"ACRES OF BOOKS"
633 MAIN ST.
NEW YORK, THOMAS Y.
CROWELL & COMPANY,
PUBLISHERS Jk jt Jt,
AN ORIENTAL ROMANCE
BY THOMAS MOORE
THOMAS Y. CROWELL & CO.
SAMUEL ROGERS, ESQ.
THIS VOLUME IS DEDICATED
HIS VERY GRATEFUL
AND AFFECTIONATE FRIEND
PREFACE , 7
THE VEILED PKOPHET OF KHORASSAN .... 27
PARADISE AND TIIK PERI , 102
THE Fi it E- WORSHIPPERS .... 127
'I'm. LIGHT OF THE II A HAM , . 202
(WRITTEN ORIGINALLY FOR " LALLA ROOKH " IN THE
COLLECTED EDITION OF MOORED WORKS.)
THE Poem, or Romance, of LALLA EOOKH, having now
reached, I understand, its twentieth edition, a short ac-
count of the origin and progress of a work which has
been hitherto so very fortunate in its course may not be
deemed, perhaps, superfluous or misplaced.
It was about the year 1812, that, far more through the
encouraging suggestions of friends than from any confi-
dent promptings of my own ambition, I conceived the
design of writing a Poem upon some Oriental subject,
and of those quarto dimensions which Scott's successful
publications in that form had then rendered the regular
poetical standard. A negotiation on the subject was
opened with the Messrs. Longman in the same year;
but, from some causes which I cannot now recollect, led
to no decisive result ; nor was it till a year or two after,
that any further steps were taken in the matter, their
house being the only one, it is right to add, with which,
from first to last, 1 held any communication upon the
On this last occasion, Mr. Perry kindly offered himself
as my representative in the treaty; and, what with the
friendly zeal of my negotiator on the one side, and
the prompt and liberal spirit with which lie was met on
the other, there lias seldom, I think, occurred any transac-
tion in which Trade and Poesy have shone out so advanta-
geously in each other's eyes. The short discussion that
then took place, between the two parties, may be com-
prised in a very few sentences. " I am of opinion," said
Mr. Perry, enforcing his view of the case by arguments
which it is not for me to cite, " that Mr. Moore ought
to receive for his Poem the largest price that has been
given, in our day, for such a work." " That was," an-
swered the Messrs. Longman, " three thousand guineas."
"Exactly so," replied Mr. Perry, "and no less a sum
ought he to receive."
It was then objected, and very reasonably, on the part
of the firm, that they had never yet seen a single line of
the Poem ; and that a perusal of the work ought to be
allowed to them, before they embarked so large a sum in
the purchase. But, no ; the romantic view which my
friend Perry took of the matter, was, that this price
should be given as a tribute to reputation already acquired,
without any condition for a previous perusal of the new
work. This high tone, I must confess, not a little startled
and alarmed me ; but, to the honor and glory of Eomance,
as well on the publishers' side as the poet's, this
very generous view of the transaction was, without any
difficulty, acceded to, and the firm agreed, before we sep-
arated, that I was to receive three thousand guineas for
At the time of this agreement, but little of the work,
as it stands at present, had yet been written. But the
ready confidence in my success shown by others, made up
for the deficiency of that requisite feeling within myself ;
while a strong desire not wholly to disappoint this "au-
guring hope," became almost a substitute for inspiration.
In the year 1815, therefore, having made some progress
in my task, I wrote to report the state of the work to
the Messrs. Longman, adding, that I was now most willing
and ready, should they desire it, to submit the manuscript
for their consideration. Their answer to this offer was as
follows : " We are certainly impatient for the perusal of
the Poem ; but solely for our gratification. Your senti-
ments are always honorable." *
I continued to pursue my task for another year, being
likewise occasionally occupied with the Irish Melodies,
two or three numbers of which made their appearance
during the period employed in writing Lalla Rookh. At
length, in the year 1816, I found my work sufficiently
advanced to be placed in the hands of the publishers.
But the state of distress to which England was reduced,
in that dismal year, by the exhausting effects of the series
of wars she had just then concluded, and the general em-
barrassment of all classes both agricultural and com-
mercial, rendered it a juncture the least favorable that
could well be conceived for the first launch into print of
so light and costly a venture as Lalla Rookh. Feeling
conscious, therefore, that under such circumstances I
should act but honestly in putting it in the power of the
Messrs. Longman to reconsider the terms of their engage-
ment with me, leaving them free to postpone, modify,
or even, should such be their wish, relinquish it alto-
gether, I wrote them a letter to that effect, and received
the following answer : " We shall be most happy in the
pleasure of seeing you in February. We agree with you,
indeed, that the times are most inauspicious for 'poetry
and thousands ; ' but we believe that your poetry would
do more than that of any other living poet at the present
The length of time I employed in writing the few sto-
ries strung together in Lalla Rookh will appear, to some
persons, much more than was necessary for the production
of such easy and "light o' love" fictions. lut, besides
that I have been, at all times, a far more slow and pains*
April 10, 1815. t November 9, 1810.
taking workman than would ever be guessed, I fear, from
the result, I felt that, in this instance, I had taken upon
myself a more than ordinary responsibility, from the
immense stake risked by others on my chance of success.
For a long time, therefore, after the agreement had been
concluded, though generally at work with a view to this
task, I made but very little real progress in it ; and I
have still by me the beginnings of several stories con-
tinued, some of them, to the length of three or four
hundred lines, which, after in vain endeavoring to mould
them into shape, I threw aside, like the tale of Cambus-
can, "left half-told." One of these stories, entitled The
Peri's Daughter, was meant to relate the loves of a nymph
of this aerial extraction with a youth of mortal race, the
rightful Prince of Ormuz, who had been, from his infancy,
brought up in seclusion, on the banks of the river Amou,
by an aged guardian named Mohassan. The story opens
with the first meeting of these destined lovers, then in
their childhood ; the Peri having wafted her daughter to
this holy retreat, in a bright, enchanted boat, whose first
appearance is thus described :
For, down the silvery tide afar,
There came a boat, as swift and bright
As shines, in heav'n, some pilgrim-star,
That leaves its own high home, at night,
To shoot to distant shrines of light.
"It comes, it comes," young Orian cries,
And panting to Mohassan flies.
Then, down npon the flowery grass
Keclines to see the vision pass ;
With partly joy and partly fear,
To find its wondrous light so near,
And hiding oft his dazzled eyes
Among the flowers on which he lies.
Within the boat a baby slept,
Like a young pearl within its shell ;
While one, who seem'd of riper years,
But not of earth, or earth-like spheres,
Her watch beside the sluraberer kept;
Gracefully waving, in her hand,
The feathers of some holy bird,
With which, from time to time, she stirr'd
The fragrant air, and coolly fann'd
The baby's brow, or brush'd away
The butterflies that, bright and blue
As on the mountains of Malay,
Around the sleeping infant flew.
And now the fairy boat hath stopp'd
Beside the bank, the nymph has dropp'd
Her golden anchor in the stream;
A song is sung by the Peri in approaching, of which
the following forms a part :
My child she is but half divine,
Her father sleeps in the Caspian water;
His funeral shrine,
But he lives again in the Peri's daughter.
Fain would I fly from mortal sight
To my own sweet bowers of Peristan;
But, there, the flowers are all too bright
For the eyes of a baby born of man.
On flowers of earth her feet must tread;
So hither my light-wing'd bark hath brought her;
Thy leafiest bed,
To rest the wandering Peri's daughter.
In another of these inchoate fragments, a proud
female saint, named lianou, plays a principal part; and
her progress through the streets of Cufa, on the night
of a great illuminated festival, I find thus described :
It was a scene of mirth that drew
A smile from ev'n the Saint Banou,
As, through the hush'd, admiring throng,
She went with stately steps along,
And counted o'er, that all might see,
The rubies of her rosary.
But none might see the worldly smile
That lurk'd beneath her veil, the while:
Alia forbid ! for, who would wait
Her blessing at the temple's gate,
What holy man would ever run
To kiss the ground she knelt upon,
If once, by luckless chance, he knew
She look'd and smil'd as others do ?
Her hands were join'd, and from each wrist
By threads of pearl and golden twist
Hung relics of the saints of yore,
And scraps of talismanic lore,
Charms for the old, the sick, the frail,
Some made for use, and all for sale.
On either side, the crowd withdrew,
To let the Saint pass proudly through;
While turban' d heads of every hue,
Green, white, and crimson, bow'd around,
And gay tiaras touch'd the ground,
As tulip-bells, when o'er their beds
The musk-wind passes, bend their heads.
Nay, some there were, among the crowd
Of Moslem heads that round her bow'd,
So fill'd with zeal, by many a draught
Of Shiraz wine profanely quaff'd,
That, sinking low in reverence then,
They never rose till morn again.
There are yet two more of these unfinished sketches,
one of which extends to a much greater length than I
was aware of ; and, as far as I can judge from a hasty
renewal of my acquaintance with it, is not incapable of
being yet turned to account.
In only one of these unfinished sketches, the tale of
The Peri's Daughter, had I yet ventured to invoke that
most home-felt of all my inspirations, which has lent to
the story of The Fire-worshippers its main attraction
and interest. That it was my intention, in the concealed
Prince of Ormuz, to shadow out some impersonation of
this feeling, I take for granted from the prophetic words
supposed to be addressed to him by his aged guardian :
Bright child of destiny! even now
I read the promise on that brow,
That tyrants shall no more defile
The glories of the Green Sea Isle,
But Onnuz shall again be free,
And hail her native Lord in thee!
In none of the other fragments do I find any trace of
this sort of feeling, either in the subject or the person-
ages of the intended story; and this was the reason,
doubtless, though hardly known, at the time, to myself,
that, finding my subjects so slow in kindling my own
sympathies, I began to despair of their ever touching the
hearts of others ; and felt often inclined to say :
" Oh no, I have no voice or hand
For such a song, in such a land."
Had this series of disheartening experiments been car-
ried on much further, I must have thrown aside the work
in despair. But, at last, fortunately, as it proved, the
thought occurred to me of founding a story on the fierce
struggle so long maintained l>etween the Ghebers,* or
ancient Fire-worshippers of Persia, and their haughty
Moslem masters. From that moment, a new and deep
interest in my whole task took possession of me. The
Voltaire, in his tragedy of "Los Guebres," written with a
similar under-ourn-nt of meaning, was arcusod of having trans-
formed liis Firo-worshipprrs into .lansonists. "(Juolqiies figu-
ristcs," he says, "pre"tendent quo ls CJuM>ros son! los .lansrnistes."
cause of tolerance was again my inspiring theme; and
the spirit that had spoken in the melodies of Ireland
soon found itself at home in the East.
Having thus laid open the secrets of the workshop to
account for the time expended in writing this work, I
must also, in justice to my own industry, notice the pains
I took in long and laboriously reading for it. To form a
storehouse, as it were, of illustration purely Oriental, and
so familiarize myself with its various treasures, that, as
quick as Fancy required the aid of fact, in her spiritings,
the memory was ready, like another Ariel, at her "strong
bidding," to furnish materials for the spell-work, such
was, for a long while, the sole object of my studies ; and
whatever time and trouble this preparatory process may
have cost me, the effects resulting from it, as far as the
humble merit of truthfulness is concerned, have been
such as to repay me more than sufficiently for my pains.
I have not forgotten how great was my pleasure, when
told by the late Sir James Mackintosh, that he was once
asked by Colonel "VV s, the historian of British India,
" whether it was true that Moore had never been in the
East ? " " Never," answered Mackintosh. " Well, that
shows me," replied Colonel W s, " that reading over
D'Herbelot is as good as riding on the back of a camel."
I need hardly subjoin to this lively speech, that, al-
though D'Herbelot's valuable work was, of course, one of
my manuals, I took the whole range of all such Oriental
reading as was accessible to me ; and became, for the
time, indeed, far more conversant with all relating to that
distant region, than I have ever been with the scenery,
productions, or modes of life of any of those countries
lying most within my reach. We know that D'Anville,
though never in his life out of Paris, was able to correct
a number of errors in a plan of the Troad taken by De
Choiseul, on the spot ; and for my own very different, as
well as far inferior, purposes, the knowledge I had thus
acquired of distant localities, seen only by me in my day-
dreams, was no less ready and useful.
An ample reward for all this painstaking has been
found in such welcome tributes as I have just now cited ;
nor can I deny myself the gratification of citing a few
more of the same description. From another distin-
guished authority on Eastern subjects, the late Sir John
Malcolm, I had myself the pleasure of hearing a similar
opinion publicly expressed ; that eminent person, in a
speech spoken by him at a Literary Fund Dinner, having
remarked, that together with those qualities of a poet
which he much too partially assigned to me was combined
also " the truth of the historian."
Sir William Ouseley, another high authority, in giving
his testimony to the same effect, thus notices an excep-
tion to the general accuracy for which he gives me credit :
"Dazzled by the beauties of this composition,* few
readers can perceive, and none surely can regret, that the
pott, in his magnificent catastrophe, has forgotten, or
boldly and most happily violated, the precept of Zoro-
aster, above noticed, which held it impious to consume
any portion of a human body by fire, especially by that
which glowed upon their altars." Having long lost, I
fear, most of my Eastern learning, I can only cite, in de-
fence of my catastrophe, an old Oriental tradition, which
relates that Nimro ., when Abraham refused, ;it his com-
mand, to worship he fire, ordi'ml him to be thrown into
the midst of the flames, f A precedent so ancient for
this sort of use of the worshipped element, would appear,
for all purposes at least of poetry, fully sufficient.
t " TIM hint .-mil in Hclini-i hanc fabulam, quod Abraham in
ignem missus sit, quia igncin utloraru noluit." Sr. HIKKO.N. in
Qua; at. in (Jcnenm.
In addition to these agreeable testimonies, I have also
heard, and need hardly add, with some pride and pleasure,
that parts of this work have been rendered into Persian,
and have found their way to Ispahan. To this fact, as
I am willing to think it, allusion is made in some lively
verses, written many years since, by my friend Mr.
Luttrell : -
" I'm told, dear Moore, your lays are sung,
(Can it be true, you lucky man ?)
By moonlight, in the Persian tongue,
Along the streets of Ispahan."
That some knowledge of the work may have really
reached that region appears not improbable from a pas-
sage in the Travels of Mr. Frazer, who says, that " being
delayed for some time at a town on the shores of the
Caspian, he was lucky enough to be able to amuse him-
self with a copy of Lalla Eookh, which a Persian had
Of the description of Balbec, in "Paradise and the
Peri," Mr. Carne, in his Letters from the East, thus
speaks : " The description in Lalla Eookh of the plain
and its ruins is exquisitely faithful. The minaret is on
the declivity near at hand, and there wanted only the
muezzin's cry to break the silence."
I shall now tax my reader's patience with but one
more of these generous vouchers. Whatever of vanity
there may be in citing such tributes, they show, at least,
of what great value, even in poetry, is that prosaic qual-
ity, industry ; since, as the reader of the foregoing pages
is now fully apprised, it was in a slow and laborious col-
lection of small facts, that the first foundations of this
fanciful Romance were laid.
The friendly testimony I have just referred to, ap-
peared, some years since, in the form in which I now give
it, and, if I recollect right, in the Athenceum :
" I embrace this opportunity of bearing my individual testimony
(if it be of any value) to the extraordinary accuracy of Mr. Moore,
in his topographical, antiquarian, and characteristic details, whether
of costume, manners, or less changing monuments, both in his
Lai I a Rookli and in the Epicurean. It has been my fortune to read
his Atlantic, Bernmdean, and American Odes and Epistles, in the
countries and among the people to which and to whom they re-
lated; I enjoyed also the exquisite delight of reading his Lalla
Rookh, in Persia itself; and I have perused the Epicurean, while
all my recollections of Egypt and its still existing wonders are as
fresh as when I quitted the hanks of the Nile for Arabia: I owe
it, therefore, as a debt of gratitude (though the payment is most inad-
equate), for the great pleasure I have derived from his productions,
to bear my humble testimony to their local fidelity. " J. S. B."
Among the incidents connected with this work, I
must not omit to notice the splendid Divertissement,
founded upon it, which was acted at the Chateau Royal
of Berlin, during the visit of the Grand Duke Nicholas
to that capital, in the year 1822. The different stories
composing the work were represented in Tableaux Vivans
and songs ; and among the crowd of royal and noble per-
sonages engaged in the performances, 1 shall mention
those only who represented the principal characters, and
whom I find thus enumerated in the published account
of the Divertissement.*
" Fadladin, Grand-Nasir . . Cotnte Unnck \~Mari-chal de Coitr).
Aliris, Roi de Rncharie . . .S. A. 1. le. Crnnd-Dnr.
Lalla Houkh ..... S. A. I. Id
( S. A. It. le Prince (iuillttnme.
Aarnngzeb, le Grand Moral
I frt'rc du Hoi.
Abdallah, PtVe d' Aliris . . 8. A. li. If Due <!< Cumlterlaml.
( S. A. li. la Princexse Louise
La Heine, son opouse . . < ,. , , ...
Lalla Ronkh. Divertissement mele" de Chants et de Pauses,
Berlin, 1822. The work contain* a serif* of colored engraving*, rep-
resenting groups, processions. etc.. in different Oriental costumes.
Besides these and. other leading personages, there were
also brought into action, under the various denomina-
tions of Seigneurs et Dames de Bucharie, Dames de
Cachemire, Seigneurs et Dames dansans & la Fete des
Roses, etc., nearly 150 persons.
Of the manner and style in Avhich the Tableaux of the
different stories are described in the work from which I
cite, the following account of the performance of Para-
dise and the Peri will afford some specimen :
"La decoration representoit les portes brillantes du
Paradis, entourees de nuages. Dans le premier tableau
on voyoit la Peri, triste et desolee, couchee sur le seuil
des portes fermees, et 1'Ange de lumiere qui lui adresse
des consolations et des conseils. Le second represente
le moment ou la Peri, dans 1'espoir que ce don lui ouvrira
1'entree du Paradis, rucueille la derniere goutte de sang
que vient de verser le jeune guerrier indien. . . .
" La Peri et 1' Ange de lumiere repondoient pleinement
a 1'image et a 1'idee cpi'on est tente de se faire de ces
deux individus, et 1'impression qu'a faite generalement
la suite des tableaux de cet episode delicat et interessant
est loin de s'effacer de notre souvenir."
In this grand Fete, it appears, originated the transla-
tion of Lalla Rookh into German * verse, by the Baron
de la Motte Fouque ; and the circumstances which led
him to undertake the task, are described by himself in a
Dedicatory Poem to the Empress of Russia, which he
has prefixed to his translation. As soon as the perform-
ance, he tells us, had ended, Lalla Rookh (the Empress
herself) exclaimed, with a sigh, "Is it, then, all over?
Are we now at the close of all that has given us so
much delight ? and lives there no poet who will impart
* Since this was written, another translation of Lalla Rookh
into German verse has been made by Theodor Oelckers (Leipzig,
to others, and to future times, some notion of the happi-
ness we have enjoyed this evening ? " On hearing this
appeal a Knight of Cashmere (who is no other than the
poetical Baron himself) comes forward and promises to
attempt to present to the world " the Poem itself in the
measure of the original : " whereupon Lalla Kookh, it
is added, approvingly smiled.
Ix the eleventh year of the reign of Aurungzebe, Ab-
dalla, King of the Lesser Bucharia, a lineal descendant
from the Great Zingis, having abdicated the throne in
favor of his son, set out on a pilgrimage to the Shrine
of the Prophet; and, passing into India through the
delightful valley of Cashmere, rested for a short time at
Delhi on his way. He was entertained by Aurungzebe
in a style of magnificent hospitality, worthy alike of the
visitor and the host, and was afterwards escorted with
the same splendor to Surat, where he embarked for
Arabia. 1 During the stay of the Royal Pilgrim at Delhi,
a marriage was agreed upon between the Prince, his son,
and the youngest daughter of the emperor, LALLA.
ROOKH ; 2 a Princess described by the Poets of her
time as more beautiful than Leila, 8 Shirine, 4 Dewilde, 6 or
any of those heroines whose names and loves embellish
the songs of Persia and Hindostan. It was intended
that the nuptuals should be celebrated at Cashmere;
where the young King, as soon as the cares of empire
would (HTinit, was to meet, for the first time, his lovely
bride, and, after a few months' repose in that enchanting
valley, conduct her over the snowy hills into Bucharia.
The day of LALLA ROOK it's departure from Delhi was
as splendid as sunshine and pageantry could make it.
The bazaars and baths were all covered with the richest
22 LALLA EOOKH.
tapestry; hundreds of gilded barges upon the Jumna
floated with their banners shining in the water ; while
through the streets groups of beautiful children went
strewing the most delicious flowers around, as in that
Persian festival called the Scattering of the Eoses ; 6 till
every part of the city was as fragrant as if a caravan of
musk from Khoten had passed through it. The Princess,
having taken leave of her kind father, who at parting
hung a cornelian of Yemen round her neck, on which
was inscribed a verse from the Koran, and having sent
a considerable present to the Fakirs, who kept up the
Perpetual Lamp in her sister's tomb, meekly ascended
the palankeen prepared for her ; and, while Aurungzebe
stood to take a last look from his balcony, the procession
moved slowly on the road to Lahore.
Seldom had the Eastern world seen a cavalcade so
superb. From the gardens in the suburbs to the Impe-
rial palace, it was one unbroken line of splendor. The
gallant appearance of the Rajahs and Mogul Lords, dis-
tinguished by those insignia of the Emperor's favor, 7 the
feathers of the egret of Cashmere in their turbans, and
the small silver-rimmed kettledrums at the bows of their
saddles ; the costly armor of their cavaliers, who vied,
on this occasion, with the guards of the great Keder
Khan, 8 in the brightness of their silver battle-axes and
the massiness of their maces of gold ; the glittering
of the gilt pine-apples 9 on the tops of the palankeens ;
the embroidered trappings of the elephants, bearing
on their backs small turrets, in the shape of little antique
temples, within which the Ladies of LALLA ROOKH lay
as it were enshrined; the rose-colored veils of the
Princess's own sumptuous litter, 10 at the front of which
a fair young female slave sat fanning her through the
curtains, with feathers of the Argus pheasant's wing; 11
and the lovely troop of Tartarian and Cashmerian
LALLA nOOKH. 23
maids of honor, whom the young King had sent to ac-
company his bride, and who rode on each side of the
litter, upon small Arabian horses: all was brilliant,
tasteful, and magnificent, and pleased even the critical
and fastidious FADLADEEX, Great Nazir or Chamberlain
of the Haram, who was borne in his palankeen imme-
diately after the Princess, and considered himself not the
least important personage of the pageant.
FADLADEEN was a judge of everything, from the
pencilling of a Circassian's eyelids to the deepest ques-
tions of science and literature ; from the mixture of a
conserve of rose-leaves to the composition of an epic
poem : and such influence had his opinion upon the vari-
ous tastes of the day, that all the cooks and poets of
Delhi stood in awe of him. His political conduct and
opinions were founded upon that line of Sadi, "Should
the Prince at noon-day say, It is night, declare that you
behold the moon and stars." And his zeal for religion,
of which Aurungzebe was a munificent protector, 13 was
about as disinterested as that of the goldsmith who fell in
love with the diamond eyes of the Idol of Jaghernaut. 18
During the first days of their journey, LALLA ROOKH,
who had passed all her life within the shadow of the
Royal Gardens of Delhi, 14 found enough in the beauty
of the scenery through which they passed to interest her
mind, and delight her imagination ; and when at evening
or in the heat of the day, they turned off from the high
road to those retired and romantic places which had been
selected for her encampments, sometimes on the banks
of a small rivulet, as clear as the waters of the Lake of
Pearl; 14 sometimes under the sacred shade of a Banyan
tree, from which the view ojw'ned upon a glade covered
with antelopes; and often in those hidden, embowered
24 LALLA KOOKH.
spots, described by one from the Isles of the West, 16 as
" places of melancholy, delight, and safety, where all the
company around were wild peacocks and turtle-doves ; "
she felt a charm in these scenes, so lovely and so new
to her, which, for a time, made her indifferent to every
other amusement. But LALLA EOOKH was young, and
the young love variety ; nor could the conversation of
her Ladies and the Great Chamberlain, FADLADEEN (the
only persons of course admitted to her pavilion), suf-
ficiently enliven those many vacant hours, which were
devoted neither to the pillow nor the palankeen. There
was a little Persian slave who sung sweetly to the Vina,
and who, now and then, lulled the Princess to sleep with
the ancient ditties of her country, about the loves of
Wamak and Ezra, 17 the fair-haired Zal and his mistress
Eodahver ; 18 not forgetting the combat of Rustam with
the terrible White Demon. 19 At other times she was
amused by those graceful dancing-girls of Delhi, who had
been permitted by the Bramins of the Great Pagoda to
attend her, much to the horror of the good Mussulman
FADLADEEN, who could see nothing graceful or agreeable
in idolaters, and to whom the very tinkling of their
golden anklets 20 was an abomination.
But these and many other diversions were repeated till
they lost all their charm, and the nights and noon-days
were beginning to move heavily, when, at length, it was
recollected that, among the attendants sent by the bride-
groom, was a young poet of Cashmere, much celebrated
throughout the valley for his manner of reciting the
Stories of the East, on whom his Royal Master had con-
ferred the privilege of being admitted to the pavilion
of the Princess, that he might help to beguile the
tediousness of the journey by some of his agreeable
recitals. At the mention of a poet, FADLADEEN ele-
LALLA ROOKU. 25
vated his critical eyebrows, and, having refreshed his
faculties with a dose of that delicious opium 21 which is
distilled from the black poppy of the Thebais, gave
orders for the minstrel to be forthwith introduced into
The Princess, who had once in her life seen a poet
from behind the screens of gauze in her Father's hall, and
had conceived from that specimen no very favorable ideas
of the Caste, expected but little in this new exhibition
to interest her ; she felt inclined, however, to alter her
opinion on the very first appearance of FERAMOKZ. He
was a youth about LALLA KOOKH'S own age, and graceful
as that idol of women, Crislma, 22 such as he appears to
their young imaginations, heroic, beautiful, breathing
music from his very eyes, and exalting the religion of
his worshippers into love. His dress was simple, yet not
without some marks of costliness ; and the ladies of the
Princess were not long in discovering that the cloth
which encircled his high Tartarian cap was of the most
delicate kind that the shawl-goats of Tibet supply. 28
Here and there, too, over his vest, which was confined by
a flowered girdle of Kashan, hung strings of tine pearl,
disposed with an air of studied negligence : nor did the
exquisite embroidery of his sandals escape the observa-
tion of these fair critics; who, however they might give
way to FADLADEEX upon the unimportant topics of re-
ligion and government, had the spirit of martyrs in
everything relating to such momentous matters as jewels
For the purpose of relieving the pauses of recitation
by music, the young Cashmerian held in his hand a kitar;
such as, in old times, the Arab maids of the West used
to listen to by moonlight in the gardens of the Alham-
26 LALLA ROOKH.
bra and having premised, with much humility, that the
story he was about to relate was founded on the adven-
tures of that Veiled Prophet of Khorassan 24 who, in the
year of the Hegira 163, created such alarm throughout
the Eastern Empire, made an obeisance to the Princess,
and thus began :
THE VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN."
IN that delightful Province of the Sun,
The first of Persian lands he shines upon,
Where all the loveliest children of his beam,
Flow'rets and fruits, blush over every stream, 28
And, fairest of all streams, the MURGA roves
Among MEKOU'S" bright palaces and groves;
There on that throne, to which the blind belief
Of millions rais'd him, sat the Prophet-Chief,
The Great MOKAXNA. O'er his features hung
The Veil, the Silver Veil, which he had flung
In mercy there, to hide from mortal sight
His dazzling brow, till man could bear its light.
For, far less luminous, his votaries said,
Were ev'n the gleams, miraculously shed
O'er MoussA's 28 cheek, 29 when down the Mount he
All glowing from the presence of his God !
On either side, with ready hearts and hands,
His chosen guard of bold Believers stands ;
Young fire-eyed disputants, who deem their swords,
On points of faith, more eloquent than words ;
And such their zeal, there's not a youth with brand
Uplifted there, but, at the Chiefs command,
Would make his own devoted heart its sheath,
And bless the lij-s that dooiu'd so dear a death 1
In hatred to the Caliph's hue of night, 80
28 LALLA ROOKH.
Their vesture, helms and all, is snowy white ;
Their weapons various some equipp'd for speed,
"With javelins of the light Kathaian reed ; 81
Or bows of buffalo horn and shining quivers
Fill'd with the stems 3 - that bloom on IRAN'S rivers ; 88
While some, for war's more terrible attacks,
Wield the huge mace and ponderous battle-axe ;
And as they wave aloft in morning's beam
The milk-white plumage of their helms, they seem
Like a chenar-tree grove, 8 * when winter throws
O'er all its tufted heads his feathering snows.
Between the porphyry pillars, that uphold
The rich moresque-work of the roof of gold,
Aloft the Haram's curtain'd galleries rise,
Where, through the silken network, glancing eyes,
From time to time, like sudden gleams that glow
Through autumn clouds, shine o'er the pomp below. .
What impious tongue, ye blushing saints, would dare
To hint that aught but Heaven hath placed you there ?
Or that the loves of this light world could bind,
In their gross chain, your Prophet's soaring mind ?
No wrongful thought ! commissioned from above
To people Eden's bowers with shapes of love,
(Creatures so bright, that the same lips and eyes
They wear on earth will serve in Paradise,)
There to recline among Heaven's native maids,
And crown the Elect with bliss that never fades
Well hath the Prophet-Chief his bidding done ;
And every beauteous race beneath the sun,
From those who kneel at Brahma's burning founts, 35
To the fresh nymphs bounding o'er YEMEN'S mounts j
From PERSIA'S eyes of full and fawn-like ray
To the small, half-shut glances of KATHAY ; 86
And GEORGIA'S bloom, and AZAB'S darker smiles,
VEILED PROPHET OF K11ORASSAN. 29
And the gold ringlets of the Western Isles ;
All, all are there ; each Land its flower hath given,
To form that fair young Nursery for Heaven !
But why this pageant now ? this arm'd array ?
What triumph crowds the rich Divan to-day
With turban'd heads, of every hue and race,
Bowing before that veil'd and awful face,
Like tulip-beds, 87 of different shape and dyes,
Bending beneath the invisible West-wind's sighs !
What new-made mystery now, for Faith to sign,
And blood to seal, as genuine and divine,
What dazzling mimicry of God's own power
Hath the bold Prophet plann'd to grace this hour ?
