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Full text of "The Gulistān; or, Rose-garden, of Shek̲h̲ Muslihu'd-dīn Sādī of Shīrāz, translated for the first time into prose and verse, with an introductory preface, and a life of the author, from the Ātish Kadah"

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1 ' b 



c 



^ 



Oct. 



I 



TRUBNER'S 

ORIENTAL SERIES. 



THE GULISTAN; 



ox. 



ROSE-GARDEN, 



OF 



« — 



SHEKH MXJ§LIHTJ'D-DIN SADI OF SHIRAZ, 



« • * 



TRANSLATED 

FOR THE FIRST TIME IXTO PROSE AND TERSE, WITH AN INTRODUCTORY 
PREFACE, AND A LIFE OF THE AUTHOR, FROM THE ATI8H KADAH, 



BT 



EDWARD B. EASTWICK, C.B., M.A., F,R.S., M.R.A.S., 

OF MERTON COLLEGE, OXFORD ; MEMBER OF THE ASIATIC SOCIETIES 

OF PARIS AND iftOMBAY; AND FORMERLY PROFESSOR OF ORIENTAL 

LANGUAGES AND LIBRARIAN IN THE EAST INDIA COLLEGE, 

HAILEYBURY. 



ATTENTION READER: 

This volume is too fragile for any future repair. 
Please handle with great care. 

UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN-CONSERVATION SERVICES 



1880. 
[AU rights reserved.] 



\ 



0541 

El3 
1880 



•- •• • • 
• • • ' • 



STEPHKM AUSTIN AMD SONS, PRINTERS, HERTFORD. 






PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITIOx\. 



The First Edition of my translation of the Gulistan 
was published by Mr. Stephen Austin, of Hertford, 
in 1852. A new edition has been frequently called 
for, and negociations have been more than once entered 
into for re-printing it, but my time has been too 
much occupied to allow of their being brought to a 
satisfactory result. The former edition was an " edition 
de luxe,'* and the high price at which it sold put 
it out of the reach of many, who, it is hoped, will 
purchase it in its present form. The extraordinary 
popularity of the work in the East, and its intrinsic 
merits, may well lead to the expectation that it will 
find a place in all public libraries. It may be added 
that the translation has been carefully read through and 



r 



^^-^^^^^^ 



vi PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION. 

compared with the original by an Indian gentleman^ 
who is a profound Persian scholar, and possesses at 
the same time a complete mastery of English, and 
who has expressed himself satisfied with this version 
of the most famous work of the immortal Sadl. 



EDWARD B. EASTWICK. 

London, Kwy Tlthj 1880. 



PEEFACE. 



The GuHstan of Sadi has attained a popularity in the 
East which, perhaps, has never been reached by any 
European work in this Western world. The school-boy 
lisps out his first lessons in it; the man of learning quotes 
it; and a vast number of its expressions have become 
proverbial. When we consider, indeed, the time at which 
it was written — ^the first half of the thirteenth century — 
a time when gross darkness brooded over Europe, at 
least — darkness which might have been, but, alas! was 
not felt — the justness of many of it& sentiments, and the 
glorious views of the Divine attributes contained in it, 
are truly remarkable. Thus, in the beginning of the 
Preface, the Unity, the imapproachable majesty, the 
omnipotence, the long-suffering, and the goodness of God, 
are nobly set forth. The vanity of worldly pursuits, and 
the true vocation of man, are everywhere insisted upon : 

" The world, my brother ! will abide with none. 
By the world's Maker let thy heart be won." (p. 24.) 

In Sfidi's code of morals, mercy and charity are not 
restricted, as by some bigoted Muhammadans, to true 
believers : 



viii TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 

" All AdanCB race are members of one frame ; 
Since all, at first, from the same essence came. 
If thou feel'st not for others' misery, 
A son of Adam is no name for thee." (p. 38.) 

Evil, it is said, should be requited with good, thus : 

" Whenever then 
Thy enemy thee slanders absent, thou 
To his face applaud him.'* (p. 67.) 
and: 

" Shew kindness even to thy foes.'' (p. 67.) 
See also the story of the Khalifah Harun's son (p. 67) ; 
and of the recluse (p. 76) : 

" The men of God's true faith, I've heard. 
Grieve not the hearts e'en of their foes. 
When will this station be conferred 

On thee, who dost thy friends oppose P " 

S&di not only preached the duty of contentment and 
resignation, but practised what he preached. In a life 
prolonged to nearly twice the ordinary period allotted 
to man, he shewed his contempt for riches, which he 
might easily have amassed, but which, when showered on 
him by the great, he devoted to pious purposes; being 
minded that : 



u 



The poor man's patience better is than gold." (p. 99.) 



Thus, when the Prime Minister of Hulaku Khan sent 
him a present of 50,000 dinars, he expended it in erecting 
a house for travellers, near Shiraz. But it will be suffi- 
cient for those who would form a just estimate of SadI 
to peruse his works, especially the Ilird and Vlllth 



TRANSLATOJ^S PREFACE. ix 

books of the Gulistan, whicli set forth his good sense, 
humility, and cheerful resignation to the Supreme will, 
in the clearest light. Of the history of his long and 
useful life we, unfortunately, know but little ; and that 
little is comprised in the notice of him which is here 
subjoined from the Atish Kadah. Eoss, however, with 
much diligence and acuteness, has drawn from his works 
themselves some other interesting particulars relating to 
him. It appears that his father's name was Abdu'llah, 
and that he was descended from All, the son-in-law of 
Muhammad ; but that, nevertheless, his father held no 
higher office than some petty situation under the Dlwan. 
From Bustan, II. 2, it appears that he lost his father 
when but a child; while, from the 6th Story of the 
Vlth Chapter of the Gulistan, we learn that his mother 
survived to a later period. He was educated at the 
If izamiah College at Baghdad, where he held an Idrar, 
or fellowship (Bustan, VII. 14), and was instructed in 
science by the learned Abul-farj-bin-Jauzi (Gulistan, II. 

20), and in theology by Abdu'l-Kadir Gilani, with whom 
he made his first pilgrimage to Makkah. This pilgrimage 
he repeated no less than fourteen times. It is to his 
residence at Baghdad — ^where Arabic, as he tells us in 
the Ilird Chapter of the Gulistan, was spoken with 
great purity — that we, perhaps, owe the profusion of 
Arabic verses and sentences which are scattered through 
his works. He had, however, scarce reached his mid- 
career when that imperial city was taken and sacked by 
the Tartar Hulaku, with a prodigious massacre of the 
inhabitants; on which occasion he gave expression to 
his regrets in a Kasidah, or elegy. 

SadI was twice married. Of his first nuptials, at 



X TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, 

Aleppo, we have a most amusing account in the 31st 
Story of the Ilnd Chapter of the Gulistan. His enforced 
labour with a gang of Jews in the fosse of Tripolis was 
not likely to increase his good opinion of the Christian 
sect ; for it appears from that story, that his taskmasters, 
the Crusaders, had not made him prisoner in war, but 
while practising religious austerities in the desert ; and 
he, therefore, certainly deserved more lenient treatment. 
Whatever might, however, have been S&dl's opinion of 
Christians* — ^and it certainly was not very favourable — 
he speaks with reverence of their Lord, as he does also 
of St. John the Baptist. Thus, in his Badlya, he says, 
** It is the breath of Jesus, for in that fresh breath and 
verdure the dead earth is reviving : " and, * in the 
Gulistan, II. 10, we find SSdi engaged in devotion at 
the tomb of John the Baptist, of which he says — 

• 

" The poor, the rich, alike must here adore ; 
The wealthier they, their need is here the more." 

where it is to be remarked that his prayers were ofiered 
only to the Deity ; but he knelt at the tomb, supposing, 
with other Muhammadans and Eoman Catholics, that it 
was not only allowable, but salutary, to entreat the 
interciBssion of holy men. 

Sadi married a second time at Sanaa, the capital of 
Taman; and, in the Bustan, IX. 25, pours out his 
regrets for the loss of his only son. His notices of the 
female sex are, in general, not very laudatory, and his 

a Vide Chapter III. Story 21 : 

'* A Christiaa's well may not be pure, 'tis true, 
'Twill do to wash the carcase of a Jew." 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, xi 

opinions on this head seem to have strengthened as he 
grew in years. Ross mentions Europe, Barbary, Abyssinia, 
Egypt, Syria, Palestine, Armenia, Asia Minor, Arabia, 
Persia, Tartary, Afghanistan, and India, as the countries 
in which he travelled ; and Kaempf er, who visited Shiraz 
A.D. 1686, tells us that he had been in Egypt and Italy ; 
and that, to his knowledge of Oriental tongues, he had 
even superadded an acquaintance with Latin, and, in 
particular, had diligently studied Seneca. S&di himself 
informs ujs that he was at Dihli during the reign of 
TJglamish, who died A.H. 653 = a.d. 1255, and there 
exist some verses in the Urdu dialect which he is said, but 
perhaps without much reason, to have composed. Jam! 
supposes that the beautiful youth whom Sidl encountered 
at Kashgarh, and who is mentioned in the 17th story of 
the Vth chapter of the Gulistan,* was the famous poet 
of DihlT, Amir Khusrau ; and it is certain that it was 
owing to the eulogies of Khusrau that SadI was invited 
by Sultan Muhammad to Multan, where that prince 
offered to found a monastery for him. 

Sadi seems to have spent the latter part of his life in 
retirement. He died on the evening of Friday, in the month 
of Shawwal, A.H. 690 = a.d. 1291, saysDaulat Shah, and 
was buried near Shiraz. Kaempfer, in 1686, and Colonel 
Franklin, in 1787, visited his tomb, and the latter 
mentions it as being "just in the state it was in when 
SadI was buried." In person, Sadi was, as Ross conjee 
tures, of a mean appearance, low of stature, spare and 
slim. In the picture which Colonel Franklin saw of 
him, near his tomb, he is represented as wearing the 

^ Eoss's Translation. 



xii TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, 

khirkah, or long blue gown of the djarwesli, with a 
staff in his hand. 

The great beauty of Sadf s style is its elegant simplicity. 
In wit he is not inferior to Horace, whom he also re- 
sembles in his "curiosa verborum felicitas." Of his 
works the Gulistan may be ranked first. The numerous 
translations of his writings shew that his merits have not 
been altogether unappreciated even in these Western 
regions. George Gentius has the credit of first making 
known to European readers the Gulistan, by his "Rosarium 
Politicum," published at Amsterdam, A.D. 1651, of which 
it is sufficient to observe that it exhibits, along with the 
energy, all the roughness of a pioneer. A century and a 
half elapsed between the appearance of this Latin trans- 
lation and the English one of Gladwin, which, though 
deserving of much commendation, is somewhat too free ;® 
as are also those of Dumoulin, published at Calcutta in 
1807, and of Lee, published in London in 1827. In 

® Thus, at p. 53, 1. 11, of my edition of the Persian text, 
^JLc (...^ yuM^ jTl aga/r mmtatyib-i ukuhatam, is translated 

by Gladwin, '* Shouldst Thou doom me to punishment; " and 
p. 55, 1. 14, ui-AMxftlfwjj ^5J^ ^ .yMjjt^k^] in kadr has hih rut 

dor Jdialkast, "This is sufficient with a mortal face," which is 
very incorrect. At p. 76, 1. 10, he renders i^j^ \ za muri, 
''to an ant," which, as well as being incorrect, destroys the 
sense. At p. 79, 1. 18, ^jLo ^w* ^\su] ittifak ml sdzam is 

rendered, "I am reflecting"! At p. 80, 1. 13, J^ H''^ J^ 
jysP- az naMb-% hard-i ajiiz, is translated by " in the depth of 
winter." At p. 147, 1. 10, for a^ <uUf^ J*«9, sud-i sa/rmayah-i 
umram, we find " the chief comfort of my life." At p. 149, 
1. 10, he omits an entire line. 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, xiii 

1823 Mr. James Boss, a retired civilian, published a 
new translation,* whicli lie dedicated, by permission, to 

* At p. 18, 1. 12, of the Persian preface (my edition), Ross 
translates <o^y iJ ^ ^^ >»Jcj ^^ss^ nalchl handam wall nah 
dar huddn, " I am a gardener, but not in a garden," — where he 
appears to me to lose the whole pith of the sentence, viz., the 
implied comparison between the flowers of an artificial flower- 
maker aad those of nature. At p. 7, 1. 16, we findjUH ^ JaJ 
nasi tea tdbar rendered, in Ross, " The tree of their wicked- 
ness," — where he evidently mistakes the Arabic word for the 
Persian. At p. 12, 1. 10, (^jj/-» ^ Jj^, ^^iaL» ii Jcih 
Suit an ^^ Ioshkar Jcunad sarwarl is rendered, '^Eor a king with 
an army constitutes a principality," — which is altogether wide 
of the obvious meaning that "A king rules through his troops." 
At 1. 17, in the same page, we find JcJli Jia ^Jb d^ ^JbLj* Jb, 
padshdhl kih farh zulm fikanad^ '* A king that can anyhow be 
accessory to tyranny," — where the obvious meaning of -.^ 
tarh, *'le fondement," as Semelet rightly translates it, is over- 
looked, though sd* clearly shewn by the use of ^\) pde in the 
next line. At p. 20, 1. 4, Ross strangely mistakes l::^^U; 
riayat for ^^- ^j ralyat, and renders ^A**^^ K^^^JL^,^ ^^r^\^JJ^ 
o'Jp dar riayat'i mamlaJcat stisti kardzy "was easy with the 
yeomanry in collecting revenue " ! In the same line both he 
and Semelet wrongly translate jj-jux-j pisMn, "ancient," 
whereas it is evident from the sequel of the story that the 
king was cotemporary with Sadi, who knew one of his soldiers, 
and the word should, therefore, be rendered "former." At 
p. 23, 1. 19, Ross gives a new sense to ^^)r»- haramiy "revenue- 
embezzler." At p. 25, 1. 16, Ross translates joW^ ^^ jLuL4 
,.,Lc31 JCbC <uLc «Xi:u^ ^ musharun ilaihi h^ilhandn wa mutamad 
alaihi andu^l-aiydn, " Towards whom all turned for counsel, 
and upon whom all eyes rested their hope," — which does not 



Xiv TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 

the Chairman and Court of Directors of the East India 
Company, and which he especially informs us was in- 

contain a single word of the original, for even j^Lcl aiyan 
cannot here be rendered " eyes." In the last line of the same 
page, Ross renders iS^J^ iarlki, ** Chaos," completely and 

most gratuitously destroying the beautiful metaphor. At p. 28, 
1. 20, we have a tolerable instance of a free translation ; \jS\s>' 
J^l ^rJoJkAMJ m;^ ^^\ hdktm^d in suMuin pasandidah amad, 
"When the prince heard this sentiment he subscribed to its 
omnipotence " ! The two first lines in p. 29 are sadly mis- 
translated, 

- * y *• ^ » * * j^ 

a. 

Chu kahah hihlah-i hdjat shud az diydr-i hatd. 
Remand khalk ha-dlddrash az hasl farsanff, 

which he renders thus, '^When the fane of the Cablah at 
Mecca became their object from a far-distant land, pilgrims 
would hurry on to visit it from many farsangs." The Xlbah 
it is needless to remark, is the Black Temple at Mecca, 
and the Kiblah is the place to which people turn in prayer. 
<Ouj Ktblahy therefore, should here be taken with hdjat, 
with which it is connected by an izdfahy and the Jujo jIj J \\ 

asL diydr-i hatd as evidently belongs to Jjjj rawand, from which 
it should not be separated by a stop. At p. 31, 1. 7, 8, the 
couplet is BO translated as to become quite unmeaning. At 

p. 32, 1. 13, Ross translates uuo^S Jjj^ ^J^ \^ ji *^-^^ 
malik ha/r dn lashkarl khishm girift^ " The sovereign let loose 
the army of his wrath " — a mistake which it is hardly possible 
to imagine a mere beginner would make. Gladwin rightly 
translates the sentence in his curt, free maimer, "the king 



TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, xv 

tended to be literal, and thereby useful to the Students 
of the East India College. He prefixed to it a very 

being displeased ; " and Semelet, who reads ^ har-a for ^ J 
i^^^xjuuI har an lashkarly renders it 'Ue roi se met en colore centre 
lui." At p. 34, 1. 6, ci^ ^^ ^ J^ J^ ^'^ U^^^f^ 
hamchundn dor fikr-i an haitam kih guft, where ▲iuj haitam is 
for Mr*4*Jb f*::^ hait hastamy as Gladwin and Semelet rightly 
take it, whereas Ross renders it ''applicable to which is that 
stanza of mine." At p. 38, 1. 7, Boss renders u-Q;oc^ la-haif 
"at a low price," instead of "by force," and he also mistakes 
the sense of ^Ja^ ha-tarh. At p. 41, 1. 10, ^ LZ^s^t] ^^ 

c^'^l ^^^^*^ go/rchich ntmat la-fmr-i daulat-i ustf is translated, 
"Though it be for their benefit that his glory is exalted" — a 
sense which can in no way be extracted from the words. At 
p. 41, 1. 13, Ross renders Juju*sr ^J^LuJ ^J^*^ jl |^j]/« 

marurd az handagdn ha-siydhl hakhshid, *' he forced her upon a 
negro," a strange sense of ^IjlJLsT laTd^hidan, At p. 53, 
1. 10, Ross translates l.a>. hasay in defiance of the dictionary 
and of the other translations, "the black stone," instead of 
"pebbles," as Gladwin rightly renders it. In the next line he 
translates c— ^^sj-yu**^ nmstaujihy "doomed," for "deserving." 
At p. 66 y 1. 14, he translates u:.>^mAjw jj ^nj rul dor hhalkaaty 
"this much is sufficient that it has a threadbare hood!" — a 
translation so amazing that one must suppose he read the 
passage differently, though it stands so in Gentius, whose text 
he professed to follow. At p. 57, 1. 16, Ross has evidently 

misunderstood the sentence, JjI jl^ ^ ^'^^ '^Ji^ ^^^^^ *^ 
kardl kih hakdr dyady — ^which he renders, "that nothing be 
omitted that can serve a purpose." At p. 61, 1. 10, Ross gives 
a ridiculous version of tiij>' j^ l/**^^^ (J^^ khdman-i mqjlis 

darjuahy " and the rawest of the assembly bubbled in unison." 



xvi TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE, 

yaluable essay on the works and character of SadI; 
but, of his Translation, I regret to say that I cannot 
speak in terms of unqualified praise. In 1828, M. 
Semelet published the Persian text of the Gulistan in 
Paris, and six years afterwards, a most excellent Trans- 
lation, to which the first place must imdoubtedly be 
assigned;® while Gladwin's version occupies the second; 
that of Boss, the third ; and that of Gentius, the fourth. 

At p. 64, 1. 7, ^^^j{ \i ^ j»^ sar pd hardhnah is rendered, 
** naked from head to foot,*' instead of ''with bare head and 
feet." At p. 64, 1. 15, Boss translates ^^xkiJLj ha-bdlinashj 
"to his hier,'' instead of *' piUow." At p. 69, 1. 2, ^Ji e^^-jjj 
L^J^ ha-dast'i In mu(rih is rendered, ** in the hand of this 
minstrel," instead of **by meaos of this musician." At p. 74, 
1. 7, Ross translates ^->JfJ^ hubuh, " zephyr" ! and, at p. 76, 1. 3, 
^jJb hani-ay ** immense ; " and 1. 9, j^ gur^ " an elk." At 
p". 95, 1. 8, Ross renders t— c-^ safff ** group." At p. 102, 1. 6, 
J^j-* [ifC taarruz-i sudl, ** prostitution of begging." At 
p. 109, 1. 18, Jyb (J^*>r gaddl haul is rendered, "an impor- 
tunate mendicant." At p. 178, 1. 14, Jki^jy jljj] d^ lukmah-i 
idrdr fa/rushand is rendered, " that they may entitle themselves 
to the bread of charity." At least ten times this number of 
inaccuracies might have been noticed, but these will be sufficient 
to shew how unsafe a guide Ross proves himself as a translator. 
« I have found but very few passages in which it appears to 
me that M. Semelet has failed to give the sense of the original. 
One is in Chap. I. (p. 4, 1. 13), where he renders ,c^ sari^ 
"le premier;" and line 17 of the same page, where Jw.*^ 
durushti, is rendered "la masse." At p. 34, 1. 7, he renders 
^LLj "un gardien de chameaux." At p. 162, 1. 14, -Xi faldh, 
is translated "le paysan." There are some other inadvertencies, 
which will be found referred to in the notes. 




TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. xvii 

For the publication of the present Translation, the 
only apology that seems requisite is the fact that those 
of Gladwin and Ross have long been out of print. 
Moreover, if the Eastern saying be true that 

tj^jA-j lifi! Jb har lafz'i Sadt, 

J J J Jliiib haftdd tea du manu 

"Each word of SadI has seventy-two meanings," there 
is room for a septuagint of translators. There is, how- 
ever, another ground on which the Translation now 
offered to the public may claim notice, that it is, I 
beUeve, the first attempt, on anything like an exten- 
sive' scale, to render Persian poetry into English verse. 
E/Oss, in his Introductory Essay, asserts, in the words of 
Cowper, that " it is impossible to give, in rhyme, a just 
translation of any ancient poetry of Greece or Bome, 
and still less (here he means "still more" impossible) 
of Arabic and Persian." It will be for the Oriental 
scholar to judge how far I have departed from the true 
meaning of the original in putting it into English verse. 
For myself, I can only say I have not knowingly allowed 
myself any license except on very few occasions, on each 
of which I have excused myself in a note. I have also 
endeavoured to make the metre correspond in some 
degree to that of the Persian, and I have uniformly 

' Atkinson has published some spirited versions extracted 
from the Shah-namah ; but I speak here of a continuous work. 
I do not mention Miss Costello's "Eose Garden of Persia," 
which is merely a translation jfrom the French, and exhibits 
about as much of the originals as Moore's "Lalla Rookh," that 
is, nothiDg but a certain Oriental tone and gilding. 



xviii TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE. 

done my best to preserve the play upon words whicli 
occurs so often^ and whicli is accounted such a beauty 
in the East. 

I have only further to add that, to mark the Arabic 
passages, itaHcs have been adopted ; and that where I 
have had occasion to insert any explanation, the words 
employed are enclosed in brackets. 



EDWARD B. EASTWICK. 



Hailetbubt Colleqb, 
October \it^ 1852. 



LIFE OF SADI. 



Shekh Muslihu'd-dTn, sumamed Sadi, is the most 
eloquent of writers, and the wittiest author of either 
modem or ancient times, and one of the four monarchs 
of eloquence and style. In the opinion of this humble 
individual (the author of the Atish Kadah) no one has 
appeared since the first rise of Persian Poetry who can 
claim a superior place to FirdausI of Tus, Nizami of 
Kum, Anwari of Abiward, and Shekh Sadl. In short, 
all I could say of the qualities which adorned his mind 
and heart, and of his perfections, displayed and secret, 
would not amount to the thoujsandth part of the reality, 
or be more than a trifling indication of the whole. In 
accordance with this, my master, the august and felicitous 

Mir Saiyid Ali Mushtak, used to call Sadl the "Nightingale 
of a Thousand Songs,''' intending to express that in every 
branch of poetry he displayed the perfection of genius. 
In a word, I used to busy myself with reflecting, whether 
in the revolutions of Time there had ever been a period, 
when men of learning were more lightly esteemed than at 
present; or, with reference to the want of appreciation 
evinced by the generation in which we live, whether 
bards were ever more undervalued than now P until I saw 

b 



XX LIFE OF SADL 

it mentioned in a Biography that a number of Poets once 
questioned Muhammad Hamkar (Praise be to God ! the 
like of him does not exist in these days) as to the com- 
parative excellence of Sadi and Imam! of Herat. He 
answered them with this verse, 

" Not to Imaml's strain, 
Caa I or Sadi e'er attain ! " 



On reading this, I returned thanks to God that this age 
is guiltless of such folly as this. Men of sense will be 
alive to the disgraceful injustice of such a sentence, 
though as to himself Muhammad Hamkar pronounced 
rightly. It is quite true that Imaml is a far superior 
poet to the author of the verse quoted above, but there 
is not the shadow of a pretence for comparing him with 
the illustrious Sadi, nor is there a single person save 
the three great poets whose names are given above, 
who can be placed in the same rank. With relation to 
the preceding anecdote a stanza occurred to me as I 
was composing the life of Sadi, which perhaps is not 
altogether devoid of point, and which I will here set 
down* 

One said, " The palm of merit has been given 

To Imam of Herat, o'er Sadi, by 
Muhammad Hamkar; — what think'st thouP" ''Good 
Heaven ! 

How much does Hamkar* herein err ! " said I. 

Sadi is said to have been a disciple of Shekh Shaha- 

• There is a play on the words " Samka/r " and JLcm^j 
sttamkaTj ** unjust," which cannot be preserved in English, 



FROM THE ATISH KADAH, xxi 

bu'd-dln ; and Daolat Shah^ writes that he lived to the 
age of one hundred and twenty years ; and that after 
his tenth year he spent thirty years in various countries 
in acquiring learning, and thirty years more in travellilig 
and making himself practically acquainted with things^ 
and thirty years more in the environs of Shiraz^ in a 
spot which for beauty equals the Garden of Paradise; 
where men of learning and eminence resorted to him, 
and where he employed himself in devotion. Here he 
was supplied with delicious viands by his disciples, and 
it was his wont after satisfying his hunger to wrap 
up what was left cmd suspend it in a basket, and the 
wood-cutters who used to cut bushes in the neighbour- 
hood of Shiraz took these fragments away. One day, 
a person, by way of experiment, diflguised himself as a 
wood-cutter and went to the place where the fragments 
were. On reaching towards them, his arm became stiff 
and remained stretched out. He cried out, ^'O Shekh! 
come to my aid ! *' Sadi replied, " If this be the dress 
of a bush-cutter, where are the scars on thy hands and 
feet ? or if thou art a robber, where is thy strong arm 
and £rm heart that without a wound or pain thou makest 
these outcries P '* He then prayed for him and the man 
was healed. 

They also relate that a devout person of Shiraz saw 
in a dream that the angels in heaven were nK>ved, cmd 
that the cherubs were singing softly the poetry of 
Shekh Sadi, and said that "this couplet of Sidi is worth 
the praises and hymns of angel-worship for a whole 

^ The name of the author of a celebrated Biography of 
Learned Men. 



xxii LIFE OF SADI. 



year." When lie awoke, he went to Sadi and found 
him with ecstatic fervour reciting this couplet, 

To pious minds each verdant leaf displays, 
A volume teeming with th' Almighty's praise. 

The devotee related to SadI the vision before mentioned, 
and besought him to pray in his behalf. 

The repartees of SadI are numberless; nor is it 
requisite to recount what is known to all. Once in his 
travels he arrived at Tabriz, where he learnt on inquiry 
after Khwajah Hamam,® that he had a son of great 
beauty and accomplishments; and that he guarded him 
from acquaintauce with strangers with the most scru- 
pulous care, insomuch that he took him to the private 
baths. SadI went to the bath on the day that the 
Khwajah had fixed to come, and concealed himself in 
a comer imtil he arrived with his son; when laying 
aside his mantle, he stepped in. Khwajah was dis- 
pleased when he ^saw him, and seating his son behind 
him, he asked SadI, whence he came? and what was 
his profession? SadI replied that he came from the 
fair laud of Shiraz ; and that he was a poet. Khwajah 
said, "Holy God! in this country the men of Shiraz 
are more plentiful than dogs ! " " It is just the reverse 
in my country," replied Sadi, "for there the men of 
Tabriz are less* than dogs." There happened to be 
there a vessel of water. Khwajah said, " It is strange, 

^ ITame of a famous poet. 

* The wit lies in the double sense of ^ru^ JcamtaVy which 
meaas "fewer" — answering iojxi*^^ hisMar — "more numerous," 
and also " inferior." 



FROM THE ATISH KADAH. xxiii 

the people of Shlraz are bald-headed like the bottom 
of this vessel. '* "Stranger still," replied Sadi, turning 
up the cup, "the heads of the people of Tabriz are 
as empty as the mouth® of this." "Prithee," rejoined 
Khwajah with a discomfited look, "Do they ever 
quote the poems of Hamam in ShirazP" "Yes," 
answered Sadi, and he then repeated this concluding 
verse of one of Hamam's odes, 

« Hamam divides ' me from my love-H)ne day 
That veil, I hope, will be removed away." 

Khw&jah said, " I conjecture that thou art Shekh S&dl ? 
for to no one else belongs such quickness." S&di 
answered in the affirmative ; on which Khwajah Hssed 
!.Is hand, and made his son pay his respects, and took 
his illustrious visitor home with him, where he showed 
him every attention for some time — " Would that I too 
had been with them ! " ' 

I have repeatedly perused the writings of this poet, 
whose whole works deserve to be transcribed here. 
Some extracts, however, of his elegies, odes, didactic 
poems and facetisB, which appear to me to possess the 
most perfect beauty, are all that I am able to extract; 
and I shall quote this one passage from his prose writings, 

® I have chaaged this repartee a little, at the risk of losing 
somewhat of its point. 

' Hamam was sitting between his son and S&di. In the 
original sense, a Sufiistic one, a veil is said to be between 
Hamam and his beloved one, ♦.«. God. 

' This is an exclamation of the author, and is to be found in 
the Kur'an. 



l/f^C^ 



xxiv LIFE OF SAD/. 

though I have not admitted any other prose extract from 
any writer into this book : 

"They asked a philosopher^ *Who should be called 
fortunate, and who unfortunate P * He replied, ^He is 
to be called fortunate, who sowed and reaped; and he 
must be reckoned unfortunate, who died and left [what 
he possessed without enjoying it.]' " 

The rest of his sayings, full of wisdom as they are, 
must be sought in the Gulistan, to which the reader is 
referred. 

Sadi flourished in the reign of S&d Atabak, whence 
his name of S&dl, and he died in Shiraz, in the year 
/3 /^yP0 691 A.H. (This is the date according to D'Herbelot, 
but according to Daulat Shdh, 690, see p. xi.) 



A LIST OP THE WRITINGS OF SADI. 



AS ENUMERATED BY ROSS. 



1 to 6. — Eisalah ; or Treatise. 

7. — Ghilistan. 

8. — ^Bustan. 

9. — ^Arabian Kasaids. 
10. — ^Persian Kasaids. 
11. — ^Marasi ; or Dirges. 
12. — Mixed Poems, Persian and Arabic. 
13.-Poems, with recurring lines. 
14. — Plain Ghazals. 
15. — Rhetorical Ghazals. 
16. — ^Works written in later life. 
17. — ^Writings in earlier life. 
18. — ^Poems addressed to Shamsu'd-din. 
19 — Fragments. 
20. — ^Facetiae. 
21. — ^Tetrastichs. 
22. — ^Distichs. 



I BOAST not the stock of my own excellence ; 
But hold forth my hand, like a beggar, for pence. 
I have heard in the day of hope and of fear,* 
God's mercy the good and the sinner will spare : 
If thou, too, herein seest faults, be it thine 
Like thy Maker to act ; like Him be benign. 

BHatdn of Sadi. 



• That is, in the day of resurrection. 



PREFACE. 



IN THE NAME OF GOD, THE MERCIFUL, THE 

COMPASSIONATE ! 

Praise be to God ! (May lie be honoured and glorified !) 
whose worship is the means of drawing closer to Him, 
and in giving thanks to whom is involved an increase 
of benefits. Every breath which is inhaled prolongs life, 
and when respired exhilarates the frame. In every breath 
therefore two blessings are contained, and for every 
blessing a separate thanksgiving is due. 

COUPLETS. 

Whose hands suflSce ? whose voices may 

The tribute of His praises pay ? 

! ye of David's line ! His praises sing,^ 

For few are grateful found to Mm [their King.] 

STANZA. 

Best for the slave his fault to own, 
And seek for pardon at God's throne : 
For none can hope to pay aright 
A homage worthy of his might. 

The raindrops of his mercy, shed 

On all, descend imlimited. 

His bounteous store for all is spread. 
Dark though their sins may be, He does not rend 

The veil that clokes His creatures' shame ; 
Nor stays His bounty, though they oft offend, 

[But aye continueth the same.] 

^ This is a quotation from the Kur'an ; Chap, xxxiv., v. 12. 

1 



2 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

STANZA. 

AU-Gracious One ! who, from Thy hidden store, 
On Guebre^ dost, and Pagan, alms bestow ! 

When wiU Thy mercies crown Thy friends no more P 
Thou, who with love regardest e'en Thy foe ! 

He biddeth His chamberlain, the morning breeze, 
spread out the emerald carpet [of the earth,] and 
commandeth His nurses, the vernal clouds, to foster in 
earth's cradle the tender herbage, [lit,, "the daughters 
of the grass"] and clotheth the trees with a garment 
of green leaves, and at the approach of spring crowneth 
the young branches with wreaths of blossoms; and by 
His power the juice of the cane becometh exquisite 
honey, and the date-seed, by His nurture, a lofty tree. 

STANZA. 

Cloud and wind, and sun and sky, 
Labour all harmoniously. 
That while they thee with food supply. 
Thou mayst not eat unthankfully.^ 
Since all are busied and intent for thee, 
Justice forbids that thou a rebel be. 
It is a tradition of the Chief of Created Beings, and 
the Most Glorious of Existences, the Mercy* of the 
Universe, the Purest of Mankind, and the Complement 
of Time's Circle, Muhammad Mustafa (On whom be 
blessing and peace !) 

COUPLET. 

Gracious Prophet ! intercessor ! worthy of obedience, thou ! 
Beautiful, of mien majestic, comely, and of smiling brow, 

^ Byron has Anglicised the word " Guebre," and it seems 
more euphonious than -»S Gahar, or Moore's **Gheber." 

' \^jf^ c:--^ii.*> la-gl^flaA na-Wmtj **thou shouldst not eat 
carelessly," or according to Gladwin, "in neglect." This must 
mean '* carelessly with reference to God," i.e, ''unthankfally." 

* That is, " means of obtaining mercy from God for all 
creatures." 



PREFACE, 3 

COUPLET. 

To the wall of the faithful what sorrow, when pillared 

[securely] on thee ? 
What terror where Niih ^ is the pilot, though rages the 

storm-driven sea P 

VERSE. 

All perfect he, and therefore won 
His hfty place, and [like a sun] 
His beauty lighted up the night. 
Fair are his virtues all, and bright. 
Let peace and benediction be 

On him and his posterity ! 

[The tradition is] that whenever one of his sinful 
servants in affliction lif teth up the hands of penitence in 
the court of the. glorious and Most High God, in the hope 
of being heard ; the Most High God regardeth him not ; 
again he supplicateth Him, again God turneth from him ; 
again humbly and piteously he beseecheth Him ; [then] 
God Most High (Praise be to Him !) saith, " my angels, 
verily I am ashamed by reason of my servant, and he hath 
no God but myself; therefore of a surety I pardon him,"^ 
that is to say, "I have answered his prayer and accom- 
plished his desire, since I am ashamed because of his 
much entreaty and supplication." 

COUPLET. 

God's condescension and his mercy see ! 
His servant simieth, and ashamed is He ! 

The devout dwellers at the temple of His glory confess 
the faultiness of their worship saying, " We have not 
worshipped Thee as Thou oughtest to be worshipped /" and 
those who would describe the appearance of His beauty 
are amazed and say, " We have not known Thee as Thou 
oughtest to be known,** 

^ Nuh is the Oriental form of the name of the Prophet Noah. 
• These words being in Arabic, an explanation of them is 
afterwards given in Persian, introduced by " that is to say." 



H ^ H ^"^! 



4 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

If one His praise of me would learn, 

What of the traceless can the tongueless tell P 
Lovers''^ are killed by those they love so well ; 

No voices from the slain return. 

STORY. 

A devout personage had bowed his head on the breast 
of contemplation, and was immersed in the ocean of the 
divine presence. When he came back to himself from 
that state, one of his companions sportively asked him — 
" From that flower-garden where thou wast, what mira- 
culous gift hast thou brought for us ? '* He replied, " I 
intended to fill my lap as soon as I should reach the 
rose-trees, and bring presents for my companions. When 
I arrived there the fragrance of the roses so intoxicated 
me that the skirt of my robe slipped from my hands." 

VERSE. 

bird of mom ! ® love of the moth be taught ; 

Consumed it dies nor utters e'en a cry ! 
Pretended searchers ! of this true love nought 
Know ye, — ^who know tell not their mystery. 
loftier than all thought. 
Conception, fancy, or surmise ! 

' The soul and the Deity are often, by Oriental writers, 
imaged by the lover and his beloved one. 

® The nightingale is so called as singing in the morning 
twilight. Gladwin reads jSf^ <^y ^ at murghri sahr, and 
translates, "0 bird of the desert!" and in my edition of the 
Text I unfortunately retained this reading, which, however, 
I now think incorrect, and prefer reading with M. Semelet, 
J^^ f-/^ ^^ ^* wwr^-t sahar, **0 bird of the morning!" 
The comparison is this, that as the nightingale, for all its 
warblings, is not so true a lover as the moth, which perishes 
in the brilliance it adores without a sigh ; so the truly devout 
are not those who speak of their devotion, but those who are 
wrapt into silent ecstacy. 



PREFACE. 5 

All vainly Thou art soagM, 
[Too high for feeble man's emprise.] 

Past is our festive day,« 
And reached at length life's latest span ; 

Thy dues are yet to pay, 
The firstKngs of Thy praise by man. 

RECITAL OF THE GLORIOUS QUALITIES OF THE MONARCH 
OF THE TRUE FAITH (mAY GOD MAKE CLEAR ITS 
DEMONSTRATION^®) ABU-BAKR-BIN-SAD-BIN-ZANGI. ^^ 

The fair report of SSdi, which is celebrated by the 
generaP^ voice ; and the fame of his sayings, which has 
travelled the whole surface ^^ of the earth ; and the loved 
reed," which imparts his discourse, and which they devour 
like honey ; and the manner in which men carry off the 
scraps of his writing, as though they were gold leaf ^^ — 
are not to be ascribed to the perfection of his own 
excellence or eloquence, but [to this, that] the Lord of 

• Life is finely compared by Oriental writers to an enter- 
tainment which is succeeded by the darkness and silence of 
night. 

^° Gladwin has a different reading, where the benediction 
refers to the king, ** may God perpetuate his reign !" 

" ^ Bin signifies " son of." 

^"^ Literally, ** which has fallen into the mouths of the common 
people.'' So the Latin '* volitare per ora virum.*' 

" Richardson's Dictionary makes la-i^wJ han^ an adjective 
only, but in this passage it is evidently a substantive. 

" The Oriental JJi hilam (calamus) or pen is, as every one 

knows, a reed. This leads to various poetical fantasies. Thus 
Maulavi Eumi, 

** Hear the reed's complaining wail ! 
Hear it tell its mournful tale ! 
Tom from the spot it loved so well, 
Its grief, its sighs our tears compel." 
*' This expression may also mean " bills of exchange." 
Gladwin so translates it. Others think it means a diploma of 
honour, amongst whom is M. Semelet. 



^am^ 



6 GULISTAN; ORy ROSE GARDEN". 

the Earth, the Axis of the Bevolutiori of Time, the 
Successor of Sulaiman, the Defender of the People of the 
True Faith, the Puissant King of Kings, the Great 
Atabak ^^ Muzaffaru'd-dln Abu-bakr-bin-Sad-bin-ZangI, 
God's shadow on earth (0 God! approve him and his 
desires!) has regarded him with extreme condescension 
and bestowed on him lavish commendation, and evinced a 
sincere regard for him. Of a verity, from attachment 
to him, all people, both high and low, have become 
favourably inclined towards me, since men adopt the 
sentiments of their /cings^^ 

QUATRAIN. 

Since to my lowliness thou didst with favour turn. 
My track is clearer than the sun's bright beam. 

Though in thy servant aU might every fault discern ; 
When kings approve, e'en vices virtues seem. 

VERSE. 

'Twas in the bath, a piece of perfumed clay 

Came from my loved one's hands to mine, one day. 

"Art thou then musk or ambergris ?" I said ; 

" That by thy scent my soul is ravished ?" 

" Ifot so," it answered, " worthless earth was I, 

But long I kept the rose's company ; 

Thus near, its perfect fragrance to me came. 

Else I'm but earth, the worthless and the same." ^® 

" djob^ AtahaJc is a Turkish word signifying "father of 
the prince." It was originaUy applied to a prime minister or 
great noble of state. It afterwards became the title of a 
dynasty of Persian kings, originaUy Tnrkumans, who reigned 
from 1148 to 1264 A.D. To the sixth of these, S&d-bin-Zangi, 
S§.di dedicates his " Gulistan." He reigned thirty-five years, 
and died A.D. 1259. 

" A quotation from the Kur'an. 

^ By this simile, which in the original is of exquisite beauty, 
Sftdi would express his own unworthrness, and the estimation 
imparted to him by the King's favour. 



PREFACE, 7 

Lord! for the Faithful's sake his life renew. 
Double the guerdon to his virtues due, 
Exalt his friends', his nobles' dignity, 
And thpse destroy^ who hate him or defy; 
As in the Kur'dn's verse. Thy will be done, 
Protect, Qod ! his kingdom and his son. 

V£iRS£« 

Happy in truth the world through him — may he 
Be happy ! and may Heavensent victory. 
Like a proud banner, him o'ercanopy ! 
He is the root, then may the tree be blest ! ^^ 
Fairest are aye the plants whose seed is best. 

May the most High, and Holy God preserve to the day 
of resurrection the fair territory of Shiraz in the security 
of peace through the awe inspired by its just rulers, and 
the magnanimous spirit of its sagacious superintendents ! 

VERSE. 

Knowest thou not in distant lands, 

Why I made a long delay ? 
I, through fear of Turkish bands, 

Left my home and fled away. 
Earth was ravelled by those bands 

Like an -Sthiop's hair ; and they, 
Slaughter-seeking, stretched their hands. 

Human wolves, towards the prey. 

Men like angels dwelt within,^ 

Lion- warriors roamed around. 
Back I came, how changed the scene ! 

Nought but peacef ulness I found : 
Tigers though they late had been, 

Changed their fierceness, fettered, bound. 

" The State is here compared to a tree, of which the 
King is the root. 

*° *' Within," i.e., in the city of Shiraz, then one of the 
most populous on earth. The surrounding districts were 
suffering from an irruption of savage Turks. 



8 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Thus in former times I saw, 

Filled with tumult, trouble, pain. 

Earth uncurbed by rule or law. 

But strife owned our monarch's reign. 

Heard Atabak's name with awe. 
Heard, and all was peace again.'^ 

VERSE. 

The clime of Fars^ dreads not Time's baneful hand, 
While one like thee, God's Shadow, rules the land. 
None at this day can shew on earth's wide breast, 
A haven, like thy gate, of peace and rest. 
'Tis thine to guard the poor : a grateful sense 
Is due from us — ^from God thy recompense. 
Lord ! shield the land of Fars from faction's storm. 
Long as winds blow, or earth retains its form. 



CAUSE OF WRITING THE " GULISTAN. 



>> 



One night I was reflecting on times gone by and 
regretting my wasted life; and I pierced the stony 
mansion of my heart with the diamond of my tears, 
and recited these couplets applicable to my state. 

DISTICHS. 

One breath of life each moment flies, 
A small remainder meets my eyes. 
Sleeper ! whose fifty years are gone, 
Be these five^^ days at least thy own. 
Shame on the dull, departed dead. 
Whose .task is left unfinished ; 

" I have been obliged to render these last three lines very 
freely. There is in them, however, notHing to delay the 
student. 

" Ears is that province of Persia of which Shiraz is the 
capital. 

" This is an indefinite number, used to express any short 
period. 



PREFACE. 9 

In vain for them the drum was beat, 
Which warns us of man's last retreat. 
Sweet sleep upon the parting-day** 
Holds back the traveller from the way. 
Each comer a new house erects. 
Departs, — ^the house its lord rejects. 
The next one forms the same conceit ; 
This mansion none shall ere complete. 
Hold not as friend this comrade light, 
With one so false no friendship plight. 
Since good and bad alike must fall, 
He's blest who bears away the ball.*'^ 
Send to thy tomb an ample store ;^ 
None will it bring — ^then send before. 
Like snow is life in July's sun. 
Little remains ; and is there one 
To boast himself and vaunt thereon P^ 
With empty hand thou hast sought the mart ; 
I fear thou wilt with thy turban part.^ 
Who eat their com while yet 'tis green. 
At the true harvest can but glean. 
To Sadi's counsel let thy soul give heed. 
This is the way — ^be manful and proceed, 

** These verses may seem nncomiected, but they are not 
more so than in the original ; the rendering is most close. 

** This is an allusion to the game of chattgdn, which is a 
sort oS tennis played on horseback. He who hears off the 
ball is the winner. 

** Of good deeds — which are here compared to the provisions 
for a journey. 

^ This is somewhat freely translated. Gladwin reads jyjb y^ 
ghirah haniiz, and translates, **Art thou yet slothful?" I 
prefer reading jyjb aZz d^\y>^ • wa Tcki/fajah g harrah hanuz ; 
— ^literally " and my gentleman is still boastful." 

^ "Thou hast" and *^ thou wilt" must be here read, for 
the sake of the metre, as one syllable. It is frequently 
impossible to avoid stiffness and other faults in the versification, 
that the literal translation may be preserved. 



10 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

After deliberating on this subject I thougbt it advisable 
that I should take my seat in retirement and &:ather under 
me my robe, wi1idra4ig from society, and waS tte tablet 
of my memory from vain words, nor speak idly in future. 

COUPLET. 

Better who sits in nooks, deaf, speechless, idle, 
Than he who knows not his own tongue to bridle. 

At length one of my friends who was my comrade 
in the camel-litter^ and my closet-companion^ entered 
my door according to old custom. Notwithstanding all 
the cheerfulness and hilarity which he displayed, and 
his spreading out the carpet of affection, I returned 
him no answer, nor lifted up my head from the knee 
of devotion. He was pained, and looking towards me said, 

STANZA. 

Now that the power of utterance is thine, 
Speak, my brother ! kindly, happily. 

To-morrow's message bids thee life resign. 
Then art thou silent of necessity. 

One of those attached to me [t.«., a kinsman or a 
servant] informed him regarding this circumstance, 
saying, "Such an one [fe., SadI] has made a resolution 
and fixed determination to pass the rest of his life in 
the world as a devotee, and embrace silence. If thou 
canst, take thy way, and choose the path of retreat.^^ 

*• The 2[iUp kajdwah is nothing more than two paimiers 
slung one on each side a camel, and each contaioing a traveller ; 
who of course would prefer a friend as his vis-d-vis in such a 
situation. The expression then means simply a comrade in travel. 

'° As we should say '* a bosom-friend." 

'^ Gladwin understands this as an exhortation to adopt a 
similar abnegation of the world. I cannot agree with this 
opinion, and think that the speaker simply desired S&di's 
friend to withdraw if he could make up his mind to leave 
him (ic^V y^ ^y^ tawdni "if thou art able "). 



