ant pass without the royal permission; and that whoever would
bring any intelligence of the princess should receive a _khil'at_
and a thousand pieces of gold as a present. The bawds roamed through
the whole city and entered every house.

I, who was ill fated, did not shut the door. An old hag, the aunt
of Satan (may God make her face black), with a string of beads in
her hand, and covered with a mantle, finding the door open, entered
without fear, and standing before the princess, lifted up her hands
and blessed her, saying, "I pray to God that he may long preserve you a
married woman, and that thy husband's turban may be permanent! I am a
poor beggar woman, and I have a daughter who is in her full time and
perishing in the pains of child-birth; I have not the means to get
a little oil which I may burn in our lamp; food and drink, indeed,
are out of the question. If she should die, how shall I bury her? and
if she is brought to bed, what shall I give the midwife and nurse,
or how procure remedies for the lying-in woman? it is now two days
since she has lain hungry and thirsty. O, noble lady! give her, out
of your bounty, a morsel of bread that she may eat the same along
with a drink of water."

The princess took pity on her, and called her near her, and gave
her four loaves, some roast meat, and a ring from her little finger,
saying, "having sold this, make jewels [for your daughter] and live
comfortably; and come occasionally to see me, the house is yours." The
old hag having completely gained the object she came in search of,
poured heartfelt blessings on the princess, saluted her and trotted
off. She threw away the loaves and meat at the door, but kept the
ring snug, saying to herself, "the clue to trace the princess is now
in my possession." As God wished to preserve us from this calamity,
just then the master of the house arrived; he was a brave soldier,
mounted on an Arab horse, with a spear in his hand, and a deer hanging
by the side of his saddle. Finding the door of his house open, the
lock broken, and the old hag coming out of it, he was enraged, and
seized her by the hair and dragged her to the house. He tied both
her feet with a rope, and hung her on the branch of a true with her
head down and her feet uppermost; so that in a short time the old
devil died in agonies. The moment I saw the soldier's looks, I was
overcome with such fear that I turned quite pale, and my heart began
to tremble with dread. That brave man seeing us both alarmed, gave
us assurances of safety, and added, "You have acted very imprudently;
you have done the deed and left the door open."

The princess, smiling, said, "The prince said it was the house
of his slave, and brought me here under a deception." The soldier
observed, "The prince said truly, for all the people are the slaves
and servants of princes; all are reared and fed from their favour
and protection. This slave is yours without purchase; but to conceal
secrets is consonant to good sense. O, prince, you and the princess's
coming to this humble roof, and honouring me with your presence,
will be a source of happiness to me in both worlds; and you have thus
dignified your slave. I am ready to sacrifice my life for you; in no
way will I withhold either it or my property [from your service];
you may repose here in confidence; there is now no danger. If this
vile bawd had gone away in safety, she would have brought calamity
[upon you]; remain here now as long as you please, and let this
servant know whatever you require; he will procure it. What is
the king! angels themselves shall have no tidings of your being
here." The brave fellow spoke such words of comfort, and gave such
confidence, that we became more easy in our mind. Then I spoke,
"Well said, you are a brave fellow; when I am able, I will show
you the return for this kindness; what is your name?" He answered,
"This slave's name is _Bihzad Khan_. In short, for the space of six
months, he performed from his heart and soul all the duty required,
and we passed our time very comfortably.

One day, my country and my parents recurred to my recollection,
which made me pensive and melancholy. Seeing my thoughtful looks,
_Bihzad Khan_ joined his hands together, and stood before me, [378] and
began to say, "If on the part of this slave any failure has occurred
in performing his duty, then let the same be stated." I said, "For
God's sake, why mention this? you have behaved to us in such a manner,
that we have lived in this city as comfortably as any one does in his
mother's womb; for I had committed such an act that every individual
straw had become my enemy. Who was such a friend to us, that we could
have tarried here a moment? May God preserve you in happiness! You are
a brave man." _Bihzad Khan_ then said, "If you are tired of this place,
I will conduct you in safety wherever you wish to go." I then said,
"If I could reach my own country, I should see my parents; I am in
this state; Lord knows what may have been their condition. I have
attained the object for which I quitted my country; and it is proper
I should now return [to my relations]; they have no tidings of me,
whether I am dead or alive; [God knows] what sorrow they may feel in
their hearts." That brave man replied, "It is very proper,--let us
go." Saying this, he brought a Turkish horse for me, which could travel
a hundred _kos_ a-day, and a swift quiet mare of unclipped wings [379]
for the princess, and made us both mount; then putting on his cuirass
and arming himself completely, he mounted on his horse and said,
"I will go before, do you follow me with full confidence."

When we came to the city gate, he gave a loud cry, and with his mace
broke the bolt, and frightened the guards; he vociferated to them, "Ye
rascals, go and tell your master that _Bihzad Khan_ is carrying off the
princess _Mihrnigar_, and the prince _Kamgar,_ who is his son-in-law;
if he has any spark of manhood, then let him come out and rescue her;
do not you be saying that I carried her off in silence and by stealth,
otherwise let him stay in the fort and enjoy his repose." This news
soon reached the king; he ordered the _wazir_ and general to seize the
three rebellious ones, and bring them tied neck and heels to the royal
presence, and cut off their heads and lay them before the throne. After
a short time, a numerous body of troops appeared, and the heavens and
earth were darkened by a whirlwind of dust. _Bihzad Khan_ placed the
princess and me on the abutment of an arch of the bridge which, like
the bridge of _Jaunpur_, consisted of twelve arches, and he himself
turned about, and pushed his horse towards the troops; he rushed in
among them like a growling lion; the whole body was dispersed like a
flock of sheep, [380] and he penetrated to the two chiefs and cut off
both their heads. When the chiefs were killed, the troops dispersed,
as the saying is, that "All depends on the head; when it is gone,
all is lost." The king came immediately to their assistance, with a
body of armed troops; _Bihzad Khan_ completely defeated them also.

The king fled; so true it is that "God alone gives victory;"
but _Bihzad Khan_ behaved so bravely, that perhaps even _Rustam_
himself could not have equalled his valour. When he saw that the
field of battle was cleared, and that no one remained to pursue him,
and that there was nothing to apprehend, he came confidentially to
the place where we were, and taking the princess and me along with
him, he pushed forward. The duration of the journey is rendered
short; we reached the boundaries of my country in a short time. I
despatched a letter to the king, (who was my father), mentioning my
safe arrival; he was quite rejoiced on reading it, and thanked God
[for His goodness]. As the withered plant revives by water, so the
joyful tidings renovated his drooping spirits; he took all his _amirs_
with him, and advanced for the purpose of receiving me as far as the
banks of a large river, and an order for boats [to cross us over]
was issued to the superintendent of rivers. I saw the royal train
from the opposite bank; from eagerness to kiss my father's feet,
I plunged my horse into the river, and swimming over, I rode up to
the king; he clasped me with eager fondness to his [paternal] bosom.

At this moment, another unforeseen calamity overwhelmed us. The horse
on which I was mounted was perhaps the colt of the mare on which the
princess rode, or they had been perhaps always together, for seeing
my horse plunge into the river, the mare became restive, followed
my horse, and likewise plunged into the river with the princess,
and began to swim. The princess being alarmed, pulled the bridle;
the mare was tender mouthed and turned over; the princess struggled,
and sank with the mare, so that not a trace of either was ever seen
again. On seeing this circumstance, _Bihzad Khan_ dashed into the
river on horseback to afford assistance to the princess; he got into
a whirlpool and could not extricate himself; all his efforts with
his hands and feet were vain, and he also sank. The king seeing these
sad circumstances, sent for nets and had them thrown into the river,
and ordered the boatmen and divers [to look for the bodies]; they
swept the whole river, but could find nothing. [381] O _Darweshes!_
this dreadful occurrence affected me so much that I became mad and
frantic; I became a pilgrim, and wandered about, ever repeating these
words,--"Such has been the fate of these three; that you have seen, now
view the other side." If the princess had vanished or died anywhere,
I should then have some kind of consolation for my heart, for I would
have gone in search of her, or have borne the loss with patience;
but when she perished before my eyes [in this dreadful manner], I
could not support [the shock]. At last, I determined to perish with
her in the stream, that I might perhaps meet my beloved one in death.

I according plunged into that same river one night in order to drown
myself, and went up to the neck in the water; I was on the point of
stepping forward and diving down, when the same veiled horseman who
saved you two, [382] came up and seized my arm; he consoled me, and
said to me, "Be comforted; the princess and _Bihzad Khan_ are alive;
why do you uselessly throw away your life? such events do occur in
the world. Do not despair of the help of God; if you live, you will
some day or other meet the two persons [for whom you are going to
sacrifice your life]. Proceed now to the empire of _Rum_; two other
unfortunate _Darweshes_ are gone there already; when you meet them,
you will attain your wishes." O _Darweshes!_ I am come here to you,
according to the advice of my heavenly Mentor; I firmly hope that
each of us will gain the desires of his heart. These have been this
pilgrim's adventures, which he hath related to you fully and entirely.


The fourth _Darwesh_ began with tears the relation of his adventures
in the following manner:--

"The sad tale of my misfortunes now hear,
Pay some attention, and my whole story hear;
From what causes I distressed have come thus far,
I will relate it all,--do you the reason hear."

O, guides [to the path] of God, [383] bestow a little attention. This
pilgrim, who is reduced to this wretched state, is the son of the king
of China; I was brought up with tenderness and delicacy, and well
educated. I was utterly unacquainted with the good and evil of this
world, and imagined [my life] would ever pass in the same manner. In
the midst of this extreme thoughtlessness this sad event took place;
the king, who was the father of this orphan, departed [this life]. In
his last moments, he sent for his younger brother, who was my uncle,
and said to him, "I now leave my kingdom and wealth behind me, and
am going to depart; but do you perform my last wishes, and act the
part of an elder. Until the prince, who is the heir to my throne,
has become of age, and has sense to govern his kingdom; do you act as
regent, and do not permit the army and the husbandmen to be injured
or oppressed. When the prince has arrived at the years of maturity,
give him advice, and deliver over to him the government; and having
married him to your daughter, _Roshan Akhtar,_ retire yourself from
the throne. By this conduct, the sovereignty will remain in my family,
and no harm will accrue to it."

After this speech, [the king] himself expired; my uncle became ruler,
and began to regulate the affairs of government. He ordered me to
remain in the seraglio, and that I should not come out of it until I
reached [the years of] manhood. Until my fourteenth year I was brought
up among the princesses and female attendants, and used to play and
frisk about. Having heard of [my intended] marriage with my uncle's
daughter, I was quite happy, and on this hope I became thoughtless,
and said to myself, that I shall now in a short time ascend the
throne and be married; "the world is established on hope." [384] I
used often to go and sit with _Mubarak_, a negro slave, who had been
brought up in my late father's service, and in whom much confidence was
[placed], as he was sensible and faithful. He also had a great regard
for me, and seeing me advancing to the years of manhood, he was much
pleased, and used to say, "God be praised, O prince, you are now a
young man, and, God willing, your uncle, the shadow of Omnipotence,
will shortly fulfil the injunctions [of your late father], and give
you his daughter, and your father's throne."

