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Social Sciences & Humanities Library 

University of California, San Diego 
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1 7 2002] 

Cl 39 (5/97) 

UCSD Lib. 



(A.D. 12651502) 











Add. 18803 (Brit. Mus.), f. 19 




(A.D. 1265-1502) 



M.A., M.B., F.B.A., F.R.C.P. 









(Imdmi: see pp. 116-117.) 


"T7OURTEEN years have elapsed since the second 
JL volume of my Literary History of Persia 1 , of which 
the present work is in fact, if not in name and form, a con- 
tinuation, was published. That the appearance of this 
continuation, which comprises the period between Sa'di and 
Jam/, and extends from the death of Hulagu the Mongol to 
the rise of the Safawi dynasty (A.D. 1265-1502), has been so 
long delayed is due to a variety of causes, at one of which, 
operative for five or six years (A.D. 1907-12), I have hinted 
in the Preface (p. xx) to my Persian Revolution of 1905-9. 
While Persia was going through what repeatedly appeared 
to be her death-agony, it was difficult for anyone who loved 
her to turn his eyes for long from her present sufferings to 
her past glories. Often, indeed, I almost abandoned all 
hope of continuing this work, and that I did at last take up, 
revise and complete what I had already begun to write was 
due above all else to the urgency and encouragement of my 
wife, and of one or two of my old friends and colleagues, 
amongst whom I would especially mention Dr T. W. Arnold 
and Mr Guy le Strange. 

The delay in the production of this volume has not, 
however, been altogether a matter for regret, since it has 
enabled me to make use of materials, both printed and 
manuscript, which would not have been available at an earlier 
date. In particular it has been my good fortune to acquire 

1 Of these two volumes, published by Mr T. Fisher Unwin in the 
" Library of Literary History," the full titles are as follows : A Literary 
History of Persia from the earliest times until Firdaivst (pp. xvi + 521), 
1902 ; and A Literary History of Persia from Firdawsi to Sa l di 
(pp. xvi + 568), 1906. In the notes to this volume they are referred to 
as Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. i or vol. ii. 


two very fine collections of Persian and Arabic manu- 
scripts which have yielded me much valuable material, 
namely, at the beginning of 1917*, some sixty manuscripts 
(besides lithographed and printed books published in Persia) 
from the Library of the late Sir Albert Houtum-Schindler, 
and at the beginning of 1920 another forty or fifty manu- 
scripts of exceptional rarity and antiquity collected in 
Persia and Mesopotamia by Hajji 'Abdu'l-Maji'd Belshah. 
So many Persian works of first-class importance still remain 
unpublished and generally inaccessible save in a few of the 
great public libraries of Europe that the possession of a 
good private library is essential to the student of Persian 
literature who wishes to extend his researches into its less 
familiar by-paths. 

I regret in some ways that I have had to produce this 
volume independently of its two predecessors, and not in 
the same series. Several considerations, however, induced 
me to adopt this course. Of these the principal ones were 
that I desired to retain full rights as to granting permission 
for it to be quoted or translated, should such permission be 
sought ; and that I wished to be able to reproduce the 
original Persian texts on which my translations were based, 
in the numerous cases where these were not accessible in 
printed or lithographed editions, in the proper character. 
For this reason it was necessary to entrust the printing of 
the book to a press provided with suitable Oriental types, 
and no author whose work has been produced by the 
Cambridge University Press will fail to recognize how much 
he owes to the skill, care, taste and unfailing courtesy of all 
responsible for its management. 

I hope that none of my Persian friends will take ex- 
ception to the title which I have given to this volume, 

1 See my notice of this collection in iheJ.lf.A.S. for October 1917, 
pp. 657-694, entitled The Persian Manuscripts of the late Sir Albert 
Houtum-Schindler, K.C.I. E. 


"A History of Persian Literature under Tartar 1 Dominion." 
I have known Persians whose patriotism has so far outrun 
their historical judgment as to seek to claim as compatriots 
not only Timur but even Chingiz and Hulagu, those scourges 
of mankind, of whom the two last mentioned in particular did 
more to compass the ruin of Islamic civilization, especially 
in Persia, than any other human beings. When we read of 
the shocking devastation wrought by the Mongols through 
the length and breadth of Central and Western Asia, we 
are amazed not so much at what perished at their hands as 
at what survived their depredations, and it says much for 
the tenacity of the Persian character that it should have 
been so much less affected by these barbarians than most 
other peoples with whom they came in contact. The period 
covered by this volume begins with the high tide of Mongol 
ascendancy, and ends with the ebb of the succeeding tide 
of Turanian invasion inaugurated by Timur. Politically, 
during its whole duration, Turan, represented by Tartars, 
Turks and Turkmans, lorded it over Iran, which, neverthe- 
less, continued to live its own intellectual, literary and artistic 
life, and even to some extent to civilize its invaders. It is 
my hope and purpose, should circumstances be favourable, 
to conclude my survey of this spiritual and intellectual life 
of Persia in one other volume, to be entitled "A History 
of Persian Literature in Modern Times," covering the last 
four hundred years, from the rise of the great Safawf 
dynasty, which restored the ancient boundaries and revived 
the national spirit of Persia, to the present day. 

There remains the pleasant duty of expressing my thanks 
to those of my friends and fellow-students who have most 
materially helped me in the preparation of this work. Nearly 
all the proofs were carefully read by two Government of 

1 I have yielded to the common usage in adopting this form instead 
of the more correct "Tatar." The later and less accurate, though 
more familiar, form " Tartar " owes its origin, as indicated on pp. 6-7 
infra, to a popular etymology which would connect it with Tartarus. 


India Research Students of exceptional learning, ability and 
industry, Muhammad Shaft'', a member of my own College 
and now Professor of Arabic in the Panjab University, and, 
on his departure, by Muhammad Iqbal, a young scholar of 
great promise. To both of these I owe many valuable 
emendations, corrections and suggestions. 

Of the twelve illustrations to this volume four (those 
facing pp. 8, 66, 74 and 96) have already appeared in the 
edition of the Tarikh-i-Jahdn-gushd published in 1912 by 
the "E. J. W. Gibb Memorial Trust " (vol. xvi, I, pp. Ixxxvii, 
147, 154 and 222), and are reproduced here by the kind 
permission of my fellow trustees. To my old friend Pro- 
fessor A. V. Williams Jackson, of Columbia University, and 
to Messrs Macmillan, his publishers, I am indebted for 
permission to reproduce the photograph of the Tomb of 
Hafiz at Shfraz which originally appeared in his Persia, 
Past and Present (p. 332), and here appears facing p. 310. 
The facsimile of J ami's autograph facing p. 508 of this 
volume is reproduced from vol. iii (1886) of the Collections 
Scientifiques de I'Institut des Langues Orientales du 
Ministere des Affaires Etrangeres a St P^tersbourg: Manu- 
scrits Per sans, compiled with so much judgment by the late 
Baron Victor Rosen, to whose help and encouragement in 
the early days of my career I am deeply indebted. The 
six remaining illustrations, which are new, and, as I 
think will be generally admitted, of exceptional beauty 
and interest, were selected for me from manuscripts in 
the British Museum by my friends Mr A. G. Ellis and 
Mr Edward Edwards, to whose unfailing erudition and 
kindness I owe more than I can say. Three of them, the 
portraits of Sa'di, Hafiz and Shah-rukh, are from Add. 7468 
(ff. 19, 34 and 44 respectively), while the portraits of Hulagu 
and Timur are from Add. 18,803, f. 19, and Add. 18,801, 
f. 23. The colophon of the beautifully written Quran 
transcribed at Mawsil in A.H. 710 (A.D. 1310-1 1) for Uljaytii 
(Khuda-banda) and his two ministers Rashidu'd-Din 


Fadlu'llah and Sa'du'd-Dm is from the recently acquired 
Or. 4945 1 . All these have been reproduced by Mr R. B. 
Fleming with his usual taste and skill. 

Lastly I am indebted to Miss Gertrude Lowthian Bell, 
whose later devotion to Arabic has caused her services to 
Persian letters to be unduly forgotten, for permission to 
reprint in this volume some of her beautiful translations of 
the odes of Hafiz, together with her fine appreciation of his 
position as one of the great poets not only of his own age 
and country but of the world and of all time. 


April 5, 1920. 

1 See the first entry in the Descriptive List of the Arabic Manu- 
scripts acquired by the Trustees of the British Museum since 1894, by 
Mr A. G. Ellis and Mr Edward Edwards (London, 1912). 






(A.H. 663-737 = A.D. 1265-1337) 


I. The Mongol Il-khans of Persia (A.D. 1265-1337) . . 3 

II. The Historians of the Il-khani Period .... 62 

III. The Poets and Mystics of the Il-khanf Period . . 105 


A.D. 1335-1405) 

IV. The Period of Tfmur 159 

V. The Poets and Writers of the Time of Tfmur . . 207 


SAFAWf DYNASTY (A.H. 807-907 = A.D. 1405-1502) 

VI. History of the Later Tfmurid Period .... 379 
VII. Prose Writers of the Later Tfmurid Period . . . 421 

VIII. Poets of the Later Tfmurid Period 461 

INDEX 549 


I. Hiilagu. (Phot, by Mr R. B. Fleming) . . Frontispiece 

II. Batu's court on the Volga . . . To face page 8 

III. Colophon of oldest MS. of the Tcfrikh-i- 

Jahdn-giishd ...... 66 

IV. Enthronement of Ogotay .... ,, 74 

V. Colophon of Qur'an transcribed for Uljaytii, 

Rashidu'd-Din and Sa'du'd-Di'n. (Phot. 

by Mr R. B. Fleming) .... 78 

VI. Mongol siege of a Chinese town . 96 

VII. Timur-i-Lang (Tamerlane). (Phot, by Mr 

R. B. Fleming) 180 

VIII. Hafiz and Abu Ishaq. (Phot, by Mr R. B. 

Fleming) 274 

IX. The Hafiziyya or Tomb of Hafiz . . 310 

X. Shah-rukh. (Phot, by Mr R. B. Fleming) 382 

XI. Sa'di. (Phot, by Mr R. B. Fleming) . 484 

XII. Jamfs autograph 508 


p. 60, last line, read Matla'u's-Sa'dayn. 

p. 1 10, 1. 25, for speed read speech. 

p. in, 1. 23, for bfajmthtsk-SkttarA read Majmcfrfl-FusahA. 

p. 311, 1. ii. The date given is evidently wrong, for Karim Khan 
reigned from A.H. 1163-1193 (A.D. 1750-1779). 

p. 398, 11. 28 and 31, for Bdyazid III read Bdyaztd II. 

pp. 411, 1. 1 6, and 412, 1. 26. One of the two dates (A.D. 1472 and 1474) 
here given is wrong, but I do not know which. 



(A.H. 663-737 = A.D. 1265-1337). 

B. P. 



Although to the student every period in the history of 
every nation is more or less interesting, or could be made 
Great epochs in so w ^ tn sufficient knowledge, sympathy and 
Persian history, imagination, there are in the history of most 

and their con- , - , . 

nection with peoples certain momentous epochs of upheaval 
world-history an( j reconstruction about which it behoves every 
educated person to know something. Of such epochs Persia, 
for geographical and ethnological reasons, has had her full 
share. A glance at the map will suffice to remind the reader 
that this ancient, civilized and homogeneous land, occupying 
the whole space between the Caspian Sea and the Persian 
Gulf, forms, as it were, a bridge between Europe and Asia 
Minor on the one hand and Central and Eastern Asia on 
the other, across which bridge from the earliest times have 
passed the invading hosts of the West or the East on their 
respective paths of conquest. The chief moments at which 
Persian history thus merges in World-history are as follows : 
(i) The Persian invasion of Greece by the Achaemenian 
kings in the fifth century before Christ. 
Enumeration of ( 2 ) Alexander's invasion of Persia on his 

seven of these way to India in the fourth century before Christ, 
resulting in the overthrow of the Achaemenian 
dynasty and the extinction of Persia as a Great Power for 
five centuries and a half. 

(3) The restoration of the Persian Empire by the House 
of Sasan in the third, and their often successful wars with the 
Romans in the fourth and following centuries after Christ. 

(4) The Arab invasion of the seventh century after 
Christ, which formed part of that extraordinary religious 
revival of a people hitherto accounted as naught, which in 

4 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

the course of a few years carried the standards of Islam 
from the heart of desert Arabia to Spain in the West and 
the Oxus and Indus in the East. 

(5) The Mongol or Tartar invasion of the thirteenth 
century, which profoundly affected the greater part of Asia 
and South-eastern F^urope, and which may be truly described 
as one of the most dreadful calamities which ever befel the 
human race. 

(6) The second Tartar invasion of Tamerlane ( Timtir- 
i-Lang or " Limping Ti'mur") in the latter part of the four- 
teenth century. 

(7) The Turco-Persian Wars of the sixteenth and seven- 
teenth centuries, which gave Persia at that time so great an 
importance in the eyes of Europe as a potential check on 
Turkish ambitions, and caused her friendship to be so eagerly 
sought after by the chief Western nations. 

Of these seven great epochs in Persian history the fourth 
and fifth are the most important and have had the greatest 
The Arab and and most profound influence. In all points save 
Mongol inva- one) however, the Arab and Mongol invasions 
compared and were utterly dissimilar. The Arabs came from 
contrasted the South-west, the Tartars from the North- 

east; the Arabs were inspired by a fiery religious enthusiasm, 
the Tartars by mere brutish lust of conquest, bloodshed and 
rapine; the Arabs brought a new civilization and order to 
replace those which they had destroyed, the Tartars brought 
mere terror and devastation. In a word, the Tartars were 
cunning, ruthless and bloodthirsty marauders, while the 
Arabs were, as even their Spanish foes were fain to admit, 
" Knights... and gentlemen, albeit Moors." 

The one point of resemblance between the two was the 
scorn which their scanty equipment and insignificant ap- 
pearance aroused in their well-armed and richly-equipped 
antagonists before they had tasted of their quality. This 
point is well brought out in that charming Arabic history 
the Kitdbu'l-Fakhri, whose author wrote about A.D. 1300, 
some fifty years after the Tartars had sacked Baghdad and 


destroyed the Caliphate. After describing the Arab inva- 
sion of Persia and the merriment of the Persian satraps 
and officers at the tattered scabbards, slender lances and 
small horses of the Arabs, he relates, a propos of this, the 
account 1 given to him by one of those who " marched out 
to meet the Tartars on the Western side of Baghdad on the 
occasion of its supreme catastrophe in the year 656/1258," 
and tells how to meet one of their splendidly appointed 
champions in single combat there rode forth from the 
Mongol ranks "a man mounted on a horse resembling a 
donkey, having in his hand a spear like a spindle, and 
wearing neither uniform nor armour, so that all who saw 
him were moved to laughter." " Yet ere the day was done," 
he concludes, " theirs was the victory, and they inflicted on 
us a great defeat, which was the Key of Evil, and after which 
there befell us what befell us." 

It is almost impossible to exaggerate either the historical 

importance or the horror of this great irruption of barbarians 

out of Mongolia, Turkistan and Transoxiana in 

Terrible charac- \c\-\cr\\- i A 

ter and lasting the first half of the thirteenth century. Amongst 
effects of the fa results were the destruction of the Arabian 

Mongol invasion 

Caliphate and disruption of the Muhammadan 
Empire, the creation of the modern political divisions of 
Western Asia, the driving into Asia Minor and subsequently 
into Europe of the Ottoman Turks, the stunting and bar- 
barizing of Russia, and indirectly the Renaissance. As 
regards the terror universally inspired by the atrocious 
deeds of the Tartars, d'Ohsson in his admirable Histoire 
des Mongols observes 2 that we should be tempted to charge 
the Oriental historians with exaggeration, were it not that 
their statements are entirely confirmed by the independent 
testimony of Western historians as to the precisely similar 
proceedings of the Tartars in South-eastern Europe, where 

1 For the full translation of this passage see Lit. Hist, of Persia, 
vol. i, pp. 197-8. 

3 Vol. i, p. vii : " On croirait que 1'histoire a exagdre leurs atrocite"s, 
si les annales de tous les pays n'etaient d'accord sur ce point." 

6 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

they ravaged not only Russia, Poland and Hungary, but 
penetrated to Silesia, Moravia and Dalmatia, and at the 
fatal battle of Liegnitz (April 9, 1241) defeated an army 
of 30,000 Germans, Austrians, Hungarians and Poles com- 
manded by Henry the Pious, Duke of Silesia. Already 
two years before this date the terror which they inspired 
even in Western Europe was so great that the contempo- 
rary chronicler Matthew Paris, writing at St Albans, records 
under the year A.D. 1238 that for fear of the Mongols 
the fishermen of Gothland and Friesland dared not cross 
the North Sea to take part in the herring-fishing at Yar- 
mouth, and that consequently herrings were so cheap and 
abundant in England that year that forty or fifty were sold 
for a piece of silver, even at places far from the coast. In 
the same year an envoy from the Isma'ilis or Assassins of 
Alamiit by the Caspian Sea came to France and England 
to crave help against those terrible foes by whom they 
were annihilated twenty years later. He met with little 
encouragement, however, for the Bishop of Winchester, 
having heard his appeal, replied : " Let these dogs devour 
each other and be utterly wiped out, and then we shall see, 
founded on their ruins, the Universal Catholic Church, and 
then shall truly be one shepherd and one flock ! " 

The accounts given by Ibnu'l-Athfr, Yaqut and other 
contemporary Muhammadan historians of the Mongol in- 
vasion have been cited in part in a previous 
pLrifcLd volume 1 and need not be repeated here, but 
it is instructive to compare them with what 
Matthew Paris says about those terrible Tatars, who, for 
reasons which he indicates, through a popular etymology 
connecting them with the infernal regions, became known in 
Europe as " Tartars." Under the year A.D. 1 240 he writes 
of them as follows 2 : 

" That the joys of mortal man be not enduring, nor 

1 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 426 et seqq. 

2 Vol. iv, pp. 76-78, cited in the Introductory Note to vol. iv of the 
Second Series of the Hakluyt Society's publications (London, 1900). 


worldly happiness long lasting without lamentations, in 
this same year a detestable nation of Satan, to wit the 
countless army of Tartars, broke loose from its mountain- 
environed home, and, piercing the solid rocks (of the Cau- 
casus) poured forth like devils from the Tartarus, so that 
they are rightly called 'Tartars' or 'Tartarians.' Swarming 
like locusts over the face of the earth, they have brought 
terrible devastation to the eastern parts (of Europe), laying 
them waste with fire and carnage. After having passed 
through the land of the Saracens, they have razed cities, 
cut down forests, overthrown fortresses, pulled up vines, 
destroyed gardens, killed townspeople and peasants. If 
perchance they have spared any suppliants, they have forced 
them, reduced to the lowest condition of slavery, to fight in 
the foremost ranks against their own neighbours. Those 
who have feigned to fight, or have hidden in the hope 
of escaping, have been followed up by the Tartars and 
butchered. If any have fought bravely for them and con- 
quered, they have got no thanks for reward ; and so they 
have misused their captives as they have their mares. For 
they are inhuman and beastly, rather monsters than men, 
thirsting for and drinking blood, tearing and devouring the 
flesh of dogs and men, dressed in ox-hides, armed with 
plates of iron, short and stout, thickset, strong, invincible, 
indefatigable, their backs unprotected, their breasts covered 
with armour ; drinking with delight the pure blood of their 
flocks, with big, strong horses, which eat branches and even 
trees, and which they have to mount by the help of three 
steps on account of the shortness of their thighs. They are 
without human laws, know no comforts, are more ferocious 
than lions or bears, have boats made of ox-hides which ten 
or twelve of them own in common ; they are able to swim 
or manage a boat, so that they can cross the largest and 
swiftest rivers without let or hindrance, drinking turbid and 
muddy water when blood fails them (as a beverage). They 
have one-edged swords and daggers, are wonderful archers, 
spare neither age, nor sex, nor condition. They know no 

8 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

other language but their own, which no one else knows; 
for until now there has been no access to them, nor did 
they go forth (from their own country); so that there could 
be no knowledge of their customs or persons through the 
common intercourse of men. They wander about with their 
flocks and their wives, who are taught to fight like men. 
And so they come with the swiftness of lightning to the 
confines of Christendom, ravaging and slaughtering, striking 
everyone with terror and incomparable horror. It was for 
this that the Saracens sought to ally themselves with the 
Christians, hoping to be able to resist these monsters with 
their combined forces." 

So far from such alliance taking place, however, it was 
not long before the ecclesiastical and temporal rulers of 
Eari Euro an Christendom conceived the idea of making use 
envoys to the of the Tartars to crush Islam, and so end in 
their favour once and for all the secular struggle 
of which the Crusades were the chief manifestation. Com- 
munications were opened up between Western Europe and 
the remote and inhospitable Tartar capital of Qaraqorum ; 
letters and envoys began to pass to and fro; and devoted 
friars like John of Pian de Carpine and William of Rubruck 
did not shrink from braving the dangers and hardships of 
that long and dreary road, or the arrogance and exactions 
of the Mongols, in the discharge of the missions confided 
to them. The former, bearing a letter from the Pope dated 
March 9, 1245, returned to Lyons in the autumn of 1247 
after an absence of two years and a half, and delivered 
to the Pope the written answer of the Mongol Emperor 
Kuyuk Khan. The latter accomplished his journey in the 
years 1253-5 a d spent about eight months (January- 
August, 1254) at the camp and capital of Mangu Khan, 
by whom he was several times received in audience. Both 
have left narratives of their adventurous and arduous 
journeys which the Hakluyt Society has rendered easily 
accessible to English readers 1 , and of which that of Friar 

1 Second Series, vol. iv, London, 1900, translated and edited by 
W. W. Rockhill. 


Batii, the grandson of Chingiz, holds his Court on the Volga 

From an old MS. of the 
Jdmi'iit-Tawdrikh in the 
Bibliotheque Nationale 


William of Rubruck especially is of engrossing interest 
and great value. These give us a very vivid picture of 
the Tartar Court and its ceremonies, the splendour of the 
presents offered to the Emperor by the numerous envoys of 
foreign nations and subject peoples, the gluttonous eating 
and drinking which prevailed (and which, as we shall see, 
also characterized the Court of Ti'mur 1 50 years later), and 
the extraordinary afflux of foreigners, amongst whom were 
included, besides almost every Asiatic nation, Russians, 
Georgians, Hungarians, Ruthenians and even Frenchmen. 
Some of these had spent ten, twenty, or even thirty years 
amongst the Mongols, were conversant with their language, 
and were able and willing to inform the missionaries "most 
fully of all things" without much questioning, and to act 
as interpreters 1 . The language question, as affecting the 
answer to the Pope's letter, presented, however, some diffi- 
culties. The Mongols enquired "whether there were any 
persons with the Lord Pope who understood the written 
languages of the Ruthenians, or Saracens, or Tartars," but 
Friar John advised that the letter should be written in 
Tartar and carefully translated and explained to them, so 
that they might make a Latin translation to take back 
with the original. The Mongol Emperor wished to send 
envoys of his own to Europe in the company of Friar John, 
who, however, discountenanced this plan for five reasons, 
of which the first three were: (i) that he feared lest, seeing 
the wars and dissensions of the Christians, the Tartars might 
be further encouraged to attack them ; (2) that they might 
act as spies; (3) that some harm might befall them in Europe 
"as our people are for the most part arrogant and hasty," 
and " it is the custom of the Tartars never to make peace 
with those who have killed their envoys till they have 
wreaked vengeance upon them." So Friar John and his 

1 M. Le"on Cahun in his Introduction a I ' Histoire de FAsie, p. 353, 
n. 2 ad calc., puts forward the ingenious suggestion that the German 
Dolmetsch is derived from the Turco- Mongol Tilmdj\ both words 
meaning " Interpreter." 

io THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

companions came at last to Kieff on their homeward journey, 
and were there "congratulated as though they had risen 
from the dead, and so also throughout Russia, Poland and 

The history of the diplomatic missions 1 which passed 
between Europe and Tartary in the thirteenth and four- 
teenth centuries has been admirably illustrated 

Diplomatic re- > i \ *n 

lations of the by Abel-Remusat in his two classical Memoir es 
Bur?? Wkh sur les R e lations politiques des Princes Chretiens, 
et particulierement les Rois de France, avec les 
Empereurs Mongols. Fac-similes are here given, with 
printed texts and in some cases Latin or French trans- 
lations, of nine Mongol letters conveyed by different envoys 
at different periods to the French Court. The originals of 
these, measuring in some cases more than six feet in length, 
may still be seen in the Archives in Paris. The arrogance 
of their tone is very noticeable ; still more so the occurrence 
in the Latin version of a letter to the Pope from Bachu 
Nuyan of a very ominous and characteristic phrase which is 
also noticed by the contemporary Persian historian Juwayni. 
" Si vultis super terram vestram, aquam et patrimonium 
sedere," runs the letter, "oportet ut, tu Papa, in propria 
persona ad nos venias, et ad eum qui faciem totius terrae 
continet accedas. Et si tu praeceptum Dei stabile et illius 
qui faciem totius terrae continet non audieris, illud nos 
nescimus Deus scit z " So Juwayni says* that, unlike other 
great rulers and conquerors, they never indulged in violent 
and wordy threats when demanding submission or sur- 
render, but "as their utmost warning used to write but this 
much: 'If they do not submit and obey, what do we know 
[what may happen}? the Eternal God knows" 7" As to what 
would inevitably happen if the Tartars were resisted (and 

1 Published in the Mdmoires de I'Acade'mie Royale des Inscriptions 
et Belles- Lettres in 1821 and 1822, vol. vi, p. 396 and vol. vii, p. 335. 

2 See pp. 421-2 of the second memoir mentioned above. 

3 Tctrikh-i-Jahdn-gushd (" E. J. W. Gibb Memorial " Series, vol. xvi, 
i, 1912) Part I, p. 18, 1. 11. 


often even if they were not resisted) men were not long 
left in doubt. "Wherever there was a king, or local ruler, 
or city warden who ventured to oppose, him they annihi- 
lated, together with his family and his clan, kinsmen and 
strangers alike, to such a degree that, without exaggera- 
tion, not a hundred persons were left where there had been 
a hundred thousand. The proof of this assertion is the ac- 
count of the happenings in the various towns, each of which 
has been duly recorded in its proper time and place 1 ." 

Whether any such letters exist in the records of this 

country I do not know, but in 1307, shortly after the 

death of Edward I (to whom they had been accredited), 

two Mongol ambassadors, whose names are given as 

Mamlakh and Tuman 2 , came to Northampton 

Mongol envoys -111-11 r 

visit Edward ii and carried back with them an answer from 
at Northampton Edward II written in Latin and dated Oc- 

in 1307 

tober 1 6, 1307. The principal object of this 
and previous missions was to effect an alliance between 
the Mongols and the European nations against the Mu- 
hammadans, especially the Egyptians. To attain this end 
the wily Mongols constantly represented themselves as dis- 
posed to embrace the Christian religion, a deceitful pretence 
which the more readily succeeded because of the belief pre- 
valent in Europe that there existed somewhere in Central or 

Eastern Asia a great Christian emperor called 

'Presterjohn r / 

"Prester John," generally identified with Ung 
Khan the ruler of the Kari'ts (or Kera'its), a people akin 
to the Mongols, with whom at the beginning of his career 
Chingi'z Khan stood in close relations, and who had been 
converted to Christianity by Nestorian missionaries 3 . But 
as a matter of fact Islam had been the official religion of 

1 Juwaynf, op. tit., p. 17. 

2 Called elsewhere " Thomas Ildaci " or " louldoutchi " (Yoldiichi). 

3 This identification is explicitly made byAbu'l-Faraj Bar-Hebraeus 
(Beyrout ed. of 1890, p. 394). See also d'Ohsson's Hist, des Mongols, 
vol. i, pp. 48-9 and 52-3 with the footnotes, fag or Ong Khdn was 
converted by popular etymology into Yokhnan=Johan. 

12 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

the Mongol rulers of Persia for at least ten years before 
the above-mentioned ambassadors obtained audience of 
Edward II. 

The contemporary Oriental histories of the Mongols 

are singularly full and good 1 , and include in Arabic Ibnu 

'1-Athir's great chronicle, which comes down 

Excellence and , . _ , Of ., ,, , , T -., -, ,.,. 

abundanceof to the year O28/I23I; Shihabud-Dm Nasais 
materials for ver y f u u biography of his master Jalalu'd-Uin 

Mongol history J J J 

Mankobirm, the gallant Prince of Khwarazm 
who maintained so heroic and protracted a struggle against 
the destroyers of his house and his empire; the Christian 
Abu'l-Faraj Bar-Hebraeus, whose Arabic history (for he 
wrote a fuller chronicle in Syriac) comes down to 683/1284, 
two years' before his death; and Yaqut the geographer, most 
of which have been discussed and quoted in a previous 
volume. Of the three chief Persian sources, the Tarikh-i- 
Jahdn-gushd of Juwayni, the Tarikh-i- Wassaf, and the 
Jdmi'iJt-Tawdrikh, a good deal will be said in the next 
chapter, but one may be permitted to express regret that 
the last-mentioned history, one of the most original, ex- 
tensive and valuable existing in the Persian language, still 
remains for the most part unpublished and almost inac- 
cessible 2 . 

Of the three best-known European histories of the 
Mongols, and of the point of view represented by each, 
Euro an his- something must needs be said here. First there 
tones of the is Baron d'Ohsson's admirable Histoire des Mon- 
gols, depuis Tchinguiz Khan jusqit a Timour Bey 
ou Tamerlan 3 , a monument of clear exposition 
based on profound research. While recognizing, as every 

1 They are admirably enumerated and described by d'Ohsson, op. 
tit., vol. i, pp. x-lxvi. 

2 I have discussed the materials available for a complete text of this 
important work in an article published in the/. R.A. S. for 1908, vol. xl, 
pp. 17-37, entitled Suggestions for a complete edition of the Jami'u't- 
Tawarikh of Rashidifd-Din Fadhflldh. 

5 Published in four volumes at the Hague and Amsterdam, 1834-5. 


student of the subject must recognize, the immense im- 
portance and far-reaching effects of the Mongol conquests, 
he finds this people utterly detestable: "their government," 
he says, "was the triumph of depravity: all that was noble 
and honourable was abased ; while the most corrupt per- 
sons, taking service under these ferocious masters, obtained, 
as the price of their vile devotion, wealth, honours, and the 
power to oppress their countrymen. The history of the 
Mongols, stamped by their savagery, presents therefore 
only hideous pictures ; but, closely connected as it is to 
that of several empires, it is necessary for the proper 
understanding of the great events of the thirteenth and 
fourteenth centuries 1 ." 

Next in point of time is Sir Henry Howorth's great 
History of the Mongols in four large volumes 2 . His 

view of the Tartars differs somewhat from 
Howorth" 1 d'Ohsson's, for he sees in them "one of those 

hardy, brawny races, cradled amidst want and 
hard circumstances, in whose blood there is a good mix- 
ture of iron, which are sent periodically to destroy the 
luxurious and the wealthy, to lay in ashes the arts and 
culture which only grow under the shelter of wealth and 
easy circumstances, and to convert into a desert the para- 
dise which man has painfully cultivated. Like the pestilence 
and the famine the Mongols were essentially an engine of 
destruction ; and if it be a painful, harassing story to read, 
it is nevertheless a necessary one if we are to understand 
the great course of human progress 3 ." After enumerating 
other luxurious and civilized peoples who have been simi- 
larly renovated by the like drastic methods, he asserts 
that this "was so to a large extent, with the victims of the 
Mongol arms ; their prosperity was hollow and pretentious, 

1 Op. laud., vol. i, pp. vii-viii. 

2 Published in London 1876-1888 and divided into three parts, of 
which part 2 forms vols. ii and iii. Part 3 (vol. iv) deals with the 
Mongols of Persia. 

3 Op. latid., part I, p. x. 

14 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

their grandeur very largely but outward glitter, and the 
diseased body needed a sharp remedy; the apoplexy that 
was impending could probably only be staved off by much 
blood-letting, the demoralized cities must be sown with 
salt and their inhabitants inoculated with fresh streams of 
vigorous blood from the uncontaminated desert 1 ." With 
more justice he insists on the wonderful bringing together 
of the most remote peoples of the East and West which 
was the most important constructive effect of the Mongol 
conquest, and concludes: "I have no doubt myself. ..that 
the art of printing, the mariner's compass, firearms, and 
a great many details of social life, were not discovered in 
Europe, but imported by means of Mongol influence from 
the furthest East." 

The third book which demands notice, chiefly on account 

of its influence in Turkey in generating the Yeni Ttirdn, 

or Pan-Turanian movement, of which it is not 

(3) Lon Cahun 

yet possible exactly to appraise the political 
importance, is M. Leon Cahun's Introduction a I'Histoire 
de rAsie: Turcs et Mongols, des Origines a 1405*. This 
writer goes very much further than Howorth in his admi- 
ration of the Mongols and the various kindred Turkish 
peoples who formed the bulk of their following. A note 
of admiration characterizes his description of their military 
virtues 8 , their " culte du drapeau, la glorification du nom 
turc, puis mongol, le chauvinisme 4 " ; their political com- 
binations against the Sasanian Persians 5 , and later against 
the Islamic influences of which Persia was the centre ; their 
courage, hardihood, discipline, hospitality, lack of religious 
fanaticism, and firm administration. This book, though 
diffuse, is suggestive, and is in any case worth reading 
because of its influence on certain chauvinistic circles in 
Turkey, as is a historical romance about the Mongols by 

1 Op. laud., p. ii. 2 Paris, 1896. 

3 Op. laud., p. ix. 4 Ibid., p. 79. 

5 Ibid., pp. 111-118. 


the same author, translated into English under the title of 
The Yeni The Blue Banner. Of the Yeni Turdn movement 

THrdn, or j nav e spoken briefly elsewhere 1 , and this is 

nian" Move- hardly the place to discuss it more fully, though 


it has perhaps a greater significance than I was 
at that time disposed to think. On the literary side it 
aims at preferring Turkish to Arabic and Persian words, 
idioms and vehicles of expression, and at combating Arabic 
and Persian influences and traditions ; while on the political 
side it dreams of amalgamating in one State all the Turkish 
and kindred peoples west and east of the Caspian Sea (in- 
cluding the Mongols on the one hand and the Bulgarians 
on the other), and of creating a great Turkish or Turanian 
Empire more or less coextensive with that of Chingiz Khan. 
The ideas of this school were chiefly embodied in a fort- 
nightly publication entitled Turk Yurdu (the "Turkish 
Hearth") inaugurated in December, 1911. 

It is not, however, with the Mongol Empire as a whole, 
but with Persia under Mongol dominion that we are here 
state of Persia chiefly concerned, nor is it necessary to record 
under the Mon- in detail the history of the Mongol Il-khdns who 

succeeded Hulagu, which can be read in full in 
the pages of d'Ohsson and Howorth. Considering what 
Persia suffered at the hands of the Tartars, it is wonderful 
how much good literature was produced during this period. 

Generally speaking the South of Persia, lying 

Relative immu- * > J o 

nity of South apart from the main track of conquest to the 
West, suffered much less than the North, West 
and Centre. Isfahan suffered a massacre in which one 
famous poet at least perished 2 , but Shi'raz, owing to the 
timely and prudent submission of its ruler, escaped almost 
scatheless, a fact to which Sa'di ingeniously alludes in the 

1 The Press and Poetry of Modern Persia, p. xxxix. An interesting 
article on this subject, written, I understand, by Mr Arnold Toynbee, 
also appeared in the Times for Jan. 3, 5 and 7, 1918. 

- See Lit, Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 541-2. 

16 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

panegyric on his patron prefixed to the Bustdn, where he 
says 1 : 

" Alexander, by means of a Wall of brass and stone, narrowed the 
road of Gog from the world : 

Thy barrier to the Gog of Paganism is of gold, not of brass like 
the Wall of Alexander." 

"By the 'Gog of Paganism,'" says the commentator, 
" Chingi'z Khan is meant. The King-Atabek made peace 
with him by money, so that the'Musulmans of Shi'raz were 
saved from the hands of his tyranny. The author ascribes 
pre-eminence to his patron because, says he, 'Alexander 
barred Gog's advance with a brazen barrier, but thou didst 
check the advance of the Gog of Paganism with gold.' " 

Twenty-five years before Sa'di wrote this,Shamsu'd-Di'n 
Muhammad ibn Qays of Ray, flying before the first fury of 
the Tartar irruption, had found at Shi'raz a haven of refuge 
wherein to complete his interrupted work on the Ars Poetica 
and prosody of Persia 2 ; and the life of Shi'raz seems to have 
gone on fairly tranquilly and suffered relatively little dis- 
turbance during those stormy days. 

Another point to be noted is that, while all learning 
suffered from the wholesale massacres of scholars and des- 
why certain struction of mosques, libraries, and other pious 
branches foundations, some branches of learning suffered 

oflearning * 

suffered less much less than others. For theology and philo- 

sophy, for example, the pagan Mongols naturally 

cared little ; but they attached considerable importance to 

medicine, botany, astronomy and other natural sciences, 

1 See Graf's edition, last line on p. 22 and first line on p. 23. The 
Bustdn was written in 665/1257, a year before the Gulistdn. 

2 See the English Preface (pp. xv-xviii) to MirzA Muhammad's 
edition of his Mu'jam fi Mcfdyiri Asfcdri 'l-'Ajam, published in the 
" E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, vol. x, 1909. 

CH. i] ABAQA KHAN (A.D. 1265-1282) 17 

were especially desirous that their achievements should be 
fully and accurately recorded by competent historians, and 
were not altogether indifferent to the praises of poets. At 
no other period, as will be pointed out more fully in the next 
chapter, were so many first-rate histories written in Persian ; 
but it must be remembered that the writers were, as a rule, 
men whose education reposed on the more scholarly tradi- 
tion of pre-Mongol days, and that such historical works as 
the T<Jrikh-i-Jahdn-gushd of Juwaynf and the Jdmi'rft- 
Tawdrikh of Rashfdu'd-Di'n Fadlu'llah were isolated phe- 
nomena, hardly approached in excellence in later days. 
The Tarikh-i-Guzida is as inferior to the latter as it is 
superior to the over-estimated histories of Mirkhwand and 
Khwandami'r which will be discussed in the concluding 
chapter of this volume. On the whole, then, it may be safely 
said that, allowing for the terrible crisis through which Persia 
was passing, when heathen rulers dominated the land, and 
Christians and Jews lorded it over Muslims, the period of 
Mongol ascendancy, from the death of Hulagu Khan on 
February 8, 1265, until the death of the last Mongol Il-khan, 
Musa, in 1337, was wonderfully rich in literary achievements. 
Before passing to the detailed consideration of these 
achievements, a brief sketch must be given of the external 
history of this period, which is divided into two nearly equal 
halves by the reign of Ghazan, who, though not the first 
Mongol Il-khan to embrace the religion of Islam, was the 
first to restore it to its position of supremacy and to purge 
the land of Mongol heathenism. 

i. ABAQA (A.D. 1265-1282). 

The first successor of Hulagu was his son Abaqci (or 

Abaqa), who was crowned on June 19, 1265, a date chosen as 

auspicious by the famous astronomer and philo- 

Abdqa,A.D. sopher Nasfru'd-Din of Tus, whose brilliant 
1265-1282 _ r 

scientific and dubious political achievements 
have been discussed in a previous volume 1 . His life was now 

1 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 484-6, etc. 
B. P. 2 

i8 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

drawing towards its close, but we hear of him once again five 
years later, in 669/1 270-1, when he was called in 

Last days and J T ' ' 

death of Nasiru to treat Abaqa, who had been gored by a wild cow 
on one of his hunting expeditions. The wound 
suppurated and an abscess formed which none of thell-khan's 
other medical advisers dared to open. Nasiru'd-Di'n suc- 
cessfully performed the operation. He died in the following 
year at the age of seventy-five. Bar-Hebraeus gives him a 
brief but laudatory notice in his Mukhtasarud-Duwal 1 , 
describing him as "the Keeper of the Observatory at Maragha 
and a man of vast learning in all branches of philosophy." 
" Under his control," he continues, " were all the religious 
endowments in all the lands under Mongol rule. He com- 
posed many works on logic, the natural sciences and meta- 
physics, and on Euclid and the Almagest. He also wrote 
a Persian work on Ethics 2 of the utmost possible merit 
wherein he collected all the dicta of Plato and Aristotle on 
practical Philosophy, confirming the opinions of the ancients 
and solving the doubts of the moderns and the criticisms 
advanced by them in their writings." 

Abaqa was thirty-one years of age when he became ruler 
of Persia, and whether or no there was any truth in the rumour 
that he was actually baptised into the Christian 
Zs 5 Church at the desire of his bride Despina, the 
natural daughter of Michael Palaeologus 3 , he 
consistently favoured the Christians, and, indeed, appears 
to have owed his elevation to the throne to their influence, 
exercised through Doquz Khatun, the widow of his father 
and predecessor Hulagu, who survived her husband about 
a year, and who never failed to befriend her co-religionists 
in every possible way 4 . Abaqa's diplomatic relations with 

1 Beyrout ed. of A.D. 1890, pp. 500-1. 

2 I.e. the well-known Akhldq-i-Ndsiri, one of the three Persian 
works on this subject which are most read even at the present day. 
See Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 220, 456, 485. 

3 See Howorth, op. cit., pt. 3, p. 223. 

4 Ibid., p. 218. She belonged to the Christian tribe of Kera'it (or 

CH. i] ABAQA KHAN (A.D. 1265-1282) 19 

the Popes and Christian kings of Europe are, however, in all 
probability to be ascribed rather to political than religious 
motives. He was in correspondence with Clement IV, who 
wrote him a letter from Viterbo in 1267; Gregory X in 1274; 
and Nicolas III, who in 1278 sent to him and to his over- 
lord the great Qubilay (" Kubla ") Khan an embassy of five 
Franciscan monks. One of his embassies even penetrated 
as far as England and was apparently received by Edward I, 
but the records of it seem to be scanty or non-existent 1 . The 
political object of these negotiations was to arrange for a 
combined attack on the still unsubdued Muslims of Egypt 
and Syria, the natural and deadly foes of the Mongols; and 
the inducement held out to the Christians was the possession 
of the Holy Land for which they had so long striven. 
Fortunately for the Muhammadans, Islam possessed in the 
Mamluk Sultan Baybars, called al-Malik az-Zahir, a doughty 
champion well qualified to meet the double peril which 
menaced his faith and his country. Already in 1 260, before 
he was elected king, he had driven Hulagu's Mongols out 
of Ghaza and routed them at 'Ayn Jalut, driven back the 
Crusaders in Syria, and broken the power of the Syrian 
branch of the Assassins ; and in April, 1277, he inflicted on 
the Mongols another great defeat at Abulustayn, leaving 
nearly 7000 of them dead on the field of battle 2 . When 
Abaqa subsequently visited the battle-field, he was deeply 
moved, even to tears, by the numbers of the Mongol slain. 

Karit) and was the granddaughter of their ruler Ung or Wang Khan, 
the original of the "Prester John" of mediaeval legend. Bar-Hebraeus 
in recording her death (pp. cit., p. 497) describes her as " great in her 
judgement and wisdom." 

1 See Howorth, op. laud., pp. 278-281, and on the whole subject 
Abel-Rdmusat's classical Memoires sur les Relations politiques des 
Princes Chretiens... avec les Empereurs Mongols in the Me"m. de FAcad. 
Royale des Inscriptions et Belles- Lettres, vols. vi and vii, pp. 396 and 
335 respectively. 

2 See Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, p. 446 ; S. Lane-Poole's admirable 
little History of Egypt, pp. 262 and 270 ; and Howorth, op. cit. pp. 

20 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

Bitter hatred subsisted during all this period between the 
Mongol Il-khans and the Egyptian Mamluks, and no more 
dangerous or damaging charge could be preferred against 
a subject of the former than an accusation of being in com- 
munication with the latter. Every Muslim subject of the 
Mongols must needs walk very warily if he would avoid 
such deadly suspicion, and, as we shall see hereafter, the 
favourite method of ruining a hated rival was to denounce 
him to the Mongol government as having relations with 

From our present point of view we are less concerned 

with the Mongol rulers and generals than with the Persian 

functionaries whom they found indispensable in 

The juwayni the ^jj serv j ce nfc e t h e Arabs in earlier times), 


and amongst whom were included men of remark- 
able talents. Conspicuous amongst these was the Juwayni 
family, notably Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad the Sdhib- 
Dtwdn, his brother 'Ala'u'd-Dm 'Ata Malik, and his son 
Baha'u'd-Din. The Sdhib-Diwdn 's grandfather, also en- 
titled Shamsu'd-Din, but distinguished by the epithets 
Biizurg ("the Great") and Miiy-dirdz ("the long-haired"), 
had been Prime Minister to Qutbu'd-Di'n Khwarazmshah, 
while his father, Baha'u'd-Din, had held the office of 
Mustawfil-Mamdlik (approximately equivalent to Chan- 
cellor of the Exchequer). He himself had held the office 
of Prime Minister for ten years under Hulagii Khan, and 
was continued in this position by Abaqa. His brother, 
'Ala'u'd-Din is chiefly interesting to us as one of the finest 
historians whom Persia ever produced, and in this capacity 
he will be considered in the next chapter; but he was also 
a great administrator, and was for twenty-four years gover- 
nor of Baghdad 1 . His son Baha'u'd-Din was governor of 
Persian 'Iraq and Frs, while another son Sharafu'd-Din 

1 He was appointed by Hiildgu in 657/1259, one year after the 
capture of the city by the Mongols. See the Introduction to Mfrz 
Muhammad's edition of the Tdrikh-i-Jahdn-gushd in the " E. J. W. 
Gibb Memorial" Series, vol. xvi, i (1912), pp. xxviii. 


Harun was a poet and a patron of poets 1 . A full and critical 
account of this talented family, based on researches equally 
extensive and minute, is given by Mirza Muhammad of 
Qazwfn, one of the finest and most critical Persian scholars 
whom I ever met, in his Introduction to the Tdrikh-i- 
Jahdn-gushd (vol. i, pp. xix-xcii), to which the reader may 
refer for much detailed information which considerations 
of space render it impossible to reproduce here. The 
Juwayni family, alike in their love of literature and learning, 
their princely generosity, their administrative capacity, and 
their tragic fate, irresistibly recall to one's mind another 
great Persian family of statesmen, the celebrated House of 
Barmak or Barmecides of "the Golden Prime of good 
Haroun Alraschid 2 ." Their influence was great and wide- 
spread ; their connection with literature, both as writers and 
as patrons of poets and men of learning, extensive ; and 
the jealousy of less fortunate rivals which embittered their 
lives and finally brought about their destruction commen- 
surate with the power and high positions which they so 
long enjoyed. The first to die of those mentioned above, 
and one of the few who was fortunate enough to die a 
natural death, was Baha'u'd-Dfn, son of the 

Death and char- 
acter of Baha'u SdJub-Dzwdn and governor of Persian 'Iraq. 

waynf His death took place in 678/1279 at the early 
age of thirty. He was a terribly stern governor, who 
inspired the utmost terror in the hearts of his subjects, and 
whose ferocity went so far that he caused his little son, and 
he a favourite child, to be put to death by his executioner 
because in play he had caught hold of his beard. The 
historian Wassaf gives many other instances of his implac- 
able sternness, of which a selection will be found in Howorth's 
History of the Mongols*; but it is fair to add that under his 

1 His Diwdn is very rare, but there is a MS. (Or. 3647) in the 
British Museum. See Rieu's Pers. Suppl. Cat., No. 254, pp. 166-7. 

2 Cf. Mfrza Muhammad's Introduction to the Jahdn-gushd, p. 4. 

3 Pt. 3, pp. 221-2, and the Tdrikh-i- Wassdf ( Bombay lith.), pp. 60 
et seqq. 

22 THE MONGOL T.L-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

stern administration the utmost security prevailed in the 
provinces which he administered, while he eagerly cultivated 
the society of poets, scholars and artists. His father the 
Sdkib-Diwdn mourned his death in the following verse: 

!L ' CjLJk .^XAs 


" Muhammad's son ! Thy slave is Heaven high ; 
One hair of thee the Age's Mart might buy ; 
Thy Sire's support wert thou : bereft of thee 
His back is bent as brow o'er beauty's eye." 

The following verse was composed by Hindushah to com 
memorate the date of his death : 

jL&w oto jt .i^j a.=> 

" On the eve of Saturday the seventeenth of Sha'ban's month 
In the year three score and eighteen and six hundred from the Flight 1 
From the world Baha'u'd-Din, that great wazir, in Isfahdn 
Fled. Ah, when on such another ruler shall Time's eyes alight ? " 

This was the first of the misfortunes which befel the 

Juwaynf family, and which were largely due to their un- 

grateful protege Majdu'1-Mulk of Yazd. whose 

Misfortunes r 

of juwayni ambition led him to calumniate both the Sdhib- 
family Diwdn and his brother 'Ala'u'1-Mulk' 'Ata 

Malik. While still subordinate to the Sdhib-Dlwdn, Majdu 
'1-Mulk addressed to him the following quatrain : 

1 Sha'ban 17, 678 = Dec. 23, 1279. 

CH. i] ABAQA KHAN (A.D. 1265-1282) 23 

" I said, 'I'll ever in thy service be, 

intrigues of Not come like larch and go like willow tree' 1 : 
Majdu'l-Mulk He who despairs is bold and sharp of tongue ; 
Cause me not, Friend, thus desperate to be ! " 

By traducing the Sdhib-Diwdn to Abaqa, he finally induced 
that monarch to associate him in the government with his 
rival, and this dual control gave rise to endless friction and 
recriminations. On one occasion he sent another quatrain 
to the Sdhib-Diwdn as follows : 

" Into the Ocean of thy grief I'll dive, 
And either drown, or pearls to gather strive ; 
'Tis hard to fight with thee, yet fight I will, 
And die red-throated, or red-cheeked survive 2 ." 

To this the Sdhib-Diwdn sent the following answer 

" Since to the King complaints thou canst not bear 
Much anguish to consume shall be thy share. 
Through this design on which thou hast embarked 
Thy face and neck alike shall crimson wear." 

1 I suppose the writer's meaning is, that he wishes to be a permanent 
and honoured associate of the minister, not liable to reprimand, humili- 
ation or dismissal, coming in erect as the larch or cypress, and going 
out after some rebuff bowed down with humiliation like the weeping 

2 "Die red-throated," i.e. by decapitation. "Red-cheeked" or "red- 
faced" means " honoured," the opposite of "black-faced." 

24 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

Ultimately Majdu'1-Mulk succeeded in arousing Abaqa's 

suspicions against the Sahib -Diwdris brother, 'Ala'u'1-Mulk 

'Ata Malik-i-Juwayni,whowas arrested, paraded 

Disgrace and i ' i i / T i i y i i i 

punishment of through the streets ot Baghdad, tortured, and 
Ata Maiik-i- forced to pav large sums of money which he 

Juwayni . . 

was alleged to have misappropriated. Matters 
might have gone yet worse with him had not Abaqa's sudden 
death on April i, 1282, put an end to his persecution and 

brought about his release from prison, while 

Release of 'Ata a r 

Malik and death soon afterwards his enemy Majdu'1-Mulk fell a 


pieces by the mob, his dismembered limbs being publicly 
exhibited in the chief cities of Persia. On this well-merited 
punishment of the old and inveterate foe of his family 'Ata 
Malik-i- Juwayni composed the following quatrain : 

" For some brief days thy guile did mischief wreak; 
Position, wealth and increase thou didst seek : 
Now every limb of thine a land hath ta'en : 
Thou'st over-run the kingdom in a week ! " 

'Ata Malik, however, did not long survive his foe, for he too 

Death of 'Ata died ' the Spring of 1283. 

Maiik-i-juwayni In one curious particular connected with 

Abaqa's death all the historians agree. He had, 

in the usual Mongol fashion, been drinking deeply with his 

favourites and boon-companions. Feeling uneasy, he had 

withdrawn from them for a moment into the 

Death of Abaqa , , , 111-1 1 

palace garden when he suddenly cried out that 
a large black bird was threatening him, and ordered some 
of his servants to shoot it with arrows. The servants hastened 
to him in answer to his call, but no bird was to be seen, and 

CH. i] AHMAD TAKtfDAR (A.D. 1282-1284) 25 

while they were still searching for it, Abaqa fell down in a 
swoon from which he never awoke 1 . 

A few other events of Abaqa's reign merit a brief men- 
tion. The Assassins, in spite of all they had suffered at 
Renewed the hands of the Mongols, so far recovered 

activity of themselves as to attempt the life of 'Ata Malik- 

i-Juwaynf in 670/1271-2, while four years later, 
in 674/1275-6, they actually succeeded, under the leader- 
ship of the son of their last Grand Master Ruknu'd-Din 
Khurshah, in regaining possession of Alamut, though they 
internecine were shortly afterwards subdued and destroyed 
warsofMon- by Abaqa. Internecine wars between various 

gol princes n/r i u i- i 

Mongol princes began to be prevalent in 
Abaqa's reign, as, for instance, that between Yushmut and 
Nogay at Aq-sii in 663/1264-5, the year of Abaqa's ac- 
cession, and that between Abaqa and Nikudar the son of 
Chaghatay in 667/1268-9. Further turmoil was caused by 
the repeated raids of the Nikudarfs, and by the revolt of 

Buraq in Khurasan. The defeat of the latter 

Revolt of Burdq , , , . 

by Abaqa s troops was due almost entirely to 
the valour of Subutay, in allusion to which a contemporary 
poet says: 

O"* L^'r IP 

"'Gainst the army of thy love not one could stand save only I, 
As against Burdq of all Abaqa's captains Subuta"y." 

AHMAD TAKUDAR 2 (A.D. 1282-1284). 

On the death of Abaqa two rival candidates appeared 
on the scene, his brother Takudar 2 (who, on his conversion 

1 Abu'l-Faraj Bar-Hebraeus (Beyrout ed. of 1890, p. 505) says that 
this happened at Ramadan in the house of a Persian named Bihndm 
who gave a banquet in Abdqd's honour. He does not explicitly mention 
the black bird, but says that Abqa "began to see phantoms in the air." 

- This name is sometimes given as Nikudar or Nigudar, but the 
Armenian form Tongudar given by Haithon seems decisive. See 
Howorth, op. '/., pp. 310-11. 

26 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

to Islam took the additional name of Ahmad) and his 
Ahmad Takudar son Arghun. A majority of the Mongol nobles 
A.H. 681-683 preferred the former, and he was accordingly 
* proclaimed on May 6, 1282, under the title of 
Sultan Ahmad Takudar. One of his earliest public acts 
was to show his devotion to the religion which he had 
adopted by letters addressed to the doctors of Baghdad 1 
and to Qala'un, Sultan of Egypt 2 , in which he expressed 
his desire to protect and foster the religion of Islam and 
to live on terms of peace and amity with all Muslims. 
His letter to Qald'un, dated Jumada I, A.H. 68 1 (August, 
1282), was entrusted to two special envoys, Qutbu'd-Din-i- 
Shi'razi and the Atabek Pahlawdn, and Qala'un's answer 
was dated the beginning of Ramadan of the same year 
(December 3, 1282). 

However gratified the Muslims may have been at the 
conversion of Ahmad Takudar and the evidences of sin- 
cerity afforded by his conduct, the Mongols 

Ahmad Takudar J ' . ' 

defeated, cap- were far from sharing this satisfaction, and in 
in the followin g y ear (682/1283-4), a formidable 
conspiracy of Mongol nobles to depose Ahmad 
Takudar and place his nephew Arghun on the throne came 
to light. Qunquratay, one of the chief conspirators, with a 
number of his accomplices, was put to death on January 18, 
1284, but Arghun successfully revolted against his uncle, 
whom he ultimately captured and put to death on Au- 
gust 10 of the same year, and was proclaimed King on 
the following day. 

1 See d'Ohsson's Hist, des Mongols, vol. iii, pp. 553 et seqq. 

2 See the Tdrikh-i-Wassdf, Bombay lithographed edition of A.H. 
1269, pp. 113-115, and, for Qala'un's answer, pp. 115-118 of the same. 
Also Abu'l-Faraj Bar-Hebraeus (Beyrout ed. of 1890), pp. 506-510 and 
510-518. English translations of both letters are given by Howorth, 
op. cit., pp. 260-296. 


ARGHUN (A.D. 1284-1291). 

One of Arghun's first acts was to make his son Ghazan 
governor of Khurasan, Mazandaran, Ray and Qumis. His 
Rei nofAr hun f rma l recognition as Il-khan of Persia by his 
A. H. 683-690 over-lord Qubilay Khan (" Kubla Khan") was 
brought from China in the following year by 

During the reign of Ahmad Takiidar the fortunes of 
the Sdhib-Dtwdn and his family, threatened for a while 
The.svrt#- ky the intrigues of Majdu'1-Mulk, revived 
z>/' P utto once more, but they were finally eclipsed by 
the accession of Arghun. On the death of 
his master, Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad the Sdhib-Diwdn, 
fearing Arghun's anger, fled to Qum, where he was over- 
taken by Arghun's messengers, brought back, and finally 
put to death at a place called Mu'ma near Ahar on Sha'ban 
4 or 5, 683 (October 16 or 17, I284) 1 . Before submitting 
himself to the headsman's hands he craved a brief respite, 
which was granted him. After performing the ablution, he 
took an augury from a Qur'dn which belonged to him, and 
then wrote the following letter to the l ulamd of Tabriz : 

"When I sought an augury from the Qur'an, these were 

the words which came 2 : ' Verily those who said ''God is our 

Lord" and then were steadfast, unto them do 

The Sdhib-Dt- . , . r . n J . . 

mdn's letter to the angels afscaut [sayingj : rear not, neither 
Tab '" la "' 4 f be afraid. Receive good tidings of the Paradise 
which ye were promised!" Since the Creator, 
exalted is He, hath well maintained his servant in this 
perishable world, and hath not withheld from him any 
wish, it hath pleased Him even in this world to give him 
glad tidings of the World Eternal. Therefore he hath 
deemed it incumbent on himself to convey these glad 
tidings to Mawlana Muhiyyu'd-Din, Mawlana Afdalu'd- 

1 This is the last event recorded by Bar-Hebraeus in his history 
(pp. 521-2 of the Beyrout ed. of 1890). 

2 Qur'dn, xli, 30. 

28 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

Din, Mawlana Shamsu'd-Din, Mawlana Humamu'd-Din 
and those other great divines whom time and the circum- 
stances do not permit me to mention by name, that they 
may know that we have severed all ties and so departed. 
Let them assist me with their prayers 1 !" 

He also addressed the following farewell letter and 
testament to his sons 2 : 

"Salvation and greeting to my sons and dear ones, may 
God Almighty preserve them ! Let them know that I en- 
trust them to God, Mighty and Glorious is He : 
tohiiKMu verily God doth not suffer that which is en- 

trusted to Him to sustain loss. It was in my 
mind that perhaps a meeting might be possible, whereat 
my last wishes might be communicated orally, but my 
days are ended, and my business is now with the world 
to come. Do not fall short in the care of my children ; 
incite them to study, and on no account suffer them to 
have aught to do with the service of the State; let them 
rather be content with that which God Most High hath 
assigned to them. If my son Atabek and his mother wish 
to return home, they have my permission so to do. Let 
Nawruz, Mas'ud and their mother remain with Bulqan 
Khatun, and should she grant them estates, let them ac- 
cept them and be content therewith. Whither can my chief 
wife go from Tabriz ? Let her then remain there near the 
grave of me and my brothers. If they can, let them make 
their dwelling in the monastery of Shaykh Fakhru'd-Din 
and repair thither. Mumina hath received little satisfaction 
from us : if she wishes to marry again, let her do so. Let 
Farrukh and his mother remain with Atabek. Let them 
leave Zakariyya with the crown lands and other estates 
which I have given over to Amir Buqa. Let them petition 
[on his behalf]: if some land should be granted to him, well 
and good: if not, let him rest content. May the Almighty 

1 Ta!rikh-i-Wassdf,v- HI. 

2 The text of this is given in the Mujmal of Fasihi of Khwdf, 
ff. 468 b -469 a of the MS. belonging to the Gibb Trustees. 


Creator have mercy upon us, and bless all of them. At 
this hour my mind is fixed on the Divine Presence, and 
I can write no more than this. Deal kindly with all, bond 
and free, and forget us not on the nights when you remember 
the absent." 

The Sdhib-Diwdn did not perish alone. Four of his 
sons, Yahya, Faraju'llah, Mas'iid and Atabek, were put 
to death soon after him, and a little later another son, 
Harun. "Two brothers and seven sons," according to the 
Ta'rikh-i- Wassaf 1 , constituted the sacrifice demanded by 
Mongol ferocity, ever ready to visit the sins of the fathers 
upon the children, and little disposed to leave alive poten- 
tial avengers. Added to these losses were the deaths in the 
years immediately preceding of 'Ala'u'1-Mulk 'Ata Malik-i- 
Juwayni and Baha'u'd-Dm, already mentioned, so that in 
the course of five or six years this great family of states- 
men was practically effaced from the page of history. 

Fasihi, in his Mujmal (f. 469), quotes the two following 
quatrains composed by the Sdhib-Diwdn in his last mo- 
ments : 

" O Hand of Fate, which doth my heart's steps stay, 
My heart submits to thy desire to slay : 
With all my heart I offer thee my life ; 
For this throughout my life my heart did pray." 

" Look, thou who caused'st life's bright lamp to die, 
Two hundred worlds thou seest extinguished lie, 
Yet do the slain eternal life attain, 
And those in chief who are by heathens slain." 

1 P. 142. 

30 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

His death was universally lamented, even in towns like 
Shiraz where he was known only by his charities and good 
works, and which he had never visited. Amongst the verses 
composed on his death are the following: 


"The Night in grief hath dyed her cloak, and Morn, 
Heaving cold sighs, appears with collar torn : 
The Sun's 1 departure stains the sky with gore : 
The Moon is veiled, the locks of Venus shorn." 

" That minister whose head o'ertopped the skies 
Hath earned, in truth, of martyrdom the prize ; 
The Sdhib-Dtwdn, who for thirty years 
Hath kept the world secure from hurts and fears. 
O cruel heavens such a life to ban ! 
O cruel earth, to slay so great a man ! " 

There were, however, others who regarded the Sdhib- 
Diwdris fate as well deserved, on account of the part he had 
played in respect to his unlucky predecessor Majdu'1-Mulk. 
This point of view is represented in the following verses, 
cited in the Tcf rikh-i-Guzida : 

1 Shamsu'd-Dfn, " the Sun of Religion," was the Sdhib-Diivdris 
name, to which allusion is here made. 

CH. i] ARGHtiN KHAN (A.D. 1284-1291) 31 

aU 5 i j JL- 

" Since Majdu'1-Mulk, by God-sent destiny, 
A martyr in Naw Shahr's plain did die, 
By the Sdhib-Diwdn Muhammad's spite, 
Who ruled the land with unrestricted might, 
Two years, two months, two weeks went by, and lo, 
Fate bade him drain in turn the cup of woe. 
Beware how in this world thou workest harm ; 
Fate's scales hold equal weight of bane and balm ! " 

A violent death was, however, the common end of 
those who were rash enough to act as ministers to Mongol 
sovereigns. Thus Jalalu'd-Dm Simnani, who succeeded the 
Sdhib-Diwdn, was executed in August, 1289; Sa'du'd-Dawla, 
who succeeded him, was put to death at the end of February, 
1291 ; Sadru'd-Dm Khalidi, who acted as minister to Gay- 
khatu, suffered the same fate in May, 1298; and Rashidu'd- 
Din Fadlu'llah, the most accomplished of all, was executed 
in July, 1318. 

Arghun reigned over Persia for nearly seven years 

(August, 1284-May, 1291). The embassies which he sent to 

Europe, and especially that of 1287-1288, of 

Sa'du'd-Dawia, w hi c h one o f ^Q envoys, Rabban Sawma, has 

theJewisha/aszV ' 

left us an account in Synac 1 , mark a revival of 
Abaqa's policy, which had been reversed by Ahmad Takudar. 
During the latter part of Arghun's reign Sa'du'd-Dawla 
the Jew was his all-powerful minister. This man, originally 
a physician, was detested by the Muslims, who ascribed 
to him the most sinister designs against Islam. He was 
originally a native of Abhar, and afterwards practised 
medicine at Baghdad. He was recommended to Arghun 
by some of his co-religionists, and, according to the 7V- 
rikh-i- Wassdf", gained the esteem and confidence of that 
prince not only by his knowledge of the Mongol and 

1 See that most interesting book Histoire de Mar Jabalaha ///...<?/ 
du moine Rabban Cauma..*traduit du Syriaque et annotee par J.-B. 
Chabot (Paris, 1895). 2 p. 236. 

32 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

Turkish languages, but also by the skilful manner in which 
he played on Arghun's avarice by the schemes for re- 
plenishing the treasury which he unfolded. In the realiza- 
tion of these schemes in Baghdad he showed such ability 
that he was entrusted by Arghun with the financial control 
of the whole kingdom. His co-religionists, hitherto despised 
and repressed, began to benefit by his ever-increasing power, 
and to fill many offices of state ; so much so that a con- 
temporary poet of Baghdad wrote as follows 1 : 

" The Jews of this our time a rank attain 
To which the heavens might aspire in vain. 
Theirs is dominion, wealth to them doth cling, 
To them belong both councillor and king. 
O people, hear my words of counsel true : 
Turn Jews, for heaven itself hath turned a Jew ! 
Yet wait, and ye shall hear their torment's cry, 
And see them fall and perish presently." 

Sa'du'd-Dawla's boldness and open hostility to Islam 
increased with his power, until he not only induced Arghun 
to exclude the Muslims from all high civil and military 
posts 2 , but endeavoured to compass the destruction of their 
religion. To this end he sought to persuade Arghun that 
the prophetic function had passed from the Arabs to the 
Mongols, who were divinely commissioned to chastise the 
disobedient and degenerate followers of Muhammad, and 
proposed to turn the Ka'ba into an idol-temple. He began 
to prepare a fleet at Baghdad to attack Mecca, and sent his 
co-religionist Khwaja Najibu'd-Din Kahhal into Khurasan 
with a black list of some two hundred notable and influential 

1 Tctrikh-i-Wassdf, p. 238. 2 Ibid., p. 241. 


Muslims whose death he desired to compass. A similar but 
shorter list, containing the names of seventeen notable 
divines and theologians of Shiraz, was also prepared for him. 
"It is related," says the author of the Tdrtkh-i-Wassdf, 
" that when Arghun Khan first ascended the royal throne he 
greatly disliked bloodshed, so that one day, during the pro- 
gress of a banquet, he looked at the number of sheep slain, 
and, moved by excessive compassion, said, 'Hardness of heart 
and a cruel disposition alone can prompt man to sacrifice 
so many innocent beasts for the pleasures of the table.' 
Yet this minister (Sa'du'd-Dawla) so constantly applauded 
evil and represented wrong as right, urging that to clear the 
garden of empire from the thorns of disaffection, and to 
purify the wells of endeavour from the impurity of suspects 
was required alike by prudence and discretion..., that finally, 
through his evil promptings and misleading counsels, the 
Il-khan's heart became as eager to kill the innocent as are 
the infidel glances of the fair ones of Khutan, so that on the 
least suspicion or the slightest fault he would destroy a 
hundred souls. Such is the effect produced by intercourse 
with an evil companion and the society of wicked persons 1 ." 
But just when Sa'du'd-Dawla's influence was at its 
highest and his schemes were approaching maturity, Arghun 
fell grievously sick at Tabriz. The minister, 
lasf nines realizing that he would certainly not long sur- 

vive his master, became a prey to the most acute 
and overpowering distress: he was unremitting in his atten- 
dance, and also, with the view of propitiating Heaven, gave 
away vast sums of money in charity, thirty thousand dinars 
being distributed in Baghddd and ten thousand amongst the 
poor of Shiraz. He also liberated many captives and renewed 
or extended many benefactions. Some of the Mongol priests 
declared that the execution of Qaranqay, Huldju, Jushkab 
and other Mongol princes had brought this sickness on 
Arghun ; others that he had been bewitched by one of his 
wives. Sultan Idajf, who was alleged to have instigated 

1 Ibid., pp. 242-3. 
B. P. 3 

34 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

the former deed, was sacrificed in expiation, and also Jush- 
kab's niece Tuqjaq, who was suspected of the ensorcelment 
of the king ; but naught availed to stay the progress of his 
malady, and towards the end of February, 1291, his condition 
was so critical that none were allowed to approach him save 
Jushf and Sa'du'd-Dawla. The latter secretly sent mes- 
sengers to Ghazan, bidding him be ready to claim the throne 
so soon as Arghun should have breathed his last, but nothing 
could now avail to save him from his foes, and he was put 
to death a few days before his master expired, on March 9, 

I29I 1 . 

The death of Sa'du'd-Dawla was the signal for a general 

persecution of the Jews, who were plundered and in many 

cases slain. In Baghdad alone more than a 

Persecution hundred of their chief men were killed. The 

ot the Jews 

collapse of thejewish ascendancy was celebrated 
by Zaynu'd-Din 'All b. Sa'id the preacher in the following 
Arabic qasida?, composed in the same metre and rhyme as 
that quoted on p. 32 supra : 

f 1 1 10*0 111 

JXUJI d-o~.L> 

, ~ 4 

0*9 ' , i - - J i x> j j ^ Oi 

i^TVJUj ^3 U JUU ^>Xi ' liwl "^La-Lc 4JLJI ^JkUC^I 5 


0<0 X X 0X5 , 


ji.1 LJ 9 

1 See Howorth, op. cit., p. 345. 

2 Cited from the Tcfrikh-i- Wass&f, p. 247. 


' \j->j3 & jLi 

ijb UJ 13 


L5 5iL " bj-f*-* 1 * l6 


-liJ9 17 

jxx e 


il 19 

> JL5 j>^ ^J 2 3 

1 " His Name we praise who rules the firmament ! 

These apish Jews are done away and shent. 

2 111 luck hath whelmed the Fortune of their State 1 ; 
Throughout the lands they're shamed and desolate. 

3 God hath dispersed their dominant accord, 
And they are melted by the burnished sword. 

4 How long they ruled in fact, though not in name, 
And, sins committing, now are put to shame. 

1 Scfdrfd-Dawla means the " Fortune," or " Good Luck of the 
State." There is an antithesis between Safd, which applies to the fortu- 
nate influence of the auspicious planets, and Nafys, the maleficent 
influence of the unlucky planets. 


36 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

5 God made them wail in woe right speedily, 
After that in their days they laughed with glee. 

6 Grim captains made them drink Death's cup of ill, 
Until their skulls the blood-bathed streets did fill, 

7 And from their dwellings seized the wealth they'd gained, 
And their well-guarded women's rooms profaned. 

8 O wretched dupes of error and despair, 

At length the trap hath caught you in its snare ! 

9 Vile, carrion birds, behold, in open ground 
The nets of ruin compass you around ! 

10 O foulest race who e'er on earth did thrive, 
And hatefulest of those who still survive, 

1 1 The Calf you served in place of God ; and lo, 
Vain, vain are all your goings to and fro ! 

12 They doomed to death your ' Cleanser 1 ' and thereby 
A host of sinful souls did purify, 

13 What time they gathered round his head upraised 
Midst dust and stench, and on its features gazed. 

14 God sped the soul of him who was their chief 
To hell, whose mirk is dark despair and grief. 

15 In molten torments they were prisoned, 

In trailing chains they to their doom were led. 

16 Take warning, from this doom without reprieve ; 
Recite the verse : " How many did they leave 2 / " 

17 Tughachar, prince fulfilled with strength and zeal, 
Hath caused the pillars of their power to reel. 

1 8 His flashing falchion on their flesh did feed, 
And none would hold him guilty for the deed. 

19 Our Shaykh's prediction found fulfilment there, 
What time he saw them rob him of his share ; 

20 That holy man, our lord Jamalu'd-Din 3 , 
Aided by God, endowed with angel's mien, 

21 Devoted, walking ever in the way 
Of Him the fishes in their seas obey. 

22 I penned this satire, hoping to attain 

The Eternal Gardens' lake-encompassed plain, 

23 And to refute that poet's words untrue 

Who said, ' Turn Jews, for Heaven hath turned a Jew.' " 

1 This word Muhadhdhib (" Purifier") probably forms part of some 
such title as Muhadhdhibu'd-Dawla borne by one of the victims. 

2 " How many gardens and fountains .. .did they leave behind them /" 
Qur'an, xliv, 24. 

3 Perhaps Jamdlu'd-Dfn Muhammad ibn Sulaymdn an-Naqfb al- 
Maqdisf (d. 698/1298-9) is meant. 


GAYKHATU (A.D. 1291-1295). 

Arghun was succeeded by his brother Gaykhatu, whose 
coronation did not take place till July 22, 1291, four months 

and a half after his predecessor's death. During 
Gaykhatu this interval, in spite of the fact that Tughachdr 

(A.D^ 1291- anc j other chiefs of the Mongols had hastened to 

appoint governors in the different provinces, 
anarchy was rampant, and Afrasiyab, of the House of 
Hazarasp, which had ruled over Luristdn since the middle 
of the twelfth century, broke out in an abortive revolt and 
for a while held Isfahan. 

Gaykhatu, whom the author of the Habibu's-Siyar 
describes as " the most generous of the children of Hulagu," 

chose Sadru'd-Din Ahmad Khalidi of Zanjan, 

Dissolute and , ', r> j T i * i 

extravagant better known as Sadr-i-Jahan, as his prime 
character of minister. Both the monarch and his minister 


were disposed to extravagance and prodigality, 
and the former at any rate to the pleasures of the table and 
other less reputable enjoyments. Thus it soon happened 
that the treasury was empty, and, money being urgently 

required, Sadr-i-Jahdn determined to introduce 

Introduction of + 

paper money the ckao, or paper money, which was current in 
the Chinese Empire. To this end establishments 
for manufacturing the chao were erected in all the principal 
towns, and stringent laws were enacted to restrict the use 
of the precious metals as far as possible. Full descriptions of 
the projected paper money are preserved to us in the Tartkh- 
i- Wassdf 1 and other histories of the period. The notes 
consisted of oblong rectangular pieces of paper inscribed 
with some words in Chinese, over which stood the Muham- 
madan profession of faith, "There is no god but God, 
Muhammad is the Apostle of God," in Arabic. Lower down 
was the scribe's or designer's name, and the value of the note 
(which varied from half a dirham to ten dinars) inscribed 
in a circle. A further inscription ran as follows: "The King 

1 Pp. 272-3. 

38 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

of the world issued this auspicious chao in the year A.H. 693 
[A.D. 1294]. Anyone altering or defacing the same shall 
be put to death, together with his wife and children, and his 
property shall be forfeited to the exchequer." Proclamations 
were also sent to Shi'raz and other towns explaining the 
advantages of the new currency, answering imaginary objec- 
tions against it, and declaring that : 

" If in the world this chao gains currency, 
Immortal shall the Empire's glory be," 

and that poverty and distress would entirely disappear. 
One ingenious provision in the laws affecting the chao was 
that notes worn and torn by circulation were to be returned 
to the chao-khdna, or Mint, and new notes, less by ten per 
cent, than the amount thus refunded, were to be given to 
the person so returning them. 

The issue of the chao in Tabriz was fixed for the month 
of Dhu'l-Qa'da, 693 (Sept.-Oct, 1294). In three days the 

bazaars of Tabriz were closed and business 
S n the P ^ ity was practically at a standstill, for no one would 

accept the chao, and gold and silver had been 
withdrawn from circulation. The popular rage was largely 
directed against 'Izzu'd-Din Muzaffar, who had been in- 
strumental in introducing the hated paper money, and such 
verses as the following were composed about him : 

" Pride of the Faith 1 , Protection of the Land, 
Would that thy being from the world were banned ! 

1 This is the meaning of I lzzu'd-Dtn. 

CH. i] BAYDti (APRIL-OCTOBER, 1295) 39 

Hence Muslim, Guebre and Jew first magnify 
God, and declare His Power and Unity ; 
Then, humbly praying, bow them in the dust, 
And thus invoke the Judge All-wise and Just : 
' Lord, send him not victorious 1 , we pray : 
Cause all his schemes and plans to go astray ! ' " 

Similar disturbances broke out at Shi'raz and in other 

cities, and, yielding to the representations of the Mongol 

nobles and others, Gaykhatu finally consented 

withdraw * reca ll the obnoxious chao and abolish the 

paper currency which had intensified instead of 

ameliorating the financial crisis. 

Shortly after this untoward experiment, Gaykhatu, in 

one of those drunken orgies which were habitual to him, 

grossly insulted his cousin Baydu. a grandson 


insults his of Hulagu, and caused him to be beaten by one 

of his retainers. Next morning, when he came 
to his senses, he repented of his action, and endeavoured to 
conciliate Baydu by means of gifts and honours. Baydu, 
for reasons of expediency, concealed his resentment for the 
time, but soon afterwards, encouraged by certain disaffected 
Mongol nobles, he openly revolted against Gaykhatu, who, 
betrayed by his general Tughachar, was taken prisoner and 
put to death at Muqan, on Thursday, 6 Jumada II, 694 
(April 23, 1295). 


Baydu was crowned soon after this at Ramadan, and 

after celebrating his accession in the usual drunken fashion 

of the Mongols 2 , proceeded to appoint Tugha- 

Baydii (April- c harcommander-in-chief,dismiss the late premier 

Oct., A.D. 1295) 

Sadr-i-Jakdn, and replace him by Jamalu'd-Din 
Dastajirdanf. He did not, however, long enjoy the high 
position which he had gained, for six months after his 

1 " Victorious " is the meaning of Muzaffar. 

2 Habibu's-Siyar (Bombay lithographed ed. of 1857), vol. iii, pt. i, 
p. 81. 

4 o THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

accession he was overcome by Ghazan, the son of his cousin 
Arghun, and, in the words of Khwandamir 1 , "quaffed a full 
cup of that draught which he had caused Gaykhatu to taste." 

GHAZAN (A.D. 1295-1304). 

The accession of Ghazan, the great-grandson of Hulagii, 

marks the definite triumph of Islam over Mongol heathenism, 

and the beginning of the reconstruction of Per- 

Ghdz4n (A.D. s j an independence. He was born on December 

4, 1271, and was therefore not twenty-four years 

of age when he assumed the reins of government. At the 
youthful age of seven he accompanied his grandfather Abaqa 
on his hunting expeditions, and at the age of ten his father 
Arghun made him governor of Khurasan, under the tutelage 
of the Amir Nawruz, the son of Arghun Agha, who for 
thirty-nine years had governed various Persian provinces 
for Chingiz Khan and his successors. The Amir Nawruz had 
GhAzdn's embraced Islam, and it was through him that 

conversion Ghazan was converted to that faith, for at the 
beginning of his struggle with his rival Baydu 
he had been persuaded by Nawruz to promise that, if God 
should grant him the victory, he would accept the religion 
of the Arabian Prophet. This promise he faithfully fulfilled ; 
on Sha'ban 4, 694 (June 19, 1295), he and ten thousand 
Mongols made their profession of faith in the presence of 
Shaykh Sadru'd-Din Ibrahim 2 , the son of. the eminent 
doctor Sa'du'd-Din al-Hamawi. Nor did Ghazan lack zeal 
for his new convictions, for four months after his conversion 
he permitted Nawruz to destroy the churches, synagogues 
and idol-temples at Tabriz. He also caused a new coinage 
bearing Muhammadan inscriptions to be struck, and by an 
edict issued in May, 1299, prohibited usury, as contrary to 
the Muhammadan religion. In November, 1297, the Mon- 

1 Habibds-Siyar (Bombay lithographed ed. of 1857), vol. iii, pt. i, 
p. 81. 

2 So the Habibrfs-Siyar and Dawlatshdh ; but, according to the 
Mujmal of Fasihi, Shaykh Ibrahim al-Juwaynf. 

CH. i] GHAZAN (A.D. 1295-1304) 41 

gol amirs adopted the turban in place of their national 

There was still, however, a considerable section of Mon- 
gols, princes, nobles and others, which regarded Ghazan's 
_. . . conversion with active dislike. This led to 

Disaffection of 

the old-fashioned sundry rebellions and intrigues, which, however, 
were sternly repressed ; and in the course of 
one month, according to the Habibu's-Siyar (loc. cit., p. 85), 
no fewer than five Princes and thirty-seven amirs of the 
Mongols were put to death by Ghazan and Nawriiz. Naw- 
ruz himself, however, in spite of all that Ghazan owed him, 
was suspected by his master of secretly intriguing with the 
Sultan of Egypt ? and, though he fled to Herat and sought 
refuge with Malik Fakhru'd-Dm Kurt, he was taken and 
put to death. Shortly afterwards Jamalu'd-Dm Dastajir- 
dani, the Sadr-i-Jahdn* and his brother Qutb-i-Jahdn, were 
also put to death, and the great historian and physician 
Rashfdu'd-Din Fadlu'llah was made prime minister. Ghazin 
was a stern ruler; "his reign," as Sir Henry Howorth ob- 
serves 2 , "was marked by a terrible roll of executions, and, 
as d'Ohsson says, there is hardly a page of Rashfdu'd-Din 
at this time without a notice of the execution of some public 

During a considerable portion of his reign, Ghazan 
was at war with Egypt. His first campaign, which was 
in the winter of 1299-1300, culminated in the 
Mongol victory at Majma'u'l-Muruj near Hims 
(Emessa), where the Egyptians, outnumbered 
by three or four to one, were completely routed. The 
Mongols occupied Damascus and other portions of Syria 
for a hundred days, during which Ghazan's name was in- 
serted in the khutba. In spite of Ghazan's reassuring 
proclamation of December 30, 1299, Syria suffered heavily 
from the cruelties and depredations of the Mongols 3 . In 

1 On April 30, A.D. 1298. See Howorth's Hist, of the Mongols, 
pt. 3, pp. 426-7. 

- Howorth, loc. tit., p. 421. 3 Ibid., pp. 444~5- 

42 THE MONGOL I'L-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

the following winter (1300-1301) Ghazan again prepared 
to invade Syria, but was forced to retreat owing to floods 
and bad weather. In the following May he despatched a 
letter to the Sultan of Egypt, the answer to which, written 
in October, was delivered to him by his envoys in De- 
cember, 1 30 1 1 . Rather more than a year later, at the 
end of January, 1303, Ghazan again marched against the 
Egyptians. Having crossed the Euphrates at the date 
above mentioned, he visited Karbala, a spot sanctified to 
him by his strong Shi'ite proclivities, and bestowed on the 
shrine and its inmates many princely favours. At 'Ana, 
whither he next proceeded, Wassaf, the court- 

The historian . t i ' i f i 

Wassaf is pre- historian, presented him with the first three 
sentedtoGhd- volumes (out of five) of the history on which 

zan in A.D. 1303 ' . ' 

he was engaged, and which has been so otten 
quoted or mentioned in these pages. Ghazan accompanied 
his army for some distance further towards the West, and 
then recrossed the Euphrates to await the result of the 
campaign at Kashf, two days' journey westwards from 
Ardabi'K This campaign proved as disastrous to the 
Mongols as the previous one had been fortunate, for they 

were utterly defeated by the Egyptians in 

Defeat of the ' 

Mongols at March, 1303, at Marju s-Suffar near Damascus. 
Marju's-Sufiar -phe Egyptian victory was celebrated by gene- 

m A.D. 1303 . . . . c . J , \\ c 

ral rejoicings in Syria and Egypt, especially, 01 
course, at Cairo, where every house was decorated and every 
point of vantage crowded to see the entry of the Sultan with 
his victorious troops, preceded by 1600 Mongol prisoners, 
each bearing, slung round his neck, the head of one of his 
dead comrades, while a thousand more Mongol heads were 
borne aloft on lances, accompanied by the great Mongol 
war-drums with their parchment rent 3 . Ghdzan's vexation 
was commensurate with the Egyptian Sultan's exultation, 
and was increased by a scornful and railing letter addressed 
to him by the victor 4 . Condign punishment was inflicted 

1 For the contents of these letters, see Howorth, loc. cit.> pp. 458-461 . 

2 Ibid., p. 467. 3 Ibid.) p. 474. 4 Ibid., pp. 476-8. 


by him on the Mongol generals and captains who were sup- 
posed to have been responsible for this disaster. Ghazan's 
health seems to have been undermined by the distress re- 
sulting from this reverse to his arms, which was perhaps 
still further increased by the abortive conspiracy to depose 
him and place his cousin Alafrank the son of 
Ga y kMtu on the throne, and he died at the 
early age of thirty-two on May 17, 1304. 
The mourning for his death throughout Persia was uni- 
versal, and appears to have been sincere, for he had restored 
Islam to the position it occupied before the in- 

Ghazan's / /~<i , -ir-\ / i 

character vasion oi Lhingiz Khan, repressed paganism, 

and reduced chaos to order. In spite of his 
severity, he was merciful compared to his predecessors, and 
had the reputation of disliking to shed blood save when 
he deemed it expedient or necessary. He was, moreover, 
a generous patron of science and literature and a liberal 
benefactor of the pious and the poor. Though ill-favoured 
and of mean and insignificant appearance, he was brave, 
assiduous in all things, and gifted with unusually wide in- 
terests and keen intelligence. He was devoted alike to 
arts and crafts and to the natural sciences, 
IdencT* especially to architecture on the one hand, and 

to astronomy, chemistry, mineralogy, metal- 
lurgy and botany on the other. He was extraordinarily 
well versed in the history and genealogy of the Mongols, 
and, besides Mongolian, his native tongue, was more or 
less conversant with Persian, Arabic, Chinese, 
attainders' Tibetan, Kashmiri, and, it is said, Latin. Some- 
thing also he knew more than his predecessors 
of the lands and peoples of the West, a knowledge chiefly 
derived from the numerous envoys of different nations 
who sought his capital in Adharbayjcin, and reflected, as 
Ho worth remarks (p. 487), in the work of the great his- 
torian Rashidu'd-Dm, who acted as his prime minister 
during the latter portion of his reign, and who was aware, 
for instance, that the Scotch paid tribute to the English and 

44 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

that there were no snakes in Ireland 1 . Amongst the envoys 
who visited Ghazan's court were represented the Chinese, 
the Indians, the Egyptians, the Spaniards (by Solivero of 
Barcelona), the English (by Geoffrey de Langley), and many 
other nations. 

Ghazan was also well grounded in Islam, the faith of 

his adoption, and showed a marked predilection for the 

Shf'ite form of that religion 2 . How he enriched 

tjharan s parti- o 

aiityforthe Karbala we have already seen, and the shrine 
of the eighth Imam 'All ar-Rida at Mash-had 
also benefited by his charity. How far he was influenced 
in his conversion by sincere conviction and how much by 
political expediency is a matter open to discussion, but his 
conversion was in any case a blessing for Persia. A harsh 
government is always an evil thing for those subject to its 
sway; more evil if it be administered by a foreign, domi- 
nant caste; most evil if the administrators be also of an 
alien religion hostile to, or unsympathetic towards, the faith 
of their subjects. The Mongol dominion had hitherto been 
of this last and cruellest type; by Ghazan's conversion it 
was ameliorated at once to the second, which again pre- 
pared the way for a return to the first. "When Ghazan 
became a Muhammadan," says Howorth (p. 486), "he defi- 
nitely broke off his allegiance to the Supreme Khan in 
the furthest East. Hitherto the Il-khans had been mere 
feudatories of the Khaqan of Mongolia and China. They 
were now to become independent, and it is natural that 
the formulae on the coins should accordingly be changed." 
Henceforth Shamans and Buddhist monks could no longer 
domineer over the Muslim l ulamd\ their monasteries and 
temples gave place to colleges and mosques. Muslim 

1 See f. 3i2 a of the India Office MS. of the Jdmi'tft-Taivdrikh 
(Persian, 3524 = 2828 of Ethels Catalogue). 

2 Sayyid Niiru'llah of Shiishtar includes him in the list of Shi'ite 
rulers given in the sixth Majlis of his Majdlisdl-MiVminin. The 
pages of the lithographed Tihran edition of this work published in 
1268/1851-2 are unfortunately not numbered, so that no more exact 
reference can be given. 


learning, enriched in some directions though impoverished 
in others, was once more honoured and encouraged. Nor 
were material improvements, tending greatly to benefit 
the hitherto oppressed subjects of the Il-khans, wanting. 
Ghazan was at all times stern and often cruel, but he had 
far higher ideals of his duties towards his subjects than 
any of his predecessors, and he adopted practical means to 
give effect to these ideals. " Be sure," he says 1 , "that God 
has elevated me to be a ruler, and has confided his people 
to me in order that I may rule them with equity. He has 
imposed on me the duty of doing justice, of punishing the 
guilty according to their crimes. He would have me most 
severe with those who hold the highest rank. A ruler 
ought especially to punish the faults of those most highly 
placed, in order to strike the multitude by example." An 
account of the reforms which he effected in the collection 
of taxes, the prevention of extortion, the repression of the 
idle and baneful extravagances of the dominant Mongols, 
the restoration of confidence and security where the lack of 
these had previously reduced prosperous towns to ruined 
and deserted hamlets, and withal the restoration of the 
finances of the country to a sound and healthy condition 
would be out of place here, especially as the matter is fully 
discussed by Howorth in his great history (loc. tit., pp. 487- 
530). The institution of the new Era, called Il-khanf or 
Ghazani, which began on Rajab 13, 701 (March 14, 1302), 
was also dictated, at any rate in part, by a desire to put 
an end to sundry irregularities which had crept into the 
finance. To Ghazan 's credit must also be set his efforts to 
suppress or at least minimize prostitution, and the example 
he himself gave of a morality far higher than that generally 
prevalent amongst his countrymen at that time. 

Previous Mongol sovereigns had, in accordance with the 
custom of their nation, always taken measures 

onazan s mauso- * 

leum and chant- to have the place of their burial concealed. 
Ghazan, on the other hand, specified the place 
1 Howorth, loc. '/., p. 491. 

46 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK I 

where he should be buried, and spent large sums in erecting 
and endowing round about his mausoleum a monastery 
for dervishes, colleges for the Shafi'i and Hanaff sects, a 
hospital, a library, an observatory, a philosophical academy, 
a residence for sayyids, a fountain, and other public build- 
ings. Annual endowments amounting to over a hundred 
tdtndns, or a million pieces of money, were provided for 
the maintenance of these establishments, and every possible 
precaution was taken to secure these revenues to their ori- 
ginal use. Round about the mausoleum and its dependent 
buildings grew up the suburb of Ghazaniyya, which soon 
rivalled Tabriz itself in size and surpassed it in beauty. 

KHUDA-BANDA (A.D. 1305-1316). 

Ghazan was succeeded by his brother Uljaytu the son 

of Arghun, who was crowned on July 21, 1305, under the 

name of Uljaytu Muhammad Khuda-banda, 

Reign of Ul- J 

jaytu(A.n. being at the time twenty-four years of age. 
1305-1316) As a child he had) at the desire of his mother 

Uruk Khatun, been baptised into the Christian church 
under the name of Nicolas, but later he was converted 
to Islam by his wife, to whom he was married at a very 

early age. In his youth he had received the 
?L!Sir me curious name of Khar-banda ("ass-servant," i.e. 

ass-herd or muleteer), which was afterwards 
changed to Khuda-banda (" servant of God "). On the 
former name Rashi'du'd-Din has the following verses in 
the preface to vol. i of his great history : 

CH. i] KHUDA-BANDA (A.D. 1305-1316) 47 

The point of these verses, which are hardly worth trans- 
lating in their entirety, is that the sum of the numerical 
values of the nine letters constituting the words Shah Khar- 
banda (jcjj^. ali) is equivalent to that of the fifteen letters 
in the words Sdya-i-Khds-i-Afartnanda (jUijjjl jo\. p xL), 
for the first gives 300 + I + 5+600+200+2 + 50+4 + 5 = 1 167, 
and the second 60 + i + 10 + 5 + 600 +1+90 + 1 + 80 + 200 
+ 10+50 +50 + 4+5 = 1 167. Since in the Muhammadan, 
as in the Jewish view, words giving the same numerical 
equivalent are in some sense identical, the King's name, 
Khar-banda, is shown to be equivalent to Sdya-i-Khds-i- 
Afarinanda, the "Special Shadow (i.e. Protection) of the 
Creator." According to Dawlatshah 1 (an author on whose 
uncritical statements no reliance whatever can be placed), 
" when, on the death of Arghun Khan, Ghazan Khan be- 
came king, Uljaytu Khan fled from him, and for some years 
wandered with the ass-herds in the district of Kirman and 
Hurmuz, on which account he was called Khar-banda, 'the 
Ass-herd.' But others say that this is not so, but that the 
parents of a very beautiful child give him an ugly name, 
so that the evil eye may not affect him, and that on this 
account he was called Khar-banda*" 

1 P. 217 of my edition. 

2 For another explanation see the Travels of Ibn Batuta (ed. 
Defremery and Sanguinetti), vol. ii, p. 115. 

48 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

Even before Uljaytu was crowned, it was deemed expe- 
dient to get rid of his cousin Alafrank as a possible claimant 

to the throne, and he, as well as the general 
to death " Harqadaq, was accordingly assassinated by 

three Mongol officers. Uljaytu's first act was to 
confirm the laws of his predecessor Ghazan, and to ordain 
the strict observance of the S/iarf'at, or Canon Law of 
Islam; and he appointed Rashi'du'd-Dfn the historian and 
physician, and Sa'du'd-Di'n of Sawa as joint Chancellors of 
the Exchequer, with absolute authority over his Persian as 
opposed to his Mongolian subjects. He visited the cele- 
brated observatory of Maragha, and installed Asflu'd-Din, 
the son of the eminent Nasiru'd-Din of Tus (who, as already 
mentioned, had died in 1272-3), as Astronomer-royal 1 . 
Abu Sa'i'd, the son and successor of Uljaytu, was born in the 
year of the latter's accession, and in the same year was de- 
posed Shah Jahan, the last sovereign of the Qara-Khita'i 
dynasty of Kirman. In the same year was founded the 

royal city of Sultaniyya 2 , near Zanjan, which 

Sultaniyya i ,t , , 

founded soon assumed the most majestic proportions. 

Now it is an almost uninhabited ruin, conspicu- 
ous only for its magnificent though dilapidated mosque; 
but the name of the royal founder is still remembered in 
the following doggerel, which I heard from an old man 
who accompanied me round the mosque when I visited it 
in November, 1887: 

" O Shah Khuda-banda, worker of injustice, two fowls for one village ! " 

The last line is Turkish, but I have never been able to 
ascertain to what it alludes. 

1 The death of Asflu'd-Din is recorded in the MujmatofFusihi under 
the year A. H. 7 1 4 (A.D. 1 3 1 4- 1 5). Abu'l-Faraj Bar- H ebraeus gives the date 
of Nasfru'd-Din's death as 675/1 276-7 (Beyrouted. of 1890, pp. 500-501). 

2 Tafrtkh-i-Waffdfi pp. 477-8. The author gives a long poem by 
himself on this event, at the end of which he mentions " the day of 
Anfran in the month of Farwardfn in the year A.H. 710" as the date 
when his poem was completed (March-April, A.D. 1311). 


Two months after Uljaytu's succession he received em- 
bassies from three of the Mongol rulers (of whom Ti'mur 
Oa'an, Emperor of China, was the most im- 

Ambassadors i i i i 

received and portant) to announce the truce which had just 
^ es ?f, t . c , hec ! been concluded between them. Three months 

by Uljaytu 

later arrived an embassy from Tuqtay, and 
shortly afterwards Uljaytu despatched ambassadors to 
Egypt, to assure Sultan Ndsir of his friendly disposition. 
He was also in correspondence with Philip le Bel, Edward 
the Second, and Pope Clement V. The bearer of the II- 
khan's letters to and from these potentates was Thomas 
Ildouchi 1 , who, as d'Ohsson observes (vol. iv, pp. 590-8), 
evidently concealed from the European courts to which he 
was accredited the fact that his master Uljaytu had em- 
braced Islam; for the letters on both sides are extant, and 
both Edward II (in a letter dated Nov. 30, 1307) and 
Pope Clement V (in a letter dated March i, 1308) assume 
explicitly that Uljaytu would help them in extirpating 
what they describe as " the abominable sect of Mahomet." 
Uljdytu, meanwhile, was preoccupied with devising some 
test whereby he might prove the sincerity of the numerous 
Jews who at this time desired to profess Islam. This was 
finally effected by the learning of Rashidu'd-Din, who, as 
his history shows, was thoroughly conversant with Jewish 
tradition and doctrine, and was even accused by his ene- 
mies of being a Jew, or of regarding Judaism with undue 
favour. The intending proselyte was bidden to partake of 
camel's flesh seethed in milk, and the sincerity of his con- 
version was judged by his readiness to eat this doubly- 
unlawful food. It was about this time also (April 14, 
1306) that the aforesaid Rashidu'd-Din presented the 
finished portion of his great historical work, the Jdmi'u't- 
Tawdrikh to Uljaytu. 

The chief wars of Uljaytu's reign were the conquest of 
Gilan in the early summer of 1307 and the 
capture of Herat in the latter part of the same 

1 Cf. p. 1 1 supra, and n. 2 ad calc. 
B. P. 4 

50 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

year. In both campaigns a gallant resistance was made, and 
success was not achieved by the Mongols without serious 
losses. In the defence of Herat especially the most con- 
spicuous courage and resource were shown by the Ghuri 
captain, Muhammad Sam, to whose charge the city had 
been entrusted by Fakhru'd-Dm Kurt. He 

Executions 1-111 i 

was, however, ultimately taken by treachery 
and put to death. Amongst other notable persons who 
suffered death in Uljaytu's reign were Musa the Kurd, who 
claimed to be the Mahdi or appointed Saviour of Islam ; 
Sa'du'd-Dm, the associate and later the rival of Rashfdu'd- 
Di'n, who was executed on a charge of peculation from the 
treasury; and Taju'd-Din Awaji, an extreme Shi'ite, who 
had tried to convert Uljaytu to his doctrines. But what the 
unfortunate Taju'd-Dm failed to accomplish nevertheless 

was brought about by other means. Uljaytu be- 
s ' longed to the Hanafi sect, the doctors of which, 

relying on the royal favour, waxed arrogant, 
until the King was induced by his minister Rashidu'd- 
Din to incline to the Shafi'f doctrine. Thereupon violent 
disputes took place in Uljaytu's presence between the repre- 
sentatives of these two Sunni schools, who, in the heat of 
controversy, brought against each other such abominable 
accusations that Uljaytu was greatly annoyed with both, and 
even the Mongol nobles, who were by no means squeamish, 
professed disgust, and began to ask whether it was for this 
that they had abandoned the faith of their ancestors, to 
which they now called on Uljaytu to return. The Il-khan 
was further alarmed by a violent thunder-storm by which 
he was overtaken about this time, and which, according to 
the Mongols and their bakshis or priests (who, expelled by 
Ghazan, would appear to have returned to Persia under his 
successor, unless, as d'Ohsson implies, they were brought 
back ad hoc) was a signal of the Divine displeasure 1 . For 
some time he was distracted with doubt, until at length he 
was persuaded by the Amir Taramtaz to follow Ghazan's 
1 D'Ohsson, vol. iv, pp. 536-541. 

CH. i] ABtJ SA'fD (A.D. 1317-1334) 51 

example and adopt the Shf'ite creed. This he ultimately 
did 1 , after he had visited 'All's tomb and there seen a vision 
which convinced him that the homage of the faithful was due, 
after the Prophet, to 'All ibn Abi Talib and his descendants. 
Uljaytu conducted one campaign against Syria, of which 
the chief event was the siege of Rahbat, which, however, the 

Mongols were obliged to raise when the town 
^nTtT'ria was re duced to the last extremity on account 

of the heat and the scarcity of provisions. As 
the result of dissensions between the brothers of the house 
of Qatada who ruled Mecca alternately according to the 
fortune of war, Uljaytu's name was for a while substituted 
in public prayer in the Holy City for that of the Egyptian 
Sultan Nasir. 

Uljaytu died at Sultaniyya from the sequelae of an attack 
of gout on December 16, 1316, at the comparatively early 

age of thirty-five. He is described as "virtuous, 

Death of J 

uijaytu in liberal, not readily influenced by calumny ; but, 
like all Mongol princes, addicted to spirituous 
drinks, and chiefly occupied with his pleasures." His funeral 
obsequies were celebrated with great pomp, and he was 
mourned by his subjects for eight days. He had twelve 
wives, who bore him six sons and three daughters, but five 
of the former and one of the latter died in childhood. 
His surviving son, Abu Sa'id, succeeded him ; his two 
surviving daughters were married to the Amir Chuban, and 
one of them, Sati Beg, subsequently held for a short time 
the position of queen in the year 1339. 

ABU SA'ID (A.D. 1317-1334). 

Abu Sa'id, who was in Mazandaran at the time of his 
father's death, was crowned in April, 1317, being then under 
Reign of Abu thirteen years of age. The Amir Chuban was 
Sa'id (A.D. 1317 made Amiru'l- Umard, while 'Ah'-shah was asso- 
ciated with Rashidu'd-Din Fadlu'llah in the 

1 The inscription on one of his coins affords proof of this. See 
d'Ohsson, vol. iv, p. 541 ad calc. 


52 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

wazirate. Between these two ministers there existed a 
great rivalry, and it soon became evident that one or other 
must succumb. The victim was Rashidu'd-Di'n, whose 
greater scrupulousness and honour placed him at a disad- 
vantage. By the intrigues of his rival he was deposed in 
October, 1317, and the death of the powerful Amir Savinj 
in January, 1318, deprived him of his chief protector. The 
Amir Chuban was anxious to reinstate him in office, but 
though he pleaded his advanced age and desired only to 
be allowed to live out the remainder of his life in peace and 
retirement, his rival 'Ali-shah took alarm, renewed his in- 
trigues, and succeeded in persuading Abu Sa'id that Rashidu 
'd-Din and his youthful and comely son Khwaja Ibrahim 
were guilty of poisoning the late ruler Uljaytu. Both were 
condemned to death and executed on July 18, 

Execution of <-> T-> ^ > i > < -r^> i ^1 

Rashfdu'd-Dm I3i8, Rashidu d-Din being then over seventy 
and his son in years f a g e - His body was outraged, his houses 

and possessions plundered, and his relatives and 
connections subjected to all sorts of persecution. More 
will presently be said of his character, learning, charity and 
literary achievements. 

About a month after this sad event (August, 1318) began 
the rebellion of Yasawur, whose ambition led him to covet 

the province of Khurasan. He succeeded in 


compassing the death of Yasa ul, and, having 
made himself master of Khurasan, invaded and ravaged 
Mazandaran, but retired before Abu Sa'fd's general, Amir 
Husayn into the Garm-sir, or hot region bordering on the 
Persian Gulf. About the same time a formidable conspiracy 
of Mongol captains, such as Iranchin 1 , Tuqmaq and Isen- 
buq was formed against Chuban, but the latter, supported 
by Abu Sa'fd, utterly defeated them near Ujan in June, 
1319, and those of the rebel leaders who did not perish in 
the battle were put to death with every circumstance of 

1 Or Irinjin, the nephew of Doquz KMtun. See Chabot's Hist, de 
Mar Jabalaha III, p. 141 adcalc. 

CH. i] ABti SA'fD (A.D. 1317-1334) 53 

ignominy and cruelty at Sultaniyya. Amongst the victims 
was Kinjik (or Kikhshik, or Kichik), the grand-daughter of 
Abaqa and wife of Iranchin, who had fought with con- 
spicuous bravery in the battle to avenge the death of her 
son Shaykh 'Ah', and was now, according to Nuwayri's 
account 1 , trampled to death by horses at the command of 
Abu Sa'id. Two months later Chuban was rewarded by 
being given in marriage Satf Beg, the king's sister, while 
the king, to commemorate his valour in this battle, took the 
title of Bahadur Khan. 

The years 1318-1319 were remarkable for grievous 
famines in Asia Minor and elsewhere, followed in 1320 by 
terrific hail-storms. Abu Sa'id, much alarmed, 
LTstorm 1 ? consulted the theologians as to the cause of these 
calamities. They ascribed them to the laxity 
which prevailed about wine-drinking and prostitution, 
taverns and brothels being in many cases situated close to 
mosques and colleges. Abu Sa'id thereupon closed all dis- 
orderly houses, and caused an enormous quan- 
Suppression t j t Q f to b destroyed, but he allowed 

of taverns * * 

one wine-shop to remain for the use of travellers 
in each district. These measures produced a very good 
impression in Egypt, and facilitated the conclusion of a 
treaty between Abu Sa'id and Sultan Nasir, the Egyptian 
ruler, who had recently carried his hostility against the 

Mongols so far as to send thirty assassins of the 

Assassins em- . 

ployed against Isma'ili sect from Syria to attempt the life ot 
Qara Sunqur. Although this attempt mis- 
carried, it greatly alarmed the Mongols, and both sides were 
thus prepared to come to terms and to set aside their 
ancient feuds. A treaty was ultimately concluded in 1323 
between the two states, after a Mongol princess 2 (a grand- 

1 D'Ohsson, vol. iv, pp. 636 and 641 ad calc. According to another 
account she perished in the battle, while WassaT (p. 645) says she was 
stoned to death, and her body cast naked into the street. 

* Ibid., pp. 655-6. The princess's journey from Sardy to Alex- 
andria, where she arrived in April, 1320, occupied nearly six months. 

54 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

daughter of Batu) had been given in marriage to Sultan 
Nasir in 1320. 

In 1322 Timur-Tash the son of Chuban revolted in Asia 
Minor and declared himself to be the expected Mahdi or 
Revolt of Messiah, but he was overcome by his father, par- 

Tfmur-Tash doned, and ultimately reinstated in his govern- 
ment by Abu Sa'id. About the same time Armenia was de- 
Armenia vastated by the Egyptians,and Popejohn XXII 

devastated endeavoured to stir up the European powers on 
their behalf; to which end he wrote a letter (dated July 12, 
I322) 1 to Abu Sa'id asking him to aid them, and exhorting 
him at the same time to embrace the Christian faith. He 
also appointed 2 a Dominican named Fra^ois de Peruse 
archbishop of Sultaniyya. 

Early in 1324 died the prime minister 'Ali-shah, who 
was chiefly remarkable as the first Mongol wazir to die a 
Abu Sa'id natural death. He was succeeded by Ruknu'd- 

becomes Din Sa'in, who enjoyed the support of the 

impatient J J rr 

great Amir Chuban. The power of this Amir, 

power however, began to arouse the jealousy of Abu 

Sa'id, now about twenty-one years of age, and an open 
rupture was precipitated by Abu Sa'id's passion for Baghdad 
Khatun, the daughter of Chuban and wife of Shaykh Hasan 
Jala'ir, and by the intrigues of the ungrateful Ruknu'd-Dm 
against his benefactor. A threatened invasion of Khurasan 
by the Mongols of Transoxiana obliged Chuban and his son 
Husayn to be present in the eastern portion of the empire, 
while another son named Dimashq Khwaja, against whom 
Abu Sa'id was already incensed, remained at the court, 
which returned from its winter quarters at Baghdad to 
Sultaniyya in the spring of 1327. Abu Sa'id, growing daily 
more impatient of Dimashq Khwaja's arrogance and im- 
morality, only awaited a reasonable excuse to destroy him. 

1 A translation of this letter is given by d'Ohsson, vol. iv, pp. 662-3. 

2 D'Ohsson, vol. iv, p. 664. This appointment was made on May i, 
1318. The first archbishop resigned in 1323, and was succeeded by 
Guillaume d'Ada. 


Nor had he to wait long, for about this time it was discovered 
that Dimashq was engaged in an intrigue with one of 
Uljaytu's former concubines. Finding himself detected, he 

endeavoured to escape, but was overtaken and 
Kh *j a q put put to death, and his head was exhibited over 
to death in one o f the gates of Sultaniyya. This took place 

on August 25, I327 1 . He left four daughters, 
of whom the most notable was Dilshdd Kh^tun. She was 
married first to Abu Sa'i'd, to whom she bore a posthumous 
daughter who died in infancy, and afterwards to Shaykh 
Hasan Il-khanf, to whom she bore Sultan Uways and another 
son. This Sultan Uways reigned at Baghdad from 1356- 
1374, and was, as we shall see, a notable patron of poets 
and men of letters and learning. 

Abu Sa'i'd, having taken this decisive step, resolved to 
exterminate Chuban and his whole family. Chuban, warned 

of the king's intention, first put to death the 
Death of wazir, Ruknu'd-Dm Sa'in, and then collected 


his troops, to the number of seventy thousand, 
and marched westwards, first to Mashhad and then to 
Simnan, whence he sent the venerable Shaykh 'Ala'd-Di'n 
to intercede for him with Abu Sa'i'd. The Il-khan was not 
to be moved, and Chuban continued his advance westwards 
until he arrived within a day's march of Abu Sa'i'd. All 
seemed to be in Chuban's favour, until some of his most 
important amirs deserted to the king, taking with them 
some thirty thousand men. Thereupon Chuban retreated, 
first to Savva, where he left his wives Karduchi'n and Sati 
Beg, and then to Tabas. His followers continued to desert 
him until he was finally left with only seventeen persons. 
He then decided to take refuge at Herat with Ghiyathu'd- 
Din Kurt, who, however, betrayed him, and caused him and 
his chief officers to be strangled. His body was, by the 
Il-khan's order, conveyed to al-Madfna with great pomp, 

1 Ibn Batiita gives a full account of the death of Dimashq Khwaja. 
See vol. ii, pp. 117-119. 

56 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

and there buried in the tomb which he had prepared for 
himself 1 . 

Abu Sa'i'd was now free to marry Baghdad Khatun, but, 

though she soon acquired a great influence over him, he did 

not cease persecuting her family. Another of 

Fate of Chuban s 

son Timtir-Tash, Chuban's sons,Ti'mur-Tash, who was governor of 
Asia Minor, took refuge at the Egyptian court, 
where he arrived on January 21, 1328. He was at first well 
received, sumptuously entertained, and given an allowance 
of 1500 dinars a day; but the urgent demands of Abii Sa'i'd 
for his extradition, combined with the intrigues of the 
Egyptian Sultan's courtiers, soon decided the latter to get 
rid of him. For a while he hesitated between the extradi- 
tion and the execution of his once powerful guest, but finally 
he decided to kill him, fearing lest, if he were sent to Abu 
Sa'i'd, the intercession of his sister Baghdad Khatun and his 
old friend Ghiyathu'd-Din, the son of the great Rashi'du'd- 
Di'n, now himself prime minister, might induce the f 1-khan 
to forgive him, and that, should this happen, he would 
certainly seek to revenge himself on the Egyptians. Timur- 
Tash was therefore put to death in prison on the night of 
Thursday, August 22, 1328, and his head, embalmed and 
placed in a casket, was sent to Abu Sa'i'd. 

Of the waztr Ghiyathu'd-Din b. Rashidu'd-Di'n the con- 
temporary historian Hamdu'llah Mustawfi ofQazwin speaks 
in enthusiastic terms in his Ta'rikh-i-Giizida, 

Ministry of Ghi- /-. i T T i i i i- i i 

yathu'd-Dinb. or Select History, which is dedicated to him. 
Rashidu-d-Dm <That minister of good repu te," he says, "like 

his illustrious father, made the most admirable efforts to 
secure the order of the world ; and inasmuch as to pardon 
when one has power to injure is the extreme of human 
perfection, and all the greatest of former ages have followed 
this path, and thus 'obtained, by their virtuous conduct, the 
highest honour and an enduring name, so this minister of 
angelic temperament, inspired by the certainty of his con- 
victions, did even more than this, for, instead of punishing 

1 See Ibn Batiita, vol. ii, pp. 119-121. 


those who had wrought towards his noble family ill deeds 
whereof the recapitulation would disgust the hearts of my 
hearers, he drew the pen of forgiveness through the record 
of their crimes, recompensed their evil actions with good, 
and made each one of them an exemplar of the prosperity 
of this Empire, raising them to the highest ranks, and en- 
trusting to them the most important functions, so that each 
now beholds with his own eyes that which he did most 
ardently desire 1 ." 

This complaisance of Ghiyathu'd-Din nearly caused his 
destruction when the rebellious Amir Nan'n Buqa sought his 
intercession with Abu Sa'id at the very moment when he 
was plotting the minister's assassination. On this occasion, 
however, the king, prompted by his wife Baghdad Khatun, 
who hated Nan'n Buqa as the destroyer of her father and 
brothers, intervened, and caused the rebel and his con- 
federate Tash-Timur to be executed on October 5, 1327. 

The last years of AbuSa'i'd's reign saw numerous changes 

in the Kurt kings of Herat Ghiyathu'd-Din died in October, 

1329, and was succeeded by his eldest son 

Kurt rukrs Shamsu'd-Di'n, who was so much addicted to 

of Herat 

drink that it was said that during a reign of ten 
months he was only sober for ten days. He was succeeded 
by his younger brother Hafiz, a gentle scholar, who was 
assassinated in 1332, and replaced by his infant brother 
Mu'izzu'd-Din, whose election was approved by Abu Sa'id. 
He enjoyed a long reign of forty years, and was followed 
by his son, Ghiyathu'd-Din Pir 'All, in whose time the 
dynasty, which had endured since 1245, was extinguished 
by Tamerlane. 

In August, 1335, Abu Sa'id, having learned that Uzbek, 

the Khan of the Golden Horde, intended an invasion of his 

Death of dominions, was preparing to take the field 

Abu Sa'rd against him when he fell ill, and died at Qara- 

bagh near Arrdn on Nov. 30 of that year. He 

1 See p. 611 of the fac-simile edition of the Tc?rtkh-i-Guzida pub- 
lished in the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial " Series, vol. xiv, i. 

58 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

is described by Ibn Taghribardi as " a brave and brilliant 
prince of majestic appearance, generous and witty." He 
was a good calligraphist, composer and musician, and is 
praised by this historian not only for his good moral 
character and for his suppression of the drink traffic, but 
also for his destruction of the Christian churches. It is 
suggested by Mirkhwand and positively asserted by Ibn 
Batuta 1 that Abu Sa'fd was poisoned by Baghdad Khatun, 
who was jealous of the ascendancy obtained by her younger 
rival Dilshad Khatun over the f 1-khan 2 . At any rate, whether 
guilty or not, Baghdad Khatun was put to death 3 . 

With Abu Sa'id's death the dynasty of the Il-khans of 
Persia, founded by Hulagii Khan, practically came to an 
end, and a period of anarchy ensued which lasted until 
another great wave of conquest from the land of Turan 
swept over Persia and Asia Minor thirty-five years later, 
led by the ruthless and irresistible conqueror Timur-i-Lang 
(" Limping Timur "), or, as he is commonly called in Europe, 
Tamerlane. By a strange coincidence, noticed in the 
Matla'u's-Sa'dayn*, the year of Timur's birth was the same 
as that of Abu Sa'i'd's death, and the chronogram lawdh 
( = " refuge ! ") 5 has been devised for it, since this word 
gives the date (A.H. 736) according to the Muhammadan 
computation, and men might well seek refuge with God 
from this double calamity the death of Abu Sa'i'd and the 
birth of Ti'mur which this year brought. 

On the death of Abu Sa'i'd, who left no sons, Arpa, or 

Arpaga'un, a descendant of Arik-buqa, the 

^Arpl " brother of Hulagu, was, at the instance of 

the minister Ghiyathu'd-Din b. Rashfdu'd-Din, 

1 Ibn Batuta, vol. ii, p. 123. 

' 2 See Howorth's History of the Mongols, pt. 3, p. 624. In the 
first line of this page, Nov. 30, 1334, is given as the date of Abu Sa'i'd's 
death. This error is apparently due to a careless perusal of the last 
paragraph in d'Ohsson's Hist, des Mongols, vol. iv, p. 716. 

3 The manner of her death is related by Ibn Batuta, vol. ii, p. 123. 

4 See Rieu's Persian Catalogue, p. 182. 

5 See Howorth's History of the Mongols, pt. 3, p. 634. 


chosen as his successor. To strengthen his position, he 
married Sati Beg, the widow of Chuban and sister of Abu 
Sa'fd. He then marched against Uzbek and defeated him. 
But meanwhile Amir 'All Padishah and other amirs, dis- 
approving of Arpa's election, set up a rival 
frivliSant f 1-khan in the person of Musa, a descendant of 
Hulagu. A battle took place between the two 
rivals near Maraghaon April 29, 1336. Arpa was defeated, 
and both he and the wazir Ghiyathu'd-Di'n were put to 
death shortly afterwards. Musa, however, was not suffered 
to enjoy the fruits of victory for long : another rival, 
Muhammad Shah, also descended from Hulagu, was set up 
against him by Shaykh Hasan the Jala'ir (called Buznrg, 
"the Great"). Another battle was fought at Ala-Tagh near 
the town of Naw-Shahr,in which, by the treachery of Shaykh 
Hasan Buzurg, Musa was routed and 'All Padishah killed. 
Yet another claimant was set up in the person of Tughay- 
Ti'mur, who joined forces with Musa, and fought another 
battle with Shaykh Hasan Buzurg near Maragha in June, 
1337, in which Musa was taken prisoner and put to death 
(July, 1337), while Tughay-Timur fled to Bistam. Shaykh 
Hasan,the son of Timur-Tash,the son of Chuban,now added 
to the confusion by producing a pretender whom he asserted 
to be his father Timur-Tash, whose execution by the Sultan 
of Egypt has been already mentioned. A battle finally took 
place at Nakhjuwan on July 10, 1338, between the two 
Hasans, in which Hasan "the Greater" was defeated, while 
his protege Muhammad Shah was taken prisoner and put to 
death. Shaykh Hasan "the Less" (the grandson of Chuban) 
now quarrelled with the pretended Ti'mur-Tash, and espoused 
the cause of the princess Sati Beg, the sister of the late 
king Abu Sa'fd and widow of his grandfather Chuban. 
She was proclaimed queen in 739 (i 338-9), and a reconcilia- 
tion was effected between the two Hasans. 

It is hardly worth following these intrigues further. 
Those who desire fuller information about them, and about 
the tortuous policy of Shaykh Hasan " the Less," will find 

60 THE MONGOL fL-KHANS (A.D. 1265-1337) [BK i 

it in the pages of d'Ohsson and Howorth. Suffice it to say 
that Tughay-Ti'mur was betrayed by the astute Shaykh 
Hasan " the Less," who then set up another puppet, Sulay- 
man Khan, a descendant of Hulagu, and gave him Sati Beg 
in marriage, while Hasan " the Greater " set up as a rival a 
descendant of Abaqa named Shah Jahan Tfmur. A battle 
took place between the two factions near Maragha in 1 340. 
Hasan "the Greater" was defeated, retired to Baghdad, 
deposed his puppet Shah Jahan Ti'mur, and, proclaiming 
himself king, founded the dynasty more important in 
literary than in political history of the Jala'irs, who reigned 
until 1411 over Western Persia and Mesopotamia, with 
Baghdad as their capital. As for Hasan " the Less," the 
grandson of Chuban, he was murdered in 1343, while march- 
ing to attack his rival, by his wife 'Izzat Malik, who expiated 
her crime by a most cruel and ignominious death. On this 
event the contemporary poet Salman of Sawa (who, being 
a protege of the rival Shaykh Hasan, was delighted at the 
death of Chuban's grandson) has the following verses 1 , 
which hardly bear translation : 

O- *** 

The Mongol ascendancy in Persia was now at an end, 
and, until Timur's hordes swept over the country (1384- 
I 393) ^ was divided into at least four kingdoms, those of 
the Jala'irs, the Muzaffan's, the Kurts and the Sar-ba-dars, 
whose history will be considered in another chapter. 

1 Habibrfs-Siyar, vol. iii, p. 131 (Bombay lithographed ed. of A.D. 
1857). I cannot find these lines in the Bombay lithographed edition 
of Salmon's poems, but they are given in the Matla <l n's-Sa i dayn. 


Besides the travels of Ibn Batuta, repeatedly cited in the 
notes, much light is thrown on this period by the travels in 
Persia of Friar Odoric of Pordenone about A.D. I3I8 1 ; the 
particulars given about " Bousaet " or " Boussay " (i.e. Abu 
Sa'fd) and his kingdom by the Archbishop of Sultaniyya 
in a tract written about A.D. 1330; and the narratives of 
the consuls who represented Venetian interests in Tabriz 
and other Persian towns between the years A.D. 1305 and 
I332 2 . 

1 A fine edition of this work, edited by M. Henri Cordier, was 
published by Leroux of Paris in 1891. 

2 See Howorth, op. cit., pt. 3, 628-633. 



The period of about seventy years which we are now 

considering is chiefly remarkable, from the literary point of 

view, for the large number of eminent Persian 

pre-eminently historians which it produced. At least eight of 

that of the these deserve somewhat detailed notices, besides 

great historians 

a rather larger number of notable poets, whose 
number might easily be increased if those of the second 
rank were included. Before considering these Persian 
writers, however, a few words must be said about the 
Arabic literature of this period of which it behoves even 
students whose primary interest is in Persian letters to have 
at least some general idea. 

So long as the Caliphate endured and Baghdad remained, 
in theory at least, the metropolis of all orthodox Muslims, 

the Arabic language held throughout those wide 
Arabic literature Domains a position analogous to that of Latin 

in this period 

in Europe during the Middle Ages ; that is to 
say it was not only (what it still remains) the language of 
theology, philosophy and science, but also to a large extent 
of diplomacy, polite society and belles lettres. The over- 
throw of the Caliphate by the Mongols greatly impaired its 
position and diminished its prestige, but this decline did 
not become very conspicuous so long as those survived 
whose education had been completed before Islam suffered 
this great disaster, that is to say for some fifty or sixty 
years after the fall of Baghdad. In the later periods which 
we have to consider a knowledge of contemporary Arabic 
literature, though always important, becomes less essential 
to the student of Persian history and letters, but at this 


period it is still vital, especially in the domains of history, 
biography and travel, not to mention theology, philosophy 
and science, where it continues to be indispensable. 