\ 



PREFACE, U 

He replied, "By the glory of the Highest, md by our 
ancient friendship ! I will not breathe nor stir a step 
until he hath spoken according to his wonted custom, 
and in his usual manner : for to distress friends is folly, 
but the expiation of an oath is easy.^ It is contrary 
to rational procedure and opposed to the opinion of 
sages, that the Zii'l-fakar^' of All should remain in its 
scabbard, or the tongue of Sadi [silent] in his mouth. 

STANZA, 

What is the tongue in mouth of mortals ? — say ! 

'Tis but the key that opens wisdom's door : 
While that is closed who may conjecture, — ^pray P 

If thou sell'st jewels or the pedlar's store ? 

STANZA. 

Silence is mannerly, so deem the wise. 
But in the fitting time use language free ; 

Blindness of judgment just in two things lies. 
To speak unwished, not speak unseasonably. 

In brief, I had not the power to refrain from con- 
versing with him, and I thought it uncourteous to avert 
my face from conference with him, for he was an 
agreeable companion and a sincere friend. 

COUPLET. 

When thou contendest, choose an enemy ^ 

Whom thou mayst vanquish or whom thou canst fly. 

® The non-observance of a rash oath is expiated by fasting 
three days, or by feeding and clothing ten poor persons, or 
by setting one captive free. 

^ Zu'l-fakar was the name of a two-edged sword which 
Muhammad pretended to have received from the Angel Gabriel ; 
and which he bequeathed to his son-in-law Ali. The author 
of the il^^amus says that it was the sword of As-bin-Munabbih, 
an unbeliever, who was slain at the battle of Badr. 

" In these lines lie some difficulties well descanted on by 

M. Semelet, but which require but a word here. The words 

J-s^ ij dwr sitlz may be translated '*in strife," in which case 



12 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

By the mandate of necessity I spoke, and we went 
out for recreation, it being the season of spring, when 
the asperity of winter was mitigated, and the time of 
the roses' rich display had arrived. 

COUPLET. 

Yestments green upon the trees 

Like the [costly] garments seeming, 

Which at Id's festivities 

Rich men wear [all gaily gleaming.] 

STANZA. 

'Twas TJrdabihisht's first day, the Jalalian^ month of 

spring. 
From the pulpits of the branches slight we heard the 

bulbuls^® sing 
The red red branches were be-gemmed with pearls of 

gKstening dew. 
Like moisture on an angry beauty's cheek, a cheek of 

rosy hue. 

[So time passed] tiU one night^^ it happened that I 
was walking at a late hour in a flower-garden with one 
of my friends.^ The spot was blithe and pleasing, and 

supply jj-,jj hahln before the next line ; or spite of the 
dictionaries, those words may perhaps mean **try for one," 
" choose," in which case there is no ellipse. ji*S gu%ir can 

hardly mean *'aid," here — the **du secours" of M. de Sacy ; 
but rather "a means of success," the *;l>- char ah of Castell. 

'* Jalalu'd-din, King of Persia, began to reign A.H. 475= 
1082 A.D. His aera dates from that year. TJrdabihisht is 
the second month of the Jalalian year, and corresponds with 
our April. 

•* The bulbul, it is almost unnecessary to say, is the 
nightingale. 

^ I must confess that I think the sense would be greatly im- 
proved if we could get rid of ^1:l*j^ J jl ^ij b hd yakl az duttdn, 

and read U^^^ shah-rd for _^^ \j id shahif in which case it 
would be the same friend who persuaded S&di to give up his 



PREFACE. 13 

the trees intertwined there charmingly. You would have 
said that fragments of enamel were sprinkled on the 
ground, and that the necklace of the Pleiades was sus- 
pended from the vines that grew there* 

STANZA. 

A garden where the murmuring rill was heard; 
While from the trees sang each melodious bird; 
That, with the many-coloured tulip bright. 
These, with their various fruits the eye delight. 
The whispering breeze beneath the branches' shade, 
Of bending flowers a motley carpet made. 

In the morning, when the inclination to return pre- 
vailed over our wish to stay,^ I saw that he had gathered 
his lap full of roses, and fragrant herbs, and hyacinths, 
and sweet basil, [with which] he was setting out for 
the city. I said, "To the rose of the flower-garden 
there is, as you know, no continuance ; nor is there 
faith in the promise^® of the rose garden : and the sages 
have said that we should not fix our affections on that 
which has no endurance." He said, "What then is my 
course P" I replied, " For the recreation of the beholders 
and the gratification of those who are present, I am 
able to compose a book, *the Garden of Roses,' whose 
leaves the rude hand of the blast of autumn cannot 
affect ; and the blitheness of whose spring the revolution 
of time cannot change into the disorder of the waning 
year. 

taciturnity, that walked with him at night, and received the 
promise of the **Gulistan." 

*• Every line of S&di is said to have ,<iJt^ jfc> ^ i^lsJub haftad 

wa du manlf " seventy-two meanings,'* and this sentence may 
fairly be thought to have a different meaning from the one 
given in the text. It may be rendered, " the desire to return, 
in order to repose, prevailed with us.'' 

" I prefer translating Jl^ ahd thus. Gladwin translates it 
" continuance ; " and M. Semelet renders it by "la saison." 



14 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

DISTICHS. 

What use to thee that flower- vase of thine ? 

Thou would'st have rose-leaves; take then, rather, mine. 

Those roses but five days or six will bloom ; 

This garden ne'er will yield to winter's gloom." 

As soon as I had pronounced these words, he cast 
the flowers from his lap, and took hold of the skirt of 
my garment, [saying] " When the generous promise y they 
perform.^' It befel that in a few days a chapter or two 
were entered in my note-book, on the advantages of 
society,*® and the rules of conversation,*^ in a style that 
may be useful to orators, and augment the eloquence 
of letter-writers.*^ In short, the rose of the flower- 
garden still continued to bloom, when the book of the 
" Rose Garden " was finished. It will, however, be then 
really perfected when it is approved and condescendingly 
perused*^ at the court of the King, the Asylum of the 

*° The seventh chapter, iji*^ J -Jlj^J dar tdsir-i tarhiyat. 

Boss translates ijtAsu* mmsharat, ''education," which is hardly 
defensible. It means rather " enjoyable intercourse.*' 

** The eighth chapter, i^jL^^^sr^ c-^1 jj jt> dar addh-t suhhat, 
** Richardson's Dictionary is silent as to this word ^^Lajx>^ 
mutaraMtldn, 

** A string of titles separates the latter part of this sentence, 
which I have somewhat freely translated, from the jjT if Jo JCnuJ 
pasandldah ay ad, " it is approved." The more literal rendering 
would be, "It will, however, be really complete when it shall 
have been approved at the court of the King, the Asylum of 
the World," etc., **and [when] he shall have condescended to 
peruse it with the benign glance of imperial favour." Owing 
to the length of the titles, the passage is rather involved, and 
aU the translators appear to me to deal unfairly by it. Ross 
and Gladwin both omit to translate ^^j ^ tXst^ {jiJ^. y^ 
Ahu'bakr'hm'Sad'hin'Zdnffi ; whence it would almost seem that 
they overlooked the circumstance that the S&d-bin-Atabak was 
the son of Abii-bakr, who was the son of a former Sid, and 
who admitted the second Sad to reign jointly with himseK. 



PREFACE. 15 

world, the Shadow of the Creator, and the Light of the 
Bounty of the All-provider, the Treasury of the Age, 
the Retreat^^ of true Eeligian, the Aided hy Seaven, the 
Triumphant over his JEnemies, the Victorious Arm of 
the Empire, the Lamp of the excelling Faith, the Beauty 
of Mankind, the Olory of Islam, Sad, the son of the Most 
Puissant King of Kings, Master of attending Nations, Lord 
of the Kings of Arabia and Persia^ Sovereign of Land 
and Sea, Heir to the Throne of Sulaimdn, Atdbak the 
Cheat, Muzaffaru'd'din Abu-bakr-bin-Sad-bin-Zangz : (May 
Ood most High perpetuate the good fortune of both, and 
prosper all their righteous undertakings !) 

VERSE. 

If the imperial favour should it grace, 

'Twill rival China's*^ paintings, Arjang's pictured 
leaf.*« 
Ife'er with chagrin can it o'ercloud the face ; 
For the rose garden*^ is no place for grief. 
And its fair preface bears, impressed by fame, 
Great Sad Abu-bakr-S&d-bin-Zangrs name. 

" i*-a^X jT^A/" signifies " a cave," especially the cave in which 
the seven young Christians of Ephesus took refuge from the 
persecutions of the Emperor Decius. They are called the 
k-jLyi «*«>lsr^l ashdh'i kdhf "lords of the cave." 

" M. Semelet quotes Gentius as to a great city gn the 
confines of India called Sina, and possessing an edifice adorned 
with paintings, to which he supposes cdlasion is here made. 
I should rather suppose that Chinese paintings were meant. 

*• Eichardson's Dictionary teUs us that Arjang is the name 
of the house of the painter Manes. M. Semelet holds it to 
mean a book of his; and Boss translates the passage by "the 
picture-portfolio of Man!." Mam or Manes, the founder of the 
ManichsBans, was a painter of wondrous skill, who lived in the 
reign of Shahpur or Sapor, the son of Ardasir Babakan. He 
was burnt alive by order of Bahram. 

*' An equivoque on the word Gulistan. 



1 6 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

EULOOIUM OF THE MIGHTY NOBLE, FAKHRU'd-dTn ABU- 

BAKR-BIN-ABU-NASR. 

A second time the bride of my imagination, conscious 
of her want of beauty, lifts not up her head, nor raises 
the eye of despondency from the instep of bashfulness, 
and comes not forth adorned among the bevy of beauties, 
save when decked with the ornaments of the approbation 
of the mighty, wise, just, and divinely-supported Lord, 
the Victorious over his Foes, Prop of the Imperial 
Throne, Counsellor of State, Shelter of the Indigent, 
Asylum of the Poor, Patron of the Eminent, Friend 
of the Pure, Glory of the People of Fars, Right-hand of 
the Empire, Prince of Favourites, Ornament of the State 
and of Religion, Succour of the True Faith and of the 
Faithful, Pillar of Kings and Princes ; Abu-bakr-bin- 
Abu-nasr (May God prolong his life, increase his dignity, 
cause his breast to expand with joy, and double his 
reward ! for he is extoUed by the nobles of all quarters 
of the globe, and is an assemblage of all laudable 
qualities). 

COUPLET. 

When his kind care, protective, one defends. 
Pious his sins become, his f oemen, friends. 

To each one of the other servants and attendants a 
separate duty is assigned; such that if in the performance 
of it' they indulge in any negligence or sloth, they 
assuredly incur the liability of reproof, and expose 
themselves to rebuke ; all save this tribe of Darweshes 
[of whom SadI is one] from whom thanks are due for 
the benefits they receive from the great, and whom it 
behoves to recount the fair virtues [of their benefactors] 
and offer up prayers for their welfare:*® and the per- 

*' Ross here and in several places renders j^ Tdiair by 
<* charity." I cannot think it has this meaning in this place, 
where, if "ahns" were intended, ci^L*^ Tdmirat would, in 
my opinion, be used. 



PREFACE. 



17 



formance of such duties as these is better in absence 
than when present, for in the latter case it borders on 
ostentation, and in the former it is far from outward 
show and aUied to acceptance with God. 

VERSE. 

Straight grew the sky's crook'd back** from that fair 
hour, 

When the great mother. Time, produced a son like thee ; 
Signal that act of God's wise, gracious power, 

In forming one who should to all a blessing be ! 
Lasting his fortune, whose fair name survives ; 

For after him, his memory shall by fame endure ; 
To thee the praise of learned men nought gives ; 

The soul-entrancing cheek needs not the toilette's^ 
lure. 

AN APOLOGY FOR THE OMISSION OF SERVICE, AND THE 
CAUSE OF SELECTING SECLUSION. 

A faultiness and neglect which takes place in the 
assiduity of my service at the court of my lord arises 
£l-propos to what a body of the sages of Hind said of 
the excellence of Buzurchimihr.^^ At length they were 
unable to discover any defect in him but this, that in 
utterance he was slow (that is,^^ delayed long), so that 
his hearers were obliged to wait a long time until he 
could explain himself. Buzurchimihr heard this and 
said, " It is better to be anxious what I shall say, than 
to suffer remorse for what I have said." 

*^ However unpalateable to European taste, I am obliged to 
present this strange metaphor in all its marvellous monstrosity. 

'^ Metre compels me to sub^titute the temple for the priestess. 
Instead of ** toilette " it should be " tire-woman." 

^^ Buzurchimihr was the prime minister of l^ushirwan, king 
of Persia, in whose reign Muhammad was bom. 

** The word here rendered "slow" is, in the text, Arabic, 
and is there explained in Persian to mean "delayed long." 
In English the latter expression becomes superfluous. 

2 



1 8 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

DISTICHS. 

The well'taught orators,^ the men of age, 

First ponder well and then their thoughts declare : 
Waste not thy breath in thoughtless speech ; if sage 

Thy counsel, slowness will it nought impair. 
Reflect, then speak ; and let thy utterance cease 
Ere others say, " Enough ! " and bid thee " Peace ! " 
Men by the power of speech the brutes excel, 
The brutes surpass thee if thou speakest not well. 
And more especially in the presence of the Eye^ of 

Royalty (glorious be his victory !), which is the rallying 
point for the wise, and the centre where profound sages 
meet ; if I should display boldness in pursuing the con- 
versation I might be guilty of presumption, and should 
be producing my trumpery^ before his incomparable 
Excellency ; and a glass-bead were not worth a barley- 
corn in the jewellers' mart, and a lamp gives no light 
in the sim, and a lofty minaret shows low at the foot 
of mount Alwand.^ 

^ xiy^ J^ ^^J^J ^^ \d^ ' ^' Semelet connects the 
{JT J^' jplr-i huhanyn^ the ^^^j^J^parwwrddhy and translates 
it thus, " L'homme eloquent, instruit par un vieux maltre," 
which may well be admitted among the seventy-two meanings 
of each sentence of the divine S&di. 

** This word (jo^l) is in the plural, but the vazir alone is 
meant. The expression, **Eye of the king," is, as is well 
known, one of the titles of a vazir. 

** Here is said to be an sdlusion to the Kur'an, c. xii. v. 88. 

hizaatin mu%jdtiny " most excellent ! we have come with little 
money;" where the brothers of Joseph are addressing him 
when about to buy com. 

*• At eight or ten leagaes to the east of Tehran is the 
remarkable peak of Alwand, or Alburz, as the inhabitants 
of Tehran call it. It is covered with eternal snow, and, 
according to Olivier, sometimes emits smoke. 



PREFACE, 



19 



DISTICHS. 

He who exalts Ms neck with pride 

Is girt with foes on every side ; 

SadI lies prostrate, free from care : 

None of the fallen ere make war. 

Heflection first, speech last of all, 

The basement must precede the wall. 

True, that the art of making flowers I know ; 

But shall I try it where real flow'rets grow P 

A beauty I — ^but will my cheek look fair, 

When they with Canaan's glory ^^ me compare ? 

They said to the sage Lukman,^ " From whom didst 
thou learn wisdom?" He replied, "From the blind, 
who advance not their feet till they have tried the 
ground." Try the egress before you enter. 

HEMISTICH. 

Try first your powers, and then try a wife. 

" These lines require a little expansion, which I have given 
to them. SS,di says, that though he may have a reputation 
for learning, it would appear altogether contemptible at the 
Court of the vazTr, himself so wise, and surrounded by such 
a galaxy of sages ; just as a maker of artificial flowers would 
make himself ridiculous if he practised his art amid real flowers, 
or as oa ordinary beauty would forfeit all pretensions to 
loveliness if compared with Joseph, the beauty of Coaaan, 
whose charms, according to Musalman, were incomparable. 

^ Lukman, after whom the thirty-first chapter of the Kur'an 
is called, is by some reckoned among the Prophets, and called 
the conjsin of Job ; and by others, the grand-nephew of 
Abraham ; others say he was bom in the time of David, and 
lived to that of Jonah ; others, again, caU him an Ethiopian 
slave, hberated by his master for his fidelity. His fables 
and maxims are celebrated ia the East, and the Greeks probably 
borrowed their account of -^sop from his history. 



20 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

VERSE. 

Dauntless the cock in war, yet to what end 
Shall he with brazen- taloned hawks contend ? 
Capturing the mouse the cat doth lionly ; 
Gauged with the leopard but a mouse is she ! 

Nevertheless, in reliance on the liberal disposition of 
the great, who conceal the faults of the himible, and 
use no endeavour to disclose the defects of their inferiors, 
I have inserted in this book, in a concise way, a few 
narratives of rare adventures, and traditions, and tales, 
and verses, and manners of ancient kings, and I have 
expended some portion of precious life upon it. Such 
was my motive for composing the Gulistan. 

STANZA. 

This verse instructive shall remain when I, 
Scattered in dust, in several atoms lie ; 

In short, since in no mundane thing I see / 
The signs impressed of perpetuity. 
This picture shall my sole memorial be ; 
Perhaps hereafter, for this pious task. 
Some man of prayer for me too grace shall ask. 

Mature consideration as to the arrangement of the 
Book, ordering of the chapters, and conciseness, made 
me^ deem it expedient that this delicate Garden, and 
this densely wooded grove, should, like Paradise,^ be 
divided into eight chapters, in order that it may become 
the less likely to fatigue. 

^ M. Semelet's reading /♦J^J didam, is perhaps better than 
the one here adopted, in which .lii ^^U^l irmn-i nazar is made 
the nominative to iXJJ did. I confess I should like to insert 
J wa before J^stI ljd%, 

*° Here is an equivoque on the word c^Auyj bihishi, which 
means " Paradise," but with a little alteration becomes ^jl^JL^ 
ha-hasht, "in eight." The Musalman divide Paradise into 
eight regions. 



PREFACE. 21 

LIST OF THE CHAPTERS. 



CHAPTER 



I. On the Manners of Kings. 

II. On the Qualities of Darweshes. 

III. On the Excellence of Contentment. 

IV. On the Advantages of Taciturnity, 
V. On Love and Youth. 

VI. On Decrepitude and Old Age. 

VII. On the Effect of Education. 

VIII. On the Duties of Society. 

DATE OF THE BOOK. 

Six hundred six and fifty years had waned 
From the famed Flight ^^ ; then when no sorrow pained 
My heart, I sought these words, with truth impressed, 
To say, and thus have said : to God belongs the rest. 

•* The flight of Muhammad, the -^ra by which the Musalman 
reckon, took place on the 16th of July, 622. Consequently 
the date of the Gulistan is A.D. 1258. 



22 



CHAPTEE L 

ON THE MANNERS OF KINGS. 

Story I. 

I have heard of a king who made a sign to put a 
captive to death. The hapless one, in a state of despair, 
began in the dialect he spoke ^^ to abuse the monarch, 
and use opprobrious language; as they say, "Every 
one, who washes his hands of life, utters all he has in 
his heart." 

COUPLET. 

He that despairs, gives license to his tongue, 
As cats by dogs o^erpressed rusk madly on. 

COUPLET. 

The hand, when flight remains not, in despair 
Will grasp the point^ of the sharp scymitar. 

The King asked, " What does he say P " . One of the 
vazirs, who was of a good disposition,^ said, "0 my 
Lord ! he says that [^Paradise, whose breadth equalleth 
the heavens and the earth, is prepared for the godlt/l, who 
bridle their anger, and forgive men; for Ood loveth the 

^ Literally, "he had." So also in Gaelic, "I have no 
English," for "I speak no English." 

** M. Semelet translates -*» sar, by "la poignee," which 
appears less correct. S§,di says, '' Li despair the naked hand 
will seize the point of a sword held by a foe." Ross and 
Gladwin render -j sar by "edge," which is rather <^Uj zuhdh 
or 't_ -^ lab. 

•* Richardson's Dictionary very strangely omits this meaning 
of ,«asr* mahzar^ 



CHAPTER L STORY A 



23 



henejkenty^ The King had compassion upon him, and 
gave up the intention of [spilling] his blood. Another 
vazir, who was his rival, said, " It beseems not such as 
we are to speak aught but truth in the august presence 
of kings. This person reviled the king, and spoke un- 
becomingly.'* At this speech the King frowned and 
said, **That untruth of his is more acceptable to me than 
this truth which thou hast spoken; for that inclined®^ 
towards a good purpose, and this to malevolence; and 
the sages have said, * Well-intentioned falsehood is better 
than mischief-exciting truth.' " 

COUPLETS. 

Words which beguile thee, but thy heart make glad. 
Outvalue truth which makes thy temper sad. 
They by whose counsels kings are ruled, 'twere shame 
If good in all they said were not their aim. 

This maxim was inscribed over the vaulted entrance 
of Farldun's®^ palace. 

•• This is a quotation from the Kur'an, c. iii. v. 134; and 
it is very essential to note this, as the vazIr can hardly be said 
to have told a falsehood in putting a text enjoining mercy 
into the mouth of the captive; at least, there is a shade of 
difference between this and inventing something out of his 
own head. This very text is said to have been quoted to 
Hasan, grandson of Muhammad, when a slave threw something 
boiHng hot over him. At the first sentence, J^asan replied, 
"I am not angry"; at the second, ** I forgive you"; and at 
the conclusion, viz., *' God loveth the beneficent," he added, 
" Since it is so I give you your liberty and four hundred pieces 
of silver." — Vide Sale's Koran, p. 47, Note D. 

•• M. Semelet seems to think that ^9^ rUti is here used in 
an uncommon sense, but the literal translation is simply '^ its 
countenance was towards good," — an easy metaphor. 

*' Faridun was the seventh king of the first dynasty of 
Persian kings. He overcame the tyrant Zah^ak, and imprisoned 
liim in the mountain Damavend. 



24 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

DISTICHS. 

The world, my brother ! will abide with none. 

By the world's Maker let thy heart be won. 

Rely not, nor repose on this world's gain, 

For many a son like thee she has reared and slain. 

What matters, when the spirit seeks to fly. 

If on a throne or on bare earth we die ? 

Story II. 

One of the kings of Khurasan® beheld, in a dream, 
Sultan Mahmud^^ Sabuktagin, a hundred years after his 
death, when all his body had dissolved and become dust, 
save his eyes, which, as heretofore, moved in their 
sockets and saw. AU the sages were at a loss for the 
interpretation of this, except a darwesh, who made his 
obeisance, and said, "His eyes still retain their sight, 
because his kingdom is in the possession of others." 

VERSE. 

Full many a chief of glorious name 

Beneath the ground now buried lies. 
Yet not one token of his fame 

On earth's wide sxirface meets our eyes. 
That aged form of life bereft, 

"Which to earth's keeping they commit, 
The soil devours ; no bone is left, 

No trace remains to tell of it. 
The glorious name of Nushlrvan 

Lives in his deeds year after year. 

^ Khurasan, according to Richardson's Dictionary, is the 
ancient Bactria, lying to the north of the Oxus, but at present 
it is used of Afghanistan, from the Bolan to Herat, and the 
frontiers of Persia. 

*• Mahmud succeeded his father, Sabuktagin, on the throne 
of Ghazni, A.D. 997, and died after a reign of thirty-three 
years, and after he had conquered great part of Hindustan, 
and taken the cities of Dihli and Xanoj. 



CHAPTER L STORY III, 25 

Do good, my friend ! and look upon 

This life as an occasion won 
For acting well, ere yet we hear 

Of thee, that thy career is done. 



Story III. 

I have heard of a prince who was of low stature 
and mean appearance, while his other brothers were 
tall and handsome. One day, his father surveyed him 
with loathing and contempt. The son had penetration 
enough to discover [his feelings], and said, "0 my 
father! an intelligent dwarf is superior to an ignorant 
giant. Not every thing that is higher in stature is 
more valuable : ' The sheep is clean and the elephant 
unclean,* 

COUPLET. 

Least of earth* s mountain's is Sinai, yet all 
In worth and rank with God beneath it fall. 

STANZA. 

Hast thou heard how the lean sage wittily 
A bloated fool's presumption stilled P 

* The steed of Arab race, though slim he be. 
Transcends a stall with asses filled.' " 

His sire laughed, and the Pillars of the State approved, 
and his brothers were mortally offended. 

VERSE. 

While a man's say is yet unsaid, 
His weakness, Lrits. none descry ; 

Think not each waste's untenanted : 
A sleeping tiger there may lie. 

I have heard, that at that time a dangerous enemy to 
the King shewed himself. When the two armies en- 
countered, the first person who galloped forward on the 
field of battle was that young prince, exclaiming. 



26 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

STANZA* 

I'm not lie that, on the battle-day, my back will meet 

thy sight ; 
I'm one whose head thou'lt follow *nud the dust and 

gory fight. 
He must stake carelessly his blood who joins in war's 

grim strife ; 
Who flies in war risks carelessly his fellow-soldier's life. 

He said this, and rushed on the hostile array; after 
overthrowing several veteran warriors he came back. 
As soon as he presented himself to his father, he kissed 
the ground of obedience^ and said, 

STANZA. 

Thou who my stature didst with scorn survey. 
Think not that roughness marks the bold in war ; 

The slender courser in the battle-day 
Will the fat stall-fed ox outvalue far. 

They relate that the host of the enemy was numerous, 
and this side fewer. A body of the latter prepared to 
fly ; the young prince uttered a shout and said, " 
men ! exert yourselves, that ye may not be clothed in 
the dress of women." The horsemen were inspired by 
his words with increased ardour, and made a simultaneous 
charge. I have heard that on that day they obtained 
a victory over the enemy. The King kissed his head 
and his eyes and embraced him, and each day entertained 
a stronger regard for him until he made him his heir. 
His brothers envied him, and put poison in his food. 
His sister saw it from a window, and closed the casement 
sharply. The yoimg prince, by his acuteness, imderstood 
her meaning, and drew back his hand from the food, and 
said, " It is impossible that men of merit should perish, 
and those who have none should occupy their places." 

'® This expression is a very common one. It simply meaas, 
" kissed the ground obediently." 



CHAPTER /. STORY IV. 



«7 



COUPLET. 

What though the phoenix from the world take flight, 
'Neath the owl's shadow none wiU ere alight. 

They acquainted the father with this circumstance. He 
sent for the brothers and gave them a fitting reproof. 
Afterwards he assigned to each a suitable portion of his 
dominions, so that faction subsided and discord was ap- 
peased. In relation to this''^ they have said, that "Ten 
darweshes may sleep under one blanket, but one country 
cannot contain two kings." 

STANZA. 

The man of God with half his loaf content. 
To darweshes the remnant will present ; 
But though a king seven regions should subdue, 
He'll still another conquest keep in view. 

Story IV. 

A horde of Arabian robbers had fixed themselves on 
the summit of a mountain, and had stopped the passage 
of caravans, and the inhabitants of the coimtry were in 
terror of their ambuscades, and the forces of the Sultan 
were repulsed by them, because they had possessed them- 
selves of an inaccessible retreat in the crest of the moun- 
tain, and made it their refuge and place of abode. The 
governors of provinces in that direction took counsel as 
to the means of getting rid of the annoyance they 

'^ Gladwin leaves the \s^\ j\ o& tnjd, untranslated. M. 
Semelet translates it simply by "et." Ross inserts, "but the 
ferment was increased," as an explanation. Hence it appears 
to me that all the translators have missed the right meaning 
of the concluding passage, which I am of opinion is simply an 
explanation of how the discord subsided, viz. : because each 
brother had a separate kingdom allotted to him. To suppose, 
with Boss, that the discord increased, would give a singularly 
abrupt termination to the story. 



28 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

occasioned, saying,'^ "If tliis band maintain themselves 
any time in this fashion, resistance to them will become 
impossible/' 

DISTICHS. 

A single ann may now uptear 

A tree if lately planted there ; 

But if it for a time you leave, 

No engine could its roots upheave. 

A spade may the young rill restrain, 

Whose channel, swoUen [by storms and rain] 

The elephant attempts in vain. 

They came to the decision^ to depute a person to 
reconnoitre them: and these watched their opportimity 
until the robbers made a foray on a tribe and their 
hold was evacuated, when they despatched a small body 
of experienced veterans to conceal themselves in a defile 
of the mountain. At night, when the robbers returned, 
having accomplished their expedition, and brought back 
their spoil, they laid aside their arms and deposited their 
booty. The first enemy that attacked them was sleep.''^* 
As soon as a watch ''^^ of the night had passed — 

COUPLET. 

The solar orb sank down in night's thick gloom. 
As, in the fish-maw, Jonas found a tomb.*'^ 

" I think M. Semelet has done well in supplying i^ hih 
here, and should wish it to be supplied in my edition of the 
text. 

'' Literally, "the word was fixed on this," a Persianism 
which must be freely rendered. 

"'^ There should be a full stop at J^ hud^ and a comma at 
l::.^^^ ha-guzasht. M. Semelet' s punctuation is preferable 
to that of my edition, which is copied from Gladwin's. 

'* That is, at nine o'clock, since the night is reckoned from 
six p.m., and each watch is of three hours' duration. 

^' This is certainly a strange comparison. It seems to me 
a simile with the slenderest possible thread of similarity. 



A.; 



CHAPTER L STORY IV. 



29 



The valiant men leapt forth from their ambuscade 
and bound the hands of all of them, one after the other, 
behind their backs. In the morning they brought them 
to the palace of the king. He gave a sign to put them 
all to death. It happened that among them was a 
stripling, the fruit of whose youthful prime was but 
just ripening, and the bloom of the rose-garden of whose 
cheek had just expanded. One of the vazlrs kissed the 
foot of the king's throne, and bowed the face of inter- 
cession to the ground and said, "This child has not 
yet tasted the fruit of the garden of life, nor reaped 
enjoyment from the flower of his youth. I rely on the 
clemency and virtues of his Majesty, that he will oblige 
his slave by sparing his life." The King looked dis- 
pleased at these words, and his lofty understanding did 
not approve them, and he said, 

COUPLET. 

" The good in vain their rays will pour 
On those whose hearts are bad at core. 
T' instruct the base will fail at last, 
As walnuts on a dome you cast.''^ 

It is better to cut off their race and tribe, and more 
advisable to extirpate them root and branch;''® since, to 
extinguish a fire and to leave the embers, and to kill a 
serpent and preserve its young, are not the acts of 
wise men. 

STANZA. 

What though life's water from the clouds descend, 
Thou'lt ne'er pluck fruit from off the willow-bough ; 

Not on the base thy precious moments spend, 
Thou'lt ne'er taste sugar from the reed, I trow." 

'' If you throw walnuts on a dome they will fall down 
again, and perhaps on your own head ; such is the meaning 
of this strange, but frequently occurring simile. 

'® Literally, ** root and foundation," which corresponds to our 
expression as used in the text. 



30 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

The vazir heard these words, and, willing or not, 
assented to them, and extolled the excellence of the 
king's judgment and said, "What my lord (may Mb 
dominion he eternal! ) has been pleased to say is the 
essence of truth : for had he been reared in the bond 
of the society of those evil persons he would have become 
one of them. However, your slave is in hopes that he 
will receive his education in the society of good men, 
and will adopt the character of the wise, since he is yet 
but a child, and the rebellious and perverse habits of 
those bandits have not fixed themselves in his nature ; 
and in the traditions of the Prophet [it is said] " There 
is no person born hut assuredly he is hegotten [with a natural 
disposition] to the faith of Islam ; then his parents make 
a Jew of him, or a Christian, or a Magian. 

STANZA. 

Lot's wife consorted with the unjust, and she 
Quenched in her race the light of prophecy. 
And the cave- sleepers'''^ dog sometime remained 
With good men, and the rank of man attained." 

When he had thus spoken, a nimiber of the councillors 
of state united with him in intercession, so that the king 
abstained from shedding his blood and said, "I have 
spared his life, though I disapprove of it." 

QUATRAIN. 

Knowest thou what Zal to valiant Bustam said P 
Deem not thy f oeman weak, without resource ; 
Full many a rill, from tiny springlet fed, 
Sweeps off the camel in its onwan' course. 
In short, the vazTr took the youth to his house and 
reared him delicately, and appointed a learned preceptor 

" Por an account of the Seven Sleepers who fell asleep in 
a cave near Ephesus in the reign of the . Emperor Decins 
A.D. 253, and awoke A.D. 408, imder that of Theodosius 
the Younger, vide the Kur'an, c. 18, aad M. Semelet's notes 
on this passage of the Gulistan. 



CHAPTER L STORY V, 



31 



to instruct him, who taught him elegant address and 
quickness in repartee, and all the manners fit for the 
service of kings, so that he was viewed with approbation 
by his compeers. At length the vazir related somewhat 
of his abilities and good qualities to his Majesty the 
king, saying, " The instruction of the wise has produced 
an effect upon him, and has expelled from his disposition 
his former ignorance." The king smiled at these words 
and said, 

COUPLET. 

" The wolf's whelp will at last a wolf become. 
Though from his birth he finds with man a home." 

After this, two years passed away, and a set of dissolute 
fellows in the quarter where he lived joined themselves 
to him, and formed a league with him, so that at a 
favourable opportunity he slew the vazIr with his two 
sons, and carried off an immense booty, and took the 
place of his father in the robber's cave, and became an 
avowed rebel. They acquainted the king. The king 
seized the hand of amazement with his teeth,«> and said, 

VERSE. 

" Who can from faulty iron good swords frame P 

Teaching, Sage ! lends not the worthless worth. 
The rain, whose boimteous nature's still the same, 

Gives flowers in gardens, thorns in salt land birth. 
Salt ground will not the precious spikenard bear \ 

Waste not thereon the seed of thy emprise : 
Who benefits on evil men confer. 

Upon the good no less heap injuries." 

Story V. 

I saw at the gate of the palace of XJghlamish®^ the 
son of an officer endowed with intellect, quickness of 

^ Orientals represent surprise by biting the fore-finger. 

^^ TJghlamish was the son of the celebrated Tartar conqueror, 

Jangiz Khan, aud reigned towards the year 656 of the Hijrah. 



32 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

parts, understanding and sagacity beyond description. 
Even from the time of his childhood the signs of great- 
ness were found on his forehead, and the rays of lumi- 
nousness visible and distinct in his countenance, and 
many hearts were enamoured of him. 

COUPLET. 

And high above his head shone lustrously 
The star of wisdom and of majesty. 

In short, he became a favourite of the Sultan, for he 
possessed beauty of person and perfection of mind : and 
the sages have said, "Wealth consists in talent, not in 
goods ; greatness, in understanding, not in age." His 
compeers grew envious of him, and accused him of 
treason, and used fruitless endeavours to put him to 
death. 

HEMISTICH. 

While friends are true what can the foe effect P 

The king asked him, "What is the cause of their 
hostility towards you P " He replied, " I have satisfied 
all who are under the shadow of the royal dominion, 
except the envious, who cannot be contented, except by 
the waning of my good fortime. May the wealth and 
auspicious destiny of my lord remain perpetual ! " 

VERSE. 

This can I do — ^inflict distress on none ; 

Envy 's its own distress — ^what can I there P 
Perish, O envious one ! for thus alone 

Canst thou escape from thy self-nurtured care. 
The wretched long to witness the decay 

Of fortune's favours to the happier few : 
But, though the bat be visionless by day. 

Can we for this a fault or failing view 
In the Sim's foimt of light P 'T were better far 

A thousand of such eyes no vision knew. 
Than the bright radiance of the sun to mar. 



CHAPTER L STORY VI, 33 

Story VI. 

Tbey relate of one of the kings of Persia, that he had 
extended the hand of oppression upon the property of 
his subjects, and had entered on a course of tyranny 
and injustice. The people were reduced to extremity 
by the snares of his cruelty, and from the anguish of 
his tyranny took the road of exile. As the people 
diminished, the resources of the State were impaired, 
and the treasury remained empty, and enemies pressed 
him on every side. 

STANZA. 

He who in adversity would succour have. 

Let him be generous while he rests secure. 
Thou that reward' st him not, wilt lose thy slave, 

Though wearing now thy ring.®* Wouldst thou secure 
The stranger as thy slave, be to him kind ; 
And by thy courtesy enslave his mind. 

One day they read, in his presence, the book of the 
Shah-namah, in the part which relates to the decline of 
the empire of Zahhak, and the reign of Faridun. The 
vazir asked the king, saying, " Faridun possessed not 
treasure, territory, or troops ; in what manner was the 
kingdom secured in his favour?" He replied, "Just 
as you have heard; the people rallied roimd him from 
attachment to him, and gave him their support : he 
gained the kingdom." The vazir rejoined, " king ! 
since sovereignty is acquired by the people's resorting 
to one, why dost thou scatter the people from thee ? 
imless, indeed, thou dost not purpose to be a king." 

COUPLET. 

Since monarchs by their troops their States control, 
Cherish thy host, king ! with all thy soul. 

** I have not translated i/ij^ ha-ffush, "in the ear." The 

ring in the ear is the badge of servitude in the East. 

8 



34 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

The king asked, " What causes the soldieiy and the 
people to rally round youP" He replied, "A king 
must be just, that they may resort to him, and merciful, 
that they may sit secure under the shadow of his great- 
ness — ^and thou hast neither of these two quaKties." 

DISTICHS. 

Kingcraft yokes not with tyraony : 
The wolf cannot the shepherd be. 
Tyrants who on their people fall, 
Sap their own State's foimdation-wall. 

The coimsel of the faithful vazir suited not the king's 
temper. He ordered him to be boimd and sent him to 
prison. No long time had elapsed when the sons of 
the king's imcle rose in revolt, and arrayed an army 
against him, and demanded the kingdom of their father. 
Nimibers who had been driven to despair by his tyranny, 
and were dispersed, gathered round them and lent them 
their support, so that the kingdom passed from his hands. 

STANZA. 

The king who dares his subjects to oppress. 
In day of need wiU find his friend a fo^ 

A mighty one. Soothe, rather, and caress 
Thy people ; and in war-time thou wilt know 

No fear of foes ; for a just potentate 

The nation's self will be a host to guard the State, 

Story VII. 

A king was seated in a vessel with a Persian slave. 
The slave had never before beheld the sea, nor expe- 
rienced the inconvenience of a ship.®* He began to 

^^ M. Semelet explains this as meaning of '' sea-sickness ; " 
but I think the context shews it has a more general meaning. 
It is evident the vessel was floating quietly along, so that 
when the slave was thrown* in he was not swept away, but 
easily reached the rudder. 



CHAPTER /. STORY VII. 



35 



weep and bemoan himself, and a tremor pervaded Ms 
frame. In spite of their endeavours to soothe him, he 
would not be quieted. The comfort of the king was 
disturbed by him ; but they could not devise a remedy. 
In the ship there was a philosopher,®* who said, " If you 
command, I will silence him.'' The king answered, "It 
would be the greatest favour.'' The philosopher directed 
them to cast the slave into the sea. He underwent 
several submersions, and they then took him by the hair 
and dragged him towards the ship. He clung to the 
rudder of the vessel with both hands, and they then 
pulled him on board again. When he had come on 
board, he seated himself in a comer and kept quiet. 
The king approved, and asked, " What was the secret of 
this expedient P " The philosopher replied, " At first he 
had not tasted the agony of drowning, and knew not the 
value of the safety of a vessel. In the same manner a 
person who is overtaken by calamity learns to value 
a state of freedom from ill." ^ 

STANZA. 

Sated, thou wilt my barley-loaf repel. 

She whom I love ill-favoured seems to thee. 

To Eden's Hourls ^ Iraf would seem hell ; 
Hell's inmates ask — ^they'll call it heavenly 

COUPLET. 

Wide is the space 'twixt him who clasps his love. 
And him whose eyes watch for the door to move.®^ 

^ I think Eoss and Gladwin, as also M. Semelet, wrong in 
rendering >.X'^ hakim, ** a physician ; " to tally with which 

the two former translate <*::-^l^ afit/at, by "health.'* M. 
Semelet, on the contrary, very properly gives " incolumitas " 
as its equivalent. 

** For the Houris, vide Sale's Koran, p. 393 ; and for Iraf 
(or Purgatory), Sale, p. 111. 

" In expectation of seeing his loved one come in. 



36 CULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story VIII. 

They said to Hurmuz Tajdar,®' " What fault didst 
thou find in the vazirs of thy father that thou didst 
command them to be imprisoned P " He replied, " I dis- 
covered no fault in them; but I saw that they had a 
boundless fear of me in their hearts, and that they had 
not entire confidence in my promise. I feared that 
through dread of injury to themselves they might 
attempt my destruction ; wherefore I put into practice 
the maxim of the wise men who have said, 

STANZA. 

Thou who art wise, fear him who feareth thee. 
Though thou like him a hundred wouldst despise : 

Seest thou not, how in last extremity, 
The cat will lacerate the leopard's eyes P 

Hence, too, the snake the shepherd wounds ; for he 
Dreads the raised stone and down-crushed agonies." 

Story IX. 

One of the Arabian kings was sick in his old age, and 
the hope of surviving was cut ofil Suddenly a horse- 
man entered the portal, and brought good tidings, saying, 
" By the auspicious fortune of my lord we have taken 
such a castle, and the enemies are made prisoners, and 
the troops and ^peasantry in that quarter are entirely 
reduced to obedience." When the king heard this 
speech he heaved a cold sigh, and said, "These joyful 
tidings are not for me, but for my enemies ; that is, the 
heirs of my crown." 

^ Hummz Tajdar, or "the crown- wearer," was so called 
because, wishing to dispense justice on aU occasions himself, 
without the intervention of others between himself and his 
subjects, he continually wore the crown, to denote his readiness 
to discharge his kingly f imctions. He was the son of Nushlrvan, 
and his tutor, Buzurchimihr, has been already mentioned in 
the Preface. 



CHAPTER L STORY X. 37 



STANZA. 

In this fond hope, dear life, alas ! has waned : 

That my heart's wish might not be wished in vain : 

Hope, long delayed, is granted. Have I gained 
Aught P — Nay; Life spent returns not back again. 

STANZA. 

Death's hand has struck the signal-drum ; 

Eyes ! now obey your parting knell ! 
Hands, wrists, and arms, all members, come. 

And bid a mutual, long f areweU ! 
Hope's foe. Death, has me seized at last ; 

Once more, O friends ! before me move ; 
In folly has my time been past : 

May my regrets your warning prove ! 

Story X. 

In a certain year I was engaged in devotion at the 
tomb of the Prophet Yahiya,^ in the principal mosque 
of Damascus. It happened that one of the Arabian 
princes, who was notorious for his injustice, came as a 
pilgrim thither, performed his prayers, and asked [of 
God] what he stood in need of. 

COUPLET. 

The poor, the rich, alike must here adore : 
The wealthier they, their need is here the more. 

He then turned towards me and said, "On account of 
the generous character of darweshes, and the sincerity 
of their dealings, I ask you to give me the aid of your 
spirit, for I stand in dread of a powerful enemy." I 

^ St. John the Baptist, whose remains were said to be 
interred in a church at Damascus. After the conquest of Syria 
by the Musalman, this church was converted into a mosque, and 
called the mosque of the tribe of Ummiyah. 



38 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

replied, "Shew mercy ^ to thy weak subjects, that thou 
mayst not experience annoyance ®^ from a puissant foe." 

VERSE. 

With the strong arm and giant grasp His wrong 

To crush the feeble, unresisting throng. 

Who pities not the fallen, let him fear. 

Lest, if he fall, no friendly hand be near. 

Who sows ill actions and of blessing dreams, 

Fosters vain phantasies and idly schemes. 

TJnstop thy ears, thy people's wants relieve. 

If not, a day ^ shall come when all their rights receive. 

DISTICHS. 

All Adam's race are members of one frame ; 
Since all, at first, from the same essence came. 
When by hard fortune one limb is oppressed, 
The other members lose their wonted rest : 
If thou feel'st not for others' misery, 
A son of Adam is no name for thee. 

Story XI. 

A darwesh, whose prayers were accepted with God, 
made his appearance in Baghdad. They told this to 
Hajjaj-bin-Yufluf,^^ who sent for him, and said, '* Offer 
up a good prayer for me." The darwesh said, " God ! 
take away his life." " For God's sake ! " asked he, "what 
prayer is this?" He replied, "It is a good prayer for 
thee, and for all Musalman." 



•• There is here a rhyme in the words (j: ^as*^j rahmat^ and 
v_M,^^>^j zahmat, which camiot be preserved in English. 

•° That is, the day of resurrection. 

•* Haj jaj-bin-Yusuf was the Governor of Arabian Irak, imder 
the Khallfah Abd-ul-malik, A.H. 65. He was notorious for 
his oppression. 



39 



CHAPTER I, STORY XIIL 
DISTICHS* 

Oppressor ! troubler of the poor ! 
How soon shall this thy mart ^ be o'er ! 
What good will empire be to thee P 
Better thy death than tyranny. 

Stoky XII. 

An unjust king asked a religious man, "What sort 
of devotion is to be esteemed highest P " He replied, 
" For thee to sleep at noon,^^ in order that in this state 
thou mightest cease for an instant to oppress mankind." 

STANZA. 

A tyrant lay, his noontide slumber taking : 

Said I — 'Tis best this scourge should sleeping lie ; 

And he whose sleep is better than his waJdng, 
'Tis best for such an evil one to die." 

Story XIII. 

I have heard of a prince who had turned night into 
day, aad had drunk wine all^ night ; and, in the height 
of his intoxication, uttered this couplet, 

COUPLET. 

" Of all my bright and gladsome moments the gladdest 

is this one ; 
When of good or ill I reck not, and I harbour fear of 
none." 
A darwesh, entirely destitute of clothing, lay beneath 
his palace, outside, in the cold, and exclaimed, 

•* The termination of life is here, as often elsewhere, com- 
pared to the closing of a market. 

^ Eoss renders it, " to sleep till noon." If any one prefers 
this rendering I have nothing to say against it, except that 
perhaps Ij ta would be used in place of the izafat were it 
correct. The noontide-sleep is customary in hot climates, 



40 GULISIAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

CX)UPLET. 

" Thou with whom none may in success compare, 
Grant thou art griefless ; say, Have I no care P " 

The king was pleased with this address. He held out 
from the window a purse containing a thousand dinars, 
and said, " darwesh ! hold thy lap/* He replied, 
" Whence shall I get a lap, I who have not a garment P " 
The king's compassion for his wretched state increased ; 
he added to the purse a rich robe, which he sent out to 
him. The darwesh, in a short time, spent and squan- 
dered that simi of money, and came back. 

COUPLET. 

Money abides not in the palm of those who careless live,^* 
Nor patience in the lover's heart, nor water in the sieve. 

At a time when the king did not concern himself about 
him, they annoimced his state. He was displeased, and 
his coimtenance changed at this intelligence. And for 
this reason men of sagacity and experience have said, 
that it is requisite to beware of the violence and despotic 
temper of kings ; since for the most part their high 
thoughts are engaged with the arduous aflfairs of State, 
and they will not endure the vulgar throng. 

DISTICHS. 

Let him not hope kings' favours, who omits 
To watch the moment which his prayer befits. 
Till thou observest the just time for speech 
Do not by useless words thy cause impeach. 

The king said, " Drive away this impudent and prodigal 
mendicant who, in so short a time, has dissipated such 
a treasure, and does not know that the royal treasury is 
to supply morsels to the poor, not feasts to the fraternity 
of devils." 