One day, it happened that a common female slave gave me, without cause,
such a slap, that the marks of her five fingers remained on my cheek. I
went, weeping, to _Mubarak_; he clasped me to his bosom, and wiped away
my tears with his sleeve, and said, "Come, I will conduct you to-day to
the king; he will perhaps be kind to you on seeing yon, and, conceiving
you qualified [in years], he may give up to you your rights." He led me
immediately to my uncle's presence; my uncle showed me great affection
before the court, and asked me, "why are you so sad, and wherefore
are you come here to-day?" _Mubarak_ replied, "He is come here to say
something [to your majesty]." On hearing this, he said of himself,
"I will shortly marry the young prince." _Mubarak_ answered, "It will
be a most joyful event." The king immediately sent for the astrologers
and diviners into his presence, and with feigned interest asked them,
"In this year what month, what day, and what hour is auspicious, that I
may order the preparations for the prince's marriage?" They perceiving
what were [the king's real wishes], made their calculations, and said,
"Mighty sire, the whole of this year is unpropitious; no day in any
of the lunar months appears happy; if this whole year pass in safety,
then the next is most propitious for a happy marriage."

The king looked towards _Mubarak_, and said, "Reconduct the prince to
the seraglio, if God willing, after this year is over, I will deliver
up my trust to him; let him make himself perfectly easy, and attend to
his studies," _Mubarak_ made his _salam_, and taking me along with him,
reconducted me to the seraglio. Two or three days after this, I went
to _Mubarak_; on seeing me, he began to weep; I was surprised, and
asked him, saying, "My father, is all well? what is the cause of your
weeping?" Then, that well wisher, (who loved me with heart and soul),
said, "I conducted you the other day to that tyrant; if I had known it,
I would not have carried you there," I was alarmed, and asked him,
"What harm has occurred from my going? pray tell me truly," He then
said, "All the nobles, ministers, and officers of state, small and
great, of your father's time, were greatly rejoiced on seeing you,
and began to offer up thanks to God, saying, 'Now, our prince is of
age, and fit to reign. Now, in a short time, the right will devolve
upon the rightful [heir]; then he will do justice to our merits,
and appreciate the length of our services.' This news reached the
ears of that faithless wretch, [385] and entered his breast like a
serpent. He sent for me in private, and said, 'O _Mubarak_, act now
in such a manner, that by some stratagem or other the prince may be
destroyed; and remove the dread of his [existence] from my heart,
that I may feel secure.' Since then I am quite confounded, for your
uncle is become the enemy of your life." When I heard this dreadful
news from _Mubarak,_ I was dead without being murdered, and fell at
his feet from fear of my life, and said, "For God's sake, I relinquish
my throne; by any means, let my life be saved." That faithful slave
lifted up my head, clasped me to his breast, and said, "There is no
danger, a thought has struck me; if it turns out well, then there
is nothing to fear; whilst we have life, we have everything. "It is
probable that, by this scheme [of mine] your life will be preserved,
and you will attain your wishes."

Giving me these hopes, he took me with him, and went to the apartment
where the deceased king, my father, used to sit and sleep; and gave
me every confidence. There a stool was placed; he told me to lay
hold of one of its legs, and taking hold of the other himself, we
removed the stool, and he lifted up the carpet that was beneath it,
and began to dig the floor. A window appeared suddenly, to which were
attached a chain and lock. He called me near him; I apprehended within
myself that he wished to butcher me, and bury me in the place he had
dug. Death appeared [in all its horrors] before my eyes; but having
no other alternative, I advanced slowly and in silence towards him,
repeating within myself my prayers to God. I then saw a building
with four rooms inside of that window, and in every room ten large
vases of gold were suspended by chains; on the mouth of each vase was
placed a brick of gold, on which was set the figure of a monkey inlaid
with precious stones. I counted thirty-nine vases of this kind in the
four rooms, and saw one vase filled with pieces of gold, on the mouth
of which there was neither the brick, nor the figure of the monkey,
and I also saw a vat filled to the brim with precious stones. I asked
_Mubarak,_ "O my father, what talisman is this? whose place is this,
and for what use are those figures?" He replied, "The following is
the story of those figures of monkeys which you see:--Your father
from his youth formed a friendship and kept up an intercourse with
_Maliki Sadik_, who is the king of the _jinns_.

"Accordingly, once every year, [his late majesty] used to visit _Maliki
Sadik_ and stay near a month with him, having carried thither with
him many kinds of essences, [386] and the rarities of this country,
[as a present]. When he took his leave, _Maliki Sadik_ used to give
him the figure of a monkey made of emerald, and our king used to
bring it and place it in these lower rooms; no one but myself knew
the circumstance. Once I observed to your father, O mighty king, you
carry with you thousands of rupees'-worth of rarities, and you bring
back from thence the figure of a lifeless monkey in stone; what is
the advantage of this [exchange] in the end? In answer to my question,
he smiling, said, 'Beware, and do not, in any way divulge this secret;
the information [you receive] is on this condition. Each one of these
lifeless monkeys which thou seest has a thousand powerful demons [387]
at his command, ready to obey his orders; but until I have the number
of forty monkeys complete, so long are all these of no use, and will
be of no service to me.' So one monkey was wanting [to complete the
efficient number] in that very year, when the king died.

"All this toil then has been of no avail, nor has the advantage of it
been displayed. O prince, I recollected this circumstance on seeing
your forlorn situation, and determined within myself to conduct you
by some means or other to _Maliki Sadik_, and mention to him your
uncle's tyranny. It is most likely that he, recollecting your father's
friendship for him, may give you the one monkey which is wanting [to
complete the number]; then, with their aid, you may get your empire,
and reign peaceably over China and _Machin,_ [388] and your life, at
least, will be secured by this proceeding, if nothing else can be done;
I see no other way to escape from the hands of this tyrant, except
the plan I propose." On hearing all these consoling circumstances
from _Mubarak_, I said to him, "O friend, you are now the disposer
of my life; do whatever is best with regard to me." Giving me every
confidence, he went to the _bazar_ to buy some _'itr_ and _bukhur_,
[389] and whatever he deemed fit to be carried [as a present for
_Maliki Sadik_].

The next day, he went to my impious uncle, who was a second
_Abu-Jahal_, [390] and said, "Protector of the world, I have formed
a plan in my heart for destroying the prince, and if you order me,
I will relate it." That wretch was quite pleased, and said, "What
is the plan?" Then _Mubarak_ said, "By putting him to death [here],
your majesty will be highly censured in every way; but I will take
him out to the woods, finish him, bury him, and return; no one will
be conversant [of the fact]." On hearing this plan of _Mubarak's_, the
king said, "It is an excellent [plan]; I desire this, that he may not
live in safety; I am greatly afraid of him in my heart, and if thou
relievest me from this anxiety, then in return for that service thou
shalt obtain much; take him where thou wilt, and make away with him,
and bring me the welcome tidings."

Being in this manner at ease with regard to the king, _Mubarak_ took
me with him, and having also taken the presents, he set out from
the city at midnight, and proceeded towards the north. For a whole
month he went on without stopping; one night we were trudging along,
when _Mubarak_ observed, "God be praised, we are now arrived at the
end of our journey." On hearing this exclamation, I said, "O friend,
what dost thou say?" He replied, "O prince, do not you see the army
of the _jinns_?" I answered, "I see nothing except you." _Mubarak_
then took out a box containing _surma_, and with a needle applied
to both my eyes the _surma_ of _Sulaiman_. I instantly began to see
the host of the _jinns_ and the tents and encampments of their army;
they were all handsome, and well dressed. Recognising _Mubarak_,
they all embraced him, and spake to him facetiously.

Proceeding onwards, we at length reached the royal tents, and entered
the court. I saw they were well lighted, and stools of various kinds
were arranged in double rows, on which were seated men of learning,
philosophers, _darweshes_, nobles, and the officers of state; servants
of various grades with their arms across were in waiting, and in the
centre was placed a throne set with precious stones, on which was
seated with an air of dignity, the king, _Maliki Sadik_, with a crown
of his head, and clothed in a tunic set with pearls. I approached
him and made my salutation; he desired me with kindness to sit down,
and then ordered dinner; after having finished [our repast], the
_dastar-khwan_ was removed, and he having looked towards _Mubarak_,
asked my story. _Mubarak_ replied, "This prince's uncle now reigns
in the room of his father, and is become the enemy of his life, for
which reason I have run off with him from thence, and have conducted
him to your majesty; he is an orphan, and the throne is his due;
but no one can do anything without a protector; with your majesty's
assistance, this injured [youth] may get his rights; recollect the
return due for his father's services, afford him your assistance,
and give him the fortieth monkey, that the number may be completed,
and the prince, having gained his rights [with their aid], [391]
will pray for your majesty's long life and prosperity; he has no
other visible resource except your majesty's protection."

On hearing all these circumstances, _Maliki Sadik_, after a pause,
said, "In truth, the return for the deceased king's services,
and his friendship for me, are great; and, considering that this
helpless prince is overwhelmed with misfortunes, that he has quitted
his lineal throne to save his life, and is come as far as this, and
has taken shelter under the shadow of our protection, I shall in no
way be wanting [to afford him my assistance] as far as I am able,
nor will I pass him over; but I have an affair in hand; if he can do
it and does not deceive me--if he executes it properly, and acquits
himself fully in the trial, I then promise that I will be a greater
friend to him than I was to the late king, his father, and that I
will grant him whatever he asks." I joined my hands, and replied,
"This servant will most cheerfully perform as far as he is able,
whatever services your majesty may require; he will execute them with
prudence and vigilance, and without deceit, and think it a happiness to
him in both worlds." The king of the _jinns_ observed, "You are as yet
a mere boy, for which reason I warn you so repeatedly, that you may
not deceive me, and plunge yourself in calamity." I answered, "God,
through the good fortune of your majesty, will make it easy to me,
and I will, as far as in me lies, exert myself to your satisfaction."

_Maliki Sadik_, on hearing [these assurances], called me near him,
and taking out a paper from his pocket book, showed it to me, and said,
"Search where you think proper for the person whose portrait this is;
find her out and bring her to me; when you find out her name and
place, go before her, and express great affection to her from me;
if you perform this service, then whatever expectations you may have
from me, I will exceed them in the performance; otherwise you will
be treated as you deserve." When I looked on that paper, I perceived
such a beautiful portrait in it, that a faintness came over me; I
supported myself with difficulty through fear, and answered, "Very
well, I take my leave; if God favours me, I shall execute what your
majesty commands." Saying this, I took _Mubarak_ with me, and bent my
course towards the woods. I began to wander from city to city, from
town to town, from village to village, and from country to country,
and to inquire of every one [I met] the name and place [of the fair
one whose portrait I had]; but no one said "Yes, I know her," or
"I have heard of her from some one." I passed seven years in this
wandering state, and suffered every misery and perplexity; at last,
I reached a city which was populous, and contained many grand edifices;
but every living creature there was repeating the great name, [392]
and worshipping God.