The Arabic literature with which we are here concerned 

falls into three classes. First, the Arabic works of bilingual 

Persians whose Persian writings entitle them to 

Three classes of men t j on j n the literary history of their country. 

Arabic literature 

important to the Of this class the Qadi'l-Qudat (Chief Justice) 
student of Per- N ^i r u'd-Dfn al-Bayddwf may be taken as an 
example. Al-Bayda ("the White"), from which 
he derived his cognomen, is the Arabic name of a place in 
Fars so called on account of a white tomb (turbat-i-safidy 

(1) Arabic works which renders it conspicuous. Al-Baydawi is 
of bilingual best known as the author of the famous com- 
feaere mention mentary on the Quran entitled Asrdru't- Tamil, 
on account of vvhich is written in Arabic 2 ; but he also wrote 
tions to Persian in Persian a history of Persia entitled Nizdmu't- 
Hterature Tawdrikh, whereof mention will be made in the 
course of this chapter. To speak of him merely as a his- 
torian of the second rank and to ignore his far more impor- 
tant work as a commentator would be to do 

(2) Arabic works , . . . . f, ,. . , . , 

which profoundly him a great injustice, secondly, Arabic works 
influenced Per- ^y non-Persians which have profoundly in- 

sian thought . ir->/ 

fluenced Persian thought, such as the Fusiisu l- 
Hikam and other writings of Shaykh Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l- 
'Arabi, and the writings of Shaykh Sadru'd-Dm of Qonya 

(Iconium), which were the sources whence such 

(3) Arabic histori- . , T-II > i T^/ T ' > J J 

cai, geographical mystical poets as Fakhru d-Din Iraqi derived 
and biographical t ne j r inspiration. Thirdly, and most important, 
Arabic historical, geographical and biographical 
works which throw light on the persons, places, circum- 
stances and ideas which we shall meet with in the course 
of our investigations. Amongst these special mention 
must be made of the lives of physicians ( Tabaqatu'l-Atibbd) 

1 See Nuzhattfl-Quliib (ed. G. le Strange), vol. xxiii, I of the 
" E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, p. 122, 11. 21 et seqq. 

- See Brockelmann's Gesch. d. Arab. Lift., vol. i, pp. 416-418. 


by Ibn Abi Usaybi'a 1 (d. 668/1270); the great biographical 
work of Ibn Khallikan (d. 681/1282) entitled Wafaydtu'l- 
A'ydn*; the Athdru'l-Bildd ("Monuments of the Lands") 
of Zakariyya b. Muhammad al-Qazwinf 3 (d. 682/1283) ; the 
general history, especially important for the Mongol period, 
entitled Mukhtasant d-Duwal of Abu'l-Faraj Bar-Hebraeus 
(d. July 30, 1289)*; the well-known history of Abu'1-Fida, 
Prince of Hamat (d. 732/1331), entitled Al-Mukhtasar f{ 
Ta rikh? l-Bashar* ; and the illuminating travels of Ibn 
Batuta 6 (d. 779/1377), which extended over a period of 
24 years (1325-1349) and included not only Persia but the 
greater part of Asia from Constantinople to India and 
China, and from Arabia to Afghanistan and Transoxiana. 
The student of Persian history and literature who ignores 
these books is cut off from some of the richest sources of 
trustworthy information, yet they are constantly 
Value of the neglected even by experts who write authorita- 

Atharul-Bilad J 

tively on the Persian poets and other kindred 
topics. Take only the " Monuments of the Lands " of 
al-Qazwi'm above mentioned, consider the following list of 
eminent Persian poets to whom reference is made under the 
towns wherein they were born or where they spent their 
lives, and see how much information about them is given 
which is vainly sought in the Persian tadhkiras or " Memoirs " 
commonly consulted on such matters 7 : Anwari (p. 242), 

1 Brockelmann's Gesch. d. Arab. Litt., vol. i, pp. 325-6. The text 
was printed at Cairo in 2 vols., 1299/1882. 

2 Ibid., vol. i, pp. 326-8. This work is accessible to the English 
reader in the excellent translation of the Baron McGuckin de Slane, 
4 vols., London and Paris, 1843-1871. 

3 Ibid., vol. i, pp. 481-2 ; published by Wiistenfeld together with 
the better known but less valuable 'Aja'ibTi'l-Makhluqdt, or " Wonders 
of Creation " of the same author at Gottingen in 1818. 

4 Ibid., vol. i, pp. 349-350. I have not used Pococke's edition 
(Oxford, 1663), but the text printed at Beyrout in 1890. 

5 Ibid., vol. ii, pp. 44-46. 

6 Ibid., vol. ii, pp. 256-7 ; edited with a French translation by 
Defre"mery and Sanguinetti in 4 vols. (Paris, 1853-1858, and 1869-1879). 

7 The references are to the pages of Wiistenfeld's edition, which is 


'Asjadf (p. 278), Awhadu'd-Din Kirmani (p. 164), Fakhrf of 
Jurjan (p. 351), Farrukhi (p. 278), Firdawsf (pp. 278-9 and 
a verse from the Shdhndma quoted on p. 135), Jalal-i-Tabi'b 
(p. 257), Jalal-i-Khwarf (p. 243), Khaqani (pp. 272-3, 
where 3 bayts of his poetry are cited, and p. 404), Abu 
Tahir al-Khatuni (p. 259), Mujfr of Baylaqan (p. 345), 
Nizami (pp. 351-2), Nasir-i-Khusraw (pp. 328-9), Abu 
Sa'fd ibn Abi'l-Khayr (pp. 241-2), Sana'i (p. 287), Shams-i- 
Tabasi (pp. 272-3), 'Umar-i-Khayyam (p. 318), 'Unsuri 
(p. 278)and Rashidu'd-Din Watwat (pp. 223-4). Here, then, 
we have notices, some fairly full and containing matter not 
to be found elsewhere, of 19 important Persian poets who 
flourished before or during the thirteenth century, these 
being in many cases the oldest notices extant 1 , since the 
Lubdbul-Albdb of 'Awfi and the Chahdr Maqdla, "Four 
Discourses," of Nizami-i-'Arudi of Samarqand are almost 
the only Persian works of greater antiquity which treat 
more or less systematically of the lives of Persian poets. 
And this is only one subject out of many interesting to the 
student of Persian dealt with in this most entertaining work. 

We must now pass to the historians, who, as I have 
already said, are by far the most important writers of this 
period, for, while other periods, both earlier and later, have 
produced poets alike more numerous and more celebrated, 
none have produced historians comparable in merit to these. 

Of 'Ata Malik-i-Juwaym"s Tdrikh-i-Jahdn-guslid or 

" History of the World-Conqueror " (i.e. Chingiz Khan), 

repeated mention was made in a preceding 

The Ta'rikh-i- vo i ume 2 b u t something more must be added 


here. It was completed in 658/1260, but con- 

the standard one. The work has not been translated, so far as I know, 
into any European language. 

1 On p. 334 of the AthdruH-Bildd the author tells us that he met 
Shaykh Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabf in 630/1232-3, while the author's 
autograph copy of the book is dated 674/1275-6, so that its composition 
lies between these limits. 

2 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, where the chief references are pp. 434, 
435. 443 and 473- 

B. P. 5 


eludes with the events of the year 655/1257, notably the 
destruction of the Assassins by the author's master and 
patron Hulagu Khan. Some few MSS. contain an Appendix 
describing the sack of Baghdad, which took place in the 
following year, but this is probably an addition by a later 
hand. The work comprises three parts, of which the first 
deals with the history of Chingfz Khan and his ancestors, 
and his successors down to Chaghatay ; the second relates 
the history of the Khwarazm-shahs, especially of the two 
last rulers of this dynasty, Qutbu'd-Di'n Muhammad and 
his son Jalalu'd-Dfn ; while the third treats of the Isma'i'lf 
sect and especially of Hasan-i-Sabbah and his successors, 
the Assassins of Alamut. The work is therefore not a 
general history, but a historical monograph on Chingfz 
Khan and his predecessors and successors, to which are 
added accounts of the two chief dynasties with which he 
came in conflict in Persia and Mesopotamia. Further par- 
ticulars about this most valuable and original history are 
given in an article which I contributed to the J.R.A.S. for 
January, 1904, pp. 1-17, and the first and second of the 
three volumes which it comprises have already appeared 
(in 1912 and 1916 respectively) in the " E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial " Series (xvi, I and xvi, 2), edited by my learned 
friend Mirza Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'l-Wahhab of Qazwin, 
who has prefixed to the first volume 1 a full and critical 
account of the work and its author, and of the family of 
statesmen to which he belonged, He died in March 1283. 
His brother Shamsu'd-Dfn the Sdhib-Dzwdn wrote this 
verse on his death : 

"He and I, thou wouldst say, were two lamps which in unison shone ; 
One lamp burneth still, but alas ! for the other is gone ! " 

1 English Introduction, pp. xv-xcii ; Persian ditto, ^.5 -^. 


^>U^%tu! r / ffij^b&Jj^t^jtf&jUj^ 


tj^U*D>v J 



7^ ; A 6^ J^M^ii^2J!nI^^ 

W^>^^frfc^^&j$jJ\^ bUtjLu&J 

tM^j&j&b -^bxjbJ^//^-^ U^L^ 

Colophon of the oldest MS. of the Tdrikh-i-Jahdn-gushd in the 
Bibliotheque Nationale, dated A.H. 689 (A.D. 1290) 

To face p. 66 


The following chronogram on his death was composed 
by Sadru'd-Dm 'All, the son of Nasiru'd-Dm of Tus 1 : 

O J* -5 

The Tarikh-i- Wassdf was intended, as its author in- 

forms us, to be a continuation of the above-mentioned his- 

tory, and may therefore most conveniently be 

mentioned next, although it is of slightly later 

date than the Jdmi'u't- Tawdrikh, of which we 

shall next speak. Its proper title is Tajziyatu'l-A msdr wa 

Tazjiyatiil-A'sdr (the "Allotment of Lands and Propulsion 

of Ages"), and its author, though commonly known simply as 

Wassdf (the " Panegyrist ")or Wassdf-i-Hadrat(\he "Court 

Panegyrist "), was properly named 'Abdu'llah ibn Fadlu'llah 

of Shiraz. He was employed in the collection of revenue 

for the Mongol Government, and was a protege of the great 

minister Rashidu'd-Din, who presented him and his book to 

Uliaytu. as he himself relates 2 , at Sultaniyya on 

Dr Rieu's esti- J * TT-I- "T-.-H 

mate of its merits June I, A.D. 1^12. HlS history, as RlCU Well 

says 3 , "contains an authentic contemporary 
record of an important period, but its undoubted value is 
in some degree diminished by the want of method in its 
arrangement, and still more by the highly artificial character 
and tedious redundance of its style. It was unfortunately 
set up as a model, and has exercised a baneful influence on 
the later historical compositions in Persia." That these 
criticisms are fully justified will be denied by no one who 
has occasion to use the work, and indeed the author himself 

1 Both these verses are taken from the Mujmal of Fasihf, f. 466 of 
the Raverty MS., sub anno 68 1. 

2 Pp. 544 etseqq. of the fine Bombay lithograph of 1269/1852-3. 

3 Cat. of Pers. MSS. in Brit. Mus., p. 162. 



declares that to write in the grand style was his primary 
object, and that the historical events which he records 
served merely as the material on which he might embroider 
the fine flowers of his exuberant rhetoric. Uljaytii, we are 
told, was unable to understand the passages read aloud to 
him by the author on the occasion of his audience ; and the 
reader who is not a Persian scholar may form some idea of 
his pompous, florid and inflated style from the German 
translation of the first volume published with the text by 
Hammer in 1856. We could forgive the author more 
readily if his work were less valuable as an original 
authority on the period (1257-1328) of which it treats, 
but in fact it is as important as it is unreadable. It com- 
prises five volumes, of which the contents are summarily 
stated by Rieu (op. cit., pp. 162-3), and there is, besides the 
partial edition of Hammer mentioned above, an excellent 
lithographed edition of the whole, published at Bombay in 
Rajab, 1269 (April, 1853). 

Here, perhaps, mention should be made of a quasi- 
historical work similar in style but far inferior in value 
to that just mentioned, I mean the Mu'jam 

Mu'jam ft , J . ., . . 

AthdriMuiukii- fi Athdri Mtilukt I- l Ajam, a highly rhetorical 
account of the ancient Kings of Persia down 
to Sasanian times, written by Fadlu'llah al-Husayni and 
dedicated to Nusratu'd-Din Ahmad b. Yusuf-shah, Atabek 
of Lur-i-Buzurg, who reigned from 1296 to about 1330. 
This book, which is vastly inferior to the other histories 
mentioned in this chapter, has been lithographed at Tihran, 
and manuscripts of it are to be found in most large Oriental 
libraries 1 . 

We now come to the great fdmfu't-Tawdrikk, or 

"Compendium of Histories," of which incidental mention 

has been made in the last chapter in con nee - 

e -^i v '~ tion with its illustrious author Rashfdu'd-Dfn 

/ awarlKn 

Fadlu'llah, equally eminent as a physician, a 

1 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., p. 811 ; Ethe*'s Bodleian Cat., No. 285 ; 
Ethels India Office Cat., Nos. 534-5. 


statesman, a historian, and a public benefactor. Of his 
public career and tragic fate we have already spoken, but 
something more must be said not only of the scope and 
contents of his history, but of his private life and literary 
activity. His history, unfortunately, has never yet been 
published in its entirety, and manuscripts of it are compara- 
tively rare, but amongst the published portions is his life of 
. , Hiilasru Khan, edited by Quatremere at Paris 

Quatremere s J *-' 

critical account in 1836, with a French translation and many 

valuable notes, under the title of Histoire des 

Mongols de la Perse, ecrite en per s an par Raschid-eldin, 

publiee, traduite en franqais, accompagnee de notes et dun 

memoire sur la vie et les outrages de Cauteur. From this 

excellent memoir, to which those who desire fuller and more 

detailed information are referred, the following salient facts 

of Rashidu'd-Dm's life and works are chiefly taken. He 

was born at Hamadan about A.D. 1247, and was 

His birth in 1247 111- i i /- 

asserted by his enemies to have been of Jewish 
origin. His grandfather Muwaffaqu'd-Dawla 'Alf was, 
with the astronomer Nasiru'd-Din Tusi and Ra'isu'd-Dawla, 
an unwilling guest of the Assassins of Alamut when that 
place was taken by Hulagu in the very year of our author's 
birth, and was at once received into Hulagu's service. As 
court-physician Rashi'du'd-Din enjoyed considerable in- 
fluence and honour during the reign of Abaqa, but it was 
in the reign of Ghazan, whose accession took place in A.D. 
1295, that his many merits were first fully recognized, and 

three years later, on the dismissal and execution 

He becomes * 

Prime Minister of the prime minister Sadru'd-Din Zanjdni, 
zani QI29 8 called Sadr-i-Jakdn, he was chosen by Ghazan, 
conjointly with Sa'du'd-Din, to succeed him. In A.D. 1303 
Rashi'du'd-Din accompanied Ghazan as Arabic secretary in 
the campaign against the Syrians, and it was during this 
period, while the Mongol court was established at 'Ana on 
the Euphrates, that he presented to Ghazan the author of 
the Tarikh-i- Wassdf, as has been already mentioned (p. 42), 
on March 3, 1303. 


During the reign of Uljaytu(or Khuda-banda)Rashidu'd- 

Dfn enjoyed the same high position as under his predecessor, 

and received from the new king several singular 

add increaMd"* marks of favour and confidence. He also built 

honour under j n Sultanivya, the new capital, a fine suburb, 

Khuda-banda / J 

named after him Rashidiyya, containing a 
magnificent mosque, a college, a hospital and other public 
buildings, and some thousand houses. In December, 1307, 
he was instrumental in establishing the innocence of two 
Shafi'ite doctors of Baghdad, Shihabu'd-Din Suhrawardi and 
Jamalu'd-Din,whohadbeen accused of carrying on a treason- 
able correspondence with Egypt 1 . Some two years later he 

built another beautiful little suburb, near Ghaza- 

He founds and - , t i i i j i 

endows the niyya, the town which had grown up round 
suburb called Ghazan's mausoleum, to the East of Tabriz, 


and, at great expense, brought thither the 
river Saraw-rud through channels hewn in the solid rock'-. 
Immense sums of money were required for these and other 
admirable works of piety and public utility, but Rashi'du'd- 
Din, as he himself declares, had received from the generous 
Uljaytvi such sums as no previous sovereign had ever 
bestowed on minister or courtier. On the transcription, 
binding, maps and illustrations of his numerous literary 
works he had, according to the Ta'rikh-i- Wassdf, expended 
no less a sum than 60,000 dinars (^36,000). 

Early in the year 1312 Rashidu'd-Din's colleague Sa'du'd- 
Di'n of Sawa fell from power and was put to death, the prime 

mover in the intrigue of which he was the victim 
SS^ bein g the clever and unscrupulous 'Ali-shah, 

who at once succeeded the dead minister in his 
office. Soon afterwards a dangerous intrigue was directed 
against Rashidu'd-Di'n, but happily it recoiled on its authors 
and left him unscathed. Whether he, on the other hand, 
was responsible for the barbarous execution of SayyidTaju'd- 

1 Quatremere, Hist, des Mongols, pp. xvi-xvii. The Shihabu'd-Din 
here mentioned is not, of course, Sa'df's teacher, who died 632/1234-5. 

2 See G. le Strange's Lands of the Eastern Caliphate, pp. 162-3. 


Din, the Naqibn'l-Ashrdf, or " Dean of the Shan'fs " (i.e. the 
descendants of 'Ah') is a doubtful question, which Quatremere 
answers in the negative. 

In 1315 such acrimonious disputes broke out between 
Rashidu'd-Din and 'Ah'-shah, as to who was responsible for 
Fan and death of thejack of money to pay the troops, that 
Rashidu'd-Din Uljaytu' assigned to the management of each 
one different provinces of Persia and Asia Minor. 
Nevertheless 'Ah'-shah continued his campaign of calumny 
against his colleague, who succeeded only with the greatest 
difficulty in saving himself from disaster. The same rivalry 
and intrigue continued after the death of Uljaytu and the 
accession of Abu Sa'id, until finally Rashi'du'd-Din, having 
succumbed to the attacks of his traducers, was deprived of 
his office in October, 1317, and ultimately, on July 18, 1318, 
at the age of over seventy years, was put to death with his 
son Ibrahim, a lad of sixteen years of age, on a charge of 
having poisoned the late king. His property was confiscated, 
his relatives were persecuted and despoiled, his pious founda- 
tions were robbed of their endowments, and the 
his foundations Rab'-i-Rashidi,the suburb which he had founded, 
and desecration was given over to rapine. He was buried in the 
mausoleum which he had prepared for his last 
resting-place, but his body was not suffered to rest there in 
peace, for about a century later Mi'ranshah the son of Timur- 
i-Lang, in one of his fits of insane brutality, caused it to be 
exhumed and buried in the Jews' cemetery. 'Ah'-shah, in 
order to testify his joy at his rival's fall, presented magnifi- 
cent presents to the Sanctuary at Mecca, and, escaping the 
retribution which overtook most of his accomplices, died 
peaceably in his bed six years later (in 1324), being, as 
already remarked, the first minister of the Mongol Il-khans 
who had the good fortune to die a natural death. Of Rashi- 
du'd-Din's son Ghiyathu'd-Din, who resembled him in virtue 
and learning, as well as in his public career and his sad end 
(for he too was ultimately put to death in the spring of 1336) 
mention has been already made in the preceding chapter. 


For the conception of the Jdmi'u't- Tawdrikh the credit, 

in Quatremere's opinion 1 , belongs to Ghazan Khan, who, 

foreseeing that the Mongols in Persia, in spite 

ande^ecudon f their actual supremacy, would in course of 

ofttejdmfv time inevitably be absorbed by the Persians. 

' t-Tawdrikh J 

desired to leave to posterity a monument ot 
their achievements, in the shape of a faithful record of their 
history and conquests, in the Persian language. For the 
accomplishment of this great task he chose (and no better 
choice could have been made) Rashidu'd-Di'n, at whose 
disposal were placed all the state archives, and the services 
of all those who were most learned in the history and 
antiquities of the Mongols. The minister, though engrossed 
by the state affairs of a vast empire, yet succeeded in finding 
time to prosecute his researches and commit them to writing, 
though, according to Dawlat-shah 2 , the only time at his 
disposal for this purpose was that which intervened between 
the morning prayer and sunrise. 

Before Rashidu'd-Din's history of the Mongols was 

completed, Ghazan died (May 17, 1304), but his successor 

Uljaytu ordered it to be finished and dedicated, 

contents of the as originally intended, to Ghazan ; whence this 

a- portion of the work, generally called the first 

,. **,! j </> -/,/ r, - ' 

volume,is sometimesentitled la nkh-i-Ghazam, 

the " Ghazanian History." Uljaytu also ordered the author 
to write a companion volume containing a general history 
of the world and especially of the lands of Islam, and a 
third volume dealing with geography. This last has either 
perished, or was never actually written, but only projected, 
so that the work as we now know it comprises only two 
volumes, the first on the history of the Mongols, written for 
Ghazan, the second on general history. The whole work 
was completed in 710/1310-11, though two years later the 
author was still engaged on his supplementary account of 
Uljaytu's reign. 

1 Hist, des Mongols, p. Ixviii. 

2 P. 217 of my edition. 


The contents of this great history are briefly as follows : 

VOL. I, ch. i. History of the different Turkish and Mongol 

tribes, their divisions, genealogies, pedigrees, legends, 

etc., in a Preface and four sections. 

ch. ii. History of Chingfz Khan, his ancestors and 

successors, down to Ghazan Khan. 
VOL. II, Preface. On Adam and the Patriarchs and Hebrew 

Part i. History of the ancient kings of Persia before 

Islam, in four sections. 

Part 2. History of the Prophet Muhammad and of the 
Caliphate, down to its extinction by the Mongols in 
1258; of the post-Muhammadan Persian dynasties 
of Persia, viz. the Sultans of Ghazna, the Seljuqs, 
the Khwarazmshahs, the Salgharid Atabeks of Fars, 
and the Isma'i'lis of the West and of the East ; of 
Oghuz and his descendants, the Turks ; of the 
Chinese ; of the Jews ; of the Franks and their 
Emperors and Popes ; and of the Indians, with a 
long and full account of Sakyamuni (Buddha) and 
of the religion which he founded. 

The above is the arrangement actually adopted in the 

manuscripts of the India Office and the British Museum, but 

the divisions proposed by the author in his Intro- 

rangem^of duction are slightly different, for he intended to 

tbe/dmi'ut- begin the second volume with the history of 

Tawdrlkh / 7 

the reigning king Uljaytu from his birth until 
706/1306-7, and to add a supplement at the end of the same 
volume continuing the history of this monarch year by year. 
This confusing arrangement is not actually observed in most 
manuscripts, which, if they contain Uljaytu's reign at all, 
put it in its natural place, at the end of vol. i, after Ghazan. 
Few if any of the extant manuscripts are, however, complete, 
though every part of the history is contained in one or other 
of them. In the J.R.A.S. for January, 1908 (pp. 17-37) I 
have given a fuller analysis of the contents, together with a 
scheme for the complete edition which is so much needed. 


Ignoring the complicated and confusing divisions made by 
Scheme for a tne aut hor, I proposed to publish the whole 
complete edition book in seven volumes, of which the first three, 

of the Jam? u't- . . 

TawMkh in containing the history of the Turks and Mon- 

seven volumes go j g> WQuld correspond to yol j Q f the original, 

and the last four to vol. ii, as follows : 

Series L Special history of the Mongols and Turks. 

VOL. I, from the beginning to the death of Chingfz Khan. 

VOL. II, from the accession of Ogotay to the death of Timur 
(Uljaytu), the grandson of Qubilay Khan 1 . 

VOL. in, from the accession of Hulagu 2 to the death of 
Ghazan, including the continuation of the history of 
the later Il-khans down to Abu Sa'i'd compiled as a 
supplement to this portion of Rashi'du'd-Din's work 
in the reign of Shah Rukh and by his command. 

Series II. General history. 

VOL. IV. The Introduction, the history of the ancient kings 
of Persia down to the fall of the Sasanian dynasty, 
and the biography of the Prophet Muhammad. 

VOL. V. The entire history of the Caliphate, from Abu 
Bakr to al-Musta'sim. 

VOL. VI. The history of the post-Muhammadan dynasties 
of Persia (Ghaznawis, Seljuqs, Khwarazmshahs, Sal- 
ghan's and Isma'ilis). 

VOL. VII. The remainder of the work, comprising the history 
(from their own traditions and statements) of the 
Turks, Chinese, Israelites, Franks and Indians. 

The Jdmi'ut-Tawdrikh is remarkable not only for the 
extensive field which it covers and the care with which it 
has been compiled from all available sources, both written 

1 This is the portion which M. Blochet has published in the 
" E. J. W. Gibb Memorial " Series, vol. xviii. 

2 The portion of this volume dealing with Hulagu was, as already 
stated, published by Quatremere under the title Q{ Histoire des Mongols 
de la Perse, vol. i (Paris, 1836). 


Enthronement of Ogotay, the son and successor of Chingiz, from an old 
MS. ot tiae fdmfiit-Tawdrikh in the Bibliotheque Nationale. 

To face p. 74 


and oral, but for its originality. It is doubtful whether any 
Persian prose work can be compared to it in value, at any 
rate in the domain of history, and it is the more to be re- 
gretted that it remains unpublished and almost inaccessible. 
" I will dwell no longer," says Quatremere 1 , " on the proofs 
of the extreme importance of Rashfdu'd-Din's compilation ; 
this excellent work, undertaken in the most favourable cir- 
cumstances, and with means of performing it never before 
possessed by any single writer, offered for the first time to 
the peoples of Asia a complete course of universal history 
and geography." The same writer illustrates the thorough- 
ness of Rashidu'd-Di'n's work by indicating the extent to 
which he drew on Chinese sources, written and oral, in 
writing that portion of his history which bore reference to 
Khata (Cathay) 2 , and expresses a regret, which all must 
share, that the geographical portion of his work is lost, or 
at least still undiscovered. Perhaps, as Quatremere conjec- 
tures 3 ,it perished in the destruction and looting of the Rab'-i- 
Rashidi which immediately followed Rashidu'd-Di'n's death. 
Rashidu'd-Din composed numerous other works besides 
the Jdmi'iit- Tawdrikk, and of these and their contents a 
detailed account is given by Quatremere 4 . 
S the h r 7fn by Amongst them is the KitdbiM-Ahyd wcil-Athdr 

Rashidu d-Din -' 

(the "Book of Animals and Monuments"), which 
comprised twenty-four chapters treating of a variety of 

matters connected with meteorology, agricul- 
Kitdbu'i-Ahyd tu arboriculture, apiculture, the destruction 

wa l-Athar 

of noxious insects and reptiles, farming and 
stock-breeding, architecture, fortification, ship-building, min- 
ing and metallurgy. This work is unhappily lost. 

Another of Rashidu'd-Di'n's works was the Tawdihdt, 
or " Explanations," a theological and mystical work, of 
which the contents are arranged under a pre- 
face and nineteen letters. It was written at the 

1 Op. laud., p. Ixxiv. 2 Ibid., p. Ixxviii. 

3 Ibid., p. Ixxxi. 4 Ibid., pp. cxii-cxlvi. 


request of Uljaytu, and is described by Quatremere from a 
manuscript in the Bibliotheque Nationale. 

This was followed by another theological work entitled 
Miftdhu't-Tafdsir, the " Key of Commentaries," treating of 
the divine eloquence of the Qur'dn, its com- 
' mentators and their methods, Good and Evil, 
rewards and punishments, length of life, Pro- 
vidence, Predestination and the Resurrection of the Body. 
To these topics are added a refutation of the doctrine of 
Metempsychosis, and a definition of sundry technical terms. 
" The Royal Treatise " (ar-Risdlatus-Siiltdniyya) is 
another similar work, undertaken on Ramadan 9, 706 
(March 14, 1307), as the result of a discussion 
ar-Risdiatu's- Qn theological matters which had taken place 

Sultdmyya o , 

in the presence of Uljaytu. 

The Latd'ifu'l-Haqaiq, or " Subtle Truths," comprises 
fourteen letters, and begins with an account of a vision in 

which the author, on the night preceding Ra- 
&%e l ~ madan 26, 705 (April 11, 1306), dreamed that 

he was presented to the Prophet. Its contents 
also are theological. This and the three preceding works 
are all written in Arabic, and together form what is known 
as the Majmrta-i-Rashtdiyya, or " Collection of the works 
of Rashi'du'd-Din," of which a beautiful manuscript, dated 
710/1310-11, exists at Paris. Another manuscript of the 
same library 1 contains a Persian translation of the Latd 
'ifitl-Haqd'iq, and there are also preserved there two copies 
of an attestation of the orthodoxy of Rashidu'd-Din's 
theological views, signed by seventy leading doctors of 
Muslim theology. This attestation was drawn up in con- 
sequence of accusations of heterodoxy made against Rashid 
by a malicious fellow whose enmity had been aroused by 
the frustration of his endeavours to appropriate an emolu- 
ment from a benefaction for scholars and men of learning 
made by Ghazan Khan on his death. 

Another of Rashfd's works, of which, unhappily, only 

1 Ancien Fonds Persan, No. 107, fif. 1-70. 


the general nature of the contents is known, is the Baydnu'l- 
Haqd'tq, or " Explanation of Verities," com- 

B Haqq l ~ prising seventeen letters, dealing mostly with 
theological topics, though other subjects, such 

as the small-pox and the nature and varieties of heat, are 


The elaborate precautions (precautions which, alas ! in 

the event proved inadequate) taken by Rashidu'd-Din to 
preserve and transmit to posterity the fruits of 

Precautions J 

taken by his literary labours are very fully detailed by 

Kashidu'd- ,-*. \ , i i_ i_ n . 

Din for the Quatremere, and can only be briefly recapitu- 
preservation lated in this place. First, he caused several 
copies of each of his works to be made for lending 
to his friends and to men of letters, who were freely permitted 
to transcribe them for their own use. Then he caused 
Arabic translations of all his Persian, and Persian transla- 
tions of all his Arabic works to be prepared, and of both 
versions he caused numerous copies to be deposited, for the 
use of anyone who might desire to read or copy them, in 
the mosque-library of the quarter called after him Rab'-i- 
Rashidi. He also caused one large volume, containing all 
of his treatises with the necessary maps and illustrations, 
to be prepared and deposited in the above-mentioned public 
library, giving it the title of Jdnritit-tasdnifir-Rashidi 1 , or 
"Complete collection of the works of Rashidu'd-Din." Of 
four more works treating of Medicine and the Mongol system 
of government he caused trilingual versions, in Chinese, 
Arabic and Persian, to be prepared. He further accorded 
the fullest liberty to anyone who desired to copy any or all 
of these books, and, not content with this, assigned a certain 
yearly sum from the revenues with which he had endowed 
his mosque in order to have two complete transcripts of his 

1 That this is the correct title appears from the text of this docu- 
ment, published by Quatremere together with the translation. See his 
Hist, des Mongols, p. cxlix, 1. 3. The Majmu'a contained four treatises 
only (see the preceding page), while the Jdmi 1 contained everything 
Rashfd had written. 


works, one in Arabic and one in Persian, made every year, 
and presented to one of the chief towns of the Muhammadan 
world. These copies were to be made on the best Baghdad 
paper and in the finest and most legible writing, and to be 
carefully collated with the originals. The copyists were to be 
carefully chosen, having regard both to the excellence and the 
speed of their work, and were to be lodged in the precincts 
of the mosque, as the administrators of the bequest might 
direct. Each copy, when finished, bound and ornamented, 
was to be carried into the mosque and placed on a book- 
rest between the pulpit and the mihrdb, and over it was to 
be repeated a prayer for the author, composed by himself, 
and conceived in the following terms 1 : 

"(9 God, who revealest the most hidden secrets, and gives t 
knowledge of history and traditions ! As Thou hast graci- 
ously guided thy servant Rashid the Physician, 
Rashidu'd- who standeth in need of Thine Abundant Mercy, 

Dm sprayer 

in the composition of these works > which comprise 
investigations supporting the fundamental dogmas of Islam, 
and minute researches tending to elucidate philosophical truths 
and natural laws, profitable to those who meditate on the in- 
ventions of Art, and advantageous to such as reflect on the 
^vonders of Creation, even so hast TJiott enabled him to con- 
secrate a portion of his estates to pious foundations, on condition 
that from these revenues should be provided sundry copies of 
these books, so that the Muslims of all lands and of all times 
may derive profit therefrom. Accept, O God, all this from 
him with a favourable acceptance, and cause his efforts to be 
remembered with thanks, and grant forgiveness for all sins, 
and pardon all those who shall help to accomplish this good 
work, and those who shall read or consult these works and 
put in practice the lessons which they contain. And bestow 

1 The original of this prayer is given by Quatremere on p. clxx of 
his Hist, des Mongols, and the translation, which is more elegant than 
literal, on pp. cxl-cxli. The translation here given is from the Arabic 



Colophon of Qiir'an transcribed for Uljaytd, Rashidu'd-Din 
and Sa'du'd-Din in A.H. 710 (A. D. 1310-11) 

Or. 4945 (Brit. Mus.), f. i a To/ace />. 7 s 


on him a good recompense, both in this world and the next ! 
Verily Thou art worthy of fear, yet swift to forgive ! " 

This prayer was also to be inscribed at the end of each 
copy so completed, and was to be followed by a brief 
doxology, also formulated by Rashidu'd-Din,and a colophon 
penned by the administrator of the bequest, stating at what 
epoch and for what town each copy had been made, and 
giving his own name and genealogy, so that he also might 
be remembered in the prayers of the faithful. Finally the 
completed copy was to be submitted to the qddis, or judges, 
of Tabriz, who should certify that all the formalities pre- 
scribed by the author had been duly carried out ; and it was 
then to be sent to the town for which it was destined, and 
deposited in a public library where it could be freely used 
by all students, and even borrowed against a bond for such 
sum as the librarian might deem suitable. A copy of the 
Arabic version of the MajmiVa-i-Rashidiyya, together with 
the Baydnul-Haqd'iq and the Kitdbu'l-Ahyd wal-Athdr, was 
also to be made for one of the Professors on the foundation, 
who was daily to read and expound to the students some 
portion of the contents.- Besides this, each lecturer on the 
foundation was obliged to make a copy of one of these 
\vorks,either in Arabic or Persian,during the period occupied 
by his course of lectures, failing which he was to be dismissed 
and replaced by one more diligent than himself. The copy, 
when made, was to be his own, to sell, give away, or keep 
as he pleased. All facilities were to be accorded to persons 
desirous of copying any of these works in the library, but 
they were not allowed to be removed from its walls. In 
conclusion the successive administrators of the funds were 
exhorted to carry out zealously and literally the wishes of 
the benefactor, and curses were invoked on any administrator 
who should fail to do so. 

Yet, as Quatremere observes 1 , in spite of all these elabo- 
rate precautions, " we have lost the greater part of the works 
of this learned historian, and all the measures which he took 
1 Op. laud., p. cxlv. 


have not had a more fortunate success than the precautions 
devised by the Emperor Tacitus to secure the preservation 
of his illustrious relative's writings. The action of time and 
the vandalism of man, those two scourges which have robbed 
us of so many masterpieces of antiquity, have also destroyed 
numerous other productions, less brilliant without doubt, 
but not less useful; and while worthless compilations are 
spread abroad in all directions and load the shelves of our 
libraries, we are left to lament bitterly a number of important 
works, of which the loss is irreparable." 

Of one such work, however, not apparently known to 
Quatremere, I am the fortunate possessor. This is a col- 
lection of Rashi'du'd-Di'n's letters, mostly on 

A MS. collection f 

of Rashidu-d- political and financial matters, addressed to 
his sons and others who held various offices 
under the Mongol government, and collected, arranged and 
edited by his secretary Muhammad of Abarquh. For two 
manuscripts of this work, one old, the other a modern copy 
of the first, made, apparently, for Prince Bahman Mi'rza 
Bahd'u'd-Dawla, I am indebted to the generosity of my 
friend Mr G. le Strange, who obtained them from the late 
Sir Albert Houtum-Schindler 1 . A third manuscript volume, 
in English, is entitled in Mr le Strange's hand : Summary 
of the Contents of the Persian MS. Despatches of Rashiditd- 
Din: copied from notes supplied by Sir A. H. Schindler, and 
afterwards corrected by him: Dec. 1913. In view of the ex- 
treme rarity of this work and the interest of its contents, 
a list of the 53 despatches and letters which it contains and 
the persons to whom they are addressed is here appended. 

1. Preface of the editor Muhammad of Abarquh, de- 
fective at beginning. 

2. Letter from Rashidu'd-Dfn to Majdu'd-Din Isma'il 

3. Answer to the above. 

4. From Rashidu'd-Dfn to his son Amir 'All, Governor 

1 See my article on the Persian Manuscripts of the late Sir Albert 
Houtum-Schindler, K.C.I. E., in ihzJ.R.A.S. for Oct. 1917, pp. 693-4. 


of Iraq-i-'Arab, ordering him to punish the people of Basra 
for rebellious conduct. 

5. From the same to his son Amir Mahmud, Governor 
of Kirman, reprimanding him for oppressing the people 
of Bam. 

6. From the same to his servant Sunqur Bawarchi, 
Governor of Basra, instructing him as to the policy he 
should pursue. 

7. From the same to his sister's son Khwaja Ma'ruf, 
Governor of 'Ana, Haditha, Hit, Jibba, Na'usa, 'Ashra(?), 
Rahba, Shafatha (?) and Baladu'l-'Ayn, appointing him 
Governor of Rum. Written from Sultdniyya in 690/1291 
(or possibly 696/1296-7). 

8. From the same to the Na'ibs of Kdshan concerning 
the pension of 2000 dinars assigned to Sayyid Afdalu'd- 
Din Mas'ud out of the revenues of Kdshan. 

9. From the same to his son Amir Mahmud (see No. 5 
supra) ordering the distribution of food to the poor of Bam, 
Khabi's, etc. 

10. From the same to his son Khwdja Sa'du'd-Dfn, 
Governor of Antioch, Tarsus, Sus, Qinnasrfn, the 'Awasim 
and the shores of the Euphrates, giving him fatherly advice 
as to the methods of administration he should adopt, and 
warning him against sloth, wine-drinking, and over-fondness 
for music and dissipation. 

11. From the same to his son 'Abdu'l-Mu'min, Governor 
of Simnan, Damghan and Khwar, ordering him to appoint 
the Qadi Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad b. Hasan b. Muham- 
mad b. 'Abdu'l-Kan'm of Simnan Chief Judge of that 

12. From the same to Shaykh Sadru'd-Dm b. Shaykh 
Bahd'u'd-Di'n Zakariyya condoling with him on the death 
of a son. 

13. From the same to Mawlana Sadru'd-Din Muham- 
mad Turka'i concerning a revised and emended scale of 
taxation to be applied to the people of Isfahan and other 

B.P. 6 


14. Proclamation from the same to his son Amir 'Ah', 
Governor of Baghdad, and to the people of that city, small 
and great, concerning the appointment of Shaykh Majdu'd- 
Din as Shaykhu'l-Islam and the provision to be made for 
the professors, officers and students of the khdnqdh of the 
late Ghazan Khan. 

1 5. From the same to Amir Nusratu'd-Din Sitay, Go- 
vernor of Mawsil, and Sinjar, concerning Sharafu'd-Din 
Hasan Mustawfi. 

1 6. Answers from the same to philosophical and reli- 
gious questions propounded by Mawlana Sadr-i-Jahan of 

17. Letter from the same to his son Khwaja Jalal, 
asking for 40 young men and maidens of Rum to be sent 
to him at Tabriz to form the nucleus of a population for 
one of the five villages he has included in his park in the 

1 8. From the same to Khwaja 'Ala'u'd-Din Hindu re- 
questing him to obtain and send various medicinal oils for 
the hospital in the Rab'-i-Rashidi. 

19. From the same to his son Amir 'Ah', Governor of 
Baghdad, concerning allowances and presents to various 

20. From the same to his son Khwaja 'Abdu'l-Lati'f, 
Governor of Isfahan, giving him good advice. 

21. From the same to his son Khwaja Jalalu'd-Dfn, 
Governor of Rum, also giving good advice, and ordering 
various quantities of different herbs and drugs for his hos- 
pital at Tabriz. 

22. From the same to his son Amir Shihabu'd-Dfn, 
then Governor of Baghdad, giving him good advice, and 
summarizing the revenues of Khuzistan. 

23. From the same to Mawlana Majdu'd-Din Isma'fl 
Fall, inviting him to be present at the marriages which he 
has arranged for nine of his sons with various noble ladies. 

24. From the same to Qara-Buqa, Governor of Kayff 
and Palu. 


25. From the same to Mawlana 'Afifu'd-Dm Baghdad*. 

26. From the same in answer to a letter from the Mawlds 
of Qaysariyya (Caesarea) in Rum. 

27. From the same to his son Amir Ghiyathu'd-Din 
Muhammad on his appointment as Inspector of Khurasan 
by Khuda-banda Uljaytu. 

28. From the same to the people of Si'was concerning 
the Alms-house for Sayyids founded there by Ghazan 
{Ddrus-Siyddat-i-Ghdzdnf) and the necessity of its proper 

29. From the same from Multan in Sind to Mawlana 
Qutbu'd-Dm Mas'ud of Shiraz, giving an account of the 
journey to India which he undertook at the Il-khan's com- 
mand to greet the Indian kings and bring back various 
drugs and spices not obtainable in Persia. 

30. From the same to Takhtakh Inju as to complaints 
of his tyranny made by the people of Fars, concerning 
which he is sending his son Ibrahim to report. 

31. From the same concerning Mawlana Muhammad 
Rumi, and the teaching in the college at Arzanjan, of which 
he has been appointed Master. 

32. From the same to Shirwan Shah, ruler of Shabaran 
and Shamakhi, inviting him to visit the Garden of Fath- 
abad which he has made. 

33. From the same to the revenue officers of Khuzistan, 
concerning various financial and administrative matters, and 
the sending of Khwaja Siraju'd-Dm of Dizful to audit the 
accounts, make investigations, and report. 

34. From the same to. his son Khwaja Majdu'd-Dm, 
ordering him to collect stores for the army destined for the 
occupation of India. 

35. From the Seljuq ruler of Arzanjan, Malik Jalalu'd- 
Din Kay-Qubad b. 'Ala'u'd-Din Kay-Qubad, asking advice 
on sundry matters; with Rashidu'd-Dfn's replies. 

36. Rashi'du'd-Din's reply to a letter from Mawlana Sa- 
dru'd-Din Muhammad Turka'i, written duringa dangerous ill- 
ness and containinghis last will and testament as to thedivision 



amongst his children of his numerous and extensive estates 
and other property. To the Rab'-i-Rashidi he bequeaths 
a library of 60,000 volumes of science, history and poetry, 
including 1000 Qur'dns by various excellent calligraphers, 
of which 10 were copied by Yaqiit al-Musta'simf, 10 by Ibn 
Muqla and 200 by Ahmad Suhrawardi. He enumerates 
by name his 14 sons, viz. (i) Sa'du'd-Di'n, (2) Jalalu'd-Di'n, 
(3) Majdu'd-Din, (4) 'Abdu'l-Lattf, (5) Ibrahim, (6) Ghi- 
yathu'd-Din Muhammad, (7) Ahmad, (8) 'All, (9) Shaykhi, 
(10) Pi'r Sultan, (n) Mahmud, (12) Humam, (13) Shihabu 
'd-Di'n, (14) 'Ah'-shah ; and his 4 daughters, viz. (i) Farman- 
Khand, (2) Ay Khatun, (3) Shahf Khatiin, (4) Hadiyya 

37. Rashfdu'd-Dfn to the same, concerning a book which 
he had written and dedicated to him, and sending him a 
present of money, choice garments, a horse and various 
food -stuffs. 

38. From the same to the people of Diyar Bakr con- 
cerning the digging of a new canal to be called after him- 
self, and the establishment and population of 14 villages on 
both sides of it, with names and plan of the new villages, 
which are for the most part named after his 14 sons. 

39. From the same to his son Jalalu'd-Di'n, Governor 
of Rum, concerning the digging of a new canal from the 
Euphrates to be called after his late lord Ghazan Khan, 
and the foundation of 10 villages, of which the plan and 
names are again given. 

40. From the same to his agent Khwaja Kamalu'd-Din 
Siwasi, Mustawfi of Rum, ordering him to send, by means 
of a merchant named Khwaja Ahmad, certain presents in 
cash and in kind to ten learned men in Tunis and the 
Maghrib (names given) in return for ten books (titles given) 
in 36 volumes which they had sent to the Minister, of 
whose generosity they had heard. 

41. From the same to the authorities at Shi'raz ordering 
them to make certain specified presents in cash and in 
kind to Mawlana Mahmud b. Ilyas who had written a 


book entitled Lataif-i-Rashidiyya and dedicated it to 

42. From the same to the authorities at Hamadan con- 
cerning the maintenance of the Pharmacy (Ddrti-khdnd) 
and Hospital (Ddru'sh-Shifd) which he had founded there, 
and which he is sending a physician named Ibn Mahdf to 
inspect and report on. Written from Caesarea (Qaysariyya) 
in 690/1291. 

43. From the same to his son Ami'r Mahmud, Go- 
vernor of Kirman, recommending to his care and assist- 
ance Khwaja Mahmud of Sawa, whom he is sending on a 
mission to India, to Sultdn 'Ala'u'd-Dm, and also to collect 
money due to Rashidu'd-Din from his estates there. 

44. From the same to his son Pir Sultan, Governor of 
Georgia, concerning the King's projected expedition to 
Syria and Egypt, and an intended punitive expedition 
of 120,000 men under ten Mongol amirs (names given) 
which is to pass through Georgia to chastise the rebellious 
people of Abkhaz and Trebizonde, and which Pir Sultan is 
to accompany, leaving the government of Georgia in the 
hands of his deputy Khwaja Mu'i'nu'd-Dm. 

45. From the same to Shaykh Safiyyu'd-Dm of Ardabil 
giving, after many compliments, a list of the supplies of 
meat, fowls, rice, wheat, butter, honey, mast, perfumes and 
money which he proposes to supply to the aforesaid 
Shaykh's monastery (khdnqdh) for the festival to be held 
there in commemoration of the Prophet's birthday. 

46. Letter from Malik Mu'mu'd-Din, Parwana of Rum, 
to Rashfdu'd-Dm, complaining of Turkman depredations 
in his province. 

47. Letter from Malik 'Ala'u'd-Din accompanying the 
presents of precious stuffs, aromatic drugs, animals, con- 
serves, spices, dried fruits, carpets, oils, plate, rare timber, 
ivory, etc., which he is sending from India by way of Basra 
to Rashidu'd-Dm. 

48. Letter from Rashidu'd-Din to his son Amir Mahmud, 
then engaged in studying Sufiism in Kirman. 


49. Letter from the same to his son Amir Ahmad, at 
that time Governor of Ardabfl, containing seven recom- 
mendations (wasiyyat\ and expressing regret that he is 
occupying himself with Astrology. 

50. Letter of condolence from the same to Mawlana 
Sharafu'd-Din Tabasf on the death of his son, and ordering 
Shamsu'd-Di'n Muhammad of Abarquh to supply him yearly 
with certain specified provisions. 

51. Letter from the same to his son Sa'du'd-Din, Go- 
vernor of Qinnasn'n, describing the completion of the Rab'-i- 
Rashidi at Tabriz, with its 24 caravansarays, 1 500 shops and 
30,000 houses; its gardens, baths, stores, mills, workshops, 
paper-mills and mint; its workmen and artisans, brought 
from every town and country, its Qnr'dn-readers, muadh- 
dhins and doctors of theology, domiciled in the Kticha-i- 
'Ulamd ("Rue des Savants"); its 6000 or 7000 students; 
its 50 physicians from India, China, Egypt and Syria, each 
of whom is bound to give instruction to ten pupils; the 
hospital (Ddru'sh-Shifd) with its oculists, surgeons and 
bone-setters, to each of whom are assigned as pupils five 
of the writer's servants; and the allowances in kind and in 
money made to all of them. 

52. Letter from the same to his son Khwaja Ibrahim, 
Governor of Shiraz, describing the campaign against Kabul 
and Si'stan, and demanding various arms and munitions of 
war in specified quantities. 

53. Letter from the same to several of his sons con- 
cerning the attributes of learning, clemency, reason and 
generosity. The MS. breaks off abruptly in the middle of 
this letter. 

These letters, which ought to be published, are of extra- 
ordinary interest on account of the light they throw on the 
character and manifold activities of this most remarkable 
man, at once statesman, physician, historian and patron of 
art, letters and science. We have already noticed the tragic 
fate which overtook him and to a large extent brought to 
naught his careful and elaborate plans for the preserva- 


tion of his books and the beneficent institutions which he 
founded for the promotion of learning and charity; and the 
least we can do in pious memory of a truly great scholar is 
to perpetuate what is left of his writings. 

But if Rashidu'd-Di'n failed to secure the immortality of 
all his works, he set a fruitful example to other historians, 

Hamdu'iiah so t ^ iat ** * s ^ ar S e ^y due to him that this period 
Mustawfi of is so conspicuous for merit in this field of know- 
ledge. We have seen how he helped Wassaf 
and brought him to the Il-khan's notice. We shall now con- 
sider the work of his most illustrious follower, Hamdu'iiah 
Mustawfi' of Qazwfn. Of his life little is known save what 
he tells us incidentally in his works. He professed to be 
of Arab origin, tracing his pedigree to Hurr b. Yazid ar- 
Riyahi, but his family had long been settled in Qazwin. 
His great-grandfather, Amfnu'd-Din Nasr, was Mustawfi 
of 'Iraq, but later adopted the ascetic life, and was finally 
slain by the Mongols. His brother, Zaynu'd-Dfn Muham- 
mad, held office under Rashidu'd-Dm, and he himself was 
appointed by the same minister, about 1311, superintendent 
of the finances of Qazwin, Abhar, Zanjan and Tarumayn. 
For the rest, he tells us that he had from his youth upwards 
eagerly cultivated the society of men of learning, especially 
that of Rashidu'd-Di'n himself, and had frequented many 
learned discussions, especially on history; so that, though 
not by training a historian, he resolved to employ his leisure 
in compiling a compendious universal history. Three of 
his works, the Tdrikh-i-Gttzida, or " Select History," the 
Zafar-ndma, or " Book of Victory," and the Nus-hatti'l- 
Qulub, or " Heart's Delight," have come down to us. Of 
these, the first two are historical, the third geographical. 

The Tarikh-i-Guzidavjz.s composed in 730/1330, and is 
Ta'rtkh- dedicated to Rashfdu'd-Di'n's son Ghiyathu'd- 

Din Muhammad, who was made Prime Minister 
in May, 1328, and, as we have seen, was put to death in 
sources of May, 1336. The author enumerates about two 

i-Gu^da l dozen of his sources, which include (i) the 


Siratun-Nabi, or Biography of the Prophet (probably 
Ibn Hisham's 1 ); (2) the Qisasu'l-Anbiyd (probably ath- 
Tha'labfs 2 ) ; (3) the Risdla-i-Qushayriyyd*; (4) the Tadh- 
kiratul-Awliyd (probably Farfdu'd-Din 'Attar's 4 ); (5) the 
Tadwin of Imamu'd-Di'nal-Yafi'i 5 ; (6) the Tajdribu' l-Umam* 
(probably of Ibn Miskawayhi); (7) the Mashdribu't-Tajd- 
rib\ (8) the Diwdnu'n-Nasab" 1 ; (9) the Chronicle of Muham- 
mad Jan'r at-Taban' 8 ; (10) the history of Hamza of Isfahan 9 ; 
(n) the Tcirikhul-Kdmil of Ibnu'l-Athir 10 ; (12) the Zub- 
datu't-Tawdrikh of Jamalu'd-Din Abu'l-Qasim of Kashan; 
(13) the Nizdmiit-Tawdrikh of the Qadi Nasiru'd-Din 
al-Baydawi 11 ; (14) the ' Uyiinu't- Tawdrikh of Abu Talib 
'AH al-Khazin al-Baghdadi; (15) the Kitdlml-Mctdrif 
of Ibn Qutayba 12 ; (16) the Tarikh-i-Jahdn-gushd of 'Ata 
Malik-i-Juwayni 13 ; (17) Abu Sharaf Jarbadhaqani's Persian 
translation of a.\- ( Uibi"sKztd&u7-Yamfnf 1 *; (18) the Siydsat- 

1 Edited by Wiistenfeld, Gottingen, 1858-1860; German trans- 
lation by Weil, Stuttgart, 1864. 

2 Printed at Cairo in 1312/1894-5, with the Abridgement of 
al-Ya"fi'i's Rawditr-Raydhin in the margins. 

3 Printed at Bulaq, 1284/1867-8. 

4 Edited by Dr R. A. Nicholson in my Persian Hist. Text Series, 
vols. iii and v. 

5 See Hajji Khalifa (ed. Fliigel), vol. ii, p. 254, No. 2773, where 
623/1226 is given as the date of the author's death. 

6 Vols. i, 5 and 6 have been published in fac-simile in the " E. J. W. 
Gibb Memorial " Series, (vii, i ; vii, 5 ; vii, 6). 

7 Probably one of the works on Genealogy entitled Kitdbtfl-Ansdb. 

8 Published at Leyden in 15 vols. (1879-1901) by an international 
group of eminent Arabic scholars presided over by the late Professor 
de Goeje. 

9 Edited with Latin translation by Gottwaldt, Leipzig, 1844-1848. 

10 Ed. Tornberg, 14 vols., Leyden, 1851-1876 ; Cairo, 12 vols., 1290- 

11 This work and its author will be discussed further on in this 

12 Ed. Wiistenfeld, Gottingen, 1850. 

13 The first two of the three vols. constituting this work, edited by 
Mirzd Muhammad of Qazwin, have appeared in the "E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial" Series, xvi, i and xvi, 2. 

14 The Arabic original was lithographed at Dihlf in 1847, and printed 


ndma (here called Siyarul-Muluk) of Nizamu'1-Mulk 1 ; 
(19) the Shdhndma of Firdawsf 2 ; (20) the Saljuq-ndma of 
Zahiri of Nishapur; (21) the Majma'u Arbdbil-Maslak of 
Qadi Ruknu'd-Dm Juwayni ; (22) the Istizhdru'l-Akhbdr 
of Qadi Ahmad Damghani; and lastly (23) the Jdmtu't- 
Tawdrikh* of the author's late martyred master and patron 
Rashidu'd-Dm Fadlu'llah. 

After the enumeration of his sources, most of which, as 
will appear from the foot-notes, are directly accessible to 
. us. the author describes the different eras used 

Different eras 

used in com- by different peoples, some of whom date from 
Adam, others from the Deluge, others from 
Abraham or Moses, others from the destruction of Pharaoh, 
others from the building of the Ka'ba or the Abyssinian in- 
vasion of Yaman, while the Greeks date from Alexander, the 
Copts from Nebuchadnezzar, and the pre-Islamic Quraysh 
from the year of the Elephant. He then discusses the 
confusion in chronology arising from these differences as to 
the terminus a quo, which is increased by the fact that the 
philosophers deny that the world had a beginning, while the 
theologians assert that it had a beginning and will have an 
end, but decline to define or specify either. The learned men 
of India, China and Europe assert that Adam lived about 
a million years ago, and that there were several Adams, 
each of whom, with his descendants, spoke a special lan- 
guage, but that the posterity of all save one (viz. the Adam 
of the Hebrews) died out. Most of the Muslim doctors of 
Persia, on the other hand, reckon the period between Adam 
and Muhammad as six thousand years, though some say 
more and some less. Astronomers reckon from the Deluge, 
since which, at the time of writing (viz. in the year 698 of 

in Cairo with al-Manmi's commentary in 1286/1869-70. Jarbadhaqani's 
Persian translation was lithographed in Tihran in 1272/1855-6. 

1 Edited and translated by Schefer (Paris, 1891, 1893). 

2 The three printed editions are Turner Macan's (Calcutta, 1829), 
Jules Mohl's (Paris, 1838-1878) and Viillers and Landauer's (Strass- 
burg, 1877-1884, 3 vols., ending with Alexander the Great). 

3 See above, pp. 68-9, 72-5. 


the Era of Yazdigird, i.e. about A.D. 1330) 4432 years are 

considered to have elapsed. 

The Ta rtkh-i-Guzida comprises an Introd\iction(Fattha), 

Contents of s ^ x cna pters (Bdb), each of which is divided 

the ra'rtkh- into numerous sections (Fas/), and a conclusion 
(Khdtima), as follows: 

Introduction. On the Creation of the Universe and of Man. 

Chapter /, in two sections. (i) Major Prophets, and 
(2) Minor Prophets, and Sages, who, not being Pro- 
phets, yet worked for the cause of true religion. 

Chapter II. The Pre-Islamic Kings of Persia, in four sec- 
tions, viz. : 

1 i ) Pishdadiyan, eleven Kings, who ruled 2450 years. 

(2) Kayaniyan, ten Kings, who ruled 734 years. 

(3) Mulukut-Tawd'if (Parthians), twenty -two 
Kings, who ruled 318 years 1 . 

(4) Sasaniyan, thirty-one Kings, who reigned 527 
years 2 . 

Chapter III. The Prophet Muhammad and his Companions 
and Descendants, in an introduction and six sections, 
viz. : 

Introduction, on the pedigree, genealogy and kin of 
the Prophet. 

(1) Life of the Prophet, his wars, his wives, secre- 
taries, relations and descendants. 

(2) The Orthodox Caliphs, who are reckoned as 
five, al-Hasan being included. Duration, from 
10 Rabi" I, A.H. ii to 13 Rabi" I, A.H. 41 (June 6, 
632-July 17, 661), when al-Hasan resigned the 
supreme power to Mu'awiya the Umayyad. 

1 The period between Alexander the Great and the fall of the 
Parthians (really about 5 50 years) is always under-estimated byMuham- 
madan writers, with the one exception (so far as I know) of Mas'udi, 
who, in MisKitdbdt- Tanbih wa!l-Ishrdf(pp. 97-9), explains the political 
and religious motives which led the founder of the Sasanian Dynasty, 
Ardashir-i-Bdbakan, to reduce it deliberately by about one half. 

2 This period is over-estimated by more than a century. The 
duration of the dynasty was from A.D. 226 to 652. 


(3) The remainder of the twelve Imams, excluding 
'Ah' and his son al- Hasan, who was poisoned in 
49/669-70. Duration, 215 years and 7 months, 
from 4 Safar, A.H. 49 to Ramadan, A.H. 264 
(March 14, 669-May, 878). 

(4) Notices of some of the chief "Companions" (As- 
hdb) and "Followers" (Tdbi'un) of the Prophet. 

(5) The Umayyad " Kings " (not regarded by the 
author as Caliphs), fourteen in number. Dura- 
tion, 91 years, from 13 Rabi' I, A.H. 41 to 13 Rabi' I, 
A.H. 132 (July 17, 66i-Oct 30, 749). 

(6) The 'Abbasid Caliphs, thirty-seven in number. 
Duration, 523 years, 2 months and 23 days, from 
13 Rabf i, A.H. 132 to 6 Safar, A.H. 656 (Oct. 30, 
749- Feb. 12, 1258). 

Chapter IV. Post-Islamic Kings of Persia, in twelve sec- 
tions, viz. : 

(1) Saffarids, three Kings, who reigned 35 years, 
from 253/867 to 287/900, after which date their 
posterity continued for some time to rule over 

(2) Samanids, nine Kings, who reigned 102 years 
and 6 months, from Rabi" II, A.H. 287 to Dhu'l- 
Qa'da, A.H. 389 (April, 900 to Oct.-Nov. 999). 

(3) Ghaznawis, fourteen Kings, who reigned 155 years 
(30 years over most of Persia, and the remaining 
years in Ghazna), from 390/1000 to 545/1150-1. 

(4) Ghun's, five Kings, who reigned for 64 years, from 
545/1150-1 to 609/1212-13. 

(5) Daylamis (or House of Buwayh), seventeen 
Kings, who reigned for 127 years, from 321/933 
to 448/1056-7. 

(6) Seljuqs, in three groups, viz.: 

(a) Of Persia, fourteen Kings, who reigned for 
161 years, from 429/1037-8 to 590/1194. 

(b) Of Kirman, eleven Kings, who reigned for 
150 years, from 433/1041-2 to 583/1187-8. 


(c) Of Asia Minor, eleven Kings, who reigned 
for 220 years, from 480/1087-8 to 700/1300-1. 

(7) Khwarazmshahs, nine Kings, who reigned for 
137 years, from 491/1098 to 628/1230-1. 

(8) Atabeks, in two groups, viz.: 

(a) Of Diyar Bakr and Syria, nine Kings, who 

reigned for 120 years, from 481/1088-9 to 6oi/ 

(b} Of Pars (also called Salgharids), eleven Kings, 

who reigned for 120 years, from 543/1148-9 to 


(9) Isma'ih's, in two groups, viz.: 

(a) Of North Africa and Egypt (the Fatimid 
Caliphs), fourteen anti-Caliphs, who reigned for 
260 years, from 296/908-9 to 556/1160. 
(b} Of Persia (the Assassins of Alamut), eight 
pontiffs, who ruled for 171 years, from 483/ 
1090-1 to 654/1256. 
(10) Qara-Khita'i's of Kirman, ten Kings, who reigned 

for 85 years, from 621/1224 to 706/1306-7. 
(i i) Atabeks of Luristan, in two groups, viz.: 

(a) Of Lur-i-Buzurg, seven rulers, who reigned 
for 1 80 years, from 550/1155-6 to 730/1329- 

(b) Of Lur-i-Kuchak, eleven rulers, who reigned 
150 years, from 580/1184-5 to 730/1329-30. 

(12) Mongol Il-khans of Persia, thirteen Kings, who 
had reigned at the time of writing 131 years, from 
599/1202-3 to 730/1329-30. "Hereafter," adds 
the author, " let him who will write the con- 
tinuation of their history." 

Chapter V. Account of men notable for their piety or 
learning, in six sections, viz.: 

(1) Imams and Mujtahids (12 are mentioned). 

(2) " Readers" of the Quran (9 are mentioned). 

(3) Traditionists (7 are mentioned). 

(4) Shaykhs and Sufi's (about 300 are mentioned). 


(5) Doctors of Divinity, Law and Medicine (about 
70 are mentioned). 

(6) Poets, of whom about 5 Arabic and 87 Persian 
poets are mentioned. The biographies of the latter 
have been translated and published by me in the 
J.R.A.S. for October 1900 and January 1901, and 
as a separate reprint. 

Chapter VI. Account of Qazwin, the author's native town, 
in seven sections, viz.: 

(1) Traditions concerning Qazwin. Some 40 are 
given, of which 36 are said to be from an auto- 
graph copy of the Tadwin of ar-Rafi'i 1 . Nearly 
all these agree in describing Qazwin as one of the 
"Gates of Paradise." 

(2) Etymology of the name of Qazwfn. 

(3) Notable buildings of Qazwin ; its nine quarters 
and architectural history from the time of Shapur I, 
who was its original founder; its conquest by the 
Arabs, and conversion to Islam. 

(4) Its environs, rivers, aqueducts (qandts), mosques, 
and tombs. Some of its inhabitants are said still 
to profess secrstly the religion of Mazdak. 

(5) Notable men who have visited Qazwin, including 
"Companions" and "Followers" of the Prophet, 
Imams and Caliphs, Shaykhs and 'ulamd, Kings 
and wazirs, khdqdns and amirs. 

(6) Governors of Qazwin. 

(7) Tribes and leading families of Qazwin, including 
Sayyids; l ulamd; Iftikharis (of whom the actual 
representative, Malik Sa'fd Iftikharu'd-Dfn Mu- 
hammad b. Abu Nasr, had learned the Mongol and 
Turki languages and writing", and had translated 

1 See G. le Strange's ed. and translation of our author's Nuz- 
hatu'l-Qulub ("E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, vols. xxiii, I, pp. 
56-8 and xxiii, 2, pp. 62-3), where many of these traditions are given 
on the same authority. See also p. 88 supra, n. 5 ad calc. 


Kalila and Dimna into the first, and the Sindibdd- 
ndma into the second); Bazdaris or Muzaffaris; 
Bishan's ; Durham's ; Hanafis ; Hulwanis ; Kha- 
lidi's; Khali'Hs ; Dabfran ; Rafi'fs ; Zakam's ; Zu- 
bayn's ; Zadanis ; Shirzads ; Tausi's ; 'Abbasfs ; 
Ghaffarfs ; Fi'lwagushan ; Qadawis ; Qarawuls ; 
Tamfmfs; Karajfs or Dulafis (one of whom was 
the cosmographer and geographer Zakariyya b. 
Muhammad b. Mahmud) ; Kiyas or Kaysfs ; 
Makanis ; Mustawfis (the author's own family, 
said to be descended from Hurr b. Yazid ar- 
Riyahi) ; Mu'minan ; Mukhtaran ; Mu'afiyan or 
Mu'afaniyan ; Marzubanan ; Nfshapuriyan ; and 
Bula-Ti'muris or Tababakan. 

Conclusion. A tree of dynasties, or genealogical tree, based 
on that devised by Rashi'du'd-Dfn, but improved. This 
tree is, however, omitted in all the manuscripts which 
I have seen. 

Having regard to the extent of the field covered by the 
Tarikh-i-Guzida, and its comparatively modest size (some 
170,000 words), it is evident that it is of the nature of a 
compendium, and that no great detail can be expected 
from it. It is, however, a useful manual, and contains many 
interesting particulars not to be found elsewhere, while for 
contemporary history it is of first-rate importance, so that 
the need for a complete edition of the text had long been 
felt. Until the year 1910 the only portions accessible in 
print were : 

(1) The whole of chapter iv, on the Post- Islamic dy- 
nasties of Persia, edited in the original, with French 
translation, by M. Jules Gantin (Paris, 1903). Pp. 
ix + 623. 

(2) The whole of chapter vi, except the first section on 
the Traditions, containing the account of Qazwin, 
translated into French by M. Barbier de Meynard, 
and published in the Journal Asiatique for 1857 
(Ser. v, vol. 10, pp. 257 et seqq.}. 


(3) Section 6 of chapter v, the account of the Persian 
poets, translated by myself in the J.R.A.S. for 
October 1900 and January 1901. 

In 1910, however, a fac-simile of a fairly accurate and 
ancient MS. (transcribed in 857/1453) was published in the 
"E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series (vol. xiv, i), and this was 
followed in 1913 by an abridged English translation, with 
full Indices, by myself and Dr R. A. Nicholson (vol. xiv, 2), 
so that the whole work is now accessible to scholars, who 
can form their own opinion of its value. 

In the preface of the Tdrikh-i-Guzida, Hamdu'llah 
Mustawfi speaks of a great historical poem on which he 
was then engaged, and of which he had at that 
ndma time (/3O/I33O) completed fifty and odd thou- 

sand couplets out of a total of 75,000. This 
poem, entitled Zafar-ndma, the " Book of Victory," was 
actually completed five years later. It is essentially a 
continuation of Firdawsf's Shdh-ndma, and the only known 
manuscript (Or. 2833 of the British Museum, a huge volume 
of 779 folios, transcribed in Shiraz in 807/1405, and bought 
in Persia by Mr Sidney Churchill for the Museum about 
I885 1 ) contains besides the Zafar-ndma the revised text 
of the Shdh-ndma on which the author had spent six years. 
The Zafar-ndma begins with the life of the Prophet 
Muhammad, and comes down to the author's own time, 
viz. to the year 732/1331-2, when Abu Sa'id was still 
reigning. It comprises, as already said, 75,000 couplets, 
10,000 couplets being assigned by the author to each of 
the seven and a half centuries of which he treats, or, ac- 
cording to the main chronological divisions of the work, 
25,000 couplets to the Arabs, 20,000 to the Persians, and 
30,000 to the Mongols. The author was forty years of age 
when he began it, and spent fifteen years on its composition, 
so that he must have been born about 680/1281-2. From 

1 For full description of this precious MS. see Rieu's Persian Sup- 
plement, No. 263, pp. 172-174, and also the Athenaeum for 1885, p. 314. 


Dr Rieu's description, it is evident that the historical value 
of this work is by no means to be neglected: "the author," 
he says (loc. cit., p. 173), "is very precise as to facts and 
dates, and his third book will be found valuable for the 
history of the Mongol period. He gives, for instance, on 
f. 5i2 a , a very vivid description of the wholesale slaughter 
wrought by the Mongols in his native place, Qazwfn. His 
information was partly derived from his great-grandsire, 
Ami'n Nasr Mustawfi, who was ninety-three years old at 
the time." The following extract from this portion may 
serve as a specimen : 

d ' JkJ 

****' j""* 

JU 6J*\ rt,7,t,.f-. A^A 

- 3 ^ J 


* u 

Mongol siege of a Chinese town, from an old ws..o{ t\\eJdmi l u't-Taivdrikh 
in the Bibliotheque Nationale 

To face p. 96 


ljJb jt j^j-ilj jJiLJ ^5**^ 'j^J tjt ^ 



jJ AJbj ' jLiXJ 4jl5l jjut JJU 

"Thence 1 to the town of Qazwfn, Subutdy 2 
Like raging tiger came right speedily. 
The tale of years at six, one, seven stood 
When that fair town became a lake of blood, 
And Sha'bdn's month had counted seven days 3 
When it was filled with woe and sore amaze. 
The governor who held the ill-starred town 
Muzaffar named, a ruler of renown, 
Was, by the Caliph's most august command, 
Set to control the fortunes of the land. 

When came the hosts of war and direful fate 
Firm as a rock they closed the city gate. 
Upon the wall the warriors took their place, 
And each towards the Mongols set his face. 
Three days they kept the ruthless foe at bay, 
But on the fourth they forced a blood-stained way. 

1 I.e. from Zanjdn. 

2 The MS. has ^U*~ (n for b\ but see the TcHrikh-i-Jahdn-gushd 
("E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, xvi, i), p. 115, 1. 17. 

3 Sha'bdn 7, A.M. 6i7 = October 7, A.D. 1220. 

B. p. 7 


Fiercely the Mongols entered Qazwin Town 

And heads held high before were now brought down. 

No quarter in that place the Mongols gave : 

The days were ended of each chieftain brave. 

Nothing could save the townsmen from their doom, 

And all were gathered in one common tomb. 

Alike of great and small, of old and young, 

The lifeless bodies in the dust they flung : 

Both men and women shared a common fate : 

The luck-forsaken land lay desolate. 

Many a fair one in that fearful hour 

Sought death to save her from th' invaders' power : 

Chaste maidens of the Prophet's progeny 

Who shone like asteroids in Virtue's sky, 

Fearing the lust of that ferocious host 

Did cast them down, and so gave up the ghost. 

Much in that land prevails the Shafi'ite ; 

One in a thousand is a Hanafite 1 ; 

And yet they counted on that gory plain 

Twelve thousand Hanafites amongst the slain ! 

In heaps on every side the corpses lay, 

Alike on lonely path and broad high-way. 

Uncounted bodies cumbered every street : 

Scarce might one find a place to set one's feet. 

In terror of the Mongol soldiery 

Hither and thither did the people fly, 

Some seeking refuge to the Mosque did go, 

Hearts filled with anguish, souls surcharged with woe. 

From that fierce foe so sore their straits and plight 

That climbing forms the arches hid from sight. 

The ruthless Mongols burning brands did ply 

Till tongues of flame leapt upwards to the sky. 

Roof, vault and arch in burning ruin fell, 

A heathen holocaust of Death and Hell ! " 

Yet a third work produced by this industrious writer is 
the well-known geographical and cosmographical treatise 
entitled the Nuz-hatul-Qulub, or " Heart's De- 
light." Manuscripts of it are fairly common, 
but until 1915 the text was only generally ac- 
cessible in the indifferent lithographed edition published 

1 Cf. Nuz-hatu? l-Qulub (Gibb Series, xxiii, i), p. 59, last line. 


at Bombay in 1311/1893-4. In 1915, however, a critical 
edition of the text was brought out by Mr G. le Strange 
in the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series (vol. xxiii, i), and 
the English translation (vol. xxiii, 2), which is now in the 
Press, will shortly follow. 

'T'he.Nuz-hatu'l-Qulub was composed five years later than 
the Zafar-ndma, during the period of anarchy which suc- 
ceeded Abu Sa'id's death, to which the author alludes with 
feeling. He was persuaded, he says, to undertake the work 
at the request of certain friends, who felt the want of a 
Persian work on geography, most of the works on that sub- 
sources of the J ect Dem g in Arabic. He enumerates amongst 
Nuz-katu'i. his sources the following works, which he has 
supplemented from his own observations during 
his travels through Persia: the Suwaru'l-AqdUm of Abu 
Zayd Ahmad b. Sahl al-Balkhf 1 ; the Tibydn of Ahmad b. 
Abi 'Abdi'llah; the Road-book (Masdlik wa'l-Mamdlik) of 
Abu'l-Qasim 'Abdu'llah ibn Khurdadhbih 2 ; and a work 
entitled the Jahdn-ndma; besides nineteen other works, 
of which the enumeration will be found in Rieu's Persian 
Catalogue, pp. 418-419. The work is primarily divided into 
an Introduction (Fdtihd), three Discourses (Maqdla), and 
an Appendix (Khdtima). The third Maqdla is the impor- 
tant part of the work: all that precedes this deals with 
cosmography, the heavens, the earth, the three kingdoms, 
and man. This third Maqdla, which contains the geo- 
graphical portion of the work, deals first with the geography 
of the two holy cities of Arabia and of Jerusalem; then 
with the geography of Persia, Mesopotamia and Asia 
Minor, with an appendix on the physical geography of 
Persia; then with the countries bordering on Persia, and 
some other lands never included in the Persian Empire. 

1 This author is perhaps identical with the " Ibnu'l-Balkhi " whose 
Fdrs-ndma Mr G. le Strange intends to publish in the Gibb Series. 

- He wrote about 230-4/844-8. See Brockelmann, vol. f, pp. 225-6. 
The text is included in de Goeje's valuable Bibliotheca Geographorum 



The Conclusion treats of the wonders of the world, espe- 
cially of Persia. The book is of considerable value for a 
knowledge of the geography and condition of mediaeval 
Persia, and was largely used by Mr G. le Strange in the com- 
pilation of his Lands of the Eastern Caliphate before he 
published the edition mentioned on the preceding page. 

Mention has been already made at the beginning of this 

chapter (p. 63 supra) of a small historical manual entitled 

Nizdmu't-Tawdrikh (the "Order of Histories" 

Al- rsaydawi s 

or " Dates ") by the well-known judge and 

0rW-commentator Nasiru'd-Din al-Baydawi, 
whose father held the same office under the Atabek Abu 
Bakr b. Sa'd-i-Zangi, the patron of the great poet Sa'di. 
This dull and jejune little book, compiled in the year 6/4/ 
1275, with a continuation, apparently added by the author, 
down to 683/1284-5, and a further continuation, probably 
by another hand, to 694/1294-5, contains an outline of 
general history from the time of Adam to the date last 
mentioned. It has not been published, and is probably 
not worth publishing, since it is doubtful whether it con- 
tains anything new or valuable, and whether it is calculated 
to add to the fame which its author enjoys as a juriscon- 
sult, theologian and commentator 1 . 

Another still unpublished historical manual of this period 
is that properly entitled Rawdatu Ulil-Albdb fi tawdrikhil- 
Akdbir wa'l-Ansdb (the "Garden of the Intelligent, on the 

histories of the great, and on genealogies") com- 
faJkl^' P iled in 717/1317 by Abu Sulayman Da'ud of 

Banakat (or Fanakat) in Transoxiana 2 . It is 
better known as the Tdrikh-i-Bandkati, is obviously and 
indeed admittedly inspired by Rashidu'd-Din's great work, 

1 For further particulars see Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 832-4. 

2 Ibid., pp. 79-80. The only copy to which I have access is a MS. 
(unfortunately defective at beginning and end) from the Library of the 
late Sir A. Houtum-Schindler. It formerly belonged to that great 
bibliophile Prince Bahman Mirzd Bahd'u^d-Dawla. 


and comprises nine sections, called qism, as follows: (i) Pro- 
phets and Patriarchs; (2) ancient Kings of Persia; (3) the 
Prophet Muhammad and the Caliphs; (4) Persian dynas- 
ties contemporary with the'Abbasid Caliphs; (5) the Jews; 
(6) the Christians and Franks; (7) the Indians; (8) the 
Chinese; (9) the Mongols. In one respect it shows very 
clearly the influence of Rashidu'd-Din's wider conception 
of history, for more than half the book is devoted to the 
non-Muslim peoples mentioned in the headings of the last 
five qisms, to wit the Jews, the European nations, including 
the Roman Emperors and the Popes, the Indians, the 
Chinese and the Mongols. The accounts given of these 
nations, though for the most part brief and dry, show some 
real knowledge of the chief facts, while the statements of 
non-Muslim religious doctrines are fair and devoid of acri- 
mony or fanaticism. Baydawi, on the other 

Contrast be- J . , 

tweenthe hand, like most Persian historians not directly 

SSwild inspired by Rashi'du'd-Dfn, practically ignores 
Banakati, and all history except that which is connected with 

Islam and the Muhammadan peoples, the an- 
cient Kings of Persia, and the Hebrew Prophets and Patri- 
archs. This contrast between these two historical manuals 
is probably in large measure due to the fact that Baydawi 
lived in Ears, which, as we have seen, lay outside the great 
stream of communication between East and West set in 
motion by the Mongol dominion, while the author of the 
Tdrikh-i-Bandkati was from Transoxiana, and, as poet- 
laureate of Ghazan Khan (70 1/1301 -2), was doubtless familiar 
with the Mongol court and the many foreigners from distant 
lands who frequented it. His information about the Jews, 
Christians, Indians, Chinese and Mongols, though largely 

directly borrowed, often in the same words, 

Wider range . 

of Banakatfs from the pages of Rashidu d-Dm, was never- 
SerS? e and theless undoubtedly supplemented by what the 
author learned orally from representatives of 
the peoples in question. In no Persian history before 
the Mongol period and in few after it do we find so many 


references to places, people, and historical events beyond 
the ken of most Muslim writers ; places like Portugal, 
Poland, Bohemia, England, Scotland, Ireland, Catalonia, 
Lombardy, Paris and Cologne ; people like the Roman 
Emperors from Romulus downwards, and the Popes from 
St Peter to the Pope contemporary with the author, who is 
said to be the two hundred and second in succession ; and 
events like the different Church Councils, the Conversion 
of Britain to Christianity in the time of Pope Eleutherius, 
the Nestorian heresy, and the like. As a specimen of one 
of the more interesting passages the following account of 
printing from wood blocks in China is worthy of atten- 
tion. Having described the care with which the Chinese 
transcribe historical and other passages from their ancient 
books, he says : 

" Then, according to a custom which they have, they were 
wont and still continue to make copies from that book in 
Account of such wise that no change or alteration can find 
Chinese print- ft s wav j n { O th e text. And therefore when they 

ing from the i t 11 r 

Ta'r{kk-i- desire that any book containing matter of value 
BanUatt t o them should be well written and should re- 

main correct, authentic and unaltered, they order a skilful 
calligraphist to copy a page of that book on a tablet in a 
fair hand. Then all the men of learning carefully correct it, 
and inscribe their names on the back of the tablet. Then 
skilled and expert engravers are ordered to cut out the 
letters. And when they have thus taken a copy of all the 
pages of the book, numbering all [the blocks] consecutively, 
they place these tablets in sealed bags, like the dies in a 
mint, and entrust them to reliable persons appointed for 
this purpose, keeping them securely in offices specially set 
apart to this end on which they set a particular and defi- 
nite seal. Then when anyone wants a copy of this book he 
goes before this committee and pays the dues and charges 
fixed by the Government. Then they bring out these tab- 
lets, impose them on leaves of paper like the dies used in 
minting gold, and deliver the sheets to him. Thus it is 


impossible that there should be any addition or omission in 
any of their books, on which, therefore, they place complete 
reliance; and thus is the transmission of their histories 

A third minor history of this period is the Majmctu'l- 

Ansdb ("Collection of Genealogies") of Muhammad ibn 

'Ah' of Shabankara, who, like Fakhr-i-Bana- 

^Anb ajm 1 ' katf > was a P et as wel1 as a historian. Of this 
book there seem to have been two editions, the 
first issued in 733/1332-3, the second three years later and 
one year after the death of Abu Sa'i'd. This work contains 
a summary of general history from the Creation to the time 
of writing, but I have unfortunately been unable to obtain 
or read a copy, and am indebted for these meagre par- 
ticulars to Rieu's admirable Persian Catalogue, pp. 83-4. 
According to Ethe 1 the original edition perished when the 
house of Rashidu'd-Dm's son Ghiyathu'd-Dm Muhammad 
was pillaged, and the author rewrote the book from memory, 
completing this second edition, according to Ethe, in 743/ 

Two rhymed chronicles of this period also deserve notice, 
the Shdhinshdh-ndma ("Book of the King of Kings"), or 
Chingiz-ndma (" Book of Chingiz"), of Ahmad of Tabriz, 
containing the history of the Mongols down to 738/1337-8 
in about 18,000 verses, and dedicated to Abu Sa'i'd; and 
the Ghdzdn-ndma of Nuru'd-Dm ibn Shamsu'd-Dm Mu- 
hammad, composed in 763/1361-2. Both works are very 
rare. Rieu has described a MS. of the first, copied in 8oo/ 
1397-8, acquired by the British Museum at the sale of the 
Comte de Gobineau's library in i885 2 ; and I possess a fine 
MS. of the latter, copied at Tabriz in 873/1468-9 for the 
Royal Library of Abu'n-Nasr Hasan Beg Bahadur Khan, 
and given to me in August, 1909, by Dr Rida Tawfi'q, then 

1 India Office Pers. Cat., cols. 10 11, Nos. 21 and 22. 

2 Persian Suppl. Cat., No. 201, p. 135. 


Deputy for Adrianople in the Turkish Parliament. Both 
works are written in the same metre (the mutaqdrib) as the 
Shdh-ndma of Firdawsi, of which they are imitations, but 
the second is only about half the length of the first (some- 
thing between 9000 and 10,000 couplets) 1 . Neither of these 
two works appears to be of any exceptional merit either 
as history or poetry, though useful information about the 
period of which they treat could no doubt be extracted 
from them by patient examination. 

1 In the short prose preface describing how the poem came to be 
written for Sultan Uways, who had restored the pension enjoyed by 
the author, then fifty years of age, under Ghazan Khan, the number of 
verses is stated as 10,000. 



From the literary point of view the period which we 
are now considering is, as we have seen, chiefly remarkable 
for the quality and quantity of historical writers 
which it produced. That it was also rich in 
poetical talent cannot be disputed, but this is 
less remarkable, since at hardly any period was there a 
dearth of poets in Persia. Almost every well-educated 
Persian can produce moderately good verses on occasion, 
and it would be a hopeless and useless task even to mention 
all of those who, transcending the rank of mere versifiers, 
can fairly claim to be poets. Severe selection is necessary 
but not easy, for on the one hand due regard must be paid 
to the judgement of the poet's own countrymen, even when 
it does not entirely accord with our own ; and on the other 
hand care must be taken not to overlook any poet of 
originality and talent merely because he has not found 
favour with the Persian biographers, who, especially in 
their treatment of contemporaries, are apt to be swayed by 
personal, political, and even religious prejudices and pre- 

In the period with which we are now dealing there lived 
at least a score of poets whose claims to consideration 
The two greatest cannot be denied. The two greatest by far 
poets whosur- were Jalalu'd-Din Rumf and Sa'di of Shfraz, of 
pTriod^aiaiu'd. whom the former died in 672/1273 at the age of 
DmRumiand 55 an( j t h e latter about 690/1291 at the very 

Sa'di, discussed } 

in a previous advanced age, as is generally asserted, of no 

lunar years. Both these poets, therefore, belong 

rather to the period preceding this, and have accordingly 


been already discussed in a previous volume 1 , to which the 
reader is referred. They might with equal justice have 
been included in this volume, which is the poorer for their 
omission, since their literary activity extended into the period 
which it covers, and both poets came into relations with 
some of its leading personages, Sa'di with the Sdhib-Diwdn 
and his brother 'Ala'u'd-Din of the great Juwayni family, and 
even with Abaqa Khan himself 2 , and Jalalu'd-Di'n Rumi 
with the unfortunate Parwana of Rum, Mu'inu'd-Dm, who 
was put to death by Abaqa for suspected complicity with 
the Egyptians in 675/I276-/ 3 . It would be easy to devote 
many pages to each of them in this place without repeating 
anything that has been said before, but the difficulty is to 
limit rather than to extend the scope of this chapter, and, 
in spite of all temptations to the contrary, they must there- 
fore be omitted here. 

For similar reasons I shall content myself with a very 

brief mention of three other poets of this time whom many 

Persian students, especially such as have pur- 

Oimssion of poets . . T . T ,. 

who, though they sued their studies in India, would place next 
wrote m Persian, t ^ ^ great poets mentioned above ; I mean 

were not of Per- 
sian race or resi- Amir Khusraw and Hasan of Dihli and Badr- 

i-Chach, all of whom are highly esteemed in 
India, but none of whom, so far as is known, ever visited, 
much less resided in Persia. To reduce the subject-matter 
of this book within any reasonable limits, it becomes more 
and more necessary to exclude the great and increasing 
number of Indian writers of Persian. Two considerations 

besides that of space seems to me to justify this 

Grounds for ex- _ . . . 

eluding Indian- procedure. The first is that, owing to the greater 
Persian literature j n t- eres f- j n i n di a which naturally prevails in 

1 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 515-539. 

2 See the English Introduction to vol. xvi, i, of the " E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial" Series (the Jahdn-gushd of Juwayni, edited by Mirzci 
Muhammad), pp. lii-liv. 

3 See Bar-Hebraeus' Mukhtasardd-Duival (Beyrout ed. of 1890), 
pp. 501-3. 


England, far more has been written about these Indian- 
Persian authors, whether poets or historians, than about 
the purely Persian men of letters. The second is that, so 
far as a foreign student may be permitted to express an 
opinion on matters of literary taste, this Persian literature 
produced in India, has not, as a rule, the real Persian flavour, 
the tjtdf as the Irish call it, which belongs to the indigenous 
product. Without making any invidious comparisons, it 
will hardly be contested that there is just as good reason for 
treating the abundant Persian literature produced in India 
from the middle of the thirteenth to the middle of the 
nineteenth century as a separate subject as for a similar 
procedure in the case of the English literature produced in 
England and that produced in America; and that therefore 
the omission of Amir Khusraw from this chapter is as justi- 
fiable as the omission of Walt Whitman from a modern 
English literary history, especially as a very long notice of 
the former is given in Elliot's History of India 1 . The same 
observation applies in lesser degree to the Persian writings 
produced in Afghanistan and Turkey respectively, though 
Persian still remains the natural speech of a large number 
of Afghans, and Turkish Sultans (notably the great Sah'm 
" the Grim 2 ") have not disdained, even when at war with the 
Persians, to make use of their language for literary purposes. 
Exceptions will be made, however, especially in the period 
succeeding that included in this volume, in the case of 
native-born Persians who, attracted by the munificence of 
the Moghul Emperor of Dihlf, emigrated to India in the 
hopes of disposing of their intellectual wares more profitably 
than was possible in their own country. 

The attention of those who read Urdu should be called 

1 Vol. iii, pp. 524-566. 

2 A most sumptuous edition of this Persian Diwdn of Sultdn Sah'm, 
edited by the late Dr Paul Horn of Strassburg, was printed by com- 
mand of the German Emperor for presentation to the late Sultdn 
'Abdu'l-Hamid in 1904. Of this rare and beautiful work I am fortunate 
enough to possess a copy. 


to a very excellent modern book entitled Shi'rul-Ajam 
Note on a good (" Poetry of the Persians") by the late Shibli Nu- 
modem Urdu 'mam, lithographed at 'AH-garh in two volumes 

work containing ... 

critical studies of in or about 1325/1907, and containing critical 
Persian poets studies of about a. score of the classical poets of 
Persia from Firdawsi arid his predecessors to Hafiz. Amongst 
these a long notice 1 is devoted to Amir Khusraw of Dihli, 
which contains incidentally a good deal of information 
about his friend, contemporary and fellow-poet Hasan of 
Dihli. Those who do not read Urdu may be referred to 
another excellent and scholarly work produced by Indian 
scholarship under the auspices of my friend Sir Edward 
Denison Ross, the Catalogue of the Arabic and Persian 
Manuscripts in the Oriental Public Library at Bankipore, of 
which the first volume, containing the Persian poets from 
Firdawsi to Hafiz, was published at Calcutta in 1908. 
Twenty pages of this volume (pp. 176-195) are devoted to 
Amir Khusraw and his various works, and the four following 
pages to his friend Amir Hasan. Both were disciples of the 
great Saint Nizamu'd-Di'n Awliya, who died in 725/1324, 
only seven months before Amir Khusraw, who was buried 
beside him. Amir Hasan only survived them a few (pro- 
bably two) years. 

Amir Khusraw, not less notable as a musician than as 

a poet, was of Turkish race, his father Amir Sayfu'd-Dfn 

Mahmud having fled before the Mongols from 

Brief account of the region of Ba lkh to India, where he finally 

Amir Khusraw 

settled at Patyali. There the poet was born in 
651/1253. He was therefore seventy-one years old when 
he died, and " lived to enjoy the favour of five successive 
kings of Dihli." He was enormously productive ; Dawlat- 
shah credits him with nearly half a million verses. Of 
these " Mirza Baysunqur, after ceaseless efforts, succeeded 
in collecting 120,000," but having subsequently discovered 
2000 more from his ghazals, he " concluded that it would be 

1 Op. laud., vol. ii, pp. 107-195. 


very difficult for him to collect the complete work of the 
poet, and gave up the idea for ever 1 ." 

Although, for the reasons given above, I do not propose 
to speak at length of Amir Khusraw, yet, in accordance 
with the well-known Arabic saying 2 of which the gist is 
that what cannot be fully included need not therefore be 
wholly omitted, I shall give here " for good luck and a 
blessing" (tayammun an wa tabarruk*"} one short extract from 
his Layld wa Majmin in which he mourns, with a remark- 
able touch of feeling, the death of his mother and younger 
brother, both of whom died in 698/1298-9. The poet's love 
for his mother, which is in strong contrast with his lack of 
appreciation of his daughter, is one of the most attractive 
features of his character 3 . 

1 See the Bankipore Catalogue mentioned above, vol. i, pp. 176-7, 
and my edition of Dawlat-shah, p. 240. 

2 ' 4JL> Jjlj -N) J^ jj jj N) U 

3 The five verses addressed to his daughter, who appears to have 
been called 'Afifa, will be found on p. 125 of vol. ii of the Shfritl- 
'Ajam, and the verses to his mother on pp. 126-7. 


"A double radiance left my star this year : 
Amir Khusraw's Gone are m y brother and my mother dear. 

lament on his ., _,. j j i_ 

mother's death My two ""' moons have set and ceased to shine 
In one short week through this ill luck of mine. 
By double torture I am racked of Fate, 
By double blow doth Heaven me prostrate. 
Double my mourning, double my despair ; 
Alas that I this double grief must bear ! 
Two brands for one like me is't not a shame ? 
One fire's enough to set the stack aflame. 
One breast a double burden should not bear, 
One head of headaches cannot hold a pair. 
Beneath the dust my mother lieth dead ; 
Is't strange if I cast dust upon my head ? 
Where art thou mother mine, in what strange place ? 
Canst thou not, mother, show me thy dear face ? 
From heart of earth come smiling forth once more, 
And take compassion on my weeping sore ! 
Where'er in days gone by thy feet did fall 
That place to me doth Paradise recall. 
Thy being was the guardian of my soul, 
The strong support which kept me safe and whole. 
Whene'er those lips of thine to speed were stirred 
Ever to my advantage was thy word. 
To-day thy silence makes its dumb appeal, 
And lo, my lips are closed as with a seal ! " 

Badr-i-Chach, another poet of Transoxiana, has a con- 
siderable reputation in India but is practically unknown in 
Persia. The town of Chch or Shsh of which 
he claimed to be the " Full Moon " (Badr) is 
the modern Tashkand. His poetry, which I have never read, 
but of which Sir H. Elliot has translated specimens in 
his History of India 1 , is reputed very difficult, a common 
characteristic of the Persian poetry produced by men of 
Turkish race or writing under Turkish influence and patron- 
age, but not in itself, from our point of view, a reason for 
including him in this survey. 

1 Vol. iii, pp. 567-573. 

CH. in] QANI'f AND PtiR-I-BAHA in 

Mention may here be made of a little-known poet called 

Qani'i, who fled from his native town of Tus in Khurasan 

before the terrible Mongol invasion, escaped to 


India, and thence made his way westwards by 
Aden, Mecca, Medina and Baghdad to Asia Minor, where 
he attached himself to the court of the Seljuq rulers of 
Qonya (Iconium), for whom he composed an immense versi- 
fied history of the dynasty on the model of the Shdh-ndma, 
and a metrical rendering of the celebrated Book of Kalila 
and Dimna, of which a manuscript (Add. 7766) belonging 
to the British Museum is described by Rieu 1 , from whom 
these particulars are taken. In virtue of these and other 
poetical productions, of which he boasted that they filled 
thirty volumes and amounted to 300,000 bayts, he received 
the title of Maliku'sh-Shtfard (" King of Poets " or Poet 
Laureate), and he lived long enough to compose an elegy 
on the death of the great Jalalu'd-Din Rumi, who died, 
as already mentioned, in 672/1273. 

Another early but little-known poet of this period is 

Pur-i-Baha-yi-Jami',to whomDawlat-shah 2 devotes an article 

containing but few facts about his life, to which 

pur-i-Baha-yi- o ther biographical works, such as the Haft 

Jami / 

Iqlim, Atash-kada, Majma'u'sh-ShiJ'ard, etc. 
add but little. His original patron was Khwaja Wajihu'd- 
Dm Zangi'(Dawlat-shah)or Tahir-i-Faryumadf (//#/? /<7/z'#z), 
but he afterwards enjoyed the patronage of the great Sahib 
Diwdn. He seems to have been fond of quaint conceits 
and tours de force, and Dawlat-shah cites an ingenious poem 
of his, containing 28 bayts, in which he made use of as 
many Mongol and Turkish words and technical terms as 
possible, as when he says 3 : 

1 Rieu's Brit. Mus. Pers. Cat., pp. 582-4. 2 Pp. 181-5 of my edition. 
3 Loc. tit., p. 182, lines 22-3. 


" The wizards of thy tresses, like the pens of the bakhshis, 
Have practised on thy cheek the Uyghiir writing 1 ." 

The following quatrain, addressed to a friend who had 
lost a tooth, is also rather neat. 


" If a pearl is missing from thy sweet casket 
Thy dignity is in no wise diminished in the matter of beauty. 
A hundred moons shine from the corners of thy cheek 
What matter if one star be missing from thy Pleiades ?" 

The two following poems by Pur-i-Baha, written in 
the grand style cultivated by court poets, and filled with 
elaborate word-plays and far-fetched metaphors, are chiefly 
interesting because they can be exactly dated. The first 
refers to the destruction of Nishapiir by an earthquake in 
666/1267-8, and the second to its restoration in 669/1270-1 
by order of Abaqa. Both are taken from that rare work 
the Mujmal of Fasi'hi of Khwaf 2 . 

1 See d'Ohsson, vol. i, p. 17, who defines "les Games " (Qdmdri) as 
"ministres de leur culte grossier, qui e"taient a la fois magiciens, 
interpretes des songes, augures, aruspices, astrologues et mddecins." 
The bakhshis were the scribes who wrote the old Uyghur character, 
which continued to be used in Turkistan until the fifteenth century of 
our era. 

2 Only four MSS. of this work are known to exist, two in Petrograd 
and two in Cambridge. See my article on this rare book in the number 
of the Muston published at the Cambridge University Press for the 
exiled Belgian professors in 1915, pp. 48-78. 

CH. in] PtiR-I-BAHA 113 

j t 

' U) (^I 

" Through the shakes and knocks of the earthquake shocks it is upside 

down and awry, 
So that 'neath the Fish is Arcturus 1 sunk, while the Fish is raised to 

the sky. 
That fury and force have run their course, and its buildings are over- 


And riven and ruined are whole and part, and the parts asunder strown. 
Not in worship, I ween, are its chapels seen with spires on the ground 

low lying, 
While the minarets stoop or bend in a loop, but not at the bedesmen's 


The libraries all are upside down, and the colleges all forsaken, 
And the Friday Mosque in ruins is laid, and the pulpits are shattered 

and shaken. 

Yet do not suppose that this ruin arose from the town's ill destiny, 
But ask of me if thou fain wouldst see the wherefore of this and the why. 

1 Arcturus (SimdK) is accounted one of the highest stars in 
heaven. In the popular cosmogony of the less educated Muslims, the 
earth is supposed to be supported by a great fish (Samak in Arabic, 
Mdhi in Persian) which swims in a vast ocean contained by banks of 
cloud. Hence the Arabic expression minds- Samak ila's-Stmdk ("from 
the Fish to Arcturus"), corresponding to the Persian az mdh td bi-mdhi 
("from the Moon to the Fish"), meaning from the highest to the 

B. P. 8 


'Twas because the Lord had such high regard for this old and famous 

That He turned His gaze ou its fashions and ways with the eyes of 

favour and grace, 
And such was the awe which His glance inspired, and His Light's 

effulgent rays 

That with shaking feet to earth it fell for fear of that awful blaze. 
For did not the Mountain of Sinai once fall down and crumble away 
Where Moses stood, and the Face of God to behold with his eyes did 

pray ? " 

" The buildings of Nishapur Time had striven to displace 
And Ruin wide from every side had thither turned its face. 
God willed that men should once again its buildings strive to raise 
In the reign of just Abdqa, the Nushirwan of our days. 
Of all the world the lord is he, of all the earth the king, 
Foe-binder, world-subduer he, all kingdoms conquering. 
It happened in the year six-hundred and three-score and nine 
That from its ruins rose again this city famed and fine. 

CH. in] IMAMf OF HERAT 115 

Venus and Sol in Taurus, Ramadan was ending soon ; 

In Gemini stood Mercury, in Pisces stood the Moon. 

May this new town's foundation to thee a blessing bring, 

And every desert in thy reign bear towns as flourishing ! 

By thy good luck Nishapiir old is now grown young again, 

Like to some agdd dotard who his boyhood doth regain. 

Three things, I pray, may last for aye, while earth doth roll along : 

The Khwaja's 1 life, the city's luck, and Pur-i-Baha's song ! " 

Not very much need be said, or indeed, is known, about 

Imami of Herat, whose full name, according to the author 

of the Tarikh-i-Guzida, was Abu 'Abdi'llah 

Imami of Herdt , 11 A i / T- 1 i TT 

Muhammad b. Abu Bakr b. 'Uthman. He was 
the panegyrist of the rulers and ministers of Kirman, and 
died, according to the Majmctul-Fusahd'*' in 667/1268-9. 
An extraordinarily complicated acrostic on his own name, 
composed by him according to the terminology of the state 
accountants, will be found in the Guzida 3 . The highest 
compliment which he ever received was probably that paid 
him by his contemporary Majdu'd-Din Hamgar, in reply to 
a versified question addressed to the latter poet by Mu'inu'd- 
Din the Parwana, Malik Iftikharu'd-Din,Nuru'd-Din Rasadi, 
and the Sdhib-Diwdn Shamsu'd-Din, enquiring his opinion 
as to the respective merits of himself, Sa'di and Imami' 4 . 
His reply was as follows : 

" Though I in song am like the tuneful birds, 
Fly-like I sip the sweets of Sa'di's words ; 
Yet all agree that in the arts of speech 
Sa'di and I can ne'er Imami reach." 

1 Probably the Sdhib-Diwdn is meant. a Vol. i, p. 98. 

:i See my translation of this section of the work (ch. v, 6) in the 
J.R.A.S. for Oct. 1900 and Jan. 1901, pp. 13-15 of the separate reprint. 

4 These verses are given by Dawlatshah, p. 166, 1. 24 p. 167, 
11. 1-9 of my edition. 



To this Imami replied in the following complimentary 
quatrain 1 : 

"Though throned in power in eloquence's fane, 
And, Christ-like, raising song to life again, 
Ne'er to the dust of Majd-i-Hamgar's door, 
That Sahbdn of the Age 2 , can I attain." 

Sa'di, on the other hand, vented his spleen in the 
following verse : 

" Whoe'er attaineth not position high 
His hopes are foiled by evil destiny. 
Since Hamgar flees from all who pray or preach, 
No wonder he ' can ne'er Imami reach 3 .' " 

The poems of Imami, so far as I am aware, have never 
been published, nor are manuscripts of them common. In 
my necessarily limited investigations I have made use of 
the British Museum manuscript Or. 2847. One of the 
prettiest of his poems which I have met with occurs on 
f. Q8 a of that manuscript, and runs as follows : 


s*o I 

1 British Museum MS. Or. 3713, f. 179''. 

3 Sahbdn ibn Wa'il, an ancient Arab, whose eloquence is proverbial. 

3 There is an untranslateable pun here, for fmdmi means the posi- 
tion of an Imdm, or leader in prayer, as well as being the poet's nom 
de guerre. 

4 MS.>**> which I have emended on account of the metre. 

CH. in] IMAMf OF HERAT 117 

" We celebrate the New Year's Feast but once in all the year ; 

A Feast perpetual to me affords thy presence dear. 

One day the roses hang in clusters thick upon the tree ; 

A never-failing crop of roses yield thy cheeks to me. 

One day I gather violets by the bunch in gardens fair, 

But violets by the sheaf are yielded by thy fragrant hair. 

The wild narcissus for a single week the field adorns ; 

The bright narcissus of thine eye outlasts three hundred morns. 

The wild narcissus must its freshness lose or vigil keep 1 : 

To thy narcissus-eyes no difference waking makes or sleep. 

Fragrant and fair the garden jasmine is in days of Spring, 

But round thy hyacinths 2 the jasmine-scent doth ever cling. 

Nay, surely from thy curls the hyacinths their perfume stole, 

These are the druggist's stock-in-trade and those food for the soul. 

Those from a ground of silver 3 spring, and these from heaps of stone ; 

Those crown a cypress-form, while these adorn some upland lone. 

There is a garden-cypress which remains for ever green, 

Yet by thy cypress-stature it appears uncouth and mean." 

Imami was for some time patronized by Fakhru'1-Mulk 

1 A flower "keeps vigil" when it is fully open. 

2 " Hyacinth " (sunbtit) is a common poetical metaphor for hair. 

3 Meaning the fair, silver-like skin. 


of Khurasan 1 , who on one occasion submitted to him the 
following versified enquiry 2 : 

" What says that master of the Law, chief scholar of our land, 
Our guide in doctrine and belief, to this which we demand : 
Suppose a cat at dead of night feloniously should steal 
A cage of pigeons or of doves, and make therefrom a meal, 
Would Retribution's Law revealed the owner justify 
If he in vengeance for the birds should doom the cat to die ?' ; 

To this enquiry, Imami answered as follows : 

"A subtle question this indeed ! The palate of the mind 
Therein thy nature's fragrance fair and reason rare doth find ! 
No vengeance falls upon the cat, for nowhere hath implied 
Our Prophet in his Holy Law that such is justified. 
Have cats which hunt for birds less right than catkins 3 on the tree ? 
Their claws upon the branch they spread whene'er a bird they see. 
So, if his own white arm he seeks to keep secure from pain, 
Let him avoid with Pussy's blood his hand and arm to stain. 
If he the pigeon seeks to save, the dove to keep alive, 
To hang their cages out of reach he surely could contrive ! " 

Poetical interrogations of this sort seem to have been 
the fashion at this time, for certain people of Kashan 
addressed a similar versified question as to the respective 
merits of the poets Anwari and Zahir of Faryab to 
Majdu'd-Di'n Hamgar, and to this same question Imami also 
thought good to reply in verse. The text and trans- 
lation of this correspondence, including the question and 
the two answers, all in verse, are given in the Tarikk-i- 
Guztda*, to which the curious reader is referred. Majdu'd- 
Dm Hamgar's reply contains the date when it was written, 
viz. the end of Rajab, 674 (Jan. 19, 1276), and both he 
and Imami agree in preferring Anwari to Zahir, a judge- 
ment in which nearly all competent critics will concur. 

1 Apparently that same minister Fakhru'1-Mulk Shamsu 'd-Dawla, 
to whom several of Imami's poems are dedicated. 

2 For the original verses, which it would be superfluous to reprint 
here, see my edition of Dawlatshdh, p. 169. 

3 Catkins are called gurba-i-bid, "willow-cats," in Persian. 

4 See pp. 60-64 of the separate reprint of my translation of this por- 
tion (ch. v, 6) published in \heJ.R.A.S. for Oct. 1900 and Jan. 1901. 


Majdu'd-Din's claim to prefer Imami's poetry not only to his 
own but to Sa'di's, on the other hand, cannot be taken 
seriously, and must have been prompted by some personal 
motive, such as a desire to please Imami or to annoy Sa'df. 
All Persian writers who have noticed this matter at all 
have expressed amazement at the view which Majdu'd-Dm 
Hamgar saw fit to advance; for in truth Imami's poetry, so 
far as we can judge from the specimens given by Dawlat- 
.shah 1 and in the Atash-Kada"- and the Majma'u'l-Fusakd*, 
has no special distinction or originality, while Sa'di's claim 
to be reckoned among the half-dozen greatest poets of his 
country has never been disputed, 

Majdu'd-Di'n Hamgar was, according to the Tarikh-i- 

Guzida, a native of Yazd, and a protege of Baha'u'd-Din 

Juwayni, the high-handed governor of Fars, who 

Majdu'd-Dm died 678/I27Q 4 . When the poet came from 

Hamgar I ' ? 

Yazd to Isfahan, he left his elderly wife behind 
him, but she soon followed him. News of her arrival was 
brought to the poet by one of his pupils, who said, " Good 
news ! Your lady has alighted in the house." " Good 
news," replied Majdu'd-Din, " would rather be that the 
house had alighted on her ! " The lady, to whom this 
speech was reported, reproached her husband for his unkind 
words, quoting the quatrain of 'Umar Khayyam beginning : 

" Days changed to nights ere thou wert born, or I 5 ." 

" Before me, perhaps," replied Majdu'd-Dm, "but Heaven 

forbid that day and night should have existed before thee!" 

According to Dawlatshah 6 , Majdu'd-Dm Hamgar boast- 

ed descent from Nushfrwan the Sasanian, and was on this 

1 Pp. 167-170 of my edition. 

'* P. 137 of the lithographed edition of 1277/1860-1. 

:! Vol. i, pp. 98-101. 4 See p. 21 supra. 

5 See E. H. Whinfield's text and translation in Triibner's Oriental 
Series (1883), No. 33 (pp. 24-5). 

6 P. 176 of my edition. 


account a somewhat privileged person at the courts which 
he frequented. To this alleged genealogy the poet alludes 
in the following verses 1 : 


' J'J 


1 Cited in the Afajffia i u'/-Fusa/ui, vol. i, p. 596. 


" My virtues all a cruel age hath made for me a bane ; 

My youthful blood the aged Sphere hath shed in grief and pain. 

The envious Mercury 1 hath plucked the pen from out my hand, 

The arching Heaven hath drawn a bow to smite me where I stand. 

O Sphere, what vvould'st thou of me, a poor, bare-footed thing ? 

O Time, what seek'st thou from me, a bird with broken wing ? 

Make of the falcon's eyes a dish to satisfy the owl : 

Make of the lion's thighs the food for which the jackals prowl. 

In no wise like the noisy drum will I his blows bewail, 

Although his lashes on my back descend as falls the flail. 

O foot of trouble's elephant, prithee more gently press ! 

O hand of this ignoble Sphere, increase my dire distress ! 

Through tribulations bravely borne my heart hath grown more bright, 

As mirrors gain by polishing in radiancy and light. 

What time the rose-bush from the dust doth raise its flowering head, 

The sapling of my luck (what luck !) hath withered and is dead. 

My fault is this, that I am not from some base seed upgrown : 

My crime is this, that noble is the pedigree I own. 

The sons of Sasn, not Tigin, my ancestors I call ; 

I'm of the race of Kisrd, not the household of InaT 3 . 

My verse is sweet and exquisite as union with the fair : 

My pen in picture-painting hath the gifts of fancy rare. 

No eye hath seen an impulse mean impede my bounty's flow : 

The ear of no petitioner hath heard the answer ' No ! ' 

When youth is gone, from out the heart all love of play is cast : 

And lustre fadeth from the sun which hath the zenith passed." 

Majdu'd-Di'n Hamgar wrote poems in praise of Shamsu'd- 

Din Muhammad the Sdhib-Diwdn as well as of the Atabek 

Sa'd b. Abu Bakr. Manuscripts of his poems 

Quatrains of afe fa fc fi jj manuscr jpt (Qr. 3713) 

Majd-i-Hamgar > J/ " 

in the British Museum, transcribed in the years 
A.D. 1293-8 by the poet's grandson, contains a number 
of his quatrains. Unlike the quatrains of 'Umar Khay- 
yam, Abu Sa'i'd b. Abi'l-Khayr, and other masters of this 
style of verse, Majdu'd- Din's quatrains deal less with 

1 Mercury is the planet which presides over the destinies of authors, 
scribes and poets. 

* Tigin or Tagin is a suffix of Turkish names (e.g. Subuk-tigin, 
Alp-tigin, etc.} and Indl is another common Turkish name or title. 
Kisra is the Arabic form of Khusraw (" Chosroes "), the proper name 
of Nushirwdn and Parwiz, and the generic name for all the kings of the 
Royal House of Susan. 


mystical and philosophical ideas than with concrete things 
and persons. Some are merely abusive epigrams, such as 
the following : 

" Born of a mother of accursed womb 
From Ganja's town to Abkhdz thou didst come, 
Where that dog-training swineherd nurse of thine 
Fed thee on dog's milk and the blood of swine." 

The following, expressing the poet's love of travel, is too 
ingenious in its word-plays to admit of adequate translation : 

->* J^ 

" O heaven, never turn aside my reins from wandering : 
Give me my bread from Sarandfb (Ceylon), my water from Sarab: 
Grant me each evening (shdni) a loaf of bread from Bamiyan, 
And every morning (bam} give me a draught of water from Sham 
(Damascus) 1 ." 

In the two following quatrains he laments his advancing 

J ' 

1 Sarandzb, from the Sanskrit Sivarna-dipa, is the name given by 
the Arab geographers to Ceylon, and Sardb is a town in Adharbayjan. 
There is a kind of word-play between these two names, but a much more 
complete one in the second half of the quatrain between bam (morning) 
and Bdmiydn (north-west of Afghanistan) on the one hand, and 
shiim (evening) and Sham (Damascus) on the other. The last is an 
example of the " complete word-play." 


" Fiery and fluent, once my heart did hurl 
Spontaneous verses forth, each verse a pearl : 
Then Love, Desire and Youth were mine. These three 
Not e'en in dreams I now can hope to see ! " 

" This foot of mine no more the stirrup suits ; 
For me no more are spurs and riding-boots. 
Oppressed by aches and age, there now remains 
No foot for stirrup and no hand for reins." 

Here is another very insulting quatrain, but again no 
record remains of the person to whom it was addressed : 

" Compared to thee a pig's a pretty sight : 
Beside thy face an ape's the heart's delight. 
Thy temper's uglier than e'en thy face, 
Compared to it thy face is fair and bright." 

Some of the quatrains are acrostics on names, as, for 
example, the following : 

" The [sum of the] numbers of the letters in that graceful charmer's 


Is exactly three hundred and sixty, like the divisions of the heavens. 
The third letter is one-ninth of the fourth letter, 
While the first letter is one-sixth of the second letter." 


The name appears to be Nashdt (JUJ), for ,j = 50, 
CH= 300, t = i, and J = 9, which yields a total of 360 and 
fulfils the two other conditions. 

The following is addressed to his sweetheart : 


"No means have I by thee to pitch my tent, 
Nor money in thy street a house to rent : 
My ears and eyes serve only to this end, 
To hear thy voice and on thee gaze intent." 

That Majdu'd-Dfn Hamgar reached an advanced age is 
suggested by some of the quatrains just cited,whilein another 
he describes himself as over eighty, but I have not been 
able to ascertain the precise dates of his birth and death. 

Mention must now be made of a poet of far greater 
talent and originality than those of whom we have spoken 
above, namely Fakhru'd-Dm Ibrahim of Hama- 
dan, better known by his poetical nom de guerre, 
or takhallus, of 'Iraqi. Notices of his life are found in 
most of the later biographies of mystics and poets, notably 
in the Nafakdtu'l-Uns of Jami' 1 and in the Majdlisu'l- 
'Ushshdq of Husayn Mirza Bayqara ; but in the absence of 
contemporary testimony the particulars there given must 
be received with a certain reserve, while from his writings, 
almost entirely of a mystical and erotic character, little or 
nothing is to be gleaned as to his personal adventures. He 
is the typical qalandar, heedless of his reputation, and seeing 
in every beautiful face or object a reflection, as in a mirror, 
of the Eternal Beauty. " Love," as one of his biographers 
says, " was predominant in his nature," and hence his ghazals 
have an erotic character which has exposed him to very 
harsh strictures on the part of some European critics, notably 

1 Pp. 700-704 of Nassau Lees's edition. 

CH. in] 'IRAQI' 125 

Sprenger 1 , who find scandalous in a Persian sentiments 
which in Plato they either admire or ignore. 

According to Jami, 'Iraqi was born at Hamadan, and in 
childhood learned the Qur'dn by heart and could recite it 
melodiously and accurately. When he was about seventeen 
years of age, a party of qalandars, amongst whom was a 
very beautiful youth, came to Hamadan, and, when they 
left, 'Iraqi, attracted by the beauty of the young dervish, 
followed them to India. At Multan he became the disciple 
of Shaykh Baha'u'd-Dm Zakariyya, of whom he says in one 
of his poems : 

" If thou shouldst ask of the world ' Who is the guide of men ?' 
Thou wilt hear from heaven no other answer than ' ZakariyyaV" 

Soon after his arrival there the discipline of a chilla, or 
forty days' retirement and meditation, was imposed upon 
him, but on the tenth day the other dervishes came to the 
Shaykh and complained that instead of meditating in silence 
he was singing a ghazal or ode which he had composed, and 
which in the course of a few days was in the mouths of all the 
revellers in the city, who were singing it in the taverns to 
the accompaniment of the harp and zither. This ghazal, 
which is one of 'Iraqi's best-known poems, is as follows : 

1 Catalogue of the Library of the King of Oude, pp. 440-1. 


" The wine wherewith the cup they first filled high 
Was borrowed from the Sdqi's languorous eye. 
Since self-possessed the revellers they found 
The draught of selflessness they handed round. 
The loved one's wine-red lips supplied the cup : 
They named it ' Lover's wine,' and drank it up. 
No rest the hair of those fair idols knows, 
So many a heart it robs of its repose. 
For good and bad a place within our hall 
They found, and with one cup confounded all. 
They cast the ball of Beauty on the field, 
And at one charge compelled both worlds to yield. 
The drunken revellers from eye and lip 
The almond gather, and the sugar sip. 
But that sweet lip, desired of all, most fair, 
Maketh harsh words the helpless lover's share. 

CH. in] 'IRAQf 127 

They loosen and set free their locks of jet 

That they therewith for hearts a snare may set. 

A hundred messages their glances dart ; 

Their eyebrows signal secrets to the heart. 

They speak in confidence and silence claim, 

And then their secrets to the world proclaim. 

Where'er in all the world is grief and gall 

They mix them up, the mixture ' Love' they call. 

Why should they seek to hurt 'Iraqi's fame, 

Since they themselves their secrets thus proclaim ? " 

When Shaykh Baha'u'd-Dm heard the last couplet, he 
said, " This finishes his business ! " He then called to 
'Iraqi in his cell," Do you make your supplications in wine- 
taverns? Come forth!" So 'Iraqi came forth, and the 
Shaykh clothed him in his own khirqa or dervish-cloak, 
raised him from the ground to which he had cast himself, 
and subsequently gave him in marriage his daughter, who 
afterwards bore him a son named Kabfru'd-Din. 

Twenty-five years passed, and Shaykh Baha'u'd-Din 
died, naming 'Iraqi as his successor. The other dervishes, 
however, disapproved of this nomination, and complained 
to the King of 'Iraqi's antinomianism. He thereupon left 
India and visited Mecca and al-Madina, whence he proceeded 
to Asia Minor. At Qonya (Iconium) he attended the 
lectures of the celebrated Shaykh Sadru'd-Din of that city 
on theFustis of Shaykh Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabi 1 , and 
composed his most celebrated prose work, the Lamctdt 
(" Flashes " or " Effulgences "), which was submitted to the 
Shaykh and won his approval. The powerful nobleman 
Mu'fnu'd-Din the Parwana was 'Iraqi's admirer and disciple, 
and built for him, it is said, a khdnqdh or monastery at 
Tuqat, besides showing him other favours. On his death, 
'Iraqi left Asia Minor for Egypt, where also he is said to 
have been well received by the reigning Sultan, whose favour 
he retained, notwithstanding the efforts of his enemies to 
traduce him. In Syria, whither he subsequently proceeded, 
he met with an equally good reception, and there, after six 

1 See vol. ii of my Lit. Hist, of Persia, pp. 497-501. 


months' sojourn, he was joined by his son Kabiru'd-Din 
from India. There also he died, on the 8th of Dhu'l-Qa'da, 
688 (Nov. 23, 1289) and was buried in the Salihiyya 
Cemetery at Damascus, beside the great mystic Shaykh 
Muhiyyu'd-Di'n ibnu'l-'Arabi, who had predeceased him by 
50 years, and whose influence in Persia, still prevalent even 
in our days, was largely due to 'Iraqi, Awhadu'd-Di'n of 
Maragha, and others of the same school. 

The following poems from 'Iraqi's Diwdn may serve 
besides that already given, as typical of his style : 

CH. m] 'IRAQI 129 

" From head to feet thou art gracious, pleasant and sweet, O Love ! 

Thee to prefer to life 'twere right and meet, O Love ! 

To thee doth aspire the heart's desire of all, O Love ! 

A hunter of hearts art thou to hold us in thrall, O Love ! 

To mine eyes appear thy features fair and dear, O Love ! 

Awake or asleep like a crystal stream so clear, O Love ! 

Though Beauty's wine doth incarnadine thy cheek, O Love ! 

Bear with thy comrades, nor causeless quarrels seek, O Love ! 

They melt in air, hope's promises false and fair, O Love ! 

Excuses, I ween, you'll find enough and to spare, O Love ! 

Kisses sip from thine own fair lip. and behold, O Love ! 

The Water of Life with its savour so sweet and so cold, O Love ! 

In the dust hard by thy path I die at thy door, O Love ! 

That a draught of wine on this dust of mine thou mayst pour, O Love ! 

Jewels of speech on all and each thou dost hurl, O Love ! 

So that every soul in its ear may wear a pearl, O Love ! 

None do I see in grace like thee, and I'm sure, O Love ! 

Thou art soul incarnate and spirit essential and pure, O Love ! 

In mine eyes and heart thou hast thy part and share, O Love ! 

Thou dost hide or appear, now dark and dim, now clear, O Love ! 

Never a moment on earth from North to South, O Love ! 

May 'Irdqi aspire to have his desire of thy mouth, O Love ! " 

The following is the first strophe of a very fine Tarji 1 - 

B. P. 


" Cups are those a-flashing with wine, 
Or suns through the clouds a-gleaming ? 
So clear is the wine and the glass so fine 
That the two are one in seeming. 
The glass is all and the wine is naught, 
Or the glass is naught and the wine is all : 
Since the air the rays of the sun hath caught 
The light combines with night's dark pall, 

For the night hath made a truce with the day, 
And thereby is ordered the world's array. 
If thou know'st not which is day, which night, 
Or which is goblet and which is wine, 
By wine and cup divine aright 
The Water of Life and its secret sign : 

Like night and day thou mayst e'en assume 
Certain knowledge and doubt's dark gloom. 
If these comparisons clear not up 
All these problems low and high, 
Seek for the world-reflecting cup 
That thou mayst see with reason's eye 
That all that is, is He indeed, 
Soul and loved one and heart and creed." 

Here is a fragment of another ode : 

CH. m] 'IRAQf 


" Forth from the Veil came that fair Cup-bearer, in hand the cup ; 
He tore our veils asunder, and our vows forthwith broke up ; 
Showed us His visage fair, and straightway us of sense bereft, 
Then sat Him down beside us, when of us no trace was left. 
His locks the knots unloosed ; our spirits' bonds were cast aside; 
Our souls abjured the world, and to His curls their fortunes tied. 
There in His fragrant tresses we remained in frenzy fine, 
Intoxicated with the proffered cup of ruby wine. 
Lost at His hands, our hearts for refuge clung unto His hair, 
E'en as the drowning man will catch at straws in his despair. 
And when His tresses' chains became the bonds of hearts that raved, 
From their own being they escaped and from the world were saved." 

Of the following ode a spirited translation was made, 
but not published, by my friend Sir E. Denison Ross. The 
translation here given resembles and is suggested by his, 
but is not identical with it, for I cannot lay my hands on 
the copy which I received, nor can I remember it in detail. 