Not such the pageant now, though not less proud j
Yon warrior youth, advancing from the crowd,
With silver bow, with belt of broider'd crape,
And fur-bound bonnet of Buchanan shape, 88
So fiercely beautiful in form and eye,
Like war's wild planet in a summer sky ;
That youth to-day a proselyte, worth hordes
Of cooler spirits and less practised swords
Is come to join, all bravery and belief,
The creed and standard of the heaven-sent Chief.
Though few his years, the West already knows
Young AZIM'S fame; beyond the Olympian snows,
Ere manhood darken'd o'er his downy cheek,
O'erwhelm'd in fight and captive to the Greek, 89
He linger'd there, till peace dissolv'd his chains;
Oh, who could, even in bondage, tread the plains
Of glorious GKKKCK, nor feel his spirit rise
Kindling within him ? who, with heart and eyes,
Could walk where Liberty had Ix-en, nor see
30 LALLA ROOKH.
The shining footprints of her Deity,
Nor feel those godlike breathings in the air,
Which mutely told her spirit had been there ?
Not he, that youthful warrior, no, too well
For his som's quiet work'd the awakening spell ;
And now, returning to his own dear land,
Full of those dreams of good that, vainly grand,
Haunt the young heart, proud views of human-kind,
Of men to Gods exalted and refined,
False views, like that horizon's fair deceit,
Where earth and heaven but seem, alas, to meet !
Soon as he heard an Arm Divine was rais'd
To right the nations, and beheld, emblaz'd
On the white flag MOKANNA'S host unfurl'd,
Those words of sunshine, " Freedom to the World,"
At once his faith, his sword, his soul obey'd
The inspiring summons ; every chosen blade
That fought beneath that banner's sacred text
Seem'd doubly edg'd, for this world and the next ;
And ne'er did Faith with her smooth bandage bind
Eyes more devoutly willing to be blind,
In virtue's cause ; never was soul inspir'd
With livelier trust in what it most desir'd,
Than his, the enthusiast there, who kneeling, pale
With pious awe, before that Silver Veil,
Believes the form, to which he bends his knee,
Some pure, redeeming angel, sent to free
This fetter'd world from every bond and stain,
And bring its primal glories back again !
Low as young AZIM knelt, that motley crowd
Of all earth's nations sunk the knee and bow'd,
With shouts of " ALLA ! " echoing long and loud ;
While high in air, above the Prophet's head,
Hundreds of banners, to the sunbeam spread,
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 31
Wav'd, like the wings of the white birds that fan
The flying throne of star-taught SOLIMAN.*
Then thus he spoke : " Stranger, though new the
Thy soul inhabits now, I've track'd its flame
For many an age, 41 in every chance and change
Of that existence, through whose varied range,
As through a torch-race, where, from hand to hand,
The flying youths transmit their shining brand,
From frame to frame the unextinguish'd soul
Rapidly passes, till it reach the goal !
" Nor think 'tis only the gross Spirits, warm'd
With duskier tire and for earth's medium form'd,
That run this course; Beings, the most divine,
Thus deign through dark mortality to shine.
Such was the Essence that in ADAM dwelt,
To which all Heaven, except the Proud One, knelt : 42
Such the refin'd Intelligence that glow'd
In MOUSSA'S*' frame, and, thence descending, flow'd
Through many a Prophet's breast ; 44 in ISSA 46 shone,
And in MOHAMMED burn'd; till, hastening on,
(As a bright river that, from fall to fall
In many a maze descending, bright through all,
Finds some fair region where, each labyrinth past,
In one full lake of light it rests at last !)
That Holy Spirit, settling calm and free
From lapse or shadow, centres all in me ! "
Again, throughout the assembly, at these words.
Thousands of voices rung : the warriors' swords
Were ]>ointed up to heaven ; a sudden wind
In the open banners play'd, and from behind
Those Persian hangings, that but ill could screen
The Haram's loveliness, white hands were seen
32 LALLA ROOKS.
Waving embroider'd scarves, whose motion gave
A perfume forth ; like those the Houris wave
When beck'ning to their bowers the immortal Brave.
" But these," pursued the Chief, " are truths sublime,
That claim a holier mood and calmer time
Than earth allows us now ; this sword must first
The darkling prison-house of Mankind burst
Ere Peace can visit them, or Truth let in
Her wakening daylight on a world of sin.
But then, celestial warriors, then, when all
Earth's shrines and thrones before our banner fall ;
When the glad Slave shall at these feet lay down
His broken chain, the tyrant Lord his crown,
The Priest kis book, the Conqueror his wreath,
And from the lips of Truth one mighty breath
Shall, like a whirlwind, scatter in its breeze
That whole dark pile of human mockeries ;
Then shall the reign of mind commence on earth,
And starting fresh, as from a second birth,
Man, in the sunshine of the world's new spring,
Shall walk. transparent, like some holy thing!
Then, too, your Prophet from his angel brow
Shall cast the Veil that hides its splendors now,
And gladden'd Earth shall, through her wide expanse.
Bask in the glories of this coiintenance !
For thee, young warrior, welcome ! thou hast yet
Some tasks to learn, some frailties to forget,
Ere the white war-plume o'er thy brow can wave ;
But, once my own, mine all till in the grave ! "
The pomp is at an end the crowds are gone
Each ear and heart still haunted by the tone
Of that deep voice, which thrill'd like ALLA'S own !
The Young all dazzled by the plumes and lances,
VEILED PROPHET OF KHOHASSAN. 33
The glittering throne, and Harara's half-caught glances ;
The Old deep pondering on the promis'd reign
Of peace and truth ; and all the female train
Keady to risk their eyes, could they but gaze
A moment on that brow's miraculous blaze !
But there was one, among the chosen maids,
Who blush'd behind the gallery's silken shades,
One, to whose soul the pageant of to-day
Has been like death : you saw her pale dismay,
Ye wondering sisterhood, and heard the burst
Of exclamation from her lips, when first
She saw that youth, too well, too dearly known,
Silently kneeling at the Prophet's throne.
Ah ZELICA ! there was a time, when bliss
Shone o'er thy heart from every look of his ;
When but to see him, hear him, breathe the air
In which he dwelt, was thy soul's fondest prayer;
When round him hung such a perpetual spell,
Whate'er he did none ever did so well.
Too happy days ! when, if he touch' d a flower
Or gem of thine, 'twas sacred from that hour ;
When thou didst study him till every tone
And gesture and dear look became thy own,
Thy voice like his, the changes of his face
In thine reflected with still lovelier grace:
Like echo, sending back sweet music, fraught
With twice the aerial sweetness it had brought !
Yet now he comes, brighter than even he
E'er IwamM before, but, ah ! not bright for thee;
No dread, unlook'd for, like a visitant
From the other world, he comes as if to haunt
Thy guilty soul with dreams of lost delight,
Long lost to all but memory's aching sight:
34 LALLA ROOKII.
Sad dreams ! as when the Spirit of our Youth
Returns in sleep, sparkling with all the truth
And innocence once ours, and leads us back,
In mournful mockery, o'er the shining track
Of our young life, and points out every ray
Of hope and peace we've lost upon the way !
Once happy pair ; in proud BOKHARA'S groves,
Who had not heard of their first youthful loves ?
Born by that ancient flood, 46 which from its spring
In the dark Mountains swiftly wandering,
Enrich'd by every pilgrim brook that shines
With relics from BUCIIARIA'S ruby mines,
And lending to the CASPIAN half its strength,
In the cold Lake of Eagles sinks at length ;
There, on the banks of that bright river born,
The flowers, that hung above its wave at morn,
Bless'd not the waters, as they murmur'd by,
With holier scent and lustre, than the sigh
And virgin-glance of first affection cast
Upon their youth's smooth current, as it pass'd !
But war disturb'd this vision, far away
From her fond eyes summon'd to join the array
Of PERSIA'S warriors on the hills of THRACE,
The youth exchang'd his sylvan dwelling-place
For the rude tent and war-field's deathful clash ;
His ZELICA'S sweet glances for the flash
Of Grecian wild-fire, and Love's gentle chains
For bleeding bondage on BYZANTIUM'S plains.
Month after month, in widowhood of soul
Drooping, the maiden saw two summers roll
Their suns away but ah ! how cold and dim
Even summer suns, when not beheld with him !
From time to time ill-oinen'd rumors came,
VEILED PROPHET OF KIIORASSAN. 35
Like spirit-tongues mutt'ring the sick man's name,
Just ere he dies : at length those sounds of dread
Fell withering on her soul, " AZIM is dead ! "
Oh Grief, beyond all other griefs, when fate
First leaves the young heart lone and desolate
In the wide world, without that only tie
For which it lov'd to live or fear'd to die ;
Lorn as the hung-up lute, that ne'er hath spoken
Since the sad day its master-chord was broken !
Fond maid, the sorrow of her soul was such,
Even reason sunk, blighted beneath its touch:
And though, ere long, her sanguine spirit rose
Above the first dead pressure of its woes,
Though health and bloom return'd, the delicate chain
Of thought, once tangled, never clear'd again.
Warm, lively, soft as in youth's happiest day,
The mind was still all there, but turn'd astray ;
A wand'ring bark, upon whose pathway shone
All stars of heaven, except the guiding one !
Again she smil'd, nay, much and brightly smil'd,
But 'twas a lustre, strange, unreal, wild;
And when she sung to her lute's touching strain,
Twas like the notes, half ecstasy, half pain,
The bulbul 47 utters, ere her soul depart,
When, vanquished by some minstrel's powerful art,
She dies upon the lute whose sweetness broke her
Such was the mood in which that mission found
Young ZKUCA, that mission, which around
The Eastern world, in every region blest
With woman's smile, sought out its loveliest,
To grace that galaxy of lips and eyes
Which the Veil'd Prophet destin'd for the skies :
And such quick welcome as a spark receives
36 LALLA EOOKH.
Dropp'd on a bed of Autumn's wither'd leaves,
Did every tale of these enthusiasts find
In the Avild maiden's sorrow-blighted mind.
All fire at once the madd'ning zeal she caught ;
Elect of Paradise ! blest, rapturous thought !
Predestin'd bride, in heaven's eternal dome,
Of some brave youth ha ! durst they say " of some ? "
No of the one, one only object trac'd
In her heart's core too deep to be effac'd ;
The one whose memory, fresh as life, is twin'd
With every broken link of her lost mind ;
Whose image lives, though Keason's self be wreck'd,
Safe 'mid the ruins of her intellect !
Alas, poor ZELICA ! it needed all
The fantasy which held thy mind in thrall,
To see in that gay Haram's glowing maids
A sainted colony for Eden's shades ;
Or dream that he, of whose unholy flame
Thou wert too soon the victim, shining came
From Paradise, to people its pure sphere
With souls like thine, which he hath ruin'd here !
No had not Reason's light totally set,
And left thee dark, thou hadst an amulet
In the lov'd image, graven on thy heart,
Which would have sav'd thee from the tempter's
And kept alive, in all its bloom of breath,
That purity, whose fading is love's death !
But lost, inflamed, a restless zeal took place
Of the mild virgin's still and feminine grace ;
First of the Prophet's favorites, proudly first
In zeal and charms, too well the Impostor nurs'd
Her soul's delirium, in whose active flame,
Thus lighting up a young, luxuriant frame,
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 37
He saw more potent sorceries to bind
To his dark yoke the spirits of mankind,
More subtle chains than hell itself e'er twin'd.
No art was spar'd, no witchery ; all the skill
His demons taught him was employ'd to fill
Her mind with gloom and ecstasy by turns
That gloom, through which Frenzy but fiercer burns ;
That ecstasy, which from the depth of sadness
Glares like the maniac's moon, whose light is madness.
'Twas from a brilliant banquet, where the sound
Of poesy and music breath'd around,
Together picturing to her mind and ear
The glories of that heaven, her destin'd sphere,
Where all was pure, where every stain that lay
Upon the spirit's light should pass away,
And, realizing more than youthful love
E'er wish'd or dream'd, she should forever rove
Through fields of fragrance by her AZIM'S side,
His own bless'd, purified, eternal bride !
'Twas from a scene, a witching trance like this,
He hurried her away, yet breathing bliss,
To the dim charnel-house ; through all its steams
Of damp and death, led only by those gleams
Which foul Corruption lights, as with design
To show the gay and proud, she too can shine !
And, passing on through upright ranks of Dead,
Which to the maiden, doubly craz'd by dread,
Seem'd, through the bluish death-light round them
To move their lips in mutterings as she pass'd
There, in that awful place, when each had quaffd
And pledg'd in silence such a fearful draught,
Such oil! the look and taste of that red tx>wl
Will haunt her till she dies he bound her soul
38 LALLA ROOKIL
By a dark oath, in hell's own language fram'd,
Never, while earth his mystic presence claim' d,
While the blue arch of day hung o'er them both,
Never, by that all-imprecating oath,
In joy or sorrow from his side to sever.
She swore, and the wide charnel echoed, "Never,
From that dread hour, entirely, wildly given
To him and she belie v'd, lost maid! to Heaven,
Her brain, her heart, her passions all inflam'd,
How proud she stood, when in full Haram nam'd
The Priestess of the Faith ! how flash'd her eyes
With light, alas ! that was not of the skies,
When round, in trances, only less than hers,
She saw the Haram kneel, her prostrate worshippers !
Well might MOKANNA think that form alone
Had spells enough to make the world his own :
Light, lovely limbs, to which the spirit's play
Gave motion, airy as the dancing spray,
WTien from its stem the small bird wings away :
Lips in whose rosy labyrinth, when she smil'd,
The soul was lost ; and blushes, swift and wild
As are the momentary meteors sent
Across the uncalm, but beauteous firmament.
And then her look oh ! where's the heart so wise
Could unbewilder'd meet those matchless eyes ?
Quick, restless, strange, but exquisite withal,
Like those of angels, just before their fall;
Now shadow'd with the shames of earth now crost
By glimpses of the heaven her heart had lost ;
In ev'ry glance there broke, without control,
The flashes of a bright but troubled soul,
Where sensibility still wildly play'd,
Like lightning, round the ruins it had made 1
VEILED PEOPHET OF KIIORASSAN. 39
And such was now young ZELICA so chang'd
From her who, some years since, delighted rang'd
The almond groves that shade BOKHARA'S tide,
All life and bliss, with AZIM by her side !
So alter'd was she now, this festal day,
When, 'mid the proud Divan's dazzling array,
The vision of that Youth whom she had lov'd,
Had wept as dead, before her breath'd and mov'd ;
When bright, she thought, as if from Eden's track
But half-way trodden, he had wander'd back
Again to earth, glistening with Eden's light
Her beauteous AZIM shone before her sight.
Reason ! who shall say what spells renew,
When least we look for it, thy broken clew !
Through what small vistas o'er the darken'd brain
Thy intellectual day -beam bursts again ;
And how, like forts, to which beleaguerers win
Unhop'd-for entrance through some friend within,
One clear idea, waken'd in the breast
By memory's magic, lets in all the rest !
Would it were thus, unhappy girl, with thee !
But though light came, it came but partially ;
Enough to show the maze in which thy sense
Wander 1 d about, bxit not to guide it thence;
Enough to glimmer o'er the yawning wave,
But not GO point the harbor winch might save.
Hours of delight and peace, long left behind,
With that dear form came rushing oVr her mind;
But, oh ! to think how deep her soul had gone
In shame and falsehood since those moments shone;
And, then, her oath th-re madness lay again,
And, shuddering, back she sunk into her chain
Of mental darkness, as if blest to flee
From light, whose every glimpse was agony !
40 LALLA ROOKH.
Yet, one relief this glance of former years
Brought, mingled with its pain, tears, floods of
Long frozen at her heart, but now like rills
Let loose in spring-time from the snowy hills,
And gushing warm, after a sleep of frost,
Through valleys where their flow had long been lost.
Sad and subdued, for the first time her frame
Trembled with horror, when the summons came
(A summons proud and rare, which all but she,
And she till now, had heard with ecstasy)
To meet MOKANNA at his place of prayer,
A garden oratory, cool and fair,
By the stream's side, where still at close of day
The Prophet of the Veil retir'd to pray ;
Sometimes alone but, oftener far, with one,
One chosen nymph to share his orison.
Of late none found such favor in his sight
As the young Priestess ; and though, since that night
When the death-caverns echoed every tone
Of the dire oath that made her all his own,
The Impostor, sure of his infatuate prize,
Had, more than once, thrown off his soul's disguise,
And utter'd such unheavenly, monstrous things,
As even across the desp'rate wanderings
Of a weak intellect, whose lamp was out,
Threw startling shadows of dismay and doubt ;
Yet zeal, ambition, her tremendous vow,
The thought, still haunting her, of that bright brow,
Whose blaze, as yet from mortal eye conceal'd,
Would soon, proud triumph ! be to her reveal'd,
To her alone ; and then the hope, most dear,
Most wild of all, that her transgression here
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 41
Was tut a passage through earth's grosser fire,
Froiu which the spirit would at last aspire,
Even purer than before, as perfumes rise
Through flame and smoke, most welcome to the skies -
And that when AZIM'S fond, divine embrace
Should circle her in heaven, no dark'ning trace
Would on that bosom he once lov'd remain,
But all be bright, be pure, be his again !
These were the wildering dreams, whose curst deceit
Had chain'd her soul beneath the tempter's feet,
And made her think even damning falsehood sweet.
But now that Shape, which had appall'd her view,
Th?t Semblance oh, how terrible, if true !
Which came across her frenzy's full career
With shock of consciousness, cold, deep, severe,
As when, in northern seas, at midnight dark,
An isle of ice encounters some swift bark,
And, startling all its wretches from their sleep,
By one cold impulse hurls them to the deep ;
So came that shock not frenzy's self could bear,
And waking up each long-lull'd image there,
But check'd her headlong soul, to sink it in despair I
Wan and dejected, through the evening dusk,
She now went slowly to that small kiosk,
Where, pondering alone his impious schemes,
MOKAXNA waited her too rapt in dreams
Of the fair-rip'ning future's rich success,
To heed the sorrow, pale and spiritless,
That sat upon his victim's downcast brow,
Or mark how slow her step, how alterM now
From the quick, ardent Priestess, whose light
Came like a spirit's o'er the unerhoing ground,
From that wild ZKI.ICA, whose every glance
Was thrilling tire, whose every thought a trance I
42 LALLA EOOKH.
Upon his couch the Veil'd MOKANNA lay,
While lamps around not such as lend their ray,
Glimmering and cold, to those who nightly pray
In holy KooM, 48 or MECCA'S dim arcades,
But brilliant, soit, such lights as lovely maids
Look loveliest in, shed their luxurious glow
Upon his mystic Veil's white glittering flow.
Beside him, 'stead of beads and books of prayer,
Which the world fondly thought he mus'd on there,
Stood vases, fill'd with KISHMEE'S 49 golden wine,
And the red weepings of the SHIRAZ vine ;
Of which his curtain'd lips full many a draught
Took zealously, as if each drop they quaff'd,
Like ZEMZEM'S Spring of Holiness, 50 had power
To freshen the soul's virtues into flower !
And still he drank and ponder'd nor could see
The approaching maid, so deep his reverie ;
At length, with fiendish laugh, like that which broke
"From EBLIS at the Fall of Man, he spoke :
" Yes, ye vile race, for hell's amusement given,
Too mean for earth, yet claiming kin with heaven ;
God's images, forsooth ! such Gods as he
Whom INDIA serves, the monkey deity ; 51
Ye creatures of a breath, proud things of clay,
To whom if LUCIFER, as grandams say,
Refus'd, though at the forfeit of heaven's light,
To bend in worship, LUCIFER was right ! 52
Soon shall I plant this foot upon the neck
Of your foul race, and without fear or check,
Luxuriating in hate, avenge my shame,
My deep-felt, long-nurst loathing of man's name ;
Soon at the head of myriads, blind and fierce
As hooded falcons, through the universe
I'll sweep my dark'ning, desolating way,
Weak man my instrument, curst man my prey f
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASBAN. 43
" Ye wise, ye learn'd, who grope your dull way on
By the dim twinkling gleams of ages gone,
Like superstitious thieves, who think the light
From dead men's marrow guides them best at night 68
Ye shall have honors wealth, yes, Sages, yes
I know, grave fools, your wisdom's nothingness ;
Undazzled it can track yon starry sphere,
But a gilt stick, a bauble blinds it here.
How I shall laugh, when trumpeted along,
In lying speech, and still more lying song,
By these learn'd slaves, the meanest of the throng ;
Their wits bought up, their wisdom shrunk so small,
A sceptre's puny point can wield it all !
" Ye too, believers of incredible creeds,
Whose faith enshrines the monsters which it breeds ;
Who, bolder even than NEMROD, think to rise,
By nonsense heap'd on nonsense, to the skies ;
Ye shall have miracles, ay, sound ones too,
Seen, heard, attested, ev'ry thing but true.
Your preaching zealots, too inspir'd to seek
One grace of meaning for the things they speak
Your martyrs, ready to shed out their blood
For truths too heavenly to be understood ;
And your State Priests, sole vendors of the lore
That works salvation; as, on AVA'S shore,
Where none but priests are privileg'd to trade
In that best marble of which (Jods are made; 84
They shall have mysteries ay, precious stuff
For knaves to thrive by mysteries enough ;
Dark, tangled doctrines, dark as fraud can weave,
Which simple votaries shall on trust receive,
While craftier feign belief, till they believe.
A Heaven too ye must have, ye lords of dust,
A splendid Paradise, pure souls, ye must :
14 LALLA ROOKff.
That Prophet ill sustains his holy call,
Who finds not heavens to suit the tastes of all 5
Houris for boys, omniscience for sages,
And wings and glories for all ranks and ages.
Vain things ! as lust or vanity inspires,
The Heaven of each is but what each desires,
And, soul or sense, whate'er the object be,
Man would be man to all eternity !
So let him EBLIS ! grant this crowning curse,
But keep him what he is, no Hell were worse."
" Oh my lost soul ! " exclaim'd the shuddering maid,
Whose ears had drunk like poison all he said :
MOK ANN A started not abash'd, afraid,
He knew no more of fear than one who dwells
Beneath the tropics knows of icicles !
But, in those dismal words that reach'd his ear,
" Oh my lost soul ! " there was a sound so drear,
So like that voice, among the sinful dead,
In which the legend o'er Hell's Gate is read,
That, new as 'twas from her, whom nought could dim
Or sink till now, it startled even him.
" Ha, my fair Priestess ! " thus, with ready wile,
The impostor turn'd to greet her " thou, whose sniila
Hath inspiration in its rosy beam
Beyond the Enthusiast's hope or Prophet's dream !
Light of the faith ! who twin'st religion's zeal
So close with love's, men know not which they feel,
Nor which to sigh for, in their trance of heart,
The heaven thou preachest or the heaven thou art !
What should I be without thee ? without thee
How dull were power, how joyless victory !
Though borne by angels, if that smile of thine
Bless'd not my banner, 'twere but half divine.
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 45
But why so mournful, child ? those eyes, that shone
All life last night what ! is their glory gone ?
Come, come this morn's fatigue hath made them pale,
They want rekindling suns themselves would fail,
Did not their comets bring, as I to thee,
From light's own fount supplies of brilliancy.
Thou see'st this cup no juice of earth is here,
But the pure waters of that upper sphere,
Whose rills o'er ruby beds ami topaz flow,
Catching the gem's bright color as they go.
Nightly my Genii come and fill these urns
Nay, drink in every drop life's essence burns ;
'Twill make that soul all fire, those eyes all light
Come, come, I want thy loveliest smiles to-night :
There is a youth why start ? thou saw'st him then ;
Look'd he not nobly ? such the godlike men
Thou'lt have to woo thee in the bowers above ;
Though he, I fear, hath thoughts too stern for love,
Too rul'd by that cold enemy of bliss
The world calls virtue we must conquer this ;
Nay, shrink not, pretty sage ! 'tis not for thee
To scan the mazes of Heaven's mystery :
The steel must pass through fire, ere it can yield
Fit instruments for mighty hands to wield
This very night I mean to try the art
Of powerful beauty on that warrior's heart.
All that my Haram boasts of bloom and wit,
Of skill and charms, most rai and exquisite,
Shall tempt the boy; young MIKZALA'S blue eyes,
Whose sleepy lid like snow on violets lies ;
AROUYA'S cheeks, warm as a spring-day sun,
And lips that, like the seal of SOLOMON',
Have magic in their pressure ; ZKHA'M lute.
And LILLA'S dancing feet, that gleam and shoot
Rapid and white as sea-birds o'er the deep
46 LALLA ROOKH.
All shall combine their witching powers to steep
My convert's spirit in that soft'ning trance,
From which to heaven is but the next advance ;
That glowing, yielding fusion of the breast,
On which Religion stamps her image best.
But hear me, Priestess ! though each nymph of these
Hath some peculiar, practis'd power to please,
Some glance or step which, at the mirror tried,
First charms herself, then all the world beside ;
There still wants one, to make the victory sure,
One who in every look joins every lure ;
Through whom all beauty's beams concentred pass,
Dazzling and warm, as through love's burning glass ;
Whose gentle lips persuade without a word,
"Whose words, ev'n when unmeaning, are ador'd,
Like inarticulate breathings from a shrine,
Which our faith takes for granted are divine !
Such is the nymph we w r ant, all warmth and light,
To crown the rich temptations of to-night :
Such the refin'd enchantress that must be
This hero's vanquisher, and thou art she ! "
With her hands clasp'd, her lips apart and pale,
The maid had stood, gazing upon the Veil
From which these words, like south winds through a
Of Kerzrah flowers, came fill'd with pestilence ; 65
So boldly utter'd too ! as if all dread
Of frowns from her, of virtuous frowns, were fled,
And the wretch felt assur'd that, once plung'd in,
Her woman's soul would know no pause in sin !
At first, though mute she listen'd, like a dream
Seem'd all he said : nor could her mind, whose beam
As yet was weak, penetrate half his scheme.
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 47
But when, at length, he utter'a, ' Thou art she ! "
All flash'd at once, and shrieking piteously,
" Oh not for worlds ! " she cried " Great God ! to whom
I once knelt innocent, is this my doom ?
Are all my dreams, my hopes of heavenly bliss,
My purity, my pride, then come to this,
To live, the wanton of a fiend ! to be
The parider of his guilt oh infamy !
And sunk, myself, as low as hell can steep
In its hot flood, drag others down as deep !
Others ha ! yes that youth who came to-day
Not him I lov'd not him oh ! do but say,
But swear to me this moment 'tis not he,
And I will serve, dark fiend, will worship even thee ! "
" Beware, young raving thing ! in time beware,
Xor utter what I cannot, must not bear,
Even from thy lips. Go try thy lute, thy voice,
The boy must feel their magic; I rejoice
To see those fires, no matter whence they rise,
Once more illuming my fair Priestess' eyes ;
And should the youth, whom soon those eyes shall warm,
Indeed resemble thy dead lover's form,
So much the happier wilt thou find thy doom,
As one warm lover, full of life and bloom,
Excels ten thousand cold ones in the tomb.
Nay, nay, no frowning, sweet ! those eyes were made
For love, not an;,er I must be obey'd."
"Obey'd! 'tis well yes, I deserve it all
On me, on me Heaven's vengeance cannot fall
Too heavily but A/.IM, brave and true
And beautiful must fie l>e ruin'd too?
Must he too, glorious as he is, bo driven
A renegade like me from Love and Heaven?
48 LJLLA ROOKH.
Like me ? weak wretch, I wrong Mm not like me ;
No he's all truth and strength and purity !
Fill up your madcl'ning hell-cup to the brim,
Its witch'ry, fiends, will have no charm for him.
Let loose your glowing wantons from their bowers,
He loves, he loves, and can defy their powers !
"Wretch as I am, in his heart still I reign
Pure as when first we met, without a stain !
Though ruin'd lost my memory, like a charm
Left by the dead, still keeps his soul from harm.
Oh ! never let him know how deep the brow
He kiss'd at parting is dishonor'd now ;
Ne'er tell him how debas'd, how sunk is she,
Whom once he lov'd once ! still loves dotingly.
Thou laugh' st, tormentor, what ! thou'lt brand my
Do, do in vain he'll not believe my shame
He thinks me true ; that nought beneath God's sky
Could tempt or change me, and so once thought I.
But this is past though worse than death my lot,
Than hell 'tis nothing while he knows it not.
Far off to some benighted land I'll fly,
Where sunbeam ne'er shall enter till I die ;
Where none will ask the lost one whence she came,
But I may fade and fall without a name.
And thou curst man or fiend, whate'er thou art,
Who found'st this burning plague-spot in my heart,
And spread'st it oh, so quick ! through soul and
With more than demon's art, till I became
A loathsome thing, all pestilence, all flame !
If when I'm gone "
" Hold, fearless maniac, hold.
Nor tempt my rage by Heaven, not half so bold
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 49
The puny bird, that dares with teasing hum
Within the crocodile's stfetch'd jaws to come ! M
And so thou'lt fly, forsooth ? what ! give up all
Thy chaste dominion in the Haram Hall,
Where now to Love and now to ALLA given,
Half mistress and half saint, thou hang'st as even
As doth MEDINA'S tomb, 'twixt hell and heaven!
Thou'lt fly ! as easily may reptiles run,
The gaunt snake once hath fix'd his eyes upon ;
As easily, when caught, the prey may be
Pluck'd from his loving folds, as thou from me.
No, no, 'tis fix'd let good or ill betide,
Thou'rt mine till death, till death MOKANNA'S bride !
Hast thou forgot thy oath ? "
At this dread word,
The Maid, whose spirit his rude taunts had stirr'd
Through all its depth, and rous'd an anger there,
That burst and lighten'd ev'n through her despair
Shrunk back, as if a blight were in the breath
That spoke that word, and stagger'd, pale as death.
" Yes, my sworn bride, let others seek in bowers
Their bridal place the charnel vault was ours !
Instead of scents and balms, for thee and me
Rose the rich steams of sweet mortality ;
Gay, flickering death-lights shone while we were wed,
And, for our guests, a row of goodly Dead,
flmmortal spirits in their time, no doubt,)
From reeking .shrouds upon the rite look'd out!
That oath .thou heard'st more lips than thine repeat
That cup thou shudd'rest, Lady, was it sweet?
That cup we pledg'd, the churnel's choicest wine,
Hath bound thee ay, body and soul all mine ;
Hound thee by chains that, whether blest or curst
50 LALLA KUOKH.
No matter now, not hell itself shall burst !
Hence, woman, to the Haram, and look gay,
Look wild, look anything but sad; yet stay
One moment more from what this night hath pass'd,
I see thou know'st me, know'st me well at last.
Ha ! ha ! and so, fond thing, thou thought'st all true,
And that I love mankind ? I do, I do
As victims, love them ; as the sea-dog doats
Upon the small, sweet fry that round him floats ;
Or, as the Nile-bird loves the slime that gives
That rank and venomous food on which she lives ! 5T
"And, now thou see'st my soul's angelic hue,
'Tis time these features were uncurtain'd too ;
This brow, whose light oh rare celestial light !