•* "Wandering devotees, who have renounced the world and 
are, therefore, careless. 



CHAPTER I, STORY XIV. 



COUPLET. 



41 



The dolt, who in bright day sets up a camphor light, 
Soon thou wilt see his lamp devoid of oil at night. 

One of the vazirs, who was a man of prudence, said, 
"0 my lord I to such persons one ought to give an 
aUowaQce, by instalments, of what is just enough for 
their support, *that they may not become lavish in their 
expenses. But as to what thou commandest, namely, to 
treat him with violence, and to drive him away, it is 
not consonant with true generosity to make one expect 
favour and then to woimd his spirit with disappointment." 

COUPLET. 

Ope not thyself the door of greediness ; 
But roughly it to close beseems thee less. 

STANZA. 

None see the Hijaz pilgrims, faint with thirst, 
Crowd to the margin of the briny sea : 

Where'er the foimtains of sweet water burst 

Their way ; there men, and birds, and ants will be. 

Story XIV. 

One of the former kings showed remissness in protect- 
ing his dominions, and treated his army with severity. 
On the appearance of a powerful enemy, all turned their 
backs. 

COUPLETS. 

Soldiers, from whom the State withholds its gold, 
WiU from the scymitar their hands withhold. 
What valour in war's ranks will he display. 
Whose hand is empty on the reckoning day ? 

I had a friendship with one of those who had declined 
service. I reproached him and said, "He is base and 



«^^^l» 



42 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

unthankful, and vile and ungrateful, who, on a slight 
change of fortune, deserts his old master, and lays aside 
the obligations of favours received for years." He re- 
plied, "If I was to tell you [how matters stood] you 
would acquit me. Suppose my horse had no barley, and 
my saddle-cloth was in pawn ; and one cannot valiantly 
risk one's life for a Sultan who is miserly to his soldiers." 

COUPLET. 

Give thy troops gold that for thee they may die ; 
Else they'll go seek a better destiny* 

COUPLET. 

The well-fed warrior tcill with ardour fight ; 
The starved will he as ardent in his flight. 

Story XV. 

One of the vazirs had been dismissed from office, and 
had entered the community of darweshes, and the blessed 
influence of their society took effect upon him, and his 
peace of mind was restored to him. The king's heart 
became again reconciled to him, and he offered him 
employment. The vazir declined it, and said, " Dis- 
charge is better than charge." 

quatrain. 

Those who in safety's quiet nook repose 

Have stopped the t^eth of dogs and tongues of men ; 
Far from the slander and the reach of foes, 

They tear their paper and destroy their pen. 

The king said, " It is most certain that I have need of 
a man of consimmiate wisdom, who may be suitable for 
the coimcils of the State." He replied, "The sign of a 
man of consummate wisdom is not to engage in such 
matters." 



CHAPTER L STORY XV, 43 

COUPLET. 

The Huma ^ is for this of birds the king : 
It feeds on bones and hurts no living thing. 

APOLOGUE. 

They said to a lynx,®^ " How didst thou come to 
choose service in attending on the lion?" He replied, 
*' Because I feed on the remains of his quarry, and pass 
my life in security from the malice of my enemies 
under the shelter of the awe which he inspires." They 
rejoined, "Now that thou hast come under the shadow 
of his protection, and avowest thy thankfulness for his 
favours ; why dost thou not approach nearer, that he may 
include thee in the circle of his especial favourites, and 
reckon thee among his devoted adherents P " He replied, 
" I am not so secure from his violence." 

COUPLET. 

Though for a hundred years the Guebre feeds his flame. 
Did he once fall therein, 'twould feed on him the same. 

Sometimes it happens that the counsellor of his majesty 
the Sultan is rewarded with gold, and at another time, 
it may be that he loses his head ; and the sages have 
said, " You ought to be on your guard against the 
changeableness of the temper of kings ; for, sometimes 
they are displeased at a respectful salutation, and at 
other times they bestow dresses of honour in return for 
abuse : " and they have observed that, " Great facetious- 

•* The Huma is the PhcBnix ; or, as D'Herbelot tells us, 
a sort of eagle which feeds on bones, and is therefore called 
by the Persians Ustukhwan Kh'ur, the Ossifrage. This bird, 
from its not injuring other animals, is thought of happy 
augury, and from its name is derived the Persian adjective 
jj^Ujb humayun^ ** auspicious." 

^ The other translators avoid rendering this word, and call 
it the Siyah Gush. The literal meaning is, " black ear." 



44 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

ness is an accomplislimeiit in courtiers; but a fault in 



wise men." 



COITPLET. 

To keep thy place and dignity be thine ; 
To courtiers wit and pleasantry resign. 

Story XVI. 

One of my companions came to me with complaints 
of his ill-fortune, saying, "I have but little means of 
subsistence, and a large family, and I cannot support 
the burthen of poverty; it has frequently entered my 
head that I would go to another country, in order that, 
live how I may, no one may know of my welfare or the 
reverse. 

COUPLET. 

Full many a starving wight has slept ^ unknown ; 
Full many a spirit fled that none bemoan. 

Again, I am in dread of the rejoicing of my enemies, 
lest they should laugh scoffingly at me behind my back, 
and impute my exertions in behalf of my family to a 
want of humanity, and say, 

STANZA. 

See now, that wretch devoid of shame ! for him 
Fair fortune's face will smile not, nor has smiled ; 

Himself he pampers in each selfish whim. 

And leaves his hardships to his wife and child. 

And I know something, as you are aware, of the 
science of accounts ; if by your interest a means [of 
subsistence] could be afforded me, which might put me 
at ease, I should not be able to express my gratitude 
sufficiently to the end of my life." I replied, "0 my 
friend ! the king's service has two sides to it,— hope of 
a livelihood, and terror for one's life ; and it is contrary 

^ Here used for " died." 






CHAPTER I. STORY XVL 45 

to the opinion of the wise, through such a hope to expose 
oneself to such a fear. 

STANZA. 

None in the poor man's hut demand 
Tax on his garden or his land. 
Be thou content with toil and woe, 
Or with thy entrails feed the crow." 

He replied, "These words that thou hast spoken do 
not apply to my case, nor hast thou returned an answer 
to my question. Hast thou not heard what they have 
said : * that the hand of every one who chooses to act 
dishonestly trembles in rendering the account * P '* 

COUPLET. 

God favours those who follow the right way. 
From a straight road I ne'er saw mortal stray. 

"And the sages have said, 'Four kinds of persons are 
in deadly fear of four others : the brigand of the Sultan, 
and the thief of the watchman, and the adulterer of the 
informer, and the harlot of the superintendent of police ; ' 
and what fear have those of the settling, whose accounts 
are clear P " 

STANZA. 

Wouldst thou confine thy rival's power to harm 
Thee at discharge P then while thy trust remains. 

Be not too free ; none shall thee then alarm. 

'Tis the soiled raiment which, to cleanse from stains. 
Is struck on stones and asks the washer's pains. 

I answered, "Applicable to thy case is the story of that 
fox which people saw running away in violent trepida- 
tion.^ Some one said to him, 'What calamity has 
happened to cause thee so much alarm P ' He replied, ' I 
have heard they are going to impress the camel.' They 
rejoined, ' Shatter-brain ! what connection has a camel 
with thee, and what resemblance hast thou to it P ' He 

•® Literally, " falling and rising." 






46 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

answered, * Peace ! for if the envious should, to serve 
their own ends, say, " This is a camel," and I should be 
taken, who would care about my release so as to inquire 
into my condition? and before the antidote is brought 
from Irak, the person who is bitten by the snake may 
be dead/ ^ And in the same way thou possessest merit, 
and good faith, and piety, and uprightness ; but the 
envious are in ambush, and the accusers are lurking in 
comers. If they should misrepresent thy fair qualities, 
and thou shouldest incur the king's displeasure and fall 
into disgrace, who would have power, in that situation 
of affairs, to speak for thee ? I look upon it as thy best 
course to secure the kingdom of contentment, and to 
abandon the idea of preferment, since the wise have said, 

COUPLET. 

- Upon the sea 'tis true is boundless gain : 
Wouldst thou be safe, upon the shore remain.' " 

When my friend heard these words he was displeased, 
and his countenance was overcast, and he began to utter 
words which bore marks of his vexation, saying, " What 
judgment, and profit, and understandings and knowledge 
is this P and the saying of the sages has turned out 
correct, in that they have said, ' Those are useful friends 
who continue so when we are in prison ; for at our table 
all our enemies appear friends.' 

STANZA. 

Think not thy friend one who in fortune's hour 
Boasts of his friendship and fraternity. 

Him I caU friend who suiis up aU his power 
To aid thee in distress and misery." 

^ The ^3 tiryoih is an antidote against poison. Some 
think it is treacle ; and others the bezoar-stone. Others would 
derive it from drjp "a noxious beast," and aK€0/iai **to heal." 
This sentence is a proverb in common use. 



CHAPTER I, STORY XVI, 47 

I saw that he was troubled, and that my advice was taken 
in bad part. I went to the president of finance/^^ and, 
in accordance with our former intimacy, I told him the 
case; in consequence of which he appointed my friend 
to some trifling office. Some time passed away ; they 
saw the amenity of his disposition, and approved his 
excellent judgment* His afiairs prospered, and he was 
appointed to a superior post; and in the same manner 
the star of his prosperity continued to ascend until he 
reached the summit of his desires, and became a confi- 
dential servant of his Majesty the Sultan, and the 
pointed-at hy merCs fingers, and one in whom the ministers 
of State placed their confidence, I rejoiced at his secure 
position and said, 

COUPLET. 

Have no doubts because of trouble nor be thou dis- 

, comfited ; 
For the water of life's fountain ^^^ springeth from a 
gloomy bed. 

COUPLET. 

Ah ! ye brothers of misfortune ! be not ye tcith grief 

oppressed, 
Many are the secret mercies which with the AlUbounteous 

rest, 

COUPLET, 

Sit not sad because that Time a fitful aspect weareth ; 
Patience is most bitter, yet most sweet the fruit it 
beareth. 

^^ loV.*^ (?2w?a» may, as M. Semelet remarks, have several 
meanings ; but the one evidently intended here is what I have 
given ; for S§.di's friend, we are told, had a talent for accounts. 

101 Muhammadans believe in a fountain of life, to taste one 
drop of which bestows immortality. They say that -.ass. 
Khizr, or Elias, who, they suppose, was the general of the 
first Alexander, discovered this fountain, and drank of it, and 
hence he can never die. 



f 



48 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN". 

During this interval I happened to accompany a number 
of my friends on a journey to Hijaz.^^ When I re- 
turned from the pilgrimage to Makkah he came out 
two stages to meet me. I saw that his outward appear- 
ance was one of distress, aud that he wore the garb of 
a darwesh. I said, "What is thy condition?" He 
replied, "Just as thou saidst: a party became enyious 
of me, and accused me of disloyal conduct ; and the king 
did not deign to inquire minutely into the explanation 
of the circumstances ; and my former companions, and 
even my sincere friends, forbore to utter the truth, and 
forgot tiieir long intimacy. 

STANZA. 

When one has fallen from high heaven's decree, 
The banded world will trample on his head ; 

Then fawn and fold their hands respectfully, 
When they behold his steps by fortune led. • 

In short, I was subjected to all kinds of tortures till 
within this week that the good tidings of the safety of 
the pflgrimsio3 arrived, when they granted me release 
from grievous durance, with the confiscation of my 
hereditary estate." I said, " At that time thou wouldest 
not receive my suggestion, that the service of the king 
is like a sea- voyage, at once profitable and fraught with 
peril ; where thou either wilt acquire a treasure, or 
perish amid the biUows. 

COITPLET. 

Or with both hands the merchant shall one day embrace 

the gold ; 
Or by the waves his lifeless form shall on the strand be 

rolled." 

I did not think it right to lacerate his mental wounds 

^^ Arabia Petnea. 

^^ The pilgrims to Makkah, 



CHAPTER I. STORY XVIL 



49 



further, or to sprinUe them with salt. I confined myself 
to these two couplets and said, 

STANZA. 

" Kjiewest thou not that thou wouldst see the chains upon 
thy feet, 
When a deaf ear thou tumedst on the counsels of the 
wise? 
If the torture of the sting thou canst not with courage 
meet, 
Place not thy finger in the hole .where the sullen 
scorpion lies." 

Story XVII. 

Certain persons were associates of mine, whose external 
conduct was adorned with rectitude. A great personage 
entertained a strong opinion in their favour, and had 
settled a pension upon them. But one of them did an 
act which was unbecoming the character of a darwesh. 
The favour of that person was estranged, and their 
market was depreciated.^^ I wished to set my com- 
panions free as regarded their allowance, and resolved to 
wait on their patron. The porter would not suflfer me 
to enter, and treated me with insolence. I excused him, 
in accordance with what they have said, 

STANZA. 

" To door of king, or minister, or peer, 
Draw thou not nigh unless with patrons girt ; 

For if a poor man at the gate appear. 

Warders his collar seize, and dogs his skirt." 

As soon as the favourite attendants of that great man 
were informed of my condition, they brought me in 
with respect, and assigned me a place of distinction. 
However, I submissively seated myself lower, and said, 

^^ That is, their supplies were cut off. 



50 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 



COUPLET, 



" Permit me, a slave of low degree, 
To sit among those who wait on thee. 



9i 



He replied, "My God! my God! what room is there 
for this speech ? " 

COUPLET, 

What though my head and eyelids thou shouldst press, 
I'd bear thy love-airs for thy loveliness. 

In short, I seated myself, and conversed on all subjects, 
till the circumstance of my friends' disgrace was intro- 
duced. I said, 

STANZA. 

" What did the Lord of past munificence 

See in his servants that he deemed them vile ? 

God's rule is boundless, and, with love immense. 

He notes our sins, but us sustains meanwhile." 

These words were approved by the prince, and he ordered 
that they should make ready the means of maintenance 
for my friends, according to the former custom, and that 
they should make up to them the supplies which they 
would have received during the time their allowance was 
stopped. I returned thanks for this favour, and kissed 
the ground of obedience, and asked pardon for my bold- 
ness ; and as I was departing I said these words, 

STANZA. 

" The Kabah^^ is the place of answered prayer ; 

Therefore, from many a league the pilgrim throngs 
To view its fane ; from distant lands repair 

The hurrying crowds. Thus, too, to thee belongs 
Patience, with supplicants like me to bear ; 

For none cast stones at trees save fruit be there." 



105 



The temple at Makkah. 



CHAPTER L STORY XVm. 51 



Story XVIII. 

A prince inherited from his father an immense treasure. 
He opened the hand of munificence, and did justice to 
his generous disposition, and lavished on his soldiers and 
subjects incalculable sums. 

STANZA. 

The aloes-tray, from which no fragrance came, 

If placed on fire, its inodorous state 
Will change, more sweet than ambergris. So fame, 

Thou for thyself by generous deeds create ; 

The unsown seed wiU never germinate. 

One of his courtiers, who lacked discretion, began to 
admonish him, saying, " Former monarchs acquired this 
treasure by their exertions, and stored it up for a wise 
purpose. Hold back thy hand from this procedure, for 
emergencies are before thee and foes behind. It must 
not be that in time of need thou shouldst fail. 

STANZA. 

Expend thy treasure for thy people's sake. 

The share of each^^^ would be a single grain ; ^^ 

Rather from each a grain of silver take. 

And thou wilt thus each day a treasure gain." 

The prince frowned at these words, which were not in 
imison with his sentiments, and said, " God (may He be 
honoured and glorified!) has made me sovereign of this 
realm, that I may gratify my own wants and be liberal 
to others. I am not a sentinel to keep guard over [what 
I have]. 

^^ In the original, '* each father of a family." 
^^' A grain of rice. 



52 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDENS 

COUPLET. 

Karun ^^ with forty treasures was of life bereft ; 
But JSTiisliirwaii's still ruling in the fame he left." 

Story XIX. 

They relate that once, during a hunting expedition, 
they were preparing for Nushlrwan the Just some game, 
as roast meat. There was no salt ; and they despatched 
a slave to a village to bring some. Niishirwan said, 
" Pay for the salt you take, in order that it may not 
become a custom, and the village be ruined." They said, 
" What harm will this little quantity do ?" He replied, 
"The origin of injustice in the world was at the first 
small, and every one that came added to it, until it 
reached this magnitude." 

STANZA. 

If but one apple from the peasant's field ^^ 
The king should eat, his men uproot the tree ; 

And does the Sultan but his sanction yield 
T' extort five eggs — ^his followers will see 
Cause with a thousand pullets to make free."® 

COUPLET. 

Not always will the wicked tyrant live ; 
The curse upon him will for aye survive. 

^^ Karun is said by Oriental writers to have been the first 
cousiD and brother-in-law of Moses, whose sister he is said to 
have married. Moses taught him alchemy, by which he 
acquired vast riches ; but, being called upon by Moses to pay 
a fortieth for religious purposes, he refused, and endeavoured 
to suborn false evidence against the lawgiver, who, therefore, 
caused him to be swallowed up by the earth. 

*°® In the original the word is cb lagk^ "garden." 

"® In the original, " put on the spit." 



CHAPTER I. STORY XX, 53 

Story XX.. 

I have heard of a revenue-collector who was ruining 
the peasantry in order to fill the treasury of the Sultan, 
in ignorance of that saying of the wise, which they have 
uttered: "Whosoever afficts the creatures of the Most 
High God in order to win the regard of a creature, 
the Most High God will raise those same creatures 
against him to destroy him utterly." 

COUPLET. 

Flames cannot with such speed wild rue consume, 
As tyrants perish by the wronged heart's fume.^^^ 

POINTED ILLUSTRATION. 

They say that among all animals the lion is chief, and 
the ass lowest ; and yet the wise are agreed that an ass 
that bears burdens is better than a lion that tears men. 

DISTICHS. 

True, the poor ass is dull ; but then 
For carrying loads 'tis dear to men. 
The carrier ox, the patient ass, 
Man's tyrant, cruel man surpass. 

Some of his misdeeds became known to the king,/ 
who tortured him on the rack, and put him to death, 
with a variety of torments. 

STANZA. 

The Sultan's praise thou canst not gain 
Till thou canst win his people's heart : 

Wouldst thou God's pardoning grace obtain ? 
Then to his creatures good impart. 

One of those who had been oppressed by him passed 
near him, and looked on his agonies, and said, 

"^ I have advisedly used this expression (though it maketf 
but indijfferent poetry), as it is the exact equivalent to the 
Persian J J J«J dadni dil. Boss has a ridiculous mistake here, 
for which see preface to this Translation. 



7 



54 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

" Not every one who with strong arm bears sway, 
Can boast of his extortions in the end ; 
To swallow the rough bone thou mayst some way 
Devise ; but once permit it to descend 
Down to the navel, 'twill thy belly rend." 

Story XXI. 

« 

They relate that an oppressor smote a pious man on 
the head with a stone. The darwesh had not power to 
retaliate ; but he kept the stone carefully beside him 
until a season when the king was wroth with that 
officer,"^ and confined him in a pit. The darwesh came 
and smote him on the head with that stone. He said, 
"Who art thou? and why hast thou struck me on the 
head with the stone?" The darwesh replied, "I am 
such a one, and this stone is the same which, on such 
a day, thou didst cast at me." The other rejoined, 
" Where hast thou been this long while P " The 
darwesh answered, " I was awed by thy rank ; now 
that I behold thee in this dungeon I took advantage 
of the opportunity: as the wise have said, 

DISTICHS. 

* Seest thou that fortune crowns the imworthy P — ^then 
Choose thou submission too, with wiser men."' 

'^ Boss makes a curious mistake here, which is adverted 
to in the preface to this Translation, q,v. M. Semelet prefers 
reading, instead of lsJJ^ u'^ ^^ ^^ lashkaflf jji bar t/, 
but as it occurs a few lines before in the precedmg story, 
and in a similar description, I should retain it. 

*" M. Semelet rightly observes that there is an ellipse 
here, which I have supplied by the words *' Choose thou,'' 
and a sHght modification of the sense of the second line. 



CHAPTER I. STORY XXIL 55 

Hast thou not sharp and rending claws ? then yield— 
For so 'tis best — ^to beasts, the battle-field. 
He that has grappled with a hand of steel 
Will, in his silver ^^* arm, the anguish feel : 
Wait thou tiU fortune shaU his arm restrain ; 
Then, at thy will, thou mayst thy foeman brain/ " 

Story XXIL 

A certain king had a horrible disease, to repeat a 
description of which would not be agreeable. A body 
of Greek physicians unanimously decided that there was 
no remedy for the pain except the gall of a man possessed 
of certain qualities. The king ordered search to be made 
for him. They found a peasant-boy with the qualities 
which the physicians had mentioned. The king sent for 
hid father and mother, and, by immense presents, made 
them content; and the Kazi gave his decision that 
it was lawful to shed the blood of one of the subjects 
to save the king's life. The executioner prepared to put 
him to death. The boy looked up to heaven and smiled. 
The king asked, " In this condition what place is there 
for laughter?" The boy replied, "Fathers and mothers 
are wont to caress their offspring, and complaints are 
carried before the KazT, and justice is sought from kings; 
yet now my father and mother have, for the sake of 
worldly trifles, delivered me over to death, and the 
KazT has given his sentence for my execution, and the 
Sultan looks for his own recovery in my destruction ; 
save God Most High I have none to protect me. 

COUPLET. 

Where shall I from thy hand for succour flee ? 
'Gainst thine own power I'll justice seek from thee." 

The king's heart was touched by these words ; he wept, 

"* ^jfA>^ simin, " silvery," is often used to signify " delicate," 
when applied to the human form. 



56 GUUSTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

and said, " It is better for me to perish than to shed 
innocent blood." He kissed his head and eyes, embraced 
him, bestowed on him abundant presents, and set him 
free. They say, too, that the king recovered that same 
week. 

STANZA. 

Just thus that couplet I recall, as said. 

On the Nile's bank, he of the elephant : 
' Wouldst thou know what the ant feels 'neath thy tread ? 

Think if on thee my beast its foot should plant ! ' 

Story XXIII. 

One of the slaves of Amriilais^^^ had run away. Some 
persons went in pursuit of him, and brought him back. 
The vazlr bore him a grudge. He gave a sign to put 
him to death, that the other slaves might be deterred 
from acting similarly. The slave touched the ground 
with his head before Amru, and said, 

COUPLET. 

" Whatever befalls me is most just, if thou think'st fit : 
Command is thine ; why should thy slave complain of it ? 

However, inasmuch as I have been reared by the bounty 
of thy family, I do not wish that in the resurrection 
thou shouldst be made to answer for my blood. If, 
then, thou desirest to put thy slave to death, at least 
do so in conformity with the law, that thou mayst not 
be called to account at the resurrection." The king 
asked, "How am I to interpret the law?" He replied, 
" Grant me permission to slay the vazlr, after which, in 
retaliation for his death, thou mayst order me to be 
executed." The king laughed, and said to the vazlr, 
"What dost thou advise?" He answered, "Sire! for 
the sake of the tomb of thy father, set free this rascal, 

"* The second Sultan of the dynasty of the Saffarides, who 
reigned in Fars, A.H. 267. 



CHAPTER L STORY XXIV, 57 

that he may not plunge me also into misfortune. The 
fault is mine for slighting that saying of the wise, 
which they have thus delivered: 

STANZA. 

^ When with a practised slinger thou wouldst fight, 

Thou by thy folly thine own head wilt break : 
Ere 'gainst thy foe thine arrow wings its flight. 
See thou beyond his range position take.' " 

Story XXIV. 
A ,king of Zuzan ^^® had a minister ^^^ of a beneficent 
disposition, and gracious presence, who was courteous to 
all, when in their company, and spoke well of them 
behind their backs. It happened that he did something 
which was disapproved in the sight of the king; who 
ordered him to be amerced and punished. The officers 
of the monarch were sensible of his former kindnesses, 
and pledged to requite them. Wherefore, while he was 
under their custody, they treated him with courtesy and 
attention, and forbore to inflict on him harshness or 
reproach. 

STANZA. 

Wouldst thou with foes have peace ? whenever then 

Thy enemy thee slanders absent, thou 
To his face applaud him. Since evil men 

Must"® speak, and thou lov'st not their gall; fill now 
Their mouths with sweets ; thus them to speak allow. 

"• Ross strangely translates this. "King Zuzan;" on what 
ground I am at a loss to conjecture. I concur with M. Semelet, 
Gladwin, and Gentius, in regarding ^J^j Zu%(m as the name 
of a city, either iu Khurasan, between Hirat and Nishapur, or 
iQ Khuzistan, iu which case it would be the capital of the 
Susiana of the Greeks. 

"^ We may so render ^\^ Tditpajah^ as is evident from 
the context. Perhaps, however, it may mean "eunuch." 

"® Instead of j:>^\ ^jsr» suMim-i dMir, I am clearly of 



HP 



\ 






/ 



58 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

He acquitted himself of a portion of that which 
furnished matter for the king's orders^" respecting him, 
and remained in prison for the rest. One of the neigh- 
bouring princes sent a secret message to him to the 
following effect : " The worth of such excellence [as 
thine] has not been appreciated by the sovereigns of those 
parts ; nay, it has been rewarded with disgrace. If the 
precious mind of such a one (may God prosper him at the 
last !) should incline towards us, the utmost endeavours 
will be used to show him respect ; for the nobles of this 
country will rejoice to see him ; and await an answer to 
this letter.'' When the minister was acquainted with the 
purport of the letter, he was alarmed at his danger, lest, 
if it should become known, some disastrous results might 
take place. He immediately wrote a short answer, as he 
thought advisable, on the back of the letter, and sent it 
off. One of the king's attendants was apprised of this 
circumstance, and informed the king of it, saying, " Such 
a one, whom thou commandedst to be imprisoned, holds 
a correspondence with the neighbouring princes." The 
king was incensed, and ordered inquiry to be made 
into the matter. They seized the courier, and read his 
despatches. These were written to this effect: "The 
favourable opinion of your Highnesses exceeds your 
servant's merits, and it is impossible for him to accept 
the offer which you have condescended to make, inas- 
much as he has been nurtured by the fostering care of 
this royal house ; and, for a slight withdrawal of favour. 



opinion that we ought to read jsLl jji*^ mJchan alchir^ and 
render the words as above. "Why should the "last word" 
be the only one that needs sweetening? 

*" Several passages, among which this is one, prove that 
the meaning ** reproof," "censure," ought to be admitted 
into the dictionaries under the word Cy^UarL kht(dh. 



CHAPTER I. STORY XXV, 



59 



he cannot act ungratefully towards his benefactor : since 
they have said^ 

COUPLET. 

' He whose unceasing favours are bestowed on thee, • 
Excuse his life's sole act of tyranny.' " 

The king was pleased with his gratitude. He bestowed 
on him rewards, and a dress of honour, and asked his 
forgiveness, saying, " I have committed a mistake, and I 
have made thee suffer though innocent." He replied, 
" Sire ! your slave sees no fault in you in this matter ; 
but the decree of God Most High was so that evil should 
bef al this slave ; wherefore it is better it should come 
from your hand, since you possess the claim of former 
benefits conferred upon him, and of innumerable kind- 
nesses : and the sages have said, 

DISTICHS. 

' Art thou by creatures injured ? — do not grieve ; 
None joy or pain from creatures e'er receive. 
Know that by God both friends and foes are given 
Yes ! for the hearts of both are swayed by Heaven. 
What though the arrows from the bowstring fly. 
The wise well know the archer's agency.' " 

Story XXV. 

One of the Arabian kings commanded the officers of 
his exchequer to double the allowance of a certain person, 
whatever it might be, saying, "He is regular in atten- 
dance at court, and ready at command ; while the other 
servants are all engaged in amusements, and neglect 
their duty." A wise person heard it, and said, " The ele- 
vation of the different ranks of creatures in the court of 
God (may He be honoured and glorified!) is analogous 
to this." 



6o GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

VERSE. 

If for two momings one attends the king, 
Doubtless the third a favouring glance wiU bring : 
So in God's court ; who worship truly there 
Hope to be not excluded in despair. 

DISTICHS. 

Greatness consists in bowing to God's will ; 
Rebellion proves thee bafiSled, outcast still. 
Who bears impressed the tokens of the just, 
Will place his head submissive in the dust. 

* 

Story XXVI. 

They relate of an oppressor that he purchased fire- wood 
of poor men by force and gave it to the rich gratuitously.^^ 
A devout person passed by him and said, 

CJOUPLET. 

" Art thou a serpent that all travellers stings P 
Or owl, that where it lights, destruction brings ? 

STANZA. 

Grant that thy violence may with us prevail. 
With the all-seeing God 'twill surely fail. 
Beware, lest earth's much injured sons be driven 
To raise 'gainst thee their suppliant voice to heaven." 

The tyrant was wroth at these words, and frowned, and 
heeded him not, imtil one night when fire spread from the 
kitchen to the stack of wood, and consumed all his 
property, and from a soft bed removed him to glowing 
ashes. It happened that the same devout person passed 
by. He heard him say to his friends, " I know not 

'^ So I feel bound to render this most obscure sentence, in 
which I follow Gladwin. M. Semelet and Boss translate it 
differently, but I believe on no other authority than their 
own conjectures. As ^)o ^ hi ta/rh is " rude," so -.JIsJ ha 

far^ may be " graciously." 



CHAPTER L STORY XXVII. 6i 

whence this fire broke out in my house/' He replied, 
" From the smoke ^^^ of the hearts of the poor." 

STANZA. 

Beware of the sigh of the wounded heart, 
For the secret sore you'll too late discern ; 

Grief, if thou canst, to no bosom impart. 
For the sigh of grief wiU a world o'ertum, 

MAXIM. 

On the crown of king Kaikhusrau was written, 

STANZA. 

How long shall men my buried dust tread down P 
Through many a lengthening year and distant day. 

From hand to hand to me descends this crown. 
To others so, it soon will pass away. 

Story XXVII. 

A person had reached perfection in the art of wrestling. 
He knew three hundred and sixty precious sleights in 
this art, and every day he wrestled with a different 
device. However, his heart was inclined towards the 
beauty of one of his pupils. He taught him three 
hundred and fifty-nine throws, all he knew save one, 
the teaching of which he deferred. The youth was 
perfect in skill and strength, and no one could with- 
stand him, tUl he at length boasted before the Sultan 
that he allowed the superiority of his master over him 
only out of respect to his years, and what was due to 
him as an instructor, and that but for that he was not 
inferior in strength, and on a par with him in skill. 
The king was displeased at his breach of respect, and 
he commanded them to wrestle. A vast arena was 
selected. The great nobles and ministers of the king 
attended. The youth entered, like a furious elephant, 

»i That is, ''from their sighs." 



62 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

with a shock that had his adversary been a mountain of 
iron would have uptom it from its base. The master 
perceived that the yoimg man was his superior in 
strength. He fastened on him with that curious grip 
which he had kept concealed from him. The youth 
knew not how to foil it. The preceptor lifted him 
with both hands from the ground, and raised him above 
his head, and dashed him on the groimd. A shout 
of applause arose from the multitude. The king com- 
manded them to bestow a robe of honour and reward 
on the master, and heaped reproaches on the youth, 
saying, " Thou hast presimied to encounter him who 
educated thee, and thou hast failed." He replied, 
"Sire! my master overcame me, not by strength or 
power, but a small point was left in the art of wrestling 
which he withheld from me ; and by this trifle he has 
to-day gotten the victory over me.*' The preceptor 
said, "I reserved it for such a day as this; for the 
sages have said, ' Give not thy friend so much power 
that if one day he should become a foe, thou mayst not 
be able to resist him.' Hast thou not heard what once 
was said by one who had suffered wrong from a pupil 
of his own P 

STANZA. 

' On earth there is no gratitude, I trow ; 

Or none, perhaps, to use it now pretend. 
None learn of me the science of the bow, 
Who make me not their target in the end.' " 

Story XXVIII. 

A solitary darwesh had fixed himself in the comer of a 
desert. A king passed by him. The darwesh, inasmuch 
as cessation from wordly pursuits is the kingdom of 
content, raised not up his head, and heeded him not. 
The king, through the domineering character of royalty. 



CHAPTER I, STORY XXIX. 63 

was offended, and observed, " This tribe of tatterdemalions 
is on a level with brutes/' The vazir said, " The king of 
earth's surface passed near thee ; why didst thou not do 
him homage, and perform thy respects?" He replied, 
" Tell the king to look for service from one who expects 
favours from him, and let him also know that kings are 
for the protection of their subjects, not subjects for the 
service of kings: as they have said, 

STANZA. 

' Kings are but guardians, who the poor should keep ; 

Though this world's goods wait on their diadem. 
Not for the shepherd's welfare are the sheep : 
The shepherd rather is for pasturing them. 

CONCLUDING STANZA. 

To-day thou markest one flushed with success ; 

Another sick with struggles 'gainst his fate : 
Pause but a little while, the earth shall press 

His brain that did such plans erst meditate. 
Lost is the difference of king and slave. 

At the approach of destiny's decree : 
Should one upturn the ashes of the grave. 

Could he discern 'twixt wealth and poverty ? ' " 

The discourse of the darwesh made a strong impression 
on the king. He said, "Ask a boon of me." The 
darwesh replied, " I request that thou wilt not again 
disturb me." On this the king rejoined, *' Give me some 
piece of advice." He said, 

STANZA. 

"Now that thy hands retain these blessings, know — 
This wealth, these lands, from.hand to hand must go." 

Story XXIX. 
A vazIr went to Zu'l-nun,^22 ^f Egypt, and requested the 

^^ Gentius tells us that there were two Zu'1-nuns : one, the 
prophet Jonah, who lived about 862 B.C.; and the othe^, 



64 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

aid of his prayers, saying, " I am day and night employed 
in the service of the Sultan, hoping for his favour, and 
dreading his wrath/' ZQ*l-nun wept, and said, "If I 
had feared the Most High God as thou dost the Sultan, I 
should have been of the number of the just." 

STANZA. 

Could the holy darwesh cease from worldly joy and sorrow. 

On the sky his foot would be ; 
And the vazir for himself angelic light would borrow. 

Served he God as royalty.^^^ 

Story XXX. 

A king gave an order to put an innocent person to 
death. He said, " king ! for the anger which thou 
feelest against me, seek not thine own injury ! " The 
king asked, " How so P " He replied, ** I shall suffer 
this pang but for a moment, and the guilt of it will 
attach to thee for ever." 

QUATRAIN. 

Circling on, life's years have fled, as flies the breeze of mom ; 
Sadness and mirth, and foul and fair, for aye have 

passed away. 
Dream' st thou, tyrant! thou hast wreaked on me thy 

rage and scorn P 

The burthen from my neck has passed, on thine must 
ever stay. 

Suban, who, being in a vessel, was accused of stealing a very 
valuable pearl, and invoked God's aid to establish his innocence, 
whereupon the pearl was discovered in a fish. The person here 
alluded to is Abu Pazl Suban bin Ibrahim, a celebrated 
Muhammadan saint, chief of the Sufis, who died in Egypt, 
A.H. 245. 

'^ There is a very elegant turn in the original, which cannot 

be imitated in English : CS^ malxk is " a king," and (JjJU 
malak **an angel." 



CHAPTER I, STORY XXXII. 65 

This admonition of his operated advantageously on the 
king, and he forbore to shed his bloody and asked pardon 
of him. 

Story XXXI. 

The vazTrs of Nushlrwan were consulting on a matter 
connected with State affairs, and each delivered his 
opinions in accordance with what he judged best. The 
king also took part in their deliberations. Buzurchimihr 
adopted the opinion of the king. The vazirs said to him 
privately, "What superiority didst thou discern in the 
king's opinion above the counsels of so many sage 
persons?'* He replied, "In that the end of the affair 
is unknown, and the opinions of all depend on the will 
of the Most High God, whether they turn out just or 
erroneous. Wherefore it is better to conform to the 
monarch's opinion, that, should it tun; out unfavourably, 
our obsequiousness will secure us from his reproaches. 

DISTICHS. 

Opinions, differing from the king, to have ; 
Is your own hands in your own blood to lave. 
Should he affirm the day to be the night. 
Say you behold the moon and Pleiads' light." 

Story XXXII. 
A traveller ^^ twisted his ringlets, ^^ saying, "I am a 

^** In my edition, I read in accordance with four MSS. 
j->-llyj myajl, instead of the (^JuJ* ahaiyadl, which 

M. Semelet, Gladwin, and Eoss prefer. The sense of the latter, 
** an impostor," is certainly more suitable to the context, but 
then it does not occur in the dictionaries, and is contrary to 
the MSS. 

*^ This implies merely a swaggering air, as we say, " twirled 
his moustache." I do not believe that the descendants of 
All have any particular way of wearing the hair, though there 
is a difference in their turbans and the colour of their clothes. 

6 



66 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

descendant of Ali/^ and entered the city along with the 
caravan from Hijaz, giving out that he had come from 
the pilgrimage to Makkah; and produced an idyl before 
the king, affirming it to be his own. One of the king's 
counsellors had that year returned from travelling. He 
said, " I saw him in Basrah,^ at the festival of Azha ;^^ 
how, then, can he have come from the pilgrimage to 
Makkah P'' Another said, "His father was a Christian 

in Malatiyah;^^ how should he be a descendant of Ali P " 
His verses were found in the Diwan^^ of Anvarl.^*^ 
The king ordered him to be beaten and sent him away, 
saying, " Why hast thou uttered so many falsehoods P " 
He replied, " Lord of earth's surface ! I will speak one 
word more, and if it be not true, I am worthy of any 
punishment that thou mayest command." The king 
inquired, " What is that P" He replied, 

STANZA. 

" Curds,^^' which to thee a poor man brings, will prove, 
Water, two cups ; and buttermilk, one spoon. 
Let not my idle tales thine anger move. 
For, from a traveller, lies thou'lt hear full soon." 

^" A seaport town in the Persian Gulf. 

^'^ The Id, or festival of Azha, is held by the Muhammadans 
on the tenth day of the month Zi'l-^ajj, which is the last of the 
Musalman year. It is celehrated in honour of the ofPering up 
of Ishmael hy Abraham, for the Muhammadans pretend that he, 
and not Isaac, was to be the sacrifice. — Vide Kanun-i Islam, 
p. 226. 

^» Malta. 

**• A poem, consisting of a series of odes, of which the first 
class terminate with \ a, the second with (^ h, and so on 

through the alphabet. 

^^ A celehrated Persian poet, who died A.H. 577=A.D. 1200. 
He was patronized by Sultan Sanjar, of the Saljuk family. 

"^ This alludes to the practice in Persia of breakfasting on a 
cup of curds and bread, with a slice of cheese or melon. 



CHAPTER L STORY XXXIV. 67 

Tlie king laughed and said, " In thy life thou never 
saidst a truer word than this." He then commanded 
the usual allowance for descendants of the Prophet to be 
got ready for him. 

Story XXXIII. 

They have related that a certain vazir was compassionate 
to his inferiors, and studied the welfare of all. It hap- 
pened that he fell under the king's displeasure. All 
exerted themselves to obtain his release ; and those who 
had the custody of him alleviated his punishment ; and 
the other nobles spoke of his good qualities to the king, 
so that the king forgave his fault. A sage heard of this, 
and said, 

STANZA. 

" To gain thy friends' affection. 

Sell the garden of thy sire ; 
To give them food, protection. 

With thy goods go feed the fire. 
Shew kindness even to thy foes ; 

The dog's mouth with a morsel close."^^^ 

Story XXXIV. 

One of the sons of Harunu'r-rashid ^^ came to his 
father in a passion, saying, "Such an officer's son has 
insulted me, by speaking abusively of my mother." 

^^ I have been compelled to translate these lines freely, metri 
catisd. The literal version is, for the third and fourth lines, 
** to cook the pot of thy well-wishers, it is better to bum all 
thy household furniture." The other lines are more literally 
rendered, save that each second line ends with a rhymiDg 
participle, which cannot be carried out in English. 

^^ That is, "HarQn the Just." He began to reign A.H. 170, 

and was the fifth Xhalifah of the house of Abbas. He sent 
presents to Charlemagne, and, like him, divided his empire 
among his three sons. 



68 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Harun said to his nobles, " What shoiild be the pimish- 
ment of such a person?" One gave his voice for 
death, and another for the excision of his tongue, and 
another for the confiscation of his goods and banish- 
ment. Harun said, "O my son! the generoujs part 
would be to pardon him, and if thou canst not, then 
do thou abuse his mother, but not so as to exceed the 
just limits of retaliation, for in that case we should 
become the aggressors." 

STANZA. 

They that with raging elephants make war 
Are not, so deem the wise, the truly brave ; 

But in real verity, the valiant are 

Those who, when angered, are not passion's slave.^^* 

DISTICHS. 

An ill-bred fellow once a man reviled, 

Who patient bore it, and replied, " Good friend ! 

Worse am I than by thee I could be styled, 
And better know how often I oflfend." 

Story XXXV. 

I was seated in a vessel along with some persons of 
distinction. A barge, which was in our wake, went 
down, and two brothers were plimged into the vortex. 
One of the great personages said to the boatman, '' Save 
those two, and I will give thee a hundred dinars." 
The boatman plimged into the water and rescued one. 
The other perished. I said, " He was destined not to 
survive, wherefore thou earnest too late to get hold of 
him." The boatman laughed, and said, "What thou 
sayest is most true, and, besides, my mind was more 
set on saving this one, because once when I was ex- 
hausted in the desert he set me on his camel, and I 
had been flogged by the other in my childhood." I 



134 



More literally, " do not speak intemperately." 



CHAPTER /. STORY XXXVII, 69 

replied, " The Great Ood is righieom I for every one who 
does well benefits his otvn soul; and evert/ one that sinneth, 
sinneth against himself,'^ 

STANZA. 

Strive not to pain a single heart, 
Nor by that thorny pathway move. 

But with the needy aye take part ; 
To thee, too, this will succour prove. 

Story XXXVI. 

There were two brothers, one of whom served the 
Sultan, and the other obtained his bread by his manual 
labour. Once on a time the rich one said to the poor 
one, "Why dost thou not serve the Sultan, by which 
thou mayst escape from thy toilsome work ? " He 
replied, "Why dost thou not work in order to free 
thyself from the disgrace of being a servant? since 
the sages have said, * It is better to eat barley bread, 
and sit on the ground, than to gird oneself with a 
golden girdle, and stand up to serve.' " 

COUPLET. 

Better from lime make mortar with thy hand, 
Than before chiefs with folded arms to stand. 

STANZA. 

Life, precious life, has been in pondering spent 
On summer clothing and on winter food. 

glutton belly ! let one loaf content 

Thee, rather than the back [in slavish mood] 

Be to the ground in others' service bent. 

Story XXXVII. 

A person brought to Nushirwan the Just good news, 
saying, "God [mky he be honoured and glorified!] has 
removed such and such an enemy of thine." He re- 
plied, " Hast thou heard at all that he wiU spare me P " 



7© GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

In my foe's death, what joy is there for me P 
For my life, too, camiot eternal be. 

Story XXXVIII. 

A council of wise men at the court of Kisra^^ was 
discussing .a certain matter. Buzurchimihr was silent. 
They said, " Why dost thou not deKver thy opinion with 
us in this consultation ? " He replied, " Vazirs are like 
physicians : and the physican does not give medicine save 
to the sick. Wherefore, when I see that your opinion is 
right, it would not be wise for me to interfere therein 
with my voice.'' 

STANZA. 

Without my meddling, if a thing succeed. 
For me to give advice therein, what need ? 
But if I see a blind man and a pit. 
Why, then, I'm guilty if I silent sit. 

Story XXXIX. 

When Harunu'r-rashid had conquered Egypt, he said, 
"In contradiction to that impious rebel ^^^ who, through 
pride of having Egypt for his kingdom, kid claim to 
divine honours, I will give this province to none but the 
lowest of my slaves." He had a black slave of great 
stupidity, whose name was Khusaib ; on him he bestowed 
the land of Egypt. They say that his intellect and 
capacity were so limited that when a body of Egyptian 
cultivators complained to him that they had sown cotton 
on the banks of the Nile, and that, owing to an unseason- 
able fall of rain, it had been destroyed ; he replied, " You 

"* Xisra or Chosroes, as the Arabs styled the Persian kings 
of the Sassanian race, is here used for I^ushlrwan. 
^ Pharaoh is here meant 



CHAPTER L STORY XL. 71 

ought to SOW wool, that it might not be swept away/' A 
sage heard it and said, 

DISTICHS. 

" If with your wisdom grew your store, 
The fool would be the truly poor ; 
But Heaven to the fool supplies 
Such wealth as would amaze the wise."^^ 

DISTICHS. 

Fortune and wealth are not to merit given : 
None can obtain them but by aid from Heaven. 
In this world oft a marvel meets our eyes ; 
The undisceming honoured, scorned the wise. 
The alchymist expires with grief and pain. 
And fools a treasure 'neath a shed obtain. 

Story XL. 

They had brought a Chinese girl, of surpassing beauty 
and loveliness, to an Arabian king. In a moment of 
intoxication he attempted to embrace her. The damsel 
resisted him. The king was enraged, and bestowed her 
on one of his slaves, who was a negro, and whose upper 
lip ascended above his nostrils, and whose lower lip hung 
down on his collar. His form was such that the demon 
SaMir would have fled at his appearance. 

COUPLET. 

In him th' extreme of ugliness was found, 
As beauty to all time fair Joseph crowned. 

STANZA. 

Not such his person that description can 

His hideous aspect typify ; 
The fetor [save us !] from him foully ran 

Like carrion sun-baked in July. 

At that season the passions of the negro were roused, 
"? In the original it is "a hmidred wise men." 



72 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

and he was overpowered by lust. Agitated by desire he 
deflowered her. In the morning, the king sought for the 
girl and could not find her. They told him what had 
happened. He was incensed, and commanded that they 
should bind the negro and the girl fast together by their 
hands and feet, and cast them from the roof of the palace 
into the fosse. One of the vazirs, who was of a bene- 
volent disposition, bent down his face in intercession to 
the ground and said, " The negro is not to blame in this 
matter ; for all your Majesty's slaves and attendants are 
accustomed to your royal bounty." The king said, "What 
great difference would it have made had he forborne to 
meddle with her for a night P " The vazir replied, " Sire ! 
hast thou not heard what they have said, 

STANZA. 

'When to a limpid foimtain one parched with thirst 
advances, 
Think not a raging elephant him would scare ; 
Or, when alone, an infidel sees meat with famished 
glances. 
Can reason think he'd pause for the fast-day there.' " 
The king was pleased with this pleasantry, and said, " I 
give thee the negro ; but what shall I do with the girl ? " 
He replied, " Give the girl to the negro ; for his leavings 
are fit only for himself." 

STANZA. 

Never take him for thy friend 

Who goes where it beseems him not : 

The purest water will offend 
The thirstiest Kps, if it be got 
From one whose breath is foul and hot. 

STANZA. 

Ne'er will the orange from the Sultan's hand 
Once in the dimghill fallen, more there rest : 

Though thirsty, none will water e'er demand. 
When ulcerated lips the jar have pressed. 



CHAPTER I, STORY XLI. 



Story XLI. 