The ' 



" Save love of thee a soul in me I cannot see, I cannot see ; 
An object for my love save thee I cannot see, I cannot see. 
Repose or patience in my mind I cannot find, I cannot find, 
While gracious glance or friendship free I cannot see, I cannot see. 
Show in thy face some sign of grace, since for the pain wherewith I'm 


Except thy face a remedy I cannot see, 1 cannot see. 
If thou wouldst see me, speed thy feet, for parted from thy presence sweet, 
Continued life on earth for me I cannot see, I cannot see. 
O friend, stretch out a hand to save, for I am fallen in a wave 
Of which the crest, if crest there be, I cannot see, I cannot see. 
With gracious care and kindly air come hither and my state repair ; 
A better state, apart from thee, I cannot see, I cannot see. 
Some pathway to 'Iraqi teach whereby thy gateway he may reach, 
For vagrant so bemused as he I cannot see, I cannot see. 1 ' 

Besides his lyric poetry 'Iraqi composed a mathnawi 
poem entitled the 'UshsJidq-ndina, or " Book of Lovers," but 
this I have not read, nor is a copy of it at present 
. access ible to me. I therefore pass to his most 
notable prose work, the Lama'dt (" Flashes," or 
" Effulgences "), a mystical treatise inspired, as already 
mentioned, by the teachings of " the most great doctor" (ash- 
Skaykhtil-akbar) Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabi, by origin of 
the famous Arabian tribe of Tayy, an d by birth a Moor of 

The Lamddt is a comparatively small book, containing, 

perhaps, between 7000 and 8000 words, and, though written 

in prose, includes numerous pieces of verse. The 

The Latna'dt . . . . . . _ , , r 

many-sided and talented Jami, of whom we 
shall speak in a later chapter, wrote a commentary on it, 
entitled Ashfatul-Lama'dt 1 (" Rays of the Flashes "), in the 

preface to which he says that he began by being 
ilTworT 1 " 10 " f prejudiced against the work and its author, but, 

being requested by one of his spiritual guides 
to study and collate the text, he found it to consist of 
"graceful phrases and charming suggestions, verse and 
prose combined together and subtleties in Arabic and 
Persian intermingled, wherein the signs of [human] know- 

1 Lithographed, with other Sufi tracts, at Tihran in 1303/1885-6. 

CH. in] 'IRAQI'S LAMA' AT 133 

ledge and [superhuman] gnosis were apparent, and the lights 
of rapture and ecstasy manifest, so that it would awaken the 
sleeper, cause him who was awakened to apprehend secret 
mysteries, kindle the fire of Love, and put in motion the 
chain of Longing." The book is divided into 28 " Flashes" 
(Lam'a), probably in correspondence with the number of 
letters in the Arabic alphabet. As a specimen I give the 
opening pages, down to the end of the first Lam'a, the prose 
portion in translation only, the verses both in translation and 
in the original. 

"In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Forgiving. 
" Praise be to God who illuminated the countenance of 
His Friend with the Effulgence of Beauty, so that it gleamed 
with Light ; and made visible therein the limits of Perfec- 
tion, and rejoiced therein with joy ; and raised him up by 
His hand and chose him out while Adam was not yet a 
thing mentioned, nor had the Pen written, nor the Tablet 
been inscribed. [His friend, who was] the Treasure-house 
of the treasures of Being, the Key of the Store-houses of 
Bounty, the Qibla of Desire and the Desired One, the 
Possessor of the Standard of Praise and the Laudable 
Station, the tongue of whose high degree declares : 

' Though in outward form I seem one of Adam's progeny, 
Yet the underlying truth claims for me paternity V 

1 This verse, as J<lmi tells us, is from the Td'iyya, or qastda rhyming 
in /*, of Ibnu'l-Farid. Though outwardly the Prophet is descended 
from Adam, he is in reality the Object and Cause of Creation, so that 
Adam exists through and because of him, not he through Adam. The 
Muslims represent God as saying to the Prophet, " But for thee, I 
had not created the Heavens." 


' Although in form of Adam's race,' said he, 

' Higher by far than his is my degree. 

My beauty mirrored in a glass I see, 

And all the world a picture seems of me. 

Creation's Sun am I : doth it amaze 

If each created atom me displays ? 

The holy Spirits make my Essence plain, 

And human forms my Attributes retain. 

The boundless Sea's a sprinkling of my grace ; 

The radiant light's a reflex of my face. 

From Throne to Footstool all is but a mote 

Which in the radiance of my Sun doth float. 

The Veil of Attributes aside is hurled, 

And my bright Essence brightens all the world. 

The stream which Khidr's ebb of life did stop 

Was of my Kawthar- stream a single drop. 

That breath wherewith Christ loosed the thralls of Death 

Was but a blast of my soul-saving breath. 

CH. in] 'IRAQI'S LAM A' AT 135 

My Essence all the Names doth manifest ; 
I am of Names the greatest and the best ! ' 
( May God bless and hail Him /) 

But to proceed. A few words on the degrees of Love, 
dictated by the mood of the moment, are here set down in 
the manner of the Sawdnih 1 , that they may be for every 
lover a mirror to display the Beloved ; though the rank of 
Love is too high for anyone to approach the pavilion of its 
glory by dint of understanding or explanation, or to gaze on 
the perfection of its true nature with the eyes of discovery 
and observation. 

Exalted high is Love o'er men's ambition, 

And o'er ideas of union or partition ; 

For when a thing transcends all thought and mention 

'Tis freed from likeness and from comprehension. 

It is veiled by the Veil of Glory and isolated in its Per- 
fection. Its Attributes are the Veils of its Essence and 
implicit in that Essence. Its Splendour is the Lover of its 
Beauty, which is involved in that Splendour. For ever it 
makes love to itself, and concerns itself not with aught else. 
Every moment it casts aside the Veil from the face of some 
loved one, and every instant it raises a new song in the 
way of loverhood. 

>U3I &}jj oW j' ^ Jl) 

Within the Veil Love sings its air: 
Where is the lover to hear it, where ? 

1 This is the title of a treatise by Shaykh Ahmad Ghazzali on Love, 
the Lover, and the Beloved. 


Each moment it chants a different lay, 
And ever some melody fresh doth play. 
All the Universe echoes its song: 
Who hath heard such an anthem long? 
Its secret out from the world doth leap: 
How can an Echo its secret keep ? 
I tell no tales, but loud and clear 
From the tongue of each atom its secret hear. 

Every moment with every tongue it tells its secret to 
its own ear ; every instant with all its ears it hears its 
speech from its own tongue ; every minute with all its 
eyes it flashes its beauty on its own vision ; every second 
in every aspect it presents its being to its own notice. Hear 
from me its description as it really is : 

It speaks with me through speaking and through speechless 1 ; 
Through lowered eyelashes and glancing eyes. 

Knowest thou what it whispers in my ears ? 

I am Love, for the which in these worlds there is found not a place : 
The 'Anqd am I of the West 2 , who hath never a trace. 

1 I.e. through articulate and inarticulate creatures, through the 
organic and the inorganic. 

2 The true explanation o^Anqd-yi-Mughrib is doubtful. See Lane's 
Arabic- English Lexicon, s.v. 

CH. in] 'IRAQI'S LAMA'AT 137 

By my glance and my eyebrow the world I have captured, I trow, 
Heed not that I do not possess either arrow or bow. 
Revealed in the face of each atom am I, like the sun ; 
So apparent am I that my form is apparent to none. 
I speak with all tongues, and with every ear do I hear 
Though, strange as it seems, I have neither a tongue nor an ear. 
I am all that exists in all worlds, so 'tis patent and clear 
That neither in this world nor that have I rival or peer. 


Know that in each ' Flash ' of these ' Flashes ' some hint 
is given of that Reality which transcends differentiation, 
whether you call it Love or Attraction, since there is no 
dearth of words ; and some suggestion is made as to the 
manner of its progress in diverse conditions and cycles, 
of its journey through the degrees of dissociation and es- 
tablishment, of its manifestation in the form of ideas and 
realities, of its emergence in the garb of Beloved and Lover, 
and finally of the absorption of the Lover in the Beloved 
formally, of the inclusion of the Beloved in the Lover 
ideally, and of the comprehension of both together in the 
Majesty of its Unity. There divergences are reconciled, 
ruptures are made whole, the Light is concealed within the 
Light, and the Manifestation lies latent within the Mani- 
festation, while from behind the pavilions of Glory is cried: 

' JJ*L 4DT y U ^ J ^1 
O, is not all save God hollow and vain ? 

The identity [of each] disappears [in the other], leaving 
neither sign nor trace, and they merge in God, the One, the 


Setting forth the pre-existence of Love to both Beloved and 

Lover, and the manner of their production by it, 

which takes place in the First Differentiation ; 

and setting forth that wherein each stands 

in need of the other. 

The derivation of both Lover and Beloved is from Love, 
which, in its Abode of Glory, is exempt from differentiation, 


and, in the Sanctuary of its own Identity, is sanctified from 
inwardness and outwardness. Yea, in order to display its 
perfection, in such way as is identical with its Essence and 
[equally] identical with its Attributes, it shows itself to itself 
in the Mirror of Loverhood and Belovedness, and reveals its 
Beauty to its own Contemplation by means of the Seer and 
the Vision. Thus the names of Loverhood and Beloved- 
ness appeared, and the description of the Seeker and the 
Quest became manifest. It showed the Outward to the 
Inmost, and the Voice of Loverhood arose : it showed the 
Inmost to the Outward, and the name of Belovedness was 
made plain. 

J^U ^j jAU 

No atom doth exist apart from It, that Essence single: 
'Tis when Itself it doth reveal that first those ' others ' mingle. 
O Thou whose outward seeming Lover is, Beloved thine Essence, 
Who hitherto e'er saw the Object Sought seek its own presence ? 

Love, by way of Belovedness, became the Mirror of the 
Beauty of Loverhood, so that therein it might behold its 
own Essence, and by way of Loverhood the Mirror of 
Belovedness, so that therein it might contemplate its own 
Names and Attributes. Although but one object is beheld 
by the Eye of Contemplation, yet when one face appears 
in two mirrors, assuredly in each mirror a different face 

* * ftio a 5 , * tot * iSti * 6 ' r > ' H J t f tie , * 

U>JI O^jkfi cuil !>l ' <xjl j*e. j^-tj ^1 Ao-^JI U 3 

The Face is only one, yet multiple 
When thou in many mirrors see'st it. 


O how can ' Otherness ' appear when whatsoe'er existeth here 
In essence is that Other One becoming to our vision clear ?" 

Shaykh Abu Hamid Awhadu'd-Din of Kirman was, 

like 'Iraqi, a follower, and, indeed, as it would appear from 

the Majma'ttl-Fusahd 1 , a personal friend or dis- 

KiS, U ' d " Dtn f ci P le of the S reat Sha 7 kh Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l- 
'Arabi, and had met (according to the same 
authority) that wild mystic Shams-i-Tabriz, the inspirer of 
Jalalu'd-Din's Mathnawi and Diwdn. He was also ac- 
quainted, as some assert, with Awhadi of Maragha and with 
'Iraqi himself, whom, in his heedlessness of appearances and 
passionate admiration of beauty, he somewhat resembles. 
Shaykh Shihabu'd-Din, who, for chronological reasons, 
cannot be the famous Suhrawardi, strongly disapproved of 
him, called him a " heretical innovator," and refused to 
admit him to his presence, on hearing which Awhadu'd- 
Din recited the followin Arabic verse 2 : 


" I mind not that bad names thon dost me call : 
I'm glad that thou shouldst mention me at all." 

Jami apologizes for him for "contemplating the Truth 
through the medium of its Manifestations in Phenomena, 
and beholding Absolute Beauty in finite forms," and adds 
that, being asked by Shams-i-Tabriz what he was doing, he 
replied, " I am contemplating the Moon in a bowl of water," 
meaning the Beauty of the Creator in the beauty of the 
creature ; to which Shams-i-Tabriz replied, " Unless you 
are afflicted with a carbuncle on the back of your neck, 

1 See the Tihran lithographed edition, vol. i, pp. 89-94, and Jmi's 
Nafahdt, p. 685. 

2 See Jami, Nafahdtu'l-Uns, ed. Nassau Lees, pp. 684-689. This 
verse is ascribed by Badi'u'z-Zaman al-Hamadhanf to a poet named 
Dumayna (Rascfil, ed. Beyrout, 1890, p. 96 and n. 8 ad calc.*). In its 
original form it was addressed to a woman and runs : 


why do you not look at the Moon in the sky?" Similarly 
Mawlana Jalalu'd-Din Rumi, being told that Awhadu'd- 
Din sought the society of the beautiful, but with purity of 
purpose, exclaimed, " Would rather that his desires had 
been carnal, and that he had outgrown them ! " Awhadu'd- 
Din expresses his own point of view in the following 
quatrain : 

jj JA Juj 

" Therefore mine eyes insistent gaze on forms 
Because the Idea itself displays in forms : 
We live in forms ; this World's the formal World : 
The Idea we thus must needs appraise in forms." 

Apart from a few quatrains cited in the Nafahdtul- Uns of 
Jami, the Majma'ul-Fusahd of Rida-quli Khan, and other 
biographical works, Awhadu'd-Din seems to have left little 
save a mathnawi poem entitled " The Lamp of Spirits " 
(Misbdhu'l-Ai"wdh), from which long extracts are given in 
the Majmctu'l-Fusahd and the following eight couplets in 
the Nafahdt (pp. 688-9) : 


" While the hand moves, the shadow moveth too : 
What else, indeed, can the poor shadow do? 
'Tis but the hand which makes the shadow fall, 
The shadow, then, no substance hath at all. 
To call ' existent ' what no Being hath, 
Save through another, is not Wisdom's Path. 
Absolute Being only wise men call 
Being, and naught save God exists at all. 
That which existent but through God became 
Is NOT in truth, but only is in name. 
And yet the Artist loves His work, 'tis clear ; 
There's none but He, so be thou of good cheer. 
Himself at once the Truth doth hear and tell 
The Face He shows He doth perceive as well, 
Know, then, by Allah, for a certainty 
That nothing else existence hath save He." 

Mention should also be made of Awhadu'd-Din's disciple, 

Awhadi of Maragha,also called of Isfahan, because, though a 

native of the former place, he passed a consider- 

Awhadiof b j portion of his life and died at the latter 1 . 


Little seems to be known to the biographers 
of his circumstances, but the prevalent opinion is that he 
died in 738/1337-8. His chief poem is an imitation of the 
Hadiqa of Sana'i entitled Jdm-i-Jam (the "Cup of Jamshfd," 
also known as the " World-displaying Glass "), of which 
copious extracts are given by the biographers, and of which 
I possess a good manuscript 2 . Dawlatshah, followed by 
the Haft Iqlim, states that this poem was so popular that 
within a month of its production four hundred copies of it 
were made and sold at a good price, but adds that in his 
time (892/1487) it was seldom met with and little read. This 
seems to have been the only mathnawi poem he wrote, but 
he also left a diwdn, estimated by Rida-qulf Khan, the author 
of the Majma l t?l-Fusahd, to contain six or seven thousand 

1 See my edition of Dawlatshah, pp. 210-215 ; Majma > 'u'l-Fusahd, 
vol. ii, pp. 94-98 ; Haft Iqlim, under Isfahdn, etc. Jamf, however, 
(Nafakdt, p. 707) reverses the roles of these two cities. 

2 Dated 916/1510-11. The text comprises about 4500 couplets. 


verses 1 , including qasidas and quatrains, of which a selection 
is given by the biographers. The following may serve as 
examples of his style : 

(Part of a qasida taken from the Haft Iqltm}. 

Jj lw J C*O J> IJJ 'J^! (^5-** 

" How long wilt pride in beard and turban take ? 
That Friend adopt as friend : all else forsake. 
With stir and movement fill thy heart with pain : 

1 Dawlatsh<ih (p. 210 of my edition) says 10,000. 


The soul in rest and quiet strength doth gain. 

All scent and hue of self do thou efface, 

That HE may clasp thee tight in His embrace. 

Till thou art contrite vainly shalt thou seek 

In truth the beauty of that lovely cheek. 

If thou canst do what He enjoins on thee 

He'll do what thou dost ask assuredly. 

He's kin enough : all else forsake forthwith : 

When wilt thou free thyself from kin and kith ? 

Ask of thyself, when from thyself set free, 

God-vexer, where and who thy God may be ? 

Who is't in thee who speaks of ' us ' and ' me ' ? 

Who fixed the evil and the good for thee ? 

If there are ' others,' prithee point them out : 

Art thou alone ? Then wherefore ' others ' flout ? 

To be united is not as to see : 

In this my speech is no hypocrisy. 

Were sight and union one in fact and deed 

The eye on looking at the thorn would bleed. 

A cup he gives thee : spill not, drink it up ! 

Hold fast when I bestow another cup ! 

One is the Master's Face : pluralities 

From Mirror and from Mirror-holder rise. 

One the King's portrait and the coining-die : 

Numbers in gold and silver coinage lie. 

One sap supplies the flower which doth adorn 

The rose-bush, and the sharp and cruel thorn. 

Orange and fire alike 1 their hue derive 

From that life-giving sun whereon they thrive. 

A thousand circles issue from the point 

What time the compass doth enlarge its joint. 

The world entire reveals His Vision bright : 

Seek it, O ye who are endowed with sight : 

All things His praises hymn in voices still, 

Sand in the plain and rocks upon the hill." 

The following fragment is possessed of some beauty, 
but is imitated from one of Sa'df's 2 . 

1 Or " Orange and pomegranate,'' for ndr has both meanings. 

2 See the Calcutta edition of 1795, vo1 - i' ff - 238 a -239 b . 


e. OJ j ^rb j^-o J^-i 

3 OJ L tt er' 

" Think O thou who dost inherit, yet didst labour ne'er, 
Who was he whose wealth was thine, and who art thou, the heir? 
He amassed but did not spend it, so 'twas left behind : 
Use it well, that when thou flittest, others good may find. 
Gold a goblin is, and woman for the neck a chain : 
Chained and goblin-haunted's he who greatly loves the twain. 
Over-anxious for thy offspring be not, for the Lord 
Knoweth better than the servant how to guard his ward. 
Dally not with lust and passion, which do curses bring, 
Curses which thou shalt not 'scape with Flying Ja'far's 1 wing. 
This thy lust and this thy craving are a sea of strife : 

1 I.e. Ja'far ibn Abi Talib, the Prophet's cousin, who was killed by 
the Romans in the Battle of Mu'ta (September, A.D. 629), and of whom 
the Prophet said, " I saw Ja'far yesterday in a group of the angels, 
having two wings whereof the pinions were stained with blood." 
(Ibnu'l-Athir, ed. Tornberg, vol. ii, p. 181). Hence he was called the 
"Winged (or "Flying") Martyr." (Muir's Life of Mahomet, new and 
abridged edition of 1828, p. 410 ad calc.} 


Canst thou swim not ? Wherefore venture in the waves thy life ? 

Washing of the coat and turban naught can profit you : 

Wash thy hands of worldly longings : this is washing true ! 

On the evil wrought by others never wilt thou dwell 

If upon the deeds thou doest thou shouldst ponder well. 

Truth there lacks not in the sayings Awhadi doth say : 

He who hearkens to his counsel wins to Fortune's way ! " 

The following ode is another favourable specimen of 
Awhadfs work : 

JtU. Ji jlj! 


" Many a Spring shall Autumn follow when thou'rt passed away ; 
Many an evening, many a morning, many a night and day. 
To the World thy heart incline not, though it seemeth fair ; 
Deem it not a faithful friend who for its friends doth care. 
Thou to-day who like a scorpion everyone dost sting, 
Snakes shall be thy tomb's companions, shame to thee shall bring. 
Comfort some afflicted spirit ; that is worth thy while ; 
Else to vex thy fellows' spirits easy is and vile. 
Look not on earth's humble dwellers with a glance so proud : 
Knowing not what Knight is hidden midst the dusty cloud." 

The following fragment must conclude our citations from 
Awhadi : 

jl^Jlwl U 

B. P. 10 


" These suppliant suitors hold in slight esteem ; 
Hold thou their vows as frailer than a dream. 
Honours which meanness winneth for thy name 
Regard, if honour toucheth thee, as shame. 
When Fortune's cup into your hands doth pass 
Think of the headache as you raise the glass. 
Like ill-bred camel seems thy restive soul ; 
Put on the leading-rein or lose control ! " 

The village of Shabistar (or Chabistar) near Tabriz, in 

Adharbayjan, gave birth about the middle of the thirteenth 

century of the Christian era (seventh of the 

Mahmfid-i- hijra) to another notable mystic, Sa'du'd-Di'n 

Shabistan / 

Mahmud, generally called, after his native place, 
Shabistarf. Little is known of his life, which seems to have 
been passed quietly, and, so far as those stirring times 
allowed, uneventfully, at or near Tabriz, where he died 
about 720/1320. He was by no means a voluminous writer, 
but his Gulshan-i-Rdz, or " Rose-Garden of Mystery," a 
mathnawi containing about one thousand couplets, is one 
of the best and most compendious manuals of the mystical 
doctrine of the Sufis, and enjoys even at the present day a 
high reputation. It has been edited with a translation, 
Introduction, and valuable notes, by Mr E. Whinfield 1 , who 
gives in his Introduction the few particulars known about the 
author and the history of the poem. This attracted the 
attention of European travellers as early as A.D. 1700, 
reached certain Western libraries during the succeeding 

1 Published by Triibner, London, 1880. 


century, was utilized by Dr Tholuck in his Ssufismus in 
1821 and was partly translated into German by the same 
writer in his Bluthensammlung aus der M orgenlandischen 
Mystik in 1825, and was edited with a complete versified 
translation in German by Hammer-Purgstall in 1838. The 
poem was composed, as the poet himself informs us, in the 
month of Shawwal, 710 (Feb.-March, 1311) in reply to 
a series of fifteen questions on mystical doctrine propounded 
by an enquirer from Khurasan named Amir Husaynf. These 
questions, which are included in the poem, are briefly as 
follows : 

(i) As to the nature of thought. 

The fifteen 

questions (2) Why is thought sometimes a sin, some- 

answered in the t j mes a dut and what sort of thought 

Guhhan-i-Raz J ' 

is incumbent on the mystic? 

(3) What am " I " ? What is meant by " travelling into 

one's self"? 

(4) What is meant by " the Pilgrim," and what by " the 

Perfect Man " ? 

(5) Who is the Gnostic ('Arif) who attains to the Secret 

of Unity ? 

(6) "If Knower and Known are one pure Essence, 
What are the inspirations in this handful of dust ? " 

(7) " To what Point belongs the expression, ' I am the 

Truth ' ? " 

(8) " Why call they a creature ' united ' ? 

How can he achieve ' travelling ' and ' journey ' ? " 

(9) " \Vhat is the union of ' Necessary' and ' Contingent'? 
What are ' near ' and ' far,' ' more ' and ' less ' ? " 

(10) " What is that Sea whose shore is speech ? 

What is that pearl which is found in its depths ? " 
(i i) " What is that Part which is greater than its Whole? 

What is the way to find that Part ? " 

(12) " How are Eternal and Temporal separate ? 
Is this one the World and the other God ? " 

(13) "What means the mystic by those [allegorical] ex- 

pressions of his ? 


What does he indicate by ' eye ' and ' lip ' ? 

What does he intend by ' cheek/ ' curl,' ' down ' and 

' mole ' ? 
(He, to wit, who is in ' Stations ' and ' States.') " 

(14) "What meaning attaches to 'Wine,' 'Torch' and 

' Beauty ' ? 
What is assumed in being a haunter of Taverns ? " 

(15) " Idols, girdles and Christianity in this discourse 
Are all infidelity ; if not, say what are they ? " 

The book contains not only the answers to these ques- 
tions, but a number of incidental illustrations, parables and 
digressions, and is on the whole one of the best manuals of 
Sufi Theosophy which exist, especially when taken in con- 
junction with the excellent commentary of 'Abdu'r-Razzaq 

Since the whole of this work is accessible to the English 
reader in Whinfield's excellent translation, the following 
short specimen may suffice here : 

Question X. 

From the " What Sea is that whereof the shore is speech? 

Gulshan-i-Raz What pearl from out its depths our hands can reach ? " 

Answer X. 

" The Sea is Being ; speech its shore ; the shell 

Words, and its pearls Heart's Wisdom, wot thee well. 
Each wave a thousand royal pearls doth pour 
Of text, tradition and prophetic lore. 
Each moment thence a thousand waves are tossed, 
Yet ne'er a drop therefrom is ever lost. 
Knowledge is gathered from that Sea profound : 
Its pearls enveloped are in words and sound. 
Ideas and mysteries descending here 
Need some similitude to make them clear." 


" In April's month, thus was it told to me, 
The oysters upwards float in 'Umman's sea. 
Up from the depths unto the Ocean's brim 
Ascending open-mouthed they shorewards swim. 


Mists from the sea arise and veil the land, 

And then in rain dissolve by God's command. 

Into each oyster-mouth a rain-drop creeps : 

The shell doth close, and sinketh to the deeps. 

With heart fulfilled it sinketh down again ; 

A pearl is formed from every drop of rain. 

Into the depths himself the Diver hurls, 

And to the shore brings back the lustrous pearls. 

Being's the sea : the shore our human frames : 

God's Grace the mist : the rain God's Holy Names : 

Wisdom's the diver in this mighty deep, 

Who 'neath his cloak a hundred pearls doth keep. 

The Heart's the vase wherein is Wisdom found : 

Heart's wisdom's shell the letters, words and sound. 

The moving breath like lightning doth appear, 

And thence words fall upon the hearer's ear. 

Break, then, the shell : bring forth the royal pearl : 

The kernel keep : the husk on ash-heap hurl. 

Lexicon, grammar and philology 

All these mere accidents of letters be. 

Whoe'er on things like these his life doth spend 

Doth waste his life without an aim or end." 

Shaykh Mahmud Shabistari cannot, like so many Persian 
poets, be charged with writing too much, for the Gulshan-i- 
Rdz is, so far as I know, his only poem, while his only other 
works are the Haqqiil- Yaqin (" Certain Truth "), and the 
Risdla-i-ShdJiid (" Tract of the Witness "). The former is 
fairly common, and has been lithographed at Tihran with 
other Sufi tracts : the latter I have never met with. The 
full title of the better-known treatise is " Certain truth on 
the Knowledge of the Lord of the Worlds," and it contains 
eight chapters, corresponding with the eight Gates of 
Paradise, and dealing with the following topics : 

(1) The Manifestation of the Divine Essence. 

(2) The Manifestation of the Divine Attributes, and 
the Statioii of Knowledge. 

(3) The Manifestation of the Degrees thereof, and the 
explanation of the Origin. 

(4) On the Necessity of the Divine Unity. 

(5) On Contingent Being and Plurality. 


(6) On Differentiation of movement, and the continual 
renovation of Differentiations. 

(7) On the Philosophy of obligation, compulsion, pre- 
destination and conduct. 

(8) Explaining the Return and the Resurrection, and 
Annihilation and Permanence. 

The poet Rabf'f of Bushanj, the panegyrist of Fakhru'd- 
Din Kurt of Herat, is little known, but a long notice of him 
is given in that rare and valuable work the 
Mujmal (" Compendium ") of Fasihf of Khwaf 1 , 
under the year 702/1399-1400 in which he was 
put to death. He was a great drinker of wine, while 
Fakhru'd-Dm was addicted to bang ; a fact to which refer- 
ence is made in these two quatrains : 

"When I wax cheerful with .the green-hued seed 2 
I'm ready to bestride the heaven's green steed ; 
With verdant youths on lawns the green 2 I eat 
Ere like the grass the earth on me shall feed." 


" The toper, e'en if rich, is harshly blamed, 
While by his rioting the world's inflamed. 

1 The MS. which I have used formerly belonged to Colonel Raverty, 
and was bought by the trustees of the " E. ]. W. Gibb Memorial Fund " 
on his death. A second MS., now in my possession, is from the Library 
of the late Sir Albert Houtum-Schindler. There is a third MS. at St 
Petersburg. There is, unfortunately, a large lacuna comprising the 
years A.H. 718-840 (A.D. 1318-1436) in the Raverty MS. 

2 I.e. Indian hemp (Cannabis Indica) or bang, the green colour of 
which is also alluded to in its nicknames Aqd-yi-Sayyid (" Master 
Sayyid ") and Tuti-yi-Sabz (the " Green Parrot "). 

CH. m] RABM OF BtlSHANJ 151 

In ruby casket emeralds I pour 1 , 

And blinding snake-eyed sorrow, grieve no more." 

While in prison Rabf'f composed a poem called the Kdr- 
ndma ("Book of Deeds") and other poems, wherein he sought 
but failed to move the King's pity. Of these some seventy 
couplets are cited in the Mujmal of Fasi'hi, of which the 
following may serve as specimens : 

(From the Kdr-ndma.) 


'^tj^ ^ ; .0 ,> 

" The Empire's Lord, King of these realms so fair, 
Prince Fakhru'd-Di'n the Kurt, great Jamshid's heir, 
Had fetters fashioned for the culprit's heel 
Most strongly wrought of iron and of steel. 
Therewith my feet they bound by his command : 
Bow to the will of him who rules the land ! 
The other captives all he did set free : 
Of Heaven's wheel behold the tyranny ! 

1 This seems to point to the smoking of hemp, the hemp being 
compared to the emerald and the fiery pipe-bowl to the ruby casket. 


Thus I myself in grievous fetters found, 

As Ka'iis in Mazandaran was bound. 

With feet in fetters, heart weighed down with care, 

How long shall I in every sorrow share ? 

Nor men nor demons are my comrades here : 

My soul cries out at such companions drear. 

No heart on earth through them doth gladness feel : 

Hard as their hearts no iron is, nor steel. 

The Devil's but a joke when they are there ; 

Their pupil, only fit for blows, the bear. 

Their custom is to hang, torment and bind ; 

Bloodshed and slaughter occupy their mind. 

Their life-long work is outrage, curse and blow : 

To Khaysar 1 and to Ghur each year they go. 

They're highland robbers all, in battle proved, 

Themselves like mountains which God's power hath moved. 

Ten of these wretches now control my fate : 

Alas for my condition desolate ! " 

In another qastda, composed during his imprisonment, 
the poet says that he was thirty-one years of age at the 
time of writing, and that of this period he had spent seventeen 
years in the King's service and fourteen in the Holy Sanc- 
tuaries (Mecca and Medina) : 

A third poem in the same strain and composed under 
the same conditions (a mathnawt'\v\ this case) is also recorded 
in the Mujmal, but all appeals were unavailing, and the 
unfortunate poet died in prison, none knows in what manner. 

Humamu'd-Din of Tabriz is another poet of this period 

who merits a brief mention. According to the 

Humam of Mujmal he died in 714/1314, at the age of 1 16, 

while a well-known anecdote 2 brings him into 

1 Khaysar is a fortress in Khurasan, not far from Herat (Yaqiit, 
vol. ii, p. 507) ; and Ghur a mountainous district in Afghanistan. 
Perhaps, like Kaldt-i-Nadiri at the present day, they were formerly 
used as penal settlements. 

2 See Sir Gore Ouseley's Biographical Notices of Persian Poets 
(London, 1846), pp. 14-15. 

CH. in] HUMAMU'D-DfN-I-TABRrzf 153 

contact with the great Sa'di (died 690/1291), with whom 
he engaged in a wordy duel, not conspicuous for refinement, 
in which he was signally worsted. No other particulars of 
his life are known to me, except that he also was one of the 
panegyrists of the Sahib Diwdn 1 . The following specimens 
of his verse (which is said to have been greatly influenced 
by that of Sa'di) are taken from the Haft Iqlim. 

" On the day of life's surrender I shall die desiring Thee : 
I shall yield my Spirit craving of thy street the dust to be. 
On the Resurrection Morning, when I raise my head from sleep, 
I shall rise desiring Thee, and forth to seek for Thee shall creep. 
I will smell not blooms of Eden, nor of Heavenly Gardens speak, 
Nor, desiring Thee alone, shall I Celestial Houris seek." 

3*- J 3 


3 <4 ^ 3 **** 3 J3J ij* O3 

" When the parting from country and friends to my vision appears 
The stages I tread are fulfilled with the flood of my tears. 
In parting one moment, one breath like ten centuries seems : 
How weary the days and the weeks and the months and the years !" 

1 See p. 1 of the English introduction to Part I of JuwaynPs 
Ta'rikh-i-jahdn-gusM, edited by Mirza Muhammad (" E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial Series," vol. xvi, i). 


" That day of parting seemed the Day of Doom : 
How were it if our friendship had been less ? 
Make much, then, of your friends while they are here, 
For this false sphere is fraught with faithlessness." 

^J to 

" Last night to tell my tale I did prepare 
Unto my Friend, and forth from every hair 
Flowed speech. Night passed, unended was my song ; 
Blame not the night ; the tale was over-long ! " 

A good many other poets of this period, such as Afdal- 
i-Kashf, Athir-i-Awmani, Sayfu'd-Dfn-i-Isfarangf, Rafi'u'd- 

Din-i-Abhari,Farid-i-Ahwal(" the squint-eyed") 
2* p r erod S f and Niz ^ rf of Quhistan might be mentioned, did 

space allow, but as in most cases their works are 
inaccessible to me save in the brief extracts given by the 
biographers, it has seemed better to pass them over for the 

present. Of the last-named, however, a few 
Quhlltdn words must be said, for a MS. of his poems 

(Or. 7909) has been acquired by the British 
Museum since the publication of the Supplement to the 
Persian Catalogue, and of this MS. a transcript was made 
for me in the autumn of 1913 by an Indian copyist, Mawlawi 
Isma'il 'Alf. This transcript I desired because of the strong 
probability that Nizari belonged to the sect of the Isma'ilis, 
Malahida, or Assassins, and I hoped that his poems might 
afford proof of this fact, and perhaps reveal a genius com- 
parable to that of the one great Isma'i'li poet hitherto known, 
Nasir-i-Khusraw 1 . That Nizari of Quhistan belonged to 
the Isma'flf sect is not merely suggested by his pen-name 
and place of origin, but is asserted or hinted at by most 
of the biographers. On the death of al-Mustansir, the 
eighth Fatimid or Isma'ili Caliph (A.D. 1035-1094), there 
ensued a struggle for the succession between his two sons 
al-Musta'H and Nizar 2 , in which the latter lost his life and 

1 See vol. ii of my Lit. Hist, of Persia, pp. 218-247. 

2 Ibid., pp. 199, 20 1, 203, 204, 206, etc. 


his throne, but continued to be regarded by the Eastern or 
Persian Isma'ilfs (including the derived Syrian branch) as 
the legitimate Imam. It was from him, no doubt, that the 
poet took his nom de guerre, for the other suggestion, that 
it was derived from the Persian adjective nizdr ("thin," 
" weak ") is quite untenable. Quhistan, moreover, was a 
stronghold of the Assassins 1 , especially the towns of Qayin 
and Birjand to which he particularly alludes in one of his 
poems, where he says : 

" I am seated over my treasure, whether I be in Birjand or Qdyin ; 
O Nizdri, henceforth, free and untroubled, thou hast the treasure of 
poverty and a safe corner." 

The MS. of Nizarfs poems alluded to above contains 
only ghazals or odes, and these, though spirited enough, 
appear for the most part to be of the usual Bacchanalian 
type, and to give little or no indication of the poet's religious 
views or general circumstances. It is in qasidas and math- 
nawis that such indications are generally to be found, and, 
unfortunately, neither of these classes of poems are repre- 
sented in the MS. in question. According to Sprenger 2 , 
Nizarf died in 720/1320, and left two mathnawis, one of 
which, entitled Dastiir-ndma, he describes as " very witty 
and amusing," but I have never seen it. Nizarfs writings 
would probably repay further study. 

In conclusion a few words must be said about Sultan 

Walad (or Veled, according to the Turkish pronunciation), 

the son and ultimately the spiritual successor 

Sultan Walad ' 

(or Veied) and of the great Mawlana Jalalu'd-Dm Rumi. He 

his Rab&b-n&ma ^ bom ^ j^^ jyjj^ ^ L randa ( thg mO dem 

Qaraman) in 623/1226 when his father was only nineteen 
years of age, and his proper name was Baha'u'd-Dm Ahmad. 

1 See G. le Strange's Lands of the Eastern Caliphate, pp. 354-5. 

2 Catalogue of the Library of the King of Oude, vol. i, p. 524. 


His best-known work is a mathnawi poem, entitled Rabdb- 
ndma (the " Book of the Rebeck "), which, though mostly 
written in Persian, contains 1 56 verses in Turkish, which Gibb 
describes as " the earliest important specimen of West- 
Turkish poetry that we possess." These archaic verses 
have attracted the attention of Von Hammer, Wickerhauser, 
Bernhauer, Fleischer, Salemann 1 and Radloff, and Gibb 
has very fully discussed them and their author in the first 
volume of his great History of Ottoman Poetry, pp. 149-163. 
"To Sultan Veled," he says (loc. cit., pp. 156-7), "belongs 
not only the honour due to the pioneer in every good work, 
but the credit which is justly his who successfully accom- 
plishes an arduous enterprise. To have inaugurated the 
poetry of a nation is an achievement of which any man 
might be proud." Thus even so great an admirer of 
Turkish poetry as Gibb is constrained to admit that it 
chiefly owes its inception to a Persian, and is in fact, in a 
sense, a branch of Persian poetry, to which for five centuries 
and a half (A.D. 1300-1850) it owed its inspiration. At all 
events the rise of both the Ottoman State and Turkish 
literature belong to the period which we have discussed in 
this and the preceding chapters, and henceforth it will be 
necessary to allude to both with increasing frequency. 

1 For references see Gibb's Hist, of Ottoman Poetry, vol. i, p. 157 
ad calc. Radloff's article, which he does not mention, is entitled Uber 
Alt-Tiirkische Dialekte. i. Die Seldschukischen Verse im Rebdbndmeh. 
It was published in 1890 in vol. x, Livraison I, of the Melanges 
Asiatiques at St Petersburg. 



(A.H. 736-807 = A.D. 1335-1405.) 



The power of the Mongols in Persia practically came 
to an end on the death of Abu Sa'i'd (13 Rabf II, A.H. 736 
~ , . . , = Nov. 30, 1335), and some eight months later in 

Definition of the j > Jjj/i ^ t> 

period about to the same year of the Jiijra (Sha'ban 25 = April 8, 

be considered ^^ ^^ bom Tfnuir> called L(mg ( the Hmp _ 

ing"), and generally known in the West as " Tamerlane," 
who was destined to become in his turn almost as great a 


scourge to the Muslims of Western and Central Asia as 
Chingiz Khan. The approximate coincidence of the death 
of the last great Mongol ruler of Persia with the birth of this 
new organizer of Tartar depredations has been remarked by 
the author of the Matla'tis-Sa'dayn 1 , and makes this date a 
convenient starting-point for the period of seventy years 
which we are now about to consider; a period which, in spite 
of the anarchy wherewith it began and the bloodshed where- 
with it ended, is remarkable alike for the quantity and the 
quality of the poets and writers which it pro- 

oflrperi2 erS duced - Of the former were Salman of Sawa, 
Khwajii of Kirman, 'Ubayd-i-Zakani, 'Imdd of 
Kirman, 'Assar of Tabriz, the two Jalals, known respectively 
as 'Adudi and Tabtb (" the physician "), Kamal of Khujand, 
Maghribi, Bushaq, Ibn-i-Yamm, and last but not least the 
incomparable Hafiz of Sm'raz; of the latter were the historians 
of Ti'mur, Nizam -i-Shami and Sharafu'd-Din 'Ah' Yazdf, 
and Mu'fnu'd-Din Yazdf, the historian of the House of 
Muzaffar which perished at Tfmur's hands, not to mention 
others who, though Persians, wrote chiefly in Arabic, such 
as the Sayyid-i-Shan'fof Jurjan, Sa'du'd-Dfn Taftazani, and 
'Adudu'd-Di'n al-Iji. 

1 See Rieu's Persian Catalogue, p. 182. 


Timur's first invasion of Persia took place in A.D. 1380, 

when he subdued Khurasan, Si'stan and Mazandaran ; his 

. second in A.D. 1384-5, when he again invaded 

invasions of Mazandaran and extended his operations into 

Adharbayjan, 'Iraq-i-'Ajam and Georgia, finish- 
ing up with the subjugation of Shiraz and a massacre of 
70,000 persons at Isfahan ; and his third and last in 
A.D. 1392, when he again subdued Fars and extirpated the 
Muzaffari dynasty, having already destroyed the Sarbadars 
of Sabzawar (in 1381) and the Kurts of Herat (in 1389). 
During the 45 years succeeding Timur's birth and Abu 
Sa'id's death (A.D. 1335-1380) Persia was, however, left to its 

own devices, and was divided between four or five 
The minor petty dynasties, of which the Muzaffaris, ruling 

dynasties Jr J J . 

destroyed by over Fars, 'Iraq-i-'Ajam and Kirman, were the 

Timur / 

most important ; then the Jala irs (or Il-khanis) 
of Baghdad and Adharbayjan ; and lastly the Sarbadars of 
Sabzawar and the Kurts of Herat, both in the North-East. 
The history of these dynasties is very intricate, and, perhaps, 
hardly worth a detailed study ; while the territories over 
which each held control were indeterminate, and their fron- 
tiers (if such existed) constantly shifting, and often indeed 
generally civil war prevailed between members of the same 
dynasty,and their heritage was divided amongst rival brothers 
or cousins. What is remarkable, however, is that it is pre- 

cisely duringsuch periods of anarchy and division 
t^rfmosfflour- of P ower that Persian literature has flourished 
in troubled most ; so that, for example, while a dozen first- 

class poets lived in the brief period of 45 years 
now under discussion, the whole Safawi period, which in 
all lasted 234 years (A.D. 1502-1736), and in which Persia 
reached a degree of power, splendour and consolidation un- 
equalled in modern times, hardly produced half that number 
of poets of more than local fame, though arts flourished 
and theology reached its zenith. The cause of this curious 
phenomenon will be further discussed when we come to 
speak of the Safawi period ; but it would seem that the 


existence of numerous small courts, rivals to one another, 
and each striving to outshine the others, was singularly 
favourable to the encouragement of poets and other men of 
letters, who, if disappointed or slighted in one city, could 
generally find in another a more favourable reception. 

Before speaking of Ti'mur, then, it is necessary to give 

some account of the petty dynasties which flourished in 

Persia during this half-century's interregnum. 

Muzaffaris _. ... , 

Of these the Muzaffaris werethe most important, 
both on account of the position and extent of their realms, 
and by reason of the eminent poets notably Hafiz of 
Shiraz who frequented their courts. Next to them we 

may place the Jala'ir or Il-khani princes who 
jaia-irsor ruled Qver Baghdad and jabrfz as the direct 


heirs of the shrunken Mongol power, and under 

whose aegis likewise many eminent poets flourished. The 

Sarbadars (or Sarbadals) of Sabzawar seem to 


have held sway over a very restricted territory, 
and were in fact (as their name, " Head-on-the-gallows," 
implies) little better than successful outlaws and highway- 
robbers; while the Kurts of Herat, though more 
civilized, greater patrons of letters, and more 
stable in character (they ruled for 144 years, from A.D. 1245 
to 1389), were established in a domain which is no longer 
included in Persia, but now forms part of Afghanistan, and 
were themselves, perhaps, of Afghan or semi-Afghan descent. 
Of each of these dynasties some brief account must now be 


Apart from the general histories, such as the Raivdatus- 

Safd, with which every student of Persian is familiar, there 

exists a monograph on the House of Muzaffar 


for history of by a contemporary scholar of some repute, 
Mu'i'nu'd-Di'n of Yazd, who was made professor 
at one of the colleges of Kirman in 755/1354. This history 
exists only in manuscript 1 , and I have been able to consult 
1 See Rieu's Persian Cat., p. 168, and Persian Supp!., p. 33. 
B. P. II 

1 62 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

it in an old copy belonging to the Fitzwilliam Museum at 
Cambridge 1 , dated 7/8/1376-7, and, since January, 1917, in 
two MSS.,one written in the author's life-time, from the library 
of the late Sir A. Houtum-Schindler. It comes down only 
to the year 767/1365-6, and so omits the last thirty years 
of the dynasty ; and it is, moreover, written in a very stilted 
and artificial style. So difficult, indeed, was it that a certain 
Mahmud Kutbi, while engaged in transcribing the Tartkh- 
i-Guzida in 823/1420, thought good to add to that history 
an independent account of the Muzaffari dynasty from his 
own pen. This account is contained in the fac- simile of an 
old MS. of the Guztda published in the Gibb Memorial 
Series (vol. xiv, I, pp. 6i3~755) 2 , and carries the history of 
the dynasty down to its extinction in Rajab, 795 (May, 
I 393)- This, and the account contained in the modern 
Fdrs-ndma-i-Ndsiri* Q{ Hajji Mirza Hasan (pp. 49-66), have 
been chiefly used in compiling the following brief account 
of the dynasty, but I should like also to acknowledge my 
indebtedness to an excellent and most readable sketch of 
its history contained in the Introduction to Miss Gertrude 
Lowthian Bell's Poems from the Divan of Hafiz* (pp. 8-28). 
The ancestors of the House of Muzaffar are said to have 
come to Persia from Arabia in the early days of the Mu- 
hammadan conquest, and to have settled near 

Origin of the l ' 

Muzaffari Khwaf in Khurasan, whence Amir Ghiyathu'd- 

Dfn Hajji Khurasani, the grandfather of Mu- 
bdrizu'd-Din Muhammad, the first king of the dynasty, 
migrated to Yazd during the period of the Mongol invasion. 
One of his three sons, Abu Bakr, with 300 horsemen, accom- 
panied Hulagu's expedition against Baghdad, and was 
subsequently killed in Egypt by Arabs of the Banu Khafaja 
tribe. His brother Muhammad succeeded him as deputy to 
the Governor of Yazd, but died without issue. The third son, 

J Frank McClean Collection, No. 198. 

2 See also Rieu's Persian Cat., p. 82. 

3 Lithographed at Tihran in A.H. 1313/1895-6. 
* London : Heinemann, 1897. 


Jalalu'd-Din Mansur, lived at Maybud, near Yazd, and like- 
wise left three sons, Sharafu'd-Di'n Muzaffar, Zaynu'd-Din 
'All, and Mubarizu'd-Din Muhammad. The first is said to 
have been notified in a dream of the distinction to which 
his family was destined, and while still young distinguished 
himself by destroying a band of robbers from Pars who 
were committing depredations in his province. In 685/1286 
he went to Kirman and entered the service of Surghatmish 
Qara-Khita'f. Later he served the four Mongol sovereigns 
Arghun, Gaykhatu, Ghazan and Uljaytu Khuda-banda, 
to the last-named of whom he was presented at Khaniqin 
in 711/1311, and who conferred on him a more extensive 
government. He died in 713/1313, leaving to succeed him 
his son Mubarizu'd-Dfn Muhammad, then only thirteen 
years of age, who was confirmed in his father's offices by 
Uljaytu (died Dec. 16, 1316). At the age of 29 he married as 
his second wife Banu Jahan, the grand-daughter of Surghat- 
mish. He had five sons, Sharafu'd-Din Muzaffar (born 
725/1325, died of a wound in 754/1353); Shah Shuja' 
(born 733/1333); Qutbu'd-Dfn Mahmud (born 737/1336); 
and two others named Ahmad and Bayazid. 

Mubarizu'd-Din Muhammad is generally reckoned the 

first of the Muzaffan dynasty, the duration of which, from 

his accession in A.D. 1313 to the extirpation of 

Mubarizu'-d-Din ,11 i T-' / i 

Muhammad the dynasty by Timur in A.D. 1393, covered a 
period of 80 years. His original governmen^ 
as we have seen, was the little town of Maybud near Yazd, 
but in A.D. 1319 the latter town was added to his jurisdiction. 
In A.D. 1340 Kirman also fell to his share, though the 
previous ruler, Qutbu'd-Dfn, invoked and received help from 
the Kurt kings of Herat, and offered a stubborn resistance. In 
A.D. 1353, after a still more prolonged struggle, he succeeded 
in wresting the province of Pars with its capital Shiraz from 
Abu Ishaq Inju, whose little son, 'Ali Sahl, aged ten, was 
taken prisoner and cruelly put to death by Shah Shuja' at 
Rafsinjan. One of Mubarizu'd-Din's first measures was to 
enact severe laws against wine-drinking and other forms of 

164 THE PERIOD OF TfMtiR [BK 11 

dissipation prevalent amongst the pleasure- loving Shirazfs, 
concerning which his son Shah Shuja' composed the following 
quatrain : 


" Closed are the taverns now throughout the land; 
Zither and harp and tambourine are banned ; 
Banned is wine-worship to the libertine ; 
Only the proctor's 1 drunk, though not with wine !" 

In the following year, A.D. 1354, whether in consequence 
of this unpopular measure or not, Shiraz was seized by 
rebels against the Muzafifaris, but was soon retaken. About 
this time Mubarizu'd-Di'n declared his allegiance to the 
titular Caliph al-Mu ! tadid 2 , whose name he caused to be 
inserted in the khutba. In A.D. 1357 Isfahan was attacked 
and ultimately taken, and its ruler Shaykh Abu 
Isl ? dc l In J u was captured, brought to Shiraz, 
and there put to death at Mubarizu'd-Din's 
command by Amfr Qutbu'd-Dm, the son of Sayyid Amir 
Hajji Darrab, who had suffered death by order of Abu 
Ishaq. It is said that just before his death Abu Ishaq 
recited the two following quatrains : 


1 The Muhtasib, here rendered " proctor," was an officer whose 
function it was to maintain public order and morality and ensure that 
the goods sold by tradesmen should both in quantity and quality 
maintain a proper standard. 

2 Abu'1-Fath Abu Bakr al-Mu'tadid bi'llah, son of al-Mustakff, one 
of the titular 'Abbasid Caliphs who exercised a merely nominal sway 
in Egypt after the sack of Baghdad until the Ottoman conquest 
(A.D. 1262-1517), succeeded his brother al-Hakim bi-amri'llah in 
753/1352-3 and died in 763/1362. See as-Suyuti's Tdrlkhrfl-Khitlafa 
(ed. Nassau Lees, Calcutta, 1857), p. 516. 


" No hope in kin or stranger doth remain, 
Nor to the bird of Life one single grain ; 
Of all we said throughout our life, alas ! 
Naught will survive us save an echo vain ! " 

" Depart and quarrel not with Fortune's spite ; 
Depart, nor strive with circling Heaven's might : 
Drain with a smile the poison-cup of Death 
And pour libations ere you take your flight" 

After capturing Isfahan, Mubarizu'd-Din marched on 
Tabriz, which also he occupied, after two engagements with 
the troops of Akhi Juq, whom his sons pursued as far as 
Nakhjuwan. Finally, however, his fortune turned against 
him, for his sons Mahmud and Shuja', apprehensive of his 
intentions towards them, seized and blinded him when they 
reached Isfahan on the homeward march, and imprisoned 
him first in the castle of Tabarak and then in the Qal'a-i- 
Safid in Fars, where he succeeded in winning over the 
warden to his interests. Some sort of reconciliation was 
eventually effected between him and his rebellious sons, 
but it did not long endure, and Mubarizu'd-Din finally died 
in prison at Bam in Rabf I (December, 1363), at the age 
of sixty-five 1 . 

1 His severity was such that, according to one of his intimates, 
Lutfu'llah b. Sadru'd-Dm 'Iraqi (cited in the Fdrs-ndma-i-Nasiri}, he 
would often lay aside the Qur'dn which he was reading to decapitate 
some criminal brought before him for judgement, and then calmly 
resume the perusal of the Sacred Book. 

1 66 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

SnAn SHUJA' (759-786=1357-1384). 

Mubarizu'd-Din was succeeded by his son Shah Shuja', 

whose chief claim to fame is that he was the patron of the 

immortal Hafiz. He himself was not devoid of 

Shdh Shujd' , ' . , , . . , . 

poetic talent, and wrote verses both in Arabic 
and Persian, specimens of which are given by Mahmud 
Kutbi 1 . Nor did his intellectual attainments end here : he 
knew the Qzir'dn by heart when he was nine years of age ; 
could remember eight verses of Arabic poetry after hearing 
them read once ; was famous for his epistolary style, wrote 
a fine hand, and was skilled in all martial exercises. He 
was also a great patron of men of learning, and at one time 
used to attend the lectures of Mawlana Qiwamu'd-Din, 
while he appointed the eminent Sayyid-i-Sharif-i-Jurjani 
professor in the Daru'sh-Shifa College which he had founded 
at Shiraz. Nor did his reign lack military glory of the 
somewhat barren kind prevalent at that time, for he retook 
Shiraz from his brother Mahmud, who had ousted him from 
it by a trick, and Kirman, which had been seized by Dawlat- 
shah ; and, on the death of Sultan Uways Jala'ir at Tabriz 
in March, 1375, occupied not only that city, but also Nakh- 
juwan, Qarabagh, Awjan, Sultaniyya, Shushtar and even 
Baghdad, so that he became for a while the master of the 
greater part of Persia. 

In his family relations he was not happier than the rest 
of his House. His brother Mahmud, who had strangled his 
wife, the daughter of Shaykh Abu Ishaq, about A.D. 1368, 
died in 1375 at the age of 38. On hearing of his death 
Shah Shuja' wrote the following quatrain : 

1 See pp. 683-4 of the fac-simile of an old MS. of the Tdrikh-i- 
Guztda published in the Gibb Series (vol. xiv, i). 


" My brother Mahmud, lion-like crouched low, 
For crown and ring was my relentless foe. 
At length we shared the earth that men might rest : 
I took the surface, he the realm below." 

He was also troubled by the real disloyalty of one son, 
Sultan Uways, and the fancied disloyalty of another, Sultan 
Shibli, whom in a fit of anger, intensified by drink, he 
caused to be blinded, and only repented of his rash act 
when it was too late. This happened in A.D. 1383, a year 
before his death, which took place on October 9, 1384, he 
being then 53 years of age and having reigned 27 years. 
On his death-bed he wrote a letter to the great Ti'mur 1 , 
setting forth his devotion and loyalty, and commending 
to his care his sons and brothers, especially his successor 
Zaynu'l-'Abidin. How much effect this letter, with its, 
admonitions that " loyalty to promises is a part of Faith," 
produced on Ti'mur was shown nine years later when he made 
a massacre of the whole family. The body of Shah Shuja' 
was conveyed to Medina for burial, or, according to another 
account, buried in a place called Kiih-i-Chahil Maqdm (the 
' Mountain of Forty Stations ") a little to the North-east of 
Shi'raz. The date of his death is given by the chronogram : 
cla^w olwjt \jLfA. ("Alas for Shah Shuja' ! "), the numerical 

equivalents of the component letters of which add up to 
(A.H.) 786 (= A.D. 1384). 

ZAYNU'L-'ABIDIN (786-789= 1384-1387). 

Zaynu'l-'Abidin's reign was both short and troubled, 
for not only was it marred by those family feuds and fratri- 
cidal strifes which were characteristic of this 

Muj&mdu d-Din 

AiiZaynu'i- dynasty, but the menace of Ti'mur and his Tar- 
tars hung ever more threateningly over the land. 
Soon after his accession Zaynu'l-'Abidin was attacked by 
his cousin Shah Yahya, and shortly after this arrived Ti'mur's 
envoy Qutbu'd-Din and required the insertion in the khutba 

1 The text of this letter will be found on pp. 730-733 of the fac- 
simile of the Td'rikh-i-Guzida (Gibb Series, vol. xiv, i) 

1 68 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

of his master's name, which was tantamount to recognizing 
him as over-lord. In 789/1387 Timur himself made his 
first entry into 'Iraq and Pars. From Isfahan, which was 
governed by Majdu'd-Din Muzaffar, the uncle of Zaynu'd- 
Din, he demanded a large sum of money, in collecting 
which his agents showed so harsh and arrogant a disposition 
that the inhabitants rose against them and killed them. 
Tfmur took a terrible revenge on them, for he ordered a 
general massacre, in which 70,000 persons 1 are said to have 
perished. He then advanced on Shiraz, but Zaynu'l-'Abidm 
did not await his arrival, and fled to Shushtar, where he 
was treacherously seized by his cousin Shah Mansur, who 
thereupon marched to Shiraz and drove out his brother 
Yahya, who fell back on Yazd. The next six years (A.D. 
1387-1393) passed in continual strife between 
F r ra u ric a ' s J r * e the three Muzaffarf princes Shah Mansur (who 

of the Muzaffans r V 

reigned over Fars and Isfahan), his brother 
Shah Yahya (who ruled at Yazd), and his cousin Shah 
Ahmad (who held Kirman), until in 795/1393 Tfmur for 
the second time descended on these distracted provinces. 
He first took the Qal'a-i-Safid ("White Castle"), killed the 
garrison, and released and restored to the throne Zaynu'l- 
'Abidin, and then continued his march on Shiraz, whence 
Shah Mansur fled to Pul-i-Fasa. Of some of the Shirazis 
who had followed him thither he enquired what the people 
of Shiraz were saying of him. " Some say," they replied, 
" that those who wielded maces weighing ten maunds and 
carried quivers weighing seventeen maunds have fled like 
goats before a pack of wolves and have left their families 
as an easy prey to the foe." On hearing this Shah Mansur, 
moved alike by shame and compassion, resolved to go back 

to Shiraz and face the inevitable death which a 

Shah Mansur 

gives battle to conflict with Timur's hosts involved. He had 

with him only 3000 men, of whom 2000 fled 

soon after the battle began, while the Tartar army "were 

1 This is the number given in the Fdrs-ndma-i-NdsiH, but the 
Tdrikh-i-Guztda (p. 739 of fac-simile) raises the number to 200,000. 


more numerous than ants and locusts," yet with such valour 
and desperation did he engage the enemy that more than 
once he forced his way almost to within striking distance 
of Timur, until at last, wounded in the neck and shoulder, 
he turned in flight towards Shiraz. He was overtaken by 
some of Shah Rukh's soldiers, who dragged him 
Death of shah f rom m 's horse and severed his head from his 


body. The year of his death (795/1393) is 


given by the chronogram c~l& JUU ("he relinquished the 

kingdom") 1 . The other Muzaffari princes (Ahmad 'Imadu'd- 

Dm and Sultan Mahdi, son of Shah Shuja', from Kirman ; 

Nusratu'd-Din Shah Yahya and his sons Mu'izzu'd-Dfn 

^ , . Jahangi'r and Sultan Muhammad from Yazd : 

Muzanari princes 

put to death by and Sultan Abu Ishaq, son of Sultan Uways, 
son of Shah Shuja', from Sirjan) surrendered 
themselves to Ti'mur and were at first treated honourably, 
but were finally put to death at Qumishah, a little to the 
south of Isfahan, on Rajab 10, 795 (May 22, 1393), a date 
commemorated in the following verses : 

Only two were spared, Zaynu'l-'Abidin and Shiblf, both of 
whom had been blinded, the one by his cousin Mansur, the 
other by his father Shah Shuja'. These were taken by 
Ti'mur to Samarqand, his capital, where they spent the 
remainder of their days in tranquillity. So ended the 
Muzaffari dynasty, which for eighty years had 
L , ltc J a Z tas ^ s , held sway over the greater part of southern 

of the Muzaffaris J . 

and central Persia. Several of their princes 
1 This works out at 40 + 30 + 20 + 5 + 300+400 = 795. 

170 THE PERIOD OF TfMtf R [BK n 

were distinguished alike by their taste and their talents, 
and their patronage of learning and letters drew to their 
court not only numerous poets of distinction, including the 
incomparable Hafiz, but savants such as 'Adudu'd-Din al-Iji 
and Mu'inu'd-Din Yazdi. Materially they did little to 
benefit their subjects, save for the building of a few colleges; 
while even in Eastern history it would be difficult to find a 
household so divided against itself and so disposed to those 
fratricidal wars and savage mutilations or destruction of their 
kinsmen which constitute the greater part of their history. 


During the period of the disruption of the Mongol Empire 
two Shaykh Hasans play a prominent part, the one known 

as "the Great" (Buzurg), the other as "the Little" 
fikL/Dynrs'ty (Ktichctk\ The latter was the grandson of the 

great Amir Chuban, whose power and influence 
were still further increased by his marriage in 719/1319 
with Satf Beg, the daughter of Uljaytu and sister of Abu 
Sa'i'd, who bore him three sons, besides the six sons and one 
daughter (Baghdad Khatun) born to him by another wife. 
Of these ten children the most celebrated were Amir Hasan, 
Timur-Tash, Dimashq Khwaja,and Baghdad Khatun. Amir 
Hasan and his three sons,Talish, Hajji Beg and GhuchHusayn, 
all died violent deaths about 727-8/1327-8. Timur-Tash 
rebelled and fled to Egypt, where he was at first well received 
by al-Malik an-Nasir, who, however, becoming alarmed at 
his increasing influence and evident ambition, put him to 
death in 728/1 328. He was the father of the above-mentioned 
Shaykh Hasan -\-Kuchak (" the Little "), also called after his 
grandfather " Chubani," and of Malik-i-Ashraf. Dimashq 
Khwaja, the third of Amir Chuban's sons, was put to death 
by Abu Sa'i'd in 727/1327 (a year very fatal to this family) 

1 Concerning the Jald'irs, a tribe cognate to the Mongols, see the 
History of the Moghuls of Central Asia by N. Elias and E. Denison 
Ross (London, 1898), p. 88*. 


on a charge of carrying on an intrigue with one of the 
widows of the late king Uljaytu. His daughter Dilshad 
Khatun and her aunt Baghdad Khatun were both ladies of 
considerable note, and, extraordinary as it appears, both 
were married at one time in their lives to the Sultan Abu 
Sa'fd and at another to the rival Shaykh Hasan, called "the 
Great " (Buzttrg). Baghdad Khatun is said to have been 
remarkable for her beauty, and was married in 723/1323 to 
Shaykh Hasan-i-Busurg, but unfortunately Abu Sa'i'd saw 
her, was smitten by her charms, and conceived so violent a 
passion for her that in 727/1325 he compelled her husband 
to divorce her so that he might marry her himself. On 
Abu Sa'fd's death in 736/1335-6 and the elevation to the 
throne of Arpa, she was put to death privily by the new 
Sultan on suspicion of having poisoned her late husband, 
and Shaykh' compensated himself by appro- 
priating the late monarch's other widow Dilshad Khatun 1 . 
She bore him Sultan Uways, whose power she subsequently 
shared, and, like him, was the subject of many panegyrics 
on the part of the poet Salman of Sawa. 

Shaykh Hasan " the Great" was the son of Husayn,the 
son of Aq-Bugha, the son of Aydakan, and claimed descent 
from Hulagu, whence, I suppose, the title of 

llMnf (L^ 1 ' not J>^-\> Il-khani, though 
probably a mere variant of it) by which, as well 
as Jala'ir (the tribal name) the dynasty was known. For 
about eight years (736-744/1335-1343) after the death of 
Abu Sa'fd the history of Persia consists largely in the 
struggles and intrigues of these two houses (of Chuban and 
Jala'ir) for the supreme power, their ambitions being thinly 
masked by the puppet-princes of the race of Hulagu whom 
they successively raised to a nominal and generally very 

1 The author of the Hakt'bu's-Siyar, Khwandamfr, endeavours to 
explain the illegality of Abu Sa'fd's marriage with Baghdad Khatun 
and her niece Dilshad KMtun by assuming that he divorced the 
former before marrying the latter. He also asserts that Baghdad 
Khatun avenged this slight by poisoning Abu Sa'fd. 


brief sovereignty. By 737/1337 Shaykh Hasan-i-Buzurg 
was in possession of Baghdad and Tabriz, the two capitals 
of the Mongol Il-khans and afterwards of the Jala'irs, who 
would therefore appear to have represented most directly 
the older dynasty ; but his tenure only became relatively 
secure on Rajab 27, 744 (Dec. 15, 1343), when his rival 

Shaykh Hasan-i-Ktic/tak was murdered by his 
Shaykh Hasan- unfaithful wife in a very horrible manner, which 
\-Kuckak by nevertheless called forth a savage and untrans- 

lateable epigram from Salman of Sawa, the 
panegyrist of the Jala'irs, of which the text has been already 
given on p. 60, supra. 

Thejala'iror Il-kham'dynasty founded by Shaykh Hasan- 
\-Bnzurg endured for some 75 years, and, though much 
harassed by Ti'mur during the last fifteen or twenty years 
of its existence, was never entirely crushed by him like the 
Muzaffaris. Shaykh Hasan and hisson Shaykh Uways, whose 
mother was DilshadKhatun, each reigned about twenty years 
(A.H. 736 or 737 to 757 and A.H. 757 to 776 respectively) ; and 
all three seem to owe much of their fame and good repute to 
their indefatigable panegyrist Salman of Sawa, most of whose 
poems are consecrated to their praise. The portrait of them 
presented by most historians and biographers is therefore 
a very flattering one, and, though their virtues may -have 
been exaggerated, there seems no reason to believe that it 
is altogether unfounded. After the death of Sultan Uways, 
however, on the 2nd of Jumada I, 776 (Oct. 9, 1374), the 
fortunes of the dynasty began to decline. On that same 
day the late ruler's eldest son Hasan was put to death by 
the nobles, and the younger son Husayn was placed on the 
vacant throne at Tabriz, whence he was driven out, after a 
successful war with the Turkmans, for a space of four months 
by Shah Shuja' the Muzaffarf. Shortly after this his authority 
was resisted by his brother 'Ah', and finally in Safar, 784 
(April-May, 1 382),he was killed by another brother, Ahmad, 
who in turn was proclaimed king, and became involved 
almost immediately in a fratricidal conflict with yet another 


brother named Bayazi'd. A partition of the kingdom was 
finally effected, Adharbayjan being assigned to Ahmad and 
'Iraq to Bayazi'd, but soon fresh conflicts occurred between 
the two brothers in which the aid of Shah Mansur the 
Muzaffari was invoked first by one and then by the other. 
These unedifying squabbles were brought to an end by the 
approach of Timur's army, which, after a protracted resist- 
ance on the part of Ahmad, finally compelled him and 
Qara-Yusuf the Turkman to seek refuge with the Turkish 

Sultan Bayazi'd, known as Yildirim, "the 
suhdn'^azid Thunder-bolt." Thence they passed to Egypt, 
"the Thunder- the ruler of which country was preparing to 

make his peace with Timur by surrendering 
them to him when, fortunately for them, news arrived that 
that sanguinary conqueror was dead. Shortly afterwards 
Ahmad's bad faith led to a rupture between him and Qara- 
Yusuf, who defeated him near Tabriz on the 25th of Rabi' II, 
812 (Sept. 6, 1409). The same night he was captured and 
put to death, after a troubled and turbulent reign of twenty- 
seven years, by his conqueror, and with him practically 
ended the Il-khdni or Jala'ir dynasty, though its final extinc- 
tion at the hands of the Qara-qoyunlu or " Black Sheep " 
Turkmans did not take place until a year or two later. 

THE KuRTS 1 . 

We pass now to the Kurt dynasty which ruled over 
extensive territories in the N.E. of Persia and the adjacent 
countries with their capital at Herat. The most detailed 
account of them which I have met with is contained in a 
still unpublished history of Herat entitled Rawddtu'l-Janndt 
ft tcHrikhi madinati Herat (" Gardens of Paradise : on the 
history of the city of Herat "), composed by Mawland Mu'i'n 
of Isfizar. This history, which comes down to the year 8/5/ 

1 The name is generally spelt Kart by English Orientalists, but in 
the carefully-written MS. of the History of Herat, which will be men- 
tioned immediately, it is repeatedly pointed Kurt, which pronunciation 
I have therefore adopted. 


1473-4 or thereabouts, is based on the older works of Abu 
Ishaq Ahmad b. Ya-Sin ; Shaykh 'Abdu'r-Rahman Farm ; 
Sayfi of Herat ; and the Kurt-ndma of Rabi'f 1 of Bushanj ; 
and is divided into 26 Rawdas^ Gardens "), each containing 
two or more Chimans ("Parterres"). Of these, Rawdas vii-x 
deal with the period and dynasty now under review. I am 
indebted to Mr A. G. Ellis, Assistant Librarian of the India 
Office, for the loan of an excellent MS. of this work, tran- 
scribed in 1 073/1 662-3 and superior in accuracy and legibility 
to either of the British Museum codices 2 . Another work 
which supplies some useful information about this dynasty 
is the very rare Mujmal of Fasihi of Khwaf 3 , from which the 
poems of Rabi'i cited in the last chapter are taken. Some 
account of the dynasty is, of course, also contained in all 
general histories of Persia of a later date, such as the 
Rawdatus-Safd, Habibu's-Siyar, Matltfus-Sctdayn, etc. 

The ancestor of the Kurts was a certain Taju'd-Din 
'Uthman-i-Marghim, whose brother, 'Izzu'd-Di'n 'Umar-i- 
Marghim, was the powerful Wazir of Sultan Ghiyathu'd-Din 
Muhammad-i-Ghuri (d. 599/1202-3). Taju'd-Din was made 
Warden of the Castle of Khaysar, and on his death his son, 
Malik Ruknu'd-Din Abu Bakr, married the daughter of the 
above-mentioned Sultan. Their son Shamsu'd- 
shamsu'd-Din Dfn succee d e d his father in 643/1245-6, joined 
Sail Noyan in an invasion of India in the 
following year, and met the great Shaykh Baha'u'd-Dfn 
Zakariyya (the spiritual director of the poet 'Iraqi) at 
Multan in 645/1247-8. Later he visited the Mongol ruler 
Mangu Qa'an (646-655/1248-1257) who placed under 

1 Rabi'f, called Khatib, of Bushanj, was killed, according to the 
Mujmal of Fasfhf, in 702/1302-3. He was court-poet to Fakhru'd- 
Dm Kurt. 

2 Add. 22380 and Or. 4106. 

3 See p. 150 supra, ad calc., where the MSS. are enumerated. The 
St Petersburg MS. is No. 271 of the Institttt des Langues Orientates 
du Ministtre des Affaires Etrangeres. See Baron Victor Rosen's 
Manuscrits Per sans, pp. 111-113. 


his sway Herat, Jam, Bushanj, Ghur, Khaysar, Firuz-Kuh, 
Gharjistan, Murghab, Merv, Faryab (up to the Oxus), 
Isfizar, Farah, Si'stan, Kabul, Tirah, and Afghanistan up to 
the Indus. In 662/1263-4, after having subdued Si'stan, he 
visited Hulagu, and three years later his successor Abaqa, 
whom he accompanied in his campaign against Darband 
and Baku. He again visited Abaqa, accompanied by 
Shamsu'd-Din the Sahib Dtwdn, in 675/1276-7, and this 
time the former good opinion of the Mongol sovereign in 
respect to him seems to have been changed to suspicion, 
which led to his death, for he was poisoned in Sha'ban, 676 

(January, 1278), by means of a water-melon given 
p^one/" 1 to him while he was in the bath at Tabriz. 

Abaqa even caused his body to be buried in 
chains at Jam in Khurasan. Mawlana Waji'hu'd-Dm Nasafi 
commemorated the date of his death in the following verses : 

The allusion is to the verse in the Qur'an (si'ira Ixxxi, i) 
" When the sun is rolled up" for the title of the deceased 
ruler, Shamsu'd-Din, signifies the Sun of the Faith. 

The title of Malik (which means King in Arabic, but in 
Persia at this period meant no more than Prince or Amir) 
seems to have been first taken by Ruknu'd-Din, but already 
the Shaykh Thiqatu'd-Di'n Farm had given the higher title 
of Shah to his uncle 'Izzu'd-Din 'Umar in the following 
verse : 


The title of Malik was, however, that borne by all the suc- 
ceeding members of this house. 

Shamsu'd-Din was succeeded in 677/1278-9 by his son 

Ruknu'd-Din, who thereupon assumed his father's title with 

the adjective Kihin (" the Younger "). He died 

Ruknu'd-Din J or 

succeeds his at Khaysar on Safar 12, 705 (Sept. 3, 1305), but 
father under seems at a much earlier date to have been 

the title of 

shamsu'd-Din- practically set aside by his son Fakhru'd-Di'n, 

who, having been imprisoned by his father for 

seven years, was released at the intercession of the Mongol 

, general Nawruz, whom he ill requited by be- 

He is superseded ... 

by his son traying him in 696/1296-7 to Ghazan Khan, 

Fakhm'd-DJn against whom Nawruz had revolted. Three 
years later Fakhru'd-Din himself fought against Ghazan's 
brother Khuda-banda, who succeeded Ghazan in 705/1305-6, 
and in the following year sent an army of 10,000 men under 
Danishmand Bahadur against Herat, of which the fortifica- 
tions had been greatly strengthened by Fakhru'd-Din. 
Danishmand was, however, killed by a treacherous stratagem 
after he had been allowed to occupy Herat, together with 
many of his men, and Fakhru'd-Din then returned from 
Aman-Kuh, whither he had fled, and reoccupied the city. 
Soon afterwards he died on Sha'ban 22, 706 (Feb. 26, 1307). 
He was a great patron of literature. Sayfi says that forty 
poets of note were his panegyrists, and that he himself 
had composed eighty qastdas and one hundred and fifty 
muqattctdt in his praise. On the other hand his rule was 
austere : he forbade women to walk abroad, and sternly 
repressed wine-drinking and public mourning. 

Fakhru'd-Din was succeeded by his brother Ghiyathu'd- 
Din, who soon afterwards had a quarrel with his brother 
'Ala'u'd-Di'n, and went to lay his case before 
2 C etds U ' d ' Din the Mon g o1 sovereign Khuda-banda, who ac- 
corded him a gracious reception. On his return 
to Herat in 708/1308-9 he extended his power over Ghur, 
Khaysar and Isfizar. 'Ala'u'd-Din Hindu's intrigues against 
him compelled him again to visit Shah Khuda-banda in 


714/1314-15, and it took him some time, aided by the 
intercession of Shaykh Nuru'd-Din 'Abdu'r-Rahman of 
Isfara'in, to regain that monarch's confidence. On his return 
he was confronted first, in 718/1318-19, with an invasion 
of Khurasan by Prince Yasur 1 the Nikudan and, in the 
following year, with the hostility of Qutbu'd-Dm of Isfizar 
and the people of Si'stan, on which latter war Pur-i-Baha 
of Isfizar has the following verses : 

" O King, do not again, supported [only] by the weak Sistanis, 

Venture to give battle to the army of the Persians. 
The people of Sistan are nothing more than beards and moustaches ; 
Beware lest thou place thy reliance on felt and cords ! " 

In 720/1320 Prince Yasur was killed and the Nikudaris 
dispersed, and in Rajab of that year (August, 1320) 
Ghiyathu'd-Dm set out to perform the pilgrimage to Mecca, 
leaving his son Malik Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad to act as 
Viceroy. In 729/1329 Ghiyathu'd-Di'n died, leaving four 
sons, the above Shamsu'd-Din who succeeded him ; Hafiz 
and Mu'izzu'd-Dfn who successively ascended the throne ; 
and Baqir. 

On the date of Shamsu'd-Din's accession the following 
Arabic chronogram was composed by Jamalu'd-Din Mu- 
hammad ibn Husam : 

The words Khullida mulkuhn (" May his rule be eternal- 
ized!") give, according to the abjad reckoning, the date 729 ; 
but unhappily so slight was their appropriateness that 
1 See Howorth's Hist, of the Mongols, Part iii, pp. 590-1. 

B. P. 12 


Shamsu'd-Din died two months after his accession, and was 
succeeded by his brother Hafiz, who in turn, after a brief and 
troubled reign of about two years, was succeeded by the third 
brother Abu'l-Husayn Malik Mu'izzu'd-Di'n. 

The accession of Mu'izzu'd-Dm in 732/1331 almost 

synchronized with three important events, the 

Accession of death of Abu Sa < {d / which pra ctically marked 

JVlu izzu d-JUin v 

the end of the Mongol dominion over Persia) ; 
the birth of Tfmur ; and the rise of the Sarbadar Dynasty. 


The history of this dynasty, so far as it need be discussed 
here, may well be considered in connection with that of the 

Kurts. It is well summarized by Stanley Lane- 
DynS y bad4r Poole 1 , who says that they held Sabzawar and 

the neighbouring district for nearly half a cen- 
tury, "during which period twelve successive chiefs assumed 
the command, nine of whom suffered violent deaths." It 
may be added that no one of them reigned more than six 
or seven years, and that they were enthusiastic adherents 
of the Shf'a doctrine, while in Nishapur and Herat the 
Sunni doctrine predominated. Nevertheless Khwaja 'All 
Mu'ayyad, the last of the line, succeeded in taking Bistam 
and Farhadjird and winning over Nishapur, which, how- 
ever, was recaptured by the Kurts in 777/1375-6. The 
revolt which gave rise to this dynasty if such it can be 
called took place on Sha'ban 12, 737 (March 16, 1337), 
when Amir 'Abdu'r-Razzaq of Bayhaq, a disciple of Shaykh 
Husayn Juri (whose murids or disciples formed an im- 
portant element in the forces of this little kingdom) first 
raised the standard of rebellion, saying, " A gang of evil- 
doers dominates and oppresses the people. By God's grace 
we will do away with the oppression of these tyrants, 

failing which we will see our heads on the 
^amTsarbaddr gibbet (sar-ba-ddr), since we can no longer 

endure these tyrannical aggressions," and it 
1 Mohammadan Dynasties, p. 251. 


was to this expression that the dynasty owed its name 1 . 
One notable poet, Ibn-i-Yamin, is associated with the Sar- 
badars, but after the battle of Zawa, in which Shaykh 
Husayn Juri was killed and the Sarbadar forces routed, he 
fell into the hands of Malik Mu'izzu'd-Din Kurt, by whom 
he was well received and treated with honour. 

Mu'izzu'd-Din Kurt reigned for forty years, not in- 
gloriously, though not without occasional acts of barbarity 
Death of Malik wmcn were, unhappily, characteristic of that 
Mu'izzu'd-Dm time, as when, after the capture of Badghis, 
he erected, in the style later made familiar 
by Timur, two towers or minarets of the heads of his 
enemies. Finally he sickened and died in 771/1369-70, 
a date expressed in the following chronogram : 


He was buried at Herat by the side of the Ghuri monarch 
Sultan Ghiyathu'd-Din Muhammad Sam and of his own 
father Ghiyathu'd-Din Muhammad-i-Kurt, and was suc- 
ceeded by his son Ghiyathu'd-Din Pir 'All. 

It was about this time that the shadow of Timur 

(Tamerlane) began to fall over the land, but as usual his 

first advances were of a friendly character, and 

of^mT^ he S ave his niece Sevin J Qutluq Agha in 

marriage to Ghiyathu'd-Din Pir 'Alf's son Pir 

Muhammad in or about the year 778/1376. Five years 

1 The original words (Rawddtu'l-Janndt, Mr Ellis's MS., f. 147) are 
as follows : 


later, in the spring of A.D. 1381, early in his first Persian 
campaign, Ti'mur occupied Herat, placed it and the adjacent 
territories under the control of his son Mfran-shah, and 
carried off the Kurt ruler Ghiyathu'd-Di'n Pir 'All and his 
eldest son Pir Muhammad to Samarqand, where he im- 
ir * . f ,1, prisoned them, while two other members of the 

Extinction oi the 

Kurt Dynasty family, Amir Ghuri and Malik Muhammad, 
were similarly imprisoned at Andakan. Soon 
afterwards, however, an abortive rebellion at Herat in 
A.D. 1389 furnished their captor with an excuse for 
putting them to death, and so ended the Kurt dynasty, a 
year after the extinction of their rivals the Sarbadars. 

Amongst the four dynasties whose history has been 

briefly sketched above was Persia for the most part divided 

when, in the last quarter of the eighth century 

Comparison of ' 1 J 

Timur with of the kijra and the fourteenth of the Christian 
Chingiz Khdn er ^ ^imfa burst upon the land and ravaged it 
as Chingiz Khan had done some hundred and fifty years 
before. Between the two Central Asian conquerors there 
are many points of resemblance ; both had to begin by con- 
solidating their power and destroying rivals amongst their 
own people; both had passed the age of forty when they 
embarked on their invasions of Persia ; and both were re- 
sponsible for incalculable bloodshed and suffering. Two 
circumstances chiefly differentiate them, the fact that Chingiz 
Khan was a heathen while Ti'mur was, in name at least, a 
Muhammadan ; and the fact that, while Chingiz Khan was 
confronted with the great empire of the Khwarazmshahs, 
Ti'mur found Persia, as we have seen, parcelled out amongst 
a number of petty rulers whose dominions had no fixed 
frontiers, and who were constantly at war with one another 
and even with ambitious members of their own families. 
That Ti'mur v/as a Muhammadan certainly tended to miti- 
gate in some measure, so far as Persia and other Muslim 
lands were concerned, a natural savagery not inferior to 
that of Chingiz, for he at least showed more respect for 



Add. 18801 (Brit. Mus.), f. 23 

To face p. 180 


shrines and sacred edifices, and for men reputed holy or 
learned. Yet we must not be misled by panegyrists like 
Sharafu'd-Dm 'Ah' Yazdf, author of theZafar-nama ("Book 
of Victory ") 1 , who wrote under the patronage and for the 
pleasure of the conqueror ; though we need not, on the other 
hand, endorse all the abusive language employed by the 
Arabic writer Ahmad ibn 'Arabshah in h.\s l Ajaibu'l-Maqdtir 
fi akhbdri Timiir (" Marvels of Destiny in the History of 
Timur") 2 , where the conqueror is habitually described as 
" this traitor," " this criminal," " this mad dog," and the like. 
But Sharafu'd-Din's fulsome flattery is less tolerable than 
Ibn 'Arabshah's abuse, for though he is unable to omit all 
mention of Timur' s massacres and pyramids of skulls, he 
does not scruple to declare 3 that " his generous personality 
manifested the boundless grace of God, while the purest 
virtue and philanthropy were concealed in his light-seeking 
mind ; and such acts of wrath and retribution as were 
ostensibly committed in the initial stages [of his conquests] 
by some of his world -endowed followers and partisans, as 
will be presently set forth, were prompted only by the exi- 
gencies of conquest and the necessities of world-empire." 
As specimens of those acts mention may be made of his 
massacre of the people of Si'stan in 785/1383-4, when he 
caused some two thousand prisoners to be built up in a wall; 
his cold-blooded slaughter of a hundred thousand captive 
Indians near Dihlf in 801 (December, 1398); his burying 
alive of four thousand Armenians in 803/1400-1, and the 
twenty towers of skulls erected by him at Aleppo and 
Damascus in the same year ; and his massacre of 70,000 
of the inhabitants of Isfahan in 789 (November, 1387), to 
quote only a few out of many similar instances of his callous 
indifference to bloodshed and human suffering. Sir John 

1 Published in two volumes at Calcutta in the Bibliotheca Indica 
Series in 1887-8. This history, which comprises in this edition some 
1560 pages, is prolix, tedious, florid and fulsome. 

2 Published at Leyden, 1636; Calcutta, 1818; Cairo, A.H. 1285, etc. 

3 Pp. 15-16 of the Bibl. Ind. edition. 

1 82 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

Malcolm's judgements of Tfmur will command the assent 
of all fair-minded students not blinded by a misplaced hero- 
worship of great conquerors, such as Alexander, Chingiz, 
Ti'mur or Napoleon, who deemed no price of human suffering 
too great for the gratification of their ambitions. " Such a 
leader as Timour," says Malcolm, in his excellent History 
of Persia 1 , "must have been idolized by his soldiers ; and, 
with an army of six or seven hundred thousand men attached 
to his person, he was careless of the opinion of other classes 
in the community. The object of this monarch was fame 
as a conqueror ; and a noble city was laid in ashes, or the 
inhabitants of a province massacred, on a cold calculation 
that a dreadful impression would be made which would 
facilitate the purposes of his ambition. He pretended to be 
very religious, was rigid in performing his sacred duties, and 
paid attention to pious men ; who, in return for his favour, 
used to assure him that God had given the countries of other 
monarchs to his victorious sword. The parade which he 
made of these prophecies proves that he either believed in 
them, or that he thought they might produce an effect 
favourable to his designs." 

" From what has been said," observes this judicious 
historian a little further on 2 , "we may pronounce that 
Timour, though one of the greatest of warriors, was one of 
the worst of monarchs. He was able, brave and generous ; 
but ambitious, cruel and oppressive. He considered the 
happiness of every human being as a feather in the scale, 
when weighed against the advancement of what he deemed 
his personal glory ; and that appears to have been measured 
by the number of kingdoms which he laid waste, and the 
people that he destroyed. The vast fabric of his power had 
no foundation, it was upheld by his individual fame ; and 
the moment that he died, his empire dissolved. Some 
fragments of it were seized by his children : but it was in 
India alone that they retained dominion for any length of 
time. In that country we yet perceive a faint and expiring 
1 London, 1815, pp. 482-3. 2 Op. laud., p. 484. 


trace of the former splendour of the Moghul dynasty ; a 
pageant, supported by the British nation, still sits upon a 
throne at Delhi 1 ; and we view in him the gradual decline 
of human greatness, and wonder at the state to which a few 
centuries have reduced the lineal descendants of the great 

Besides the two histories of Timur already mentioned, 
the Persian Zafar-ndma of Sharafu'd-Dm 'All Yazdi and 
the Arabic 'Ajaibul-Maqdiir Q{ Ibn 'Arabshah, 
SorTof Ttaflr there exis ts a third contemporary history, un- 
published, and, so far as is known, represented 
only by the unique MS. Add. 23,980 of the British Museum. 
This history, also written in Persian, and also entitled 
Zafar-ndma, was undertaken at Timur' s command in 8o4/ 
1401-2 by Nizam-i-Shami, and was concluded and presented 
to Timur in 806/1403-4, just a year before his death. 
The author was living in Baghdad when it was taken by 
Ti'mur in 795/1393, and was the first person who came out 
to greet him. "God have mercy on thee," said Ti'mur, "for 
thou wert the first person to come forth from this city before 
me! 2 " This history, conciser and less florid than the 
homonymous work of Sharafu'd-Dm, appears to deserve 
publication, and seems to have formed the basis of the later 
work. In writing this chapter I have had at my disposal 
not only my own brief notes on its contents, taken during 
spare hours in the British Museum, but also a complete 
transcript made for me by my friend Dr Ahmad Khan. 

Reference must also be made to the so-called "Memoirs" 

and "Institutes" of Ti'mur (Malfiizdt and Tuziikdt-i-Timtirt), 

which, though translated into English from the 

"Memoirs" and Persian and widely quoted and used by Euro- 

" institutes" of p ean writers, are now generally, and I think 

Timur . V 

properly, regarded by the best judges as apocry- 

1 Sir John Malcolm's History was published in 1815, long before 
the Indian Mutiny, which led, among other results, to the final ex- 
tinction of the dynasty of Ti'mur, commonly known as the "Great 
Moghuls." 2 -MS., f. 99. 

1 84 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

phal 1 . The Persian version of this book was first produced 
in the seventeenth century of our era, in the reign of Shah 
Jahan (1628-1659), by a certain Abu Talib al-Husayni, who 
professed to have translated it from a Turki original dis- 
covered by him in the library of a certain Ja'far Pasha, 
governor of Yaman (Arabia Felix). Of the existence of 
this Turki original no evidence whatever exists save this 
statement of Abu Talib's, and it appears much more likely 
that he himself compiled the Persian work, in imitation of 
Bcibur's 2 authentic autobiography, with the aid of the Zafar- 
ndma and other histories of Ti'mur. A manuscript of this 
work was brought to England by Major Davy in 1779, and 
on his death in 1784 passed into the possession of his son. 
In 1779 he wrote to Dr White, then Laudian Professor of 
Arabic in the University of Oxford, a high appreciation of 
this book and a vehement defence of its authenticity 3 , and 
in 1783 both the text and translation of the "Institutes" were 
published in collaboration by these two. In 1787 Professor 
Langles produced a French translation with the following 
cumbrous title : Instituts politiques etmilitaires de Tamerlan, 
proprement appelle Timour, ecrits par lui-meme en Mongol, et 
traduits en Francois, sur la version Persane d'Abou-Taleb 
Al-Hosse'ini, avec la Vie de ce Conquerant, d'apres les meilleurs 
Auteurs Orientaux, des Notes, et des Tables Historique, Gfo- 
graphique, &c. In 1830 Major Charles Stewart published 
an English translation of the Malfiizdt or [pseudo] auto- 
biographical Memoirs. 

Not only as one of the greatest conquerors the world has 
ever seen, but as the ancestor of the so-called Moghul 
dynasty in India, Ti'mur has attracted the attention of many 

1 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 177-180, where several very cogent 
reasons against the authenticity of the book are given. 

2 That this, not Bdbar, is the correct form has been shown by 
Sir E. Denison Ross, in his interesting article on A Collection of Poems 
by the Emperor Bdbur published on Oct. 26, 1910, as an extra number 
to vol. vi of the J.A.S.of Bengal, pp. iv-vi of the Introduction. 

3 See pp. ix-xiii of Major Charles Stewart's translation of the 

CH. iv] TfMtfR'S EARLY CAREER 185 

European (especially English) as well as Asiatic historians, 
and has furnished a subject for many writers. For the 
purposes of this book, in which the historical portion of the 
subject is necessarily subordinated to the literary, it will be 
sufficient to give a brief sketch of his career, based chiefly 
on the Zafar-ndma and Ibn 'Arabshah, especially that 
portion of it which is connected with Persia. 

Timur (a name which in Turkish signifies " Iron") was 
born at Kash in Transoxiana on Sha'ban 28, 736 (April 1 1, 

1336). As usual in the case of men who after- 
Birth of Timur , , - , , 

wards became famous, attempts are made by 
his panegyrists on the one hand to affiliate him (through 
Qarachar Noyan) to the Mongol Royal House of Chingiz 
Khan, and on the other to surround his birth with all manner 
of portents indicative of his future greatness. Ibn 'Arab- 
shah, on the other hand, merely gives the names of his father 
(Taraghay) and his grandfather (Abghay), says that "he 
and his father were herdsmen, belonging to a gang of rascals 
devoid alike of intelligence and religion," and ascribes the 
limp to which he owed his sobriquet of " the Lame " (Lang) 
to a wound received while engaged in stealing sheep. His 
early adventures and the steps by which he gradually 
attained the leading position amongst his people need not 
here detain us, and it is sufficient to say that he first became 
prominent at the age of 24 in 761/1360; received the title 
of Sdhib-Qirdn ("Lord of the Auspicious Conjunction") 
ten years later when he succeeded in killing his rival Sultan 
Husayn in Sha'ban, 771 (March, 1370) ; spent six or seven 
years after this in consolidating his power in Transoxiana, 

and did not seriously turn his attention to Persia 

First Persian ^jj ^ sprmg Q f AfD . 1381, when he Was 45 

campaign 011381 * ~ J 

years of age. In this first campaign, which 
lasted only for the inside of a year, his attention was con- 
fined to Khurasan. At Andakhiid he paid his respects to a 
more or'less crazy dervish known as Baba Sangu 1 , and, with 
that superstition which was so strangely blended with his 
1 Zafar-ndma, i, p. 310. 

186 THE PERIOD OF TfMtf R [BK n 

ferocious energy, interpreted as a presage of victory the 
piece of meat which that holy but demented personage 
threw at his head. Sarakhs surrendered to him, and, after 
visiting another holy man, Zaynu'd-Din Abu Bakr, at 
Tayabad, he captured and destroyed Bushanj. The reduction 
of Herat and submission of Ghiyathu'd-Dm Pfr 'All, the 
Kurt ruler, followed ; and thereafter came the turn of Tus, 
Isfara'in (which was levelled with the ground and many of 
its inhabitants slain), and Kalat. He then returned to 
Samarqand and Bukhara for the winter. 

In the spring of the following year (A.D. 1382) he con- 
tinued his operations against Persia. At Kalat, where he 
encamped, he was joined by his son Miran-shah cam- from Sarakhs and by the now submissive Ghi- 

paign of 1382 

yathu'd-Di'n Kurt from Herat ; and, having 
established a blockade of this strong place, he passed on to 
Turshiz, which also surrendered to him. Here he received 
an ambassador from Shah Shuja', the Muzaffari ruler of Pars, 
whose daughter he demanded in marriage for his grandson 
Pir Muhammad. Having received the submission of Amir 
Wall, the ruler of Mazandaran, Ti'mur returned for the winter 
to Samarqand, his capital, where he was for a while plunged 
in sorrow by the death of his wife Dilshad Agha and her 
elder sister Qutlugh Turkan Agha. 

In the autumn of A.D. 1383, after despatching an expe- 
dition against the heathen Mongols to pursue Qamaru'd-Dm, 
Ti'mur again set out on a campaign against 

Third Persian 

campaign of Mazandaran and Sfstan. Towards the end of 
1383-4 October he attacked Sabzawar, undermined and 

destroyed the citadel, and took captive some two thousand 
persons, whom "he piled alive one on another, compacted them 
with bricks and clay,and erected minarets, so that men, being 
apprised of the majesty of his wrath, might not be seduced 
by the demon of arrogance, and so cast themselves into the 
pit of wailing and destruction 1 ." Having received the sub- 
mission of Farah, he attacked Zirih, which was fiercely 
1 Zafar-ndma, i, p. 360. 

CH. iv] TfMtfR'S CAMPAIGNS (A.D. 1383-7) 187 

defended by some five thousand men, most of whom were 
slain, and their heads built up into minarets. In December 
Si'stan fell before his onslaught, and " whatever was in that 
country, from potsherds to royal pearls, and from the finest 
fabrics to the very nails in the doors and walls, was swept 
away by the winds of spoliation, while the lightning of 
rapine, comprehending alike the greater and the less of that 
land, consumed moist and dry together 1 ." After reducing 
two or three other fortresses, and constructing more pyramids 
of the skulls of his enemies, Ti'mur captured Qandahar, 
hanged the commander of the garrison, and returned to his 
capital Samarqand, where he allowed himself a period of 
repose lasting three months. 

It would be tedious, and, in a work of this character, 
out of place to describe in detail the almost annual cam- 
paigns which occupied the remaining twentyyears of Timur's 
life, but in brief they were as follows : 

In 786/1384-5 Ti'mur invaded Mazandaran and Adhar- 
bayjan, wintered at Ray, continued his campaign in the 
spring of 1385, and, having reduced the Caspian provinces 
and the North of Persia as far as Sultaniyya, returned to 
his capital Samarqand for the winter. 

In 788/1386-7 Ti'mur, seeing the distracted state of 
Persia, determined to effect its total subjugation, and set 
out on a three years' campaign against that country. He 
first marched against Malik 'Izzu'd-Di'n, the ruler of Luristan, 
sacked Burujird and Khurramabad, and caused many of 
his opponents to be cast alive over precipices. He next 
marched on Tabriz, where Sultan Ahmad Jala'ir had col- 
lected an army to oppose him, but on his approach the 
latter, deeming discretion the better part of valour, retreated 
to Nakhjuwan, and, after a fierce battle, succeeded in making 
good his escape. Ti'mur spent the summer at Tabriz, and 
despatched thence to Samarqand a selection of the most 
skilful artificers and craftsmen whom he could find in the 
conquered city. In the autumn he crossed the Araxes, 
1 Ibid.) pp. 368-9. 

1 88 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

pushed forward towards Nakhjuwan, and, having subdued 
the strong fortress of Qars, proceeded to devastate Gurjistan 
(Georgia). Having captured Tiflis, and, indulged in a great 
hunting-expedition, in which the game slain was so abundant 
that most of it was left to rot on the ground 1 , he returned 
to winter quarters in Qara-Bagh. 

In the spring of A.D. 1387 (A.H. 789) Timur renewed 
his campaign in Asia Minor, subdued the cities of Bayazi'd, 
Erzeroum, Erzinjan, Mush, Akhlat and Van, and received 
the submission of Salmas and Urmiya, and in the autumn, 
in consequence of the refusal of the Muzaffarf prince 
Zaynu'l-'Abidm to appear before him, he marched against 
Pars. On the way thither he entered Isfahan, and levied a 
heavy contribution on the people of that city. This pro- 
voked a riot, in which a good many of Timur's tax-collectors 
and agents were killed, and Timur took a terrible revenge, 
making a general massacre of the people, in which it is 
computed that 70,000 perished, whose heads were counted 
and afterwards built up into minarets. This 
happened on Monday, Nov. i8 % ! 3 8 7 2 . Ti'mur 
then continued his march to Shiraz, which sub- 
mitted to him in the following month (Dec. 1387), and it is 
on this occasion that the legendary interview between the 
great conqueror and the poet Hafiz is supposed to have 
taken place. Dawlatshah, who relates the anecdote 3 , with 
characteristic inaccuracy assigns this meeting to the year 
795/1392-3, when Hafiz had been dead for four years. 
The story, which is probably entirely apocryphal, is that 
Timur summoned Hafiz to his presence and upbraided him 
for the well-known verse in which he says : 

" If that unkindly Shirdz Turk would take my heart within her hand, 
I'd give Bukhara" for the mole upon her cheek, or Samarqand." 

" With the blows of my lustrous sword," exclaimed Timur, 
"have I subjugated most of the habitable globe, and laid 

1 Zafar-ndma, i, p. 404. 

2 Ibid., p. 435. 

3 See pp. 305-6 of my edition. 

CH. iv] TfMtfR AND HAFI? 189 

waste thousands of towns and countries to embellish Samar- 
qand and Bukhara, my native towns and the seats of my 
government ; and you, miserable wretch that you are, would 
sell them both for the black mole of a Turk of Shi'raz ! " 
" Sire," replied Hafiz, with a deep obeisance, " it is through 
such prodigality that I have fallen on such evil days ! " 
Timur is said to have been so much delighted by this quick 
rejoinder that he not only refrained from punishing the 
poet but gave him a handsome present. There is a variant 
of the story, which I have heard in Persia but not met with 
in any book, according to which Hafiz replied, " They have 
misquoted me : what I really wrote was not 

Bi-khdl-i-hinduwash bakhsham Samarqand u Bukhdrd-rd 

Bi-khdl-i-hinduwash bakhsham du man qand u si khurmd-rd 

I would give for the mole on her cheek two maunds of sugar and 
three dates." 

No mention of any such meeting occurs in contemporary 
biographers of Timur, such as Sharafu'd-Dm 'Ah' of Yazd, 
nor have I met with any trustworthy evidence in support 
of it. 

To return to Tfmur's invasion of Fars. Zaynu'l-'Abidin, 
the Muzaffari prince, had fled to his cousin Shah Mansiir, 
governor of Shushtar in the S.W. of Persia, who, violating 
alike the bonds of kinship and claims of hospitality, cast 
him into prison. Most of the other princes of the House 
of Muzaffar, as well as the Atabeks of Luristan and other 
petty rulers, waited on Timur at Shi'raz and tendered their 
submission. But, even in the moment of his triumph, news 
was brought to the conqueror by a messenger, who had 
accomplished the long journey from Samarqand to Shi'raz 
in the incredibly short space of seventeen days, that a 
fresh revolt of the stiff-necked Tuqatmish required the 
presence of Timur to defend his own realms. Thereupon, 
in February, 1388, he at once set out for Samarqand, bearing 
with him, as part of his spoils, the learned Sayyid-i-Shan'f-i- 

1 90 THE PERIOD OF TfMtfR [BK n 

Jurjini, and appointing the Muzaffari princes Shah Yahya, 
Sultan Muhammad, Sultan Ahmad and Sultdn Abu Ishaq 
governors of Shiraz, Isfahan, Kirman and Sirjan respectively. 

For the next four years and a half Timur was engaged 
in warfare against Tuqatmish, the Mongols, the realm of 
Khwarazm or Khiva, and other northern peoples, and 
Persia enjoyed a brief rest from his attentions, though a 
rebellion which broke out in the summer of 1389 in Khu- 
rasan (apparently prompted by reports of his defeat at the 
hands of Tuqatmish) was put down in the usual bloody 
and barbarous fashion by Miranshah, especially at Tiis, 
where some ten thousand persons were massacred, and their 
heads built up into pyramids or minarets. 

On the last day of July, 1392, Tfmur, after some delay 
occasioned by a serious illness, once again crossed the Oxus 
on another of his devastating campaigns in the South. 
This, known as the " Five Years' Campaign " ( Ytirish-i- 
panj-sdla 1 ) included the Caspian provinces, Fars (where he 
exterminated the princes of the Muzaffari dynasty, as already 
described at p. 169 supra}, Armenia, Georgia, Mesopotamia, 
and South Russia. In Gurgan and Mazandaran he came in 
contact with certain heretical Sayyids, many of whom he 
slew, "delivering those regions from the mischievous influence 
of those misguided communists 2 ." Sharafu'd-Din's account 
of their tenets is neither clear nor detailed, but it appears 
highly probable that they belonged to the heretical Hurufi 
sect, whose founder, Fadlu'llah, appeared, preached his 
doctrines, and suffered death in Tfmur's reign, and was 
a native of Astarabad. We shall have more to say about 
him and his doctrine presently. 

In the latter part of December, 1392, Tfmur, having 
received a visit from his wives and family, set out for South 
Persia, travelling by way of Damghan, Samnan, Ray, 
Qazwin, Sultaniyya, Kurdistan, and Burujird (which he 
reached on February 14, I393 3 ), and putting to death on 

1 Zafar-nAma, \, pp. 561 et seqq. 2 Ibid., pp. 576-7. 

3 Ibid., p. 587. 


his way many of the Lurs. He reached Dizful on March 2 
and Shushtar a day or two later, and thence set out for 
Shiraz. On his way thither he captured the strong fortress 
of Qal'a-i-Saffd and released the blinded captive prince 
Zaynu'l-'Abidin, whom he treated with honour and promised 
vengeance on Shah Mansur. Nor was this vengeance long 
delayed, for, as already narrated, Shah Mansur was slain in 
battle a few days later, while most of the remaining princes 
of the House of Muzaffar were put to death by Timur's 
order on May 22, 1393. " All the most skilful of the crafts- 
men and artisans of the provinces of Pars and 'Iraq " were, 
according to Sharafu'd-Din 'All of Yazd, transferred by 
Tfmur to Samarqand 1 . 

On August 10 Timur, who was approaching Baghdad, 
was visited by Shaykh Nuru'd-Din 'Abdu'r-Rahman of 
Isfara'in, who came as an ambassador from Sultan Ahmad 
Jala'ir to make his excuses for not waiting on Ti'mur in 
person. His excuses were ill received by Ti'mur, who 
nevertheless treated the Shaykh with the respect which, 
according to the Zafar-ndma (p. 629), he habitually accorded 
to learned and pious men. Shortly afterwards he entered 
Baghdad and occupied the palace of Sultan Ahmad, who 
fled before him. Some of Timur's amirs went in pursuit, 
overtook the fugitives near Karbala, and captured much 
spoil and some of the wives and sons of Sultan Ahmad, 
who, however, succeeded in making his escape. His son 
'Ala'u'd-Dawla, together with his wives, a selection of the 
most skilful artisans of Baghdad, and the celebrated musician 
Khwaja 'Abdu'l-Qadir, were sent to Samarqand by Tfmur, 
who also despatched an ambassador to Barquq al-Maliku'z- 
Zahir, the ruler of Egypt, with a view to concluding a treaty 
of friendship and commercial intercourse with him. 

Timur's next exploit was the reduction of the strong 

fortress of Takn't, which was gallantly defended. Finally, 

however, the defenders were overcome and put to death, and 

their heads built up into minarets. Continuing his march 

1 Ibid., p. 619. 

i 9 2 THE PERIOD OF TfMtf R [BK n 

northwards he passed by Karkiik, Arbil, Mawsil (Mosul) and 
Rawha, where, in March, 1 394, he was overtaken by stormy 
and rainy weather, and compelled by this and the disobedi- 
ence of Malik 'Izzu'd-Din to return to Mesopotamia. Having 
in a brief space of time dealt with this rebellious chieftain, 
Ti'mur again turned northwards and reduced the fortress of 
Mardi'n. Luckily for the garrison, news had just reached 
Ti'mur of the birth, at Sultaniyya, on March 22, 1394, of a 
grandson, the afterwards celebrated Ulugh Bey, son of Shah- 
rukh, and this put Ti'mur in such good humour that he 
spared their lives, which would otherwise have certainly 
been forfeited 1 . Amid (Diyar Bakr) next succumbed to his 
victorious arms in April, but he had to abandon his attempt 
to raze the fortifications on account of their extraordinary 
strength and solidity 2 . He then passed on to Si'was, Mush, 
Bitli's, Akhlat and Aydfn, halting for a while in the Plain 
of Ala-dagh to receive his wives and younger children, who 
came to visit him from Sultaniyya, and despatching an 
army in pursuit of his enemy Qara Yusuf and his Turkman 
followers. At the end of July, 1 394, he captured the fortress 
of Avnfk, on the upper waters of the Araxes, and sent its 
defender, Misr the son of Qard Yusuf, to Samarqand, to- 
gether with Sultan 'Isa, the ex-governor of Mardi'n. He 
next invaded Georgia and occupied Tiflis. 

Fortunately for Persia, a fresh menace on the part of 
his old enemy Tuqatmish compelled Ti'mur at this juncture, 
towards the end of February, I39S 3 , to march northwards 
to defend his own territories, and this, with the ensuing 
campaign in Southern Russia, in the course of which he 
penetrated as far as Moscow 4 , kept him occupied for more 
than a year. During and in consequence of his absence 
several revolts broke out in Persia, such as that of Qard 
Yiisuf the Turkman in Adharbayjan 5 ; of Gudarz (probably 
a Zoroastrian) at Sirjan 6 ; of Sultan Muhammad, son of 

1 Zafar-ndma, \. p. 680. 2 Ibid., p. 684. 

3 Ibid., p. 735. 4 Ibid., p. 761. 

5 Ibid., p. 757. 6 Ibid., pp. 784-5- 


Abu Sa'id of Tabas, and some Khurasani soldiers who had 
formerly been in the service of the Muzaffari dynasty 
at Yazd ; and of Buhliil at Nihawand. All these revolts 
were quickly and sternly repressed, and the ringleader of 
that last mentioned, Buhlul, was burned alive 1 . The en- 
suing month of Ramadan was passed by Ti'mur at Ramadan 
" in obedience and devotion to the Divine Benefactor, and 
in the observance of the obligations of fasting and vigils 
and of every kind of religious rite and ceremony." He 
then, having ordered his generals to subdue the whole 
Persian shore of the gulf from Khuzistan to Hurmuz, set 
out on July 18, 1396, for Samarqand. 

On this occasion Ti'mur remained quiet at his capital 
for a longer period than usual, and devoted a good deal of 
attention to beautifying it and its environs by the labours 
of " the expert engineers and skilful architects who had 
been gathered to the Royal Metropolis from every clime 
and country from East to West 2 ." He also gave a series 
of gorgeous banquets, of which one of the chief was to 
celebrate the conferring of the kingdom of Khurasan, in- 
cluding Si'stan and Mazandaran, from Firuzkuh to Ray, on 
his son Shah-rukh, which happened in May, I397 3 . Less 
than a year later, in the spring of 1398, he set out on his 
Indian campaign, instigated thereto, as asserted in the 
Zafar-ndma*, by his desire to promote Islam and crush 
idolatry, and by the accounts which reached him of the 
toleration shown by the Muslim rulers towards their Hindu 
subjects and neighbours. After some preliminary opera- 
tions against the Afghans (or Awghans) of the Sulayman 
Kuh and the Siydh-piish (" Black-robed") heathen of Kafir- 
istan, he crossed the Indus on Muharram 12, 801 (Sept. 24, 
1398) and proceeded to carry fire and sword into India. It 
is unnecessary for our purpose to follow these operations in 
detail. They were characterized by the usual bloodshed 
and barbarities, amongst the worst of which was the massacre 

1 Ibid., i, p. 788. 2 Ibid., ii, p. 6. 

3 Ibid., i, pp. 803-4. * Ibid., ii, p. 15. 

B. P. 13 


in cold blood of 100,000 Indian prisoners near Dihlf on 
December 12, I398 1 . Compared to this monstrous crime 
the horrors enacted a few days later at Dihlf, and the 
massacre of 10,000 persons a month earlier at Batnfr sink 
into insignificance. 

Reports of troubles in Persia (especially in Adharbayjan, 
where his son, Mfranshah, to whom the government of this 
important province had been entrusted, was courting disaster 
by his insane vagaries, generally ascribed to an injury to his 
head caused by a fall from his horse) impelled Timur to cut 
short his Indian campaign early in the year A.D. 1399, and 
to hasten homewards. He crossed the Indus on his return 
journey on March 8 of that year, five months and seventeen 
days after he had crossed it at the beginning of his campaign, 
and the Oxus three weeks later. On April 7 he reached 
his native town of Kash or Shahr-i-Sabz (the "Green City"), 
and entered Samarqand, his capital, on April 27. A fort- 
night later (May 9, 1399) he laid the foundation-stone of 
the magnificent mosque (Masjid-i-Jdm?) which he had long 
intended to erect for the embellishment of his metropolis. 

On September 9, 1399, Timur again quitted Samarqand 
for Adharbayjan, where the erratic conduct of his son 
Mfranshah, of which fresh accounts continued to reach 
him, urgently demanded his attention. At Aywanak, near 
Ray, he was joined by his son Shah-rukh and by another 
army which he had despatched by way of Mazandaran. 
Mfranshah was induced to come to his father's camp to 
render account of his misconduct, which included the waste 
or embezzlement of a large proportion of the revenues, the 
putting to death on mere suspicion of certain men of conse- 
quence against whom he had conceived a spite, the wanton 
destruction of certain historic buildings, and the exhuma- 
tion of the eminent Minister and historian Rashidu'd-Dfn 
Fadlu'llah, whose body he caused to be re-interred in the 
Jews' cemetery. Mfranshah was punished by his father's 
displeasure and the virtual transference of the authority he 
1 Zafar-ndma, ii, p. 92. 


had misused to his son Abu Bakr, but Timur's fiercest 
wrath fell upon certain minstrels and poets who had been 
Miranshah's boon-companions, and who were alleged to 
have corrupted his principles and encouraged his extrava- 
gances. Several of these, namely Mawlana Muhammad of 
Quhistan, " who, together with a complete mastery of the 
technicalities of the various sciences, was unique in his age 
and the marvel of his time in verse and prose composition, 
both serious and frivolous 1 ," Qutbu'd-Di'n Na'f, Habib-i- 
'Udf and 'Abdu'l-Mu'min the rhapsodist, were condemned 
to death on this charge and hanged at or near Qazwfn. 
According to Dawlatshah 2 , Muhammad of Quhistan must 
needs indulge his propensity for jesting even on the scaffold. 
Turning to Qutbu'd-Dm, one of his fellow- victims, he said, 
" You had precedence in the King's company : precede 
me, therefore, here also." " O unlucky heretic," replied the 
other, " do you bring matters to this pass, and cannot you 
cease jesting yet ? " When it came to Muhammad's turn 
to die, he recited the following punning verse : 

" 'Tis the end of the matter and the last round, O heretic ! 
Whether thou goest or not, the choice is no longer in thy hand ! 
If they lead thee, like Mansiir 3 , to the foot of the gibbet (pd-yi-ddr\ 
Stand firm (pdy-ddr) like a man, for the world is not enduring (pdy- 
ddr) \ " 

1 Zafar-ndma ii, pp. 213-214. 

2 Pp. 330-1 of my edition. In the very rare Mujmal of Fasihf, 
under the year A.H. 802, two other victims are enumerated, viz. 
Ardashir-i-Changi (" the harper "), and Khwaja Yahyd-yi-Narrad (" the 
backgammon-player ") 

3 The celebrated mystic who was hanged or crucified in the tenth 
century of our era at Baghdad for exclaiming Ancil-Haqq ! (" I am the 
Truth ! " i.e. God). His real name was Husayn ibn Mansur al-Hallaj 
(" the wool-carder"). See my Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. i, pp. 428-437. 



The campaign on which Timur was now embarked, and 
which included some of his most remarkable achievements, 
is called by Sharafu'd-Din 'All Yazdi (ii, 206) the " Seven 
Years' Campaign." As it began about Muharram 8, 802 
(Sept. 10, 1399), and as Tfmur returned to his capital, 
Samarqand, in Muharram, 807 (July, 1404), this appellation 
must be regarded as a misnomer. Even the abridged 
account of the many bloody battles and brilliant victories 
included in this period which is given in Price's Chrono- 
logical Retrospect^ fills 166 quarto pages, and in this place 
it must suffice to indicate only its chief events. 

The winter of A.D. 1399-1400 was spent by Ti'mur in 
Qarabagh near the Araxes, and ere spring had melted the 
snows he once more invaded Georgia, devastated the country, 
destroyed the churches and monasteries, and slew great 
numbers of the inhabitants. In August, 1400, he began his 
march into Asia Minor by way of Avni'k, Erzeroum, Erzinjan 
and Sfvas. The latter place offered a stubborn resistance, 
and when it finally capitulated Ti'mur caused all the Arme- 
nian and Christian soldiers to the number of four thousand 
to be buried alive; but the Muhammadans he spared 2 . 
Meanwhile an animated correspondence was taking place 
between him and the Ottoman Sultan Bayazid, called Yil- 
dirim (the " Thunder-bolt "), from whom Ti'mur demanded 
the surrender of Sultan Ahmad of Baghdad and Qara 
Yusuf the Turkman. This Bayazid refused, as, until a very 
recent occasion, the Turks have ever been wont to refuse 
such betrayal of guests ; and, moreover, as must be admit- 
ted, and as will presently be seen, he couched his refusal in 
language little calculated to appease his great rival. With 
the Sultan of Egypt also (al-Maliku'n-Nasir Faraj) Ti'mur 
became embroiled by reason of the unlawful detention of 
his ambassador at Cairo, and thus the campaign became 
diverted not only against the territories over which the two 

1 Published in London in 4 vols., 1811-1821. The portion to which 
reference is here made is vol. iii, Part i, pp. 297-463. 

2 Zafar-ndma, ii, p. 269. 


fugitive kings had reigned respectively, but against the 

Ottoman and Egyptian, and incidentally the Syrian lands. 

After taking 'Ayntab, Timur besieged and reduced 

Aleppo in October, 1400, and there captured and sent with 

other spoils of war to Samarqand his future 
Damcu" historian Mawland Nizdmu'd-Di'n called Shdmi 

d by ( the " Syrian "). Having next subdued in turn 

Hama,Hims(Emessa) and Ba'labakk (Baalbek) 
he proceeded to invest Damascus. Here an assassin, insti- 
gated by al-Maliku'n-Nasir, Sultan of Egypt, attempted his 
life, but failed and was put to death. Damascus surrendered, 
but again revolted, and was again subdued in March, 1401, 
when it finally submitted, and suffered Tfmur's name to be 
inserted in the khutba, after it had suffered the horrors 
of Tartar incendiarism and looting. Another portion of 
Ti'mur's army ravaged the Syrian coast as far south as 

Timur next turned his attention to Baghdad, the 
capital of the recalcitrant Sultan Ahmad Jala'ir, and, 

having taken it, made, on June 20, 1401, a 
b a Timik aghdad S reat massacre, in revenge for the many notable 

officers of his army who had perished in the 
siege. Each soldier was ordered to bring a head 1 , and in 
the words of Sharafu'd-Dfn 'Alf Yazdi, "the market of 
retribution became so brisk that the broker of death sold 
at one price the old man of eighty and the child of eight, 
while the oven of wrath was so enkindled that it consumed 
in like manner the corporeal vestiture of the wealthy 
plutocrat and the wretched pauper 2 ." 

Having left Baghdad a smoking charnel-house, Ti'mur 
again turned his attention to the unfortunate Georgians, 

until the approach of winter drove him in 
Angola" 1 ' November, 1401, into his winter quarters at 

Qarabagh. About the middle of February, 

1 According to Ibn 'Arabshah the number of Ti'mur's soldiers on 
this occasion was 20,000, and each v.'cs ordered to bring two heads. 

2 Zafar-ndma, ii, p. 367. 


1402, he prepared to attack the Ottoman Sultan Bayazi'd, 
from whom he had received another defiant letter which 
goaded him to fury. On July 20, 1402, was fought the 
memorable battle of Angora, in which the Ottoman Turks 
were utterly defeated and their Sultan, Bayazi'd, "the 
Thunderbolt," taken prisoner. The well-known story that 
The story of Ti'mur confined him in a cage and carried him 
Bayazid and about with him wherever he went is now gene- 
rally discredited 1 . No mention of this is made, 
I think, by Sharafu'd-Din 'Ah' of Yazd and other Persian 
historians of Ti'mur, and the story may have arisen from an 
expression used by Ibn 'Arabshah, who, as already mentioned, 
hated Ti'mur, and sought always to represent his actions in 
the worst light. The expression in question is : 

" The son of 'Osman fell into a hunter's snare, and became confined 
like a bird in a cage " 

a phrase which it is not necessary to take literally, and which 
may well have been employed metaphorically and to fulfil 
the exigencies of the rhymed prose in which Ibn 'Arabshdh's 
work is composed. Sharafu'd-Din explicitly says 2 that 
when Bayazi'd, with hands bound, was brought before Ti'mur, 
the latter, after reproaching him for his previous contumacy, 
expressing his regret at having been compelled to make war 
on a fellow-believer who had rendered such signal services 
to Islm, and reminding him how he would have probably 
behaved to the conquered had their respective positions been 
reversed, concluded by saying that " in gratitude for the 
victory and help vouchsafed to him by the mercy of God " 
he would do naught but good to his captive and the other 
Turkish prisoners. 

1 It is, however, accepted by Professor H. A. Gibbons in his very 
interesting work on the Foundation of the Ottoman Empire (Oxford, 
1916). See his long foot-note on p. 255, where the matter is very fully 

2 Zafar-ndma, vol. ii, pp. 438-9. 


Be this as it may, the campaign against the Ottoman 
Turks continued ; royal Broussa and "infidel" Smyrna were 
attacked and made desolate, the latter in December, 1402; 
and a little later, on February 26, 1403, the unfortunate 
Bayazi'd died in captivity. 

Seeing what had befallen the Turks, the Egyptian 
Sultan, al-Maliku'n-Nasir Faraj, abandoned his former 
attitude of defiance, released Timur's ambas- 
f sador, and sent his submission to the victor 

Suitin ai- O f Angora by an embassy which was graciously 

Maliku'n-NSsir . b TA jo 

received. In August and September, 1403, 
Ti'miir again raided Georgia, and, having wintered once 
more at Qarabagh, reached Rayon May 10 and Samarqand 
about the end of July, 1404. Here a month later arrived 

the Spanish Mission headed by Ruy Gonzalez 
Ttai embasSy de Clavijo, who has left us an entertaining 

account of his journey from Spain to Samar- 
qand and back, and of his impressions of Tfmur, of which 
account an English translation, edited by Sir Clements R. 
Markham, was published by the Hakluyt Society in 1859. 
Clavijo sailed from Seville in company with an envoy, 
Muhammad al-Qadi, whom Ti'mur had sent to Spain, 
accompanied by Gomez de Salazar and an ecclesiastic 
named Fray Alonzo Paez de Santa Maria. Travelling by 
way of Constantinople, Trebizond, Erzeroum, Khuy, Tabriz, 
Tihran and Mashhad, the Spanish envoys reached Samar- 
qand on August 31, 1404, in company with the ambassador 
of " the Sultan of Babylon," and were received by Ti'mur 
on Monday, September 8. He " was seated in a portal, in 
front of the entrance of a beautiful palace ; and he was 
sitting on the ground. Before him there was a fountain, 
which threw up the water very high, and in it there were 
some red apples. The lord was seated cross-legged, on 
silken embroidered carpets, amongst round pillows. He was 
dressed in a robe of silk, with a high white hat on his head, 
on the top of which there was a special ruby, with pearls 
and precious stones round it." The ambassadors were 


brought close before him that he might see them better ; 
for his eyesight was bad, he being so old that the eyelids had 
fallen down entirely. He received them graciously, en- 
quiring, " How is my son the king ? Is he in good health? " 
and then turned to the nobles who stood round him, saying, 
" Behold ! here are the ambassadors sent by my son the 
King of Spain, who is the greatest King of the Franks, and 
lives at the end of the world. The Franks are truly a great 
people, and I will give my benediction to the King of Spain, 
my son. It would have sufficed if he had sent you to me 
with the letter, and without the presents, so well satisfied 
am I to hear of his health and prosperous state." 

The Spanish envoys were subsequently entertained at 
several banquets, of which Clavijo gives detailed descrip- 
ciavijo-s de- tions, and saw Timur several times. They seem 
scriptionof t o have been much struck by the quantities of 

Timur's Court, . , . . r 

his banquets and meat and wine consumed, and the frequent 
his "justice" drunkenness. "The drinking," says Clavijo 
(p. 148), "was such that some of the men fell down drunk 
before her" (Cano, wife of Timur) ; "and this was con- 
sidered very jovial, for they think there can be no pleasure 
without drunken men." On another occasion (Oct. 9, 1404), 
besides the banquet, they were treated to an exhibition of 
Timur's " justice," for " in the place where the traders had 
pitched their tents, he ordered a great number of gallows to 
be set up ; and declared that, in this festival, he knew how 
to be merciful and kind to some, and how to be severe to 
others." On these gallows he forthwith hanged several 
persons of quality, besides " certain traders who had sold 
meat for more than it was worth," and some shoemakers. 
" The custom is," adds Clavijo, " that, when a great man is 
put to death, he is hanged ; but the meaner sort are be- 
headed " a curious inversion of the mediaeval practice in 

The ambassadors do not seem to have seen Ti'mur after 
November I, 1404, on the morrow of which day " he did not 
come out of his tent, because he felt ill." They were bidden 


by the Mirzas, or Secretaries of the Court, to depart, but 
this they at first declined to do until they should receive 
theirdismissal from Timur and his messages and compliments 
to their own King. Finally, however, they were compelled 
to leave without another audience (Timur being then, as they 
were led to believe, sick unto death) and quitted the city 
on November 18 with the " ambassadors from Turkey " and 
" the ambassador from the Sultan of Babylon." After re- 
maining for three days in a garden outside the town, they 
started on their homeward journey on November 21, 1404. 
They reached Tabriz on February 28, 1405, and were 
delayed there and at the camp of 'Umar Shaykh Mi'rza 
in Qarabagh for six months, not leaving Tabriz on their 
homeward march until August 22. After passing through 
Armenia, of whose inhabitants Clavijo says that " the Chris- 
tian Armenians are an evil race, who would not let the 
ambassadors pass until they had given up some of their 
property," they reached Trebizond on September 17, Con- 
stantinople on October 22, 1405, Genoa on January 3, 1406, 
and San Lucar in Spain on March i of the same year, after 
an absence of nearly three years. 