I saw a blind beggar of _Hindustan_ begging alms, but no one gave him
a _kauri_, or a mouthful; I wondered at it, and pitied him; I took
out a piece of gold from my pocket, and gave it to him; he took it,
and said, "O donor! God prosper you; you are perhaps a traveller,
and not an inhabitant of this city." I replied, "In truth, I have
wandered distractedly for seven years; I cannot find the smallest
trace of the object for which I set out, and have this day reached this
city. The old man poured blessings on me, and went on; I followed him;
a grand building appeared without the city; he entered it, and I also
followed, and saw that here and there the building had fallen down,
and was out of repair.

I said to myself, "This edifice is fit for princes; what an agreeable
place it will be when in repair? and now, through desolation, what
an appearance it has! but I cannot conceive why it is fallen into
ruin, and why this blind man lives in it." The blind man was going
on feeling his way with his stick, when I heard a voice, as if some
one was saying, "O father, I hope all is well; why have you returned
so early to-day?" The old man, on hearing this question, replied,
"Daughter, God made a youthful traveller have pity on my condition; he
gave me a piece of gold; it is many a-day since I have had a bellyful
of good food. So I have purchased meat, spices, butter, oil, flour, and
salt; and I have also procured such clothes for you as were necessary;
cut them out, sew them and wear them; and cook the dinner, that we
may partake of it, and then offer up our prayers for the generous man
[who has been kind to us]; although I do not know the desires of his
heart, yet God knows and sees all; and will grant the prayers of us
destitute ones." When I heard the circumstance of his severe fasting,
I wished much to give him twenty pieces of gold more; but looking
towards the quarter from whence the sounds came, I saw a woman who
resembled exactly the portrait I had. I drew it out and compared
it, and perceived that there was not a hairbreadth of difference. A
deep sigh escaped from my bosom, and I became senseless. _Mubarak_
took me in his arms and sat down, and began to fan me; I recovered
a little sensation, and was gazing at her, when _Mubarak_ asked,
"What is the matter with you?" I had not yet answered him, when the
beautiful female said, "O young man, fear God, and do not look at a
strange female; [393] shame and modesty are necessary to every one."

She spoke with such propriety that I became enchanted with her beauty
and manners. _Mubarak_ comforted me greatly, but he did not know
the state of my heart; having no alternative, I called out and said,
"O you creatures of God, and inhabitants of this place! I am a poor
traveller; if you call me near you, and give me some place to put
up in, it will be an important matter [for me]." The old man called
me to him, and recognising my voice, he embraced me, and conducted
me to where the lovely woman was seated; she went and hid herself
in a corner. The old man asked me thus: "Tell thy story; why hast
thou left thy home, and wandered about alone, and of whom are you
in search?" I did not mention _Maliki Sadik's_ name, nor did I say
anything about him; but thus told [my supposed tale]. "This wretch
is the prince of China and _Machin_; so that my father is still king;
he purchased from a merchant this picture for four _lakhs_ of rupees;
from the moment when I beheld it, my peace of mind fled, and I put
on the dress of a pilgrim; I have searched the whole world, and have
now found the object here; the same is in your power."

On hearing these words, the old man heaved a heavy sigh, and said,
"O friend, my daughter is entangled in great misfortunes; no man
can presume to marry her and enjoy her." I replied, "I am in hopes
you will explain more fully." Then that strange man related thus his
story;--"Hear, O prince! I am a chief and grandee of this unfortunate
city; my forefathers were celebrated, and of a great family; God the
Most High bestowed on me this daughter; when she became a woman, her
beauty and gracefulness and elegance of manners were celebrated; and
over the whole country it was said, that in such a person's house is a
daughter, before whose beauty even angels and fairies are abashed; how
can a human creature, therefore, be compared to her! The prince of this
city heard these praises, and became enamoured of her by report without
seeing her; he quitted food and drink, and became quite restless.

"At last, the king heard of this circumstance, and called me at night
in private and mentioned to me how matters stood; he coaxed me so
with fine speeches, that at last he got my consent to an alliance
[by marriage] with him. I likewise [naturally] reflected that as a
daughter was born to me, she must be married to some one or other;
then what can be better, than to marry her to the prince? this the
king also entreats. I accepted the proposal, and took my leave. From
that day the preparations for the marriage were begun by both
parties; and on an auspicious hour, all the _kazis_ and _muftis_,
[394] the learned men and the nobles were convened, and the marriage
rites were performed; the bride was carried away with great _eclat_,
and all the ceremonies were finished. At night, when the bridegroom
wished to consummate the nuptial rites, such a noise and uproar
arose in the palace, that the people without who mounted guard were
surprised. They wished that having opened the door of the room,
they might see what was the matter; but it was so fastened from
the inside, that they could not open it. A moment after, the noise
of lamentation became less; they then broke open the door from its
hinges, and saw the bridegroom with his head severed from his [body],
and [his limbs] still quivering; and the bride foamed at the mouth,
and rolled senseless in the dust mingled with [her husband's] blood.

"On seeing this horrible sight, the senses of all present forsook them;
that such grief should succeed such felicity! The dreadful intelligence
was conveyed to the king; he flew [to the spot], beating his head; all
the officers of state were soon assembled there, but no one's judgment
was of any use in ascertaining the [cause of] this [mysterious] affair;
at length the king, in his distracted state, ordered the ill-fated,
luckless bride's head to be cut off likewise. The moment this order
was issued from the king's lips, the same clamour arose; the king was
alarmed, and from fear of his life, he ran off, and ordered the bride
to be turned out of the palace. The female attendants conveyed this
[unfortunate] girl to my house. The account of this strange event soon
spread over the whole kingdom, and whoever heard it was amazed; and
owing to the prince's murder, the king himself and all the inhabitants
of the city became bitter enemies of my life.

"When the public mourning was over, and the fortieth day completed,
the king asked counsel of the officers of state, saying, 'What is next
to be done?' They all said, 'Nothing else can be done; but in order to
console your majesty's mind, and inspire it with patience, to put the
girl and her father to death, and confiscate their property.' When
this punishment of me and mine was determined on, the magistrate
received orders [to put it in execution]; he came and surrounded my
house [with guards] on all sides and sounded a trumpet at the gate,
and was about to enter in order to execute the king's orders. From
some hidden quarter, such showers of stones and bricks were poured
on them that the whole band could not stand against it, and covering
their faces, they were dispersed hither and thither; and these dreadful
sounds issued, which even the king himself heard in his palace; 'What
misfortune impels thee! what demon possesses thee! if thou desirest
thy welfare, molest not that fair one, or else the fate that thy son
met with by marrying her, thou shalt experience the like doom by being
her foe; if thou now molestest her, thou wilt rue its consequences.'

"The king fell into a fever through fear, and instantly ordered that
'No one should molest these evil-fated persons; to say nothing to them,
to hear nothing from them, but to let them remain in their house,
and that no one should injure or oppress them.' From that day, the
magicians, conceiving this mysterious event to be witchcraft, have
used all their exorcising arts and spells to destroy its effects;
and all the inhabitants of this city read [prayers] from the glorious
_Kur,an_, and pronounced the great name of God. It is a long while
since this awful scene took place, but to this day the mysterious
secret has not been developed, nor do I know anything about it; I
once asked the girl what she had seen with her own eyes; she replied,
I know nothing more than that when my husband wished to consummate
our marriage, I saw the roof instantly open, and a throne set with
precious stones descended through the aperture, on which was seated
a handsome young man dressed in princely robes, and many persons
in attendance upon him, came into that apartment; and were ready
to put the prince to death. That young man came up to me and said,
"Well, my love, where to will you now escape from me?" They had the
appearance of men, but with feet like goats; my heart palpitated,
and I fainted through fear; I do not know what afterwards happened.'

"From that period we have both thus lived in this ruined place; and
from the fear of offending the king, all our friends have forsaken us;
when I go out to beg, no one gives me a _kauri_; moreover, it is not
allowed me even to stand before their shops; this unfortunate girl has
not a rag to cover her nakedness, nor sufficient food to satisfy her
hunger. From God I only pray for this, that our deaths should ensue,
or that the earth may open out and swallow this ill-fated girl:
death is better than such existence; God has perhaps sent thee here
for our good; so that thou tookest pity on us, and gave us a piece
of gold, which has enabled us to have good food and clothes for my
daughter. God be praised, and blessed be thou; if she was not under
the influence of some _jinn_ or fairy, then I would give her for thy
service like a slave, and think myself happy. This is my wretched
story; do not think of her, but abandon all thoughts on that head."

After hearing this sad narrative, I entreated the old man to accept me
as his son-in-law, and if evil be my future doom, then let it come; but
the old man would on no account agree to my request. When the evening
came, I took my leave of him, and went to the _sarai_. _Mubarak_ said,
"Well, prince, rejoice, God has favoured you, and your labours are not
thrown away." I answered, "I have to-day used many fair speeches, but
that infidel old man will not consent; God knows if he will give her
to me or not." My mind was in such a state that I passed the night in
great restlessness, and wished the morning was come that I might return
[and see her]; I sometimes fancied, that if the father should be kind
and agree to my wishes, _Mubarak_ would carry her away for _Maliki
Sadik_. I then said to myself, "Well, let us once get possession of
her; I will then get over _Mubarak_, and enjoy her." Again my heart
was filled with apprehensions, that even if _Mubarak_ should likewise
agree to my project, the _jinns_ would serve me as they had served
the prince; moreover the king of this city will never consent, that
after the murder of his son, another should enjoy [his bride].

I passed the whole night without sleep, agitated by this project. When
the day appeared, I issued forth, and went to the _chauk_, and
purchased some pieces of fine cloth and lace, and fresh and dried
fruits; and carried them to the old man. He was greatly pleased, and
said, "That to every one nothing is dearer than life, but even if my
life could be of any use to thee, I would not grieve to sacrifice
it, and give thee now my daughter; but I fear that by doing so, I
might endanger thy life, and the stain of this reproach would remain
upon me to the day of judgment." I answered, "I am now in this city,
helpless, it is true, and you are my father in every respect, temporal
and spiritual, but [consider] what pains, fatigues and miseries I
have undergone, and what buffetings I have for a long while suffered
to attain the object of my wishes, before I arrived here. God has
likewise made you kind towards me, since you consent to marry her to
me, and only hesitate on account of my safety; be just for a moment,
and reflect that to save our heads from the sword of love, and screen
our lives from its danger, is not commendable in any religion; let
what will happen, I have lost myself in every way; and to possess
the object of my love, I consider as my existence. I do not care if
I live or perish; moreover, despair will finish my days without the
assistance of fate, and I will stand forth as your accuser on the
day of judgment."