73 



They said to Alexander of Rum, " How didst thou 
conquer the eastern and western worlds, when former 
kings surpassed thee in trteasures, and territory, and long 
life, and armies, and yet did not obtain such victories?" 
He replied, " By the aid of the Most High God. Whenever 
I subdued a coimtry I did not oppress its inhabitants, and 
I neyer spoke disparagmgly of its kings." 

COUPLET. 

Ne'er will he be called great among the wise. 
Who to the truly great their name denies. 

STANZA. 

These are no more than trifles, swiftly sped. 

Fortune and throne, command and conquest — ^all. 

Destroy not thou the good name of the dead, 
That thy fame, too, may last and never fall. 



74 



CHAPTER II. 

ON THE QUALITIES OF DARWESHES. 

Story I. 

A person of distinction asked a holy man, "What 
sayest thou with regard to a certain devotee ; for others 
have spoken sneeringly of him ? '* He replied, " In his 
outward conduct I discern no fault, and I know nothing 
of his secret defects." 

STANZA. 

When thou dost one in saintly vestments find. 
Doubt not his goodness or his sanctity. 

What though thou knowest not his inmost mind ? 
Not within doors need the Muhtasib^^ pry. 

Story II. 

I once saw a darwesh, who, with his head resting on 
the threshold of the temple at Makkah, called the Kabah, 
was weeping and saying, " Thou merciful and com- 
passionate One ! Thou knowest what homage can be 
offered by a sinful and ignorant being worthy of thee ! "^^ 

^^ The Muhtasib is the Mul^iammadan superintendent of 
police, who prevents drunkenness, gaming, and other disorders ; 
but, as appears from this passage, his business is rather to enforce 
external decency, than to suppress latent immorality. 

*^ That is, '* The homage of a sinful being cannot be worthy 
of God." 



CHAPTER 11. STORY III. 75 

STANZA. 

Fop my scant service I would pardon crave, 
Since on obedience I can ground no claim. 
Sinners, of sin repent ; but those who have 
Knowledge of the Most High, at pardon aim 
- For worthless worship [which they view with shame]. 

The pious seek the reward of their obedience, and 
merchants look for the price of their wares, and I, thy 
servant, have brought hope, not obedience, and have come 
to beg, not to traffic. '' Bo unto me that which is worthy of 
Thee^ and not that of which I am worthy J^ 

COUPLET, 

Whether Thou wilt slay or spare me, at Thy door my head 

I lay; 
To the creature will belongs not. Thy commandment I 

obey. 

STANZA. 

A supplicant at Makkah^s shrine who wept 
Full piteously and thus exclaimed, I saw ; 
" I ask Thee not my homage to accept. 

But through my sins Thy pen absolving draw.'* 

Story III. 

Abdu'l-Kadir Gilani^*^ laid his face on the pebbles in 
the sanctuary of the Kabah, and said, ^^ Lord ! pardon 
me ; but if I am deserving of punishment, raise me up at 
the resurrection blind, that I may not be ashamed in the 
sight of the righteous." 

STANZA. 

Humbly in dust I bow each day 
My face, with wakening memory, 

Thou ! whom I forget not, say, 
Dost Thou bethink Thee e'er of me P 

^ This saintly personage was a celebrated Sufi of Baghdad, 
under whom S&dl embraced the doctrine of the Mystics. 



76' GULISTAN; OR, HOSE GARDEN. 

Story IY. 

A thief entered the house of a recluse. However much 
he searched, he found nothing. He turned back sadly and 
in despair, and was observed by the holy man, who cast 
the blanket on which he slept in the way of the thief, 
that he might not be disappointed. 

STANZA. 

The men of God's true fgith, I've heard. 
Grieve not the hearts e'en of their foes. 

When will this station be conferred 
On thee who dost thy friends oppose ? 

The friendship of the pure-minded, whether in pre- 
sence or absence, is not such that they will find fault 
with thee behind thy back, and die for thee in thy 
presence. 

COUPLET. 

Before thee like the lamb they gentle are : 
Absent, than savage wolves more ruthless far. 

COUPLET. 

They who the faults of others bring to you. 
Be sure they'll bear to others your faults too. 

Story Y. 

Certain travellers had agreed to journey together, and 
to share their pains and pleasures. I wished to join 
them. They withheld their consent. I said, *'It is 
inconsistent with the benevolent habits of the eminent 
to avert the countenance from the society of the lowly, 
and to decline to be of service to them ; and I feel in 
myself such power of exertion and energy that in the 
service of men I should be an active friend, not a weight 
on their minds. 



CHAPTER IL STORY V. 
COUPLET. 

What though Fm home ^*^ not in the camel tht*ong, 
Yet will I strive to bear your loads along. 



77 



99 



One of them said, " Let not thy heart be grieved at the 
answer thou hast received, for within the last few days, 
a thief came in the guise of a darwesh, and linked himself 
in the chain of our society." 

COUPLET. 

What know men of the wearer, though they know the 

dress full well P 
The letter- writer only can the letter's purport tell. 

Inasmuch as the state of darweshes is one of security,**^ 
they had no suspicion of his meddling propensities, and 
admitted him into companionship. 

DISTICHS. 

Bags are th' external sign of holiness ; 
Sufficient — ^for men judge by outward dress. 
Strive to do well, and what thou pleasest, wear ; 
Thy head a crown, thine arm a flag ^*^ may bear. 
Virtue lies not in sackcloth coarse and sad ; 
Be purely pious, and in satin clad : 

*" There is an attempt here at a pun in the words v---^lj 
rakih, ** I am riding," and J.^W hdmilf "I am bearing.*' 

1*2 This word c::.*v*iLrf salamat, is variously rendered. M. 
Semelet translates it by **une assurance"; Boss by ''reve- 
rence " ; Gladwin by " everywhere approved," renderings 
sufficiently free, one would think, and all of them objective. 
I prefer giving the word a subjective meaning, when it may 
take its natural signification and yet make good sense. 

^*^ M. Semelet, from a note of M. de Sacy, conjectures Jlc 

alam to mean " a rich dress, worn by the great ; " or, " a piece 
of rich stuff worn by kings on the left shoulder." Gladwin 
and Boss translate as above, and I am content to follow them. 



78 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

True holiness consists in quitting vice, 
The world and lust, — ^not dress ; — let this suffice. 
Let vaKant men their breasts with iron plate : 
Weapons of war ill suit the effeminate. 

" In short, one day, we had journeyed till dusk, and slept 
for the night under a castle's walls. The graceless thief 
took up the water-pot of one of his comrades, saying that 
he was going for a necessary purpose, and went, in truth, 
to plunder. 

COUPLET. 

He'd fain with tattered garment for a darwesh pass. 
And makes the Kabah's^^ pall the housings of an ass. 

As soon as he had got out of sight of the darweshes he 
scaled a bastion,^** and stole a casket. Before the day 
dawned, that dark-hearted one had got to a considerable 
distance, and his innocent companions were still asleep. 
In the morning they carried them all to the fortress and 
imprisoned them. From that day we have abjured 
society, and kept to the path of retirement, for, in 
aolitvde there is safety.'' 

STANZA. 

When but one member of a tribe has done 

A foolish act, all bear alike disgrace, 
Seest thou how in the mead one ox alone 

Will lead astray the whole herd of a place P 

I said, " I thank God (may He be honoured and glo- 
rified!) that I have not remained excluded from the 

"* First the Khalifahs, then the Sultans of Egypt, and lastly 
those of Constantinople, have been in the habit of sending 
annually to Makkah a rich covering of brocade for the temple 
there, called the K&bah. 

^^ I must confess I consider this reading unsatisfactory, and 
much prefer Dr. Sprenger's L::-^3y 15^^ harWn haraft, **he 
went a little distance." The Doctor has a misprint directly 
after : ^-sj- J for ^^frj^ &urjt. 



/ 

CHAPTER IL STORY VL 79 

beneficial influences of the darweshes, although I have 
been deprived of their society, and I have derived profit 
from this story, and this advice will be useful to such as 
I am through the whole of life/* 

DISTICHS. 

Be there but one rough person in their train, 
For his misdeeds the wise will suffer pain. 
Should you a cistern with rose-water fill, 
A dog dropped in it would defile it still. 

Story YI. 

A religious recluse became the guest of a king. When 
they sate down to their meals, he ate less than his wont ; 
and when they rose up to pray, he prayed longer than he 
was accustomed to, that they might have a greater opinion 
of his piety. 

COUPLET. 

I Arab ! much I fear thou at Makkah's shrine wilt never 

be, 
For the road that thou art going is the road to Tartary. 

When he returned to his own abode he ordered the 
cloth to be laid that he might eat. He had a son 
possessed of a ready wit, who said, " my father ! didst 
thou eat nothing at the entertainment of the Sultan P" 
He replied, "I ate nothing in their sight to serve a 
purpose." The son rejoined, " Bepeat thy prayers again, 
and make up for their omission, since thou hast done 
nothing that can serve any purpose." 

STANZA. 

Thy merits in thy palm thou dost display ; 

Thy faults beneath thy arm from sight withhold. 
What wilt thou purchase, vain one ! in that day, 

The day of anguish, with thy feigned gold ? ^^^ 



146 



Literally, ''Base silver or coin." 



8o GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Story VII. 

I pemembep that, in the time of my childhood, I was 
devout, and in the habit of keeping vigils, and eager to 
practise mortification and austerities. One night I sate 
up in attendance on my father, and did not close my eyes 
the whole night, and held the precious Kur'an in my lap 
while the people around me slept. I said to my father, 
" Not one of these lifts up his head to perform a prayer.""'^ 
They are so profoundly asleep that you would say they 
were dead." He replied, "Life of thy father! it were- 
better if thou, too, wert asleep ; rather than thou shouldst 
be backbiting people," 

STANZA. 

Naught but themselves can vain pretenders mark, 
For conceit's curtain intercepts their view. 

Did God illume that which in them is dark, 

Naught than themselves would wear a darker hue.^^® 

Story VIII. 

In a certain assembly they were extolling a person 
of eminence, and going to an extreme in praising his 
excellent quaUties. He raised his head, and said, "I 
am that which I know myself to be." 

COUPLET. 

Thou who wouldst sum my virtues up, enough ihou^Ufind 
In outward semblance ; to my secret failings blind, 

"' Literally, "A double prayer," "binaB precationes," as 
M. Semelet remarks, like " deux Pater et deux Av6." 

1^ This translation is free. The nominative is throughout in 
the singular, and the last line is literally, ''He would see no 
one more wretched than himself." 



CHAPTER IL STORY IX. 8i 

STANZA. 

My person, in men's eyes, is fair to view ; 

But, for my inward faults, shame bows my head. 
The peacock, lauded for his briUiant hue. 

Is by his ugly feet discomfited. 

Story IX. 

One of the holy men of Mount Lebanon, whose dis- 
courses were quoted, and whose miracles were celebrated 
throughout the country of Arabia, came to the principal 
mosque of Damascus, and was performing his ablutions 
on the side of the reservoir of the well. His foot slipped, 
and he fell into the basin, and got out of it with the 
greatest trouble. When prayers were finished, one of his 
companions said, "I have a difficulty." The Shekh 
inquired what it was. He replied, "I remember that 
thou didst walk on the surface of the western sea without 
wetting thy feet, and to-day thou wast within a hair's 
breadth of perishing in this water, of but one fathom 
depth ; what is the meaning of this P " He bent his head 
in the lap of meditation, and after much refiection, raised 
it, and said, " Hast thou not heard that the Lord of the 
World, Muhammad Mustafa (may the blessing and peace 
of God be upon him!) said, ^ I have a season with Gody in 
which neither ministering angel, nor any prophet that has 
been sent, can me mth me^ but he did not say that this 
season was perpetual. In such a time as he mentioned, 
he was wrapt beyond Gabriel and Michael; and, at 
another time, he was contented with Hafsah ^** and 
Zainab, for the vision of the pious is between eflPulgence 
and obscurity; at one moment He shews Himself, at 
another snatches Himself from our sight." 

^" These are the names of two of Muhammad's wives, of 

which the latter was a Jewess who poisoned him. 

6 



82 GULISTAN ; ORy ROSE GARDEN, 

CJOUPLET. 

Thou dost Thy face now shew and now conceal, 
Thy worth enhancest, and inflam'st our zeal. 

STANZA. 

Til with unintercepted gaze mrvey 

Him whom I love, and, wildered, lose my way. 

One while aflame He kindles — bright in vain. 

For soon He quenches it toith cooling rain ; 

*Tis thus thou seest me burnt, then droumed again. 

Story X. 

VERSE. 

To that bereaved father ^^ one once said, 

"Aged sire! on whose bright soul truth's light is shed, 

From Egypt his coat's scent thy nostrils knew ; 

In Canaan's pit why was he hid from view ? " 

" My state," he said, " is like heaven's flashing light : 

One moment shewn, the next concealed in night ; 

Now on the azure vault I sit supreme ; 

In darkness now my own feet hidden seem. 

Did but the darwesh in one state abide. 

He might himself from both worlds aye divide." ^^^ 

Story XI. 

I once, in the principal mosque of Baalbak,^^ addressed 
a few words, by way of exhortation, to a frigid assembly, 

^"° Jacob, — ^to the story of whose son Joseph, perpetual 
reference is made by the Musalman. 

"^ That is, he might attain re-union with the Deity. 

"* Baftlbak, by the Greeks called Heliopolis, is a city now in 
ruins, situated at the foot of Anti-Libanus, in the direct route 
between Tyre and Palmyra, by traffic with which cities it 
greatly profited. The principal temple, which is of extra- 
ordinary size and beauty, seems to have been built by Antoninus 
Pius. It contains now but 1200 inhabitants. 



CHAPTER IL STORY XL 83 

whose hearts were dead, and who had not found the way 
from the material to the spiritual world. I saw that my 
speech made no impression on them, and that the flame of 
my ardour did not take effect on their green wood. I felt 
repugnance to continue instructing such mere animals, 
and to holding up a mirror in the district of the blind ; 
however, the gate of my spiritual discourse continued 
open, and the chain of my address was prolonged in 
explanation of the verse, " We are nearer to him than the 
jugular vein." ^^ I had brought my discourse to this point, 
when I exclaimed, 

STANZA. 



" Not to myself am I so near as He, 

My friend ; and stranger still, from Him I'm far. 
What can I do ? where tell this mystery ? 
He's in our arms, yet we excluded are." 

I was intoxicated with the spirit of this address, and the 
remainder of the cup was in my hands, when, a traveller 
passing by the assembly, my last words ^^ made an 
impression upon him. He gave such an applauding shout 
that the others, in sympathy with him, joined in the 
excitement, and the most apathetic of the assembly shared 
his enthusiasm. I exclaimed, " Praise be to God ! Those 
at a distance who have knowledge of Him are admitted 
into His presence, while those who are at hand, but are 
deprived of vision, are kept aloof." 

^" This verse of the Kur'an occurs in ch. l., 1. 27, of Sale's 
Translation. 

"* The translators, in my opinion, have missed the sense of 
ijj daur, which I take to mean not " ondulation," according to 
M. Semelet, but " circle of the cup " ; the metaphor being still 
kept up, and the last sentence being compared to the last time 
the cup is sent round. 



84 GULISTAN; ORy ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

Expect not from that speaker eloquence, 

Whose words his audience cannot value well. 

With a wide field of willingness commence, 
Then will the orator the ball^® propel. 

Story XII, 

One night, in the desert of Makkah, from excessive 
want of sleep, I was deprived of the power of proceeding. 
I reclined my head, and bade the camel-driver leave me 
alone. 

STANZA. 

What distance can the tired footman go. 

When Bactria's camel faints beneath the load ? 

In the same time that fat men meagre grow, 
The lean will perish on affliction's road. 

The camel-driver said, " brother ! the sanctuary ^^ is 
before thee, and the robber behind; if thou goest on, 
thou wilt obtain thy object ; if thou sleepest, thou wilt 
die." 

COUPLET. 

Sweet is slumber in the desert under the acacia-tree. 
On the night when friends are marching, but it bodeth 
death to thee. 

Story XIII. 

I saw a devotee on the sea-shore, who had received a 
wound from a leopard, and had been for a long time thus 

155 There is an equivoque here which cannot be retained in 
English: j^jT gut signifies both " speech," and **the ball used 
in the game of Chaugan." 

^^ There is a ^un here, impossible to render in English, on 
the words ^^ ha/ram, *' sanctuary," and jc^]/^ h^ardmlj " a 
robber." ' * " ' 



CHAPTER II. STORY XIV. 85 

afflicted, but could obtain no reKef from any medicine, 
and yet incessantly returned thanks to God Most Higli. 
They asked him, saying, "How is it that thou, who 'art 
suffering from this calamity, art returning thanks ? '' He 
replied, " Praise be to God ! that I am suffering from a 
calamity, and not from a sin." 

STANZA. 

If that loved One should slay me cruelly, 
Thou shouldst not say, e'en then, I feared to die. 
I'd ask. What fault has Thy poor servant done ? 
'Tis for Thine anger that I grieve.alone. 

Story XIY. 

A darwesh, having some pressing occasion, stole a 
blanket from the house of a friend. The judge ordered 
his hand to be cut off. The owner of the blanket inter- 
ceded for him, saying that he had pardoned him. The 
judge said, "I shall not desist from carrying out the 
law on account of thy intercession." He replied, " Thou 
hast spoken the truth, but it is not necessary to punish 
with amputation one who steals property dedicated to 
pious purposes, for * the fakir does not possess anything, 
and is not possessed by any one.^ Whatever the darwesh 
possesses is for the benefit of the necessitous." The 
judge released him, and said, " Was the world too narrow 
for thee, that thou must steal nowhere but from the 
house of such a friend?" He replied, "My Lord! hast 
thou not heard the saying, * Make a clean sweep in thy 
friend's house, but do not even knock at the door of 
thy enemies.' " 

COUPLET. 

Art thou distressed ? yield not to weak despair ; 
Uncloak thy friends, but strip thy foemen bare.^^"'^ 

"^ Literally, " strip off their skins." The second sentiment 
does not agree with the first. 



86 CULTS TAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story XV. 

A king said to a holy man, " Dost thou ever remember 
me ? " He repKed, " Yes ! whenever I forget my God." 

COUPLET. 

Those He repels, to every side direct 

Their course — ^whom he invites, all else reject. 

Story XVI. 

A certain pious man in a dream beheld a king in 
paradise and a devotee in hell. He inquired, "What is 
the reason of the exaltation of the one, and the cause of 
the degradation of the other ? for I had imagined just 
the reverse." They said, " That king is now in paradise 
owing to his friendship for darweshes, and this recluse is 
in hell through frequenting the presence of kings." 

STANZA. 

Of what avail is frock, or rosary, 

Or clouted garment ? Keep thyself but free 

From evil deeds, it will not need for thee 
To wear the cap of felt : a darwesh be 
In heart, and wear the cap of Tartary. 

Story XVII. 

A man on foot, with bare head and bare feet, came 
from Kufah^^ with the caravan proceeding to Hijaz, and 

^ Kufah is a city on the Euphrates, four days* journey from 
Baghdad, and so near Basrah that the two towns are called 
the two Basrahs, or the two Kufahs. The Persians assert that 
it was built by Hushang, the second king of the Pishdadyan, 
or second dynasty of Persia. Khondemir, however, affirms that 
it was founded by S&d, a general of the E3ialifah Omar, 
A.H. 17. The first Abbasi Khalifah made it his capital, and it 
became so extensive that the Euphrates was called ii^ j^^ 

nahar-i J^ufah, "the river of Kufah." The oldest Arabic 
characters are called Kufic, from this city. 



CHAPTER II. STOR Y XVIII. 87 

accompanied us. I looked at him, and saw that he was 
whoUy improvided with the supplies requisite for the 
journey. Nevertheless, he went on merrily, and said, 

VERSE. 

"I ride not on a camel, but am free from load and 

trammel ; 
To no subjects am I lord, and I fear no monarch's word ; 
I think not of the morrow, nor recall the gone-by sorrow. 
Thus I breathe exempt from strife, and thus moves on my 

tranquil life." 

One who rode on a camel said to him, "0 darwesh! 
whither art thou going ? turn back, or thou wilt perish 
from the hardships of the way." He did not listen, 
but entered the desert and proceeded on. When we 
reached "the palm-trees of Mahmud," fate overtook the 
rich man and he died. The darwesh approached his 
pillow, and said, "I have survived these hardships, and 
thou hast perished on the back of thy dromedary." 

COUPLET. 

A person wept the livelong night beside a sick man's bed : 
When it dawned the sick was well, and the mourner, he 
was dead. 

STANZA*. 

Fleet coursers oft have perished on the way. 
While the lame ass the stage has safely passed ; 

Oft have they laid the vigorous 'neath the clay. 
While the sore- wounded have revived at last. 

Story XYIII. 

A king sent an invitation to a religious man. The 
latter thought to himself, ^' I will take a medicine to . 
make me look emaciated ; perhaps it may increase the 
good opinion entertained of me." They relate that he 
swallowed deadly poison, and died. 



88 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEA. 

STANZA. 

He who, pistachio-like, all kernel seemed, 
An onion was ; for fold on fold was there. 

The saint who turns to man to be esteemed. 
Must on the Kiblah ^^ turn his back in prayer. 

COUPLET. 

Who calls himself God's servant must forego 
All else, and none besides his Maker know. 

Story XIX. 

In the country of the Greeks some banditti attacked a 
caravan, and carried off immense riches. The merchants 
made lamentations and outcries, and called upon God and 
the Prophet to intercede for them, without avail. 

COUPLET. 

When the dark-minded robber finds success. 
What cares he for the caravan's distress ? 

The philosopher Lukman was among them. One of 
those who composed the caravan said, "Say some words 
of wisdom and admonition to them ; perchance they may 
restore a portion of our goods ; for it would be a pity 
that such wealth should be lost." Lukman said, "It 
would be a pity to address the words of wisdom to 
them." 

"• The Kiblah is the point to which men turn in prayer. 
This, among Jews and Christians, is Jerusalem; and when 
Muhammad first ordered his followers to turn to the temple 
at Makkah; it occasioned such discontent that he added a verse, 
to the effect that prayer is heard to whatever quarter the 
supplicant turns. However, Muhammadans now all turn to 
Makkah when praying. 



CHAPTER II, STORY XX. 89 

STANZA. 

When rust deep-seated has consumed the steel, 
Its stain will never a new polish own. 

Advice affects not those who cannot feel : 
A nail of iron cannot pierce a stone. 

STANZA. 

In prosperous days go seek out the distressed ; 

The poor man's prayer can change misfortune's course. 
Give when the beggar humbly makes request, 

Lest the oppressor take from thee by force. 

Story XX. 

However much the excellent Sheikh Shamsu'd-dm 
Abu'1-faraj-bin-JauzI^^ commanded me to abandon music, 
and directed me towards retirement and solitude, the 
vigour of my youth prevailed, and sensual desires con- 
tinued to crave. Maugre my will, I went some steps 
contrary to the advice of my preceptor, and enjoyed the 
delights of music and conviviality. When the admoni- 
tions of my master returned to my recollection, I used to 
exclaim, 

COUPLET. 

"E'en the Kazi would applaud us, could he of our 
party be ; 
Thou Muhtasib ! quaff the wine-cup, and thou wilt the 
drunkard free.'* 

TiU one night I joined the assembly of a tribe, and saw 
amongst them a minstrel. 

^^ Eoss reads Abu'l-farah, as I felt inclined to do; but 
Gladwin, Semelet, and Sprenger read Abu'l-faraj. He was 
S§,di's preceptor, and was the son of an eminent poet and sage, 
who died A.H. 597. 



go GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

COUPLET. 

Tliou'dst say tliat througli his fiddle-bow thy arteries 

would bursty 
Thaa tidings of thy father's death wouldst own his voice 

more curst. 

The fingers of his friends were at one time stopping 
their ears, at another pressed on their lips, to bid him be 
silent. 

VEBSE. 

We haste to music^a sound mth stirred and kindling breast, 
But thou a minstrel art, whose silence pleases best. 

COUPLET. 

One soKtary pleasure in thy strains we find, 

'Tis when they cease, we go, and thou art left behind. 

DISTICHS. 

When my shocked ear that lutist*s voice had riven, 
Straight to my host I cried, " For love of heaven. 
Or with the quicksilver stop my ear, I pray. 
Or ope thy door and let me haste away." 

Howeyer. for the sake of my friende, I accommodated 
myself to the circumstances, and passed the night until 
dawn in this distress. 

STANZA. 

Mu'azzin ! ^^^ why delay thy morning task? 

Know'st thou not how much of the night is sped P 
"Wouldst know its length P it of my eyeHds ask. 

For ne'er has sleep its influence o'er them shed. 

'" I have here traoslated somewhat freely. Literally it is, 
'' The mu'azzin raised his voice unseasonably; he knows not 
how much of the night is passed. Ask the length of the night 
of my eyelasheSy for not one moment has sleep passed on my 
eyes.*' The mu'azzin is the summoner to prayer, or crier of 
the mosque. I am inclined to think that the free translation 
above represents what S&di really intended. 



CHAPTER II. STORY XX. 91 

In the morning, by way of a blessing, I took my 
turban from my head, and some dinars ^^ from my belt, 
and laid them before the minstrel, and embraced him, 
and returned hiTn many thanks. My friends observed 
that the feeling I evinced towards him was contrary to 
what was usual, and ascribed it to the meanness of my 
imderstanding, and laughed at me privately. One of 
them extended the tongue of opposition, and began to 
reproach me, saying, " This thing thou hast done accords 
not with the character of the wise ; thou hast given the 
tattered robe, which is the dress of darweshes, to such 
a musician as has never in his whole life had one diram ^^ 
in his hand, nor a particle of gold on his drum. 

DISTICHS. 

Such minstrel (from this mansion far be he !) 
As in one place none twice will ever see. 
The moment that his strains his gullet leave. 
The hairs upon his hearer's flesh upheave. 
The sparrow flies from horror at his note ; 
Our brain he shatters, while he splits his throat." 

I said, " It is advisable for you to shorten the tongue 
of reproach, for, to me, his miraculous powers have been 
clearly evinced.'* He replied, " Acquaint me with these 
circumstances, that we may approach him,^** and ask 
forgiveness for the joke which has been passed." I 
replied, **It is by reason of this, because my preceptor 
• 

^•' The dinar is nearly equal to a ducat or sequin, about nine 

shillings ; but, according to the Kanun-i Islam, only five. 

*" A silver coin, worth, according to some, twopence. 

^•* Sprenger's reading of ^Uj ^-^}Aj' ^j^^^j^ hamehunin 

takarruh numdlm, seems better than (mgjjSj ^l:JUjb hamkundn 

takarrub. The izafat under the ^ n, of ^l:JUjb hamkundn, 
in my edition, is a misprint. 



92 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

had repeatedly commanded me to give up music, and 
amply advised me, but his words had not entered the 
ear of my acceptance ; to-night, however, my auspicious 
fortune and happy destiny conducted me to this mona- 
stery, where, by means of this musician, I have repented, 
vowing that I will never again betake myself to music ^^ 
or conviviality." 

STANZA. 

When a sweet palate, mouth, lips, voice, we find. 
Singing or speaking, they'll enchant the heart ; 

Fshak, Sifahan, Hijaz,^^ all combined. 
From a vile minstrers gullet pain impart. 

Story XXI. 

They asked Lukman, "Of whom didst thou learn 
manners ? " He repKed, " From the unmannerly. What- 
ever I saw them do which I disapproved of, that I 
abstained from doing." 

STANZA. 

Not e'en in jest a playful word is said. 

But to the wise, 'twill prove a fruitful theme. 

To fools, a hundred chapters may be read 

Of grave import ; to them they'll jesting seem. 

Story XXII. 
They relate that a religious man, in one night, would 

*•* The cUm9 Bcmay appears to be " the circular ecstatic dance 
of darweshes." In my edition, a j wahA omitted between ^U^s 
swma^ and i^ii^^ls^ mukhalatat. 

^^ The names of three favourite musical modes ; and not even 
these, says S§,di, can please us if the musician be a bad one. 



CHAPTER II. STORY XXIII. 



93 



eat three pounds^^ of food, and before dawn go through 
the Kur'an in his devotions. A holy man heard of this, 
and said, "If he were to eat half a loaf, and go to sleep, 
he would be a much better man than he is." 

STANZA. 

Keep thou thy inward man from surfeit free, 
That thou, therein, the light of heaven may see. 
Art thou of wisdom void P 'tis that with bread 
Thou 'rt to thy nostrils over-surfeited. 

Story XXIII. 

The divine grace caused the lamp of mercy to shine on 
the path of one lost in sin, so that he entered the circle 
of men of piety. By the happy influence of the society 
of darweshes, and the sincerity of their prayers, his evil 
qualities were exchanged for good ones, and he withdrew 
his hand from sensuality ; and, nevertheless, the tongue 
of calumniators was lengthened with regard to him, to the 
effect that he was, just as before, subject to the same 
habits, and that no confidence could be placed in his 
devotion and uprightness. 

COUPLET. 

By penitence thou mayst exempted be 

From wrath divine : man's tongue thou canst not flee. 

He was unable to endure the injustice of their tongues, 
and complained to the superior of his order, and said, 
" I am harassed by the tongues of men." His preceptor 

^^ In my edition I read ^ ^-3 nim man, "half a w«»," 
the man being, according to Chardin, 51b. 11 oz.; but the other 
editors, Sprenger, Semelet, etc., read ^ Ht} dah man, "ten 
mam,^^ or 581b. 12 oz., which is surely ridiculous. In India, 
the "man" is = 40 sers, or 80 lbs., which would prove too 
much even for the appetites of these gentlemen. 



94 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

wept, and said, "How canst thou return thanks for this 
blessing, that thou art better than they think thee P 

STANZA. 

How oft, sayest thou, malignant enemies 
Seek to find fault with wretched me ! 

What if to shed thy blood they furious rise. 
Or sit in changeless enmity P 

Be thou but good, and ill-report despise : 
'Tis better thus than thou shouldst be 

Bad whilst thou seemest good in others' eyes. 

But, behold me, who am regarded by all as perfection, 
and yet am imperfection itself. 

COUPLET. 

Had but my deeds been like my words, ah ! then, 
I had ^^ been numbered, too, with holy men. 

COUPLET. 

True^ I may he from neighbours^ eyes concealed : 
Ood knows my acts, both secret and revealed. 

STANZA. 

I close the door before me against men, 

That my faults may not stand to them confessed : 

Of what avail its bar 'gainst Thee, whose ken 
Sees both the hidden and the manifest ! " 



Story XXIV. 

I complained to one of our elders that a certain person 
had testified against me that I had been guilty of mis- 

i«8 The jtf^t)^ hudamlf read by Sprenger and Semelet at the 

end of the second line of this couplet, is much better than the 
j^ J^ mardumif in my edition. 



t9f^im^9 



CHAPTER IL STORY XXVL 



95 



conduct.^^® He replied, "Put hiin to the blush by thy 
virtuous conversation." 

"Walk well, that he who would calumniate 
Thee 'may naught e^il find of which to prate ; 
For when the lute a faithful sound returns, 
It from the minstrel's hand, what censure earns ! 

Story XXV. 

They asked one of the Shekhs of Damascus, " What is 
the true state of Suflism?"^''® He replied, "Formerly 
they were a sect outwardly disturbed, but inwardly col- 
lected; and at this day they are a tribe outwardly collected 
and inwardly disturbed." 

STANZA. 

While ever roams from place to place thy heart, 
No peacefulness in solitude thou'lt see ; 

Hast thou estates, wealth, rank, the trader's mart P 
Be thy heart God's — ^this solitude may be. 

Story XXVI. 

I remember that one night we had travelled all night 
in a caravan, and in the morning slept on the edge of a 

*" Ross and Gladwin, it appears to me, mistranslate this 

sentence. Sprenger reads, jIj \^^f [j^ ^UaAJ ^ii ^ kih 

ftddn ha-faadd-i man guwdhi dad, ''That a certain person had 
borne witness to my misconduct," which is obviously not so 
good as the reading in the text. 

"" The Sufis are a sect of Muljammadan mystics, whose 
opinions, with regard to the soul, the Deity, and creation, 
very much resemble the esoteric doctrines of the Brahmans. 
They look upon the soul as an emanation from the Deity, to 
be re-asorbed into its source, and regard that absorption as 
attainable by contemplation. 



96 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

forest. A distracted person, who accompanied us on that 
journey, uttered a cry, and took the way to the wilderness, 
and did not rest for a moment. When it was day I said 
to him, " What state is this ? " He replied, " I saw the 
nightingales engaged in pouring forth their plaintive 
strains from the trees, while the partridges uttered their 
cries from the mount«,ins, the frogs from the water, and 
the beasts from the forests. I reflected that it would be 
ungrateful for me to slumber neglectful while all were 
engaged in praising God." 

DISTICHS. 

But yester mom, a bird with tender strain, 

My reason, patience, sense, endurance stole ; 
A comrade, one most near in friendship's chain, 

(Perhaps he heard th* outpourings of my soul). 
Said, " My belief would ne'er have credited 

That a bird's voice could make thee thus distraught." 
" It fits not well my state as man," I said, 

" That birds their God should praise, and I say nought." 

Story XXVII. 

Once on a time, in travelling through Arabia PetrsBa, a 
company of devout youths shared my aspirations ^^^ and 
my journey. They used often to chant and repeat mystic 
verses ; and there was a devotee en route with us, who 
thought imf avourably of the character of darweshes, and 
was ignorant of their distress. When we arrived at the 
palm-grove of the children of Hallal, a dark youth came 
out of one of the Arab families, and raised a voice which 
might have drawn down the birds from the air. I saw 

^''^ There is rather a neat pun in the Persian here, which I 
have made a poor attempt to preserve. AtVtJb hamdam, signifies 

** breathing together;" «.«., "a friend:" ^JJUib hamkadam, 

" stepping together " ; i.e., " a companion." 



CHAPTER II, STORY XXVIII 



97 



the camel of the devotee begin to caper, and it threw its 
rider, and ran off into the desert. I said, "0 Shekh! it has 
moved a brute, does it not create any emotion in thee ? '' 

VERSE. 

Knowest thou what said the bird of morn, the nightingale, 

to me? 
" What meanest thou that art unskilled in love's sweet 

mystery ? 
The camels, at the Arab's song, ecstatic are and gay ; 
Feel'st thou no pleasure, then thou art more brutish far 

than they ! '' 

COUPLET. 

When e'en the camels join in mirth and glee. 
If men feel naught, then must they asses be. 

COUPLET. 

Before the blast the balsams ^"^ bend in the Arab's garden ^^^ 

lone ; 
Those tender shrubs their boughs incline ; naught yields the 

hard firm stone, 

DISTICHS. 

All things thou seest still declare His praise ; 
The attentive heart can hear their secret lays. 
Hymns to the rose the nightingale His name ; 
Each thorn's a tongue His marvels to proclaim. 

Story XXVIII. 

A king had reached the close of his life, and had no 
heir to succeed him. He made a will, that they should 
place the royal crown on the head of the first person 
who might enter the gates of the city in the morning, 

"* The u\\j ban is the myrobolan, whence is obtained the fine 
balsam, called Benjamin, or Benzoin. 

"* M. Semelet informs us that the ^^>^ hama is the space 

enclosed by the nomadic Arab for his use. 



98 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

and slLOuld confide the government to him. It happened 
that the first person who entered the city-gate was a 
beggar, who throughout his whole life had collected 
scrap after scrap, and sewn rag upon rag. The Pillars 
of the State, and ministers of the late king, executed 
his will, and bestowed on him the country and the trea- 
sure. The darwesh carried on tlie government for a time, 
when some of the great nobles turned their necks from 
obeying him, and the princes of the surrounding countries 
rose up on every side to oppose him, and arrayed their 
armies against him. In short, his troops and his subjects 
were thrown into confusion, and a portion of his territory 
departed from his possession. The darwesh was in a state 
of dejection at this circumstance, when one of his old 
friends, who was intimate with him in the time of his 
poverty, returned from a journey, and, finding him in 
this exalted position, said, " Thanks be to God (may He 
be honoured and glorified!) that thy lofty destiny has 
aided thee, and thy auspicious fortune has led thee on, 
so that thy rose has come forth from the thorn, and the 
thorn from thy foot, and thou hast arrived at this rank, 
* mrely with calamity comes rejoicing.' ^''^ 

COUPLET. 

The bud now blossoms ; withered now is found : 
The tree now naked; now with leaves is crowned." 

He replied, " brother ! condole with me ; for there is 
no room for felicitation. When thou sawest me, I was 
distressed for bread, and now I have the troubles of a 
world upon me." 

DISTICHS. 

Have we no wordly gear — 'tis grief and pain : 
Have we it — ^then its charms our feet enchain. 
Can we than this a plague more troublous find. 
Which absent, present, still afflicts the mind ? 

"* " After pain comeB pleasure;" " Apres la peine le plaisir." 



CHAPTER IL STORY XXIX. 99 

STANZA. 

Wouldst thou be rich, seek but content to gain ; 

For this a treasure is that ne'er will harm. 
If in thy lap some Dives riches rain, 

Let not thy heart with gratitude grow warm ; ^"^ 
For, by the wisest, I have oft been told, — 
The poor man's patience better is than gold. 

COUPLET. 

A locust's leg, the poor ant's gift, is more 

Than the wild ass dressed whole from Bahr^m's ^^^ store. 



Story XXIX. 

A person had a friend who was filling the office of 
Diwan.^^ A long interval had passed without his 
happening to see him. Some one said, "It is a long 
time since thou sawest such a one." He replied, " Neither 
do I wish to see him." By chance one of the Diwan's 
people was there; he asked, "What fault has he 
committed that thou art indisposed to see him ? " He 
answered, " There is no fault ; but the time for seeing a 
Dlwan is when he is discharged from his office." 

STANZA. 

While office lasts, amid the cares of place, 

The great can well dispense with friendship's train ; 

But in the day of sorrow and disgrace, 
They come for pity to their friends again. 

"* I have been obliged to render this line freely. Literally 
it is, " See that thou dost not regard his recompense." 

"® Bahrain, the sixth of that name, was a king of Persia, 
called Gur, from his fondness for hunting the wild ass. This 
couplet is a sort of Oriental version of the widow's mite. 

"' Accountant-General, or superintendant of the imperial 
finances. 






100 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story XXX. 

Abu Hurairali^"'® used every day to wait upon Mustafa ^"'^ 
(may the blessing and peace of God be upon him !). The 
latter said, " Abu Hurairah ! vkit me less often and thou 
fcilt increase our friendship ; *' ^^ that is, " Come not every 
day, that our attachment may be augmented." 

ANECDOTE IN ILLUSTRATION. 

They said to a wise man, " Notwithstanding the kindly 
influence which the sun exerts, we have not heard that 
any one ever regarded it as a friend." He replied, " It 
is because we can see it every day except in winter, when 
it is concealed and beloved." 

STANZA. 

There is no harm in visiting a friend ; 

But not so oft that he should say, " Enough ! " 
If thou wilt thyself only reprehend. 

Thou wilt not meet from others a rebuff. 

Story XXXI. 
Having become weary of the society of my friends at 

"* That is, '* The father of the kitten." M. Semelet tells us 
Omar, who succeeded Abu-bakr as Khallfah, was so called, 
because he always carried a kitten on his arm. It was a name 
given him by Muhammad. But we are informed by the 
Eamus that the name is assigned, for no less than thirty different 

reasons, to Abdu'r-rahman bin Sakhr. Abulfeda says, ** Prseterea 
quoque postremum hunc obiit Abu-Horaira de cujus et nomine 
et genere certum non constat. Puit perpetuus comes et famulus 
prophetsB, tantumfjue ejus dictorum factorumque retulit, ut 
multi sint qui ob immanem traditionum, quas edidit, numerum 
suapectum fraudis eum habeant." Page 375, ed. Beiskii. 

*'• " Chosen," a name of Muhammad. 

^^ This last sentence is in Arabic, and therefore the Persian 
interpretation is immediately added. 






CHAPTER IL STORY XXXL loi 

Damascus, I set out for the wilderness of Jerusalem, and 
associated with the brutes, until I was made prisoner by 
the Franks, who set me to work along with Jews at 
digging in the fosse of Tripolis, till one of the principal 
men of Aleppo, between whom and myself a former 
intimacy had subsisted, passed that way and recognised 
me, and said, "What state is this? and how are you 
living ? " I replied, 

STANZA. 

" From men to mountain and to wild I fled 
Myself to heavenly converse to betake ; 
Conjecture now my state, that in a shed 
Of savages I must my dwelling make." 

COUPLET. 

Better to live in chains with those we love. 
Than with the strange 'mid flow'rets gay to move. 

He took compassion on my state, and with ten dinars 
redeemed me from the bondage of the Franks, and took 
me along with him to Aleppo. He had a daughter, 
whom he united to me in the marriage-knot, with a 
portion of a hundred dinars. As time went on, the girl 
turned out of a bad temper, quarrelsome and unruly. 
She began to give a loose to her tongue, and to disturb 
my happiness, as they have said, 

DISTICHS. 

" In a good man's house an evil wife 
Is his hell above in this present life. 
From a vixen wife protect us well, 
Save us, 6od! from the pains of hell J^ 

At length she gave vent to reproaches, and said, '*Art 
thou not he whom my father purchased from the Franks' 
prison for ten dinars ? " I replied, " Yes ! he redeemed 
me with ten dinars, and sold me into thy hands for a 
hundred." 



102 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

DISTICHS. 

I've heard that once a man of high degree 
From a wolfs teeth and claws a lamb set free. 
That night its throat he severed with a knife. 
When thus complained the lamb's departing life, 
" Thou from the wolf didst save me theri, but now, 
Too plainly I perceive the wolf art thou." 



Story XXXII. 

A king asked a religious man how his precious time 
was passed. He replied, "I pass the whole night in 
prayer, and the morning in benedictions and necessary 
requirements; and all the day in regulating my ex- 
penses." ^®^ The king commanded that they should 
supply him with food enough for his support, in order 
that his mind might be relieved from the burthen of 
his family. 

DISTICHS. 

Thou who art fettered by thy family ! 

Must ne'er again thyself imagine free. 

Care for thy sons, bread, raiment, and support, 

"Will drag thy footsteps back from heaven's court. 

All day I must the just arrangements make ; 

To God, at night, myself in prayer betake. 

Night comes ; I would to prayer my thoughts confine. 

But think, How shall my sons to-morrow dine ? 

"^ Semelet and Sprenger, and also Boss and Gladwin, read, in- 
stead of clXU malik, u^JL^ ^^Ix^ JjU {jpj^\ ^yua^ IjCXU 

malik-rd ma^mun-i ishdrat-i abid malum gashtf ^'The king 
perceived the drift of the devotee's hint ; " but I think it much 
better to omit this, and suppose that the king gave the allow- 
ance of his own free will, without its being asked for. 



CHAPTER IL STORY XXXIIL 103 

Story XXXIII. 

One of the Syrian recluses had for years worshipped in 
the desert, and sustained life by feeding on the leaves of 
trees. The king of that region made a pilgrimage to visit 
him, and said, " If thou thinkest fit I will prepare a 
place for thee in the city that thou mayest have greater 
conveniences for devotion than here, and that others may 
be benefited by the blessing of thy prayers,^®^ and may 
imitate thy virtuous acts." The devotee did not assent 
to these words. The nobles said, "To oblige the king, 
the proper course is for thee to come into the city for 
a few days and learn the nature of the place ; after which, 
if the serenity of thy precious time suffers disturbance 
from the society of others, thou wilt be still free to 
choose." They relate that the devotee entered the city, 
and that they prepared for him the garden of the king's 
own palace, a place delightsome to the mind, and suited 
to tranquiUise the spirit. 

DISTICHS. 

Like beauty's cheek, bright shone its roses red ; 
Its hyEicinths — like fair ones' ringlets spread — 
Seemed babes, which from their mother milk ne'er drew, 
In winter's cold so shrinkingly they grew. 

COUPLET. 

And the branches — on them grew pomegranate-flowers 
Like firey suspended there^ ''mid verdant bowers. 

The king forthwith despatched a beautiful damsel to him. 

^®* Sprenger's reading of this passage is far the best, or, 
rather, it is correct ; while the reading of all others, including 
my own, is ungrammatical and incorrect. As the sentence 
begins with the second person singular, the U^l shumd after 
^jwUjl anfdSj and jUxl amdl^ is a downright blunder. I saw 
this, but, unsupported by MSS., could not make an alteration, 
and am delighted to find that, on the best authority, Sprenger 
reads li^wmoUjI anfdsat, and L::^Lkcl r^^, ha-saldh-i amdlat. 



104 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN', 

VERSE. 

A young moon that e'en saints might lead astray. 
Angel in form, a peacock in display, 
When once beheld, not hermits could retain 
Their holy state, nor undisturbed remain. 

In like manner, after her, the king sent a slave, a 
youth of rare beauty and of graceful proportions. 

STANZA. 

Round him, who seems cupbearer, people sink ; 
Of thirst they die, he gives them not to drink. 
The eyes that see him, still unsated crave. 
As dropsy thirsts amid the Euphrates' wave. 

The holy man began to feed on dainties and wear soft 
raiment, and to find gratification and enjoyment in fruits 
and perfumes, as well as to survey the beauty of the 
youth and of the damsel; and the wise have said, "The 
ringlets of the beautiful are the fetters of reason, and 
a snare to the bird of intelligence." 

COUPLET. 

In thy behoof, my heart, my faith, my intellect, I vow ; 
Ija. truth, a subtle bird am I ; the snare this day art thou. 

In short, the bliss of his tranquil state began to decline ; 
as they have said, 

STANZA. 

" All that exist — disciples, doctors, saints, 
The pure and eloquent alike, all fail 
When once this world's base gear their minds attaints. 
As flies their legs in honey vainly trail." 

At length the king felt a desire to visit him. He 
found the recluse altered in appearance from what he 
was before, with a florid complexion, and waxen fat, 
pillowed on a cushion of brocade, and the fairy-faced 
slave standing at his head, with a fan of peacock's 



CHAPTER IL STORY XXXIV. loj 

feathers. The monarch was pleased at his felicitous state, 
and the conversation turned on a variety of subjects, till, 
at the close of it, the king said, " Of all the people in the 
world, I value these two sorts most — ^the learned and 
the devout." A philosophical and experienced vazir was 
present. He said, "0 king! friendship requires that 
thou shouldest do good to both these two orders of men — 
to the wise give gold, that they may study the more ; 
and to the devout give nothing, that they may remain 
devout." 

COUPLET. 

To the devout, nor pence nor gold divide ; 
If one receive it, seek another guide. 

STANZA. 

Kind manners, and a heart on God bestowed 

Make up the saint, without alms begged or bread 

That piety bequeathes. What though no load 
Of turquoise-rings on Beauty's fingers shed 

Their ray, nor from her ear the shimmering gem 
Depends ; 'tis Beauty still, and needs not them. 

STANZA. 

gentle darwesh ! blest with mind serene. 
Thou hast no need of alms or hermit's fare. 

Lady of beauteous face and graceful mien ! 

Thou well the turquoise-ring and gauds canst spare. 

COUPLET. 