But few notices of this Embassy occur in the Persian 
historians, though mention is made of it by Sharafu'd-Din 
'Ah' of Yazd, who says 1 : "At this juncture there arrived an 
ambassador from the ruler {farmdn-diJt) of the Frankish 
realms, who presented many fine gifts and presents, and a 
variety of offerings and oblations," amongst which "certain 
tissues adorned with designs and pictures which would have 
filled Manes with despair" specially aroused the author's 
admiration. He also mentions on the next page the pre- 
sence of the Spaniards at one of the banquets given by 
Timur, adding that " even chaff finds its way into the sea," 
and, a few pages lower 2 , chronicles their departure. 

By this time Timur was apparently recovered from his 
indisposition, tired of the settled life, and eager for fresh 

1 Zafar-ndma, ii, p. 598. 
" Ibid., p. 633. 


adventures, and he resolved to undertake a campaign 
against China in order to destroy the temples 

T imur prepares J _ L 

for a campaign of the heathen, spread the true faith, and in- 
against china Dentally enrich himself and his army with the 
spoils of that spacious, ancient and wealthy land. After 
making all necessary arrangements for the campaign and for 
the administration of his vast territories during his absence, 
he set out from Samarqand on his eastward march on 
November 27, 1404. The winter was exceptionally severe, 
and the army, after suffering much from the cold, crossed 
the Jaxartes (Slktiri) on the ice, and reached Utrar on 
January 14, 1405. A month later Ti'mur fell ill, 

Illness and death * r 

of Timuron and, though treated by Mawlana Fadlu'llah of 
et>. 18, 1405 Tabriz, who was accounted one of the most 
skilful physicians of his age, his sickness increased and 
complications set in until he finally succumbed, a week after 
the first attack, on February 18, 1405, being then seventy-one 
[lunar] years of age, and having reigned thirty-six years. 
His mind remained clear to the last, and having nominated 
his grandson Pi'r Muhammad-i-Jahangfr to succeed him as 
ruler of his vast empire, he embodied his last wishes in a 
discourse which is fully reported by Sharafu'd-Dm 1 , and 
died with the profession of the faith of Islam on his lips. 

The character of Ti'mur has been differently appraised 

by those who are dazzled by his military achievements on 

the one hand, and those who are disgusted by 

Various views . _ J 

of Timur's his cruelty and utter disregard of human life 
on the other. One factor in such judgement 
is the acceptance or rejection of the much discussed and 
quoted Tuztikdt, or " Institutes," which profess to contain 
Timur's own philosophy of Empire. Thus Gibbon says, in 
a foot-note in ch. Ixv, that though he " did not expect to 
hear of Tfmour's amiable moderation "...he "can excuse a 
generous enthusiasm in the reader, and still more in the 
editor, of the Institutions" though in the corresponding 
portion of the text, he criticizes him pretty severely, and 
1 Op. tit., vol. ii, pp. 656-7. 

CH. iv] CHARACTER OF TfMtfR 203 

admits that " perhaps we shall conclude that the Mogul 
Emperor was rather the scourge than the benefactor of man- 
kind." Sir John Malcolm's very judicious observations have 
been already cited 1 . Sir Clements R. Markham 2 says that, 
although Timur's conquests were the cause of much suffer- 
ing to the human race, yet "he certainly was not the 
remorseless tyrant he is represented by [Ibn] 'Arabshah 
and his other enemies," and that " there is evidence that he 
had loftier aims than the mere gratification of his lust for 
conquest." He adds 3 that though " the name of Tfmur is 
frequently coupled with that of Chingi'z Khan, yet the latter 
was a rude uncultivated barbarian, while there is evidence 
that the former was versed in all the knowledge of his age 
and country." As regards the facts of Ti'mur's life, there 
is little difference of opinion : his massacres and pyramids of 
skulls are equally chronicled by his panegyrists, Sharafu'd- 
Din 'Ah' of Yazd and Nizam-i-Shamf, and his detractor Ibn 
'Arabshah, though the former affect to regard them as 
" manifestations of the Divine Attributes of Wrath " (Sifdt- 
i-Jaldliyya or Qahriyyd), and the latter as the outcome of 
diabolic malignity. The latter view appears to me the 
more reasonable and natural ; and as for the " Institutes," 
which supply a quasi-philosophic basis for this policy of 
" frightfulness," I incline to the reasoned opinion expressed 
by Rieu 4 that they are spurious. 

Before closing this brief account of Tfmur, some refer- 
ence should be made to certain despatches which passed 
_^ between him and the Ottoman Sultan Bayazfd 

Firidun Bey s . * 

collection of and others, of which the texts are preserved in 
an important collection of State Papers known 
as the Munsha dt-i-Firidun Bey, of which a good edition was 
printed at Constantinople in Jumada II, A.H. 1274 (February, 
1858). The compiler of this work, Ahmad Firidun, known 
as Tawqfi (Tevqfi), flourished in the middle of the tenth 

1 See pp. 182-3 supra. * History of Persia, p. 219. 

3 Ibid., p. 220, and the Introductory Life of Timur prefixed to 
Clavijo's Embassy to the Court of Tzmur, p. li. 4 Pers. Cat., p. 178. 


century of the Muhammadan (sixteenth of the Christian) 
era, and composed, besides the Munsha'dt (compiled in 
982/1574-5), a history entitled Nuz-hatu'l-Akhbdr. The 
first volume of the Munshddt comprises State Papers 
ranging in date from the time of the Prophet (seventh 

century of the Christian era) to the middle of 
n- tne sixteenth century. It contains 626 large 
nectedwith pages, of which pp. 118-142 contain letters to, 

from, or about Ti'mur, as follows : 

(i) Letter from Qara Yusuf to Sultan Bayazfd, written 
in Persian and undated, complaining of the aggressions of 
Tfmur, whom the writer describes as " that quickener of the 
fire of evil and trouble and agitator of the chain of mischief 
and insolence, Ti'mur the object of Divine Wrath (may God 
destroy and crush him !)," and demanding help from Bayazi'd 
(pp. 118-119). 

(2) Bayazi'd's answer to the above, also written in 
Persian and undated (p. 119). 

(3) Letter from Tfmur to Bayazi'd, written in Arabic 
and undated, requiring in peremptory language that no 
shelter shall be afforded to Qara Yusuf and Sultan Ahmad, 
and warning the Ottoman Sultan against disobedience to 
this command (pp. 120-1). 

(4) Bayazi'd's answer to the above, also written in 
Arabic and undated. This begins (after the doxology), 
" Know, O ravening dog named Tfmur," and hurls defiance 
at the invader, daring him to advance (p. 121). 

(5) Letter from Sultan Ahmad Jala'ir of Baghdad to 
Sultan Bayazfd, written in Persian and undated. The writer 
describes how, after the capture of Baghdad and the two 
'Iraqs by Tfmur, he withdrew to Malatya and Si was to 
await the arrival of Qara Yusuf, according to Bayazi'd's 
instructions, and how in conjunction they attacked, routed 
and annihilated the Uzbeks who formed the vanguard of 
Tfmur's army, but were awaiting with certainty an attack 
from his main army so soon as news of this disaster should 
reach him (pp. 124-5). 

CH. iv] TfMtiR AND BAYAZfD 205 

(6) Bayazi'd's answer to the above, announcing that, in 
consequence of the news received from Sultan Ahmad, 
he has concluded peace with the " Tekfur," or Byzantine 
Emperor, and has advanced to Toqat to aid in checking 
the invasion of Timur (p. 125). Dated Sha'ban, 798 (May, 

(7) Second letter from Ti'mur to Bayazfd, written in 
Persian and undated. It begins with a " salutation tem- 
pered with reproach " (saldm-i-itdb-dmiz), describes the 
writer's forty years' career of conquest, and how he has 
now advanced to Si'was, and taunts his adversaries with 
their failure to capture Malatya and Sinope. He is still, 
however, ready to come to terms, since he is unwilling that 
the dissensions of Muslims should afford fresh opportunity 
to the " Prankish infidels " to pursue their schemes of 
aggression. In conclusion he describes himself as of the 
family of the Il-khdnis, and demands a speedy and con- 
ciliatory answer to his overtures (pp. 126-7). 

(8) Bayazid's answer to the above, also in Persian and 
undated. The writer boasts of the martial prowess of the 
Turks, reminds Ti'mur how his ancestor Er-Toghril with 
300 horsemen routed 10,000 " Tartar and Mongol heathens," 
and rehearses other like glorious deeds of his predecessors. 
He claims to be the protector of the Muslims, and declares 
that "hitherto not one of the House of 'Othman has sought 
by flattery to turn aside an enemy, or has had recourse to 
deceit or guile" (pp. 127-8). 

(9) Ti'mur's third letter to Bayazi'd, written in Persian 
and undated, acknowledging a letter sent by means of the 
Qadi Fan'du'd-Di'n and a person named Najashi, and ex- 
pressing a desire for friendship and alliance. Timur alludes 
to his Syrian campaign, objects to the Sultans of Egypt 
calling themselves " Kings of the two Holy Shrines " 
(Sultdnul-Haramayn), and complains of the return of 
Sultan Ahmad Jala'ir to Baghdad (pp. 128-131). 

(10) Bayazid's answer to the above, written in Persian. 
It is couched in much politer language than his previous 

206 THE PERIOD OF TfMtiR [BK 11 CH. iv 

letters, but declines absolutely to surrender Sultan Ahmad 
Jala'ir and Qara Yusuf, which, says the writer, would be 
entirely incompatible with the Ottoman traditions of hospi- 
tality. He alludes to the continuance in Egypt of the 
lawful descendants of the 'Abbasid Caliphs, and calls on 
Tfmur, if his intentions are really peaceful, to surrender 
Sfwas (pp. 131-2). 

(i i) Tfmur's fourth letter to Bayazfd. In this letter he 
boasts his orthodoxy and adherence to the Sunni creed, 
denounces the actions of Sultan Ahmad Jala'ir and Qard 
Yusuf, and demands their banishment from Ottoman terri- 
tory, and an apology from Bayazid (pp. 132-4). 

(12) Bayazfd's answer to the above (pp. 134-5). 

(13) Letters from Shah Mansur, the nephew of Shah 
Shuja' the Muzaffarf ruler of Shfraz, to Bayazid, written 
in Persian after Dhu'l Qa'da, 802 (June July, 1400), de- 
scribing the mischief wrought by " the accursed ones of 
Chaghatay," and the deceitfulness and cunning of " that 
sinner and rebel " Tfmur (pp. 135-9). 

(14) Bayazid's answer to the above. He abuses Tfmur, 
alludes to the depredations wrought by him in Fars and at 
Shfraz, and states that, though actually engaged in an 
attempt to capture Constantinople, he is preparing to 
abandon this in order to attack Tfmur (pp. 139-140). 

(15) Tfmur's fifth letter to Bayazfd, written from 
Maragha in Persian, but undated. He alludes to his 
capture of Baghdad, and, after quoting a verse to the effect 
that to win the whole world it is not worth vexing even 
an ant, indulges in veiled threats as to what he will do if 
Bayazfd still refuses to listen to his demands (pp. 140-2). 

Here ends the correspondence between Tfmur and 
Bayazfd preserved by Firfdun Bey. 

It only remains to be added that Tfmur's corpse was 
conveyed across the frozen Khujand River on the night of 
Feb. 19, 1405, and interred four days later at Samarqand, 
while the Chinese campaign happily for that people was 
finally abandoned. 



Attention has already been called to the curious but 

indisputable fact that in Persia, at any rate, periods of great 

turmoil and disorder have generally produced 

Stable govern- . ,, , ., . , .. 

ment not neces- the finest poetry, while periods of relative 
lVe P ros P er ity> when the country was under a strong 
and stable government, have generally been 
singularly barren in this respect 1 . In comparatively modern 
times Persia has never been more strong, united and pros- 
perous than under the Safawi dynasty (A.D. 1502-1736), 
more particularly during the sixteenth century ; yet, though, 
not only in military strength, national unity and commerce, 
but also in the arts (especially architecture and painting) 
and the sciences (especially theology), this period was 
particularly brilliant, it hardly produced a single poet of com- 
manding genius or wide-spread reputation ; a phenomenon 
of which the causes will be discussed when we come to 
speak of the epoch in question. The period with the literary 
aspects of which we are now about to deal is, on the other 
hand, as will have been sufficiently apparent from the pre- 
ceding chapter, one of anarchy, misery and bloodshed ; yet 
it would be hard to indicate any period of seventy years 
(A.D. 1335-1405) which produced so many remarkable poets, 
a galaxy of talent in which the great Hafiz is merely the 
brightest of many brilliant stars. Probably the existence of 
numerous little courts, each anxious to rival and excel the 
others, is favourable to the development of poetical talent, 
since the poet who fails to win appreciation from one royal 
patron can easily find another who may prove more sus- 
ceptible to his song ; while, when there is but one capital 

1 Cf. pp. 1 60- 1 supra. 


and one court, he who fails there (not necessarily from lack 
of talent so much as from lack of opportunity, ill fortune, 
or the machinations of jealous rivals) is likely to be perma- 
nently discouraged, or at least to remain unknown outside 
his own immediate circle. 

From this point of view, Persia, immediately after the 

collapse of the Mongol power, and before the irruption of 

Timur the Tartar, was an ideal field for the 

ditfo'n o'fpersil" wandering poet. In the North-East, with their 

from the extinc- ca pjtal at Herat, were the Kurt princes; at 

tion of the * l 

Mongol power Sabzawar and the neighbourhood the little 
Timflr rise f Sarbadar dynasty (if such it can be called) held 

sway; the Il-kham's,Shaykh Hasan-i-Buzurg,his 
son Sultan Uways, and their descendants, ruled over a 
curious elliptical domain which had its northern capital 
at Tabriz and its southern capital at Baghdad ; while 
Southern Persia was divided amongst princes of the House 
of Muzaffar, often independent of, and even at war with, one 
another, with Shiraz, Isfahan, Yazd and Kirman as their 
seats of government. There were no hard and fast frontiers 
to these little states, and no map could be made showing 
the divisions of these fluid, ever-shifting kingdoms ; rather, 
if we wish to reconstruct the political geography of Persia 
at that period, we must conceive of some seven or eight 
centres whence radiated, in ever-varying strength, the 
influence of as many petty warrior-princes, whose truculent 
activities were oftener than not combined with a fine 
literary taste. 

Of the poets of this period some ten at least deserve 
mention, either on account of their evident originality and 

beauty, or because of the reputation which they 
fenTn b c e e r of thT en J o y in their own country. These two things 
poets of this do no t necessarily go together, but either of 


them seems to me to entitle a poet at any rate 
to honourable mention ; for a foreign critic must always 
entertain some mistrust of his judgements, and must re- 
member that, strive as he may, he can hardly hope to 


develop the fine and discriminating taste of the cultivated 
native critic, and that the mere fact that a poet 

By what cn- 

terions poets has maintained his reputation amongst his own 
b^I fordgif 5 countrymen for several centuries entitles him at 
critic least to some respectful consideration. This 

applies to lyrical poets like Khwaju and 'Imad of Kirman 
and Kamal of Khujand, of whom one is apt to think as 
mere dim reflections of the incomparable Hafiz, devoid of 
any salient originality ; but it must not be forgotten that 
the first died 37 and the second 18 years before him, and 
that they may therefore well have prepared the way for his 
greater achievements, while the eminence of the third, who 
was his contemporary, is to a certain extent certified by 
Hafiz himself in the verse 


which is translated by Rosenzweig-Schwannau 1 

"Wenn er erst Hafisens Lieder horet, 
Die als zart und lieblich Jeder kennt, 
Wird sich selbst Kemal nicht unterfangen 
Dichtend aufzutreten in Chodschend." 

On the other hand poets like 'Ubayd-i-Zakani and 
Bushaq (Abu Ishaq) are so original that, whether appreciated 
or not in their own country, they cannot be ignored by any 
student of Persian literature. 

I propose, therefore, to discuss in this chapter the 

following poets, and, that priority may be duly considered 

in relation to actual merit, in chronological 

Untrustworthi- , r^, . , 11 j i 

ness of most of order. 1 his, however, can only be regarded as 
the Persian Wo- approximate, since in most cases the date of 

graphers of poets Ai . 

death only is recorded (and that often uncer- 
tainly), and we often do not know whether the poet died 
young or at an advanced old age. Indeed, notwithstanding 
the numerous biographies of poets given by Dawlatshah, 

1 Hafts, Dtwdn, vol i, pp. 328, 329, 11. 13-14 of text. 
B. P. 14 


and in the Atash-kada, Haft Iqltm and other similar well- 
known works, the lack of authentic particulars as to the 
lives and characters of these poets is a very discouraging 
feature in our quest. Most of the anecdotes given in these 
books are trivial or fictitious, and, save for what can be 
gleaned from their verses (where again we are often 
hampered by the lack of anything approaching 
Lack of crmcai a cr jtf ca i edition), we are finally driven to admit 

editions " * 

that we know very little indeed about most of 
them. They were generally poor men, often socially obscure, 
and as such were completely ignored by contemporary 
historians, while all that later generations, who appreciated 
their merit, could do was, as a rule, to string together a few 
more or less trivial anecdotes, evidently constructed in many 
cases to explain or illustrate passages in their poems. An 
exception must be made in favour of one rare manuscript 
work, the Mujmal (" Compendium ") of Fasihf of Khwaf 1 , a 
chronicle of some thousand pages compiled in 845/1441-2 
and containing many valuable details not to be found else- 
where, especially in what concerns the province of Khurasan 
in general, and the city of Herat in particular. 

The poets of this period whom I propose to discuss are 
the following : 

(i) Ibn-i-Yamin (d. 745/1345 according to 
be discussed in Dawlatshdh 2 , or /69/ 1 368 according to the more 
this chapter authoritative Mujmal} was associated with the 
Sarbadar dynasty. 

1 So far as I know, only three MSS. of this work exist in Europe. 
One, in St Petersburg, is described by the late Baron Victor Rosen at 
pp. 111-113 of his Collections Scientifiques, vol. iii, Manuscrits Persans 
(No. 271) and by Dorn in vol. ii of the Bulletin de la classe historico- 
philologique de V Academic Imperiale des Sciences de St Pdtersbourg, 
pp. i et seqq. The second (marred by an extensive lacuna comprising 
the years A.H. 718-840) formerly belonged to the late Colonel Raverty, 
and is now the property of the "E. J. W. Gibb Memorial Trust." The 
third, modern but complete, belonged to Sir Albert Houtum-Schindler 
and is now in my possession. See also p. 150 supra, n. i ad calc. 

2 See p. 276, 11. 12-13 of my edition. 

CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 211 

(2) Khwdjii of Kirmdn (d. 753/1352, or, according to 
Dawlatshah, 742/1341-2). 

(3) 'Ubayd-i-Zdkdni, the great satirist and parodist 

(d. 772/1371). 

(4) l lmdd of Kirmdn (d. 773/1372). 

(5) Salman of Saw a (d. 779/1378), the panegyrist of 
Sultan Uways. 

(6) fififo of Shirdz (d. 791/1389). 

(7) Kamdl of Khujand (d. 793/1 39 r , or 803/1400). 

(8) Maghribi, the mystic (d. 809/1407). 

(9) Bushaq (Abu Ishaq) of Shirdz, the gastronomic 
poet (d. 814/1416). 

(10) Nizdmud-Din Mahmiid Qdri of Yazd, the poet 
of clothes. 

Of each of these poets I shall now proceed to speak in 

I. Ibn-i-Yamin 
(Amir Mahmiid ibn Amir Yaminu'd-Din Tughrdi\ 

Although notices of this poet and his father Yaminu'd- 
Din (from whom he derives the name Ibn-i-Yamin "son 
of Yamin" by which he is commonly known) occur in 
Dawlatshah 1 , the Haft Iqlim, Atash-kada*, Majma'u'l- 
Fusahd* and other biographical works, the few particulars 
about him which are known to us are chiefly derived from 
the rare Mujmal of Fasihi. In this work Ibn-i-Yamin is 
thrice mentioned, under the years 743/1342-3, and 769/ 
1367-8, the year of his death. 

The first of these two notices, so far as it concerns 
Ibn-i-Yamin, runs as follows : 

"War of Malik Mu'izzu'd-Dfn Abu'l-Husayn 

ibn-i-vLnin Muhammad-i-ATr/ with Khwaja Wajihu'd-Dfn 

i?l? jmal W-* 5 'u6.-\-Sarbaddr and Shaykh Hasan-i-Juri 

between Zawa and Khwaf, and death of Shaykh 

1 Pp. 272, 275-7 and 359 of my edition. 

2 P. 7 of the Bombay lithographed ed. of A.H. 1277. 

3 Vol. ii, pp. 2-5 of the Tihrn lithograph. 

14 2 


Hasan-i-Juri at the hands of Khwaja Wajihu'd-Din Mas'ud's 
men on the I3th of Safar [A.H. 743 = July 18, 1342], and 
flight of Khwaja Wajihu'd-Din. 

"Loss of the Diwdn (complete poetical works) of the 
late Amir Fakhru'1-Haqq wa'd-Dm Mahmud ibn-i-Yamin 
the Mustawft (government accountant) of Faryumad, which 
was looted in the battle mentioned above. Here is the 
fragment [in which Ibn-i-Yami'n refers to this event] : 

'It fell into the hands of the spoilers, and thereafter no trace of it was 

"The above-mentioned Amir Fakhru'd-Din Mahmud 
[Ibn-i-Yamfn] sent the following fragment which he had 
composed from Sabzawar to Malik Mu'izzu'd-Dm Abu'l- 

' O-* Ol*!* '^te J9*~>> j 

<** I* _ 

j\ a 

- f \ 

J Ji 

-^" V ^*^^ *^^ ^ J 

c *-**- -^ Lj 

^ *<IIMI l^' ^ _ _ _ 

X ^ 


CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 213 

' C*..^. b ijt^^Uj .**:** OW? 

ib jul U 

" Seek as they might his Dtwdn was not to be found, so 
he made a [fresh] compilation from the anthologies of the 
Masters [of this art], and from what each [amateur of verse] 
remembered by heart, and from what he himself subsequently 
composed : 

'jb j 

'So that my verses, scattered like the Seven Thrones 1 , 
Might be again co-ordinated like the Pleiades.'" 

1 I.e. the Great Bear, also called "the Seven Brothers" (Haft Bira- 
dardri], and by the Arabs Bandtu'n-Na'-sh, "the Daughters of the 
Bier," or " Pall-bearers." 


This ends the first notice of Ibn-i-Yamm in the Mujmal> 
but, before passing on to the second, I should give a trans- 
lation of the fourteen couplets quoted above, which, if not 
remarkable as poetry, are of interest on account of the data 
which they afford. 

( Translation} 

"If Heaven, by a trick, snatched my Diwdn out of my hands, 
Thanks be to God ! He who made the Dtwdn 1 is still with me ! 
And if Fate plucked from me a string of pearls fit for a king, 
Yet I grieve not at its loss, since the remedy is with me. 
And if the wind tore a flower from a branch of the rose-bush of my 


A garden full of anemones, eglantine and basil is still with me. 
And if one of my shells of brilliant pearls was emptied, 
I still have a mind filled with pearls like the sea of 'Ummdn. 
What matters it if a few drops of the sputterings of my pen are lost ? 
There still remains with me a talent bountiful as the April cloud ! 
If the sweet water of my verse has been cast to the winds like dust 
It matters -little, for with me is the Fountain of the Water of Life. 
And though my heart is grieved at the loss of my Diwan, 
Why should I grieve at this, since my pearl-producing genius re- 
mains ? 
And if the praise of the King of the World is, like the fame of his 

Spread abroad throughout the earth, the praise-producing talent is 

mine ! 

Although I could compile another Diwan, yet 
My life's work is wasted, and regret for this remains with me. 
If this vile Age is unkind to me, what matter 
If the favours of the King of the Age are mine ? 
That just Prince Mu'izziSd-Dtn, whose virtue cries, 
4 Whatever of glory can enter the Phenomenal World is mine.' 
The chief of the favours which in all circumstances 
The King of the Age doth show me amongst all my peers 
Is this, that by his favour one of noble rank says to me 
'Rejoice, O Ibn-i-Yamm, for the constituent parts of the Diwan 

are in my possession ! ' 

Life has passed : may he continue successful until Eternity, 
And may the daily portion of me his servant be prayers for the 
King so long as life remains to me ! " 

1 I.e. my genius, myself. 

CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 215 

The second entry in the Mujmal is very brief, and 
merely records the death of Ibn-i-Yamin on the 

ibn-i-Yamm's 8th of Jumada ii, 769 (Jan. 30, 1368), this date 
being further commemorated in the following 

chronogram : 

This is followed by a quatrain 1 said to have been uttered 
by the poet a little before his death: 

" Regard not Ibn-i-Yamm's heart of woe ; 
See how from out this transient world I go. 
Qur'an in hand and smiling, forth I wend 
With Death's dread messenger to seek the Friend." 

Dawlatshah devotes an article to the poet's father as 
well as to himself (Nos. 6 and 7 of the fifth Tabaqa\ but 
Particulars given contributes few material or trustworthy facts, 
by Dawlatshah though he cites one fine poem of 14 couplets 

concerning ^ ^ r t 1111 i 

ibn-i-Yanim by the former, whose death he places in the year 
and his father 724/1324. According to him Amfr Yaminu'd- 
Di'n, the father of our poet, was of Turkish origin ; settled 
as a landowner at Faryumad, where his son was born, in 
the reign of the Mongol Sultan Khuda-banda; and enjoyed 
the favour and patronage of Khwaja 'Ala'u'd-Din Muham- 
mad, who was in the fiscal service of Sultdn Abu Sa'fd, 

1 Given also with very slight variations by Dawlatshdh, p. 276, 
11. 15-18 of my edition. 


and who was killed near Astarabad by the Sarbadars in 
7 37 1 1 336-7. Concerning the son, Ibn-i-Yamm, he tells us 
little, save that he was the panegyrist of the Sarbadars, 
which is doubtful, and that he died in 745/1344-5, which 
is almost certainly incorrect ; but he endeavours to make 
up for this dearth of information by a digression of ten 
pages on the history of the little Sarbadar dynasty, which 
lasted about fifty years and was finally extinguished by 
Timur about 788/1386. The Haft Iqlzm, Atash-kada and 
Majma'u'l-Fusahd practically yield no further information, 
except that the last-named work states that Ibn-i-Yamin 
was the panegyrist of Tugha-Timur. Owing to the loss of 
his Dtwdn, as described above, it is impossible to determine 
with certainty who were his patrons and to whom his 
panegyrics were chiefly addressed. 

Ibn-i-Yamfn's extant work consists of his Muqattctdt, 
or " Fragments," most of which are of a philosophical, ethical 

or mystical character. An edition of them was 
fb^Yamin s f printed at Calcutta in 1865, and I also possess 

a pretty and carefully-written manuscript dated 
Rajab 5. 88 1 (Oct. 24, 1476). A German rendering of many 
of these poems by Schlechta-Wssehrd has also been pub- 
lished 1 . The following fine verses on the evolution of the 
soul are amongst the best and most celebrated of Ibn-i- 
Yamin's poems : 

1 Ibn Jemiris Bruchstucke, Vienna, 1852, pp. 191. It contains 
translations of 164 "Fragments." 

CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 217 

The following is a rather free translation of the above : 
"From the void of Non-Existence to this dwelling-house of clay 
I came, and rose from stone to plant ; but that hath passed away ! 
Thereafter, through the working of the Spirit's toil and strife, 
I gained, but soon abandoned, some lowly form of life : 

That too hath passed away ! 

In a human breast, no longer a mere unheeding brute, 
This tiny drop of Being to a pearl I did transmute : 

That too hath passed away ! 

At the Holy Temple next did I foregather with the throng 
Of Angels, compassed it about, and gazed upon it long : 

That too hath passed away ! 

Forsaking Ibn-i-Yamin, and from this too soaring free, 
I abandoned all beside Him, so that naught was left but HE : 

All else hath passed away ! " 

The same ideas have been equally well expressed, how- 
A parallel ever, by the great mystical poet Jalalu'd-Dm 

passage on the Rumf, who lived a century earlier, in a very 

evolution of the y 

soul from the well-known passage of the Mathnawi which 



" I died from mineral and plant became ; 
Died from the plant, and took a sentient frame ; 
Died from the beast, and donned a human dress ; 
When by my dying did I e'er grow less ? 
Another time from manhood I must die 
To soar with angel-pinions through the sky. 
'Midst Angels also I must lose my place, 
Since ''Everything shall perish save His Face.' 
Let me be Naught ! The harp-strings tell me plain 
That ' unto Him do we return again 1 ! '" 

(Another Fragment) 

" Only for one of reasons twain the wise 
Possession of this varied world do prize : 
Either to benefit their friends thereby, 
Or else to trample down some enemy. 
But he who seeketh wealth upon this earth, 
And knoweth not wherein consists its worth 
Is as the gleaner, who with toil doth bind 
His sheaf, then casts the harvest to the wind. 
Naught but a weary soul and aching back 
Accrue to those who understanding lack." 

The following is typical in its Manichaean and Malthu- 
sian pessimism : 

V 'ajudl 

> >*!~3 

1 Compare Tennyson in Locksley Hall : 
" Love took up the harp of Life, and smote on all the chords with 

might ; 
Smote the chord of Self, that, trembling, pass'd in music out of sight." 

CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 219 

" Knowest thou wherefore the child no gratitude bears 
E'en to the father who makes him the chief of his heirs? 
' 'Twas thou, 5 he seems to say, ' who my peace didst mar 
By bringing me into a world where such miseries are !'" 

The fragment next following also represents a line of 
thought common with Ibn-i-Yamm and others of his school : 

' C..IM.A Jjbt A*. Jiai ...o ^,-vsfc-ct A*. 

" That God who on Creation's Primal Day 1 
The first foundations of thy soul did lay, 
Who in His Wisdom did for forty morns 
Fashion the house of clay thy soul adorns 2 , 

1 The Ruz-i-Alast, or "Day of 'Am I not' [your Lord]?" is the 
day at the beginning of time when God thus addressed the souls which 
He had created, A -lastu bi-Rabbikum? "Am I not your Lord?" 

' 2 It is said in the traditions " God Most High kneaded Adam's clay 
for forty days." See Tabari, I, 91. 


Who bade the Pen 1 inscribe upon thy brow 

Whate'er betided thee from then till now, 

It ill beseems Him on the Judgement-Day 

'This was well done, and that done ill' to say ! 

For he who sows the camel-thorn can ne'er 

Expect the aloe-tree to blossom there. 

Since, then, the Muslim and the Christian stand 

Subject alike to His supreme command, 

' Why should He give,' in wonder ask the wise, 

'To this one Hell, to that one Paradise?'" 

(Another Fragment} 

f^ ^ " 

-\^ LJ '<t-\Jt 

" Whoe'er he be, wherever he may dwell 
A man should strive to guard his honour well ; 
Conceit and folly he should put aside, 
And turn his back on arrogance and pride ; 
Should so behave that none through him should e'er 
Endure vexation equal to a hair ; 
None should despise for lack of power or pelf, 
And deem each neighbour better than himself; 
Then all his energies and wealth should spend 
That so perchance he thus may gain a friend." 

(Another Fragment) 

1 According to another tradition (Tabarf, i, 29) the Prophet said : 
" The first thing which God created was the Pen, and He commanded 
it to write down everything" (i.e., as is explained in other traditions, 
everything predestined to happen). 

CH. v] IBN-I-YAMfN 221 

jb jl >swj 

l/o* jt ju 

" A corner which no stranger can explore, 
Where no one bores you, and you no one bore, 
A sweetheart, lute and song, a friend or two 
At most a party not exceeding four ; 
A harp, a zither, roasted meats and wine, 
A cup-bearer who is a friend of thine, 
Reason, which doth distinguish good and ill, 
Regarding not thy ploy with eyes malign ! 

Whoever doth disparage such affair 
Is in the spirit- world devoid of share ; 
To Ibn-i-Yamm should such luck accrue 
For no one in this world or that he'd care !" 

The following fragment is practically a paraphrase of 
some very well-known Arabic verses ascribed to Qdbus ibn 
Washmgi'r, Prince of Tabaristan (reigned A.D. 976-1012), 
which are quoted in the Story of the Merchant and the 
Jinni'm the Arabian Nights 1 : 

1 See W. H. MacNaghten's edition (Calcutta, 1839), vol. i, p. 11, 
11. 1-8. 


" Not as I would, O friends, the world doth go : 
Of men of genius 'tis the constant foe. 
Though fickle Fortune trouble me, what then ? 
Trouble's the portion of all noble men. 
The sky holds countless stars, of which not one 
Suffers eclipse, except the moon and sun. 
'Tis custom now that he who wants for wits 
Ever above the man of talent sits, 
As on the sea the dust and rubbish swim 
While pearls lie sunk in its abysses dim." 

2. Khwdjti. of Kirmdn 
(Kamdlud-Din Abu'l-Atd Mahmdd ibn 'Alt ibn Mahmtid}. 

Although nearly all the well-known biographies, such 

as Dawlatshah 1 , the Haft Iqlhn, the Atash-kada\ the 

Majma'u'l-Fusahd 3 , etc., contain notices of 

Khwaju of Kirman, they are singularly jejune 

and lacking in precise information, while 

such precise information as is given is often demon- 

strably incorrect Indeed the carelessness with which 

these works are compiled and copied is deplorable. To 

take one instance only, Rida-qulf Khan, in spite of his 

undeniable attainments as a poet, a lexicographer and 

a historian, states in the Majmctul-Fusahd that Khwaju 

was the panegyrist of Sultan Abu Sa'i'd Khan, who 

1 Pp. 249-253 of my edition. 

2 Pp. 109-110, Bombay lith. of A. H. 1277. 

3 Vol. ii, pp. 15-18 of the Tihra"n lithographed edition. 

CH. v] KHWAjtf OF KIRMAN 223 

reigned from 716-736/1316-1335, and immediately after- 
wards gives the year of his death as 503/1109-1110, which 
is evidently a careless mistake for 753. Dawlatshah, who 
gives 742/1341-2 as the year of his decease, describes 
him as belonging to a good family in Kirman, where, 
however, he spent but a small part of his life, though in 
some verses quoted on the same page 1 , and evidently 
composed at Baghdad, he speaks of his native town with 
longing and affection: 

***. O!P A;'* <*^ 'L^'J-* O^* Ah* O' ^ 

" Pleasant the fragrant and sweet-scented blast 

Verses showing 

his love of his Which o'er the earth of Kirman late hath passed ! 

native place Pleasant the days of that sweet Philomel 

Which in its groves and gardens fair doth dwell ! 
What fault was mine that Heaven did decree 
From that pure land I must an exile be ? 
Wherefore in Baghdad city must I dwell 
That tears like Tigris from mine eyes may well 2 ?" 

During his travels, according to the Haft Iqltm, Khwaju 
made the acquaintance of many of his contemporaries 
amongst the poets and men of letters, and became the 
disciple of the eminent and pious Shaykh Ruknu'd-Dm 
'Ala'u'd-Dawla of Simnan, with a sketch of whose life 
Dawlatshah seeks to compensate us for the exiguity of 
his information about the proper subject of his biography. 
Rieu 3 quotes some verses in which a little-known con- 
temporary poet named Haydar of Shiraz fiercely attacks 

1 Loc. cit., p. 249, 11. 1 8-2 1. 

2 Literally, "Where naught but the Tigris comes into my eyes." 
This may either mean "Where my eyes serve only to shed rivers of 
tears," or, "Where I can see nothing but the Tigris." 

3 British Museum Pers. Cat., p. 623. 


Khwaju, whom he calls "a Kabuli thief from Kirman 
town," as a plagiarist. He says : 

. " Do not mention the name of Khwaju before a poet, 

Khwajfi accused , * 

of plagiarism For he is a thief from the Diivan of Sa di. 

by Haydar of Since he cannot compete in verse even with me 


I can find no mention of Khwaju in the Mujmal of 

Fasihi, but Hamdu'llah Mustawfi of Qazwin accords him 

a brief notice and cites one of his poems in 

KwSaTn'the the Tctrikk-i-Guzida, which was completed 

chief biographies j n 730/1 33O 1 , so that even during his life- 

time he was evidently well-known throughout 

Persia. He is also mentioned in the Majdlisu'l-Mu'mimn, 

that late but extensive biographical work on the ornaments 

of the Shi'a sect of Islam, which, however, in this case does 

little more than copy Dawlatshah. 

It may be laid down as a general principle that the 

only satisfactory method of writing the lives of Persian 

poets, with the possible exception of some of 

Von Erdmann's , , , . . . . , - , _ r 

critical study the older ones, who lived before the Mongol 
of Khwaju's Invasion had destroyed the scientific spirit of 

life and works .... . 

historical criticism in Persia, is to collect and 
collate such particulars as can be derived from their own 
works as preserved in old and correct manuscript copies, 
since little confidence can be placed in some of the modern 
lithographed editions. This method has been followed in 
the case of many of the older poets, such as Firdawsf, 
Nizami, Anwari, Khaqani, etc., and in this respect Khwaju 
is more fortunate than many of his contemporaries, for so 
long ago as 1848 Dr Franz von Erdmann published 2 a 
short account of him, in which, after quoting and translating 
Dawlatshah's article, he gives a brief description of a manu- 

1 P. 818 of \htfac-simile edition published in the "E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial" Series, xiv, i. See also pp. 29-30 of the reprint of an article 
on the Biographies of Persian Poets contained in... the Tdrtkh-i-Guzida 
which I contributed to the J.R.A.S. for Oct. 1900 and Jan. 1910. 

2 Z.D.M.G. for 1848, vol. ii, pp. 205-215. 

CH. v] KHWAjtf OF KIRMAN 225 

script of his Kkamsa, or five longer mathnawi poems, 
adding some useful particulars derived from them and 
from his Diwdn. These particulars I shall here sum- 
marize, together with the additional details contributed 
by Rieu 1 . 

According to his own statement, in his poem Naw-riiz 
u Gul (" New Year's Day and the Rose "), he was born on 
Shawwal 15, 679 (Feb. 7, 1281). He began his poetical 
career by attaching himself to the court of one of the 
Muzaffarf princes, probably Mubarizu'd-Dm Muhammad, 
the founder of that dynasty, at Yazd. Later he fre- 
quented the court of Shaykh Abu Ishaq (reigned 742- 
754/1341-1353) at Shi'raz, and, as may be gathered from 
the dedications of some of his qasidas (panegyrics) given 
by von Erdmann, the courts of Shirwan-shah and Qizil 
Arslan, Prince of 'Iraq, while the poem already cited shows 
that he also spent some time at Baghdad. In short he 
would seem to have wandered through the greater part 
of Persia, and cannot be regarded, like some of his 
contemporaries, as essentially the poet of one particular 

Khwaju's poems comprise the five romantic mathnawis 

which constitute the Kkamsa, or " Quintet " (of which no 

copy is accessible in Cambridge, though the 

E /' a , nt ?., ems British Museum possesses a fine copy 2 made 

of Khwiju rv 

in 798/1396), and a Diwdn containing qasidas 
(some religious, but mostly panegyrics), ghazals (odes), 
muqatta'dt (fragments), rubd'iyydt (quatrains), etc. Of the 
Diwdn I possess two manuscripts, one quite modern, and 
the other, bought at the sale of the Fiott-Hughes library 
about twenty years ago, copied by " Darwish Hafiz of 
Shi'raz " (not, of course, the great Hafiz, who died more 
than a century earlier) in 899/1493-4. A former owner of 
the last-mentioned manuscript has computed the number 
of verses which it contains at about four thousand. 

1 British Museum Pers. Cat., pp. 620-3. 

2 Add. 18,113, to which Rieu's remarks, where cited, refer. 

B. P. 15 


The five poems which constitute the Khamsa are : 

(1) Naw-rtiz u Gul ("New Year's Day and the Rose"), 

of which the contents are briefly stated by 
^thMw^r von Erdmann, who says that it comprises 
2615 verses (bayf). 

(2) Humdy u Hutndyun, dedicated, apparently, either 
to Sultan Abu Sa'id (716-736/1316-1335) or to his minister 
Ghiyathu'd-Din Muhammad, and containing 3203 verses. 
This poem, as Rieu has shown, was composed at Baghdad 
in 732/1331-2. 

(3) Kamdl-ndma (the " Book of Perfection "), com- 
posed in 744/1343-4, and dedicated to Shaykh Abu Ishaq, 
Prince of Fars, who had ascended the throne only two 
years previously. 

(4) The Rawdatu'l-Anwdr ("Garden of Lights"), a 
mystical poem composed at the shrine of Shaykh Abu 
Ishaq Ibrahim, the patron saint of Kazarun in Fars, in 
743/1342-3, a year before the poem last mentioned. 

(5) Another mystical poem of the title of which I am 
uncertain. The whole Khamsa, or "Quintet," is apparently 
an imitation of the celebrated Khamsa of Nizamf of Ganja, 
and was concluded in 744/1343-4. 

In spite of the comparative celebrity which Khwaju 
enjoys, I have not been able to discover any striking 
beauty or conspicuous merit in his odes (ghazals}, of 
which I have read some seventy-five. The following 
may serve as a fairly favourable specimen : 




" Pass us not by, for our thought is set on thy constancy, 
Our heart on the hope of thy promise, and our soul on thy faith ! 
If it be thy pleasure to thwart our pleasure, that matters little ; 
Our object in this world and the next is thy pleasure. 
Hereafter, since we have staked our head in following thee, 
Drive us not from thy presence, for our heart follows after thee. 
I put my neck under the yoke and bow my head in service : 
Forgive me, if thou wilt, or slay me : it is for thee to judge. 
He who is thy slave becomes freed from all : 
He who is thy friend becomes a stranger to his own kin. 
O thou who art dearer to my heart than the soul which is in the body, 
That soul which is in my body exists but for thee ! 
This sad-hearted victim who aspires to thy love, 
His rightest oath is by thy heart-entrancing stature. 
Khwaju, who is passing away through thy cruelty and harshness, 
His heart is still set on thy love and loyalty ! " 

Besides odes (ghazals) and the above-mentioned math- 
nawis, Khwaju has several tarkib-bands, one or two 
" fragments " (muqatta'dt), and a few quatrains, including 
one about the dove crying " Ku, kti ? " (" Where, where " 
are the great ones of yore departed ?), generally ascribed 
to 'Umar Khayyam. 



The following mustazdd is not without grace : 

^Uj o+s-s U 
j\~-j cA3' >v 

v*y* -fb j* 

^J^A Ji-UiLo 
^UJ C^lXJl 

l^W J-*^ >" 

^L*-Jj ^jl^a-1 'jLwjAJ AS jJl>b 

LS 51 ^ 5 J-" L5^ J 1 
Jllft "Oj-J jt 

^1^3 ii^-Jb jl 
O'^-*^ J*J> 
L5 51 ^ J3J A: 

( Translation) 

"Is there none to say from me to that Turk of Cathay (Khat) 

' If any fault (khata) 1 has been committed 
Come back, for we hope from thee for ourselves 
Fidelity to promises. 

1 This is a very common word-play, e.g. in the well-known verse : 

The Turks of Cathay or Chinese Tartary are celebrated in Persia for 
their fair complexions and beauty. 


Do not cast pepper in the name of me, the heart-consumed, 

On the fire of thy cheek 1 , 
For because of that musky grain of thine I have fallen, O friend, 

Into the snare of misfortune. 
Today I am, like the curve of thine eyebrow, in the city 

Like unto the crescent moon 2 , 
Since I have seen that face of signal beauty 

The cynosure of every eye. 
Come back, that I may lay down my head at thy feet, and my life 

At the feet of thy horse, 
Since the hand of poor indigent me cannot provide 

Anything more than ' hoof-money 3 .' 
Is it a rule in your city not to enquire 

Into the condition of poor strangers? 
After all, what hurt could befall the realm of thy beauty 

From one so helpless [as me] ? 
How long, O sweet-voiced minstrel, wilt thou play out of tune 

The 'Lover's Air'? 
Soothe me, the poor and portionless, for once 

By a song of substance ! 
After all, how much longer can I keep hidden 

In my heart the grief of separation ? 
O Beloved, I am sure that this grief will spread 

One day somewhither. 
Through regret for thy ruby lip I am in the Darkness of Alexander 4 

Like Khwaju, 
But what can I do, since the Kingdom of Darius. 

Is not meet for a beggar?" 

These few specimens of Khw^ju's poems will perhaps 
suffice to show that his verse, while graceful and pleasing, 
lacks any conspicuous distinction or excellence. 

1 Rue (sipand] and pepper (filfif) are burned in incantations against 
the Evil Eye. The black mole (khdl) or beauty-spot on the red cheek 
of a beautiful person is often compared by the Persian poets to rue on 
the fire. 

2 I.e. bent with grief and disappointment. 

3 Na'-l-bahd, or " hoof-money," is money paid to invading troops to 
induce them to abstain from looting. 

4 This alludes to Alexander's quest for the Water of Life in the 
Land of Darkness. 


3. ' Ubayd-i-Zdkdni 
(Nizdtmtd-Din ' Ubaydiilldh). 

'Ubayd-i-Zakani is, perhaps, the most remarkable 

parodist and satirical writer produced by Persia, and 

though, like most Persian, Arabian and Turkish 

'Ubayd-i-Zikdni ' . 

satirists, his language is frequently so coarse 
as to render a large part of his writings unfit for trans- 
lation, his Akkldqu'l-Askrdf, or "Ethics of the Aristocracy," 
is, where not so marred, a fine piece of irony, while some 
of his serious poems (which have been too much ignored 
by most of his biographers) are of singular beauty. Of 
his life, as usual, little is known, save that he was originally 
from Qazwi'n (for which city he seems to have had little 
affection, since he is constantly gibing at the stupidity of 
its inhabitants), lived at Shfraz (to which, on the other 
hand, as several of his poems show, he was much attached) 
during the reign of Shaykh Abu Ishaq Inju (who was killed 
in 747/1346-7), abandoned serious writing for a ribaldry 
more in accord with the taste of the great men of that 
time, but none the less (as several of his poems and a well- 
known anecdote about his death indicate) suffered much 
from penury and debt, and finally died about 772/1371. 
Another well-known anecdote describes his quarrel and 
reconciliation with his contemporary Salman of Sawa 1 , 
and he appears to have enjoyed the patronage of Sultan 
Uways at Baghdad or Tabriz, or both. Dawlatshah 2 con- 
secrates a long but not very informative article to him, 
most of which (with fuller quotations from his poems) is 
reproduced in the Haft Iqltm. The notice in the Atash- 
kada is very meagre, and no mention of him is made in 
the Mujmal of Fasihi or in the modern Majmctul-Fusahd. 
His satirical mathnawi of" the Mouse and the Cat" (Mtisk 
u Gurba) has been lithographed, with quaint woodcuts, at 

1 See 005616/5 Notices of Persian Poets, pp. 125-128. 

2 Pp. 288-294 of my edition. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 231 

Bombay, without date 1 ; and a selection of his Faceticz, to 
which is prefixed a Persian preface, probably by the late 
Mirza Habib of Isfahan, followed by another of M. Ferte", 
was printed at Constantinople, at the Press of Ebu'z-Ziya 
Tevffq Bey, in I3O3/I885-6 2 . As these two prefaces 
contain most that is to be said about 'Ubayd-i-Zakanf, I 
here append a translation, omitting only a few unsuitable 

" Preface. 

" That most witty poet 'Ubayd-i-Zakdni was of the village of Zakan 3 
near Qazwfn, and was one of the notabilities of the eighth century of the 
Flight 4 . He was a man of talent and learning, one of the masters of 
style and sound taste. Although some reckon him as one of the ribald 
writers, it is only fair to state that, though jests, ribaldry and satire 
occur in his poems, he deserves to rank as something more than a 
mere satirist, being, indeed, conspicuous amongst the older poets for 
his grace and wit, and in these respects approached by few. He was 
particularly skilful in incorporating in his poems and investing with a 
ludicrous sense the serious verses of other poets, an achievement in 
which he left no ground unturned. His own serious poems, on the 
other hand, are incomparable in fluency of diction, sweetness and dis- 
tinction, and are unrivalled in grace and subtlety. 

"'Ubayd-i-Zakani pursued his studies at Shirdz in the reign of 
Shcih Abu Ishaq, and became one of the most accomplished men of 
letters and learning of his time, acquiring complete proficiency in every 
art, and compiling books and treatises thereon. He subsequently 

1 There is also a cheap English rendering, with the same woodcuts, 
of which I once picked up a copy at the railway bookstall of Llandudno 

2 It comprises 128 pp. 

3 Hamdu'llah Mustawfi of Qazwin in his Tdrikh-i-Guztda (Gibb 
Memorial Series, vol. xiv, i, pp. 845-6) speaks of the Zdkdnts as one 
of the notable tribes or families of Qazwin, says that they were de- 
scended from the Arabian tribe of Khafaja, and quotes in the original 
Arabic a rescript (manshtir} addressed to them by the Prophet Mu- 
hammad. At the end of this article he mentions our poet as follows : 
" Of them is that honoured gentleman Master [Khivdja\ Niz^mu'd-Din 
'Ubaydu'lldh, who has some fine poems and incomparable writings." 
This book was written in 730/1330, and as 'Ubayd-i-Zakdm was then 
already a man of note in his own city of Qazwin, he cannot have been 
born much later than 700/1300. 

4 Fourteenth of the Christian era. 


returned to Qazwfn, where he had the honour of being appointed to a 
Judgeship, and was chosen as the tutor and teacher of sundry young 
noblemen. At that time the Turks in Persia had left no prohibited or 
vicious act undone, and the character of the Persian people, by reason 
of association and intercourse with them, had become so changed and 
corrupted that 'Ubayd-i-Zakani, disgusted at the contemplation thereof, 
sought by every means to make known and bring home to them the 
true condition of affairs. Therefore, as an example of the corrupt 
morals of the age and its people, he composed the treatise known as 
the 'Ethics of the Aristocracy' (Akhldqitl-Ashrdf\ which was not 
intended as mere ribaldry, but as a satire containing serious reflections 
and wise warnings. So likewise, in order to depict the level of intelli- 
gence and degree of knowledge of the leading men of Qazwin, each 
one of whom was a mass of stupidity and ignorance, he included in 
his 'Joyous Treatise' (Risdla-i-Dilgushd) many anecdotes of which 
each contains a lesson for persons of discernment. As a measure of 
his accomplishments, experience, learning and worldly wisdom, his 
' Tract of a Hundred Counsels ' (Risdla-i-Sad Pand) and his ' Defini- 
tions' ( Ta'rtfdt} are a sufficient proof. Moreover, even those who speak 
of him as a mere ribald satirist admit that he composed a treatise on 
Rhetoric (^Ilm-i-Ma i dni u Baydri) which he desired to present to the 
King. The courtiers and favourites, however, told him that the King 
had no need of such rubbish. Then he composed a fine panegyric, 
which he desired to recite, but they informed him that His Majesty did 
not like to be mocked with the lies, exaggerations and fulsome flattery 
of poets. Thereupon 'Ubayd-i-Zdkanf said, 'In that case I too will 
pursue the path of impudence, so that by this means I may obtain access 
to the King's most intimate society, and may become one of his 
courtiers and favourites,' which he accordingly did. Then he began 
recklessly to utter the most shameless sayings and the most unseemly 
and extravagant jests, whereby he obtained innumerable gifts and 
presents, while none dared to oppose or contend with him. 

"It is said that after 'Ubayd-i-Zdkam had despaired of entering the 
King's assembly, he extemporized the following quatrain : 


1 The Farhang-i-Ndsiri explains e^_i as <ti&- iy ij-ot, with a 
reference to Sa'df's Khabithdt (Calcutta ed. of 1795, vol. ii, f. 4;o b , 1. 4) ; 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 233 

' In arts and learning be not skilled like me, 
Or by the great like me despised thou'llt be. 
Wouldst earn applause from this base age of thine ? 
Beg shamelessly, play lute and libertine ! ' 

" One of his acquaintances, hearing this, expressed astonishmen t 
that one so talented and accomplished could abandon learning and 
culture in favour of ribaldry and lewd utterances. To him 'Ubayd-i- 
Zdkani sent the following verse : 

o 13 

5 j^ j 

' Keep clear of learning, Sir, if so you may, 
Lest you should lose your pittance for the day. 
Play the buffoon and learn the fiddler's skill : 
On great and small you then may work your will 1 !'. 

" It is said that Salmdn-i-Sawaji, a contemporary poet, wrote these 
verses satirizing 'Ubayd-i-Zakanf, whom he had never seen : 

"Ubayd-i-Zdk4nf, the rhymester, whose damnable satirist pen 
Hath made him accursed before God, and obnoxious to men ; 
He's an ignorant oaf from the country, and not a Qazwinf at all, 
Though him, and that not without reason, "Qazwi'm" they call 2 .' 

"The point of this verse is that Persian wits affect to regard the 
people of Qazwin as fools, just as they dub the Khurasdnfs ' asses,' the 

as a very importunate type of beggar, who continues to make an 
intolerable noise outside a house until the householder gives him money 


to go away; andj.\_i as an Indian musical instrument. 

1 Here follow some very coarse verses on a lady named Jahan- 
Khdtun whose hand had been sought in marriage by Khwaja Aminu'd- 
Din, one of Shdh Abu Ishaq's ministers. She also was a poetess, and 
I possess a MS. of her poems, the only copy I ever met with. 

2 The people of Qazwin are reputed (very unjustly) to be the 
stupidest in Persia. 


people of Tus ' cows,' those of BukMrd ' bears,' and those of Trans- 
oxiana ' Mashhadis,' that is, heretics (Rdfidh\ all of which attributions 
are of the nature of disparagement. 

"As soon as 'Ubayd-i-Zdkam heard this verse, he at once set out 
for Baghdad. On his arrival there, he found Salmdn, surrounded with 
great pomp and circumstance, on the banks of the Tigris, occupied 
with pleasure and diversion and the society of learned and accom- 
plished men. When by some means he succeeded in entering the 
circle, Salmon had just composed this hemistich descriptive of the 
Tigris : 

' With drunken frenzy and fury fierce this year the Tigris flows ' 

which he asked the bystanders to complete. Thereupon 'Ubayd-i- 
Zdkani extemporized the following complementary hemistich : 

' With its foaming lips and its feet in chains, 'twere 
mad, you might suppose.' 

" Salman was delighted, and enquired whence he came. He re- 
plied, ' From Qazwin.' In the course of the ensuing conversation 
Salman asked him whether his name was known or any of his verse 
familiar in Qazwin, or not. 'Ubayd-i-Zdkdni replied, ' The following 
fragment of his poetry is very well known : 

-J* 3*. 

" A frequenter of taverns am I, and a lover of wine, 
Besotted with drink and desire at the Magians' shrine. 
Like a wine-jar from shoulder to shoulder amongst them I pass, 
And go from one hand to another like goblet or glass." ' 

" ' Now although Salmdn is an accomplished man,' added 'Ubayd, 
' and these verses may perhaps be truly ascribed to him, yet in my 
opinion they were most probably composed by his wife 1 .' 

" Salmdn perceived from this witty speech that this was none other 
than 'Ubayd himself, whereupon he made much of him, apologized for 
his satire, and so long as 'Ubayd remained in Baghdad, fell short in 
no service which he could render him. And 'Ubayd used often to say to 

1 The implication is, of course, that his wife was a woman of loose 
morals and bad character. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 235 

him, 'O Salman, fortune favoured you in that you so speedily made your 
peace with me, and so escaped from the malice of my tongue ! '" 

Then follows as a postscript the short Introduction 
ascribed to M. Ferte, who describes therein his devotion to 
Oriental and especially Persian literature, his desire to con- 
tribute something to a fuller knowledge of it, and his ap- 
preciation of the works of 'Ubayd-i-Zakani, a manuscript of 
which happened to come under his notice. From this manu- 
script he made the selections (amounting to about three- 
quarters of the whole contents) contained in this volume. 
These include : 

(1) The Akhldqu'l-Ashrdf, or "Ethics of the Aristo- 
cracy" (prose), composed in 740/1340. 

(2) The " Book of the Beard " (Rtsh-ndma), in mixed 
prose and verse, undated. 

(3) The "Book of a hundred Counsels" (Risdla-i-Sad 
pand), composed in 750/1350 (prose). 

(4) The "Definitions" (Ta'rtfdt), or "Ten Sections" 
(Dah Fasl), undated (prose). 

(5) Poems of different kinds, mostly obscene, including 

(6) The "Joyous Treatise" (Risdla-i-Dilgushd), divided 
into two parts, the one containing Arabic, the other Persian 
anecdotes and/acetttz. 

On the other hand, there are omitted from these selections 
all 'Ubayd's serious poems and panegyrics, as well as the 
"Book of Lovers" (^Ushshdq-ndma), "Book of Omens" (Fdl- 
ndma), etc. Of the three MSS. of this poet's works which I 
have examined in the British Museum (Or. 2947, Or. 5738, 
and Or. 6303) the last contains the largest selection of poetry, 
including panegyrics on Shaykh Abu Ishaq, Sultan Uways, 
Ruknu'd-Din 'Amidu'1-Mulk, etc. Among these one of the 
prettiest is the following : 


CHJ ' L^P JJ-* CHJ L'yfc CHJ 

ji 'ju djUa 

-A u*>- 'u^^*- W Ji 

( Translation) 

"Once again a passion has entered my head ; again my heart inclines 

in a certain direction. 
He is of Royal birth, I am of the dust ; he is a King, and I am 

One tall of stature, with locks like lassoes, an autocrat descended 

from Sultan Husayn : 
One with eyebrows like bows and slender waist, one unkind, fair and 

Such a charmer of hearts, such a graceful cypress-tree, such a shower 

of oats and seller of barley 1 ! 
Without him the sun gives no light ; without him the world has no 


Wherever his ruby-lip smiles, there sugar is of no account. 
Everywhere the heart holds with his vision pleasant speech and 

sweet discourse 
Thou wouldst say that I come to the house of a physician, that perhaps 

I may procure a remedy for my heart. 

Everyone else complains of a foe, but our complaint is of a friend. 
Should the eyes of 'Ubayd not look their fill upon him, then his eyes 

do not regard any other misfortune ! " 

Another fine manuscript of the works of 'Ubayd-i-Zakani, 
bearing the class-mark Suppl.persan 824,15 in the possession 

1 "To show oats and sell barley" means to make specious promises 
which one cannot fulfil, to let one's practice fall short of one's 
promises, etc. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 237 

of the Bibliotheque Nationale at Paris. It was transcribed 
in Muharram, 834 (Sept. Oct., 1430), comprises 1 1 1 leaves, 
and contains besides the poems, serious and flippant, the 
" Book of Lovers " (' Ushshdq-ndma), in verse and partly in 
dialect; the "Ethics of the Aristocracy" (Akhldqul-Ashrdf), 
the "Book of the Beard" (Risk-ndma), and the "Ten Chap- 
ters " (Dak Fas/). The most striking feature of the serious 
poems is the constant references to Fars and its capital 
Shiraz, which evidently held the affection of the poet far 
more than his native city Qazwin. Thus, to quote a few 
examples, he says (f. I3 b ): 

" By the auspicious justice of that King who is so gracious to his 
servants the region of Shiraz has become an earthly Paradise." 

So again he says (f. 23 a ): 

JUU jJi 

" By the favour of the Creator the Kingdom of Pdrs hath become 
pleasanter than the Courts of Paradise and gayer than the Spring." 

And again (f. 28 a ) he says: 

" The victorious standard of the King who is so gracious to his 
servants hath reached with glee and happiness the region of Shirdz : 

Shaykh Abu Ishaq, that world-conqueror of youthful fortune, our 
liege-lord who slayeth opponents and maketh the fortune of his loyal 

The following verse, again (f. 35 b ), is strongly reminiscent 
of, and was probably inspired by, a very well-known verse 


of Sa'dfs occurring in a poem quoted in vol. ii of my Literary 
History of Persia, p. 535, lines 13-15: 

" The gentle breeze of MusaM and the stream of Ruknabad cause 
the stranger to forget his own native land." 

The following verse occurring in a poem in which 'Ubayd 
bids farewell to Shiraz affords further testimony of his attach- 
ment to that place : 

" I leave the region of Shfraz, being in peril of my life : 
Alas, how full of anguish is my heart at this inevitable departure ! " 

As in the case of Hafiz so also in 'Ubayd's Diwdn we 
find one disparaging allusion to Hurmuz (Ormuz) in the 
Persian Gulf which would seem to show that our poet had 
once visited that place : 


" I am thus cast away in Hurmuz in grief and sorrow, isolated from 
the companionship of friends and patrons." 

Amongst the serious poems is one (f. 3O b ) in praise of 
the Sdhib-Diwdn 'Amfdu'1-Mulk, while amongst the satires 
are two (ff. 54 b and 55 a ) directed against Kamalu'd-Din 
Husayn and Shihabu'd-Din Haydar 1 . One of the religious 
poems at the beginning of the volume (f. i b ), containing the 
praise of God, the Prophet, and the Four Orthodox Caliphs, 
indicates that 'Ubayd was a Sunni, but, apart from his 
disreputable facetia, the following verse shows clearly 
enough that he neither claimed nor desired to lead a vir- 
tuous life : 

I have not been able to identify these persons. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 239 

"God, of Thy grace one special hope I nourish, 
That Thou wilt cause my pleasure-realm to flourish, 
And turn from me the Doom of Abstinence, 
And save me from the Plague of Penitence ! " 

As regards 'Ubayd's facetice (fazaliyyai), which are 
practically the only poems contained in the Constantinople 
edition of his works, they are, as already stated, almost with- 
out exception unfit for translation, and are regarded with 
disapproval or disgust by all respectable Persians at the 
present day. Their only point, moreover, lies in the skilful 
turning to base uses of the serious verses of earlier or con- 
temporary poets, who are thus held up to ridicule and made 
to afford material for ribaldry by the unscrupulous 'Ubayd- 
i-Zakani. Amongst the lighter poems which are unobjection- 
able, however, the following may be cited : 

A \ 

" Something at least from my small property 
Was wont to reach me in the days gone by, 
And when friends came to cheer my loneliness 
A crust of bread they found, a dish of cress, 
And sometimes wine withal, when some new flame 
Or some old crony me to visit came. 
But now, alas ! all that I reckoned on, 
Solid or liquid, from my table's gone, 
And only I am left, nor would remain 
If my removal were another's gain ! " 

That poverty and debt were our poet's usual lot appears 
from other verses, such as the following 1 : 

1 Pp. 6 1 -2 of the Constantinople edition. 


J v^ 

" Others rejoice in merriment, while I am afflicted with debt ; 
Everyone has his affairs and business, while I am in the misfortune 

of debt. 

My duty towards God and my debts to His creatures bow my neck; 
Shall I discharge my duty towards God, or my debts ? 
My expenses are more than usual, and my debts beyond bounds : 
Shall I take thought for my expenses or for my debts ? 
I complain of no documents save summonses for debt, 
And I fear no one save the witnesses to my indebtedness. 
I have debts in the town and debts in the suburb, 
Debts in the street and debts in the store. 
From morning until evening I continue in anxiety 
As to where I may incontinently beg a loan. 
Other people flee from the hands of debt, while I, 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 241 

After prayer and supplication, pray for a loan from God 1 . 
My honour, like that of beggars, is cast to the winds, 
So often have I sought a loan from the door of every beggar. 
If the Master does not bespeak for me the King's favour 
How can poor 'Ubayd finally discharge his debts ? 
Master i Ald'u'd-Dunyd ivrfd-Dtn, except whose hand 
None other in the world hath given Debt its deserts ! " 

Other poems to the same purport will be found on pp. 58 
(11. 18-23) an d 61 (11. 16-20) of the Constantinople edition, 
and whether or no the well-known story 2 about 'Ubayd-i- 
Zakani's death-bed practical joke on his children be true, 
it certainly accords alike with his character and his circum- 

The following epigram on a physician is worth quoting : 



^\ ) O^jf JUU 

" To this fool-doctor no man need apply 
For treatment if he does not wish to die. 
At last to him the Death-Angel appears 
Saying, ' Buy now the goods you've sold for years ; ! " 

" The Mouse and the Cat " (Mush u Gurba} is a short 
mathnawi poem of 174 verses, and in the Bombay litho- 
graphed edition, with the numerous quaint woodcuts which 
illustrate it, comprises only 18 pages. It opens with a de- 
scription of the voracious, keen-eyed, " lion-hunting " cat, 
with eyes like amber and sharp claws, feet like a scorpion, 
a forehead like an eagle, a belly like a drum, a breast of 
ermine, eyebrows like bows, and sharp teeth : 


1 I.e. while others fear to become debtors, I pray that I may have 
the chance of borrowing money and so becoming a debtor. 

2 See my Year amongst the Persians, pp. 115-116. 

B. P. l6 



This cat, being in need of a meal, goes to a wine-tavern 
and conceals itself behind a wine-jar. Presently a mouse 
appears, leaps on to the edge of one of the jars, and begins 
to drink the wine, until, filled with the arrogance engendered 
by alcohol, and ignorant of the proximity of its formidable 
foe, it begins to boast its prowess, saying : " Where is the 
cat, that I may wring its neck and bear its head to the 
market-place ? In the day of my munificence at the time of 
conferring benefits I would distribute the heads of a hundred 
cats ! Cats are but as dogs in my sight, were I to meet them 
in the open field!" 

Suddenly the cat leaps out upon it, seizes it, and cries, 
" O miserable mouse, how wilt thou save thy life ? " 

The mouse, effectively sobered now, adopts a tone of 
piteous entreaty, saying, " I am thy slave : pardon me these 
sins ! If I ate dirt (i.e. talked nonsense) I was drunk, and 
drunkards eat much dirt ! I am your slave, your devoted 

The cat, however, pays no heed to the mouse's supplica- 
tions, kills and eats it, and then goes to the mosque to pray 
and repent of its mouse-eating: 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 243 

Another mouse which was hiding in the pulpit of the 
mosque hears these edifying utterances and hastens to bear 
the good news of the cat's repentance to the other mice, 
saying, in a verse which has become proverbial and is 
alluded to by Hafiz 1 : 

"Good tidings, for the cat has become devout, an ascetic, a true 
believer, a Musulman ! " 

The mice thereupon decide to express their satisfaction 
by sending to the cat a deputation of seven mice bearing 
suitable presents of wine, roasted meats, sweets, nuts, fruits 
and sherbets. The cat invites them to approach, and then 
seizes five of them, one in its mouth and one in each of its 
four paws, while the two survivors escape and carry the sad 
news of the cat's unchanged nature to the other mice. After 
a week's mourning for their lost comrades, the mice, 330,000 
in number, under the command of their king, march out to 
do battle with the cats. After a fierce struggle, the cats 
are defeated, and the chief offender, taken captive, is brought 
before the king of the mice, who condemns it to die on the 
gibbet, but at the end the cat breaks away from its captors, 

1 See my Literary History of Persia, vol. ii, p. 78, on the figure 
called talmih or " allusion." 

16 2 


kills the king of the mice, and scatters or slays his followers. 
The poem ends : 

x x 

"This strange and wonderful story is a memento of 'Ubayd-i- 

Passing now to 'Ubayd-i-Zakam"s prose works, we shall 
first consider his " Ethics of the Aristocracy " 
' Ethics (Akhldqul-Ashrdf), which is a very bitter satire 
of the Aristo- on fa e morals of his time, composed in 740/1 340, 
and comprising a Preface and seven chapters, 
each of which deals with one of the virtues in the following 
order: (i) Wisdom ; (2) Courage ; (3) Chastity; (4) Justice; 
(5) Generosity ; (6) Clemency and Fidelity ; (7) Modesty, 
Mercy, etc. In each chapter the author treats first of the 
old or " abrogated " conception of the virtue in question 
(madh-hab-i-manstikh), and then of the new or " adopted " 
view (madh-hab-i-mukhtdr) of the moderns, whom he ironi- 
cally extols for their discovery, that, for instance, Courage 
is not really a virtue, as the ancients taught, but a very 
dangerous and harmful quality. Concerning the purpose 
of his book he thus speaks in the Preface : 

"Just as the physicians have expended their energies on removing 
the ailments of the body and maintaining its health, so likewise the 
prophets have concentrated their attention on removing the maladies 
and misfortunes of the spirit, so that they may bring it out of the 
perilous gulfs and whirlpools of ignorance and imperfection to the 
shores of salvation and perfection. When the wise man regards with 
attentive gaze, it will become plain to him that the object of the mission 
of those on whom has devolved the Prophet's trust is the refining of 
the qualities and purification of the attributes of God's servants, a truth 
thus enunciated in the words of the poet : 

& AJjt j Jul jJ j 

' Whether or no a Prophet comes, be thou virtuous in conduct, 
For he whose conduct is virtuous will not go to Hell.' 

"His Holiness the Prophet himself has removed the veil from the 
virgin face of this idea, and has revealed the beauty implicit therein 


on the bridal throne of this assurance ' / have been sent to complete 
virtuous qualities} while learned men of former times have com- 
mitted to writing, in lengthy treatises, most of which the defective 
intelligence of this humble writer fails to comprehend, the laws of this 
science, known as ' Ethics ' or ' Practical Philosophy,' whereby, in the 
best and safest way, human nature may be perfected. From the 
auspicious time of the pure Adam until these days the noblest of man- 
kind, with much trouble and extreme endeavour, have made the most 
strenuous efforts to acquire the four cardinal virtues of Wisdom, Courage, 
Chastity and Justice, which they account the chief means to happiness 
in this world and salvation in the world to come, and concerning which 
they say : 

.I Ju 5 XM j <V 

' Of whatever creed thou art, be a well-doer and a giver, 
For Infidelity combined with good character is better than Isldm 
combined with immorality.' 

" But now in this age, which is the cream of all the ages and the 
crown of all times, the nature of the leaders of mankind has been subli- 
mated, and great and powerful thinkers have appeared who have con- 
centrated their luminous thoughts and salutary meditations on all 
matters appertaining to this life and the next, and in their clear vision the 
ancient laws and practices appeared contemptible and unsubstantial. 
Moreover, by the lapse of ages and passage of time, most of these rules 
had become obsolete, and the observance of these ethical principles 
and practices proved burdensome to the powerful minds and luminous 
intellects of these people. Therefore they manfully trampled under 
foot these principles and practices ; adopted instead, for their guidance 
in this life and the next, the method now current amongst the great 
and noble (to the elucidation of some portion of which this epitome is 
devoted) ; and based on it their conduct of the affairs of this world and 
the next. The portals of thought being thus opened and the chain of 
speech extended, let us enter upon the matter in hand. 

"It is now some time since this humble writer 'Ubayd-i-Zakdm 
conceived the ambition of writing a compendious treatise dealing with 
certain ethical conceptions of the ancients, which the people of our time 
regard as ' obsolete,' and some portion of the principles and practices 
of the leaders of thought in this age, which they regard as ' adopted,' 
in order that this treatise might benefit students of this science and 
neophytes in this path. Now at last, in this year 740 of the Flight 
(A.D. 1339-1340) he hath hastily penned this epitome, entitled 'Ethics 
of the Aristocracy,' dividing it into seven chapters, each of which 


contains two views, first the 'obsolete' view, in accordance with which 
our forefathers regulated their lives ; and second the 'adopted' view, 
now discovered by our great thinkers, whereby they regulate their 
affairs here and hereafter. And although this treatise borders on 
ribaldry, yet 

<c~~5u^ u cii a> jjb ' casua jyt, j **=> y~* \ 

' He who is familiar with the city will know whence our goods are 

"The humble author's hope in striving to complete this brief 
treatise is that 

' Perchance somewhere and somewhen some man of heart 
May utter a prayer on behalf of this poor fellow.' " 

After these preliminary remarks, the author proceeds 
to discuss in turn each of the seven virtues already enu- 
merated, beginning in each case with the " obsolete view " 
(which is exactly modelled on what is set forth at greater 
length in such well-known treatises on Ethics as the earlier 
Akhldq-i-Ndsiri or the later Akhldq-i-Jaldli or Akhldq-i- 
Mu/tsmf), and then passing on to the " adopted " view of 
his contemporaries. As a specimen we may take the first 
chapter, which is less ribald than most. 

" First Chapter. On Wisdom. 

" Philosophers in defining Wisdom say that this consists in ''seeking 
to perfect the human soul in its intellectual and practical aptitudes; 
First chapter of "whereof the former is effected by an apprehension of the 
the "Ethics of true nature of things as they really arc, and the latter by 
the Aristocracy," ifa acquisition of a psychical habit or faculty, ivhereby the 
soul is able to perform "virtuous actions and to abstain 
from evil actions, which is called Character.' In other words 1 , there 
are centred in the Rational Soul two faculties, on the perfecting of 
which its perfection depends ; one, the speculative faculty, the other 
the practical faculty. The first is that which craves after the appre- 
hension of knowledge and the acquisition of science, so that, impelled 
by its promptings, the soul acquires a power of knowing things as they 
truly are, whereby eventually it attains the felicity of knowing that true 

1 The preceding words in italics are in the original in Arabic. In 
what follows they are explained in Persian. 


Object of all Search and Universal Goal Who (Exalted and Holy is 
He !) is the Consummation of all Existences. So, guided by this know- 
ledge, the soul attains to the Realm of Unity, nay, even to the Pre- 
cincts of Union, and becomes tranquil and composed (for 'are not 
hearts composed by the remembrance of God l ?'\ while the dust of doubt 
and the rust of uncertainty are cleansed from the visage of its mind 
and the mirror of its heart, even as the poet says : 

' Wherever Certainty entered, Doubt departed.' 

" Now as for the Practical Faculty, it is that which coordinates and 
arranges the powers and actions of the soul, so that they cooperate and 
agree with one another, by virtue of which equipoise and accord its 
qualities become pleasing in God's sight. And when such knowledge 
and practice are combined in this degree in any person, he may fitly 
be entitled the 'Perfect Man' and 'Vicar 2 of God,' and his rank becomes 
the highest attainable by the human race, even as God Most High 
hath said : '//<? giveth Wisdom to whom He will, and whosoever is 
given Wisdom hath been given abundant good?? Moreover his spirit, 
after its separation from the body, becomes fitted to dwell in Paradise, 
to enjoy everlasting happiness, and to become receptive of God's 

" Thus far is the view of the ancient philosophers." 

The writer now passes immediately to the 
"Adopted View. 

"When the great and wise men of subtle understanding, with whose 
honoured persons the face of the earth is now adorned, reflected on the 
perfecting of the human soul and its future destiny, and examined the 
practices and opinions of the famous men of former times, they soon 
formulated a complete and categorical denial of all these beliefs. They 
say : ' It has been revealed to us that the " Rational Soul" is a thing 
of no consideration ; that its continuance absolutely depends on the 
continuance of the body, and that its destruction is involved in the 
destruction of the body.' They further say : ' What is asserted by the 
Prophets as to its having perfections and defects, and as to its sub- 
sisting and continuing in itself after its separation from the body is 
impossible, as is also the Resurrection. Life consists in the just 

1 Qur'dn, xiii, 28. 

2 Khalifa ("Caliph"), or Representative, alluding to God's saying, 
when He created man (Qur'dn, ii, 28), " Verily I am placing a Repre- 
sentative (or Vice-Gerent) on Earth." 

3 Qur'dn, ii, 272. 


equipoise of the elements comprising the body, and when this is 
decomposed its owner becomes for ever extinct and null. What is 
intended by the joys of Paradise and the torments of Hell must be in 
this world, as the poet says : 

'jut o 

' He to whom they give receives his gift even here, 
And he who has nothing [here] is put off with promises for "to- 
morrow 1 ."' 

" Consequently our leaders of thought are entirely unconcerned with 
such matters as the Resurrection, Future Punishment, Nearness to or 
Remoteness from God, the Divine Approval or Wrath, Perfection and 
Imperfection, and the like ; and the result of this conviction is that 
they spend every day of their life in satisfying their lusts and pursuing 
their pleasures, saying : 

'O Final Outcome of the Seven and Four 2 , 
Who by the Four and Seven art vexe'd sore, 
Drink wine ! A thousand times Pve told thee this 
When once thou'rt gone, thou shalt return no more ! ' 

" While they commonly inscribe this quatrain on their fathers' tomb- 
stones : 

' No mansions lie beyond this earth and sea ; 
No reason dwells outside of me and thee : 
That Nothing which is deemed by some men All, 
O pass it by ; 'tis but vain phantasy ! ' 

1 I.e. promises of a future life. 

2 I.e. the Seven Planets and the Four Elements called the "Seven 
Celestial Fathers " and the " Four Mundane Mothers." 


"And it is for this reason that in their eyes attacks on men's lives, 
property and honour seem insignificant and of small account. 

1 To such one draught of wine in hue like fire 
Outweighs the blood of brethren or of sire.' 

"In truth our applause is the just meed of these our great and favoured 
guides to whom matters which, notwithstanding the cultivation of the 
reasoning powers, remained hidden for several thousand years have 
been made plain without trouble." 

So in like manner 'Ubayd-i-Zakani deals with the other 
virtues. Thus in speaking of the "adopted" or current 
view about Courage, which is the subject of the second 
chapter, he says : 

" Our teachers say that when one confronts a dangerous enterprise, 
or engages in combat and conflict with another, one of two things will 
'Ubayd-i- happen : either his adversary will prevail and slay him, 

Zakani on or the contrary. If he slays his adversary, he will have 

on his neck the burden of innocent blood, and as a 
consequence thereof will undoubtedly sooner or later be overtaken by 
punishment. If, on the other hand, his adversary prevails, that person 
will assuredly go the road to Hell. How, then, can a wise man under- 
take an action presenting such alternatives ? What proof, indeed, is 
clearer than this, that whenever there is a wedding, or a dance, or any 
social function where delicate meats, sweets, robes of honour and money 
are in evidence, rakes, effeminate persons, minstrels and jesters are 
invited there, while when arrows and spears are the entertainment pro- 
vided, some stupid fool is persuaded that he is a man, a hero, a defeater 
of armies, a captain courageous, and is thus induced to confront the 
swords, so that when the poor wretch is slain in battle the rakes and 
effeminates of the town wag their tails, saying : 

' Scant attraction have arrow and axe and spear for me ; 
Minstrels, wine and delicate meats far better agree ! ' " 

The third chapter, dealing with Chastity, hardly lends 
itself to translation, but the " adopted view " concerning 
Justice in the fourth chapter is worth quoting. 

" The view of our teachers is that this quality is the worst of all 
attributes, and that Justice involves much loss ; a thesis which they 
have proved by the clearest arguments. For they say : ' The founda- 


tion of sovereignty, lordship and mastery is punishment, since men 
Ubayd-i- w '^ not b ev any one until they fear him ; all will feel 

ZakAnfon themselves equal ; the foundations of administration will 

be undermined, and the order of public business dis- 
organized. He who practices Justice (which God forbid!) refrains 
from beating, killing and fining any one, and does not intoxicate him- 
self and quarrel or be angry with his subordinates, him none will fear. 
Then the people will not obey their kings, nor sons their sires, nor 
servants their masters, while the affairs of the lands and the people 
will lapse into chaos. Hence it is that they say: 

' Kings to gain a single object oft will slay a hundred souls.' 
" And they further say : ''Justice bequeaths disaster? 

What proof, indeed, can be more convincing than this, that so long 
as the Kings of Persia played the tyrant, like Dahhak the Arabian and 
Yazdigird 'the Sinner' (who now confer distinction on the chief seats 
of Hell, together with other later potentates who followed them), their 
Empire increased and their realm flourished ; but when the reign of 
Khusraw Amisharwan came, who, by reason of his weak judgement 
and the policy of his feeble-minded ministers chose the attribute of 
Justice, in a little while the pinnacles of his Palace fell to the ground, the 
Fire Temples, which were their places of worship, were extinguished, 
and all trace of them disappeared from the face of the earth 1 . The 
Commander of the Faithful and Confirmer of the Laws of Religion 
'Umar ibnu'l-Khattdb (may God be well pleased with him), who was 
noted for his justice, made bricks and ate barley-bread, while his cloak, 
as they relate, weighed seventeen maunds. Mu'awiya, by the blessing 
of Injustice, wrested the kingdom from the hands of the Imam 'All (may 
God ennoble his countenance). Nebuchadnezzar did not establish his 
authority, nor become eminent in both worlds, nor did his empire in- 
crease, until he slew twelve thousand innocent prophets in the Holy 
City and cast into bondage many thousand more. Chingfz Khan, who 
to-day, in despite of his enemies, stands supreme in the lower depths 
of Hell as the exemplar and guide of all the Mongols, ancient and 
modern, did not attain to the sovereignty of the whole world until with 
ruthless sword he had destroyed millions of innocent persons. 

" Anecdote. 

" It is recorded in the histories of the Mongols that when Baghdad 
was conquered by Hulagii Khan he ordered the remnant of the in- 

1 These were some of the portents said to have heralded the Arab 
Invasion and the overthrow of the Sasanian Empire. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 251 

habitants who had escaped the sword to be brought before him. He 
then enquired into the circumstances of each class, and, when he was 
acquainted with them, he said : 'Artisans are indispensable,' and gave 
them permission to go about their business. To the merchants he 
commanded that some capital should be given, so that they might trade 
for him. From the Jews he was content to take a poll-tax, declaring 
them to be an oppressed people ; while the effeminates he consigned 
to his gyncecia. He then set apart the judges, shaykhs, Sufis, Hajjis, 
preachers, persons of note, beggars, religious mendicants, wrestlers, 
poets and story-tellers, saying, ' These are superfluous creatures who 
waste God's blessings,' and ordered all of them to be drowned in the 
Tigris, thus purifying the face of earth from their vile existence. As a 
natural consequence sovereignty continued in his family for nearly 
ninety years, during which time their Empire daily increased ; until, 
when poor Abu Sa'fd conceived in his mind a sentimental passion for 
Justice, and branded himself with the stigma of this quality, his Empire 
shortly came to an end, and the House of Hiilagu Khdn and all his en- 
deavours were brought to naught through the aspirations of Abu Sa'fd... 
"Blessings rest on those great and well-directed persons who guided 
mankind out of the dark delusion of Justice into the light of right 
guidance ! " 

The " Book of the Beard " (Rtsh-ndma) is a fantastic 

dialogue between 'Ubayd-i-Zakani and the 

^filar'd" f beard considered as the destroyer of youthful 


The "Hundred Counsels" (Sad Pand} was composed 
in 750/1350, and, as its name implies, comprises a hundred 
aphorisms, some serious, such as : " O dear 
Sun'l" ndred friends, make the most of life"; "Do not 
defer until to-morrow the pleasure of to-day"; 
" Profit by the present, for life will not return a second 
time " ; and some ironical and ribald, such as : " So far 
as you are able, refrain from speaking the truth, so that 
you may not be a bore to other people, and that they 
may not be vexed with you without due cause " ; " Do 
not believe the words of pious and learned men, lest you 
go astray and fall into Hell " ; " Do not take lodgings in 
a street where there is a minaret, so that you may be safe 
from the annoyance of cacophonous mu adhdhins" ; "Despise 
not ribaldry, nor regard satirists with the eye of scorn." 


The "Definitions" (Ta'rifdt\ or " Ten Sections" (Dak 
Fasl} is. like the "Hundred Counsels" just 

'Ubayd-j- . 

zdkanfs mentioned, a tract of only a few pages. A 

few specimens from it will suffice to show its 

" First Section : on the World and what is therein. 

" The World. That place wherein no creature can enjoy peace. 
The Wise Man. He who does not concern himself with the world 

and its inhabitants. 

The Perfect Man. He who is not affected by grief or gladness. 
Thought. That which wearies men to no purpose. 
The Man of Learning. He who has not sense enough to earn his 

own livelihood. 
The Ignorant Man. Fortune's favourite. 

" Second Section : on the Turks and their friends. 

' Gog and Magog. The Turkish tribes when they set out for a 


The Infernal Guards. Their leaders. 
Famine. The result of their advent. 

The Constable. He who robs by night and demands payment from 
the shop-keepers by day. 

" Third Section : on the Judge and his appanages. 
" The Judge. He whom all men curse. 
The Advocate. He who renders the truth of no effect. 
Bribery. That which does the business of the helpless. 
The Lucky Man. He who never sees the Judge's countenance. 
The Preacher. An ass. 
The Prelector. An ass's tail. 
The Poet. A greedy coxcomb. 

" Fourth Section : on Shaykhs and their dependents. 

" The Shaykh. Iblfs (the Devil). 
The Devils. His followers. 

The Sufi. He who eats what he has not earned. 
The Hdjji. He who swears falsely by the Ka'ba. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 253 

" Fifth Section : on the Gentry. 

" Boasting and impudence. The Gentry's stock-in-trade. 
Nothing. Their existence. 
Hollow. Their politeness. 
Vanity and folly. Their talk. 

Fault-finding^ greed, avarice and envy. Their characteristics. 
The Fool. He who hopes any good of them. 

* * * * 

" Sixth Section : on Artisans and Officials. 
" The Shopman. He who fears not God. 
The Druggist. He who wants to make everyone ill. 
The Doctor. An executioner. 
The Liar. The astrologer. 
The Athlete. An idle rogue. 

The Broker. The chartered thief of the market-place. 
One per cent. What does not reach the landlord from his crops. 
Complaint. What is carried to the landlord. 

* * * * 

" Seventh Section : on Wine and its appurtenances. 
" Wine. The source of disturbance. 

Backgammon, beauties, candles and desert. Its instruments. 
The Harp, Lute and Dulcimer. Its music. 
Soup and roasted meat. Its food. 
The Garden and Parterre. Its appropriate place. 
The ' Destroyer of Joys? Ramadan. 
The ' Night of Worth: The eve of the festival. 

* * * * 

" Eighth Section : on Bang and its accessories. 

" Bang. That which fills the Sufi with ecstasy. 
The Bejewelled, or the Noble on both sides. He who indulges simul- 
taneously in bang and wine. 
The Disappointed. He who enjoys neither. 

" Ninth Section : the Householder and what appertains to him. 

" The Bachelor. He who laughs at the world's beard. 
The Unfortunate. The householder. 

The Two-horned (Dhu'l-Qarnayn). He who has two wives. 
The most unfortunate of the unfortunate. He who has more. 
The Futile. The householder's life. 


The Wasted. His time. 
The Dissipated. His wealth. 
The Distracted. His mind. 
The Bitter. His life. 
The Abode of Mourning. His house. 
The Enemy in the House. His son. 
The Ill-starred. He who is afflicted with a daughter. 
The Adversary. His brother. 
The Kinsman. His deadly foe. 
Joy after sorrow. The triple divorce. 

* * * * 

" Tenth Section: on the true nature of Men and Women. 

" The Lady. She who has many lovers. 
The House-wife. She who has few. 
The Virtuous. She who is satisfied with one lover. 
The Maiden. A name denoting what does not exist." 

The "Joyous Treatise" (Risdla-i-Diiguskd) is a col- 
lection of short Arabic and Persian stories and 


Zakani's "joyous facetiae, mostly of a somewhat ribald character, 
preceded by a short Preface. A few specimens 
of both parts are here appended. 

(Arabic Stories.} 

" Julia" once went to al-Kindsa ('the Dust-heap ') to buy a donkey. 
A man met him and asked him where he was going. He replied, ' To 
al-Kindsa to buy a donkey.' 'Say, "Please God,"' answered the 
other. 'There is no "Please God" about it,' responded Julia" : 'the 
donkey is in the market and the money is in my sleeve.' 

" Now when he entered the market, some pickpockets fell upon 
him and stole his money. And as he returned, the man met him 
again, and enquired whence he came. He replied, ' From the market, 
Please God. My money has been stolen, Please God. So I did not 
buy the donkey, Please God. And I am returning to my house dis- 
appointed and despoiled, Please God.' " 

" A certain man met another riding on a sorry ass, and enquired 
of him, 'Whither away?' He replied, 'To try to reach the Friday 
prayer.' ' Out on thee ! ' exclaimed the other ; ' To-day is Tuesday ! ' 
' I shall be lucky,' answered the rider, 'if my ass gets me to the mosque 
by Saturday ! ' " 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 255 

"A man came to I yds ibn Mu'awiya and asked him : ' If I should 
eat dates, would it harm me ? ' He replied, ' No.' ' What would 
happen,' he continued, ' if I were to eat fennel with bread ? ' ' Nothing 
would happen,' he answered. 'And if I then drank a little water?' he 
asked. 'What forbids?' replied the other. Said the questioner, ' Date- 
wine is compounded of these things : how then can it be unlawful?' 
' If I threw some earth at you,' said lyas, 'would it hurt? ' ' No,' said 
the man. 'And if a little water was poured upon you, would any of 
your bones be broken ?' continued lyas. 'No,' said the man. 'But 
if,' said I yds, 'out of the earth and the water I made a brick, and dried 
it in the sun, and then struck you on the head with it, how would it be ?' 
' It would kill me,' answered the other. Said I yds, 'This case is like 

{Persian Stories.} 

" A certain Shi'ite entered a mosque and saw the names of the [four] 
Companions 1 written up on the wall. He wished to spit on the names 
of Abii Bakr and 'Umar, but his spittle fell on the name of 'All. He 
was greatly annoyed at this, and exclaimed, ' This is only what you 
deserve for keeping such company ! ' " 

"A certain man claimed to be God. He was brought before the 
Caliph, who said to him, ' Last year someone here claimed to be a 
prophet, and he was put to death.' ' It was well done,' replied the man, 
' for I did not send him.' " 

" Juha. in his childhood was apprenticed for some days to a tailor. 
One day his master brought a jar of honey to the shop. Desiring to 
go out on some business, he said to Juhd, ' There is poison in this jar : 
beware lest you partake of it, or you will perish ! ' Said Juha, ' What 
have I to do with it?' When his master had gone, Juha gave a piece 
of cloth to a money-changer and bought a piece of baker's bread, 
which he ate with all the honey. When his master returned, he 
demanded the piece of cloth. 'Don't beat me,' said Juhd, 'so that I 
may tell you the truth. A thief stole the piece of cloth while I was 
not paying attention. I was afraid that when you came back you 
would beat me, so I said to myself that I would take poison, so that 
when you returned I should be dead. So I ate all the poison which 
was in the jar, but I am still alive. The rest you know.'" 

" A Qazwini armed with an enormous shield went out to fight the 
Heretics 2 . A stone fired from their stronghold struck him and broke 

1 I.e. the four Orthodox Caliphs, Abii Bakr, 'Umar, 'Uthmdn and 
'All, of whom the Shi'ites regard the first three as usurpers. 

2 Maldhida, i.e. the Assassins, whose chief fortress, Alamut, was 
situated near Qazwin. 


his head. He was much annoyed and exclaimed, ' O fellow, are you 
blind that you cannot see so large a shield and must needs hit me on 
the head?'" 

" The son of a certain Qazwmi fell into a well. ' O my dear boy,' 
he exclaimed, 'don't move from where you are until I go and fetch a 
rope and pull you out ! ' " 

"A certain mu'adhdhin was running along shouting the call to 
prayer. They asked him why he was running. He replied, 'They tell 
me that my voice sounds best from a distance, so I am running away 
from it to see if this is true.' " 

" Sultan Mahmiid saw a feeble old man carrying on his back a load 
of firewood. Being moved to pity, he said, ' Old man, would you 
prefer that I should give you two or three gold dindrs, or a donkey, 
or two or three sheep, or a garden, so that you may be delivered from 
this misery?' 'Give me money,' said the old man, 'so that I may put 
it in my girdle, and ride on the donkey, and drive the sheep before me, 
and go to the garden, and rest there, through your favour, for the rest 
of my life.' The Sulta'n was pleased at his reply, and gave orders that 
this should be done." 

"A man said to his friend, ' My eye hurts me. What should I do ? ' 
' Last year,' replied his friend, 'one of my teeth hurt me and I pulled 
it out.'" 

"A bald man coming out from the bath found that his hat had 
been stolen, and had a violent altercation with the bathman, who 
declared that he had no hat on when he came. ' O Musulmans ! ' 
exclaimed the man, 'is mine the kind of head which goes about 

"A certain Qazwmf was asked if he knew about 'All, the Commander 
of the Faithful. ' Of course I know about him,' he replied. ' Which 
of the Caliphs was he in order?' they asked. ' I know nothing about 
Caliphs,' he answered, 'but it was he whom Husayn caused to die a 
martyr's death on the Plain of Karbala 1 ! ' " 

"A certain gipsy reproached his son, saying, 'You do nothing, and 
spend your life in idleness. How often must I tell you that you should 

1 'All, the first Imdm of the Shf'ites and Fourth Caliph of the 
Sunnites, was assassinated by Ibn Muljam in A.D. 661. His younger 
son, Husayn, the third Imam, called by the Persians "the Chief of 
Martyrs," was slain at Karbald by Yazfd's myrmidons some twenty 
years later. The anecdote is intended to illustrate the stupidity and 
ignorance of the Qazwfnis. For a similar anecdote given by Zamakh- 
shari see the English Preface to the Chahdr Maqdla ("E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial" Series, Vol. xi), pp. xxi-xxii. 

CH. v] 'UBAYD-I-ZAKANf 257 

learn to turn somersaults, make dogs jump through hoops, or walk on 
the tight-rope, so that you may derive some profit from life. If you 
won't listen to me, by Heaven, I will send you to college to learn their 
moth-eaten science and to become a learned man, so that all your life 
you may continue in abasement, poverty and evil fortune, and be un- 
able to earn a single barleycorn anywhere.' " 

" A certain Qazwini was returning from Baghdad in the summer. 
They asked him what he was doing there. He replied, ' Sweating.' " 

With the "Joyous Treatise," from which the few 
anecdotes given above are taken, the printed edition of 
'Ubayd-i-Zakani's works ends, except for two letters 
models of unintelligible vulgarity and full of solecisms 
ascribed to Shaykh Shihabu'd-Din Qalandar and Mawlana 
Jalalu'd-Dm b. Husam of Herat, but no doubt written by 
'Ubayd himself in order to hold them up to ridicule. 

I have devoted to 'Ubayd-i-Zakani more space than he 
may be deemed by many students of Persian literature 
Reasons for to deserve, but, in spite of his coarseness and 
devoting so cynicism, his strong originality and boldness 

much space to c . i_i 

of speech appear to me to entitle him to more 

consideration than he has hitherto received. 
His " Ethics of the Aristocracy " is valuable for the light 
it throws on the corrupt morals of his age, and it is at 
least conceivable that, as 'Ubayd's biographer suggests, 
it was really written with serious purpose to awaken his 
countrymen to the lamentable deterioration in public and 
private life which had taken place in Persia during the 
Mongol ascendancy. In style and subject-matter 'Ubayd- 
i-Zakani stands almost alone amongst the older poets, 
though he bears some resemblance to his predecessor 
Suzani, and to his successors Abu Ishaq (Bushaq) of 
Shi'raz, the parodist and poet of the kitchen, and Mah- 
mud Qari of Yazd, the poet of clothes. Amongst the 
moderns, the learned Mi'rza Habib of Isfahan, the editor 
of his books, who died in Constantinople towards the end 
of the nineteenth century, rivals and even surpasses him 
in hazaliyydt or ribald poems. 

B. P. 17 


4. 'Imddu'd-Din Faqih (the Jurisconsult} of Kirmdn, 

Such fame as this poet enjoys arises chiefly from the 
fact that he was a rival of the great Hafiz, and 

'Imdd of Kirmn . 1.1 i . - \ ' -L. r i 

is supposed to be aimed at in a rather spiteful 
poem 1 by the latter, especially in the verse : 

" O gracefully-walking partridge, whither goest thou ? Stop ! 
Be not deceived because the zealot's cat says its prayers ! " 

The story is 2 that 'I mad stood high in the favour of 
Shah Shuja' the Muzaffarf, with whom, on the other hand, 
Hafiz was by no means a persona grata. 'Imad, who, as 
his title Faqih indicates, was a theologian, had a tame 
cat which he had taught to go through the appropriate 
postures and genuflections when he prayed, and this art 
of mimicry was regarded by the Prince as miraculous, but 
by Hafiz as a piece of hypocritical cunning. 

Notices of 'Imad are given by Dawlatshah 3 and Jami 
(in the Bahdristdn, chapter vii), and in the Atash-kada* , 
the Haft Iqlim and the Habibiis-Siyar (as mentioned 
above), and most other biographies of poets, but these 
contain very little indeed about his life. He is said to 
have been highly respected at Kirman, and to have had 
a college or retreat there. " He was wont," says Jami, 
"to recite his verses to all who visited the rest-house 
(khdnqdh), requesting them to criticize and amend them, 
whence it is that they say that his poetry is really the 

1 See Rosenzweig-Schwannau's edition of the Diwdn of Hdfiz, 
vol. i, pp. 316-317, in the note to which, however, the allusion is other- 
wise explained. See also p. 243, n. i supra. 

2 See Habibit's-Siyar, vol. iii, pt. 2, p. 37 ; and the Haft Iqlim. 

3 Pp. 254-6 of my edition. 
' * P. no. 

CH. v] 'IMAD-I-KIRMANf 259 

poetry of all the people of Kirman." Dawlatshah quotes 
the opinion of Adhari, author of the " Gems of Mysteries " 
(Jawdhiru'l-Asrdr), who says : 

" Critical scholars hold that some redundancy (' stuffing ' Jiashw) 
is to be observed at times in the poetry of all the ancients and moderns 
except in that of Khwaja 'Imdd-i-Faqih, in which, as they agree, there 
is absolutely no such lapse, either in words or ideas." 

'Imad's extant work comprises a Dlwdn of lyric poetry, 
of which copies are not common 1 , and at least five mathnawi 
poems, of which the earliest, entitled Mahabbat-ndma-i- 
Sdhib-dildn, was composed in 722/1322, and the latest, 
the Mtinisu'l-Abrdr, in 766/1364. According to Dawlat- 
shah, he died in 773/1371-2, evidently at a fairly advanced 
age. The following is a translation of the first of the two 
odes of 'Imad quoted by this biographer 2 : 

"The poor patient in the hospital of Religion who details his 

symptoms to the physicians who sit by the road, 
What cares he for the road, the pain, the trouble and the sickness 

Who has Khidr for his friend and Christ for his companion ? 
On the first day of Eternity Past I inscribed on the Tablet of my Soul 

Of the words of my father (may his tomb be fragrant !) these : 
' O child, if thou meetest with one who is fallen, 

Do not mock him, nor look on him with the eyes of scorn ! ' 
For this reason did the great religious leaders ride on lions, 

Because they trod the earth more gently than ants. 
If no heart in the world is cheered by thee, 

At least do not so act that any spirit may be saddened by thee. 
O 'Imdd, one cannot seek for any friend but God : 

Help, O Helper ! 'From Thee do we seek assistance 3 '!" 

1 See the excellent Bankipore Catalogue, prepared under the super- 
vision of Sir E. Denison Ross by Mawlawi'Abdu'l-Muqtadir,and printed 
at Calcutta in 1908. ("Persian Poets," Firdawsf to Hdfiz, pp. 217-219.) 

2 See p. 254, 1. 14, to p. 255, 1. 4, of my edition for the text. 

3 The last words are from the opening sura of the Qur'an, v. 4. 

17 2 


5. Salman of Sdwa 

(Jamdlu'd-Din Muhammad Salman b. 'Ald'itd-Dtn 

Salman of Sawa, who has been already mentioned in 
connection with 'Ubayd-i-Zakani, is another 

' Salman of Sdwa , . , , . _ . . 

poet whose eminence has been certified by 
the great Hafiz in the following verse : 

" Dost thou know who is the chief of the scholars of this age 
In the way of truth and certainty, not in the way of doubt and 

falsehood ? 

That monarch of the accomplished and king of the realm of verse 
That ornament of Church and State (Jamdlu'd-Diri), the Master 

of the World Salman." 

He was essentially a court-poet and panegyrist, and 
was attached during the greater part of his long life to 
the Il-khani or Jala'ir dynasty, his special patrons being 
Shaykh llas&n-t-Busurg, the founder of that dynasty, his 
consort Dilshad Khatun, and their son Shaykh Uways. 
Apart from the notices of him given by the biographers 
cited throughout this chapter 1 , attention should be called 
to two excellent biographies by Indian scholars, one in 
English and the other in Urdu. The first, in the Catalogue 
of ...the Oriental Public Library at Bankipore, Fir daw si to 
Hafiz (pp. 219-225), is by Mawlawi 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir, and 
gives a very good critical summary of the data furnished 
by the Persian biographers. The second is contained in 
an admirable collection of studies of some twenty eminent 

1 See Dawlatshdh (my edition), pp. 257-263; Atash-kada (lith. ed., 
A.H. 1277), pp. 208-211 ; Habibifs-Siyar (Bombay lith. ed., A.D. 1857), 
vol. iii, pt. I, pp 130, 135, 137 ; J ami's BahAristdn, ch. vii, etc. 

CH. v] SALMAN-I-SAWAjf 261 

Persian poets by Shibli Nu'mdni entitled Shi'ru'l-'Ajam 
("Poetry of the Persians") 1 , compiled in 1324-5/1906-7, 
and lithographed at 'Aligarh. 

That Salman was born in or about the year 700/1300 
is proved, as pointed out by Mawlawi 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir, 
,, . . , by a verse in the Firdq-ndma (" Book of 

Materials for the J 

biographyof Separation"), composed in 761/1360, in which 
the poet says that his age had then passed 
sixty-one ; and the same scholar gives good reason for 
believing that he died on Monday, Safar 12, 778 (July i, 
1376). He composed two mathnawl poems, the above- 
mentioned Firdq-ndma and another entitled Jamshid u 
Khurshid, and a number of odes (ghazaliyydf), fragments 
(muqatta'dt), and quatrains (rubd'iyydi), but it is as a 
qasida-vrntoex and panegyrist that he excels, often sur- 
passing, as Jami says, the earlier masters, such as Kamal 
Isma'il, Zahfr of Faryab, Athir-i-Awmani, Sana'f, etc., 
. . . whom he took for his models. Of his odes 

Jarm s criticism 

of Salman's {gJiazaliyydf) Jami says that they too are very 
agreeable and highly finished, but that, " being 
devoid of the savour of love and passion which is the 
essence of the ghazal, they are not very highly esteemed 
by men of taste." In the Bombay lithographed edition 
of Salman's Kiilliyydt, the qastdas, with two tarjf -bands, 
fill the first 135 pages, the ghazals pp. 136-230, and the 
quatrains the last six pages. 

Salman's earliest poems, as 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir observes, 
are apparently his elegies on the death of Sultan Abu Sa'id 
(Nov. Dec., 1335), and of his great minister Khwaja 
Ghiyathu'd-Din Muhammad, who was put to death on 
Ramadan 21, 736 (May 3, 1336). In this same year 
Shaykh \$asax\.-i-Busttrg established the dynasty known 
as Il-khani, with its capital at Baghdad, and thither Salman, 
attracted by the fame of that ruler's generosity to men of 
letters, made his way, probably soon after the cruel and 

1 The notice of Salmdn is in the second part of this work, pp. 196- 


violent death of his earlier patron Ghiyathu'd-Di'n. It is 
related by Dawlatshah and other writers that he first won 
Shaykh Hasan's favour by the following verses which he 
extemporized on some occasion when that Prince was 
exhibiting his skill with the bow 1 : 

"When the King lifted his Chichi 2 bow 
Thou would'st have said that the Moon was in the Sign of 


I saw the two 'crows' of the bow and the three-winged eagle 3 
Bring their heads together in one corner 4 . 
They laid their heads on the King's shoulder : 
I know not what they whispered in the King's ear. 
When the King loosed the bow-string from the finger-stall 
From every side arose the twang of the string. 
O King, the arrow is subject to thy schemes, 
And fortune follows the flight of thy arrow. 
In thy time complaints arise from none 
Save from the bow, which it is but right should lament. 
For, in the reign of this auspicious Sultan 
None does violence save to the bow." 

It was, however, according to the biographers, chiefly 
to the beautiful and accomplished Queen Dilshad Khatun, 
and to the amiable Prince Uways, that Salman owed the 
favours which he enjoyed at the Il-khani court, of which 
he says : 

"Through the auspicious fortune of this House I have captured the 

world with the sword of my tongue. 
To-day from the East to the West I am more famous than the Sun." 

Shaykh Uways succeeded to the throne in 757/1356 
and reigned nearly twenty years, and to him a great 

1 For the text, see my edition of Dawlatshah, p. 257, 11. 15-21. 

2 Chach, or Shdsh, the modern Tashkand, is a place in Turkistan 
celebrated for its bows. 

3 Each of the two horns or tips of a bow is called zdgh, "crow." 
The "three-winged eagle" is the arrow. 

4 This indicates metaphorically the full drawing of the bow. 

CH. v] SALMAN-I-SAWAjf 263 

number of Salman's qasidas are addressed, while anecdotes 
given by Dawlatshah and reproduced by Ouseley in his 
Biographical Notices of the Persian Poets 1 show the intimacy 
which prevailed between the two. This prince is said by 
Dawlatshah to have been of such striking beauty that when 
he rode out the people of Baghdad used to flock into the 
streets to gaze upon a countenance which seemed to 
reincarnate the legendary comeliness of Joseph. When 
overtaken by untimely death, he is said to have composed 
the following fine verses : 

3 *. 


" From the spirit-world one day to the realms of Body and Sense did 

I roam ; 

I sojourned here for a few brief days, and now I am going home. 
The servant was I of a mighty Lord, and I fled from my Liege and 

Whom now in shame I am going to meet with a winding-sheet and 

a sword 2 . 

Comrades of mine, I leave you now to joys which I may not share, 
And that you may enjoy this banquet long is my parting hope and 

prayer ! " 

As is usually the case with panegyrists, many of 
Salman's qasidas refer to definite historical events, and 
can therefore be dated. Mawlawi 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir gives 
a list of ten such poems, with their dates and the occasions 

1 Pp. 117 et seqq. 

2 A fugitive and repentant slave, to show his readiness to surrender 
himself unconditionally and submit to even the extremest punishment, 
goes back to his master bearing a sword, wherewith he may be slain, 
and a winding-sheet for his burial. 


which called them forth, from the Habtbus-Siyar 1 . The 
earliest of them, composed in 739/1338 on the occasion of 
the flight of Shaykh Hasan-i-Buzurg- to Baghdad, begins 2 : 

'jlo jljdu Jxi U 

" It is the time of morning, and the brink of the Tigris, and the breath 

of Spring ; 
O, boy, bring the wine-boat to the estuary of Baghdad ! " 

The two latest, composed in 7/7/1375, celebrate a 
victory of Shah Shuja' in Adharbayjan 3 . The second of 
them, which won that Prince's high approval, begins 4 : 


and it was after hearing it that Shah Shuja' observed : 
" We had heard the fame of three notable persons of this 
country, and found them differing in their circumstances. 
Salman exceeded all that was said in his praise ; Yiisuf 
Shah the minstrel agreed with his reputation; and Shaykh 
Kajahanf fell short of his." 

One of the most celebrated of Salman's qasfdas, how- 
ever, was written to commemorate the death of Shaykh 
Uways, which took place in Jum^da ii, 776 (November, 
1374). It begins 5 : 


1 Bankipore Catalogue, pp. 222-3. 

2 This poem will be found on pp. 87-8 of the lithographed edition 
of the Kulliyydt of Salmon. 

3 Habibifs-Siyar, vol. iii, pt 2, p. 35. 

4 See pp. 57-8 of the lithographed edition. 

6 It does not seem to be included in the lithographed edition. 


" O Heaven, go gently ! It is no slight thing that thou hast done : 
Thou hast made desolate the land of Persia by the death of the King. 
Thou hast brought down a heaven from its zenith, 
And hast cast it on the earth and made it level with the dust. 
If thou walkest with truth, this is no insignificant matter : 
Thou hast attacked the life and property and honour of every 
Musulma"n ! " 

As already stated, Salman probably died in 778/1376, 
a year after the composition of two of the qasidas mentioned 
above, so that he evidently continued to write poetry until 
the end of his long life, and did not, as stated by Dawlat- 
shah 1 , actually retire into seclusion, though he implies his 
desire and intention of so doing in an interesting poem cited 
by Shibli Nu'mani in his Shi'nil-Ajam (vol. ii, pp. 198-200). 
In this poem he says that for nearly forty years he has 
celebrated his Royal patron's praises in the East and in 
the West ; that he is now old and feeble, lame, and weak 
of sight, and wishes to retire from Court and spend the 
remainder of his days in praying for the King ; that having 
been the master of the realm of poets, he desires to become 
the servant of the poor ; that he has no doubt that the 
King will continue his allowance, but that he would like 
its source and amount to be definitely fixed ; and finally 
that he owes considerable sums of money which he cannot 
pay, and prays the King to discharge these debts for him. 
In reply the King is said to have written two couplets on 
the poet's versified petition, in the first of which he orders 
his allowance to be continued as heretofore, while in the 
second he assigns him the revenues of the village of In'n 
near Ray. 

Shibli Nu'mani concludes his notice of Salmon with 
a fairly detailed and wholly favourable appreciation of his 
skill in the different forms of verse. His skill is chiefly 

1 P. 261, 1. 21, of my edition. 


apparent in his qasidas, which are remarkable for grace and 
fluency of language, and for a felicity of diction possessed 
by none of the earlier poets, and peculiar to those of this 
middle period, between which two groups Salman marks 
the transition. Shiblf gives the following examples to 
illustrate his assertion : 

" Thy mouth smiled, and produced a jar of sugar : 
Thy lip spoke, and revealed glistening pearls. 
Thy waist was undiscoverable 1 , but thy girdle 
Deftly clasped it round, and revealed it in gold. 
Cast aside the veil from thy face, for those black tresses 
Have affected the fairness of thy cheeks." 

1 On account of its extreme slenderness. 

CH. v] SALMAN-I-SAWAjf 267 

"The breeze of the Naiv-rtiz 1 brings the aroma of the beautiful rose, 
[And] brings the dust of the musk of Tartary from the borders of 

the desert. 
The garden has decked the branch with the patterns of a peacock's 


The wind hath fashioned the bud into the likeness of a parrot's head. 
The [red] anemone hath displayed from the mountain-slopes the 

fire of Moses ; 

The branch hath brought forth 'the White Hand' from its bosom 2 . 
The sweet-voiced nightingale, for the [delectation of the] Rose-Prince, 
Hath contributed the strains of Barbad and the songs of Nikfsd 3 . 
The zephyr-breeze hath conferred high rank on the cypress ; 
The sweetness of the air hath endowed the anemone with a noble 


Shibli next gives examples of Salmon's skill in inventing 
those graceful and subtle conceits in which the poets of 
the middle and later periods take pride. The following 
specimens may suffice : 

1 The Persian New Year's Day, or Naw-niz, falls on March 21 and 
corresponds with the Vernal Equinox. 

2 " The White Hand " is the hand that Moses drew forth from his 
garment "as white as snow." Here the allusion is to the white 

3 Baibad was the famous minstrel of Khusraw Parwi'z the Sasdnian, 
and Nikfsa his harper. 


" The cornelian of thy lip placed the coin of life in a casket of pearls ; 
It was a precious stuff, so it put it in a hidden place 1 . 
Thy lips put a ruby lock on the lid of that casket ; 
Thy mole, which was of ambergris, set a seal upon it. 
A subtle thought, finer than a hair, suddenly came 
Into the heart of thy girdle, and named it 'waist 2 '." 

( ...J ( 

" Henceforth make your rosary from the knots of the Magian's tresses; 
Henceforth take as your mihrdb the arch of the idols' (fair ones') 

Arise joyous like the bubbles from the rose-red wine, and base no 

On this bubble-like revolving dome [of sky]." 

" For some while the revolution of this circle parted us from one 
another like the [points of a] compass, but at last brought us together 
[once more]." 

" The Zephyr found the rose-bud laughing before thy mouth, " 
And smote it so sharply in the mouth that its mouth was filled with 

1 This means that the life of the lover is in his sweetheart's mouth, 
which, on account of the brilliant teeth, he compares to a casket of 
pearls, and, on account of its smallness, to " a hidden place." 

2 A slender waist and a small mouth are accounted amongst the 
chief charms of Persian beauties. Both are here described in the most 
exaggerated terms. 

CH. v] SALMAN-I-SAWAjf 269 

" I will not set my foot one hair's breadth outside this circle 1 , 
Even though they should split me like a compass into two halves 
from head to foot." 

Other points in Salman's poetry noted by Shibli Nu'mani 
are his skill in the successful manipulation of difficult rhymes 
and awkward refrains. Thus he has long qastdas in which 
each verse ends with such words as dost (" hand "), pay 
(" foot "), rti (" face "), bar sar (" on the head ") preceded by 
the rhyming word, yet which maintain an easy and natural 
flow of words and ideas. 

Shibli Nu'mani next deals with the poet's " fragments " 
(muqatta'dt}, or occasional verses, which, as usual with this 
class of verse, are connected with various incidents in his 
life, and therefore have a more personal note than the 
odes (ghazaliyydt) and elegies (qasd'td"), but which are un- 
fortunately omitted from the Bombay lithographed edition. 

On one occasion the King gave Salman a black horse, 
which he did not like and wished to exchange for one of 
another colour, but the Master of the Horse apparently 
would not permit this. Thereupon he wrote as follows to 
his patron : 

*"* !>* 

1 My friend Muhammad Iqbal has called my attention to the follow- 
ing parallel verse by Han"?, from which it appears that the circle formed 
by the down on the cheeks is here intended : 

See Rosenzweig-Schwannau's edition of the Dtwdn, vol. i, p. 510. 


" O King, thou didst promise me a horse : no further discussion is 

possible about the word of Kings. 
They gave me an old, black horse, and I am of opinion that no more 

aged black is to be found in the world. 
I gave back that horse so that I might get another in such wise that 

none should have knowledge of this secret. 
I gave back a black horse, but they would not give me one of another 

colour; yes, indeed, 'There is no colour beyond black 1 !'" 

Salman further satirized this unfortunate horse as 
follows : 

" O King, I had hopes that, through thy good fortune, I might mount 

a tall, young and ambling horse. 
They give me an old, lazy, undersized horse, not such a horse as I 

can ride. 
It is a horse black, feeble and lean as a pen : it would be the height 

of folly to mount such a beast. 
In truth it must be thirty years older than myself, and it is dis- 

respectful to sit upon one's elders." 

In another fragment Salman excuses his absence from 
the Court on the plea that his eyes are bad, and that though 
the dust of the King's threshold is a collyrium, yet the evil 
eye must be kept far from him : 

J3JJ jL^ Jl 'C^l^ y Ajp JU. 

1 This is a common proverbial saying in Persian. 


On another similar occasion he pleads the pain in his 
feet (probably gout), to which he elsewhere alludes in his 
poems, as the cause of his absence, wittily observing that 
foot-ache prevents him from giving the King headache, 
which in the Persian idiom means trouble : 

Finally Shibli Nu'mani speaks of the innovations intro- 
duced by Salman, and especially of his skilful 

Shibhs summing t , . 

upofSaimdn's use of the figure called {ham or "ambiguity." 
The general conclusion seems to be that Salman 
deserves to be ranked amongst the great panegyrists and 
goftita-writcrs ; that he was an ingenious, skilful and to a 
certain extent original poet, but that he lacks the fire, passion 
and conviction which make a poet great and famous beyond 
the limits of his own time and country. 

6. Hdfiz of Shirdz 
(Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad Hdfiz). 

What has been already said generally at the beginning 
of this chapter as to the extraordinary dearth 

Hjifi? of Shiraz *, . - . , 

of trustworthy information concerning the poets 
of this period applies especially to the most eminent and 
famous of them, and indeed of all the poets of Persia, the 
immortal and incomparable Hafiz of Shiraz, entitled by 
his admirers Lisdnu l-Ghayb ("the Tongue of the Unseen") 
and Tarjumdnul-Asrdr ("the Interpreter of Mysteries"). 
Notices of him naturally occur in all the numerous bio- 


graphics of poets composed subsequently to his death, 
beginning with Dawlatshah, who wrote just a century after 
this event, down to quite modern compilations, like Rida- 
quli Khan's Majma'ul-Fusahd and Riyddu'l-'Arifin ; but 
these contain few trustworthy biographical details, and con- 
sist for the most part of anecdotes connected with certain 
verses of his poems, and probably in most cases, if not all, 
invented to explain or illustrate them. The only con- 
temporary mention of Hafiz with which I am acquainted 
is contained in the Preface of his friend and the collector 
and editor of his poems, Muhammad Gulandam, who, after 
expatiating on the poet's incomparable genius, his catholic 
sympathy, and the celebrity attained by his verse even in 
his lifetime, not only in Persia, from Fars to Khurasan and 
Adharbdyjan, but in India, Turkistan and Mesopotamia, 
proceeds as follows : 

" However, diligent study of the Qur'dn, constant attendance to the 
King's business, the annotation of the Kashshdf 1 and the Misbdh*, the 
Muhammad perusal of the Matdli^ and the Miftdh*, the acquisition 
Guiandam's of canons of literary criticism and the appreciation of 
account of Arabic poems prevented him from collecting his verses 

and odes, or editing and arranging his poems. The 
writer of these lines, this least of men, Muhammad Gulandam, when 
he was attending the lectures of our Master, that most eminent teacher 
Qiwamu'd-Din 'Abdu'llah, used constantly and repeatedly to urge, in 
the course of conversation, that he (Hafiz) should gather together all 
these rare gems in one concatenation and assemble all these lustrous 
pearls on one string, so that they might become a necklace of great 
price for his contemporaries or a girdle for the brides of his time. 
With this request, however, he was unable to comply, alleging lack of 
appreciation on the part of his contemporaries as an excuse, until he 
bade farewell to this life. A.H. 791" (A.D. 1389). 

1 The celebrated commentary on the Qur'dn of az-Zamakhshari. 

2 Of the many works of this name that of al-Mutarrizi (d. 610/1213) 
on Arabic grammar is probably intended. 

3 The MatdliWl-Anzdr of al-Bayddwi (d. 683/1284) is probably 

4 The MiftAhu'l^Ulum of as-Sakkaki (d. 626/1229) is probably 

CH. v] HAFIZ 273 

The notice of Hafiz contained in that agreeable work of 
Sir Gore Ouseley, the Biographical Notices of 
Persian Poets 1 , gives most of the anecdotes 
connected with verses in his Diwdn to which I 
have already alluded ; while an admirable account of the 
times in which he lived and the general character of his 
poetry is to be found in the Introduction to Miss Gertrude 
Lowthian Bell's Poems from the Divan of Hafiz (London, 
1897), which must be reckoned as the most skilful attempt 
to render accessible to English readers the works of this 
poet. On the whole, however, the best and 
most com P lete critical study of Hafiz with 
which I am acquainted is contained in Shibli 
Nu'mani's Urdu work on Persian Poetry entitled Skt'rul- 
'Ajam 2 , already repeatedly quoted in this chapter. I feel 
that I cannot do better than summarize at any rate that 
portion of this notice which deals with the poet's life, and 
the few facts concerning his personal circumstances and 
relations with his contemporaries which can be deduced 
from his poems, indicating at the same time the Persian 
biographical sources to which the learned author refers. 
Amongst these he specially mentions the well-known 
Habibrfs-Siyar of Khwandamfr 3 and the May-khdna 
("Wine-tavern") of 'Abdu'n-Nabi Fakhru'z-Zaman (com- 
piled in 1036/1626-7, in the reign of Jahangi'r), of which 
latter I have no copy at hand. The Persian 


biographies biographical works which I have consulted, and 
which yield but scanty results (since, as Shibli 
points out, they generally copy from one another and often 
make statements not merely unsupported by any respect- 
able evidence but mutually destructive) are Dawlatshah's 
" Memoirs of the Poets" ; Jdmi's Bakdristdn* and Nafakdtu'l- 

1 Pp. 23-42. 

' 2 Vol. ii, pp. 212-297. 

3 See vol. iii, pt 2, p. 37 of the Bombay lithographed edition of 

4 P. 90 of the Constantinople printed ed. of 1294/1877. 

B. P. i 8 


Uns 1 ; Lutf 'Alt' Beg's Atash-kada (" Fire-temple "), which 
mainly follows Dawlatshah ; the Haft Iqlim ; and the quite 
modern Majma'ul-Fusahd (" Assembly of the Eloquent "), 
which gives several fresh particulars of doubtful authenticity, 
such as that Hafiz came originally from Tuysirkan and that 
he composed a commentary on the Qur'dn. 

Shibli Nu'mani arranges his matter systematically, be- 
ginning with an account of the poet's parentage 

Parentage and b 

childhood of and education derived from the above-men- 
tioned May-khdna, to which, however, he 
apparently attaches little credence. According to this 
account, the father of Hafiz, who was named Baha'u'd-Din, 
migrated from Isfahan to Shi'raz in the time of the Atabeks 
of Pars, and there enriched himself by commerce, but died 
leaving his affairs in confusion, and his wife and little son 
in penury, so that the latter was obliged to earn a livelihood 
by the sweat of his brow. Nevertheless he found time and 
means to attend a neighbouring school, where he obtained 
at least a respectable education and learned the Qur'dn by 
heart, in consequence of which he afterwards adopted in his 
poems the nom de guerre of "Hafiz" ("Rememberer"), a 
term commonly applied to those who have committed to 
memory and can recite without error the sacred book of 
Islam. He soon began to compose and recite poems, but 
with small success until in a vigil at the shrine of Baba 
Kuhi on a hill to the north of Shi'raz he was visited by the 
Imam 'All, who gave him to eat some mysterious heavenly 
food and told him that henceforth the gift of poetry and 
the keys of all knowledge should be his. 