In short, in such altercations, in hesitations between refusal
and acquiescence, a tedious month passed heavily over my head,
accompanied with future hopes and fears; I used every day to devote
my services to the old man, and every day, with flattering speeches,
I entreated him [to grant my boon]. It came to pass, that the old
man fell sick; I attended him during his illness; I used always to
relate his case to the physician, and whatever medicine he ordered,
I used to get them, and administer them to him; I used to dress with
my own hand his rice and pulse and other light diet, and gave it to
him to eat. One day he was [uncommonly] kind, and said, "O young man,
thou art very obstinate; I have repeatedly told thee of all the evils
which will ensue if thou persistest in thy object, and have often
warned thee not to think of it. Whilst we have life, we have every
thing, but thou art determined to jump into the abyss; well, I will
to-day mention thee to my daughter; let us hear what she says." O
holy _Darweshes_, on hearing these enchanting words, I swelled so
with joy, that my clothes could scarce contain me; I fell at the old
man's feet, and exclaimed, "You have now laid the foundation of my
[future happiness and] existence." I then took my leave and returned
to my abode, I passed the whole night in talking of this circumstance
with _Mubarak_; where was sleep, and where was hunger! Early in the
morning I again went and saluted the old man; he said, "Well, I give
you my daughter--God bless you with her--I have put you both under his
protection--whilst I have life, stay with me; when my eyes are closed,
then do what you wish; you will then be master of your own actions."

A few days after [this conversation], the old man died; we mourned
for him and buried him. After the _tija_, [395] _Mubarak_ brought this
beautiful daughter to the _serai_ in a _doli_, [396] and said to me,
"She belongs, [pure and untouched], to _Maliki Sadik_; beware you do
not play false, and lose the fruits of your labour."

I replied, "O friend, what has _Maliki Sadik_ to do here? my heart
will not mind me, and how can I have patience? let what will happen,
whether I live or perish, let me now enjoy her." _Mubarak_, having
lost all patience, replied, with anger, "Do not act like a boy; now,
in an instant, matters will change dreadfully; do you think _Maliki
Sadik_ far off, that you disregard his injunctions? He explained
every circumstance to you on taking leave, and warned you of the
consequences; if you act according to his directions, and convey
her safe and sound to him, he has a royal mind, and may regard the
toils you have undergone with a favourable eye, and give her to you;
how different will the case be then! you will preserve his unbounded
friendship, and gain the sincere affection [of your mistress]."

At last, [from the force of his] threats and admonitions, I remained
silent; I bought two camels, and mounting on _kajawas_, [397] we
set out for the country of _Maliki Sadik_. We pursued our journey,
and at last reached a plain, where loud noises were heard. _Mubarak_
exclaimed, "God be praised, our labours have turned out well, for
lo! the army of _jinns_ is here arrived." He met them at last, and
asked them where they intended to go. They replied, "The king has
sent us forward for the purpose of receiving you, and we are now under
your orders; if you command us, we will convey you in a moment to the
presence [of the king]." _Mubarak_, turning to me, said, "See how,
after all our toils and dangers, God has favoured us before the face
of the king; what is the need of haste now? if some misconduct should
occur, which God forbid, then the fruits of our labours would be lost,
and we should fall under the king's displeasure." They all answered,
"You are the sole master in this; proceed as you please." Although we
were comfortable in every way, yet we made it our business to march
day and night.

When we approached [the place where the king was], I, seeing _Mubarak_
asleep, fell at that beautiful woman's feet, and bewailing to her
the restless state of my heart, and my helpless condition, owing
to the threats of _Maliki Sadik_, and that from the day I had seen
her picture, I had forsworn sleep and food and repose; and now that
God had shewn to me this day, I still remained an utter stranger
to her. She replied, "My heart is also inclined towards you, for
what toils and dangers have you undergone for my sake, and with
what labour and difficulty have you brought me away; remember God,
and do not forget me; let us see what may be revealed from behind
the curtain of mystery." On saying this, she wept so loud that she
was nearly suffocated. Such was my state, and such was hers! In the
meantime, _Mubarak's_ slumbers were broken, and seeing us both in
tears, he was greatly affected, and said, "Be comforted; I have an
ointment which I will rub over the body of this fair one; from the
smell of it the heart of _Maliki Sadik_ will be disgusted, and he
will perhaps abandon her to you."

On hearing this plan of _Mubarak's_, my heart was greatly revived;
and, embracing him fondly, I said, "O friend, you are now in the place
of a father to me; owing to you my life was saved, now also act so
that I may still live on, otherwise I must perish in this grief." He
gave me every friendly assurance. When the day appeared, we heard the
noise of the _jinns_, and saw that many personal attendants of _Maliki
Sadik_ were arrived, and had brought two rich _khil'ats_ for us, and
a covered litter with a network of pearls accompanied them. _Mubarak_
rubbed the ointment over my beloved's body; and having caused her to be
richly dressed, he conveyed her to _Maliki Sadik_. On beholding her,
the king rewarded me greatly, and having honoured and dignified me,
he made me sit down [near himself], and said, "I will behave to thee
such as no one has as yet done to any one; the kingdom of thy father
awaits thee, besides which thou art in the place of a son to me." He
was talking to me in this gracious manner, when the beautiful woman
appeared before him, and suddenly at the smell of that ointment,
his brain became confused, and his mind distracted; he could not
endure that smell; having got up, he went out and called _Mubarak_
and me; he addressed himself to _Mubarak_, and said, "Well, sir,
you have truly performed the injunctions [I gave].

"I had warned you, that if you deceived me, you would incur my
displeasure; what smell is this? now see how I will treat you." He
was very angry; _Mubarak_, from fear, opened his trowsers, and showed
his condition, [398] and said, "Mighty king, when I undertook this
business, according to your commands, I then cut off my privities,
and put them in a box, sealed it, and delivered it over in charge
to your treasurer, and putting some ointment of Solomon on the
mutilated parts, I set out on the errand." On hearing this reply from
_Mubarak_, the king of the _jinns_ looked sternly at me, and said,
"Then, this is thy doing;" and getting into a rage, he began to abuse
me. I immediately perceived from his words that he would put me to
death. When I felt convinced of this from his looks, despairing of
life, I became desperate, and snatching the dagger from _Mubarak's_
waist, I plunged it into the king's belly; on receiving the stab, he
bent down and staggered; I wondered, for I thought he must assuredly
have perished; I then perceived that the wound was not so effective as
I imagined, and could not account for it; I was staring [with surprise]
when he rolled on the ground, and assuming the appearance of a tennis
ball, he flew up to the sky. He ascended so high, that at last he
disappeared; a moment after, flashing like lightning, and vociferating
some meaningless words in his rage, he descended, and gave me such
a kick, that I swooned away, and fell flat on my back, and became as
one lifeless. God knows how long I remained ere I came to my senses;
but when I opened my eyes I saw that I was lying in such a wilderness,
where, except thorns and briars, nothing else was to be seen; at that
moment my understanding was of no avail to fix on what I should do,
or where I should go. In this state of despondence, I gave a sigh,
and followed the first path that offered; if I met any one any where,
I inquired after the name of _Maliki Sadik_; he, thinking me mad,
answered that he had not even heard his name.

One day, having ascended a mountain, I likewise determined to throw
myself [off its summit], and end my existence; just as I was ready to
jump off, the same veiled horseman, the possessor of _Zu-l-fakar_,
[399] appeared and said, "Why do you throw away your life; man is
exposed to every pain and misery; your unhappy days are now over, and
your propitious ones are coming; go quickly to _Rum_--three afflicted
persons like thee are gone there before thee--meet them, and see
the king of that country; the wishes of all five will be fulfilled
in the same place." This is my story which I have just related;
at last, from the happy tidings of our difficulty-solving guardian,
[400] I am come into the presence of your worships, and have also
been kindly received by the king, who is the shadow of Omnipotence;
we ought all now to be comforted."

This conversation was passing between the king _Azad Bakht_ and the
four _Darweshes_, when a eunuch came running from the royal seraglio
and with respectful salutation, wished his majesty joy, and added,
"This moment a prince is born, before whose refulgent beauty the sun
and moon are abashed." The king was surprised, and asked, "No one
was pregnant [401] in appearance; who has brought forth a son?" The
eunuch replied, "_Mahru_, the female slave, who for some time hath
lain under your majesty's displeasure, and lived like an outcast in
a corner [of the seraglio], and no one from fear ever went near her
or asked after her state; on her the grace of God hath been such,
that she hath borne a son like the moon."

The king was so rejoiced, that he nearly expired from excessive joy;
the four _Darweshes_ also blessed him, and said, "May thy house be
ever happy, and may thy son prosper; and may he grow up under thy
shadow." The king replied, "This is owing to your propitious arrival,
for otherwise I had no idea of such an event; if you give me leave,
I will go and see him." The _Darweshes_ answered, "In the name of God,
go." The king went to the seraglio, and took the young prince in his
lap, and thanked God; his mind became easy; pressing the infant to
his bosom, he brought it and laid it at the _Darweshes'_ feet; they
blessed it, and exorcised all evil spirits from approaching it. The
king commanded the preparations of a festival to be made [on the
happy occasion], and the royal music struck up, and the door of the
treasury was opened; with princely donations he made the poor [402]
rich; on all the officers of state he bestowed a two-fold increase
of lands and higher titles, and to the army he gave five years' pay
as a present; to the learned and holy he gave pensions and lands;
and the wallets of the beggars were filled with pieces of gold and
silver; and the _ryots_ [403] were excused from paying any revenue
for three years, and that whatever they cultivated during this period,
they should keep for themselves.

Throughout the whole city, in the houses of the high and the low,
wherever one looked, there were merry dances; in their joy, every
one, small and great, felt himself a prince. In the midst of these
rejoicings, the sounds of lamentation and weeping issued suddenly
from the seraglio; the female servants, of all descriptions, and
the eunuchs, ran out, scattering dust upon their heads, and said to
the king, "When we had washed and bathed the prince, and delivered
him to the bosom of the nurse, a cloud descended from the sky and
enveloped the nurse; a moment after, we saw the nurse prostrate and
senseless, and the little prince gone; what a dreadful calamity has
occurred!" The king was thunderstruck on hearing this wonderful
occurrence; and the whole country mourned [for the sad event];
for two days no one dressed any victuals, but fed on their grief,
and drank their own blood, for the prince's loss.