Hath been reserv'd to bless thy favor'd sight ;
These dazzling eyes, before whose shrouded might
Thou'st seen immortal Man kneel down and quake
Would that they were heaven's lightnings for his sake !
But turn and look then wonder, if thou wilt,
That I should hate, should take revenge, by guilt,
Upon the hand, whose mischief or whose mirth
Sent me thus maim'd and monstrous upon earth ;
And on that race who, though more vile they be
Than mowing apes, are demi-gods to me !
Here judge if hell, with all its power to damn,
Can add one curse to the foul thing I am ! "
He rais'd his veil the Maid turn'd slowly round,
Look'd at him shriek'd and sunk upon the ground!
LALLA ROOKll. 51
Ox their arrival, next night, at the place of encampment,
they were surprised and delighted to find the groves all
around illuminated ; some artists of Yamtcheou 68 having
been sent on previously for the purpose. On each side
of the green alley, which led to the Royal Pavilion,
artificial sceneries of bamboo- work 69 were erected, repre-
senting arches, minarets, and towers, from which hung
thousands of silken lanterns, painted by the most deli-
cate pencils of Canton. Nothing could be more beautiful
than the leaves of the mango-trees and acacias, shining
in the light of the bamboo-scenery, which shed a lustre
round as soft as that of the nights of Peristan.
LALLA ROOKH, however, who was too much occupied
by the sad story of ZELICA and her lover, to give a
thought to anything else, except, perhaps, him who
related it, hurried on through this scene of splendor to
her pavilion, greatly to the mortification of the poor
artists of Yamtcheou, and was followed with equal
rapidity by the Great Chamberlain, cursing, as he went,
that ancient Mandarin, whose parental anxiety in light-
ing up the shores of the lake, where his beloved daughter
had wandered and been lost, was the origin of these
fantastic Chinese illuminations. 90
Without a moment's delay, young FKKAMOKZ was intro-
duced, and FADLADKKX, who could never mak* ~p his
mind as to the merits of a poet, till he knew the religious
sect to whieh he lelonged, was about to ask him whether
he was a Shia or a Sooni, when LALLA KOOKH impa-
tiently clapped her hands for silence, and the youth,
being sejited u|xm the musnnd near her, proceeded :
52 LALLA KOOKH.
PREPARE thy soul, young AZIM ! thou hast brav'd
The bands of GREECE, still mighty though enslav'd ;
Hast faced her phalanx, arm'd with all its fame,
Her Macedonian pikes and globes of flame ;
All this hast fronted, with firm heart and brow,
But a more perilous trial waits thee now,
Woman's bright eyes, a dazzling host of eyes
From every land where woman smiles or sighs ;
Of every hue, as Love may chance to raise
His black or azure banner in their blaze ;
And each sweet mode of warfare, from the flash
That lightens boldly through the shadowy lash,
To the sly, stealing splendors, almost hid,
"Like swords half-sheath'd, beneath the downcast lid : -
Such, AZIM, is the lovely, luminous host
Now led against thee ; and, let conquerors boast
Their fields of fame, he who in virtue arms
A young, warm spirit against beauty's charms,
Who feels her brightness, yet defies her thrall,
Is the best, bravest conqueror of them all.
Now, through the Haram chambers, moving lights
And busy shapes proclaim the toilet's rites ;
From room to room the ready handmaids hie,
Some skill'd to wreathe the turban tastefully,
Or hang the veil, in negligence of shade,
O'er the warm blushes of the youthful maid,
Who, if between the folds but one eye shone,
Like SEBA'S Queen could vanquish with that one: 61 -
While some bring leaves of Henna, to imbue
The fingers' ends with a bright roseate hue, 62
So bright, that in the mirror's depth they seem.
VEILED PROPIIET OF KHORASSAb, 53
Like tips of coral branches in the stream ;
And others mix the Kohol's jetty dye,
To give that long, dark languish to the eye, 68
Which makes the maids, whom kings are proud to cull
From fair Circassia's vales, so beautiful.
All is in motion ; rings and plumes and pearls
Are shining everywhere : some younger girls
Are gone by moonlight to the garden beds,
To gather fresh, cool chaplets for their heads ;
Gay creatures ! sweet, though mournful, 'tis to see
How each prefers a garland from that tree
Which brings to mind her childhood's innocent day,
And the dear fields and friendships far away.
The maid of IXDIA, blest again to hold
In her full lap the Champac's leaves of gold, 64
Thinks of the time when, by the GANGES' flood,
Her little playmates scatter'd many a bud
Upon her long black hair, with glossy gleam
Just dripping from the consecrated stream ;
While the young Arab, haunted by the smell
Of her own mountain flowers, as by a spell,
The sweet Elcaya, 6 * and that courteous tree
Which bows to all who seek its canopy, 68
Sees, call'd up round her by these magic scents,
The well, the camels, and her father's tents ;
Sighs for the home she left with little pain,
And wishes even its sorrows back again !
Meanwhile, through vast illuminated halls,
Silent and bright, where nothing Imt the falls
Ot fragrant waters, gushing with cool sound
From many a jasper fount, is heard around,
Young AZIM roams bewilder'd, nor can guess
What means this ma/e of light and loneliness.
Here, the way leads, o'er tesselated floors
54 LALLA ROOKH.
Or mats of CAIRO, through long corridors,
Where, ranged in cassolets and silver urns,
Sweet wood of aloe or of saiidaJ burns ;
And spicy rods, such as illume at night
The bowers of TIBET, 6T send forth odorous light,
Like Peris' wands, when pointing out the road
For some pure Spirit to its blest abode :
And here, at once, the glittering saloon
Bursts on his sight, boundless and bright as noon;
"Where, in the midst, reflecting back the rays
In broken rainbows, 'a fresh fountain plays
High as the enamell'd cupola, which towers
All rich with Arabesques of gold and flowers :
And the mosaic floor beneath shines through
The sprinkling of that fountain's silv'ry dew,
Like the wet, glistening shells, of every dye,
That on the margin of the Red Sea lie.
Here too he traces the kind visitings
Of woman's love in those fair, living things
Of land and wave, whose fate in bondage thrown
For their weak loveliness is like her own !
On one side gleaming with a sudden grace
Through water, brilliant as the crystal vase
In which it undulates, small fishes shine,
Like golden ingots from a fairy mine ;
While, on the other, latticed lightly in
With odoriferous woods of CoMORix, 68
Each brilliant bird that wings the air is seen;
Gay, sparkling loories, such as gleam between
The crimson blossoms of the coral tree 69
In the warm Isles of India's sunny sea :
Mecca's blue sacred pigeon, 70 and the thrush
Of Hindostan, 71 whose holy warblings gush,
At evening, from the tall pagoda's top ;
VEILED PROPHET OF KIIORASSAN. 55
Those golden birds that, in the spice-time, drop
About the gardens, drunk with that sweet food 73
Whose scent hath lur'd them o'er the summer flood ; 7 *
And those that under Araby's soft sun
Build their high nests of budding cinnamon : "*
In short, all rare and beauteous things, that fly
Through the pure element, here calmly lie
Sleeping in light, like the green birds 76 that dweli
In Eden's radiant fields of asphodel !
So on, through scenes past all imagining,
More like the luxuries of that impious King, 78
Whom Death's dark angel, with his lightning torch,
Struck down and blasted even in Pleasure's porch,
Than the pure dwelling of a Prophet sent,
Arm'd with Heaven's sword, for man's enfranchise-
Young AZIM wander'd, looking sternly round,
His simple garb and war-boots' clanking sound
But ill according with the pomp and grace
And silent lull of that voluptuous place.
"Is this, then." thought the youth, "is this the way
To free man's spirit from the dead'ning sway
Of worldly sloth, to teach him, while he lives,
To know no bliss but that which virtue gives,
And, when he dies, to leave his lofty name
A light, a landmark on the cliffs of fame ?
It was not so, Land of the generous thought
And daring deed, thy godlike sages taught;
It was imt thus, in Iwiwers of wanton ease,
Thy Freedom nurs'd her sacred energies ;
Oh! not IxMieath the enfeebling, withering glow
Of such dull luxury did those myrtles grow,
56 LALLA ROOKH.
With which she wreath'd her sword, when she would
Immortal deeds ; but in the bracing air t
Of toil, of temperance, of that high, rare,
Ethereal virtue, which alone can breathe
Life, health, and lustre into Freedom's wreath.
Who, that surveys this span of earth we press,
This speck of life in time's great wilderness,
This narrow isthmus 'twixt two boundless seas,
The past, the future, two eternities !
Would sully the bright spot, or leave it bare,
When he might build him a proud temple there,
A name, that long shall hallow all its space,
And be each purer soul's high resting-place ?
But no it cannot be, that one, whom God
Hath sent to break the wizard Falsehood's rod,
A Prophet of the Truth, whose mission draws
Its rights from Heaven, should thus profane its cause
With the world's vulgar pomp ; no, no, I see
He thinks me weak this glare of luxury
Is but to tempt, to try the eaglet gaze
Of my young soul shine on, 'twill stand the blaze ! "
So thought the j^outh ; but, ev'n while he defied
This witching scene, he felt its witchery glide
Through ev'ry sense. The perfume breathing round,
Like a pervading spirit ; the still sound
Of falling waters, lulling as the song
Of Indian bees at sunset, when they throng
Around the fragrant NILICA, and deep
In its blue blossoms hum themselves to sleep ; 77
And music, too dear music ! that can touch
Beyond all else the soul that loves it much
Now heard far off, so far as but to seem
Like the faint, exquisite music of a dream;
VEILED PROPHET OF KUOEASSAN. 57
All was too much for him, too full of bliss,
The heart could nothing feel, that felt not this ;
Soften'd he sank upon a couch, and gave
His soul up to sweet thoughts, like wave on wave
Succeeding to smooth seas, when storms are laid ;
He thought of ZELICA, his own dear maid,
And of the time when, full of blissful sighs,
They sat and look'd into each other's eyes,
Silent and happy as if God had given
Nought else worth looking at on this side heaven.
" Oh, my lov'd mistress, thou, whose spirit still
Is with me, round me, wander where I will
It is for thee, for thee alone I seek
The paths of glory ; to light up thy cheek
With warm approval in that gentle look
To read my praise, as in an angel's book,
And think all toils rewarded, when from thee
I gain a smile worth immortality !
How shall I bear the moment when restor'd
To that young heart where I alone am Lord,
Though of such bliss unworthy, since the best
Alone deserve to be the happiest;
When from those lips, unbreath'd upon for years,
I shall again kiss off the soul-felt tears,
And find those tears warm as when last they started,
Those sacred kisses pure as when we parted ?
O my own life ! why should a single day,
A moment, keep me from those arms away ? "
While thus he thinks, still nearer on the breze
Come those delicious, dream-like harmonies,
Each note of which but adds new, downy links
To the soft chain in which his spirit sinks.
He turns him tow'ru the sound, and far avvuv
58 LALLA ROORH.
Through a long vista, sparkling with the play
Of countless lamps, like the rich track which Day
Leaves on the waters, when he sinks from us,
So long the path, its light so tremulous ;
He sees a group of female forms advance,
Some chain'd together in the mazy dance
By fetters, forged in the green sunny bowers,
As they were captives to the King of Flowers ; 78
And some disporting round, unlink'd and free,
Who seem'd to mock their sisters' slavery ;
And round and round them still, in wheeling flight,
Went, like gay moths about a lamp at night ;
While others walk'd, as gracefully along
Their feet kept time, the very soul of song,
From psaltery, pipe, and lutes of heavenly thrill,
Or their own youthful voices, heavenlier still.
And now they come, now pass before his eye,
Forms such as Nature moulds, when she would vie
With Fancy's pencil, and give birth to things,
Lovely beyond its fairest picturings.
Awhile they dance before him, then divide,
Breaking, like rosy clouds at even-tide
Around the rich pavilion of the sun,
Till silently dispersing, one by one
Through many a path, that from the chamber leads
To gardens, terraces, and moonlight meads,
Their distant laughter comes upon the wind,
And but one trembling nymph remains behind,
Beck'ning them back in vain, for they are gone,
And she is left in all that light alone ;
No veil to curtain o'er her beauteous brow,
In its young bashfulness more beauteous now ;
But a light golden chain-work round her hair, 79
Such as the maids of YEZD 80 and SIIIRAS wear,
From which, on either side, gracefully hung
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORAS8AN. 59
A golden amulet, in the Arab tongue
Engraven o'er with some immortal line
From Holy Writ, or bard scarce less divine ;
While her left hand, as shrinkingly she stood,
Held a small lute of gold and sandal-wood,
Which, once or twice, she touch'd with hurried strain,
Then took her trembling fingers off again.
But when at length a timid glance she stole
At AZIM, the sweet gravity of soul
She saw through all his features calm'd her fear,
And, like a half-tam'd antelope, more near,
Though shrinking still, she came ; then sat her
Upon a musnud's 81 edge, and, bolder grown,
In the pathetic mode of ISFAHAN 82
Touch'd a preluding strain, and thus began :
There's a bower of roses by BKXDKMEKR'S 88 stream,
And the nightingale sings round it all the day long;
In the time of my childhood 'twas like a sweet dream,
To sit in the roses and hear the bird's song.
Tint bower and its music I never forget,
Iut oft when alone in the bloom of the year,
I think is the nightingale singing there yet ?
Are the roses still bright by the calm BKXDEMEER?
No, the roses soon wither'd that hung o'er the wave,
But some blossoms were gather'd, while freshly they
And a dew was distill'd from their flowers, that ga v e
All the fragrance of summer, wlu-n summer was gone.
60 LALLA JiOOKH.
Thus memory draws from delight, ere it dies,
An essence that breathes of it many a year ;
Thus bright to my soul, as 'twas then to my eyes,
Is that bower on the banks of the calm BENDEMEEB.
" Poor maiden ! " thought the youth, " if thou wert
With thy soft lute and beauty's blandishment,
To wake unholy wishes in this heart,
Or tempt its truth, thou little know'st the art.
For though thy lip should sweetly counsel wrong,
Those vestal eyes would disavow its song.
But thou hast breath'd such purity, thy lay
Returns so fondly to youth's virtuous day,
And leads thy soul if e'er it wander'd thence
So gently back to its first innocence,
That I would sooner stop the unchain'd dove,
When swift returning to its home of love,
And round its snowy wing new fetters twine,
Than turn from virtue one pure wish of thine ! "
Scarce had this feeling pass'd, when, sparkling
The gently open'd curtains of light blue
That veil'd the breezy casement, countless eyes,
Peeping like stars through the blue evening skies,
Look'd laughing in, as if to mock the pair
That sat so still and melancholy there :
And now the curtains fly apart, and in
From the cool air, 'mid showers of jessamine
Which those without fling after them in play,
Two lightsome maidens spring. lightsome as they
Who live in the air on odors, and around
The bright saloon, scarce conscious of the ground,
Chase one another, in a varying dance
VEILED PROPUET OF EHOKASSAN. 61
Of mirth and languor, coyness and advance,
Too eloquently like love's warm pursuit :
While she, who sung so gently to the lute
Her dream of home, steals timidly away,
Shrinking as violets do in summer's ray,
But takes with her from AZIM'S heart that sigh
We sometimes give to forms that pass us by
In the world's crowd, too lovely to remain,
('features of light we never see again !
Around the white necks of the nymphs who danc'd
Hung carcanets of orient gems, that glanc'd
More brilliant than the sea-glass glittering o'er
The hills of crystal on the Caspian shore ; 84
While from their long, dark tresses, in a fall
Of curls descending, bells as musical
As those that, on the golden-shafted trees
Of EDEX, shake in the eternal breeze, 88
Rung round their steps, at every bound more sweet,
As 'twere the ecstatic language of their feet.
At length the chase was o'er, and they stood wreath'd
Within each other's arms ; while soft there breath'd
Through the cool casement, mingled with the sighs
Of moonlight flowers, music that seem'd to rise
From some still lake, so liquidly it rose ;
And, as it swell'd again at each faint close,
The ear could truck, through all that maze of chorda
And young sweet voices, these impassion'd \vords :
A Spirit there is, whose fragrant sigh
Is burning now through earth and air:
Win-re checks are blushing, the Spirit is nigh;
Where lips are meeting, the Spirit is there I
62 LALLA EOOKH.
His breath is the soul of flowers like these,
And his floating eyes oh ! they resemble 8 *
Blue water-lilies, 87 when the breeze
Is making the stream around them tremble.
Hail to thee, hail to thee, kindling power !
Spirit of Love, Spirit of Bliss !
Thy holiest time is the moonlight hour,
And there never was moonlighv so sw r eet as this.
By the fair and brave
Who blushing unite,
Like the sun and wave,
When they meet at night ;
By the tear that shows
When passion is nigh,
As the rain-drop flows
From the heat of the sky ;
By the first love-beat
Of the youthful heart,
By the bliss to meet,
And the pain to part ;
By all that thou hast
To mortals given,
Which oh, 'could it last.
This earth were heaven !
We call thee hither, entrancing Power !
Spirit of Love ! Spirit of Bliss !
Thy holiest time is the moonlight hour,
And there never was moonlight so sweet as this.
VEILED PROPHET OF SHOKASSAN. 63
Impatient of a scene whose luxuries stole,
Spite of himself, too deep into his soul,
And where, midst all that the young heart loves most
Flowers, music, smiles to yield was to be lost,
The youth had started up, and turn'd away
From the light nymphs, and their luxurious lay,
To muse upon the pictures that hung round, 88
Bright images, that spoke without a sound ;
And views, like vistas into fairy ground.
But here again new spells came o'er his sense :
All that the pencil's mute omnipotence
Could call up into life, of soft and fair,
Of fond and passionate, was glowing there ;
Nor yet i,oo warm, but touch'd with that fine art
Which paints of pleasure but the purer part ;
Which knows even Beauty when half-veil'd is best,
Like her own radiant planet of the west,
Whose orb when half-retir'd looks loveliest. 89
There hung the history of the Genii-King,
Traced through each gay, voluptuous wandering
With her from SABA'S bowers, in whose bright eyes
He read that to be blest is to be wise ;*
Here fond ZuLKiKA 91 woos with open arms
The Hebrew boy, who flies from her young charms,
Yet, flying, turns to gaxe, and, half undone,
Wishes that Heaven and she could JmtJi be won ;
And here MOIIAMMKD, Inirn for low and guile
Forgets the Koran in his MAKY'S smile;
Then U'ckons some kind angel from above
With a new text to consecrate their low.* a
Witli rapid step, yet pleas'd and ling'ring
Did the youth pass these piotnrM stories by,
And hasten'd to a casement, where the light
Of the calm moon came in, and freshly bright
64 LALLA EOOKH.
The fields without were seen, sleeping as still
As if no life remain'd in breeze or rill.
Here paus'd he, while the music, now less near,
Breath'd with a holier language on his ear,
As though the distance, and that heavenly ray
Through which the sounds came floating, took away
All that had been too earthly in the lay.
Oh ! could he listen to such sounds unmov'd,
And by that light nor dream of her he lov'd ?
Dream on, unconscious boy ! while yet thou may'st ;
'Tis the last bliss thy soul shall ever taste.
Clasp yet awhile her image to thy heart,
Ere all the light, that made it dear, depart.
Think of her smiles as when thou saw'st them last,
Clear, beautiful, by nought of earth o'ercast ;
Recall her tears, to thee at parting given,
Pure as they weep, if angels weep, in Heaven.
Think, in her own still bower she waits thee now,
With the same glow of heart and bloom of brow,
Yet shrin'd in solitude thine all, thine only,
Like the one star above thee, bright and lonely.
Oh ! that a dream so sweet, so long enjoy'd,
Should be so sadly, cruelly destroy'd !
The song is hush'd, the laughing nymphs are flown,
And he is left, musing of bliss, alone ;
Alone ? no, not alone that heavy sigh,
That sob of grief, which broke from some one nigh
Whose could it be ? alas ! is misery found
Here, even here, on this enchanted ground ?
He turns, and sees a female form, close veil'd,
Leaning, as if both heart and strength had fail'd,
Against a pillar near ; not glittering o'er
With gems and wreaths, such as the others wore,
VEILED PROPHET OF EUOIt ASSAM 65
But in that deep-blue, melancholy dress, 98
BOKHARA'S maidens wear in mindfulness
Of friends or kindred, dead or far away ;
And such as ZELICA had on that day
He left her when, with heart too full to speak,
He took away her last warm tears upon his cheek.
A strange emotion stirs within him, more
Than mere compassion ever wak'd before ;
Unconsciously he opes his arms, while she
Springs forward, as with life's last energy,
But, swooning in that one convulsive bound,
Sinks, ere she reach his arms, upon the ground ;
Her veil falls off her faint hands clasp his knees
'Tis she herself ! 'tis ZELICA he sees !
But, ah, so pale, so chang'd none but a lover
Could in that wreck of beauty's shrine discover
The once ador'd divinity even he
Stood for some moments mute, and doubtingly
Put back the ringlets from her brow, and gaz'd
Upon those lids, where once such lustre blaz'd,
Ere he could think she was indeed his own,
Own darling maid, whom he so long had known
In joy and sorrow, beautiful in both ;
Who, even when grief was heaviest when loth
He left her for the wars in that worst hour
Sat in her sorrow like the sweet night-flower, 94
When darkness brings its weeping glories out,
And spreads its sighs like frankincense alxmt.
"Look up, my ZELH-A one moment show
Those gentle eyes to me, that I may know
Thy life, thy loveliness is not all gone,
But there, at least, shines as it ever shone.
C'oine, look upon thy A/IM one dear glance,
66 LALLA ROOKH.
Like those of old, were heaven ! whatever chance
Hath brought thee here, oh, 'twas a blessed one !
There my lov'd lips they move that kiss hath
Like the first shoot of life through every vein,
And now I clasp her, mine, all mine again.
Oh the delight now, in this very hour,
When had the whole rich world been in my power,
I should have singled out thee, only thee,
From the whole world's collected treasury
To have thee here to hang thus fondly o'er
My own, best, purest ZELICA once more ! "
It was indeed the touch of those fond lips
Upon her eyes that chas'd their short eclipse ;
And, gradual as the snow, at Heaven's breath, -
Melts off and shows the azure flowers beneath,
Her lids unclos'd, and the bright eyes were seen
Gazing on his not, as they late had been,
Quick, restless, wild, but mournfully serene ;
As if to lie, even for that tranced minute,
So near his heart, had consolation in it ;
And thus to wake in his belov'd caress
Took from her soul one half its wretchedness.
But, when she heard him call her good and pure,
Oh, 'twas too much too dreadful to endure !
Shudd'ring she broke away from his embrace,
And, hiding with both hands her guilty face,
Said, in a tone whose anguish would have riven
A heart of very marble, " Pure ! oh, Heaven ! "
That tone those looks so chang'd the withering
That sin and sorrow leave where'er they light ;
The dead despondency of those sunk eyes,
VEILED PEOPIIET OF KIIORASSAN. 67
Where once, had he thus met her by surprise,
He would have seen himself, too happy boy,
Reflected in a thousand lights of joy ;
And then the place, that bright, unholy place,
Where vice lay hid beneath each winning grace
And charm of luxury, as the viper weaves
Its wily covering of sweet balsam leaves, 95
All struck upon his heart, sudden and cold
As death itself ; it needs not to be told
No, no he sees it all, plain as the brand
Of burning shame can mark whate'er the hand,
That could from Heaven and him such brightness
'Tis done to Heaven and him she's lost forever !
It was a dreadful moment ; not the tears,
The lingering, lasting misery of years
Could match that minute's anguish all the worst
Of sorrow's elements in that dark burst
Broke o'er his soul, and, with one crash of fate,
Laid the whole hopes of his life desolate.
"Oh ! curse me not," she cried, as wild he toss'd
His desperate hand tow'rd Heaven " though I am
Think not that guilt, that falsehood made me fall :
No, no 'twas grief, 'twas madness did it all !
Nay, doubt me not though all thy love hath ceas'd
I know it hath yet, yet believe, at least,
That every spark of reason's light must be
Quonoh'd in this brain, ere T could stray from thee.
They told me tliou wert dead why, A/.IM, why
Did we not, l>oth of us, that instant die
Wheri \ve were parted ? Oh ! eouldst tliou but know
With what a deep devotedness of woe
I wept thy absence o'er and o'er again
68 LALLA ROOKH.
Thinking of thee, still thee, till thought grew pain,
And memory, like a drop that, night and day,
Falls cold and ceaseless, wore my heart away.
Didst thou but know how pale I sat at home,
My eyes still turn'd the way thou wert to come,
And, all the long, long night of hope and fear,
Thy voice and step still sounding in my ear
God ! thou wouldst not wonder that, at last,
When every hope was all at once o'ercast,
When I heard frightful voices round me say,
Azim is dead! this wretched brain gave way,
And I became a wreck, at random driven,
Without one glimpse of reason or of Heaven
All wild and even this quenchless love within
Turn'd to foul fires to light me into sin !
Thou pitiest me I knew thou wouldst that sky
Hath nought beneath it half so lorn as I.
The fiend who lur'd me hither hist ! come near,
Or thou too, thou art lost, if he should hear
Told me such things oh! with such devilish art
As would have ruin'd even a holier heart
Of thee, and of that ever-radiant sphere,
Where bless'd at length, if I but serv'd him here,
1 should forever live in thy dear sight,
And drink from those pure eyes eternal light.
Think, think hoAV lost, how madden'd I must be,
To hope that guilt could lead to God or thee !
Thou weep'st for me do weep oh, that I durst
Kiss off that tear ! but, no these lips are curst,
They must not touch thee ; one divine caress,
One blessed moment of forgetfulness
I've had within those arms, and that shall lie,
Shrin'd in my soul's deep memory till I die ;
The last of joy's last relics here below,
The one sweet drop, in all this waste of woe,
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 69
My heart has treasur'd from affection's spring,
To soothe and cool its deadly withering !
But thou yes, thou must go forever go ;
This place is not for thee for thee ! oh no !
Did I but tell thee half, thy tortur'd brain
Would burn like mine, and mine grow wild again !
Enough, that Guilt reigns here that hearts, once
Now tainted, chill'd, and broken, are his food.
Enough, that we are parted that there rolls
A flood of headlong fate between our souls,
Whose darkness severs me as wide from thee
As hell from heaven, to all eternity ! "
" ZELICA, ZELICA ! " the youth cxclaim'd,
In all the tortures of a mind iunaiu'd
Almost to madness "by that sacred Heaven,
Where yet, if prayers can move, thou'lt be forgiven,
As thou art here here, in this writhing heart,
All sinful, wild, and ruin'd as thou art !
liy the remembrance of our once pure love,
Which, like a churchyard light, still burns above
The grave of our lost souls which guilt in thee
Cannot extinguish, nor despair in me!
I do conjure, implore thee to fly hence
If thou hast yet one spark of innocence,
Fly with me from this place
"With thee! oh bliss!
'Tis worth whole years of torment to hear this.
What ! take the lost one with thee ? let her rove
15y thy dear side, as in those days of love,
Wlien we were both so happy, both so pure
Too heavenly dream ! if there's on earth a cure
For the sunk heart, 'tis this day after day
To be tho blest companion of thy way;
70 LALLA ROOKH.
To hear thy angel eloquence to see
Those virtuous eyes forever turn'd on me ;
And, in their light re-chasten'd silently,
Like the stain'd web that whitens in the sun,
Grow pure by being purely shone upon !
And thou wilt pray for me I know thou wilt
At the dim vesper hour, when thoughts of guilt
Come heaviest o'er the heart, thou'lt lift thine eyes,
Full of sweet tears, unto the dark'ning skies,
And plead for me with Heaven, till I can dare
To fix my own weak, sinful glances there ;
Till the good angels, when they see me cling
Forever near thee, pale and sorrowing,
Shall for thy sake pronounce my soul forgiven,
And bid thee take thy weeping slave to Heaven !
Oh yes, I'll fly with thee "
Scarce had she said
These breathless words, when a voice deep and dread
As that of MOXKER, waking up the dead
From their first sleep so startling 'twas to both
Kung through the casement near, "Thy oath! thy
oath ! "
Oh Heaven, the ghastliness of that Maid's look !
" 'Tis he," faintly she cried, while terror shook
Her inmost core, nor durst she lift her eyes,
Though through the casement, now, nought but the
And moonlit fields were seen, calm as before
"'Tis he, and I am his all, all is o'er
Go fly this instant, or thou'rt ruin'd too
My oath, my oath, God ! 'tis all too true,
True as the worm in this cold heart it is
I am MOKANNA'S bride his, AZIM, his
The Dead stood round us, while I spoke that vow ;
VEILED PROPHET OF KFIORASSAX. 7J
Their blue lips echo'd it I hear them now !
Their eyes glar'd on me, while I pledg'd that bowl :
'Twas burning blood I feel it in my soul !
And the Veil'd Bridegroom hist ! I've seen to-night
What angels know not of so foul a sight,
So horrible oh ! never may'st thou see
What there lies hid from all but hell and me !
But I must hence off, off I am not thine,
Nor Heaven's, nor Love's, nor aught that is divine
Hold me not ha! think'st thou the fiends that sever
Hearts, cannot sunder hands ? thus, then for-
With all that strength which madness lends the
She flung away his arm ; and, with a shriek,
Whose sound, though he should linger out more years
Than wretch e'er told, can never leave his ears
Flew up through that long avenue of light,
Fleetly as some dark, ominous bird of night
Across the sun, and soon was out of sight !
LALLA ROOKH could think of nothing all day but the
misery of these two young lovers. Her gayety "was
gone, and she looked pensively even upon FADLADEEN.
She felt, too, without knowing why, a sort of uneasy
pleasure in imagining that AZIM must have been just
such a youth as FERAMORZ ; just as worthy to enjoy all
the blessings, without any of the pangs, of that illusive
passion which too often, like the sunny apples of Istka-
har, 96 is all sweetness on one side, and all bitterness on
As they passed along a sequestered river after sunset,
they saw a young Hindoo girl upon the bank, 97 whose
employment seemed to them so strange that they stopped
their palankeens to observe her. She had lighted a
small lamp, filled with oil of cocoa, and, placing it in an
earthen dish, adorned with a wreath of flowers, had
committed it with a trembling hand to the stream ; and
was now anxiously watching its progress down the
current, heedless of the gay cavalcade which had drawn
up beside her. LALLA ROOKH was all curiosity ; when
one of her attendants, who had lived upon the banks of
the Ganges (where this ceremony is so frequent, that
often, in the dusk of the evening, the river is seen glit-
tering all over with lights, like the Oton-tala, or Sea of
Stars 98 ), informed the Princess that it was the usual
way in which the friends of those who had gone on
dangerous voyages offered up vows for their safe return.