Seek I for goods which not to me belong ; 

Then if men call me worldly they're not wrong.^^ 

Story XXXIV. 
In conformity with the preceding story, an aflEair of 

^^ Literally, " While I have, and seek for another's, if they 
do not call me hermit, perhaps they are right." 



io6 GULISTAN-i OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

importance occurred to the king. He said, ''If the 
termination of this matter be in accordance with my 
wishes, I will distribute so many dirams to holy men/' 
When his desire was accomplished, it became incumbent 
on him to fulfil his vow according to the conditions. He 
gave a bag of dirams to one of his favourite servants, and 
told him to distribute them among devout personages. 
They say that the servant was shrewd and intelligent. 
He went about the whole day, and returned at night, and 
kissing the dirams, laid them before the king, saying, 
" However much I searched for the holy men I could not 
find them." The king replied, " What tale is this P I 
know that in this city there are four hundred saints." 
He answered, " Lord of the earth ! the devout accept 
them not, and he who accepts them is not devout." The 
king laughed and said to his courtiers, "Strong as my 
good intentions are towards this body of godly men, and 
much as I wish to express my favour towards them, I 
am thwarted by a proportionate enmity and rejection of 
them on the part of this saucy fellow, and he has reason 
on his side." 

COTJPLET. 

When holy men accept of coin from thee. 
Leave them, and seek some better devotee. 

Story XXXV. 

They asked a profoundly learned man his opinion as 
to pious bequests. He said, "If the allowance is received 
in order to tranquillize the mind, and obtain more leisure 
for devotion, it is lawful ; but when people congregate 
for the sake of the endowment, it is unlawful." 

COUPLET. 

For sacred leisure saints receive their bread, 
Kot to gain food that ease is furnished. 



CHAPTER II. STORY XXXVII 



Story XXXVI. 



107 



A darwesh arrived at a place where tlie master of the 
house was of a beneficent disposition. A number of 
excellent persons, who were also endowed with eloquence, 
attended his circle, and each one of them, as is customary 
with men of wit, uttered some bon-mot or pleasantry. 
The darwesh had traversed the desert, and was fatigued, 
and had eaten nothing. One of them said in jest, " Thou, 
too, must say something.'* The darwesh said, "I have 
not the talent and eloquence of the others, and have not 
read anything ; be satisfied with one couplet from me." 
All eagerly exclaimed, " Say on." He said, 

COUPLET. 

" Hungry I stand, with bread so near my path, 
Like one unwedded by the women's bath." 

All laughed and approved his wit, and brought a table 
before him. The host said, " Wait a little, friend ! as my 
servants are preparing to roast some meat, cut small." 
The darwesh raised his head and said, 

COUPLET. 

" Not on my table let this roast meat be. 
Baked as I am, dry bread is roast to me." 

Story XXXVII. 

A disciple said to his spiritual guide, " What shall I 
do, for I am harassed by people through the frequency 
of their visits to me, and my precious moments are 
disturbed by their coming and going." He repKed, 
*'Lend to all who are poor, and demand a loan of all 
who are rich, and they will not come about thee again." 

COUPLET. 

If Islam's van a beggar should precede. 
To China infidels would fly his greed. 



Jo8 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Story XXXVIII. 

A lawyer said to his father, "No part of those faclnating 
speeches of the orators makes an impression on me, for 
this reason, that I do not see their practice correspond 
with their preaching." 

DISTICHS. 

While men to leave the world they warn, 
Themselves are hoarding pelf and com. 
The sage who does but preach, will ne'er, 
" With all his words, man's conscience stir. 
Who does no evil, truly wise is he; 
Not one whose acts and doctrines disagree. 

COUPLET. 

The sage, whom ease and pileasure lead aside, 
Is himself lost ; to whom can he be guide ? 

The father said, " my son I it is not proper to avert 
one's countenance from the instruction of good advisers 
solely through this unfounded notion, and to take the 
path of idleness, and to tax the wise with error; and, 
while seeking for an immaculate sage, to remain deprived 
of the advantages of wisdom, like that blind man who one 
night fell into the mire and exclaimed, " Musalman ! 
shew a lamp in my path ! " A bold hussey heard him and 
said, "Thou who canst not see a lamp, what wilt thou 
see with a lamp?" In like manner, the congregation 
of preachers^®* is like the warehouse of mercers, for there, 
until thou give money, thou canst not get the goods ; and 
here, unless thou bring good intentions, thou wilt not 
carry off a blessing." 

*** I prefer Dr. Sprenger's reading ij^^% (J***^ majlis-i 
tcaizan to the old reading, lai^ u**^^ majlts-i wa^. 



CHAPTER IL STORY XL. 109 

STANZA* 

Heed thou well the wise man's waminff. 

Though his acts his words belie ; 
Futile is th' objector's scorning, 

*' Sleepers ope not slumber's eye." 
Heed thou then well the words of warning, 

Though on a wall thou them descry. 

(in verse.) 

A holy man left the monastic cell, his vow 

Of sojourn with recluses broke, and now 

A college sought. " How diflfer then ?" I said, 

" Sages and saints, that thou the one hast fled — 

The other sought P" "This his own blanket saves," 

He said, "while that the drowning rescues from the 



waves." 



Story XL. 



A person had fallen asleep in a state of intoxication on 
the highway, and the reins of self-control had escaped 
from his hands. A devotee passed beside him, and 
noticed his disgraceful condition. The young man raised 
his head and said, "And when they pass by the slips and 
shortcomings of others, they pass by absolvingly"^^ 

VERSE. 

JFhen thou a sinner dost behold. 
Shew mercy, nor his crimes unfold. 
Seest thou my faults with scornful eye ? 
With pity rather pass me by. 

*** This is a quotation from the Kur'an, chap. xxv. v. 72. I 
have altered Sale's words, and, with all due deference, I must 
confess I think his rendering of this passage execrable. 



1 1 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDE N^, 

STANZA. 

Turn not, saint ! thy face from sinful me ; 

But rather view me with benignity. 

If I act not with honour, still do thou 

So act, and pass me by with courteous brow. 

Story XLI. 

A band of dissolute fellows came to find fault with a 
darwesh, and used unwarrantable language, and wounded 
his feelings. He carried his complaint before the chief 
of his order, and said, "I have undergone such and such.*' 
His chief replied, " son ! the patched road of darweshes 
is the garment of resignation. Every one who in this 
garb endures not disappointment patiently is a pretender, 
and it is unlawful for him to wear the robe of the darwesh. 

CX)TJPLET. 

A stone makes not great rivers turbid grow : 
When saints are vexed their shallowness they shew. 

STANZA. 

Hast thou been injured P suflfer it and clear 
Thyself from guilt in pardoning other's sin. 

brother ! since the end of all things here 
Is into dust to moulder,^^ be thou in 
Like humble mould, ere yet the change begin." 

Story XLII. 
(in verse.) 

List to my tale ! In Baghdad once, dispute 

Between a flag and curtain rose. Its suit 
The banner, dusty and with toil oppressed. 
Urged ; and the curtain, angry, thus addressed : 

iM (^U. mic, signifies "dust," and ^J^ C/U. mi 
sJmdany " to be humble.** I have endeavoured to retain the 
equivoque. 



CHAPTER IL STORY XLIIL m 

" MyseK and thou were comrades at one school ; 

Both now are slaves *neath the same monarch's rule. 

I in his service ne'er have rested, — still, 

Whatever the time, I journey at his will ; 

My foot is ever foremost in emprise ; 

Then why hast thou more honour in men's eyes ? 

Witi moon- faced slaves thy moments pass away ; 

With jasmine-scented girls thou mak'st thy stay. 

I lie neglected still in servile hands, 

Tossed by the winds my head, my feet in bands." 

" The threshold is my couch," the curtain said, 

"And ne'er, like thee, to heaven raise I my head : 

He who exalts his neck with vain conceit, 

Hurls himself headlong from his boasted seat." 

Story XLIII. 

A pious man saw an athlete who was exasperated, and 
infuriated, foaming at the mouth. He said, "What is 
the matter with this man P" Some one answered, " Such 
a one has abused him." "What!" said the holy man, 
" This contemptible fellow can lift a stone of a thousand 
mans'^^ weight, yet has not the power to support a word. 

STANZA. 

Boast not thy strength or manhood, while thy heart 
Is swayed by impulse base ; — if man thou art. 
Or woman, matters naught ; — ^but rather aim 
All mouths to sweeten, — ^thus deserve the name 
Of man ; for manliness doth not consist 
In stopping others' voices with thy fist. 

STANZA. 

Though one could brain an elephant, yet he 
Is not a man without himianity. 
In earth the source of Adam's sons began; 
Art thou not humble ? then thou art not man." 

"^ A man varies in weight in different countries. M. Semelet 
fixes it 51b.; but in India it is, in many places, 801b. 



112 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story XLIV. 

They asked a person of eminence as to the character of 
the Brothers of Purity.^^ He replied, "The meanest 
of their quaKties is, that they prefer the wishes of their 
friends to their own interests; and the wise have said, 
' the hrother whose aims are relative ^®^ to himself alone, 
is neither brother nor relative.' " 

COUPLET. 

Who goes too fast, cannot thy comrade be ; 
Fix not thy heart on one who loves not thee. 

COUPLET. 

If truth and faith sway not thy kinsman's breast, 
To break off kinsmanship with him were best. 

I remember that an opponent objected to the wording 
of this couplet, and said, "God, most glorious and most 
High, has, in the Glorious Book,'^ forbidden us to break 
the ties of blood, and has commanded us to love our 
relations; and what thou hast said is contrary to this." 
He replied, " Thou hast erred ; it is in accordance with 
the Kur'an. God most High has said, ' But if thy parents 
endeavour to prevail on thee to associate with me that con- 
cerning which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not,' " ^^^ 

^^ M. Semelet tells us, in his note on this passage, that in 
the third century of the Hi j rah there was a college of that 
name, at Baghdad. There was also a monastery in Persia so 
called. The Sufis particularly affected the name, from the 
resemblance of \La safa, and ^y^ sufly and they are designated 

in this passage by the said title. 

"• I have used this expression in order to retain the pun on 
{J*iy>' JdCuh, '* self," and (jjuJ^ Wuh, " relation." 

»»" That is, The Kur'an. 

"* This quotation is from the Kur'an, ch. xxxi. v. 15. I 
have given Sale's version. 



CHAPTER II. STOR Y XLVL 113 

COUPLET. 

Thou, for one friendly stranger, sacrifice 
A thousand kinsmen who their God despise. 

Story XLV.i« 
(in verse.) 

In Baghdad once, an aged man of wit 

His daughter to a cobbler gave ; 
The cruel fellow so the damsel bit. 

That blood began her lips to lave. 
Next morning, when the father saw her plight, 

He sought his son-in-law and said, 
"What mark of teeth is this P ignoble wight ! 

Her lip's not leather, that thou'st fed 
Upon it thus. I speak this not in jest ; 

Take what is right, but cease to scoff. 
When once ill habits have the soul possessed, 

Till^the last day they're not left off." 

Story XLYI. 

A lawyer had an extremely ugly daughter, who had 
arrived at maturity ; but, notwithstanding her dowry and 
a superabundance of good things, no one shewed any 
desire to wed her. 

couplet. 

Brocade and damask but iU gra<5e 
A bride of loathly form and face. 

In short, they were compelled to unite her in the 
nuptial bond with a blind man. They relate that at 
that time there arrived a physician from Ceylon, who 
restored the eyes of the blind to sight. They said to the 

*" This story and the next seem to belong rather to Chapter V. 

8 



114 GLLISTAM; OR, ROSE GARDEIT 

lawyer, " Why dost thou not get thy son-in-law cured ? " 
He replied, " I am afraid that he should recover his sight 
and divorce my daughter." 

HEMISTICH. 

An ugly woman's spouse is better blind. 

Story XLVII. 

A king was regarding a company of darweshes con- 
temptuously. One of them, acute enough to divine his 
feelings, said, " king ! we, in this world, are inferior to 
thee in military pomp, but enjoy more pleasure, and are 
equal with thee in death, and superior to thee in the 
day of resurrection. 

DISTICHS. 

The conqueror may in every wish succeed ; 
Of bread the darwesh daily stands in need ; 
But in that hour when both return to clay, 
Naught but their winding-sheet they take away. 
When man makes up his load this realm to leave. 
The beggar finds less cause than kings to grieve. 

The outward mark of a darwesh is a patched garment and 
shaven head ; but his essential qualities are a living 
heart and mortified passions. 

STANZA. 

Not at strife's door sits he ; when thwarted, ne'er 
Starts up to contest ; all unmoved his soul. 

He is no saint who from the path would stir. 

Though a huge stone should from a mountain roll. 

The darwesh's course of life is spent in commemorating, 
and thanking, and serving, and obeying God; and in 
beneficence and contentment ; and in the acknowledgment 
of one God and in reliance on Him ; and in resignation 
and patience. Every one who is endued with these 



CHAPTER II. STORY XLVIIL 



115 



qualities is^ in fact, a darwesh, though dressed in a tunic. 
But a babbler, who neglects prayer, and is given to 
sensuality, and the gratification of his appetite ; who 
spends his days till night-fall in the pursuit of licentious- 
ness, and passes his night till day returns in careless 
slumber ; eats whatever is set before him, and says what- 
ever comes uppermost ; is a profligate, though he wear 
the habit of a darwesh. 

STANZA. 

thou ! whose outer robe is falsehood, pride. 
While inwardly thou art to virtue dead ; 

Thy curtain ^^ of seven colours put aside. 

While th' inner house with mats is poorly spread." 

Story XLVIII. 
(in verse.) 

1 saw some handf uls of the rose in bloom. 
With bands of grass suspended from a dome. 

I said, " What means this worthless grass, that it 
Should in the roses' fairy circle sit P " 
Then wept the grass and said, " Be still ! and know 
The kind their old associates ne'er forego. 
Mine is no beauty, hue, or fragrance, true ! 
But in the garden of the Lord I grew." 
His ancient servant I, 
Beared by His bounty from the dust ; 

Whatever my quality, 
I'll in His favouring mercy trust. 

No stock of worth is mine, 
Nor fund of worship, yet He will 

A means of help divine ; 
When aid is past. He'll save me still. 

'^^ It is customary in Persia to have a curtain at the portal of 
the house, the ridmess of which depends on the circumstances 
of the owner. 



Ii6 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN^. 

Those who have power to free, 
Let their old slaves in freedom live^ 

Thou Glorious Majesty ! 
Me, too, Thy ancient slave, forgive. 
Sadi ! move thou to resignation's shrine, 
man of God ! the path of God be thine. 
Hapless is he who from this haven turns, 
All doors shall spurn him who this portal spurns. 

Story XLIX. 

They asked a sage, "Which is better, courage or 
liberality P " He replied, " He who possesses liberality 
has no need of courage/' 

COUPLET. 

Graved on the tomb of Bahram Gur we read, 
" Of the strong arm the generous have no need." 

STANZA. 

Hatim^** is dead ; but to eternity 
His lofty name will live renowned for good. 

Give alms of what thou hast. The vineyard, see ! 
Yields more, the more the dresser prunes the wood. 

*•* Abu Adi Jatim-bin-Abdu 'llah-bin-Sadu'l Tai, usually 
caUed Hatim Tai, was an illustrious Arab, renowned for his 
generosity. He lived before Muhammad, but his son Adi, who 
died at the age of 120, in the 68th year of the Hijrah, is said 
to have been a companion of the Prophet. Tai is the name 
of a powerful Arabian tribe, to which Hatim belonged. One 
anecdote of Hatim's liberahty is very celebrated. The Greek 
Emperor had sent ambassadors to him for a famous horse he 
possessed, whose swiftness and beauty were unrivalled, and 
which he valued with all an Arab's pride. When the envoys 
arrived, through some accident he had no food to give them ; 
he, therefore, killed his favourite steed, and served up part of 
its flesh. When their hunger was satisfied, the envoys told the 
object of their mission, and were astounded at learning that the 
matchless courser had been sacrificed to shew them hospitality. 



117 



CHAPTEE III. 

ON THE EXCELLENCE OF CONTENTMENT. 

Story I. 

An African mendicant, in the street of the mercers of 
Aleppo, said, " wealthy sirs ! if you had but justice and 
we contentment, the custom of begging would be banished 
from the world.'' 

STANZA. 

Contentment ! do thou me enrich ; for those 

Who have thee not are blest with wealth in vain. 

Wise Lukman for his treasure ^^ patience chose : 
Who have not patience wisdom ne'er attain. 

Story II. 

There were in Egypt two sons of an Amir.^^ One 
studied science; the other gained wealth. The former 
became the most learned man of the age ; and the latter 
king of Egypt. The rich one then looked with scornful 
eyes on his learned brother, and said, "I have arrived at 
sovereign power, and thou hast remained in thy poverty 

^ Ross reads -^o ganj^ " treasure," which I much prefer to 

-^ kunfy ** comer," the reading of Gladwin, Semelet, and 

Sprenger. Lukman did not choose " retirement." His wisdom 
was (f>p6vrj(ri<; picked up in the world, not iirKrrrffirj, 

^^ Mebuhr, in his History of Arabia, tells us that the descen- 
dants of the Prophet are called Amirs, but the general meaning 
of the word is " nobleman." 



1 1 8 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN^. 

as at the first." He replied, "0 brother! It behoves 
me to render thanks to God Most High, for His bounty, 
in that I have obtained the inheritance of the Prophets— 
that is to say, wisdom; and thou the inheritance of 
Firaun and Haman,^^ namely, the land of Egypt." 

DISTICHS. 

I am the ant which under foot men tread, 
And not the hornet whose fierce sting they dread. 
How, for this boon, shall I my thanks express P 
That I, to injure man, am powerless. 

Story III. 

I have heard of a darwesh who was consumed with the 
flames of hunger, and who sewed rag upon rag, and 
consoled himself with this couplet. 

COUPLET. 

I'm with dry bread contented, and with tatters ; for His 

better 
To bear up imder sorrow, than to be another's debtor. 

Some one said to him, " Why dost thou sit here P for 
such a one in this city has a generous mind, and displays 
a mimificence that extends to all, and his loins are ever 
girded to serve the distressed, and he sits at the gate of 
all hearts [waiting to fulfil their wishes]. If he should 
become acquainted with the state of thy circumstances, he 
would consider it an obligation to serve a man of worth, 
and regard it as a precious opportunity." The darwesh 

'^^ Dr. Sprenger omits the words jo^^ j w?^ Mmany and thus 
gets rid of the difficulty of the name Haman being associated 
with that of Pharaoh, the only Haman we know being the 
favourite of Ahasuerus. However, the names occur together in 
the Kur'an, chaps, xxviu. and xl., where Haman appears to be 
the vazir of Pharaoh, and therefore only of the same name as 
our Haman, not the same person. 



^«a3 



CHAPTER III. STORY IV. 



119 



replied, " Be silent ! for it is better to die in indigence 
than to expose one's wants to another : as they have said, 

STANZA. 

* Better to suffer, and sew patch o'er patch. 
Than begging letters to the rich to write. 
Truly it doth hell's torments fairly match, 
To mount by others to celestial light.' " 

Story IV. 

One of the kings of Persia sent a skilful physician to 
wait on Mustafa^* (on whom be peace!). He remained 
some years ia the country of Arabia ; but no one came to 
test his abilities, nor asked him for medicine. One day 
he presented himself before the Chief of the Prophets (on 
whom be peace !) and complained, saying, " They sent me 
to heal your companions, and during this long interval no 
one has addressed himself to me, that this slave might 
discharge the duty for which he was appointed." The 
Prophet (peace be upon him !) said, " This people have a 
custom of not eating anything till hunger compels them, 
and of withdrawing their hands from the repast while 
still hungry." " This," said the physician, " is the cause 
of their good health." He then kissed the ground re- 
spectfully and departed. 

DISTICHS. 

The wise will then begin their speech. 
Then towards food their fingers reach. 
When silence would with ills be rife. 
When fasting would endanger life : 
Such speech were, certes, wisdom, too. 
And from such food will health accrue. 

"• A name of Muhammad. Vide I^ote 179. 



120 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story V. 

A person made frequent vows of repentance and broke 
them again, till a venerable personage said to bim, ^'I 
understand that tbou bast tbe babit of gormandizing, 
and tbe bond of tby appetites — ^tbat is to say, tby vows of 
penitence — ^is finer tban a bair ; and tby appetites^ as 
tbpu f osterest tbem, would break a cbain ; and a day will 
come wben tbey will destroy tbee." 

COUPLET, 

A wolf*s wbelp bad been fostered till, one day. 
Grown strong, it tore its master's life away. 

Story VI. 

In tbe annals of Ardsbir Babakan,^^ it is related tbat 
be asked an Arabian pbysician bow mucb food ougbt to 
be eaten daily. He replied, " A bundred dirbams' weigbt 
would suffice.*' Tbe king replied, " Wbat strength will 
tbis quantity give P " Tbe pbysician answered, " Thi9 
quantity will carry thee; and that which is in excess of it 
thou must carry ; " or, " Tbis quantity will support tbee, 
and tbou must support whatever thou addest to this.'* 

COUPLET. 

We eat to live, God's praises to repeat ; 
Thou art persuaded tbat we live to eat. 

Story VII. 

Two darwesbes of Khurasan, travelling together, united 
in companionship. One was weak, and was in the habit 
of breaking his fast after every two nights ; and the other 
was strong, and made three meals a day. It happened 

^^ This king was the first of the fourth Persian dynasty or 
Sassanides. He was the son of a shepherd, who married the 
daughter of one Babak — Whence the name. He was co-temporary 
with the Emperor Commodus. 






CHAPTER IIL STORY IX. 121 

tliat at the gate of a city they were seized, on suspicion of 
being spies, and were both imprisoned, and the door 
closed up with mud. After two weeks it was discovered 
that they were innocent. They opened the door, and 
found the strong man dead, and the weak man safe and 
alive. They were still in astonishment at this, when a 
wise man said, "The opposite of this would have been 
strange ; for this man was a great eater, and could not 
support the being deprived of food, and so perished. * But 
the other was in the habit of controlling himself; he 
endured, as was his wont, and was saved." 

STANZA. 

When to eat little is one's habit grown, 
Then, should we want, we bear it easily ; 

Do we indulge when plenty is our own. 

Then, when want happens, we of hardship die. 

Story VIII. 

A sage forbade his son to eat much, as satiety causes 
sickness. The son replied, " my father ! hunger kills. 
Hast thou not heard what the wits have said P ' That it is 
better to die of repletion than to endure hunger.' " The 
father answered, "Observe moderation; for God Most 
High has said, ' Eat and drink ; hut do not exceed,"' 

COUPLET. 

Eat not so as to cause satiety ; 
Nor yet so little as of want to die. 

STANZA. 

The sense by food is gratified ; yet still 

Th' excess of it brings sickness. Did you eat 

Conserve of roses in excess, 'twere ill : 
Eat late ; then bread is as that conserve sweet." 

Story IX. 
They said to a sick man, "What does thy heart 



122 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

desire ? " He replied, " Only that it may desire some- 
thing/' 200 

CJOUPLET. 

For stomachs loaded or oppressed with pain. 
The costKest viands are prepared in vain. 

Story X. 

In the city of "Wasit,^^ some Sufis had incurred a debt 
of a few dirams to a butcher. Every day he dimned 
them, and spoke roughly to them. The society were 
distressed by his reproaches, but had no remedy, save 
patience. A holy man among them said, " It is easier to 
put off the stomach with a promise of food, than the 
butcher with a promise of payment.'* 

STANZA. 

Better renounce the favour of the great. 

Than meet their porter's gibes at thy expense ; 

Rather through want of food succumb to fate. 
Than bear the butcher's dunning insolence. 

Story XI. 

A brave man had received a terrible wound in a war 
with the Tartars. Some one said to him, " Such a mer- 
chant possesses a remedy. If thou ask him, perhaps he 
may give thee a little." Now they say that that merchant 
was as notorious for his stinginess as Hatim Tai for his 
liberality. 

^ The other translators read JJbl as:^ na Tdiwahadj and render 
thus, " Only that it may not desire anything.'* This, I think, 
destroys the point of the story. The sick man wanted food, and 
being asked what he would wish to eat, replied, " That his wish 
was, that he could fancy anything." 

^^ Wasit \lit., *' middle "] is a city lying between Kufah and 
Basrah, on the Tigris, built A.H. 83, by Hajjaj bin Yusuf. . 



CHAPTER III, STORY XII, 



1*3 



COUPLET. 

If the sun upon his table-cloth instead of dry bread lay, 
In aU the world none would behold again the light of day. 

The warrior replied, " If I ask him for the remedy, he 
may give it or he may not ; and if he give it, it may do 
me good or it may not. In every case to ask of him is 
deadly poison.'* 

COUPLET. 

Whoe'er to beg of sordid persons stoops. 
His flesh may profit, but his spirit droops. 

And the wise have said, " "Were they, for example, to 
sell the water of life at the price of honour,^^ a wise man 
would not buy it ; since to die honourably is better than 
to live disgracefully." 

COUPLET. 

The colocynth from friends tastes better far, 

Than sweets from those whose features scowling are. 

Stoey XIL 

One of the learned had a large family and small means. 
He stated his case to a great personage who entertained 
a favourable opinion of him. The great man was dis- 
pleased with the request, and regarded with disappro- 
bation this annoyance of begging on the part of a man of 
decorum. 

STANZA. 

Seekest thou thy friend P let not thy face be sad 
With thy misfortunes, lest thou cloud his joy : 

When asking favours let thy looks be glad ; 
For fortune's not to smiling brows more coy. 

*** There is a play on words here which camiot be preserved 
in English : ^%s c— >l ah rut, Kterally, " water of the face," 

signifies '' honour," and is here made to answer to c;L^ c^l 
al'i l^idt, ** water of life." 



124 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

They relate that he increased his allowance a little, and 
diminished his regard for him much. After some days, 
when the learned man saw that the great man's wonted 
friendship was not continued to him, he said, 

COUPLET. 

^^Fie on that food which through hose means you taste ! 
The cauldron* 8 Established, but your worth* s abased.^^ 

COUPLET. 

My bread increases ; but my name's depressed : 
Sure want is better than a base request." 

Story XIII. 

A darwesh was suffering from a pressing exigency. 
Some one said to him, ^' Such a one possesses incalculable 
wealth. If he were informed of your wants, he would 
probably not allow of any delay in relieving them." He 
replied, " I do not know him." The other answered, " I 
will conduct thee." He took his hand and brought him 
to that person's door. The darwesh beheld a man with a 
hanging lip, and sitting in an ill-tempered attitude : he 
said not a word and went back. The other said to him, 
" What hast thou done ? " He replied, " I renounced his 
gift for the sake of his looks." 

*" There is a double equivoque in this Arabic couplet, 
jji kid/r, is " a cauldron," and i*\3 kad/r, is " worth," and 
muntasaby ''established," signifies also inflected with 
nashf this nasb being the grammatical expression for 
jMboTy or the short "a" vowel-sound. The iji kid/r, "caul- 
dron," is said then to be ^.-^tor*.'^^ muntasab, made into jSi 
kadr, '* worth; " and in the same way the jJa kadr, " worth," 
is said to be ^Jls^ makh f uz (which, as well as ''abased," 
signifies also kasrated, or inflected with the vowel "1") or 
made into »j3 kidr, "cauldron." 



CHAPTER III. STORY XIV. 125 

STANZA. 

To one of scowling face tell not thy woes, 
Lest that his evil temper should thee pain ; 

But if thy griefs thou shouldst at all disclose, 
Be it to one from whom thou mayst obtain. 
In his kind countenance, a ready gain. 

Story XIV. 

One year there bef el such a drought at Alexandria that 
the reins of endurance escaped from the hands of men, 
and the gates of heaven were closed against the earth, and 
the complaints of the terrestrial inhabitants ascended to 
heaven. 

STANZA. 

Nor beast, nor bird, nor fish, nor ant was there, 

But to the sky arose its cry of pain. 
Strange that the smoke-wreaths of the people's prayer 

Became not clouds, their streaming tear-drops rain. 

In such a year, an effeminate person (be he far from 
my friends !), to describe whom would be indecorous, 
especially in the august presence of the great; yet to 
pass over whom altogether in a careless manner would not 
be right, lest some party should impute it to the inability 
of the speaker : wherefore, we will sum up the matter 
with this couplet, that a little may be a sample of much, 
and a handful a specimen of an ass-load. 

COUPLET. 

A Tartar might that wretch effeminate 
Slay, and not, therefore, merit a like fate. 

Such a person, a partial description of whom thou hast 
heard, possessed that year incalculable wealth. He gave 
silver and gold to the necessitous, and kept a table for 
travellers. A party of darweshes, who were reduced to 
the last extremity by the violence of their hunger, formed 



126 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

• 

the intention of accepting his invitation, and came to 
consult with me upon the matter. I withheld my consent, 
and said, 

STANZA. 

" Lions devour not food which dogs forego, 

Of hunger though they perish in their den. 
Give up thy frame to famine, want, and woe ; 

But stretch not forth thy hand to baser men. 
A fool a second Faridun may be 

In wealth ; yet him you lightly should esteem. 

Silk and brocade upon th' unworthy seem 
Like gilding on a wall and lazuli.'' 

Story XV. 

They said to Hatim Tal, " Hast thou seen or heard of 
any one in the world more magnanimous than thyself ? " 
He replied, " Yes ! One day I had sacrificed forty camels, 
aud had gone out with the chiefs of the Arabs to a comer 
of the desert; there I saw a wood-cutter, who had 
collected a bundle of thorns. I said, * Why dost thou not 
go to Hatim's entertainment ? for the people have assem- 
bled at his board.' He replied, 

COUPLET. 

* By theif 'own efforts those who earn their bread, 
Need not by Hatim Tai's alms be fed.' 

I perceived that in magnanimity and generosity he was 
my superior.'" 

^^^TORY XVI. 

The Prophet Musa^^ (on him be peace !) saw a darwesh 
who, to hide his nakedness, had concealed himself in the 
sand, and who said, " Musa ! pray for me, that God 
Most High may give me wherewith to live, for I am so 

^ Moses. 



CHAPTER III. STORY XVI. 



127 



weak as to be at the point of death/' Miisa (peace be 
upon him !) prayed, so that God Most High granted him 
assistance. Some days after, when the Prophet was 
returning from his devotions, he saw the darwesh in 
custody, and surrounded by a crowd of people. He asked, 
"What has befaUen himP'' They repKed, "He drank 
intoxicating liquor, raised a disturbance, and slew a man ; 
now they are going to QUAGi retaliation/' 

VERSE. 

Had the poor cat but wings, it would erase 
The sparrow's progeny from nature's face ; 
So, too, the feeble, could they but prevail. 
Their f ellow-impotents would soon assail. 

Miisa (peace be on him !) acknowledged the wisdom of 
the Creator, and expressed contrition for his boldness, 
repeating the verse, " And if God had pknteamlt/ afforded 
subsistence to Sis creatures^ they would have rebelled on the 
earth" 

COUPLET. 

What, proud one ! plunged thee in this hapless plight ? 
Would that the ant ne^er had the power of flight ! 

VERSE. 

When to a blockhead riches, rank accrue, . 

His f oUy on his head a buffet brings. 
Is not this proverb of the sages true ? 

" 'Twere better for the ant not to have wings." 

COUPLET. 

Of honey hath the Sire a plenteous store ; 

But the son's feverish [and must not have more].^ 

COUPLET. 

That Being, who increases not thy wealth. 
Better than thou, knows what is for thy health. 

** That is, our Heavenly Father has store of blessings ; but 
maa needs chastisement rather than indulgence. 



128 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story XVII. 

I once saw an 'Arab amid a circle of jewellers, at 
Basrah, who was relating the following story : " Once on 
a time I had lost my way in the desert, and had not a 
particle of food left, and I had made up my mind to 
perish, when, suddenly, I found a purse full of pearls. 
Never shall I forget the gratification and delight I felt 
when I imagined them to be parched wheat; nor again, 
the bitterness and despair when I found them to be 
pearls." 

STANZA. 

In the parched desert and the drifting sands. 
What to the thirsty is or pearl or shell P 

When the tired traveller f oodless, powerless stands, 
No more than sherds can gold his wants expel. 

Story XVIII. 
An Arab in the desert, from excess of thirst, exclaimed, 

VERSE. 

" would thaty ere I die, 

I might at length one day obtain my mil : 
A river dashing by 

Knee-deep, while I at ease my bucket Jill" 

In the same way a traveller had lost his way in a vast 
plain, and his food and strength were exhausted, and he 
had some dirams in his belt. He wandered about much, 
but could not regain the road, and perished of fatigue. 
A party arrived there, and saw the dirams spread out 
before his face, and these words traced on the ground, 

stanza. 

" Though he aU yellow gold, pure gold possessed. 
His wishes still the f oodless man would miss. 
A turnip boiled, to the poor wretch distressed 
In deserts, than crude silver better is.'' 



CHAPTER III, STORY XX. 129 . 



Story XIX. 



I never complained of the vicissitudes of fortune, nor 
suffered my face to be overcast at the revolution of the 
heavens, except once, when my feet were bare, and I had 
not the means of obtaining shoes. I came to the chief 
mosque of Kufah^* in a state of much dejection, and saw 
there a man who had no feet. I returned thanks to God 
and acknowledged his mercies, and endured my want of 
shoes with patience, and exclaimed, 

STANZA. 

" Roast fowl to him that's sated will seem less 
Upon the board than leaves of garden cress. 
While, in the sight of helpless poverty. 
Boiled turnip will a roasted pullet be." 

Story XX. 

A certain king, with some of his principal ojHicers, 
chanced to be in a hunting-park, at a great distance from 
any habitation, in time of winter. Night fell ; they 
observed the house of a peasant, and the king said, " Let 
us go there for the night, that we do not suffer from the 
cold." One of his vazirs said, " It would not be suitable 
to the dignity of a king to take refuge in the hut of a 
miserable peasant. Let us pitch our tent here and kindle 
a fire." The peasant learned what had taken place. He 
prepared what food he had ready and took it to the king, 
and, after kissing the ground respectfully, said, "The 
lofty dignity of the king will not be lowered by thus 
much condescension : but these are unwilling that the 
rank of the peasant should be exalted." The king was 
pleased with his address. He transferred himself to his 
cottage for the night, and in the morning gave him a robe 
of honour and other rich presents. I have heard that the 

9 



^ S' iK^tiW 



130 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

villager ran by the king's stirrup for some distance, and 
said, 

STANZA. 

" Of the king's glorious attributes, not one 

"Was lost by honouring the hostelrie 
Of the poor peasant, whose peaked cap the sun 

Has reached^ since on his head fell, shelteringly. 
The shadow of a monarch great like thee." 



Story XXI. 

They relate that a horrible mendicant possessed great 
treasures. A king said to him, '^ It appears that thou 
possessest immense wealth, and I have an emergent 
occasion ; if thou wouldst assist me with a little of it by 
way of loan, when the revenue of the country comes in 
it shall be faithfully repaid." He replied, " It would be 
imworthy of the lofty dignity of Earth's Lord to defile 
the hand of his nobleness with the property of a beggar 
like me, who has scraped it up grain by grain." The 
king replied, " There is no occasion to be distressed on 
that account, for I shall give it to the Tartars— ;/?/^A to the 
filthy^ 

COUPLET. 

Mortar^ they tell t«s, i% by no means sweet; 
'Tis then to stop foul drains with it more meet, 

COUPLET. 

A Christianas well may not be pure, His true; 
^ Twill do to wash the carcase of a Jew. 

I have heard that he bowed not to the king's command, 
and began to shuffle and be insolent. The king then 
ordered them to take out of his clutches, by force and 
intimidation, the amount under discussion. 



CHAPTER III, STORY XXII, 131. 

DISTICHS. 

When by kind means succeeds not an affair, 
Eougli treatment then we must apply and force. 

Whoever of himself will nothing spare, 

Others will him, too, nothing spare, of course. 

Story XXII. 

I met^ with a merchant who had a hundred and fifty 
camels of burthen and forty slaves and servants. One 
night, in the island of Kish, he took me to his room, and 
did not cease the whole night from talking in a rhodo- 
montade fashion, and saying, " I have such a correspon- 
dent in Turkistan, and such an agency in Hindustan ; 
and this paper is the title-deed of such a piece of ground, 
and for such a thing I have such a person as security." 
At one time he said, " I intend to go to Alexandria, as 
the climate is agreeable." At another, " No ! for the 
western sea is boisterous ; Sadi ! I have one more 
journey before me: when that is accomplished I shall 
retire for the rest of my life and give up trading." I 
said, " What journey is that ? " He replied, " I shall 
take Persian sulphur to China, for I have heard that it 
brings a prodigious price there ; and thence I shall take 
China-ware to Greece, and Grecian brocade to India, and 
Indian steel to Aleppo, and mirrors of Aleppo to Yaman,^^ 
and striped cloth of Taman to Persia, and after that I 
shall give up trading and sit at home in my shop." He 
continued for some time rambling in this strain until he 
had no power to utter more. He then said, " SadI ! do 
thou say something of what thou hast seen and heard." 
I replied, *' Thou hast not left me a single subject to talk 
about." 

^ Literally, " saw " ; but here one may translate it, ** was in 
the habit of seeing." 
^ Arabia Pelix. 



132 GLLISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

VERSE. 

Hast thou not heard, wliat once a mercliant cried. 
As in the desert from his beast he sank F 
" The worldling's greedy eye is satisfied. 

Or by contentment or the grave-yard dankJ 



yi 



Story XXIII. 

I have heard of a wealthy man who was as famous for 
his parsimony as Hatim fai for generosity. His outward 
estate was adorned with riches, but the baseness of his 
nature was so inherent in him that he would not have 
given a loaf to save a life, nor would have indulged the 
cat of Abu Hurairah^^ with a scrap, nor have cast a bone 
to the dog of the Companions of the Cave. In short, no 
one ever saw his mansion with the doors open, nor his 
table spread. 

COUPLET. 

No darwesh knew his viands save by smell, 

Nor birds picked crumbs which from his table fell. 

I have heard that he was voyaging to Egypt by the 
western sea with all the pride of Pharaoh, according to the 
words of the Most Sigh, ''until his submersion arrived:" 
All of a sudden an adverse wind sprang up round the 
vessel : as they have said. 



COUPLET. 



Thy peeTish mind all things must still displease. 
The ship not always finds a favouring breeze.'' 

He raised his hands in prayer, and began to make 
imavailing lamentations. God Most High has said^ " When 
they embark in a ship, they pray to God.*^ 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXIIL 



133 



COUPLET. 

Wliat will it avail the creature to stretcli forth his hand 

in grief ? 
Baised in prayer to God in peril, but withheld from 

man's relief.^ 

STANZA. 

Go, with thy silver and thy gold, provide 
Blessings to men ; nor from thyself withhold 

Enjoyment due ; thus ever shall abide 

Thy house, its bricks of silver and of gold.^ 

They relate that he had poor relations in Egypt, who 
were enriched by the residue of his property, and who, 
at his death, rent their old garments, and cut out others 
of silk and stuffs of Damietta. During the same week, 
too, I saw one of them mounted on a fleet courser, with a 
fairy-faced youth running at his stirrup. I said to myself, 

STANZA. 

" Ah ! could the dear defunct again 
Baxjk to his kin and friends repair. 
Worse than his death would be the pain 
Of restitution to his heir." 

On the strength of a former acquaintance which existed 
between uls, I pulled his sleeve and said, 

COUPLET. 

" Enjoy thy fortune, gentle sir ! for he. 
Luckless, amassed ; th' enjoyment, left to thee." 



208 



The literal translation of this impracticable couplet is — 
" What avails the hand of entreaty to the needy creature, 
Who in the hour of prayer raises it to God, but at the time 

for liberality puts it under his armpit." 
^ The meaning of this is : Thou shalt obtain for thyself a 
heavenly dwelling, built, as it were, by the proper use of thy 
treasures in this world. 



134 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 



Story XXIV, 

A strong fish fell into tlie net of a weak fisherman. 
He liad not strength to secure it ; the fish got the better 
of him, dragged the net from his hands, and escaped. 

STANZA. 

The slave went forth for water from the brook, 
The streamlet rose and bore the slave away. 

Each time the net its prize of fishes took. 
But of the net the fish made prize to-day. 

The other fishermen were vexed, and reproached him, 
saying, '' Such a fish fell into thy net, and thou couldst 
not keep it ! " He replied, " brothers ! what could I 
do? seeing that it was not my lucky day, and the fish 
had some days remaining." ^^® 

MAXIM. 

A fisherman without luck cannot capture a fish in the 
Tigris ; and unless his predestined time be come, a fish 
will not die on the dry land. 



Story XXV. 

One whose hands and feet had been cut off killed a 
millepede. A devout personage passed by and said, 
" Holy God ! though it had a thousand feet, yet, when 
its time was come, it could not escape from one without 
either hands or feet." 



^^^ There is a play on the words here which cannot be well 
preserved in English. \Jjd tuzI^ signifies " luck " as well as 
** days " [».tf. remnant of life]. 



CHAPTER III, STORY XXVI. 135 

DISTICHS. 

When from behind speeds our last enemy, 
Fate fetters us, how fleet soe'er we be. 
And in that instant when comes up the foe, 
'Tis vain to handle the Kaianian bow.^^^ 



Story XXVI. 

I saw a fat blockhead, with a gorgeous robe on his 
body, and an Arabian horse under him, and a turban of 
fine Egyptian linen on his head. Some one said, " 
S^ ! what thinkest thou of this splendid brocade on 
this animal who knows nothing ? " I replied, " It is a 
villainous scrawl written in golden letters." 

COUPLET. 

He, among men, an ass appears to be, 
Certes a very calf-like effigy ?^^ 

STANZA. 

One cannot say this brute resembles man. 
Save by cloak, turban, outward garniture; 

Go thou his goods, estates, possessions scan, 
Naught but his life is takeable, be sure. 

STANZA. 

Though one of birth illustrious should grow poor. 
This will his lofty station naught impair : 

And though gold nails may stud his silver door. 
Think not a Jew can aught that's noble share. 

'" The Kaianian is the second dynasty of Persian kings, of 
whom the first was Kail^ubad or Darius the Mede. Archery is 
said to have reached perfection under these monarchs. 

"* There is a reference here to the Kur'an, ch. vii. v. 148, 
" And the people of Moses, after his departure, took a corporeal 
calf, made of their ornaments, which lowed." 



1^6 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Story XXVII. 

A tliief said to a beggar, ''Art thou not ashamed to 
hold out thy hand for the smallest particle of silver to 
every contemptible fellow ? " He replied, 

COUPLET. 

" Better hold the hand for coin, though small. 
Than lose, for one and half a dang,^^^ it all." 

Story XXVIII. 

They relate that an athlete had suffered so much from 
adverse fortune that he was reduced to despair, and 
bemoaned himself on account of his keen appetite and 
narrow means. He went to his father to complain, and 
asked his leave to set out on his travels, in order that by 
the strength of his arm he might succeed in grasping the 
skirt of his wishes. 

COUPLET. 

Merit and skill are weak while in the husk : 
Aloes they cast on fire, and crush down musk. 

The father said, " son ! put out of thy head this im- 
practicable idea, and draw the feet of contentment under 
the skirt of security : as the wise have said, ' Riches are 
not to be gained by exertion; the best resource is to 
chagrin oneself less.' 

COUPLET. 

No one by strength of arm can fortune find : 
'Tis labour lost— coUyrium for the blind* 

*" A dang is the sixth part of a dirham, or, according to 
some, the fourth part, and therefore equal to about one penny. 
M. Semelet remarks that this line shews that theft, in the time 
of S&di, was punished by amputation, if the tMng stolen was 
worth one and a half dang ; I suppose, however, that this sum 
is used generally for any trifling value. 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXVIII. 



m 



99 



COUPLET. 

Hast thou two hundred virtues on each hair ? 
With adverse fate thou still wilt badly fare. 

COUPLET. 

What can th' ill-starred athlete do ? how thrive ? 
Can he, though strong, with stronger fortune strive ? 

The son replied, " father ! the advantages of travel are 
manifold ; in enlivening the mind, and acquiring advan- 
tages, and seeing wonderful things, and hearing marvels 
and in amusement, in passing through new countries, and 
in correspondence with friends, and in the acquisition of 
rank and courteous manners, and in the increase of wealth 
and profit, and as a means of obtaining companions, and 
making proof of diflferent fortunes : as those who travel 
in the path of spirituality have said, 

STANZA. 

* Whilst thou art wedded to thy shop and home, 

simpleton ! a man thou ne'er wilt be ; 
Go blithely forth, and in the wide world roam, 
Ere thou roam'st from it to eternity.' " 

The father answered, " son ! the advantage of travel in 
the manner thou hast mentioned is great ; but it is secured 
to five kinds of persons. The first is the merchant, who, 
by the possession of riches and affluence, and active slaves, 
and enchanting damsels, and brave servants, enjoys all 
the luxuries of the world, being each day in a city, and 
each night at a halting-place, and each instant in an 
abode of pleasure. 

STANZA. 

In mountain- waste, orf orest wild, the rich man isnot strange ; 
Where'er he goes his tent is pitched, and there his 
court is made. 
But he who has not this world's gear must ever friendless 
range, 
Kor even in his fatherland will comfort find nor aid. 



138 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

The second is the learned man^ from whose sweetness of 
speech, and power of language, and stock of eloquence, 
wherever he goes, all hasten to serre him and do him 
honour. 

STANZA. 

The wise man's nature is like purest gold : 

Where'er he comes all know his value, prize his worth. 
But men will, cheap as leathern money, hold 

The witless lord, save in the land that gave him birth. 

The third is the beautiful person, being such that the 
heart 2^* of persons of eminence inclines to friendship with 
him, and his society is regarded by them as a fortunate 
circimistance, and his service as a favour : as they have 
said : ' A little beauty is better than much wealth : a 
fair countenance is a salve for heart-sickness, and the key 
of closed doors.' 

STANZA, 

Let beauty travel where it will, it finds respectful greeting. 
Though its own parents, wrathfully, should drive it 
from its home. 
One day, amid the Kur'an's leaves, a peacock's feather 
meeting, 
I said, * This place exceeds thy worth, thou dost it 
not become.' 
* Peace I ' it replied, ^for to each one who wears the charm 
of beauty. 
Go where he will, all him receive with favour as a 
duty.' 

When the son beauty has, and courtesy, 
Let him not care how cold his sire may be. 

'^* M. Semelet recommends Jc^ Icunad for Jc^ kunand, aad 
Dr. Sprenger reads it; I do not, therefore, hesitate to adopt 
it in this translation. 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXVIII. 139 

He IS a pearl, what if tlie shell be lost P 

Who for a priceless^*^ pearl will grudge the cost P 

The fourth is he who possesses a sweet voice ; who, with 
the throat of David, restraius the water from flowing, 
and arrests the bird in its flight ; and, moreover, by- 
means of this excellence, captivates the hearts of men, 
and spiritual persons eagerly desire his companionship. 

COUPLET. 

My ears attend his melody ; 

Whd% this whose bands^^^ the lutestrings try ? 

STANZA. 

How winningly a soft and tender voice 

Comes to the ears of f ri^ids, whom th' early bowl 

Makes blithe ! in it, more than in looks, rejoice 
All hearts; these the sense gladden : that the soul. 