In short, they began to despair of their lives, living in this manner;
on the third day the same cloud appeared, and a cradle studded with
jewels, and with a covering of pearls, descended from it into the area
of the seraglio; the cloud then disappeared, and the servants found
the little prince in the cradle sucking his thumb; the royal mother
immediately invoking blessings upon him, took him up in her arms,
and pressed him fondly to her bosom; she saw that he was dressed in
a jacket of fine muslin embroidered with pearls, and had a child's
bib of brocade, and many ornaments set with jewels on his hands and
feet, and a necklace with nine gems on his neck, and there was a
child's rattle with golden balls placed by his side. Through joy all
[the female attendants] were transported; and they began to offer
up prayers, saying, "May all thy mother's wishes be gratified, and
mayest thou attain a period of mature old age."

The king ordered a new grand palace to be built and furnished with
carpets, and kept the four _Darweshes_ in it; when he was disengaged
from the affairs of state, he used to go there, sit with them, and
to provide everything for them and wait on them; but on the first
Thursday night of every month the same cloud descended, and took
away the prince, and after keeping him two days, it used to bring
him back, with such rich toys and rarities of every country, and of
every description, in his cradle, that on beholding them, the minds
of the spectators were confounded with astonishment. In this manner,
the prince reached in safety his seventh year; on the birthday the
king _Azad Bakht_ said to the _Darweshes_, "O holy men, I cannot
conceive who carries the prince away and brings him back; it is very
wonderful; let us see what will be the end of it." The _Darweshes_
said, "Do one thing; write a friendly note to this purport, and put
it into the prince's cradle, viz.:--'Having seen your friendship and
kindness [to my son], my heart wishes most anxiously to meet you,
and if by way of amity you favour me with your tidings, my heart will
be highly gratified, and my wonder will cease.'" The king, according
to the _Darweshes'_ advice, wrote a note to this purport on paper
sprinkled with gold, and put it in the golden cradle.

The prince, according to custom, disappeared; and in the evening _Azad
Bakht_ was sitting with the _Darweshes_ and conversing with them,
when a folded paper fell near the king; he opened it and read it,
and found that it was an answer to his note; these two lines were
written in it: "Conceive me likewise anxious to see you; a throne
goes for you; it is best that you should come now, that we may meet;
all the preparations of enjoyment are ready; your majesty's place
alone is empty." The king _Azad Bakht_ took the _Darweshes_ with him,
and ascended the celestial throne; it was like the throne of Solomon,
and mounted into the air; proceeding on, it descended in a place where
grand edifices and sumptuous preparations appeared; but it could not
be perceived if any one was there or not. In the meantime some one
rubbed the eyes of all five with the _surma_ of _Sulaiman_; two drops
of tears fell from the eyes of each, and they saw an assembly of the
fairies, who were waiting to receive them, dressed in rich habits of
various colours, with vials of rose-water in their hands.

_Azad Bakht_ advanced amidst two rows consisting of thousands of
fairy-born creatures, standing in respectful order, and in the
centre was placed an elevated throne inlaid with emeralds, on which
was seated leaning on pillows, with an air of great dignity, _Malik
Shah Bal_, the son of _Shah-rukh;_ a beautiful little girl of the
fairy race was seated before him, and was playing with the young
prince _Bakhtiyar_. Chairs and seats were arranged in rows on both
sides of the throne, on which the nobles of the fairy race were
seated. _Malik Shah Bal_ stood up on seeing the king _Azad Bakht_
and descended from his throne and embraced him, and taking him by
the hand, he seated him on the throne by the side of himself, and
they began to converse together with much cordiality; the whole day
passed in feasting and hilarity, and music and dancing. The second day,
when the two kings met, _Shah Bal_ asked _Azad Bakht_ the reason for
bringing the _Darweshes_ with him.

_Azad Bakht_ related fully their adventures as he had previously
learned, and interceded for them, and asked [the king's] assistance,
saying, "These have undergone many hardships, and suffered great
misfortunes; and if now, through your favour, they attain their wishes,
it will be an act of great merit, and I also will be grateful for
it through life; by your kind assistance they will all reach the
summit of their desires." _Malik Shah Bal_, after hearing [these
adventures, replied, "Most willingly; I will not fail to obey your
commands." Saying this, he looked sternly at the _divs_ and fairies
[who were present], and he wrote letters to the great _jinns_, who
were chiefs in different places, and ordered them, that on receiving
his commands, they must repair speedily to the presence, and if any one
should delay in coming, he should be punished, and brought as captive;
and that whoever possessed any persons of the human species, male or
female, he must bring them along with him; that if [a _jinn_] having
concealed any one, should detain the same, and it be known hereafter,
the concealer and his wife and family shall be exterminated, and no
vestige of them will remain.

Receiving these written orders, the _divs_ were dispatched in all
directions. A great warmth of friendship arose between the two kings,
and they passed their time in amicable conversation, amidst which
_Malik Shah Bal_, turning round to the _Darweshes_, said, "I had a
great wish to have children, and had resolved, if God gave me a son
or a daughter, to marry it to the offspring of some king of the human
race. After this resolve, I learned that my wife was pregnant; at last,
after counting with anxiety each day and hour, the full period arrived,
and this girl was born. According to my determination, I ordered the
_jinns_ to search the four corners of the world, and that whatever king
had a prince born to him, to bring the child quickly to me with care;
agreeably to my orders, the _jinns_ flew instantly to the four corners
of the earth, and after some delay, brought this young prince to me.

"I thanked God, and took the child in my lap, and loved it dearer than
my own daughter; I could not bring myself to separate him from my sight
for a moment, but used to send him back for this reason, that if his
parents did not see him, they would be greatly afflicted. For this
reason I sent for him once every month, and after keeping him with me
a few days, I sent him back. If it please God the Most High, now that
we have met, I will marry them to each other; all are liable to death,
then let us, whilst we are alive, see their marriage performed."

The king _Azad Bakht_, on hearing this proposal of _Shah Bal's_,
and seeing his amiable qualities, was greatly pleased and said,
"At first the prince's disappearance and re-appearance raised
very strange aprehensions in my breast, but I am now, from your
conversation, easy in my mind, and perfectly satisfied; this son is
now yours; do with him whatever you please." In short, the intercourse
between the two kings was like that of sugar and milk, and they fully
enjoyed themselves. In the space of less than ten days, mighty kings
of the race of the _jinns_, from the rose garden of _Iram_, [404]
and from mountains and islands, (to call whom the fairies had been
dispatched) all arrived at the court [of _Shah Bal_]. In the first
place, _Maliki Sadik_ was ordered to produce the human creature
he had in his possession; he was much vexed at it, and sad, but
having no remedy, he produced the rosy-cheeked fair one [the blind
man's daughter]. Next, he demanded of the king of _'Umman_ [405]
the daughter of one of the _jinns_ for whom the prince of _Nimroz_,
the bull rider, went mad; he likewise made many excuses, but produced
her at last. When the daughter of the king of the Franks and _Bihzad
Khan_ were demanded, all present denied having any knowledge of them,
and swore by Solomon [to that effect].

At last, when the king of the sea of _Kulzum_ was asked if he knew
anything of them, he hung down his head, and remained silent. _Malik
Shah Bal_ had a deference for him, and entreated him to give them up,
and gave him hopes of future favour and even threatened him. Then
he also joined his hands together, and said, "Please your majesty,
the particulars of that circumstance are as follows:--When the king
[of Persia] came to the river _Kulzum_ to meet his son, and the
prince from eagerness plunged his horse into the flood, it chanced
that I had gone out that day to roam about and to hunt. I passed by
the place, and the cavalcade stopped to behold the scene. When the
princess's mare carried her also into the stream, my looks met hers,
and I was enchanted, and gave instant orders to the fairy race to
bring her to me, together with the mare. _Bihzad Khan_ plunged in
also after her on horseback; I admired his bravery and gallantry,
and had him seized likewise; I took him with me, and returned home;
so they are both safe, and with me."

Saying this, he sent for them both before _Malik Shah Bal_. Great
search had been made for the daughter of the king of Syria, and strict
inquiries were put to all present, but no one acknowledged having her,
or knowing anything about her. _Malik Shah Bal_ then asked if any king
or chief was absent, and if all were arrived; the _jinns_ answered,
"Mighty sire, all are present except one named _Musalsal Jadu_, who
has erected a fort on the mountain _Kaf_ by the means of magic; he,
from haughtiness, is not come, and we, your majesty's slaves, are not
able to bring him by force; the place is strong, and he himself also
is a great devil."

On hearing this, _Malik Shah Bal_ was very angry, and an army of
_jinns, 'afrits_ and fairies were sent with orders, that if he came
of his own accord, and brought the princess with him, well and good,
but otherwise subdue him, and bring him tied by the neck and heels,
and raze his fort to the ground, and drive the plough, drawn by an ass,
over it. Immediately, on the orders being given, such numbers of troops
flew to the place, that in a day or two the rebellious haughty chief
was brought in irons to the presence. _Malik Shah Bal_ repeatedly asked
about the princess, but the haughty rebel gave no reply. The king at
length got angry, and ordered him to be cut to pieces, and his skin
stretched and filled with chaff; [406] a body of fairies were ordered
to go to the mountain of _Kaf_, and search for the princess; they went
and found her, and brought her to _Malik Shah Bal_. All these prisoners
and the four _Darweshes_, seeing the strict orders and justice of
the king _Shah Bal_, were greatly rejoiced, and admired him highly;
the king _Azad Bakht_ was also much pleased. _Malik Shah Bal_ then
ordered the men to the palace, and the women to the royal seraglio;
the city was ordered to be illuminated, and the preparations for the
marriages to be quickly completed; [all was instantly made ready],
as if the order alone was wanted to be given.

One day, a happy hour being fixed upon, the prince _Bakhtiyar_
was married to the princess _Roshan Akhtar_; and the young merchant
of _Yaman_ [407] was married to the princess of _Dimashk_; and the
prince of Persia [408] was married to the princess of _Basra_; and the
prince of _'Ajam_ [409] was married to the princess of the Franks;
_Bihzad Khan_ was married to the daughter of the king of _Nimroz_;
and the prince of _Nimroz_ was married to the _jinn's_ daughter;
and the prince of China [410] was married to the daughter of the
old blind man of _Hindustan_; she who had been in the possession of
_Maliki Sadik_. Through the favour of _Malik Shah Bal_, every hopeless
person gained his desires, and obtained his wishes; afterwards,
they all enjoyed themselves for forty days, and passed their time,
night and day, in pleasures and festivity.

At last, _Malik Shah Bal_ gave to each prince rich and rare presents,
and dismissed them to their different countries. All were pleased and
satisfied, and set out and reached their homes in safety, and began
their reigns; but _Bihzad Khan_, and the merchant's son of _Yaman_,
of their own accord, remained with the king _Azad Bakht_, and in the
end the young merchant of _Yaman_ was made head steward to his majesty,
and _Bihzad Khan_ generalissimo of the army of the fortunate prince
_Bakhtiyar_; whilst they lived, they enjoyed every felicity. O God! as
these four _Darweshes_ and the king _Azad Bakht_ attained their wishes,
in like manner grant to all hopeless beings the wishes of their hearts,
through thy power and goodness, and by the medium of the five pure
bodies, [411] the twelve _Imams_, and the fourteen innocents, [412]
on all of whom be the blessing of God! Amen, O God of the universe.