Shibli Nu'mani next passes to the enumeration of the 
several kings and princes whose favour and 

Patrons of Hafi? 

patronage Hafiz enjoyed. Of these the first 
was Shall (or Shaykh) Abu Ishaq Inju, the son of Mahmud 
Inju 2 who was appointed governor of Pars in the reign of 

1 W. Nassau Lees' Calcutta printed ed. of 1859, p. 715. 

2 According to the Fdrs-ndma he was put to death by Arpa (in 
736/1335-6), who was in turn put to death by his son Mas'iid Inju. 


HAFI (left) and ABU ISHAQ (right) 

Add. 7468 (Brit. Mus.), f- 34 b 

To face p. 274 

CH. v] HAFIZ 275 

Ghdzan Khan. This Abu Ishaq 1 was a poet and friend of 

poets, heedless, pleasure-loving, and so negligent 

isS'Ui'" of th e affairs of state that when he was at last 

induced by his favourite Shaykh Amfnu'd-Din 

to fix his attention on the Muzaffarf hosts who were invest- 

ing his capital, he merely remarked that his enemy must 

be a fool to waste the delicious season of Spring in such 

fashion, and concluded by reciting the verse : 

"Come, let us make merry just for this one night, 
And let us deal tomorrow with tomorrow's business." 

Concerning Abu Ishaq's brief but genial reign at Shiraz, 
Hafiz says : 

"In truth the turquoise ring of Abu Ishdq 
Flashed finely, but it was a transitory prosperity." 

The following verses, commemorating five 

The five orna- 

meats of Shaykh of the chief ornaments of Shaykh Abu Ishaq's 


1 According to the Fdrs-ndma he captured Shiraz in 743/1342-3, 
was besieged there by Mubarizu'd-Dfn Muhammad b. Muzaffar in 
753/1352-3, when, after losing his little son 'AH Sahl, he was driven 
back to Isfahdn, and was finally captured and put to death by his rival 
in 758/1357. 

1 8 2 


' Ji Wj 

Jja^t jl A-^ 

dj ^.j^i. j. , Jjj ,) 

fJ. 3 >fi 

" During the period of Shah Shaykh Abii Ishaq's rule 
The kingdom of Fdrs throve wondrously through five persons. 
First, a king like him, a giver of governments, 
Who, thou would'st say, snatched preeminence by justice, bounty and 


Secondly, that Remnant of the Abddl 1 , Shaykh Aminu'd-Din, 
Who was numbered amongst the ' Poles ' and was the meeting-place 

of the Avutdd 1 . 

Thirdly, one like that just judge Asilu'l-Millat wa'd-Dfn, 
Than whom Heaven remembers no better judge. 
Again one like that accomplished judge 'Adudtyd-Dm /-/;/] 2 , 
Who dedicated his explanation of the Mawdqifto the King. 
Again one so generous as Hajji Qiwam 3 , whose heart is as the Ocean, 
Who, like Hatim, invited all men to partake of his bounty. 
These departed, leaving none like unto themselves : 
May God most Great and Glorious forgive them all ! " 

1 The Abddl ("Substitutes"), Aqt&b ("Poles"), and Awtdd (literally 
"Tent-pegs") are three classes of the Rijdlrfl-Ghayb, or " Men of the 
Unseen World," who are supposed by the Sufis to watch over the order 
of the world and the welfare of mankind. Their number and functions 
are discussed in the "Definitions" (TcSrifdf) of ash-Sharff al-Jurjani, 
who was appointed by Shah Shuja' to a Professorship in Shi'raz, and 
must have been acquainted with Hafiz. He died in 816/1413. 

2 'Adudu'd-Din 'Abdu'r-Rahmdn b. Ahmad al-Iji composed a 
number of works on theology, ethics, philosophy, etc., amongst which 
the Mawdqif ft ^IlmVl-Kaldm (on which al-Jurjanf, mentioned in the 
preceding note, wrote a commentary) is the most celebrated. He died 
in 756/1355. See Brockelmann, Gesch. d. Arab. Litt., ii, pp. 208-9. 

3 Hajji Qiwdm is celebrated by Hafiz in other poems, as in the well- 
known verse : 

He died, according to the Fdrs-ndma, in 753/1352. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 277 

Mubarizu'd-Dm Muhammad b. Muzaffar, who ruled 
over Fars from 754/1353 to 759/1357, was of 

kStS' Dfn a very different type to his pleasure-loving 
predecessor and victim. Harsh, stern and 

ascetic in character, he had no sooner taken possession 
of Shiraz than he caused all the taverns to be 

Closing of the 

taverns in his closed, and put a stop, as far as possible, to 
the drinking of wine, to the great annoyance 
of Hafiz, who refers to these lean days in the following 
amongst other passages of his poems : 

" Though wine gives delight and the wind distils the perfume of the 


Drink not wine to the strains of the harp, for the constable 1 is alert. 
Hide the goblet in the sleeve of the patch-work cloak, 
For the time, like the eye of the decanter, pours forth blood. 
Wash your dervish-cloak from the wine-stain with tears, 
For it is the season of piety and the time of abstinence." 


* . * fr I 


** O^j 1 *- ^ 

1 Muhtasib, a police officer charged with the superintendence of the 
weights, measures and morals of a town. His activities in certain 
aspects correspond with those of a University Proctor. 



' jLoUJu t ju*. j^> jt *> j 

" O will it be that they will reopen the doors of the taverns, 
And will loosen the knots from our tangled affairs ? 
Cut the tresses 1 of the harp [in mourning] for the death of pure wine, 
So that all the sons of the Magians 2 may loosen their curled locks! 
Write the letter of condolence for the [death of the] Daughter of the 

Grape 3 , 
So that all the comrades may let loose blood [-stained tears] from 

their eyelashes. 

They have closed the doors of the wine-taverns ; O God, suffer not 
That they should open the doors of the house of deceit and hypocrisy ! 
If they have closed them for the sake of the heart of the self-righteous 

Be of good heart, for they will reopen them for God's sake ! " 

Shah Shuja', who succeeded his father Mubarizu'd-Din 
relaxed his oppressive restrictions, com- 

aiiows the taverns posed the following quatrain on the same 

to be reopened , . 

subject : 

"In the assembly of the time the concomitants of wine-bibbing are 

laid low ; 

Neither is the hand on the harp, nor the tambourine in the hand. 
All the revellers have abandoned the worship of wine 
Save the city constable, who is drunk without wine." 

1 I.e. strings or chords. 

2 The sale of wine in Muhammadan countries is carried on by non- 
Muslims, Jews, Christians, or Zoroastrians. With Hdfiz and his con- 
geners the "Elder of the Magians" (/>/>-/'- Mughdii) and the "Magian 
boys" (Mugh-bacha-hd] are familiar concomitants of the tavern. 

3 I.e. Wine, similarly called by the Arabs Bintu 'l-'lnab. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 279 

The reopening of the taverns is celebrated by Hafiz in 
the following verses : 

UaJlo- ^ 

"At early dawn good tidings reached my ear from the Unseen Voice : 
'It is the era of Shdh Shujd 4 : drink wine boldly ! ' 
That time is gone when men of insight went apart 
With a thousand words in the mouth but their lips silent. 
To the sound of the harp we will tell those stories 
At the hearing^ of which the cauldron of our bosoms boiled. 
Princes [alone] know the secrets of their kingdom ; 
O Hafiz, thou art a beggarly recluse ; hold thy peace ! " 

In another poem Hafiz says : 


" I swear by the pomp and rank and glory of Shh Shuja.' 
That I have no quarrel with anyone on account of wealth and 


See how he who [formerly] would not permit the hearing of music 
Now goes dancing to the strains of the harp." 

In another poem he says : 


"The harp began to clamour ' Where is the objector?' 
The cup began to laugh ' Where is the forbidder ? ' 
Pray for the King's long life if thou seekest the world's welfare, 
For he is a beneficent being and a generous benefactor, 
The manifestation of Eternal Grace, the Light of the Eye of Hope, 
The combiner of theory and practice, the Life of the World, Shah 

In spite of this and other verses in praise of Shah 
Shuja', the relations between the Prince and the Poet are 

said to have been somewhat strained. Shah 
jealous of J Hdfi? Shuja' had a great opinion of a poet named 

'\rs\iA-\-Faqih ("the Jurisconsult") of Kirman, 
who is said to have taught his cat to follow him in its 
genuflections when he performed his prayers. This achieve- 
ment was accounted by the Prince almost a miracle, but by 
Hafiz a charlatan's trick, concerning which he said : 

d b 

"The Sufi hath made display of his virtues and begun his blandish- 

ments ; 

He hath inaugurated his schemings with the juggling heavens. 
O gracefully-moving partridge who walkest with so pretty an air, 
Be not deceived because the cat of the ascetic hath said its prayers l ! " 

1 The reference in this line is otherwise explained on p. 243 supra. 
Cf. also p. 258. The text given in Rosenzweig-Schwannau's edition 
(vol. i, p. 316: No. 8 in i) differs somewhat from that adopted by 
Shibli which is here given. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 281 

The scorn expressed by Hafiz for 'Imad is said to have 
been the original cause of Shah Shuja^'s dislike for him, 
Contempt of but the Prince himself was his not very suc- 

? for 'imad cessful rival in the field of poetry, and jealousy 

of Xirman . , . ... _^ 

appears to have increased that dislike. On one 
occasion the Prince criticized Hafiz's verse on the ground 
of its many-sided aspects : no one motive, he complained, 
inspired it ; it was at one moment mystical, at another 
erotic and bacchanalian ; now serious and spiritual, and 
again flippant and worldly, or worse. " True," replied 
Hafiz, "but in spite of all this everyone knows, admires 
and repeats my verses, while the verses of some poets 
whom I could name never go beyond the city gates." 

Shah Shuja' was greatly incensed at this answer, and 
soon afterwards came across the following verse of Hdfiz 
which seemed to deliver the poet into his hands : 

" If Muhammadanism be that which Hafiz holds, 
Alas if there should be a to-morrow after to-day ! " 

Hafiz, being warned that this verse was to be made the 

ground of a charge of heresy or agnosticism against him, 

went in great perturbation to Mawlana Zaynu'd- 

Hafiz ingenious- ._. T i -r / , / i / < i < 

ly extricates Dm Abu Bakr Tayabadi, who happened at that 
h ! mselff ru raa time to be in Shi'raz, and asked his advice. 

charge of heresy 

The latter recommended him to add another 
verse placing the words to which exception was taken in the 
mouth of another, on the principle that "the reporting of 
blasphemy is not blasphemy." Thereupon Hafiz prefixed 
the following verse to the one cited above : 

" How pleasant to me seemed this saying which at early morn 
A Christian was reciting at the door of the tavern with tambourine 
and flute:" 


On being charged with atheism he produced this verse 
along with the other, and said that he was not responsible 
for the opinions expressed by a Christian 1 . 

Shah Shuja' died in 785/1383-4 or 786% and was suc- 

ceeded by his son Zaynu'l-'Abidin, who, however, was 

deposed and imprisoned by his cousin Shah 

Mansur in 789/1387. Hafiz celebrated his 

triumph in a poem beginning : 


" Come, for the standard of King Mansur has arrived ; 
The good tidings of conquest and victory have reached the Sun and 
the Moon." 

The deposed ruler Zaynu'l-'Abidm (who was subse- 
quently blinded) had accepted the suzerainty of Timur, 
received his ambassador, Qutbu'd-Dm, and inserted his 
name in the khutba and on the coins, and Tfmur himself 
entered Shfraz in 789/1387, some time before Zaynu'l- 
'Abidm's deposition. It must have been at 

The alleged 

meeting between this time, if at all, that the meeting between 
Timur and H4fi ? ffafa and j^^ des cribed by Dawlatshah 3 

and those who follow him in connection with Ti'mur's second 
entry into Shfraz in 795/1393, three or four years after 
the poet's death, actually took place. The story, which is 
more celebrated than authentic, has been already given on 
pp. 188-189 supra. Dawlatshah, with characteristic in- 
accuracy, first gives the date of this supposed meeting as 
795/1393, and then states (incorrectly) that 
^ fi ? died in the Previous year, 794/1392- As 
a matter of fact he died in 791/1389, or possibly 
in the following year. The former date is that given by 

1 This anecdote is given by the Habibu's-Siyar, vol. iii, pt 2, pp. 37 
et seqq. 

2 The latter is the date given by the Mujmal of Fasi'hf in the 
chronogram cUJ! alw j\ wAg*. 

3 See pp. 305-306 of my edition. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 283 

the chronogram on his tombstone, so ingeniously para- 
phrased by Herman Bicknell 1 as follows: 

" On spiritual man the lamp of Hafiz gleamed ; 
'Mid rays from Glory's Light his brilliant taper beamed ; 
Musalla was his home : a mournful date to gain. 

Thrice take thou from MOSALLA'S EARTH ITS RICHEST 

* * * * 


The sum of the letters composing the words 
is 791, and the same date is obtained by subtracting three 
times cm (= 309) from MLL (= i ioo) 2 . The same date 
is given by Muhammad Gulandam, the editor of Hafiz's 
Dtwdn ; while the following year (792) is given by Jami in 
the Nafahdtul- Uns, by Khwandamir in the Habibus-Siyar, 
and by Fasfhi of Khwaf in his Mujmal or Compendium of 
History and Biography. 

Mention has already been made of the 

Celebrity of * 

Hafi? during celebrity achieved by Hafiz even during his 
lifetime. As he himself says : 

"The black-eyed beauties of Cashmere and the Turks of Samarqand 
Sing and dance to the strains of Hafiz of Shfraz's verse." 

In another passage 3 he says, speaking of a poem he had 
just composed : 

1 Hdfiz of Shirdz : Selections from his Poems, translated from the 
Persian by Herman Bicknell (Triibner and Co., London, 1875), p. xvi. 

2 See my Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 76-7. 

3 Ed. Rosenzweig-Schwannau, vol. i, p. 416. 


"All the parrots of India become sugar-breakers 
Through this Persian candy which is going to Bengal. 
Behold the annihilation of space and time in the pilgrimage of Poetry, 
For this infant, though but one night old, is going on a year's 
journey ! " 

Not only with the Muzaffarf rulers of Shfraz, but with 
many other contemporary princes, Hafiz entered into re- 
lations. Sultan Ahmad ibn Uways-i-Jala'ir, the accom- 
plished t l-khani ruler of Baghdad, himself a poet, musician, 
painter and artist, repeatedly strove to induce Hafiz to visit 
his court, but, as the poet himself sang : 

" The zephyr-breeze of MusaM and the stream of RuknaMd 
Do not permit me to travel or wander afield." 

However he composed verses in this Prince's praise, 
amongst others the following : 

A A t . . i I r .1 

~J 15 --^ A -*"-* 'g vO-S >J^ J-^ J 1 

" I praise God for the justice of the King 
Ahmad the son of Shaykh Uways the son of Hasan Il-khani ; 
A Khdn and the son of a Khan, a King of kingly descent, 
Whom it were meet that I should call the Soul of the World. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 285 

No rose-bud of delight bloomed for me from the earth of Fars : 
O for the Tigris of Baghdad and the spiritual wine ! 
Curl your locks in Turkish fashion, for in thy fortune lie 
The Empire of Khusraw and the status of Chingiz Khan." 

But, though Hafiz never achieved the journey to 
Baghdad, he seems often to have thought of it : 

JaJU. A jjj , 

" In Shfraz we did not find our way to our goal ; 
Happy that day when Hdfiz shall take the road to Baghdad ! " 

Two kings of India also sought to persuade Hafiz 

to visit their courts. One of these was Mahmud Shah 

Bahmani of the Deccan, a liberal patron of 

Invitations to * 

Hdfi? to visit poets, who, through his favourite Mir Fadlu'llah, 
invited Hafiz to his capital, and sent him money 
for his journey. Hafiz spent a considerable portion of this 
sum before leaving Shfraz, and on arriving at Lar on his 
way to the Persian Gulf met with a destitute friend to 
whom he gave the remainder. Two Persian merchants, 
Khwaja Zaynu'd-Dm of Hamadan, and Khwaja Muham- 
mad of Kazarun, who were on their way to India, offered 
to defray the poet's expenses in return for the pleasure 
of his company. He went with them as far as the port of 
Hurmuz, where a ship was waiting to convey him to India, 
but a tempest which arose just as he was embarking caused 
him such lively consternation that, abandoning his intention, 
he returned to Shfraz and sent to Mahmud Shah the poem 
beginning : 


Ul w 


A verse-translation of the whole of this poem (though 
the verses stand in an order different from that given above) 
will be found amongst Miss Gertrude Lowthian Bell's 
graceful renderings of Poems from the Divan of Hafiz 1 
(No. xxi, pp. 91-93), in which the stanzas corresponding 
to the four couplets cited above are as follows : 

" Not all the sum of earthly happiness 
Is worth the bowed head of a moment's pain, 
And if I sell for wine my dervish dress 
Worth more than what I sell is what I gain ! 

* * * * 
The Sultan's crown, with priceless jewels set, 
Encircles fear of death and constant dread ; 
It is a head-dress much desired and yet 
Art sure 'tis worth the danger to the head ? 

* * * * 
Down in the quarter where they sell red wine 
My holy carpet scarce would fetch a cup 
How brave a pledge of piety is mine, 
Which is not worth a goblet foaming up ! 

* * * * 
Full easy seemed the sorrow of the sea 
Lightened by hope of gain hope flew too fast ! 
A hundred pearls 2 were poor indemnity, 

Not worth the blast 3 ." 

Another Indian king, Sultan Ghiyathu'd-Din ibn Sultan 
Sikandar of Bengal, stated by Shibli Nu'mani (who is 

1 London : William Heinemann, 1897. 

2 This translation corresponds with the alternative reading J^AI 
in place of jj >* *X-oj. 

3 This story rests on the authority of the historian of India, Mu- 
hammad Qasim Firishta of Astarabad, who wrote in 1015/1606-7. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 287 

responsible for the story 1 ) to have ascended the throne in 
768/1366-7, is said to have corresponded with Hafiz, who 
wrote for him the ode beginning : 

" O cup-bearer there is talk of the cypress, the rose and the anemone, 
And this discussion goes on with 'the three cleansing draughts 2 .' 
All the parrots of India will crack sugar 
Through this Persian candy which is going to Bengal. 
O Hafiz, be not heedless of the enthusiasm of the Court of Sultan 

For thy affair will be furthered by thy lamentation." 

Having spoken of Hafiz's relations with contemporary 
princes, we pass now to the little that is known or con- 
jectured as to his personal circumstances. For 

Domestic J r 

circumstances the statement that he fell in love with and 
ultimately married a girl called Shdkh-i-Nabdt 
(" Branch of Sugar-cane ") there is no weighty authority, 
nor are such domestic particulars to be expected from 
Persian biographers, in view of their reticence on all 

1 In Mawlawi 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir's excellent Bankipore Catalogue 
(Persian Poets : Firdawsi to Hfiz : pp. 253-4) the King in question in 
this anecdote is the same as in the last, viz. Mahrmid Shah Bahmanf, 
who reigned 780-799/1378-1396, and the anecdote assumes a different 
and fuller form. 

2 This is generally explained as meaning three draughts of wine 
taken in the morning after a debauch to " break the headache " caused 
by previous excess. The author of the Catalogue cited in the last note 
makes it refer to three of the Sultan's handmaidens called respectively 
Cypress, Rose, and Anemone, and named collectively, for reasons which 
he gives, " the three washerwomen." 


matrimonial matters. That he married and had several 
children is probable. To the death of his wife he is supposed 
to allude in a poem beginning 1 : 

" That sweet-heart through whom our home was Fairyland, 
And who, from head to foot, was like a fairy, free from blemish," 

but there is nothing in the poem to show that his wife 
is the person referred to. There is, however, a clearer 
reference to the premature death of a son in the following 
verses : 

j j-J ^ 

" O heart, thou hast seen what that clever son 
Has experienced within the dome of this many-coloured vault : 
In place of a silver tablet 2 in his bosom 
Fatd hath placed a stone tablet 3 on his head." 

The following fragment 4 , also believed to refer to the 
death of this or another son, gives the date of this loss as 
Friday, 6th of Rabi" i, 764 (Dec. 24, 1362) : 

' J5|j 

1 Ed. Rosenzweig-Schwannau, vol. i, pp. 596-8, and note on p. 819. 

2 Corresponding to a slate on which a child does sums and 

3 I.e. a tombstone. 

4 Ed. Rosenzweig-Schwannau, iii, p. 280. 


" It was the morning of Friday and the sixth of the first Rabt 1 
When the visage of that moon-faced one declined from my heart. 
In the year seven hundred and sixty four of the Flight 
This difficult story became clear to me like [limpid] water. 
How can regret, grief or sorrow profit 
Now that life has passed in vanity without result ? " 

According to a biography of poets entitled Khizdna-i- 
'Amira, composed in India by Mir Ghulam 'All Khan Azdd 
in 1176/1762-3, a son of Hafiz named Shah Nu'man came 
to India, died at Burhanpur, and is buried in the Asir-Garh. 

As regards Hafiz's intellectual attainments, his bilingual 

intellectual poems alone show that he had a good know- 

attainments ledge of Arabic, apart from the statements of 

his editor, Muhammad Gulandam 1 , as to his 

more scientific work in the language. He himself says : 

" No one of the Hdfizes* in the world hath combined as I have 
The aphorisms of the Philosophers with the Scripture of the Qur'dn.^ 

That he knew the Quran by heart is proved by the 
verse : 


" I have never seen any poetry sweeter than thine, O Hafiz, 
[I swear] by that Qur'dn which thou keepest in thy bosom." 

Mawlawi Shibli Nu'mani points out that the oft-made 

assertion that Hafiz was indifferent to the favour of kings 

Hafi not anc * P rmces ^ not borne out by his poems, in 

indifferent to which there occur incidentally praises of the 

majority of contemporary rulers, including Shah 

1 See p. 272 supra. 

2 I.e. those who have learned the Qur'dn by heart. 

B. P. 19 


Shuja', Shaykh Abu Ishaq, Sultan Mahmud, Shah Mansur, 
and the rulers of Yazd and Hurmuz : 

"The King of Hurmuz did not see me, yet showed me a hundred 
favours without a word [of praise on my part] ; 

The King of Yazd saw me, and I praised him, but he gave me 

Such is the conduct of Kings : be not thou vexed, O Hafiz ; 

May God, the Giver of daily bread, vouchsafe them His Grace and 

To the King of Yazd's failure to reward him, he again 
alludes in a very famous and beautiful ode 1 : 

'^.j to j\ }jj ^i tjU^L/ b 

These lines are thus rendered by Herman Bicknell 2 : 

" Many a year live on and prosper, Sdqis* of the Court of Jam 4 , 
E'en though I, to fill my wine-cup, never to your circle come : 
East-wind, when to Yazd thou wingest, say thou to its sons from me : 
' May the head of every ingrate ball-like 'neath your mall-bat be ! 
' What though from your da'is distant, near it by my wish I seem ; 
' Homage to your King I render, and I make your praise my theme.'" 

1 Ed. Rosenzweig-Schwannau, vol. i, pp. 4-7. 

2 Op. tit., pp. 6-7. 3 Cup-bearers. 

4 Jam or Jamshid, a legendary king of Persia, whose reign is 
associated with much glory. He corresponds to the mythical Yima of 
the Avesta. The king of Yazd and his courtiers are here alluded to. 



The difference between Hafiz and most Persian pane- 
gyrists is, however, as Mawlawi Shibli Nu'manf 

Wherein H4fi? ,, ... , 

differs from well points out, that, unlike even such great 
gy'rtsT" 6 " P ets as Anwarf, Zahi'r of Faryab and Salman 
of Sdwa, he never employs mean and despicable 
methods to extort money, or has recourse to satire when 
panegyric fails. 

We have already seen how devoted Hafiz was to Shi'raz, 
and he never wearies of singing the stream of Ruknabad 
and the rose-gardens of Musalla : 

" Bring, Cup-bearer, all that is left of thy wine ! 
In the Garden of Paradise vainly thou'lt seek 
The lip of the fountain of Rukndbad 
And the bowers of Musalld where roses twine 1 ." 

And again : 

4i U v ^ 

" There is a difference between the Water of Khidr, which dwells in 

the Darkness 2 , 
And our water, of which Allahu Akbar 3 is the source." 

Although it is chiefly of the Spring, the Rose, the 
Nightingale, Wine, Youth and Beauty that Hafiz sings, 
and at times of the Eternal Beauty of which all fair and 
desirable things are but the pale reflection, he sometimes 

1 Miss G. L. Bell's Poems from the Divan of Hafiz, pp. 71-2. 

2 I.e. the Water of Life, said to be situated in the Land of Darkness. 
It was sought in vain by Alexander the Great, but found by his saintly 
companion and guide Khidr (sometimes identified with Ilyas or Elias), 
who drunk of it and became immortal. 

3 The Tang-i-Alldhu Akbar is the narrow defile whence the 
traveller approaching from the North first sees Shirdz. See the plate 
on p. xxi of Herman Bicknell's translation of Hdfiz. 

19 - 2 


makes incidental mention of various statesmen and scholars 
whose favour and patronage he has enjoyed 1 . Amongst 
these are Hajji Qiwam, Qiwamu'd-Din Hasan 2 , Khwaja 
Jalalu'd-Di'n, Shah Yahya Nusratu'd-Din and others, be- 
sides the kings and princes already mentioned. And though 
he wrote mathnawis, " fragments " (muqatta'dt), qasidas and 
quatrains (rubd'iyydt}, it is in the ode or ghazal that he 
especially excels. To his incomparable skill in this branch 
of verse many of his successors have borne testimony, 
amongst them Sa'ib, Salfm and 'Urfi 3 ; but no one has 
better expressed it than Sir Gore Ouseley, who says 4 : 

" His style is clear, unaffected and harmonious, displaying at the 
same time great learning, matured science, and intimate knowledge of 
S' G reOuselev *^ e hidden as well as the apparent nature of things; but 
on the genius above all a certain fascination of expression unequalled 

Of H4fi? 

It is, however, to Miss Gertrude Lowthian Bell that we 
are indebted for the best estimate of Hafiz, at once critical, 
sympathetic, and full of insight. In particular she compares 
and contrasts him in the most illuminating manner with his 
elder contemporary Dante, after characterizing whose poetry 
she says 5 : 

" To Hafiz, on the contrary, modern instances have no value ; con- 

temporary history is too small an episode to occupy his thoughts. 

During his life-time the city which he loved, perhaps 

Miss Gertrude ' 

Lowthian Bell as dearly as Dante loved Florence, was besieged and 
on H4fi? and taken five or six times ; it changed hands even more 
often. It was drenched with blood by one conqueror, 
filled with revelry by a second, and subjected to the hard rule of 
asceticism by a third. One after another Hfiz saw kings and princes 
rise into power and vanish 'like snow upon the desert's dusty face.' 
Pitiful tragedies, great rejoicings, the fall of kingdoms and the clash 

1 The verses in question are given by Shiblf on p. 232 of vol. ii of 
his Shfru'l-'Ajam. 

2 See the Introduction to Miss G. L. Bell's Divan of Ha/iz, 
pp. xxii-iii. 

3 See p. 234 of Shibli's above-mentioned work. 

4 Biographical Notices of Persian Poets (London, 1826), p. 23. 
6 Op, tit., pp. 58-60. 

CH. v] HAFIZ 293 

of battle all these he must have seen and heard. But what echo 
of them is there in his poems? Almost none. An occasional allusion 
which learned commentators refer to some political event ; an ex- 
aggerated effusion in praise first of one king, then of another ; the 
celebration of such and such a victory and of the prowess of such and 
such a royal general just what any self-respecting court-poet would 
feel it incumbent upon himself to write ; and no more. 

" But some of us will feel that the apparent indifference of Hafiz 
lends to his philosophy a quality which that of Dante does not possess. 
The Italian is bound down within the limits of his philosophy, his 
theory of the universe is essentially of his own age, and what to him 
was so acutely real is to many of us merely a beautiful or a terrible 
image. The picture that Hdfiz draws represents a wider landscape, 
though the immediate foreground may not be so distinct. It is as if 
his mental eye, endowed with wonderful acuteness of vision, had 
penetrated into those provinces of thought which we of a later age were 
destined to inhabit. We can forgive him for leaving to us so indistinct 
a representation of his own time, and of the life of the individual in it, 
when we find him formulating ideas as profound as the warning that 
there is no musician to whose music both the drunk and the sober can 

Shibli Nu'mani ascribes the perfecting of \heghazal and 
what the ^ Q ex tension of its scope to Hafiz, and in a 

gkazai, or ode, lesser degree to his contemporaries Salman and 

Khwaju. With the earlier masters, such as Sa'di, 
Amir Khusraw and Hasan of Dihli, its almost invariable 
theme was love. Khwaju sang of other matters as well, 
such as the transitoriness of the world, while Salman ex- 
celled in rhetorical artifices and novel comparisons and 
similes. Hafiz combined the merits of all, adding to them 
a charm all his own, and often it pleased him to take from 
their Diwdns a couplet or hemistich and modify it so as to 
add to its beauty. In the case of Sa'di I have given some 

instances of this in the second volume of my 

Parallel passages ^ 

of Hafiz and Literary History of Persia^, and Shibli Nu'mani 

gives others as between Hafiz and Khwaju and 

Salman respectively. Amongst these latter are the following: 

1 Pp. 536-9. See Mawlawi 'Abdu'l-Muqtadir's remarks on this at 
p. 255 of the Bankipore Catalogue (Firdawsf to Hafiz). 


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his predecessor or contemporary. This, of course, is quite 
different from parody, such as that indulged in by 'Ubayd- 
i-Zakani and Bushaq, where the object is not to surpass but 
to deride. 

The number of commentaries on the poems of Hafiz, 

not only in Persian but also in Turkish, and 

commentators possibly in Urd ^ also> is very considerable, but 

few of those which I have had occasion to 
examine are either very critical or very illuminating. The 
three best-known Turkish commentaries are those of Sururi, 
Shem'f and Sudi, of which the last is the most accessible 1 
and the most useful, since the author very wisely confines 
himself to the elucidation of the literal meaning, and avoids 
all attempts at allegorical interpretation and the search for 
the " inner meaning." That many of the odes are to be 
taken in a symbolic and mystical sense few will deny; that 
others mean what they say, and celebrate a beauty not 
celestial and a wine not allegorical can hardly be questioned ; 
that the spiritual and the material should, as Shah Shuja' 
complained, be thus mingled will not surprise any one who 
understands the character, psychology and Weltanschauung 
of the people of Persia, where it is common enough to meet 
with persons who in the course of a single day will alternately 
present themselves as pious Muslims, heedless libertines, 
confirmed sceptics and mystical pantheists, or even incarna- 
tions of the Deity 2 . The student of Hafiz who cannot decide 
for himself which verses are to be taken literally and which 

1 His commentary on the first 80 odes is included in Brockhaus's 
Leipzig edition of the Diwdn (1854-6), and the whole has been printed 
with the text and another Turkish commentary at Constantinople about 
1870. The English reader who desires to acquaint himself with Sudi's 
methods may consult W. H. Lowe's Twelve Odes of Hafiz done literally 
into English together with the corresponding portion of the Titrkish 
Commentary of Siidi, for the first time translated (Cambridge, 1877, 
pp. 80). See also Lieut.-Col. H. Wilberforce Clarke's English prose 
translation (2 vols, London, 1891). 

2 I have endeavoured to depict this type of Persian in the chapter 
of my Year amongst the Persians entitled "Amongst the Qalandars." 


symbolically is hardly likely to gain much from a com- 
mentator who invariably repeats that Wine means Spiritual 
Ecstasy, the Tavern the Sufi Monastery, the Magian elder 
the Spiritual Guide, and so forth. To the English reader 
who desires to pursue this method of study, however, Lieut- 
Colonel H. Wilberforce Clarke's complete prose translation 
of the Dtwdn of Hafiz "with copious notes and an ex- 
haustive commentary 1 " may be recommended. On the sym- 
bolical meaning of the erotic and Bacchanalian phraseology 
of the mystic or pseudo-mystic poets of Persia generally 
E. H. Whinfield's excellent edition and annotated transla- 
tion of Mahmud Shabistarf's Gulshan-i-Rdz ("Rose-garden 
of Mystery") and the late Professor E. H. Palmer's little 
work on Oriental Mysticism may be consulted with ad- 
vantage. On the origin, doctrines and general character of 
Suffism I must refer the reader to chapter xiii (pp. 416-444) 
of the first volume of my Literary History of Persia. 

One little Persian treatise on Hafiz, to which my atten- 
tion was first called by Mr Sidney Churchill, 
GhayHyyaoi formerly Oriental Secretary of the British Le- 
ofDa a rT ad gation at Tihran, deserves a brief mention, 
chiefly because it formulates and subsequently 
endeavours to refute certain adverse criticisms on his poetry 
made by some of his compatriots. This little book is en- 
titled Latifa-i-Ghaybiyya and was written by Muhammad 
b. Muhammad of Darab, concerning whose life and date 
I have been unable to learn anything. It comprises 127 
pages of small size, was lithographed at Tihran in I3O4/ 
1886-7, an d chiefly consists of explanations of different 
verses. The three hostile criticisms which it seeks to refute 
are stated as follows on p. 5 : 

(i) That some of his verses are meaningless, or that, if 
they have any meaning, it is very far-fetched 

Defence of Han? J J ' * 

against his and enigmatical. The following instance is 


given : 

1 See n. i on the preceding page. 


- 4^ T Jb 

" Cease your recriminations and return, for the pupil of my eye 

Hath pulled off the cloak over its head and burned it as a thank- 
offering 1 ." 

(2) That some of his verses are evidently secular and 
profane, and refer to the pleasures of the senses in a manner 
which cannot be explained as allegorical, as for instance : 

" My heart, in love with Farrukh's face, is agitated like Farrukh's hair." 
And again : 

"A thousand blessings be on the red wine which hath removed the 
sallow complexion from my face ! " 

(3) That many of his verses smack of the Ash'arf 
(Sunni) doctrines, which are repudiated and execrated by 
the Imami (Shi'a) doctors, e.g. : 

j j^ tjU 

" They did not suffer me to pass through the street of good repute : 
If thou dost not approve, then change Destiny 2 ." 

" This borrowed life which the Friend hath entrusted to Hafiz 
One day I shall see His Face and shall yield it up to Him 3 ." 

1 For Sudi's explanation of this verse, see Rosenzweig-Schwannau's 
edition of Hafiz, vol. i, No. 26 in O, p. 769 in the notes. It is not very 
convincing, and I have never met with any other allusion to the custom 
there alleged. 

2 It is worth noting that the extreme Fatalism commonly regarded 
in Europe as characteristic of Islam is repudiated by Muslims of the 
Shi'a sect. 

3 The doctrine called Ruyatdlldh ("The Vision of God") belongs, 
I think, especially to the Hanbalf sect, but is held in detestation by the 


Although manuscripts of Hafiz offer as many variants 

as is usually the case with Persian texts, there exists of 

this poet's works an established and generally 

Why the Turks , ' 

are better editors accepted text which WC OWC, I think, to the 

of Persian poetry T ur kish commentator Sudi, and which has 

than the Indians 

been popularized in Europe by the editions of 
Brockhaus and Rosenzweig-Schwannau, so that it is usual 
to refer to the odes of Hafiz by the numbers they bear in 
the latter edition. Turkish editions of Persian poetry, such 
as the Mathnawioi. Jalalu'd-Din Rumi, the Diwdn of Hafiz, 
etc., are generally more accurate and trustworthy than those 
produced in India, which commonly contain many spurious 
and interpolated lines composed by the editors, lines which 
a Persian would be ashamed and a Turk unable to produce ; 
for the Persian editor has in most cases enough taste 
(dhawq) to know that he cannot produce verses likely 
to be accepted as those of the master whom he is editing ; 
while the Turkish editor is generally conscientious and 
laborious, but incapable of producing any Persian verses 
at all. The Indian editor, on the other hand, often has 
a certain facility of versifying without much critical taste. 

This "authorized version" of the Diwdn of Hafiz (which 
could probably be much improved by a fresh and careful 
collation of all the best and oldest manuscripts) 
contains in all 693 separate poems ; to wit, 573 
odes (ghazaliyydf) ; 42 fragments (muqattctdt) ; 
69 quatrains (rubd l iyydt)\ 6 mathnawts; 2 qasidas, and one 
" five-some" or mukkammas. Of all of these poems German 
verse-translations are given by Rosenzweig-Schwannau, and 
English prose translations by Wilberforce Clarke. There 
exist also many translations of individual odes or groups 
of odes in English, German, Latin, French, etc., either in 
verse or prose 1 . Of English verse translations the largest 
and most sumptuous collection is that of Herman Bicknell, 

1 For a list of the chief of these, see Dr H. Ethd's Catalogue of the 
Persian MSS in the India Office, No. 1246 (col. 720), and the Banki- 
pore Catalogue (Firdawsf to Hdfiz), pp. 256-7. 


who was born in 1830, studied Medicine at St Bartholo- 
mew's Hospital and took the degree of M.R.C.S. in 1854, 
entered the Army Medical Service, went through the 
Indian Mutiny, travelled widely in Europe, Asia, Africa 
and America, made the pilgrimage to Mecca under the 
name of 'Abdu'l-Wahfd in 1862, and spent some time at 
Shi'raz " with the object of clearing up doubtful points [in 
the Diwdri\, and of becoming personally acquainted with 
the localities mentioned by the Poet." He died in 1875, 
and his posthumous work was brought out with loving 
care by his brother, A. S. Bicknell, in the same year. It 
contains, besides the Preface, Introduction, Appendix and 
Indices, and nine illustrations, translations, complete or 
partial, of 189 ghazaliyydt, all the 42 muqatta'dt and 69 
rubd'iyydt, 2 out of the 6 mathnawis, and the one muk- 

Of most of these translations of Hafiz, from the Latin 
renderings of Meninski (1680), Thomas Hyde (1767) and 
Revisky (1771); the French (1799) and English (1792) 
versions of Sir William Jones ; the numerous German 
versions from Wahl (1791) to Bodenstedt (1877); and the 
later English efforts of Payne, Justin McCarthy and Wilber- 
force Clarke, I do not propose to speak here ; but I shall 
say something of three of the English verse-translations 
which seem to me the most worthy of attention. Of the 
oldest of these three, that of Herman Bicknell, published 
in 1875, I have already spoken above. The next in point 
of time is that of Miss Gertrude Lowthian Bell (London, 
1897), which contains, besides an admirable Introduction 
on the life, times and character of the poet, verse-translations 
of 43 of the odes. These, though rather free, are, in my 
opinion, by far the most artistic, and, so far as the spirit 
of Hafiz is concerned, the most faithful renderings of his 
poetry. Lastly, in 1898 Mr Walter Leaf published 28 
"Versions from Hafiz," in which he endeavoured to re- 
produce the form as well as the sense of the original 
poems, with as much success, probably, as is attainable 


under these conditions. The existence of these three 
versions exonerates me from attempting, as I have done 
in the case of other less known Persian poets, to produce 
versions of my own. In their different ways they are all 
good : Herman Bicknell's are accurate as regards the 
sense, and often very ingenious, especially the chrono- 
grams ; Walter Leaf's give an excellent idea of the form ; 
while Miss Bell's are true poetry of a very high order, 
and, with perhaps the single exception of FitzGerald's 
paraphrase of the Quatrains of 'Umar Khayydm, are 
probably the finest and most truly poetical renderings of 
any Persian poet ever produced in the English language ; 
for, though some of Sir William Jones's verse-translations 
are pretty enough, they can hardly be dignified by the 
name of poetry, and are, moreover, so free that they can 
scarcely be called translations. 

For the sake of comparison I gave elsewhere 1 five 
different English verse-translations of one of the best- 
known of the odes of Hafiz, that beginning 2 : 

' IjU J> * 

which has been rendered into English verse by Sir William 
Jones, Herman Bicknell, Miss Bell, Walter Leaf, and myself. 
I cannot find so many English verse-renderings of any other 
of the odes of Hafiz, for, though many of those translated 
by Miss Bell are also to be found in Herman Bicknell's 
translation, only three or four of the former are included 
amongst the 28 published by Walter Leaf. The one fault 
to be found with Miss Bell's versions is that they are not 
arranged in any order, nor is any indication given of the 
opening words of the original, nor reference to its position in 
the text of Rosenzweig-Schwannau which she has followed ; 

1 In a lecture on the Literature of Persia delivered to the Persia 
Society on April 26, 1912, and afterwards published for that Society by 
John Hogg, 13, Paternoster Row, London, E.G., price one shilling. 

2 See Rosenzweig-Schwannau's ed., vol. i, p. 24 (No. 8 in alif}. 

CH. V] 



and only after I had succeeded, with considerable labour, 
in identifying the originals of all but nine or ten of her 
translations did I ascertain that my friend Mr Guy le 
Strange possessed an annotated copy of her book con- 
taining all the references I required save one (No. xv), 
which was wrongly given, and which I am still unable to 
identify. For the convenience, therefore, of other readers 
of her admirable book, I give below the reference to each 
original in Rosenzweig-Schwannau's edition, 
specifying the volume, page, and number under 
each rhyming letter, and adding a reference 
to Bicknell and Leaf in cases where an ode 
has also been rendered by them. 


table of odes 
translated by 
Miss Bell and 
other translators. 

(No. in Miss Bell's 

1 No. i (p. 67) 
No. ii (p. 68) 
No. iii (p. 69) 
No. iv (p. 70) 
2 No. v (p. 71) 
No. vi (p. 73) 
No. vii (p. 74) 
No. viii (p. 75) 
No. ix (p. 76) 
3 No. x (p. 78) 
No. xi (p. 79) 
No. xii (p. 80) 
No. xiii (p. 81) 
No. xiv (p. 83) 
No. xv (p. 84) 
No. xvi (p. 85) 
No. xvii (p. 86) 
No. xviii (p. 88) 
No. xix (p. 89) 
No. xx (p. 90) 

1 See also 

2 W. Leaf, 

3 W. Leaf, 

B. P. 

(Reference to H. 
Bicknell's transl.) 

No. i (p. 3) 
No. Ii (p. 83) 
No. liv (p. 85) 

(Reference to original in 
Rosenzweig's ed.) 

vol. i, p. 2 (\ i) 
vol. i, p. 194 (O 58) 
vol. i, p. 204 (O 63) 
vol. i, p. 100 (O 19) 
vol. i, p. 24 (t 8) 
vol. ii, p. 86 (^ 6) 
vol.i, p. 152 (O 41) 
vol. i, p. no (O 24) 
vol. i, p. 8 (I 3) 

vol. i, p. 138 (O 36) 
vol. i, p. 32 (I 12) 
vol. i, p. 276 (O 90) 
vol. i, p. 302 (i 3) 

VOl. i, p. 222 (O 69) 

vol. i, p. 148 (O 40) 
vol. i, p. 360 (i 23) 
vol. i, p. 368 (i 26) 
vol. ii, p. 1 8 (j 6) 

Palmer's Song of the Reed, pp. 53-4. 
No. iv, pp. 27-8. 
No. i, p. 23 ; Palmer, pp. 49-50. 

No. viii (p. 20) 
No. cxxvi (p. 172) 

No. xxxi (p. 60) 
No. iii (p. 9) 
No. clxxii (p. 240) 
No. xxxix (p. 71) 
No. xii (p. 29) 
No. Ixv (p. 99) 
No. Ixx (p. 107) 

No. Ivi (p. 88) 
No. xliii (p. 75) 


(Reference to H. 
Bicknell's transl.) 

No. Ixxx (p. 122) 
No. ciii (p. 147) 

No. xc (p. 133) 


(No. in Miss Bell's 

No. xxi (p. 91) 
No. xxii (p. 93) 
No. xxiii (p. 94) 
No. xxiv (p. 95) 
No. xxv (p. 97) 
*No. xxvi (p. 98) 
No. xxvii (p. 100) 
No. xxviii (p. 10 1 ) 
No. xxix (p. 102) 
No. xxx (p. 103) 
No. xxxi (p. 104) 
No. xxxii (p. 1 06) 
No. xxxiii (p. 107) 
No. xxxiv (p. 1 08) 
No. xxxv (p. 109) 
No. xxxvi (p. no) 
No. xxxvii (p. in) 
No. xxxviii (p. 112) 
No. xxxix (p. 114) 
No. xl (p. 115) 
No. xli (p. 1 1 6) 

No. xlii (p. 117) 
No. xliii (p. 1 1 8) 

(Reference to original in 
Rosenzweig's ed.) 

vol. i, p. 374 (> 28) 
vol. i, p. 410 (^ 41) 
vol. i, p. 596 (i 113) 
vol. iii, p. 86 (^ 31) 
vol. i, p. 502 (i 78) 
vol. i, p. 520 (j 85) 
vol. i, p. 256 (O 82) 
vol. i, p. 490 (> 73) 
vol. ii, p. 8 (j 3) 
vol. ii, p. 104 (^i 7) 
vol. i, p. 560 (> 99) 
vol. ii, p. 32 (j ii) 
vol. i, p. 576 (i 105) 
vol. i, p. 584 (i 1 08) 
vol. i, p. 662 (i 139) 
vol. ii, p. 78 (^ 2) 
vol. ii, p. 68 (j 10) 
vol. i, p. 650 (> 135) 
vol. i, p. 416 (> 44) 
vol. ii, p. 120 (^i 15) 
vol. iii, p. 296 (git'a 

No. 33) 

vol. i, p. 586 (j 109) 
vol. ii, p. 398 (j> 74) 

No. cxv (p. 158) 
No. cxxviii (p. 176) 
No. xcvii (p. 140) 
No. cxvii (p. 162) 

No. ci (p. 144) 
No. cvii (p. 151) 

No. cxxi (p. 1 66) 

No. Ixxxi (p. 123) 

Qit'a xxxiii (p. 292) 

No. clxiii (p. 227) 

As already noted, only three or four of the odes have 
been rendered in English verse by Miss Bell, Herman 
Bicknell and Walter Leaf, and of one of them {Agar an 
Turk-i-Shirdzi...) the parallel renderings were published 
in my paper on Persian Literature, to which reference has 
been already made, together with others. Another ode 
rendered by the three writers above mentioned is that 
beginning 1 : 

J~b O 

1 See Rosenzweig-Schwannau's ed., vol. i, p. 1 10, No. 24 in O ; 
Miss Bell, No. viii, pp. 75-6; Bicknell, No. xxxi, p. 60; and Walter 
Leaf, No. v, p. 29. 


Of this also, for the sake of comparison, I here reprint the 
three versions, beginning with Herman Bicknell's, which is 
as follows : 

Bickneirs translation (No. xxxi, p. 60). 

(1) "In blossom is the crimson rose, and the rapt bulbul trills his song ; 

A summons that to revel calls you, O Sufis, wine-adoring throng ! 

(2) The fabric of my contrite fervour appeared upon a rock to bide ; 
Yet see how by a crystal goblet it hath been shattered in its pride. 

(3) Bring wine ; for to a lofty spirit, should they at its tribunal be, 
What were the sentry, what the Sultan, the toper or the foe of glee ? 

(4) Forth from this hostel of two portals as finally thou needst must go, 
What if the porch and arch of Being be of high span or meanly low ? 

(5) To bliss's goal we gain not access, if sorrow has been tasted not; 
Yea, with Alastu's 1 pact was coupled the sentence of our baleful lot. 

(6) At Being and Not-being fret not, but either with calm temper see : 
Not-being is the term appointed for the most lovely things that be. 

(7) Asaf s display, the airy courser, the language which the birds em- 


The wind has swept ; and their possessor no profit from his wealth 
enjoyed 2 . 

(8) Oh ! fly not from thy pathway upward, for the winged shaft that 

quits the bow 
A moment to the air has taken, to settle in the dust below. 

(9) What words of gratitude, O Hifiz, 
Shall thy reed's tongue express anon, 
As its choice gems of composition 
From hands to other hands pass on ? " 

1 " It is maintained by certain interpreters of the Koran that Adam 
and the whole of his future race appeared before their Creator on the 
first day of the world. God said to them : ' A-lastu bi- Rabbi- kum,' ' Am 
I not your Lord ? ' All responded ' Bald] ' Yes.' But the word ' bald ' 
has the additional signification of ' bale ' or ' evil.' Hence the sentence 
of bale, or evil, was annexed to the pact of the ' Day of Alast] and was 
constituted a condition of existence." 

2 " How vain were the glories of Solomon ! Asaf was his minister, 
the East-wind his courser, and the language of birds one of his accom- 
plishments ; but the blast of Time has swept them away." 


Walter Leaf's translation (No. v, p. 29). 

(1) "Aflame with bloom is the red rose, the bulbul drunk with Spring; 

What ho, adorers of Wine ! Hear the call to mirth that they fling. 

(2) The corner-stone of repentance that seemed a rock firm-set 
Is rent and riven asunder by touch of glasses a-ring. 

(3) Fill high the bowl with the red wine, for here is Liberty Hall, 
The sage is one with the toper, the ploughman e'en as the king. 

(4) From out this Hostel of Two Doors the signal calls us away, 
Alike if low be the roof-tree or lofty dome upspring. 

(5) We conquer only through anguish the resting-place of delight ; 
To life, by bond of Atast-vow, the long 'Alas'' must cling 1 . 

(6) With is and IS NOT annoy not thy heart ; be merry of soul, 
For is NOT is but the last end of every perfect thing. 

(7) The fame of Asaph, the wind-steed, the speech with birds of the air 
As wind have passed ; to their master no more avail shall they 


(8) No pinion heavenward soaring desire ; the arrow aloft 
Shall sink to dust in the end, howsoe'er it leap on the wing. 

(9) What thanks and praises, O HAnz, shall yield the tongue of thy 

That all the songs of thy singing from mouth to mouth men sing ?" 

Miss Bell's translation (No. viii, p. 75). 

(1) "The rose has flushed red, the bud has burst, 

And drunk with joy is the nightingale 

Hail, Sufis, lovers of wine, all hail ! 

For wine is proclaimed to a world athirst. 

(2) Like a rock your repentance seemed to you ; 
Behold the marvel ! Of what avail 

Was your rock, for a goblet has cleft it in two ! 

(3) Bring wine for the King and the slave at the gate ! 
Alike for all is the banquet spread, 

And drunk and sober are warmed and fed. ) 

(4) When the feast is done and the night grows late, 
And the second door of the tavern gapes wide, 
The low and the mighty must bow the head 
'Neath the archway of Life, to meet what... outside? 

1 See note i on previous page. Mr Leaf has here sought to para- 
phrase the word-play on bald (' Yea ') and bald (Woe) in the original. 


(5) Except thy road through affliction pass, 
None may reach the halting-station of mirth ; 
God's treaty : Am I not Lord of the earth ? 
Man sealed with a sigh : Ah yes, alas ! 

(6) Nor with IS nor IS NOT let thy mind contend ; 
Rest assured all perfection of mortal birth 

In the great IS NOT at the last shall end. 

(7) For Assaf's pomp, and the steeds of the wind, 
And the speech of birds down the wind have fled, 
And he that was lord of them all is dead ; 

Of his mastery nothing remains behind. 

(8) Shoot not thy feathered arrow astray ! 

A bow-shot's length through the air it has sped, 
And then. ..dropped down in the dusty way. 

(9) But to thee, oh Hafiz, to thee, oh tongue 

That speaks through the mouth of the slender reed, 
What thanks to thee when thy verses speed 
From lip to lip, and the song thou hast sung ? " 

This one example of three parallel translations will 
suffice to show generally the style of work of the three 
translators. Miss Bell's is the least literal, but by far 
the most poetical, and is a wonderful interpretation of the 
spirit of the original. Walter Leaf aims especially at 
exactly reproducing the form (both as regards rhyme 
and metre), as well as the sense, of the original. Herman 
Bicknell steers a middle course, making each verse of his 
translation correspond with its original, but not attempting 
to preserve the same rhyme throughout the poem. 

In view of these and other excellent translations of 
Hafiz into verse and prose in English and other European 
languages, I will content myself with quoting here the 
renderings by Miss Bell and Herman Bicknell of one more 
ode of Hafiz, which has a certain special interest because 
it is engraved on his tombstone 1 , and which begins : 

1 For a complete translation of the inscription on the tombstone, see 
the plate facing p. xvi of Herman Bicknell's work above mentioned. 


BickneWs translation (p. 227, No. clxiii). 

" Where doth Thy love's glad message echo for my rapt soul 

To rise ? 
This sacred bird from the world's meshes yearns to its goal 

To rise. 

I swear, wilt Thou Thy servant name me, by all my love sublime 
Higher than my desire of lordship o'er space and time 

To rise. 

Vouchsafe, Lord, from Thy cloud of guidance to pour on me Thy 

Ere Thou command me as an atom from man's domain 

To rise. 

Bring minstrels and the wine-cup with thee, or at my tomb ne'er sit : 
Permit me in thy perfume dancing from the grave's pit 

To rise. 

Though I am old, embrace me closely, be it a single night : 
May I, made young by thy caresses, at morn have might 

To rise! 

Arouse thee ! show thy lofty stature, 
Idol of winning mien : 
Enable me, as soul-reft Hfiz, 
From Nature's scene 

To rise!" 

Miss Bell's translation (No. xliii, pp. 118-119). 

" Where are the tidings of union ? that I may arise 
Forth from the dust I will rise up to welcome thee ! 
My soul, like a homing bird, yearning for Paradise, 
Shall arise and soar, from the snares of the world set free. 
When the voice of love shall call me to be thy slave, 
I shall rise to a greater far than the mastery 
Of life and the living, time and the mortal span : 
Pour down, oh Lord 1 from the clouds of Thy guiding grace 
The rain of a mercy that quickeneth on my grave, 
Before, like dust that the wind bears from place to place, 
I arise and flee beyond the knowledge of man. 
When to my grave thou turnest thy blessed feet, 
Wine and the lute shalt thou bring in thy hand to me, 
Thy voice shall ring through the folds of my winding-sheet, 
And I will arise and dance to thy minstrelsy. 
Though I be old, clasp me one night to thy breast, 
And I, when the dawn shall come to awaken me, 
With the flash of youth on my cheek from thy bosom will rise. 

S3 ^3 


13 I 

C/2 "?* 


-H ^J 

fe -^ 




1 I 

JT] "^ 





Rise up ! let mine eyes delight in thy stately grace ! 

Thou art the goal to which all men's endeavour has pressed, 

And thou the idol of Hdfiz's worship ; thy face 

From the world and life shall bid him come forth and arise !" 

The tomb of Hdfiz is in a beautiful garden, called after 
him the " Hafiziyya," situated near Shiraz. It was much 
beautified by Abu'l-Qasim Babur 1 , the great- 
Hafiz n grandson of Timur, when he conquered Shiraz 

in 856/1452, the work being entrusted by him 
to Mawlana Muhammad Mv'amiHd'i*. At a later date 
(1226/1811) it was further embellished by Kan'm Khan- 
i-Zand, one of the best rulers that Persia has ever had 3 , 
by whom the present tombstone, a slab of fine alabaster, 
was contributed. The Hafiziyya is much honoured and 
much frequented by the people of Shiraz and by visitors 
to that city, and the poet's grave is surrounded by the 
graves of many others who have sought proximity to those 
illustrious ashes, so that his own words have been fulfilled 
when he said : 

" When thou passest by our tomb, seek a blessing, for it shall be- 
come a place of pilgrimage for the libertines of all the world." 

Before passing on to the mention of other poets, some- 

thing must be said as to the practice of taking an augury 

(tafaul} from the Diwdn of Hafiz which is so 

1 aking auguries \ / / 

from the Diwdn prevalent in Persia, where the only other book 
used for this purpose (and that much more 
rarely) is the Quran itself, just as the ancient Romans 
used to use Vergil (Sortes Vergiliance). It has been already 
mentioned that Hafiz is often entitled Lisdnu' l-Ghayb 

1 Not the great Babur who was the great-great-great-grandson of 
Timur, and who founded the so-called " Mogul Dynasty" in India. 

2 See Dawlatshah, p. 308 of my edition. 

3 See Sir John Malcolm's History of Persia, vol. ii, p. 147. 


("The Tongue of the Unseen") and Tarjumdmil-Asrdr 
("The Interpreter of Mysteries"), and it is generally be- 
lieved by his fellow-countrymen that, in case of doubt as 
to the course of action to be pursued, valuable indications 
may be obtained by opening the Diwdn at random, after 
the utterance of suitable invocations, and taking either the 
first verse on which the eye falls, or the last ode on the open 
page, with the first line of the succeeding ode. Tables, 
called Fdl-ndma, comprising a number of squares (always 
a multiple of some number such as 7 or 9) each containing 
one letter are also employed for the same purpose ; and 
one of these, with instructions for its use, is often prefixed 
to Oriental editions of the Diwdn 1 . These tables, however, 
in spite of their mysterious and impressive appearance, 
only give a very limited number of answers seven when 
the squares are a multiple of seven, nine when they are a 
multiple of nine, and so on ; and as Lane has well observed, 
in speaking of similar squares used by the Egyptians, in 
consequence of the view prevailing in the East generally 
that, if in doubt, it is better, as a rule, to refrain from 
action, a majority of the answers provided for are generally 
distinctly discouraging or of a negative character, and only 
a few encouraging. 

The table referred to in the last foot-note comprises 

15 x 15 = 225 squares, each containing one letter. Nine 

hemistichs each containing 25 letters are chosen 

fdSdm? a (9 x 2 5 also =225). In the first square is placed 

the first letter of the first hemistich ; in the 

second square the first letter of the second hemistich, and 

so on to the ninth square, in which is placed the first letter 

of the ninth hemistich. Next follow the second letters of 

each hemistich in the same order, the second letter of the 

first hemistich in the tenth square, the second letter of 

the second hemistich in the eleventh square, and so on, 

1 A specimen of these tables will be found on p. 233 of the Banki- 
pore Catalogue, in the volume consecrated to Persian Poetry from 
Firdaws{ to Hdfiz. 


until the table concludes at the 225th square with the 
last (25th) letter of the last (ninth) hemistich. In using 
the table, the finger is placed at random on one of the 
225 squares, and the letter it contains is written down, 
and after it, in a circle, the 24 letters obtained by taking 
each Qth square from the point of departure until the cycle 
is completed. By beginning at the proper point, these 
25 letters give the first hemistich of one of the odes, which 
can then be readily found in the D{wdn. The table in 
question gives the following nine hemistichs, to each of 
which I have added the second hemistich (not included in 
the table, but needed to complete the verse), the reference 
to Rosenzvveig's edition, and the English translation. 

i. No. 17 in cA R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 121. 

" We have tried our fortune in this city ; we must withdraw our 
gear from this gulf." 

This would supply an answer to one who was hesitating 
as to whether he should emigrate from the place where he 
was, or not. 

2. No. 62 in j. R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 364. 

" Welcome, O bird of auspicious advent and fortunate message ! 
Good is thy arrival ! What news ? Where is the Friend ? Which is 
the road ? " 

3. No. 57 in j>. R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 352. 

" If I go home from this abode of exile, then, when I go thither, I 
shall go wisely and sensibly." 


This would supply an answer to a traveller or exile 
who was wondering whether he would not do well to return 

4. No. i in o. R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 160. 

" Should my lucky star aid me, I will lay hold on his skirt ; 
Should I pluck it, O the delight ! And should he slay me, O the 
honour ! " 

5. No. 4 in > R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 12. 

" Show thy face and take away from my memory all thought of my 

own existence ; 
Bid the wind bear away all the harvest of those who are burned out !" 

6. No. 80 in i. R.-Schw., vol. i, p. 508. 

'jLjl J-J Osfrfr UA^vOjb JtS- J&J& 

' juT jj J>\ U*^ $, ^> U A^ ^u^ 

" I said, ' I have longing for thee ! ' She replied, 'Thy longing will come 

to an end.' 
I said, 'Be thou my Moon!' She replied, 'If it comes off!'" 

7. No. 19 in ^A R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 128. 

" O Lord, that fresh and smiling rose which Thou didst entrust to me 
I now entrust to Thee from the envious eye of the flower-bed." 

8. No. 8 in j. R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 64. 

LoJ jl jcL5 ^j 


" My desire hath not yet been fulfilled in respect to my craving for 

thy lip ; 

In the hope of the ruby goblet [of thy mouth] I am still a drainer 
of dregs." 

9. No. 24 in j>. R.-Schw., vol. ii, p. 270. 

i jt 

"Arise, that we may seek an opening through the door of the tavern, 
That we may sit in the Friend's path and seek [the fulfilment of ] a 
wish ! " 

As will be seen, the answers supplied by these vague 

oracles are often of a somewhat uncertain na- 

approp'riatf ture, besides being limited in number to nine. 

auguries drawn j^e other method of opening the Dtwdn at 

from Hafiz r *f 

random gives, of course, much richer results, and 
there stands on record many a remarkable response, which 
si non / vero e ben trovato. Six of these are recorded at the 
end (pp. 122-7) of the little treatise entitled Latifa-i-Ghay- 
biyya which has been already mentioned 1 . 

The first refers to Shah Isma'il the Great, the founder 
of the Safawi dynasty, who made the Shi'a doctrine the 
official creed of Persia, and carried his energy so far in this 
endeavour that he ordered the tombs of persons of suspected 
orthodoxy or of known Sunni proclivities to be destroyed. 
One day, accompanied by a certain ignorant and fanatical 
priest known as Mulla Magas 2 , he visited the tomb of Hafiz, 
and Mulla Magas urged him to have it destroyed, alleging 
(as had been alleged by the poet's contemporaries) that he 
was unorthodox in belief and dissolute in life. The King 
thereupon announced his intention of taking an augury 
from the Dtwdn of Hafiz, which opened at the following 
verse : 

" At dawn Orion displayed his belt before me, 
As though to say, ' I am the King's slave, and this I swear.'" 

1 See p. 300 supra. 2 Magas is the Persian for " a fly." 


This, it is to be supposed, Shah Isma'fl took as an ex- 
pression of the deceased poet's loyalty to himself, and there- 
upon, well pleased, he again opened the book at random and 
was confronted by the following verse, which was even 
more evidently intended for his ecclesiastical companion : 

"O fly (magas} \ the presence of the Simurgh 1 is no fit place for thy 

evolutions : 
Thou dost but dishonour thyself and vex us ! " 

After this it may be assumed that Mulla Magas effaced 

The story referred to above, but not given in the Lattfa- 
i-Ghaybiyya, is that, when Hafiz died, some of his detractors 
objected to his being buried in the Muslim equivalent of 
consecrated ground, but that, on an augury being taken 
from his poems to decide the question, the following very- 
appropriate verse resulted : 

" Withhold not thy footsteps from the bier of Hdfiz, 
For, though he is immersed in sin, he will go to Paradise !" 

The second instance given by the Latifa-i-Ghaybiyya 
refers to another king of the same dynasty, Shah Tahmasp 2 , 
who one day, while playing with a ring which he valued 
very highly, dropped it, and, though he caused an exhaustive 
search for it to be made under the carpets and cushions, 

1 A mythical bird of great size and wisdom and almost or quite 
immortal, which is supposed, like its Arabian equivalent the 'Angd, to 
dwell in the Mountains of Qaf or of the Alburz, and which played an 
important part in the legend of Sm and Zdl (the grandfather and 
father of Rustam respectively) as recounted in the Shdh-n&ma of 

2 There were two Safawi kings of this name. The first reigned 
A.D. 1524-1576; the second 1722-1731. 


could not find it. An augury taken from Hafiz gave the 
following result : 

" What cares a heart which mirrors the Unseen and possesses the 
Goblet of Jamshid for a ring which is mislaid for a moment 1 ?" 

The king clapped his hands on his knees in admiration for 
the appositeness of this verse, and immediately felt the ring 
in a fold of his robe into which it had accidentally slipped. 

The third anecdote refers to yet another Safawf King, 
Shah 'Abbas the Second (A.D. 1642-1667), who obtained 
the following augury as to a campaign which he was medi- 
tating against the province of Adharbayjan, of which Tabriz 
is the capital 2 : 

> to 

" Thou hast captured 'Iraq and Fdrs by thy verse, O Hfiz : 
Come, for it is now the turn of Baghdad and the time for Tabriz." 

This decided the king in favour of the campaign, which 
turned out completely successful. 

The fourth anecdote refers to the same king as the last. 
He had a servant named Siyawush, whom his fellow-servants, 
through jealousy and malice, desired to destroy, so that they 

1 The original reference is, of course, to Solomon, whose ring, 
engraved with "the Most Great Name" of God, whereby he exercised 
authority over birds, beasts, fishes, the winds, men, and the Jinn, was 
stolen for a while by the Jinni Sakhr. The Persians often seek to 
identify their legendary King Jamshid or Jam (the Yima of the Avesta) 
with Solomon, and attribute to the latter the "World- showing Goblet" 
(Jdm-t-Jahdn-numd) of the former, which, like Alexander's Mirror 
(A'ina-i-Sikandar\ revealed to its possessor all that was passing in the 

2 This story is more often told of Nadir Shah. See the Bankipore 
Catalogue (Persian Poetry: Firdawsi to Hafiz), p. 235. 


were constantly striving to convince the King that he was 
worthy of death. The result of an augury from the Diwdn 
of Hafiz was this verse : 


" The King of the Turks hearkens to the speech of the accusers : 
May he be ashamed of the wrong of [shedding] the blood of Siya- 
wush 1 !" 

The fifth instance is from the author's own experience. 
In 1052/1642-3 he reached Ahmad-abad, then the capital 
of Gujerat in India, and there made the acquaintance of a 
certain Kan'an Beg, one of the notables of the place, who 
had a brother named Yusuf Beg. The latter, who was in 
the army of Gujerat, had a little time previously been re- 
ported missing in a battle fought near Ahmad-abad against 
a hostile force. His brother, Kan'an Beg, was greatly 
disquieted until the following augury from Hafiz assuaged 
his anxiety, which was soon afterwards dispelled by his 
brother's safe return : 

jut jU *I 

" Lost Joseph ( Yusuf) will return to Canaan (Kan'dri) : grieve not ! 
The house of sorrows will one day become a rose-garden : grieve not ! " 

The sixth and last instance refers to a certain Fath-'Ali 
Sultan, the son of Imam-quli Khan, a youth remarkable 
for his beauty, who was the author's contemporary. One 
day, flushed with w r ine, and clad in a green coat (qaba) 
embroidered with gold, he visited the tomb of Hafiz on the 
day specially set apart for this, which falls in the latter part 
of the month of Rajab, and while there took an augury from 
the Diwdn, which gave the following verse : 

1 See ed. Rosenzweig-Schwannau, vol. i, p. 620, and the note on 
p. 823, which explains the allusion to the old legend in question. 


U^u>j JiiU. j JJ 

" When thou passest by, drunk with wine and clad in a gold-embroidered 

Vow one kiss to Hfiz who is clad in wool 1 ! " 

" What is one kiss ? " exclaimed Fath-'Alf ; " I promise 
two kisses ! " A week passed ere he revisited the tomb, 
and took another augury, which was as follows : 


"Thou didst say, ' I will get drunk and give thee two kisses' : 
The promise has passed its limit [of time], and we have seen neither 
two nor even one." 

" What are two kisses ? " cried the lad ; " I promise three 
kisses ! " And again he went away without discharging his 
vow, and did not return until another week had elapsed, 
when he again took an augury, and received the following 
answer : 

"Those three kisses which thou didst assign to me from thy two lips, 
If thou dost not pay them, then thou art my debtor ! " 

Thereupon Fath-'Ali Sultan leapt from his seat and im- 
printed kiss after kiss upon the poet's tombstone. 

Other instances of omens taken from the Diwdn of 
Hafiz by the Moghul Emperor Jahangfr, and recorded in 
his own handwriting in the margins of a manuscript formerly 
in his possession, are given in the Bankipore Catalogue 
(Persian Poetry: Firdawsf to Hafiz), pp. 231-52. 

1 Pashmfna-push (" clad in wool ") is the Persian equivalent of the 
Arabic Sufi. See vol. i of my Lit. Hist, of Persia, p. 417. 


7. Kamdl of Khujand 
(Kamdlu 'd-Din b. Mas'tid}. 

Not much is known concerning this poet, who, however, 

since his verses won the admiration of Hafiz, 

Kamiiof cannot be passed over. Tami says 1 that he was 

Khujand * J 

a great saint, and that if he deigned to write 
verse it was to conceal the fullness of his saintly nature and 
spiritual attainments, to prevent the complete suppression 
of his exoteric by his esoteric life, and to maintain the 
position of "servitude" to God against an overmastering 
tendency to be merged in the Deity; an assertion in support 
of which he quotes Kamal's verse : 

" These efforts of mine in my poetry are my 'Speak to meO Humayrd' 2 !" 

Kamal's spiritual guide was a certain Khwaja 'Ubaydu- 
'llah who resided for some time at Shash 2 , a 
K^maT'lTfe^ place situated like Khujand in Transoxiana. 
At an unknown but probably fairly early period 
of his life Kamal migrated to Tabriz, where he made his 
home, and for which he conceived a great affection. The 
Jala'irf Sultan Husayn, son of Uways (776-784/1374-1382) 
showed him much favour and built for him a monastery or 
rest-house. Jamf says that when after Kamal's death they 
entered his private room in this rest-house, they found in it 
no furniture save a mat of coarse reeds on which he used to 
sit and sleep, and a stone which served him for a pillow. 
In Tabriz, where he obtained a great reputation for sanctity, 

1 Nafahdtu'l-uns, pp. 712-13. 

2 The Prophet Muhammad, when recovering from the state of 
exhaustion into which he used to fall after receiving a revelation, was 
wont to summon his wife 'A'isha to come to his side and talk to him, 
with the words Kallimi-ni yd Humayrd, " Speak to me O little red 

3 Or Chdch, the modern Tashkand and ancient Bandkat or Fanakat. 
Cf. pp. i oo and no supra. 


he came under the influence of Shaykh Zaynu'd-Din 
Khwafi 1 . 

^787/1385 Tuqtamish,Khanof Qipchaq, raided Tabriz, 
and, after the fashion of Ti'mur and other conquerors of 
those days, carried off Kamal amongst other learned and 
pious persons to his own capital, Saray. There he remained 
for four years 2 , at the end of which period he returned to 
Tabriz where he died 8 , according to most authorities, in 
803/1400-1. Dawlatshah places his death in 792/1390, a 
date which Rieu shows reason for regarding as much too 
early. A still later date (808/1405-6) is given by the 
Majdlisiil-'Ushshdq. On the poet's tomb was inscribed 
the verse : 

" O Kamal ! Thou hast gone from the Ka'ba to the door of the Friend : 
A thousand blessings on thee ! Thou hast gone right manfully ! " 

During his second sojourn at Tabriz Kamal was patron- 
ized by Timur's son Miranshah, who was then governor of 
Adharbayjan, and who is said to have given the poet, in 
return for some fruit which he or his soldiers had eaten 
from his garden, a sum of a thousand dinars wherewith to 
discharge his debts. 

The Diwdn of Kamal of Khujand has never, so far as 
I know, been published, and is not common in manuscript, 
though copies are to be found in most of the larger collec- 
tions of Persian books. I possess an undated but well-written 
and fairly ancient manuscript, from which the following 
selections are taken. 



1 See pp. 569-72 of Jami's Nafahdt and Ibn 'Arabshdh's 'Ajd'ibu'l- 
Maqdur, p. 34 of the Calcutta ed. of 1818. 

2 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 632-3. 

3 The Atash-kada alone says that he died at Yazd. 

B. P. 21 


" O Kamal, have thy tears from every eye-lash assumed the hue of 


Because he hath stolen from other people's poetry his brilliant 


OX> f J J 

* * ' * ' 

" The breeze combed the tresses of my Friend ; may God keep him in 

health for ever ! 
So long as thou art upright in figure like an a/if, we are like a lam 

in the midst of woe J ! 
The moist eye is best [laid] on thy lips, for sweet-meats are best 

[eaten] with what is moist. 
The wounded heart is so filled with the pain of thy love that the 

very idea of healing cannot enter it. 
Vex not thy heart with grief for the Friend, O Kamal : his mouth is 

the Water of Life wherein is healing." 


" Hardly can the artist draw the picture of thy two eyebrows ; 
They cannot easily draw a double bow ! " 

1 A graceful upstanding figure is compared to the letter alif (I), 
one bent with age or sorrow to Idm (J) or ddl (>). Ldm is the middle 
letter of the word bald ^), " woe." 



" What company, what paradise, what resting-place are here ! 
Lasting life, the lip of the cup-bearer, the brim of the goblet are here ! 
That Fortune which fled from all [others] did not pass by this door ; 
That joy which escaped all is here a servant ! 
When thou enterest our joyous abode with sorrow in thy heart 
All say, ' Indulge not in sorrow, for it is forbidden here !' 
We are on the roof of heaven : if thou passest by us 
Go gently, for here is the glass and the edge of the roof 1 ! 
In our audience-chamber there is neither seat of honour nor thres- 
hold 2 ; 

Here King and dervish know not which is which ! 
Like wood of aloes we are all hot-footed and burning, 
Save the ice-cold ascetic, who is here [accounted] raw. 
How often, O Kamal, wilt thou ask, ' What station is this which thou 

possessest ? 
Whose station is this ? ' For here is neither abode nor lodging ! " 

1 A proverbial expression for what is very precarious. "A glass in 
a stone-swept way " is another similar idiom. 

2 Saff-i-nfdl ("the shoe-row") is at the lower part of the room, 
where the servants stand, and visitors kick off their shoes before 
stepping on to the raised and carpeted dais. 

21 2 



" O Moon of mine, the Festival 1 is come : may it bring thee happiness ! 
What wilt thou give as a festal-gift to thy lovers ? 
Thy cheek is at once our festal-gift and our Festival : 
Without thy cheek may our Festival be no Festival ! 
Thou hast said : ' I will ask after thee next Festival' : 
Alas ! for this promise is of long standing ! 
Deliver my soul from grief since the Festival hath come, 
For at the Festival they set free captives. 
The Festival is come : cease to threaten Kamdl ; 
At the festal season they make glad the hearts of all ! " 

" Blessings on thy power of expression, O Kamal ! 
Thou hast, indeed, no choice as to approval. 
The fruit which they bring from Khujand 
Is not so sweet and so luscious !" 


lUwljj jl *4 *J* 

*^ ** *J*-iJ* 
AJiti U 

1 The great Persian festival is the Nawruz, or New Year's Day, 
which corresponds with the vernal equinox (March 21). The two great 
festivals of Islam are the 'Idu'l-Fitr at the end of Ramaddn, and the 
'idu'l-Adhd on the loth of Dhu'l-Hijja, the month of the Pilgrimage. 


" Thy pain is better than balm, O Friend ! 
Thy sorrow enlargeth the soul, O Friend ! 
He who begs of thee at thy door 
Seeks naught but pain and calamity, O Friend ! 
Notwithstanding that through poverty I have not 
Aught which is worthy of thine acceptance, O Friend. 
I will lay before thee my two bright eyes, 
I will say, ' It is the gaze of sincerity, O Friend ! ' 
Thou didst say, ' I will slay thee,' but this is not right : 
Is it right that a friend should slay, O Friend? 
Whatever the heart said in praise of thy stature 
God brought true (or straight), O Friend ! 
Straight have I made this ode to thy stature : 
Write, ' It is by Kamal,' O Friend ! " 

Kamdl is, so far as I know, the only poet who endeavours 
as far as possible to make all his odes of a uniform length, 
namely seven verses, as he expressly declares in the two 
following fragments : 

^Lj J 


" My odes are for the most part seven verses, 
Not forgotten like the utterance of Salman. 
When Hafiz recites them in 'Irdq 

Fluently and aloud, [they are] like 'the seven hard ones 1 '; 
All seven [are] like heaven in their foundation, 
And of such sort 'Imad [of Kirman] has not a single verse." 

1 The " Seven Lean Years " are so called in the Suratu Yusuf 
(Our 1 an, xii, 48). In another passage (Ixxviii, 12) the same expression 
is used of the Seven Heavens, which is the meaning intended here. 



" The odes of Kamil are seven verses ; 

Of the grace thereof the ' Five Treasures 1 ' are but a tenth part. 
There exist also poems of seven verses by some of my friends, 
Each one of which is limpid and fluent and charming, 
But of every seven of them there should be erased 
Four verses from the beginning and three from the end ! " 



"When the Diwdn of Kamal falls into thine hand 
Copy of his poetry as much as thou wilt. 
If thou wishest to understand aright 
His rare ideas and expressions and words 
Do not pass swiftly over each word like the pen, 
But dive down into every letter like the ink." 

1 This (Panj Ganj} is the title given to the Five Romantic Poems 
of Nizami of Ganja. 



" There are two Kamals famous in the world, 
One from Isfahan 1 and one from Khujand. 
This one is incomparable in the ode, 
And that one unrivalled in the elegy. 
Between these two Kamals, in a manner of speaking, 
There is no more than a few hairs' breadths' difference !" 

" Salman requested from me a poem, saying, ' In my album there is 

no specimen of that verse.' 
I gave him those answering words like unto which [in value] is no 

pearl in [the Sea of] Aden. 
I wrote them for thee, but his words are naught in my sight." 


" That Sufi with his nose cut off hath nothing for us but helplessness 

and humility ; 

One cannot accuse him of the fault of self-conceit (khud-blni\ 
For the poor wretch hath not even a nose (khud bini na-ddrad} 2 ! " 

1 Some account of Kamalu'd-Din of Isfahan, called "the Creator 
of [new] ideas" (KhalldquU-Mctdni), will be found in vol. ii of my 
Literary History of Persia (pp. 540-42). 

2 The whole point of this verse lies in the untranslateable word-play 
on khud-bini. 


Two or three " fragments " are addressed to a certain 
Hdfiz, who, however, appears to be a minstrel or harper of 
that name, not the celebrated poet of Shiraz. The following, 
however, almost certainly alludes to the contemporary poet 
'Assar of Tabriz 1 : 


" At length poor 'Assar died and departed : he took upon his neck 
the blood of the courts 2 and departed." 


The following fragment, to which Rieu refers 3 , contains 
an allusion to an historical event, viz. the invasion of Tuq- 
tamish : 


" Our Farhad said to Mir Wall, ' Let us restore the Rashidiyya 4 quarter ; 
Let us give gold to the Tabrizis for bricks and stone for this building.' 
The poor fellow was busy with his hill-piercing when, more numerous 
than the ants of the mountain and the plain, 

1 Some account of him will be found in Ousele/s Notices of the 
Persian Poets, pp. 201-226, and another notice by Fleischer in the 
Z.D.M.G., xv, 389-396. The date of his death is variously given as 
A.H. 779 and 784 (A.D. 1377-8 and 1382-3). 

2 I do not understand these words, which suggest that 'Assar was 
put to death. 

3 Pers. Cat., p. 633. 

4 This was the quarter of Tabriz originally built by the great 
minister and historian Rashidu'd-Din Fadlu'llah. See pp. 70-71 supra. 

en. v] KAMAL OF KHUJAND 329 

The army of King Tuqtdmish arrived, and the Unseen Voice thus 

cried : 

' Shirin's ruby [lip] became the portion of Khusraw [Parwfz], 
While Farhad vainly pierces the rock 1 !'" 

The following fragment refers to the poet Humam of 
Tabriz (a contemporary of Sa'df) and contains an "insertion" 
( Tadmiii} or citation from his poems : 

" I said, ' From the region [or Egypt] of ideas I will send thee 
A few sweet trifles which will be like sugar in thy mouth' : 
Again I feared this criticism, that thou mightest say like Humam 
' Do not again bring sugar from Egypt to Tabriz ! ' " 

Other fragments contain allusions to Nizami and Sa'df, 
while one is addressed to a poet named Ma'jari of Samarqand, 
and the following to another (presumably a contemporary 
rival) called Ma'adhi : 

" This is my petition in my every private prayer, ' O my Succour and 

my Refuge, 

Save all people of taste and lovers of music from the harp of Malawi 
and the poetry of Ma'adhi ! " 

1 The allusion in the last verse is to the well-known romance of 
Khusraw and Shirin. 


The following is a rather original and pretty conceit : 

" Knowest thou what is the cause of chuckling of the wine-bottles ? 
They are laughing at the beard of the town-constable ! " 


The following fragment seems to show that Kamal's 
odes were not collected into a Dtwdn until after his death : 

' '(. 

" A certain man of discernment said to me, ' Why is it 
That thou hast [composed] poetry, yet hast no Diwdn ? ' 
I replied, ' Because, like some others, 
My verse is not copious and abundant.' 
He said, ' Although thy verse is scanty [in amount] 
It is not less [in value] than their utterances.' " 

As is so often the case with Persian poets, Kamal's 
fragments are much more intimate and personal, and con- 
tain more allusions to contemporary events and persons 
(though for lack of fuller knowledge these allusions must 
often remain obscure) than his odes ; and for this reason I 
have here quoted them to a disproportionate extent. 

8. Maghribt 
(Muhammad Shinn Maghribt of Tabriz), 

Of the life and circumstances of Maghribi, one of the 
most thorough-going pantheistic poets of Persia, 
little is known, though notices of him are given 

CH. v] MAGHRIB! 33 i 

by most of the biographers 1 . He is generally stated to have 
died in 809/1406-7 at Tabriz at the age of sixty years, so 
that he must have been born about 750/1349-1350; but by 
a minority of the biographers his death is placed two years 
earlier. The learned modern historian Rida-quli Khan states 
that he was born at Na'in, near Isfahan, and buried at 
Istahbanat in Fars, but he is generally reckoned a native 
of Tabrfz. His poetical name Maghribi is said to be due 
to the fact that he travelled in the Maghrib (N.W. Africa), 
where he was invested with the dervish cloak (khirqd) by 
a Shaykh who traced his spiritual pedigree to the great 
Maghribf mystic Shaykh Muhiyyu'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabi, 
whose thought even at the present day has a great influence 
in Persia, and whose Persian disciples, poets like 'Irdqi, 
Awhadu'd-Di'n, Maghribi and even the later Jami, are con- 
spicuous for their thorough-going pantheism. Of Maghribi 
Rida-qulf Khan truly says in his Majma'u'l-Fusakd: 

O JJ jL>jJLt> 

" His doctrine is the Unity of Being (Pantheism), and his inspiration 
the rapture of Vision 2 , nor can one find throughout all his verse aught 
save this one idea. His tarji^-bands andghazals are all filled with the 
verities of the true Unitarianism 3 ." 

Maghribi is said by Jami and other biographers to have 
been personally acquainted with the poet last discussed, 
Kamal of Khujand, which is probable enough, since the 

1 Jcimfs Nafahdtu'l-uns, p. 713 ; Atash-kada and Haft Iqlim, 
under Tabrfz ; Habfbu 's-Styar, vol. iii, pt. 3, p. 91 ; Majma l u'l- 
Fusahd, vol. ii, p. 30 ; Riyddu'l- i Ariftn, pp. 134-5. There is no men- 
tion of Maghribi in Dawlatshdh's Memoirs of the Poets. 

2 I.e. of beholding the infinite manifestations of the Divine Beauty 
in the beautiful things of the Phenomenal World. 

3 Formal or exoteric Unitarianism is the declaration that there is 
only One God ; esoteric Unitarianism is the conviction that there is 
only One Being who really exists. 


two were contemporaries and spent at any rate a consider- 
able part of their lives at Tabriz. On one occasion he is 
said to have found fault with the following verse of Kamal's 
on the ground that it evidently referred to material charms, 
and was not susceptible of a mystical interpretation 1 : 

" If eyes be such, and eyebrows such, and charm and coquetry such, 
Farewell, abstinence and piety ! Good-bye, reason and religion ! " 

Kamdl, hearing this, sought an interview with Maghribi, 
and said : " [The Persian] chashm is [equivalent to the 
Arabic] 'ayn 2 ; so it maybe that in the language of allusion 
it is to be interpreted as the Eternal Essence ('Ayn-i-Qadtm), 
which is the Divine Personality. So also [the Persian] abni 
is [equivalent to the Arabic] hdjib*, so it may be that it may 
be taken as alluding to the Divine Attributes, which are 
the veil of the Essence." Maghribi, on hearing this ex- 
planation, apologized and withdrew his criticism. If it be 
true, however, as stated by Rieu 4 , that Kamal superseded 
Maghribi in the favour of Tfmur's son Miranshah, the Go- 
vernor of Adharbayjan, it is possible that the relations of the 
two poets were not of the most cordial character. 

As the above particulars practically exhaust the little 
we know of Maghribi" s life, we may now pass on to his 
poetry, which is represented by a comparatively small 
Diwdn, comprising for the most part odes (ghazaliyydf) 
with a few tarji 1 -bands and quatrains. It has been several 
times lithographed in Persia 5 , and I also possess a good and 
well-written, but undated, manuscript. The lithographed 

1 Nafahdt, p. 714. 

2 Both mean "eye," but l ayn in Arabic also means the exact 
counterpart of a thing, or its essence. 

3 Both mean " eyebrow," but hdjib also means a veil or curtain. 
* Pers. Cat., p. 633. 

5 I have two editions, dated A.H. 1280 and 1287 (A.D. 1863-4 and 
1870-1) respectively. 

CH. v] MAGHRIBf 333 

edition comprises 153 smallish pages each containing 17 
lines, and the total number of verses may be estimated 
at about 2300. The poems, so far as I have examined 
them, are entirely mystical, and contain no allusions to the 
poet's life and times. The following specimens are typical: 


X*. UJ^t 'JL^ j-AUi-o 

" When the Sun of Thy Face appeared, the atoms of the Two Worlds 

became manifest. 
When the Sun of Thy Face cast a shadow, from that shadow Things 

became apparent. 
Every atom, through the Light of the Sun of Thy Countenance, be- 

came manifest like the Sun. 
The atom owes its existence to the Sun, while the Sun becomes mani- 

fest through the atom. 


The Ocean of Being was tossed into waves ; it hurled a wave to- 
wards the shore. 

That wave sunk and rose in some heart-delighting raiment and form. 
Like violets the Ideas sprung up like the pleasant down on some fair 

beauty's face. 
The anemones of the [Eternal] Realities blossomed ; a thousand tall 

cypresses appeared. 
What were all these ? The counterpart of that Wave ; and what was 

that Wave? Identical [in substance] with the Ocean. 
Every particle which exists is identical with the whole ; then is the 

whole altogether the parts. 
What are the parts ? The manifestations of the All ; what are 

things ? The shadows of the Names. 
What are the Names ? The revelation of the Sun, the Sun of the 

Beauty of the Supreme Essence. 
What is the Shore? The land of Contingent Being, which is the 

Book of God Most High. 
O Maghribi, cease this discourse : do not make plain the Mystery of 

the Two Worlds ! " 


CH. v] MAGHRIBf 335 

" O Thou in whose life-giving Face all the Universe is manifest, 
And O Thou whose Countenance is apparent in the Mirror of the 

Universe ! 

Since the Darling of Thy Beauty looked in the Mirror 
And saw the reflection of his face, he became wild and mad [with 


Every instant Thy Countenance displays the beauty of its features 
To its own eyes, in a hundred fair vestments. 
It looked forth from lovers' eyes 
So that it beheld Its Beauty in the faces of Idols 1 . 
Thy Face wrought a Mirror for Its self-display, 
And called that Mirror ' Adam and Eve? 
He beheld the Beauty of His Face in every face through him 2 , 
Therefore hath he 2 become the Mirror of all the Names. 
O Thou whose Beauty hath shone forth to Thine own eyes, 
And who hast plainly seen Thy Face in Thine own eyes, 
Since Thou art at once the Seer and the Seen, there is none other 

than Thee : 

Wherefore, then, hath all this strife become apparent ? 
O Maghribi, the horizons are filled with clamour 
When my King of Beauty pitches His tent in the Plain ! " 

1 I.e. beautiful persons. Both sanam (" idol ") and nigdr ("picture") 
are constantly used in this sense. The same idea is also expressed in 
the following well-known quatrain attributed to 'Umar-i-Khayyam : 

' Ls juU 

' U Jua-L, *rtT..t..< 

2 In both cases Adam is meant. 



" O Centre and Pivot of Being, and Circumference of Bounty, 
O Fixed as the Pole, and Fickle as the Sphere! 
If I send greetings to Thee, Thou art the greeting, 
And if I invoke blessings on Thee, Thou art the blessing ! 
How can any one give Thee to Thyself? Tell me now, 
O Thou who art Thine own alms-giver and Thine own alms ! 
O Most Comprehensive of Manifestations, and Most Perfect in 


O Gulf of gulfs, and O Combiner of diversities ! 
O most Beauteous of the beautiful, and O most Fair of the fair, 
O most Gracious of the graceful, O most Subtle of subtleties ! 
Thou art at once both the Bane and the Balm, both Sorrow and Joy, 
Both Lock and Key, both Prison and Deliverance ! 

CH. v] 



Thou art both the Treasure and the Talisman, both Body and Soul, 
Both Name and Named, both Essence and Attribute ! 
Thou art both Western (Maghribt) and West, both Eastern and East, 
Alike Throne, and Carpet, and Element, and Heavens, and Space!" 

B. P. 


" O [Thou who art] hidden from both worlds, who is He who is 

apparent ? 
And O [Thou who art] the Essence of the Apparent, who then is the 

Hidden One? 

Who is that One who in a hundred thousand forms 
Is apparent every moment? 

And who is that One who in a hundred thousand effulgences 
Showeth forth His Beauty every moment? 
Thou sayest, ' I am hidden from the Two Worlds ' : 
Who then is He who appeareth in each and all ? 
Thou didst say, ' I am always silent ' : 
Who then is He who speaketh in every tongue? 
Thou didst say, ' I stand outside body and soul ' : 
Who then is He who clothes himself in the garment of body and 


Thou didst say, ' I am neither this one nor that one' : 
Who then is He who is both this one and that one ? 

Thou who hast withdrawn apart, 

1 conjure Thee by God tell me who is in the midst ? 
Who is He whose effulgence shines forth 

From the beauty and comeliness of the charmers of hearts ? 

And who is He who hath shown His beauty 

And who hath cast turmoil into the world ? 

O thou who remainest in doubt, 

Not knowing certainly who lurks in thy doubt, 

Be hidden from the eyes of Maghribi, 

And see who is apparent through his eyes ! " 


The opening lines of the following poem strike an almost 
Christian note : 

CH. v] MAGHRIBf 339 

l _ r .=> ^b <x <x5jJ? C 

'Jti I^X*. AJU. ^ ^ JLT ulj^xfc. f 4JU. 


" That One who was hidden from us came and became us, 
And He who was of us and you became us and you. 
The King of the topmost throne of Sovereignty condescended, 
And, notwithstanding that there is no King save Him, became a 


He who is exempted from poverty and wealth 
Came in the garb of poverty in order to show forth [true] riches. 
Who hath ever heard aught stranger than this, that one and the same 


Became both his own house and his own householder? 
That pure substance and that peerless pearl 
When it germinated became earth and heaven. 
Into the raiment of 'how-ness ' and ' why-ness ' one cannot say 
How and why that 'how-less' and 'why-less' Charmer of hearts 


His eyebrow revealed itself from the eyebrows of the beautiful, 
Until it was pointed at by every ringer, like the new moon. 
In the garden of the Universe, like the straight cypress and the 


He became both red-capped and green-robed. 
That Sun of the Eternal Sphere shone forth 
So that it became Western (Maghribi) and Eastern, Sun and Light." 

22 - 2 




i ^*^ -5 >-** J^' J 

JU jU 

Ask not the road to the College or the customs of the Monastery; 

Pass by road and custom ; ask not about way and road. 

Adopt the path of [religious] Poverty and Annihilation, and be happy ; 

Look not behind thee, and ask not save of what lies before. 

When thou steppest forth from the narrow cell of the body 

Ask not save of the Holy Precincts and of the King. 

Ask about the delights of Poverty and Annihilation from those who 

have tasted them ; 
Ask not of him who is the slave of wealth and rank. 

CH. v] 



When the Royal Umbrella appears, acclamation arises : 
Ask no longer then about the King from the army and the host ! 
When thou hast stepped forth in sincerity and staked thy head, 
Ask not of thy cap, if they steal it of thee. 
Since my state, O Friend, is not hidden from thee 
Do not again enquire of my state from witnesses. 
Wipe out the sin of his existence, since thou thyself art obliterated; 
Do not again ask of sin concerning the sin of his existence ! 
O Friend, since Maghribi hath come to Thee to make his excuses 
Overlook in Thy Grace, and ask not concerning the sin of him who 
apologizes ! " 

ij -I;M>* 


"We have escaped from the Monastery, the Chapel and the College, 
And have settled in the quarter of the Magians with Wine and the 


We have cast aside the prayer-mat and the rosary, 
We have girt ourselves with the pagan girdle 1 in the service of the 

Christian child. 
On the benches [of the Wine-house] we have torn up the dervish- 

cloak of hypocrisy ; 

In the taverns we have broken our hypocritical repentance. 
We have escaped from counting the beads of the rosary ; 
We have sprung forth from the snares of virtue, piety and asceticism. 
In the quarter of the Magians we became annihilated from all exist- 

ence : 
Having become annihilated from all existence, we have become all 


Hereafter seek not from us any knowledge or culture, 
O wise and sensible friend, for we are lovers and intoxicated ! 
Thanks be to God that from this worship of self 
We are wholly delivered, and are now worshippers of wine. 
We are drunkards, wastrels, seekers of wine, 
And we are most at ease with him who is, like ourselves, drunk and 


Since Maghribi has removed his baggage from our assembly 
And has departed (for he was the barrier in our path), we are free !" 


*'J k * 


LJ j 

1 The Zunn&r (Zonarium), regarded by the Muslim poets as the 
symbol of misbelief, represents the Kushti, or " Kosti," of the Zoro- 
astrians, the sacred thread of the Brahmins, and presumably the cord 
worn round the waist by Christian monks. 

CH. v] MAGHRIBf 343 

'^ ^t OUl 3 

> *}) jl .3 *5' Jl ; i * 


"Thou art but a drop : talk not of the depths of the Ocean ; 
Thou art but a mote : talk not of the high Sun ! 
Thou art a man of to-day : talk then of to-day ; 
Do not talk of the day before yesterday and yesterday and to-morrow ! 
Since thou knowest not earth and heaven 
Talk no more of below and above ! 
Since thou hast not the elements of musical talent 
Talk not of tand, nd and tdnd l ! 
Cease, O my son, from denial and affirmation ; 
Talk not of 'except' 1 and l no' 2 ! 
If they bid thee lay down thy life, 
Go, lay down thy life, and talk not ! 
Until thou knowest who ' I ' and 'We ' are 
Be silent ! talk not of I' and ' We ' ! 

Until, like Adam, thou receivest from God the Science of the Names 
Do not talk about the Names ! 

He who hath become the Counterpart of all Things 
Hath said to Maghribi, ' Speak not of Things ! ' " 

The above specimens should suffice to give a fair idea 
of Maghribfs thought and style. He belongs essentially to 
the same class of mystical poets as Sana'i, Shams-i-Tabriz 

1 Or, as we might say, " of sol, fa, re," or " ta, ta-at, ta-te," or " of 
crotchets, minims and quavers." 

2 Ld ("No") and illd ("except") is the Muhammadan profession 
of faith, Ld ildha illa'lldh (" There is no god but God"). 


(i.e. Jalalu'd-Dfn Rumi), and 'Iraqi, and, as he asserts, Fari- 
du'd-Din 'Attar : 

" From His waves 1 arose 'Irdqi and Maghribf, 
And from His ferment came Sand'i and 'Attdr." 

Yet though of the same category as these, he seldom 
reaches their level. 

9. Abti Ishdq (" Bushaq ") called " At'ima " 
(Fakhru'd-Din Ahmad-i-Halldj of Shirdz). 

Although there are several other poets of this period 
who are not undeserving of notice, such as 'Assar of Tabriz, 
Jalal-i-'Adudi, Jalal-i-Tabib, etc., this chapter 
has already reached so considerable a length 
that I shall make mention of only one other, 
Abu Ishaq of Shfraz, the poet of foods, hence called At'ima, 
who offers the greatest possible contrast to Maghribf, the 
mystic and pantheist. 

Of Abu Ishaq's life, as usual, very little is known, 
except that he appears to have spent the greater part 
of it at Shfraz, where he enjoyed the favour of the great, 
and especially of Tfmur's grandson Iskandar ibn 'Umar 
Shaykh Mfrza, who governed Fars and Isfahan from 
A.H. 812 to 817 (A.D. 1409-1415). Dawlatshah consecrates 
a long article to him 2 , which, however, chiefly consists of 
quotations from his poems and an account of the ambitious 
designs and tragic fate of his patron Iskandar, who was 
deprived of his sight by his uncle Shah-rukh on the 2nd 
of Jumada i, 817 (July 20, 1414), and died the following 

1 I.e. God, considered as the Ocean of Being, whose waves are 

2 Pp. 366-71 of my edition. 

CH. v] " BUSHAQ " OF SHfRAZ 345 

year. By trade Abu Ishaq was, as his title Halldj indicates, 
a carder of cotton. On one occasion, when he had been 
absent for several days from Prince Iskandar's receptions, 
the latter asked him, when he reappeared, where he had 
been ; to which he replied, " I card cotton for a day, and 
then spend three days in picking the cotton out of my 
beard." Short notices of Abu Ishaq are given in the 
Atash-kada, the Haft Iqlim and the Majma'"u'l-Fusahd 
(vol. ii, p. 10), but they add nothing to the little recorded 
by Dawlatshah, save a brief anecdote in the last named, 
according to which Abu Ishaq considered himself the 
, disciple and admirer of Shah Ni'matu'iiah, 

Bushaq and Shah 

Ni'matu'iiah the mystical poet of Mahan, a little village 
near Kirman, where he is still commemorated 
in a handsome shrine served by dervishes of the order which 
he founded. Abu Ishaq's admiration took the dubious form 
of parodying Ni'matu'llah's mystical rhapsodies in profane 
poems addressed to various culinary delicacies. Thus 
Ni'matu'iiah has a poem quite in the style of Maghribi, 
beginning : 


Ijt j^. A> ' Lo jj ^ J^l v>JjU U 

" We are the pearl of the shoreless Ocean ; sometimes we are the Wave 

and sometimes the Sea ; 

We came into the world for this purpose, that we might show God 
to His creatures." 

Bushaq parodied this as follows : 

" We are the dough-strings of the bowl of Wisdom ; sometimes we are 

the dough and sometimes the pie-crust ; 

We came into the kitchen for this purpose, that we might show the 
fried meat to the pastry." 

When subsequently Sayyid Ni'matu'iiah met Abu 
Ishaq, he said, "Are you the 'dough-strings of the bowl 


of Wisdom ' ? " To which the latter replied, " Since I am 
not in a position to talk about God {Allah}, I talk about 
God's bounty (Ni'matu'lldh)." 

Manuscripts of Abu Ishaq's works are not common. 
The British Museum possesses a copy of one of them, the 
Kanzu'l-Ishtihd (" Treasure of Appetite ")*, and I once had 
the opportunity of examining an excellent and very com- 
Dr wolfs plete manuscript from the collection of the late 
MS. of the Dr Wolf of Bukhara fame, to whom it was 

Dtwdn-i-At'ima. . . . ...... . TT ,, , , T . , , T ~. . 

given by a certain Hajji 'Uthman Nuru d-Din, 
and by whom it was left to the Society for the Propagation 
of Christianity amongst the Jews. This manuscript was 
copied in 970/1562-3, contains 162 ff. of 22.4 x 12.7 c. and 
17 lines to the page, and is written in a small, neat ta'liq 
hand between blue and gold lines. It is remarkable for 
containing (on ff. 137-8 and 160-61) some half dozen 
poems in dialect, comprising in all 44 couplets. The book, 

however, would have remained hardly known 

The Constant!- . ri 11 i 11 

nopie printed but tor the excellent edition printed by the late 
edition of the learned and indefatigable Mi'rza Habib of Is- 


fahan at Constantinople in 1303/1885-6. This 
volume, which comprises 184 pages, begins with an extract 
from Dawlatshah's notice of the author, and ends with a 
vocabulary of the culinary terms occurring in the course 
of the work, many of which are now obsolete in Persia, 
often representing dishes no longer prepared, of which the 
exact nature must in many cases remain doubtful. The 
actual text of Abu Ishaq's works begins with the Kanzul- 
Ishtihd ("Treasure of Appetite"), to which is prefixed a 
short prose Preface. Then follow the poems, mostly 
parodies, in which almost every variety of verse (qasida, 
tarjf-band, ghazal, git 1 a, rubd'i and mathnawt) is repre- 
sented; and these in turn are followed by several treatises 
in mixed prose and verse, to wit "The Adventure of the 
Rice and the Pie-crust" (bughra), "Abu Ishaq's Dream," 
the " Conclusion " (Khdtimd), and a " Glossary " (Farhang), 

1 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., p. 634. 

CH. v] " BUSHAQ " OF SHfRAZ 347 

by the author, not to be confounded with the vocabulary 
above mentioned, which was added by the Editor, who 
also supplements Dawlatshah's account of the poet with 
a few observations of his own. In these he emphasizes 
the philological and lexicographical value of Abu Ishaq's 
works, and adds that though they have been printed or 
lithographed several times in Persia, these editions are so 
marred by errors that they are almost valueless. He adds 
that he discovered two MSS. at Constantinople, and that, 
though both were defective, he succeeded from the two 
in constructing what he hopes and believes to be a fairly 
complete and trustworthy edition. 

The poems, filled as they are with the strange and ob- 
solete culinary terminology of mediaeval Persia, and deriving 
such humour as they possess from being parodies of more 
serious poems familiar to the author's contemporaries, do 
not lend themselves to translation. In the Preface to the 
"Treasure of Appetite" (Kanzu'l-Ishtihd) he claims to have 
written it to stimulate the failing appetite of a friend, just 
as Azraqf in earlier times wrote his Alfiyya Shalfiyya to 
quicken the sexual desires of his royal patron, Tughanshah 
the Seljuq 1 . Here is a translation of this Preface, omitting 
the doxology : 

''But to proceed. Thus saith the weakest of the servants of God 
the All- Provider, Abu Ishaq, known as the Cotton-carder (Halldj), 
Bushaq's Preface ma y ^' s com f rts endure ! At the time when the tree of 
to the "Treasure youth was casting its shadow, and the branch of gladness 
was heavy with the fruit of hopes, a few verses, of an 
extemporized character and appropriate to every topic, were produced 
by me. I thought within myself, 'The wisest course is this, that I 
should in such wise guide the steed of poetry through the arena of 
eloquence, and so spread the banquet of verse on the table of diction, 
that those who partake at the board of pleasure should obtain the most 
abundant helping ; and that the masters of eloquence should be filled 

1 See vol. ii of my Lit. Hist, of Persia, p. 323, and, besides the refer- 
ences there given, Jmi's Bahdristdn, Const, ed. of A.M. 1294, pp. 78-9 
(near the beginning of chapter vii) ; and a note by Von Hammer in 
the Journal Asiatique for 1827, vol. x, p. 255. 


with admiration therefor, so that this may conduce to my greater fame 
and popularity.' For I had heard this verse which says : 

' Whatever verse I may utter, others have uttered it all, 
And have penetrated all its domain and territory.' 

" For some days my thoughts ran in this channel : 'having regard 
to the epic narrative of Firdawsi, the salt of whose speech is the 
flavouring of the saucepan of every food ; and the mathnawis of 
Nizamf, the sugar of whose verses is the dainty morsel of sweet-tongued 
parrots ; and the tayyibdt of Sa'df, which, by general accord, are like 
luscious honey to the palate of the congenial ; and the odes of Khwaja 
Jamalu'd-Dfn Salmon, which take the place of milk and honey in the 
mouths of philologists ; and the products of the genius of Khwajii of 
Kirmdn, the carroway-syrup of whose utterances is a cure for the 
melancholies of the fetters of verse ; and the subtle sayings of 'Imad-i- 
Faqfh, whose sweet utterances are as fragrant spices and delicious 
potions ; and the fluent phraseology and well-weighed thoughts of 
Hafiz, which are a wine fraught with no headache and a beverage 
delicious to the taste ; and other poets, each of whom was the celebrity 
of some city and the marvel of some age, what fancies can I concoct 
whereby men can be made glad?' 

" While I was thus meditating, on a favourable morning, when ac- 
cording to my wont and habit, the smoke of an unfeigned appetite rose 
up from the kitchen of the belly, there suddenly entered through the 
door my silver-bosomed sweetheart, my moon-faced darling, whose eyes 
are like almonds, whose lips are like sugar, whose chin is like an orange, 
whose breasts are like pomegranates, whose mouth is like a pistachio- 
nut, smooth-tongued, melodious of utterance, lithe as a fish, sweet- 
voiced, with a mole like musk ; even as the poet says : 



' By reason of the sweet smiles of the salt-cellar of her mouth 1 
Blood flows from the heart, as from a salted kabdb? 

" Said she, ' I have quite lost my appetite, and suffer from a feeling 
of satiety ; what is the remedy ? ' I replied, ' Just as in the case of that 
person who went to a physician, complaining that he was impotent, and 

1 A particular kind of charm or beauty is called maldhal (from 
milk, "salt"), which may be rendered as "piquancy" or "spiciness," 
and it is in reference to this that a saucy and provocative mouth is 
compared to a salt-cellar. 


the physician thereupon composed for him the [book entitled] Alfiyya 
Shalfiyya^, which when he had perused he at once took to his em- 
braces a virgin girl, so will I compose for thee a treatise on the table, 
such that when thou hast once read it, thy appetite will return.' So for 
her sake I girded up the loins of my soul, and cooked a meal garnished 
with verbal artifices and rhetorical devices, and baked in the oven of 
reflection with the dough of deliberation a loaf which rivalled the orb 
of the sun in its conquest of the world ; so that I can proudly exclaim : 

Jut <* 

' I have spread a table of verse from Qaf to Qdf 2 : 
Where is a fellow-trencherman who can rival me ? ' 

" I have entitled this table ' the Treasure of Appetite ' (Kanzu'l- 
Ishtihd}, because the day was the I ldu'l-Fitr s ; and the cause of the 
revelation of this book is commemorated in the following fragment 4 ." 

1 See note on p. 347 supra. 

2 The Mountains of QaY are supposed to form the boundaries of the 
habitable globe. 

3 The Festival of the breaking of the Fast, called by the Turks 
Sheker Bayrdm. 

* As this merely repeats the substance of the prose preface trans- 
lated above, I give the text only without translation. 

A. J 

The whole poem is divided into ten sections (fas/), 
comprises 108 verses with the same rhyme throughout, and 
is a parody on Sa'di's qasida beginning 1 : 

The first verse of the parody is 

The "Treasure of Appetite" is followed by a qasida 
entitled Afdq u An/us ("Horizons and Souls") in praise of 
Remaining Shah Sayfu'd-Din, and this in turn by parodies 
contents of the o f qasidas by Zahiru'd-Din Faryabi, Khwaju of 
Kirman, Najmi/Imad-i-Faqih of Kirman, Hafiz, 
Salman of Sawa, Hasan of Dihli, Mawlana 'All Dur-duzd, 
Sa'di, Jalalu'd-Di'n Rumi, Jalal-i-'Adud, Sadru'd-Din Qay- 
ruwani, Kamal of Khujand, Sa'du'd-Dfn Nasfr, Anwari, 
Shaykh Faridu'd-Din 'Attar, Kamalu'd-Dm of Kashan, 
Shah Ni'matu'llah of Kirman, Aminu'd-Din, Muhammad 
Jawhari, 'Iraqi, Abu Nasr-i-Farahf, Adhari, 'Ubayd-i-Zakanf, 
Jalal-i-Tabfb, Firdawsf, Nizami of Ganja, etc. These are 

1 See the Calcutta printed edition of 1795, v l- "> ff- 223-224. 


followed by the two prose treatises already mentioned, the 
"Conclusion" (Khdtima), the "Glossary" (Farkang), a qasida 
in praise of Kajri (" Kedgeree "), and the Editor's Vocabu- 
lary of Culinary Terms which fills twelve pages. 

For the reasons already given it is practically impossible 
to translate these poems so as to preserve any of their 
point, and it is sufficient for our purpose to note that Abu 
Ishaq, with his predecessor 'Ubayd-i-Zakanf (already dis- 
cussed earlier in this chapter) and his successor Nizamu'd- 
Di'n Mahmud Qarf of Yazd, represents a definite school of 
satire and parody. 

10. NizdmiJd-Din MaJnmid Qdri of Yazd. 

Of the last-named poet, who took for his subject clothes, 
as Abu Ishaq had taken foods, we have an excellent edition 
^y t ^ ie same Mfrza Habib who edited the works 
of the two other poets of the group, all three 

volumes being uniform in size and style. In 
the short preface prefixed to the Diwdn-i-Albisa, which 
contains the sartorial poems of Mahmud Qari of Yazd, 
the learned editor says that he believes the manuscript 
on which his text is based to be unique, and that he had 
never met with another copy in any of the numerous 
libraries in Persia and at Constantinople which he had 
examined, nor had he found any mention of the author 
or his date in any biographical or historical work except 
in one Indian tadhkira (neither named nor cited by him), 
and a single verse of his cited in evidence in the well-known 
Persian dictionary entitled Burhdn-i-Jdmi 11 . 

The Diwdn-i-Albisa was avowedly inspired by the 
Diwdn-i-Atima, which, in style and arrangement, it closely 
follows. There is a prose preface, which, unfortunately, 
throws no light on the author's date ; a qasfda-i-Afdq u 

1 This excellent and concise dictionary ("the Comprehensive 
Proof") is essentially an abridgement of the better-known Burhdn- 
i-Qdtf, or " Decisive Proof." The former has been well lithographed 
at Tabriz in Shawwdl, 1260 (Oct.-Nov. 1844). 


An/us; a mock-heroic account of the war between cloth 

and cotton (Jang-ndma-z-Miiina u Kattdti) ; a poem on the 

"Mysteries of Silk"; parodies of Awhadi, Khwaju, Sa'di, 

Sayyid Hasan of Tirmidh.Sana'i. Kamalu'd-Din 

Poets * * 

parodied by Isma'il of Isfahan, Zahir of Faryab, 'Imad-i- 
MahmddQari p^ of jg^fa. H fi?> < A1{ Dur-duzd, Kamal 

of Khujand, Muhammad-i-Firuzabadi, Nayyir of Kirman, 
Sayyid Ni'matu'llah, Amir Khusraw, Jalalu'd-Dm Rumi, 
Salman of Sawa, Sayyid Jalal-i-'Adud, Sa'du'd-Dm Nasi'r, 
Sadru'd-Dfn Jawharf, Amini, Amir Hasan of Dihlf, Jama- 
lu'd-Din, Shaykh Faridu'd-Din 'Attar, Katibi, Nasir of 
Bukhara, Sultan Abu Sa'i'd, Humam of Tabriz, Amir 
Khusraw of DihH, Darwish hs\xz.{-\-Namad-push, 'Ubayd- 
i-Zakani, and Jalal-i-Tabib. Nearly all the chief varieties 
of verse are represented, including a certain number of 
poems in dialect (Fahlawiyydt and Shtrdziyydt), and the 
volume concludes with several prose treatises, to wit a 
Dispute between Food and Clothes, the Dream 

Further contents I _ . 

of Mahmud of the Bath, Eulogies of the chief Persian poets 
OArfs/wto*. in terms of clothes and stu ff S) the story of the 

clothes-thief, Wool's letter to Satin, and other similar 
letters and official documents, the Ardyish-ndma ("Book 
of Adornment"), the Book of Definitions entitled Dah 
Wasl, containing, as its name implies, ten sections, the 
treatise entitled Sad Wctz (" A Hundred Counsels "), a 
mock-heroic mathnawt in the style of the Shdk-ndma on 
the battle between Wool and " Cincob " (Kamkhd) en- 
titled Mukhayyat-ndma, and finally a Glossary (Farhang) 
of articles of clothing. The only indication of the author's 

date which I can find is supplied by the list 
MatSdQari ' of contemporary poets occurring at the end of 

the Eulogies of Poets (pp. 138-9 of the text), 
which includes Qasim[u'l- Anwar], who died 837/1433-4; 
'Ismat [of Bukhara], d. 829/1425-6 ; Katibi, d. 838/1434-5 ; 
Khay all [of Bukhara], d. circd 850/1 446-7 ; Shahf, d. 8 5 // 1 45 3 ; 
and Adharf, d. 866/ 1 46 1 -2. We must therefore conclude that 
Mahmud Qan of Yazd wrote subsequently to the date last 

CH. v] AT-TAFTAzANf 353 

given, so that he really belongs to a later period than that 
which we are now considering, though it seemed convenient 
to mention him here on account of his close literary affinity 
with Abu Ishaq, to whom his work evidently owed its chief 
inspiration. Sayyid Ni'matu'llah, on the other hand, who 
is one of the poets parodied by Abu Ishaq, should, strictly 
speaking, be included in this place, but since he survived 
until 834/1430-1, and this chapter has already grown to an 
inconvenient length, I shall defer his consideration, with 
that of 'Ismat, Katibi and others, to a later section of this 


Although it is not necessary to speak at nearly the same 

length about the prose-writers of this period as 

Ss S Sod ers f about the poets, some at least of them deserve 

at any rate a passing mention, including one 

or two who wrote chiefly or exclusively in Arabic. 

Ti'mur resembled another great Eastern conqueror of 
Turkish origin who lived four centuries before him, namely 
Sultan Mahmud of Ghazna, in his passion for collecting 
and carrying off to his capital eminent scholars from the 
towns which he conquered, and thus endeavouring to in- 
crease the splendour of his Court and his own reputation 
as a patron of letters 1 . Amongst those whom Ti'mur thus 
abducted the most celebrated were Sa'du'd-Din Taftazani 
and as-Sayyid ash-Sharif al-Jurjam' 2 . 

I. Sa'du'd-Din Mas'iid ibn ' Umar at- Taftdsdni. 

This eminent scholar, who was described by the con- 
temporary 'ulamd of Transoxiana as "at the 
^Taft^i present time the chief man of learning in the 
world, and the exemplar of scholars amongst 

1 For an instance of this, see my translation of the Chahdr Maqdla, 
p. 1 19 of the tirage-a-part. 

2 See the Habibu's-Siyar (vol. iii, pt 3, pp. 87-90), which devotes a 
long notice to him. 

B. P. 23 


the sons of men," and of whose works sixteen are enumerated 
by Brockelmann 1 , was born at Taftazan near Nasa in Khu- 
rasan in 722/1322, and is said to have written his first book 
(a commentary on az-Zanjam"s Arabic Grammar) at the 
early age of sixteen. Another of his works, the Mutawwal, 
he is said to have dedicated to Malik Mu'izzu'd-Dm Husayn- 
i-Kurt (who reigned at Herat from A.D. 1331 to 1370). He 
then settled at Khwarazm, at that time a great centre of 
learning, where he composed his Mukktasar, which he de- 
dicated to Jam' Beg Khan of the Golden Horde, a descendant 
of Batu the Mongol, who reigned in Western Qipchaq from 
A.D. 1340 to 1357. When Ti'mur captured Khwarazm he 
allowed Malik Muhammad of Sarakhs, the youngest son of 
the above- mentioned Malik Mu'izzu'd-Din,to take Taftazani 
with him to Sarakhs, where he was given a professorship; but 
later, learning how great was his reputation as a scholar, he 
summoned him to his own capital Samarqand, where he 
remained for some years, greatly honoured by all. He died 
in 791/1389 (in the same year as the poet Hafiz), or, ac- 
cording to others, in 797/1 394-5 2 , and was buried at Sarakhs. 
He left a son named Mawlana Muhammad who died of the 
plague at Herat in 838/1434-5, and concerning whom an 
anecdote is related in the Habibus-Siyar which reflects but 
little credit either on his filial piety or his sincerity. 

Of Taftazanf s works it is unnecessary to speak in detail, 
for not only are they written in Arabic, but they do not even 
fall into the category of belles lettres, being for the most part 
on logic, Arabic grammar, philosophy, theology, exegesis 
and jurisprudence. I am not aware that he wrote anything 
in Persian, but, by virtue of a Turkish metrical trans- 
lation of Sa'df's Bustdn which he composed, he is included 
by the late Mr E. J. W. Gibb in his History of Ottoman 

1 Gesch. d. Arabisch. Lift., vol. ii, pp. 215-16. 

2 According to the Mujmal of Fasfhf in 787/1385. 

3 Vol. i, pp. 202-3. 


2. 'Ali ibn Muhammad as-Sayyid ash-Sharif al-Jurjdni. 

As-Sayyid ash -Sharif, chiefly known to European 
scholars by his book of " Definitions " (ta'rifdf) 

As-Sayyid * / 

ash-Sharif of technical and especially Sufi terms, was born, 

as his title al-Jtirjdni indicates, in the Caspian 
province of Gurgan or Jurjan, near Astarabad, in 740/1339. 
In 779/1377 he was presented by Sa'du'd-Din Taftazani to 
the Muzaffari prince Shah Shuja' who was then residing at 
Qasr-i-Zard, and who took him with himself to Shiraz, where 
he became a professor at the Ddru'sh-Shifd. In 789/1387 
Ti'mur conquered Shiraz and transported him to Samarqand, 
where he again foregathered with Taftazani, with whom he 
had many scientific controversies. On the death of Tfmur 
in 807/1405 he returned to Shiraz, where he died in 816/1413 
at the age of 76. Brockelmann enumerates 3 1 of his works, 
all of which are in Arabic 1 . Three Persian works, a well- 
known Arabic grammar commonly known as Sarf-i-Mtr, 
a treatise on Logic (al-Kubrd fil-Mantiq), and another on 
the Degrees of Existence, written by or ascribed to him, 
are mentioned in Rieu's Persian Catalogue 2 , but he seems 
to have composed but little in his mother-tongue. 

3. Ibn 'Arabshdk. 

A third but much younger writer of note who was carried 
off by Ti'mur from his native place, Damascus, 

Ibn 'Arabshah . , , . , 

m 803/1400, when he was only twelve years of 
age, together with his mother and brothers, was Abu'l-' Abbas 
Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'llah ibn 'Arabshah, 
chiefly famous for the bitterly hostile biography of Tfmur 
which he composed under the title of 'Ajd'ibu'l-Maqdur f{ 
nawd'ibi Timur, and to which reference has been made in 
the last chapter 3 . He studied at Samarqand with the above - 

1 See Brockelmann's Gesch. d. Arabisch. Lift., vol. ii, pp. 216-17, 
and the Habibrfs-Siyar, vol. iii, pt 3, p. 89. 

2 Pp. 522, 812, 864, etc. 

3 See Brockelmann's Gesch. d. Arabisch. Litt., vol. ii, pp. 28-30, 
where five of his works are described. 



mentioned al-Jurja'nf, mastered the Turkish and Persian 
languages, translated from the latter into Arabic the Mar- 
zubdn-ndma of Sa'du'd-Dfn Warawfnf 1 , travelled widely, 
visiting Khatd (Chinese Tartary), Khwarazm, Dasht, As- 
trachan and Adrianople (where he became for a time private 
secretary to the Ottoman Sultan Muhammad I). He returned 
to his native town, Damascus, in 825/1422, made the pil- 
grimage to Mecca seven years later, settled in Cairo in 
840/1436, and died in 854/1450. The undisguised hatred 
of Timur revealed in every page of his history forms a 
piquant contrast to the fulsome flattery of Sharafu'd-Di'n 
'AH Yazdf and other Persian biographers. Of Ibn 'Arab- 
shah's other works the best known is the Fdkihatul-Khulafd. 

4. 'Adudu'd-Din al-lji. 

Of Arabic writers of this period who had no connection 
with Persia, such as al-Yafi'i and as-Safadi, to both of whom 
we are indebted for valuable biographical and historical 
material, I do not propose to speak here, but two other 
Arabic-writing Persians deserve at least a brief mention. 
The first of these, 'Adudu'd-Dm 'Abdu'r- 
Rahman ibn Ahmad al-lji, who died in /56/ 
1355, wrote in Arabic a good many books 2 on 
philosophical, religious and ethical subjects, of which the 
Mawdqif is the most celebrated ; but it is chiefly on account 
of his connection with the Muzaffari dynasty that he is 
mentioned here, for though his birthplace was in Fars at 
Ij, a place between Darabjird and Nayn'z 3 , he seems to have 
written little or nothing in his mother-tongue, though, as we 
have seen above 4 , he is celebrated by Hdfiz as one of the 
chief intellectual ornaments of Shi'raz. He was a Shafi'i 
jurisconsult, a judge (qddi), and a mystic ; but he was also 

1 A good and critical edition of this book by Mirzd Muhammad is 
included in the "E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, vol. viii, 1909. 

2 Brockelmann (pp. tit., vol. ii, pp. 208-9) enumerates eleven. 

3 See G. le Strange's Lands of the Eastern Caliphate, p. 289. 

4 See p. 276 supra, and n. 2 ad calc. 

CH. v] AL-fjf AL-FfRtiZABADf 357 

employed at times in a diplomatic capacity, for we learn 
from the Fdrs-ndma-i-NdsirP that he was sent by Shaykh 
Abu Ishaq, at that time ruler of Shiraz, in 753/1352-3, to 
the Amir Mubarizu'd-Di'n Muhammad the Muzaffarf, who 
was then in the neighbourhood of Kirman, to endeavour to 
dissuade him from attacking Shiraz. In this mission he 
failed ; but he was well received by Mubarizu'd-Dm, whom 
he had to entertain for three days at his native town of Ij, 
and had the honour of reading and explaining the com- 
mentary on the Mufassal (a well-known work on Arabic 
grammar by az-Zamakhsharf) to the Amir's son Shah Shuja', 
afterwards ruler of Shirdz and alternately patron and rival 
of the poet Hafiz. 