If the lamp sunk immediately, the omen was disastrous ;
but if it went shining down the stream, and continued to
burn until entirely out of sight, the return of the beloved
object was considered as certain.
LALLA ROOKU. 73
LALLA ROOKH, as they moved on, more than on -e
looked back to observe how the young Hindoo's lamp
proceeded ; and, while she saw with pleasure that it was
still unextinguished, she could not help fearing that all
the hopes of this life were no better than that feeble
light upon the river. The remainder of the journey was
passed in silence. She now, for the first time, felt that
shade of melancholy which comes over the youthful
maiden's heart, as sweet and transient as her own breath
upon a mirror; nor was it till she heard the lute of
FEK AMORZ, touched lightly at the door of her pavilion, that
she waked from the reverie in which she had been wan-
dering. Instantly her eyes were lighted up with pleasure ;
and after a few unheard remarks from FADLADEEX, upon
the indecorum of a poet seating himself in presence of a
Princess, everything was arranged as on the preceding
evening, and all listened with eagerness, while the story
was thus continued :
74 LALLA UOOKU.
WHOSE are the gilded tents that crown the way,
Where all was waste and silent yesterday ?
This City of War, which, in a few short hours,
Hath sprung up here," as if the magic powers
Of Him who, in the twinkling of a star,
Built the high pillar' d halls of CHILMINAK, IO
Had conjur'd up, far as the eye can see,
This world of tents, and domes, and sun-bright
Princely pavilions, screen'd by many a fold
Of crimson cloth, and topp'd with balls of gold :
Steeds, with their housings of rich silver spun,
Their chains and poitrels, glittering in the sun ;
And camels, tufted o'er with Yemen's shells, 101
Shaking in every breeze their light-tbn'd bells !
But yester-eve, so motionless around,
So mute was this wide plain, that not a sound
But the far torrent, or the locust bird 102
Hunting among the thickets, could be heard ;
Yet hark ! what discords now, of every kind,
Shouts, laughs, and screams are revelling in the wind ;
The neigh of cavalry; the tinkling throngs
Of laden camels and their drivers' songs ; 103
Kinging of arms, and flapping in the breeze
Of streamers from ten thousand canopies ;
War music, bursting out from time to time,
With gong and tymbalon's tremendous chime;
Or, in the pause, when harsher sounds are mute,
The mellow breathings of some horn or flute,
VEILED PROPHET OF KUORASSAN. 75
That far off, broken by the eagle note
Of the Abyssinian trumpet, 104 swell and float.
Who leads this mighty army ? ask ye " who ? "
And mark ye not those banners of dark hue,
The Night and Shadow, 106 over yonder tent ?
It is the CALIPH'S glorious armament.
Roused in his Palace by the dread alarms,
That hourly came, of the false Prophet's arms,
And of his host of infidels, who hurl'd
Defiance fierce at ISLAM 106 and the world,
Though worn with Grecian warfare, and behind
The veils of his bright Palace calm reclin'd,
Yet brook'd he not such blasphemy should stain,
Thus unreveng'd, the evening of his reign ;
But, having sworn upon the Holy Grave 10T
To conquer or to perish, once more gave
His shadowy banners proudly to the breeze,
And with an army, nurs'd in victories,
Here stands to crush the rebels that o'errun
His blest and beauteous Province of the Sun.
Ne'er did the march of MAHADI display
Such pomp be fore ; not even when on his way
To MKCOA'S Temple, when both land and sea
Were spoil'd to feed the Pilgrim's luxury ; 108
When round him, 'mid the burning sands, he saw
Fruits of the North in icy freshness thaw,
And cool'd his thirsty lip, beneath the glow
Of MECCA'S sun, with urns of Persian snow: 10 *
Nor e'er did armament more grand than that
Pour from the kingdoms of the (,'aliphat.
First, in the van, the People of the IJock, 110
On their light mountain steeds, of royal stock: 111
Then, chieftains of DAMASCUS, proud to see
76 LALLA EOOKH.
The flashing of their swords' rich marquetry ; 112
Men, from the regions near the VOLGA'S mouth,
Mix'd with the rude, black archers of the South ;
And Indian lancers, in white-turban'd ranks,
From the far SINDE, or ATTOCK'S sacred banks,
"With dusky legions from the land of Myrrh, 118
And many a mace-arm'd Moor and Mid-sea islander.
Nor less in number, though more new and rude
In warfare's school, was the vast multitude
That, fir'd by zeal, or by oppression wrong'd,
Hound the white standard of the Impostor throng'd.
Beside his thousands of Believers blind,
Burning and headlong as the Samiel wind
Many who felt, and more who fear'd to feel
The bloody Islamite's converting steel,
Flock'd to his banner ; Chiefs of the UZBEK race,
Waving their heron crests with martial grace ; m
TURKOMANS, countless as their flocks, led forth
From the aromatic pastures of the North ;
Wild warriors of the turquoise hills, 115 and those
Who dwell beyond the everlasting snows
Of HINDOO Kosii, 116 in stormy freedom bred,
Their fort the rock, their camp the torrent's bed.
But none, of all who own'd the Chief's command,
Rush'd to that battle-field with bolder hand,
Or sterner hate, than IRAN'S outlaw'd men,
Her Worshippers of Fire 11T all panting then
For vengeance on the accursed Saracen ;
Vengeance at last for their dear country spurn'd,
Her throne usurp'd, and her bright shrines o'eiturn'tn
From YEZD'S 118 eternal Mansion of the Fire,
Where aged saints in dreams of Heaven expire :
From BADKU, and those fountains of blue flame
That burn into the CASPIAN, 119 fierce they came,
VEILED PROPHET OF KF1ORASSAN. fj
Careless for what or whom the blow was sped,
So vengeance triumph'd, and their tyrants bled.
Such was the wild and miscellaneous host,
That high in air their motley banners tost
Around the Prophet-Chief all eyes still bent
Upon that glittering Veil, Avhere'er it went,
That beacon through the battle's stormy flood,
That rainbow of the field, whose showers were blood.
Twice hath the sun upon their conflict set,
And risen again, and found them grappling yet;
While streams of carnage, in his noontide blaze,
Smoke up to Heaven hot as that crimson haze
By which the prostrate Caravan is aw'd, 120
In the red Desert, when the wind's abroad.
"On, Swords of God!" the panting CALIPH calls,
" Thrones for the living Heaven for him who falls ! "
" On, brave avengers, on," MOKAXXA cries,
"And EBLIS blast the recreant slave that flies!"
Now comes the brunt, the crisis of the day
They clash they strive the CALIPH'S troops give
MOKANXA'S self plucks the black Banner down,
And now the Orient World's Imperial crown
Is just within his grasp when, hark, that shout!
Some hand hath rheck'd the flying Moslems' rout;
And now they turn, they rally at their head
A warrior, (like those angel youths who led,
In glorious panoply of heaven's own mail,
The Champions of the Faith through BKDKK'S vale, 1 " 1 )
Bold as if gifted with ten thousand lives,
Turns on the fierce pursuers' blades, and drives
At once the multitudinous torrent back
While hope and courage kindle in his track;
78 LALLA ROOKIT.
And, at each step, his bloody falchion makes
Terrible vistas through which victory breaks !
In vain MOKANNA, 'midst the general flight,
Stands, like the red moon, on some stormy night,
Among the fugitive clouds that, hurrying by,
Leave only her unshaken in the sky
In vain he yells his desperate curses out,
Deals death promiscuously to all about,
To foes that charge and coward friends that fly,
And seems of all the Great Arch-enemy.
The panic spreads " A miracle ! " throughout
The Moslem ranks, " a miracle ! " they shout,
All gazing on that youth, whose coming seems
A light, a glory, such as breaks in dreams ;
And every sword, true as o'er billows dim
The needle tracks the lodestar, following him !
Eight tow'rds MOKANNA" now he cleaves his path,
Impatient cleaves, as though the bolt of wrath
He bears from Heaven withheld its awful burst
From weaker heads, and souls but half way curst,
To break o'er Him, the mightiest and the worst !
But vain his speed though, in that hour of blood,
Had all God's seraphs round MOKANNA stood,
With swords of fire, ready like fate to fall,
MOKANNA'S soul would have defied them all ;
Yet now, the rush of fugitives, too strong
For human force, hurries even him along ;
In vain he struggles 'mid the wedg'd array
Of flying thousands he is borne away ;
And the sole joy his baffled spirit knows,
In this forc'd flight, is murdering as he goes !
As a grim tiger, whom the torrent's might
Surprises in some parch'd ravine at night,
Turns, even in drowning, on the wretched flocks,
VEILED PROPHET OF KHOBASSAN. 79
Swept with him in that snow-flood from the rocks,
And, to the last, devouring on his way,
Bloodies the stream he hath not power to stay.
"Alia ilia Alia! " the glad shout renew
"Alia Akbar!" 122 the Caliph's in MEROU.
Hang out your gilded tapestry in the streets,
And light your shrines and chant your ziraleets. 121
The Swords of God have triumph'd on his throne
Your Caliph sits, and the Veil'd Chief hath flown.
Who does not envy that young warrior now,
To whom the Lord of Islam bends his brow,
In all the graceful gratitude of power,
For his throne's safety in that perilous hour ?
Who doth not wonder, when, amidst the acclaim
Of thousands, heralding to heaven his name
'Mid all those holier harmonies of fame,
Which sound along the path of virtuous souls,
Like music round a planet as it rolls,
He turns away coldly, as if some gloom
Hung o'er his heart no triumphs can illume;
Som; sightless grief, upon whose bhisted gaze
Though (Jlory's light may play, in vain it plays ?
Yes, wretched AZIM ! thine is such a grief,
Beyond all hope, all terror, all relief;
A dark, cold calm, which nothing now can break,
Or warm or brighten, like that Syrian Lak.-, 124
Upon whose surface morn and summer shed
Their smiles in vain, for all beneath is dead !
Hearts there have been, o'er which this weight of woe
Came by long use of suffering, tame and slow ;
But thine, lost youth ! was sudden over thce
It broke at once, when all seem'd ecstasy ;
When Hope look'd up, and saw the gloomy Vast
Melt into splendor, and I'.liss dawn at hust
O LALLA ROOKH.
'Twas then, even then, o'er joys so freshly blown,
This mortal blight of misery came down ;
Even then, the full, warm gushings of thy heart
Were check'd like fount-drops, frozen as they
And there, like them, cold, sunless relics hang,
Each fix'd and chill'd into a lasting pang.
One sole desire, one passion now remains
To keep life's fever still within his veins,
Vengeance ! dire vengeance on the wretch who
O'er him and all he lov'd that ruinous blast.
For this, when rumors reach'd him in his flight
Far, far away, after that fatal night,
Rumors of armies, thronging to the attack
Of the Veil'd Chief, for this he wing'd him back,
Fleet as the vulture speeds to flags unfurl'd,
And, when all hope seem'd desperate, wildly hurl'd
Himself into the scale, and saved a world.
For this he still lives on, careless of all
The wreaths that Glory on his path lets fall ;
For this alone exists like lightning-fire,
To speed one bolt of vengeance, and expire !
, But safe as yet that Spirit of Evil lives ;
With a small band of desperate fugitives,
The last sole stubborn fragment, left unriven,
Of the proud host that late stood fronting Heaven,
He gain'd MEROU breath'd a short curse of blood
O'er his lost throne then pass'd the JIHON'S flood, 121
And gathering all, whose madness of belief
Still saw a Saviour in their down-fall'n Chief,
Rais'd the white banner within NEKSHEB'S gates, 128
And there, untam'd, the approaching conqu'ror waits.
VEILED PROPHET OF KUORASSAN. 31
Of all his H?.ram, all that busy hive,
With music ar .1 with sweets sparkling alive,
He took but oie, the partner of his flight,
One not fci love not for her beauty's light
No, ZEL'CA stood withering 'midst the gay,
Wan as he blossom that fell yesterday
From tlie Alma tree and dies, while overhead
To-day's young flower is springing in its stead. 127
Oh, not for love the deepest Damn'd must be
Touch'd with Heaven's glory, ere such fiends as he
Can feel one glimpse of Love's divinity.
But no, she is his victim ; there lie all
Her charms for him charms that can never pall,
As long as hell within his heart can stir,
Or one faint trace of Heaven is left in her.
To work an angel's ruin, to behold
As white a page as Virtue e'er unroll'd
Blacken, beneath his touch, into a scroll
Of damning sins, seal'd with a burning soul
This is his triumph ; this the joy accurst,
That ranks him among demons all but first:
This gives the victim, that before him lies
Blighted and lost, a glory in his eyes,
A light like; that with which hell-lire illumes
The ghastly, writhing wretch whom it consumes !
But other tasks now wait him tasks that need
All the deep daringness of thought and deeu
With which the Dives 128 have gii'ted him for mark,
Over yon plains, which night had else made dark,
Those lanterns, countless :us the winged lights
That spangle INDIA'S fields on showery nights, 129
Far lus their formidable gleams they shed,
The mighty tents of the beleajjuerer spread,
Glimmering along the horizon's dusky line,
82 LALLA EOOKH.
And thence in nearer circles, till they shine
Among the founts and groves, o'er which the town
In all its arm'd magnificence looks down.
Yet, fearless, from his lofty battlements
MOKANNA views that multitude of tents ;
Nay, smiles to think that, though entoiFd, beset,
Not less than myriads dare to front him yet ;
That friendless, throneless, he thus stands at bay,
Even thus a match for myriads such as they.
" Oh, for a sweep of that dark Angel's wing,
Who brush'd the thousands of the Assyrian King 18
To darkness in a moment, that I might
People Hell's chambers with yon host to-night !
But, come what may, let who will grasp the throne,
Caliph or Prophet, Man alike shall groan ;
Let who will torture him Priest, Caliph, King
Alike this loathsome world of his shall ring
With victims' shrieks, and bowlings of the slave,
Sounds that shall glad me even within my grave ! "
Thus, to himself ; but to the scanty train
Still left around him, a far different strain :
" Glorious Defenders of the sacred Crown
I bear from Heaven, whose light nor blood sha""
Nor shadow of earth eclipse ; before whose gems
The paly pomp of this world's diadems,
The crown of GERASHID, the pillar'd throne
Of PARviz, 181 and the heron crest that shone, 182
Magnificent, o'er ALI'S beauteous eyes, 133
Fade like the stars when morn is in the skies :
Warriors, rejoice the port to which we've pass'd
O'er Destiny's dark wave, beams out at last !
Victory's our own 'tis written in that Book
Upon whose leaves none but the angels look,
That ISLAM'S sceptre shall beneath the power
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 83
Of her great foe fall broken in that hour,
When the moon's mighty orb, before all eyes,
From NEKSHEB'S Holy Well portentously shall rise !
Now turn and see ! "
They turn'd, and, as he spoke,
A sudden splendor all around them broke,
And they beheld an orb, ample and bright,
Rise from the Holy Well, 134 and cast its light
Round the rich city and the plain for miles, 185
Flinging such radiance o'er the gilded tiles
Of many a dome and fair-roof'd minaret
As autumn suns shed round them when they set.
Instant from all who saw the illusive sign
A murmur broke " Miraculous ! divine ! "
The Gheber bow'd, thinking his idol star
Had wak'd and burst impatient through the bar
Of midnight, to inflame him to the war ;
While he of MOUSSA'S creed saw, in that ray,
The glorious Light which, in his freedom's day,
Had rested on the Ark, 186 and now again
Shone out to bless the breaking of his chain.
" To victory ! " is at once the cry of all
Nor stands MOKAXXA loitering at that call;
Hut instant the huge gates are flung aside,
And forth, like a diminutive mountain-tide
Into the boundless sea, they speed their course
Right on into the MOSLKM'S mighty force.
The watchmen of the camp. who, in their rounds,
Had paus'd, and even forgot the punctual sounds
Of the small drum with which they count the night, 1 "
To gaze upon that supernatural light,
Now sink beneath an unexpected arm.
And in a death-groan give their last alarm.
" On for the lamps, that light yon lofty screen, 111
84 LALLA EOOKn.
Nor blunt your blades with massacre so mean ;
There rests the CALIPH speed one lucky lance
May now achieve mankind's deliverance."
Desperate the die such as they only cast
Who venture for a world, and stake their last.
But Fate's no longer with him blade for blade
Springs up to meet them through the glimmering
And, as the clash is heard, new legions soon
Pour to the spot, like bees of KAUZEROON 139
To the shrill timbrel's summons, till, at length,
The mighty camp swarms out in all its strength,
And back to XEKSHEB'S gates, covering the plain
With random slaughter, drives the adventurous train ;
Among the last of whom the Silver Veil
Is seen glittering at times, like the white sail
Of some toss'd vessel, on a stormy night,
Catching the tempest's momentary light !
And hath not this brought the proud spirit low ?
Nor dash'd his brow, nor check'd his daring ? No.
Though half the wretches, whom at night he led
To thrones and victory, lie disgrac'd and dead,
Yet morning hears him, with unshrinking crest,
Still vaunt of thrones and victory. to the rest ;
And they believe him ! oh, the lover may
Distrust that look which steals his soul away ;
The babe may cease to think that it can play
With Heaven's rainbow ; alchymists may doubt
The shining gold their crucible gives out ;
But Faith, fanatic Faith, once wedded fast
To some dear falsehood, hugs it to the last.
And well the Impostor knew all lures and arts
That LUCIFER e'er taught to tangle hearts ;
VEILED PliOPIIET OF KllORASSAN. 85
Nor, 'mid these last bold workings of his plot
Against men's souls, is ZELICA forgot.
Ill-fated ZELICA ! had reason been
Awake, through half the horrors thou hast seen,
Thou never couldst have borne it Death had come
At once, and taken thy wrung spirit home.
But 'twas not so a torpor, a suspense
Of thought, almost of life, canie o'er the intense
And passionate struggles of that fearful night,
When her last hope of peace and heaven took flight :
And though, at times, a gleam of frenzy broke,
As through some dull volcano's veil of smoke
Ominous flashings now and then will start,
Which show the fire's still busy at its heart,
Yet was she mostly wrapp'd in solemn gloom ;
Not such as AZIM'S, brooding o'er its doom,
And calm without, as is the brow of death,
While busy worms are gnawing underneath,
But in a blank and pulseless torpor, free
From thought or pain, a seal'd-up apathy,
Which left her oft, with scarce one living thrill,
The cold, pale victim of her torturer's will.
Again, as in MKROU, lie had her deck'd
Gorgeously out, the Priestess of the sect ;
And led her glittering forth before the eyes
Of his rude train, as to a sacrifice.
Pallid as she, the young, devoted Bride
Of the fierce NILE, when, deek'd in all the pride
Of nuptial pomp, she sinks into his tide. 140
And while the wretched maid hung down her head,
And stood, ;us one just risen from the dead.
Amid that ga/iiig crowd, the fiend would tell
His credulous slaves it was some charm or spell
Poasess'd hwr now, and from that darkuu'd trance
86 LALLA ItOOKH.
Should dawn ere long their Faith's deliverance.
Or if, at times, goaded by guilty shame,
Her soul was rous'd, and words of wildness came,
Instant the bold blasphemer would translate
Her ravings into oracles of fate,
Would hail Heaven's signals in her flashing eyes,
And call her shrieks the language of the skies !
But vain at length his arts despair is seen
Gathering around; and famine comes to glean
All that the sword had left unreap'd : in vain
At morn and eve across the northern plain
He looks impatient for the promis'd spears
Of the wild Hordes and TARTAR mountaineers ;
They come not while his fierce beleaguerers pour
Engines of havoc in, unknown before, 141
And horrible as new; 142 javelins, that fly
Enwreath'd with smoky flames through the dark sky,
And red-hot globes, that, opening as they mount,
Discharge, as from a kindled Naphtha fount, 148
Showers of consuming fire o'er all below ;
Looking, as through the illumin'd night they go,
Like those wild birds 144 that by the Magians oft,
At festivals of fire, were sent aloft
Into the air, with blazing fagots tied
To their huge wings, scattering combustion wide.
All night the groans of wretches who expire
In agony, beneath these darts of fire,
Ring through the city while, descending o'er
Its shrines and domes and streets of sycamore,
Its lone bazaars, with their bright cloths of gold,
Since the last peaceful pageant left unroll'd,
Its beauteous marble baths, whose idle jets
Now gush with blood, and its tall minarets,
That late have stood up in the evening glare
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 87
Of the red sun, unhallow'd by a prayer ;
O'er each, in turn, the dreadful flame-bolts fall,
And death and conflagration throughout all
The desolate city hold high festival !
MOKANNA sees the world is his no more ;
One sting at parting, and his grasp is o'er.
"What! drooping now?" thus, with unblushing
He hails the few, who yet can hear him speak,
Of all those famish'd slaves around him lying,
And by the light of blazing temples dying ;
"What! drooping now? now, when at length we
Home o'er the very threshold of success ;
When ALLA from our ranks hath thinn'd away
Those grosser branches, that kept out his ray
Of favor from us, and we stand at length
Heirs of his light and children of his strength,
The chosen few, who shall survive the fall
Of Kings and Thrones, triumphant over all !
Have you then lost, weak murmurers as you are,
All faith in him, who was your Light, your Star?
Have you forgot the eye of glory, hid
"Beneath this Veil, the flashing of whose lid
Could, like a sun-stroke of the desert, wither
Millions of such as yonder Chief brings hither?
Long have its lightnings slept too long but now
All earth shall feel the unveiling of this brow !
To-night yes, sainted men! this very night,
I bid you all to a fair festal rite,
Where having deep refresh'd each weary limb
With viands, such as feast Heaven's cherubim,
And kindled up your souls, now sunk and dim,
With that pure wine the Dark -eyed Maids above
3 LALLA EOOKIL
Keep, seal'd with precious musk, for those they
I will myself uncurtain in your sight
The wonders of this brow's ineffable light ;
Then lead you forth, and with a wink disperse
Yon myriads, howling through the universe ! "
Eager they listen, while each accent darts
New life into their chill'd and hope-sick hearts ;
Such treacherous life as the cool draught supplies
To him upon the stake, who drinks and dies !
Wildly they point their lances to the light
Of the fast sinking sun, and shout " To-night ! "
" To-night ! " their Chief re-echoes in a voice
Of fiend-like mockery that bids hell rejoice.
Deluded victims ! never hath this earth
Seen mourning half so mournful as their mirth.
Here, to the few, whose iron frames had stood
This racking waste of famine and of blood,
Faint, dying wretches clung, from whom the shout
Of triumph like a maniac's laugh broke out :
There, others, lighted by the smould'ring fire,
Danc'd like wan ghosts about a funeral pyre,
Among the dead and dying, strew'd around ;
While some pale wretch look'd on, and from his
Plucking the fiery dart by which he bled,
In ghastly transport wav'd it o'er his head !
'Twas more than midnight now a fearful pause
Had follow'd the long shouts, the wild applause,
That lately from those Royal Gardens burst,
Where the Veil'd demon held his feast accurst,
When ZELTCA alas, poor ruin'd heart,
In every horror doom'd to bear its part !
VEILED PROPHET OF KIIORASSAN. 89
Was bidden to the banquet by a slave,
Who, while his quivering lip the summons gave,
Grew black, as though the shadows of the grave
Compass'd him round, and, ere he could repeat
His message through, fell lifeless at her feet !
Shuddering she went a soul-felt pang of fear,
A presage that her own dark doom was near,
Rous'd every feeling, and brought Reason back
Once more, to writhe her last upon the rack.
All round seem'd tranquil even the foe had ceas'd,
As if aware of that demoniac feast,
His fiery bolts ; and though the heavens look'd red,
'Twas but some distant conflagration's spread.
But hark she stops she listens dreadful tone,
'Tis her Tormentor's laugh and now, a groan,
A long death-groan comes with it : can this be
The place of mirth, the bower of revelry ?
She enters Holy ALLA, what a sight
Was there before her ! By the glimmering light
Of the pale dawn, mix'd with the flare of brands
That round lay burning, dropp'd from lifeless hands,
She saw the board, in splendid mockery spread,
Rich censers breathing garlands overhead
The urns, the cups, from which they late had quaff d,
All gold and gems, but what had been the draught ?
Oli ! who need ask, that saw those livid guests,
With their swoll'n heads sunk black'ning on their
Or looking pale to Heaven with glassy glare,
As if they sought but saw no mercy there ;
As if they felt, though poison raek'd them through,
Remorse the deadlier torment of the two!
While some, the bravest, hardiest of the train
Of their false Chief, who on the battle-plain
Would have met death with transport by his side,
90 LALLA ROOKn.
Here mute and helpless gasp'd ; but, as they died,
Look'd horrible vengeance with their eyes' last strain,
And clench'd the slack'ning hand at him in vain.
Dreadful it was to see the ghastly stare,
The stony look of horror and despair,
Which some of these expiring victims cast
Upon their souls' tormentor to the last ;
Upon that mocking Fiend, whose Veil, now rais'd,
Show'd them, as in death's agony they gazed,
Not the long prornis'd light, the brow, whose beaming
Was to come forth, all conquering, all redeeming,
But features horribler than Hell e'er trac'd
On its own brood ; no Demon of the Waste, 146
No churchyard Ghole, caught lingering in the light
Of the blest sun, e'er blasted human sight
With lineaments so foul, so fierce as those
The Impostor, now in grinning mockery, shows :
"There, ye wise Saints, behold your Light, youi
Ye would be dupes and victims, and ye are.
Is it enough ? or must I, while a thrill
Lives in your sapient bosoms, cheat you still ?
Swear that the burning death ye feel within
Is but the trance with which Heaven's joys begin ;
That this foul visage, foul as e'er disgrac'd
Even monstrous man, is after God's own taste ;
And that but see ! ere I have half-way said
My greetings through, the uncourteous souls are fled.
Farewell, sweet spirits ! not in vain ye die,
If EBLIS loves you half so well as I.
Ha, my young bride ! 'tis well take thou thy seat;
Kay, come no shuddering didst thou never meet
The dead before ? they grac'd our wedding, sweet ;
And these, my guests to-night, have brimm'd so true
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN. 91
Their parting cups, that thou shalt pledge one too.
But how is this ? all empty ? all drunk up ?
Hot lips have been before thee in the cup,
Young bride, yet stay one precious drop remains,
Enough to warm a gentle Priestess' veins :
Here, drink and should thy lover's conquering arms
Speed hither, ere thy lip lose all its charms,
Give him but half this venom in thy kiss,
And I'll forgive my haughty rival's bliss !
"For me I too must die but not like these
Vile, rankling things, to fester in the breeze ;
To have this brow in ruffian triumph shown,
With all Death's grimness added to its own,
And rot to dust beneath the taunting eyes
Of slaves, exclaiming, ' There his Godship lies ! '
No cursed race since first my soul drew breath,
They've been my dupes, and shall be e'en in death.
Thou see'st yon cistern in the shade 'tis fill'd
With burning drugs, for this last hour distill'd: 147
There will I plunge me, in that liquid flame
Fit bath to lave a dying Prophet's frame !
There perish, all ere pulse of thine shall fail
Nor leave one limb to tell mankind the tale.
So shall my votaries, wheresoeYr they rave,
Proclaim that Heaven took back the Saint it gave;
That I've but vanish'd from this earth awhile,
To come again, with bright, unshrouded smile !
So shall they build me altars in their xeal,
When- knaves shall minister, and fools shall kneel;
Where Faith may mutter o'er her mystic spell,
Written in blood and Higotry may swell
The sail he spreads for Heaven with blasts from hell!
So shall my banner, through long ages, be
The rallying sign of fraud and anarchy :
92 LALLA ROOEIL
Kings yet unborn shall rue MOKANNA'S name,
And, thougli I die, my spirit, still the same,
Shall walk abroad in all the stormy strife,
And guilt, and blood, that were its bliss in life.
But, hark ! their battering engine shakes the wall
Why, let it shake thus I can brave them all.
No trace of me shall greet them, when they come,
And I can trust thy faith, for thou'lt be dumb.
Now mark how readily a wretch like me,
In one bold plunge, commences Deity ! "
He sprung and sunk, as the last words were said
Quick clos'd the burning waters o'er his head,
And ZELICA was left within the ring
Of those wide walls the only living thing ;
The only wretched one, still curs'd with breath,
In all that frightful wilderness of death !
More like some bloodless ghost such as, they tell,
In the lone Cities of the Silent 148 dwell,
And there, unseen of all but ALLA, sit
Each by its own pale carcase, watching it.
But morn is up, and a fresh warfare stirs
Throughout the camp of the beleaguerers.
Their globes of fire (the dread artillery lent
By GREECE to conquering MAHADI) are spent ;
And now the scorpion's shaft, the quarry sent
From high ballistas, and the shielded throng
Of soldiers swinging the huge ram along,
All speak the impatient Islamite's intent
To try, at length, if tower and battlement
And-bastion'd wall be not less hard to win,
Less tough to break down than the hearts within.
First in impatience and in toil is he,
The burning AZIM oh ! could he but see
VEILED PROPHET OF KI10RASSAN. 93
The Impostor once alive within his grasp,
Not the gaunt lion's hug, nor boa's clasp,
Could match that gripe of vengeance, or keep pace
With the fell heartiness of Hate's embrace !
Loud rings the ponderous rain against the walls ;
Now shake the ramparts, now a buttress falls,
But still no breach " Once more, one mighty
Of all your beams, together thundering ! "
There the wall shakes the shouting troops exult,
"Quick, quick discharge your weightiest catapult
Right on that spot, and XKKSHKU is our own !"
'Tis done the battlements come crashing down,
And the huge wall, by that stroke riven in two,
Yawning, like some old crater, rent anew,
Shows the dim, desolate city smoking through.
But strange ! no signs of life nought living seen
Above, below what can this stillness mean ?
A minute's pause suspends all hearts and eyes
" In through the breach ! " impetuous AZIM cries;
But the cool CALIPH, fearful of some wile
In tins blank stillness, checks the troops awhile.
Just then, a figure, with slow step, advanc'd
Forth from the ruin'd walls, and, as there glanc'd
A sunbeam over it, all eyes could see
The well-known Silver Veil ! "Tis He, 'tis He,
MOKAXXA, and alone! " they shout around;
Young AZIM from his steed springs to the ground
'Mine, Holy CALIPH! mine," he cries, "the task
To crush yon daring wretch 'tis all I ask."
Eager he darts to meet the demon foe,
Who still across wide heaps of ruin slow
And falteringly comes, till they are near ;
Then, with ;i Ixjund, rushes on A/.IM'S spear,
94 LALLA ROOKH.
And, casting off the Veil in falling, shows
Oh ! 'tis his ZELICA'S life-blood that flows !