The flfth is the artisan, who gains the means of support 
by the labour of his arm, so that his character is not 
jeoparded for bread : as the wise have said, 

STANZA. 

' If want from his own city should expel 
A cotton-carder, he'd not feel distress ; 
But if the king of Nimroz, ruined, fell 

From his high place, he'd slimiber supperless.' 

Qualities such as I have described are a means of consola- 
tion in travel, and a sweet cause of enjoyment ; but one 

*" There is a very good equivoque here which camiot be 
repeated in English: ^^jj^j yatm, signifies "unique, precious," 
and also " orphan." 

**• For the ^\1^\ ^J^ husn-u^l-masfinl in the second line, 
which is the common reading, Dr. Sprenger has the better (in 
my opinion) reading: ^JlJ^;t!l [J**^ jassa-u^l jwflgani, ' he 
handled the strings." 



140 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

who has no share in all these will enter the world with 
vain expectations, and no one will hear his name again, 
or see any more trace of him. 

STANZA. 

He, whom f afflict upsprings revolving fate 
Malevolent, is led by destiny 

Against his will. The pigeon, who his mate 
Shall ne'er revisit, follows fate's decree 
Towards the net [in blind security]." 

The son answered, " father ! how shall I act in opposi- 
tion to the saying of the wise? who have pronounced 
that although a subsistence is allotted, yet it is on the 
condition of using the means of acquiring it ; and though 
calamity is predestined, yet it is right to secure oneself 
against the portals by which it might have access. 

STANZA. 

Though, without doubt, fate will our want supply. 
Reason requires it be sought from home ; 

'Tis true that none will unpredestined die. 
Yet in a dragon's maw one should not come. 

In my present condition I could encounter a furious 
elephant and contend with a devouring lion. My best 
course is to travel, for I am unable to endure my privations 
any longer. 

STANZA. 

Whene'er a man from home and country flies. 
All earth is his ; he has no further care. 

Each night the rich man to his palace hies : 

Where night descends, the poor man's home is there. 

He spoke thus, and asking his father's blessing, took 
leave of him and set off, and at the time of his departure 
they heard him say, 

COUPLET. 

'' The man of worth, whose fate is cross, will go 
Where men have never learned his name to know." 



99 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXVIII. 



141. 



So he trayelled on till lie came to tlie brink of a stream, 
by the violence of which stone was dashed upon stone, 
and whose noise resounded to the distance of a parasang.^^^ 

COUPLET, 

A stream so dread, not birds were safe amid its waters' 

roar; 
The smallest of its waves would sweep a mill-stone from 

its shore. 

There he saw a party of men who had each of them 
obtained a seat in a ferry-boat, for a small piece of gold, 
and whose baggage was ready packed. The young man's 
hand was closed from payment, but he loosened the 
tongue of compliment. In spite of all his supplication 
they rendered him no assistance, but said, 

COUPLET. 

" Thou canst not make thy strength of arm the want of 
gold supply ; 
And hast thou gold, thou needest not to threaten or 
defy.- 

The rude boatman turned from him with a laugh, and 
said, 

COUPLET. 

" Gold thou hast not ; the passage o'er by force may not 
be won ; 
What is the strength of ten men here ? bring thou the 
gold for one." 

The young man was incensed at this sarcasm, and 



*" Chardin explains this word as t^^*- ' U^J^ f^^^ Bang^ 
"Persian stone;" a word written by Hferodotus and other 
Greek authors, Hapcurav^a, parasanga : "II paralt, par la 
signification du mot Fa/rs-sengy qu'anciennement les lieues 
etaient marquees par de grandes et hautes pierres, tant dans 
rOrient que dans TOccident. On dit en latin. Ad primum vel 
secundum lapidem." 



142 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

burned to revenge himself upon him. The boat had put 
off; he called out, "If thou wilt be content with this 
garment I am wearing, I will not refuse to give it." The 
boatman's avarice was roused ; he put back the boat. 

COUPLET. 

The eyes of men, though sharp, are closed by avarice ; 
Greed will both bird and fish towards the net entice. 

As soon as the young man's hand could reach the beard 
and collar of the boatman, he dragged him forward and 
knocked him down without mercy. His comrades ^^® came 
out of the boat to help him, and meeting with the same 
rough treatment, turned their backs, finding it their best 
plan to make peace with him, and excuse him the passage- 
money. 

DISTICHS. 

Act thou forbearingly when discord's rife. 
For gentleness will close the gates of strife. 
When thou seest broils arise, use courtesy ; 
A sharp sword cuts not silk, though soft it be. 
With honeyed words, good humour on thy side. 
Thou, with a hair, an elephant mayst guide. 

They fell at his feet, with excuses for their past conduct, 
and imprinted hypocritical kisses on his forehead and 
face, and brought him into the boat, and proceeded till 
they arrived at a pillar of a Grecian building which 
remained standing amid the waters. The boatman said, 
" The boat is in danger ; let one of you, who is most 
courageous and valiant, and powerful, go to this pillar, 
and lay hold of the boat's hawser, that we may pass by 

"^ Dr. Sprenger reads Jjj^l lAjW ydrash dmadand, M. 
Semelet j^T /A;V. t/^^^^ amad. I must confess I prefer my 
own reading JJx«! ^J^\)^^ yardnaah dmadand. 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXVIIL 143 

tliis building/' *^^ The young man, from the pride of 
valour which he felt, took no thought of his still smarting 
foe, and forbore to act in accordance with the saying of 
the wise, which they have uttered: "When thou hast 
wounded the heart of any one, even if thou shouldest 
subsequently do him a hundred favours, nevertheless deem 
not thyself safe from that one injury, for the shaft may 
have been extracted from the wound, yet the pang abide 
still in the heart." 

COUPLET. 

How truthfully to Khailtash, Yaktash^ said ; 
Is thy foe hurt ? — ^then live not free from dread. 

STANZA. 

Fancy not thyself safe, for thou shalt moan. 

Who hast another treated cruelly. 
Against the castle- wall hurl not a stone, 

Lest from the walls a stone descend on thee. 

He had no sooner twisted the hawser round his arm, 
and mounted the pillar, than the boatman twisted the 
rope from his hand, and urged on the boat. The athlete 
remained there helpless and astonished. For two days he 
endured his suffering and distress, and bore up against 
his hardships. On the third day sleep seized him by the 
collar, and plunged him in the water. After a night and 
a day^^^ he was cast on the shore, with the breath of life 

*" Dr. Sprenger reads t^ jy^ C^Ux J^ u ta a% tmarat 
uhur hunim, which, on the whole, I prefer to the reading in my 
edition. M. Semelet translates, '^ a£n que nous fassions la 
reparation." Gladwin renders, " that we may save the vessel " ; 
and Boss, ''till we can swing her head round," all which 
translations are without the vestige of a foundation in the 
original. 

^ Of these two Gentius says, " duo nobilissimi sunt athletse 
quos celebrat thesaurus regius." 

^^ Ji/ V^ «AaJa«r fi2, exactly the Greek w^drjiiepov^ 



144 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

JTist remaining. He began to eat the leaves of trees, and 
to pull up the roots of grass, until he recovered his 
strength a little. He then set his face toward the woods, 
and went on till he arrived, thirsty and hungry, and 
powerless, at the brink of a well. He saw a party of 
persons, who had assembled round it, and who were 
getting a draught of water for a small payment. The 
young man had no coin, not even the smallest ; he asked 
for water, they refused it; he extended the hand of 
violence, but succeeded not. He struck down several of 
them ; the men made a general attack upon him, beat 'h™ 
immercifully, and woimded him. 

STANZA. 

Gnats will an elephant o'ercome, if they 
Unite against their foe, so huge and grim. 

And ants collected in one dense array, 

Though fierce the lion be, will vanquish him. 

Urged by necessity, he followed a caravan, sick and 
woimded, and proceeded on. At night they arrived at 
a place which was perilous on account of robbers. He 
saw that a tremor pervaded the frames of the people of 
the caravan, and that they had made up their minds to be 
slain. He said, "Be not troubled, for I am one among 
you who will answer for fifty men, and the other braves 
will assist me." The men's hearts were encouraged by 
his vaunt, and they were glad of his company, and 
ministered to him food and water. The fire was blazing 
up in the young man's stomach, and the reins of endurance 
had slipped from his hands. He devoured some mouthfuls 
with excessive voracity, and swallowed some gulps of 
water, till the demon within him was appeased, and 
slimiber overcame him, and he slept. There was, in the 
caravan, an old man of experience, acquainted with the 
world, who said, "0 my friends! I am more afraid of 
this guard of yours than of the robbers j as they tell that 



CHAPTER III, STORY XXVIIL 



H5 



an Arab had amassed a few dirhams : he could not sleep 
when alone in his house from dread of the Luris.^^^ He 
brought one of his friends to be with him that he might 
get rid of the terrors of solitude by the sight of him. 
The friend remained some nights in his company, but as 
soon as he found out where his dirhams were, he carried 
them oflF and went on his travels. The next morning 
they saw the Arab despoiled and lamenting. They said, 
^ What is the matter ? has some robber carried oflF those 
dirhams of thine ? * He replied, ^No ! by Heaven, the 
guard has taken them.' 

STANZA. 

With a companion I ne'er felt secure 

Until I learned his inward qualities. 
Wounds from a f oeman's tooth are worse t' endure 

When he has shown himself in friendship's guise. 

How know ye, my friends ! whether this young man, 
also, be not of the number of the robbers, and sent among 
us through stratagem, in order that, on a favourable 
opportimity, he may communicate with his friends ? I, 
therefore, think it expedient to leave him asleep, and 
proceed on our journey." The people of the caravan 
approved of the old man's advice, and felt a dread of the 
athlete arise in their hearts. They packed up their goods, 
and left the young man sleeping. He did not discover 
this until the sun was shining on his shoulders ; he then 
raised his head, and saw that the caravan had departed. 
After wandering about a long time, he could not find his 
way, and thirsty and hungry, he placed his face on the 
ground, and fixed his thoughts on destruction, and said, 

'"^ The Luris are the people of Luristan, a mountainous 
province of Persia, to the north-east of Khuzistan, and having 
Kurdistan to the north. The inhabitants are notorious thieves. 

lO 



146 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

" Qone^'^ are the yellow cameh now : who will address me 
more ? 
The poor man has no comrade — no comrade hut the poor. 

COUPLET. 

With the poor wanderer they will harshly deal, 
Who ne'er experienced what the friendless feel. 



99 



He was uttering these words when a prince, who, in 
pursuit of a quarry, had got to a distance from his retinue, 
came and stood over him. He heard what he said ; and 
looking on his form, saw that his external shape was 
comely, while his appearance betokened wretchedness. 
He asked him whence he was, and how he had come 
there ? He related a portion of what had befallen him. 
The prince pitied him, bestowed on him a dress and gifts, 
and sent a confidential servant along with him to see him 
back to his own city. His father was glad to see him, 
and returned thanks for his safety. At night, he told his 
father what had befallen him ; of the adventure of the 
boat, and of the injurious conduct of the boatman, and of 
the peasants, and of the treachery of the people of the 
caravan. The father said, " son ! did I not tell thee at 
the time of thy departure that the hands of the empty- 
handed, however brave they may be, are fettered, and 
their Kon's claws broken. 

COUPLET. 

That needy gladiator said right well, 

A grain of gold doth pounds 22* of strength excel." 

The son said, "0 father! undoubtedly, until thou 



^ The word 1\ zumm, signifies "bridled," but in this place 
it refers to departure. 

^ Literally, ** fifty mans,^^ a weight which has been explained 
before. 



CHAPTER III. STORY XXVIIL 147 

endurest pain, thou wilt no treasure gain ; and while thou 
riskest not thy life, thou wilt not subdue thy foe ; and 
until thou scatterest abroad the seed, thou wilt not reap 
the harvest. Seest thou not, by a little matter of trouble 
which I have undergone, what an amount of treasure I 
have brought home ; and by enduring the sting, what an 
abundance of honey I have obtained ? *' 

COUPLET. 

Though more than fate supplies we ne'er can gain, 
Yet must we strive that portion to obtain. 

COUPLET. 

From the ravening monster's^^ jaw, should the diver 

pause and gasp. 
He'd never hold the precious pearl, the bright pearl, in 

his grasp. 

APOPHTHEGM. 

The lower miU-stone revolves not, and hence, of necessity, 
supports the greater burthen. 

STANZA. 

On what would savage lions feed P if they 

In their deep dens abode. The hawk would win 

Small sustenance did it ne'er seek its prey. 

And, like a spider's, will thy limbs grow thin, 
If thine own house alone thou himtest in. 

The father said, " son ! this time heaven has befriended 
thee, and thy good fortune has been thy guide, so that 
thy rose has come forth from the thorn, and the thorn 
from thy foot; and, accordingly, one who possessed 
wealth, found thee out and enriched thee, and he had 
compassion on thee, and repaired thy broken fortunes, 
inquiring kindly into them; and such an occiLrrence is 

. ^ Gladwin translates (^J^ nihang, "crocodile," but the 
danger to the pearl-diver would rather be from sharks. 



148 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

rare, and one cannot govern one's conduct by events of 
rare occurrence. Beware lest thou be led by this greedi- 
ness to bover a second time round this snare. 

COUPLET. 

The hunter does not always win the prey, 
Perchance a tiger may him rend one day. 

As, once a king of Persia had a very precious stone in 
a ring. On a certain occasion he went out with some of 
his favourite courtiers, to amuse himself, to the mosque 
near Shiraz, called Musalla, and commanded that they 
should suspend the ring over the dome of Azad, saying 
that the ring should be the property of him who could 
send an arrow through it. It befell that four hundred 
archers, who plyed their bows in his service, shot at 
the ring. All of them missed. But a stripling, at 
play, was shooting arrows at random from a monastery, 
when the morning breeze carried his shaft through the 
circle of the ring. They bestowed the ring upon him, 
and loaded him with gifts beyond calculation. The 
boy, after this, burned his bow and arrows. They asked 
him why he did so. He replied, * That my first glory 
may remain unchanged.' 

STANZA. 

The sage whose bright mind mirrors truth. 
May sometimes wander wide of it : 

While, by mistake, the simple youth. 
Will, with his shaft, the target hit." 

Story XXIX. 

I have heard of a darwesh who had taken up his abode 
in a cave, and had closed the door before him on the 
world ; while, in the eye of his lofty independence, kings 
and rich men had lost consideration. 



CHAPTER III, STORY XXIX, 149 

STANZA. 

Who, on himself, the door of begging opes, 

Will, to his death, in want remain. 

Quit greed, and as a monarch reign, 
For proud his station who for nothing hopes. 

One of the neighbouring princes signified to hiTn that 
he relied on the condescension of his courteous character, 
that he would come and partake of his bread and salt. 
The Shekh consented, as to accept an invitation is enjoined 
by the authority of the Prophet. The next day the king 
went to apologize for the trouble ^^ he had given him. 
The devotee arose and embraced the king, and treated 
him kindly. When the king was gone, one of the com- 
panions of the Shekh asked him, saying, "It is unusual 
with thee to display such tokens of regard to a king; 
what hidden meaning is there in thisP" He replied, "Hast 
thou not heard that they have said, 

COUPLET. 

" If at another*s table one has sat, 
'Tis right, in turn, to rise and on him wait." 

DISTICHS. 

The ear may never through one's life 
Hear sound of tabor, lute, or fife : 
The eye abstain from floral show : 
The brain the rose's ^^ scent not know : 
Though pillowed not on down, the head 
May on a stone find sleep instead : 
And when our arms no fair one hold. 
On our own breast we may them fold. 
But this vile belly, base and dull. 
Will never rest unless 'tis full. 

*^ Literally, "for excusing his service {i,e, lack of service) 
to him." 
227 I omit the Narcissus, metri oausd. 



'50 



CHAPTER IV- 
ON THE ADVANTAGES OF TACITURNITY. 

Story I. 

I said to one of my friends, " I have chosen to abstain 
from speaking, for this reason, because, on the majority 
of occasions, it happens that in speech there is^evil as well 
as good, and the eye of enemies notes only the evil/' 
He replied, " brother I he is the best enemy** who 
does not observe our good qualities.'^ 

COUPLET. 

No fault's like virtue to the foeman's eye. 
Who, e'en in Sadi's^* self, would thorns descry. 

COUPLET. 

Ne^er the malignant pass a good man by. 
But slander him with hateful villainy. 

COUPLET, 

The feeble- visioned mole perchance may scorn 
The sun's bright fount, that doth the world adorn. 

Story II. 

A merchant met with the loss of a thousand dinars, 
and said to his son, '' Thou must not tell any one of this 



Malice is comparatively quiet as long as the object of its 
hate is but an ordinary character. To be illustrious, provokes 
its bitterest wrath. 

^ Literally, ** A rose is S&di, but in the eyes of enemies a 
thorn." 



CHAPTER IK STOR Y IV. 151 

matter." The son replied, "0 father! it is thy command; 
I will not tell ; acquaint me, however, with the advantage 
to be derived from keeping the affair secret." The father 
answered, " In order that we may not have two misfor- 
tunes to encounter — ^first, the loss of our money; and 
secondly, the malignant rejoicings of our neighbours." 

COUPLET. 

Do not to foes thy sufferings impart. 

Lest, while they seem to grvevQ, they joy at heart.^^ 

Story III. 

An intelligent young man, who possessed an ample 
stock of admirable accomplishments and a rare intellect, 
notwithstanding, uttered not a word whenever he was 
seated in the company of the wise. At length, his father 
said, " son ! why dost not thou also say somewhat of 
that thou knowest?" He replied, "I fear lest they 
should ask me something of which I am ignorant, and I 
should bring on myself disgrace." 

STANZA. 

One day a Sufi (hast thou heard it told P) 

By chance was hammering nails into his shoe : 

Then of his sleeve an officer caught hold. 
And said, "Come thou! and shoe my charger too!" 

COUPLET. • 

Art silent ? none can meddle with thee. When 
Thou once hast spoken, thou must prove it then. 

Story IY. 

A learned man of high reputation had a dispute with a 
heretic, and did not get the better of him in argument. 



230 



Literally, "While they repeat the deprecatory formula, 
There is no power or strength but ia God.'* 



152 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

He cast away his shield, and took to flight.^^ Some one 
said to him, "Hadst thou, notwithstanding all thy learning 
and address, and eminent qualities and sagacity, no argu- 
ment left with which to combat an infidel P " He replied, 
" My knowledge is the Kur'an, and the traditions of the 
Prophet and the doctrines of the fathers ; and he beKeves 
not in these things, and will not attend to them ; and in 
what shall I be benefited by listening to his impieties P ^' 

COUPLET. 

To those who doctrine and Kur'an deny, 
To answer nothing is the best reply. 

Story V. 

The physician Galen, on seeing a fool lay hold of the 
collar of a learned man and disgrace him, said, "Had 
this been a wise man, his dealings with a fool would not 
have reached this point." 

DISTICHS. 

The wise will not in hate or strife engage ; 
Nor with a simpleton contends the sage. 
When fools, in savage words, their thoughts express, 
The wise will soothe them by their gentleness. 
Two men of judgment will not break a hair. 
Thus 'twixt the headlong and the mild Hwill fare. 
But should the band that parts them be a chain, 
Two fools would quickly break its links in twain. 

Story VI. 

Sahban Wail^^^ has been regarded as unrivalled in 
eloquence, inasmuch as he could speak a whole year 
before an assembly without ever being guilty of repeti- 

^* Metaphorical expressions for giving up the dispute. 
^' Name of a celebrated Arabian poet. 



CHAPTER IV, STOR Y VIIL 1 5 3 

tion ; and should the same idea recur, he would express it 
in different language. And this is one of the accomplish- 
ments requisite for courtiers. 

DISTICHS. 

Thy speech may be attractive, just, and sweet, 
Worthy to be approved by judgment nice ; 

But when once spoken, ne'er the same repeat. 
For once to swallow sweetmeats will suffice. 

Story VII. 

I heard a sage say, " No one avows his ignorance but 
the man, who, while another is speaking, and has not yet 
finished, commences speaking himself.'^ 

DISTICHS. 

Each several theme beginning has and end. 
Therefore weave not discourse within discourse. 

A man of judgment, wit, and sense, my friend ! 
Speaks not until thy words have had their course. 

Story VIII. 

Some of the servants of Sultan Mahmud asked Hasan 

. . . 

Maimandi,^^ "What did the SultSn say to thee to-day 
about a certain affair ? " He replied, " It will not have 
been concealed from you too P " ^^ They answered, 

*^ Khwajah Ahmad-bin Hasan, called Maimandi, from the 
town of Maimand where he was bom, was the vazTr of Sultan 
Mahmud of Ghazni. His enemies, and particularly Altantush, 
the General of Mahmud' s forces, endeavoured to ruin him with 
the king, but were constantly baffled through the Queen's 
influence. Elrdausi, the author of the Shah-namah, was in- 
troduced to the Sultjan by Hasan. 

^^ Br. Sprenger reads Jl^LJ na hdahadfoi my J^iUj namdnad, 
and f^^\A>^ j^X) j^Jm^ j ^J:jliaLj Jj^ jj^ zahir-i sarir-i 

sulfdnati wa mttsMr-i tadhlr-i mamlahat for my \j:,^4Xa^ jy:*^} J 

dastar-i mamlahat. 



154 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

^ Thou art the Prime Minister of the State ; the Sultan 
does not think of telling us what he tells thee/' Hasan 
replied, ^^ And he does this in the confidence that I will 
not repeat it. Wherefore, then, do ye ask me ? '* 

COUPLET. 

Not all they know will men of prudence tell ; 
Nor with kings' secrets sport, and life as well. 

Story IX. 

I was hesitating about a bargain for a house when a 
Jew said to me, '' I am one of the old inhabitants of this 
quarter. Inquire of me the intrinsic value of the house, 
and purchase it, for it has not a fault.'' I replied, 
" None, except that thou livest near it." 

STANZA. 

A house with such a neighbour as thou art 

Were worth ten silver dirhams — ^those, too, bad. 

Yet hope we — shouldst thou from this life depart, 
A thousand for it then might well be had« 

Story X. 

A poet went to the chief of a band of robbers and 
recited a panegyric upon him. He commanded them to 
strip off his clothes and turn him out of the village. The 
dogs, too, attacked him in the rear. He wanted to take 
up a stone, but the ground was frozen. Unable to do 
anything, he said, " What a villainous set are these, who 
have untied their dogs and tied up the stones." The 
chieftain heard this from a window, and said with a 
laugh, " Philosopher ! ask a boon of me." He replied, 
" If thou wilt condescend to make me a present, bestow 
on me my own coat." 

COUPLET. 

From some a man might favours hope — ^from thee 
We hope for nothing but immunity. 



CHAPTER IV. STORY XIL 155 

HEMISTICH. 

We feel thy kindness that thou lett'st us go. 

The robber chief had compassion on him. He gave 
him back his coat^ and bestowed on him a fur cloak in 
addition, and further presented him with some dirhams. 

Story XI. 

An astrologer, on entering his own house, found a man 
sitting with his wife. He abused and revUed him, and a 
disturbance arose. A sagacious person, being informed of 
this, said, 

COUPLET. 

" Canst thou tell what goes on above the sky. 
And not th' interior of thy house descry ? '* 

Story XII. 

A preacher, who had a shocking voice, fancied it was 
very agreeable, and employed it in shouting to no pur- 
pose. The croaking of the raven [you would say] was in his 
modulations ; and that that verse was intended for him, 
" Verily the moat detestable of sounds is the voice of an ass.^' 

COUPLET. 

Preacher AhU^l-fawdris hrays^from far 
Persian Istakhar trembles at the jar ?^ 

The people of the town, out of respect to the office he 
held, put up with the infliction, and did not think it right 
to annoy him : till at length, a preacher of that district, 
who had a secret spite against him, came to see him, and 
said, " I have seen a dream; I hope it will turn out well." 
The other asked, " What hast thou seen P " The visitor 

^ H. Semelet thinks this couplet a quotation. He does, not, 
however, nor does any other author that I have seen, explain 
who Abu'l-fawaris \lit,y " father of the horsemen "] is. 



156 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

answered, " I beheld that thy voice was pleasant, and that 
people were delighted with thy discourse/' The preacher 
reflected a little on this, and said, "What a fortunate 
dream it is that thou hast seen, by which thou hast ac- 
quainted me with my failings. I now understand that I 
have an unpleasant voice, and that people are distressed 
by my delivery. I vow amendment, and, in future, will 
never read except in a low voice." 

STANZA. 

I wearied of my friend's society, 

Who my bad qualities as virtues shews ; 

Who, in my failiigs. can perfection see, 

And calls my thorns the jasmine and the rose. 

Give me the pert and watchful enemy. 

Who will my faults to me with zest disclose. 

Story XIII. 

A person was performing gratis the office of summoner 
to prayer in the mosque of Sanjariyah,^® in a voice which 
disgusted those who heard him. The patron of the 
mosque was a prince who was just and amiable. He did 
not wish to pain the crier, and said, " sir ! there are 
Muazzins attached to this mosque to whom the office 
has descended from of old, each of whom has an allowance 
of five dinars, and I will give thee ten to go to another 
place.'' This was agreed upon, and he departed. After 

*** This mosque was built by Sultan Sanjar Saljuki, sixth 
Sultan of the Saljuks, who was the son of Malik Shah, and 
reigned over Persia and Khurasan. He performed many ex- 
ploits, and was called the second Alexander. As a mark of 
respect, prayers were read in his name in the mosques for a 
year after his decease. The Saljuks were originally Turkumans, 
and entered Trans-oxiana A.H. 375. Sultan Sanjar succeeded 
his brother Muliammad on the throne, A.H. 501. 



CHAPTER 2V. STORY XIV, 157 

some time he returned to the prince and said, "0 my 
lord ! thou didst me injustice in sending me from this 
place for ten dinars. In the place whence I have come 
they offered me twenty dinars to go somewhere else, and 
I will not accept it." The prince laughed and said, 
" Take care not to accept it, for they will consent to give 
thee even fifty dinars." 

COUPLET. 

No mattock can the clay remove from off .the granite 

stone, 
So well as thy discordant voice can make the spirit moan. 

Story XIY. 

A man with a harsh voice was reading the Kur'an in a 
loud tone. A sage passed by and asked, "What is thy 
monthly stipend ? " He replied, " Nothing." Wherefore, 
then," asked the sage, "dost thou give thyself this 
trouble?" He replied, "I read for the sake of God." 
" Then," said the sage, " for God's sake ! read not." 

COUPLET. 

If in this fashion the Kur'an you read. 
You'll mar the loveliness of Islam's creed. 



158 



CHAPTER V- 
ON LOVE AND YOUTH. 

Story I. 

They asked Hasan Maimandl, ^'How is it that^ although. 
Sultan Mahmud has so many handsome slaves^ every one 
of whom is the wonder of the world, and the marvel of 
the age, he has not such a regard or aflfection for any 
one as for Ayaz,^^ who is not remarkable for beauty ? " 
He replied, " Whatever pleases the heart appears fair to 
the eye/' 

DISTICHS. 

The man for whom the Sultan shews esteem. 
Though bad in every act, will virtuous seem. 
But whom the monarch pleases to reject. 
None of his retinue will e'er affect. 

STANZA. 

When with antipathy we eye a man. 

We see in Joseph's beauty, want of grace : 

And, prepossessed, should we a demon scan. 
He'd seem a cherub with an angel's face. 

Story II. 

I remember that one night a dear friend of mine entered 
my door, and I rose from my seat with such impatience 
[to receive him] that I put out my lamp with my sleeve. 

*" Gladwin writes this name lyaz, and I have followed him 
in my Yocabulary ; but with Semelet, Ross, and Richardson on 
the other side, I feel bound to adopt the spelling given above. 



CHAPTER V, STORY III. 



159 



VERSES. 

By night a spectre came, and with its form lit up the gloom; 
Methought it well would suit me for a guide throughout the 

night,^^ 
^' Sail J'' I exclaimed, " Well art thou come ! for thee is 

ample room ; 
I love thee, for the darkness flies before thy radiance bright J* 

COUPLET. 

I said, astonislied at my destiny, 

" Whence has this happy fortune come to me ? " 

He sate down and began to remonstrate with me, 
saying, " Why, at the moment that thou sawest me, didst 
thou extinguish the lamp ? ^' I replied, " I imagined that 
the sun had entered ; and the witty have said, 

STANZA. 

' If one obscure the lamp with presence vile. 
Arise and him before th' assembly smite : 
But, if he have sweet lips and honeyed smile,^^^ 
Seize thou his sleeve, and then put out the light.' '' 

Story III. 

A person had not seen his friend for a long interval. 
At last he met him and said, " Where wert thou ? for I 
longed after thee.*' He replied, "Better longing than 
loathing." 

"® These three lines are not in Boss, Gladwin or Semelet. 
I inserted them in my edition, and am now glad to find 
my judgment confirmed by Dr. Sprenger, in whose edition 
they are likewise to be found, with some trifling difEerence of 
reading. 

^' They would be of no use in his radiant presence, which of 
itself would dispel the darkness. 



i6o GLLISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

Gay idol of my soul ! late comest thou ! 
Not soon will I release thy garment now. 

VERSE. 

'Tis better that our friend we seldom see, 
Than to behold him to satiety .^^^ 

SENTIMENT. 

When a fair one comes attended by companions, she 
comes only to torment us ; because, in that case, there 
must arise the jealousy and discord of riyals. 

COUPLET. 

Comest thou attended, then thou comest me only to distress; 
Thou comest truly to make war, though peace thy looks 
eospress. 

STANZA. 

But for an instant should my friend prefer 
To be with others, envy would me slay. 

'* Sad! ! *' he smiling cried, " Would this deter 
Me this assembly's beacon ? what, I say, 
Imports it that in me moths quench life's ray ! 



>f 



Story IY. 

I remember that, in former days, I and a friend of 
mine were so much associated together that we were like 
two kernels in one almond. All at once I happened to 
find it requisite to take a journey. When, after some 
time, I returned, he began to reproach me for not sending 
a messenger to him during such an interval. I replied, 
" I was unwilling that the eyes of the messenger should 
be brightened by thy beauty, while I remained excluded." 



'" I prefer the reading <U hih to that of jS ham in my edition, 
which, however, if read, must be taken with -j^j ser. 



CHAPTER V. STORY V. i6i 

STANZA. 

Friend of my youth ! cease now me to reprove ; 
Thy love not steel could make me e'er repent. 

That one should gaze his fill on thee does move 
My envy, yet my heart would soon relent — 
For seeing thee could ne'er his sight content. 

Story V. 

They shut up a parrot in a cage with a crow. The 
parrot was distressed at the ugly appearance of the other, 
and said, " What hateful form is this, and detested shape, 
and accursed face, and unpolished manners P crow of 
the desert! would that between me and thee were the space 
Hwixt east and west .'" 

STANZA. 

Should one at dawn arising thy face see, 

'Twould change to twilight gloom that morning's mirth. 
Such wretch as thou art should thy comrade be. 

But where could such a one be found on earth ! 

But still more strangely the crow, too, was harassed to 
death by the society of the parrot, and was utterly 
chagrined by it. Reciting the deprecatory formula, 
"There is no power nor strength but in God,"**^ it com- 
plained of its fate, and, rubbing one upon the other the 
hands of vexation,^^ it said, " What evil fate is this, and 
unlucky destiny, and fickleness of fortune! It woidd 
have been commensurate with my deserts to have walked 
proudly along with another crow on the wall of a garden. 

*** This means, "There is no striving against fate." "Msi 
Dominus frustra." See Kanun-i Islam, p. 335, Gloss., 66. 

**^ The only meanings given for ^^Uj tagbahun in the 
Dictionary are, "Defrauding one another." "ITeglecting, erring, 
straying." !N"one of these can we apply here. 

II 



1 62 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

Twill for a prison to the good suffice, 

To herd them with the worthless sons of vice. 

What crime have I committed in punishment for which 
my fate has involved me in such a calamity, and im- 
prisoned me with a conceited fool like this, at once 
worthless and fatuous ? " 

STANZA. 

All would that wall with loathing fly 
Which bore impressed thy effigy : 
And if thy lot in Eden fell, 
AU others would make choice of Hell. 

I have brought this example to show that, how strong 
soever the disgust a wise man may feel for a fool, a fool 
regards with a hundred times more aversion a wise man. 

COUPLETS. 

A pious mau, 'mid dance and song, was seated with the 

gay; 

One of Bale's beauties saw him there, and marked the 

mirth decay : 
" Do we, then, weary thee P " he said, " at least, uncloud 

thy brow ; 
For we, too, feel thy presence here is bitterness enow. 

QUATRAIN. 

This social band like roses is and lilies joined in one, 
And 'mid them thou, a withered stick, upspringest all 

alone ; 
Like winter's cruel cold art thou, or like an adverse 

blast, — 
Thou sittest there like f aUen snow, ice-bound and frozen 

fast." 



CHAPTER V. STORY VI. 163 

Stoky VI. 

I had a companion with whom I had for many years 
travelled, and with whom I had partaken of bread and 
salt, and the rights of friendship were established between 
US without reserve. Afterwards, on account of some 
trifling advantage, he suffered me to be displeased, and 
our friendship was broken off. Yet, notwithstanding 
all this, there was a feeling of attachment existing on 
both sides; in accordance with which I heard that he 
one day repeated, in an assembly, these two couplets, 
taken from my works : — 

STANZA. 

" When my soul's idol to me comes with laughter arch 
yet kind. 
She sprinkles salt upon my wound, and opes afresh the 
sore; 
would that I could fondly grasp her tresses unconfined! 
As the skirt of the munificent is caught at by the 
poor.'* 

A party of friends applauded the sentiment, not so much 
on account of the beauty of the verses as by reason of 
their own kind feeling. He, too, went beyond all of 
them in his eulogies, and expressed his regret for the 
extinction of our former intimacy, and confessed his 
fault. I saw that he, too, was eager for a renewal of our 
friendship. I sent him these verses, and effected our 
reconciliation. 

STANZA. 

Were we not pUghted to fidelity ? 

Yet thou wert harsh and didst thyself estrange. 
When I left all and fixed my thoughts on thee, 

I knew not that so soon thou wouldest change ! 
Yet still, would'st thou make peace, return to me, 
And then thou wilt more loved, more honoured, be. 



1 64 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Story VII. 

A man had a beautiful wife, who died, and his wife's 
mother, a decrepit old woman, on account of the marriage- 
settlement,^^ took up her abode, and fixed herself in his 
house. The man was vexed to death by her propinquity, 
yet he did not see how to get rid of her by reason of the 
settlement. Some of his friends came to inquire after 
him, and one of them said, " How dost thou bear the loss 
of thy beloved one P " He replied, " The not seeing my 
wife is not so intolerable to me as the seeing her mother." 

DISTICHS. 

The tree has lost its roses, but retains 

Its thorn. The treasure's gone, the snake ^^ remains. 

'Tis better on the lance-point fixed to see 

One's eye, than to behold an enemy. 

'Tis well a thousand friendships to erase 

Could we thereby avoid our foeman's face. 

Story VIII. 

I remember that in my youth I was passing along a 
street when I beheld a moon-faced beauty. The season 
was that of the month July, when the fierce heat dried 
up the moisture of the mouth, and the scorching wind 
consumed the marrow of the bones. Through the weak- 
ness of himian nature I was unable to support the power 
of the sun, and involuntarily took shelter under the shade 
of a wall, waiting to see if any one would relieve me from 
the pain I suffered, owing to the ardour of the sun's rays, 

^ As he could not pay what he had covenanted to pay, 
when he married, his wife's relations indemnified themselves by 
saddling him with the old lady, his wife's mother. 

^ It is a popular Oriental notion that treasures are guarded 
by serpents. 



\ 



CHAPTER V, STORY IX, 165 

and cool my flame with water. All of a sudden, from the 
dark portico of a house, I beheld a bright form appear, of 
such beauty that the tongue of eloquence would fail in 
narrating her charms. She came forth as mom succeeding 
a dark night, or as the waters of life issuing from the 
gloom. She held in her hand a cup of snow-water, in 
which she had mixed sugar and the juice of the grape. 
I know not whether she had perfumed it with her own 
roses, or distilled into it some drops from the bloom of 
her countenance. In short, I took the cup from her fair 
hand, and drained its contents, and received new life. 
" The thirst of my heart cannot he slaked vnth a drop of 
watery nor if I should drink rivers would it he lessened." 



STANZA. 

Most blest that happy one whose gaze intense 
Bests on such face at each successive mom ; 

The dnmk mth wine at midnight may his sense 
Eegain ; but not till the last day shall dawn 
Will love's intoxication reach its bourne. 

Story IX. 

Once, in the caravan of Hijaz, a darwesh accompanied 
us. One of the Arab chiefs had bestowed on him a 
hundred dinars, for the support of his family. All of a 
sudden the robbers of the tribe Khafachah attacked the 
caravan, and spoiled it of everything. The merchants 
began to weep and lament, and pour forth imavailing 
complaints. 

COUPLET 

Thou mayest complain, or cry, Alack ! 
The thieves the gold will not give back. 

But that darwesh, in his tattered garb, retained his 
composure, and his manner imderwent no change. I 
said, " Perhaps they have not taken thy money ? '' He 



1 66 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

replied, " Yes ! they have taken it. However, I had not 
such an attachment for that money ^^ that I should 
break my heart at losing it/' 

COUPLET. 

Tkj heart from loving thing or person guard ; 
For to recall affection ismost hard. 

I said, " What thou hast uttered is i-propos of my con- 
dition ; for in my youth I had formed a friendship with 
a young man, and entertained a sincere attachment for 
him to that degree that his beauty was the point of 
adoration of my eyes, and my intimacy with him as it 
were the interest on the capital of life. 

STANZA. 

It may be angels do not ; man I trow 
Ne'er did his beauty equal on this earth. 

By friendship's self friends are forbidden now. 
For after him his like shall ne'er find birth. 

Suddenly the foot of his existence went down into the 
clay of death, and the smoke of separation arose from his 
family .^*^ I watched for days at the head of his grave, 
and this is one of the many things which I uttered 
touching his loss : — 

STANZA. 

Death like a thorn transfixed thy foot. Ah ! then. 
Would that fate's cruel sword me too had slain ; 

Then I'd ne'er missed thee from thy fellow-men. 
Thou on whose dust my head is laid — ^in vain I 
Dust be on it ! [thou ne'er shalt breathe again]. 

^^ The darwesh had only just got it as a present, and I 
imagine his words partly imply that he had not had time to 
grow fond of it. 

^ There is a play on words here which it is altogether im- 
possible to retain in English. J^J dudj ^^ smoke," also signifies 

''anguish;" and the word for "family" in Persian, ^^UjjJ 
dudmdn, strongly resembles it. 



CHAPTER V. STORY X. 167 

STANZA. 

He who, before he slept or took repose, 

Did roses and the jasmine round him fling ; 

Revolving time has shed his beauty's rose, 

While from his a^hes now the thorns upspring. 

After separation from him, I made a determination and 
a steadfast vow that, for the remainder of my life, I would 
fold up the carpet of desire and abstain from social 
intercourse. 

STANZA. 

Pleasant were the gains ^"^ of ocean, were there of the 
waves no fear ; 

Pleasant with the rose to dwell, were the thorn not lurking 
there; 

Peacock-like I walked exulting in love's garden yester- 
night; 

Snake-like now I writhe in anguish — she no more will 
glad my sight." 

Stoby X. 

They told to one of the Arabian kings the story of 
Laila and Majnun, and of the insanity which happened 
to him, so that, although possessed of high qualities and 
perfect eloquence, he betook himself to the desert and 
abandoned the reins of choice. After commanding them 
to bring him into his presence, the king began to rebuke 
him, saying, " What defect hast thou seen in the noble- 
ness of man's nature that thou hast taken up the habits 
of an animal, and bidden adieu to the happiness of himian 
society P " Majnun wept and said« 

VEBSE. 

" Oft have my friends reproached me for my love : 
The day mil come they'll see her and approve. 

^'' That is, by traffic in ships. 



1 68 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

Would that those who seek to blame me 

Could thy face, fairest ! see ; 
Theirs would then the loss and shame be : 

While amazed, intent on thee, 
They would wound their hands while they 
Careless with the orange^*® play : 

That the truth of the reality might testify to the ap^Jear- 
ance I claim for her ! *' The king was inspired with a 
desire to behold her beauty, in order to know what sort 
of person it was who was the cause of such mischief. He 
commanded, and they sought for her, and, searching 
through the Arab families, found her, and brought her 
before the king, in the court of the royal pavilion. The 
king surveyed her countenance, and beheld a person of a 
dark complexion and weak form. She appeared to him 
so contemptible that he thought the meanest of the ser- 
vants of his haram superior to her in beauty and grace. 
Majnun acutely discerned his thoughts and said, '^0 
king ! it is requisite to survey the beauty of Laila from 
the window of the eye of Majnun, in order that the 
mystery of the spectacle may be revealed to you." 



'^ I have amplified these lines a little. The allusion is to 
the story of Joseph and Zulaikha, the wife of Potiphar. In the 
12th chapter of the Kur'an we read, ^' And certain women said 
publicly in the city, 'The nobleman's wife asked her servant 
to lie with her ; he hath inflamed her breast with his love, and 
we perceive her to be in a manifest error.' And when she heard 
of this subtle behaviour she sent unto them, and prepared a 
banquet for them, and she gave to each of them a knife ; and 
she said unto Joseph, 'Come forth unto them.' And when 
they saw him, they praised him greatly ; and they cut their 
own hands, and said, ' This is not a mortal,' " etc. 



CHAPTER V. STORY XL 169 



(( 



DISTICHS. 

Unmoved with pity thou me hear'st complain ; 
I need a comrade who can share my pain : 
The livelong day I'd then my woes recite ; 
Wood with wood joined will ever bum more bright. 

VERSE. 

What, passed within my hearing of the grove, 

forest leaves ! did ye hut learn, 
Ye^d mourn with me. My friends ! tell him whom love 

Has spared, I would he did hut hum 

With lover's flames ; he'd then my grief discern." 

V£iK8E. 

Scars may be laughed at by the sound. 

But to a fellow-suflferer reveal 
Thy anguish. Of the hornet's wound 

What reck they who did never feel 
Its sting ? Till fortune shall bring round 

Thy woes to thee, they will but seem 

The weak illusions of a dream. 
Do not my sufferings confound 

With those of others. Canst thou deem 
One holding salt^* can tell the pain of him 
Who has salt rubbed upon his wounded limb P 

Story XI. 

(in VERSE.) 

A gallant youth there was and fair 
Pledged to a maid beyond compare ; 
They on the sea, as poets tell. 
Together in a whir W f elL 



^ This is a favourite comparison of Oriental poets. Eubbing 
salt on a wound is a proverbial expression with them. 



V 



170 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN". 

Tte boatman came the youth to save — 

To snatch him from his watery grave: 

But, 'mid those billows of despair, 

He cried, " My love ! my love is there ! 

Save her, oh save ! '' he said, and died ; 

But with his parting breath he cried, 

" Not from that wretch love's story hear 

Who love forgets when peril's near." 

Together thus these lovers died. 

Be told by him who love has tried ; 

For Sadi knows each whim and freak 

Of love, — as well its ways can speak 

As Baghdad's dweUers Arabic. 

Hast thou a mistress ? her then prize, 

And on all others close thine eyes. 

Gould Majnun and his Laila back return. 

They might love's story from this voliime learn. 



I?! 



CHAPTEE VI. 



ON DECREPITUDE AND OLD AGE. 



Story I. 

I was engaged in a dispute with some learned men in 
the principal mosque of Damascus. Suddenly a young 
man entered the door, and said, " Is there any one among 
you who knows the Persian language P " They pointed 
to me. I said, " Is aU weU ? "25o He repKed, "An old 
man, of a hundred and fifty years of age, is in the 
agonies of death, and says something to me in Persian, 
which is not intelligible to me. If thou wouldest be so 
kind as to trouble thyself so far as to step with me thou 
wilt be rewarded.^^ It may be that he wants to make 
his wiU." When I reached his piUow, he said this, 

^ M. Semelet translates "Cela est vrai," in which he appears 
to me to mistake the sense altogether. The expression jj^ 
fJL^ Tdkair ast, corresponds to our " What is the matter? " but 
I have translated it literally. A similar expression occurs in 
the 2nd book of Kings, chapter v. verse 21, "He lighted down 
from the chariot to meet him, and said, 'Is all well?"* Of 
M. Semelet's MSS., one reads L::^^MM>• y^^ khahar chut; and 
another, tj:,^ l::^v«4X>- <l>- chih khidmat ast " What is the 
news ? " and, " What service can I do you ? " 

»i That is, by God. 



172 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

'^ Methouglit a few short moments I would spend 
As my soul wished; alas! I gasp for air. 
At the rich board, where all life's dainties blend, 
I sate me down — ^partook a moment there, 
When, ah! they bade me leave the scarcely tasted 
fare/' 

I repeated the meaning of these words to the Damascenes 
in Arabic. They marvelled at his having lived so long, 
and yet grieving for worldly life. I said to him, "How 
dost thou find thyself under present circumstances ? 
He replied, " What shall I say ? 



99 



STANZA. 

" Hast thou ne'er marked his agony. 

Out from whose jaw a tooth is wrenched ? 
Then thiok what must his feelings be, 
Whose life, dear life, is being quenched ! " 

I said, "Dismiss from thy mind the idea of death, and 
let not thine imagination conquer thy nature; for the 
philosophers have said, * Though the constitution may be 
vigorous, we are not to rely upon it as gifted with 
perpetuity, and, though a disease may be terrible, it 
furnishes no positive proof of a fatal termination.' If 
thou wilt give us leave, we will send for a physician, 
in order that he may use remedies for thy recovery." 

He replied, " Alas ! 

DISTICHS. 

The master's bent on garnishing 
His house, which, sapped, is falling in ; 
The skilful leech, in mute despair, 
Together smites his hands as there 
He marks, like broken potsherd. He 
The poor old man outstretched to die. 



CHAPTER YL STORY IL 173 

The old man groans in parting pain ; 
His wife the sandal ^^ rubs in vain : 
But once unpoise our nature frail, 
Nor cure nor amulet avail/' 



Story II. 

An old man, descanting about himself, said, ^'I had 
espoused a young maiden, and adorned my room with 
flowers, and, sitting alone with her, fastened on her my 
eyes and my heart. Through long nights I never slept, 
but passed the time in narrating witty jests and amusing 
stories, in order to dispel her coyness, and to make her 
attached to me. Among other things, I said to her one 
night, *Thy lofty fate befriended thee, and the eye of 
thy happy destiny was open, that thou hast fallen into 
the arms of an old man, prudent and acquainted with the 
world ; one who has tasted the vicissitudes of fortune, and 
experienced good and evil; who knows what is required 
in social intercourse, and performs all the conditions of 
friendship, and who is kind and considerate, cheerful and 
gentle in his language. 

DISTICHS. 

To win thy heart shall be my lot ; 

Though thou griev'st me, I'll grieve thee not. 

Is sugar, parrot-like, thy food : 

Be thou with my life's sweetness wooed. 