5. Al-Firtizdbddi. 

Another Persian man of learning who met and received 
favours from Ti'mur was the great Arabic scholar 

Al-Finizabddi j 1 i i . i i i_ 

and lexicographer, best known by his monu- 
mental dictionary the Qdmtis, or " Ocean," Abu't-Tahir 
Muhammad ibn Ya'qub ash-Shi'razi al-Firuzabadi 2 . He 
was born in 729/1326 at Firuzabad in Fars, and studied 

first at Shiraz, then at Wasit in Mesopotamia, 
St e e is tensive then at Ba g hd ad (745/1344), and afterwards 

(75/ I 349- I 35) at Damascus, where he at- 
tended the lectures of as-Subki, whom he accompanied to 
Jerusalem. There he lectured for some ten years, after which 
he set out again on his travels, in the course of which he 
visited Asia Minor, Cairo, Mecca (770/1368), where he re- 
mained fifteen years, and India, where he spent five years in 

1 This copious and valuable account of the province of Fars, which 
contains some 372 large pages, was lithographed at Tihran in 

2 See Brockelmann, op. tit., ii, pp. 181-3, from whom the particulars 
here given are taken. Al-Firuzbadf is also mentioned in six or seven 
places in al-Khazrajf s History of Yaman. See the second half of the 
Arabic text ("E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, iii, 5), pp. 264-5, 2 ?8, 
286, 290, 297, 303-4, and 311, where mention is made of him in every 
year from 796/1393-4 to 802/1399-1400. 


Dihlf. He then returned to Mecca, where he spent another 
ten years. In 794/1392 he visited the court of the Jala'ir 
Sultan Ahmad ibn Uways at Baghdad ; and he also visited 
Tfmur at Shfriz, probably in 795/1393, and was received 
with much honour. Thence he went by way of Hurmuz on 

the Persian Gulf to Yaman, where he arrived in 
"Yaman 1505 "' " the following year (796/1394), and remained at 

Ta'izz for fourteen months. He was then made 
Chief Judge (Qddi'l-quddt) of Yaman, and received in 
marriage the daughter of the Sultan al-Malik al-Ashraf. 
In 802/1400 he again visited Mecca, where he established 
a small college of Maliki jurisprudence : and, after visiting 
al-Madina, returned to Zabi'd in Yaman, and died there in 

Of the five Arabic writers mentioned above all save Ibn 
'Arabshah (who is included on account of his connection 
with Timur) were Persians ; and, for reasons which I have 
elsewhere given 1 , I consider that no literary history of the 
Persians which, confining itself to what is written in Persian, 
ignores the immense amount of valuable work produced by 
Persians in Arabic, can be regarded as adequate in its scope, 
or just to this talented people. 


The period which we are now considering is far less rich 
in notable prose-writers than in poets, and not more than 
four or five need detain us here. 

I. Shamsu'd-Din Muhammad b. Sa'id-i-Fakhr of Isfahan. 

The first writer who deserves mention is Shams-i-Fakhrf, 
whose full name is given above. He compiled 

Shams-i-Fakhri . _ . 

in 745/1 344 a very excellent work on the Persian 
language entitled Mi'ydr-i-Jamali, which he dedicated to 
the amiable and talented but unfortunate Shaykh Abu 
Ishaq Inju 2 . It is divided into four parts as follows : 

1 Literary History of Persia, vol. i, pp. 445-7. 

2 See p. 164 supra. 


Part i, in 9 chapters, on Poetry and Prosody. 

Part ii, in 5 chapters, on Rhyme, the different varieties 
of Poetry, etc. 

Part iii, on Rhetorical Devices, Tropes and Figures of 
Speech, etc. 

Part iv, on the Persian language and its rare and archaic 

The fourth part, which is of most interest to philologists, 
was printed at Kazan in 1885 by Carl Salemann. I possess 
a good MS. of the whole work (except for one leaf missing 
at the beginning) which was given to me by my friend 
Dr Riza Tevffq in August, 1909. The date of composition 
is given in a poem of 1 1 bayts in praise of " the son of 
Mahmud Shah" ( i.e. Shay kh Abu Ishaq Inju) in the following 
lines : 

The rare Persian words explained in this fourth part 
are arranged under the final letter, and each group is worked 
up into a qasfda, of which they constitute the rhymes, in 
praise of the author's royal patron. The first three (un- 
published) parts of the book, though good, are relatively of 
less value than the fourth, since the matters of which they 
treat are more fully discussed in such older books as the 
Mifjam ft Ma'dyiri Asfcdri'l-'Ajam 1 of Shams-i-Qays, and 
the Hadd'iqiis-Sihr of Rashidu'd-Din Watwat. 

2. Mtfinu'd-Din-i- Yazdi. 

Nearly all that is known of this writer is recorded by 

Rieu 2 in his notice of one of the British Museum 

Y^d"shuto"y Mss - f tne Mawdhib-i-Ildkt, a historical mono- 

^ e H use graph on the House of Muzaffar from its origin 

of Mu?affar 

until the battle fought at Shiraz in 767/1365-6 

1 Published in the "E. J. W. Gibb Memorial" Series, vol. x (1909). 

2 Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 168-9. 


between Shah Shuja' and his brother and rival Shah Mah- 
mud. Mu'mu'd-Din is described by his fellow-townsman 
Mufid in the Jdmi'-i-Mufidi (composed in 1082-1090/1671- 
79) x as the greatest of the 'ulamd of his day. His lectures 
were crowded with students, and occasionally honoured by 
the presence of his patron Shah Shuja' the Muzaffarf, at 
whose instigation and encouragement, seconded by that of 
his father Mubarizu'd-Dm Muhammad, Mu'm began the 
composition of his history at Isfahan in 757/1356, though, 
as indicated above, he did not complete it until ten years 
later. Two years earlier, in 755/1354, according to the 
abstract of his history included in some manuscripts of the 
Tarikh-i-Guzida?, he was made professor at a college at 
Kirman. He died in 789/1387. 

The Mawdhib-i-Ildhi, of which I possess two MSS. from 
the late Sir A. Houtum-Schindler's library 3 , besides having 
access to a manuscript belonging to the Fitzwilliam Museum 
at Cambridge, is a disappointing book, written, as Rieu 
justly remarks, like the History of Wassaf, mainly " with a 
view to rhetorical display." It is in fact intolerably florid and 
bombastic, a fault which we might more readily excuse but 
for the undoubted value of the information which it contains. 
Happily the simplified abstract of its contents mentioned at 
the end of the last paragraph dispenses us in large measure 
from the necessity of reading it in its unabridged form. 

3. Shaykh Fakhrud-Din Abitl-Abbds Ahmad of Shirdz. 

This author, a grandson of the famous Shaykh Zarkub 
of Shfraz, deserves mention on account of a monograph on 
his native town, entitled Shirdz-ndma, which 
Idm*" h e composed in 744/1343-4, and which is de- 

scribed by Rieu 4 . Manuscripts of this work, 

1 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 207-8. 

2 This abstract, by a certain Mahmud Kutbi (?), is included in the 
MS. published in fac-simile in the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial " Series 
(vol. xiv, pp. 613-755 ; and vol. xiv, 2, pp. 151-207). 

3 See my list of these MSS. in the/.-ff.AS. for Oct. 1917, pp. 670-1. 

4 Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 204-5. 

CH. v] NIZAM-I-SHAMf 361 

which has never been published, are rare ; and it is a 
matter of regret that the author has devoted his attention 
in the biographical portion of the work so much more to 
Shaykhs and holy men than to poets. 

4. Mawldnd Nizdmu'd-Din Shdmi. 

This writer, called Shamb-i-Ghazani after a mausoleum 

erected for his own sepulture by the Mongol Ghazan Khan 

two miles to the S.W. of Tabriz, is notable as 

Nizam-i-Shdmi, ., 

the earliest the author of the only known history of I imur 
^Timdr' 510 " 2111 com pil e d during his life-time. This history, en- 
titled, like the later and much more celebrated 
book of Sharafu'd-Dm 'Ah' of Yazd, Zafar-ndma (" The 
Book of Victory"), is extremely scarce, the only manuscript 
which I know of being the British Museum codex (Add. 
23,980), of which I possess a copy made for me by my 
friend Dr Ahmad Khan. Our knowledge of Nizam-i-Shami 
is chiefly derived from incidental remarks occurring in his 
history, some of which are copied by his successor Shara- 
fu'd-Din 'All, 'Abdu'r-Razzaq (in the Matla'us-Sa'dayri), 
Mirkhwand and Khwandami'r. Rieu has admirably sum- 
marized all that is known about this author 1 . He was 
living at Baghdad when it was conquered by Timur in 
795/1392-3, and was amongst the first who came out to 
do homage to the conqueror, by whom he was graciously 
received; and he describes the impression made on him 
by the Tartar attack. In 803/1400-1 he was detained as 
a prisoner at Aleppo, and describes an attack on the citadel 
of which he was a witness. In 804/1401-2 Timur summoned 
him to his presence and ordered him to write the history 
of his reign and his conquests, placing at his disposal the 
necessary records, memoranda and official papers 2 , and 
bidding him especially avoid bombast and rhetoric, and 

1 Pers. Cat., pp. 170-2 and 1081. Cf. p. 183 supra. 

2 As has been already pointed out, the absence of any mention of 
the so-called Institutes of Timur in this place is one of the strongest 
arguments against their authenticity. See pp. 183-4 supra. 


write in a simple and straightforward style which ordinary 
people could understand. In 806/1403-4 he preached a 
homily before Timur in his camp near Ardabi'l on the 
occasion of the 'Id or Festival at the end of the Ramadan 
fast (April 12, 1404). Soon afterwards Ti'mur set out for 
his capital Samarqand, and allowed Nizam-i-Shami to 
return "home" (apparently to Tabriz), furnishing him with 
letters of recommendation to his grandson Prince 'Umar 
Bahadur, son of Miran-shah, who had just been appointed 
Governor of Persia; a post which he held until 808/1405-6, 
when he was dispossessed by his brother Prince Abu Bakr. 
It does not appear that the history was continued beyond 
the year 806/1404, when Ti'mur, having enjoyed a brief 
period of repose after his last Georgian campaign, set out 
on his last return journey to his capital Samarqand, which 
he quitted on December 28, 1404, on his projected campaign 
against China. This campaign was rendered abortive by 
Timur's death on March 19, 1405. Particulars of the last 
year of his life, therefore, are not included in 
zafar^dma of Nizam-i-Shami's work, but must be sought for 
sharafu-d-Din j n t h e homonymous Zafar-ndma of Sharafu'd- 

AH Yazoi " 

Din 'Ah' Yazdf, who wrote in 828/1424-5 and 
died thirty years later. Although he strictly belongs, there- 
fore, to the period which will be discussed in the next 
chapter, it will be more convenient to consider him here 
in connection with the author of the original Zafar-ndma, 
of which his later Zafar-ndma is essentially a more florid 
and verbose enlargement, garnished with many more verses, 
and increased in bulk by about fifty per cent. 

5. Sharafu 'd-Din 'Alt Yazdi. 

All that is known about this historian, either from his 
own statements or from such books as the Jdmi'-i-Mufidt, 
Matla'ds-Sa'dayn, Haft Iqlim, Tdrikh-i-Rashtdi, Habtbu's- 
Latd'if-ndma, and Dawlatshah's "Memoirs of the 

1 Vol. iii, pt 3, p. 148. 


Poets 1 ," is, as usual, admirably summarized by Rieu 2 . It 
is as a poet writing under the nom de guerre of Sharaf, 
and with a special skill in versifying riddles and acrostics 
(mu'ammd) that he is mentioned by Dawlatshdh, who also 
speaks in terms of exaggerated praise of his history of 
Timur, the Zafar-ndma, on which his fame chiefly rests, 
though its style is intolerably inflated and bombastic, and 
its facts in spite of the author's implication that he col- 
lected them from original documents and orally from old 
men who had taken part in the events described appear 
to have been mostly borrowed with little or no acknow- 
ledgement from his predecessor Nizam-i-Shami, to whom 
he is even indebted for many of his citations from the 
Quran and from the poets. His work, however, has entirely 
eclipsed that of his predecessor. It has been published at 
Calcutta in the Bibliotheca Indica Series in two volumes 
(1887-8), and translated into French by Petis de la Croix 
(1722) 'and from the French into English by J. Darby 
(1723). The author of the Haft Iqlim calls Sharafu'd-Dfn 
" the noblest of the scholars of Persia in his time, and the 
subtlest of the doctors of that period; luminous in ex- 
position, sharp-tongued, conspicuous in merit, the illuminator 
of every assembly, the adorner of every company " ; and, in 
speaking of his Zafar-ndma, says that " no book so elegant 
has ever been written in Persian on the science of history." 
He adds that it was composed in 828/1424-5, a date ex- 

* rt J 

pressed by the chronogram j\j~* ^ \J^a (" It was composed 

Other works b m Shiraz "), and that the author also wrote a 
sharafu'd-Din treatise on riddles and acrostics; a commentary 
on the celebrated Arabic poem in praise of the 
Prophet entitled al-Burda (" The Mantle ") by al-Busm ; 
a book on magical squares and lucky numbers, entitled 
Kunhu'l- Murdd dar 'Ilm-i-Wafq-i-A'ddd; and a number 
of odes, quatrains and mathnawi poems, of which he gives 
only one short specimen. 

1 Pp. 378-81 of my edition. 2 Pers. Cat., pp. 173-5. 


"Sharafu'd-Di'n," says Rieu, "attained a position of great 
eminence, no less by his learning and piety than by the rare 
elegance of his style, and was for a long time the favourite 
companion of Shah-rukh and of his son Mi'rza Ibrahim 
Sultan. It is related in the Tarikh-i-Rashidi^ that the former 
entrusted to his keeping and able tuition Yunus Khan, the 
young Khan of the Moghuls, who had been captured in 
832/1428-9 by Mi'rza Ulugh Bey, and who stayed with 
Sharafu'd-Din till the latter's death. In 846/1442-3 Mi'rza 
Sultan Muhammad, who had been appointed Governor 
of 'Iraq and established his residence in Qum, invited 
Sharafu'd-Di'n, who was then teaching crowds of pupils 
in his native city, to his court, and kept him there as an 
honoured guest and trusted adviser. When some years 
later, in 850/1446-7, the Prince having raised the standard 
of rebellion, Shah-rukh came with an army to Isfahan to 
enforce his submission, and ordered several of his ill-advised 
councillors for execution, Sharafu'd-Di'n, who was also ac- 
cused of haying incited the Prince to revolt, was rescued 
from danger by the timely interference of Mi'rza 'Abdu'l- 
Lati'f, who, on the plea that his father, Mi'rza Ulugh Bey, 
required the Mawlana's assistance for his astronomical 
observations, despatched him to Samarqand. After the 
death of Shah-rukh, Sultan Muhammad, then master of 
Khurasan, gave him leave to go back to Yazd. Sharafu'd- 
Di'n returned to his birthplace in 853/1449-1450, and 
settled in the neighbouring village of Taft. He died there 
in 858/1454, and was buried in the precincts of a college 
built by himself and called after him Sharafiyya" 

Some manuscripts of the Zafar-ndma contain "an Intro- 
duction treating of the genealogy of the Turkish Khans and 
of the history of Chingiz Khan and his descendants down 
to the time of Timur 2 ." This was compiled in 822/1419, 

1 See Erskine's History of India, vol. i, pp. 45 and 49 ; and the 
History of the Moghuls of Central Asia, by N. Elias and E. D. Ross, 
p. 74 (ch. xxxvi), and pp. 84-5 and 155. 

2 Rieu, Pers. Cat., pp. 174-5. 

CH. v] THE HURtiFt HERESY 365 

six years earlier than the Zafar-ndma. It is instructive to 
compare parallel sections of the histories of Nizamu'd- 
Dfn Shami and Sharafu'd-Din 'AH Yazdi, so as to see how 
the latter has amplified and embroidered the work of his 
predecessor ; and, did space allow, it would not be without 
interest to offer side by side translations of such parallel 
passages, e.g. the account of the Battle of Angora (June 16, 
1402), which resulted in the overthrow and capture of the 
Ottoman Sultan Bayazi'd, called " the Thunder-bolt " ( Yil- 
dirini). Since Sharafu'd-Di'n's later work, for all its faults 
of taste and style, probably contains all or nearly all the 
matter chronicled by Nizam-i-Shamf, it is doubtful whether 
the work of the latter, though more desirable in itself on 
account of its priority, as well as of its greater simplicity 
and concision, will ever be published. 


Before concluding this chapter, it is necessary to say 
something about the strange heretical sect of 
the ff urji ff s ( Literalists ") invented and pro- 
pagated by a certain Fadlu'llah of Astarabad 
in the reign of Timur ; a sect worthy of attention not only 
on account of its extraordinary doctrines and considerable 
literature (including not a little poetry, especially in Turkish), 
but on account of events of some historical importance, per- 
secutions on the one hand and assassinations on the other, 
to which it gave rise. The sect does not seem to have main- 
tained its position long in Persia, but it passed over into 
Turkey and there found a suitable medium for its develop- 
ment in the order of the Bektashi dervishes, who are at the 
present day its chief if not its only representatives. 

Concerning this sect and its founder the Persian historians 
of the period are unaccountably silent, and the only reference 
to it which I have met with occurs in the Mujmal of Fasihi 
of Khwaf under the year 829/1426, and in a fuller form in 


the Habibu's-Siyar 1 , which places the event described a year 
later. On the 23rd Rabf ii, 829 (March 4, 1426), or on the 
same day of the month of the following year (Feb. 21, 1427), 
a certain Ahmad-i-Lur, described as " a disciple (murtct) of 
Mawlana Fadlu'llah of Astarabad," on the usual pretence 
of presenting a petition to Shah-rukh, Timur's son and suc- 
cessor, stabbed him in the stomach as he was leaving the 
mosque at Herat, without, however, inflicting a mortal 
wound. The would-be assassin was killed on the spot by 
one of the King's servants named 'AH Sultan Quchin ; a 
fortunate thing for him, as he was undoubtedly saved 
thereby from torture, but subsequently a matter of regret to 
Mirzd Baysunqur and the nobles charged with the investiga- 
tion of the matter, who were thus deprived of a valuable 
clue. However, they found in the dead man's pocket the 
key of a certain house, the tenants of which being examined 
cast suspicion on a certain Mawlana Ma'ruf, a notable calli- 
graphist, scholar and wit, who had formerly been in the 
service of Sultan Ahmad-i-Jala'ir at Baghdad, and after- 
wards in that of Mirza Iskandar of Shi'raz, whence Shah-rukh 
had brought him to Herat. Here he had associated with 
many men of letters, dervishes and others, and apparently 
amongst them with Ahmad-i-Lur. Baysunqur Mfrza, who 
had a private grudge against him, wished to put him to 
death, but, after he had been brought beneath the gallows 
several times, he was finally imprisoned in a dungeon of the 
Castle of Ikhtiyaru'd-Dfn. Others, more unfortunate, were 
put to death and their bodies burned. Amongst these was 
Khwaja 'Adudu'd-Din, the grandson of Fadlu'llah of Astar- 
abad the Hurufi. The poet Sayyid Qasimu'l-Anwar, of 
whom we shall speak in another chapter, also incurred some 
suspicion, and was expelled from Herat by Mi'rz& Bay- 

1 Vol. iii, pt 3, pp. 127-8. I have published a full translation of the 
passage in the Mujmal in the special number of the Mus/on pub- 
lished by the Cambridge University Press in 1915, pp. 48-78. See 
also Price's Retrospect, vol. iii, pt 2, pp. 546-7. 


One of the few notices of Fadlu'llah "al-Hurufi" which 
Account of I have met with occurs in the Inbd of Ibn Hajar 
JuWnnNbn 6 al-'Asqalani (died 852/I448-9) 1 and runs as 

Hajar's Inbd folloWS : 

" Fadlu'llah, the son of Abu Muhammad of Tabriz, was one of those 
innovators who subject themselves to ascetic discipline. Imbued with 
heretical doctrine, he finally evolved the sect known as the Huriifis, 
pretending that the Letters \_Hur&f\ of the alphabet were metamor- 
phoses of men, together with many other idle and baseless fancies. He 
invited the Amir Timur the Lame [Tamerlane] to adopt his heresies, 
but he sought to slay him. This came to the knowledge of his [Timur's] 
son [Mfranshdh] with whom he [Fadlu'lldh] had sought refuge, and he 
struck off his head with his own hand. When this was made known 
to Timur, he demanded his head and body and burned them both in 
this year 804/1401-2." 

The doctrines of Fadlu'llah were originally set forth in 
a most extraordinary book, written partly in Arabic, partly 

in Persian, and partly in a dialect of Persian, 
5^lT*' fn entitled Jdwiddn-i-Kabir (" the Great Eternal "), 

of which manuscripts exist in the library of 
St Sofia at Constantinople, at Leyden, in the British Museum 
(Or. 5957), in the Cambridge University Library (EE. i. 27), 
and in my own collection. The first European description 
of this curious book was, I believe, the brief notice of the 
Leyden MS. contained in vol. iv (p. 298) of the old Leyden 
Catalogue of 1866, the author of which observes "alternum 
exemplar non vidi obvium." A much fuller account of 
the work was published by M. Clement Huart in the Journal 
Asiatique for iSSp 2 under the title Notice d'un manuscrit 
pehlevi-musulman, and was based on the Constantinople MS., 
which was apparently labelled not by its proper title but as 
"Questions connected with the Qur'dn." M. Huart did not 
concern himself with the contents so much as with the 
language of this manuscript, which he did not at that time 

1 This book is not accessible to me, but the passage in question is 
cited by Fliigel at pp. vii-viii of the preface to vol. ii of his edition of 
Hajji Khalffa's Kashfu'z-Zunun. 

2 viii e SeVie, t xiv, pp. 238-70. 


recognize as the Jdwiddn-i-Kabir, or as the chief text-book 
of the Hurufis, or as the work of Fadlu'llah of Astarabad. 
In my Catalogue of the Persian Manuscripts in the Library 
of the University of Cambridge^ published in 1896, I devoted 
a long notice (pp. 69-86) to our excellent copy of the 
Jdwiddn-i-Kabir, which was "bought at Constantinople, 
Oct. 1 68 1, price ten Lion dollars." A feature of special 
interest in this manuscript is an appendix containing ac- 
counts, written in a dialect of Persian explained to some 
extent by interlinear glosses in red, of a series of dreams 
seen presumably by Fadlu'llah himself. Many of these are 
dated, the earliest in 765/1363-4, "at a time before the 
explanation of visions and interpretation of dreams was 
vouchsafed"; the latest in 796/1393-4. They thus cover 
a period of thirty years, and contain references to a number 
of places and persons. Amongst the former are 

Persons and r 

places mentioned Astarabad, Baghdad, Baku, Burujird, Damghan, 

in connection , , . , , _ . T . , . 

with Fadiu'iiah's Kgypt, r iruz-kuh, Iraq, Isfahan (especially a 
buildingtherecalled 'Imdrat-i- TukhjiQr Tuqcht), 
Khwarazm, Mesopotamia (Jazfra), Qazwin, Samarqand, 
Tabriz, and the two celebrated strongholds of the Assassins, 
Rudbar (near Astarabad) and the Fortress of Gird-i-Kuh. 
Amongst the latter are Amir Tfmur (Tamerlane), " King " 
Uways 1 , Tuqtamish Khan 2 , Pir Pasha, Sayyid 'Imadu'd- 
Din (i.e. the Turkish Hurufi poet Nesimi 3 ), Sayyid Shamsu 
'd-Dfn, Sayyid Taju'd-Din, Khwaja Fakhru'd-Dfn, Khwaja 
Hasan, Khwaja Bayazi'd, Mawlana Kamalu'd-Dfn, Mawlana 
Mahmud, Mawlana Majdu'd-Din, Mawlana Qiwamu'd-Din, 
Mawlana Sadru'd-Din, Shaykh Hasan, Shaykh Mansur, 
Malik 'Izzu'd-Din, Amir Shams, Darwfsh Tawakkul, Dar- 
wish Musafir, Darwish Kamalu'd-Din, 'Abdu'r-Rahim, 'Ab- 
du'1-Qadir, Husayn Kiya, 'Umar-i-Sultaniyya, and Yusuf 
of Damghan. 

1 Presumably Shaykh Uways the Jald'ir, who reigned 757-777/1356- 
1375. 2 See p. 321 supra. 

3 See Gibb's History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. i, pp. 343-68. He 
was flayed alive for heresy in 820/1417-18. 


The accounts of these dreams, even with the aid of the 
interlinear glosses which explain most of the words in dialect, 
are very elliptical and difficult to understand, being ap- 
parently mere memoranda sufficient to recall the vision to 
the memory of the writer. They seem to form no part of 
the Jdwiddn-i-Kabir, and do not, I think, occur in most 
copies of it. 

On Oct. 23, 1896, soon after the publication of my 
Catalogue, my friend the late Mr E. J. W. Gibb called my 
attention in a letter to the fact that in several Turkish bio- 
graphies of poets (such as those of Lati'fi and ' Ashiq Chelebi) 
the Turkish poet Nesimf mentioned in the last paragraph 
but one is described as "the Hurufi," and his connection 
with Fadlu'llah is established by some of his own verses, e.g.: 

" If thou would'st gain knowledge of wisdom's lore, come hither, O sage ; 
Hearken to the speech of Nesimi and behold the Grace of God" 
[Fadlu'llah] ! 

Mr Gibb, following up this clue, devoted a chapter (the 

seventh, pp. 336-388) in the first volume of his 

Sifthe'hutot 65 History of Ottoman Poetry to the Hurufis, and 

of the Turkish especially to two of the Turkish Hurufi poets, 

Hurufis r J 

Nesimi 1 and Refi'i, of whom the latter was a 
disciple of the former. Mr Gibb was unable to trace the 
Hurufis beyond the middle of the seventeenth century, but 
gives (pp. 381 et seqq.} two interesting extracts from Turkish 
chronicles showing the fierce persecution of which the sect 
was on several occasions the object. The first extract (from 
the Memoirs of Turkish Divines entitled Shaqd'iqu'n-Nu'- 
mdniyya, which Gibb renders as "the Crimson Peony") 

1 Nesimi, who was a native of Baghdad, was bilingual, and his 
Diivdn includes a Persian as well as a Turkish section. Both were 
printed at Constantinople in one thin volume in 1298/1881. Mr Gibb 
calls Nesfmi " the first true poet of the Western Turks, the only true 
poet of this far-off period." 

B. P. 24 


relates how the Persian Mufti of Constantinople, Fakhru'd- 
Din-i-'Ajami, a pupil of as-Sayyid ash-Sharif al-Jurjani 1 , 
seized and caused to be burned to death as heretics certain 
Hurufis who had succeeded in gaining the confidence and 
favour of the reigning Sultan Muhammad II, the "Conqueror" 
of Constantinople, who, apparently, for all his power, was 
unable to protect them from the fury of the 'ulamd and the 
fanaticism of the orthodox. It is even related that the Mufti 
was so carried away by his religious zeal that, in blowing the 
fire kindled for his victims, he singed the long beard for 
which he was conspicuous. The second extract (from 
Latffi's Biographies of Turkish poets) denounces the heresies 
and " blasphemous nonsense " of a Huruff poet named Ta- 
manna'i, who with others of the sect was put to death by 
sword and fire in the reign of Sultan Bayazid, who, as we 
have seen above 2 , was defeated by Ti'mur at the Battle of 
Angora in 804/1402 and died soon after. As it was in this 
same year that Fadlu'llah the Huruff was put to death 3 , it 
is evident that his doctrines had become widely diffused 
(from Astarabad to Adrianople) even during his life-time, 
and that they aroused the fiercest execration of the orthodox. 
Mr Gibb says that as he had failed to discover any record of 
later movements on the part of the Hurufis, he was inclined 
to think that the activity of the sect did not extend much 
beyond the close of the fifteenth century ; and that such 
organization as it may have possessed was probably de- 
stroyed in the persecutions to which it was sub- 

The BektAshi . j 1.1 c TH ' i T> .1 

Order of der- jected in the reign of Bayazid. But as a matter 
vishesisthe Q f f act their activity continues down to the 

present reposi- 

tory of Hunifi present day, the Bektashi dervishes being still 

doctrines . _ 

the representatives and repositonesof the Hurufi 

1 See p. 355 supra. 

2 Pp. 197-9 supra. Gibb thinks that Bayazfd II (reigned 886- 
918/1481-1512) is meant, since in his reign, in 897/1492, there was, 
according to the historian Sa'du'd-Dm, a fierce persecution of "the 
Qalandars " in consequence of an attempt on the Sultan's life made by 
one of them. 

3 See p. 367 supra, but compare also p. 374. 


doctrines. As lately as 1291/1874-5 there was published 
a Turkish denunciation of the sect entitled " the Revealer 
of Mysteries and Repeller of Miscreants : a Refutation of 
the Doctrines and Practices of the Hurufis and Bektashis," 
by Ishaq Efendi, who is very well informed concerning the 
matters about which he writes and gives a clear and accurate 
account of the doctrines which he denounces. He divides 
his treatise into three chapters, of which the first treats of 
the origin of Fadl[u'llah] the Hurufi', and the principles and 
laws of certain of the Bektashis ; the second of the blas- 
phemies of Firishta-zada's Jdwiddn ; and the third of the 
blasphemies contained in the other Jdwiddns. He men- 
tions a persecution of the Bektashis by Sultan Mahmud in 
1241/1825-6, in which the Turkish poet 'Arif Hikmat Bey 
acted as chief inquisitor ; and says that he was moved to the 
compilation and publication of his work by the impudence 
of the Bektashis in daring to print and publish the 'Ishq-ndma, 
or " Book of Love," of Firishta-zada ('Abdu'l-Majfd ibn 
Firishta Tzzu'd-Din) in 1288/1871-2. He says that "the 
books which these persons (i.e. the Bektashis or Hurufis) 
call Jdwiddn are six in number, of which one was composed 
by their original misleader Fadlu'llah the Hurufi, while the 
other five are the works of his Khaltfas" (Vice-gerents or 
Successors). "In these five books," he adds, "their heresies 
and blasphemies are very evident, and they are wont to 
teach and study them secretly amongst themselves " ; but 
" Firishta-zada in his Jdwiddn, entitled 'Ishq-ndma, did in 
some measure conceal his blasphemies." 

" After a while," continues the author, " the evil doctrines of those 
heretics became known amongst men, and the son of Timur \yiz. 
Mfrinshah] caused Fadl the Hurufi to be put to death, after which he 
tied a rope to his legs, had him dragged publicly through the streets 
and bazaars, and rid this nether world of his vile existence. 

" Thereupon his Khalifas (vicars or lieutenants) agreed to disperse 
themselves through the lands of the Muslims, and devoted themselves 
to corrupting and misleading the people of Islam. He of those Khalifas 
who bore the title of al-'Ali al-A'ld ('the High, the Supreme') came to 
the monastery of Hajji Bektash in Anatolia and there lived in seclusion, 



secretly teaching the Jdividdn to the inmates of the monastery, with 
the assurance that it represented the doctrine of Hajji Bektash the 
saint (waif). The inmates of the monastery, being ignorant and foolish, 
accepted the Jdividdn, notwithstanding that its obvious purport was 
the denial of all divine obligations and the pandering to the lusts of the 
flesh ; named it 'the secret' ; and enjoined the utmost reticence concerning 
it, to such a degree that if anyone enters their order and afterwards 
reveals ' the secret,' they consider his life as forfeit. By this their so- 
called ' secret' are meant certain blasphemous passages in \h&Jdwiddn, 
hinted at by detached letters like alif (1), vudw (*),jim (~,), and zayn ( ;), 

for the interpreting of which symbols they have compiled a treatise 
entitled 'the Key of Life' (Miftdhu'l-Haydt). This they name 'the 
Secret,' and should one possess it he understands the Jdwiddn, which 
without this aid is unintelligible. They were thus careful to conceal 
their secret for fear lest the doctors of religion (^ulama) should obtain 
some inkling of its nature and should suppress it ; and thus, since 
800/1397-8, they have succeeded in secretly seducing many." 

The author then goes on to expose and denounce the 
different tricks and stratagems by which they strive to win 
men, both Muslims and non-Muslims, to their heresies, and 
adds : 

" From all this it is plain that these people [the Bektashis] are not 
really Shf'ites, but are essentially a polytheistic sect [Mushrikuri^ who, 
though unable to win over to themselves the Jews and Christians, how- 
ever much they affirm their doctrines, do attract some of those Muslims 
who are partial to the Shi'ite doctrine. So when I questioned certain 
Bektashi neophytes, they declared themselves to be of the Ja'fari [i.e. 
the Imami or Shi'a] sect, and knew nothing of the mysteries of the 
Jdividdn, imagining themselves to be of the Shf'a. But when I enquired 
of a learned Persian traveller named Mi'rza Safa his opinion concerning 
the Bektashis, he replied, ' I have associated much with them, and have 
carefully investigated their religion, and they deny [the necessity of] 
actions prescribed by the Holy Law.' He thus decisively declared 
their infidelity. We take refuge with God from their ignorance ! " 

During the Easter Vacation of 1897 1 had the opportunity 
of examining with some care two Hurufi manuscripts be- 
longing to the Bibliotheque Nationale at Paris 1 , which I 
described in the J.R.A.S. for 1898 (pp. 61-94) in an article 

1 They bear the class-marks Ancien Fonds Persan 24, and Suppl. 
Persan 107. 

The Istiiud- 


entitled " Some Notes on the Literature and Doctrines of 
the Hunan' Sect." One of these MSS., dated 970/1562-3, 
contains the Istiwd-ndma of Amir Ghiyathu'd- 
Dfn, a mathnawi poem in Persian on Alexander 
the Great's quest after the Water of Life, and 
a glossary of the dialect words occurring in the Jdwiddn-i- 
Kabtr. The other, dated 895/1489-90, contains 
the Mahabbat-ndma, of which there is reason 
to believe that Fadlu'llah himself was the 

Nine years later, in the J.R.A.S. for 1907, I published 
another article on this subject entitled " Further Notes on 
the Literature of the Hurufis and their connection with the 
Bektashf Order of Dervishes," in which I described 43 Hu- 
rufi MSS. recently acquired by the British Museum, the 
Cambridge University Library, and myself. Concerning 
the manner in which these MSS. were obtained I then wrote 
as follows : 

"The connection of the Hurufis with the Bektashis first became 
known to me in the following manner. About three years after the 
publication of the article to which I have referred above, a certain 
dealer in Oriental manuscripts in London, a native of Baghdad, from 
whom I had already purchased a number of MSS., invited me to furnish 
him with a list of my desiderata, in order that he might submit the same 
to his correspondents in the East. I did so, and mentioned in my list 
the JdwidAn-ndma or any other Hurufi books. Shortly afterwards (in 
Feb.-March, 1901) he forwarded to me a parcel of manuscripts in 
which was included a copy of this work (now in the British Museum, 
marked Or. 5957) besides some other books of the sort in question. 
The prices set on these MSS. were high, but some half-dozen were 
secured by the Cambridge University Library, while five or six more 
were purchased by the British Museum, and now bear the class-marks 
Or- 5957-O r - 5Q6i- 

" The comparatively high prices realized by these MSS. seem to have 
stimulated the search for other similar ones, and gradually, as the 
supply not only continued but increased, it became clear that these 
Hurufi books existed in considerable quantities, and were still widely 
read and copied in the East, especially in Turkey. Prices consequently 
fell rapidly, and latterly few of these MSS. have fetched more than 2 
or ^3 in the limited market where the demand for them existed. Nor 


was it long before we discovered that it was from the Bektashf dervishes 
that they were, in almost all cases, directly or indirectly derived, and 
that it is amongst the members of this Order that the Hurufi doctrines 
flourish at the present day." 

Amongst the MSS. described in this article are two or 
three treatises dealing with the biography and teachings of 
Hajji Bektash, from whom the Order in question derives 
its name, and who died in 73 8/ 13 37-8 1 , two years before 
the birth of Fadlu'llah the Huruff. This latter date, with 
five others connected with the early history of the sect, is 
recorded on the fly-leaf of one of the British Museum MSS. 
(Or. 6381) as follows : 

(l). Birth of Fadlu'llah, 740/1339-1340. 

(2) Manifestation or annunciation of his doctrine, 788/ 

(3) Martyrdom of Fadlu'lldh, 796/1 393-4, aged 56 lunar 

(4) Death of his Khalifa " Hadrat-i-'Aliyyu'l-A'la," 

(5) Death of Timur's son Mi'ranshah (whom the Hurufis 
called "Antichrist," Dajjdl, and " the King of Snakes," Md- 
rdn-shdh\ who slew Fadlu'llah, 803/1400-1. 

From a verse on the same page it would appear that 
Fadlu'llah performed the pilgrimage to Mecca in 775/1373-4. 
On a page of another of these MSS. in the British Museum 
(Or. 6380, f. 24) is inscribed a curious document which 
appears to be Fadlu'llah's last Will and Testament. From 
this, of which the text and translation are printed in full in 
the article in question 2 , it would appear that he was put to 
death at Shirwan. The article concludes with a complete 
index of all the books and persons mentioned in it. The 
titles of most of the books, whether Persian or Turkish, end 
in ndma; e.g. Adam-ndma ("the Book of Adam "), Akhirat- 

1 The authority for this date is Mu'allim Najf (Esdmt, p. 106). By 
a curious coincidence this date is yielded by the sum of the letters 
composing the word Bektdshiyya, the name of the order. 

2 Pp. 9-10 of the separate reprint from the J. JR. A. S. for July, 1907. 


ndma ("the Book of the Hereafter"), 'Arsh-ndma ("the 
Book of the Throne "), Bashdrat-ndma (" the Book of Good 
Tidings "), etc. 

In 1909 there was published in the "E. J. W. Gibb 
Memorial " Series a volume (vol. ix) containing translations 
into French of several Hurufi treatises, with explanatory 
notes, etc., by M. Cle'ment Huart, followed by a study of 
the Hurufi doctrines (also in French) by Dr Riza Tevfiq, 
commonly known in Turkey as " Feylesiif Rizd " or " Riza 
the Philosopher," a man remarkable for his attainments in 
the learning of both East and West, and an adept in all 
that appertains to the various Dervish Orders of Turkey, 
especially the Bektashi's. This volume, by far the most 
important independent work on the subject, is a rich mine 
of information on the strange and fantastic doctrines of a 
sect which, though its very name seems to have been un- 
known in Europe twenty years ago, played a not unimportant 
part in the history of Western Asia. Its characteristic 
doctrines, equally ingenious and grotesque, are pretty fully 
discussed in the books and articles mentioned above, to 
which such as desire fuller knowledge of them may be 



(A.H. 807-907 = A.D. 1405-1502). 



The century which we are now about to consider is in its 
latter part one of those chaotic and anarchical periods which, 
character of the m P ers i an history, commonly follow the death of 
century which a great conqueror and empire-builder. It in- 
forms the subject 11.1 /-^ITTLI T- 

of the remainder eludes the rise of the Uzbek power m Trans- 
of this volume oxiana ; the gradual decay and disruption of the 
vast empire built up by Tfmur at so great a cost of blood 
and suffering; the successive domination of two Turkman 
dynasties known as the "Black" and "White Sheep" (Qdra- 
qoyiinlii and Aq-qoyiinlii) ; and the appearance and triumph 
of the Safawis, the greatest of modern Persian dynasties, 
who may be regarded in a certain sense as the creators, or 
at least the restorers, of Persian national sentiment in 
modern times. It begins with the death of Ti'mur in 8o7/ 
1405, and ends with the Battle of Shurur, in 907/1501-2, in 
which Shah Isma'il the Safawi utterly defeated the "White 
Sheep" Turkmans, made Tabriz his capital, and was crowned 
king of Persia; though it took him some years to extend 
his sway over the whole country, until, as Stanley Lane- 
Poole says, "his dominions stretched from the Oxus to the 
Persian Gulf, from Afghanistan to the Euphrates." 

When examined more closely, this period of a century 
is seen to fall naturally into two unequal halves, divided by 
The death of tne death of Tfmur's third son Shah-rukh in 
Snah-rukhin 850/1446-7. As long as he lived and reigned, 

1446 divides this . . . . . e .^ 

period into two he succeeded, in spite of numerous revolts on 
dissimilar pans ^g p art o f hj s kinsmen, in maintaining almost 
in its integrity the empire conquered by his father, which, 
however, after his death underwent rapid disintegration at 
the hands first of the "Black" and then of the "White Sheep" 


Turkmans, and lastly of the Uzbeks, until these in their 
turn, together with the remnants of the House of Timur, 
were swept aside by the victorious Shah Isma'il the Safawi. 
But though the House of Timur was driven out of Persia, 
The Timurids it was still destined to play a splendid part in 
after their expui- India, where Zahiru'd-Din Muhammad Babur, 

sion from Persia, , , ' r _, . , , . 

play a brilliant *C great-great-great-grandson of I imur, driven 
pan in India ou t by the Uzbeks from his own principality of 
Farghana, founded the dynasty commonly known in Europe 
as the " Great Moguls," which endured there for more than 
three centuries and finally disappeared in the great Mutiny 
of 1857. With the "Great Moguls" of India we are not 
directly concerned in this book, save in so far as they came 
into relations with the Persian Safawis ; but though the 
political importance of the later Tfmurids in Persia con- 
tinually decreased after the death of Shah-rukh, the courts 
of their diminished realms continued to be a centre of 
literary activity, enriched by the presence of numerous cele- 
brated poets and men of letters, while several princes of 
this House, notably Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn b. Mansur 
b. Bayqara, Ulugh Beg, Baysunqur and the great Bibur him- 
self, made notable contributions to literature or science, and 
Mfr 'Ah' ShirNawa'f, Ministerof Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn, 
was at once a notable poet (especially in the Turki tongue) 
and a generous patron of men of letters, so that the literary 
splendour of Herat under the later Timurids is comparable 
to that of Ghazua under Sultan Mahmud. 

From the political point of view the most important 
representatives of the dynasties mentioned above were 
Shah-rukh of the House of Ti'mur ; Qara Yusuf of the 
"Black Sheep" Turkmans; Uzun Hasan of the "White 
Sheep" Turkmans; Shaybani Khan of the Uzbeks; and, 
chief of all, Shah Isma'il the founder of the great Safawi 

dynasty. Of Uzun ("Tall" or "Long") Hasan 
to^zd^HasaiT we P ossess contemporary European accounts 

in the narratives of Caterino Zeno, Josafa 
Barbaro and Ambrosio Contarini, ambassadors from Venice 


to this great ruler (whom they variously call "Ussun 
Cassano" and "Assambei"), whose assistance against the 
increasingly formidable power of the Ottoman Turks they 
desired to gain. They successively visited Persia for this 
purpose between the years A.D. 1471 and 1478, and their 
narratives, full of interest and life-like touches seldom found 
in the pages of Persian historians of this period, have been 
published in English by the Hakluyt Society in a volume 
entitled Six Narratives of Travel in Persia by Italians in 
the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries^. 

Before considering in greater detail these Turkman 

dynasties of the "Black" and "White Sheep," the history 

of the House of Ti'mur, so far as its connection 

Timiir's sons ?. i i i 

with Persia is concerned, must be briefly traced. 
Ti'mur had four sons and a daughter. Of his sons the eldest, 
Jahangir, predeceased his father by thirty years; and the 
second, 'Umar Shaykh Mi'rza,by ten years. The third, Mfrdn- 
shah, survived him by three years, but fell into disgrace and 
appears to have become affected in his reason. The fourth 
was Shah-rukh, who practically succeeded his father, and 
had a long and prosperous reign of forty-three years (807- 
850/1404-1447). Ti'mur's intention was that Jahdngir's son 
Pir Muhammad should succeed him, but he was defeated 
by his cousin Khalil Sultan, son of Mi ran shah, who succeeded 

in taking possession of Samarqand and gaining 
Kham'suitdn *^ e su PP or t of several powerful nobles, and was 

finally murdered two years after his grandfather's 
death by his trusted minister 'All Taz or Pir 'All. Khalil 
Sultdn, though not without parts, was undone by his infatua- 
tion for the courtesan Shad Malak, whose extravagant whims 
he was ever ready to gratify, to the disgust of his nobles 
and officers, who, headed by the two Khuda-dads and Bardi 

1 The three other narratives are the Discourse of Giovan Battista 
Ramusio on the "writings of Giovan Maria which are 
narrated the life and deeds of Ussun Cassano; the Travels of a Merchant 
in Persia (in the time of Shah Isma'fl) ; and the Narrative of Vincentio 
tf Allesandri, Venetian Ambassador to Shdh Tahmasp. 


Beg, presently rose against him, deposed him, and banished 
him to Kashghar. Thereupon his uncle Shah-rukh marched 
in and took possession, but had sufficient kindliness to re- 
unite the unhappy Khah'l to his beloved Shad Malak, who 
showed her appreciation of his devotion by stabbing herself 
with a poniard when he died. The two were buried together 
in the same tomb at Ray 1 . Khah'l Sultan was not only a 
generous patron of poets but himself wrote verse, of which 
several specimens are recorded by Dawlatshah 2 . 

Shah-rukh, who now succeeded to the throne, was born 

in 779/1377, and was therefore 28 years of age at the time 

of his accession. He had been made governor 


(reigned A.D. of Khurasan in his twentieth year (799/1396-7), 
1404-1447) anc j wag a j reac jy practically absolute in that 
province and struck coins in his own name. His dominions 
were successively enlarged by the addition of Mazandar^n 
(809/1406-7), Transoxiana(8n/i4o8-9),Fars(8i7/i4i4-5), 
Kirman (819/1416-7) and Adharbayjan (823/1420). The 
attempt on his life by Ahmad-i-Lur, alluded to in the last 
chapter 3 , was made in 830/1427, and he finally died at Ray 
in 850/1447, after a reign of 43 years at the age of 72. He 
waged successful wars against the rulers of the "Black 
Sheep" dynasty, Qara Yiisuf and his son Iskandar, but on 
the whole, as Sir John Malcolm says 4 , "he desired not to 
extend, but to repair, the ravages committed by his father. 
He rebuilt the walls of the cities of Herat and Merv, and 
restored almost every town and province in his dominions 
to prosperity. This Prince also encouraged men of science 
and learning, and his Court was very splendid. He culti- 
vated the friendship of contemporary monarchs, and we read 
in the pages of his historian a very curious account of some 

1 This is Sir John Malcolm's version (Hist, of Persia, ed. 1815, 
vol. i, p. 486), for which his authority is De Guignes. Dawlatshah, 
however (p. 354), says that the rebellious nobles cut off Shdd Malak's 
ears and nose, and makes no mention of her reunion with Khah'l 

2 Pp. 355-6 of my edition. 

3 See p. 366 supra. 4 Op. tit., \, p. 487. 



Add. 7468 (Brit. Mus.), f. 44 

To face p. 382 


embassies which passed between him and the Emperor of 
China 1 ." 

With this estimate of Shah-rukh's character the most 
recent native historian of Persia, Mirza Muhammad Husayn 
Khan Zukaul-Mulk, poetically surnamed Fu- 
charaoeriJ rAghijs in complete agreement 2 . " After Timur," 
depicted by he says, "his son Mirza Shah-rukh sat in the 
place of his father. He was a successor who 
was the exact opposite of his predecessor, a peaceful and 
placable man, never prone to war and contention, save with 
seditious rebels and such as sought means to create dis- 
turbances in the empire, whom he deemed it necessary to 
suppress. In brief, the Empire founded by Timur was 
refined by the efforts of Mirza Shah-rukh, who during a 
long period busied himself in repairing the devastation 
wrought by his father, and in informing himself as to the 
condition of his subjects and compassing their happiness. 
It is an extraordinary fact that the son of one so hard- 
hearted should be so kindly, amiable, gracious and friendly 
to learning, showing favour and courtesy to all, especially 
to scholars and men of parts. Ogotay Khan, the son of 
Chingiz Khan, had a somewhat similar disposition and 
practice, and in particular he has left on the page of history 
a great reputation for generosity, so that he has been entitled 
'the Hatim 3 of later days'; and we have met with many 
anecdotes concerning his liberality and tenderness of heart 
in the pages of former writers." 

Dawlatshah 4 is equally flattering, and, with his usual 
exaggeration, goes so far as to say that " from the time of 

1 He received an embassy of Khidr Khn from India in 824/1421, 
and sent one to the Turkish Sultdn Mura"d (Amurath) II in 839/1435-6. 
(Munajjim-ba'shfs Sahtfifu'l-Akhbdr^ vol. iii, pp. 56-7.) Further 
mention of the embassies to China and India will be made later on 
in this chapter. 

2 Tdrikh-i-frdn, lith. Tihrdn, A.H. 1323 (1905), pp. 266-7. 

3 Hitim of the tribe of Tayy was celebrated amongst the old Arabs 
for his generosity. 

4 Pp. 336-8 of my edition. 


Adam until this our day no age, period, cycle or moment 
can be indicated in which the people enjoyed such peace 
The same an< ^ tranquillity as they did in his [Shah-rukh's] 

according to days." He adds that such were the virtues of 
this Prince that he was credited with miraculous 
gifts and knowledge of the Unseen. Of the two instances 
of this which Dawlatshah gives, one rests on the authority 
of his father, who was one of his familiar attendants. Ulti- 
mately,however,accordingtothis writer, Shcih-rukh incurred 
the Divine displeasure by putting to death three learned 
and pious men of Isfahan whom he suspected of having 
encouraged his grandson Sultan Muhammad Baysunqur in 
his revolt against him. These cursed him ere they died, 
and "the doors of Heaven being open, the prayers of those 
innocent and illustrious victims were answered ; the seed of 
that highly-placed king was cut off, and the sovereignty 
returned to its original source." Amongst the many artists, 
poets and men of learning contemporary with Shah-rukh 
Dawlatshah 1 mentions four in particular as conferring special 
lustre on his court, namely 'Abdu'l-Qadir of Maragha the 
musician (who is mentioned by Munajjim-bdshi^ as one of 
the eminent victims of the plague which afflicted Herat in 
838/1434-5), Yusuf of Andakan the minstrel, Qiwamu'd- 
Dfn the engineer and architect, and Mawlana Khah'l the 
painter, who in skill was "second only to Mam" (Manes). 

The Turkish historian Munajjim-bdshP speaks not less 

favourably than the writers already cited of Shah-rukh's 

character. " He was," says he, " a wise, just, 

The same . . 

according to prudent and benevolent king, prone to forgive 
Munajjim-bashi and tQ do sood ^ devout) temperate and pious, 

so that alike at home and on the march, nay, even in time 

1 P. 340 of my edition. 

2 Sahifitl-Akhbdr,vQ\. iii,p. 57 (Constantinople, A.H. 1285). This 
useful history was originally composed in Arabic by Ahmad-Dede 
Efendi ibn Lutfu'llah, and comes down to 1083/1672. The Turkish 
translation was made in 1132/1720 by Ahmad b. Muhammad Nadfm 
for the Grand Wazir Damad Ibrahim Pasha. 

3 Ibid., p. 58. 


of war and battle, he never neglected the morning, noon and 
evening prayers, while on ' white days ' and on the first day 
of each month he used to fast, and on the eve of Fridays, 
Mondays and Thursdays he used to assemble those who 
knew the QuSdn by heart and cause them to recite the entire 
scripture in his presence. During the whole period of his 
life he never knowingly committed a major sin. He con- 
tinually sought the society of learned and pious men, on 
whom he conferred the greatest benefits and favours. He 
never suffered defeat, but was always favoured by fortune 
and victorious. To whatever land he went, he first of all 
used to visit any shrine which might exist there." His 
empire, in the words of the same writer, extended " from 
the confines of China to the frontiers of Rum (Turkey in 
Asia), and from the remotest parts of Turkistan to the limits 
of India." 

Of Shah-rukh's five sons 1 only one, Ulugh Beg, survived 

to succeed him. Of the other four Baysunqur, who died of 

drink (the curse of this family) in 837/1433 at 

Baysunqur Mirzd .. 

the age of 37, was, perhaps, the most talented 2 , 
and the greatest patron of art and learning, to whose court 
flocked poets, artists, scholars, calligraphists, miniature- 
painters, book-binders and illuminators from 'Irdq, Fdrs, 
Adharbayjan, and all parts of Persia. In connection with 
Persian literature he is chiefly associated with the preface 
prefixed to the Shdh-ndma of Firdawsi in his name and 
composed for him in 829/1426. The following chronogram 
of his death is given in the Habibu's-Siyar: 

j\J A&9 Ui 

1 The remaining three sons were Abu'1-Fath Ibrahim (^838/1434-5), 
who was the patron of the historian Sharafu'd-Dm 'AH of Yazd ; 
Suyurghatmish (d. 830/1426-7) ; and Muhammad Juki (d. 848/1444-5). 

2 Habibu's-Siyar, vol. iii, part 3, p. 131 ; Munajjim-bashfs Sahd- 
'iftfl-Akhbdr, vol. iii, p. 66. He was especially interested in calligraphy. 

B. P. 25 


" In the morning that august prince B^ysunqur said to me, 
' Tell tidings of me to the people of the world : 
I am gone, and this is the date of my death 
May my father's life be long in the world 1 !'" 

Shah-rukh died near Ray on March 13, 1447, and, as 

stated above, was succeeded, though not peaceably, by his 

son Ulugh Beg, who had during his father's 

UlughBeg , * 

life-time been governor or 1 uran or 1 urkistan. 
It was during this period, in 824/1421, that he built at 
Samarqand his celebrated observatory, where, with the col- 
laboration of four eminent men of learning, Salahu'd-Dm 
Musa, called Qadi-Zada-i-Rumi ("the Turkish Judge's son") ; 
Mulla 'Ala'u'd-Di'n 'All Qiishjf, the commentator of the 
Tajrid; Ghiyathu'd-Din Jamshid; and Mu'inu'd-Din of 
Kashan, he compiled the notable astronomical tables known 
as the Zij-i- Ulugh Beg, or Zij-i-jadid-i-Sultdni, which were 
probably completed in 841/1437-8, and concerning which 
full particulars are given by Rieu 2 . 

Ulugh Beg, as already indicated, did not at once succeed 

in establishing his supremacy, which was contested by 

'Ala'u'd-Dawla, who seized Herat and cast 

Ulugh Beg is 

murdered by his ' Abdu'l-Latif, the son of Ulugh Beg, into prison. 
Nor did his authority, when established, endure 
long, for he was killed at the instigation of his son, the 
above-mentioned 'Abdu'l-Latif, on Ramadan 10,853 (October 
27, 1449) by a certain 'Abbas, the year of this tragic 
event being given by the chronogram ' 'Abbas killed \hini\ 

'Abdu'l-Latif, not content with the murder of his father, 

also murdered his brother 'Abdu'l-'Aziz, but did not long 

profit by his crime, for he in turn was murdered 

'Abdu'l-Latif .,- ,. n./uj' 

in the ensuing year, 854/1450, by a certain Joaba 

1 The sum of the letters composing this hemistich gives 837, the 
date of Baysunqur's death. 

2 Persian Catalogue, pp. 455-7, where the European editions and 
translations of this work are enumerated. See also Clements Markham's 
History of Persia, p. 224 ad calc. 


Husayn, this date, curiously enough, being given by the 
chronogram Bdbd Husayn killed \hini\ (c-JL^s O*~* > ^)- 
Mfrkhwand, in recording this event, cites the well-known 
dictum of the poet Nizami as to the short-lived prosperity 
of royal parricides : 

"The parricide is unworthy of sovereignty: 
[Even] if he attains it, he will not survive more than six months." 

"This'Abdu'l-Latff," says the Turkish historian Munajjim 
Bdsht 1 , "was a talented and accomplished man, but very 
impetuous, blood-thirsty and pitiless, so that men's hearts 
were turned aside from him. With his death the succession 
of Ulugh Beg came to an end in Transoxiana." 

From this period onwards until its extinction in Persia 

the House of Tfmur rapidly declined in power, cohesion 

and territorial possessions, and even the suc- 

'Abdu'llahb. . f , u 

ibrahimSuitanb. cession of rulers is somewhat uncertain, or, to 

be more precise, it is uncertain which should be 

accounted supreme and which subordinate. Thus Stanley 

Lane-Poole 2 regards 'Abdu'llah, the son of Ibrahim Sultan, 

the son of Shah-rukh, as the successor of 'Abdu'l-Latif ; 

while Mfrkhwand substitutes Mfrza Abu'l-Qasim Babur 

(not the great Babur), the son of Baysunqur, the son of 

Shah-rukh. He died in 861/1456-7. having lost 

Abu'l-Qasim ' 

Babur b. 'Iraq, Fars and Kirman four years previously 

Baysunqur ^ J ah nsh hj SQn Q f Q ar Y USUf of the " Black 

Sheep " Turkmans, and killed his brother Sultan Muham- 
mad, the expelled ruler of Fars, in battle. 

Mfrza 'Ala'u'd-Dawla, another son of Baysunqur, was 
acting as governor of Herat at the time of his grandfather 

Shah-rukh's death, but, after a certain show of 
b^Mysunq^ 13 opposition, he made peace with Ulugh Beg and 

Babur, and contented himself with the govern- 
ment of a district extending from Khabushan in Khurasan 

1 Op. tit., vol. iii, p. 65. 

2 Mohammadan Dynasties, p. 268. 



to Astarabad and Damghan. In 852/1448-9 he was defeated 
by Ulugh Beg near Herat and driven into Badakhshan and 
the Plain of Qipchaq. After various vicissitudes, including 
sundry wars with his brothers and a period of allegiance to 
Jahan-shah, the "Black Sheep" Turkman and enemy of his 
House, he finally died in 875/1470-1. His son Ibrahim, 
having escaped from the custody of his uncle Abu'l-Qasim 
Babur, fled to Murghab and there collected a considerable 

army. He occupied Herat and defeated his 
^AidVcUDawia c o usm Mfrz Shah Mahmud, whom he was 

preparing to crush at Astardbad when be was 
suddenly attacked by the redoubtable "Black Sheep" Turk- 
man Jahanshah. Abandoning Herat he fled before the 
invader, but returned on the withdrawal of the latter, only 
to suffer defeat at the hands of Sultan Abu Sa'i'd. He died 
in 863/1458-9 on the march from Damghan to Mashhad, 
and his cousin and rival, the above-mentioned Mfrza Shah 
Mahmud, was killed in the same year. 

Sultan Abu Sa'fd, the grandson of Miranshah,is described 
by Mirkhwand in the Rawdatus-Safd as " supreme amongst 

the princes of the House of Timur in high em- 

Sultan Abu 

Sa'id b. Sultan prise, lofty rank and perfect discernment. He 

Muhammad b. r J J c i i ^11- 

was a iriend and patron of scholars, theologians 

Timur anc j men O f letters, and during the period of 

his rule the lands of Turkistan, Turan, Khurasan, Zabulistan, 
Sfstan and Mazandaran attained the zenith of prosperity." 
He had in early life been attached to the court of his ac- 
complished kinsman Ulugh Beg, whose son 'Abdu'l-Latif, 
after murdering his father as already related, cast Abu Sa'fd 
into prison, whence, owing to the negligence of the sentries, 
he escaped to Bukhara. When 'Abdu'l-Latif in turn was 
killed, he marched out from Bukhara, and, after giving 
battle to his kinsman Abu Bakr, made himself supreme in 
Turkistan and Turan. In 861/1456-7 he captured Herat 
and put to death Gawhar Shad Khatun. In 862/1457-8 
Jahanshah invaded Khurasan and occupied Herat, but 
afterwards relinquished it to Abu Sa'i'd. Ten years later, 

CH. vi] ABtf SA'fD SLAIN BY tfZtfN HASAN 389 

in 872/1467-8, when Jahanshah was defeated and slain by 
Uzun Hasan, of the rival clan of the "White Sheep" Turk- 
mans, Abu Sa'i'd, hoping to profit by this circumstance, and 
encouraged by representations from 'Iraq, Fars, Kirman, 
Adharbayjan and other lost provinces, marched westwards 
against his new rival Uzun Hasan, by whom he was finally 
defeated and taken prisoner near Mayana. After three 
days his captor, having decided on his destruction, handed 
him over to Yadigar Muhammad, who put him to death to 
avenge the blood of his grandmother Gawhar Shad Khatun. 
The philosopher Jalalu'd-Din Da warn, author of the well- 
known ethical manual entitled Akhldq-i-Jaldti, commem- 
orated his death in the following chronogram 1 : 

By the Venetian travellers of this period, to whom we 

are indebted for much interesting information and indepen- 

, dent chronological details, Abu Sa'i'd is called 

Abu Sa'id called / ' 

"Busech"bythe "Busech"; while Uzun Hasan is called "Ussun 
Cassano," "Assimbeo," or "Assambei" (i.e. 
Hasan Beg), and Jahdnshah "Giansa." The towns of 'Urfa, 
Isfahan, Kashan,Qum,Yazd and Kharput appear as "Orphi," 
"Spaham" or " Spaan," " Cassan," " Como," "Jex" and 
" Carparth." It should be noted also that, apart from such 
well-known general histories as the Rawdatu's-Safd and 
Habibus-Siyar, the hitherto unpublished Matlctu's-Sctdayn 
. , , of Kamalu'd-Din 'Abdu's-Razzaq, a monograph 

Historical value 

ottheMatia'u'f- on the reigns of "the two Fortunate Planets," 

i.e. the two Abu Sa'i'ds (the Il-khanf Mongol, 

reigned 716/1316 736/1335, and the Tfmurid of whom we 

1 Given in the Rawdatds-Safd. The sum of the letters composing 
the last four words (40 + 100 + 400 + 30 + 60 + 30 + 9+1 + 50+1 + 2 
+ 6 + 60 + 70+10 + 4) gives the year of his death 873 (= A.D. 1468-9). 


are now speaking), which was completed in 875/1470-1, only 
two years after the later Abu Sa'id's death, affords a great 
wealth of material for the history of this period. 

Abu Sa'id was succeeded by two of his sons, Ahmad 

and Mahmud, who are accounted by Stanley Lane-Poole 

the last (eighth and ninth) rulers of the House 

M'a'hmudTthe of Timur in Persia and Central Asia. Of these 

sons of Suitan the first ruled in Transoxiana with Samarqand 

Abii Sa'id 

for his capital, and the second in Badakhshan, 
Khatlan, Tirmidh, etc. Both died, the latter by violence 
at the hands of the Uzbek Shaybani Khan, in the last years 
of the fifteenth century (899/1493-4 and 905/1499-1500 

Much more important than the two princes last men- 
tioned, from the literary if not from the political point of 
o , * TI v view, was Sultan Husayn b. Mansur b. Bayqara\ 

Sultan Husayn b. J J n 

Mansur b. whose court at Herat was one of the most 

brilliant centres of letters, art and learning 
which ever existed in Persia. This prince, originally at- 
tached to and protected by Ulugh Beg, was, on the death 
of this ruler and his son 'Abdu'l-Latif, cast into prison by 
Abu Sa'id, but escaped, joined Abu'l-Qasi'm Babur, and fled 
to Khwarazm or Khiva. In 862/1457-8 he captured Astar- 
abdd, the capital of the province of Gurgdn or Jurjan (the 
ancient Hyrcania) and was there crowned, but recognized 
Abu Sa'id as his suzerain and' placed himself under his 
protection. A year later Abu Sa'id again compelled him 
to take refuge in Khwarazm and occupied Astarabad, which, 
however, he shortly afterwards recovered, together with the 
rest of the provinces of Gurgan and Mazandaran. On the 
death of Abu Sa'id, Sultan Husayn captured Herat, and 
was crowned there on Ramadan 10, 872 (April 3, 1468), 
which date is regarded by Munajjim-bdshi as the beginning 
of his 38 years' reign, terminated by his death at the age of 
seventy years on Monday, 1 1 Dhu'l-Hijja,9i I (May 5, 1506). 
During the last 20 years of this period he was partly para- 
lysed. His talented minister Mir 'All Shfr Nawa'f, who, 


like his master, was not only a great patron of men of 
learning and letters but himself a writer of distinction, both 
in prose and verse, especially in the Turkf language, died 
on the 1 2th of Jumada ii, 906 (January 3, 1501) at the age 
of 62. An excellent monograph on his life and literary 
activities was published by M. Belin in the Journal A siatique 
for 1861, and reprinted in the form of a separate pamphlet 1 . 
Sultan Husayn, besides his literary tastes, had a great passion 
for pigeons, fighting-cocks and other birds, and, like so many 
of his House, was much addicted to wine. 

It still remains to mention one of the most notable of 
all the descendants of Timur, namely Zahiru'd-Din Muham- 
mad Babur, who, though he never ruled in 
tT d " D ' n Persia, was the founder of a new and splendid 
Tfmurid empire in India, the representatives 
of which, commonly known in Europe as the " Great 
Moguls," included such noble princes as Humayun, Akbar, 
Jahangir, Shah-Jahan and Awrang-Zfb 'Alamgfr, and which, 
though gradually shorn alike of its glories and its virtues, 
continued to exist until the great Indian Mutiny in 1857. 
Until the early part of the eighteenth century their magnifi- 
cent court at Delhi continued to attract a great number of 
eminent Persian poets and men of letters during a period 
when fuller appreciation and more liberal patronage of 
talent was to be found at Dihlf than at Isfahan. 

Of the life of Babur we possess singularly full and 

authentic details in the autobiographical memoir generally 

known as the Bdbur-ndma, or "Book of Babur" 

Jiphy SaUt0bi ~ which he composed in the Turkf or Chaghatay 
language. Of the original Turkf text of this 
remarkable work a printed edition was published by Ilminsky 
at Kazan in i85/ 2 ; while a fac-simile of the then newly- 
discovered Haydarabad codex was edited by Mrs Beveridge 

1 Notice biographique et litte"raire sur Mir Ali-Chir Nfodii, suivie 
(C ex traits tire's des ceu-vres du meme auteur^ par M. Belin, It com- 
prises 158 pages. 

2 The text comprises 506 pages 


for the trustees of the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial Fund " in 
I9O5 1 . This Turki text has been translated into French 
by M. Pavet de Courteille, and was published at Paris in 
1 87 1 . There also exists a Persian translation of the original, 
known as the Wdqi'dt (or Ttizuk}-i-Bdbari, made at the 
request of the great Emperor Akbar, Babur's grandson, 
by his accomplished general Mi'rzd 'Abdu'r-Rahi'm Khan- 
Khanan in 998/1 SSg-QO 2 , on which Dr John Leyden and 
Mr William Erskine's well-known English version, published 
in London in 1826, is based. Besides this notable and 
most authoritative work, we have the very valuable and 
illuminating Memoir of Babur's cousin Mi'rza 

Mirza Hayaar 

Dughiat's Haydar Dughlat, now accessible to the English 

reader in Sir E. Denison Ross's translation, 
edited, with Preface, Introduction, Commentary, Notes and 
a Map, by the late Mr Ney Elias, formerly H.B.M. Consul- 
General for Khurasan and Si'stan, and published in London 
in 1898 with the title A History of the Moghuls of Central 
Asia, being the Ta'rikh-i-Rashi'di of Mirzd Muhammad 
Haydar Dughldt, This book, which, as its title implies, 
has a much larger scope than the Bdbur-ndma, of which the 
author made use 3 in its compilation, greatly supplements 
and illuminates the earlier work 4 . Apart from these two 
works, which are worthy of special notice on account of the 
high position of their authors and their active participation 
in the making of the history which they narrate, the historical 
sources for this period are unusually full and trustworthy. 

Of Babur's life, which can be studied in detail in the 
above-mentioned and numerous other works 8 , it is sufficient 

1 It contains 382 ff. of text, 107 pp. of Indices, and an English 
Preface of 10 pages. 

2 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 244 et seqq. 

3 See p. 23 of the Introduction to Mr Ney Elias's book. 

4 The Bdbur-ndma comes down to the year 936/1529-30, while the 
Tctrikh-i-Rashtdi ends with the year 948/1541. 

5 The best and fullest account I know of is W. Erskine's History 
of India under the two first Sovereigns of the House of Taimur, Bdber 
and Humdyun (2 vols., London, 1854). 


to say here that it falls broadly into three periods, of which 
the first was passed in the little principality of Farghana, 

where he was born in A.D. 1482 and whence 
e he was expelled by Shaybani Khan and his 

Uzbeks about 1504. During the second period 
(A.D. 1 504-1 525)he ruled over Afghanistan and Badakhshan. 
Finally he decided on the invasion of India, and the founda- 
tion of the "Great Mogul" Dynasty in that country dates 
from his brilliant victory at Panipat over Sultan Ibrahim 
Lodi of Dihli on April 20, 1 526, and the occupation of Agra 
and Dihli and northern India from the Indus to Bengal. 
This third and shortest period was brought to a close by 
his death on December 26, 1530, when he was succeeded 
by his son Humayun. The narrative of the Bdbttr-ndma 
extends from Ramadan 899/June 1494 (the year of Babur's 
accession at the early age of twelve tothethrone of Farghana) 
to 936/1529-30, the year preceding his death. There are, 
however, certain lacunae, to wit the years 915-924 (1509- 
1518) and 927-931 (1521-1525). 

We have, however, overshot the limits of the period 
dealt with in this chapter; for, so far as Persia is concerned, 
the House of Tfmur disappears from it before the year 1 500. 
The great empire founded by Tfmur, that ruthless man of 
blood, was maintained in Persia by his gentler and more 
enlightened son Shah-rukh until his death in 850/1447. 
What follows is mainly a dismal record of fratricidal strife 
and invasions of Uzbeks and other barbarians, redeemed by 
brilliant galaxies of poets, artists and men of letters and 
science whom the lavish bounty and undeniable taste of 
these truculent and quarrelsome princes continued to at- 
tract to their various courts, in particular to Herat. The 
details of these wars, set out at great length by Mirkh- 
wand, Khwandamfr and 'Abdu'r-Razzaq, and in English 
by Erskine 1 , are somewhat wearisome, being not so much 

1 History of India under the first two Sovereigns of the House of 
Tatmur, etc. See the preceding foot-note. Vincent A. Smith's Akbar 
the Great Mogul, 1542-1605 (Oxford, 1917) forms a worthy continuation. 


between different peoples or principles, as between ambitious 
members of one family. Happily for our present purpose 
we need not go much beyond Sir John Malcolm's excellent 
summary of this period of Persian history. " After the death 
of Ulugh Beg," says he 1 , "we discover a crowd of the 
descendants of Ti'mur contending for the provinces of his 
empire; and so great was the respect which men entertained 
for the blood of the hero that everyone who could boast of 
it in his veins found adherents who enabled him either to 
obtain a throne or an honourable grave." 

To the literary and artistic gifts and tastes of these 
princes, on the other hand, that great authority on Persian 
painting and miniatures, Dr F. R. Martin, bears the following 
eloquent testimony in his monumental work on The Minia- 
ture Painting and Painters of Persia, India and Turkey*. 

"The Tfmurids soon began to lead a life compatible 

with the wealth their fathers and forefathers had amassed 

during their wars, and tried to squander it as 

Dr Martin on 

Persian painting quickly as possible. History constantly repeats 

at this period j^f The nfe Qf ^^ ^^ fo^ & ^^ 

epic. They recall to mind the old Paladins in the Chansons 
de Gestes, passing in the space of a short time from the 
splendours of a throne to a position of the utmost decay. 
They were, however, the most artistic princes that ever 
reigned in Persia. If the conquering armies of Ti'mur 
destroyed many a work of art, his successors brought into 
being works of art that would otherwise never have been 
created. Does not Samarqand redeem the loss of many a 
town destroyed by Ti'mur ? What he destroyed was already 
of itself destined to fall, and Ti'mur simply gave the mortal 
thrust. He was not the destroyer we are accustomed to 
consider him, but the master who arranged matters with an 
iron hand. He formed a link in the chain of natural develop- 
ment, and from his realm arose the Persia of later times, 
his successors bringing Persian art to its most flourishing 

1 Vol. i, p. 488 n the 1815 edition. Ulugh Beg died in 853/1449. 

2 Quaritch, 1912, vol. i, pp. 35-6. 


stage. These Tfmurids were no barbarians; indeed every- 
thing goes to show that they were highly civilized and 
refined men, real scholars, loving art for the sake of art 
alone, and without ostentation. In the intervals between 
their battles they enjoyed thinking of their libraries and 
writing poetry, many of them having composed poetry that 
far excels that of their court poets. Sultdn Husayn Mirza 
was no bad poet, and his odes, written in Turki, are far 
better than those of many celebrated poets. He also wrote 
in Arabic and competed with the celebrated Jami. The 
most refined style of life prevailed, in certain respects calling 
to mind that of the European princes of the same time, or 
that of France during the i8th century, although it was far 
more literary than either. 

"Baysunghur, Shh-rukh,Ulugh Beg and Sultan Husayn 
Mirza were bibliophiles not surpassed by the Dukes of 
Burgundy, or by King Rene of Anjou, their contemporaries, 
and were far more illustrious than the celebrated French 
and Italian book-lovers of the i6th and I7th centuries. 
Not only did they collect books, but they created them. 
Baysunqur and Husayn Mirza were to Persia what William 
Morris was to England four hundred years later. They 
created a new style of book, but theirs was infinitely more 
aristocratic, solid and artistic. The very finest European 
books and manuscripts cannot, except in a very few isolated 
instances, bear comparison with those of the Orientals as 
regards the fineness of their work. 

"Bdysunqur was the son of Shah-rukh and grandson 

to Tamerlane; he died in 837/1433, when 37 years of age, 

at Astarabad, where he was governor. He was 

oft^^eLest" 6 the founder of the most elegant style of book- 

bibiiophiies of production in Persia, and well deserves to be 

the world" 

remembered as one of the greatest bibliophiles 
of the world. Under his auspices forty artists were em- 
ployed in copying manuscripts under the guidance of 
Mawlana Ja'far of Tabriz, himself a pupil of 'Abdu'llah son 
of Mir 'All. By paying large salaries and making princely 


presents he retained in his service the cleverest masters of 
the period, who executed the finest work in the production 
of their splendid volumes. The paper was unsurpassed, 
the illuminations of extreme delicacy, and the covers are 
unequalled to the present day. Books from his vast library 
are now dispersed over the entire world, and wherever found 
should possess a place of honour. 

" It was during the reigns of the Ti'murids and not during 

that of Shah 'Abbas that the finest carpets were produced in 

Persia. The finest arms and armour, and ivory- 

Culmination of . J 

other arts at work of a minuteness surpassing all examples 
this period produced by other countries, were made at 
their court. All specimens of Persian art that exhibit the 
most refined taste and workmanship emanate from their 
time or from the very beginning of the Safawf dynasty. 

" All art produced in the East is the direct result of an 

impulse given by the monarch. But for Bdysunqur and 

Sultan Husayn Mirza we should not have had 

" All real art in J 

the East is that lovely miniature art their artists created, 
for it was to adorn and illustrate their own 
writings that they welcomed artists from all parts of their 
kingdom. But for Shah 'Abbds we should not have had 
the splendid figured velvet, and but for Sulayman the Mag- 
nificent there would be no magnificent Turkish faience from 
Izm'q, and but for Sultan Ahmad we should not have had 
the wonderful manuscripts of the Qur'dn, by which their 
aesthetic tastes are still perpetuated. All real art in the 
Orient is court art, or is dependent on a Maecenas. It was 
so in the 'Abbasid court at Baghdad in the ninth century ; 
it was so in Egypt and Spain ; it was so everywhere. This 
fact must be remembered, as it explains much that would 
otherwise be incomprehensible. 

" That an art so brilliant should entirely disappear with 

the ruler was not to be expected. The princes died, but 

the artists survived and entered the service of 

Survival of this 

art into the six- another. The impulse derived from theTimurids 

teenth century SQ powerml that ft lasted through a great 


partof thesixteenth century. It was notonly the newrulers of 
Persia, the Safawfs, but also princes whose names are almost 
unknown to history, who continued the fashion and had 
manuscripts executed that were more costly than anything 
of the kind produced in Europe." 

It is necessary to remind the reader, who may be apt to 

think of far-reaching international relations as in large 

measure a product of modern times and an out- 


between Persia, come of modern facilities of communication, 
china and India ^ Qw conquerable was the intercourse in the 
time which we are considering between Asiatic (not merely 
Muslim) states far removed from one another. The inter- 
esting extracts from that valuable but hitherto unpublished 
history, the Matla'u's-Sa'dayn of 'Abdu'r-Razzaq of Samar- 
qand, published in French by Quatremere in I843 1 , include 
the accounts of two embassies from the court of Herat, the 
one to China, the other to India, narrated in each case by 
one who had headed or accompanied the mission. The 
mission to China, described by Ghiyathu'd-Din Naqqdsh 
("the Painter"), left Herat on December 4, 1419, reached 
Pekin (Khdn-bdligh or " Cambaluc ") a year and ten days 
later, and returned to Herat on September 2, 1422*. The 
mission to India, confided to and narrated by the above- 
mentioned 'Abdu'r-Razzaq himself, started on January 13, 
1442, and landed once more on Persian soil at Hurmuz in 
the Persian gulf on April 20, 1444 3 . The activity and cos- 
mopolitan character of that port are well indicated by the 
ambassador in the following descriptive paragraph : 

" This Hurmuz, which they also call Jarun, is a port on 

the open sea ' which has no equal on the face of the earth.' 

Thither betake themselves merchants from the 

Abdu r-Razzaq s 

description of seven climes ; from Egypt, Syria, Asia Minor, 
Adharbayjan, Arabian and Persian 'Iraq, the 

1 Notices et Extraits des Manuscrits de la BibliothZque du Rot, 
vol. xiv, pp. 1-473. 

2 Loc. tit., pp. 387-426. 

3 Loc. tit., pp. 427-473. 


provinces of Pars, Khurdsan, Transoxiana, Turkistdn, the 
Qipchaq Plain, the territories of the Calmucks and all the 
realm of China and [its capital] Pekin (Khdn-bdligh}. 
Thither coast-dwellers from the confines of China, Java, 
Bengal, Ceylon and the cities of Zfrbad, Tanasurf, Shahr-i- 
Naw, the Islands of Di'wa-Mahall, as far as Malabar, Abys- 
sinia, and Zanzibar, the ports of Bi'janagar,Gulbarga, Gujarat, 
and Kanba'it (Cambay), the coasts of the Arabian peninsula 
as far as Aden, Jeddah and Yanbu' bring rare and precious 
things to which the sun and moon and fertilizing virtue of 
the clouds have given lustre and beauty, and which can be 
brought by sea to that country. To that land come travellers 
from all parts of the world, and whatever they bring they 
find in that city, without over-much search, the equivalent 
value thereof in whatever form they desire, whether by sale 
or exchange. The officials levy a ten per cent, ad valorem- 
duty on everything except gold and silver. In that city 
are many adherents of all manner of diverse religions, in- 
cluding heathens ; yet do they not deal otherwise than 
fairly with any creature, for which reason men call the city 
Ddrul-Amdn ('the Abode of Security'). The people of 
that country combine the winning manner of the people of 
'Iraq with the profound cunning of the Indians." 

Allusion has already been made to the correspondence 
between Shah-rukh and his successors and the Ottoman 
Relations Sultans Muhammad I (1402-1421), Murad II 

betweenthe (i42i-i45i), Muhammad II (1451-1481) and 
Se m oa n n d Bsiyazfd III (1481-1512) ; but that this corre- 
Sultans spondence was not confined to princes and 

politics is shown by letters preserved by Firidun Bey 1 ex- 
changed between Bayazi'd III on the one hand and the 
poet Jamf, the philosopher Jalalu'd-Din Dawani and the 
theologian Ahmed Taftazani on the other. To the first of 
these the Ottoman Sultan sent a gift of a thousand and to 
the second five hundred florins, accompanied by all manner 

1 MunsMat, Constantinople, A.H. 1274/1858, vol. i, pp. 361-5. 


of gracious and courtly compliments 1 . It was at Constan- 
tinople, moreover, that Sultan Husayn's son, Badi'u'z-Zaman, 
fleeing from the murderous Uzbeks, found a final refuge and 
a last resting-place. 

Having described the waning of the House of Tfmur, 
we must, before tracing the growth of the Safawi power, 

consider briefly the intermediate Turkman 
L T "BSk" dynasties of the Black " and " White Sheep," 
and "White w ho were so much akin in race and character 

that Josafa Barbaro is probably justified in 
comparing them to the rival Italian factions of the Guelphs 
and Ghibellines, or the " Bianchi " and " Neri" 2 . The 
" Black Sheep " (Qara-qoyunlu, or " Caracoilu " as Barbaro 
calls them) came first. In the time of Tfmur they were 
established in the Persian province of Adharbayjan, and a 

certain chief amongst them, Bayram Khwdja 

Bayram Khwdja . /. 

of the Baharlu tribe, attached himself to the 
service of Sultan Uways the Jala'irf, after whose death he 
possessed himself of Mawsil (Mosul), Sinjar and Arjfsh. 
In 782/1380-1 he died and was succeeded by his son Qara 

Muhammad, who similarly attached himself to 
Qara Muham- thg ' service of Sultan Ahmad, the son of the 

above-mentioned Sultan Uways, and ultimately 

fell in battle in Syria in 792/1390. He was succeeded by 

his son Oara Yusuf, who was the first of the 

QaraYiisuf r -i i . . r . 

family to attain the position of an independent 
sovereign with his capital at Tabriz. After repeated conflicts 
with Ti'mur, he took refuge with the Ottoman Sultan Bayazid 
"the Thunderbolt," and succeeded in capturing Baghdad, 
whence, however, he was shortly expelled by Tfmur's grand- 
son Abu Bakr, and fled to Egypt with a thousand of his 
followers. The Sultan of Egypt, fearing Tfmur's wrath, 
imprisoned him ; but on Tfmur's death he was released, and, 

1 Concerning the enormous influence exercised by Jdmf and Mir 
'AH Shir Nawd'i on Ottoman literature, especially poetry, see the late 
Mr E. J. W. Gibb's History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. ii, pp. 7-11. 

2 P. 85 of the Hakluyt volume above mentioned. 


having been rejoined by his scattered followers, took Diyar 
Bakr, and soon afterwards, in 809/1406-7, defeated Abu 
Bakr at Nakhjuwan, reoccupied Tabrfz, and took possession 
of the province of Adharbyj n. Four years later he defeated 
and put to death near Tabriz his old master and fellow- 
captive in Egypt, Sultan Ahmad Jala'irf. In 822/1419 he 
captured the three important Persian cities of Sawa, Qazwi'n 
and Sultdniyya, and died in the following year at the age 
of 65, after a reign of 14 years, leaving five sons, of whom 
two, Iskandar and Jahanshah, succeeded him on the throne. 
Mention has been already made in a previous chapter 
of the important collection of State Papers connected with 
the diplomacy of the Ottoman Empire which 
are contained in the Munshd'dt of Fin'dun Bey \ 
A good many of these refer to the period we 
are now considering. Thus we have a letter to Sultan 
Bayazid "the Thunderbolt" from Sultan Ahmad Jala'irf, 
written in 798/1396, describing his flight before Tfmur's 
advancing hordes, and the answer to it ; numerous letters 
which passed between Sultan Muhammad I (805-824/1402- 
1421) and Shdh-rukh, Qara Yusuf, Iskandar and Sultan 
Khah'l of Shirwan ; letters between Sultan Murad II (824- 
855/1421-1451) and Shah-rukh; letters between Sultan 
Muhammad II " Fdtih" (855-886/1451-1481) and Jahan- 
shah, Ulugh Beg, Baysunqur, Bahman Shah of India, Uzun 
Hasan, and Husayn b. Mansiir b. Bayqara ; and later a 
voluminous correspondence with the Safawf kings Shah 
Isma'il and Shah Tahmasp. These letters are interesting 
not only for the light they throw on the historical events 
to which they refer, but as indicating the relations which 
prevailed between these rulers respectively. Thus, for 
example, in a letter from Shah-rukh to the Ottoman Sultan 
Muhammad I in 818/1416 the arrogance of tone is very 
noticeable, both in respect to the comparative poverty of 
titles accorded and the reproaches addressed to the Sultan 
for having put to death his rebellious brothers Sulaymdn, 
1 Printed at Constantinople in 1274/1858, pp. 626. 


Musa and 'Isa, which, though "conformable to Ottoman 
practice," is branded as " improper according to the Il-khani 
custom " ; and in the peremptory demand that Qara Yusuf 
shall not be allowed to take refuge in Ottoman territory, 
should he seek to do so. Sultan Muhammad's reply, on 
the other hand, in not only conciliatory in tone, but even 
humble. He accords to Shah-rukh a whole string of high- 
sounding titles ; apologizes for killing his brothers by 
quoting Sa'di's well-known dictum that " ten dervishes can 
sleep in one blanket, but two kings cannot be contained in 
a continent" 1 ; and expresses his fear that if he exasperates 
Qara Yusuf by refusing him entry into his dominions, he 
may endeavour to stir up trouble amongst the neighbouring 
rulers of the Qaramani, Hami'di, Isfandiyari, Turghudi and 
Dhu'l-Qadari dynasties, and even with the Sultan of Egypt. 
In the case of the Ottoman Sultan and the " Black Sheep " 
Turkman rulers, Qara Yusuf and Qara Iskandar, on the 
other hand, the contrary holds good, the Sultan writing as 
to inferiors and the Turkman princes as to a superior. The 
numerous letters and dispatches contained in this interesting 
volume would well repay a fuller examination than can here 
be accorded to them, but reference will be made to them 
from time to time, as occasion arises 2 . 

Amir Iskandar Qara-qoyunlu inaugurated his reign by 

an attack on Shah-rukh, in which he was defeated, but soon 

afterwards he re -occupied Adharbayjan. In 

828/1425 Shamsu'd-Din, the ruler of Akhlat, 

and in 830/1427 Sultan Ahmad the ruler of Kurdistan and 

'Izzu'd-Di'n Shir fell victims to his warlike prowess, and the 

towns of Shirwan and Sultaniyya passed into his hands. In 

832/1429 he and his brother Jahanshah, in spite of the valour 

which they showed, were again defeated by Shah-rukh. Six 

1 Gutistdn, ed. Platts, p. 16. 

2 Firidun Bey's Collection of State Papers has been used by Pro- 
fessor H. A. Gibbons in his interesting work on the Foundation of the 
Ottoman Empire (Oxford, 1916), but only to a limited extent. It is 
also enumerated by Hammer-Purgstall amongst his sources. 

B. P. 26 


years later, in 838/ 1434-5, Shdh-rukh again advanced against 
Iskandar as far as Ray, where he was joined by Iskandar's 
brother Jahanshah and his nephew Shah 'AH. Iskandar 
fled, and Shah-rukh bestowed his territories on his brother 
Jahanshah as a reward for his submission. Iskandar took 
refuge in a fortress, but while preparing to resist a siege he 
was murdered by his son Qubad, at the instigation of his 
concubine Layla. 

Jahanshah, with the support and approval of Shah-rukh, 

now succeeded to the throne vacated by his brother's death 

in 839/1435-6, and considerably enlarged the 

Jahanshah 1-11 i i i 

realm which he had inherited. In 856/1452 he 
overran 'Irdq-i-'Ajam, made a massacre of the people of 
Isfahan, and invaded Pars and Kirman. In 862/1457-8 he 
conquered Khurasan, and in the month of Sha'ban in that 
year (June-July, 1458), was enthroned at Hert, and 
remained there for six months, when Sultan Abu Sa'id, 
the great-grandson of Ti'mur, prepared to attack him. At 
the same time news reached him that his son Hasan, who 
was imprisoned in Adharbayjan, had escaped and was in 
rebellion against him, so he was compelled to make peace 
with Abu Sa'id and hasten westwards at the average rate 
of twelve parasangs (some forty-five miles) a day, losing in 
this forced march 20,000 camels and 10,000 horses. Having 
subdued and expelled his son Hasan, he dismissed his other 
son Pir Budaq from the government of Fars and transferred 
him to Baghdad, where he also shortly revolted. Jahanshah 
thereupon besieged Baghdad for a whole year, and finally 
succeeded in killing Pir Budaq and replacing him by another 
son, Muhammad Mi'rza, after which he returned to Adhar- 
bdyjn. His realms now extended from the Turkish frontier 
on the west to the two 'Iraqs, Kirman and the shores of the 
Persian Gulf, thus including nearly the whole of Persia 

except Khurasan and the Caspian provinces. 
idiied by uzun In 871/1466-7 he attacked Hasan Bayandarf, 
Hasan in A.D. better known as Uzun Hasan, intending to con- 


quer his realm of Diyar Bakr, but was surprised 


and slain by the latter while tarrying behind his army on 
a hunting expedition. His two sons were taken prisoners 
and most of his principal nobles slain. This disaster is 
commemorated in the following verses : 

" The army of Jahanshdh Bahddur Niiydn, notwithstanding all the 

materials of mastery and strength, 

On the twelfth of the month of the second Rabf perished, and the 
date [of the year was] ' Hasan Beg slew \hitri\ ' 1 ." 

Of the character of Jahanshah the Turkish historian 

Munajjim-bdshi, from whom the above sketch of the Qdra- 

qoyunlu dynasty is taken 2 , gives a most un- 

character of favourable account. According to this writer, he 


was " a dissolute, immoral, blood-thirsty tyrant, 
a malignant inclined to heresy and atheism, who paid no 
heed to the Sacred Law, passed his nights until dawn in 
revelry and vice, and slept like a dog during the day ; for 
which reason he was called ' the Bat.'" He died at the age 
of 70 after a reign of 32 years, was buried at Tabriz, and 

was succeeded by Hasan 'Alf, the son whom he 

Hasan 'Ali , , .... , , , , ' 

had cast off, and who had at one time been 
protected by Uzun Hasan. This son, whose mind is said 
to have been disordered by his captivity, reigned but a 
short while in Tabriz ere he was driven thence by Uzun 
Hasan to Hamadan, whither he was pursued and put to 
death by Uzun Hasan's son Oghurlu Muhammad in 

873/1468-9. With him the Dynasty of the 

Extinction of the . o , ~ , . 

" Black sheep" Black Sheep, or Qara-qoyunlu, came to an 
Dynasty enc j anc j was replaced by that of the " White 

873/1468-9 ' , ,, 

oheep, or Aq-qoyunlu. 

1 The words Hasan Beg bi-kusht (" Hasan Beg slew ") yield in 
the abjad notation the number 872, and the I2th of Rabi' ii jn that year 
corresponds with November 10, 1467. 

2 Sahd'ifu'l-Akhbdr, Constantinople edition of A.H. 1285, vol. iii, 
PP- I5<>-154- 

26 - 2 


Diyar Bakr was the original centre of activity of the 

"White Sheep" or Bayandarf Turkmans, of whose amirs 

Baha'u'd-Din Oara 'Osman, known as Qdra link 

Ine White ~ < 

sheep" Dynasty, ("the Black Leech") from his greedy and blood- 
Qara 'Osman thirsty character, was the first to achieve fame. 
Having defeated Qara Yusuf of the rival " Black Sheep " 
Turkmans, he was driven by the envy of his less capable 
brothers Ahmad and Pir 'All to seek service with Qadi 
Burhanu'd-Din 1 at Sfwas. In 800/1397-8 Qara 'Osman 
killed his host and seized his territory, but retired, on 
learning that an Ottoman army under Prince Sulayman 
was advancing on Sfwas, to Erzinjan. He joined Tfmur in 
his campaign against Asia Minor and Syria, and received 
as a reward for his services the town of Diyar Bakr. Shortly 
afterwards Qdra Yusuf, the " Black Sheep ''' Turkman, 
escaped from Egypt and made war on Qara 'Osman, but 
died, as already mentioned, in Dhu'l-Hijja 823 (December 
1420), and was succeeded by his son Iskandar, who suffered 
defeat at the hands of Shah-rukh in the following year. 
Qara 'Osman died in 838/1434-5, and was 
'AKBegb. succeeded by his son 'All Beg, who was com- 
pelled by a revolt of his brother Hamza to take 
refusre for a time with the Ottoman Sultan Murad II. 


'All Beg was succeeded by his son Jahangfr, who was 

soon displaced (857/1453) by his more resolute and capable 

brother Uzun Hasan (the " Ussun Cassano " or 


Uzun Hasan "Assambei " of Josafa Barbaro), who was by far 

C'Ussun the most powerful and celebrated of the "White 

" A^sTmber of Sheep" Dynasty. He was the grandson of 

the Venetian ^g Black Leech," and succeeded to the throne 

ambassadors) f XT * 4 . \ 1 

at Amid (Diyar Bakr) in the year mentioned 
above, which was the year in which the Ottoman Turks 

1 A full account of this remarkable warrior-poet is given by the late 
Mr E. J. W. Gibb in his History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. i, pp. 204-224. 
Mention of him (under the form " Wurchanadin ") is also made by 
Schiltberger in ch. ix of his Bondage and Travels, published in 
English translation by the Hakluyt Society in 1879, an< i in the same 
work there are several references to Qara 'Osman (" Otman "). 

CH. vi] THE " EASTERN QUESTION " IN A.D. 1453 405 

captured Constantinople. To the fear inspired in Europe, 
and especially in Italy, by this fresh evidence of Ottoman 
power and prowess were due the efforts made by successive 
Venetian ambassadors to Persia to win the support of 
Uzun Hasan against the Turks, whom it was hoped he 
might harass on their Eastern frontier and so distract their 
attention from further conquests in the West. Thus once 
again since the Mongol Court at Q^ra-qorum had attracted 
emissaries from Rome with a similar object, the " Eastern 
Question" assumed a new importance, and the good will 
of Persia began to be assiduously sought after by European 
Powers. These Venetian ambassadors have left descrip- 
tions of their voyages and adventures which shed a 
welcome side-light on the condition of Persia and the 
character of Uzun Hasan, of whom Ramusio, in his Preface 
to Caterino Zeno's Travels, speaks in the highest terms, even 
declaring that " amongst all the kings of the East, who 
existed since the government was taken away from the 
Persians and transferred to the Greeks, there have been 
none who equalled the glory of Darius Hystaspes and 
Ussun Cassano." " It is to be regretted," he adds, " that 
some Eastern kings, great in power and intellect, have not 
had historians to celebrate their deeds, since among the 
Sultans of Egypt and among the Kings of Persia there 
have been men most excellent in war, and worthy not only 
of being compared with ancient barbarian kings famous in 
arms but even with the great Greek and Roman commanders 
in all those things which constitute able generals of armies 1 ." 
He further speaks with admiration of " the manner in which 
this Ussun Cassano, a poor nobleman and the weakest in 
condition of many brothers,... not possessing more than 
thirty soldiers, besides a small castle, afterwards raised him- 
self to such grandeur that he had the courage to dispute 
the empire of all Asia with the Ottoman House, which 
under Muhammad II (A.D. 1451-1481) was a terror to the 

1 P. 2 of the Hakluyt Society's Narrative of Italian Travels in 
Persia in the xvi and xvii Centuries (1873). 


East." Contarinij who was with Uzun Hasan in 1474-5, 
says that he "always drank wine with his 

Contanm s * 

description of meals," and " appeared to be a good liver, and 
took pleasure in inviting us to partake of the 
dishes which were before him." " There were constantly 
present," he continues 1 , "a number of players and singers, 
to whom he commanded whatever he wished to be played 
or sung, and His Majesty appeared to be of a very merry 
disposition. He was tall and thin, and had a slightly Tartar 
expression of countenance, with a constant colour on his face. 
His hand trembled as he drank. He appeared to be seventy 
years of age 2 . He was fond of amusing himself in a homely 
manner ; but when too far gone was sometimes dangerous. 
Take him altogether, however, he was a pleasant gentleman." 

No such vivid portrait of this remarkable man is to be 
found in the pages of any Oriental historian with whom I 
am acquainted, but the following estimate of his character 
by Munajjim-bdshi is worth quoting 3 : 

" He Was a wise, just, brave, pious, religious and devout 

King, a friend of learned and godly men, charitable and a 

public benefactor. He built many buildings 

Munajjtm- J 

descrip- for pious uses. As has been mentioned, with 

but a small army he overcame two such mighty 
kings as Jahanshah and Abu Sa'fd; took tribute from 
Georgia; and ruled over Adharbayjan, the two 'Iraqs, 
Kirman, Pars, Diyar Bakr, Kurdistan and Armenia." 

Concerning his patronage of learned men the same 
historian remarks on the preceding page: "He adopted 
Uzun Hasan's Tabriz as his capital, and there assembled from 
patronage of men the surrounding lands and provinces many 

learned men and doctors, who received favours 
and honours beyond anything which could be expected." 

1 Contarini's Travels to Tana and Persia in the Hakluyt Society's 
translation of 1873, PP- I 3 2 ~3- 

2 He must have looked older than his actual age, which is given 
by Munajjim-bdsht as only 54 at his death, two years later (A.D. 1477-8). 

3 SaM'ifu'l-Akhbdr, vol. iii, p. 165. 

CH. vi] tf Ztf N HASAN 407 

One of the most celebrated of those men of learning who 
received honour and rewards at his hands was 'All Qiishjf, 
who passed through his territories on his way home from 
the pilgrimage to Mecca. 

Uzun Hasan, while still a young man and only Prince 
of Diyar Bakr, married a Christian wife, to wit the beautiful 
DespinaKMtun ("LadyDespina"), daughter of 
Kalo Joannes 1 , the last Christian Emperor of 
Trebizond, of the noble family of the Comneni. 
She bore him a son and three daughters, one of whom, 
named Marta, was given in marriage to Shaykh Haydar, 
the father of Shah Isma'il the founder of the Safawi dynasty. 

The fullest account of Uzun Hasan's reign to which I 
have had access is that contained in the Sahd'iful-Akhbdr 
of Munajjim-bdshi'*, while another Turkish source from 
which much information is to be gleaned is the collection 
of State Papers (Munshadf) of Firidun Bey 3 , though the 
paucity of dates in the dozen despatches interchanged be- 
tween Uzun Hasan and Sultan Muhammad Fdtih (" the 
Conqueror ") is a matter for regret. The narratives of the 
Italian ambassadors and travellers already referred to are 
also of great value. The accounts of the Qara-qoyunlu and 
Aq-qoyunlu dynasties given by Mi'rkhwand and other 
Persian historians are for the most part very meagre and 

The first three or four years of Uzun Hasan's reign 
(A.D. 1453-1456-7) were chiefly filled by repeated revolts 
of his brothers, especially Jahangir, against his authority. 
The scene of these struggles, which were repeatedly com- 
posed by Saray Khatun, the mother of the contending 
brothers, lay for the most part outside Persia, round about 

1 See the Travels of a Merchant in Persia in the already cited 
volume of the Hakluyt Society, pp. 178-9. He describes "Despina- 
caton " as " very beautiful, being considered the most beautiful woman 
of that time, and throughout Persia was spread the fame of her loveli- 
ness and grace." 

2 SahaHftfl-Akhbdr, vol. iii, pp. 157-164. 

3 Vol. i, pp. 274-286. 


Diyar Bakr, Mosul and especially Mardm, which suffered 
terrible devastation. Jahangir did not hesitate to invoke 
the help of the rival House of the "Black Sheep" Turkmans, 
represented by Jahanshah 1 . Once during this period Uzun 
Hasan set out on an expedition against Khurasan, but was 
obliged to turn back to deal with a revolt organized by his 
brother Jahangi'r aided by Jahanshah, who sent one of his 
generals, Rustam Beg, to his support. The rebels suffered 
a severe defeat at the hands of Uzun Hasan near the 
Euphrates, in which many of the fugitives were drowned, 
while five hundred prisoners, including Rustam Beg, were 
beheaded by Uzun Hasan, who, however, at the intercession 
of his mother, again pardoned his brothers Jahangir and 
Uways, but took 'All Khan, the son of the former, as a 
hostage to Erzinjan. 

After this victory (851/1456-7) Uzun Hasan's power and 
prestige were greatly increased, and many amirs of Asia 
Minor and Syria submitted to him. About 864/1459-60 
he wrested from the Ayyubi dynasty the fortress of Hisn 
Kayf, where he installed his son Khalilu'llah Mirza as 
governor. In the same year Jahanshah's son Hasan 'All 
rebelled against his father and took refuge with Uzun Hasan, 
who, however, after a while drove him away on account of 
certain heretical opinions ascribed to him. In or before 
A.D. 1461 Uzun Hasan sent his nephew Murad Bey 2 on an 
embassy to the Ottoman Sultan Muhammad II 

Uzun Hasan J 

sends an " the Conqueror " to request him not to molest 

Embassy to the hj father-in-law Kalo Joannes, Emperor of 

Ottoman Sultan * 

Muhammad Trebizond. To this request the Turkish Sultan 

paid no attention, but attacked and subdued 

Trebizond (where David Comnenas had recently succeeded 

his elder brother Kalo Joannes) and carried off this last 

1 The " Giansa " of the Venetian travellers. 

2 In 'Abdu'r- Rahman Bey Sheref's History, entitled Tcfrikh-i- 
Devlet-i-''Aliyya (p. 161), Uzun Hasan is said to have sent his mother 
Sara Khatiin, who is evidently the same as the " Sardy KMtun " 
mentioned at the bottom of the preceding page (p. 407). 


representative of Byzantine power to Constantinople, where, 
according to Giovan Maria Angioletto, "he was treated 
honourably enough, but died before a year was over, in 
1462 V 

Thechronologyof the wars waged by Uziin Hasan against 
the Ottoman Turks is somewhat confused. Munajjim-bdshi 
speaks of a short contest immediately preceding Uzun 
Hasan's first invasion of Georgia in 871/14667, and of an 
embassy headed by Khurshfd Beg which he sent to Sultan 
Muhammad II "the Conqueror" requesting him not to 
attack Trebizond, which, as we have seen, had already 
fallen to the Ottomans in A.D. 1461. On the first of Rabf ii, 
872 (Oct. 30, 1467), however, he defeated the " Black Sheep " 
Turkmans near Khuy in Adharb^yjdn, and, 
delTtfdl^put taking their king Jahanshah off his guard while 
to death by he was away from his army on a hunting expedi- 

Uzun Hasan . /-r i i i i . , , .1 -r-r / i 

tion, cut off his head and sent it to the Timund 
Sultan Abu Sa'fd, while suffering his body to be buried in 
the grave of his father Qara Yusuf. He then occupied 
'Iraq and Adharbayjan and besieged Baghdad. The first 
despatch from Uzun Hasan to Sultdn Muhammad II re- 
corded by Fin'dun Bey 2 refers to this victory. It is couched 
in very respectful terms (unlike some later despatches), but 
seems to have received no acknowledgement 

The second despatch from Uzun Hasan to "the Con- 
queror " (which, unfortunately, is undated) refers to the next 
important event in his career, namely the defeat of Jahan- 
shah's son Hasan 'All at Marand. This prince, who, as 
already mentioned, had taken refuge with him some seven 
years previously, now attacked him to avenge the death of 
his father Jahanshah. Uzun Hasan invoked the help of 
the Timurid Abu Sa'fd, urging the constant loyalty of his 
own House of the " White Sheep " to the House of Ti'mur, 
and the disloyalty of the rival " Black Sheep." He also 

1 See this part of the Hakluyt Society's volume above mentioned, 
p. 74 and note 2 ad calc. 

2 MunsM'df, vol. i, pp. 274-5. 


offered, in return for help, to cede 'Iraq to Abi'i Sa'fd, pro- 
vided he might keep Adharbayjan. Abu Sa'fd, so far from 
accepting this proposal, immediately marched against Uzun 
Hasan to avenge Jahanshah's death, but was 

Sultan Ab<3 Sa'id . . ' . 

("BusecVof defeated and captured, together with his sons 
the Venetians) Muhammad and Shah-rukh, and handed over to 

taken prisoner 

and put to death Yadigar Muhammad, who killed him to avenge 
by u z <in Hasan the death Q f his gran dm O ther Gawhar Shad 

Khatun. When the Venetian Contarini was received by 
Uzun Hasan in his palace at " Spaan " (Isfahan) on Nov. 6, 
1474, he noticed "a painting, representing the decapitation 
of Sdltan Busech (i.e. Abu Sa'fd), and showing how he was 
brought by a rope to execution by Curlumameth (i.e. Uzun 
Hasan's son Oghurlu Muhammad), who had caused the 
chamber to be made 1 ." Abu Sa'fd's body was sent in the 
charge of his mother (who had also been captured) to Khur- 
asan with all honour and respect. In the same despatch 
in which Uzun Hasan announces to Sultan Muhammad 
" the Conqueror " the defeat and death of Hasan 'Alf and 
" some 3000 of his men," he announces his capture of Adhar- 
bayjan, 'Iraq, Fars and Kirman, and his intention henceforth 
to fix his capital at Tabriz. This despatch appears to have 
been sent by the hands of an ambassador, Sayyid Ahmad 

The third despatch from Uzun Hasan is still less re- 
spectful in its form of address than the preceding one, and 
is also undated. It mentions the arrival of an Ottoman 
envoy named Amir Bey, and then proceeds to narrate his 
negotiations and conflict with, and victory over the Tfmurid 
Sultan Husayn [b. Mansur b.] Bayqara, and the manner in 
which he had divided up and assigned his domains. He 
also announces his conquest of Khurram-abad in Luristan. 

In a fourth despatch, also undated, in which the great 
Ottoman conqueror is insultingly addressed as the " most 
puissant ^m/r...Shamsu'd-Dfn Muhammad Bey," while 
Shfraz, which he had recently conquered, is described as 

1 P. 131 of the Hakluyt volume already cited. 


having become " the Seat of the Throne of Sovereignty and 
the Station of the Caliphate," he further announces the sub- 
jugation of Khuzistan. This at last calls forth a reply 
which reveals a high degree of exasperation : the Ottoman 
"Sultdn Muhammad, son of Murad, son of Muhammad, 
son of Bayazfd " addresses his arrogant correspondent as 
" thou," warns him not to be puffed up by temporary good 
fortune, and threatens to march against him in the ensuing 
month of Shawvval. About the same time he despatched 
a letter to his sort, Prince Mustafa, governor of Qaraman, 
ordering him to attack Uzun Hasan, whom he describes as 
" deserving of the gibbet and the rope " (" mustahiqq-i-ddr 
u rasan oldn Uztin Hasan ") ; and to this letter we have 
Prince Mustafa's reply, describing how. aided by his tutor 
Gedik Ahmad Pasha, he defeated Uzun Hasan's army 
near Qonya on Saturday, I4th of RaW i, 877 (August 19, 
1472), and killed his sons Yusuf, Zaynal and 'Umar. The 
two last of this series of documents given by Firfdun Bey 1 
contain Shaykh Aq Shamsu'd-Dm's interpretation of two 
dreams about Uzun Hasan, and are written in Arabic. 

The accounts of Uzun Hasan's conflict with the Ottomans 
given by Caterino Zeno 2 , Giovan Maria Angioletto 3 , and 
Causes of hos- the author of the Travels of a Merchant in 
tiiity between Persia*, in conjunction with those of Munajjim- 
gpvemihent and bdshi and 'Abdu'r- Rahman Sheref Bey, though 
uzvin Hasan not rich j n chronological details, make the 
causes and course of the struggle pretty clear. Apart from 
the growing arrogance of Uzun Hasan, as revealed in the 
despatches to which reference is made above, the Ottoman 
Sultan had against his neighbour four principal causes of 
complaint, to wit: (1) his negotiations with Venice for a 
conjoined attack on Turkey from both East and West ; 

1 Munsha'at, vol. i, pp. 280-2. The date here given (877/1472) does 
not accord with that (A.D. 1474) given on the next page (line 26), 
which seems to be the more correct. 

2 See the above-mentioned Hakluyt Society's volume, pp. 14-31. 

3 Ibid., pp. 74-96. 4 Ibid., pp. 180-182. 


(2) his attacks on Jahanshah the " Black Sheep " Turkman, 
whom he not only conquered but put to death, and on 
Sultan Husayn Bayqara the Ti'murid, both of whom were 
in friendly relations with Sultan Muhammad Fdtih ; (3) 
his promise to support the Christian Emperor of Trebizond 
against Ottoman aggression ; and (4) his protection of Pir 
Ahmad (the " Pirameto " of Zeno) and other princes of the 
Qaraman dynasty, who were the ancient and bitter foes of 
the House of 'Osman. 

The ensuing war, which began in 877/1472-3 and ended 
in 878/1473-4, presented two phases, in the first of which 

the victory was to the Persians and in the 
TuTks ami 6 " second to the Turks. The first battle, which 
Persians took place on the Euphrates near Malatya, was 

lost chiefly through the rashness of Murad Pasha 
Palaeologus, the young Beyler-bey of Rumelia (the " Asmu- 
rat " of Angioletto). Many Turks were drowned in the "whirl- 
pools" of the river, besides those who were killed, and twelve 
thousand men, " among whom were several persons of note," 
were missing when the muster was called in the evening 1 . 
" Having suffered this defeat," says Angioletto (who was 
with the Turkish army), " the Turk became very apprehen- 
sive, and determined to lead his army back to his country 
by the shortest route." They therefore retired towards 
Trebizond, in a valley near which place a second great 
battle was fought towards the end of August, 1474, in which 

Uzun Hasan was decisively defeated and his 

Defeat of Uzun * 

Hasan by the son Zaynal killed, while much spoil fell into 
the hands of the victors. Prince Mustafa dis- 
tinguished himself greatly in this battle. " If Ussun Cassano 
had remained content with his first victory," says Angioletto, 
"the Turk would have gone away ignominiously, and he 
would not have lost the territories he did 1 ." " This battle," 
says 'Abdu'r-Rahman Sheref Bey 2 , " upset the cup of Uzun 

1 See ch. vii of G. M. Angioletto's narrative in the Hakluyt Society's 
volume, p. 88. 

2 Ta!rtkk-i-Devlet-i- l Altyya, p. 173. 


Hasan's fortune, and for twenty or thirty years assured 
the safety of the Sultan's eastern frontier." 

Uzun Hasan now retired to Tabriz, " where he caused 
games and rejoicings to be held, not caring much for his 
reverse, as he had lost none of his dominions." His ease 
was, however, soon troubled by the rebellion of his son 
Oghurlu Muhammad 1 , who seized Shiraz, and, on hearing 
that his father was advancing against him with a great 
army, fled to Constantinople, where he was received with 
much honour by the Ottoman Sultan, who promised "to 
make him king of Persia in the room of his father, who was 
his enemy." Uzun Hasan, meeting filial ingratitude with 
cunning, first feigned illness and then caused a rumour of 
his death to be circulated. 

" While thus dissembling," says Angioletto 2 , " a report 

was spread abroad to Constantinople that Ussun Cassano 

had fallen dangerously ill from melancholy, on 

The stratagem . . 

whereby Uzun account of the rebellion of his son, and, a rumour 
onhackJtQ 8 ' f ^ s having got worse having been whispered 
Persia and puts about, some of his most faithful adherents, as 
had been arranged, announced his death, while 
messengers were sent to Ugurlimehemet with letters and 
tokens, as is customary, giving information of the death of 
his father, and begging him to return and take possession 
of the throne before either of his brothers Halul or Jacob 3 
could do so. And in order to give greater semblance to 
the affair, funeral rites were paid, and his death was really 
believed in throughout the country. Ugurlimehemet having 
received three different messengers with secret messages, 
such as are used in affairs of state, thought it safe to go to 
Tauris. He arrived there in a few days with a small escort, 
and, on going to the palace to make himself sovereign, was 

1 Called "Ugurlimehemet" by Angioletto, and " Ungermanmet " 
by Zeno. 

2 End of ch. ix, p. 96. 

3 I.e. Khalil and Ya'qiib, who actually succeeded in turn to the 


taken to where his father was in perfect health, who ordered 
him to be confined, and afterwards put to death, without 
showing any consideration for his being his son." 

For his defeat by the Ottomans Uzun Hasan was in 
some degree compensated by a victory over the Egyptians, 
who had taken and ravaged 'Urfa, and a successful cam- 
paign in Georgia, from which he obtained a tribute of 
16,000 ducats and the surrender of the city of Tiflis. He 
finally died in 882/1477-8, and was succeeded 
by his son Khah'l, who, however, had only 
reigned six months when he was attacked and killed by 
his brother Ya'qub 1 near Khuy. This prince reigned for 
about thirteen years, in the course of which period he killed 
Shaykh Haydar son of Shaykh Tunayd the 

Ya'qiib's perse- r , / *i i n 

cutionofthe Safawi (whose growing power and influence 
caused him alarm) and interned his children 
(including Isma'il, the future founder of the Safawi dynasty) 
at the old Sasanian capital of Istakhr. Munajjim-bdshi 
says that he built the beautiful summer palace of the Hasht 
Bihisht, or "Eight Paradises" (the "Astibisti" of the Vene- 
tians) outside Tabriz, but the Italian merchant-traveller 2 
ascribes its construction to Uzun Hasan. Finally, according 
to the same authority 3 (for the fact is not mentioned by 
Mfrkhwand or Munajjim-bdshi\ he was poisoned by his 
wife under the following circumstances. 

" He took as his wife a high-born lady, daughter of a 

Persian noble, but a most licentious woman : having fallen 

in love with a great lord of the Court, this wicked 

How Ya'qub 

was poisoned woman sought means to kill Jacob Sultan her 
husband, designing to marry her paramour and 

1 According to Munajjim-bdshi (SahcCiftfl-Akhbdr, vol. iii, p. 165) 
Khalfl put to death his brother Maqsud, and thereby alienated and 
alarmed his other brothers. 

2 Travels of a Merchant in Persia, in the Hakluyt Society's oft- 
cited volume, ch. viii, " Description of the Royal Palace built by 
Assambei outside the city of Tauris," pp. 173-8. 

3 Ibid., pp. 183-4. 

CH. vi] DEATH OF YA'QtiB 415 

make him king, as, being closely related to Jacob, he would 
become so by right in default of children. Having arranged 
matters with him, she prepared an insidious poison for her 
husband, who, having gone into a perfumed bath, as was 
his custom, with his young son, aged eight or nine years, 
remained there from the twenty-second hour until sunset. 
On coming out he went into the harem, which was close to 
the bath, where he was met by his wicked wife with a cup 
and a gold vase containing the poison, which she had got 
ready while he was in the bath, knowing that it was his 
custom to have something to drink on coming out of the 
bath. She caressed him more than usual to effect her 
wicked purpose ; but not having sufficient command over 
her countenance, became very pale, which excited the sus- 
picion of Jacob, who had already began to distrust her from 
some of her proceedings. He then commanded her to 
taste it first, which, although she knew it was certain death, 
she could not escape and drank some; she then handed the 
gold cup to her husband Jacob, who, with his son, drank 
the rest. The poison was so powerful that by midnight 
they were all dead. The next morning the news was circu- 
lated of the sudden death of Jacob Sultan, his son and wife. 
The great lords, hearing of their king's decease, had quarrels 
among themselves, so that for five or six years all Persia 
was in a state of civil war, first one and then another of the 
nobles becoming Sultan. At last a youth named Alumut, 
aged fourteen years, was raised to the throne, which he held 
till the succession of Sheikh Ismail Sultan 1 ." 

Munajjim-bdshi describes Ya'qub as " disposed to drink 
and a merry life, and very fond of poetry." " Many poets," 
he adds, " gathered at his court from all quarters, and com- 
posed resonant qasidas in his praise." He was 


b. Ya'qub succeeded by his son Baysunqur, who reigned 

Rustamb. a year and eight months, when he was re- 

Maqsud placed by his cousin Rustam, the son of Maqsiid- 

1 Munajjim-bdshi merely says (vol. iii, p. 166) that Ya'qub died in 
Muharram, 896 (Nov.-Dec. 1490). 


He marched against Badi'u'z-Zaman the Ti'murid, but ere a 
battle had taken place in Khurasan was compelled to turn 
his attention to Isfahan, the governor of which city had 
revolted against his authority. On his approach the governor 
fled to Qum, but was pursued and killed, and his severed 
head brought to Rustam. In the same year, 898/1492-3, 
he sent an expedition against Shi'rwan, which celebrated its 
success in the Ti'murian fashion by building pyramids of 
skulls. From these same Shfrwanis, however, Baysunqur 
raised an army for the invasion of Adharbayjan, whereupon 
Rustam released Sultan 'All and the other Safawi 
Release of the prisoners at Istakhr and sent them to avenge 

Safawi captives 

the death of their father, Shaykh Haydar, who 
had been slain by Baysunqur's father Ya'qub. Sultan 'All 
and his followers were hospitably received at Tabriz by 
Rustam, and proceeded thence to Ahar, where they defeated 
and killed Baysunqur. Rustam, relieved of this anxiety, 
now grew jealous of Sultan 'All's increasing power and 
influence, and determined to destroy him. He sent one of 
his generals with 4000 horsemen after him, and a fierce 
battle ensued, wherein the Safawi's, though only 700 in 
number, fought valiantly "like lions," says Angioletto 1 
but were eventually defeated and Sultan 'All slain, after 
nominating his young brother Isma'i'l as his successor. He 
and his brother Ibrahim fled to Gilan and Mazandaran, and 
remained in hiding for some time at Lahfjan and Lishta- 
Nisha, whence Ibrahim presently made his way in disguise 
to his mother at Ardabi'l. Isma'i'l remained in Gflan, pro- 
tected by its governor Kar Kiya Mi'rza 'Ah', and 

Activity of * , J 

isma'iithe an active and successful Shi'ite propaganda was 

carried on amongst the inhabitants, amongst 

whom the number of "Sufi's of Lahijan" or "Red-heads" 

1 See p. 101 of the Hakluyt volume already so often cited. Caterino 
Zeno (Ibid., p. 46) says that the Safawi troops, though few, performed 
prodigies of valour, and there was not one who was not dead or 
mortally wounded. The Venetians throughout confuse Sultan 'AH 
with his father Shaykh Haydar (" Secheaidare," " Sechaidar"). 


(Qizil-bds/i), as they were called 1 , continued steadily to 

In 905/1499-1500 Isma'il, then only thirteen years of 

age 2 , marched forth on his career of conquest with the nine 

tribes which owed him allegiance, to wit the 

Beginning of , , 

isma'ii's career Ustajlu,Shamlu,Takalu, Rumlu, Warsaq, Dhu'l- 

Of conquest 

bagh ; and, after formally visiting the tombs of his illustrious 
ancestors at Ardabil, and seeking the blessing of his aged 
mother, advanced by way of Qara-bagh, Gukcha Deniz and 
Erzinjan on Shirwan. By this time news had spread abroad 
that the " Shaykh's son " was about to claim his rights, and 
his disciples flocked to his standard from Syria, Diyar Bakr 
and Siwds, so that he now found himself at the head of 
7000 men. Crossing the river Kur he attacked Farrukh 
Yasar, the king of Shirwan and slayer of his father, near 
Gulist^n in the neighbourhood of Shamdkha, killed him, 
completely routed his army, and occupied Shirwan, where 
he possessed himself of the royal treasure. He passed the 
winter at Mahmud-abad near that place, and appointed the 
AmirShamsu'd-DinZakariyyahis first WasirjChfi, theologian 
Shamsu'd-Di'n Gilani his Chancellor (Sadr), and Husayn 
Beg Shamlu and Abdal Beg his counsellors. 

At this juncture, in 907/1 501-2, when he had taken Bdku 
and was besieging the fortress of Gulistan, news reached 

him that Alwand Beg, son of Yusuf Beg of the 
Thejjattie of white Sheep" Turkman dynasty,had advanced 

against him to Nakhjuwan, whither he at once 
turned his victorious banners. A great battle took place at 
Shurur,near Nakhjuwan, between the " White Sheep " Turk- 
mans, commanded by Amir 'Osmdn ('Uthman) of Mawsil 
(Mosul), and the Safawi army, commanded by Pin' Beg 

1 Munajjim-bdshi, p. 181. The red caps from which they derived 
their second name are here said to have been first given by Shaykh 
Haydar to his followers when he attacked Shirwan. 

2 According to Munajjim-bdshi he was born in Rajab 892 (June- 
July, 1487). 

B. P. 27 


Qajar. The Turkmans were utterly defeated and their 
general captured and put to death. Alwand Beg fled to Diyar 
Bakr, and Isma'il occupied Tabriz, where he was crowned 
King. In the following year, 908/1502-3, he invaded 'Iraq 
and routed Murad Beg, the last ruler of the "White Sheep" 
dynasty, who fled to Shiraz, which, together with Kazarun, 
Kirman and Yazd, submitted to the victorious Shdh Isma'il 
Safawi in the course of the next year or two. He spent 
the winter of A.D. 15045 at Isfahan, destined to become 
the glorious capital of the dynasty of which he had by now 
so truly and firmly laid the foundations, and here he received 
an ambassador from the Ottoman Sultan Bayazi'd II. The 
fuller history of the origin, development and decline of 
this great and truly national dynasty will form the subject 
of the next volume. 