" I meant not, AZIM," soothingly she said,
As on his trembling arm she lean'd her head,
And, looking in his face, saw anguish there
Beyond all wounds the quivering flesh can bear
" I meant not thou shouldst have the pain of this :
Though death, with thee thus tasted, is a bliss
Thou wouldst not rob me of, didst thou but know
How oft I've pray'd to God I might die so !
But the Fiend's venom was too scant and slow ;
To linger on were maddening and I thought
If once that Veil nay, look not on it caught
The eyes of your fierce soldiery, I should be
Struck by a thousand death-darts instantly.
But this is sweeter oh ! believe me, yes
I would not change this sad, but dear caress,
This death within thy arms I would not give
For the most smiling life the happiest live !
All, that stood dark and drear before the eye
Of my stray'd soul, is passing swiftly by ;
A light comes o'er me from those looks of love,
Like the first dawn of mercy from above ;
And if thy lips but tell me I'm forgiven,
Angels will echo the blest words in Heaven !
But live, my AZIM ; oh ! to call thee mine
Thus once again ! my AZIM dream divine !
Live, if thou ever lov'dst me, if to meet
Thy ZELICA hereafter would be sweet,
Oh, live to pray for her to bend the knee
Morning and night before that Deity,
To whom pure lips and hearts without a stain,
As thine are, AZIM, never breath'd in vain,
And pray that He may pardon her, may take
VEILED PROPHET OF KIIORASSAN. 95
Compassion on her soul for thy dear sake,
And, nought remembering but her love to thee,
Make her all thine, all His, eternally !
Go to those happy fields where first we twin'd
Our youthful hearts together every wind
That meets thee there, fresh from the well-known
Will bring the sweetness of those innocent hours
Back to thy soul, and mayst thou feel again
For thy poor ZELICA as thou didst then.
So shall thy orisons, like dew that flies
To Heaven upon the morning's sunshine, rise
With all love's earliest ardor to the skies !
And should they but, alas, my senses fail
Oh for one minute! should thy prayers prevail
If pardon'd souls may, from that World of Bliss,
Reveal their joy to those they love in this
I'll come to thee in some sweet dream and tell .
Oh Heaven I die dear love ! farewell, farewell ! "
Time fleeted years on years had pass'd away,
And few of those who, on that mournful day,
Had stood, with pity in their eyes, to see
Tho maiden's death and the youth's agony,
Were living still when, by a rustic grave,
Beside the swift AMOO'S transparent wave,
An aged man, who had grown aged there
By that lone grave, morning and night in prayer,
For the last time knelt down and, though the shade
Of death hung darkening over him, there play'd
A gleam of rapture on his eye and check,
That brighten'd even Death like the last streak
Of intense glory on the horizon's brim,
When night o'er all the rest hangs chill and dim.
His soul had seen a Vision, while he slept ;
96 LALLA EOOKH.
She, for whose spirit he had pray'd and wept
So many years, had come to him, all drest
In angel smiles, and told him she was blest !
For this the old man breath'd his thanks, and died.
And there, upon the banks of that lov'd tide,
[Ie and his ZELICA sleep side by side.
LALLA ROOKS. 97
THE story of the Veiled Prophet of Khorassan being
ended, they were now doomed to hear FADLADEEN'S criti-
cisms upon it. A series of disappointments and accidents
had occurred to this learned Chamberlain during the
journey. In the first place, those couriers stationed, as
in the reign of Shah Jehan, between Delhi and the
Western coast of India, to secure a constant supply of
mangoes for the Koyal Table, had, by some cruel irregu-
larity, failed in their duty ; and to eat any mangoes but
those of Mazagong was, of course, impossible. 149 In the
next place, the elephant, laden with his fine antique por-
celain, 160 had, in an unusual fit of liveliness, shattered
the whole set to pieces : an irreparable loss, as many
of the vessels were so exquisitely old, as to have been
used under the Emperors Van and Chun, who reigned
many ages before the dynasty of Tang. His Koran, too,
supposed to be the identical copy between the leaves of
which Mahomet's favorite pigeon used to nestle, had
been mislaid by his Koran-bearer three whole days ; not
without much spiritual alarm to FADLADEE.V, who,
though professing to hold with other loyal and orthodox
Mussulmans, that salvation could only be found in the
Koran, was strongly suspected of believing in his heart,
that it could only be found in his own particular copy of
it. When to all these grievances is added the obstinacy
of the cooks, in putting tho, pepper of Canara into his
dishes instead of tho cinnamon of Serendib, we may
easily suppose that he came to tho task of criticism
with, at least, a suftieient degree of irritability for the
98 LALLA ROOKS.
'In order," said he, importantly swinging about his
chaplet of pearls, " to convey with clearness my opinion
of the story this young man has related, it is necessary
to take a review of all the stories that have ever
"My good FADLADEEN!" exclaimed the Princess, in-
terrupting him, " we really do not deserve that you should
give yourself so much trouble. Your opinion of the poem
we have just heard will, I have no doubt, be abundantly
edifying, without any further waste of your valuable
erudition." "If that be all," replied the critic, evi-
dently mortified at not being allowed to show how much
he knew about everything but the subject immediately
before him, "if that be all that is required the matter
is easily despatched." He then proceeded to analyze the
poem, in that strain (so well known to the unfortunate
bards of Delhi) whose censures were an infliction from
which few recovered, and whose very praises were like
the honey extracted from the bitter flowers of the aloe.
The chief personages of the story were, if he rightly
understood them, an ill-favored gentleman, with a veil
over his face; a young lady, whose reason went and
came, according as it suited the poet's convenience to be
sensible or otherwise ; and a youth in one of those
hideous Bucharian bonnets, who took the aforesaid gen-
tleman in a veil for a Divinity. " From such materials,"
said he, " what can be expected ? after rivalling each
other in long speeches and absurdities, through some
thousands of lines as indigestible as the filberts of Ber-
daa, our friend in the veil jumps into a tub of aquafortis ;
the young lady dies in a set speech, whose only recom-
mendation is that it is her last ; and the lover lives on
to a good old age for the laudable purpose of seeing her
ghost, which he at last happily accomplishes, and expires.
This, you will allow, is a fair summary of the story j
and if Nasser, the Arabian merchant, told no better, 151
LALLA ROOKH. 99
our Holy Prophet (to whom be all honor and glory !)
had no need to be jealous of his abilities for story-
With respect to the style, it was worthy of the matter ;
it had not even those politic contrivances of structure,
which make up for the commonness of the thoughts by
the peculiarity of the manner, iior that stately poetical
phraseology by which sentiments mean in themselves,
like the blacksmith's 15a apron converted into a banner,
are so easily gilt and embroidered into consequence.
Then, as to the versification, it was, to say no worse of
it, execrable : it had neither the copious flow of Ferdosi,
the sweetness of Hafez, nor the sententious march of
Sadi ; but appeared to him, in the uneasy heaviness of
its movements, to have been modelled upon the gait of a
very tired dromedary. The licenses, too, in which
it indulged, were unpardonable; for instance, this
line, and the poem abounded with such :
Like the faint, exquisite music of a dream.
" What critic that can count," said FADLADEEX, "and ha.'
his full complement of fingers to count withal, would tol-
erate for an instant sucli syllabic superfluities ? " He
here looked round, and discovered that most of his audi-
ence were asleep ; while the glimmering lamps seemed
inclined to follow their example. It became necessary,
therefore, however painful to himself, to put an end to
his valuable animadversions for the present, and he
accordingly concluded, with an air of dignified candor,
thus : " Notwithstanding the observations which I have
thought it my duty to make, it is by no means my wish
to discourage the young man : HO far from it, indeed,
that if he will but totally alter his style of writing and
100 LALLA ROOKH.
thinking, I have very little doubt that I shall be vastly
pleased with him."
Some days elapsed, after this harangue of the Great
Chamberlain, before LALLA ROOKH could venture to ask
for another story. The youth was still a welcome guest
in the pavilion to one heart, perhaps, too dangerously
welcome : but all mention of poetry was, as if by com-
mon consent, avoided. Though none of the party had
much respect for FADLADEEX, yet his censures, thus
magisterially delivered, evidently made an impression on
them all. The Poet himself, to whom criticism was quite
a new operation (being wholly unknown in that Paradise
of the Indies, Cashmere), felt the shock as it is generally
felt at first, till use has made it more tolerable to the
patient ; the Ladies began to suspect that they ought
not to be pleased, and seemed to conclude that there
must have been much good sense in what FADLADEEX
said, from its having sent them all so soundly to sleep ;
while the self-complacent Chamberlain was left to
triumph in the idea of having, for the hundred and
fiftieth time in his life, extinguished a Poet. LALLA
EOOKH alone and Love knew why persisted in being
delighted with all she had heard, and in resolving to hear
more as speedily as possible. Her manner, however, of
first returning to the subject was unlucky. It was while
they rested during the heat of noon near a fountain, on
which some hand had rudely traced those well-known
words from the Garden of Sadi, " Many, like me, have
viewed this fountain, but they are gone, and their eyes
are closed forever ! " that she took occasion, from the
melancholy beauty of this passage, to dwell upon the
charms of poetry in general. "It is true," she said, "few
poets can imitate that sublime bird, which flies always in
the air, and never touches the earth : 188 it is only once
LALLA HOOKB. 101
in many ages a Genius appears, whose words, like those
on the Written Mountain, last forever : 1M but still there
are some, as delightful, perhaps, though not so wonder-
ful, who, if not stars over our head, are at least flowers
along our path, and whose sweetness of the moment we
ought gratefully to inhale, without calling upon them for
a brightness and a durability beyond their nature. In
short," continued she, blushing, as if conscious of being
caught in an oration, " it is quite cruel that a poet can-
not wander through his regions of enchantment, without
having a critic forever, like the old Man of the Sea,
upon his back ! " 15S FADLADEEN, it was plain, took
this last luckless allusion to himself, and would treasure
it up in his mind as a whetstone for his next criticism.
A sudden silence ensued; and the Princess, glancing a
look at FERAMOKZ, saw plainly she must wait for a more
But the glories of Nature, and her wild fragrant airs,
playing freshly over the current of youthful spirits, will
soon heal even deeper wounds than the dull Fadladeens
of this world can inflict. In an evening or two after,
they came to the small Valley of Gardens, which had
been planted by order of the Emperor, for his favorite
sister Rochinara, during their progress to Cashmere,
some years before ; aud never was there a more spark-
ling assemblage of sweets, since the Gulzar-e-Irem, or
Kose-bower of Irem. Every precious flower was there
to be found that poetry, or love, or religion has ever
consecrated; from the dark hyacinth, to which Hafez
compares his mistress's hair, 156 to the Cuimiltttri, by
whose, rosy blossoms the heaven of Indra is scented. 157
As they sat in the cool fragrance of this delicious spot,
and LALLA KOOKII remarked that she could fancy it the
abode of that Flower-loving Nymph whom they worship
102 LALLA ROOKH.
in the temples of Kathay, 158 or of one of those Peris,
those beautiful creatures of the air, who live upon per-
fumes, and to whom a place like this might make some
amends for the Paradise they have lost, the young
Poet, in whose eyes she appeared, while she spoke, to be
one of the bright spiritual creatures she was describing,
said hesitatingly that he remembered a Story of a Peri,
which, if the Princess had no objection, he would ven-
ture to relate. " It is," said he, with an appealing look
to FADLADEEN, " in a lighter and humbler strain than
the other ; " then, striking a few careless but melancholy
chords on his kitar, he thus began :
PARADISE AND THE PERL
OXK morn a PERI at the gate
Of Eden stood, disconsolate ;
And as she listen'd to the Springs
Of Life within, like music flowing,
And caught the light upon her wings
Through the half-open portal glowing,
She wept to think her recreant race
Should e'er have lost that glorious place I
"How happy," exclaim'd this child of air,
"Are the holy Spirits who wander there,
'Mid flowers that never shall fade or fall ;
Though mine are the gardens of earth and sea
And the stars themselves have flowers for me.
One blossom of Heaven outblooms them all
"Though sunny the Lake of cool OASHMKHK,
With its plane-tree Isle reflected clear, 159
And sweetly the founts of that Valley fall;
Though bright are the waters of SIXC-SU-IIA v,
And the golden floods that thitherward stray, 18 *
Yet oh, 'tis only the Blest can say
How the waters of Heaven outshine them all
"f}o, wing thy Might from star to star,
From world to luminous world, as far
104 LALLA EOOKH.
As the universe spreads its flaming wall :
Take all the pleasures of all the spheres,
And multiply each through endless years,
One minute of Heaven is worth them all ! "
The glorious Angel, who was keeping
The gates of Light, beheld her weeping ;
And, as he nearer drew and listen'd
To her sad song, a tear-drop glisten'd
Within his eyelids, like the spray
From Eden's fountain, when it lies
On the blue flower, which Bramins say
Blooms nowhere but in Paradise. 161
"Nymph of a fair but erring line ! "
Gently he said " One hope is thine.
'Tis written in the Book of Fate,
The Peri yet may be forgiven
Who brings to this Eternal gate
The Gift that is most dear to Heaven!
Go, seek it, and redeem thy sin
'Tis sweet to let the Pardon'd in."
Rapidly as comets run
To the embraces of the Sun ;
Fleeter than the starry brands
Flung at night from angel hands, 168
At those dark and daring sprites
Who would climb the empyreal heights,
Down the blue vault the PERI flies,
And, lighted earthward by a glance
That just then broke from morning's eyes,
Hung hovering o'er our world's expanse.
But whither shall the Spirit go
To find this gift for Heaven ? "I knovr
PARADISE AXD THE PERL 105
The wealth," she cries, " of every urn,
In which unnumber'd rubies burn,
Beneath the pillars of CHILMIXAR ; m
I know where the Isles of Perfume are,
Many a fathom clown in the sea,
To the south of sun-bright ARABY ; m
I know, too, where the Genii hid
The jewelFd cup of their King JAMSHID, m
"With Life's elixir sparkling high
But gifts like these are not for the sky.
Where was there ever a gem that shone
Like the steps of ALLA'S wonderful Throne ?
And the Drops of Life oh ! what would they be
In the boundless Deep of Eternity ? "
While thus she mus'd, her pinions fann'd
The air of that sweet Indian land,
Whose air is balm ; whose ocean spreads
O'er coral rocks, and amber beds : 1M
Whose mountains, pregnant by the beam
Of the warm sun, with diamonds teem ;
Whose rivulets are like rich brides,
Lovely, with gold beneath their tides ;
Whose sandal groves and bowers of spice
Might be a Peri's Paradise !
But crimson now her rivers ran
With human blood the smell of death
Came reeking from those spicy bowers,
And man, the sacrifice of man,
Mingled his taint with every breath
Upwafted from the innocent flowers.
Land of the Sun, what foot invades
Thy Pagods and thy pillar' d shades ""
Thy cavern shrines, and Idol stones,
Thy Monarchs and their thousand Thrones ? 1M
106 LALLA ROOKH.
"Tis he of GAZNA 169 fierce in wrath
He comes, and -INDIA'S diadems
Lie scatter'd in his ruinous path.
His bloodhounds he adorns with gems,
Torn from the violated necks
Of many a young and lov'd Sultana ; 17
Maidens, within their pure Zenana,
Priests in the very fane he slaughters.
And chokes up with the glittering wrecks
Of golden shrines the sacred waters !
Downward the PERI turns her gaze,
And, through the war-field's bloody haze,
Beholds a youthful warrior stand,
Alone, beside his native river,
The red blade broken in his hand,
And the last arrow in his quiver.
" Live," said the Conqueror, " live to share
The trophies and the crowns I bear ! "
Silent that youthful warrior stood
Silent he pointed to the flood
All crimson with his country's blood,
Then sent his last remaining dart,
For answer, to the Invader's heart.
False flew the shaft, though pointed well ;
The Tyrant liv'd, the Hero fell ! -
Yet mark'd the PERI where he lay,
And, when the rush of war was past,
Swiftly descending on a ray
Of morning light, she caught the last
Last glorious drop his heart had shed,
Before its free-born spirit fled !
"Be this," she cried, as she wing'd her flight,
" My welcome gift at the Gates of Light.
PARADISE AND THE PEEI. 107
Though foul are the drops that oft distil
On the field of warfare, blood like this,
For Liberty shed, so holy is, 171
It would not stain the purest rill,
That sparkles among the Bowers of Bliss !
Oh, if there be, on this earthly sphere,
A boon, an offering Heaven holds dear,
'Tis the last libation Liberty draAvs
From the heart that bleeds and breaks in her
cause ! "
" Sweet," said the Angel, as she gave
The gift into his radiant hand,
" Sweet is our welcome of the Brave
Who die thus for their native Land
But see alas ! the crystal bar
Of Eden moves not holier far
Than even this drop the boon must be,
That opes the Gates of Heaven for thee ! "
Her first fond hope of Eden blighted,
Now among AFRIT'S lunar Mountains, 179
Far to the South the PKKI lighted ;
And sleek'd her plumage at the fountains
Of that Egyptian tide whose birth
Is hidden from the sons of earth
Deep in those solitary woods,
Win-re oft the Genii of the Floods
Dance round the cradle of their Nile,
Anil hail the new-born Giant's smile. 178
Thewe over EGYPT'S palmy groves,
Her grots, and sepulchres of Kings, 174
The exil'd Spirit sighing roves;
And now hangs listening to the doves
In warm KOSKTTA'S vale 175 now loves
108 LALLA ROOKfl.
To watch the moonlight on the wings
Of the white pelicans that break
The azure calm of MCERIS' Lake. 176
'Twas a fair scene a Land more bright
Never did mortal eye behold !
Who could have thought, that saw this night,
Those valleys and their fruits of gold,
Basking in Heaven's serenest light ;
Those groups of lovely date-trees bending
Languidly their leaf-crown'd heads,
Like youthful maids, when sleep descending
Warns them to their silken beds ; m
Those virgin lilies, all the night
Bathing their beauties in the lake,
That they may rise more fresh and bright,
When their beloved Sun's awake ;
Those ruin'd shrines and towers that seem
The relics of a splendid dream ;
Amid whose fairy loneliness
Nought but the lapwing's cry is heard,
Nought seen but (when the shadows, flitting
Fast from the moon, unsheath its gleam)
Some purple-Aving'd Sultana 178 sitting
Upon a column, motionless
And glittering like an Idol bird !
Who could have thought, that there, even there,
Amid those scenes so still and fair,
The Demon of the Plague hath cast
From his hot wing a deadlier blast,
More mortal far than ever came
From the red Desert's sands of flame !
So quick, that every living thing
Of human shape, touch'd by his wing,
Like plants where the Simoom hath past,
At once falls black and withering !
PARADISE AND THE PEEL 109
The sun went down on many a brow,
Which, full of bloom and freshness then,
Is rankling in the pest-house now,
And ne'er will feel that sun again.
And, oh ! to see the unburied heaps
On which the lonely moonlight sleeps
The very vultures turn away,
And sicken at so foul a prey !
Only the fierce hyaena stalks m
Throughout the city's desolate walks 18
At midnight, and his carnage plies :
Woe to the half-dead wretch, who meets
The glaring of those large blue eyes m
Amid the darkness of the streets !
" Poor race of men ! " said the pitying Spirit,
"Dearly ye pay for your primal Fall
Some flow'rets of Eden ye still inherit,
But the trail of the Serpent is over them all ! n
She wept the air grew pure and clear
Around her, as the bright drops ran ;
For there's a magic in each tear
Such kindly Spirits weep for man !
Just then beneatli some orange trees,
Whose fruit and blossoms in the breeze
Were wantoning together, free,
Like age at play with infancy
Beneath that fresh and springing bower,
Close by the Lake, she heard the moan
Of one who, at this silent hour,
Had thither stolen to die alone.
One who in life, where'er he mov'd,
Drew after him the hearts of many;
Yet now, as though he ne'er were lov'd,
Dies here unseen, unwept by any 1
110 LALLA BOOKH.
None to watch near him none to slake
The fire that in his bosom lies,
With even a sprinkle from that lake,
Which shines so cool before his eyes.
No voice, well known through many a day,
To speak the last, the parting word,
Which, when all other sounds decay,
Is still like distant music heard ;
That tender farewell on the shore
Of this rude world, when all is o'er,
Which cheers the spirit, ere its bark
Puts off into the unknown Dark.
Deserted youth ! one thought alone
Shed joy around his soul in death
That she, whom he for years had known,
And lov'd, and might have call'd his own,
Was safe from this foul midnight's breath,
Safe in her father's princely halls,
Where the cool airs from fountain falls,
Freshly perfum'd by many a brand
Of the sweet wood from INDIA'S land,
Were pure as she whose brow they fann'd.
But see who yonder comes by stealth, 182
This melancholy bower to seek,
Like a young envoy, sent by Health,
With rosy gifts upon her cheek ?
'Tis she far off, through moonlight dim,
He knew his own betrothed bride,
She, who would rather die with him,
Than live to gain the world beside !
Her arms are round her lover now,
His livid cheek to hers she presses,
And dips, to bind his burning brow,
In the cool lake her loosen'd tresses.
PARADISE AND THE PERL HI
Ah ! once, how little did he think
An hour would come, when he should shrink
With horror from that dear embrace,
Those gentle arms, that were to him
Holy as is the cradling place
Of Eden's infant cherubim !
And now he yields now turns away,
Shuddering as if the venom lay
All in those proffer'd lips alone -
Those lips that, then so fearless grown,
Xever until that instant came
Near his unask'd or without shame.
" Oh ! let me only breathe the air,
That blessed air, that's breath'd by thee,
And, whether on its wings it bear
Healing or death, 'tis sweet to me !
There drink my tears, while yet they fall
Would that my bosom's blood were balm,
And, well thou know'st, I'd shed it all,
To give thy brow one minute's calm.
Kay, turn not from me that dear face
Am I not thine thy own lov'd bride
The one, the chosen one, whose place
In life or death is by thy side ?
Think'st thou that she, whose only light,
In this dim world, from thee hath shone,
Could bear the long, the cheerless night,
That must be hers when thoxi art gone ?
That I can live, and let thee go,
Who art my life itself ? No. no
When th<> stem dies, the leaf that grew
Out of its heart must perish too !
Then turn to me. my own love, turn,
Before, like thee, I fade ;md burn ;
Cling to these yet cool lips, and share
The last pure life that lingers there ! "
She fails she sinks as dies the lamp
In charnel airs, or cavern-damp,
So quickly do his baleful sighs
Quench all the sweet light of her eyes.
One struggle and his pain is past
Her lover is no longer living !
One kiss the maiden gives, one last,
Long kiss, which she expires in giving !
" Sleep," said the PERI, as softly she stole
The farewell sigh of that vanishing soul,
As true as e'er warm'd a woman's breast
" Sleep on, in visions of odor rest,
In balmier airs than ever yet stirr'd
The enchanted pile of that lonely bird,
Who sings at the last his own death-lay, 188
And in music and perfume dies away / *
Thus saying, from her lips she spread
Unearthly breathings through the place,
And shook her sparkling wreath, and shed
Such lustre o'er each paly face,
That like two lovely saints they seem'd,
Upon the eve of doomsday taken
From their dim graves, in odor sleeping;
While that benevolent PEEI beam'd
Like their good angel, calmly keeping
Watch o'er them till their souls would waken.
But morn is blushing in the sky ;
Again the PERI soars above,
Bearing to Heaven that precious sigh
Of pure self-sacrificing love.
High throbb'd her heart, .with hope elate,
The Elysian palm she soon shall win,
PARADISE AND THE PERL H3
For the bright Spirit at the gate
Smil'd as she gave that offering in ;
And she already hears the trees
Of Eden, with their crystal bells
Ringing in that ambrosial breeze
That from the throne of ALLA swells ;
And she can see the starry bowls
That lie around that lucid lake,
Upon whose banks admitted Souls
Their first sweet draught of glory take ! 1M
But, ah ! even PERIS' hopes are vain
Again the Fates forbade, again
The immortal barrier clos'd " Not yet,"
The Angel said as, with regret,
He shut from her that glimpse of glory
"True was the maiden, and her story,
Written in light o'er ALLA'S head,
By seraph eyes shall long be read.
But, PEKI, see the crystal bar
Of Eden moves not holier far
Than even this sigh the boon must be
That opes the Gates of Heaven for thee."
Now, upon SYRIA'S land of roses 186
Softly the light of Eve reposes,
And, like ft glory, the broad sun
Hangs over sainted LKHANOX ;
Whose hc;id in wintry grandeur towers,
And whitens with eternal sleet,
While summer, in a vale of flowers,
Is sleeping rosy at his feet.
To one, who look'd from upper air
O'er all the enchanted regions there.
How beauteous must have been the glow,
The life, the sparkling from below !
Fair gardens, shining streams, with ranks
Of golden melons on their banks,
More golden where the sunlight falls ;
Gay lizards, glittering on the walls 186
Of ruin'd shrines, busy and bright
As they were all alive with light ;
And, yet more splendid, numerous flocks
Of pigeons, settling on the rocks,
With their rich restless wings, that gleam
Variously in the crimson beam
Of the warm West, as if inlaid
With brilliants from the mine, or made
Of tearless rainbows, such as span
The unclouded skies of PERISTAN.
And then the mingling sounds that come
Of shepherd's ancient reed, 187 with hum
Of the wild bees of PALESTINE, 188
Banqueting through the flow'ry vales ;
And, JORDAN, those sweet banks of thine,
And woods, so full of nightingales. 189
But nought can charm the luckless PERI ;
Her soul is sad her wings are weary
Joyless she sees the Sun look down
On that great Temple, once his own, 190
Whose lonely columns stand sublime,
Flinging their shadows from on high,
Like dials, which the wizard, Time,
Had rais'd to count his ages by !
Yet haply there may lie conceal'd
Beneath those Chambers of the Suii,
Some amulet of gems anneal'd
PARADISE AND THE PERL 115
In upper fires, some tablet seal'd
With the great name of SOLOMON-,
Which, spell'd by her illumin'd eyes,
May teach her where, beneath the moon,
In earth or ocean, lies the boon,
The charm, that can restore so soon
An erring Spirit to the skies.
Cheer'd by this hope she bends her thither;
Still laughs the radiant eye of Heaven,
Nor have the golden bowers of Even
In the rich West begun to wither ;
When, o'er the vale of BALBEC winging
Slowly, she sees a child at play,
Among the rosy wild flowers singing,
As rosy and as wild as they ;
Chasing, with eager hands and eyes,
The beautiful blue damsel flies, 191
That flutter'd round the jasmine stems,
Like winged flowers or flying gems :
And, near the boy, who tir'd with play
Now nestling 'mid the roses lay,
She saw a wearied man dismount
From his hot steed, and on the brink
Of a small imaret's rustic fount 19a
Impatient fling him down to drink.
Then swift his haggard brow he tnrn'd
To the fair child, who fearless sat,
Though never yet hath day -beam burn'd
Upon a brow more fierce than that,
Sullenly fieree a mixture dire,
Like thunder-clouds, of gloom and fire ;
In which tin 1 PKKI'S eye could read
Dark tales of many a ruthless deed ;
The ruin'd maid the shrine profan'd
116 LALLA EOOKH.
Oaths broken and the threshold stain'd
With blood of guests ! there written, all,
Black as the damning drops that fall
From the denouncing Angel's pen,
Ere Mercy weeps them out again.
Yet tranquil now that man of crime
(As if the balmy evening time
Soften'd his spirit) look'd and lay,
Watching the rosy infant's play :
Though still, whene'er his eye by chance
Fell on the boy's, its lurid glance
Met that unclouded joyous gaze,
As torches that have burnt all night
Through some impure and godless rite,
Encounter morning's glorious rays.
But, hark ! the vesper call to prayer,
As slow the orb of daylight sets,
Is rising sweetly on the air,
From SYRIA'S thousand minarets !
The boy has started from the bed
Of flowers, where he had laid his head,
And down upon the fragrant sod
Kneels, 198 with his forehead to the south,
Lisping the eternal name of God
From Purity's own cherub mouth,
And looking, while his hands and eyes
Are lifted to the glowing skies,
Like a stray babe of Paradise,
Just lighted on that floAvery plain,
And seeking for its home again.
Oh ! 'twas a sight that Heaven that child
A scene, which might have well beguil'd
PARADISE AND THE PERL 117
Even haughty EBLIS of a sigh
For glories lost and peace gone by !
And how felt he, the wretched Man
Reclining there while memory ran
O'er many a year of guilt and strife,
Flew o'er the dark flood of his life,
Nor found one sunny resting-place,
Nor brought him back one branch of grace I
" There was a time," he said, in mild,
Heart-humbled tones " thou blessed child !
When, young and haply pure as thou,
I look'd and pray'd like thee ; but now "
He hung his head each nobler aim,
And hope, and feeling, which had slept
From boyhood's hour, that instant came
Fresh o'er him, and he wept lie wept !
Blest tears of soul-felt penitence !
In whose benign, redeeming flow
Is felt the first, the only sense
Of guiltless joy that guilt can know.
" There's a drop," said the PERI, " that down from
Falls through the withering airs of June
Upon EGYPT'S land, 194 of so healing a power,
So balmy a virtue, that e'en in the hour
The droj) descends, contagion dies,
And health re-animates earth and skies !
Oh, is it not thus, thou man of sin,
The precious tears of repentance fall ?
Though foul thy fiery plagues within,
One. heavenly drop hath dispell'd them all 1"
And now behold him kneeling there
By the child's side, in humble prayer,
118 LALLA ROOKH.
While the same sunbeam shines upon
The guilty and the guiltless one,
And hymns of joy proclaim through Heaven
The triumph of a Soul Forgiven !
'Twas when the golden orb had set,
While on their knees they linger'd yet,
There fell a light more lovely far
Than ever came from sun or star,
Upon the tear that, warm and meek,
Dew'd that repentant sinner's cheek.
To mortal eye this light might seem
A northern flash or meteor beam
But well the enraptur'd PERI knew
'Twas a bright smile the Angel threw
From Heaven's gate, to hail that tear
Her harbinger of glory near !
" Joy, joy forever ! my task is done
The Gates are pass'd, and Heaven is won !
Oh ! am I not happy ? I am, I am
To thee, sweet Eden ! how dark and sad
Are the diamond turrets of SnADUKiAM, 196
And the fragrant bowers of AMBERABAD !
Farewell, ye odors of Earth, that die
Passing away like a lover's sigh ;
My feast is now of the Tooba Tree, 196
Whose scent is the breath of Eternity !
Farewell, ye vanishing flowers, that shone
In my fairy wreath, so bright and brief ;
Oh ! what are the brightest that e'er have blown,
To the lote-tree, springing by ALLA'S throne, 197
Whose flowers have a soul in every leaf !