When this book was finished, through the favour of God, I took it into
my mind to give it such a name, that the date should be thereby found
out. [413] When I made the calculation, I found that I had begun to
compose this work in the end of the year of the _Hijra_ 1215, and
owing to want of leisure, it was not finished until the beginning
of the year 1217; I was reflecting on this circumstance, when it
occurred to me that the words _Bagh O Bahar_ formed a proper title,
as it answered to the date of the year when the work was finished;
so I gave it this name. Whoever shall read it, he will stroll as it
were through a garden; moreover, the garden is exposed to the blasts
of winter, but this book is not; it will ever be in verdure.

When this _Bagh O Bahar_ was finished, the year was 1217; do you
now stroll through it night and day, as its name and date is _Bagh
O Bahar_; the blasts of winter can do it no injury; for this _Bahar_
[414] is ever green and fresh; it hath been nourished with the blood of
my heart, and its (the heart's) pieces are its leaves and fruits;--all
will forget me after death;--but this book will remain as a _souvenir_;
whoever reads it, let him remember me. This is my agreement with
the readers; if there is an error, excuse it; for amidst flowers lie
concealed the thorns; man is liable to faults and errors, and he will
fail, let him be ever so careful. I have no other wish except this,
and it is my earnest prayer. O my Creator, that I may ever remain
in remembrance of Thee, and thus pass my nights and days! That I
may not be questioned with severity on the night of death, and the
day of reckoning! O God, in both worlds shower thy favours on me,
through the mediation of the great prophet!


It must be allowed, that the author has displayed great adroitness in
the "denouement" of his tale. In the course of a few pages all the
principal characters, male and female, are suddenly produced, safe
and unscathed, before the reader. To be sure, this is done by the aid
of a little "diablerie," but then it is done very neatly,--much more
so than in some of the clumsy fictions of the late Ettrick Shepherd,
to say nothing of the edifying legends about the Romish saints which
the good people of southern Europe are taught to swallow as gospel.
Finally, be it remembered, that Oriental story-tellers have never
subscribed to Horace's precept,--

"Nec deus interait, nisi digens vindice nodus

On the contrary, their rule is, when, by a free use of the
supernatural, you have got the whole of your characters into a regular
_fix_, it is but fair that you should get them off by the same means.



[1] The proclamation of the Marquis Wellesley, after the formation
of the college of Fort William; encouraging the pursuit of Oriental
literature among the natives by original compositions and translations
from the Persian, &c, into _Hindustani_.

[2] "The _Bagh O Bahar_," i.e. "The Garden and Spring;" which may be
better called, "The Garden of Spring," or the "Garden of Beauty." The
less appropriate title of "_Bagh O Bahar_" was chosen merely in
order that the Persian letters composing these words, might, by their
numerical powers, amount to 1217, the year of the Hijra in which the
book was finished.--Vide Hind. Gram., page 20.

[3] _Mir Amman_ himself explains the origin and derivation of these
words in his preface, and we cannot appeal to a better authority.

[4] Literally, "in consequence of its being traversed or walked over."

[5] _Hakim Firdausi_, the Homer of Persia, who wrote the history
of that country, in his celebrated epic entitled the "_Shah-nama,"_
or Book of Kings.

[6] I have translated into plain prose all the verses occurring in the
original. I have not the vanity to think myself a poet; and I have a
horror of seeing mere doggrel rhymes--such as the following--

"Mighty toil I've borne for years thirty,
I have revived Persia by this _Pursi_."

These elegant effusions are of the "Non hominies, non Di,
&c." description.

[7] That is to say, he has introduced the elegance and correctness of
the _Urdu_ language, or that of the Upper Provinces, into _Bengal_. In
fact, the _Bengalis_ who speak a wretched jargon of what they are
pleased to call _Hindustani_, (in addition to their native tongue,)
would scarcely be understood at _Agra_ or _Dilli_; and those two
cities are the best sites to acquire the real _Urdu_ in perfection;
there the inhabitants speak it not only correctly but elegantly.

[8] The Muhammadans believe that the body of their prophet cast
no shadow. _Mustafa_ means "The Chosen," "The Elected," one of
Muhammad's titles.

[9] As a general rule, all Muhammadan books begin with a few sentences
devoted to the praise of God and the eulogy of the prophet Muhammad;
to which some add a blessing on the twelve _Imams_.

[10] The twelve _Imams_ are the descendants of the prophet, by his
daughter _Fatima_, who was married to her cousin-german _'Ali,_ who is
considered as the first _Imam_; the other eleven were the following,
viz., _Hasan_, the son of _'Ali; Husain_, the son of _'Ali_; _'Ali_,
surnamed _Zainu-l-'Abidin,_ son of _Husain; Muhammad_, son of the
last mentioned; _Ja'far Sadik_, son of _Muhammad; Musa-l-Kazim,_ son
of _Ja'far; 'Al-i Raza_, son of _Musa; Muhammad_, son of _'Ali Raza;
'Ali 'Askari_, son of _Muhammad; Hasan 'Askari_: and lastly _Muhammad
Mahdi_. With regard to this last and twelfth _Imam_, some say, very
erroneously, that he is yet to appear. Now the fact is, the twelfth
_Imam_ has appeared. He lived and died like the rest of the sainthood;
otherwise what would be the use of praying for him? The Muhammadans
offer up prayers for the dead, but I never heard of their praying
for the unborn.


[12] Much nonsense has been written about this _Fasli_ aera. We are
told that "it dates from the Christian year 592 3/4"! but the fact is
that it was established no further back than the reign of Akbar. It
was engrafted on the Hijri aera in the first year of that monarch's
reign, with this proviso, that the _Fasli_ years should thenceforth
go on increasing by _solar_ calculation, and not by lunar; hence,
every century the Hijri aera gains three years on the _Fasli_, and
in Mir Amman's time the difference had amounted to nearly eight years.

[13] A _ghat_ is a long flight of steps, of stone or brick, leading
to a river for the purpose of bathing, drawing water, embarking or
disembarking. It is a high object of ambition in India, among the
wealthier classes of natives, to construct these _ghats_, and this
species of useful ostentation has produced some magnificent structures
of the kind on the rivers _Ganges_, and _Jumna_, which are of great
public utility.

[14] The reader will do well in the first place to pass over this
very clumsy parenthesis in the original; and return to it after he
has finished the rest of the paragraph.

[15] The Honourable Company's European servants, civil, military,
and medical.

[16] A celebrated Persian poet of _Dilli_; his odes are very elegant,
and have great poetical genius; he was, as a Persian poet, inferior
to none: he is the original author of this "Tale of the Four Darwesh."

[17] The author seems to use _Dilli_ or _Dihli_ indifferently for
the northern metropolis of India, vulgarly called _Delhi_.

[18] _Zari Zar-bakhsh_ means the bestower of gold; _Nizamu-d-Din
Auliya_ was a famous holy personage of Upper India, and holds the
first rank in the list of the saints of _Hindustan_. His shrine is at
_Dilli_, and resorted to by thousands of devotees, and many tales are
told of his inspired wisdom, his superior beneficence, his contempt
of the good things of this world, and his uncommon philanthropy.

[19] The _Kos_ is a measure of distance nearly equal to two English
miles, but varying in different provinces.

[20] The _Muhammadans_, after being cured of sickness or wounds,
also their women, after recovery from child-bed, always bathe in
luke-warm water; which is called the ablution of cure.

[21] A mere novice in the language would say that _Mir Amman_ writes
"bad grammar" here! He uses the singular pronoun "_wuh_" instead of
"_we_." Now _Mir Amman_ distinctly tells us that he gives us the
language _as it is_. He did not make it--and, furthermore, nothing
is more common among _Hindustani_ writers than to use the singular
for the plural, and "vice versa."--Vide Grammar, page 114.

[22] Mr. Ferdinand Smith adds the following note: "How proud the
slave seems of his chains!--but such is the nature of Asiatic minds,
under the baneful influence of Asiatic despotism." Now, this criticism
is absurd enough. Have not we in England the titles of "Ladies in
waiting," "Grooms," &c., innumerable, which honours are borne by our
nobility and gentry?

[23] The family of _Taimur_, or Tamerlane; a pageant of which royal
race still sits on the throne of _Dilli_, under the protection of
the British government. He is happier, and has more comforts of life,
than his family have had for the last century.

[24] Literally, "why explain that which is self evident" a Persian

[25] The founder of the _Jut_ principality; they were once very
powerful in _Upper-Hindustan. Ranjit Sing, Raja_ of _Bhartpur_ at the
commencement of the present century, who so gallantly defended that
place against our arms, was a son of _Suraj Mal_, who was killed while
reconnoitring the _Mughal_ army. The _Jats_ are the best agriculturists
in India, and good soldiers in self defence; for since the spirit
which _Suraj Mal_ infused, evaporated, they have always preferred
peace to war. They built some of the strongest places in India.

[26] _Ahmad Khan_, the _Durrani_ or _Afghan_, became king of _Kabul_
after the death of _Nadir Shah_. He was the father of _Taimur Shah_,
who kept _Upper Hindustan_ in alarm for many years with threats of
invasion. _Shuja'u-l-Mulk_, whom we seated on the throne of _Kabul_
some fifteen years ago, was descended from him.

[27] _'Azim-abid_ is the _Muhammadan_ name of _Patna_. On the
_Muhammadan_ conquest, many of the _Hindu_ names of cities were changed
for _Muhammadan_ names, such as _Jahangir-abad_ or _Jahangir-nagar_
for _Dacca, Akbar-abad_ for _Agra, Shahjahan-abad_ for _Dilli_, &c.

[28] Literally, "water and grain."

[29] Literally, "has existed during the four _jugas_," or fabulous
ages of the _Hindus_, i.e., since the creation of the world.

[30] The _Bhakha_, or _Bhasha_, par excellence, is the _Hindu_ dialect
spoken in the neighbourhood of _Agra, Mathura_, &c. in the _Braj_
district; it is a very soft language, and much admired in _Upper
Hindustan_, and is well adapted for light poetry. Dr. Gilchrist has
given some examples of it in his grammar of the _Hindustani_ language,
and numerous specimens of it are to be found in the _Prem Sagar_,
and other works published more recently.

[31] _Mahmud_, the first monarch of the dynasty of _Ghazni_, was the
son of the famous _Sabaktagin_. Ha invaded _Hindustan_ in A.H. 392,
or A.D. 1002. The dynasty was called _Ghaznawi_, from its capital
_Ghazna_, or as now commonly written _Ghazni_.

[32] Two dynasties of kings who reigned in _Upper Hindustan_ before
the race of _Taimur_.