The relations between the Timurids and the Safawfs, 

first between Babur and Shah Isma'il and later between 

Humayun and Shah Tahmasp, will also be more 

between 5 fully considered in the next volume. On the 

Timurids whole these relations were singularly friendly, 

and Safawis . . ... i /v /- i 1-1 

in spite of the difference of doctrine which con- 
tributed so much to isolate Persia from her Sunni neighbours 
after the rise of the Safawi power and the definite adoption 
of the Shi'a creed as the national faith. Babur and Shah 
Isma'il were united by a common fear and hatred of Shay- 
bam Khan and his terrible Uzbeks, at whose hands the 
House of Timur suffered so much during its last days in 
Khurasan and Transoxiana. The years 1 501-7 were marked 
by a series of triumphs on the part of Shaybani Khan, 
who successively seized Samarqand, Farghana, Tashkand, 
Khwarazm, and finally Khurasan. Sultdn Husayn, of 
whose brilliant court at Herat we have already spoken, died 
in 1506, and the weakness and lack of unity of his sons and 
younger kinsmen made them an easy prey to Shaybani 
Khan, who, in the course of 1507, succeeded in defeating 
and killing all of them with the exception of Sultan Husayn's 
son Badi'u'z-Zaman, who fled for protection first to Shah 


Isma'fl and later to the Ottoman court at Constantinople, 

where he died. In 1510, however, Shah Isma'il marched 

into Khurasan against the Uzbeks and utterly 

Shah Isma'il's J , 

victory over the defeated them at the battle of Merv. Shaybam 

Uzbeks at Merv j^^ ^ amongst the slam Ris body was 

dismembered and his limbs distributed amongst different 
cities ; his skull, set in gold, was made into a drinking-cup 
for Shah Isma'il ; the skin of his head, stuffed with straw, 
was sent to the Ottoman Sultan Bayazi'd at Constantinople; 
and one of his hands constituted the gruesome credentials 
of an envoy sent to one of his vassals, the ruler of Mazan- 
daran 1 . Babur's sister, Khan-zada Begum, who had fallen 
into the hands of the Uzbeks ten years before, was delivered 
from her long captivity by Shah Isma'il, and was sent with 
all honour to her brother, who in his Memoirs 2 gives an 
interesting account of their meeting. Friendly embassies 
were interchanged between the two monarchs (for Babur 
had already in 1508 formally assumed the title of Padishah 
or Emperor), and as Babur's final abandonment of Trans- 
oxiana a year or two later, followed in 1526-9 by his 
successful invasion of India, which thenceforth became the 
seat of his government, removed all likelihood of friction 
between him and the Persians, the friendship thus formed 
was fairly stable, and was renewed in the next generation 
by Shah Tahmasp's hospitality to Humayun when he was 
temporarily expelled from his kingdom and driven into 
exile. Indeed the complaisance shown by Babur towards 
the strong religious views of Shah Isma'il at one time con- 
siderably impaired his popularity amongst his subjects 
Literary inter- beyond the Oxus, who then, as now, were 
course between remarkable for their extreme devotion to the 
during'the " Sunni doctrine, which Shah Isma'il relentlessly 
safawi period persecuted 3 . Nor were the relations between 
Persia and India confined to their rulers, for during the 

1 See W. Erskine's History of India, etc., vol. i, pp. 303-4. 

2 Ed. Ilminsky, p. n. 

3 Erskine, Hist, of India, vol. i, p. 321. 

27 2 


whole Safawi period, and even beyond it, we shall, in a 
subsequent volume, meet with a whole series of Persian 
poets, including some of the most eminent of later days, 
who emigrated from their own country to India to seek 
their fortune at the splendid court of the so-called Mogul 
Emperors, where, until the final extinction of the dynasty 
in the Indian Mutiny, Persian continued to hold the posi- 
tion not only of the language of diplomacy but of polite 



The literary and artistic wealth of the period now under 
review has been already summarily indicated in the pre- 
ceding chapter, and it will be our business in 


literary activity this chapter to discuss in greater detail the 
work of some of its most eminent representa- 
tives in the world of letters. To attempt to treat, even in 
the briefest manner, of all its notable poets and men of 
learning would be impossible in any moderate compass. 
Thus the Habibiis-Siyar, a history specially valuable on 
account of the biographies of notable writers and poets 
added as an appendix to each reign or historical period, 
enumerates no less than 211 persons of this class who 
flourished during the Ti'murid period, of whom all save 23, 
who belong to the reign of Timur himself, represent the 
period now engaging our attention 1 . The city of Herat 
during the reign of Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn (A.H. 878- 
912 = A.D. 1473-1506) may be regarded as the culminating 
point of this brilliant period, and it derives an additional 
importance from the great influence which it exercised on 
the development of Ottoman Turkish literature, a fact duly 

1 These biographical notices all occur in vol. iii, part 3, on the 
following pages of the Bombay lithographed edition of 1857 : pp. 85- 
92 (reign of Ti'miir); pp. 142-150 (reign of Shh-rukh) ; pp. 151-161 
(reign of Ulugh Beg); pp. 171-174 (reign of Abu'l-Qasim Bdbur) ; 
pp. 196-201 (reign of Abu Sa'id); pp. 334-350 (reign of Sultdn Abu'l- 
Ghazi Husayn b. Bayqara). To these must be added some of those 
persons who flourished contemporaneously under the patronage of the 
Turkmans of the " White Sheep" (Aq-qoyunlu) and early Safawis 
(vol. iii, part 4, pp. 110-118), who raise the total number of separate 
biographical notices to 274. 


emphasized and fully illustrated by the late Mr E. J. W. 
Gibb in the second volume of his monumental History of 
Ottoman Poetry. 

" This school," he says (pp. 7-8), speaking of what he 

denotes as " the Second Period," " which cultivated chiefly 

lyric and romantic poetry, and which was dis- 

Innuence of * f 

jami, Mir'Aii tinguished by its love of artifice, reached its 
S n h otfom W at ietC ' meridian in the latter half of the fifteenth 
Turkish Htera- century at the brilliant court of the scholarly 
and accomplished Sultan Husayn [ibn] Bay- 
qara of Herat. Here its spirit and substance were gathered 
up and summarized in their manifold works by the two 
greatest men of letters of the day, the poet Jamf and the 
statesman Mir 'All Shir Nawa'i. As these two illustrious 
writers were the guiding stars of the Ottoman poets during 
the whole of the Second Period (A.D. 1450-1600), it will be 
well to look for a moment at their work." 

After a brief account of these two eminent men, and an 
admirable characterization of the school which they repre- 
sent, Mr Gibb (pp. 12-13) summarizes its chief features as 
"subjectivity, artificialness, and conventionality, combined 
with an ever-increasing deftness of craftsmanship and 
brilliance of artistry." "This all-absorbing passion for 
rhetoric," he adds, " was the most fatal pitfall on the path 
of these old poets ; and many an otherwise sublime passage 
is degraded by the obtrusion of some infantile conceit, and 
many a verse, beautiful in all else, disfigured by the presence 
of some extravagant simile or grotesque metaphor." 

The high esteem in which the poet Jami was held in 
Turkey and at the Ottoman Court is proved by two Persian 
letters addressed to him by Sultan Bayazid II 
otto- 6 (A.D. 148 1-15 1 2} and printed in the Munshd'dt 

man Sultan o f Fi ri 'dun Bey 1 . The first, which is in a highly 

Bayazid II 7 

complimentary strain, was, as we learn from 

Jami's answer, written " for no special reason and without 

the intervention of any demand, out of pure grace and 

1 Constantinople, Jumada ii, 1274 (Feb. 1858), vol. i, pp. 361-364. 


favour, and sincere virtue and gratitude." In his second 
letter Sultan Bayazid expresses his gratification at receiving 
the poet's letter and informs him that he is sending a gift 
of one thousand florins 1 , which gift is gratefully acknow- 
ledged by the poet in a second letter sent by the hand of 
a certain darwish named Muhammad Badakhshi, who, with 
some others, was setting out on the pilgrimage to Mecca. 
Unfortunately none of these four letters are dated. Two 
other Persian scholars, the philosopher Jalalu'd- 
menofiettan Din Dawanf and the theologian Farfdu'd-Din 
honoured by Ahmad-i-Taftazani, were similarly honoured by 

Bayazid II ,' ,->i/i -11 T- r / / ? 

the same Sultan, but m the last case Taftazam 
took the initiative (October 25, 1505), while the Sultan's 
answer was not written until July 13, 1507. The great 
NawaTs influence exerted on Ottoman poetry by J ami's 

influence in illustrious patron, the Minister Mir 'All Shir 

Nawa'i, who was equally distinguished in prose 
and poetry, both in Eastern Turkish and Persian, is 
emphasized by Mr E. J. W. Gibb 2 ; who also describes 3 how 

the eminent Ottoman jurisconsult Mu'ayyad- 
'Abdu'r-Rahman Chelebf (afterwards in 

seven years in the reign of Sultan Bayazid II famous as a 

study at Shiraz 

generous patron of letters and collector of 
books) being compelled in A.D. 1476-7 to flee from his 
country, spent seven years at Shiraz studying with the 
above-mentioned philosopher Jalalu'd-Dfn Dawani. It was, 
in short, during this period which we are now considering 
that Persia began to exercise over Ottoman Turkish litera- 
ture the profound influence which in the next period she 
extended to India. 

From these general considerations we must now pass to 
a more particular examination of the most eminent prose 

1 "The Ottoman florin was a gold coin of the approximate value 
of 9 shillings." Gibb's Ottoman Poetry, vol. ii, p. 26, ad calc. 

2 History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. i, p. 128 ; vol. ii, pp. 10-11, p. 48 
and note, ad calc. 

3 Ibid., vol. ii. pp. 29-31. 


writers of this period, deferring the consideration of the 
poets to another chapter. 


In this, as in the preceding period, history and biography 
are well represented, and at least nine or ten writers on 
these subjects deserve at any rate a brief men- 
SoSpheT" tion. Speaking generally they are distinctly 
inferior in quality to their predecessors in the 
Mongol period, for, while their style is often almost as florid 
as, though less ingenious than, that of Wassdf-i-Hadrat, 
they fall far short of him in wealth of detail, breadth of 
treatment, and citation of documents of historic value, 
while they compare even more unfavourably with the great 
historical writers 'Ala'u'd-Din 'At Maltk-i-Juwaym and 
Rashfdu'd-Dm Fadlu'llah. We shall now consider them 
briefly in chronological order. 

(i) Hdfiz Abrti. 

Almost all that is known about this historian, whose 
name is more familiar than his works, which remain un- 
published and are very rare even in manuscript, 

H4fi ? Abru . . . _. . ' . _ , _f. 

is contained in Kieu s Persian Catalogues 1 . His 
proper name (though otherwise given elsewhere, as we shall 
presently see) is generally assumed to have been Khwaja 
Nuru'd-Dfn Lutfu'llah. He was born in Herat 2 , but in what 
year is not recorded, and educated in Hamadan. After 
the death of Ti'mur, who showed him marked favour, he 
attached himself to the court of his son and successor 
Shah-rukh, and of his grandson Prince Baysunqur, for 
whom he wrote his great history. This history, generally 
known as Zubdatu't-Tawdrikh ("the Cream of Histories") 

1 See pp. 421-424 for his geography, and pp. 16-18 of the Supple- 
ment for his history. A long and careful account of three MSS. of the 
latter is also given by Baron Victor Rosen in his Collections Scientifiques 
( Manuscrits persans), vol. iii, pp. 52-111. 

2 Or Khwaf, according to Fasihi. See p. 426 infra. 

CH. vii] HAFIZ ABRti 425 

but called by Fasihi of Khwaf Majma'ut-Tawdrikh as- 
Sultdni ("the Royal Compendium of Histories"), was 
concluded in A.H. 829 or 830 (A.D. 1426 or 1427)*, only 
three or four years before the author's death. It comprised 
four volumes, of which, unfortunately, the third and fourth, 
dealing with the post-Muhammadan Persian dynasties down 
to the date of composition, appear to be lost 2 . Manuscripts 
of the first and second volumes exist at St Petersburg 
and are fully described by Baron V. Rosen 8 ; a copy of 
vol. i, formerly in the collection of the Comte de Gobineau, 
is now in the British Museum and is numbered Or. 2774 ; 
and I myself possess a very fine copy of vol. ii (containing 
the history of Muhammad and the Caliphate down to its ex- 
tinction) dated Friday, 15 Sha'ban, 829 (June 22, 1426), and 
copied in Herat in the very year of the work's completion. 
Besides this history, Hafiz Abrii also compiled a great 
geographical work, of which the first volume is represented 
by a manuscript (Or. 1577) in the British Museum (fully 
described by Rieu 4 ), and another in St Petersburg 5 . From 
this work, composed in 820-823/1417-1420 for Shah-rukh, 
Rieu has succeeded in gleaning many particulars of the 
author's life, and especially of his very extensive travels. 
He accompanied Timur in several of his campaigns, and 
was with him at the taking of Aleppo and Damascus in 
803/1400-1401. When Shah-rukh succeeded to the throne 
he settled down in Herat to a life of letters not later than 
818/1415-1416, but died at Zanjan while returning with 
the royal cavalcade from Adharbayjan, and is buried there. 
Notice of Hifi? The following short obituary notice of him 
Abni in Fasihfs occurs in the rare Mujma/ (" Compendium") of 
Fasihf of Khwaf under the year 833/1429-1430, 
in which (contrary to most authorities, who give the following 
year 6 ) his death is placed by this writer : 

1 See Rteu's Pers. Cat., p. 422 a. * See Rosen, loc. at., p. 53. 

3 See the first foot-note on the preceding page. 

4 Pers. Cat., pp. 421-4. 5 Rosen, loc. at., p. in. 

6 See Rieu's Persian Cat., p. 422, and the chronogram there cited. 


" Death of Mawlani Shihabu'd-Dfn 'Abdu'llah of Khwaf 1 , known 
as Hafiz Abrii, the compiler of the Royal Compendium of Histories, 
on Sunday the 3rd of Shawwal, at Sarjam, at the time of the return of 
His Supreme and Imperial Majesty from Adharbayjan. He is buried 
at Zanjan near the tomb of the Divine Doctor Akhu Abi'1-Faraj-i- 
Zanjanf 2 ." 

Free use was made of the Zubdatiit-Tawdrlkh by the 
author's younger contemporary 'Abdu'r-Razzaq of Samar- 
qand, of whom we shall shortly have to speak, and half of 
the geographical work mentioned above consists of a his- 
torical summary of post-Muhammadan Persian history, 
which becomes very detailed in the latter part, down to 
Ramadan 822 (October, 1419). The author's style, so far 
as can be judged from vol. ii of the Zubdatut-Tawdrikh 
(the only portion of his work to which I have access) is 
very simple and direct, and it is greatly to be desired that 
his works, so far as they are available, should be published. 

(2) Fasihi of Khwdf. 

This notable historian and biographer is known to us 

only by one book, the Mujmal, or " Compendium " of 

History and Biography, of which, so far as I 

Fasihi of KhwAf , ' ' 7 ~ r , 

know, only three manuscripts exist. Oi these 
three MSS. one, belonging to the Institut des Langues Orien- 
tates du Ministere des Affaires Etrangeres de St Petersbourg 
is described by Baron V. Rosen 3 , whose description is 
supplementary to the fuller and earlier one of Dorn. One 
of the two others belonged to the late Colonel Raverty, 
the Pushtu scholar, from whose widow it was purchased in 
1907 by the trustees of the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial." 
The third was given to me by my excellent friend Mr Guy 
le Strange, who bought it from the late Sir Albert Houtum- 

1 The discrepancy between the name and birthplace as given here 
and elsewhere has been already noticed on p. 424 supra. 

2 See Jami's Nafahdtu'l-Uns, ed. Nassau Lees, p. 166, where he is 
called Akhi Faraj-i-Zanjanf, and is said to have died in 457/1065. 

3 Collections Scientifiques de FInslitut ... Manuscrits persans, 
pp. 111-113. 


Schindler. It is much more modern than the Raverty MS., 
but is accurate and well-written, and has a lacuna of only 
ten years (A.H. 834-844 = A. D. 1430-1440) instead of the 
hundred and twenty-two (A.H. 71 8-840 = A.D. 1318-1437) 
which are wanting in the other. 

In 1915 the expatriated Belgian professors of oriental 
languages temporarily resident in Cambridge brought out 
Descri tion at t ^ le University Press there a number of the 
ofFasihi's Museon, to which, at their kind invitation, I 

contributed an article of thirty pages on this 
interesting work, with numerous extracts, based on the 
two English manuscripts, both of which were then in my 
keeping. The Mujmal, as I there pointed out, consists of 
an Introduction, two Discourses, and a Conclusion. The 
Introduction epitomizes the history of the world from its 
creation to the birth of the Prophet Muhammad. The first 
Discourse continues the history down to the hijra, or flight 
of the Prophet from Mecca to al-Madina. The second 
Discourse, which is by far the largest and most important 
part of the book, contains the history of the years A.H. 1-845 
(A.D. 622-1442). The Conclusion, which is unfortunately 
missing in all known manuscripts, contains an account of 
the city of Herat, the author's birth-place and home, and 
its history in pre-Muhammadan times. 

All that we know of the author, Fasi'hi of Khwaf, is 

derived from this book, and I have found no mention of 

him elsewhere. Rosen says that he was born 

Bu>graphyof in ^/^^ ^ j have ^ been aWe ^ 

verify this statement from the Mujmal. In 
807/1404-5 he was employed with three other persons 
whom he names on business connected with the Treasury. 
In 818/1415-6 he accompanied Shah-rukh to Shiraz to 
subdue the rebellious activities of the latter's nephew Prince 
Bayqara. In 825/1422 he was sent to Kirman on business 
connected with the Treasury. In 827/1424 he returned 
thence to Badghis. In 828/1424-5 he obtained favourable 
notice and State employment from Prince Baysunqur. 


Under the year 841/1437-8 he cites some verses by 
Shihabu'd-Din 'Azi'zu'llah of Khwaf commemorating the 
birth of a son on the 24th of Dhu'l-Hijja (June 18, 1438). 
In 842/1438-9 he mentions the birth of his grandson 
Mughfthu'd-Din Abu Nasr Muhammad ibn Mahmud on 
the loth of Dhu'l-Qa'da (April 24, 1439). In 843/1439-40 
he had the misfortune to offend and to be imprisoned by 
Gawhar Shad Aqa, and he was again imprisoned in 845/ 
1441-2, with which year the chronicle ends (though the 
date 849/1445 is mentioned in a verse with which one of 
the MSS. concludes), and it was apparently in that year, on 
the 1 5th of Dhu'l-Hijja (April 26, 1442), that he presented 
his book to Shah-rukh. 

The detailed account of Fasihi's Mujmal which I pub- 
lished in the Cambridge number of the Museon to which 
reference has been already made absolves me 

Characteristics * 

of Fasihi's from the necessity of enlarging on its contents 
in this place. Its two chief features are a great 
simplicity of style and a special attention to matters of 
literary interest 1 . It is arranged in the form of a chronicle, 
the events of each year, including the deaths of eminent 
persons of all sorts, being grouped together under that year, 
and in the necrological part it is remarkable how large is 
the proportion of poets and men of letters, more especially, 
of course, of such as belonged to Khurasan and Transoxiana. 
Moreover it is evident that Fasihi drew his information to 
a large extent from sources other than those employed by 
later and better known biographers and historians, which 
fact gives a special value to his work. 

(3) Kamdlud-Din l Abdn!r-Razzdq of Samarqand. 

Though born at Herat in 8 16/141 3 2 , 'Abdu'r-Razzaq is 
called " of Samarqand," which was the native place of his 
father Mawland Jalalu'd-Din Ishaq, a judge and chaplain in 

1 See pp. 57-8 of my article in the Muston. 

2 The Habibrfs-Siyar gives the date of his birth as the I2th of 
Sha'ban in this year (Nov. 7, 1413). 

CH . vii] THE MA TLA' U'S-SA'DA YN 429 

Shah-rukh's army. At the age of 25, in 841/1437-8, after 

his father's death, 'Abdu'r-Razzaq attracted the notice of 

that monarch by a grammatical treatise which 

Abdur-Razzaq he had composed and dedicated to him. Four 

or .Samarqanu 

years later, in 845/1441-2, he was sent to India 
on a special mission to the king of Bijanagar, which lasted 
three years, and of which he gives a detailed narrative in 
his history. In 850/1446-7 he was sent on a mission to 
Gi'lan ; and, on the death of Shah-rukh in this same year, 
he was successively attached to the service of Mirza 'Abdu'l- 
Lati'f, 'Abdu'llah, Abu'l-Qasim Babur, and lastly of Abu 
Sa'fd. He afterwards retired into private life, became 
Shaykh of the monastery or Khdnqdh of Shah-rukh in 
Herat in 867/1463, and died there in 887/1482. All these 
particulars are taken from Rieu's Persian Catalogue^, and 
are for the most part derived either from the historian's 
own statements or from the notice of him contained in the 
Habibu's-Siyar*. The fullest account of his life and work 
is that given by Quatremere in the Notices et Extraits des 
Manuscrits de la Bibliotheque Nationale*, and other references 
will be found in Rieu's Catalogue. 

So far as is known, 'Abdu'r-Razzaq produced only one 
great work, to wit the history entitled Matla'u's-Sa'dayn 

(" the Dawn of the two Auspicious Planets "), 

'Abdu'r-Razzaq's 1*1 i j 

history, the which comprises two volumes and covers a 
Matin's- period of 170 years extending from the birth 
of the last Mongol ruler of Persia, Abu Sa'fd, in 
704/1304-5 to the death of his namesake the great-grand- 
son of Timur 4 , these two Abu Sa'fds being, presumably, the 
"two Auspicious Planets." The first volume ends with the 
death of Timur in 807/1405. Reference has been already 

1 Pp. 181-3. 

2 Vol. iii, part 3, p. 335. 

3 Vol. xiv, pp. 1-514. 

4 Abu Sa'fd the Tfmurid (the "Busech" of the Venetian ambas- 
sadors to Persia) was captured and put to death by Uziin Hasan in 
873/1468-9, and the history is continued a year or two beyond this to 


made to the curious coincidence, noticed by the author of 
the Matlctus-Sctdayn, that the date of the death of the 
last great Mongol ruler of Persia, Abu Sa'i'd, corresponds 
almost exactly with the birth of Timur, the founder of the 
next great Tartar Empire in Central Asia 1 . 

Manuscripts of the Matlctus-Sctdayn, though not very 
common, are to be found in most large collections, and, so 
value of the f ar as I have seen, are generally above the 
Matia'us- average in point of excellence and accuracy 2 . 

Sa'dayn, and . , , 

need of an The work, though based to a considerable 

edition extent on the Zubdatut-Tawdrikh of Hafiz 

Abru, is of great importance, and a critical edition of it is 
much needed, for it deals in a very detailed manner with a 
very important period of Persian history, and is the work 
of one who wrote at first hand and took an active part in 
many of the events which he describes. 

(4) Mu'inud-Din Muhammad of Isfizdr. 

Mu'inu'd-Din-i-Isfizarf is chiefly notable on account of 

his monograph on the history of Herat entitled Rawdatu'l- 

Janndt fi Tdrtkhi Madinati Herat, written for 

Mu'mu'd-Dm-i- s ult n Rusayn Abu'l-Ghazi, and carried down 

Isfizan ' 

to the year 875/1470-1 ; but he was also skilled 
in the epistolary style (tarassul) of the Court and of Diplo- 
macy, on which he compiled a manual, and was besides 
MSS of his something of a poet 3 . Three MSS. of the History 
History of of Herat are preserved in the British Museum 4 ; 

another, belonging to Mr A. G. Ellis, copied in 
1073/1663, has been generously placed at my disposal by 
the owner ; and yet another, belonging to the late Sir 
A. Houtum-Schindler, came into my possession in Jan. 

1 See p. 1 59 supra. 

2 There is a MS. of the work in 2 vols. (Or. 267 and 268) in the Cam- 
bridge University Library, and a much better one (Dd. 3. 5), dated 
989/1582, in the Library of Christ's College, Cambridge. 

3 JJabtbu's-Siyar, vol. iii, part 3, p. 342. 

4 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 206-7, and his Supplement, p. 64. 

CH. vii] MfRKHWAND 431 

1917. A detailed account of this important work, written 
in French by the late M. Barbier de Meynard, was published 
in the Journal Asiatique, 5th Series, vol. xvi, pp. 461-520. 
It is divided into 26 Rawdas or " Gardens," of which i-vi 
treat of the city of Herat, its environs, topography and 
excellence, and its earlier rulers in Muhammadan times ; 
vii-viii of the Kurt dynasty and its overthrow by Ti'mur ; 
and the remainder of the history of Ti'mur and his suc- 
cessors down to the second accession of Sultan Husayn 
Abu'l-Ghazi. The name of the month of Safar (>*o JK&}, 
in which the book was completed, yields by the abjad 
computation the date of completion, 875 (August, 1470). 
The author enumerates amongst his sources the histories 
of Abu Ishaq Ahmad b. Ya-Sin, Shaykh 'Abdu'r-Rahman 
Farm', and Sayfi of Herat, as well as the Kurt-ndma, or 
" Book of the Kurt Dynasty " of Rabi'i of Bushanj. He 
also cites the above-mentioned Matlctu's-Sctdayn in at least 
one place (in Rawda xiii). 

(5) Muhammad b. Khdwand Shah b. Mahmud, 
commonly called Mirkhwdnd. 

Mi'rkhwand's voluminous general history, the Rawdatus- 

Safd, is perhaps the best-known work of this sort in Persia, 

and has attracted a quite undue amount of 

Mirkhwdnd . T1 - 11-11- 1-1 

attention. It has been published in litho- 
graphed editions at Bombay (1271/1854-5) and Tihran 
(1270-4/1854-8), while a Turkish translation was printed 
at Constantinople in 1258/1842. A number of separate 
portions, dealing with particular dynasties, have been 
printed, with or without translations, in Europe; and of an 
English translation of the earlier portion by Mr Rehatsek 
three or four volumes were published under the auspices of 
the Royal Asiatic Society. These, it must be admitted 
with regret, are of no great value, for, apart from the fact 
that any student desirous of acquainting himself with the 
ideas of the Muslims as to the prophets, patriarchs and 


kings of olden time would prefer to seek his information 
from earlier and more trustworthy sources, the translation 
itself is both inaccurate and singularly uncouth, nor is it to 
be desired that English readers should form their ideas 
even of the verbose and florid style of Mirkhwand from a 
rendering which is needlessly grotesque. The esteem in 
which this history is still held in Persia, however, is suffi- 
ciently shown by the fact that one of the greatest Persian 
Ridd-qui; writers of modern times, Rida-quli Khan Ldld- 

's Supple- bdshi, poetically surnamed Hiddyat, thought it 

ment to the 11-1 110 i t_ 

Rawdatu's- worth while to add a Supplement bringing the 

narrative down to his own time, a few years 
after the middle of the nineteenth century. This Supple- 
ment is a valuable source of information for the history of 
modern Persia, including the rise of the Babf religion and 
the civil wars and persecutions connected therewith, but 
its consideration naturally belongs to a later period. 

Of Mirkhwand's life not much is recorded, even by his 
admiring grandson Khwandamir, the author of the Habibits- 

Siyar. His father Sayyid Burhanu'd-Din, a 
Bjogphy of nat j ve o f Bukhara, migrated to Balkh, where 


he died. Mirkhwand spent most of his life at 
Herat under the protection and patronage of that Maecenas 
of the age Mir 'All Shir Nawa'i, and died there, after a long 
illness, on the 2nd of Dhu'l-Qa'da, 903 (June 22, 1498) at 

the age of sixty-six 1 . Of the seven books into 

Contents of the ' 

Rawdatu's- which the historical part of the Rawdatu's-Safd 
is divided, the first contains the history of 
the patriarchs, prophets, and pre-Muhammadan kings of 
Persia ; the second, that of the Prophet Muhammad and 
the Four Orthodox Caliphs ; the third, that of the Twelve 
Imams and the Umayyad and 'Abbasid Caliphs ; \hefourtk, 
that of the post-Muhammadan dynasties of Persia down to 
the irruption of Tfmur ; the fifth, that of the Mongols and 

1 See tfabibit's-Siyar, part 3, vol. iii, p. 339 ; Rieu's Pers. Cat., 
pp. 87-8 ; S. de Sacy's Notice sur Mirkhond in his Mtmoire sur les 
Antiquite's de la Perse, and other references given by Rieu. 


Tartars down to Ti'mur ; the sixth, that of Timur and his 
successors to 873/1468-9 ; while the seventh, which has been 
continued by another hand (probably the author's grandson 
Khwandami'r) to a period several years later than Mfrkh- 
wdnd's death, is wholly devoted to the life and reign of his 
patron Abu'l-Ghazf Sultan Husayn, who died in 912/1506-7. 
The two last books (vi and vii), which deal with the author's 
own time, are naturally of much greater worth and authority 
than the earlier portions, and it is a pity that the attention 
of students of this history has not been more concentrated 
on them. The style employed by Mi'rkhwand is much more 
florid and bombastic than that of the preceding historians 
mentioned in this chapter, and in this respect is typical of 
much that was written about this time. This style, im- 
ported into India by Babur, continued to flourish at the 
court of the "Great Moguls" and gave rise to the prevalent 
idea that this floridity and bombast are essentially Persian, 
which is far from the truth, for both in earlier and later 
times many notable works were written with a simplicity 
and sobriety which leave little to be desired. It was under 
Tartar, Turkish, Indian, and other non-Iranian patronage 
that this inflated rhetoric especially flourished, and the 
Ottoman Turks in particular developed it to a very high 
degree. Sir Charles Eliot in his Turkey in Europe (new 
edition, 1908, p. 106) has described it in words so admirable 
that I cannot refrain from quoting them here : 

" The combination of dignity and fatuity which this style affords 
is unrivalled. There is something contagious in its ineffable compla- 
cency, unruffled by the most palpable facts. Everything 
on the natural is sublime, everybody magnanimous and prosperous. 
inclination of the We move among the cardinal virtues and their appro- 
priate rewards (may God increase them!), and, secure in 
the shadow of the ever-victorious Caliph, are only dimly 
conscious of the existence of tributary European powers and ungrateful 
Christian subjects. Can any Western poet transport his readers into 
a more enchanted land ? " 

R P. 28 


(6) Khwdndamtr, 

One is much tempted to include amongst the historians 

of this epoch Mirkhwand's grandson Khwandami'r, on the 

threefold ground that he also was one of the 

Khwindamir . . 11- 

many writers and artists who owed his success 
in large measure to the enlightened patronage of Mir 'All 
Shir Nawa'i ; that he belonged not merely to the same 
circle as Mirkhwand, but was his disciple as well as his 
grandson ; and lastly, that his first work, the Khuldsatu'l- 
Akhbdr, or "Quintessence of Histories," was not only in 
essence an abridgement of the Rawdatu's-Safd, but was 
actually written in 905/1499-1500, two years before the 
end of the period with which this chapter deals. His 
greater work, however, the Habibu's-Siyar, so often cited 
in this and the preceding chapter, was not written until 
929/1523, and he lived until 941/1534-5, so that "he really 
belongs more properly to the next period, and may be more 
appropriately considered in connection with the founder of 
the Safawi dynasty, Shah Isma'il, with a long account of 
whose reign the Hablbu's-Siyar concludes. 


After the historians come the biographers, of whose 
works five or six deserve notice, to wit Dawlatshah's 
"Memoirs of the Poets" (Tadhkiratu'sh-Shtfard); Mir 'AH 
Shir Nawa'i's Majdlisu'n-Nafd'is (which, however, is in the 
Turki, not the Persian language) ; Jami's " Lives of the 
Saints" (Nafahdtu'l-Uns)\ Abu'l-Ghazi Sultan Husayn's 
"Assemblies of Lovers" (Majdlisu!l-'Ushshdq)\ Husayn 
Wa'iz-i-Kashiffs "Mausoleum of Martyrs" (Ra^vdatusk- 
Shuhadd) and the Rashahdt of his son 'AH. Each of these 
works will be briefly considered here ; but as Nawa'f, Jami, 
and Husayn Wa'iz-i-Kashiff are more celebrated in other 
capacities than as biographers, their lives will be more 
appropriately sketched when we come to speak of writers 
belonging to other categories. 


(i) J ami's NafaJidtu'l-Uns and Bahdristdn. 

Mulla Nuru'd-Di'n 'Abdu'r-Rahman Jami, who derives 
his last and best-known name, which he uses in his poems 
jami'sA^/a- as h' s tdkhallus or nom-de-guerre, from the 
Aatu 'i-uns and town of Jam in Khurasan where he was born 
on November 7, 1414*, was equally remarkable 
for the quality and the quantity of his literary work. He 
is often described (wrongly, in my opinion, for reasons 
which will be given later) as " the last great classical poet 
of Persia," and it is as a mystical poet of remarkable grace 
and fertility of imagination that he is chiefly known. Like 
his great predecessor of the thirteenth century, Shaykh 
Faridu'd-Din 'Attar, who even excelled him in fecundity, 
though he fell short of him in grace, he composed, besides 
his numerous poems, a great Biography of Mystic Saints 
entitled Nafa/tdtu'l-Uns, or " Breaths of Fellowship." This 
book, of which a good edition was printed at Calcutta in 
1859, with an excellent notice of the author by W. Nassau 
Lees, comprises 740 pages, contains the lives of 6n Sufi 
saints, male and female, and is one of the most useful and 
easily available sources of information on this subject. It 
was written in 881/1476, and contains, besides the bio- 
graphical notices, which are arranged more or less in 
chronological order, and conclude with the poets Hafiz, 
Kamal of Khujand, Maghribi, and others who flourished at 
the end of Timur's and beginning of Shah-rukh's reign, an 
Introduction of 34 pages dealing, in nine sections, with 
various matters connected with the doctrine, practice and 
history of the Sufi's or Muhammadan mystics. 

The book is written in the simple and direct style 
suitable to such a work ; and indeed Jamf's taste was too 
good and his sincerity too great to allow him to fall into 
the verbosity and bombast which mar so many books of 
this period. 

1 Sha'bdn 23, A.H. 817. 



Another of Jami's prose works, the Bahdristdn, or 
" Spring-land," of which the form seems to have been sug- 
gested by Sa'di's Gulisldn or " Rose-garden," 
contains some biographical matter in chapter i, 
dealing with the sayings of the saints, and 
chapter vii, on poetry and poets. This work, however, is 
designed rather to yield amusement and instruction than 
accurate biographical information. In style it is distinctly 
more ornate than the Nafahdtul-Uns. An English transla- 
tion was published by the so-called "Kama-Shastra Society." 

(2) Dawlatshah's Tadhkiratu'sh-Shu'ard. 

Amir Dawlatshah, son of 'Ala'u'd-Dawla Bakhti'shab 

Ghazi of Samarqand, is the author of the best known 

"Memoirs of the Poets" existing in Persian, and 

Dawlatshdh . , . _ 

is chiefly responsible, through his interpreter to 
the West, Von Hammer 1 , for the perspective in which the 
Persian poets stand in European eyes. His "Memoirs" are 
divided into seven Tabaqdt or Generations, each containing 
accounts of some twenty more or less contemporary poets 
and the princes under whose patronage they flourished. 
There is also an Introduction on the art of Poetry, and a 
Conclusion dealing with seven poets contemporary with the 
author and the virtues and accomplishments of his royal 
patron Abu'l-Ghazf Sultan Husayn. This is an entertaining 
but inaccurate work, containing a good selection of verses 
and a quantity of historical errors which have in some cases 
misled even such good and careful scholars as Rieu. The 
book was lithographed in Bombay in 1887 and published 
by me from a selection of the best available manuscripts 
in 1901 as the first volume of my short-lived "Persian His- 
torical Texts Series." A Turkish version by Sulayman 
Fahmi was also published in Constantinople in 1259/1843 
under the title of Safinatu'sh-Shu'ard. 

1 Geschichte der schonen Redekiinste Persiens, mit einen Bliithen- 
lese aus zweihundert persischen Dichtern (Vienna, 1818). 


The oldest account of Dawlatshah is that given by his 
contemporary Mir 'AH Shir Nawa'i in his Majdlisu'n- 

Nafa'is, which will be mentioned directly. A 
DawiaS,4h f notice is devoted to him in chapter vi of that 

work, dealing with "sundry gentlemen and 
noblemen of Khurasan and other places whose ingenuity 
and talent impelled them to write poetry, but who, by 
reason of their high estate and exalted rank, did not 
persevere therein." He is there described as " a wholly 
excellent youth, unassuming and of good parts," who relin- 
quished worldly pomp and power for a life of seclusion and 
study, and " composed a Corpus Poetarum on the very same 
subject which is treated in this manual." After praising 
this work, Nawa'i adds that news had recently been received 
of his death, which the Mirdtu's-Safd, according to Rieu 1 , 
places in 900/1494-5. This does not agree with the state- 
ment of Nawa'i, who wrote in 896/1490-1, unless the 
report of Dawlatshah's death which reached him was false. 
Dawlatshah's "Memoir" was composed in 892/1487, when 
he was about fifty years of age. Of the living contemporary 
poets whom he mentions Jami is by far the most eminent, 
and I believe that the notion prevalent amongst Persian 
students in Europe that he is " the last great classical poet 
of Persia " arises ultimately from the fact that, directly or 
indirectly, they derive their ideas from Dawlatshah 2 . 

(3) Mir 'Ali Shfr NawaTs Majdlisun-Nafais. 

Of Mir 'AH Shir Nawa'i, the patron of a whole circle of 
poets, writers and artists, and himself a poet of no mean 
The Ma -diisu'n- or( ^ er > something has been said already, and 

of Mir more remains to be said. For the moment we 
are only concerned with his biographical work, 
the Majdlisun-Nafd'is, written in the Eastern Turk{ or 

1 Pers. Cat., p. 354. 

2 Of the meagre information about Dawlatshdh which can be 
deduced from his book, an epitome will be found in my edition of his 
" Memoirs," p. 15 of the Preface. 


Chaghatay dialect of Turkish which he did so much to 
popularize and refine. This work, of which I possess a fine 
manuscript, transcribed in 937/1530-1 at Samarqand, was 
composed in 896/1490-1, and comprises an Introduction 
and eight books. 

Book i treats of poets who died while the author was 
still young and whom he never had the good fortune to 
meet, of whom the first and most important is Qasimu'l- 
Anwar, who actually died in 835/1431-2, nine years before 
'All Shir was born. Other celebrated poets mentioned in 
this chapter are Adhari of Isfara'in, Katibi, Khayali, Bisati, 
Sibak, Qudsi, Tusi, Baba-Sawda'i, Badakhshi, Talib of 
Jajarm, 'Ariff, Masihi, Shahi of Sabzawar, etc. 

Book ii treats of poets whom the author had known 
personally, but who were dead at the time his book was 
written. Of these the first and most celebrated is Sharafu'd- 
Din 'AH of Yazd, the author of the well-known history of 
Ti'mur known as the Zafar-ndma. 

Book Hi treats of poets who were flourishing when the 
author wrote and with whom he was personally acquainted, 
such as Amir Shaykhum Suhayli, Sayff, Asafi, Banna'f and 
Ahlf of Turshi'z. 

Book iv treats of eminent and pious men who, though 
not primarily poets, wrote occasional verses, such as Husayn 
Wa'iz-i-Kashifi, the historian Mfrkhwand, etc. 

Book v treats of Princes and members of the Royal 
Family in Khurasan and elsewhere who wrote occasional 

Book vi treats of scholars, poets and wits, not natives of 
Khurasan, who shewed poetic talent. 

Book vii treats of Kings and Princes who have either 
composed verses, or cited the verses of others so appro- 
priately as to entitle them to rank with poets. Amongst 
the rulers mentioned in this chapter are Ti'mur himself, 
Shah-rukh, Khali'l Sultan, Ulugh Beg, Baysunqur Mi'rza, 
'Abdu'l-Latif Mi'rza, and other Princes of the reigning 
house of Ti'mur. 


Book viii treats of the virtues and talents of the reigning 
King Abu'l-Ghazi Sultan Husayn ibn Bayqara, to the 
political events of whose reign, as M. Belin observes in the 
monograph on Mir 'All Shir which will be mentioned 
immediately, Mfrkhwand devotes the seventh book of his 
Rawdatiis- Safd 1 . 

The monograph mentioned in the last sentence, which 
contains the best account of Mir 'All Shfr and his works 
with which I am acquainted, was published in the Journal 
Asiatique for 1861 and also as a tirage-a-part comprising 
158 pages. It is entitled Notice biographique et litte'raire 
sur Mir Ali-Chir Ne'vdii, suivie d'extraits tires des ceuvres 
du nieme auteur, par M. Belin, Secretaire-Interprete de 
VAmbassade de France a Constantinople. The extracts from 
the Majdlisu'n-Nafais (or " Galerie des Poetes " as Belin 
translates it) include the text and translations of the Intro- 
duction and Book vii. These suffice to give an adequate 
idea of the style and scope of the work, which, apart from 
the fact that it is written in Turki instead of in Persian, 
differs from Dawlatshah's Memoirs in being much smaller 
in extent, and in dealing only with contemporary poets. 
It is worth noting that while, as we have already seen, 
Nawa'f exercised a great influence over the development of 
Ottoman Turkish poetry, the Ottoman poets seem to have 
been entirely unknown to, or at least ignored by, him. 

(4) Abu'l-Ghazi' Sultan Husayn's Majdlisul-Usfohdq. 

But for the principle embodied in the well-known Arabic 
saying, " the Words of Kings are the Kings of Words," and 
the fact that another royal biographer, Sam 
' 1 ' M{rz ^ the Safawi, has described it as supplying 
adequate proof of its author's literary gifts 2 , 
this book, "the Conferences of Lovers," compiled by Sultan 
Husayn in 908-9/1502-3, hardly deserves to be mentioned 

1 See p. 433 supra. 

2 See Rieu's Pers. Cat., pp. 351-3. 


as a serious biographical work. Beginning with a flowery 
Preface, filled with citations from the mystical poets, on 
" real " (i.e. ideal) and " metaphorical " (i.e. material) love, 
and the latter considered as a bridge to the former 1 , the 
author proceeds to give 76 (or in some MSS. 77) articles, 
each entitled Majlis (" Conference " or " Stance "), and each' 
containing a more or less romantic account of some saintly 
or royal personage, and, in most cases, of some Platonic 
love-affair in which he was concerned. As Rieu has pointed 
out, the first 55 articles follow a chronological order, be- 
ginning with the Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq (d. 151/768), and 
ending with the author's contemporary the eminent poet 
Jami (d. 898/1492-3). The last notice in the book is 
devoted to the author himself " Sultan Husayn ibn Sultan 
Mansur ibn Bayqara ibn 'Umar Shaykh ibn Timur Kurkan." 
The title of the book, Majdlisul-'Ushshdq, is given in the 
following verse : 

The only copy of this book which I have been able to 
consult is a modern but clearly written manuscript bearing 
the class-mark Or. 761 recently acquired by the Cambridge 
University Library, but I am informed that a lithographed 
edition has been published at Lucknow. 

It should be added, however, that the great Babur 
disputes the authorship of this book (Bdbur-ndma, ed. 
Ilminsky, p. 221), which he criticizes very harshly, and 
which he declares was really written by Kamalu'd-Din 
Husayn Gazargahi, one of the pseudo-Sufis who frequented 
the society and enjoyed the patronage of Mir 'All Shir 
Nawa'{. To this point I shall recur in discussing the work 
in question. 

1 According to the well-known saying of the Sufi mystics : " Al- 
Majdzu qantaratrtl-Haqiqat" ("the Phenomenal is the Bridge to the 


(5) Husayn Wa'iz-i-Kashiffs Rawdatiish-Shuhadd. 

Husayn-i-Kashifi, surnamed Wd'iz (" the Preacher "), is 
better known as the author of that famous but over-esti- 
mated work the Anwdr-i-Suhayli, of which we 
shall speak presently ; but his " Mausoleum " 

of Husayn / or "Garden") "of Martyrs," which depicts in a 

Wd'iz-i-K4shifi \ * 

rhetorical manner the persecutions and martyr- 
doms of the Prophets and Imams, especially of the Prophet 
Muhammad's grandson Husayn, the third Imam of the 
Shf'ites, and the vengeance which overtook their perse- 
cutors, though of no great account from a historical point 
of view, deserves mention in this place. It is fully described 
by Rieu 1 , and has been lithographed at Lahore in I28// 
1870-1. It was translated into Turkish by the poet Fuduli 
of Baghdad 2 , with some additions, about half a century after 
its original composition. 

(6) The Rashahdt-i- l Aynul-Haydt t by the 
son of Husayn-i-Kashifi. 

This work, though composed in 909/1503-4 (a date 
indicated by the first word of its title Rashakdt, or "Sprink- 

lings") and therefore falling just outside the 
5j5JjJJSf period dealt with in this chapter, had best be 

considered here, since its author 'All was the 
son of Husayn-i-Kashifi, the author of the work last men- 
tioned, while it was based on notes taken in Dhu'l-Qa'da 
889 (Nov.-Dec. 1484) and Rabi" ii 893 (March- April, 1488) 
on the occasion of the writer's visits to Khwaja 'Ubay- 
du'llah (better known as Khwaja Ahrar), the great Naqsh- 
bandi Shaykh, whose predecessors, life, teachings, miracles 
and disciples form its subject-matter. A manuscript of 
this book is preserved in the British Museum and is fully 
described by Rieu 3 , but it is not common, and, so far as I 
know, has never been published in its original form, though 

1 Pers. Cat., pp. 152-3. 

2 See E. J. W. Gibb's History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. iii, p. 90. 
Fuduli died in 963/1555-6. 

3 Pers. Cat., pp. 353-4. 


a Turkish translation was printed at Constantinople in 


Less numerous and important in this period than the 
histories and biographies above enumerated are the works 
belonging to the above categories, but there are one or two 
of each class which deserve at least a brief notice. 

(l) Husayn-i-Kashifi"s Mawdhib-i-Aliyya^. 

Husayn-i-Kashif{, who has been already mentioned as 

the author of the Rawdatu'sh- Shuhadd, also compiled for 

Mfr 'Ah' Shfr a Persian Commentary on the 

The Ma-zvdhib- /^ , , u l- 11- u* ' 

Qur an, which, in allusion to his patron s name, 

commentary on ne entitled Mawdhib-i- AUyya. His original 
plan had been to write in four volumes a much 
larger and more detailed Commentary, entitled Jawdhiru't- 
Tafsir li-Tuhfati'l-Amir (" Gems of Exegesis for a Gift to 
the Amfr"), but after finishing the first volume he resolved 
to moderate his ambitions and write a much smaller, simpler 
and more concise work on the same subject, to wit the 
Mawdhib, or "Gifts," which he completed in 899/1493-4, 
eleven years before his death. Manuscripts of this book 
are not rare, but it is not often heard of, much less studied, 
at the present day in Persia. In India, however, I am 
informed that it is still widely read, and that it has been 
published there, though I have never seen a printed or 
lithographed edition. 

(2) Akhldq-i-Jaldli and (3) Akhldq-i-Muhsini. 

Of the older manuals of Ethics in Persian, the two 

best known and most popular after the Akhldq-i-Ndsiri 

(written about the middle of the thirteenth 

pop^LrtreTtists century of the Christian era by the celebrated 

on Ethics in astronomer Nasiru'd-Din-i-Tusi' 2 ) are the 

Akhldq-i-Jaldli (properly entitled Lawdmi'u'l- 

1 See Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 9-11. 

2 See Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 441-2, and vol. ii of my Literary 
History of Persia, pp. 220, 456 and 485. 


Ishrdq ft Makdrimi l-Akhldq) composed by the philosopher 
Jalalu'd-Din Dawani between A.D. 1467 and 1477, and 
dedicated to Uzun Hasan of the Aq-qoyunlu or " White 
Sheep " dynasty ; and the Akhldq-i-Muhsini compiled by 
the already mentioned Husayn-i-Kashiff, "the Preacher," in 
900/1494-5, and dedicated to Abu'l-Ghazi Sultan Husayn 
ibn Bayqara. All three books are available in printed or 
lithographed editions, which are enumerated by Rieu, and 
of that last mentioned both the text (A.D. 1823 and 1850) 
and the translation (A.D. 1851) have been printed at Hert- 
ford, for this book was, like its author's other work the 
Anwdr-i-SukayUy formerly popular (especially as a text- 
book for examinations) amongst Anglo-Indian officials. 

It is to Metaphysics and Mysticism rather than to 
Ethics that the Persian genius turns, and none of these 
three books can be regarded as having any 

, , . . , , .. 

great value, except incidentally, as throwing 
light on Persian customs, institutions and ways 
of thought. The Akhldq-i-Jaldlt is much the 
most florid in style, and used formerly to be regularly pre- 
scribed in the second or advanced part of Persian in the 
Oriental (formerly Indian) Languages Tripos at Cambridge, 
on account of its supposed difficulty, which, however, lies 
rather in the form than the substance. Aristotle, as inter- 
preted by Avicenna (Abu 'All ibn Sin a), has in the main 
determined the form and arrangement of Muhammadan 
Philosophy, which is primarily divided into "Practical Philo- 
sophy" (Hikmat-i-'A malt) and "Theoretical Philosophy" 
(Hikmat-i-Nazari). Of these two main divisions each is 
subdivided into three branches : the Theoretical into Mathe- 
matics (Riyddiyydt), Physical Science (Tabi'iyydt), and 
Metaphysics (Md fawqdt- Tabi'at or Md ba'dat- Tabi'af) ; 
and the Practical into Ethics (Tahdhibu l-Akhldq), CEco- 
nomics ( Tadbiru l-Manzil), and Politics (Siydsatu'l-Mudun). 
It is with the three branches of the second division that the 
works now under consideration deal. The two which belong 
to this period have both been translated into English and 


printed, the Akhldq-i-Jaldlt by W. F. Thompson (London, 
1839) under the title of "Practical Philosophy of the Mu- 
hammadan People"; and the Akhldq-i-Muhsini (Hertford, 
1851) by H. G. Keene. The English reader who desires 
to acquaint himself with their contents can, therefore, easily 
do so, and no further description of them is required in this 

As regards their authors, Jalalu'd-Din-i-Dawani was 
born in 830/1426-7 at the village of Dawan (from which 
he derives his nisba) in the province of Pars 
Sw~ Din "" near Kazarun, where his father was Qadi or 
judge. He himself held the same office in the 
province and was also a professor at the Ddrul-Aytdm or 
Orphans' College at Shiraz, where he passed most of his 
life. He died and was buried at his native place in 
908/1 502-3 1 . His fame even during his life-time spread 
far beyond the confines of his native land, and, as we 
have seen 2 , received recognition even at the distant Ottoman 
Court. In spite of his fame, he seems to have left but 
little behind him besides his work on Ethics, except some 
Quatrains, written and commentated by himself, and an 
explanation of one of the odes of Hafiz. 

To Husayn-i-Kashifi we shall recur later. 

(4) T\\eJawdhirul-Asrdr, (5) the Lawaih, 
and (6) the Ashi"atul-Lama l dt. 

Of the rich mystical literature of this period the major 

portion, which is in verse, will be discussed when we come 

to speak of the poets. Of the prose portion 

prtle^rkI 1Cal tne three books mentioned above may be taken 

as typical. Two are commentaries on earlier 

texts, while the third is an independent work. 

The Jawdhintl-Asrdr wa Zawdhirul-Anwdr ("Gems 
of Mysteries and Manifestations of Lights") is a com- 
mentary on the great Mystical Mathnawi of Mawlana 

1 See Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 442-3. 

2 See p. 423 supra. 

CH. vn] jAMf'S ASHr'ATU'L-LAMA'AT. ETC. 445 

Jalalu'd-Di'n Rumi by Kamalu'd-Dm Husayn b. Hasan of 
Khwarazm, the author or translator of several other works 1 , 
who was killed by the Uzbeks some time be- 
25i - " -IW * tween 835 and 840 (A.D. 1432-37). He was the 
pupil of a somewhat celebrated Sufi Shaykh, 
Khwaja Abu'1-Wafa, had assiduously studied the Mathnawi 
from his youth upwards, and had already written a briefer 
commentary on it entitled Kunuziil-Haqaiq ("Treasures 
of Truths "). The Jawdkiru'l-Asrdr, the later and fuller 
commentary, has been lithographed in India. There is a 
manuscript of the first half in the British Museum 2 , and 
one of the second Book (or Daftar) in the Cambridge 
University Library 3 , besides a lithographed Indian edition. 
The most important part of the work is the Introduction, 
which deals with the history, terminology and doctrines of 
the Sufi's. 

The two other works mentioned above are from the 
fertile pen of the great poet and mystic Mulla Nuru'd-Dm 
'Abdu'r-Rahman Jami. 

The A ski" atu I- Lama 1 at, or " Rays of the ' Flashes,' " is 
a running commentary on the Lama'dt of 'Iraqi, which has 
Timi's been already discussed in a previous chapter 4 . 

AsWatu'i- Apart from manuscripts, which are not very 
common, the text has been published in Persia 
in an undated volume containing this and several other 
mystical treatises. Of the genesis of the work Jami speaks 
thus in his Preface : 

" It is represented that at the time when the learned, practising, 

gnostic lover, the author of excellent prose and admirable verse, that 

cup-bearer of the bowl of generosity to men of high aspi- 

Quotation from rations Fakhru'd-Din Ibrahim of Hamadan, commonly 

the Preface , . . . * 

known as Iraqi, attained to the society of that Exemplar 
of learned seekers after Truth and that Model of Unitarian Gnostics 
Abu'l-Ma'ali Sadru'1-Haqq Wa'1-Millat wa'd-Dfn Muhammad of Qunya 6 

1 See Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 144-6. 

2 Add. 14051. See Rieu's Persian Cat., p. 558. 

3 Marked Or. 238. 

4 See pp. 132-9 supra. 5 Or Qonya, the old Iconium. 


(may God most High sanctify their secrets !), and heard from him the 
truths contained in the Fusttsu ^l-Hikam l , he compiled a short manual, 
which, inasmuch as it comprised several "flashes" from the lightnings 
of these truths, he entitled Lama^dt. Therein, in pleasant phrases and 
with charming allusions, he flung together jewels of verse and prose 
and mingled aphorisms Arabic and Persian, from which the signs of 
learning and wisdom were apparent, and in which the lights of taste 
and ecstasy were manifest, such as might awaken the sleeper, render 
him who is awakened cognizant of the mysteries, kindle the fire of 
Love and put in motion the chain of longing. 

" But since the author ['Iraqi] had become the target of the tongues 
of l the vilifiers of sundry men of good repute j and had suffered at the 

hands of ' 'certain ill-conditioned wanderers from the path?] 
*on^lr~i t ^ ie Dunc ^y orthodox have imposed on him the stigma 

of repudiation, and withdrawn from him the skirt of 
acceptance. This humble writer also, in view of this rejection and 
repudiation, abstained from preoccupying himself therewith ; until the 
most illustrious of the ' Brethren of Purity' in this country, and the 
most glorious of the friends of constancy (may God cause him to walk 
in the ways of His adept servants !), whose auspicious name has been 
enunciated in the course of this prayer in the best form of enigma and 
allusion between God and His servants, requested me to collate and 
correct the text thereof; which request could only be met with obedience. 
When I entered on this business, and ran over the details of its com- 
ponent parts, I saw in every leaf thereof a ' Flash ' from the lights of 
Truths, and perceived in every page a gust of the declaration of Divine 
Wisdom. The heart was attracted to the understanding of its subtle- 
ties, and the mind was troubled at the difficulty of comprehending 
its purport. Manuscripts of the text differed, and some of them ap- 
peared to be perverted from the path of accuracy. In certain cases 
of concision and passages of difficulty reference was made to the com- 
mentaries on it ; but neither was any difficulty solved thereby, nor in 
any of them was any concise statement properly amplified. As a 
necessary consequence, this thought passed through a heart disposed 
to the understanding of subtleties, and this wish established itself in a 
mind regardful of the essence of truths, that, to correct its sentences and 
elucidate its hints, a commentary should be compiled gleaned from 
the sayings of the elders of the Path and leaders in the Truth, especially 

1 A well-known and highly esteemed mystical work in Arabic by 
Shaykh Muhyi'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabf. See vol. ii of my Lit. Hist, of 
Persia, pp. 497-501. 

2 These two half-verses are from a quatrain generally ascribed to 
'Umar Khayydm. See E. H. Whinfield's edition and versified transla- 
tion, No. 199, pp. 134-5. 

CH. vn] jAMf'S LAWA'IH 447 

those two great Shaykhs Muhyi'd-Din Muhammad ibnu'l-'Arabi and 
his disciple and pupil Sadru'd-Dfn Muhammad of Qiinya and their fol- 
lowers (may God most High sanctify their secrets !). So, in consequence 
of these promptings, the mind decided on undertaking this difficult 
task, which it brought to a conclusion, by the assistance of God's Grace, 
in the shortest time. And since most of the statements which are 
included in this commentary are of the kind which have shone forth 
upon the heart from the consideration of the luminous words of the 
text, it is proper that it should be named 'Rays of the "Flashes,"' and 
should be represented to the eyes of students by this description. It is 
hoped of such as regard justly, though not of scoffers characterized by 
obstinacy, that when they take this manual into their consideration, 
and devote their thoughts to its perusal, wherever they see aught of 
goodness and perfection they will account it the gift of God (Glory 
be to Him and exalted is He !), whilst wherever they find any fault or 
defect they will attribute it to the impotence and shortcomings of 
humanity ; and that they will not specially make the humble author a 
target for the arrows of reproach, nor cast themselves into the vortex 
of evil-seeking and evil-saying. We ask aid from God, to whom be 

This Introduction is followed by a long dissertation on 
various points in the philosophy of the Mystics, together 
with questions and answers designed to elucidate special 
difficulties, after which the running commentary on the text 
follows. The book ends with the following Perso-Arabic 


chronogram, in which the word tammamtuhu (AZ+^J, " I 
completed it ") gives the date of completion as 885 (A.D. 

is j 'iu A-ij u 31 


The Lawaih a word which also, like Lama'dt, means 

" Flashes " or " Effulgences " of Light is a mystical treatise 

in prose mixed with quatrains comprising thirty 

Jimt's Lawd 'ik . . ,.,-,, , , , , 11-11 

sections called r lashes. It has been published 
in fac-simile with a Preface, translation and appendices, 


by Mr E. H. Whinfield, who has made such valuable con- 
tributions to our knowledge of Persian mysticism, aided by 
that great scholar Mirza Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'l-Wahhab 
of Qazwin. This little volume, the sixteenth in the New 
Series of the Oriental Translation Fund, was published in 
1906 under the auspices of the Royal Asiatic Society, and, 
since it is easily accessible to English readers, any lengthy 
account of it would be superfluous. One of the most 
beautiful things in it, in my opinion, is the prayer which 
follows the Exordium and precedes the Preface, and which 
runs as follows : 

3 ^5*^ Jliii^t o- U 
^Ju L Oj-^su J*OL> jt C-JLftC. O 

J j 

IU C~wU l A^A U 

" My God, my God ! Save us from preoccupation with trifles, and 

show us the realities of things as they are ! Withdraw from the eyes 

of our understanding the veil of heedlessness, and show 

Jdmi's prayer us everything as it truly is! Display not to us Not- 

for spiritual . / . ' . 

enlightenment Being in the guise of Being, and place not a veil of 
Not-Being over the Beauty of Being. Make these 
phenomenal forms a Mirror of the Effulgences of Thy Beauty, not a 
cause of veiling and remoteness, and cause these phantasmal pictures 
to become the means of our knowledge and vision, not a cause of 
ignorance and blindness. All our deprivation and banishment is from 
ourselves : leave us not with ourselves, but grant us deliverance from 
ourselves, and vouchsafe us knowledge of Thyself ! " 


Literature of the Hurufi Sect. 

In the account of the Hurufi heresy given in the last 
chapter (pp. 365-375 supra) incidental mention has been 
made of the principal books emanating from or connected 
with that strange sect From the purely literary point of 
view most of these (with the exception of a few poems like 
the Iskandar-ndma published and translated by M. Cl. Huart 
in vol. ix of the " E. J. W. Gibb Memorial " Series) are of 
little merit 1 , though to the student of religion and the psycho- 
logist they are deeply interesting. To the uninitiated reader 
Fadlu'llah's J dwiddn-ndma, whatever esoteric mysteries it 
may contain, is a series of disconnected and almost un- 
intelligible ravings, and the only one of his extant writings 
which strikes anything approaching a human note is a letter 
addressed to one of his disciples on the eve of his execution. 
From this letter it appears that Fadlu'llah was put to death 
at Shirwan, which, in allusion to the scene of the Imam 
Husayn's martyrdom, he speaks of as " my Karbala 2 ." 

In Persia, as already observed, the sect does not seem 

to have played an important role, or to have long survived 

the death of its founder and his immediate 

Diffusion of the 

Hurufi heresy successor. In Turkey, whither it soon spread, 
it was far otherwise. There, in spite of several 
severe persecutions recorded by the Turkish historians, it 
counted many adherents, amongst the most famous of 
whom was the poet Nasimi (Nesimi), who was skinned 
alive for his heterodoxy in 820/1417-8, in the city of 
Aleppo. An admirable account of him and the Hurufi 
sect is given by the late Mr E. J. W. Gibb 3 , and also of 
his chief disciple, the Turkish poet Rafi'i, author of the 

1 This refers only to the Persian Hurufi writings, for, as already 
indicated (p. 369, n. i supra), Mr Gibb regards Nesfmi as "the first 
true poet of the Western Turks." 

2 See my second paper on the Hurufis in the J. R. A. S. for July, 
1907, pp. 9 and 10 of the tirage-a-part, where both text and translation 
are given. 

3 History of Ottoman Poetry, vol. i, pp. 336-388. 

B. P. 29 


Bashdrat-ndma. Here it may be observed that the titles 
of nearly all Hurufi works are compounded with the word 
-ndma, "book." Thus in Persian we have the Adam-ndma 
("Book of Adam," or " Book of Man"), the 'Arsh-ndma 
("Book of God's Throne"), Hiddyat-ndma ("Book of 
Guidance"), fstiwd-ndma, Kursi-ndma, Mahabbat-ndma, 
etc., and in Turkish, besides the above-mentioned Bashd- 
rat-ndma (" Book of Good Tidings "), the Akhirat-ndma, 
Fadilat-ndma, Faqr-ndma, Fayd-ndma, Ganj-ndma, Haqi- 
qat-ndma, 'Ishq-ndma, and many others, of which the titles 
will be found in the Index appended to my second article 
on the Hurufi Literature in the/. R. A. S. for July, 1907, 
where short descriptions of 45 Huruff MSS. are given. 
The list of works in that Index is undoubtedly far from 
complete, yet even these have for the most part received 
only the most cursory examination, so that there is plenty 
of scope for further research in this field. Ordinary curiosity 
about the sect and its history and literature will, however, 
be amply satisfied by what has been already 
gurfiflMctfa published about it in English and French: to 
English and w jt m y account of the Jdwiddn-i-Kabir* and 

French J J 

my two papers in the /. R. A. S. (for 1898 
and 1907) ; the chapter in Mr E. J. W. Gibb's History of 
Ottoman Poetry ; and vol. ix of the Gibb Memorial Series, 
published in 1909, entitled Textes Persans relatifs a la secte 
des Houroufis, publics, traduits et annotes par M. Clement 
Huart, sidvis d'une Etude sur la Religion des Houroiifis^par 
le Docteur Rizd Tevftq, connu sous le nom de Feylesouf Rizd. 
Ishaq Efendi's refutation of the Hurufi's, written in 
Turkish in 1288/1871-2, and published in 1291/1874, under 

the title of the Revealer of Mysteries and Repeller 

Ishaq Efendi's * 

refutation of 0f Miscreants*, though very violent in tone, is 
fairly accurate in substance, and is the result of 
careful though prejudiced investigations. After a very brief 
doxology it begins as follows : 

1 See my Catalogue of the Persian MSS. in the Cambridge University 
Library, pp. 69-86. 

2 KdshifuU-Asrdr <wa Ddfi'tfl-Ashrdr. 


" Be it known that of all those sects which devote themselves to the 
misleading of the Muslims, the Bektashfs are the chief offenders, and 
that although it is evident both from their deeds and words that they 
are not truly Muslims, yet in the year 1288/1871-2 they made this fact 
perfectly plain. The books called by these people Jdwiddn (' Eternal ') 
are six in number, of which one was composed by their original mis- 
leader Fadlu'llah the Hurufi, while the other five are the works of his 
Khalifas (successors). And since in these five books their heresies 
and blasphemies are very evident, they are accustomed to teach and 
study them secretly among themselves ; but as Firishta-zada in his 
Jdwiddn, entitled ''Ishq-ndma (' the Book of Love ')> did in some degree 
veil his blasphemies, and as consequently in the year above-mentioned 
(1288/1871-2) his followers made so bold as to print and publish it, it 
has beyond question become a matter of urgent necessity that a treatise 
should be compiled to warn the faithful as to the true nature and 
blasphemous character of the doctrines contained in their books. 
Therefore, relying on God, I have ventured to write such a treatise, 
comprising three chapters, viz. : 

" Chapter I. Setting forth the origin of Fadl the Hurufi, and the 
principles and rules of certain of the Bektashis. 

" Chapter II. Setting forth the blasphemies of Firishta-zada's 

"Chapter III. Setting forth the blasphemies contained in the 
other Jdwiddns? 

After a brief account of the Carmathians and other early 
heretics, and of Fadlu'llah of Astarabad, the founder of the 
Hurufi sect, the author describes how " the son of Timiir " 
(Miran-shah) caused him to be put to death, " after which 
he tied a rope to his legs, dragged him publicly through 
the streets and bazars, and removed his foul existence from 
this nether world." Thereupon his nine Khalifas or "Vicars" 
dispersed through the lands of Islam, and he who was en- 
titled a/-' A liyyu 'l-A'ld ("the High, the Supreme") 1 came to 
the monastery of Hajji Bektash in Anatolia, and, having 
won the confidence of its inmates, began secretly to teach 
the doctrines of the Jdwiddn, pretending that they repre- 
sented the esoteric doctrine of Hajji Bektash, and naming 
them " the Secret," to divulge which was death. For the 
understanding of certain obscure symbols and passages in 

1 He died in 822/1419. 

29 2 


the Jdwiddn, a key entitled " the Key of Life " (Miftdktil- 
Haydty was compiled. " Should one possess this," adds 
the author, " he will understand the Jdwiddn, which, without 
this aid, is incomprehensible." 

In spite of all their precautions, however, several severe 

persecutions of the Hurufis and Bektashfs took place in 

Turkey, one of the latest of which was in 

Persecutions * 

ofthe Hurufis 1240/1824-5, in the reign of Sultan Mahmud, 
who killed many of them, destroyed their 
monasteries, and made over their property to the Naqsh- 
bandi order of dervishes. Many of their surviving Shaykhs 
and ordinary members took refuge amongst the Naqshbandi, 
Qadirf, Rufa'i and Sa'di orders of dervishes, and cautiously 
carried on their propaganda in these new environments. 
The order, however, speedily revived, and is still widely 
spread in Turkey, to which country rather than to Persia 
the later history of the Huruff sect belongs. Of the con- 
tinued existence of the sect in Persia there appears to 
be no evidence, though doubtless many of their doctrines 
and ideas are still current amongst the dervish " gnostics " 
('urafa) of that unforgetting land, while some of their 
peculiar views and terminology have been assimilated by 
such later heretical sects as the Babi's, who will be discussed 
in the concluding volume of this work. 

The Turki literature of this period, especially the 

The principle has been repeatedly laid down in this 

book that the literary history of a people in the wider 

sense should not be confined to what they 

Claims of Turki J 

literature to wrote in their own language, and for this 
reason Arabic books written by Persians have 

tion even in a 

Literary History been included in our survey. The case for 
saying something about the considerable Turki 

1 Three MSS. of this " Key " are described in my second paper on 
the Literature of the Hurufts, viz. Or. 5957 of the British Museum ; 
Or. 488 of the Cambridge University Library ; and a MS. of my own, 
B. 15. 


literature produced at the Timurid courts, especially at 
Herat during the reign of Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn 
(A.H. 878-912 = A.D. 1473-1506), is not quite so strong, 
because those who produced it were for the most part, if 
not wholly, of Turkish race ; though since in Transoxiana 
and Turkistan the two languages flourished (and, indeed, 
still flourish) side by side, the number of bilinguals must 
always have been considerable. The Persian, as being the 
more polished idiom, was more generally used, even by 
princes of the House of Timur like Ulugh Beg, Baysunqur, 
Mfrza Haydar Dughlat and Sultan Husayn himself, for 
Services of M, r literary purposes; but the great Mir 'AH Shir 
-AH shir Nawa'i Nawa'i, who did more than any other man 
hngukgeand to raise the Chaghatay Turki to the dignity 

of a literary language, actually maintained its 
superiority to Persian in a treatise entitled Muhdkamatul- 
Lughatayn ("the Arbitration between the two languages"). 
Of some of Mir 'AH Shir's numerous works something has 
been already said, and those who desire fuller information 
can find it in M. Belin's monograph in \he Journal A siatique 
for 1 86 1, already mentioned, and in another monograph of 
his on \heMakbubul-Qulub 1 ("Hearts' Darling") published 
in the same periodical in 1 866 under the title of Caracteres, 
Maximes et Pensees de Mir AH Chir Nfodti, Dawlatshah 
also in the Conclusion (Khdtima) of his Memoirs of the 
Poets mentions several other eminent Turki poets amongst 
his contemporaries, while numerous other works in this 
tongue, both in prose and verse, will be found mentioned 
in Rieu's Catalogue of the Turkish Manuscripts in the British 
Museum. Yet, save to the student of Turkish in its wider 
sense, it is doubtful if the interest of this literature would 
be commensurate with the trouble of learning this particular 
dialect of Turkf, were it not for the sake of reading in its 

original form that unique work, the Bdbur- 

Unique character ^ _ * 

ofRabur's Roma, or Memoirs of the Emperor Babur, of 

which at any rate the French or the English 

1 The text of this has been printed (I think at Constantinople) in 


translation should be read by every student of Persian or 

Indian history 1 . Enthusiastic as are the praises lavished 

on this most remarkable book, " singular in its 

Eulogies on the , f . . e . . . 

Memoirs by aii own nature, and perfectly so if we consider the 
who have made circumstances of the writer," by Erskine 2 , Pavet 

use of them i / 

de Courteille 3 , and all others who have worked 
at it, no one who has perused its pages will deem them 
exaggerated. It is impossible to better the description of 
it given by Elphinstone 4 , who describes it as containing 
"a minute account of the life of a great Tartar monarch, 
along with a natural effusion of his opinions and feelings 
free from disguise and reserve, and no less free from all 
affectation of extreme frankness and candour. The style 
is plain and manly, as well as lively and picturesque ; it 
presents his countrymen and contemporaries in their ap- 
pearance, manners, pursuits and actions as clearly as in 
a mirror. In this respect it is almost the only specimen 
of real history in Asia ; for the ordinary writers, though 
they give pompous accounts of the deeds and ceremonies 
of the great, are apt to omit the lives and manners even of 
that class ; while everything beneath their level is left 
entirely out of sight. In Baber the figures, dress, tastes 
and habits of each individual introduced are described with 
such minuteness and reality that we seem to live among 
them, and to know their persons as well as we do their 
characters. His descriptions of the countries he visited, 
their scenery, climate, productions, and works of art and 
industry are more full and accurate than will, perhaps, be 
found in equal space in any modern traveller ; and, con- 
sidering the circumstances in which they were compiled, 
are truly surprising." 

The book is, indeed, extraordinarily frank and intimate, 

1 Pavet de Courteille's French translation was made directly from 
the original Turkf, and is therefore preferable to Leyden and Erskine's 
English translation, which was made from the Persian version. 

2 History of India, vol. i, pp. 522-525. 

3 P. ii of the Preface to his translation. 

4 Vol. ii of his History of India, pp. 117-119. 


being such a diary as a man writes for his own private 
delectation rather than for the perusal of even his most 
confidential friends, much less subjects ; and probably no 
king at any rate ever wrote, or at any rate suffered to be 
circulated, such Confessions. While recording fully the 
many great historical events in which he took part, he 
does not hesitate to mention when he shaved for the first 
time 1 at the age of 23 in the year 909/1503-4; when he 
saw the star Canopus for the first time 2 ; how he was first 
induced to taste wine 3 at Herat in 912/1506-7; and when 
he made his first attempt to write Turki verse 4 . He de- 
scribes his unhappy marriage with 'A'isha Sultan Begum 5 , 
his reckless and unrestrained passion for Babun' 6 , his 
drinking-bouts 7 , his favourite vintage 8 , and how on one 
occasion he refrained from exceeding at a drinking-party 
in order to form an impartial opinion as to the effects of 
drunkenness on others 9 . Mention has already been made 
of the value of his geographical observations, but his notes 
on the fauna and flora of Central Asia and India are of 
nearly equal interest, while his impartial and acute de- 
lineations of the characters and personal peculiarities of 
his royal kinsmen and most notable contemporaries are 
of the highest interest and value. From our present point 
of view, however, no portion of his Memoirs is 
a more interesting than that which he devotes 
and artists in the to a series of literary portraits of the leading 

Babttr-ndnia ', 

poets, writers and artists 10 who conferred such 
distinction on the court of Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn, 
beginning with that monarch himself and his eminent and 
accomplished minister Mir 'All Shir Nawa'i 11 . As the whole 
of it may be read in French in the first volume of Pavet de 

1 Bdbur-ndma, ed. Ilminsky, p. 146. 

2 Ibid., p. 153. 3 Ibid., p. 239. 
4 Ibid., p. 107. ' Ibid., p. 62. 

6 Ibid., pp. 62-63. : Ibid., pp. 291, 293, 305. 

8 Ibid., p. 6. 9 Ibid., p. 304. 

10 Ibid., pp. 221-231. u Ibid., pp. 203-214. 


Courteille's translation (pp. 364-415), it will be sufficient 
here to summarize a few of the more interesting passages. 

Having spoken of Sultan Husayn's birth, death, family 

and personal appearance, Babur mentions the predilection 

for the Shi'ite doctrine which he showed at 

Description of t ^ beginning of his reign, but which was 

Siiliiut Husayn c> ' 

checked by Mir 'All Shir. Chronic rheumatism 
prevented him from saying his prayers, but is no explana- 
tion of his neglect to keep the fast. After he had reigned 
six or seven years he took to drink, " and during the forty 
years for which he reigned over Khurasan, there was not 
a day whereon he did not drink after the morning prayer 
though he never drank in the early morning." His sons, 
soldiers and subjects imitated his example, and were for 
the most part dissolute and self-indulgent. He was, how- 
ever, of proved valour, a very skilful swordsman, and wrote 
moderately good poetry in the Turki language under the 
nom de guerre of Hasan. His kingdom of Khurasan ex- 
tended eastwards to Balkh, westwards to Bistam and 
Damghan, northwards to Khwarazm (Khiva), and south- 
wards to Qandahar and Sistan. " His was a wonderful age," 
says Babur a little further on ; " Khurasan, and especially 
Herat, were filled with men of talent and incomparable 
artists. Whoever undertook any task, his aim and ambition 
was to perform it to perfection." 

Mir 'All Shir Nawa'f is next discussed, and a high 
tribute is paid to his poetical talent, alike in romantic 

and lyric verse and in the quatrain, but his 
Shfc*Nawl'i epistolary style is rated lower. Though he 

wrote chiefly in Turki, he has also a Persian 
Diwdn, in which he uses the pen-name of Fani. He was 
a great patron of art as well as of letters, and the fame 
attained by the painters Bihzad and Shah Muzaffar was 
largely due to his encouragement. He was devout, orthodox, 
and attentive to his religious duties, and was an enthusiastic 
chess-player. In this last respect he was excelled by Mir 
Murtad the philosopher, who, when he found two good 


players, would play a game with one while he held on to 
the skirt of the other to prevent him from going away until 
he had played a game with him also. He was a batchelor, 
without domestic ties, and very free and easy with his 
intimates. Thus on one occasion while engaged in playing 
chess he stretched out his foot and accidentally kicked the 
poet Banna'i, whereupon he jestingly exclaimed, "A plague 
on Herat ! If you stretch out your feet, you kick the back- 
side of a poet." "And so you do if you draw in your feet 1 ," 
retorted Banna'i. 

Shaykhum Beg, who assumed the pen-name of Suhaylf, 
was another of Sultan Husayn's amirs who had some 

poetical talent, but was criticized for an undue 
Be^SuhTu partiality for terrifying words and ideas. Thus 

on one occasion he recited the following verse 
in the presence of Jami: 

" In the night of grief the whirl-wind of my sighs displaced the world ; 
The dragon of my tear-torrent engulfed the habitable quarter [of the 

" Do you want to write poetry or to frighten your fellow- 
creatures?" Jami enquired. 

"Kamalu'd-Di'n Husayn G^zargahi," says Babur a little 
further on 2 , "although he was not a Sufi, posed as such. 

Pretended Suffs of this type were wont to 
Shi Din S ather rounc * <All/ Shir Beg and indulge in their 

ecstasies and religious music. This man's prin- 
ciples were better than most of them, and to this fact he 
probably owed the consideration which he enjoyed, for 
otherwise he had no special talent worth mentioning. 
He wrote a book entitled Majdlisul- Ushshdq (" Lovers' 
Meetings") of which he ascribed the authorship to Husayn 

1 I.e. "sit on your heels" in the Persian fashion. 

2 Ed. Ilminsky, p. 2.2,1. 


Mirza 1 . It is a miserable production, mostly lies, and in- 
sipid and impertinent lies to boot, some of which raise a 
suspicion of heresy. Thus he attributes carnal loves to 
many prophets and saints, inventing for each one of them 
a paramour. Another astonishing piece of folly is that 
while describing the book in the preface as the work of 
Sultan Husayn Mirza himself, over every one of his own 
verses and sonnets occurring in the course of the book he 
puts ' by the author.' " 

Of Jami, by far the greatest poet of the time, Babur 

refrains from uttering any criticism, because, he says, " he 

stands too high to need any praise," wherefore 

Jami and J ' 

Sayfu'd-Din he only mentions his name " for luck and for a 
blessing." He praises the Arabic scholarship 
and theological attainments of the Shaykhu'l-Islam Sayfu'd- 
Din Ahmad, son of the celebrated Sa'du'd-Di'n Taftazani, 
who is said to have regularly attended public prayer for 
nearly seventy years, and who was finally put to death by 
Shah Ismail when he took Herat for refusing to conform to 
the Shi'ite doctrines and observances so fanatically insisted 
on by that monarch. A longer notice is devoted to Jami's 
pupil and disciple Mulla 'Abdu'l-Ghafur of Lar, 
^haWr-i-Lari w ^ commentated his master's Nafahdtiil- Uns, 
and whose partiality for the society of dervishes 
was such that when he heard of one who had newly arrived 
he could not rest until he had seen and talked with him. 
Mention is next made of Mir 'Ata'u'llah of Mashhad, a 
good Arabic scholar, who also composed in Persian a treatise 
on rhyme, of which Babur considers the chief defect to be 
that the author's illustrations are all drawn from his own 
poems, as well as another treatise on rhetorical figures en- 
titled Baddyi'u's-Sandyi 1 . 

Amongst the poets, besides those already noticed, of 
whom he makes mention areAsafi, Banna'i, Sayff of Bukhara 

1 Cf. pp. 439-440 supra. 


(the author of a useful treatise on Prosody 1 ), Hatifi (J ami's 
nephew) also known as ' Abdu \\ah-\-Matkna- 

Other poets 

mentioned by ivt-gu, Mir Husayn Mu'ammd't, Muhammad 

of Badakhshan, Yusuf Badf'i, Ahi, Muhammad 

Salih, Shah Husayn Kami, Ahli and Hilalf, the last of 

whom Babur criticizes very severely for the subject-matter 

and treatment of his poem " The Prince and the Beggar " 

(Shdk u Darwish or Shah u Gadd). Of the 

caiiigraphists many caiiigraphists at the court he mentions 

and artists f 

only Sultan 'All of Mashhad, who copied manu- 
scripts both for Sultan Husayn and for Mir 'All Shir; 
and of the miniature-painters Bihzad and Shah Muzaffar, 
who was also a poet. His criticism on Bihzad's portraits 
is that though he drew bearded faces well, he was less 
successful with beardless boys and girls, where he had a 
tendency to exaggerate the chin 2 . Yet in another place 3 , 
in speaking of Shaybani Khan's proceedings after he had 
captured Herat in 913/1507-8, he denounces his action in 
attempting to improve and touch up Bihzad's paintings. In 
conclusion Babur mentions a number of musicians, minstrels 
and composers. 

The materials for a literary history of this period, 
especially of its poets, are therefore singularly copious 

and authoritative, for besides Babur's incidental 
materials for notices of which we have just spoken, we have the 
literary history voluminous Memoirs of the Poets compiled by 

of this period , ,~., , , 

Dawlatshah in 892/1487, and Mir 'Ah Shirs 
Turki Majdltsun-Nafd'is, completed about four years later, 
of the contents of which some account has been given above 4 . 
As a pendant to these is the later work of another royal 
author, Sam Mirza, son of Shah Isma'i'l the Safawi, who 
was born in 923/1517 and put to death in 984/1576-7, and 

1 Published with English translation and explanations by Bloch- 
mann at Calcutta. 

2 Ed. Ilminsky, pp. 228-229. 

3 Ibid., p. 262. 

4 Pp. 437-439 supra. 


who in 957/1550 wrote his Tuhfa-i-Sdmt 1 , a somewhat rare 
book which will be considered in the subsequent volume. 
In addition to these are the copious biographical notices 
contained in Khwandamir's Habibus-Siyar. Of all these, 
however, Babur is the most amusing and the most in- 
structive, because he possesses both humour and a critical 
faculty lacking in the other biographers, who, by indis- 
criminate eulogies, deprive their appreciations of all real 

1 See Rieu's Persian Catalogue, pp. 367-368, and the references 
there given. There is also a MS. (Or. 648) in the Cambridge University 



As already indicated in more than one place, the charac- 
teristic of the art which prevailed under the Ti'murids, 
whether literary or pictorial, was an extreme 

Literary taste _ ' 

under the elaboration and preciosity little in accordance 

with modern European taste, though very similar 
on its literary side to that evolved by John Lyly and the 
Euphuists in England nearly a century after Jamf's reputa- 
tion had reached its zenith in Persia 1 . In England this 
florid, artificial style enjoyed but a brief popularity ; in 
Persia it has flourished intermittently for a long period, 
especially under Tartar and Turkish patronage, but not 
continuously nor in all parts of the country, so that it is 
easy to point out fine specimens of simple, strong, natural 
Persian prose and verse both before and after the period 
now under consideration. During this period, however, 
Period of greatest tne prevailing literary style in Persia was very 
Persian influence ornate and artificial, and as it unfortunately 
Indian literary happened that at no time was Persian literary 
style influence greater in the adjoining lands of 

Turkey, India and Transoxiana, this style became stereo- 
typed throughout Western and Central Asia, and has come 
to be regarded by many persons, especially those who have 
pursued their linguistic studies in India, as typically Persian. 
Still it is a fact that not only the Persians, Turks and 
Indians, but even the Arabs, whose natural tendency is to 
a chaster and more simple style, and who seldom quite forget 
their adage that " tfie best speech is that which is brief and to 
the point*" tend to regard form as more important than ideas 

1 Lyly was born in 1553-4 and wrote his Euphues, the Anatomy of 
Wit'vs\ 1578. Jami composed his Nafahdtii'l- Uns in 1478,. and com- 
piled his first Diwdn in the following year. 


in literary composition, to care less what a writer says than 
how he says it, and to prefer conventionality to originality. 
Most instructive are the remarks of that great and original 
historian Ibn Khaldun, who was not only contemporary 
with Timur but came into personal relations with him when 
Damascus surrendered to him at the end of A.D. I4OO 1 . 
These remarks, with other observations germane to this 
subject, I have given in a previous volume 2 to which the 
reader is referred. In particular the student of Persian 
poetry, especially of the later more ornate writers, may be 
recommended to read that curious work, "the Lovers' 
Companion" (Anisu'l-Ushshdq), composed in 826/1423 by 
Sharafu'd-Din Kami at Maragha in Adharbayjan, of which 
a French translation by M. Cl. Huart was published in Paris 
in 1875, and of which I have given a brief account in a 
previous volume 3 . 

It must not be supposed, however, that all the poets 
who will be mentioned in this chapter, or even all who 

flourished at the court of Sultan Husayn at 
l^ZSZSZ, Herat, employ this inflated and ornate style, 
universal as sup- which, indeed, is more noticeable in prose- writers, 

including even historians, who ought to know 
better than to fill ten pages with what could very well be 
set forth in one. The earlier poets of whom we shall imme- 
diately speak, like Shah Ni'matu'llah and Qasimu'l-Anwar, 
are free from this blemish, for so we must regard it; and so 
also, as a rule, is Jami, who is universally and justly regarded 
not only as the chief ornament of the court of Herat, but 
as one of the greatest Persian poets of all time. It is the 
ornate prose-writers and minor poets and versifiers of the 
later part of this period who are the chief offenders in this 
respect. The passion for the riddle and acrostic (mu'amma) 
which prevailed amongst the latter is very characteristic, 

1 See Part i of the Baron McGuckin de Slane's translation in Notices 
et Extraits, pp. v and Ixxxv-xcii. 

2 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 17-89, especially pp. 86-89. 

3 Ibid., pp. 83-84. 


while the methods of the former are well illustrated by 
Husayn Wa'iz-i-Kashiff's Anwdr-i-Suhayli, where, for ex- 
ample, a squeaking mouse is described as " raising its 
outcry to the aetherial sphere." In a previous volume I 
have shown 1 by parallel extracts from the Book of Kalila 
and Dimna as rendered into Arabic by 'Abdu'llah ibnu'l- 
Muqaffa' in the eighth century, and into Persian by Nizamu'- 
d-Di'n Abu'l-Ma'alf Nasru'llah in the twelfth and Husayn 
Wa'iz at the end of the sixteenth centuries how the last- 
named writer set himself to "write up" and improve upon 
the work of his predecessors. 

I. Sayyid Ni'matulldh of Kirman. 

Though Jamf is unquestionably the greatest poet of the 

period which we are now considering, it seems better to 

adhere to chronological sequence and to begin 

nT id , ^-'T 1 with the earliest, Sayyid (or Shah) Ni'matu'llah 

llih of Kirmin * J 

of Kirman, who died at an advanced age in the 
spring of 1431 (Rajab 22, 834), and was buried at the 
charming village of Mahan near Kirman, of which some 
malicious wit has said : 

Epigram on 


" Mdhdn an Earthly Paradise would be, I wot right well, 
If you could clear its people out and shake them into hell." 

The site of his grave is marked by a fine monastery 
inhabited by dervishes of the Shah Ni'matu'llahi order which 
he founded ; for he was a great saint and mystic as well as 
a poet, and his verses abound in dark apocalyptic sayings 
concerning the "Mischief of the Last Days" (Fitna-i- 
Akkiru2-Zamdn\ the Advent of the Mahdi, and other 
similar matters. I visited this shrine in September, 1888, 
shortly before I left Kirman, and was very hospitably 
entertained by its acolytes. 

1 Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 349-353. 


As usual, the best account of Ni'matu'llah is that given 
by Rieu in his Persian Catalogue 1 , where the substance of 
the information given by the ordinary biographical works 
is supplemented by details drawn from a rare contemporary 
monograph existing in the British Museum 2 and from the 
history of Yazd and its most notable men known as the 
Jdmi'i-Muftdi. His full name was Amir Nuru'd-Din 
Ni'matu'llah, his father's name was Mir 'Abdu 

Biography of ' 

Sayyid 'llah, andhe claimed descent from the fifth Imam 

Ni'matu'llah of the Sh{ < a> Muhammad 3^ the great-grand- 
son of 'AH ibn Abi'Talib. He was born at Aleppo ^730/1329- 
30 or in the following year, but spent mpst of his youth in 
'Iraq. At the age of 24 he visited Mecca, where he resided 
for seven years, and became one of the chief disciples of 
Shaykh 'Abdu'llah al-Yafi'i, a well-known mystical and 
historical writer, who died in 768/1366-7. His later life 
was passed in Samarqand, Herat, Yazd and finally, as 
already mentioned, at Mahdn near Kirman, where he spent 
the last twenty-five years of his life, and where he died on 
Rajab 22, 834 (April 5, 1431) aged more than a hundred 
years. The historian 'Abdu'r-Razzaq of Samarqand visited 
his grave in 845/1441-2. 

Ni'matu'llah was the king of dervishes (the title " Shah " 
is always prefixed to his name) and the friend of kings. 
He enjoyed the special favour of Shah-rukh, 
scendants enjoy while Ahmad Shah Bahmani, King of the 
Royal favoui Deccan, deemed himself fortunate in persuading 
to come to his court one of his grandsons. Two other 
grandsons with their father followed him thither, while 
several of Shah Ni'matu'llah's descendants who remained 
in Persia intermarried with the Royal Safawi House. 
According to Rieu 3 , Ni'matu'llah left more than 500 Sufi 
tracts besides his Diwdn of verse, but the latter is his chief 
work, and it alone need be considered here. The only 
complete copy at my disposal is the lithographed edition 

1 Pp. 634-635. 2 Add. 16,837, ff. 339-355- 

3 Pers. Cat. p. 635. 


published at Tihran in 1276/1860, but numerous selections 
from it are contained in the various biographies and antho- 
logies in which he is mentioned. His fame, however, is 
that of a saint and mystic rather than a poet, and his verse 
strikes one on the whole as monotonous and mediocre, similar 
in style and subject-matter to that of Maghribi, and altogether 
lacking the consuming ardour and brilliant illustration of 
Shams-i-Tabriz. His most characteristic poems, though 
few in number, are those couched in the prophetic strain, 
and these still exercise a certain influence, and are appealed 
to by other Persians than those who belong to 
au^heTto his tne order of dervishes which he founded. The 
prophetic Babis, for example, used to tell me in Kirman 


that the date of the Babs "Manifestation 
(1260/1844) was foretold in the following poem. When I 
visited the saint's shrine I took the trouble to obtain from 
one of the dervishes a copy of the poem in question from 
the oldest and most trustworthy manuscript in their pos- 
session, and I found that there the date was given as 274 
instead of 1260 (p,j, 3=70 + 200 + 4 instead of i,j,^ = 
1000 + 200 + 60), while in Rida-quli Khan's Majma'ul- 
Fusa/id 1 , where the same poem is quoted, the date becomes 
1 204 (> + j + i = 1000 + 200 + 4). In the last-named work 
the poem is thus entitled : 

" Declaration of sundry mysteries and revelations by 
way of allegories." 


1 Tihran lithographed ed., vol. ii, p. 45. 
B. P. 30 



j- 3 


3 a* 

^Q X In C^ 


- .- 

j-* >^>^ 

3 j-jj^ j-ib 

CH. vin] 


The text here given is that copied for me at Mahan on 
August 9, 1888. Of the 50 verses which it contains only 24 
are given in the Majinrfiil-Fusahd, which only adds one or 



two new verses, but in some cases adopts a different order, 
besides supplying a few variants. The poem is not to be 

found at all in the lithographed edition. 


" I see the Power of the Maker ; I see the state of the time. 
The state of this year is of another sort ; not like last year and the year 

before do I see it. 
These words I speak not from the stars ; rather I see them from the 

Creator 1 . 
When l ayn,rd and ddl( = 274) have passed of the years I see wonderful 


In Khurasan, Egypt, Syria and 'Irdq I see sedition and strife. 
I see the darkness of the tyranny of the lands' oppressors boundless 

and beyond computation. 

I hear a very strange story ; I see vexation in the land. 
War, strife, mischief and injustice I see on the right and on the left. 
Looting, slaughter and many armies I see in the midst and around. 
I see the servant like the master ; I see the master like the servant. 
They impress a new superscription on the face of the gold ; I see his 

dirhams of short weight. 

I see the dear friends of every people grown sorrowful and abased. 
Each of the rulers of the Seven Climes I see involved with another. 
I see the face of the moon darkened ; I see the heart of the sun trans- 
The appointment and dismissal of officials and agents, each one I see 

twice repeated. 

In Turk and Tajik 2 towards one another I see enmity and strife. 
I see the merchant left friendless on the road at the hands of the 


I see from small and great much cunning, guile and trickery. 
I find the condition of the Indian ruined ; I see the oppression of 

Turks and Tartars. 
I see the Holy Place fearfully desolated, the abode of a number of evil 

1 I.e. these predictions are not based on astrological predictions 
but inspired by revelation from God. 

2 Tdjik, a term originally applied to the Arabs ( Tdztk, Tdzi) who 
garrisoned the towns of Khurdsan and Transoxiana, was later and is 
still applied to the Persian settled population as opposed to the nomads 
of Turkish stock. 


Some of the trees of the Garden of the World I see springless and 

If there be a little security, that too I see within the borders of the 

A companion, contentment and a [quiet] corner I now see as most to 

be desired. 

Although I see all these sorrows, I see the [final] joy of the sorrowful. 
Grieve not, for in this trouble I see the harvest of union with the 


After this year and a few years more 1 I see a world like a [fair] picture. 
I behold this world like Egypt ; I see Justice as its stronghold. 
My king and his ministers are seven ; all of these I see triumphant. 
Such as rebel against my immaculate Imam I see ashamed and dis- 
On the palm of the hand of the Cup-bearer of Unity I see the pleasant 

The friendly foe-destroying warrior I see as the comrade and friend 

of the friend. 
I see the swords of those whose hearts are hard as iron rusted, blunt 

and of no account. 
The beauty of the Law and the splendour of Islam, each one I see 

doubled 2 . 
I see the wolf and the sheep, the lion and the gazelle, dwelling 

together in the meadow. 
I see the treasure of Chosroes and the coin of Alexander all put to 

good use. 
I see the roguish Turk drunk, I see his enemy with the headache born 

of wine. 

I see Ni'matu'llah seated in a corner apart from all. 
When the fifth winter has passed I see in the sixth a pleasant spring. 
The vicar of the Mahdf will appear, yea, I see him plainly. 
I see a king perfect in knowledge ; I see a leader endowed with dignity. 
'I see the servants of His High Majesty all wearing crowns. 
For forty years, O my brother, I see the cycle of that Prince continue. 
When his cycle ends victoriously, I see his son as a memorial of him. 
I see a king perfect in knowledge, a ruler of noble family. 
After him will be the Imam himself, whom I see as the pivot of the 

I read ' M. H. M. D.' : I see the name of that famous one 3 . 

1 The variants in the Majmcftt'l-Fusahd give a slightly different 
meaning, viz. " After that year for several years more." 

2 Or, if the variant be adopted. " strong and firmly established." 

3 I.e. Muhammad. 


I see his aspect and attributes like the Prophet : I see knowledge and 

clemency as his distinctive signs. 
I see again ' the White Hand n (long may it endure !) conjoined with 

Dhu'l-Fiqdr 2 . 
I see the Mahdi of the time and the Jesus of the age both royally 

riding forth. 
I smell the rose-garden of the Law, I see the flower of Religion in 


These "apocalyptic" poems, however, though they have 

attracted most attention in Persia, constitute but a small 

fraction of the whole. Most of Ni'matu'llah's 

Pantheistic verses illustrate the doctrine of Wahdatul- 


Wujud (Pantheism), while a certain proportion 
(in which again the Babi's see an allusion to their founder) use 
the favourite illustration of the *' Point " (Nuqta), of which 
the circle is only a manifestation ; just as the letter alif is, in 
the world of calligraphy, a manifestation of the diacritical 
" point," which shares with the mathematical " point " the 
same title. A few specimens will suffice for the purpose 
of illustration. 


" King and beggar are one, are one ; foodless and food are one, are one. 
We are stricken with grief and drain the dregs ; dregs and sorrow and 
cure are one. 

1 Alluding to the miracle of Moses, when he drew forth his hand 
" white as snow." 

2 The famous sword of 'All ibn Abi Talib. 


In all the world there is naught but One; talk not of 'Two,' for God 

is One. 
Mirrors a hundred thousand I see, but the face of that Giver of Life 

is one. 
We are plagued with the plague of one tall and fair, but we the 

plagued and the plague are one. 
Drop, wave and sea and the elements four without a doubt in our 

eyes are one. 
Ni'matu'llah is one in all the world : come, seek him out, he is one, 

is one." 


" The Point appeared in the circle and was not ; nay, that Point 

produced the circle 1 . 
The Point in its revolution becomes a circle in the eyes of him who 

measured the circle. 
Its beginning and end joined together when the Point measured the 

completion of the circle. 
When the circle was completed, the compass put its head and feet 

together and rested. 
We are all without Being, without Being ; we are without Being and 

Thou art Existant. 
I called the whole world His dream : I looked again, and lo, His 

dream was Himself. 
Sweeter than the sayings of our Sayyid Ni'matu'llah has heard no 

other words." 

1 Cf. 1. 710 of the Gulshan-i-Rdz (Whin field's edition). 


*<= J 


3-3 Ja j jl 


" Know that the Named is one and the Names a hundred thousand, 
That Being is one, but its aspects are a hundred thousand. 
Its Form is the Glass, and its Meaning the Wine, 
Although both are one substance in our eyes. 
Perceive in two one unit and two units 1 ; 
Search it out well, for I have told you a good bit. 
Without His Being all the world is non-existant, 
Of His Being and Bounty the world is a sign. 
The world arises from the diffusion of His universal Being ; 
Whatever thou seest is from His universal Bounty. 
His Ipseity is essential, while our Ipseity 
Is but casual : be annihilated, then, from this annihilation ! 
The Ipseity of the world is the veil of the world : 
Nay, the world itself is the veil of the world. 
This veil is eternal, O my soul, 

my Friend of God, and O my Proof ! 

1 tell thee the state of the world in its entirety, 

So that thou may'st know the state of the world, and so farewell ! " 

The lithographed edition ofNi'matu'llih's poems contains 
approximately some 14,000 verses, including a number of 
quatrains, and from the following verse it would appear 

1 f.e. 1x2 = 2. 


that his literary activities continued until he had reached a 
very advanced age : 

" The Living and Eternal [God] hath vouchsafed to this servant ninety 
and seven years of pleasant life." 

2. Qdsimul-Anwdr. 

The next poet of this epoch who claims our attention 

was like the last a Sayyid and a mystic. The main facts 

concerning his life are thus summarized by 

Qdsimu'l-Anwir . S> . , . ' 

Rieu 1 . He was born in Sarab (Saraw) in the 
district of Tabriz in 7 5 7/1 3 56, and had for religious instructors 
Shaykh Sadru'd-Dfn Ardabilf, an ancestor of the Safawfs, 
and after him Shaykh Sadru'd-Dfn Yamanf, a disciple of 
Shaykh Awhadu'd-Din Kirmanf. After staying some time 
in Gi'lan he went to Khurasan and settled in Herat, where 
he lived during the reigns of Ti'mur and Shah-rukh. There 
disciples flocked to him in such numbers and he acquired 
so great an influence as to give umbrage to the sovereign. 
'Abdu'r-Razzaq relates in the Matlatu's-Sa'dayn that in 
830/1426-7, Shah-rukh having been stabbed in the mosque 
of Herat by a certain Ahmad-i-Lur 2 , Sayyid Qasim was 
charged by Mirza Baysunqur with having harboured the 
intended assassin, and was obliged to leave Herat 3 and 
repair to Samarqand, where he found a protector in Mirza 
Ulugh Beg. He returned, however, some years later to 
Khurasan, and took up his abode in Kharjird, a town in 
the district of Jam, where he died in 837/1433-4." 

The intimacy of Qasimu'l- An war's relations with Shaykh 
Sadru'd-Di'n of Ardabil, the ancestor of the Safawi kings 

1 Pers. Cat., pp. 635-637. 

2 See above pp. 365-366, where I have endeavoured to show that 
this attempt was instigated by the Hurufi sect. 

3 A pretty but probably fictitious anecdote about this event is given 
by Ouseley in his Notices of the Persian Poets (London, 1846), pp. 101- 


of Persia, is abundantly confirmed by an unpublished 

Persian work on the genealogy of that dyn- 

QLhnu"i S - Anwar asty entitled Silsilatu'n-Nasab-i-Safawiyya, of 

with shaykh which I possess a manuscript from the library 

Sadru d-Din 

of the late Sir Albert Houtum Schindler. In 
this MS. (ff. 27 b 28 b ) the poet is mentioned as one of the 
Shaykh's most enthusiastic disciples, and an account is 
given of the rigid discipline whereby he attained in the 
great Mosque of Ardabil to that vision wherein he beheld 
himself distributing the light to his fellow-disciples, whereby 
he earned the title of Qdsimul-Anwdr ("the Apportioner 
of the Lights "). On the death of Shaykh Saf f, the father 
of Shaykh Sadru'd-Di'n, he composed the following verses 1 . 


> 4,., he 

oUI .^-i b 

" The chief representative of saintship, who is actually Shaykh Saf i, 
Was for nearly ninety years the guide on this road. 
His soul at the moment of its departure sneezed 2 and exclaimed, 
' O Angel of Death, I have attained unto God ! ' 
When the Angel saw his condition he was amazed and cried, 
' O Shaykh, a thousand times may God have mercy upon thee ! ' 
Thou art utterly consumed, O Qasimf, by separation from the Master ; 
Be patient in separation : may God give thee patience ! " 

1 These verses also occur in one of my MSS. of the poems of 

2 For sneezing as a sign of life (here, apparently, of Eternal Life) 
see Sir J. G. Frazer's Folk-lore in the Old Testament, vol. i, pp. 6 and 9. 

CH. vin] QASIMU'L-ANWAR 475 

Jamf, in the notice which he consecrates to Qasimu'l- 

Anwar in the Nafakdtu'l-Uns 1 , alludes to the suspicions 

which fell upon him in connection with the 

Suspected of r 

heresy and ami- attempt on Shah-rukh's life in 830/1426-7 and 
which led to his banishment, and also observes 
that opinions differed as to his character, but that most of 
his disciples with whom he was personally acquainted had 
abandoned the observances of Islam, for which they ex- 
pressed contempt, and had adopted a kind of communism. 
There is therefore good reason to suspect that Qasimu'l- 
Anwar was at any rate something of an antinomian, even if 
he had not some quasi-political relation with the Shi'ite 
partisans of the still uncrowned Safawis, or with the still 
more irreconcilable Hurufi heretics. 

The literary work of Qasimu'l-Anwar consists of an un- 
published Diwdn of lyrical and some mathnawi poetry, of 
which I possess two good manuscripts, one dated 861/14567, 
only 24 years after the author's death. Several of these 
poems are in Turkish and others in some dialect of Persian. 
The poems are followed in this older manuscript by two 
treatises, written wholly or partly in prose, entitled respec- 
tively Anisii I- Arifm ("the Gnostics' Familiar") and the 
Anisu'l-Ashiqin ("Lovers' Familiar"), or Risdla-i-Amdna 
("Treatise of the Trust"). There is also a poem beginning: 

in which there is supposed to be a reference to Timur's 
death, though it is so vague as to be capable of application 
to any public calamity. 

The poetry of Qasimu'l-Anwar, so far as a foreigner 
may venture to judge it, is only of average merit, and is 
generally of the same mystical character as that of Maghribi 
and other kindred poets. Of its general type the two 
following ghazals may serve as fair specimens. 

1 Ed. Nassau Lees, pp. 689-693. 



" Of thy favour, Cup-bearer, fill me up that clear and crystalline bowl, 
That spirit of holy sanctity, that high and exalted soul ! 
What day thou givest a cup of wine to settle our whole affair 
Bestow, I pray, of your charity a draught on yon Preacher rare ! 
Woulds't thou that the motes of the universe may with thee in the 

dance be whirled ? 

Then toss aside in thy dance's stride thy tresses tangled and curled ! 
O chiding mentor, get thee hence : desist and cease thy strain, 
For never thy windy talk can drive from our heads this passion and 

' Lose thyself,' thou didst say, ' that thou to thyself the way may'st 

gain ! ' 

But this riddle dark and inscrutable I cannot solve or explain. 
Whenever I cast my life away, a hundred I win in its place : 
Who can limit the miracles of Christ and His healing grace? 
Qasim ne'er of his own free will would play the lover's part, 
But what can one do when the matter lies with the Lord of the Soul 

and Heart?" 

1 One MS. has L as a variant. 



" Ere ever cloistered cell was built, or Somnath's ancient fane 
We dwelt with Thee in every phase of life on Being's plane. 
'Twixt us all talk of Messenger and Message 1 falls away: 
What need of Messenger when Thou dost bide with me for aye? 
Can I oppose the Loved One's will, when ever with the Friend 
I hold communion sweet in moods and musings without end ? 
From mention of all 'others' 2 let thy tongue be cleansed and freed, 
Since those in whom the Spirit works of ' others ' take no heed. 
Sober to tread the mystic Path no obligation's thine : 
Each atom in the Universe intoxicates like wine. 
O Zealot, press me not, I pray, in language harsh and rude, 
For unto those of goodly kind allowed are all things good 3 . 
O Qasim, silence ! to the steed of speech apply the rein, 
That Love's High Priest may speak of things that neither fade nor 
wane 4 ." 

1 I.e. presumably of Prophet and Revelation. 

2 I.e. other than God. 
:i QuSdn, xxiv, 26. 

4 Qur'dn, xviii, 44. 


The following ode is interesting as showing traces of 
Hurufi ideas : 


" l In six days' 1 runs God's Word, while Seven 
Marks the divisions of the Heaven. 
Then at the last * He mounts His Throne*' 1 ; 
Nay, Thrones, to which no limit's known. 
Each mote's a Throne, to put it plain, 
Where He in some new Name doth reign 3 : 

Know this, and so to Truth attain ! 
' Fie, fie ! ' the zealot answers back 
Whate'er I say. I cry 'Alack! ' 

1 One MS. has O 

2 That God created the heavens in six days and then ascended (or 
settled Himself) on His Throne is mentioned repeatedly in the Qur'dn, 
e-g- v > 5 2 > x ' 3 > xxv > 6> e * c ' T* 16 num t>er of the heavens, not mentioned 
in these verses, is given as seven in ii, 27 etc. The numbers 7, 14 and 
28 have great significance in the Hurufi doctrine. 

3 This is the characteristic pantheistic interpretation of the Hurufis. 

CH. vni] QASIMU'L-ANWAR 479 

' Who from the Prophet's cup drinks free 
God's Wine, escapes calamity, 
And over-boldness to dispense 
With proper forms of reverence 1 !' 
O drunk with fancies, cease to bawl, 
Nor plague us with thy drunken brawl ! 
To glory in thine ignorance 
Is but thy blindness to enhance. 
O Qdsimi, what canst thou find 
In jurists blind with leaders blind ? 
Repeat a Fdtiha?, I pray, 
That so this plague may pass away!" 

Although the traces of Hurufi influence in this poem 
are unmistakeable, it cannot on such evidence alone be 
proved that Qasimu'l- Anwar was actually a member of that 
sect, though his association with an admitted disciple of 
Fadlu'llah of Astarabad and the suspicion which he thereby 
incurred 3 afford strong corroboration of this conjecture. 
But his saints and heroes were many, and we find in his 
poems encomiums of theologians like al-Ghazzali, mystics 
like Shaykh Ahmad-i-Jam, Bayazfd of Bistam, and Khwaja 
'Abdu'llah Ansari, and theosophic poets like Shaykh 
Faridu'd-Din 'Attar and Mawlana Jalalu'd-Dm Rumi, whose 
works he bids his readers bind together in one volume : 

It is indeed likely that one of his half-Turkish poems 
with the refrain Chelebi, bizi onutma (" O Chelebi, forget us 
not ! ") may be addressed to the " Chelebi Efendi," or 
hereditary superior of the Mawlawi or Mevlevi order of 
darwtshes, of Qonya in Asiatic Turkey. Of these Turkish 
or half-Turkish poems there are only two or three, nor are 
they of a high quality. The poems in some Persian dialect 
(probably that of Gilan) are more numerous and more 

1 I take these four lines to embody the orthodox objection to 
mystical antinomianism, while the succeeding lines embody the poet's 
dislike of the orthodox. 

2 The opening chapter of the Qur'dn. 

3 See p. 366 supra. 


interesting, though our knowledge of these dialects in their 
mediaeval forms is insufficient as a rule to enable us fully 
to interpret them. The text of one, based on the two MSS., 
is here given as a specimen. 


CH. vin] QASIMU'L-ANWAR 481 

"Thou art the Qibla of my soul, O Gil 1 with the colour and fragrance 

of an angel, 
The Moon of the Heaven of Nobility, the Cypress of the Gardens 

of Desire. 

Thou art not a Gil but an angel, compounded of heart and soul, 
How should any Gil be thus Hun-like and of such angelic temper? 
May my heart and faith be thy sacrifice ! Take them if thou wilt 2 , for 

thou art very fair : 
Thou art the Qibla : why should I wander from city to city, from 

street to street ? 

The tyranny which thy musky tresses have wrought upon me 
I will explain to thee hair by hair, if opportunity offers. 
If the reflection of thy beauty reaches the mirror for a moment 
How [much the more] should it reach him who is ever face to face 

with thee? 
Last night thou didst signify to me by hints, ' Tomorrow I will not 

leave thee in sorrow 3 ' : 

Once again of thy clemency repeat the tale of yesterday ! 
I said to her, ' O Desire of the Soul, thou didst give me a promise 

of union ! ' 

She said, ' Seek not to recall those stories, for that has gone by ! ' 
I said to her, ' O my Dear, I have been brought low by thy love ! ' 
She said, ' No, regard not as low one who has spoken with me lip 

to lip 2 !' 

I said, ' I am thy lover : what is the cure for my pain ? ' 
She said, ' Thou speakest this word being beside thyself, and it will 

yield no result 2 .' 

Qasimi, through separation and grief, is lost and heedless of himself: 
Of thy clemency seek to win back him who is lost in separation ! " 

1 This term is applied to a native of the Caspian province of Gildn. 
Rida-quli Khn in his Farhang-i-Anjuman-drd-yi Ndsirt says (s.v.) 
that it is also pronounced Gay! (Get), in proof of which he cites the 
following quatrain by Qdsimu'l-Anwar in which it rhymes with mayl 
and say I : 

2 These words are entirely in dialect, and the sense given is only 

3 Meaning doubtful. 

B. P. 31 


That Qasimu'l- Anwar was familiar with Gilan and other 
regions bordering on the Caspian Sea is confirmed by other 
poems in which he mentions Astard, Lahijan, Ardabil and 
other places in that part of Persia. Further facts about 
him might undoubtedly be deduced from an attentive 
examination of his poems, but space only permits me to 
give two more extracts from them, both taken from his 
mathnawi poem the A nisitl-'A rifin, in the prose preface to 
which he gives his full name as " 'Ah' b. Nasi'r b. Harun b. 
Abu'l-Qasim al-Husayni at-Tabrizi, better known as 
Qasimf." The first extract is an allegory of the sinner who 
clings to his sin because it is sweet to him. 



CH. vin] QASIMU'L-ANWAR 483 


Jut Osa 

JL.J! ft^U ^jb ^, U 

" A negro, lacking reason, faith and taste, 
Whose life the demon Folly had laid waste 
Had in a jar some treacle set aside, 
And by mischance a mouse fell in and died. 
He seized the mouse and plucked it out with speed 
That cursed mouse, whose death was caused by greed. 
Then to the Qadi sped the unwilling wight, 
Taking the mouse, and told of Fortune's spite. 
The Judge before the folk, refined and rude, 
Condemned the treacle as unfit for food. 
The luckless negro scouted this award, 
Saying, ' You make a great mistake, my Lord ! 
I tasted it, and found it sweet and good ; 
If sweet, it cannot be unfit for food. 



Had this my treacle bitter been, then sure 

Unlawful had I held it and impure.' 

The mind perverted of this black accursed 

Bitter and sweet confounded and reversed. 

Sin seemeth sweet and service sour, alack ! 

To thee whose face is as a negro's black. 

To passion's palate falsehood seemeth sweet ; 

Bitter is truth to natures incomplete. 

When men are sick and biliously inclined 

The taste of sugar alum calls to mind. 

Sick for this world all hearts, both young and old, 

Jaundiced for love of silver and of gold. 

O captive in the snare of worldly joys, 

Perish not mouse-like for the sweet that cloys ! 

Though bitter seems God's discipline to thee 

This bitter drug is thy sure remedy. 

This bitter drug will cause thine ill's surcease, 

And give the patient healing, rest and peace." 

The second extract is of greater interest, for it describes 
a meeting between Shaykh Safiyyu'd-Di'n, the ancestor of 
the Safawfs, who take their name from him, and the famous 
Shaykh Sa'di' of Shi'raz. Some independent corroboration 
of this interview, or at least of its possibility, is afforded by 
the previously-quoted Silsilatttn-Nasab-i-Safawiyya^^ftioh. 
gives the date of Safiyyu'd-Di'n's birth as " in the last days 
of the 'Abb^sid Caliphs in A.H. 650 " (A.D. 1252-3), at which 
time, the author adds, Shams-i-Tabriz had been dead five 
years, Shaykh Muhyi'd-Dfn ibnu'l-'Arabi twelve years, and 
Shaykh Najmu'd-Din Kubra thirty-two years ; while of 
eminent contemporary saints and poets, Jalalu'd-Din Rumi 
died when he was twenty-two and Sa'di when he was forty- 
one years of age. He was also contemporary with Amir 
'Abdu'llah of Shi'raz, Shaykh Naji'bu'd-Di'n Buzghush, 
'Ala'u'd-Dm Simna'ni, and Mahmud Shabistari 2 . A page or 
two further on we read how Safiyyu'd-Din went to Shi'raz 
to seek guidance from the above Shaykh Naji'bu'd-Din 
Buzghush, but found on his arrival that this saintly personage 

1 See p. 474 supra. The passage here referred to occurs on f. 9 of 
the MS. 2 See pp. 146-150 supra. 



Add. 7468 (Brit. Mus.), f. 19 


had passed away. This, no doubt, is the occasion to which 


the following passage in the Anisu' I- Arifin refers. 





1 The MS. has 
the text. 

xi which I have ventured to emend as in 


From this passage, which is hardly worth translating in 
full, we learn that, while at Shfraz, Shaykh Safiyyu'd-Din, 
whose reputation had made Ardabil (or Ardawil) famous, 
became acquainted with the great Sa'di, who was so much 
impressed by his sanctity and holy enthusiasm that he 
offered to add to his Diwdn some poems in his praise. This 
offer, however, Safiyyu'd-Din declined, on the ground that 
he was too much preoccupied with " the Beloved " to con- 
cern himself with anything else ; a refusal which evidently 
caused poor Sa'di some chagrin, as he "wept bitterly," while 
paying tribute to the Shaykh's exalted motives. 

Between the subjects of the last two biographies, who, 
if not very remarkable poets, had at least a certain character 
and individuality, and the great Jami, in whom culminated 

CH. vni] KATIBf OF NfSHAPtiR 487 

the literary talent of this period, there intervene a number of 
minor poets amongst whom it is difficult to make a selec- 
tion, but of whom half a dozen or more deserve at least a 
brief mention. Little, as a rule, is known of their lives or 
personal characteristics, though most of them are noticed 
in the numerous biographical works of the period, and for 
convenience they may best be arranged in chronological 
order, according to the dates of their death. 

Kdtibt of Ntshdpiir. 

Katibi of Nfshapur (or of Turshiz), who died in 
838/1434-5, comes first in sequence and perhaps 

in merit Mfr 'AH Shl ' r Naw a'i> in his Majd- 
tisu'n-Nafd'zs, classes him amongst the poets 

who were living in his time but whom he had never had the 

honour of meeting, and writes of him : 

" He was incomparable in his time, and introduced wonderful ideas 

into whatever kind of verse he attempted, especially his qasidas, even 

inventing new artifices, which were entirely successful. 

Mjr -AH shir's g Q also his mat ^ naw ^ s suc h as < Love and Beauty' 

opinion 01 him * 

(Husn u l lshq\ 'Regarder and Regarded' (Nazir u 
Manziir), ' Bahram and Gul-andam,' which illustrate such artifices as 
the double metre (dhtfl-bahrayri}, the double rhyme (dhu'l-qdfiyatayri) 
and various kinds of word-plays 1 . His Dtwdn of ghazals (odes) and 
qasidas (elegies) is, however, more celebrated and better. Towards the 
end of his life he attempted an imitation of the Khamsa (Quintet), in 
which he advanced great pretensions ; probably for this reason he 
failed to complete it. In my humble opinion his poetical talent was 
such that had he enjoyed the patronage of a ruler, like our own most 
fortunate Sovereign, capable of appreciating good verse, and had his 
life endured longer, he would have captured the hearts of all with his 
effusions, but through his ill-fortune he did not survive into either of 
the two reigns here mentioned 2 ." 

Mir 'AH Shir then quotes a verse each from a qasida 
and a ghazal of his, and finally the two following verses 

1 Dawlatshdh, however, implies that these were separate poems 
entitled Majma'u'l-Bahrayn, Dhdl-Qdfiyatayn, and Dah-ndma-i- 

2 Probably Sultan Abu Sa'fd and Abu'l-Ghazf Husayn are meant. 


which Khwandamir 1 adduces as a proof that he perished in 
the outbreak of plague at Astarabdd to which he alludes 2 : 

" That Astardbdd whose dust was more fragrant than musk 
Was suddenly made desolate by the fiery wrath of the pestilence. 
No one, old or young, survived therein : 
When fire falls on the forest neither moist nor dry remains." 

Dawlatshah consecrates ten pages of his Memoirs of the 
Poets 3 to Katibi, who, according to him, was born at a 
village between Turshiz and Nishapur, whence he is some- 
times called Turshizi and sometimes Nishdpun. He learned 
the art of calligraphy from the poet Simi 4 , who, however, 
became jealous of him, so that he left Nishapur for Herat. 
Finding his talent unappreciated at the court there, he went 
to Astarabdd and Shfrwan, where he attached himself for a 
time to Amir Shaykh Ibrahi'm, from whom he received 
large sums of money which he dissipated in a short while, 
so that he was reduced to the state of penury depicted in 
the following verses : 

1 Habibrfs-Siyar, vol. iii, part 3, p. 149. 

2 These verses are also given by Dawlatshah (pp. 389-390 of my 
edition), who merely says that he composed them " on the plague and 
the fierceness of the pestilence." 

3 Pp. 381-391 of my edition. 

4 Simf's life is given by Dawlatshah, pp. 412-417. 

CH. vni] KATIBf OF NfSHAPtfR 489 

" Yesterday I called my cook and bade him bake for me a pie 
That my guest's needs and mine own might eke be satisfied thereby. 
' If,' said he, ' I get the meat and get the fat, who'll give the meal?' 
' He,' I answered, ' who the millstone of the heavens made to wheel.'" 

Katibi next proceeded to Adharbayjan, and composed 
a qasida in praise of the Turkman ruler Iskandar ibn Qara 
Yusuf. As this potentate failed to appreciate his efforts or 
to reward him for them, he wrote a very coarse lampoon on 
him and departed to Isfahan, where he seems to have under- 
gone a kind of conversion at the hands of Sa'inu'd-Din 
Tarika, to have renounced the adulation of princes and 
attendance at courts, and to have adopted the outlook of 
the Sufi mystics. Dawlatshah 1 quotes one of his poems 
(also occurring, with two additional verses, in a manuscript 
of mine) which reflects this change of heart, but is more 
conspicuous for piety than for literary merit. From Isfahan 
he went to Rasht and thence once more to Astarabad, 
where, as we have seen, he died. 

Jami, a better judge than Dawlatshah, is more guarded 
in his praise of Katibi, of whom he says in the seventh 
chapter of his Bahdristdn that he had many original ideas 
which he expressed in an original way, but that his verse 
was unequal and uneven "cats and camels" (shutur gurbd). 
I possess a good manuscript of his Diwdn (hitherto, so far 
as I know, unpublished) dated 923/1517 and containing 
nearly 3000 verses, odes, fragments and quatrains. As 
usual the fragments are the most personal, and therefore, 
from the biographical point of view, the most interesting, 
though unfortunately ignorance of the persons and circum- 
stances to which they refer often render a full appreciation 
impossible. Of these fragments my MS. contains 105 
(ff. iO4 b -ii5 b ), mostly consisting of only two verses, of 
which only two can be precisely dated. The first records 
the death by violence of Minuchihr Shah in 825/1422, and 
the second the death of Mfr 'Adil Shah in 827/1424. The 
following have been selected as presenting some special 
1 P. 384 of my edition. 


feature of interest. The first is remarkable only on account 
of the ingenious rhyme and alliteration : 

j-A. jUol jj 

" O heart, if thou wouldst ride on the road of honour, swiftly gallop 

the steed of ambition into the arena of contentment. 
That thy heart may become acquainted with the mystery of everything 

that is, cast the cash of thy being in full at the feet of the mystics. 
If the substance of thy soul be diminished when thou siftest the dust of 

poverty, suffer not dust from this road [to settle] on thy heart, 

but sift again. 
And if thou knowest rightly the occasions for sitting and rising 1 , sit 

if thou wilt in Armenia, or rise up if thou wilt in Abkhdz. 

The alliterations tdz ttz, rdz riz, bdz biz, and Abkhdz 
khiz are very ingenious, though otherwise the lines are not 
remarkable. The reference in the following fragment may 
be to the poet Salmdn of Sawa himself 2 , or possibly to 
Katibi's contemporary 'Arifi of Herdt, who, as Mir 'All 
Shfr tells us in his MajdlisiJn-Nafd'is, was called by his 
admirers " the second Salman." 

1 By the "rules of sitting and rising" the Persians understand the 
laws of etiquette. 

2 See pp. 260-271 supra. 

CH. vin] KATIBf OF NfSHAPtfR 491 

" Those people who advance a claim on behalf of Salman, why do they 

take objection to my verse ? 

The verse of me the illuminated and then Salmon's poetry... I say 
nothing ; all men can see [the difference for themselves] ! " 

In the following squib the Kamal referred to may be 
Kamal of Khujand, but is more probably Katibf's contem- 
porary Kamalu'd-Dfn Ghiyath al-Farsi of Shfraz 1 , while 
Khusraw and Hasan are presumably the two eminent poets 
of Dihlf already noticed 2 . 

" If Hasan stole ideas from Khusraw, one cannot prevent him, 
For Khusraw is a master, nay, more than the masters ! 
And if Kamdl stole Hasan's ideas from his Dtwdn 
One can say nothing to him : a thief has fallen on a thief ! " 

The two following pleasant quips, which help to explain 
Katibf's unpopularity with his colleagues, are addressed to 
a contemporary poet named Badr (" Full Moon "). Dawlat- 
shah, who accords him a brief notice 3 , tells us that this Badr 
was for many years the principal poet of Shfrwan, where, 
as we have seen, Katibi established himself for a time. 
Dawlatshah gives the first of the two following fragments 
as a specimen of the literary duels which took place between 
these two, and adds that though some critics prefer Badr's 
poetry to Katibf's, the people of Samarqand hold a contrary 

1 See Dawlatshdh, pp. 418-420 of my edition. 

2 See pp. 108-110 supra, 

3 Pp. 377-378 of my edition. 

4 Dawlatshah has the better variant : '^'ji jJ 

" I will tear thee asunder with my index finger." 