Joy, joy forever! my task is done
The Gates are pass'd, and Heaven is won ! "
LALLA ItOOKH. 119
" AXD this," said the Great Chamberlain, " is poetry ! this
flimsy manufacture of the brain, which, in comparison
with the lofty and durable monuments of genius, is as
the gold filigree-work of Zamara beside the eternal arch-
itecture of Egypt ! " After this gorgeous sentence,
which, with a few more of the same kind, FADLADEKN
kept by him for rare and important occasions, he pro-
ceeded to the anatomy of the short poem just recited.
The lax and easy kind of metre in which it was written
ought to be denounced, he said, as one of the leading
causes of the alarming growth of poetry in our times.
If some check were not given to this lawless facility, we
should soon be overrun by a race of bards as numerous
and as shallow as the hundred and twenty thousand
Streams of Basra. 198 They who succeeded in this style
deserved chastisement for their very success ; as war-
riors have been punished, even after gaining a victory,
because they had taken the liberty of gaining it in an
irregular or unestablished manner. What, then, was to
be said to those who failed ? to those who presumed, as
in the present lamentable instance, to imitate the license
and ease of the bolder sons of song, without any of that
grace or vigor which gave a dignity even to negligence;
who, like them, flung the jereed 199 carelessly, but not,
like them, to the mark ; " and who," said he, raising
his voice, to excite a proper degree of wakefulness in his
hearers, "contrive to appear heavy and constrained in
the midst of all the latitude they allow themselves, like
one of those young pagans that dance Iw-fore the 1'rin-
cess, who is ingenious enough to move as it' her limbs
wore fettered, in a pair of the lightest and loosest
drawers of Mosul ipnt am !"
120 LALLA KOOKH.
It was but little suitable, he continued, to the grave
march of criticism to follow this fantastical Peri, of
whom they had just heard, through all her flights and
adventures between earth and heaven ; but he could not
help adverting to the puerile conceitedness of the Three
Gifts which she is supposed to carry to the skies, a
drop of blood, forsooth, a sigh, and a tear ! How the
first of these articles was delivered into the Angel's
"radiant hand" he professed himself at a loss to dis-
cover ; and as to the safe carriage of the sigh and the
tear, such Peris and such poets were beings by far too
incomprehensible for him even to guess how they man-
aged such matters. " But, in short," said he, " it is a
waste of time and patience to dwell longer upon a thing
so incurably frivolous, puny even among its own puny
race, and such as only the Banyan Hospital 20 for Sick
Insects should undertake."
In vain did LALLA ROOKH try to soften this inexor-
able critic ; in vain did she resort to her most eloquent
common-places, reminding him that poets were a timid
and sensitive race, whose sweetness was not to be drawn
forth, like that of the fragrant grass near the Ganges, by
crushing and trampling upon them; 201 that severity
often extinguished every chance of the perfection which
it demanded ; and that, after all, perfection was like the
Mountain of the Talisman, no one had ever yet
reached its summit. 202 Neither these gentle axioms, nor
the still gentler looks with which they were inculcated,
could lower for one instant the elevation of FADLADEEN'S
eyebrows, or charm him into anything like encourage-
ment, or even toleration of her poet. Toleration, indeed,
was not among the weaknesses of FADLADEEN : he
carried the same spirit into matters of poetry and of
religion, and, though little versed in the beauties or sub-
LALLA ROOKH. 121
limities of either, was a perfect master of the art of
persecution in both. His zeal was the same, too, in
either pursuit; whether the game before him was
pagans or poetasters, worshippers of cows, or writers
They had now arrived at the splendid city of Lahore,
whose mausoleums and shrines, magnificent and number-
less, where Death appeared to share equal honors with
Heaven, would have powerfully affected the heart and
imagination of LALLA ROOKH, if feelings more of this
earth had not taken entire possession of her already.
She was here met by messengers, despatched from Cash-
mere, who informed her that the King had arrived in the
Valley, and was himself superintending the sumptuous
preparations that were then making in the Saloons of the
Shalimar for her reception. The chill she felt on re-
ceiving this intelligence, which to a bride whose heart
was free and light would have brought only images of
affection and pleasure, convinced her that her peace
was gone forever, and that she was in love, irretrievably
in love, with young FEHAMOKZ. The veil had fallen off
in which this passion at first disguises itself, and to know
that she loved was now as painful as to love irithout
knowing it had been delicious. FKRAMORZ, too, what
misery would be his, if the sweet hours of intercourse so
imprudently allowed them should have stolen into his
heart the same fatal fascination as into hers; if, not-
withstanding her rank, and the modest homage he
always paid to it, even he should have yielded to the
Influence of those long and happy intet views, where
music, poetry, the delightful scenes of nature, all had
tended to bring their hearts close together, anil to waken
by every means that too ready passion, which often, like
the young of the desert-bird, is warmed into life by tho
122 LALLA ROOKH.
eyes alone ! 208 She saw but one way to preserve herself
from being culpable as well as unhappy, and this, how-
ever painful, she was resolved to adopt. FERAMORZ
must no more be admitted to her presence. To have
strayed so far into the dangerous labyrinth was wrong,
but to linger in it, while the clew was yet in her hand,
would be criminal. Though the heart she had to offer
to the King of Bucharia might be cold and broken, it
should at least be pure ; and she must only endeavor to
forget the short dream of happiness she had enjoyed,
like that Arabian shepherd, who, in wandering into the
wilderness, caught a glimpse of the Gardens of Irem,
and then lost them again forever ! 204
The arrival of the young Bride at Lahore was cele-
brated in the most enthusiastic manner. The Rajas and
Omras in her train, who had kept at a certain distance
during the journey, and never encamped nearer to the
Princess than was strictly necessary for her safeguard,
here rode in splendid cavalcade through the city, and
distributed the most costly presents to the crowd. En-
gines were erected in all the squares, which cast forth
showers of confectionery among the people ; while the
artisans, in chariots 205 adorned with tinsel and flying
streamers, exhibited the badges of their respective trades
through the streets. Such brilliant displays of life and
pageantry among the palaces, and domes, and gilded
minarets of Lahore, made the city altogether like a
place of enchantment; particularly on the day when
LALLA ROOKH set out again upon her journey, when she
was accompanied to the gate by all the fairest and richest
of the nobility, and rode along between ranks of beauti-
ful boys and girls, who kept waving over their heads
plates of gold and silver flowers, 206 and then threw them
around to be gathered by the populace.
LALLA KOOKH, 123
For many days after their departure from Lahore, a
considerable degree of gloom hung over the whole party.
LALLA ROOKII, who had intended to make illness her
excuse for not admitting the young minstrel, as usual, to
the pavilion, soon found that to feign indisposition was
unnecessary; FADLADEEN felt the loss of the good
road they had hitherto travelled, and was very near curs-
ing Jehan-Guire (of blessed memory !) for not having
continued his delectable alley of trees, 207 at least as far
as the mountains of Cashmere ; while the Ladies, who
had nothing now to do all day but to be fanned by peacocks'
feathers and listen to FADLADEEN, seemed heartily weary
of the life they led, and, in spite of all the Great Cham-
berlain's criticisms, were so tasteless as to wish for the
poet again. One evening, as they were proceeding to
their place of rest for the night, the Princess, who, for
the freer enjoyment of the air, had mounted her favorite
Arabian palfrey, in passing by a small grove, heard the
notes of a lute from within its leaves, and a voice, which
she but too well knew, singing the following words :
TELL me not of joys above,
If that world can give no bliss,
Truer, happier than the Love
Which enslaves our souls in this.
Tell me not of Houris' eyes ;
Far from me their dangerous glow,
If those looks that light the skies
Wound like some that burn below.
Who, that fools what Love is here,
All its falsehood all its pain
Would, for even Elysium's sphere,
Risk tho fatal dream attain '.'
124 LALLA ROOEH.
Who, that midst a desert's heat
Sees the waters fade away,
Would not rather die than meet
Streams again as false as they ?
The tone of melancholy defiance in which these words
were uttered, went to LALLA ROOKH'S heart ; and, as
she reluctantly rode on, she could not help feeling it to
be a sad but still sweet certainty, that FERAMORZ was to
the full as enamoured and miserable as herself.
The place where they encamped that evening was the
first delightful spot they had come to since they left
Lahore. On each side of them was a grove full of small
Hindoo temples, and planted with the most graceful
trees of the East ; where the tamarind, the cassia, and
the silken plantains of Ceylon were mingled in rich con-
trast with the high fan-like foliage of the Palmyra,
that favorite tree of the luxurious bird that lights up
the chambers of its nest with fire-flies. 208 In the middle
of the lawn w r here the pavilion stood there was a tank
surrounded by small mango-trees, on the clear cold
waters of which floated multitudes of the beautiful red
lotus ; 209 while at a distance stood the ruins of a strange
and awful-looking tower, which seemed old enough to
have been the temple of some religion no longer known,
and which spoke the voice of desolation in the midst of
all that bloom and loveliness. This singular ruin excited
the wonder and conjectures of all. LALLA EOOKH
guessed in vain, and the all-pretending FADLADEEN, who
had never till this journey been beyond the precincts of
Delhi, was proceeding most learnedly to show that he
knew nothing whatever about the matter, when one of
the Ladies suggested that perhaps FERAMORZ could
LALLA KOOKH. 125
satisfy their curiosity. They were now approaching his
native mountains, and this tower might perhaps be a
relic of some of those dark superstitions which had pre-
vailed in that country before the light of Islam dawned
upon it. The Chamberlain, who usually preferred his
own ignorance to the best knowledge that any one else
could give him, was by no means pleased with this
officious reference ; and the Princess, too, was about to
interpose a faint word of objection, but, before either of
them could speak, a slave was despatched for FERAMOHZ,
who, in a very few minutes, made his appearance before
them looking so pale and unhappy in LALLA ROOKII'S
eyes, that she repented already of her cruelty in having
so long excluded him.
That venerable tower, he told them, was the remains
of an ancient Fire-temple, built by those Ghebers or
Persians of the old religion, who, many hundred years
since, had fled hither from their Arab conquerors, 210 pre-
ferring lilM?rty and their altars in a foreign land to the
alternative of apostasy or persecution in their own. It
was impossible, he added, not to feel interested in the
many glorious but unsuccessful struggles which had been
made by these original natives of Persia to cast off the
yoke of their bigoted conquerors. Like their own Fire
in the Burning Field at Bakou, 211 when suppressed in
one place, they had but broken out with fresh flame in
another ; and, as a native of Cashmere, of that fair and
Holy Valley which had in the same manner become the
prey of strangers, 81 * and seen her ancient shrines and
native princes swept away before the inarch of her intol-
erant invaders, he felt a sympathy, he owned, with the
sufferings of the persecuted (Jhebers, which every monu-
ment like this before them but tended more powerfully
126 LALLA EOOKII.
It was the first time that FERAMORZ had ever ven-
tured upon so much prose before FADLADEEN, and it may
easily be conceived what effect such prose as this must
have produced upon that most orthodox and most pagan-
hating personage. He sat for some minutes aghast,
ejaculating only at intervals, "Bigoted conquerors!
sympathy with Fire-worshippers ! " 213 while FERAMORE,
happy to take advantage of this almost speechless horror
of the Chamberlain, proceeded to say that he knew a
melancholy story, connected with the events of one of
those struggles of the brave Fire-worshippers against
their Arab masters, which, if the evening was not too
far advanced, he should have much pleasure in being
allowed to relate to the Princess. It was impossible foi
LALLA ROOKH to refuse ; he had never before looked
half so animated ; and when he spoke of the Holy Val-
ley, his eyes had sparkled, she thought, like the talis-
manic characters on the scimitar of Solomon. Her
consent was therefore most readily granted ; and while
FADLADEEN sat in unspeakable dismay, expecting trea-
son and abomination in every line, the poet thus began
his story of the Fire-worshippers :
'Tis moonlight over OMAN'S SEA ; 2U
Her banks of pearl and balmy isles
Bask in the night-beam beauteously,
And her blue waters sleep in smiles.
'Tis moonlight in HARMOZIA'S 216 walls,
And through her EM IK'S porphyry halls,
Where, some hours since, was heard the swell
Of trumpet and the clash of zel, 218
Bidding the bright-eyed sun farewell ;
The peaceful sun, whom better suits
The music of the bulbul's nest,
Or the light touch of lovers' lutes,
To sing him to his golden rest.
All hush'd there's not a breeze in motion;
The shore is silent as the ocean.
If zephyrs come, so light they come,
Nor leaf is stirr'd nor wave is driven;
The wind-tower on the KM i it's dome 217
Can hardly win a breath from heaven.
Even he, that tyrant Arab, sleeps
Culm, while a nation round him weeps;
\Vhiie curses load the air lie breathes,
And falchions from unnuinber'd sheaths
Are starting to avenge the shame
His rare h;>th brought on IRAN'S IH name.
Hard, heartless Chief, unmov'd alike
'Mill eyes that weep, and swords that strike ;-
128 LALLA HOOKH.
One of that saintly, murderous brood,
To carnage and the Koran given,
Who think through unbeliever's blood
Lies their directest path to heaven ;
One, who will pause and kneel unshod
In the warm blood his hand hath pour'd,
To mutter o'er some text of God
Engraven on his reeking sword ; 219
Nay, who can coolly note the line,
The letter of those words divine,
To which his blade, with searching art,
Had sunk into its victim's heart !
Just ALLA ! what must be thy look,
When such a wretch before thee stands
Unblushing, with thy Sacred Book,
Turning the leaves with blood-stain'd hands,
And wresting from its page sublime
His creed of lust, and hate, and crime ;
Even as those bees of TREBIZOND,
Which, from the sunniest flowers that glad
With their pure smile the gardens round,
Draw venom forth that drives men mad. 220
Never did fierce ARABIA send
A satrap forth more direly great ;
Never was IRAX doom'd to bend
Beneath a yoke of deadlier weight.
Her throne had fallen her pride was crush'd
Her sons were willing slaves, nor blush'd,
In their own land, no more their own,
To crouch beneath a stranger's throne.
Her towers, where MITHRA once had burn'd,
To Moslem shrines oh shame ! were turn'd,
Where slaves, converted by the sword,
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 129
Their mean, apostate worship pour'd,
And curs'd the faith their sires ador'd.
Yet has she hearts, 'mid all this ill,
O'er all this wreck high, buoyant still
With hope and vengeance ; hearts that yet
Like gems, in darkness, issuing rays
They've treasur'd from the sun that's set,
Beam all the light of long-lost days !
And swords she hath, nor weak nor slow
To second all such hearts can dare ;
As he shall know, well, dearly know,
Who sleeps in moonlight luxury there,
Tranquil as if his spirit lay
Becalm'd in Heaven's approving ray.
Sleep on for purer eyes than thine
Those waves are hush'd, those planets shine ;
Sleep on, and be thy rest unmov'd
By the white moonbeam's dazzling power ;
None but the loving and the lov'd
Should be awake at this sweet hour.
And see where, high above those rocks
That o'er the deep their shadows fling,
Yon turret stands ; where ebon locks,
As glossy as a heron's wing
Upon the turban of a king, 221
Hang from the lattice, long and wild
'Tis she, that EMIR'S blooming child,
All truth and tenderness and grace,
Though born of such ungentle r;u-e ;
An image of Youth's radiant Fountain
Springing in a desolate mountain ! 2M
Oh what a pure and sacred thing
la beauty, curtain'd from the sijjht
130 LALLA ROOEH.
Of the gross world, illumining
One only mansion with, her light !
Unseen by man's disturbing eye,
The flower that blooms beneath the sea,
Too deep for sunbeams, doth not lie
Hid in more chaste obscurity.
So, HINDA, have thy face and mind,
Like holy mysteries, lain enshrin'd.
And oh, what transport for a lover
To lift the veil that shades them o'er !
Like those who, all at once, discover
In the lone deep some fairy shore,
Where mortal never trod before,
And sleep and wake in scented airs
No lip had ever breath'd but theirs.
Beautiful are the maids that glide,
On summer-eves, through YEMEN'S 228 dales,
And bright the glancing looks they hide
Behind their litters' roseate veils ;
And brides, as delicate and fair
As the white jasmine flowers they wear,
Hath YEMEN in her blissful clime,
Who, lull'd in cool kiosk or bower, 224
Before their mirrors count the time, 226
And grow still lovelier every hour.
But never yet hath bride or maid
In ARABY'S gay Haram smil'd,
Whose boasted brightness would not fade
Before AL HASSAN'S blooming child.
Light as the angel shapes that bless
An infant's dream, yet not the less
Rich in all woman's loveliness ;
With eyes so pure, that from their ray
Dark Vice would turn abash'd away,
Blinded like serpents, when they gaze
Upon the emerald's virgin blaze ; 226
Yet fill'd with all youth's sweet desires,
Mingling the meek and vestal fires
Of other worlds with all the bliss,
The fond, weak tenderness of this :
A soul, too, more than half divine,
Where, through some shades of earthly feeling,
Religion's soften'd glories shine,
Like light through summer foliage stealing,
Shedding a glow of such mild hue,
So warm, and yet so shadowy too,
As makes the very darkness there
More beautiful than light elsewhere.
Such is the maid who, at this hour,
Hath risen from her restless sleep,
And sits alone in that high bower,
Watching the still and shining deep.
Ah ! 'twas not thus, with tearful eyes
And beating heart, she used to gaze
On the magnificent earth and skies,
In her own land, in happier days.
Why looks she now so anxious down
Among those rocks, whose rugged frown
Blackens the mirror of the deep?
Whom waits she all this lonely night?
Too rough the rocks, too bold the steep,
For man to scale that turret's height !
So deenfd at least her thoughtful sire,
When high, to catch the cool night-air,
After the day-beam's withering fire, 227
He built her bower of freshness there,
132 LALLA EOOKB..
And had it deck'd with costliest skill,
And fondly thought it safe as fair :
Think, reverend dreamer ! think so still,
Nor wake to learn what Love can dare ;
Love, all-defying Love, who sees
No charm in trophies won with ease ;
Whose rarest, dearest fruits of bliss
Are pluck' d on Danger's precipice !
Bolder than they who dare not dive
For pearls, but when the sea's at rest,
Love, in the tempest most alive,
Hath ever held that pearl the best
He finds beneath the stormiest water.
Yes ARABY'S unrivall'd daughter,
Though high that tower, that rock-way rude,
There's one who, but to kiss thy cheek,
Would climb the untrodden solitude
Of ARARAT'S tremendous peak, 228
And think its steeps, though dark and dread,
Heaven's pathways, if to thee they led !
Even now thou seest the flashing spray,
That lights his oar's impatient way ;
Even now thou hear'st the sudden shock
Of his swift bark against the rock,
And stretchest down thy arms of snow,
As if to lift him from below !
Like her to whom, at dead of night,
The bridegroom, with his locks of light, 229 '
Came, in the flush of love and pride,
And scal'd the terrace of his bride ;
When, as she saw him rashly spring,
And midway up in danger cling,
She flung him down her long black hair,
Exclaiming, breathless, u There, love, there ! "
And scarce did manlier nerve uphold
THE FIRE-WORSIIIPPEES. 133
The hero ZAL in that fond hour,
Than wings the youth who, fleet and bold,
Now climbs the rocks to HINUA'S bower.
See light as up their granite steeps
The rock-goats of ARABIA clamber, 280
Fearless from crag to crag he leaps,
And now is in the maiden's chamber
She loves but knows not whom she loves.
Nor what his race, nor whence he came ;
Like one who meets, in Indian groves,
Some beauteous bird without a name,
Brought by the last ambrosial breeze,
From isles in the undiscover'd seas,
To show his plumage for a day
To wondering eyes, and wing away !
Will he thus fly her nameless lover ?
ALLA forbid ! 'twas by a moon
As fair as this, while singing over
Some ditty to her soft Kanoon, 281
Alone, at this same witching hour,
She first beheld his radiant eyes
Gleam through the lattice of the bower,
Where nightly now they mix their sighs ;
And thought some spirit of the air
(For what could waft a mortal there ?)
Was pausing on his moonlit way
To listen to her lonely lay !
This fancy ne'er hath left her mind:
And though, when terror's swoon had past,
She saw a youth, of mortal kind,
Before her in obeisance cast,
Yet often since, when he hath spoken
Strange, awful words, and gleams have broker,
From his dark eyes, too bright to bear,
134 LALLA EOOKIL
Oh ! she hath fear'd her soul was given
To some unhallow'd child of air,
Some erring Spirit cast from heaven,
Like those angelic youths of old,
Who burn'd for maids of mortal mould,
Bewilder'd left the glorious skies,
And lost their heaven for woman's eyes.
Fond girl ! nor fiend nor angel he
Who woos thy young simplicity ;
But one of earth's impassion'd sons,
As warm in love, as fierce in ire,
As the best heart whose current runs
Full of the Day-God's living fire.
But quench'd to-night that ardor seems,
And pale his cheek, and sunk his brow ;
Never before, but in her dreams,
Had she beheld him pale as now :
And those were dreams of troubled sleep,
From which 'twas joy to wake and weep ;
Visions, that will not be forgot,
But sadden every waking scene,
Like warning ghosts, that leave the spot
All wither'd where they once have been.
" How sweetly," said the trembling maid,
Of her own gentle voice afraid,
So long had they in silence stood,
Looking upon that tranquil flood
" How sweetly does the moonbeam smile
To-night upon yon leafy isle !
Oft, in my fancy's wanderings,
I've wish'd that little isle had wings,
And we, within Us fairy bowers,
Were wafted off to seas unknown
Where not a pulse should beat but ours,
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 135
And we might live, love, die alone !
Far from the cruel and the cold,
Where the bright eyes of angels only
Should come around us, to behold
A paradise so pure and lonely.
Would this be world enough for thee ? "
Playful she turn'd, that he might see
The passing smile her cheek put on ;
But when she mark'd how mournfully
His eyes met hers, that smile was gone ;
And, bursting into heartfelt tears,
" Yes, yes," she cried, " my hourly fears,
My dreams have boded all too right
We part forever part to-night !
I knew, I knew it could not last
'Twas bright, 'twas heavenly, but 'tis past I
Oh ! ever thus, from childhood's hour,
I've seen my fondest hopes decay ;
I never lov'd a tree or flower,
But 'twas the first to fade away.
I never nurs'd a dear gazelle,
To glad me with its soft black eye,
But when it came to know me well,
And love me, it was sure to die !
Now too the joy most like divine
Of all I ever dreamt or knew,
To see thee, hear thee, call thee mine,
Oh misery ! must T lose that too ?
Yet go on peril's brink we meet;
Those frightful rocks that treacherous sea
No, never come again though sweet,
Though heaven, it may be death to thee.
Farewell and blessings on thy way,
Where'er thou guest, beloved stranger!
Better to sit and watch that ray,
136 LALLA ROOKH.
And think thee safe, though far away,
Than have thee near me, and in danger ! "
" Danger ! oh, tempt me not to boast "
The youth exclam'd " thou little know'st
What he can brave, who, born and nurst
In Danger's paths, has dar'd her worst ;
Upon whose ear the signal word
Of strife and death is hourly breaking ;
Who sleeps with head upon the sword
His fever'd hand must grasp in waking.
Danger ! "
" Say on thou fear'st not then,
And we may meet oft meet again ? "
" Oh ! look not so beneath the skies
I now fear nothing but those eyes.
If aught on earth could charm or force
My spirit from its destin'd course,
If aught could make this soul forget
The bond to which its seal is set,
'Twould be those eyes ; they, only they,
Could melt that sacred seal away !
But no 'tis fix'd my awful doom
Is fix'd on this side of the tomb
We meet no more ; why, why did Heaven
Mingle two souls that earth has riven,
Has rent asunder wide as ours ?
Arab maid, as soon the Powers
Of Light and Darkness may combine,
As I be link'd with thee or thine !
Thy Father -
" Holy ALLA save
His gray head from that lightning glance !
Thou know'st him not he loves the brave ;
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 137
Nor lives there under heaven's expanse
One who would prize, would worship thee
And thy bold spirit, more than he.
Oft when, iii childhood, I have play'd
With the bright falchion by his side,
I've heard him swear his lisping maid
In time should be a warrior's bride.
And still, whene'er at Haram hours
I take him cool sherbets and flowers,
He tells me, when in playful mood,
A hero shall my bridegroom be,
Since maids are best in battle woo'd,
And won with shouts of victory !
Nay, turn not from me thou alone
Art form'd to make both hearts thy own.
Go join his sacred ranks thou know'st
The unholy strife these Persians wage:
Good Heaven, that frown! even now thou glow'st
With more than mortal warrior's rage.
Haste to the camp by morning's light,
And when that sword is rais'd in tight,
Oh still remember, Love and I
Beneath its shadow trembling lie !
One victory o'er those Slaves of Fire,
Those impious Ghebers, whom my sire
"Hold, hold thy words are death"
The stranger cried, as wild he flung
His m;i 11 tli- bark, and show'd beneath
The Ghrber belt that round him clung 282
"Hen-, maiden, look weep blush to see
All that thy sire abhors in me !
Yes / am of that impious race,
Those Slaves of Fire, who, morn and even,
Hail their Creator's dwelling-place
Among the living lights of heaven : 288
Yes /am of that outcast few,
To IRAN and to vengeance true,
Who curse the hour your Arabs came
To desolate our shrines of flame,
And swear, before God's burning eye,
To break our country's chains, or die !
Thy bigot sire, nay, tremble not,
He, who gave birth to those dear eyes,
With me is sacred as the spot
From which our fires of worship rise !
But know 'twas he I sought that night,
When, from my watch-boat on the sea,
I caught this turret's glimmering light,
And up the rude rocks desperately
Rush'd to my prey thou know'st the rest
I climb'd the gory vulture's nest,
And found a trembling dove within ;
Thine, thine the victory thine the sin
If Love hath made one thought his own,
That Vengeance claims first last alone !
Oh ! had we, never, never met,
Or could this heart e'en now forget
How link'd, how bless'd we might have been,
Had fate not frown'd so dark between !
Hadst thou been born a Persian maid,
In neighboring valleys had we dwelt,
Through the same fields in childhood play'd,
At the same kindling altar knelt,
Then, then, while all those nameless ties,
In which the charm of Country lies,
Had round our hearts been hourly spun,
Till IRAN'S cause and thine were one ;
While in thy lute's awakening sigh
T ^ieard the voice of days gone by,
THE FIltE-WORSHIPPERS. 139
And saw, in every smile of thine,
Returning hours of glory shine ;
While the wrong'd Spirit of our Land
Liv'd, look'd, and spoke her wrongs through thee,
God ! who could then this sword withstand ?
Its very flash were victory !
But now estrang'd, divorc'd forever,
Far as the grasp of Fate can sever ;
Our only ties what love has wove,
In faith, friends, country, sunder'd wide ;
And then, then only, true to love,
When false to all that's dear beside !
Thy father, IRAN'S deadliest foe
Thyself perhaps, even now but no
Hate never look'd so lovely yet !
No sacred to thy soul will be
The land of him who could forget
All but that bleeding land for thee.
When other eyes shall see, unmov'd,
Her widows mourn, her warriors fall,
Thou'lt think how well one Gheber lov'd,
And for his sake thou'lt weep for all !
But look -
With sudden start he turn'd
And pointed to the distant wave,
Where lights, like charnel meteors, burn'd
Blucly, as o'er some seaman's grave ;
And fiery darts, at intervals, 284
Flew up all sparkling from the main,
As if each star that nightly falls
Were shooting back to heaven again.
" My signal lights ! I must away
Both, both are ruin'd. if I stay.
Farewell sweet life! thou cling'st in vain
Now, Vengeance, I am thine again ! "
140 LALLA ROOKH.
Fiercely he broke away, nor stopp'd,
Nor look'd but from the lattice dropp'd
Down 'mid the pointed crags beneath,
As if he fled from love to death.
While pale and mute young HINDA stood;
Nor mov'd, till in the silent flood
A momentary plunge below
Startled her from her trance of woe ;
Shrieking she to the lattice flew,
" I come I come if in that tide
Thou sleep'st to-night, I'll sleep there too,
In death's cold wedlock, by thy side.
Oh ! I would ask no happier bed
Than the chill wave my love lies under :
Sweeter to rest together dead,
Far sweeter, than to live asunder ! "
But no their hour is not yet come
Again she sees his pinnace fly,
Wafting him fleetly to his home,
Where'er that ill-starr'd home may lie ;
And calm and smooth it seem'd to win
Its moonlit way before the wind,
As if it bore all peace within,
Nor left one breaking heart behind f
LALLA ROOKH. 141
THE Princess, whose heart was sad enough already, could
have wished that FERAMORZ had chosen a less melan-
choly story ; as it is only to the happy that tears are a
luxury. Her ladies, however, were by no means sorry
that love was once more the Poet's theme ; for, whenever
he spoke of love, they said, his voice was as sweet as if
he had chewed the leaves of that enchanted tree which
grows over the tomb of the musician, Tan-Seiu. 235
Their road all the morning had lain througn a very
dreary country ; through valleys, covered with a low
bushy jungle, where, in more than one place, the awful
signal of the bamboo staff, 230 with the white flag at its
top, reminded the traveller that, in that very spot, the
tiger had made some human creature his victim. It was,
therefore, with much pleasure that they arrived at sun-
set in a safe and lovely glen, and encamped under one of
those holy trees whose smooth columns and spreading
roofs seem to destine them for natural temples of relig-
ion. Beneath this spacious shade, some pious hands had
erected a row of pillars ornamented with the most beau-
tiful porcelain, 8 * 1 which now supplied the use of mirrors
to the young maidens, as they adjusted their hair in de-
scending from the palankeens. Here, while, as usual,
the Princess sat listening anxiously, with FAIU.ADKKX in
one of his loftiest moods of criticism by her side, the
young Poet, leaning against a branch of the tree, thus
continued hia story :
142 LALLA ROOKH.
THE morn hath risen clear and calm,
And o'er the Green Sea 288 palely shines,
Revealing BAHREIN'S 289 groves of palm,
And lighting KISHMA'S 239 amber vines.
Fresh smell the shores of ABABY,
While breezes from the Indian sea
Blow round SELAMA'S 24 sainted cape,
And curl the shining flood beneath,
Whose waves are rich with many a grape,
And cocoa-nut and flowery wreath,
Which pious seamen, as they pass'd,
Had tow'rd that holy headland cast
Oblations to the Genii there
For gentle skies and breezes fair !
The nightingale now bends her flight 241
From the high trees, where all the night
She sung so sweet, with none to listen ;
And hides her from the morning star
Where thickets of pomegranate glisten
In the clear dawn, bespangled o'er
With dew, whose night drops would not stain
The best and brightest scimitar 242
That ever youthful Sultan wore
On the first morning of his reign.