[33] _Timur_, (or _Taimur_ as it is pronounced in India) invaded
_Hindustan_ A.D. 1398.

[34] The _bazar_, that part of a city where there are most shops;
but the word is applied to various parts of a city, where various
articles are sold, as the cloth _bazar_, the jewel _bazar_, &c.

[35] _Shahjahan_ was the most magnificent king of _Dilli_, of the race
of _Taimur, Sahib Kiran_ was one of his titles, and means, Prince of
the Happy Conjunction; i.e. the conjunction of two or more auspicious
planets in one of the signs of the Zodiac at the hour of birth. Such
was the case at the birth of _Taimur_, who was the first we read of as
_Sahib-Kiran_. As a contradistinction, _Shahjahan_ is generally called
_Sahib Kirani Sani_, or the second _Sahib Kiran_. It never waw applied,
as Ferdinand Smith states, to _all_ the emperors of _Dilli_. It may
be mentioned, that a very extraordinary conjunction of the planets
in the sign Libra took place in A.D. 1185, just about the period of
_Jangis Khan's_ appearance as a conqueror; but I am not aware that he
was thence called a _Sahib Kiran_, as he did not happen to be _born_
under the said conjunction.

[36] The fort, or rather fortified place, of _Dilli_, and the great
mosque, called the _Juma' Masjid_.

[37] The famous _Takhti Ta,us_, or peacock throne, made by the
magnificent _Shahjahan_, the richest throne in the world; it was
valued at seven millions sterling. Tavernier, the French jeweller
and traveller, saw it and describes it in his work. It was carried
away by _Nadir Shah_ when he plundered _Dilli_ in 1739.

[38] The expensive and useless canal which brought fresh water
to _Dilli_, whilst the limpid and salutary stream of the _Jumna_
flowed under its walls. The advantages of irrigation to the country,
through which it passed, were nothing compared to the expense of
its construction.

[39] Literally, "the supreme camp or market."

[40] A Persian expression.

[41] _Shah 'Alam_ the emperor of _Dilli_, was then towards _Patna_
a tool in the hands of _Shuja'u-d-Daula, the Nawwab_ of _Lakhnau,
and Kasim 'Ala Khan, the Nawwab_ of _Murshid-abad._

[42] Alluding to the confusion which reigned in _Upper Hindustan_
after the assassination of _'Alamgir_ the Second, and the flight
of _Shah 'Alam. Upper Hindustan_ was then in a sad plight, ravaged
alternately by the _Abdalis_, the _Marhattas_, and the _Jats_--the
king a pageant, the nobles rebellious, the subjects plundered and
oppressed, and the country open to every invader--though this was
near 100 years ago, and although they had some government, justice,
and security from 1782 to 1802, yet the country had not even then
recovered from the severe shock.

[43] The word is used in the singular, both by _Mir Amman_ and the
original author, _Amir Khusru_ according to a well-known rule in
Persian syntax, viz., "a substantive accompanied by a numerical
adjective dispenses with the plural termination," as "_haft roz_,"
"seven days," not "_haft rozha_. The Persian term _darwesh_, in
a general sense, denotes a person who has adopted what by extreme
courtesy is called a religious life, closely akin to the "mendicant
friar" of the middle ages; i.e., a lazy, dirty, hypocrital vagabond,
living upon the credulous public. The corresponding term in Arabic
is _Fakir_; and in _Hindi_, _Jogi_.

[44] The word _Rum_ means that empire of which Constantinople is
the capital, and sometimes called, in modern times, Romania. It was
originally applied to the Eastern Roman Empire, and, at present,
it denotes Turkey in Europe and Asia.

[45] _Naushirwan_ was a king of Persia, who died in A.D. 578. He is
celebrated in oriental history for his wisdom and justice. During his
reign _Muhammad_ the prophet was born. The Persian writings are full
of anecdotes of _Naushirwan's_ justice and wisdom.

[46] _Hatim_ or rather _Hatim Tai_, is the name of an Arab chief,
who is celebrated for his generosity and his mad adventures, in
an elegant Persian work called _Kissae Hatim Tai_. This work was
translated into English for the Asiatic Translation Fund in 1830.

[47] Called also _Kustuntuniya_ by the Persians, and _Istambol_,
also _Islambol_, by the Turks.

[48] The _shabi barat_ is a Mahometan festival which happens on the
full moon of the month of _Sha'ban_; illuminations are made at night,
and fire-works displayed; prayers are said for the repose of the dead,
and offerings of sweetmeats and viands made to their manes. A luminous
night-scene is therefore compared to the _shabi barat_.

[49] I warrant you there were no "tickets of leave" granted in those
blessed days.

[50] This means an impertinent, or rather a _chaffing_, question,
like our own classic interrogation, "Does your mother know you'ra out?"

[51] It is incumbent on every good _Musalman_ to pray five times in
the twenty-four hours. The stated periods are rather capriciously
settled:--1st. The morning prayer is to be repeated between daybreak
and sunrise; 2nd. The prayer of noon, when the sun shows a sensible
declination from the meridian; 3rd. The afternoon prayer, when the sun
is near the horizon that the shadow of a perpendicular object is twice
it's length; 4th. The evening prayer, between sunset and close of
twilight; 5th. The prayer of night, any time during the darkness. The
inhabitants of Iceland and Greenland would find themselves sadly
embarrassed in complying with these pious precepts, bequeathed by
_Muhammad_ to the _true believers_, as they call themselves.

[52] The Asiatics consider _male_ children as the light or splendour
of their house. In the original there is a play upon the word "_diya_"
which, as a substantive signifies "a lamp;" and as a verbal participle
it denotes "given," or "bestowed."

[53] The literal meaning is--"There is no one as the bearer of his
name, and the giver of water."

[54] The Mirror Saloon, called by the Persians, and from them by the
_Hindustanis, Shish Mahall_, is a grand apartment in all oriental
palaces, the walls of which are generally inlaid with small mirrors,
and their borders richly gilded. Those of _Dilli_ and _Agra_ are the
finest in _Hinduistan_.

[55] "The messenger was the white hair in his majesty's whiskers.

[56] Called in the original, _Pain Bagh_. Most royal Asiatic gardens
have a _Pain Bagh_ or lower terrace adorned with flowers, to which
princes descend when they wish to relax with their courtiers.

[57] The _Diwani' Amm_, or Public Hall of Audience in eastern palaces,
is a grand saloon where Asiatic princes hold a more promiscuous court
than in the _Diwani Khass_, or the Private Hall of Audience.

[58] The _Musalla_, is generally in Persia a small carpet, but
frequently a fine mat in _Hindustan_, which is spread for the
performance of prayer. The devotee kneels and prostrates himself
upon it in his act of devotion. It is superfluous to remark that the
_Muhammadans_ pray with their face turned towards _Mecca_, as far as
they can guess its direction. Jerusalem was the original point, but
the prophet, (it is said,) in a fit of anger, changed it to _Mecca_.

[59] _Khiradmand_ means wise; as a man's name it corresponds to our
"Mr. Wiseman," or as the French have it "Monsieur le Sage." It does
not necessarily follow, however, that every Mr. Wiseman is a sage.

[60] The _Diwani Khass_, or Private Hall of Audience, is a grand
saloon, where only the king's privy councillors or select officers
of state are admitted to an audience.

[61] As Asiatic princes in general pass the most part of their time
in the _haram_ or in seclusion, eunuchs are the usual carriers of
messages, &c.

[62] The posture of respect, as to stand motionless like a statue,
the eyes fixed on the ground, and the arms crossed over the waist.

[63] Literally, "rings or circles had formed round his eyes, and
his visage had turned yellow." The term "yellow" is used among the
dark-complexioned people of the East in the same sense as our word
"pale," or the Latin "pallidus," to indicate fear, grief, &c.

[64] The Asiatics reckon the animal species at 18,000; a number which
even the fertile genius of Buffon has not attained. Yet the probability
is, that the orientals arc nearer the true mark; and the wonder is,
how they acquired such correct ideas on the subject.

[65] There is a well-known Eastern saying, that, "On the part of a
king, one hour's administration of justice will be of more avail to
him on the day of judgment than twenty years of prayer."

[66] Literally, "_Fakirs_ and _Jogis_;" either term denotes "hermit"
the former being applied to a _Musalman_, the latter to a _Hindu_.

[67] In India, the day was formerly divided into four equal portions,
called _pahars_ or watches, of which the second terminated at noon;
hence, _do-pahar-din_, mid-day. In like manner was the night divided;
hence, _do-pahar-rat_, midnight. The first _pahar_ of the day began at
sunrise, and of the night at sunset; and since the time from sunrise
to noon made exactly two _pahars_, it follows that in the north
of India the _pahar_ must have varied from three and a-half hours
about the summer solstice, to two and a-half in winter, the _pahars_
of the night varying inversely. A shallow commentator has said that
"the _pahar_ or watch is three hours, and that the day commences at
six a.m.," which is altogether incorrect.

[68] The _Naubat-khana_, or the royal orchestra, is, in general,
a large room over the outer gate of the palace for the martial music.

[69] _Nazars_, presents made to kings, governors, and masters, &c.,
on joyful occasions, and on public festivals, generally in silver
and gold.

[70] Literally, "when two _pahars_ had elapsed."--V. note on _pahar_,

[71] "On them," i.e., for the souls of the dead.

[72] A celebrated _Hindu_ poet of Upper _Hindustan_; his poetry is
of a sombre hue, but natural and sympathetic; the simile here is,
that no creature has yet survived the pressure of the heavens and the
earth; the heavens, being in motion, representing the upper millstone,
and the earth (supposed to be at rest), the lower millstone.

[73] A figurative expression, denoting, "I may yet have a son and

[74] _Fakirs_ are holy mendicants, who devote themselves to the
expected joys of the next world, and abstract themselves from those
of this silly transitory scene; they are generally fanatics and
enthusiasts--sometimes mad, and often hypocrites. They are much
venerated by the superstitious Asiatics, and are allowed uncommon
privileges, which they naturally often abuse.

[75] The _kafni_ is a kind of short shirt without sleeves, of the
colour of brick dust, which _Fakirs_ wear.

[76] Literally, "paintings on a wall."

[77] The _fanus_ is a large glass shade open at the top, placed over
a lamp or candle as a protection from wind, or bats, &c., when the
windows are all open, as is generally the case in hot weather.

[78] The _Dev_ is a malignant spirit, one of the class called _jinn_
by the Arabs, vide Lane's "Arabian Nights," vol. i. p. 30. The _jinn_
or genii, however, occasionally behave very handsomely towards the
human race, more especially towards those of the _Muhammadan_ faith.

[79] The _Ghul_ is a foul and intensely wicked spirit, of an order
inferior to the _jinn_. It is said to appear in the form of any living
animal it chooses, as well as in any other monstrous and terrific
shape. It haunts desert places, especially burying grounds, and is
said to feed on dead human bodies.