" I have the title Kdtibf, O Badr, but Muhammad is the name which 

came to me from heaven ; 

Muhammad became my name, and thou art Badr ; with my finger 
I will tear thine asunder 1 ." 

" Yesterday I said to the ill-conditioned little Badr, ' Thou art no poet ! 
He who is of the poets, him should one encourage.' 
' In every city,' he replied, ' I have hung up 2 a poem' : 
One who produces such poetry ought [himself] to be hung ! " 

The following, on the other hand, is a tribute to the 
skill shown by Abu Ishaq (Bushaq) of Shi'raz 3 in the gastro- 
nomic poems contained in his Diwdn-i-Afima : 



" Shaykh Bushdq (may his luxury endure !) dished up hot the idea of 

foods : 
He spread a table of luxuries : all are invited to his table." 

The following satire on a poet named Shams-i-'Ala is 
imitated, and indeed partly borrowed, from a well-known 
poem by 'Ubayd-i-Zakani' 4 : 

i J A^ A&l "} 

1 The allusion is to the Prophet Muhammad's miracle of cleaving 
the full moon (Badr) asunder with his finger. "Thine" means "thy 

2 Probably alludes to the common belief that the classical Mu i allagdt 
of the Arabs were so called because they were "suspended" on the door 
of the Ka'ba at Mecca. Badr means that he has produced a prize 
poem in every city. 

3 See pp. 344-351 supra. 

4 See pp. 230-257 supra. 

CH. vni] KATIBf OF NfSHAPtR 493 

" Shams-i-'Ald hath at length departed from the world, he who now 

and again used to be taken into account. 

He hath departed and left behind him a Diwdn of verse ; even 
that would not be left if it were of any use ! " 

In the following he accuses the poet Simi 1 , who taught 
him calligraphy, of plagiarism : 

" When Simi saw the tasteful poems of Ka'tibi in the city of Nfsha'pur 
He went to Mashhad and produced them in his own name : he ate 
the salt and stole the salt-cellar ! " 

Here is another denunciation of plagiarists : 


" He is no poet who, when he produces verses, brings together images 

from the poems of the masters ; 

No house which is made of old bricks stands on so firm a foundation 
as a new house." 

Here is a gentle hint to one of his royal patrons to see 
that he gets his full allowance of wine at the banquet : 

1 Dawlatshdh (pp. 412-417) consecrates an article to him, in which 
he mentions his migration from Nfshapur to Mashhad. Besides being 
a notable penman, poet and maker of acrostics, he was an expert in 
gilding, illumination, and all arts connected with books, and gave 
instruction in these subjects. He is said to have composed 3000 verses 
of poetry in one night. He had also so voracious an appetite that on 
one occasion he ate twelve maunds of food and fruit without suffering 
any evil effects. 


" O Prince, thou art he on account of the weight of whose love the 
back of the arch of the Placeless is bowed even as the vault of 
Heaven ! 

Our share of favour is not lacking out of thy abounding liberality, but 
the wine they bring is of short measure, like the life of thine 

Finally here is an epigram addressed to his pen : 

"Alack at the hands of my pitch-stained pen, which showed forth 

my secret to foe and friend ! 

I said, ' I will cut its tongue that it may become dumb ' : I did so, 
and it waxed more eloquent than before 1 ." 

There are references to other places, such as Sari in 
Mazandaran, and to other individuals whom I cannot iden- 
tify, such as Khwaja Nizam, 'Abdu'r- Rahman, a poet named 
Amin, and Shapur, Jamshid and Ardashir, who were perhaps 
Zoroastrians, since the first two of the three are mentioned 
in connection with wine. The last seems to have been a 
rebel against the king of Shfrwan, who, having got him into 
his power, hesitated between killing and blinding him; 
whereon the poet advises the latter course in these verses : 

1 The nibs of the reed-pen (qalain) are cut to make it write better. 

CH. vin] 'ARIFf OF HERAT 495 

" O king, do not kill the rebel Ardashir, although he hath broken the 

support of Shfrwan : 

Thou didst ask, ' Shall I kill him, or apply the needle to his eyes ? ' 
It is not good to kill ; blind the devil ! " 

'Arifi of Herat. 

The next poet of whom something must be said is 
,, . 'Arifi of Herat, whose best-known work is the 

'Anfi of Merit 

mystical and allegorical poem properly entitled 
Hdl-ndma ("the Book of Ecstasy"), but more commonly 
known, from its subject, as Giiy u Chawgdn ("the Ball and 
the Polo-stick"), which was written in 842/1438-9 in the 
space of a fortnight, and for which the author received as a 
reward from his royal patron a horse and the sum of one 
thousand dinars^. As he was, according to his own state- 
ment, over fifty years old at the time, he must have been 
born about 791/1389, the year in which the great Hafiz 
died. His own death appears to have taken place in 


As already mentioned 2 , he was called by his admirers 
" the sec6nd Salman," partly because his style was deemed 
similar to that of the earlier poet, and partly, as Mfr 'All 
Shir informs us in his Majdlisu'n-Nafd'is, because both 
poets suffered from weak and inflamed eyes. This is proved 
in the case of 'Arifi by the following verse : 

" The white salve on the red lid of my eye is exactly like powdered 
salt on roast meat." 

Though almost all the biographers (except the modern 
Rida-quli Khan in his Majma'u'l-Fusahd) make mention of 
'Arifi, the particulars which they give about him are very 

1 See Rieu's Persian Catalogue, pp. 639-640, and his Persian Sup- 
plement, p. 185. 

2 P. 490 supra. 


meagre. His Hdl-ndma, which Jami calls "one of his best 
poems," comprises only some 500 verses. It has not, I 
think, been printed, but I have looked at a pretty and fairly 
good manuscript of it in the Cambridge University Library 1 , 
transcribed in 952/1546, and found it, I regret to confess, 
laboured and insipid. The following passage, describing 
the king's polo-pony, includes some of the specimen verses 
given both by Jamf and Mir 'Ah' Shir, and may therefore 
be assumed to be a favourable sample : 

"The King of the denizens of earth Muhammad 2 , whose throne is 

the sun and his cushion the moon, 
That King for whom, when he lifts his polo-stick, the moon becomes 

the ball and heaven the playing-field. 
At what time he throws his leg over the saddle he raises the dust 

from the terrestrial sphere. 
When his spur excites his horse, thou wouldst say that fire mingled 

with wind. 
When the King's polo-pony is at the gallop it snatches away the ball 

from the steed of heaven. 
If he did not restrain it in its leaping, it would overshoot the goal of 

When it is drenched in perspiration it is like rain with lightning in 

the midst. 
Fire flies from its hoof, while the whirlwind clings to its tail." 

1 Add. 3150. See my Camb. Pers. Cat., pp. 365-6. 

2 I.e. Prince Muhammad ibn Baysunqur. See Rieu's Pers. Cat., 
loc. cit. 


The whole poem is filled with these ingenious and often 
far-fetched similes and metaphors drawn from the game of 
polo, but to most European readers they will seem tasteless 
and artificial, and the resulting product hardly worthy to 
be called poetry in the sense in which we understand the 

Of the poets who died in the second half of the ninth 
century of the hijra (fifteenth of the Christian era) it is diffi- 
cult to decide which are of sufficient importance to deserve 
mention in a work like this, until we come to the last and 
greatest of them, Jami, whose claim to be regarded as one 
of the most notable poets of Persia is indisputable. That 
there is no lack of them, so far as numbers go, will be evi- 
dent to anyone who consults the contemporary biographers. 
Thus Dawlatshah gives notices of some two score of this 
period, while Mir 'All Shir Nawa'i in his Majdlisu'n-Nafd'is 
(composed in the Turki language) mentions forty-six in the 
first chapter (Majlis) of his work, wherein he treats of those 
poets who were still living in his time, though he had never 
met them. Some of these poets are familiar by name to 
students of Persian literature, and most of them have pro- 
duced graceful verses, but few if any attain a degree of 
excellence which would preserve their names from oblivion 
but for their association with princes and rulers who gloried 
not only in the quality but in the quantity of the men of 
letters who frequented their courts and enjoyed their 
patronage. Dawlatshah, implicitly recognizing this fact, 
often makes a brief notice of some minor poet the peg on 
which to hang a much fuller account of his royal patron. 
Thus in his notice of Shah Ni'matu'llah, who really has 
claims to distinction as a mystic if not as a poet, he con- 
cludes by enumerating 1 the chief Shaykhs, men of learning, 
poets and artists who added lustre to the court of Shah- 
rukh. Of the poets he mentions Shaykh Adhari of Isfara'in 
(d. 866/1461-2), Baba Sawda'i of Abfward (d. 853/1449-50), 
1 P. 340 of my edition. 

B. P. 32 


Mawldna 'All Shihab of Turshfz, Amir Shahi of Sabzawar 
(d. 857/1453), Katibi of Turshiz (d. 839/1435-6), and Nasimi, 
" the fame of whose writings and diwdns" he adds, " is cele- 
brated throughout the habitable quarter of the world." 
" There were," he concludes, " four talented artists at the 
court of Shah-rukh who in their own time had no peer, 
Khwaja 'Abdu'l-Qadir of Maragha in the art of music and 
roundels (adwdr\ Yusuf of Andakan in singing and min- 
strelsy, Ustad Qiwamu'd-Din in geometry, design and 
architecture, and Mawlana Khalfl the painter, who was 
second only to Manf 1 ." Yet the verses of these poets, for 
the most part unpublished till this day and very rare even 
in manuscript, were probably but little known even in their 
own time outside Khurasan, and we may consider ourselves 
fortunate if we can individualize them by some special 
personal characteristic or incident in their lives, such as that 
Adharf visited Shah Ni'matu'llah, became a mystic and 
renounced the flattery of kings, and made a journey to 
India 2 ; or that Shahi was a descendant of the Sarbadarf 
rulers of Sabzawar and a Shi'a, which latter fact has won for 
him a long and laudatory notice in the MajdlisiJl-Mtfminiu 
("Assemblies of true believers," i.e. Shi'ites) of Nuru'llah ibn 
Sayyid Sharif al-Mar'ashi of Shushtar 3 . " Scholars are 
agreed," says Dawlatshah 4 , with his usual exaggeration, 
" that in the verse of Amir Shahi are combined the ardour 
of Khusraw, the grace of Hasan, the delicacy of Kamal, and 
the clarity of Hafiz." That he entertained no mean opinion 
of himself is shown by the following verses which he extem- 
porized when assigned a lower place at the reception of some 
prince than that to which he considered himself entitled 5 : 

1 It is commonly believed by the Persians that Mani (Manes), the 
founder of Manichaeanism, claimed that his skill in painting was the 
miraculous proof of his divine mission. 

2 See pp. 399-400 of my edition of Dawlatshah. 

3 Composed about 993/1585. See Rieu's Persian Cat., pp. 337-8. 

4 P. 426 of my edition. 

5 Ibid., p. 427. 

CH. vin] AMfR SHAHl QUDSf 499 

" O king, the revolution of heaven's wheel in a thousand years 
Will not show forth one like me, unique in a hundred accomplishments. 
If thou makest me to sit below everybody and nobody 
Herein is a subtle point ; so much I know. 
Thy court is an ocean, and in the ocean, without dispute, 
The pearl is at the bottom and the rubbish at the top." 

What, again, is to be thought of such a verse as this of 
Qudsf of Herat in which he alludes to the slobbering mouth 
with which he was afflicted as the result of some paralytic 
affection of the face 1 ? 

" Notwithstanding such a mouth as I have 
I utter verse from which water 2 drips." 

Such ingenuities are very characteristic of the time and 
place of which we are speaking, and therefore deserve notice, 
but they do not constitute what we understand by poetry. 
The following passage from Dawlatshah 3 gives a good idea 
of what the courts of these Tfmurid princes were like. 

" Now the auspicious birth of Prince Bdysunghur took place in the 
year 802/1399-1400. He possessed a perfect comeliness and favourable 
fortune and prosperity. Alike in talent and in the encouragement of 
talent he was famous throughout the world. Calligraphy and poetry 
were highly esteemed in his time, and scholars and men of talent, 
attracted by his renown, flocked from all regions and quarters to enter 
his service. It is said that forty calligraphers were busy copying in 
his library, of which scribes the chief was Mawlana Ja'far of Tabriz. 

1 Cited by Mfr 'Alf Shfr Nawa'f in his MajdlisiSn-Naftfis. 

2 Ab means water, but also lustre, temper (of steel), water (of 
diamonds), splendour, and the like. 

3 Pp. 350-351 of my edition. 



He showed favour to men of talent, loved poets, strove after refinement 
and luxury, and entertained witty courtiers and boon-companions. Of 
the kings of all times since Khusraw Parwfz 1 none lived so joyous and 
splendid a life as Baysunghur Sultdn. He composed and appreciated 
good verse both in Turki and Persian, and wrote six different hands. 
This verse is by him : 

' Bdysunghur hath become the beggar in thy street : 
The king is the beggar in the street of the fair.' 

"It is related that, in the time of Sultan Baysunghur, Khwaja 
Yusuf of Andakdn had no peer in song and minstrelsy throughout the 
Seven Climes. His notes, sweet as David's song, lacerated the soul, 
while his ' Royal Mode 2 ' sprinkled salt on wounded hearts. On several 
occasions Sultan Ibrahim the son of Shdh-rukh sent from Shirdz to ask 
for Khwaja Yusuf from Baysunghur Sultdn, who, however, raised diffi- 
culties. Finally he sent a hundred thousand dhtdrs in cash in order 
that Mirza Bdysunghur might send Khwaja Yiisuf for him, but Bay- 
sunghur answered his brother in this verse : 

' We will not sell our Yiisuf [Joseph] : keep thy black silver !' 

"Between Ulugh Beg Kurkdn, Bdysunghur Bahddur and Ibrdhim 
Sultdn there passed many pleasant sayings and much correspondence 
which transcend the scope of this Memoir, but faithless Fortune and 
the cruel Sphere laid hands on the life of that joyous prince in the days 
of his youth, nor did the ministers of Fate and Destiny take pity on his 
immaturity. One night, by the decree of the Lord of lords, through 
excess of wine he was overwhelmed by the deep sleep of death, of 
which the inhabitants of Herat supposed apoplexy to be the cause. 

' They say that death is a strange sleep : that heavy sleep overtook us.' 

" So the Prince, half-drunken, staggered to the bed of earth, whence 
he shall rise up bemused on the Resurrection Morning, with others 
drugged with the Wine of Death, to seek from the cup-bearers of 'and 
their Lord shall give them to drink pure wine 3 ' the purification of the 

1 The Sdsdnian, contemporary with the Prophet Muhammad 
(seventh century after Christ). 

2 Ahang-i-Khusrawdni, the name of one of the modes or airs of 
Persian music. 

3 Qur'dn, Ixxvi, 21. 


headache-healing wine of ' a full bumper^? It is our firm hope that 
the All-Merciful Judge will overlook his sin, which naught but the 
dew of His Mercy can wash away. This tragic catastrophe of Bay- 
sunghur Sultdn took place in the metropolis of Herat in the White 
Garden in the year 837/1433-4, his age being then thirty-five years. 
The poets who were attached to the service of Baysunghur Bahddur 
during the reign of Shdh-rukh Sultan were Baba Sawda'f, Mawldna 
Yusuf Amirf, Amir Shahf of Sabzawar, Mawlana Katibi of Turshiz, 
and Amir Yammu'd-Din...The poets composed elegies on Sultan 
Baysunghur's death, but Amir Shahi surpassed them all in this 
quatrain : 

' The age lamented much in mourning for thee ; the red anemone 

poured forth all the blood of its eyes into its skirt ; 
The rose rent the collar of its crimson mantle ; the dove clothed its 
neck in black felt.' " 

Dawlatshah, in spite of all his faults, of which inaccuracy 
and an intolerable floridity of style are the worst, does suc- 
ceed in depicting better than many contemporary historians 
and biographers the strange mixture of murder, drunken- 
ness, love of Art and literary taste which characterized the 
courts of these Timurid princes, and it may not be amiss to 
add to the preceding extracts the portrait of one of the 
most accomplished of them, Ulugh Beg, with which he 
concludes his notice of the poet 'Ismat of Bukh^ri, the 
master of Bisati and Khayali, and the contemporary of 
Rustam of Khuriyan, Tahir of Abfward, and Barandaq of 
Bukhara. After mentioning that 'Ismat died in 829/1425-6 
he continues 2 : 

" Now as to the late Sultdn of blessed memory Ulugh Beg Kiirkan, 
he was learned, just, masterful and energetic, and attained a high 
degree in the science of Astronomy, while in Rhetoric he could split 
hairs. In his reign the status of men of learning reached its highest 

1 Qur'dn, Ixxviii, 34. * Pp. 391 et seqq. of my edition. 


zenith, and in his period the rank of scholars was at its greatest. 
In the science of Geometry he was an expositor of subtleties, and on 
questions of Cosmography an elucidator of the Almagest. Scholars 
and philosophers are agreed that in Islamic times, nay, from the days 
of [Alexander] 'the Two-horned' until now no monarch like unto 
Mirza Ulugh Beg Kurkdn in philosophy and science has ever sat on 
a royal throne. He had the most complete knowledge of the mathe- 
matical sciences, so that he recorded observations of the stars with the 
cooperation of the greatest scientists of his age, such as Qadi-zdda-i- 
Rumi 1 and Mawland Ghiyathu'd-Din Jamshid. These two great 
scholars, however, died before completing their work, and the Sultan, 
devoting all his energies to this task, completed the observations and 
produced the Ztj-i-Sultdnl 2 (' Royal Almanac '), to which he himself 
prefixed an exordium. These tables are today in use and highly 
esteemed by philosophers, some of whom prefer them to the Zij-i- 
flkhdni of Nasiru'd-Dfn of Tus 3 . 

" He further constructed a fine college in Samarqand, the like of 
which in beauty, rank and worth is not to be found throughout the 
seven climes, and in which at the present time more than a hundred 
students are domiciled and provided for. During the reign of his 
father Shah-rukh he exercised absolute sway over Samarqand and 

"It is related that Mirzd Ulugh Beg's intelligence and power of 
memory were such that a record was kept of every animal which he 
overthrew in the chase, with the place and date of the hunting, recording 
the day, the locality, and the nature of the quarry. By chance this book 
was mislaid, and seek as they might they could not find it, so that the 
librarians were filled with apprehension. ' Be not troubled,' said Ulugh 
Beg, ' for I remember all these particulars from beginning to end.' So 
he summoned the scribes and repeated the dates and circumstances, 
all of which the scribes took down until the record was completed. 
After a while by chance the original record turned up. They collated 
the two copies, and found divergences only in four or five places. 

" Many such marvels are related of the genius and intelligence of 
this prince. Thus the learned Shaykh Adhari (the poet) relates as 
follows : 

1 His proper name was Saldhu'd-Din Mtisa. 

2 Concerning this important work, probably completed about 84 1/ 
1437-8, see Rieu's Persian Catalogue and the references there given, 
especially to the partial text and translation published by Sedillot 
(Paris, 1847 and 1853). 

3 Rieu's Pers. Cat. pp. 454-5. Some account of Nasiru'd-Din of 
Tiis will be found in my Lit. Hist, of Persia, vol. ii, pp. 484-6. 

CH. vni] HUSAYN W/'/Z-I-KASHIFf 503 

"'In the year 800/1397-8, when I was in Qara-bagh with my 
maternal uncle, who was story-teller to the great Amir, the Lord of 
the Fortunate Conjunction, Timiir Kurkan, I became attached to the 
service of Ulugh Beg Mirza in the days of his childhood, and for several 
years was that Prince's playmate in childish games and used to tell 
him tales and stories, while he, after the fashion of children, became 
familiar and intimate with me. In the year 852/1448-9, when the above- 
mentioned Prince conquered Khurasdn and halted at Isfard'in, I arose, 
after the grey dawn of age had been kindled from the evening of 
youth 1 , and hastened to wait upon him. When he saw me from afar 
. off in the garb of the religious mendicants and men of God, after saluting 
me and enquiring after my health, he said, "O darwish, thou seemest 
to be my ancient companion and friend. Art thou not the nephew of 
our story-teller ? " I was amazed at the quick apprehension and clear 
memory of the King, and replied, that I was. He spoke of Qara-bagh, 
the wars in Georgia and the marvels of that country, while I answered 
to the best of my recollection.' 

" Many similar instances are related of this Prince's keenness 
of memory, but more than this much exceeds the scope of these 

A year after the meeting described above (in 853/1449- 
1450) the talented Ulugh Beg was murdered by his un- 
natural son 'Abdu'l-Latif, who was himself murdered seven 
months later. 

Husayn VJ&iz-i-Kdshifi. 

Almost all the literary achievements of the latest period 

treated in this volume centre round that great and liberal 

patron of the arts the Minister Mir 'Ah' Shfr 


iwi?-i- Nawa'i, as they culminate in the brilliant and 

KAshifi -11 . T > i -,! e 

many-sided poet Jami, with some account ot 
whom we shall conclude. First, however, a few more words 
must be added about Mir All Shir and also about Husayn 
Wa f iz-i-Kash\f\, agreeably to a promise given in the pre- 
ceding chapter, where something was said about their more 
solid prose work. Of the latter a notice is given by 
Khwdndamir in his Habtbiis-Siyar"*, of which the substance 

1 The turning grey of black hair is often poetically described by the 
Persians as the dawn coming up out of the night. 

2 Bombay lith. ed. of 1273/1857, vol. iii, part 3, p. 341. 


is as follows. His full name was Kamalu'd-Din Husayn, and, 
as his title Wd'iz implies, he was by profession a preacher. 
He had a fine and melodious voice and a considerable know- 
ledge of theology and traditions. Every Friday morning he 
used to preach in the Ddrus-Siyddat-i-Sultdnf at Herat, 
and afterwards used to officiate in the Mosque of Mir 'All 
Shir. On Tuesday he used to preach in the Royal College, 
and on Wednesday at the tomb of Khwaja Abu'l-Walid 
Ahmad. In the latter part of his life he also sometimes 
preached on Thursday in the chapel of Sultan Ahmad 
Mirza. He was skilled in astronomy as well as in the 
art of literary composition, and could hold his own with 
his compeers in other branches of learning. His son 
Fakhru'd-Din 'All, who succeeded him as a preacher, was 
something of a poet and composed the romantic mathnawi 
known as Mahmtid and Aydz. The father, however, does 
not seem to have written poetry, but preferred to display 
his skill in fine writing, chiefly in the well-known Anwdr-i- 
Suhaylt, or " Lights of Canopus." This florid and verbose 
rendering of the famous Book of Kalilaand Dimna, thanks to 
the reputation which it enjoys in India, has attracted an undue 
amount of attention amongst English students of Persian : 
it was for many years one of the text-books prescribed 
for candidates for the India Civil Service, and is one of the 
lengthiest Persian texts which ever issued from an English 
printing-press 1 . The way in which this wordy and bombastic 
writer has embroidered and expanded not only the original 
Arabic version of Ibnu'l-Muqaffa', but even the earlier 
Persian version, may be appreciated by the English reader 
who will refer to vol. ii of my Literary History of Persia, 
pp. 350-353. The other works of Husayn Wd'iz have been 
already mentioned 2 , except an epistolary manual entitled 
Makhzanu'l-Inshd which I have not seen. He died in 
910/1504-5, nineteen years before Khwandamir's notice of 
his life was written. 

1 Messrs Austin of Hertford, 1805. 

2 Pp. 441, 442 supra. 

CH. vni] MfR 'ALf SHfR NAWA'f 505 

Mir 'Alt Shir Nawd'i. 

The importance and influence of Mir 'AH Shir, both as a 
writer and a patron of literary men, was, as pointed out in 

the last chapter, immense, and he may without 
sttrNawd'f exaggeration be described as the Maecenas of 

his time and country. He was the friend and 
patron of Jamf, who dedicated many of his works to him, 
and on whose death in 898/1492 he composed an elegy of 
which Khw^ndamir quotes the opening lines, and his name 
occurs in connection with a large proportion of the scholars 
and poets noticed by the last-named writer in the section 
which he devotes in the Habibu's-Siyar* to the men of letters 
of Sultan Husayn's time. Babur, who is much more critical 
and much less addicted to indiscriminate praise than bio- 
graphers like Dawlatshah and Khwandamir, speaks in the 
highest terms of Mir 'All Shir 2 , and says that he knows of 
no such generous and successful patron of talent. Apart 
from the numerous writers and poets whom he encouraged 
and patronized, the painters Bihzad and Shah Muzaffar and 
the incomparable musicians Qul-Muhammad, Shaykhi Na'i 
and Husayn 'Udi owed their success to him. He himself 
was a successful musician, composer and painter, and un- 
rivalled as a poet in the Turki language, in which he pro- 
duced four Diwdns of lyric poetry and six long mathnaivis, 
five in imitation of Nizamfs Khamsa ("Quintet"), and one 
in imitation of 'Attar's Mantiqu't- Tayr (" Speech of the 
Birds") entitled Lisdmi't-Tayr ("the Language of the 
Birds"). In Persian poetry, which he wrote under the pen- 
name of Fani, he was, according to Babur, less successful, 
for though some of his verses were not bad, most were weak 
and poor. His prosody also was lacking in accuracy, and 
in the treatise entitled Mizdnul-Awzdn (" the Measure of 
Metres ") which he wrote on that subject Babur asserts 

1 Bombay lith. ed. of 1273/1857, vol. iii, part 3, pp. 334-351. 

2 Bdbur-ndma, ed. Ilminsky, pp. 213-214 ( = Pavet de Courteille's 
French translation, vol. i, pp. 382-385). 


that he made erroneous statements about four of the twenty- 
four quatrain-metres which he discussed. 

It is on his Turkish rather than on his Persian poetry, 
therefore, that Mir 'AH Shir's claims to literary fame are 
based, though his munificent patronage of all literature and 
art entitles him to honourable mention in any history of 
Persian literature. Such as desire further particulars of his 
life and work will find them in the admirable monograph 
published by M. Belin in the Journal Asiatique for 1861 
under the title of Notice biographique et litteraire sur Mir 
Ali-Chir NJvdii, suivie cTextraits tir^s des ceuvres du meme 
auteur*. He was born at Herat in 844/1440-1 and died and 
was buried there on the I2th of Jumada ii, 906 (January 3, 
1501). His life, for a statesman in so troublous a land and 
time, was singularly peaceful, and throughout it he enjoyed 
the friendship and confidence of Sultan Abu'l-Ghazi Husayn, 
his school-fellow in childhood and his sovereign in maturer 
age 2 . For public life and political power he cared little, 
and would willingly have renounced them in favour of 
spiritual contemplation and literary leisure, nor did he ever 
take to himself a wife. He was even admitted by the illus- 
trious Jami into the Naqshbandi order of darwishes*. His 
zeal for good works was unfailing, and he is stated to have 
founded, or restored, and endowed no fewer than 370 
mosques, colleges, rest-houses and other pious and charitable 
institutions in Khurasan alone. He was a prolific writer, 
and Belin 4 enumerates 29 of his works, composed at various 
dates between the accession of Sultan Husayn and his 
death. The latest of these was his Muhdkamatiil-Lttghatayn, 
or "Judgement between the two Languages," in which he 
endeavours to establish the superiority of the Turki over the 
Persian tongue. This was written in 905/1499-1500, only 
the year before his death. 

1 Also published separately as a pamphlet of 158 pages. 

2 He succeeded to the throne of Herat on the death of Abu Sa'id 
in Ramadan 873 (March-April, 1469). 

3 Belin, op. tit., p. 19. 4 Ibid., pp. 59-64. 

CH. vin] jAMf 507 


Mulla Nuru'd-Din 'Abdu'r-Rahmdn Jami, who was born 
at the little town of Jam in Khura'san on Sha'ban 23, 817 
(November 7, 1414), and died at Herdt on 
Muharram 18, 898 (November 9, 1492), was one 
of the most remarkable geniuses whom Persia ever pro- 
duced, for he was at once a great poet, a great scholar, and 
a great mystic. Besides his poetry, which, apart from minor 
productions, consisted of three Diwdns of lyrical poetry 
and seven romantic or didactic mathnawis, he wrote on the 
exegesis of the Quran, the evidence of the Divine Mission 
of the Prophet Muhammad, traditions, lives of the Saints, 
Mysticism, Arabic grammar, Rhyme, Prosody, Music, 
acrostics (mtfammd) and other matters. In the Tuhfa-i- 
Sdmi forty-six of his works are enumerated, and I do not 
think this list is exhaustive. He was held in the highest 
honour by his contemporaries, not only by his fellow- 
countrymen, but, as we have seen 1 , even by the Ottoman 
Sultan, who vainly endeavoured to induce him to visit his 
court. By his most illustrious contemporaries he was re- 
garded as so eminent as to be beyond praise and so well 
High esteem in known as to need no detailed biography. Thus 
which jdmi was Bdbur 2 , after observing' that "in exoteric and 

heldbyBdbur . ' 

esoteric learning there was none equal to him 
in that time," says that he is "too exalted for there to be any 
need for praising him," and that he only introduces his 
name " for luck and for a blessing." Sam Mirza\ the son 
of Shah Isma'il the Safawi, places him first in 
the fifth section (Sahifd) of his Tuhfa-i-Sdmt*, 
and says "by reason of the extreme elevation 
of his genius... there is no need to describe his condition or 
set forth any account of him, since the rays of his virtues 
have reached from the East to the uttermost parts of the 

1 See pp. 422-3 supra. 

2 Bdbur-ndma (ed. Ilminsky), pp. 222-223. 

3 Cambridge MS. Or. 648, pp. 93-100. 


West, while the bountiful table of his excellencies is spread 
from shore to shore." Dawlatshah, who puts him 

s ~Mh y Daw ' at " first > before Ml ' r ' AH Shfr > in the concluding sec- 
tion of his Memoirs 1 , which deals with living 
contemporary poets, speaks in a similar strain. Mir 'All 
Shir, besides the brief notice of him at the beginning of his 
Majdlisun-Nafd'is, has devoted an entire work, 
sh? Mir <AH the Khamsatu'l-Mutahayyirin (" Quintet of the 
Astonished ") to his praises. This work, fully 
described by Belin 2 , is so entitled because it is divided into 
five parts, a preface, three chapters and an epilogue, which 
treat respectively (i) of the origin, birth and life of Jamf, 
and of the author's acquaintance with him ; (2) of events and 
conversations between the author and Jamf indicating the 
degree of their intimacy; (3) of the correspondence between 
them preserved in Jami's works; (4) of the works composed 
by Jamf at the author's suggestion and instigation ; (5) of 
the books and treatises read by the author under Jami's 
direction, with an account of his death and funeral, which 
was celebrated with extraordinary pomp, and attended by 
many members of the Royal Family, noblemen, divines and 
scholars, besides a vast concourse of the com- 

tsiograpny by 

Abdu'i-Ghafur mon people. But the most valuable biography 
of him is probably that written by his most 
eminent disciple, 'Abdu'i-Ghafur of Lar, who died on 
Sha'ban 5, 912 (December 21, 1506) and was buried beside 
his master 3 . 

All the essential facts of Jami's life, however, are given 
in the excellent Biographical Sketch (pp. 1-20) prefixed by 
Captain Nassau Lees to his edition of the Nafahatul-Uns*, 
a sketch only marred by a violent and uncalled-for attack 
on Mysticism. The details are far fuller and better vouched 
for than, for instance, in the case of Hafiz. Jamf himself 

1 Pp. 483 et seqq. of my edition. 

2 Op. cit., pp. 101-158. 

3 Rieu's Persian Catalogue, pp. 350-1. 

4 Published at Calcutta in 1859. 



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CH. vm] jAMf 509 

has recorded the date of his birth and the double reason for 
which he adopted the pen-name by which he is known, and 
he has also recorded the dates when most of his poems and 
other works were composed, for the most part during the 
last fourteen or fifteen years of his long life. These dates, 
as well as the texts of the poems, rest on an unusually firm 
foundation, for there exists at St Petersburg, in the Institut 
des Langues Orientales du Ministere des Affaires Etrangeres, 
an autograph manuscript of the poet's Kulliyydt, or Com- 
plete Works, which has been described in great detail by 
the late Baron Victor Rosen 1 , and which has finally settled 
several doubtful points of chronology. For further details 
of his life and character there is no lack of contemporary 
evidence. Even as a boy he showed remarkable quickness 
and ability, and, as he grew older and pursued his studies 
under more famous masters, he rapidly assimilated such 
knowledge as they were able to impart, and often finished 
by being able to confute them in argument. Of his scholar- 
ship Nassau Lees writes as follows : 

" Considering Jamf, not as a poet, but simply as a scholar, it cannot 
be denied that he was a man of remarkable genius and great erudition ; 
and it is to be regretted that he does not seem to have been free from 
self-conceit, supercilious hauteur, and contempt for the literati of his 
day, so commonly the characteristic of the votaries of his peculiar 
philosophy. He was extremely reluctant to admit that he was indebted 
to any of his masters for his acquirements. ' I have found,' said he, 
' no master with whom I have read superior to myself. On the con- 
trary I have invariably found that in argument I could defeat them all. 
I acknowledge, therefore, the obligations of a pupil to his master to 
none of them ; for if I am a pupil of anyone it is of my own father, who 
taught me the language.'" 

More pleasing, though possibly due to the same motives, 
T , ., was his refusal to flatter or humble himself 

Jami s 

independence before the rich and powerful, a rare virtue 

amongst the poets of that day, which led his 

biographer 'Ah' the son of Husayn Wd'iz al-Kashifi to 

1 Collections Scientifiques de P Institut etc. Les Manuscrits Per sans, 
pp. 215-259. 


remark that to no one more than Jami did the following lines 
of Nizamf apply 1 : 

" Since in my youth I ne'er forsook Thy gate 
To seek elsewhere the favours of the great, 
Thou in return didst send them all to me: 
I sought it not ; it was a boon from Thee." 

To his spiritual teachers, on the other hand, and to those 
who guided him in the mystic's path Jami showed the 
greatest veneration and rendered the most ungrudging 
homage ; a fact abundantly illustrated by Nassau Lees in 
his Biographical Sketch?. 

But though, or perhaps because, he refused to flatter or 
fawn on the great, few Persian poets have enjoyed during 
their lives such profound and widespread respect, or have 
lived so long without being exposed to such disagreeable 
experiences or discouraging vicissitudes of fortune as fell 
to the lot of even the greatest of them, such as Firdawsi, 
Nasir-i-Khusraw, Anwarf, Sa'di or Hafiz. The only un- 
pleasant incident recorded as having befallen Jami, and one 
from which he easily and speedily extricated himself, 
occurred at Baghdad when he was returning from the Pil- 
grimage in 877-8/1 472 3 . A garbled citation from one of 
his poems, the Silsilatudh-Dhahab> or "Chain of Gold," was 
employed by some ill-disposed persons to convict him of 
hostility to the House of 'All, in spite of a remarkable poem 4 
in praise of al-Husayn, 'All's son, which he had composed 
a little while before when he visited the scene of his 
martyrdom at Karbala. In a crowded meeting presided 
over by the chief doctors of Baghdad, Jami easily succeeded 
in refuting the accusation and turning the tables on his 
detractors, adding that " if he had any fears at all in writing 

1 Nassau Lees's Biographical Sketch, p. 5. 

2 Pp. 5-11. 3 Ibid., pp. 12-15. 4 Ibid., p. 12. 

CH. vin] jAMf 511 

this book they were that... the people of Khurasan might 
accuse him of Shf'a tendencies, but that it never occurred to 
him to imagine that on account of it he should fall into 
trouble at the hands of the Shi'a." The incident, however, 
rankled in his mind, and is commemorated in a rather bitter 
poem beginning 1 : 



l v-=> ?~ -A *=> ^o -.^5 jl 

" O cupbearer, unseal the [wine-]jar by the brink of the Shatt*, and 

wash from my memory the unpleasantness of the Baghdadis. 
Seal my lips with the wine-cup, for not one of the people of this land 

is worth discussion. 

Expect not faithfulness or generosity from the unworthy ; seek not 
for the virtues of men from the disposition of devils." 

Notwithstanding his piety and mysticism, Jami had a 
sharp tongue and was ready at repartee. Thus on one 
occasion he was repeating with fervour the line : 

" So constantly art thou in my stricken soul and sleepless eye 
That whosoever should appear from afar, I should think that it was 

An irreverent bystander interrupted him with the ques- 
tion, " Suppose it were an ass ? " "I should think that it 
was thou," replied Jamf 3 . 

1 Nassau Lees, op. tit., pp. 14-15. 

2 The Shatiu'l-'Arab is the name given to the united streams of the 
Tigris and Euphrates 

3 Ibid., p. 19. 


On another occasion Jami composed the following verses 
on a contemporary poet named Sagharf who had accused 
his fellow-poets of plagiarizing his ideas : 

J I d Jk-J>J,> Ij^ly-^JlXI A_J1 OA-AA.* C- ...itj 

" Saghari was saying, ' Wherever the plagiarists have seen a fine idea 

in my poetry they have stolen it.' 

I have noticed that most of his poems are devoid of ideas : whoever 
said that the ideas had been stolen spoke the truth." 

When Saghari angrily reproached Jami for this verse, he 
said, " It is not my fault. What I wrote was shd'iri (' a 
certain poet,' ^j^U>), not Sdgharl (iJ>Lw), but some mis- 
chief-maker has altered the dots over the letters to annoy 
you 1 ." 

Amongst the chronograms which commemorate the 

j * , , t * * 
date of Jamf's death the two best known are *d.> &*$ 

Cuf ,ji (Quran, iii, 91 : 6 + 40+50+4 + 600 + 30 + 5 
+ 20 + i + 50 + i + 40 + 50 + i = 898) "And whosoever 
entereth it is safe" ; and J^l j- (j(~>\j. j\ i_j>, " Smoke [of 
the heart, i.e. sighs] came up [or ' was subtracted '] from 
Khurasan" Khurasan gives 600 + 200 +1+ 60 +1+50=912; 
smoke (dud) gives 4 + 6 + 4=14; 91214 = 

We pass now to a consideration of Jami's numerous 

works, which fall primarily into two categories, 

pro^e works prose and poetry. Of his chief prose works, the 

Nafahdtu'l-Uns (Biographies of Sufi saints, 

composed in 883/1478), the Shawdhidiin-Nubuwwat ("Evi- 

contents of the dences of Prophethood," composed in 885/1480), 

shawdhidu'n- the commentary on 'Iraqi's Lama'dt (known as 

Ashi"atu'l-Lama''dt, composed in 886/1481), 

and the Lawd'ik ("Flashes") mention has been already 

1 Nassau Lees, op. tit., p. 19. 


made. Of these the second only, so far as I know, remains 
unpublished. I possess a fine old manuscript of it, on which 
the following table of contents is based. 

Preface (Muqaddamd). On the meaning of Nabi 
(Prophet) and Rasiil (Apostle), and other matter connected 

First chapter (Rukn}. On the signs and evidences which 
preceded the birth of His Holiness the Prophet. 

Second chapter. Setting forth what took place from 
the time of his birth until [the beginning of] his mission. 

Third chapter. Setting forth what took place from [the 
beginning of] his mission until the Flight. 

Fourth chapter. Setting forth what took place from the 
Flight until his death. 

Fifth chapter. Setting forth what has, or is known to 
have, no special connection with any one of these periods, 
and that whereof the significance became apparent only 
after his death. 

Sixth chapter. Setting forth the signs and evidences 
which became apparent through his Noble Companions and 
the Imams of his House (may God be well pleased with 
them !). 

Seventh chapter. Setting forth the evidences which 
were manifested through the Followers [of the Companions] 
and the Followers of the Followers, down to the generation 
of the [first] Sufi's 1 . 

Conclusion (Khdtimd). On the punishment of his 

This book is written in a very simple style, and would, 
if published, constitute an admirable introduction to the 
beliefs of the Muslims about their Prophet. 

Three other mystical works which I have not had an 
opportunity of reading are the Lawdmi' ("Gleams"), a Com- 
mentary on the celebrated Fustiml-Hikam of the great 

1 On this classification (Companions ; Followers ; Followers of 
the Followers ; Sufis) compare the Nafahdtrfl- Uns (ed. Nassau Lees), 
P- 31- 

B. P. 33 


mystic Shaykh Muhyi'd-Din ibnu'l-'Arabi (composed in 
896/1491), and a Commentary on the Nusus of his disciple 
Shaykh Sadru'd-Din al-Qunyawf. This is entitled NaqdiJn- 
Nustis, and is one of J ami's earliest works, for it was com- 
posed in 863/1458-59. 

Of Jamf's minor works I have noted some two dozen, 
included by Sam Mirzd in the list of forty-six which he 

gives in his Tuhfa-i-Sdmi, but this latter number 
iforill smin r is more than doubled by the Mirdtu'l-Khayal\ 

which states that Jami left behind him some 
ninety works. These minor works include commentaries 
on portions of the Qur'dn, e.g. the Stiratul-Fdtika; com- 
mentaries on Forty Traditions and on the Traditions of 
Abu Dharr ; theological tracts on the Divine Unity (Risdla- 
i-Tahliliyya and Ld ildha ilia 'lldk), the Rites of the Pil- 
grimage (M&ndsik-i-Hajf) and the like ; monographs on 
the lives or sayings of various eminent mystics, such as 
Jalalu'd-Din Rumf, Khwaja Parsa and 'Abdu'llah Ansari ; 
tracts on Sufi ethics and practice (e.g. the Tariq-i-Sufiydn 
and Tahqiq-i-Madhhab-i-Sufiydri); and commentaries, on 
Arabic and Persian mystical verses, such as the Td'iyya and 
Mimiyya (or Khamriyyd) of 'Umar ibnu'l-Fdrid, the opening 
verses of the Mathnawi (also known as the Nay-ndma, or 
" Reed-book" from its subject), a couplet of Amir Khusraw 
of Dihli, and a commentary of some of his own quatrains. 
Besides all these Jami wrote treatises on prosody, rhyme 2 
and music, a commentary on the Miftdhul-Ghayb, and 
another for his son Diya'u'd-Din 3 on the well-known Arabic 
grammar of Ibnu'l-Hajib known as the Kdfiya. There is 
also a collection of Jamf's letters (Muns/id'dt), and five 
treatises on the Mu'ammd, or Acrostic, which was so popular 
at this period. 

1 Cited by Nassau Lees, loc. cit., p. 19. 

2 Published by Blochmann at the end of his Persian Prosody 
(Calcutta, 1872). 

3 This book, commonly called Sharh-i-Mulld Jdm{, is properly en- 
titled, in allusion to the son's name, al-Fawd!idu?d-Diya!iyya, and is 
well known and widely used in the East. 

CH. vin] jAMf'S BAHAR1STAN 515 

Last, but not least, amongst J ami's prose works is the 
Bahdristdn, or " Spring land," a book similar in character 
and arrangement to the more celebrated Gulistdn 
lSdn ahdr ' of Sa<dl '> composed in 892/1487. It comprises 
eight chapters (each called Rawda, " Garden "), 
the first containing anecdotes about Saints and Sufis ; the 
second sayings of Philosophers and Wise Men ; the third on 
the Justice of Kings; the fourth on Generosity; the fifth 
on Love ; the sixth on Jokes and Witticisms 1 ; the seventh 
on Poets 2 ; and the eighth on dumb animals. The work is 
written in mixed prose and verse, the proportion of verse 
being very considerable. The text, accompanied by a 
German translation by Schlechta-Wssehrd, was published 
at Vienna in 1846. There are also several Constantinople 
printed editions of the text 3 , a complete English translation 
published in 1887 by the Kama Shastra Society, and an 
English version of the sixth book entitled " Persian Wit 
and Humour " by C. E. Wilson. The curious reader can 
therefore easily acquaint himself more fully with the con- 
tents of this book, even if he does not read Persian, and it 
is therefore superfluous to describe it more fully in this 

It is as a poet, however, that Jami is best known, and it 

is of his poetical works that we must now speak. These 

comprise seven mathnawi poems, known collec- 

Jdmi s poetry l l 

tively as the SaVa (" Septet ) or Haft Awrang 
("Seven Thrones," one of the names by which the constel- 
lation of the Great Bear is known in Persia), and three 
separate Diwdns, or collections of lyrical poetry, known 
respectively as the Fdtihatu sh-Shabdb (" Opening of 
Youth"), compiled in 884/1479-1480; the Wdsitatu'l-'Iqd 

1 This chapter contains 53 "witticisms," many of them very coarse, 
and hardly any of them sufficiently amusing to raise a smile. 

2 Particulars of some three dozen are given, but the notices given 
by Jami of his own contemporaries are very brief. 

3 I possess that printed at the Akhtar Press in 1294/1877. See 
also Ethe"'s India Office Persian Catalogue, col. 771-2. 



(" Middle of the Necklace "), compiled in 894/1489 ; and the 
Khdtimatul-HaydtC'fLnd of Life"), compiled in 896/1490-1, 
only two years before the author's death. 

The Haft A wrang comprises the seven following poems : 
(i) Silsilatu'dh-Dhahab (the "Chain of Gold") com- 

posed in 890/1485. 

Ifwwe' ( 2 ) Saldmdn waAbsdl, published by Forbes 

Falconer in 1850, and translated into English 
in 1856. This edition contains 1131 verses. Another 
English prose abridged translation by Edward FitzGerald 
was published in London in 1856 (pp. xvi + 84). 

(3) Tuhfatul-Ahrdr ("the Gift of the Noble"), com- 
posed in 886/1481, was published by Forbes Falconer in 
1848, and contains 1710 verses. 

(4) Subhatu'l-Abrdr (" the Rosary of the Pious") has 
been twice printed (1811 and 1848) and once lithographed 
(1818) at Calcutta. 

(5) Yusufu Zulaykhd, composed in 888/1483, the best 
known and most popular of these seven poems, was pub- 
lished with a German verse-translation by Rosenzweig 
(Vienna, 1824). There is an English translation by 
R. T. H. Griffith (London, 1881), and another in very 
mediocre verse by A. Rogers (London, 1892). 

(6) Layld wa Majmin, composed in 889/1484, has been 
translated into French by Che'zy (Paris, 1805) an d into 
German by Hartmann (Leipzig, 1807). 

(7) Khirad-ndma-i-Sikandari ("the Book of Wisdom 
of Alexander ") has received the least attention of the seven 
poems, and, so far as I can ascertain, has never been pub- 
lished or translated. 

i. The Chain of Gold. 

Of the Silsilatiidh-Dhahab, or " Chain of Gold," I possess 
a good manuscript transcribed in 997/1588-9. 
This poem discusses various philosophical, 

Chain of ethical and religious subjects with illustrative 

Gold") . . . 

anecdotes, and comprises some 7200 couplets. 

CH. vm] jAMf'S "CHAIN OF GOLD" 517 

A certain incoherence and scrappiness, combined with a 
not very pleasing metre, seem to have rendered it less 
popular than the remaining poems of the " Septet," and 
hence probably its comparative rarity. It is dedicated to 
Sultan Husayn, "whose justice bound the hands of the 
Sphere from aggression " : 

and there follows a most elaborate and artificial acrostic on 
this Prince's name, full of the most far-fetched conceits. 

As a specimen of the poem we may take the following 
anecdote concerning the distress of a poet who composed 
a brilliant panegyric on a king, which no one applauded 
save an ignorant fellow who had no acquaintance with the 
forms of poetry. 


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" A bard whose verse with magic charm was filled, 
Who in all arts of eulogy was skilled, 
Did for some king a flag of honour raise, 
And wrought a poem filled with arts of praise. 
Reason and Law the praise of kings approve ; 
Kings are the shadow of the Lord above. 
The shadow's praise doth to the wise accord 
With praises rendered to the shadow's Lord. 
A skilful rhapsodist the bard one day 
Brought in his verse before the King to lay. 
Melodious verse melodious voice doth need 
That so its beauty may increase indeed. 
From end to end these praises of the King 
Unto his ears the rhapsodist did bring. 
A fine delivery is speech's need : 
The Book God bids melodiously to read 1 . 
When to the end he had declaimed the piece 
And from reciting it at length did cease, 
The poet strained his ears to hear the pause 
Swiftly curtailed by thunders of applause. 
The man of talent travaileth with pain 
Hoping the critic's well-earned praise to gain, 
Yet no one breathed a word or showed a sign 
Of recognition of those verses fine, 
Till one renowned for ignorance and pride, 
Standing beyond the cultured circle, cried, 
' God bless thee ! Well thou singest, well dost string 
' Fair pearls of speech to please our Lord the King ! ' 
The poet gazed on him with saddened eye, 
Covered his face, and sore began to cry. 
' By this,' he wailed, ' my back is snapped in twain : 
' The praise of this lewd fellow me hath slain ! 
' That King and beggar grudged my praises due 
' My fortune's face with black did not imbrue, 
' But this fool-fellow's baseless ill-judged praise 
' Hath changed to woe the pleasure of my days ! ' 
In folly's garden every flower and fruit, 
Though fair of branch and bud, is foul of root. 
' Verse which accordeth with the vulgar mood 
' Is known to men of taste as weak and crude. 
' Like seeks for like ; this is the common law ; 
' How can the ripe foregather with the raw ? 

1 Qur'dn Ixxiii, 4: "and chant the Qur'dn with a well-measured 

CH. vin] jAMf'S " CHAIN OF GOLD " 521 

' The crow repeats the crow's unlovely wail, 
' And scorns the warbling of the nightingale. 
' The owl to some forsaken nook doth cling, 
' Nor home desires in palace of the King. 
' He hath no eye to judge the worth of verse, 
' So from his praise I suffer shame and worse ! ' 
E'en so the Rdfidi 1 fulfilled with fraud, 
When occupied with 'All's praise and laud, 
Shame comes to 'All from his shameless praise, 
Which praise on him a grievous burden lays. 
If thou shouldst say, ' A heart's devotion ne'er 
' Can be devoid of some relation fair ; 
' 'All so high, the Rafidi so mean, 
' Doth no relationship subsist between ? ' 
Another anecdote I pray thee hear, 
Ponder it well, and rend an answer clear 2 ." 

The Silsilatiidh-Dhahab is divided into three books or 
daftars, whereof the first ends with an Ptiqdd-ndma, or 
Confession of Faith, which exhibits Jdmi, in spite of his 
mysticism, as a thoroughly orthodox Sunni. This is suffi- 
ciently shown by the sectional headings, which run as 
follows : Necessary Existence ; Unity of God ; the Attri- 
butes of God, viz. Life, Knowledge, Will, Power, Hearing, 
Seeing, Speech ; Divine Actions ; existence of the Angels ; 
belief in all the Prophets ; superiority of Muhammad over 
all other prophets ; finality of Muhammad's mission ; the 
Prophet's Law ; his Night- Ascent to Heaven ; his miracles; 
God's Scriptures ; eternal pre-existence of God's Word 3 ; 
superiority of the people of Muhammad over all other 
peoples; unlawfulness of regarding as infidels any of the 

1 Literally "Rejector" (i.e. of the first three orthodox Caliphs), a 
term of vituperation applied by the Sunnfs to the Shf'a. 

2 The following lines, which are a continuation of these, are 
entitled : " Story of that Rafidf who begged a certain scholar to 
describe 'Alf, and how that scholar enquired, 'Which 'Alf shall I 
describe, the 'All in whom I believe, or the 'AH in whom you believe?' " 

3 This important dogma, hotly repudiated by the Mu'tazila, was 
one of the test-beliefs of what ultimately became the orthodox doctrine 
of IsMm. 


" people of the Qibla 1 " ; the Angels of the Tomb, Munkir 
and Nakfr ; the two blasts of the trumpet ; the distribution 
of the books kept by the recording angels ; the Balance ; 
the Bridge of Sirdt ; the fifty stations of'Arasat ; indicating 
that the infidels shall remain in Hell-fire for ever, while 
sinners shall escape therefrom by the intercession of the 
virtuous and the pious ; Paradise and its degrees. 

The second book of the "Chain of Gold " consists chiefly 
of dissertations on the different kinds and phases of Love, 
" metaphorical " and " real," and anecdotes of saints and 
lovers. The third contains for the most part anecdotes of 
kings, and towards the end several about physicians. 
Amongst the latter it is interesting to find two borrowed 
from the fourth Discourse of the Chahdr Maqdla of Nizamf- 
i-'Arudi of Samarqand, one related by Avicejina concerning 
a certain physician at the Samanid Court who healed a 
maidservant by psychical treatment, and the other describing 
how Avicenna himself cured a prince of the House of Buwayh 
of melancholic delusions 2 . These are followed by a dis- 
quisition on the two opposite kinds of poetry, the one " a 
comfort to the soul " and the other " a diminution of the 
heart " ; and an interesting dissertation on poets of old time 
who rewarded their royal patrons by immortalizing their 
names, which would otherwise have passed into oblivion. 
The poets of whom mention is here made are Rudaki, 
'Unsurf, Sana'i, Nizami, Mu'izzi, Anwari, Khaqanf, Zahi'r, 
Sa'di, Kamal and Salman of Sawa. Another anecdote from 
the Chahdr Maqdla? about one of 'Unsuri's happy improvisa- 
tions is also introduced in this place. The book ends some- 
what abruptly with a short conclusion which, one cannot 
help feeling, would have seemed almost equally appropriate 
at any other point in the text. In a word, the " Chain of 
Gold " could bear the withdrawal of many of its component 

1 I.e. those who turn towards Mecca when they pray. 

2 See my translation of the Chahdr Maqdla, Anecdotes xxxiii 
(pp. 113-115) and xxxvii (pp. 125-128). 

3 Ibid., Anecdote xiv, pp. 56-58. 


links without suffering much detriment. It contains some 
excellent matter, but is too long, and lacks artistic unity of 

2. Said man and A bsdl. 

The character and scope of the curious allegorical poem 
of Saldmdn and Absdl may be readily apprehended by the 

English reader from Edward FitzGerald's rather 
S ^!dAhdi * ree ancl somewhat abridged translation. His 

rendering in blank verse is generally graceful 
and sometimes eloquent ; but the employment of the metre 
of Hiawatha for the illustrative anecdotes (which, as is 
generally the case in poems of this class, frequently inter- 
rupt the continuity of the text) is a less happy experiment. 
The story is of the slenderest kind, the dramatis persona 
being a King of Greece, a Wise Man who is his constant 
mentor and adviser, his beautiful and dearly beloved son 
Salaman, Absal the fair nurse of the boy, and Zuhra (the 
planet Venus), representing the heavenly Beauty which 
finally expels the memory of Absal from Salaman's mind. 
Amongst the somewhat grotesque features of the story are 
the birth of Salaman without a mother to bear him (the 
poet's misogyny holding marriage in abhorrence, though he 
was himself married), and the seniority by some twenty 
years of the charming Absal over her nursling, whom, when 
he reached maturity, she entangles in an attachment highly 
distasteful to the king and the sage. The latter, by a kind 
of mesmeric power, compels Salaman in the earthly paradise 
whither he has fled with Absdl to build and kindle a great 
pyre of brushwood, into which the two lovers cast them- 
selves, with the result that, while poor Absal is burned to ashes, 
Salaman emerges unhurt, purified from all earthly desires, and 
fit to receive the crown and throne which his father hastens 
to confer upon him. The allegory, transparent enough with- 
out commentary, is fully explained in the Epilogue 1 . 

1 Pp. 71-5 of FitzGerald's translation ; 11. 1076-1120 of the original 
in Forbes Falconer's edition. 


As FitzGerald's work has a special interest in the eyes 
of all amateurs of Persian literature, I here give an extract 
of his translation with the corresponding passage of the 
original 1 . The passage selected describes the arrival of 
the lovers, in the course of their flight from the King's 
reproaches, in the enchanted island where they spend their 
joyous days of dalliance. 

*_ Alo jl 

'jl c. ,,.t. .Oi 'A-fc-^-s jl ^ ,: a. .,,>j 

1 Pp. 48-49 of the translation, 11. 802-824 of the text. 


j ^j 


' a> ; n. t 

i' W 



FitzGerald's translation (pp. 48-49). 

" When they had sailed their Vessel for a Moon 
And marr'd their Beauty with the wind o' th' Sea, 
Suddenly in mid Sea revealed itself 
An Isle, beyond Description beautiful ; 
An Isle that all was Garden ; not a Bird 
Of Note or Plume in all the World but there; 
There as in Bridal Retinue array'd 
The Pheasant in his Crown, the Dove in her Collar; 
And those who tuned their Bills among the Trees 
That Arm in Arm from Fingers paralyz'd 
With any Breath of Air Fruit moist and dry 
Down scattered in Profusion at their Feet, 
Where Fountains of Sweet Water ran, and round 
Sunshine and Shadow chequer-chased the Ground. 
Here Iram Garden seemed in Secresy 
Blowing the Rosebud of its Revelation ; 
Or Paradise, forgetful of the Day 
Of Audit, lifted from her Face the Veil. 

Sala'ma'n saw the Isle, and thought no more 

Of Further there with Absal he sat down, 

Absdl and He together side by side 

Rejoicing like the Lily and the Rose, 

Together like the Body and the Soul. 

Under its Trees in one another's Arms 

They slept they drank its Fountains hand in hand 

Sought Sugar with the Parrot or in sport 

Paraded with the Peacock raced the Partridge 

Or fell a-talking with the Nightingale. 

There was the Rose without a Thorn, and there 

The Treasure and no Serpent to beware 

What sweeter than your Mistress at your side 

In such a Solitude, and none to chide!" 

3. The Gift of the Free. 

The Tuhfatu'l-Ahrdr, or " Gift of the Free," is a didactic 
and moral poem of theological and ethical contents com- 
prising, besides doxologies, eulogies of the 
Akrtr Prophet, and Supplications to God (Mundjdt\ 

twenty Maqdldtor Discourses, of which the last 1 
1 See note on p. 527. 

CH. vni] jAMf'S " GIFT OF THE FREE " 527 

is addressed to the poet's little son Yusuf Diya'u'd-Din, who 
was then only four years of age, while his father was sixty. 
Each discourse is, as a rule, followed by one or more illustra- 
tive anecdotes. In a short prose preface prefixed to the poem 
Jami implies that it was inspired by the Makhzanu'l-Asrdr 
(" Treasury of Mysteries ") of Nizami and the Matla'uH- 
Anwdr ("Dayspring of Lights ") of Amir Khusraw of Dihli. 
The poem is on the whole dull and monotonous, and can- 
not be regarded as a favourable specimen of J ami's work. 
As a specimen I give a prose translation of part of the 
author's above-mentioned address to his son, the original of 
which can be consulted by those who desire it in Forbes 
Falconer's printed text 1 . 

Twentieth Discourse, 
giving counsel to my precious son, 

(May he be nurtured on the Herb of Beauty in the Garden of 
Childhood, and may he find his way to the Limit of Perfection 

in the School of Eloquence!} 
" O New Moon to the night of my hope, to whose Image the eye of 

my fortune is a pledge ! 
The Crescent Moon arises after thirty days, while thou didst show 

thy face after sixty years. 
Thy years are four at the time of reckoning : may thy four be forty 

and thy forty four 2 ! 

May each forty [years] of thine be quadraginta 3 , wherein, by know- 
ledge and ecstasy, thou mayst explore the degrees of Perfection ! 
Thy name is the Yusuf [Joseph] of the Egypt of Faith: may thy 

title be the Light (Dtya) of the Empire and of Religion ! 
With the pen which inditeth wisdom I write this Book of Wisdom 

for thee. 

Although thou hast not at present" understanding of advice, when 
thou attainest the age of understanding put it into practice. 

1 Pp. 91-93 of Forbes Falconer's edition, 11. 1615-1659. 

2 I.e., I suppose, " may thy four years increase to forty years, yea, to 
four times forty ! " 

3 Chilla (Arabic Arba i m}, a period of fasting and religious exercises 
lasting forty days practised \>ydarwishes and seekers after occult powers. 
See my Year amongst the Persians, p. 148. 


Until the hair of thy face becomes a veil, set not thy foot outside the 

house into the market and the street 1 . 
Be the enchainer of thine own feet ; be the [willing] prisoner of thine 

own apartments (haram). 
Never carry thy goods from the companionship of thy house-fellows 

to the doors of strangers. 
The sight of a stranger is not auspicious, especially if his age exceed 

If they set thee to work at school and place the tables of the alphabet 

in thy lap, 
Do not sit beside every low-born [school-fellow] : separate thyself 

from all and sit alone. 
Although the letter alif(\) is not by itself of crooked stature, see how 

crooked it becomes [in combination] as lam-alifty). 
When thou placest thy slate in thy lap lift not up thy finger like an 

alif therefrom. 
Modestly hang thy head like the letter dal (3); fix thine eyes upon 

it like the letter sdd (u)- 
Smiling now at this one, now at that one, show not thy teeth like 

the letter sin d^). 
Divide not thy heart with errant thoughts ; be like the letter mini 

(j>} too narrow-mouthed for speech. 
Hearken not vainly to every kind of tittle-tattle, so that thou mayst 

not suffer the pain of a box on the ear. 
Take heed of right behaviour during the teacher's lessons, lest thou 

become the little drum 2 of the school-room. 
Although the [master's] slaps impart virtue, yet is it better if thou 

dost not bring the affair to slapping !" 

Excellent as this paternal advice (and there is much 
more of it) may be, it does not constitute what we should 
regard as suitable material for poetry, while here again the 
many fanciful conceits about the ethical lessons to be learned 
from the shapes of the letters of the alphabet make it diffi- 
cult to produce a tolerable translation even in prose. 

4. The Rosary of the Pious. 

The Subhatu'l-Abrdr, or "Rosary of the Pious" is a 

didactic poem of theological, mystical and 

S Abrdr"' 1 ' ethical contents very similar to the last, equally 

lacking in coherence and even less attractive in 

1 Young boys in the East are almost as carefully secluded as girls. 

2 By being beaten with the sticks. 

CH. vni] jAMf'S " ROSARY OF THE PIOUS " 529 

form and matter. The following story of Abraham and 
the aged Fire-Worshipper, which also occurs in Sa'di's 
Bustdn^, and is the subject of some very lengthy reflections 
in Forbes's Persian Grammar*, where it is quoted amongst 
the extracts, may serve as a specimen. 


1 See Graf's edition (Vienna, 1858), pp. 142-3, 11. 37-54. 

2 Pp. 152-4 and 164-70. 

B. P. 34 


" One from a heathen temple took the road 
And lodged as guest in Abraham's abode, 
Who, seeing that his practice did accord 
111 with true faith, dismissed him from his board. 
Beholding him a stranger to God's Grace, 
The Fire-fane's smoke apparent in his face, 
Bade him confess the Lord who doth bestow 
Men's daily bread, or leave the board and go. 
The aged man arose, and ' Friend,' quoth he, 
' Can Faith the vassal of the Belly be ? ' 
With lips athirst and mouth unfilled with food 
He turned away his face and took the road. 
To Abraham a message from the skies 
Came, saying, ' O most fair in qualities ! 
' Although that stranger held an alien creed, 
' Food to forbid him was no righteous deed. 
' For more than threescore years and ten, in fine, 
' He offered worship at a heathen shrine, 


' Yet ne'er did I his sustenance withhold, 

' Saying, " Thy heart is dead to faith and cold." 

'What harm were it if from thine ample store 

' Some morsels thou shouldst give him, less or more ? ' 

Abraham called him back, and did accord 

A place to him at his most bounteous board. 

' This flood of grace,' the aged man enquired, 

' After that first rebuff what thought inspired ? ' 

He told the message which his act had banned, 

And told him too of that stern reprimand. 

' To one,' the old man said, ' who thus can take 

' To task his servant for a stranger's sake 

' Can I endure a stranger to remain, 

' Or fail his love and friendship to attain ?' 

Unto the Source of Good he then addressed 

His homage, and his faith in God professed." 

The story and the moral are admirable, but most Persian 
scholars will, I think, prefer Sa'di's older to Jamf's later 

5. Yti suf and Zulaykhd. 

The fifth of the " Seven Thrones," the Romance of 
Yusuf (Joseph) and Zulaykha (Potiphar's wife), is by far the 
most celebrated and popular, and is also the 
most accessible both in the original and in trans- 
lation. The entire text, with German metrical 
translation and notes by Vincenz Edlem von Rosenzweig, 
was published in a fine folio volume at Vienna in 1824, and 
there are several Oriental editions of the text 1 . I have 
already alluded to the late Mr A. Rogers' English rhymed 
translation (1892) which cannot be described as happy; 
R. T. H. Griffith's earlier translation (1881) I have not seen. 
Of two fine passages on the nature of Beauty and its 
essential desire to manifest itself, and on love of the creature 
considered as the bridge leading to love of the Creator 2 
I have published translations, originally in a lecture on 

1 See Ethe's India Office Persian Catalogue, col. 746-747. 

2 This latter passage is practically a commentary on the well- 
known Sufi aphorism, " the Phenomenal is the Bridge to the Real." 



Sufi'ism contributed to the Religious Systems of the World 1 
and again in part in vol. i of my Literary History of Persia 
(pp. 439 and 442). 

The story itself, based on the Stiratu Yiisuf (Qur 1 an xii), 
which describes it as " the most beautiful of stories," is one 
of the most popular themes of romantic poetry in Persia 
and Turkey, and engaged the attention of the great Firdawsf 
after he had finished the Shdh-ndma^ and after him of a 
whole series of Persian poets. Of the Turkish renderings 
of the tale a pretty complete list will be found in a foot- 
note in the second volume of Gibb's History of Ottoman 
Poetry*. But of all these renderings of the well-known tale 
Jami's deservedly holds the highest place, and on it his 
reputation largely rests. The text of the following trans- 
lation, which unfortunately is a very inadequate representa- 
tion of the original, occurs on p. 81 of von Rosenzweig's 
edition, 11. 19-42. 

"This speech from Bazigha 3 when Joseph heard 
From his sweet mouth came forth this living word : 
'That Master- craftsman's work am I,' said he; 
' One single drop contents me from His Sea. 
' One dot is Heaven from His Pen of Power, 
'And from His Beauty's garth this world a flower. 
'The Sun's a gleam from out His Wisdom's Light, 
'The Earth's a bubble on His Sea of Might. 
' Each mundane atom He a Mirror made, 
'And His Reflection in each one displayed. 
' His Beauty from all faults and flaws is free, 
' Hid 'neath the Veil of what no eye can see. 
' Discerning eyes in all that's dowered with Grace 
'See naught, when well they look, except His Face 4 . 
' Beside the Prototype the Shadow's dim ; 
' See His Reflection, haste thee unto Him. 
' If from the Prototype you stand bereft, 
'When fades the Shadow, naught to you is left. 

1 Published by Swan Sonnenschein in 1892, pp. 314-332. 

2 Vol. ii, pp. 148-150 ad calc. 

3 A lady who, like Zulaykha, falls in love with Joseph, but is turned 
by his exhortations from love of the creature to love of the Creator. 

4 Cf. Qur'dn ii, 109. 

CH. vm] jAMf 'S LA YLA AND MAJMlN 533 

' Nor will the Shadow long remain with thee ; 

' The Rose's colour hath no constancy. 

' Look to the Source, if permanence you claim ; 

' Go to the Root, if constancy's your aim. 

' Can that which is, and soon is not again, 

' Make throb the heart, or twinge the vital vein ?'" 

6. Lay Id and Majniin. 

Of the last two of Jami's "Seven Thrones," the Romance 
of Layla and Majniin and the Book of Wisdom 
^aj^ a f Alexander, copies are rare, but I have been 
able to examine them cursorily in a fine manu- 
script 1 , transcribed in 937/1530-1, belonging to Trinity Col- 
lege, Cambridge, and have selected the following passages 
as typical. The first two are from the Layld and Majntin*. 

1 It bears the class-mark R. 13.8. 

2 Ff. 68 b -69 b . 


(7 />^ meaning of the Love of the Loyal and the Loyalty 
of Lovers. 

" When the Dawn of Eternity whispered of Love, Love cast the Fire 

of Longing into the Pen. 
The Pen raised its head from the Tablet of Not-Being, and drew a 

hundred pictures of wondrous aspect. 
The Heavens are the offspring of Love : the Elements fell to Earth 

through Love. 
Without Love is no token of Good or Evil : that thing which is not 

of Love is indeed non-existent. 

This lofty azure Roof which revolveth through the days and nights 
Is the Lotus of the Garden of Love, and the ball [which lies] in the 

curve of Love's Polo-stick. 
That Magnetism which is inherent in the Stone, and which fastens 

its grasp so firmly on the Iron, 
Is a Love precipitated in Iron Resolve which hath appeared from 

within the Stone. 
Behold the Stone, how in this resting-place it becomes without 

weight through longing for its opponent : 
Judge therefrom of those who suffer sorrow in the attraction of the 

love of those dear to the heart. 

Although Love is painful, it is the consolation of pure bosoms. 
Without the blessing of Love how shall a man escape from the 

sorrow of the inverted Wheel [of Heaven] ? " 



t C 


Concerning the cause of the versification of this Book, and the 
reason of the arrangement of this Address. 

" When I withdrew the Veil from this Mystery, and prepared this 

strange Song, 
The Parrot of my Genius became an eater of sugar from the Story 

of Joseph and Zulaykha. 
In this outpouring of sugar there sprang from my Pen sweet verses 

mingled with sugar. 


Therefrom tumult fell upon the World, and a gladness in the hearts 

of lovers. 
It was a Fountain of Graciousness, but therefrom my thirst was not 


The Bird of my Heart desired to sing another song on another topic. 
When under fortunate auspices I cast lots, [the lot] fell on an account 

of Majnun's plight. 
Although aforetime two Masters, raised high above the Realm of 

Unloosed their tongues in the enunciation of subtleties, and therein 

did full justice to speech ; 
That one 1 pouring forth pearls like a Treasure (ganf) from Ganja, 

and this one 2 scattering sugar like a Parrot in India; 
That one smiting the ears of [unjustified] pretension, and this one 

unveiling the bride of the Ideal ; 
That one with his verse engraving an inscription on the rock, and 

this one giving colour [to the tale] by his exquisite art ; 
That one raising his standard to the Zenith of Glory, and this one 

preparing the spells of Magic ; 
I also bound my girdle behind me, and seated myself on my dromedary 

fleet as the wind, 

And wherever their Pegasus 3 attained, through their inspiring minds 
I also urged onwards my camel in humility, and brought myself 

within the range of their dust. 
Though I fall behind their reckoning, yet their dust upon my face 

sufficeth me." 

7. The Book of Wisdom of A lexander. 

The following anecdote from the Khirad-ndma-i- 
Sikandari, or " Book of Wisdom of Alexander," is taken 
from the same manuscript 4 as the last two extracts : 

1 I.e., Nizdmi of Ganja. 

2 Amir Khusraw of Dihli. 

3 Rakhsh, the name of Rustam's celebrated charger. 
< R. 13-8 of Trinity College, Cambridge, f. I7i a . 



JJUO ji 4J 

J A*^ J-H 



1 Jl 

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Story of the Kite which lent an ear to the Frog's talk, and in 
hope of credit let slip the cash from its hand. 

"The cycle of heaven now bids me indite 
For example the tale of the frog and the kite. 
A kite, wont to prey on the birds of the air, 
By the weakness of age was reduced to despair. 
For soaring its pinions no longer avail ; 
For hunting the strength of its talons doth fail. 
From the depth of its soul bitter wailing arose ; 
An abode by the shore of a lakelet it chose. 
Now when in that place it had dwelt for a spell 
On a sudden a frog in its clutches there fell. 
The miserable frog made a piteous appeal : 
'To woe thou hast turned,' it lamented, 'my weal!' 
' O haste not to seek my destruction,' it cried ; 
' Turn the steed of intent from my murder aside ! 
' An unsavoury morsel I yield at the best, 
' Neither sweet to the palate not good to digest. 
' My body is nothing save ill-flavoured skin : 
' What eater of meat can find pleasure therein ? 
' Unclose then thy beak, leave me free to depart, 
' And tidings of gladness convey to my heart ! 
' Then by magic and spells evermore at thy wish 
' I will guide thee to toothsome and savoury fish, 
' In the river's clear streamlets long nurtured and bred, 
' And with various food-stuffs abundantly fed, 
' From the head to the tail flesh and fatness alone, 
' With scarcely a skin and with hardly a bone ! 
'Their bellies like silver, their backs bright of blee, 
' Their eyes like reflections of stars in the sea. 
' With silvery scales back and sides are alight 
'As with God's starry largesse the heavens by night. 
' Far better, all persons of taste will agree, 
' Is a mouthful of such than a hundred like me.' 

The kite, by an oath confirmation to seek, 
Relaxed its control : the frog fell from its beak ; 
With one leap it returned to its watery lair, 
And the kite once again was the slave of despair. 
Its seat in the dust of destruction it took, 
Neither frog in its talons nor fish on its hook. 


That kite disappointed is like unto me, 

Whose soul has been turned from the pathway of glee. 

Composure has quitted my heart at the thought 

Of finding expression for thoughts so distraught. 

In my hands, through my lack of good fortune, I find 

Neither graces of speech nor composure of mind. 

O cupbearer, come, pass the bowl, I entreat, 

And like heaven, I pray thee, the cycle repeat ! 

That wine I desire which to peace giveth birth, 

And frees us from all the defilements of earth. 

O minstrel, approach, that the listening lute 

At the touch of thy fingers may cease to be mute. 

The heart of the heedless shall wake at its cry, 

And the message of angels descend from the sky." 

As the Sab'a (" Septet") of Jamf was admittedly inspired 

by and modelled on the Khamsa (" Quintet ") of Nizamf, 

some comparison of their respective styles and 

jdmi^T" methods may fairly be demanded. As I con- 

romanticpoet sider that in questions of literary taste it is very 

with Ni?Am( ' . 

difficult for a foreigner to judge, I requested 
my Persian colleague, Mfrza Bihruz, son of the distinguished 
physician and writer Mi'rz Abu'1-Fadl of Sawa, a young 
man of great promise and ability, well read in both Arabic 
and Persian literature, to write a short essay on this point, 
and I here reproduce in English the gist of his opinions. 

Jamf's verses, writes Mi'rzci Bihruz, rival, and perhaps 
even excel, those of Nizami in poetical form, sweetness and 
simplicity, being unlaboured and altogether free from 
artificiality ; but they fall far short of them in strength 
(matdnat), poetic imagination and eloquence. To appreciate 
and enjoy Nizimf a profound knowledge of the Persian 
language is required, while Jamf can be read with pleasure 
by all, whence his greater fame and popularity, especially 
in India, Turkey and other lands where Persian literature 
is an exotic. Moreover Nizami was a man of far-reaching 
attainments, not only in the language and history of his 
country, but in the sciences, especially the mathematical 
sciences, of his time, so that often he cannot be understood 
except by a reader similarly gifted. Such an one, however, 


will find in him depths and subtleties for which he would 
seek in vain in J arm's poetry. 

In one only of his "Five Poems" does Nizami challenge 
comparison with his great predecessor Firdawsi, to wit in 

his "Alexander Book" (Sikandar-ndma), which, 
R^u^'sT" alike in metre and subject-matter, resembles 

the corresponding portion of the Shdh-ndma, 
but, in the judgement of most critics, falls short of it 1 . But 
here Nizami was apparently more hampered than Firdawsi 
by the fanaticism of a less tolerant age, as he hints in the 
following lines : 

} ,x> 


" The world was so warmed by Fire-worship 
That thou mayst well be ashamed of thy Muhammadanism. 
We are Musulmdns, while he is called a Guebre ( : 
If that be heathenism (gabrf), what is Muhammadanism ? 
Return, O Nizami, to the tenour of thy tale, 
For harsh are the notes of the bird of admonition ! " 

Jami, though a mystic, was essentially an orthodox 

Muhammadan, and shows little of the enthusiasm for pre- 

Islamic Persia which inspired Firdawsi, and, in 

JAmi s close 

imitation of a lesser degree, Nizami. Of his indebtedness 
to the latter he makes no secret, and, indeed, 
follows his footsteps with extraordinary closeness, though 
here and there he introduces topics and dissertations entirely 
his own 2 . Not only does he imitate Nizami in the titles, 
metres and subdivisions of his poems, but even in minute 

1 This matter is discussed at length by Shiblf in his Skfnil- t Ajam t 
vol. i, pp. 3 2 3-356. 

2 E.g. his curious explanation of and commentary on the letters of 
the Bismfllah near the beginning of the Tuhfatrfl-Ahrdr. 


personal details. Thus each poet addresses himself and 
gives advice to a seven-year-old son, the only difference 
being that while Nizami encourages his son to study 
Medicine, Jami recommends Theology. The parallelism 
is especially apparent in the sections dealing with the 
" cause of the versification of the tale " of Layla and 
Majnun in the respective versions of the two poets, but 
lack of space compels me to omit the illustrations of this 
given by Mirza Bihruz in his essay. Such critical com- 
parison of the works of the great Persian poets is very 
important and has hitherto been too much neglected, but 
the necessary preliminary work of a historical, biographical 
and bibliographical character is all that I have been able to 
attempt in this and the preceding volumes on the literary 
history of Persia. 

Of Jami's lyric poetry, embodied, as already mentioned 1 

in three separate Dtwdns, it is impossible to give an adequate 

account in this volume, which has already 

jdmi-s lyric exceeded in bulk the limits I had assigned to it. 


In Europe German scholars alone have done 
much work in this field, notably von Rosenzweig 2 , Riickert 8 
and Wickerhauser in his Bliitenkranz*. Having regard to 
the eminence of Jami in this field also, and to the abundance 
of his output, a separate monograph would be required to 
do adequate justice to the subject, which deserves fuller 
study not only on account of Jami's own merit as a lyric 
poet, but also by reason of the profound influence which, 

1 See pp. 5 1 5-6 supra. 

2 Biographische Notizen iiber Mewlana Abdurrahman Dschami 
nebst Ubersetzungsproben aus seinen Diivanen von Vinzenz Edleni 
von Rosenzweig (Vienna, 1840). The pages of this volume are, 
unfortunately, unnumbered. 

3 His work extends over 33 years (1844-1876). It began in the 
Z. f. d. Kunde d. Morgenlandes, vols. v, pp. 281-336, and vi, pp. 189- 
227 ; and was continued in the Z. D. M. G., vols. ii, pp. 26-5 1 ; iv, pp. 
44-61; v, pp. 308-329; vi, pp. 491-504; xxiv, pp. 563-590; xxv, pp. 
95-112; xxvi, pp. 461-464 ; and xxix, pp. 191-198. 

4 Leipzig, 1855 and Vienna, 1858. 

CH. vin] jAMf'S LYRIC POETRY 543 

as already indicated 1 , he exercised over his successors, 
not only in Persia, but also in Turkey. I hope that it may 
be possible to recur to his lyric poetry in my next volume, 
when I come to trace the development of the ghazal in 
later times, but for the moment I must content myself with 
a few specimens selected after a cursory perusal of the 
edition of his first Diwdn printed at Constantinople in 
1284/1867-8, and based, as stated in the colophon, on an 
autograph manuscript 2 . I have also at hand a much fuller 
text of the same Diwdn lithographed at Lucknow in 
1298/1881, which contains many poems omitted in the 
Turkish edition, and comprises 568 as against 182 pages. 



3* J* ** u~4 3 C-wl 


1 See pp. 421-3 supra. 

2 Unfortunately no indication of the whereabouts of this MS. is 
forthcoming. The texts here given have been emended in some places 
from the Indian lithographed edition, which often gives a more correct 


" O Thou whose Beauty doth appear in all that appeareth, may a 

thousand holy spirits be Thy sacrifice ! 
Like the flute I make complaint of my separation from Thee every 

moment, and this is the more strange since I am not parted 

from Thee for a single instant 1 . 
It is Love alone which reveals itself in the two worlds, sometimes 

through the raiment of the King, and sometimes through the 

garment of the beggar. 
One sound reaches thine ear in two ways ; now thou callest it 'Echo' 

and now ' Voice.' 
Arise, O cupbearer, and graciously pour out a draught of that grief- 

dispelling wine for the sorrow-stricken lovers ! 
Of that special wine which, when it delivers me from myself, leaves 

in the eye of contemplation naught but God. 
O JAmi, the road of guidance to God is naught but Love : [this] we 

tell you, and ' Peace be upon him who followeth right guidance.'" 

The following is evidently inspired by and modelled on 
the well-known ode of Hafiz composed in the same metre 
and rhyme 2 : 

1 This line is an obvious reminiscence of the opening line of the 

2 It is the first ghazal in the Dtwdn of Hdfiz. 


" O Breeze of Morning, visit the hills of Nejd for me and kiss them, 

for the fragrance of the Friend comes from those pure camping- 

When the longing for union increases, what occasion for blame is 

there if Majnun follows the litters in the hope of [finding amongst 

them] Layld's howdah ? 
My heart is filled with love for the Friend, who is not heedless 

thereof, for they say * Hearts have a road to hearts.' 
Behold, Salma hath arrived from the road, while I am in such case 

through bodily weakness ; take, then, O comrade, my spirit as 

a gift from me and accept it. 
O cloud-like 1 eye, do not shed the rain of regret in her path, for it 

is better that her horse's hoof should be far removed from the 

plague of such mire. 
In my heart were knotted a hundred difficulties through separation 

from her ; when I saw her form all difficulties were solved 

Jami suffers vexations from the harshness of this grievous cycle, but 

fear of the wearisomeness of penitents did not prolong them." 




Jj^ ** * 


. ^ .,-0 ^l Cfc. A-flk. C 

" Here is the border of the garden, the brink of the stream, and the 

lip of the goblet : arise, O cup-bearer, for here abstinence is a 

If the elder of the monastery is intoxicated with the delights of 

music, give me the wine-tavern, for here this state endureth 

continually ! 
Thou didst touch the lip of the goblet with thy lip, and I the drunkard 

know not which is here thy ruby lip and which the wine. 
Not my heart alone is bound in thy black tresses : wherever there is 

a birdlike heart it is here caught in the snare. 
Thou dost draw the sword to divide my heart in twain ; lay aside 

the sword, for here one glance is sufficient. 
Do not explain the difficulties of Love to the reasonable ; utter not 

a private matter, for here is a public assembly. 
Jamf is intoxicated with thy love, though he has seen neither wine 

nor goblet: here is the Banquet of Love: what place is there 

for wine or goblet ? " 

CH. vmj jAMf'S LYRIC POETRY 547 

" The fair ones are a thousand, but of them all my desire is one ; my 

speech is one, though they cut me into a hundred pieces with 

the sword. 
The assembly of the beautiful is a pleasant meeting-place, but the 

Moon whence this assembly derives its lustre is one. 
For each pace of her advance we desire a different present, but we 

fall short [of this our desire], for the soul in the body is [only] one. 
I have grown so thin that, but for my lamentation and wailing, it 

would not appear that there was anyone in this shirt. 
Where the charming ruby [lips] of Shirfn are glowing, rubies and 

pebbles are alike in the eyes of [Farhad] the Tunneller. 
It was thou of all the fair ones who didst shatter my name and fame ; 

yea, of a hundred Abrahams the breaker of idols is but one. 
O Jdmf, close thy mouth from speech in this garden, for there the 

song of the nightingale and the shriek of the raven are one ! " 

This poem bears a great similarity, both in form and 
ideas, to an ode of unknown authorship of which I printed 
the opening lines with a verse translation in my Year 
amongst the Persians 1 . The fourth couplet appears to have 
been inspired by the well-known Arabic verses of al-Mu- 
tanabbi 2 : 

j j* 

' ^>*J & *r* 

1 p. 501. 2 Ed. Dieterici, p. 5. 



" On the day of parting passion wore away my body with sorrow, 

while separation effected a divorce between my eyelids and sleep. 

[I am only] a spirit permeating [a body] like a splinter [in leanness], 

no longer visible when the wind blows the garment away from it. 

Thin enough is my body, for indeed I am a man whom thou wouldst 

not see if I did not speak to thee." 

This is not an isolated instance of the influence of 
Arabian poetry on Jami's Persian verse. Thus the line : 

J ~ 

\ A 

',jUJ JU j\ AJ 3 jjj ,jUJ JD jt 4J <t=> 
" I was of the company of dreg-drainers on that day 
When there was [as yet] no trace of the vine or of the vine-planter" 

is, as Mfrza Bihruz has pointed out to me, almost certainly 
inspired by the celebrated couplet of the great Egyptian 
mystic 'Umar ibnu'l-Farid 1 : 

" We drained a draught of wine to the memory of the Friend : 
We were intoxicated therewith ere ever the Vine was created." 

Of the great Persian lyrical poets who preceded Jamf 
the influence of Sa'di and Hafiz is most noticeable ; and in 
the verses sometimes known collectively as the Nay-ndma' 2 , 
or " Book of the Reed," he has skilfully imitated the style 
and lucidly developed the idea of the Prologue to Jalalu'd- 
Din Rumi's great Mystical Mathnawi. To conclude and 
epitomize in one sentence this wholly inadequate account 
of one who, though I decline to regard him as the last great 
classical poet of Persia, was certainly one of the most talented, 
versatile and prolific. In Jami the mystical and pantheistic 
thought of Persia may be said to find its most complete and 
vivid expression ; while, though he may have been equalled 
or even surpassed by others in each of the numerous realms 
of literature which he cultivated, no other Persian poet or 
writer has been so successful in so many different fields, and 
the enthusiastic admiration of his most eminent contempo- 
raries is justified by his prolific and .many-sided genius. 

1 Ed. Cheikh ed-Dahdah (Paris, 1855), p. 472. 

2 See p. 514 supra. 


In the following Index where many reference-numbers occur under one 
heading the more important are printed in Clarendon type, which is also used 
for the first entry under each letter of the alphabet. To save needless repe- 
tition, all references to any name common to several persons mentioned in the 
text are brought together under one heading, the individuals bearing this name 
being arranged either in chronological order, or in order of importance, or in 
classes (rulers, men of letters, poets, etc.). The letter b. between two names 
stands for Ibn (" Son of..."), and n. after the number of a page indicates a foot- 
note. The addition in brackets of a Roman number after a name or book 
indicates the century of the Christian era in which the man lived or the book 
was written. Prefixes like Abu ("Father of...") and Ibn ("Son of...") in 
Muhammadan, and de, le, von in European names are disregarded in the 
alphabetical arrangement, so that names like Abu Sa'id, Ibn Sfna, le Strange, 
de Slane, etc., must be sought under S, not under A, I, L or D. Titles of 
books and foreign words are printed in italics, and an asterisk is prefixed to the 
former when they are quoted at any length in the text. A hyphen preceding 
a word indicates that the Arabic definite article al- should be prefixed to it. 

Abaqa (Mongol Il-Khan, xiii), 17-25, 
31, 40, 53, 69, 106, 112, 114, 175 

'Abbas "the Great," Shah (Safawf 
king, xvi-xvii), 317, 396 

'Abbs (murderer of Ulugh Beg, xv), 

'Abbasid Caliphs (viii-xiii), 91, 206, 
396, 484 

'Abbasf clan or family of Qazwin, 94 

Abddl (a class of invisible saints), 
276 and n. 

Abdal Beg (xv-xvi), 417 

'Abdu'l-'Aziz b. Ulugh Beg (Tfmurid, 
xv), 386 

'Abdu'l-Ghafvir of Lar (disciple of 
Jami, xv-xvi), 458, 508 

'Abdu'l-Hamid (Ottoman Sultan, xix- 
xx), 107 n. 

'Abdu'llah. Shaykh Ansarf (saint, 
iv-v), 479, 514; Amir of Shfriz 
(xiii) ; Mir (father of Sha"h 
Ni'matu'llah, xiv), 464; - - b. 
Fadlu'lhih of Shiraz (historian, xiii- 
xivj, see Wassaf-i-Hadrat and 
Ta'rikh-i-Wassaf ; Prince b. 
Ibrahim b. Shah-rukh (Timurid, 
xv), 387, 429 ; b. Mir 'Ali (calli- 
graphist, xv), 395 ; Mathnaivi- 
gu (known as Hatifi, xvi), 459 

Abu 'Abdi'llah Muhammad b. Abi 
Bakr b. 'Uthman.' See Imamf 

'Abdu'l-Latff, son of the minister 
and historian Rashidu'd-Din Fad- 
lu'llah (xiii-xiv), 82, 84 ; Prince , 
son of Ulugh Beg the Tfmurid (xv), 
82, 8 4 , 386, 387, 388, 390, 429, 
438, 503 

'Abdu'l-Majid b. 'Izzu'd-Dfn (Huruff 
heretic, xv). See Firishta-zada 

'Abdu'l-Mii'min, son of Rashfdu'd- 
Dfn Fadlu'llah (xiii-xiv), 81; 
the rhapsodist, put to death (xiv- 

xv )> r 95 

'Abdu'l-Muqtadir, Mawlawf (con- 
temporary Indian scholar), 259 n., 
260, 261, 263, 287 n., 293 n. 

'Abdu'l - Qadir. --of Mardgha 
(musician, xiv-xv), 191, 384; 
(? liuruff, xiv), 368 

'Abdu'l -Wahid (name adopted by 
Herman Bicknell, q.v., xix), 


'Abdu'n-Nabf Fakhru'z-Zama"n (bio- 
grapher of poets, xvii), 273 

'Abdu'r-Rahim. - - Huriifi (xiv), 
368 ; Kha'n-Kha'na'n (Akbar's 
general, translator of the Bdbur- 
ndma into Persian, xvi), 392 



'Abdu'r-Rahman. Shaykh Fmf 
(author of old and apparently lost 
history of Merit), 174,431; (un- 
identified, xv ), 494 ; Bey Sheref 
(contemporary Turkish historian), 
408 n., 411, 412 

'Abdu'r-Razzaq. SarbadaV ruler 
(xiv), 178; Kamalu'd-Dfn of 
Samarqand (historian, xv), 361, 

393. 397.-.426, 428-430. 464. 4735 
Ldhijf (commentator of the 
Gulshan-i-Rdz, xvii), 148 

Abel-Remusat, 10, 190. 

Abghy (grandfather of Tfmur, xiv), 

Abhar (near Zanjan), 31, 87 

AW ward, 497 

Abkhaz, 85, 122, 490 

Abraham, 89, 529-31, 547 

Abulustayn, Battle of (A.D. 1277), 19 

Abyssinia, Abyssinians, 89, 398 

Achaemenian dynasty, 3 

Adam, 73, 89, 100, 133, 2ipn., 245, 

, 335, 343 

Adam-ndma (Huruff work), 374, 450 

Aden, in, 327, 398 

Adharbayjan (Persian province), 43, 
122 n., 146, 160, 173, 187, 192, 
194, 264, 272,317, 321, 332, 382, 
385. 389* 397, 399, 4o, 401, 402, 
406, 409, 410, 416, 425, 426, 462, 

Adhari (poet, xiv-xv), 259, 350, 352, 

, 438, 497, 498, 502-3 
'Adil Shall, Mfr (d. A.D. 1424), 

Adrianople (Turkish Edtrn<<), 104, 

356, 370 
'Adudu'd-Dfn. 'Abdu'r-Rahman 

b. Ahmad al-Ijf (theologian and 

philosopher, xiv), 159, 170, 276 n., 

356-7 ; (grandson of Fadlu'llah 

al-Huruff, xv), 366 
Afdq u Anfus (poem by Bushaq, xv), 

350 ; (poem by Mahmiid Qarf 

of Yazd, xv), 351-2 
Afdal-i-Ka'shf (poet, xiv), 154 
Afdalu'd-Din. Mawldna" (xiii), 

27; Sayyid Mas'tid (pensioner, 

xiv), 8 i 
Afghanistan, Afghans, 64, 107, i22n., 

152 n., 161, 175, 193, 379, 393 
'Afffa (daughter of Amir Khusraw, 

xiii), 109 

'Afffu'd-Dfn of Baghdad (xiv), 83 
Afrasiyab (Atbek of Luristin, xiii), 


Africa, North , 92 

Afshar tribe (supporting Shah Isma'fl 

the Safawi, xvi), 417 
Agra (taken by Babur, A.D. 1526), 

. 393 

Ahang-i-Khusrawdni (name of a Per- 
sian air), 500 n. 
Ahar, 27, 416 

Ahf (poet of Babur's time, xvi), 459 
Ahlf (poet of Turshiz, xv), 438, 459 
Ahmad. Sultan Takudar (Mongol 
I)-khn, xiii), 25-6, 27, 31 ; 
(Muzaflari prince of Kirman, xiv), 
163, 168, 169, 190; b. Uways 
of the Il-khdni or Jali'ir dynasty 
(xiv), 172, 173, 187, 191, 196, 197, 
204, 205, 206, 284,^358, 366, 399, 
400 ; b. Abu Sa'id (Tfmurid 
prince, xv), 390 ; Chapel of , 
504 ; Sultan (Ottoman, xvii), 
396 ; Shah Bahmani (of the 
Deccan, xv or xvi), 464 ; Sultan 
(governor of Kurdistan, xv), 401 ; 
- b. Rashidu'd-Din Fadlu'lteh 
(governo^of Ardabfl, xiii-xiv), 84, 
86 ; (Aq-qoyunhi prince, xiv), 

404; Shaykh i-Jain (saint, xi- 

xii), 479 > Suhrawardi (calli- 
graphist, xiii), 84 ; b. Sahl of 
Balkh (geographer, cited in Nuz- 
hatti'l - Qulub, ? xiii), 99 ; b. 
Abi 'Abdi'llah (author of the 
Tibydn, cited in the Nuzhatifl- 
Qulub), 99; Qadf of Damghdn 
(historian, source of Tdrikh-i- 
Guzida), 89 ; Khwaja (mer- 
chant, xiv), 84 ; of Tabriz (poet, 
author of Shdhinshdk-ndma, xiv), 

103 ; i-Lur (Huriifi, assailant of 

Shah-rukh, A.D. 1426), 366, 382, 
473 5 Sayyid Toghan-oghlu (en- 
voy of Uzun Hasan to Ottoman 
Sultan, xv), 410 ; Faridu'd-Din 
b. Sa'd-at-Taflazanf (theologian 
and jurist, xv), 398, 423, 458 ; 
Dede b. Lutfu'llah (Turkish his- 
torian, xvii), 384 n. ; b. Muham- 
mad Nadfm (Turkish historian, 
translator from the Arabic of the 
last writer's Sahtiifrfl-Akkbdr, 
xviii), 384 n. ; Dr Khan (con- 
temporary), 183, 361 
Ahmad-abad (Gujerdt, India), 318 
Ahrar, Khwaja Naqshbandi (saint, 

, xv )> 44i 

'A'isha (wife of the Prophet, called 
Humayrd}, 320 n. 


'A'isha Sultan Begum (Babur's wife), 


'Aj&ibu'l-Makhluqdt ("Wonders of 
Creation" of al-Qazwfni,xiii).64n. 

'AjiVibifl-Maqdur fl akhbdri Tlmur 
(' ' Marvels of Destiny in the History 
of Timur," hy Ibn 'Arabshah, 
<].v., xv), 181, 183, 321 n., 355-6 

Akbar (the celebrated " Great Mogul " 
Emperor of India, xvi-xvii), 391, 

392, 393 " 
Akhi Juq (antagonist of Mubarizu'd- 

Dfn, xiv), 165 
Akhirat-ndma (Turkish Hurufi book), 

374-5. 45 
Akhldq - i -Jaldli (by Jalalu'd-Din 

Dawani, xv), 246, 389, 442-4 
Akhldq-i-Muhsini (by Husayn Wa'iz- 

i-Kashiff, xv), 246, 443, 444 
Akhldq-i- Ndsiri (by Nasiru'd-Din 

Tiisi, xiii), i8n., 442 
*Akhldqu'l-Ashrdf (by 'Ubayd-i- 

Zdkani, xiv), 230, 232, 235, 237, 

244-51, 257 
Akhlat, 188, 192, 401 
Akhtar (the " Star," a Persian news- 
paper published at Constantinople, 

A.n. 1875-1895), 515 n. 
'Akka (St Jean d'Acre in Syria, 

ravaged by Tumir in A.D. 1401), 

, 197 

Ala Tagh (or dagh, mountain), 59, 

Alafrank (son of Gaykhatu, Mongol 
prince, xiii-xiv), 43, 48 

Alarmit (stronghold of the Assassins), 
6, 25, 66, 69, 92, 255 

Alast ("Day of --"), 219 n., 307 
and n., 308 

'Ala'u'd-Dawla. b. Ahmad Jala'ir 
(xiv), 191; b. Baysunqur 
(Timvirid prince, xv), 386-8; 
Bakhtfshdh Gha/i (father of Daw- 
latshah, q.v., xv), 436 

'Ala'u'd-Din. 'Ata Malik-i-Ju- 
wayni (historian, xiii), 20, 22, 24, 
25, 29, 65, 88, 106 ; Khwaja 
Hindu (correspondent of Rashi- 
du'd-Din Fadlu'llah, xiii-xiv), 82 ; 
Malik (correspondent of same, 
xiii-xiv), 85 ; Sultan of India 
^correspondent of same, xiii-xiv), 
85; Kurt (xiv), 176 ; Khwaja 
- Muhammad (fiscal officer of 
Sultan Abu Sa'fd, xiv), 215; 
(appealed to by 'Ubayd-i-Zakanf, 
xiv), 240, 241 ; Simnanf (xiii- 

xiv), 484; 'All Qushji (astro- 
nomer and philosopher, xv), 386, 

Alburz Mountains, 316 n. 

Aleppo (Halab)> 181, 197, 361, 425, 
449, 464 

Alexander "the Great" (hkandar- 
i-Rum!}, 3, 16, 89, 90 n., 182, 
228, 291 n., 317 n., 373, 533, 536, 


Alexandria (Iskandariyya), 53 n. 

Alfiyya [tva] Skalfiyya (pornographical 
work by A/.raqi, xi), 347 and n., 
349. 350 

'Ali. b. Abi Talib (fourth Caliph 
of Sunnis and first Imam of Shi'a, 
vii), Si. 7i. 9' , 2 50, 255, 510, 
519, 521 ; Rida (eighth Imam 
of Shi'a, viii-ix), 44 ; Shaykh 
b. Kinjik (or Kikhshik, or Kichik, 
Mongol, xiv), 53 ; Amir Padi- 
shah (Mongol noble, xiv), 59 ; 
Amir (governor of 'Iraq-i-' Arab, 
xiii-xiv), 80-8 1, 82 ; b. Rashf- 
du'd-Din Fadlu'llah (xiii-xiv), 84 ; 

Sahl (son of Shaykh Abu Ishaq 
Inju, xiv), 163, 275 n.; - - b. 
Uways Jala'ir (xiv), 172 ; 
Mu'ayyad (Sarbadar, xiv), 178; 

Sultan Qiichin (retainer of Shah- 
rukh, xv), 366 ; Taz (or Pfr 
'AH, xv), 381 ; Beg b. Qara 
'Osman (or ' Uthman, of the "White 
Sheep" Turkmans, xv), 404; 
Qushjf (entitled 'Ala'u'd-Din, 
q.v., xv), 386, 407 ; b. Husayn 
Wa'iz-i-Kashifi (xv), 434, 441-2, 


Abu 'Ali b.Sma", 443. See Avicenna 
Ali-garh (A.-O. M. College, India), 

108, 261 
'Ali-shah. (rival and enemy of 

Rashidu'd-Din Fadlu'lldh, xiv), 

51-2, 54, 70, 71; (son of the 

same Rashfd, xiii-xiv), 84 
'Aliyyu'1-A'la (successor of Fadlu'llah 

al-Huriifi, xiv-xv), 371, 374, 451 
Allahu Akbar, Tang-i (defile near 

Shiraz), 291 and n. 
Allesandri, Vincentio d' (Italian 

traveller in Persia, xvi), 381 n. 
Almagest, 18, 502 
" Alumut " (last ruler of Aq-Qoyunlii 

dynasty so called by Italians), 415 
Alwand Beg b. Yusuf Aq-Qoyiinlu 

(xv-xvi), 417-18 
Aman-Kuh, 176 



America, 107 

Amid (Diya> Bakr), 192, 404 

'Amidu'1-Mulk Sdhib-Diwdn (patron 

of 'Ubayd-i-Zka'ni, xiv), 235, 238 
Amin (poet contemporary with Katibi, 

xv), 494 
Amini (poet parodied by Mahmud 

Qarf of Yazd), 352 
Aminu'd-Din. Nasr Mustawfi 

(great-grandfather of Hamdu'llah 

Mustawfi of Qazwfn, xiii), 87, 96 ; 

Khwaja (minister of Shaykh 

Abu Ishaq Inju, xiv), 233 ; Shaykh 

(? identical with preceding), 

275 ; (poet parodied by Busha~q, 

probably identical with Amini 

mentioned above), 350 
Amir Bey (Ottoman envoy to Uzun 

Hasan, xv), 410 
Amfr Khusraw of Dihli (poet, xiii), 

108-10. See under Khusraw 
Amfrf, Yusuf (poet attached to 

Baysunghur, xv), 501 
Amurath, a corruption of Murad, q.v. 
'Ana (in Mesopotamia), 42, 69, 81 
Ana'l-ffaqq (" I am the Real," i.e. 

God), 195 n. 
Anatolia, 371, 451 
Andakan, 180 
Andakhud, 185 
Andalusia, 132 
Angioletto, Giovan Maria (Italian 

traveller in Persia, xv), 381 n., 

409,411, 412, 413, 416 
Angora (Anqura), Battle of (A. D. 

1402), 198, 199, 365, 370 
*Anisul - 'Arifin (the " Gnostics' 

Familiar," by Qasimu'l-Anwar, 

?), 47,5, 482, 485 
Anisu'l- 'Ashiqfn (the "Lovers' 
Familiar," by Qasimu'l- Anwar, 

?*). 475 
Anisu 1 1- 1 Ushshdq (by Sharafu'd-Din 

Kami, A.D. 1423), 462 
Anjou, King Rene of , 395 
l Anqd (mythical bird), 136 and n., 

316 n. 

Antioch (AntaMciya), 8r 
Anusharwan, Khusraw (the Sasa- 

nian, vi). See Nvishirwan 
Anwari (poet, xii), 64, 118, 224, 291, 

350, 510, 522 
Anwdr-i-Suhayli ( " Lights of Cano- 

pus," by Husayn Wa"'iz-i-Ka~shifi, 

xv), 44 i, 443, 463, 504 
Aq Bugha ("White Bull," grandfather 

of Shaykh Hasan-i-Buzurg), 171 

Aq-Qoyunlii ("White Sheep" Turk- 
ma"n dynasty, xv-xvi), 379, 380, 

381, 389, 399. 403-4, 407-9, 

417, 418, 421 n., 444 
Aq Shamsu'd-Dfn, Shaykh (Turkish 

theologian, xv), 411 
Aqldb ("Poles," plural of Qutb, a 

class of the Rijdlu'l-Ghayb, or In- 
visible Saints), 276 n. 
Arabia, Arabic, Arabs, 3-5, 32, 64, 

93, 99, 132, 162, 231 n., 250 n., 

461, 467, 468 n. 

Arabia Felix, 184. See Yaman 
"Arabian Nights" (Alf Layla wa 

Lay la), 221 
Arabic literature produced in Persia, 

Ibnu'l-'Arabf, Shaykh Muhyi'd-Dm 

(the great mystic, xii-xiii), 63, 

127, 128, 132, 139, 446 n., 447, 

484, 5H 

Ibn 'Arabshah (historian, xiv), 181, 
183, 185, 197 n., 198, 203, 32 in. , 

Araxes (Aras) river, 187, 192, 196 

Ardyish-ndma ("Book of Adorn- 
ment " by the poet Mahmud Qari 
of Yazd, xv), 352 

Arbfl, 191 

Archives (Paris), 10 

Arcturus (Simdk), 113 

Ardabfl, 42, 85, 86, 362, 416, 473, 
474, 482, 485, 486 

Ardashir. Babakan (founder of 
Sasanian dynasty, iii), 90 n.; 
-i-Changi(Miranshah's harper, xiv), 
195 n.; (unidentified, xv), 494-5 

Arghun (Mongol Il-khan, A.D. 1284- 
,91), 26, 27-34, 37, 40, 46, 47, 163 

'Arif Hikmat Bey (Turkish poet, 
xviii-xix), 371 

'Arifi (poet of Hera~t, xv), 438, 490, 


Arik Buqa (brother of Hulagu the 

Mongol, xiii), 58 
Aristotle, 18, 443 
Arji'sh, 399 
Armenia, Armenians, 54, 181, 190, 

196, 201, 406, 489 
Arpa, Arpaga'un (Mongol Il-kha~n, 

xiv), 58-59, 171, 274 n. 
Arran, 57, 67 
'Arsh-ndma (" Book of the Throne," 

Persian Hunifi work), 375, 450 
Arzanjan,8 ; }j 188. See also Erzinjan 
Asaf (Solomon's minister), 67, 307, 

38, 39 



Asafi (poet, xv), 438, 458 

'Ashara (unidentified place in Meso- 
potamia), 8 1 

Ash'ari (doctrine), 301 

*Ashi"atu'l-L.ama' : dt (J ami's com- 
mentary on 'Iraqi's Lama'at, 
o.v.), 132-3, 444-7, 512 

'Ashiq Chelebi (biographer of Turkish 
poets), 369 

Ashraf, Malik-i- (xiv), 170 

Ashraf-i-JVamad-flisA (poet parodied 
by Mahmiid Qarf of Yazd), 352 

Asia Minor, 3, 5, 53, 54, 56, 58, 71, 
92, 99, in, 127, 155, 188, 196, 
357 397, 44, 408, 479 

'Asjadf (poet, xi), 65 

Asflu'd-Dfn (b. Nasiru'd-Din Tiisi, 
astronomer, xiii), 48 ; (judge of 
Shiraz, xiv), 275, 276 

Asir-Garh (Burhanpur, India), 289 

"Asmurat" (Italian corruption of 
Murad), 412 

Asrdru't-Tanzil (al-Baydawi's com- 
mentary on the Qur'dn, xiii), 63 

"Assambei" (Italian^ corruption of 
Hasan Beg, i.e. Uziin Hasan, 
q.v.}, 389, 404 

'Assar (poet of Tabriz, xiv), 159, 328, 


Assassins (of Alamut, q.v.), 6, 19, 25, 
, 53, 66, 69, 73, 92, 154-5, 255 

Astara, 482 

Astarabad, 190, 216, 286, 355, 365, 
368, 370, 388, 390, 395, 488, 489 

"Astibisti" (Italian corruption of 
Hasht Bihisht, "the Eight Para- 
dises"), 414 

Astrachan, 356 

Astrology condemned, 86 

Atabek (son of Shamsu'd-Din Mu- 
hammad Sdhib-Diwdn, xiii), 28, 
29; dynasty cf Pars, 92, 100, 
121, 274 (see also Salgharid); 
of Luristan, q.v., 68, 92, 189 

Atash-kada ("Fire-temple," a well- 
known biography of Persian poets 
by Lutf 'All Beg Adhar, xviii), 
in, 119, 210, 211, 216, 222, 230, 
258, 274, 321 n., 331 n., 345 

'Ata'u'llah, Mir of Mashhad (writer 
, of Babur's time, xv-xvi), 458 

Athdrul-Bildd (" Monuments of the 
Lands " by al-Qazwini, xiii), 64-5 

Athenaum (newspaper), 95 n. 

Athfr-i-Awma'nf (poet, xiii), 154, 261 

Ibnu'l-Athir (Arabian historian, xiii), 
88, i44n. 

Auguries from Hafi? (taful), 311- 


Austin (printers, of Hertford), 504 n. 

Austrians (defeated by Mongols at 
Liegnitz, A. D. 1241), 6 

Avesta, 290 n., 317 n. 

Avicenna (Shaykh Abii 'AH ibn Sfna, 
x-xi), 443, S'^ 

Avnik, 192, 196 

'Awasim, 81 

'Awfi (Niiru'd-Din Muhammad, bio- 
grapher, xiii), 65 

Awhadf of Mardgha (poet, xiii-xiv), 
?i28, 141-6; parodied, 352 

Awhadu'd-Dm of Kirman (poet, xiii), 
65, ?i28, 139-41, 473 

Awjan, 1 66 

Awrang-zib 'Alamgir ("Great Mogul'' 
Emperor, A.D. 1659-1707), 391 

A-wtdd (a class of the " Invisible 
Saints"), 276 n. 

Aydakan, 171 

Aydin, 192 

Ay KMtiin (daughter of Rashfdu'd- 
Din Facllu'llah), 84 

'AjTi Jaliit (defeat of Mongols by 
Egyptians at in A.D. 1260), 19 

'Ayntab, 197 

Aywanak (near Ray), 194 

Ayyiibi Dynasty, 408 

Azad, Ghulam 'AH Khan (bio- 
grapher, xviii), 289 

Azraqi (poet, xi), 347 

Baba Husayn (murderer of 'Abdu'l- 
Latif the parricide in A.D. 1450), 

B^bd Kiihf (Shrine of at Shiraz), 

Baba Sangu (holy man of Andakhiid, 
xiv), 185 

Baba-Sawda'i (poet, xv), 438, 497, 501 

Babis, 432, 452, 465, 470 

Babur, Mfrza Abu'l-Qasim (Timurid, 
d. 1456-7), 311, 387, 388, 390, 
421 n., 429; Zahiru'd-Din Mu- 
hammad (Timurid, founder of the 
" Great Mogul " Empire in India, 
xv-xvi), 184 and note on pro- 
nunciation of the name, 311 n., 
380, 39I-3- 418-19, 433, 440, 
453-60, 505, 507 

Baburi (favourite of Zahiru'd-Dm 
Babur), 455 

* Bdbur-ndma (autobiography of Za- 
hiru'd-Dfn Babur), 391-3, 440, 
453-9, 5>5 


"Babylon," "Sultan of ," 199, 201 

Bachu Ni'iyan (Mongol general, his 
letter to the Pope), 10 

Badakhshan, 388, 390, 393 

Badakhshi (poet, xv), 438 

Baddyi'tt 1 s-Sandyfr (a work on Rhe- 
toric by 'Mir 'AtaVllah of Mash- 
had, xv), 458 

Badghfs, 179, 427 

Badf'u'z-Zaman. al-Hamadh^ni 
(man of letters, x-xi), 139 n. ; 
b. Abu'l-Ghazf Sultan Husayn 
(Timurid prince, xv-xvi), 399, 416, 

Badr. (poet of Chch or Shash in 
Transoxiana, xiii), 106, no; 
(poet satirized by Katibf, xv), 

Baghdad, 4, 20, 24, 31, 32, 33, 34, 
54, 55, 60, 62, 66, 70, 78, 82, 1 1 1, 
160, 161, 162, 164 n., 166, 172, 
183, 191, 195 n., 196, 197, 204, 
205, 206, 208, 223, 225, 226, 230, 
234, 250, 257, 261, 263, 264, 284, 
285. 3'7, 357, 361, 366, 368, 396, 
399, 402, 409, 510, 511 

Baghdad Khatun (daughter of the 
Amfr Chuban, xiv), 54, 56, 57, 
58, 170, 171 

Bahadur (title assumed by the Mongol 
Il-khan Abu Sa'id in A.D. 1318), 


Bahdrlsldn (the "Spring- Land," by 
Jami, xv), 258, 273, 347 n., 436, 

489, 515 

Bahdrlu tribe, 399 

Bahd'u'd-Dawla, Bahman Mfrza (Qa- 
jar Prince and bibliophile, xix), 
80, 100 n. 

Baha'u'd-Dfn. Juwayni (great- 
grandfather of Shamsu'd-Dfn Mu- 
hammad Sdhib-Dhudii, xii-xiii), 
20 ; Juwayni (son of the above- 
mentioned Sdhib-Diwdn, xiii), 21- 
22, 29, 119; Zakariyya (saint 
of Multan and spiritual guide of 
'Irqi, xiii), 125, 127, 174; - 
Ahmad (commonly called Sultan 
Walad or Veled q. v., son of 
Mawln Jaldlu'd-Dfn Rumf, xiii), 
155; (father of the poet Hafiz, 
xiv), 274; Qara 'Osman (known 
as Qdralluk, "the Black Leech," 
of the Aq-qoyunlii, or "White 
Sheep " Turkmans, xiv-xv), 404 

Bahman Mfrza, 80, icon. See above 
under Baha'u'd-Dawla 

Bahman Shah (of India, xv), 400 

Bahrain u Gul-anddm (poem by 
Katibi, xv), 487 

Bakhshis (Uyghur priests and scribes), 
50, in, 112 and n. 

Abii Bakr. (the first Caliph, vii), 
74, 255 and n.; b. Sa'd-i-Zangi 
(Atdbek of Fars, xiii), 100; - 
(father of Mubarizu'd- Din, founder 
of the Muzaffarf dynasty, xiii), 
162 ; (son of Mfrdnshah b. 
Tfmur, xiv-xv), 362, 399, 400 

Baku, 175, 368. 417 

Bala'bakk (Baalbek), 197 

Baladu'l-'Ayn, 81 

Balkh, 108, 432, 4=,6 

-Balkhf, Abu Zayd Ahmad b. Sahl - 
(geographer and author of the 
Suwaru'l-Aqdltrn, one of the 
sources of the Nuzhatu'l-Quliib, 
q.v.), 99 and n. 

Bam, 81, 165 

Bamiyan, 122 

Banakat (or Fanakat in Transoxiana), 
100 and n., 320 n. 

Bandkati, Td'rikh-i- , 100-103. 
See Rawdatu Util-Albdb 

Bandtun-Na'sh (Arabic name for the 
constellation of Ursa Major), 2i3n. 

Bang (Cannabis Indica or Hashish), 
150 and n., 151 and n. 

Bankipore (Library and Catalogues), 
108, 10911., 259 n., 260, 28711., 
293 n., 312 n., 317 n., 319 

Banna'f (poet, xv), 438, 457, 458 

Bcinu Jahan (wife of Mubarizu'd-Dfn 
Muhammad, xiv), 163 

Baqir b. Ghiyathu'd-Din Kurt (xiv), 


Barandaq (poet of Bukhara, xv), 501 

Brbad (minstrel of Khusraw Parwi'z, 
vii), 267 and n. 

Barbaro, Josafa (Venetian envoy 
to Persia, xv), 380, 399, 404 

Barbier de Meynard, 431 

Bardi Beg (xv), 381-2 

Bar-Hebraeus, Abu'l-Faraj (Chris- 
tian historian and physician, xiii), 
12, 18, 19 n., 25 n., 26 n., 27 n., 
48 n., 64, 106 n. 

Barmak, House of , or '' Barme- 
cides," 21 

Barquq (al-Maliku'z-Zahir, ruler of 
Egypt, xiv), 191 

Bashdrat-ndma (Turkish Huriiff poem 
by Raff'i, xv), 375, 449-50 

Basra, 81, 85 



Batnir, Massacre of (xiv), 194 

Batii (Mongol prince, xiii), 54, 354 

Ibn Batiita (Arabian traveller, xiv), 
47 n., 55 n., 56 n., 58, 61, 64 

Bayandari (the "White Sheep" Turk- 
man dynasty, xv-xvi), 402, 404. 
See Aq-qoyunhi 

Baydnu'l-ffaqd'it] (by Rashidu'd-Dm 
Fadlu'liih, xiv), 77, 79 

Bayazid. (of Bistam, saint and 
mystic), 479 ; b. Mubarizu'd- 
Din Muhammad, founder of the 
Muzaffarf dynasty (xiv), 163; - 
b. Sultdn Uways of the Il-khanf 
or Jald'ir dynasty (xiv), 173 ; I, 
known as Yildirim, the "Thunder- 
bolt" (Ottoman Sultan, A.D. 1389- 
1402), 173, 196, 198-9, 203-6, 
365, 399, 400; II (Ottoman 
Sultan, A.D. 1481-1512), 398 
(where " II " is twice erroneously 
given as "III"), 418, 419, 422, 
423; Khwdja (Huriiff, xiv), 

Bdyazfd (Turkish frontier fortress), 188 

Baybars (al-Maliku'z-Zahir, Sultan of 
Egypt, xiii), 19 

-Baydi (the Arabic name of Turbat-i- 
Safid'm Fars), 63 

Baydawf,Qddi Ndsiru'd-Din (com- 
mentator, historian and judge, xiii), 
63, 88, 100, ipi, 272 n. 

Baydii (Mongol Il-khan, A.D. 1295), 


Bayhaq, 178 

Bayqara (Tfmurid prince, nephew of 
Shah-rukh, xiv-xv), 427 

Bayram, Khwaja Baharlu (of the 
dynasty of the " Black Sheep " or 
Qara-qoyxinlu, q.v.), 399 

Baysunqur. (Timurid prince, son 
of Shah-rukh, xv), 108, 366, 380, 
385 and n., 386, 387, 395-6, 400, 
424, 427, 438, 453, 473, 499-501 ; 
b. Ya'qiib (of the Aq-qoyiinlu 
or "White Sheep" dynasty, circ. 
A.D. 1500), 415 

Bazdari family of Qazwfn, 94 

Bazigha (her love affair with Joseph), 
532 and n. 

"Beard," "Book of the " (Rtsh- 
ndma, by 'Ubayd-i-Za"kan{, xiv), 

235. 2 5i 
Bektash, Hajji (d. A.D. 1337-8), 

37,1-2,374, 45i 
Bektashi order of dervishes, 365, 

370-5, 450-2 

Belgian professors at Cambridge (A.D. 

1915), 112 n., 427. See also 

Fasihi, Museon 
Belin (Notice sur Mir Ali-Chir..., 

1861), 391, 439, 506, 508 
Bell, Miss Gertrude Lowthian 

(Poems from the Divan of ffafiz, 

1897), 162, 273, 286, 291, 292, 

303-6, 308-11 
Bengal, 286, 287, 393, 398 
Bernhauer, 156 
Beveridge, Mrs (edition of Bdbur- 

ndma, 1905), 391 
Bianchi, 399 
Bibliotheque Nationale (Paris), 237, 

Bicknell, Herman (translator of 

Hafiz, d. 1875), 283, 290, 291 n., 

302-3, 304-7, 309, 310 
B5hna"m (his fatal banquet at Hama- 

dan, A.D. 1282), 25 n. 
Bihruz, Mirza Dhabihu'llah --of 

Sa"wa (contemporary), 541, 542, 

Bihza"d (miniature painter, xv), 456, 

. 459, 55 

Bijanagar, 398, 429 
Birjand, 155 

Bisdti (poet, xv), 438, 501 
Bishkrf (family or clan of Qazwin), 94 
Bistam, 59, 178 
Bitl'fs, 192 
"Black Sheep" Turkmans. See 

Blochet, M. Edgar (edition of part 

of the Jami'u't-Tawarikh, q.v.}, 

74 n. 
Blochmann {Persian Prosody, 1872), 

5i 4 n. 

Blue Banner (Leon Cahun), 15 
Bliithensammhwg aus d. Morgenl. 

Mystik (Tholuck, 1825), 147 
Bliitenkranz (Wickerhauser, 1885-8), 

Bodenstadt (translator of Hafiz, 1877), 


Bohemia, 10, 102 

Bombay, 231 

"Bousaet," "Boussay" (Italian cor- 
ruption of Abii Sa'id, q.v.), 61 

Brahmins, 342 n. 

Britain, British, 102, 183 

British Museum, 367, 430, 445 

Brockelmann, Karl (Gesch. d. arab. 
Lift., 1898-1902), 63 n., 64 n., 

99 n -' 354,. 355, 36, 357 
Brockhaus (editor of Ha"fiz), 299 n., 302 



Broussa, 199 

Buddhist, Buddhism, 44, 73 

Buhlul (rebellion of , A. D. 1395), 

BukhinC, 82, 186, 188, 189,234,238, 

43 2 
Bula Timiiri (family or clan of Qaz- 

wfn), 94 
Bulgarians, 15 
Bulqan Khatiin (mentioned in Rashi- 

du'd-Din's will), 28 
Btiqa', Amfr (mentioned in Rashi- 

du'd-Dfn's will), 28 
Buraq (rebellion of , A.D. 1268-9), 

Burda (the "Mantle-poem" of al- 

Busiri), 363 

Burgundy, Uukes of , 395 
Burhdn-i-Jdmi 1 ' (Persian dictionary), 

Burhdn-i-Qdti'' (Persian dictionary), 

351 n. 
Burhanf (family or clan of Qazwin), 


Burhanpiir, 289 
Burhanu'd-Dfn. Qadf (Turkish 

warrior-poet, xiv-xv), 404; Say- 

yid (father of Mfrkhwdnd the 

historian), 432 
Burujird, 187, 190, 368 
"Busech" (Italian corruption of Abu 

Sa'id, q.v.), 389, 410, 429 n. 
Bushanj, 150, 175, 186 
Bushaq (Abu Ishaq, parodist of 

Shfraz), 159, 209, 211, 257, 299, 

344-51. 353. 492 
-Busiri (Arabic poet, author of the 

Burda), 363 

Bus/an (of Sa'di, xiii), 16, 354, 529 
Buwayhid dynasty, 91, 522 
Byzantine Empire, 205, 409 

Caesarea (Qaysariyya), 83, 85 

Cahun, Leon , 9n., 14, 15 

Cairo, 42, 196, 356, 357 

Calcutta, 216 

Calf, Golden , 35, 36 

Caliph, Caliphate (Khalifa, Khildfaf), 
5, 62, 73, 74, 90, 91, 92, 101, 
247 n. See also under 'Abbasias, 
Fatimids, Umayyads 

Calmucks, 398 

Cambay, 398 

Cambaluc (Khan-baligh, i.e. Pekin), 

Cambridge, 112, 162, 367, 368, 373, 

4 2 7> 43"-; 440. 443. 445. 49 6 

"Cafio" (name of Timur's wife as 

given by Clavijo), 200 
Caracoili, 399. See Qara-qoy