And see the Sun himself ! on wings
Of glory up the East he springs.
Angel of Light ! who from the time
Those heavens began their march sublime,
Hath first of all the starry choir
Trod in his Maker's steps of fire \
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 143
Where are the days, thou wondrous sphere,
When IRAX, like a sun-flower, turn'd
To meet that eye where'er it burn'd ?
When, from the banks of BENDEMEER
To the nut-groves of SAMARCAND,
Thy temples flam'd o'er all the land ?
Where are they ? ask the shades of them
Who, on CADESSIA'S 248 bloody plains,
Saw fierce invaders pluck the gem
From IRAN'S broken diadem,
And bind her ancient faith in chains :
Ask the poor exile, cast alone
On foreign shores, unlov'd, unknown,
Beyond the Caspian's Iron Gates, 244
Or on the snowy Mossian mountains,
Far from his beauteous land of dates,
Her jasmine bowers and sunny fountains :
Yet happier so than if he trod
His own belov'd, but blighted, sod,
Beneath a despot stranger's nod !
Oh, he would rather houseless roam
Where Freedom and his Ciod may lead,
Than be the sleekest slave at home
That crouches to the conqueror's creed !
Is IRAN'S pride then gone forever,
Quench'd with the flame in MITHRA'S caves?
N" she lias sons, that never never
Will stoop to be the Moslem's slaves,
While heaven has light or earth has graves;
Spirits of tin-, that brood not 1<>";7,
But flash resentment back for wrong;
And hearts where, slow but deep, the seeds
Of vengeance ripen into deeds.
Till, in some treacherous hour of calm,
They burst, like ZKI LAN'S giant palm, 84 *
144 ' LALLA ROOKH.
Whose buds fly open with a sound
That shakes the pigmy forests round !
Yes, EMIR ! he, who scal'd that tower,
And, had he reach'd thy slumbering breast,
Had taught thee, in a Gheber's power
How safe e'en tyrant heads may rest
Is one of many, brave as he,
Who loathe thy haughty race and thee ;
Who, though they know the strife is vain,
Who, though they know the riven chain
Snaps but to enter in the heart
Of him who rends its links apart,
Yet dare the issue, blest to be
E'en for one bleeding moment free,
And die in pangs of liberty !
Thou know'st them well 'tis some moons since
Thy turban'd troops and blood-red flags,
Thou satrap of a bigot Prince,
Have swarm'd among these Green Sea crags ;
Yet here, e'en here, a sacred band
Ay, in the portal of that land
Thou, Arab, dar'st to call thy own
Their spears across thy path have thrown;
Here ere the winds half wing'd thee o'er
Rebellion brav'd thee from the shore.
Rebellion ! foul, dishonoring word,
Whose wrongful blight so oft has stain'd
The holiest cause that tongue or sword
Of mortal ever lost or gain'd.
How many a spirit, born to bless,
Hath sunk beneath that withering name,
Whom but a day's, an hour's success
Had wafted to eternal fame !
THE FIRE-WOESfllPPERS. 145
As exhalations, when they burst
From the warm earth, if chill'd at first,
If check'd in soaring from the plain,
Darken to fogs and sink again ;
But, if they once triumphant spread
Their wings above the mountain-head,
Become enthroned in upper air,
And turn to sun-bright glories there !
And who is he, that wields the might
Of Freedom on the Green Sea brink,
Before whose sabre's dazzling light 246
The eyes of YEMEN'S warriors wink ?
Who comes, embower'd in the spears
Of KERMAN'S hardy mountaineers ?
Those mountaineers that truest, last,
Cling to their country's ancient rites,
As if that God, whose eyelids cast
Their closing gleam on IRAN'S heights,
Among her snowy mountains threw
The last light of his worship too !
'Tis HA FED name of fear, whose sound
Chills like the muttering of a charm !
Shout but that awful name around,
And palsy shakes the manliest arm.
'Tis I IA FED, most accurs'd and dire
(So rrvnk'd by Moslem hate and ire)
Of all the rebel Sons of Fire ;
Of whose malign, tremendous power
The Arabs, at their mid-watch hour,
Such tales of fearful wonder tell,
That each affrighted sentinel
Pulls down his cowl upon his eyes,
Lest HAKED in the midst should rise I
146 LALLA ROOKH.
A man, they say, of monstrous birth,
A mingled race of flame and earth,
Sprung from those old, enchanted kings, 247
Who in their fairy helms, of yore,
A feather from the mystic wings
Of the Simoorgh resistless wore ;
And gifted by the Fiends of Fire,
Who groan'd to see their shrines expire,
With charms that, all in vain withstood,
Would drown the Koran's light in blood I
Such were the tales, that won belief,
And such the coloring Fancy gave
To a young, warm, and dauntless Chief, -
One who, no more than mortal brave,
Fought for the land his soul ador'd,
For happy homes and altars free,
His only talisman, the sword,
His only spell- word, Liberty !
One of that ancient hero line,
Along whose glorious current shine
Names, that have sanctified their blood :
As LEBANON'S small mountain-flood
Is render'd holy by the ranks
Of sainted cedars on its banks. 248
'Twas not for him to crouch the knee
Tamely to Moslem tyranny ;
'Twas not for him, whose soul was cast
In the bright mould of ages past,
Whose melancholy spirit, fed
With all the glories of the dead,
Though fram'd for IRAN'S happiest years,
Was born among her chains and tears !
'Twas not for him to swell the crowd
Of slavish heads, that shrinking bow'd
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 147
Before the Moslem, as he pass'd,
Like shrubs beneath the poison-blast
No far he fled indignant fled
The pageant of his country's shame ;
While every tear her children shed
Fell on his soul like drops of flame ;
And, as a lover hails the dawn
Of a first smile, so welcom'd he
The sparkle of the first sword drawn
For vengeance and for liberty !
But vain was valor vain the flower
Of KERMAN, in that deathful hour,
Against AL HASSAN'S whelming power.
In vain they met him, helm to helm,
Upon the threshold of that realm
He came in bigot pomp to sway,
And with their corpses block'd his way
In vain for every lance they rais'd,
Thousands around the conqueror blaz'd ;
For every arm that lin'd their shore,
Myriads of slaves were wafted o'er,
A bloody, bold, and countless crowd,
Before whose swarm as fast they bow'd
As dates beneath the locust cloud.
There stood but one short league away
From old HARMOZIA'S sultry bay
A rocky mountain, o'er the Sea
Of OMAN beetling awfully :" 9
A last and solitary link
Of those stupendous chains that reach
From the broad Caspian's reedy brink
Down winding to the Green Sea beach.
Around its base the bare rocks stood,
Like naked giants in the flood,
As if to guard the Gulf across ;
While, on its peak, that brav'd the sky,
A ruin'd Temple tower'd, so high
That oft the sleeping albatross 26
Struck the wild ruins with her wing,
And from her cloud-rock'd slumbering
Started to find man's dwelling there
In her own silent fields of air !
Beneath, terrific caverns gave
Dark welcome to each stormy wave
That dash'd, like midnight revellers, in ;
And such the strange, mysterious din
At times throughout those caverns roll'd,
And such the fearful wonders told
Of restless sprites imprison'd there,
That bold were Moslem, who would dare,
At twilight hour, to steer his skiff
Beneath the Gheber's lonely cliff. 251
On the land side, those towers sublime,
That seem'd above the grasp of Time,
Were sever' d from the haunts of men
By a wide, deep, and wizard glen,
So fathomless, so full of gloom,
No eye could pierce the void between :
It seem'd a place where Gholes might come
With their foul banquets from the tomb,
And in its caverns feed unseen.
Like distant thunder, from below,
The sound of many torrents came,
Too deep for eye or ear to know
If 'twere the sea's imprison'd flow,
Or floods of ever-restless flame.
For, each ravine, each rocky spire
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 149
Of that vast mountain stood on fire ; M2
And, though forever past the days
When God was worshipp'd in the blaze
That from its lofty altar shone,
Though fled the priests, the votaries gone,
Still did the mighty flame bum on,- 53
Through chance and change, through good and ill,
Like its own God's eternal will,
Deep, constant, bright, unquenchable I
Thither the vanquish'd HAFED led
His little army's last remains ;
" Welcome, terrific glen ! " he said,
" Thy gloom, that EBLIS' self might dread,
Is Heaven to him who flies from chains ! "
O'er a dark, narrow bridge-way, known
To him and to his Chiefs alone,
They cross'd the chasm and gain'd the towers,
" This home," he cried, " at least is ours ;
Here we may bleed, unmock'd by hymns
Of Moslem triumph o'er our head ;
Here we may fall, nor leave our limbs
To quiver to the Moslem's tread.
Stretch'd on this rock while vultures' beaks
Are whetted on our yet warm cheeks,
Here happy that no tyrant's eye
Gloats on our torments we may die ! "
'Twas night when to those towers they came,
And gloomily the fitful flame,
That from the ruin'd altar broke,
Glar'd on his features, as he spoke :
" 'Tis o'er what men could do, we've done
If I KAN will look tamely on,
And see her priests, her warriors driven
150 LALLA 1100KU.
Before a sensual bigot's nod,
A wretch, who shrines his lusts in heaven,
And makes a pander of his God ;
If her proud sons, her high-born souls,
Men, in whose veins oh last disgrace !
The blood of ZAL and KusTAM 264 rolls,
If they will court this upstart race,
And turn from MITHRA'S ancient ray,
To kneel at shrines of yesterday
If they will crouch to IRAN'S foes,
Why, let them till the land's despair
Cries out to Heaven, and bondage grows
Too vile for e'en the vile to bear !
Till shame at last, long hidden, burns
Their inmost core, and conscience turns
Each coward tear the slave lets fall
Back on his heart in drops of gall.
But here, at least, our arms unchain'd,
And souls that thraldom never stain'd ;
This spot, at least, no foot of slave
Or satrap ever yet profan'd ;
And though but few though fast the wave
Of life is ebbing from our veins,
Enough for vengeance still remains.
As panthers, after set of sun,
Rush from the roots of LEBANON
Across the dark sea robber's way, 265
"We'll bound upon our startled prey ;
And when some hearts that proudest swell
Have felt our falchion's last farewell ;
When Hope's expiring throb is o'er,
And e'en despair can prompt no more,
This spot shall be the sacred grave
Of the last few who, vainly brave,
Die for the land they cannot save I n
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 151
His Chiefs stood round each shining blade
Upon the broken altar laid
And though so wild and desolate
Those courts, where once the Mighty sate ;
No longer on those mouldering towers
Was seen the feast of fruits and flowers,
With which of old the Magi fed
The wandering Spirits of their Dead ; 258
Though neither priest nor rites were there,
Nor charmed leaf of pure pomegranate ; 2M
Nor hymn, nor censer's fragrant air,
Nor symbol of their worshipp'd planet; 26 '
Yet the same God that heard their sires
Heard them, while on that altar's fires
They swore 269 the latest, holiest deed
Of the few hearts, still left to bleed,
Should be, in IRAN'S injur'd name,
To die upon that Mount of Flame
The last of all her patriot line,
Before her last untrampled Shrine !
Brave, suffering souls ! they little knew
How many a tear their injuries drew
From one weak maid, one gentle foe,
Whom love first touch'd with otners' woe *
Whose life, as free from thought as sin,
Slept like a lake, till Love threw in
His talisman, and woke the tide,
And spread its trembling circles wide.
Once, EMIR! thy unheeding child,
'Mid all this havoc, bloom'd and smil'd
Tranquil as on some battle pluin
The Persian lily shines and towers, 290
Hefore, the. combat's reddening slain
Hath fall'ii upon her golden Howers.
Light-hearted maid, unaw'd, immov'd,
While Heaven but spar'd the sire she lov'd,
Once at thy evening tales of blood
Unlistening and aloof she stood
And oft, when thou hast pac'd along
Thy Haram halls with furious heat,
Hast thou not curs'd her cheerful song,
That came across thee, calm and sweet,
Like lutes of angels, touch'd so near
Hell's confines, that the damn'd can hear !
Far other feelings Love hath brought
Her soul all flame, her brow all sadness,
She now has but the one dear thought,
And thinks that o'er, almost to madness !
Oft does her sinking heart recall
His words " For my sake weep for all ; "
And bitterly, as day on day
Of rebel carnage fast succeeds,
She weeps a lover snatch'd away
In every Gheber wretch that bleeds.
There's not a sabre meets her eye,
But with his life-blood seems to swim ;
There's not an arrow wings the sky,
But fancy turns its point to him.
No more she brings with footstep light
AL HASSAN'S falchion for the fight ;
And had he look'd with clearer sight,
Had not the mists, that ever rise
From a foul spirit, dimm'd his eyes
He would have mark'd her shuddering frame,
When from the field of blood he came,
The faltering speech the look estrang'd
Voice, step, and life, and beauty chang'd
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 153
He would have mark'd all this, and known
Such change is wrought by Love alone !
Ah ! not the Love, that should have bless'd
So young, so innocent a breast ;
Not the pure, open, prosperous Love,
That pledg'd on earth and seal'd above,
Grows in the world's approving eyes,
In friendship's smile and home's caress,
Collecting all the heart's sweet ties
Into one knot of happiness !
No, HINDA, no, thy fatal flame
Is nurs'd in silence, sorrow, shame ;
A passion, without hope or pleasure,
In thy soul's darkness buried deep,
It lies, like some ill-gotten treasure,
Some idol, without shrine or name,
O'er which its pale-eyed votaries keep
Unholy watch, while others sleep.
Seven nights have darken'd OMAN'S sea,
Since last, beneath the moonlight ray,
She saw his light oar rapidly
Hurry her Gheber's bark away,
And still she goes, at midnight hour,
To weep alone in that high bower,
And watch, and look along the deep
For him whose smiles first made her weep;
lint watching, weeping, all was vain,
She never saw his bark again.
The owlet's solitary cry,
The night-hawk flitting darkly by,
And oft the hateful carrion bird,
Heavily flapping his clogg'd wing,
154 LALLA EOOKH.
Which reek'd with that day's banqueting
Was all she saw, was all she heard.
'Tis the eighth morn AL HASSAN'S brow
Is brighten'd with unusual joy
What mighty mischief glads him now,
Who never smiles but to destroy ?
The sparkle upon HERKEND'S Sea,
When toss'd at midnight furiously, 261
Tells not of wreck and ruin nigh,
More surely than that smiling eye !
" Up, daughter, up the KERNA'S 262 breath
Has blown a blast would waken death,
And yet thou sleep'st up, child, and see
This blessed day for Heaven and me,
A day more rich in Pagan blood
Than ever flash'd o'er OMAN'S flood.
Before another dawn shall shine,
His head heart limbs will all be mine ;
This very night his blood shall steep
These hands all over ere I sleep ! "
" His blood ! " she faintly scream'd her mind
Still singling one from all mankind
" Yes spite of his ravines and towers,
HAFED, my child, this night is ours.
Thanks to all-conquering treachery,
Without whose aid the links accurst,
That bind these impious slaves, would be
Too strong for ALLA'S self to burst !
That rebel fiend, whose blade has spread
My path with piles of Moslem dead,
Whose baffling spells had almost driven
Back from their course the Swords of Heaven,
This night, with all his band, shall know
How deep an Arab's steel can go,
THE FIRE-WOBSHIPPERS. 155
When God and Vengeance speed the blow.
And Prophet ! by that holy wreath
Thou wor'st on OHOD'S field of death, 268
I swear, for every sob that parts
In anguish from these heathen hearts,
A gem from PERSIA'S plunder'd mines
Shall glitter on thy Shrine of Shrines.
But, ha ! she sinks that look so wild
Those livid lips my child, my child,
This life of blood befits not thee,
And thou must back to ARABY.
Ne'er had I risk'd thy timid sex
In scenes that man himself might dread,
Had I not hop'd our every tread
Would be on prostrate Persian necks
Curst race, they offer swords instead !
But, cheer thee, maid, the wind that now
Is blowing o'er thy feverish brow,
To-day shall waft thee from the shore ;
And, ere a drop of this night's gore
Have time to chill in yonder towers,
Thou'lt see thy own sweet Arab bowers ! "
His bloody boast was all too true ;
There lurk'd one wretch among the few
Whom HAFKD'S eagle eye could count
Around him on that fiery mount,
One miscreant who for gold betray'd
The pathway through the valley's shade
To those high towers whore Freedom stood
In her last hold of flame and blood.
Left on the field last dreadful night.
When, sallying from their Sacred height,
The (Jhebers fouirht hope's farewell tight,
He lay but died not with the brave;
156 LALLA ROOKH.
That sun, which should have gilt his grave,
Saw him a traitor and a slave ;
And, while the few, who thence return'd
To their high rocky fortress, mourn'd
For him among the matchless dead
They left behind on glory's bed,
He liv'd, and, in the face of morn,
Laugh'd them and Faith and Heaven to scorn.
Oh for a tongue to curse the slave,
Whose treason, like a deadly blight,
Comes o'er the councils of the brave,
And blasts them in their hour of might !
May Life's unblessed cup for him
Be drugg'd with treacheries to the brim,
With hopes, that but allure to fly,
With joys, that vanish while he sips,
Like Dead Sea fruits, that tempt the eye,
But turn to ashes on the lips ! 264
His country's curse, his children's shame,
Outcast of virtue, peace, and fame,
May he, at last, with lips of flame
On the parch'd desert thirsting die,
While lakes that shone in mockery nigh, ***
Are fading off, untouch'd, untasted,
Like the once glorious hopes he blasted !
And, when from earth his spirit flies,
Just Prophet, let the damn'd one dwell
Full in the sight of Paradise,
Beholding heaven, and feeling hell !
LALLA HOOKH. 15J
LALLA KOOKH had, the night before, been visited by a
dream which, in spite of the impending fate of poor
H.v FED, made her heart more than usually cheerful dur-
ing the morning, and gave her cheeks all the freshened
animation of a flower that the Bid-musk had just passed
over. 266 She fancied that she was sailing on that Eastern
Ocean, where the sea-gipsies, who live forever on the
water, 267 enjoy a perpetual summer in wandering from
isle to isle, when she saw a small gilded bark approach-
ing her. It was like one of those boats which the Mal-
divian islanders send adrift at the mercy of Avinds
and waves, loaded Avith perfumes, flowers, and odorifer-
ous wood, as an offering to the Spirit \vhom they call
King of the Sea. At first, this little bark appeared to be
empty, but, on coming nearer
She had proceeded thus far in relating the dream to
her Ladies, when FKRAMOKZ appeared at the door of the
pavilion. In his presence, of course, everything else
was forgotten, and the continuance of the story Avas in-
stantly requested by all. Fresh wood of aloes was set to
burn in the cassolets; the violet sherbets 268 were hastily
handed round, and after a short prelude on his lute, in
the pathetic measure of Xava, >Jfl9 which is always used
to express the lamentations of absent lovers, the Poet
158 LALLA ROOKH.
THE day is lowering stilly black
Sleeps the grim wave, while heaven's rack,
Dispers'd and wild, 'twixt earth and sky
Hangs like a shatter'd canopy.
There's not a cloud in that blue plain
But tells of storm to come or past ;
Here, flying loosely as the mane
Of a young war-horse in the blast ;
There roll'd in masses dark and swelling,
As proud to be the thunder's dwelling !
While some already burst and riven,
Seem melting down the verge of heaven ;
As though the infant storm had rent
The mighty womb that gave him birth,
And, having swept the firmament,
Was now in fierce career for earth.
On earth 'twas yet all calm around,
A pulseless silence, dread, profound,
More awful than the tempest's sound.
The diver steer'd for ORMUS' bowers,
And moor'd his skiff till calmer hours ;
The sea-birds, with portentous screech,
Flew fast to land ; upon the beach
The pilot oft had paus'd, with glance
Turn'd upward to that wild expanse ;
And all was boding, drear, and dark
As her own soul, when HINDA'S bark
Went slowly from the Persian shore.
No music tim'd her parting oar, 270
Nor friends upon the lessening strand
Linger' d, to wave the unseen hand,
Or speak the farewell, heard no more ;
THE FIRE-WORSUIPPEB8. 159
But lone, unheeded, from the bay
The vessel takes its mournful way,
Like some ill-destin'd bark that steers
In silence through the Gate of Tears. 271
And where was stern AL HASSAN then ?
Could not that saintly scourge of men
From bloodshed and devotion spare
One minute for a farewell there ?
No close within, in changeful fits
Of cursing and of prayer, he sits
In savage loneliness to brood
Upon the coming night of blood,
With that keen second-scent of death,
By which the vulture snuffs his food
In the still warm and living breath ! 272
While o'er the wave his Aveeping daughter
Is wafted from these scenes of slaughter,
As a young bird of BABYLOx, 278
Let loose to tell of victory won,
Flies home, with wing, ah ! not unstain'd
By the red hands that held her chain'd.
And does the long-left home she seeks
Light up no gladness on her checks ?
The flowers she nurs'd the well-known groves,
Where oft in dreams her spirit roves
Once more Co see her dear gazelles
Come bounding with their silver bells ;
Her birds' new plumage to Ix-hold,
And the gay, gleaming fishes conr %
She left, all filleted with gold.
Shooting around their jasper fount, **
Her little garden mosque to see,
And once again, at evening hour,
To tell her ruby rosary* 7 *
160 LALLA ROOEH.
In her own sweet acacia bower.
Can these delights, that wait her now,
Call up no sunshine on her brow ?
No, silent, from her train apart,
As if e'en now she felt at heart
The chill of her approaching doom,
She sits, all lovely in her gloom
As a pale Angel of the Grave ;
And o'er the wide, tempestuous wave,
Looks, with a shudder, to those towers,
Where, in a few short awful hours,
Blood, blood, in streaming tides shall run,
Foul incense for to-morrow's sun !
" Where art thou, glorious stranger ! thou,
So loved, so lost, where art thou now ?
Foe Gheber infidel whate'er
The unhallow'd name thou'rt doom'd to bear,
Still glorious still to this fond heart
Dear as its blood, whate'er thou art !
Yes ALLA, dreadful ALLA ! yes
If there be wrong, be crime in this,
Let the black waves that round us roll,
Whelm me this instant, ere my soul,
Forgetting faith home father all
"Before its earthly idol fall,
NOT worship e'en Thyself above him
For, oh, so wildly do I love him,
Thy Paradise itself were dim
And joyless, if not shared with him ! "
Her hands were clasp'd her eyes upturn'd,
Dropping their tears like moonlight rain ;
And, though her lip, fond raver ! burn'd
With words of passion, bold, profane,
Yet was there light around her brow,
A holiness in those dark eyes,
Which show'd, though wandering earthward now,
Her spirit's home was in the skies.
Yes for a spirit pure as hers
Is always pure, e'en while it errs;
As sunshine, broken in the rill,
Though turn'd astray, is sunshine still I
So wholly had her mind forgot
All thoughts but one, she heeded not
The rising storm the wave that cast
A moment's midnight, as it pass'd
Nor heard the frequent shout, the tread
Of gathering tumult o'er her head
Clash'd swords, and tongues that seem'd to
With the rude riot of the sky.
But, hark ! that war-whoop on the deck
That crash, as if each engine there,
Masts, sails, and all, were gone to wreck,
'Mid yells and stampings of despair !
Merciful Heaven ! what can it be ?
'Tis not the storm, though fearfully
The ship has shudder'd as she rode
O'er mountain-waves " Forgive me, God !
Forgive me !" shrieked the maid, and knelt,
Trembling all over for she felt
As if her judgment hour was near,
While crouching round, half dead witli fear,
Her handmaids clung, nor breath'd, nor stirr'd
When, hark ! a second crash a third
And now, as if a bolt of thunder
Had riv'n the laboring planks asunder,
The deck falls in what horrors then !
Blood, waves, and tackle, swords and men
162 LALLA BOOKS.
Come mix'd together through the chasm,
Some wretches in their dying spasm
Still fighting on and some that call
" For GOD and IRAN ! " as they fall !
Whose was the hand that turn'd away
The perils of the infuriate fray,
And snatch'd her breathless from beneath
This wilderment of wreck and death ?
She knew not for a faintness came
Chill o'er her, and her sinking frame
Amid the ruins of that hour
Lay, like a pale and scorched flower,
Beneath the red volcano's shower.
But, oh ! the sights and sounds of dread
That shock'd her ere her senses fled !
The yawning deck the crowd that strove
Upon the tottering planks above
The sail, whose fragments, shivering o'er
The stragglers' heads all dash'd with gore,
Flutter'd like bloody flags the clash
Of sabres, and the lightning's flash
Upon their blades, high toss'd about
Like meteor brands 276 as if throughout
The elements one fury ran,
One general rage, that left a doubt
Which was the fiercer, Heaven or Man !
Once too but no it could not be
'Twas fancy all yet once she thought
While yet her fading eyes could see,
High on the ruin'd deck she caught
A glimpse of that unearthly form,
That glory of her soul, e'en then,
Amid the whirl of wreck and storm,
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 163
Shining above his fellow-men,
As, on some black and troublous night,
The Star of EGYPT, 277 whose proud light
Never hath beam'd on those who rest
In the White Islands of the West, 278
Burns through the storm with looks of flame
That put Heaven's cloudier eyes to shame.
But no 'twas but the minute's dream
A fantasy and ere the scream
Had half-way pass'd her pallid lips,
A death-like swoon, a chill eclipse
Of soul and sense its darkness spread
Around her, and she sunk, as dead.
How calm, how beautiful comes on
The stilly hour, when storms are gone ;
When warring winds have died away,
And clouds, beneath the glancing ray,
Melt off, and leave the land and sea
Sleeping in bright tranquillity,
Fresh as if Day again were born,
Again upon the lap of Morn !
When the light blossoms, rudely torn
And scatter'd at the whirlwind's will,
Hang floating in the pure air still,
Filling it all with precious balm,
In gratitude for this sweet calm;
And every drop the thunder-showers
Have left upon the grass and flowers
Sparkles, as 'twere that lightning-gem 27>
Whose liquid flame is born of them !
When, 'stead of one unchanging breeze,
There blow a thousand gentle airs,
And each a different perfume bears,
As if the loveliest plants and trees
164 LALLA ROOKH.
Had vassal breezes of their own
To watch and wait on them alone,
And waft no other breath than theirs :
When the blue waters rise and fall,
In sleepy sunshine mantling all ;
And e'en that swell the tempest leaves
Is like the full and silent heaves
Of lovers' hearts, when newly blest,
Too newly to be quite at rest.
Such was the golden hour that broke
Upon the world, when HINDA woke
From her long trance, and heard around
No motion but the water's sound
Rippling against the vessel's side,
As slow it mounted o'er the tide.
But where is she ? her eyes are dark,
Are wilder'd still is this the bark,
The same, that from HARMOZIA'S bay
Bore her at morn whose bloody way
The sea-dog track'd ? no strange and new
Is all that meets her wondering view.
Upon a galliot's deck she lies,
Beneath no rich pavilion's shade,
No plumes to fan her sleeping eyes,
Nor jasmine on her pillow laid.
But the rude litter, roughly spread
With war-cloaks, is her homely bed,
And shaAvl and sash, on javelins hung,
For awning o'er her head are flung,
Shuddering she look'd around there lay
A group of warriors in the sun,
Resting their limbs, as for that day
Their ministry of death were done.
Some gazing on the drowsy sea.
TITE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 165
Lost in unconscious reverie ;
And some, who seein'd but ill to brook
That sluggish calm, with many a look
To the slack sail impatient cast,
As loose it flagg'd around the mast.
Blest ALLA ! who shall save her now ?
There's not in all that warrior band
One Arab sword, one turbau'd brow
From her own Faithful Moslem land.
Their garb the leathern belt 28 that wraps
Each yellow vest 281 that rebel hue
The Tartar fleece upon their caps 282
Yes yes her fears are all too true,
And Heaven hath, in this dreadful hour,
Abandon'd her to HAFED'S power ;
HAFED, the Gheber ! at the thought
Her very heart's blood chills within ;
He, whom her soul was hourly taught
To loathe, as some foul fiend of sin,
Some minister, whom Hell had sent
To spread its blast, where'er he went,
And fling, as o'er our earth he trod,
His shadow betwixt man and God!
And she is now his captive, thrown
In his fierce hands, alive, alone ;
His the infuriate band she sees,
All infidels all enemies!
What was the daring hope that then
Cross'd her like lightning, as again,
With boldness that despair had lent,
She darted through that armed crowd
A look HO searching, so intent,
That e'en tin; sternest warrior bow'd
Abash'd, when lie h< r glances caught,
166 LALLA ROOKH.
As if he guess'd whose form they sought ?
But no she sees him not 'tis gone,
The vision that before her shone.
Through all the maze of blood and storm,
Is tied 'twas but a phantom form
One of those passing, rainbow dreams,
Half light, half shade, which Fancy's beams
Paint on the fleeting mists that roll
In trance or slumber round the soul.
But now the bark, with livelier bound,
Scales the blue wave the crew's in motion.
The oars are out, and with light sound
Break the bright mirror of the ocean,
Scattering its brilliant fragments round.
And now she sees with horror sees,
Their course is tow'rd that mountain-hold,
Those towers, that make her life-blood freeze,
Where MECCA'S godless enemies
Lie, like beleaguer'd scorpions, roll'd
In their last deadly, venomous fold !
Amid the illumin'd land and flood
Sunless that mighty mountain stood ;
Save where, above its awfiil head,
There shone a flaming cloud, blood-red,
As 'twere the flag of destiny
Hung out to mark where death would be !
Had her bewilder'd mind the power
Of thought in this terrific hour,
She well might marvel where or how
Man's foot could scale that mountain's brow,
Since ne'er had Arab heard or known
Of path but through the glen alone.
But every thought was lost in fear,
THE FIRE-WOIiSUIPPERS. 167
When, as their bounding bark drew near
The craggy base, she felt the waves
Hurry them tow'rd those dismal caves,
That from the Deep in windings pass
Beneath that Mount's volcanic mass ;
And loud a voice on deck commands
To lower the mast and light the brands !
Instantly o'er the dashing tide
Within a cavern's mouth they glide,
Gloomy as that eternal Porch
Through which departed spirits go :
Not e'en the flare of brand and torch
Its flickering light could further throw
Than the thick flood that boil'd below.
Silent they floated as if each
Sat breathless, and too aw'd for speech
In that dark chasm, where even sound
Seem'd dark, so sullenly around
The goblin echoes of the cave
Mutter'd it o'er the long black wave,
As 'twere some secret of the grave !
But soft they pause the current turns
Beneath them from its onward track ;
Some mighty, unseen barrier spurns
The vexed tide, all foaming, back,
And scarce the oars' redoubled force
Can stem the eddy's whirling force;
When, hark ! some desperate foot has spnmg
Among the rocks the chain is flung
The oars are up the grapple clings,
And tin 1 toss'd bark in moorings swings.