[80] This is a general exclamation when Asiatics sneeze, and with them,
as with the ancients, it is an ominous sign.

[81] _Kalandars_ are a more fanatic set of _Fakirs_. Their vow is to
desert wife, children, and all worldly connexions and human sympathies,
and to wander about with shaven heads.

[82] The introduction of the _hukka_ is an improvement of _Mir
Amman's_; as that luxury was unknown in Europe and Asia at the time
of _Amir Khusru_.

[83] The term _Azad_, "free, or independent," is applied to a class
of Darweshes who shave the beard, eyelashes and eyebrows. They vow
chastity and a holy life, but consider themselves exempt from all
ceremonial observances of the _Muhammadan_ religion.

[84] Literally, "is an immense mountain."

[85] The phrase _do zanu ho baithna_ denotes a mode of sitting
peculiar, more especially, to the Persians. It consists in kneeling
down and sitting back on one's heels, a posture the very reverse of
_easy_, at least, so it appears to us good Christians, accustomed to
the use of chairs &c.

[86] Arabia Felix, the south-west province of the peninsula.

[87] _Maliku-t-Tujjar_ means the chief of merchants; it is a Persian
or Arab title. The first title the East India Company received from
the court of _Dilli_ was _'Umdatu-t-Tujjar_, or the noble merchants.
_Haji Khalil_, the ambassador from Persia to the Bengal government, who
was killed at Bombay, was _Maliku-t-Tujjar_; and after him _Muhammad
Nabi Khan_, who likewise was ambassador from the Persian court,
and came to Bengal; he has since experienced the sad uncertainty
of Asiatic despotism; being despoiled of his property, blinded,
and turned into the streets of _Shiraz_ to beg.

[88] The peculiar dress worn by _fakirs_. V. "_Qanooni Islam"_

[89] The _seli_, or _saili_, is a necklace of thread worn as a badge
of distinction by a certain class of _fakirs_.

[90] The fortieth day is an important period in _Muhammadan_ rites;
it is the great day of rejoicing after birth, and of mourning after
death. To dignify this number still more, sick and wounded persons are
supposed, by oriental novelists, to recover and perform the ablution
of cure on the fortieth day. The number "forty" figures much in the
Sacred Scriptures, for example, "The flood was forty days upon
the earth." The Israelites forty years in the wilderness, &c., &c.

[91] The _Fatiha_ is the opening chapter of the _Kur,an_, which,
being much read and repeated, denotes a short prayer or benediction
in general.

[92] This is the general mode of investiture in _Hindustan_ to offices,
places, &c.; to which a _khil'at_, or honorary dress, is added.

[93] That part of a dwelling where male company are received.

[94] _Farrashes_ are servants whose duty it is to spread carpets,
sweep them and the walls; place the _masnads_, and hang up the _pardas_
and _chicks_, pitch tents, &c.

[95] _Pardas_ are quilted curtains, which hang before doors, &c.

[96] _Chicks_ are curtains, or hanging screens, made of fine slips
of _bamboos_, and painted and hung up before doors and windows, to
prevent the persons inside from being seen, and to keep out insects;
but they do not exclude the air, or the light from without. If there
is no light in a room, a person may sit close to the _chick_, and not
be seen by one who is without.--However, no description can convey
an adequate idea of _pardas_ and _chicks_ to the mere European.

[97] I hope the reader will pardon me for the use of this old-fashioned
Scottish expression which conveys the exact meaning of the original,
viz., "_muft par khane-pine-wale"_, i.e, "gentlemen who eat and drink
at another's cost." The English terms, "parasites," or "diners out,"
do not fully express the meaning, though very near it.

[98] Literally, "quaff the wine of the _Ketaki_, and pluck the flower
of the rose." The _Ketaki_, a highly odoriferous flower, was used in
giving fragrance to the wine.

[99] A Persian proverb, like our own "Lightly come, lightly go."

[100] A personage famed for his wealth, like the Croesus of the Greeks.

[101] The reader will observe, in the original, that the terms
_rah-bat_, a "highway," and _bhent-mulakat_, "a meeting," consist
each of two nouns denoting precisely the same thing, only one of them
is of _Musalman_ usage, and the other _Hindu_. Such expressions are
very common in the language.

[102] Literally, "black _takas_," or copper coins, in opposition to
"white" or silver; an expression similar to what we, in the vernacular
call "browns."

[103] _Sharbat_ is a well-known oriental beverage, made in general
with vegetable acids, sugar and water; sometimes of sugar and rose
water only; to which ingredients some good _Musalmans_, on the sly,
add a _leettle_ rum or brandy.

[104] _Pulao_, (properly "_pilav_," as pronounced by the Persians and
Turks,) is a common dish in the East. It consists of boiled rice well
dried and mixed with eggs, cloves and other spices, heaped up on a
plate, and inside of this savoury heap is buried a well-roasted fowl,
or pieces of tender meat, such as mutton, &c.; in short, any good
meat that may be procurable.

[105] _Kabab_ is meat roasted or fried with spices; sometimes in
small pieces, sometimes minced, sometimes on skewers, but never in
joints as with us, though they make _kababs_ of a whole lamb or kid.

[106] The _tora_ is a bag containing a thousand pieces (gold or
silver). It is used in a collective sense, like the term _kisa_, or
"purse," among the Persians and Turks; only the _kisa_ consists of
five hundred dollars, a sum very nearly equal to 1000 _rupis_.

[107] The word in the original is _Damishk_, an Indian corruption
of the Arabic _Dimashk_, which latter mode of pronunciation I have
followed in my printed edition.

[108] The grand street where all the large shops are. In oriental
towns of considerable size, there is generally a distinct _bazar_
for each species of goods, such as "the cloth _bazar_," "the jewellery
_bazar_," &c.

[109] The merchant would have rather a puzzling voyage of it, if he
went by sea from Yaman to Damascus.

[110] The sacred rupee, or piece of silver, is a coin which is
dedicated to the _Imam Zamin,_ or "the guardian _Imam_, (a personage
nearly allied to the guardian saint of a good Catholic), to avert evils
from those who wear them tied on the arm, or suspended from the neck.

[111] To mark the forehead with _tika_, or curdled milk, is a
superstitious ceremony in _Hindustan_, as a propitious omen, on
beginning a voyage or journey. It is probable that the _Musulmans_ of
India borrowed this ceremony, among several others, from the _Hindus_.

[112] Literally, "when half the night was on this side, and half
on that."

[113] The _dopatta_ is a large piece of cloth worn by women, which
covers the head and goes round the body; the act of drawing her
_dopatta_ over her face is mentioned as a proof of her modesty. Men
likewise wear the _dopatta_ flung over the shoulders, or wrapped
round the waist. It is often of gauze and muslin.

[114] This is _Mir Amman's_ plain expression. Ferdinand Smith's
translation savours somewhat of the Hibernian, viz., "She still loves
him who has murdered her."

[115] "The _ghari_ is the 60th part of 24 hours, or 24 of our
minutes. It may be observed that the _ghari_ was a fixed quantity,
not subject to variation, like the _pahar_, which last, in the north
of India, was made to vary from seven to nine _gharies_, according to
the season of the year, or as it referred to the day or night in the
same season. Since the introduction of European watches and clocks,
the term _ghari_ is applied to the Christian hour of sixty minutes.

[116] Literally, "became such a mountain."

[117] _'Isa_ is the name of Jesus among the _Muhammadans_; who all
believe, (from the New Testament, transfused into the _Kuran_,)
in the resurrection of Lazarus, and the numerous cures wrought
by our Saviour. This, perhaps, induced _Mir Amman_ to call the
wonder-performing barber and surgeon _'Isa_.

[118] The Arabic expression is _salam 'alaikum_ or _'alaika_,
i.e. "Peace be on you" or "on thee." This mode of greeting is used
only towards _Musulmans_; and when it has passed between them, it is
understood to be a pledge of friendly confidence and sincere good will.

[119] The _nim_ is a large and common tree in India, the leaves of
which are very bitter, and used as a decoction to reduce contusions
and inflammations; also to cleanse wounds.

[120] The spirit drawn from the leaves of an aromatic tree which
grows in _Kashmir_, called _Bed-Mushk_; it is a tonic and exhilarating.

[121] A humble deportment when addressing superiors in India; and
through complaisance, used sometimes to equals.

[122] An act of ceremony ever observed amongst the well-bred in India,
when a visitor takes leave. _'Itr_ is the essence of any flower,
more especially of the rose (by us corruptly called "otto of roses");
and _betel_ is a preparation of the aromatic leaf so generally used
in the East, more especially in India. The moment they are introduced,
it is a hint to the visitor to take leave.

[123] The _khil'at_ is a dress of honour, in general a rich one,
presented by superiors to inferiors. In the zenith of the _Mughal_
empire these _khil'ats_ were expensive honours, as the receivers
were obliged to make rich presents to the emperor for the _khil'ats_
they received. The _khil'at_ is not necessarily restricted to a rich
dress; sometimes, a fine horse, or splendid armour, &c., may form an
item of it.

[124] The word _pari_, "a fairy," is frequently used figuratively to
denote a beautiful woman.

[125] _Masnad_ means literally a sort of counterpane, made of silk,
cloth, or brocade, which is spread on the carpet, where the master of
the house sits and receives company; it has a large pillow behind to
lean the back against, and generally two small ones on each side. It
also, metaphorically, implies the seat on which kings, _nawwabs_, and
governors sit the day they are invested with their royalty, &c. So
that to say that _Shah-'Alam_ sat on the _masnad_ on such a day,
means that he was on that day invested with royalty.

[126] Asiatics divide the world into seven climes; so to reign over
the seven climes means, metaphorically, to reign over the whole world;
king of the seven climes was one of the titles of the Mogul emperors.

[127] Literally, "it was not in the power of eyesight to dwell upon
her splendour."

[128] A Persian proverb, somewhat illustrative of a story told of a
West India "nigger," whom his master used to over-flog. "Ah, massa,"
said Sambo, "poor man dare not vex--him damned sorry though."

[129] The _Kalam-dan,_ literally "the pen-holder," means here the
small tray containing pens, inkstand, a knife, &c.

[130] _Tirpauliya_ means three arched gates; there are many such
which divide grand streets in Indian cities, and may be compared to
our Temple Bar in London, only much more splendid.

[131] Ethiopian, or Abyssinian slaves, are commonly called
_Sidis_. They are held in great repute for honesty and attachment.

[132] The _chauk_ is in general a large square in Asiatic cities, where
are situated the richest shops; it is sometimes a large wide street.

[133] In the original there is a play on the word _'alam_ which
signifies "beauty," "the world," also "a multitude of people," or
what the French call "tout le monde."

[134] Literally, "the observance of the [form of greeting] "_sahib
salamat_," or "_salam 'alaika_," by which he had been at first accosted
by his customer.--Vide note on this subject, page 41.

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