Thou hast not fallen a prey to a young man, self-conceited 
and rude, headstrong and flckle, who each moment takes 

*** Preparations of sandal-wood are used by Orientals for 
rubbing the body, and are thought to be cooling and restorative. 
Thus in the Prem Sd^ar, p. 85, 1. 29, of my translation, " Thou 
h6wt removed my weariness ; having met me, thou hast given to 
me cool sandal." 



^ s 
"V 



174 GLLISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEI/. 

a new wlrmiy and changes his opinion every instant, and 
sleeps eveiy night in a different placoy and gets a new 
misiresB eyery day. 

STANZA. 

Young men are gay and fair to see, 
But wanting in fidelity. 
Who can the bulbul true suppose,. 
That, singing, flits from rose to rose ? 

But the class of old men pass their life according to the 
dictates of reason; not in those things which ignorant 
youth wishes for. 

COUPLET. 

A better than thyself seek out and prize ; 
For with one like thyself time vainly flies.' '* 

The old man said, ''I spoke much more after this fashion, 
and I imagined I had got possession of her heart, and 
secured her aflections. Suddenly she heaved a cold sigh 
from a heart full of melancholy, and said, ' All the words 
that thou hast uttered do not weigh so much in the 
balance of my reason as that one word which I heard 
from my nurse, " That to have her side pierced with an 
arrow was better for a young woman, than to have an old 
husband."' In short, it was not possible for us to agree, 
and a separation was decided upon. The period of 
probation after divorce^ elapsed. They xmited her in 
the nuptial bands with a youth irascible and cross-looking, 
destitute of fortune, and on the watch for a pretext to 
quarrel. She had to endure harshness and violence, and 
to submit to annoyance and vexation, and, nevertheless, 

^ The period for which a woman must wait before marrying 
again, after her husband's death, is four months and ten days. 
After divorce, she must wait three menstrual periods. This is 
to see if she be pregnant by her former husband. Vide £anun-i 
Islam, p. 147 ; Kur'an, ch. ii. ver. 229, 235. 



CHAPTER VI. STORY IV, 175 

she returned thanks to heaven for her blessings, saying, 
'Praise be to God! that I have escaped from that ex- 
cruciating torment and arrived at this blissful condition. 

COUPLET. 

Spite of thy passion and thy frowning brow, 
I'll bear thy airs, for beautiful art thou ! 

STANZA. 

, Better with thee be tortured and consume, 
Than with another Eden's bowers possess : 
More sweet from beauty's mouth the onion's fume, 
Than roses from the hand of ugliness.' 



yi 



Story III. 

In the country of Diyarbakr,*^ I was the guest of an 

old man, who possessed great riches, and a handsome son. 

One night he told me that in his whole life he had never 

had but this one son. There was a tree, he said, in that 

valley to which pilgrimages were made, and whither 

persons resorted to pray for what they needed ; and that 

he, too, had wept for many nights, at the foot of that 

tree, in prayer to God, who had bestowed on him this son. 

I heard his son whisper softly to his companions, "Would 

that I knew where that tree is, that I might pray there 

for my father's death ! " 

stanza. 

Long years, successive years have gone. 
Since thou didst visit at thy father's grave ; 

What filial actions hast thou done. 
That from thy son thou should' st like worship crave ? 

Story IV. 

One day, in the pride of my youth, I had travelled 
hard, and at night stopped, much fatigued, at the foot 

^ Anciently called Mesopotamia. 



176 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

of a mountain. An infirm old man, who followed the 
caravan, said to me, ''Arise ! this is not a place to slimiber 
in." I replied, " How can I proceed, when I have not 
the power to stir a foot ? " He rejoined, " Hast thou not 
heard that they have said, ' It is better to walk and rest, 
than to run and be oppressed ? 



y 9} 



STANZA. 



Thou who wouldst reach the halting-place, haste not ; 

Be patient ! and my counsel hear aright : 
Two courses may be sped by charger hot ; 

The mule goes slowly, but goes day and night. 



Story V. 

In the circle of my acquaintance there was a sprightly 
and amiable youth, gay and soft-spoken, who had not a 
particle of melancholy in his composition, and whose 
mouth was never closed for laughter. An interval passed 
during which I did not happen to meet him. After that, 
I saw him when he had married a wife, and his children 
were growing up, and the root of his contentment was 
severed, and the rose of his desires withered. I asked 
him, " What is this state of thine ? " He replied, " As 
soon as I had got boys I left off play.^ 



ff 



COUPLET. 

When thou art old thy pastimes put away : 
Leave frolics to the young and mirthful play. 

DISTICHS. 

The youth's gay humour seek not from the old 
The stream returns not which has onward rolled. 
Not so elastic bends the yellow com 
As the young blade before the breeze of mom. 



CHAPTER VI. STORY VI L 177 

STANZA. 

Youth's circling hours have passed for aye away ; 

Ah me ! alas that that gay time is spent ! 
The lion feels his strength of paw decay ; 

Now, like a pard, with cheese-scraps I'm content. 
An aged dame had dyed her locks of grey ; 

" Granted," I said, " thy hair with silver blent 
May cheat us now ; yet, little mother ! say, 

Canst thou make straight thy back, which time has 
bent ? " 

Story VI. 

One day, in the ignorance and folly of youth, I raised 
my voice against my mother. Cut to the heart, she sate 
down in a corner and said, weeping, " Perhaps thou hast 
forgotten thy infancy, that thou treatest me with this 
rudeness ? " 

STANZA. 

Well said that aged mother to her son 
Whose giant arm could well a tiger slay ! 
" Couldst thou remember days long past and gone. 
When in my arms a helpless infant lay. 
And know thyself that babe, thou wouldst not now 
Thus wrong me when I'm old ; an athlete thou ! " 

Story VII. 

The son of a rich miser was sick. The father's friends 
said to him, " The course to be adopted is to read through 
the Kur'an from beginning to end, or to oflfer up a 
sacrifice. It may be that the Most High God will grant 
him recovery." He reflected for a short space, and said, 
" It is better to read the Kur'an, as it is at hand ; 
whereas the flock is at a distance." A devout person 

12 



178 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

heard him, and said, ^'He made choice of the reading, 
because the Kur'an is on the tip of his tongue, and the 
gold is in the centre of his heart.'' 

DISTICHS. 

In sooth, it is an easy task to do, 
To bow the neck ; but were ahns needed too 
'Twere hard indeed. One dinar but require, 
And, like an ass, he flounders in the mire ; 
But for a chapter of the Kur an call, — 
Ask only one, he'll gladly give thee all. 

Story VIII. 

They asked an old man why he did not marry. He 
replied, "I don't think I could fancy an old woman." 
They rejoined, "Espouse a young one, since thou hast 
substance." " Nay," he rejoined, " when I, who am old, 
do not like old women, how is it possible for a young 
woman to like me, an old man?" 



179 



CHAPTER VII. 
ON THE EFFECT OF EDUCATION. 

Story I. 

A certain vazlr had a stupid son, whom he sent to a 
wise man, saying, "Instruct him; perhaps he may become 
inteUigent." The sage spent a long time in teaching 
him, without effect. At last he sent a person to his 
father, with this message, "This boy does not gain in 
understanding, and has driven me mad." 

STANZA. 

Is our first nature such that teaching can 

Affect it, soon instruction will take root : 
But iron, which at first imperfect ran 

Forth from the furnace, who then can imbue it 
With the capacity of polish ? So 

In the seven ^^ seas wouldst thou a dog make clean ? 

When wet, 'tis fouler than it erst has been. 

Story II. 

A phaosopher was advising his children as f oUows : 
" Dear to me as life ! acquire knowledge ; for there is 

*** The Orientals delight in the number seven. One list of 
the seven seas comprises the Chinese, the Indian, the Persian, 
the Bed Sea, the Mediterranean, the Caspian, and the Euzine. 



i8o GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

no reliance to be placed in worldly possessions, either of 
land or money. You cannot take rank abroad with you ; 
and silver and gold on a journey occasion risk, and either 
the thief may carry it off at one swoop, or the owner 
will gradually expend it : but knowledge is an ever- 
springing fountain, and a source of enduring wealth, and 
if an accomplished person ceases to be wealthy it matters 
not, for his knowledge is wealth existing in his mind 
itself. Wherever the accomplished man goes he is 
esteemed, and is seated in the place of honour, while the 
man without accomplishments has, go where he will, to 
pick up scraps and endure raps. 

COUPLET. 

'Tis hard t' obey for those who have borne rule, 
Or fortune's minions in rough ways to school. 

STANZA. 

In Syria once commotions so arose 

That discord shook each person from his hearth. 
Eftsoons the king his vazlrship bestows 

On peasants' sons, wise, though of lowly birth : 
The vazir's dullard children in their stead, 
Through town and hamlet humbly beg their bread. 

COUPLET. 

Learn what thy father knew, if thou wouldst hold 
His place. In ten days thou wilt spend his gold." 

Stoey III. 

A learned man had the education of a king's son, and 
used to beat him immercif ully, and scold him incessantly. 
The boy, unable to endure it, complained to his father, 
and removed his dress from his body, which was aching 
with blows. The father's heart was troubled, and, sending 
for the instructor, he said, " Thou dost not think it right 



CHAPTER VIL STORY IV. i8i 

to treat the children of any one of my subjects with such 
cruelty and harshness as thou shewest to my son. What 
is the reason of this ? " He replied, '* All persons ought 
to speak with reflection, and act with propriety : but this 
is especially requisite for kings, for whatever comes from 
their hand or lips, will assuredly be the common topic of 
conversation; while the words and actions of common 
people have not so much weight. 

STANZA. 

A himdred evil acts the poor may do, 

Their comrades of the hundred know but one ; 

But region after region permeates through 
One evil action by a monarch done. 

Wherefore, in correcting the manners of princes, we 
ought to use greater strictness than in reference to others. 

STANZA. 

They who in youth to manners ne'er attend. 
Will in advancing years small gain acquire : 

Wood, while 'tis green, thou mayst at pleasure bend ; 
When dry, thou canst not change it save by fire. 

COUPLET. 

Surely green branches thou mat/at render straight ; 
TK attempt to straighten dry wood comes too late,^^ 

The king approved of the sage counsel of the master, and 
of the manner in which he had spoken, and bestowed on 
him a robe of honour and rich presents, at the same time 
advancing him to a higher rank. 

Stoey IV. 

I saw, in Africa, a schoolmaster of a sour coimtenance 
and harsh address, ill-natured, cruel, mulish and intem- 
perate ; such that the very sight of him dispelled the 



1 82 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

pleasure of Muslims, and whose reading of the Kur'an 
threw a gloom over men's hearts. A multitude of fair 
boys and young maidens were surrendered to his cruel 
grasp, who neither dared to laugh, nor durst venture on 
conversing. Sometimes he would box the silver cheeks 
of the latter, and put the crystal legs of the former in the 
stocks. In short, I heard that people came to the know- 
ledge of some of his disloyal acts, on which they beat 
him, and expelled him, and gave his school to a man of 
conciliating temper — a pious, good and meek person, who 
never uttered a word but when compelled, and never said 
anything which could distress any one. The children 
forgot the awe they had been wont to feel for their 
former master, when they saw that the present one 
possessed the qualities of an angel, and became demons 
to each other, and, depending on his mildness, abandoned 
study, and spent the chief part of their time in play, and, 
without finishing their copies, broke their tablets on each 
other's heads. 

COUPLET. 

When the schoolmaster gentle is and sweet. 
The boys will play at leap-frog in the street. 

Two weeks after, I passed by the door of the mosque, 
and saw there the former master, whom they had pacified 
and reinstated in his former office. I was sadly v^xed, 
and uttering the deprecatory formula, ''There is no power 
but in God," I said, "Why have they a second time 
made Iblis the instructor of angels ? " An old man, 
who knew the world, heard me, and said, " Hast thou not 
heard that they have said : 

DISTICHS. 

' A monarch sent his son to school, and placed 
A silver tablet round his neck, where, traced 
In gold, appeared — " The fondness of thy sire 
Will harm thee more than the schoolmaster's ire P '" " 



CHAPTER VIL STORY V. 183 

Stoby V. 

The son of a religious personage acquired incalculable 
riches by the bequest of his uncles. He began to indulge 
in licentiousness and impiety, and entered on a course of 
extravagance. In short, there was no sinful or criminal 
action that he failed to commit, nor intoxicating liquor 
that he abstained from drinking. At last I said to him, 
by way of admonition, " my son ! income is a passing 
current, and pleasure a revolving miU. In other words, 
a prodigal expenditure is safe only for one who has a 
permanent and settled revenue. 

STANZA. 

Hast thou no income — then thy wants restrain ; 

For ever sing the boatmen merrily : 
' If on the mountain-summits fell no rain, 

One year would make the Tigris channel dry.' 

Betake thyself to a rational and moderate life, and give 
up thy follies; for, when thy wealth is exhausted, thou wilt 
have to endure hardship, and wilt suffer remorse." The 
youth, seduced by the delights of music and wine, was 
deaf to my advice, and rejected my coimsel, saying, " It 
is opposed to the opinion of the wise to disturb, by fore- 
bodings of death, the pleasures of this transitory life. 
I 

I niSTICHS. 

Through fear of ill should fortune's favourites 
Make for themselves ills that are premature ? 

Be happy thou in whom my heart delights ! 
Nor thus to-day to-morrow's pangs endure. 

Much less should I do as thou sayest, I who hold the 
highest rank for generosity, and have made a compact 
to be liberal, and the fame of whose munificence is blazed 
abroad among all classes. 



i8+ GbLISTA!^; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

DISTICH8. 
"Whom mankmd with the name of ' Generous ' grace** 
Must on his dirams no restriction place : 
Wlien our good fame pervades the public street. 
We must no suitor with denial meet." 

I saw that he did not accept my advice, and that my 
warm breath made no impression on his cold iron. I left 
off counselling him, and turned away from his society. 
I seated myself in the comer of security, and put in 
practice that saying of the sages, which they have uttered : 
" Convey to ihem that which it behoves thee to say, and then, 
if they receive it not, what does it concern thee ? " 



What though thou knoVst they will not hearken, still 

Thy warning counsel give — 'tis best. 
Soon shalt thou see the man of headstrong will 

With his two legs by fetters pressed ; 
Smiting his hands, he cries, in accents shrill, 

"To hearken to the a^e is best." 

After some time, what I had anticipated as to his 
downfall, came to pass, for he had to sew rag to rag and 
beg scrap by scrap. My heart was pained at his wretched 
state. I thought it unkind, in his then condition, to 
irritate and scatter salt on the wound of the poor man by 
reproaches ; but I said to myself, 

DISTICHS.' 

" The profligate, in pleasure's ecstacy, 
Dreads not the coming day of poverty : 
Trees that in summer fruits profusely bear, 
Stand, therefore, leafless in the wintry air." 

iret and fourth lines are freely rendered. The literal 
of the first is, " Whoever has become an ensign by 
^ and bounty ; " and of the fourth, " Thon canst not 
>or on any face.". 



.4* 



CHAPTER VII. STORY VIL 185 

Story VI. 

A king handed over his son to a teacher, and said, 
" This is my son ; educate him as one of thine own sons/' 
The preceptor spent some years in endeavouring to teach 
him without success, while his own sons were made perfect 
in learning and eloquence. The king took the preceptor 
to task, and said, "Thou hast acted contrary to thy agree- 
ment, and hast not been faithful to thy promise/' He 
replied, " King ! education is the same, but capacities 
differ/' 

STANZA. 

Silver and gold 'tis true in stones are found ; 

Yet not all stones the precious metals bear : 
Canopus shines to earth's most distant bound ; 

But here gives leather — scented leather there.^^ 

Stoey VII. 

I have heard of an old doctor who said to a pupil, " If 
the minds of the children of men were as much fixed on 
the Giver of subsistence as they are on the subsistence 
itself, they would rise above the angels." 

STANZA. 

Thou wast by God then not forgotten when 

Thou wast a seed — thy nature in suspense ; 
He gave thee soul and reason, wisdom, ken. 

Beauty and speech, reflection, judgment, sense ; 
He on thy hand arrayed thy fingers ten. 

And thy arms fastened to thy shoulders. Whence 
Canst thou then think, thou most weak of men ! 

He'd be unmindful of thy subsistence ? 

"^ That is, the light of Canopus in one place causes the 
leather to be perfumed (a strange notion!), in another leaves 
it in its common state. 



1 86 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Story VIII. 

I saw an Arab who was saying to his son, " my son ! 
thou wilt be asked, in the day of resurrection. What hast thou 
acquired? not, From whom hast thou sprung ?"^^ or, in 
other words, they will demand of thee an account of thy 
actions, not of thy pedigree. 

STANZA. 

The pall suspended o'er the KabaVs shrine 
Not from the yellow worm^^ derives its fame ; 

But it has dwelt some days near the Divine, 
And therefore do men venerate its name. 

Stoey IX. 

Philosophers tell us, in their writings, that scorpions 
are not engendered in the same way as other animals, but 
that they devour the entrails of their mothers, rend their 
bellies, and go forth to the desert ; and the skins which 
men see in the holes of scorpions are the vestiges which 
are thus left. I mentioned this extraordinary circum- 
stance to an eminent personage. He said, "My heart 
testifies to the truth of this legend, and it can hardly be 
otherwise; for since, when little, they behave thus to 
their mothers and fathers, they are, consequently, so 
pleasant and beloved when they grow old." 

STANZA. 

This counsel to his son a father gave : 

" Dear youth ! to recollect these words be thine, — 
Who for their kinsmen no affection have, 

On them the star of fortune ne'er will shine." 

^ This sentence, being in Arabic, is afterwards explained in 
Persian, which gives the appearance of tautology in English. 
^ The silk-worm. 



CHAPTER VII. STORY XL 187 

WITTICISM. 

They said to a scorpion, "Why dost thou not come abroad 
in winter P " He replied, " What respect is shewn to me 
in summer, that I should shew myself in winter also P " 

Story X. 

The wife of a darwesh was pregnant, and her time was 
completed. The darwesh, throughout his life, had never 
had a son. He said, " If God (may He be honoured and 
glorified !) gives me a son, I wfll bestow on my brethren 
all that I possess, with the exception of the garb I wear." 
It happened that his wife did bear a son. He made 
rejoicings, and, in accordance with his vow, prepared an 
entertainment for his friends. After some years, when I 
returned from traveUing in Syria, I passed by the quarter 
where that darwesh resided, and inquired as to his cir- 
cumstances. They replied, "He is in the Government 
prison.'' I asked the cause. They told me that his son 
had drunk intoxicating liquors, and raised an uproar, and, 
after shedding a man's blood, had fled the city ; and that, 
on account of this, they had put a chain round his father's 
neck and heavy fetters on his feet. I exclaimed, " It was 
this calamitous monster whom he besought God to grant 
to him," 

STANZA. 

Wise friend ! 'tis better that the fruitful bride 
In parturition should a serpent bear 

Rather than sons (for thus the wise decide) — 
Sons who respond not to a father's care. 

Stoey XI. 

One year a quarrel arose among the pilgrims who were 
going on foot to Makkah. I also happened to be making 
the journey on foot. We fell upon one another tooth and 



1 88 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

nail with a vengeance, and did all that could be possibly 
expected from lewd fellows and combatants. I heard 
one who sate in a litter say to his companion, " Passing 
strange ! the ivory ^^^ pawn, on completing its traverse 
of the chess-board, becomes a queen, that is to say, it 
becomes better than it was, and the foot-pilgrims to 
Makkah have crossed the desert and become worse ! '* 

STANZA. 

Go, tell for me the pilgrims who offend 

Their brother men, and cruel would them flay, 

To them none can the pilgrim's name extend ; 
The patient camel earns it more than they, 
Who feeds on thorns, nor does his task gainsay. 

Story XII. 

A Hindu was teaching the art of making fireworks. A 
sage said to him: "For thee, with thy house of reeds, 
this sport is out of all rule." 

COUPLET. 

Speak not until thou knowest speech is best, 
Nor that of which the answer is unblest. 

Story XIII. 

A fellow had a pain in his eyes, and went to a farrier, 
saying, "Give me medicine." The farrier applied to his 
eyes the remedies he was in the habit of using for 
animals, and blinded him, on which he complained to the 
magistrate, who pronounced that he could not recover 
damages ; " For,'' said he, " if this fellow had not been 
an ass, he would not have consulted a farrier." The 
moral of the story is, that whoever commits an affair of 

^ There is a very good pun between —It aj, " ivory," aad 
^W- haj^ "pilgrimage to Makkah," which camiot be retained 

in English. 



CHAPTER VII. STORY XV. 189 

importance to an inexperienced person will smart for it, 
and, in addition, will be considered an imbecile by persons 
of intelligence. 

STANZA. 

The prudent man of clear intelligence 

Not to the mean will weighty things commit : 

Mat-makers weave, 'tis true, yet, hast thou sense, 
Thou'lt not think weaving silk robes for them fit. 

Story XIV. 

A certain great man had an amiable son, who died. 
They asked the father what they should write on his 
grave-stone. He replied, " The verses of the Holy Book 
are too venerable and sacred to be written on such places, 
where they may be effaced by the weather, and the 
trampling of men's feet, and desecrated by dogs. If ye 
must write something, these two couplets will suffice : — 

STANZA. 

Ah me ! when in the garden freshly green 

TJpsprang the verdure, how my heart was gay ! 

Wait, friend ! till spring renascent tints the scene. 
And mark young rosebuds blossom from my clay. 

Story XV. 

A holy man passed by a wealthy personage, and ob- 
served that he had tightly bound one of his slaves hand 
and foot, and was engaged in torturing him. He said, 
" son ! God (may He be honoured and glorified ! ) has 
placed in bondage to thee a creature like thyself, and 
given thee the superiority over him ; thank God Most 
High, therefore, for His blessings, and do not allow thyself 
to treat him with such cruelty. Beware, lest to-morrow, 
in the day of resurrection, this slave be better than thee, 
and thou carry off disgrace. 



".-^-.r, .=" 



190 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

DISTICHS. 

Not over ireful with thy servant be, 

Nor plague his heart, nor practise tyranny. 

Thou with ten dirams didst him purchase, true ! 

Not thine the Power from whence his breath he drew. 

Soon must thou anger, rule, and pride resign : 

There is a Lord whose sway surpasses thine. 

Thou'rt master of Arslan and Aghush^*^ yet ; 

Beware, lest thine own Master thou forget.'* 

It is related of the Prophet (on whom be peace !) that he 
said, that the bitterest of all regrets will be when they 
transport the good slave to paradise and convey the 
impious master to heU. 

STANZA. 

Not 'gainst the slaves that in thy service bow 

Rage thou without restraint, or madly chafe : 
In the last day of reckoning wouldst thou 
Mark, with shamed soul and agonised brow. 
The master fettered and the bondsman safe ? 

Story XVI. 

In a certain year I journeyed from Balkh with some 
Syrians, and the road was replete with peril from robbers. 
A yoimg man accompanied us as guide, skilled in the use 
of the buckler and the bow, trained to arms, and of 
prodigious strength, so that ten powerful men could not 
string his bow, nor the greatest athletes in the world 
bring his back to the ground ; but he had been delicately 
brought up, and reared in indulgence, and had neither 
seen the world nor travelled. The thuindering drum of 
the warrior had not reached his ears, nor the flash of the 
horseman's scymitar glittered in his eyes. 

^^ IN'ames of slaves, used generally to denote any bondsmen. 



CHAPTER VIL STORY XVI. 191 

COUPLET. 

To a stem foe ne'er captive had lie been, 
Nor iron rain of arrows round him seen. 

It happened that I and this young man were running one 
after the other. Every old wall that came in the way he 
cast down with the strength of his arm, and tore up with 
the force of his wrist all the large trees that he beheld, 
and he boastingly exclaimed, 

COUPLET. 

Where is the elephant, to see the arms and shoulders of 

the strong ? 
The lion where, to feel the powers which to men of might 

belong ? 



» 



We were thus engaged when two Hindus^ lifted up 
their heads from behind a rock, and seemed prepared to 
slay us. One had a stick in his hand, and the other a 
sling under his arm. I said to the young man, " Why 
dost thou stop P " 

COUPLET. 

Now what thou hast of strength and courage shew ; 
For of himself to death comes on thy foe. 

I beheld the bow and arrows drop from the hand of the 
young man, and a tremor pervade his frame. 

COUPLET. 

Not all whose forceful shaft could strike a hair. 
Where warriors charge, would stand unshaken there. 

** There is little doubt that Afghanistan was, at no very 
remote sera, peopled by Indians who were driven out by the 
Afghans, and other northern tribes, and this passage seems to 

me a proof of it. Otherwise, whence could come these Hindus 
on the road between Balkh and Syria. 



192 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

We saw no remedy but to give up our clothes and arms 
and get free with our lives. 

STANZA. 

A veteran choose for deeds of high emprise 
He the fierce lion in his noose will tame ; 

The youth may mighty be, of giant size, 

But in the fight fear will imnerve his frame : 
War to the well-trained warrior is the same 

As some nice quillet of the law is to the wise. 

Story XVII. 

I saw the son of a rich man seated at the head of his 
father's sepulchre, and engaged in a dispute with the son 
of a poor man, and savins:, " My father's sarcophagus is 
of stL, and the inscriptio; coloured with a pavemSt of 
alabaster and turquoise bricks. What resemblance has it 
to that of thy father ? which consists of a brick or two 
huddled together, with a few handf uls of dust sprinkled 
over it.*' The son of the poor man heard him, and 
answered, " Peace ! for before thy father can have moved 
himself under this heavy stone, my sire wiU have arrived 
in paradise. This is a saying of the Prophet : * The 
death of the poor is repose.' 

COUPLET. 

Doubtless the ass, on which they do impose 
The lightest burthen, also easiest goes. 

STANZA. 

The poor man, who the agony has borne 

Of famine's pangs, treads lightly to the door 
Of death. While one from blessings torn — 

From luxury and ease — will grieve the more 
To lose them. This is certain. Happier he 
Whom, like a captive, death from bonds sets free, 
Than great men, whom it hurries to captivity." 



CHAPTER VII. STORY XIX. 193 

Story XVIII. 

I asked an eminent personage the meaning of this 
traditionary saying, " The most jnalignant of thy enemies is 
the lust which abides mthin thee J* He replied, "It is 
because every enemy on whom thou conferrest favours 
becomes a friend, save lust ; whose hostility increases the 
more thou dost gratify it." 

STANZA. 

By abstinence, man might an angel be ; 

By surfeiting, his nature brutifies : 
Whom thou obKgest will succumb to thee — 

Save lusts, which, sated, still rebellious rise. 

Story XIX. 

THE DISPUTE OF SADI WITH A PRESUMPTUOUS PRETENDER 
AS TO THE QUALITIES OF THE RICH AND THE POOR. 

I once saw seated in an assembly a person in the garb 
of a darwesh — not with the character of one — engaged 
in pouring out a disgraceful tirade, and uttering a volume 
of abuse and reproachful language against the rich. His 
discourse, moreover, had reached this point, that the hands 
of poor men are tied from doing anything, while the feet 
of rich men's intentions are lame. 

COUPLET. 

The merciful are ever moneyless ; 
Hardhearted they who have the power to bless. 

I, who have been supported by the mimificence of the 
great, disapproved of this speech. I said, " friend ! 
the rich are a revenue to the poor, and storehouses for the 
recluse ; the pilgrim's goal ; the traveller's refuge ; and 
the supporters of heavy burthens for the gratification of 
others. When they stretch forth their hands to their 
repast, their dependents and inferiors partake with them, 

13 



194 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

and what is left of their bounty comes to the widowed 
and the old, and to their relatives and neighbours. . 

VERSE. 

Offerings to God, bequests to furnish ease 
To the worn traveller, enfranchisement 

Of slaves, alms, gifts, and sacrifices — these 

Are rich men's works. Say, when wilt thou invent 

Like merits for thyself, who canst but pray. 

With twice a hundred wanderings,^^ twice a day ? 

If the question be as to the power of doing liberal actions 
and the discharge of religious duties, they are seen to be 
possessed in a higher degree by the rich, because they 
possess wealth hallowed by the usage of giving alms, pure 
garments, a reputation intact, and a heart free from care. 
And good meals greatly facilitate worship, just as clean 
garments have no little weight in sanctifying our devo- 
tions, for what strength is there in an empty stomach, or 
what liberality in an empty hand ? How can the fettered 
feet walk, or the hungry belly bestow alms P 

STANZA. 

The man at night uneasy sleeps. 

Who knows not how to gain to-morrow's bread : 
The ant in summer com upheaps ; 

'Tis thus in winter with abundance fed. 

It is certain that leisure and poverty will not combine, 
and the mind of the indigent cannot be at ease. The rich 
man hallows the evening in prayer, and the poor man 
seats himself on the look-out for his supper. The former 
will admit of no comparison with the latter. 

^ That is, of mind. Eoss and Gladwin translate lyluuJ^ 

pa/rlahanlj ^^difficilLties," which is hardly the meaning. Semelet 
is nearer the sense with ^' distractions.*^ I have altered the 
''hmidred" to ^' twice a hundred," to render the line more 
forcible. 



CHAPTER VIL STORY XIX. 195 

COUPLET. 

The rich man is with thoughts of God impressed : 
The needy is for such thoughts too distressed. 

Wherefore the worship of the former is more likely to be 
accepted, inasmuch as their minds are collected and 
attentive, not distracted and wavering ; for, as they are 
prepared with the means of subsistence, they can betake 
themselves to their devotions. The Arabians say, ^ Ood 
defend me from humiliating poverty ^ and from the neigh' 
bourhood of one I do not love ! ' And tradition tells us 
that it was a saying of the Prophet, ' Poverty blackens the 
cotcntenance in' both worlds.' '* My opponent replied, "Hast 
thou not heard that the Prophet (on whom be peace ! ) 
said, 'Poverty 'is my glory' ?'* I answered, "Be silent ! 
for the allusion of the Lord of the world is to the poverty 
of those who are the warriors of the battle-field of 
resignation and who receive with submission the arrows 
of destiny — ^not to that of those who put on the patched 
robe of the devout, and sell the scraps bestowed on them 
in charity. 

QUATRAIN. 

noisy drum, all emptiness within. 
How without food wilt thou thy march begin ! 
Be manly, and from cringing cease : for this 
Than thousand-beaded rosaries better is.^®* 

A darwesh without spirituality will not pause imtil his 

^ I have translated the last three lines rather freely. The 
literal version is, "Without provisions, what plan wilt thou 
devise at the time of marching ? Turn the face of greediness 
from people, if thou art a man. Do not turn in thy hand the 
rosary with a thousand beads." In the second line m^mJ pasleh 

clearly means "a journey," and rhymes to ,^ Meh; but, in 
Bichardson's Dictionary, we find only .^^w paslj^ with the 
meanings " ready, prepared, provision for a journey." 



L 



196 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

poverty ends in infideKty, for 'Poverty borders on the 
denial of OodJ Moreover, without the possession of 
riches we cannot clothe the naked or exert ourselves in 
liberating the captive. Who can compare the position 
of such as we are with the dignity of the rich ? or what 
resemblance is there between the hand that gives and 
that which receives? Dost thou not perceive that the 
most glorious and most high God announces, in a clear 
passage of the Kur'an,^® regarding the blessings of the 
inhabitants of Paradise, that, ' To them there is an assured 
allowance of fruits, and they are honoured in the gardens of 
Paradise ? ' in order that thou mayest know that he who 
is occupied in gaining a subsistence is excluded from the 
happiness of this degree of hoKness, and that the kingdom 
of contentment is dependant^ on a fixed income. 

COUPLET. 

To those athirst the whole world seems 
A spring of water— in their dreams. 

Wherever thou seest one who has endured hardship 
and tasted the bitterness of misfortune, thou wilt find 
him precipitate himself with avidity into enormities 
without fear of the consequences or dread of punishment 
in a future life, inasmuch as he discriminates not between 
things lawful and unlawful. 

STANZA. 

A dog leaps up with joy when on his head 
A clod descends — ^he thinks a bone to spy. 

So, when two men bear forth the cojBSned dead 
Upon their shoulders, greedy miscreants eye 
The bier, and think they then a tray of meat descry. 

^ Ross refers for this passage to the 28th chapter of the 
Kur'an ; but the only verse that is at all similar in that chapter 
is V. 57, "a secure asylum, to which fruits of every sort are 
brought, as a provision of our bounty." 

^ Literally, " under the signet." 



CHAPTER VIL STORY XIX, 



197 



But the wealthy man is regarded with an eye of favour, 
and, by the possession of that which is lawful, is preserved 
from committing that which is unlawful. But, even 
supposing that I have not proved what I have adduced, 
nor demonstrated the truth of my arguments, I yet 
expect justice from thee. Hast thou ever seen the hand 
of a suppliant tied behind his back? or an indigent 
person imprisoned ? or the veil of chastity rent ? or the 
hand amputated at the wrist P^^ except by reason of 
poverty? Driven by necessity, brave men are taken in 
the act of underm in ing houses,^^ and are punished by 
having their heels bored ; and it is likely that, when the 
passions of the poor man are roused and he has not the 
means of gratifying them, he will be involved in sin. 
And it is one among the causes of the tranquillity and 
content that rich men enjoy, that they each day renew 
their youth, and each night embrace a beauty ^^^ such 
that bright mom is ashamed^^® in her presence, and the 
graceful cypress, in modest acknowledgment of her 
superiority, finds its feet imbedded in the clay of bash- 
fulness. 

COUPLET. 

Her hands in gore of hapless lovers dipped, ' 
Her fingers with the ruddy jujube tipped. 

It is impossible that, in despite of the beauty of such 
countenance, they should hover round that which is 
forbidden or engage in depravities. . 

^ The punishment for theft. 

^^ Burglars in the East effect their entrance into the houses 
they intend to rob by mining under the walls. This is easy enough 
where, as in India, the soil is light and no one is on the alert. 

'^ I cannot at aU agree with M. Semelet's reading of this 
passage, and infinitely prefer my own, by which the extreme 
indelicacy of the Prench and other editions is avoided. 

"° Literally^ " Places its hand on its heart at her beauty." 



1 98 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

A heart that Houris charmed and made its prey, 
To Taghma's^ beauties when will devious stray P 

COUPLET. 

Who holds the dates he loves his hands Between, 
Contented, pelts the clusters not, I tceen. 

The majority of the necessitous stain the garment of 
chastity with sin, as those who are hungry steal bread. 

COUPLET. 

So when a rayenous cur finds meat — small care has he 
If Salih's camel or if Dajjal's^ ass it be. 

Many decent persons haye fallen into abominable wicked- 
ness through poverty, and have given their precious 
honour to the winds of disgrace. 

COUPLET. 

With hunger abstinence will scarce remain, 
And want will wrest away devotion's rein." 

At the moment that I uttered these words the darwesh 
lost his hold of the reins of endurance, and he unsheathed 
the sword of his tongue and let loose the steed of eloquence 
in the plain of shamelessness, and attacked me furiously, 

^^ tub Taghma is said to be a city of Turkestan, famous 
for its beautiful women. It also signifies **prey," whence 
arises an equivoque which cannot be preserved in English. 

"* JLtf Salih, " good, just ; " the Patriarch SaKh, son of 
Arphaxad, who is said in the Kur'an (ch. vii.) to have been a 
prophet sent to the tribe J^ Samvd, who inhabited Arabia 
Petrsea, and were descended from Aram, brother of Arphaxad. 
To convince them of his mission he miraculously brought a 
camel out of a rock, but they continued still in their unbelief, 
on which they were slain by the Angel Gabriel. Dajjal is 
Anti-christ, who is to appear riding on an ass and to lead men 
astray, until killed by Mahdl, the twelfth Imam, at his coming. 



CHAPTER VII, STORY XIX. 199 

saying, "Thou hast employed such exaggeration in praising 
them, and talked so extravagantly on the subject, that one 
would imagine the rich to be the antidote to the poison of 
poverty, or the key of the stores of Providence. They 
are a handful of proud, arrogant, conceited, repulsive 
persons, who are taken up with their wealth and their 
luxuries, and led away by their rank and opulence, and 
who can only talk insipidly and look disdainfully. They 
treat the learned like mendicants, and reproach the poor 
with their distresses. Through the pride of their wealth 
and the assumption of their supposed dignity, they take 
their seats above all others and imagine themselves better 
than any. They never take it into their heads to notice^* 
any one, in ignorance of that saying which has been 
uttered by the wise, 'Whoever is inferior to others in 
devotion, but surpasses them in wealth, is outwardly rich 
but inwardly poor.' 

COUPLET. 

When a fool would exalt himself, for his wealth, above 

the wile. 
Though he be an ox of ambergris,^* him as a fool despise.'* 

I replied, " Suffer not thyself to blame them, for they are 
the possessors of beneficence." He rejoined, " Thou hast 

^"^ M. Semelet thinks Jjj^J J --» B(vr har ddra/nd—ihe reading 
of Gladwin and Gentius — an error, and substitutes Jjj^ J ji^ j^ 
sar fa/ru ddrand. But sorely the former expression may mean 
** they lift up the head," i.e., "they notice." 

^* The Orientals think that ambergris is produced by sea- 
cows. M. Barbier tells us, '* Ambergris is found in the sea on 
the coasts of India, Africa, and Brazil. It is gray striped with 
yellow, brownish, and white. It appears to be a concretion 
that, in some diseased states, is formed in whales and principally 
in their caecum.'' It is a medicinal substance, rarely used 
now-a-days by the physician, but in great request among per- 
fumers, as it increases and draws out the odour of their essences. 



/■ii-"* J w ., m — .••i-t?'*^," ■ 



200 GUUSTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

spoken wrongly, for they are the slaves of money. Of what 
use is it that they are the clouds of the month Azar^^ 
and do not rain on any one; or that they are the fountains 
of the sun, and yet shine on none ; and that they ride on 
the steed of power, if they will not let him go on. They 
will not move a step in God's service, nor bestow a diram 
without making you feel painfully the obligation. They 
amass, too, their hoards drudgingly, and protect them 
grudgingly ; and the sages have said, * The silver of the 
miser is disinterred when he is interred.' 

COUPLET. 

^ith toil and trouble one does riches gain. 
Another comes and reaps them without pain." 

I replied, " Thou hast gained no knowledge of the parsi- 
mony of the rich save by begging ; otherwise every one 
who lays aside covetousness sees no difference in the 
liberal and the miserly. The touchstone discerns what rs 
gold, and the beggar knows who is stingy." He said, " I 
speak from experience that they place their menials at 
their gate, and commission coarse ruffians not to admit 
respectable persons, and these officials of theirs lay their 
hands on the breasts of men of knowledge and say, 
' There is nobody at home,' and, in point of fact, they 
speak the truth.^^ 

COUPLET. 

The soulless, stingy, dull, and senseless wight, 
Bids thee go say, * There's no one in,' — ^he's right ! " 

I replied, " There is an excuse for their doing this, in 
that they are driven to extremity by the petitions of those 

^' According to Gladwin, "August; " according to Richard- 
son's Dictionary, " November." 

"^^ This is said as a sneer, and means that the rich are 
"nobodys," "persons of no worth or value." 






CHAPTER VJI, STORY XIX. 20 1 

who expect aid from them and are harassed by begging 
letters, and it cannot reasonably be supposed that, if the 
sand of the desert should become pearls, the eyes of 
beggars would be satisfied. 

COUPLET. 

No wealth could fill the eye of avarice, 
As dew to brim a well would ne'er suffice. 

Had Hatim Ta'I, who lived in the desert, dwelt in a city, 
he would have been driven to desperation by the impor- 
tunity of beggars, and the very clothes would have been 
torn off his back." The darwesh said, " I pity ^^ their 
condition." I replied, "Not so; thou enviest their 
wealth." We were disputing thus and mutually opposed ; 
when he advanced a pawn I endeavoured to repel it, and 
when he called out check to my king I covered it with 
the queen, until he had spent all the coin of his wit and 
discharged all the arrows of the quiver of argument. 

STANZA. 

Beware, lest at that speaker's onset, who 
Has but a borrowed and a vain tirade. 

Thou should' st thy shield fling down. Keep thyself true 
To faith and virtue, and be not afraid 
Of empty posts with arms above the door displayed. 

At length he had not a word to say and was utterly 
overthrown by me. He then became outrageous and 
began to talk at random. It is the way with the ignorant 
that, when inferior to an opponent in argument, they 
betake themselves^ to violence. As, when the idol- 
worshipper Azur could not succeed with his son^"'^ in 
argument, he rose up to attack him, for God most High 

*" A sneer. 

^® Lit&rally^ " They shake the chain of enmity." 

'" Abraham. 



202 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEIT, 

i 

has said, ** Of a truth if thou unit not yield this point, then 
I will stone thee." He began to abuse me and I answered 
bim in tbe same strain. He seized my collar and I bis 
cbin. 

STANZA. 

O'er bim I tumbled^ be o'er me, 
A crowd witb laugbter us pursued, 

And wondered at our colloquy 

"Witb fingers in tbeir moutbs fast glued.*^ 

In sbort we carried our dispute before tbe KazI, and 
agreed to abide by bis just decision, so tbat tbe judge of 
tbe Musalman migbt examine as to wbat was best, and 
pronounce on tbe points of difference between tbe ricb 
and tbe poor. 

Wben tbe KazI bebeld our faces and beard our address, 
be allowed bis bead to sink down into bis vest in medita- 
tion, and, after mucb reflection, raised it and said, "O 
tbou ! wbo bast extolled tbe ricb and tbougbt fit to 
speak witb severity of tbe poor, know tbat wberever tbere 
is a rose tbere is a tbom, and witb wine is intoxication, 
and over a treasure is coiled a serpent, and wbere tbere 
are royal pearls tbere are also devouring monsters. So 
over tbe enjoyments of tbe world impends tbe terror of 
deatb, and between tbe blessings of Paradise intervenes 
a wall of difficulties.^^ 

COUPLET. 

Wbo would bave friends, a foe's bate must sustain, 
Linked are snakes, gold ; tboms, flowers ; joy and pain. 

Seest tbou not tbat in tbe garden are found togetber 
musk- willows and dry logs? so, too, among tbe ricb 
are tbose wbo are tbankful and untbankful, and among 
tbe poor are tbe patient and impatient. 

^ Tbe Oriental way of denoting surprise is to bite tbe finger. 
*8i Ytde Kur'an, cb. vii., v. 47, ed. Maracci. 



J9.A9^~KS. y-JR-iJCT'^^^gepa— ^^rau-jp ^ l-.^jili 



CHAPTER VIL STORY XIX. 203 

COUPLET. 

Could every hailstone to a pearl be turned, 
Pearls in the mart like oyster shells were spumed. 

The beloved of the Almighty (may He be honoured and 
glorified ! ) are the rich who have the humility of the 
poor, and the poor who have the magnanimity of the 
rich; and the prince of rich men is he who compas- 
sionates the poor, and among the poor men he is the 
best who depreciates the rich least. Ood most High has 
said, ' Whosoever trmteth in Ood^ Me is mfficient for him."* 
The KazI then turned the face of rebuke from me towards 
the darwesh, and said, " thou ! who hast said that the 
rich are absorbed in forbidden enjoyments and intoxicated 
with profaue delights ; it is true that there are a nimiber 
of persons such as thou hast said, deficient in liberality 
and imthankful for their blessings, who gather money 
and hoard it, and who enjoy it but give none away. If, 
for example, the rain should not f edl, or a deluge over- 
whelm the world, in the security of their own abundauce 
they would not ask after the poor man nor fear the Most 
High God. 

COUPLET. 

What though another die of want P my bread 
Fails not : to water-fowls floods cause no dread. 

COUPLET* 

Borne aloft in camel-litters, what, I pray, do women care 
For the tired pilgrim struggling through the sand-heaps 
drifted there ? 

COUPLET. 

The base who've saved their own vile wrappers cry, 
' What matters though the universe should die P ' 

There are persons of the character I have described ; 
but there is another numerous body who prepare a 



^n 



204 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

hospitable table and proclaim a liberal invitation, and 
whose countenances expand with affability while they in 
this manner pursue the path of fame and divine acceptance, 
and thus enjoy both this present world and a future 
recompense. Of these is his Majesty the King of the 
world, the aided hy God, the victorious and triumphant over 
his enemies, the holder of the reins of the human race, 
defender of the passes of Islam, heir to the throne of Sulaimdn, 
the most Just of the monarchs of the age, Muzafaru'd-dln 
Abu Bakr bin Sad bin Zangl (may God prolong his days 
and grant victory to his banners ! ) 

STANZA. 

No sire e'er showed such kindness to his child 
As thy all-bounteous hand hath heaped on man. 

Heaven on this world with favouring mercy smiled, 
And by its Providence thy reign began." 

When the Kazi had extended his discourse thus far, and 
had urged the steed of his rhetoric beyond the limits of 
our expectation, we acquiesced in the necessity of obeying 
his decree, overlooked what had passed, and, banishing 
our past differences, entered on the road of reconciliation ; 
and, in amends for what we had mutually done, bowed 
our heads at each other's feet and kissed each other's head 
and faces. The discord ceased and our enmity terminated 
in peace, and our disagreement concluded with these two 
couplets : 

STANZA. 

Complain not, darwesh ! of vicissitude : 

Hapless if in such train of thought thou die ! 

And thou, rich man ! while yet thou art endued 
With a kind heart and riches, gratify 

Thyself and others : thus on earth make sure 

Of joys ; and thy reward in heaven secure. 



205 



CHAPTEE VIII. 
ON THE DUTIES OF SOCIETY. 

Maxim I. 

Riches are for the sake of making life comfortable, not 
life for the sake of amassing riches. I asked a wise man, 
" Who is fortunate and who unfortunate ? " He replied, 
" The fortunate is he who sowed ^^ and reaped ; the un- 
fortunate he who died and abandoned." 

COUPLET. 

Not for that worthless one a prayer afford. 

Who life in hoarding spent — ne'er spent his hoard. 

Maxim II. 

The holy Musa (Peace be on him ! ) advised Karun,^^^ 
saying, " Do good unto others^ as God has done good unto 
thee ! " He did not listen, and thou hast heard his end. 

STANZA. 

He who by wealth no good deeds has upstored. 
For it has marred his future destiny. 

Wouldst thou derive advantage from thy hoard ? 
Do good to others, as God has to thee. 

'** I have transposed u: -^^^'^ j ^^ Wy/rd wa kuht, as it is 
evident that ^* kisht" is put last only to rhyme with lt. >^<a &> 
Msht. 

^^ Kur'an, chap, xxviii., page 296, 1. 6. Sale's Translation. 



2o6 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

The Arabs say, " Bo good, and do not speak of U, and 
assuredly thy kindness will he recompensed to thee ; '* that is 
to say, "Give and be Kberal, and do not impute the 
obligation, and the benefit will revert to thee/' 

STANZA. 

Where'er the tree of gracious deeds takes root. 
Its towering top and branches reach the sky : 

Do not, if thou wouldst wish to taste its fruit. 
By boasting of those deeds, the axe apply. 

STANZA. 

Thank God that He vouchsafes to succour thee, 

And has not left thee void of grace. 
Thou serv'st the king — ^well ! do not boastful be, 

But rather thankful for thy place. 

Maxim III. 

Two men have laboured fruitlessly and exerted them- 
selves to no purpose. One is the man who has gained 
wealth without enjoying it ; the other he who has ac- 
quired knowledge but has failed to practise it. 

DISTICHS. 

How much soe'er thou leam'st, 'tis all vain ; 

Who practise not, still ignorant remain. 

A quadruped, with volumes laden, is 

No whit the wiser or more sage for this : 

How can the witless animal discern. 

If books be piled on it P or wood to bum P 

Maxim IV. 

Science is for the cultivation of religion, not for worldly 
enjoyments. 

COUPLET. 

Who makes a gain of virtue, science, lore. 
Is one who garners up, then bums his store. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM VII, 207 

Maxim V. 

A learned man wlio does not restrain his passions is 
like a blind man holding a torch ; he guides others but not 
himself. 

COUPLET. 

Who life has wasted without doing aught, 

His gold has squandered, and has purchased nought. 

Maxim VI. 

A country is adorned' by wise men, and religion is 
perfected by the virtuous. Kings stand more in need of 
the counsel of the wise, than wise men do of propinquity 
to kings. 

STANZA. 

King ! let my words with thee find grace ; 

My book than this can nought more sage advise : 
The wise alone in office place ; 

Though office truly little suits the wise. 

Maxim VII. 

Three things lack permanency, uncombined with three 
other things : wealth without trading ; learning without 
instruction ; ^* and empire without a strict administration 
of justice. 

STANZA. 

By courteous speech, politeness, gentleness. 
Sometimes thou mayest direct the human will 1 

Anon by threats ; for it oft profits less 
With sugar twice a hundred cups to fiU, 
Than from one colocynth its bitters to distil. 

^ The other translators take " controversy" to be the mean- 
ing of l::.^>^1j J dirdsat ; I confess I am at a loss for authority to 
justify this sense. But the meaning I have given above is 
simple enough : — ^If the learned do not teach others, learning 
must soon come -to au end. 



■^ 



208 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Maxim VIII. 
To shew pity to tlie bad is to oppress the good, and to 
pardon oppressors is to tyrannise over the oppressed. 

COUPLET. 

When thou to base men giv'st encouragement, 
Thou shar'st their sins, since thou them aid hast lent. 

Maxim IX. ' 

No reliance can be placed on the friendship of princes, 
nor must we plume ourselves on the sweet voices of 
children, since that is changed by a caprice, and these by 
a single slumber. 

COUPLET. 

On the mistress of a thousand hearts, do not thy love 

bestow ; 
But if thou wilt, prepare eftsoons her friendship to forego. 

Maxim X. 
Reveal not to a friend every secret that thou possessest. 
How knowest thou whether at some time he may not 
become an enemy? Nor inflict on thy enemy every 
injury that is in thy power, perchance he may some day 
become thy friend. Tell not the secret that thou wouldest 
have continue hidden to any person, although he may be 
worthy of confidence ; for no one will be so careful of thy 
secret as thyself. 

STANZA. 

Better be silent, than thy purpose tell 

To others ; and enjoin them secresy. 
dolt ! keep back the water at the well. 

For the swollen stream to stop thoult vainly try. 
In private, utter not a single word 
Which thou in public wouldst regret were heard. 

Maxim XI. 

A weak enemy who submits and makes a shew of 
friendship, does so only with the intention of becoming 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM XIII, 209 

more dangerous ; and they have said, " There is no 
reliance to be placed in the friendship of friends ; how 
much less in the professions of enemies ! " Whosoever 
despises a small enemy is like him who is careless about 
a little fire. 

STANZA. 

To-day extinguish, if thou can'st, the fire, 
Which. for its victims will a world require, 
If not arrested. And ere yet his bow 
Be strung, thy arrow should transfix the foe. 

Maxim XII. 

Let thy words between two foes be such that if they 
were to become friends thou wouldest not be ashamed. 

DISTICHS. 

Like fire is strife betwixt two enemies : 

The luckless mischief-maker wood supplies. 

Struck with confusion and ashamed is he, 

If e er the two belligerents agree. 

Can we in this aught rational discern — 

To light a fire which will ourselves first burn ? 

STANZA. 

In talk with friends speak soft and low, 

Lest thy bloodthirsty f oeman thee should hear : 

A wall may front thee — ^true ! but dost thou know 
If there be not behind a list^iing ear ? 

Maxim XIII. 

Whoever comes to an agreement with the enemies of 
his friends, does so with the intention of injuring the 
latter. 

COUPLET. 

Eschew that friend, if thou art wise. 
Who consorts with thy enemies. 

14 



V. 



210 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

Maxim XIV. 

When, in transacting business, thou art in doubt, make 
choice of that side from which the least injury will result. 

COUPLET. 

Reply not roughly to smooth language, nor 
Contend with him who knocks at peace's door. 

Maxim XY. 

As long as a matter can be compassed by money, it is 
not right to imperil life. The Arabs say, " The sword is 
the last resource J^ 

COUPLET. 

When thou hast failed in every known resource, 
Then to the sword 'tis right to have recourse. 

Maxim XVI. 

Compassionate not the weakness of a foe, for were he 
to become powerful he would have no pity on thee.^^ 

COUPLET. 

Twist not thy moustaches boastful, nor with pride thy 

weak foe scan : 
Every bone contains some marrow, every garment cloaks 

a man. 

APOPHTHEGM. 

He who slays a bad man, rids mankind of annoyance 
from him, and the man himself from an increase of 
punishment [which his future misdeeds would have 
merited] from God (may He be honoured and glorified ! )?^ 

*** These maxims are a very good index of Oriental feeling ; 
and aU who know the East will admit that they are most 
religiously observed. 

*** An unlucky maxim for a criminal. So, in taking off his 
head, you are in fact consulting not only the public weal, but 
the welfare of the criminal himself. 



CHAPTER VIII, MAXIM XIX, 211 

STANZA. 

Pity is commendable — that we own ; 

Yet on tHe tyrant's wound no ointment place. 
He that has mercy to a serpent shown, 

Has acted cruelly to Adam's race. 

Maxim XVII. 

To act in accordance with an enemy's advice is foolish, 
but it is permissible to hear it, in order to do the opposite, 
for that will be exactly the right course. 

DISTICHS. 

Beware of what thy foeman bids thee do. 

Lest on thy knees thou smite thy hands, and grieve. 

Straight as a dart may be the road — 'tis true — 
He points to ; yet 'twere better it to leave. 

Maxim XVIII. 

Anger that has no limit causes terror, and unseasonable 
kindness does away with respect. Be not so severe as to 
cause disgust, nor so lenient as to make people presume. 

DISTICHS. 

Sternness and gentleness are best combined : 
The leech both salves and scarifies, you find. 
The sage is not too rigorous, nor yet 
Too mild, lest men their awe of him forget : 
He seeks not for himself too high a place ; 
Nor will himself too suddenly abase. 

DISTICHS. 

Once to his sire a shepherd said, " Sage ! 
Teach me one maxim worthy of thy age." 
" Use gentleness," he said, " yet not so much. 
That the wolf be emboldened thee to clutch." 

Maxim XIX. 

Two persons are the foes of a state and of religion ; a king 
without clemency, and a religious man without learning. 



212 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

Ne*er to that king may states allegiance own, 
Who bows not humbly at th' Almighty's throne. 

Maxim XX. 
A king ought not to indulge his resentment against 
his enemies to such an extent as to shake the confidence 
of his friends; for the fire of wrath falls first on the 
wrathful man himself, and after, its flame may or may 
not reach the enemy. 

DISTICHS. 

It suits not Adam's children, earthly-bom, 
T' indulge in pride, ferocity, and scorn. 
When I behold in thee such heat and ire, 
I cannot think thee sprung from earth, but fire. 

STANZA. 

In Bailkan^ once a devotee I saw, 

" From folly purge me by thy words,'* I said. 
" Go ! " he replied, " thou who art skilled in law. 
Be as earth humble, or what thou hast read 
Might in the earth as well be buried." 

Maxim288 XXI. 

The wicked man is overtaken in the grasp of an enemy 
from whose torturing clutches he can never escape, go 
where he will. 

COUPLET. 

Though bad men seek in heaven to flee from ill, , 

E'en there their vices will pursue them still. i 

I 

^' A city in Armenia Major, near the ports of the Caspian Sea. ' 

**® This is headed <JUjUa^ mu{di/ahah, "pleasantry," as the , 

next is jcj pand, "advice," as others are ilfii^L* mtddta/ah, 
"facetiae," and <Uoj tamhlh, "admonition;" but, as it is 
difficult to see how these differ from l::,>v»C» htkmai, and from 
one another, I have rendered them all " Maxim." 



CHAPTER VIII, MAXIM XXV, 2 1 3 

Maxim XXIL 

When thou seest discord arise among the forces of the 
enemy, take courage ; and when they are united ^^ beware 
then of rout. 

STANZA. 

Go ! with thy friends sit free from care, 

If thou thy foes shouldst see with discord rent. 

But if thou mark'st agreement there, 

Go string thy bow, thyself prepare, 
And pile thy missiles on the battlement. 

Maxim XXIII. 

When an enemy has tried every expedient in vain, he 
will pretend friendship,^^ and then, by this pretext, 
execute designs which no enemy could have effected. 

Maxim XXIV. 

Crush the serpent's head with the hand of an enemy, 
which must result in one of two good things. If the 
latter be successful^ thou hast killed a snake ; and if the 
former, thou hast freed thyself from an enemy. 

COUPLET. 

Though thy foe be feeble, be not in the battle void of 

care; 
He will dash the lion's brains out when he's driven to 

despair. 

Maxim XXV. 

When thou knowest tidings that will pain the heart of 
any one, be silent, so that another may be the first to 
convey them. 

'*• There is a play on words here, which I have not been able 
to preserve in English, /j*^ f"^*^ jama shuda/n signifies " to 
be collected, united," and also, "to be of good cheer." 

*^ Literally J " Agitate the chain of friendship." 



^ ^ ^^^ 



214 GULISTAN; OR, HOSE GARDEN, 

COUPLET. 

nightingale ! spring's tidings breathe, 
111 rumours to the owls bequeath. 

Maxim XXVI. 

iDo not acquaint a king with the treason of any one, 
unless when thou art assured that the disclosure will meet 
with his full approval, else thou art but labouring for thy 
own destruction. 

COUPLET. 

Then, only then, to speak intend 
When speaking can effect thy end. 

Maxim XXVII. 

He who gives advice to a conceited man is himself in 
need of counsel. 

Maxim XXVIII. 

Be not caught by the artifice of a foe, nor purchase 
pride of a flatterer; for the one has set the snare of 
hypocrisy, and the other has opened the mouth of 
greediness. The fool is puffed up with flattery, Kke a 
corpse whose inflated heels appear plump. 

STANZA. 

Heed not the flatterer's fulsome talk. 

He from thee hopes some trifle to obtain ; 

Thou wilt, shouldst thou his wishes baulk. 
Two hundred times as much of censure gain. 

Maxim XXIX. 

Until some one points out to an orator his defects, his 
discourse will never be amended. 

COUPLET. 

To vaimt of one's own speaking is not meet, 
At fools' approval and one's own conceit. 



CHAPTER VIII. MAXIM XXXII. 2 1 5 

Maxim XXX. 

Every one thinks his own judgment perfect, and his 
own son beautifuL 

VERSE. 

A Jew and Musalman once so contended 

That laughter seized me as their contest grew. 

The true believer thus his cause defended : 
" Is this bond false, then may I die a Jew ! " 

The Jew replied : " By Moses* books I vow that 
'Tis true, or else a Musalman am I ! " 
So from earth's face were Wisdom's self to fly, 

Not one could be amongst us found t' allow that 
He judgment lacked, or himself stultify. - 

Maxim XXXI. 

Ten men can eat at one board, but two dogs cannot 
satisfy themselves at one carcase. The greedy man con- 
tinues to hunger, though a world supply his wants ; and 
the contented man is satisfied with a crust. 

COUPLET. 

A single loaf the stomach will supply ; 
But not earth's richest gifts the greedy eye. 

DISTICHS. 

When my sire's age had reached its latest day, 
He gave me this advice, and passed away : — 
" Lust is a fire ; — from it thyself keep well ; 
Nor kindle 'gainst thyself the flames of Hell. 
Thou hast not patience to endure that flame, I trow; 
With patience, as with water, quench it now." 

Maxim XXXII. 

Whosoever does no good when he has the ability to do 
it, in the time of inability to aid others will himself sufler 
distress. 



2i6 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

Ill-starred, indeed, is he who injures men : 
Is fortune adverse, he is friendless then. 

Maxim XXXIII. 

Life hangs on a single breath ; and the world of exist- 
ence is between two non-existences. Those who barter 
religion for the world are asses ; they sell Joseph and get 
what in return ? Did I not covenant tcith you, sons of 
Adam ! that ye should not serve Satan ? for verily he is 
your avowed enemy, 

COUPLET. 

With thy friend thou faith hast broken at the bidding 

of thy foe : 
See with whom thou'st joined alliance, and from whom 

thou'st sought to go. 

Maxim XXXIY. 

Satan prevails not against the righteous; nor a king 
against the poor. 

DISTICHS. 

Lend not to him who prayer neglects, though he 
Gasping with want and inanition be ; 
For he who renders not to God His due, 
What will he care for that he owes to you ? 

STANZA. 

I've heard that they so temper Eastern clay ^^ 
That they in forty years one cup prepare : 

Hundreds are made in Baghdad in a day, 

And hence the lowness of the price they bear. 

**^ The other translators render Ayi^^ (^l>- TJhah-i mashriJc, 
" in the land of the East," *' dans le pays d* Orient," etc. ; but 
surely the translation I have given is at least as defensible. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM XXXVL 217 

VERSE. 

The young bird from its egg comes forth and meets at 
once its fate^ 
While infant man is destitute of reason and of sense : 
Too soon matured the first arrives at nothing high or great; 
The second with slow steps attains a proud pre-eminence. 
Crystal is everywhere beheld, and hence contemned its 
state ; 
But since the ruby's rarely found, its worth's the 
consequence. 

Maxim XXXV. 

Affairs succeed by patience ; and he that is hasty 
falleth headlong. 

DISTICHS. 

I've in the desert with these eyes beheld 
The hurrying pilgrim to the slow- stepped yield : 
The rapid courser in the rear remains. 
While the slow camel still its step maintains. 

Maxim XXXVI. 

There is no better ornament for the ignorant than 
silence, and did he but know this he would not be 
ignorant. 

STANZA. 

Hast thou not perfect excellence, 'tis best 
To keep thy tongue in silence, for 'tis this 

Which shames a man ; as lightness does attest 
The nut is empty, nor of value is. 

STANZA. 

Once, in these words, a fool rebuked an ass, — 
'* Go, thou who all thy life hast lived in vain ! " 

A sage said to him, " Blockhead ! why dost pass 
Thy time in this ? Gibes will be all thy gain. 

To learn of thee a brute no power has : 
Learn thou of brutes in silence to remain." 



2i8 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN-. 

DISnCHS. 

Whoe'er his answer does not ponder, will, 
In most afl&<irs, be found to answer ill ; 
Thy speech embellish with man's sense and wit. 
Or learn in silence like a brute to sit. 

Maxim XXXVII. 

Whoever disputes with a man more wise than him- 
self, to make people think him wise, will be thought 
ignorant. 

COUPLET. 

When one more wise than thou begins to speak. 
Do not, tho' skilful, to oppose him seek. 

Maxim XXXVIII. 
Whoso sits with bad men will not see aught good. 

DISTICHS. 

With demons did an angel take his seat, 
He'd leam but terror, treason, and deceit : 
Thou from the bad wilt nothing leam but ill ; 
The wolf wiU ne'er the furrier's office fill. 

Maxim XXXIX. 

Divulge not the secret faults of men ; for at the same 
time that thou disgracest them thou wilt destroy thy own 
credit. 

Maxim XL. 

He that has acquired learning and not practised what 
he has learnt, is like a man who ploughs but sows 
no seed. 

Maxim XLI. 

Worship cannot be performed by the body without 
the mind, and a shell without a kernel will not do for 
merchandise. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM XLIV, ^ i q 

Maxim XLII. 

Not every one who is ready at wrangling is correct in 
his dealings. 

COUPLET. 

Forms enow beneath the mantle wear the outward signs 

of grace; 
But if thou shouldst them unwimple, thou wouldst find 

a grandam's face. 

Maxim XLIIL 

If every night was a night of power,^*^ the Night of 
Power would lose its value. 

COUPLET. 

Were each stone such ruby as is found in Badakhshanyan 

earth, 
How would then the ruby differ from the pebble in its 

worth ? 

Maxim XLIV. 

Not every one whose outward form is graceful pos- 
sesses the graces of the mind ; for action depends on the 
heart, not on the exterior. 

'^ Gladwin seems to me to destroy the pith of this sentence 
by rendering jJoi \,^^^ shdb-i hadr, ''many of such nights ; " to 

say nothing of making a singular noun plural. Chapter xcvii. 
of the Kur*an is as follows : *' Verily, we sent down the Kurgan 
in the night of Al Kadr. And what shall make thee under- 
stand how excellent the night of Al Kadr is ? The night Of Al 
Kadr is better than a thousand months. Therein do the angels 
descend, and the spirit Gabriel also, by the permission of their 
Lord, with his decrees concerning every matter. It is peace 
until the rising of the mom." The Moslem doctors are not 
agreed when to fix this night ; but most think it one of the last 
nights of Eamazan, and the seventh reckoned backwards, 
whence it will fall between the 23rd and 24th days of that 
month. 



I«MH*« 



220 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

STANZA. 

From a man's qualities a day^s enough 
To make us of his learning's limit sure. 

Plume not thyself as though the hidden stuff 
Thou of his heart hast reached ; nor be secure, 

For not e'en long revolving years can tell 

The foul things which in man unnoticed dwell. 

Maxim XLV. 

He who joins battle with the great sheds his own 
blood. 

STANZA. 

Say'st thou, " Behold ! how great I am ! " 
The squint-eyed even thus of one makes two ; 

Who play at butting with a ram 

Will quick enough a broken forehead rue. 

Maxim XLVI. 

It is not the part of wise men to grapple with a lion, 
or strike the fist against a sword. 

COUPLET. 

Not in contention with the furious stand. 

And near the mighty humbly clasp thy hand.^' 

Maxim XLVII. 

A weak man, who has the fool-hardiness to contend 
with a strong one, assists his adversary in destroying 
himself. 

STANZA. 

He who was nursed in soft repose 

Cannot with warriors to the battle go ; 

Vain with his weakly arm to close, 
And struggle with an iron-wristed foe. 

*^' Literally, "Put thy hand under thy armpit; " i.e, **Put 
thyself in a peaceful attitude." 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM LIL 221 

Maxim XLVIII. 

Whoso will not listen to advice aims at hearing himself 
reproached. 

COUPLET. 

He who will not to friends' advice attend, 
Must not complain when they him reprehend. 

Maxim XLIX. 

Persons devoid of virtue cannot endure the sight of 
the virtuous ; just as market-curs, when they see dogs of 
the chase, bark at them, but dare not approach them. 

Maxim L. 

When a base fellow cannot vie with another in merit, 
he will attack him with malicious slander. 

COUPLET. 

Weak envy absent virtue slanders, — Why ? 
Since it is dumb, perforce, when it is by. 

Maxim LI. 

But for the tyranny of hunger no bird would fall into 
the snare — ^nay, the fowler himself would not set the snare. 

COUPLET. 

The belly binds the hands, the feet unnerves ; 
He heeds not heaven who his belly serves. 

Maxim LII. 

Wise men eat late ; devout men but half satisfy their 
appetites ; and hermits take only enough to support life ; 
the young eat till the dishes are removed, and the old till 
they sweat ; but the Kalandars ^^* stuff till they have no 
room in their stomachs to breathe, and not a morsel is 
left on the table for any one. 

^* A sort of fakir. 



'^ 



222 GL LIST AN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

COUPLET. 

The glutton for two nights no sleep can get ; 
The first from surfeit, the next from regret.^*^ 

Maxim LIII. 
To consult with women is ruin, and to be liberal to the 
mischievous is a crime. 

COUPLET. 

To sharp-toothed tigers kind to be 
To harmless flocks is tyranny.^*^ 

Maxim LIV. 

Whoso slays not his enemy when he is in his power is 
his own enemy. 

COUPLET. 

When a stone is in the hand ; on a stone the serpent's 

pate; 
He is not a man of sense who to strike should hesitate. 

There are, however, persons who think the opposite of 
this advisable, and have said, " It is better to pause in the 
execution of prisoners, inasmuch as the option [of slaying 
or pardoning them] is retained. Whereas, if a prisoner 

^' Literally y '*One who is a captive in the bonds of the beUy.'* 
Gladwin translates the (^y^ J«^ dil iangi^ in the second line, 
**want." M. Semelet, more literally, "inquietude de coBur." 
I suppose it to be ** regret,*' for having eaten the supplies for 
the next day. Dr. Sprenger reads , JU*^ Ijjc^ mtdah-i Woiliy 

for i^^o^ 9jjL^ mtdah't sangt^ which I cannot approve. 

^ As the couplet in my edition occurs, and has been already 
translated under Maxim VIII., I prefer rendering Dr. Sprenger's 
and M. Semelet's reading, which is as follows : — 

and which occurs in my edition after the next couplet. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM LVL 



223 



be put to death without deliberation, it is probable that 
the best course will be let slip, since the step is 
irremediable.'* 

COUPLETS. 

'Tis very easy one alive to slay ; 
Not so to give back life thou tak'st away : 
Reason demands that archers patience show. 
For shafts once shot return not to the bow. 

Maxim LV. 

The sage who engages in controversy with ignorant 
people must not expect to be treated with honour ; and if 
a fool should overpower a philosopher by his loquacity, 
it is not to be wondered at, for a common stone will 
break a jewel. 

COUPLET. 

What marvel is it if his spirits droop ? 

A nightingale — and with him crows to coop ! 

COUPLETS. 

What if a vagabond on merit rail ? 
Let not the spirits of the worthy fail : 
A common stone may break a golden cup ; 
Its value goes not down, the stone's not up. 

Maxim LVI. 

If in a company of dissolute fellows the discourse of a 
wise man is not received with attention, be not astonished ; 
for the sound of the lute is drowned by that of the drum, 
and the perfume of ambergris is overpowered by the 
foetor of garlic. 

VERSE. 

Proud has the loud-voiced wittol grown. 
That impudence the wise has overthrown ; 
Know'st thou not Hijaz' strains too low-toned are 
To mingle with the brazen drum of war. 

If a jewel fall into the mire it remains as precious as 



224 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

before : and though dust should ascend to heaven, its 
former worthlessness will not be altered. A capacity 
without education is pitiable, and education without 
capacity is thrown away. Ashes, though akin to what 
is exalted, inasmuch as fire is essentially noble, yet, not 
possessing any intrinsic worth, are no better than dirt ; 
and the value of sugar is not derived from the cane, but 
from its own inherent qualities. Musk is that which of 
itself yields a sweet smell, not that which the perfumer 
says is musk.^^ The wise man is like the tray of the 
druggist — silent, but evincing its own merits ; and the 
ignorant man resembles the drum of the warrior — ^loud- 
voiced, and empty, and bragging vainly. 

VERSE. 

A learned man, as sages state, 

Among the dull illiterate, 

Is like a beauty 'mid the blind. 

Or Kur'an to the impious mind. 

In Canaan's land, when sin prevailed, 

The Prophet's birth no fruit entailed. 

If innate worth is in thee bom, 

[Thy origin deserves not scorn,] 

The rose aye blossoms on the thorn ; 

[The worthless may engender worth,] 

And Azur gave to Abraham birth. 

Maxim LVII. 

It is not right to estrange in a moment a friend whom 
it takes a lifetime to secure. 

TRIPLET. 

'Tis years before the pebble can put on 

The ruby's nature. — Wilt thou on a stone 

In one short moment mar what time has done ? 

'^^ He may call that which is adulterated or counterfeit 
'* musk." 



CHAPTER VIII. MAXIM LXL 225 

Maxim LVIII. 

Beason is a captive in the hands of the passions, as a 
weak man in the hands of an artful woman. 

COUPLET. 

Shut on that house the door of sweet content, 
Where woman can aloud her passions vent. 

Maxim LIX. 

Purpose without power is mere weakness and decep- 
tion ; and power without purpose is fatuity and insanity. 

COUPLET. 

Have judgment, counsel, sense, and then bear rule ; 
Wealth, empire, are self-murder ^* to the fool. 

Maxim LX. 

The liberal man, who enjoys and bestows, is better than 
the devotee, who fasts and lays by. Whoso abandons 
lust in order to gain acceptance with the world has fallen 
from venial desires into those which are unpardonable. 

COUPLET. 

Hermits, who are not so through piety. 
Darken a glass and then attempt to see. 

COUPLET. 

Little to little added much will grow: 

The barn's store, grain by grain, is gathered so. 

Many littles make a mickle, many drops a flood. 

Maxim LXI. 
It is not right for a learned man to pass over leniently 

^* I prefer Gladwin's and Gentius' renderings of this passage 
to those of Semelet and Boss. Literally, the sense of the 
second line is, ''For the territories and wealth of the ignorant 
are the weapons of warfare against himself." 

IS 



226 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

the fooKsh impertinencies of the vulgar, for this is 
detrimental to both parties : the awe which the f onner 
ought to inspire is diminished, and the folly of the latter 
augmented. 

COUPLET. 

Art thou with fools too courteous and too free, 
Their pride and folly will augmented be. 

Maxim LXTI. 

Wickedness, by whomsoever committed, is odious : but 
most of all in men of learning ; for learning is the weapon 
with which Satan is combated ; and when a man is made 
captive with arms in his hand, his shame is more excessive. 

COUPLET. 

Better an ignorant and wretched state 
Than to be learned and yet profligate ; 
That from the path his blindness did beguile ; 
Thi^ saw, and in a pitfall slipped the while. 

Maxim LXIII. 

People forget the name of him whose bread they have 
not tasted during his lifetime. Joseph the just (Peace 
be on him !), during the famine in Egypt, would not eat 
so as to satisfy his appetite, that he might not forget the 
hungry. It is the poor widow that relishes the grapes, 
not the owner of the vineyard.^^ 

COUPLETS. 

He who in pleasure and abundance lives. 
What knows he of the pang that hunger gives ? 
He can affliction best appreciate. 
Who has himself experienced the same state. 

^ That is, "We estimate blessings when we are deprived of 
them, and value highly what is beyond our reach. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM LXV. 



227 



STANZA. 

thou ! who rid'st a mettled courser, see 

How toils, 'mid mire, the poor thorn-loaded ass ! 

From poor men's houses, let no fire for thee 

Be brought. The wreaths which from their chimney 
pass. 

Are sighs wrung from their hearts by destiny. ^^ 

Maxim LXIV. 

Inquire not of the distressed darwesh in his destitution 
and time of want, "How art thou ? " save on the condition 
that thou puttest ointment on his wound and settest money 
before him. 

STANZA. 

The ass has fallen with its burthen — well ! 

Thou mark'st it — then be pitiful, nor tread 
It down ; but if thou askest how it fell, 
[Let not thy help to this be limited]. 
But bravely strive to drag it forth instead.^®^ 

.Maxim LXV. 

Two things are impossible : to obtain more food than 
what Providence destines for us ; and to die before the 
time known to God. 

STANZA. 

Fate is not altered by a thousand sighs ; 

Complain or render thanks — arrive it will : 
The angel at whose bidding winds arise 

Cares little for the widow's lamp, if still 
It bums, or by the storm extinguished dies. 

^^ That is, do not wring from the poor the smallest trifle. 
The comparison between smoke and a sigh has occurred twice 
before. It is a simile in which Orientals delight, inept as it 
appears to us. 

^^ Literally y "Gird up thy loins and, like brave men, lay 
hold of the ass's tail." 



228 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

Maxim LXVI. 

thou ! who seekest subsistence, sit down, that thou 
mayest be fed ; and thou who desirest to die ! go not [in 
pursuit of death]; for thou canst not preserve thy life 
[beyond the destined term]. 

STANZA. 

Wouldst thou by toil or not thy wants supply, 

The Glorious and High God will give thee food. 
Nor, mortal ! canst thou unpredestined die. 
Didst thou in maw of ravenous tigers lie. 
Or savage lions thirsting for thy blood. 

Maxim LXVII. 

It is impossible to lay hands on that which is not 
predestined for us, and that which is predestined will 
reach us wherever we are. 

TRIPLET. 

Hast thou not heard with what excess of pain 
Sikandar sought the shades P nor yet could gain 
Life's water, which he strove thus to attain. 

.Maxim LXVIII. 

A fisherman cannot catch fish in the Tigris without the 
aid of destiny ; nor can a fish perish on dry land unless 
fated to do so. 

COUPLET. 

Poor greedy wretch ! where'er he drags himself, 
Death him pursues, while he's pursuing pelf. 

Maxim LXIX. 

A wicked rich man is a gilded clod, and a pious darwesh 
is a beauty soiled with earth. The latter is the tattered 
garment of Moses patched together, and the former is the 



CHAPTER VIII. MAXIM LXXL 



229 



ulcer of Pharaoh ^^ covered with jewels. The sufferings 
of the good have a joyful aspect, while the prosperity of 
the wicked looks downward. 

STANZA. 

Tell those to whom rank, wealth are given, 
Who care not for the sons of pain ; 

That in the bright abodes of Heaven 
They neither wealth nor rank will gain. 

Maxim LXX. 

The envious man begrudgeth God's blessings, and is 
the foe of the innocent. 

STANZA. 

A wretched crack-brained fellow once I saw. 
Who slandered one of lofty dignity ; 

I said, " Good sir ! I grant thee that a flaw 
May in thy fortunes be observed, — ^but why 
Impute it to the man who lives more happily ? 

SECOND STANZA. 

Oh J on the envious man invoke no curse. 
For of himself, poor wretch ! accursed is he ; 

On him no hatred can inflict aught worse 
Than his self -fed, self -torturing enmity. 

Maxim LXXI. 

A student without the inclination to learn is a lover 
without money; and a pilgrim without spirituality is a 

*** Ross translates (^j rI«A, in this passage, " embroidered 
mantle," a strange freedom. M. Semelet renders it '4a barbe," 
which is downright nonsense. Gladwin seems to me to have 
expressed the right mecining. One of the seven plagues was a 
boil and blain breaking out on the Egyptians. 



2 30 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

bird without wings; and a devotee without learning*® 
is a house without a door. 

Maxim LXXII. 

The intent of revealing the Kur'an was, to gite men 
the means of learning good morality, not that they should 
employ themselves in the mere recitation of the text. 
The man who is devout but illiterate, is one who performs 
his journey though it be on foot ; while the man who is 
learned but negligent, is a sleeping rider. A sinner who 
lifts up his hand [in prayer] is better than a devotee who 
lifts up his head [in pride]. 

COUPLET. 

Better the kind and courteous man of arms 
Than lawyer who his fellow-creatures harms. 

Maxim LXXIII. 
A learned man without practice is a bee without honey. 

COUPLET. 

Go, tell the hornet — fierce, imgentle thing, 
"We want no honey : but at least don't sting ! 

Maxim LXXIV. 

A man without courage is a woman,*^ and a devotee 
with covetous desires is a robber. 

*" Ac t/w, here, is "learning" rather than "knowledge," as 
Gladwin renders it. The devotee may have knowledge of 
spiritual things ; but, not having learning, he may be unable to 
teach others, and thus resemble a house well furnished and 
spacious, but inaccessible. 

*'* There is an equivoque in the Persian which cannot be 
preserved in English, ^j zan is " a woman," ^ j i(j rah-zan " a 
robber." Gladwin translates ^^^^y muruwat, in my opinion, 
iacorrectly. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM LXXVIL 231 

STANZA. 

Thou ! who t'appease the crowd and win repute 
Hast made the robe of outward actions white ; 

Know, to resign the world doth better suit 
The pious, and to be regardless quite 
Whether the sleeve be long or short to sight. 

Maxim LXXV. 

Two sorts of persons cannot cease to feel regret at 
heart, nor can they extricate the foot of remorse from 
the mire : one is the merchant, whose vessel has been 
wrecked ; and the other, the heir who has become the 
associate^ of Kalandars. In accordance with this they 
have said : " Though the robe bestowed by the Sultan is 
precious, people's own clothes are more regarded; and 
though the tray of dishes at the table of the great is full 
of delicacies, yet the scraps of one's own wallet are better 
relished.'* 

COUPLET. 

Than the mayor's kid and loaf more dainty far 
Are our poor herbs — ^self-earned — and vinegar. 

Maxim LXXVI. 

It is contrary to right reason, and a violation of the 
precepts of the wise, to take medicine about which we are 
in doubt ; and to travel by a road we do not know, save 
in the company of a caravan. 

Maxim LXXVII. 

They asked the Imam and spiritual guide — Muhammad 
bin Muhammad Ghizali — (may the mercy of God be upon 
him ! ) by what means he had attained such a degree of 
learning. He replied, " In this way : I was not ashamed 
to ask whatever I did not know." 



inrvK^v — ^am-^mmf^ 



232 GULISTAN ; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

STANZA. 

Hope thou with reason for good health, when thou 
Dost to the skilful leech thy pulse present ; 

Ask what thou know'st not — ^with the stigma, now, 
(If shame there be) of asking be content ; 
And thus in learning grow pre-eminent. 

Maxim LXXVIII. 

Whenever thou art certain of being informed of a 
thing, be not precipitate in inquiry ; for this will lessen 
thy credit and respectability. 

VERSE. 

When Lukman marked how wax-like iron grew, 
Moulded in David's hands ; though wondrous, he 

Forbore to ask his secret ; for he knew 
He of himself would learn the mystery. 

Maxim LXXIX. 

It is one of the essentials of society that thou either play 
the part of host thyself, or act so as to conciliate the host.^^ 

STANZA. 

Let thy story aye befit 

The hearer's taste, wouldst thou that he approve ; ^^ 
They who would with Majnun sit. 

Must still of Laila talk — still talk of love. 

^^ Gladwin translates, "Amongst the qualifications for society, 
it is necessary either that you attend to the concerns of your 
household, or else devote yourself to religion." This is, no 
doubt, the implied meaning. Life is compared to an entertain- 
ment, where, if you choose the part of host, you must entertain 
religious men ; or, if you would be a guest, be a religious man 
yourself, and so please the Great Host, that is, God. 

*"• I should wish to read, in the second line of this stanza, 

^Jfelafi^ ^\ aga/r TdirpaMj instead of t^^^^^ <^^ danl^ which 

appears to me to be nonsense. If a man knew that another was 
well disposed to him, he might presume, on that, to say un- 
palatable things; but if he wished to ingratiate himself, he 
would choose a pleasing subject. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM LXXXL 233 

Maxim LXXX. 

Whoso associates with the wicked will be accused of 
following their ways, though their principles may have 
made no impression upon him ; just as if a person were 
in the habit of frequenting taverns, he would not be 
supposed to go there for prayer, but to drink intoxicating 
liquors. 

DISTICHS. 

Thyself thou'lt surely stigmatise. 
In choosing for thy friends th' unwise. 
I asked a sage for one sound rule ; 
He said, " Consort not with a fool. 
For this of wise men fools will make. 
And even fools deteriorate.'' 

Maxim LXXXI. 

So tractable is the camel that, as is well known, if a 
child took hold of its bridle and led it a hundred para- 
sangs, it would not withdraw its neck from obeying him : 
but if they came to a dangerous road which might cause 
its destruction, and the child, through ignorance, wished 
to go that way, it would wrest the reins from his grasp, 
and would not after that obey him : for, in the time when 
rough dealing is required, kindness is blameable; and 
they have said : " An enemy will not become friendly by 
being treated with kindness; but, on the contrary, his 
avarice will be increased." 

STANZA. 

Thou to the courteous humble be, as dust ; 

But rough to those with whom thou hast a feud;^^ 
A soft file wiU not cleanse deep-seated rust : 

Then use not gentle language with the rude. 

^ I have translated this line freely. Literally, it is, ** If he 
oppose thee, fill his two eyes with mud." 



234 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN'. 

Maxim LXXXII. 

Whoever interrupts the conversation of others to display 
the extent of his wisdom, will assuredly discover the 
depth of his folly : and the wise have said : 

STANZA. 

" Until they him interrogate, 

The prudent man will aye continue mute ; 
For though his words might be sedate. 
Men would to folly the display impute." 

Maxim LXXXIII. 

I had once a sore under my robe. My religious superior 
(on whom be the mercy of God ! ) every day asked me, 
" How art thou P " and he did not inquire, " On what 
part is thy wound ? " forbearing, because it is not right 
to mention every member : and the wise have said : 
"Whoever does not weigh his words, will receive an 
answer that wiU vex him.'' 

STANZA. 

Until thou knowest that a speech is sooth. 
Thou shouldest not unclose thy lips to speak : 

Better to be confined for speaking truth 
Than, by false speaking, thy release to seek. 

Maxim LXXXIV. 

The uttering of a falsehood is like a violent blow ; for, 
even should the wound be healed, the scar will remain. 
Thus, when the brothers of Joseph (peace be on him!) 
had acquired the character of telling untruths, their words 
were not believed, even when they said that which was 
true. Ood Most High has said, " But your passions have 
suggested this to j/ou.'*'^ 



808 



Vide Sale's Kur'an, II. 35. Jacob is speaking. 



CHAPTER VIII . MAXIM LXXXVIL 235 

STANZA. 

When 'tis one's habit aye the truth to say, 

A sKp is pardoned readily ; 
But should one be renowned the other way, 

Even in his truth we error see. 

Maxim LXXXV. 

The most glorious of created things, in outward form, 
is man ; and the most vile of living things, is a dog ; yet, 
by the unanimous consent of the wise, a grateful dog is 
better than an ungrateful man. 

STANZA. 

The scrap thou on a dog bestowest, it — 

Though pelted oft — will yet remember still ; 

But though thro' life the base thou benefit. 
They for the merest trifle would thee kill. 

Maxim LXXXVI. 

The sensual ne'er can eminence attain ; 

And those who have not merit should not reign, 

DISTICHS. 

Spare not the glutton ox, for know that he 
Who much devours wiU also slothful be : 
If thou must needs be fatted like the ox. 
Then like the ass submit to people's knocks. 

Maxim LXXXVII. 

It is said, in the Gospel,^^ " son of Adam ! if I give 
thee wealth, thou wilt occupy thyself with riches and 

*'® This is probably a quotation from some spurious Gospel. 
Eoss refers to Proverbs, chap. xxx. ver. 7, 8, 9, " Two things 
have I required of thee ; deny me them not before I die : 
Remove far from me vanity and lies : give me neither poverty 
nor riches ; feed me with food convenient for me : Lest I be 
full and deny thee, and say, Who is the Lord ? or lest I be 
poor, and steal, and take the name of my God ia vain." 



lA 



236 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN. 

neglect me; and, if I make thee poor, then thou wilt 
cower down in distress. Wherefore, in what state wilt 
thou find the happiness of praising me? or when wilt thou 
hasten to serve me ? *' 

STANZA. 

With riches now thou art too proud, elate ; 

Or sinkest down too low beneath the rod : 
Since this in joy and sorrow is thy state. 

When wilt thou turn from selfishness to God ? 

Maxim LXXXVIII. 

The will of Him who has no like brings down one man 
from a royal throne^ and preserves another in the belly of 
a fish. 

COUPLET. 

He who parts not from Thy praises will enjoy tranquillity, 
Though — ^as was the Prophet Jonas — in the fish-maw he 
should be. 

Maxim LXXXIX. 

When God draws the sword of His wrath, prophets 
and saints draw back their heads [in fear of the stroke], 
and if He smile graciously with His eyes. He raises the 
bad to an equality with the good. 

STANZA. 

If in judgment He should, wrathful, words severe of 
anger say, 
What pardon e'en for saints were there ? 
Pray Him, therefore, from His mercy's face the veil to 
take away, 
And free e'en sinners from despair. 

Maxim XC. 

Whoso learns not from this world's lesson to take the 
right way, will be overtaken by the punishments of the 
next. Ood Moat High has said^ ^' And we mil catise them 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM XCL 



237 



to taste the lesser punishment of this worlds besides the more 
grievous punishment of the next; peradmnture they will 
repentJ'^^^ 

COUPLET. 

The great admonisli first — observant be ! 

Lest, if thou heed not words, they shackle thee. 

Those endued with a happy disposition are warned by the 
anecdotes and precedents of former generations, so as not 
to become themselves a warning to those who follow them. 

STANZA. 

No bird will settle on the grain, 

That sees another bird already snared ; 

Take warning then from others' pain. 
Or else to point a moral be prepared. 

Maxim XCI. 

How can one, the ear of whose choice has been made 
heavy, hear? and how can he, who is drawn by the 
noose of happy destiny, decline to proceed.^^^ 

STANZA. 

The dark night of the friends of Heaven 
Shines with the brilliant light of day ; 

Not to man's might is this rich blessing given. 
It comes from God — no other way. 

QUATRAIN. 

To whom, save Thee, shall I complain ? Thou only 
Rulest ; and no arm equals thine in might ; 

Guided by Thee, none are e'er lost or lonely ; 
Whom Thou f orsakest, none can guide aright. 

'^° Vide Kur'an, chap, xxxii. ver. 22; Sale's Translation, 
p. 311. 

311 This seems to be the doctrine of Predestination. Ross and 
Gladwin both omit to translate the word cu jj^l irddat, and the 
latter omits also CL> jUms saadat. 



■I^^^BS^ 



238 GULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDRlSr, 

Maxim XCII. 

A beggar whose end is blest is better than a king who 
dies miserably. 

COUPLET. 

Better feel sorrow ere we gladness know, 
Than to be happy and then suffer woe. 

Maxim XCIII. 

The sky supplies the earth with showers, while the 
earth renders back dust. Every vessel allows that to permeate 
through it which it contains?^^ 

COUPLET. 

My temper seems unpleasing in thy eyes ; 
Change not for that thy better qualities. 

God Most High sees [our sins], but easts a veil over 
them; and our neighbour blazes abroad [our oflfeaces], 
though he sees them not. 

COUPLET. 

Save us, good Lord ! could men in secret see, 
None were from others' interference free ! 

Maxim XCIV. 

Gold is procured from the vein by digging the mine, 
and from the miser's clutches by digging out his mind.^^* 

STANZA. 

Base men enjoy not, and to lonely haunts 
Slink sullen, and they say, " On hope to feed 

Is better than to gratify one's wants." 

One day thou'lt see the victim of his greed 

A corse, — his foes exulting and his money freed.'^* 

'" In other words, " That which exudes from a vessel is of 
the same nature as its contents/' Our proverb is, " You cannot 
make a silk purse out of a sow's ear." 

•^' 1^*3^ ^J^ jo.n hmdan, means, literally, " to dig out the 
soul," and is generally applied to the agonies of death. 

•^* That is, from his clutches. 



CHAPTER VIIL MAXIM XCIX. 



239 



Maxim XCV. 

Whoso shews no compassion to the weak will suffer from 
the violence of the strong. 

DISTICHS. 

Not every ^rm that is of might possessed, 
Can crush the poor or ruin the distressed : 
G-rieve not the feeble, lest in turn thou, too, 
Th' oppressor's power and injustice rue. 

Maxim XCVI. 

The prudent man, when he beholds contention arising, 
steps aside ; and when he sees that peace prevails, casts 
anchor there : for, in the one case, safety lies in with- 
drawing, and, in the other, he is assured of tranquillity. 

Maxim XCVII. 
The gamester wants three sixes, but three aces turn up. 

COUPLET. 

Far better is the pasture than the plain ^^^ 
But the horse guides not for himself the rein. 

Maxim XCVIII. 

A darwesh said in his prayers, " God ! have mercy 
on the wicked, for Thou hast already had mercy on the 
good, in that Thou hast created them good ! '* 

Maxim XCIX. 

The first person who introduced distinctions of dress, 
and the habit of wearing rings on the finger, was 
Jamshid.'^^ They asked him. Why he had conferred all 
these ornaments on the left arm, while the right was the 
more excellent? He replied, "The right arm is com- 
pletely adorned in being the right." 

"" (o^Ju^ maidauy "plain," is used for the "parade-ground," 
" place of exercise," " battle-field." 

*" An ancient king of Persia, being the fourth monarch of 
the first or Pishdadyan dynasty. He built Istakhar or Persepolis, 
and was dethroned by Zahhak. 



^^^^\ 



240 CULISTAN; OR, ROSE GARDEN, 

STANZA. 

Said Farldun to China's men of art, 

" Eound my paviKon's walls embroider this, — 

* If thou art wise, to bad men good impart ; 
The good enough of honour have and bKss.' " 

Maxim C. 

They asked an eminent personage why, when the right 
hand was so superior to the left, men were in the habit of 
placing the signet-ring on the left hand ? He rejoined, 
" Knowest thou not that merit is always neglected ? " 

COUPLET. 

He from whom fate, subsistence, fortunes spring, 
Now makes a man of merit, now a king. 

Maxim CI. 

He may advise kings safely who has neither fear for 
his head nor cupidity. 

DISTICHS. 

Whether thou money at his feet dost spread, 
Who truly worships God ; or o'er his head 
Wavest the Indian scymitar ; no dread 
Has he of mortal man : in this 
True faith consists, — this orthodoxy is, 

Maxim CII. 

A king is for the coercion of oppressors, and the 
superintendent of police to repress murder, and the judge 
for hearing complaints against thieves. Two parties, 
whose aim is justice only, never refer matters to the 
judge. 

STANZA. 

Art thou assured that thou must justice do — 
Then better do it gently, without strife. 

Who pay not taxes willingly, will rue 

The law's exactions, and the misproud crew 
Of insolent officials. Stubbornness is rife 

With a twin evil — shame and damage too. 



'^'^'^tm^- 



CHAPTER VIII, MAXIM CV. 



Maxim GUI. 



241 



All men's teeth are blunted by sour things except the 
judge's, whose edge is taken off by sweets, 

COUPLET. 

The judge five cucumbers as a bribe wiU take, 
And grant ten beds of melons for their sake. 

Maxim CIV. 

What can an old prostitute do but vow not to sin any 
more? or a superintendent of police discharged from 
office, except promise not to cease from injustice P 

COUPLET. 

He leads the hermit's life, who chooses it 
In youth ; for age cannot its comer quit. 

Maxim CV. 

They asked a philosopher, Why, when God Most High 
had created so many famous fruitful trees, the cypress 
alone was called free, which bore no fruit? and what 
was the meaning of this ? He replied, " Every tree has 
its appointed time and season, so that, during the said 
season, it flourishes; and when that is past, it droops. 
But the cypress is not exposed to either of these vicissi-* 
tudes, and is at all times fresh and green ; and this is the 
condition of the free." 

STANZA. 

Place not thy heart on transitory things. 
Long shall the Tigris on by Baghdad flow, 

When all the glory of the Caliph kings 
Has passed away. Be, if thou canst be so. 
Like the date, generous. Canst thou nought bestow 
From lack of means ; at least resolve to be. 
Like the green cypress, fetterless and free. 

16