Just then, a day -beam through the shade
Broke tremulous but, ere the maid
Can see from whence the brightness steals,
1(38 LALLA EOOKH.
Upon her brow she shuddering feels
A viewless hand, that promptly ties
A bandage round her burning eyes ;
"While the rude litter where she lies,
Uplifted by the warrior throng,
O'er the steep rocks is borne along.
Blest power of sunshine ! genial Day,
What balm, what life is in thy ray !
To feel thee is such real bliss,
That had the world no joy but this,
To sit in sunshine calm and sweet,
It were a world too exquisite
For man to leave it for the gloom,
The deep, cold shadow of the tomb.
E'en HINDA, though she saw not where
Or whither wound the perilous road,
Yet knew by that awakening air,
Which suddenly around her glow'd,
That they had risen from darkness then,
And breath'd the sunny world again !
But soon this balmy freshness fled
For now the steepy labyrinth led
Through damp and gloom 'mid crash of boughs,
And fall of loosen'd crags that rouse
The leopard from his hungry sleep,
Who, starting, thinks each crag a prey,
And long is heard, from steep to steep,
Chasing them down their thundering way !
The jackal's cry the distant moan
Of the hyaena, fierce and lone
And that eternal saddening sound
Of torrents in the glen beneath,
As 'twere the ever-dark Profound
That rolls beneath the Bridge of Death !
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 169
All, all is fearful e'en to see,
To gaze on those terrific things
She now but blindly hears, would be
Relief to her imaginings ;
Since never yet was shape so dread,
But Fancy, thus in darkness thrown
And by such sounds of horror fed,
Could frame more dreadful of her own.
But does she dream ? has Fear again
Perplex'd the workings of her brain,
Or did a voice, all music, then
Come from the gloom, low whispering near
" Tremble not, love, thy Gheber's here ! "
She does not dream all sense, all ear,
She drinks the words, "Thy Gheber's here."
'Twas his own voice she could not err
Throughout the breathing world's extent
There was but one such voice for her,
So kind, so soft, so eloquent !
Oh, sooner shall the rose of May
Mistake her own sweet nightingale,
And to some meaner minstrel's lay
Open her bosom's glowing veil, 288
Than Love shall ever doubt a tone,
A breath of the beloved one !
Though blest, 'mid all her ills, to think
She has that one beloved near,
Whose smile, though met on ruin's brink,
Hath power to make eVri ruin dear,
Yet soon this gleam of rapture, crost
By fears for him, is chill'd and lost.
How shall the ruthless HAKKII brook
That one of Gheber blood .should look,
170 LALLA ROOKH.
With auglit but curses in his eye,
On her a maid of ARABY
A Moslem maid the child of him,
Whose bloody banner's dire success
Hath left their altars cold and dim,
And their fair land a wilderness !
And, worse than all, that night of blood
Which comes so fast oh ! who shall stay
The sword, that once hath tasted food
Of Persian hearts, or turn its way ?
What arm shall then the victim cover,
Or from her father shield her lover ?
" Save him, my God ! " she inly cries
" Save him this night and if thine eyes
Have ever welcom'd with delight
The sinner's tears, the sacrifice
Of sinners' hearts guard him this night,
And here, before Thy throne, I swear
v From my heart's inmost core to tear
Love, hope, remembrance, though they be
Link'd with each quivering life-string there,
And give it bleeding all to Thee !
Let him but live, the burning tear,
The sighs, so sinful, yet so dear,
Which have been all too much his own,
Shall from this hour be Heaven's alone.
Youth pass'd in penitence, and age
In long and painful pilgrimage,
Shall leave no traces of the flame
That wastes me now nor shall his name
E'er bless my lips, but when I pray
For his dear spirit, that away
Casting from its angelic ray
The eclipse of earth, he, too, may shine
THE FIltE-WOK SHIPPERS. 171
Redeera'd all glorious and all Thine !
Think think what victory to win
One radiant soul like his from sin,
One wandering star of virtue back
To its own native, heavenward track !
Let him but live, and both are Thine,
Together Thine for, blest or crost,
Living or dead, his doom is mine,
And, if he perish, both are lost I "
172 LALLA ROOKS.
THE next evening, LALLA ROOKH was entreated by hev
Ladies to continue the relation of her wonderful dream ;
but the fearful interest that hung round the fate of
HIND A and her lover had completely removed every trace
of it from her mind ; much to the disappointment of a
fair seer or two in her train, who prided themselves on
their skill in interpreting visions, and who had already
remarked, as an unlucky omen, that the Princess, on the
very morning after the dream, had worn a silk dyed with
the blossoms of the sorrowful tree, Nilica. 28 *
FADLADEEN, whose indignation had more than once
broken out during the recital of some parts of this heter-
odox poem, seemed at length to have made up his mind
to the infliction ; and took his seat this evening with all
the patience of a martyr, while the Poet resumed his
profane and seditious story as follows :
THE FIEE-WORSUIPPEBS. 173
To tearless eyes and hearts at ease
The leafy shores and sun-bright seas,
That lay beneath that mountain's height,
Had been a fair enchanting sight.
'Twos one of those ambrosial eves
A day of storm so often leaves
At its calm setting when the West
Opens her golden bowers of rest,
And a moist radiance from the skies
Shoots trembling down, as from the eyes
Of some meek penitent, whose last
Bright hours atone for dark ones past,
And whose sweet tears, o'er wrong forgiven,
Shine, as they fall, with light from heaven !
'Twas stillness all the winds that late
Had rush'd through KERMAN'S almond groves,
And shaken from her bowers of date
That cooling feast the traveller loves, 285
Now, lull'd to languor, scarcely curl
The Green Sea wave, whoso waters gleam
Limpid, as if her mines of pearl
Were melted all to form the stream :
And her fair islets, small and bright,
With their green shores reflected there,
Look like those PERI isles of light,
That hang by spell-work in the air.
But vainly did those glories burst
On HINDA'S dazzled eyes, when first
The bandage from her brow \va,s taken,
And, pale and awed as those who waken
174 LALLA ROOKH.
In their dark tombs when, scowling near,
The Searchers of the Grave 286 appear,
She shuddering turn'd to read her fate
In the fierce eyes that fiash'd around;
And saw those towers all desolate,
That o'er her head terrific frown'd,
As if defying e'en the smile
Of that soft heaven to gild their pile.
In vain, with mingled hope and fear,
She looks for him, whose voice so dear
Had come, like music, to her ear
Strange, mocking dream ! again 'tis fled.
And oh, the shoots, the pangs of dread
That through her inmost bosom run,
When voices from without proclaim
"HAFED, the Chief" and, one by one,
The warriors shout that fearful name !
He comes the rock resounds his tread
How shall she dare to lift her head,
Or meet those eyes whose scorching glare
Not YEMEN'S boldest sons can bear ?
In whose red beam, the Moslem tells,
Such rank and deadly lustre dwells,
As in those hellish fires that light
The mandrake's charnel leaves at night. 287
How shall she bear that voice's tone,
At whose loud battle-cry alone
Whole squadrons oft in panic ran,
Scatter'd like some vast caravan,
When, stretch'd at evening round the well,
They hear the thirsting tiger's yell !
Breathless she stands, with eyes cast down,
Shrinking beneath the fiery frown
Which, fancy tells her, from that brow
Is flashing o'er her fiercely now :
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 175
And shuddering as she hears the tread
Of his retiring warrior band.
Never was pause so full of dread ;
Till HAFED with a trembling hand
Took hers, and, leaning o'er her, said,
" HINDA ; " that word was all he spoke,
And 'twas enough the shriek that broke
From her full bosom told the rest.
Panting with terror, joy, surprise,
The muid but lifts her wondering eyes,
' To hide them on her Gheber's breast !
'Tis he, 'tis he the man of blood,
The fellest of the Fire-fiend's brood,
HAFEU, the demon of the fight,
Whose voice unnerves, whose glances blight,
Is her own loved Gheber, mild
And glorious as when first he smil'd
In her lone tower, and left such beams
Of his pure eye to light her dreams,
That she believ'd her bower had given
Rest to some wanderer from heaven.
Moments there are, and this was one,
Snatch 'd like a minute's gleam of sun
Amid the black Simoom's eclipse
Or, like those verdant spots that bloom
Around the crater's burning lips,
Sweetening the very edge of doom !
The past the future all that Fate
Can bring of dark or desperate
Around such hours, but makes them cast
Intenser radiance while they last!
Even he, this youth though dimm'd and gone
Each star of Hope that cheer'd him on
His glories lost his cause betray'd
IBAK, his dear-lov'd country, made
A land of carcasses and slaves,
One dreary waste of chains and graves !
Himself but lingering, dead at heart,
To see the last, long struggling breath
Of Liberty's great soul depart,
Then lay him down and share her death
Even he, so sunk in wretchedness,
With doom still darker gathering o'er him,
Yet, in this moment's pure caress,
In the mild eyes that shone before him,
Beaming that blest assurance, worth
All other transports known on earth,
That he was lov'd well, warmly lov'd
Oh ! in this precious hour he prov'd
How deep, how thorough-felt the glow
Of rapture, kindling out of woe ;
How exquisite one single drop
Of bliss, thus sparkling to the top
Of misery's cup how keenly quaff' d,
Though death must follow on the draught t
She, too, while gazing on those eyes
That sink into her soul so deep,
Forgets all fears, all miseries,
Or feels them like the wretch in sleep,
Whom fancy cheats into a smile,
Who dreams of joy, and sobs the while !
The mighty Ruins where they stood,
Upon the mount's high, rocky verge,
Lay open tow'rds the ocean flood,
Where lightly o'er the illumin'd surge
Many a fair bark that, all the day,
Had lurk'd in sheltering creek or bay,
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 177
Now bounded on, and gave their sails,
Yet dripping, to the evening gales ;
Like eagles, when the storm is done,
Spreading their wet wings in the sun.
The beauteous clouds, though daylight's Star
Had sunk behind the hills of LAR,
Were still with lingering glories bright,
As if, to grace the gorgeous West,
The Spirit of departing Light
That eve had left his sunny vest
Behind him, ere he wing'd his flight.
Never was scene so form'd for love !
Beneath them waves of crystal move
In silent swell Heaven glows above,
And their pure hearts, to transport given,
Swell like the wave, and glow like Heaven,
But, ah ! too soon that dream is past
Again, again her fear returns ;
Night, dreadful night, is gathering fast,
More faintly the horizon burns,
And every rosy tint that lay
On the smooth sea hath died away.
Hastily to the darkening skies
A glance she casts then wildly cries:
" At niyht, he said and look, 'tis near
Fly, fly if yet thou lov'st me, fly
Soon will his murderous band be here,
And 1 shall see thee bleed and die.
Hush ! heard'st thou not the tramp of men
Sounding from yonder fearful glen ?
Perhaps e'en now they climb the wood
Fly, fly though still the West is bright,
He'll come oh ! yes he wants thy blood
I know him he'll riot wait for night ! "
178 LALLA HOOKS.
In terrors e'en to agony
She clings around the wondering Chief ;
" Alas, poor wilder'd niaid ! to me
Thou ow'st this raving trance of grief.
Lost as I am, nought ever grew
Beneath my shade but perish'd too
My doom is like the Dead Sea air,
And nothing lives that enters there !
Why were our barks together driven
Beneath this morning's furious heaven ?
Why when I saw the prize that chance
Had thrown into my desperate arms,
When, casting but a single glance
Upon thy pale and prostrate charms,
I vow'd (though watching viewless o'er
Thy safety through that hour's alarms)
To meet the unmanning sight no more
Why have I broke that heart-wrung vow ?
Why weakly, madly met thee now ?
Start not that noise is but the shock
Of torrents through yon valley hurl'd
Dread nothing here upon this rock
We stand above the jarring world,
Alike beyond its hope its dread
In gloomy safety, like the Dead !
Or, could e'en earth and hell unite
In league to storm this Sacred Height,
Fear nothing thou myself, to-night,
And each o'erlooking star that dwells
Near God, will be thy sentinels ;
And ere to-morrow's dawn shall glow,
Back to thy sire "
" To-morrow ! no
The maiden scream'd " thou'lt never see
To-morrow's sun death, death will be
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 179
The night-cry through each reeking tower,
Unless we fly, ay, fly this hour !
Thou art betray'd some wretch who knew
That dreadful glen's mysterious clew
Nay, doubt not by yon stars, 'tis true
Hath sold thee to my vengeful sire ;
This morning, with that smile so dire
He wears in joy, he told me all,
And stamp'd in triumph through our hall,
As though thy heart already beat
Its last life-throb beneath his feet!
Good Heaven, how little dream'd I then
His victim was my own lov'd youth !
Fly send let some one watch the glen
By all my hopes of heaven 'tis truth ! "
Oh ! colder than the wind that freezes
Founts, that but now in sunshine play'd,
Is that congealing pang which seizes
The trusting bosom, when betray'd.
He felt it deeply felt and stood,
As if the tale had frozen his blood,
So maz'd and motionless was he;
Like one whom sudden spells enchant,
Or some mute, marble habitant
Of the still Halls of ISIIMONIK ! 3 "
Hut soon the painful chill was o'er,
And his great soul, herself once more,
Look'd from his brow in all the rays
Of her l>est, happiest, grandest days.
Never, in moment most elate,
Did that hi.^h spirit loftier rise;
While bright, serene, determinate,
His looks are lifted to the skies,
180 LALLA EOOKB.
As if the signal lights of Fate
Were shining in those awful eyes !
'Tis come his hour of martyrdom
In IRAN'S sacred cause is come ;
And, though his life hath pass'd away
Like lightning on a stormy day,
Yet shall his death-hour leave a track
Of glory, permanent and bright,
To which the brave of after-times,
The suffering brave, shall long look back
With proud regret, and by its light
Watch through the hours of slavery's night
For vengeance on the oppressor's crimes.
This rock, his monument aloft,
Shall speak the tale to many an age ;
And hither bards and heroes oft
Shall come in secret pilgrimage,
And bring their warrior sons, and tell
The wondering boys where HAFED fell ;
And swear them on those lone remains
Of their lost country's ancient fanes,
Never while breath of life shall live
Within them never to forgive
The accursed race, whose ruthless chain
Hath left on IRAN'S neck a stain
Blood, blood alone can cleanse again !
Such are the swelling thoughts that now
Enthrone themselves on HAFED'S brow;
And ne'er did saint of ISSA 289 gaze
On the red wreath, for martyrs twin'd,
More proudly than the youth surveys
That pile, which through the gloom behind,
Half lighted by the altar's fire,
Glimmers his destin'd. funera.1 pyre!
THE FlHE-WOliSaiPPEttS. 181
Heap'd by his own, his comrades' hands,
Of every wood of odorous breath,
There, by the Fire-God's shrine it stands,
Ready to fold in radiant death
The few still left of those who swore
To perish there, when hope was o'er
The few, to whom that couch of flame,
Which rescues them from bonds and shame,
Is sweet and Avelcome as the bed
For their own infant Prophet spread,
When pitying Heaven to roses turn'd
The death-flames that beneath him burn'd ! ^
With watchfulness the maid attends
His rapid glance, where'er it bends
Why shoot his eyes such awful beams ?
What plans he now ? what thinks or dreams ?
Alas ! why stands he musing here,
When every moment teems with fear ?
" H.VFKD, my own beloved Lord,"
She kneeling cries " first, last ador'd !
If in that soul thou'st ever felt
Half what thy lips impassion'd swore,
Here, on my knees that never knelt
To any but their Hod before,
I pray thee, as thou lov'st me, fly
Jsow, now ere yet their blades are nigh.
Oh haste the bark that brought me hither
Can waft us o'er yon darkening sea
East west alas, I care not whither,
So thou art safe, and I with thee !
Go where we will, this hand in thine,
Those eyes In-fore me smiling thus,
Through good and ill, through storm and shine,
The world's a world of love for us !
182 LALLA ROOKH.
On some calm, blessed shore we'll dwell,
Where 'tis no crime to love too well ;
Where thus to worship tenderly
An erring child of light like thee
Will not be sin or, if it be,
Where we may weep our faults away,
Together kneeling, night and day,
Thou, for my sake, at ALLA'S shrine,
And I at any God's for thine ! "
Wildly these passionate words she spoke
Then hung her head, and wept for shame ;
Sobbing as if a heart-string broke
W T ith every deep-heav'd sob that came.
While he, young, warm oh ! wonder not
If, for a moment, pride and fame,
His oath his cause that shrine of flame.
And IRAN'S self are all forgot
For her whom at his feet he sees
Kneeling in speechless agonies.
No, blame him not, if Hope awhile
Dawn'd in his soul, and threw her smile
O'er hours to come o'er days and nights,
Wing'd with those precious, pure delights
Which she, who bends all beauteous there,
Was born to kindle and to share.
A tear or two, which, as he bow'd
To raise the suppliant, trembling stole,
First warn'd him of this dangerous cloud
Of softness passing o'er his soul.
Starting, he brush'd the drops away,
Unworthy o'er that cheek to stray ;
Like one who, on the morn of fight,
Shakes from his sword the dews of night,
That had but dimm'd, not stain'd its light.
THE FinE-\voRsnirpEiiS. 183
Yet, though subdued the unnerving thrill,
Its warmth, its weakness lingered still,
So touching in each look and tone
That the fond, fearing, hoping maid
Half counted on the flight she pray'd,
Half thought the hero's soul was grown
As soft, as yielding as her own,
And smil'd and bless'd him, while he said,
" Yes if there be some happier sphere,
Where fadeless truth like ours is dear,
If there be any land of rest
For those who love and ne'er forget,
Oh ! comfort thee for safe and blest
We'll meet in that calm region yet ! "
Scarce had she time to ask her heart
If good or ill these words impart,
When the rous'd youth impatient flew
To the tower-wall, where, high in view,
A ponderous sea-horn 2 " hung, and blew
A signal, deep and dread as those
The storm-fiend at his rising blows.
Full well his Chieftains, sworn and true
Through life and death, that signal knew;
For 'twas the appointed warning-blast,
The alarm, to tell when hope was past,
And the tremendous death-die cast!
And there, upon the mouldering tower,
Hath hung this sea-horn many an hour,
Ready to sound o'er land and sea
That dirge-note of the brave and free.
They c;ime his Chieftains at the call
Came slowly round, and with them all
Alas, how few ! the worn remains
Of those who late o'er KK UMAX'S plains
184 LALLA EOOKH.
Went gayly prancing to the clash
Of Moorish zel and tyinbalon,
Catching new hope from every flash
Of their long lances in the sun,
And, as their coursers charg'd the wind,
And the white ox-tails stream'd behind, 292
Looking as if the steeds they rode
Were wing'd, and every Chief a God !
How fallen, how alter'd now ! how wan
Each scarr'd and faded visage shone,
As round the burning shrine they came !
How deadly was the glare it cast,
As mute they paus'd before the flame
To light their torches as they pass'd !
'Twas silence all the youth had plann'd
The duties of his soldier-band ;
And each determin'd brow declares
His faithful Chieftains well know theirs.
But minutes speed night gems the skies
And oh, how soon, ye blessed eyes,
That look from heaven, ye may behold
Sights that will turn your star-fires cold !
Breathless with awe, impatience, hope,
The maiden sees the veteran group
Her litter silently prepare,
And lay it at her trembling feet ;
And now the youth, with gentle care,
Hath placed her in the shelter'd seat,
And press'd her hand that lingering press
Of hands, that for the last time sever;
Of hearts, whose pulse of happiness,
When that hold breaks, is dead forever.
And yet to her this sad caress
Gives hope so fondly hope can err !
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 18-5
'Twas joy, she thought, joy's mute excess
Their happy flight's dear harbinger ;
'Twas warmth assurance tenderness
'Twas anything but leaving her.
" Haste, haste ! " she cried, " the clouds grow
But still, ere night, we'll reach the bark ;
And by to-morrow's dawn oh bliss !
With thee upon the sun-bright deep,
Far off, I'll but remember this,
As some dark vanish'd dream of sleep ;
And thou " but ah ! he answers not
Good Heaven ! and does she go alone ?
She now has reach'd that dismal spot,
Where, some hours since, his voice's tone
Had come to soothe her fears and ills,
Sweet as the angel IsnAFiL's, 2 * 8
When every leaf on Eden's tree
Is trembling to his minstrelsy
Yet now oh, now, he is not nigh.
HA FED ! my HA FED ! if it be
Thy will, thy doom this night to die,
Let me but stay to die with thee,
And I will bless thy loved name,
Till the last life-breath leave this frame.
Oh ! let our lips, our cheeks be laid
lint near each other while they fade ;
Let us but mix our parting breaths,
And I can die ten thousand deaths!
You too, who hurry me away
So cruelly, one moment stay -
Oli ! stay one moment is not much
He yet may come for ////// I pray
HAKKD ! dear HAFED! " all the way
186 LALLA ROOKII.
In wild lamentings, that would touch
A heart of stone, she shriek'd his name
To the dark woods no HAFED came :
No hapless pair you've look'd your last :
Your hearts should both have broken then :
The dream is o'er your doom is cast
You'll never meet on earth again !
Alas for him, who hears her cries !
Still half-way down the steep he stands,
Watching with fix'd and feverish eyes
The glimmer of those burning brands,
That down the rocks, with mournful ray,
Light all he loves on earth away !
Hopeless as they who, far at sea,
By the cold moon have just consign'd
The corse of one, lov'd tenderly,
To the bleak flood they leave behind ;
And on the deck still lingering stay,
And long look back, Avith sad delay,
To watch the moonlight on the wave,
That ripples o'er that cheerless grave.
But see he starts what heard he then ?
That dreadful shout ! across the glen
From the land-side it comes, and loud
Rings through the chasm ; as if the crowd
Of fearful things, that haunt that dell,
Its Gholes and Dives and shapes of hell,
Had all in one dread howl broke out,
So loud, so terrible that shout !
" They come the Moslems come ! " he cries.
His proud soul mounting to his eyes,
"Now, Spirits of the Brave, who roam
Enfranchis'd through yon starry dome,
THE FIRE-tt'OltSHIPPERS. 187
Rejoice for souls of kindred fire
Are on the wing to join your choir ! "
He said and, light as bridegrooms bound
To their young loves, reclimb'd the steep
And gain'd the Shrine his Chiefs stood round
Their swords, as with instinctive leap,
Together, at that cry accurst,
Had from their sheaths, like sunbeams, burst.
And hark ! again again it rings ;
Near and more near its echoings
Peal through the chasm oh ! who that then
Had seen those listening warrior-men,
With their swords grasp'd, their eyes of flame
Tunfd on their Chief could doubt the shame,
The indignant shame with which they thrill
To hear those shouts and yet stand still ?
He read their thoughts they were his own
"What! while our arms can wield these blades,
Shall we die tamely ? die alone ?
Without one victim to our shades,
One Moslem heart, where, buried deep,
The sabre from its toil may sleep ?
No (rod of IRAN'S burning skies!
Thou scorn'st the inglorious sacrifice.
No though of all earth's hope bereft,
Life, swords, and vengeance still are left.
We'll make yon valley's reeking caves
Live in the awe-struck minds of men,
Till tyrants shudder, when their slaves
Tell of the GhelM'r's bloody glen.
Follow, brave hearts! this pile remains
Our refuge still from life and chains;
But his the best, the holiest bed.
Who sinks entoiub'd in Moslem dead!"
188 LALLA ROOKH.
Down the precipitous rocks they sprung,
While vigor, more than human, strung
Each arm and heart. The exulting foe
Still through the dark defiles below,
Track'd by his torches' lurid fire,
Wound slow, as through GOLCONDA'S vale 294
The mighty serpent, in his ire,
Glides on with glittering, deadly trail.
Xo torch the Ghebers need so well
They know each mystery of the dell,
So oft have, in their wanderings,
Cross'd the wild race that round them dwell,
The very tigers from their delves
Look out, and let them pass, as things
Untam'd and fearless like themselves !
There was a deep ravine, that lay
Yet darkling in the Moslem's way ;
Fit spot to make invaders rue
The many fallen before the few.
The torrents from that morning's sky
Had fill'd the narrow chasm breast high,
And, on each side, aloft and wild,
Huge cliffs and toppling crags were pil'd,
The guards with which young Freedom lines
The pathways to her mountain-shrines.
Here, at this pass, the scanty band
Of IRAN'S last avengers stand ;
Here wait, in silence like the dead,
And listen for the Moslem's tread
So anxiously, the carrion-bird
Above them flaps his wing unheard !
They come that plunge into the water
Gives signal for the work of slaughter.
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 189
Now, Ghebers, now if e'er your blades
Had point or prowess, prove them now
Woe to the file that foremost wades !
They come a falchion greets each brow,
And, as they tumble, trunk on trunk,
Beneath the gory waters sunk,
Still o'er their drowning bodies press
New victims quick and numberless ;
Till scarce an arm in HA FED'S band,
So fierce their toil, hath power to stir,
But listless from each crimson hand
The sword hangs, clogg'd with massacre.
Never was horde of tyrants met
With bloodier welcome never yet
To patriot vengeance hath the sword
More terrible libations pour'd.
All up the dreary, long ravine,
By the red, murky glimmer seen
Of half-quench'd brands that o'er the flood
Lie scatter'd round and burn in blood,
What ruin glares ! what carnage swims !
Heads, blazing turbans, quivering limbs,
Lost swords that, dropp'd from man}- a hand,
In that thick pool of slaughter stand ;
Wretches who wading, half on fire
From the toss'd brands that round them fly,
'Twixt flood and flame in shrieks expire ;
And some who, grasp'd by those that die,
Sink woundless with them, smother'd o'er
In their dead brethren's gushing gore!
But vainly hundreds, thousands bleed,
Still hundreds, thousands more succeed;
Countless as tow'rds some flame at night
190 LALLA BOOKH.
The North's dark insects wing their flight.
And quench or perish in its light,
To this terrific spot they pour
Till, bridg'd with Moslem bodies o'er,
It bears aloft their slippery tread,
And o'er the dying and the dead,
Tremendous causeway ! on they pass.
Then, hapless Ghebers, then, alas !
What hope was left for you ? for you,
Whose yet warm pile of sacrifice
Is smoking in their vengeful eyes ?
Whose swords how keen, how fierce they knew,
And burn with shame to find how few ?
Crush'd down by that vast multitude,
Some found their graves where first they stood ;
While some with hardier struggle died,
And still fought on by HAFED'S side,
Who, fronting to the foe, trod back
Tow'rds the high towers his gory track ;
And, as a lion swept away
By sudden swell of JORDAN'S pride
From the wild covert where he lay, 295
Long battles with the o'erwhelming tide,
So fought he back with fierce delay,
And kept both foes and fate at bay.
But whither now ? their track is lost,
Their prey escap'd guide, torches gone
By torrent-beds and labyrinths crost,
The scatter'd crowd rush blindly on
" Curse on those tardy lights that wind,"
They panting cry, " so far behind ;
Oh for a bloodhound's precious scent,
To track the way the GTheber went ! "
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 191
Vain wish confusedly along
They rush, more desperate as more wrong :
Till, wilder'd by the far-off lights,
Yet glittering up those gloomy heights,
Their footing, maz'd and lost, they miss,
And down the darkling precipice
Are dash'd into the deep abyss ;
Or midway hang, impal'd on rocks,
A banquet, yet alive, for flocks
Of ravening vultures, while the dell
Ke-echoes with each horrible yell.
Those sounds the last, to vengeance dear,
That e'er shall ring in HAFED'S ear,
Now reach'd him, as aloft, alone,
Upon the steep way breathless thrown,
He lay beside his reeking blade,
Resign'd, as if life's task were o'er,
Its last blood-offering amply paid,
And IRAN'S self could claim no more.
One only thought, one lingering beam
Now broke across his dizzy dream
Of pain and weariness 'twas she,
His heart's pure planet, shining yet
Above the waste of memory,
When all life's other lights were set.
And never to his mind before
Her image such enchantment wore.
It seem'd as if each thought that stain'd,
Each fear that ehill'd their loves, was past,
And not one cloud of earth reinain'd
Between him and her radiance east;
As if to charms, before so bright,
New grace from other worlds w;is given,
192 LALLA HOOKH.
And his soul saw her by the light
Now breaking o'er itself from heaven !
A voice spoke near him 'twas the tone
Of a lov'd friend, the only one
Of all his warriors, left with life
From that short night's tremendous strife.
" And must we then, my Chief, die here ?
Foes round us, and the Shrine so near ! "
These words have rous'd the last remains
Of life within him " What ! not yet
Beyond the reach of Moslem chains ! "
The thought could make e'en Death forget
His icy bondage with a bound
He springs, all bleeding, from the ground,
And grasps his comrade's arm, now grown
E'en feebler, heavier than his own,
And up the painful pathway leads,
Death gaining on each step he treads.
Speed them, thou God, who heard'st their vow !
They mount they bleed oh, save them now !
The crags are red they've clamber'd o'er,
The rock-weed's dripping with their gore ;
Thy blade too, HAFED, false at length,
Now breaks beneath thy tottering strength !
Haste, haste the voices of the Foe
Come near and nearer from below
One effort more thank Heaven ! 'tis past,
They've gain'd the topmost steep at last.
And now they touch the temple's walls,
Now HAFED sees the Fire divine
When, lo ! his weak, worn comrade falls
Dead on the threshold of the Shrine.
" Alas, brave soul, too quickly fled !
And must I leave thee withering here,
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 193
The sport of every ruffian's tread,
The mark for every coward's spear ?
No, by yon altar's sacred beams ! "
He cries, and, with a strength that seems
Not of this world, uplifts the frame
Of the fallen Chief, and tow'rds the flame
Bears him along ; with death-damp hand
The corpse upon the pyre he lays,
Then lights the consecrated brand,
And fires the pile, whose sudden blaze
Like lightning bursts o'er OMAN'S Sea.
" Now, Freedom's God ! I come to Thee,"
The youth exclaims, and with a smile
Of triumph vaulting on the pile
In that last effort, ere the fires
Have harm'd one glorious limb, expires !
What shriek was that on OMAN'S tide ?
It came from yonder drifting bark,
That just hath caught upon her side
The death-light and again is dark.
It is th i bout ah, why delay 'd ?
That bears the wretched Moslem maid;
Confided to the watchful care
Of a small veteran band, with whom
Their generous Chieftain would not share
The secret of his final doom,
But hop'd when HINDA, safe and free,
Was render'd to her father's eyes,
Their pardon, full and prompt, would be
The ransom of so dear a prixe.
Unconscious, thus, of HAKKH'S fate,
And proud to guard their beauteous freight,
Scarce had they clear'd the surfy waves
That foam around those frightful cuves.
194 LALLA ROOKII.
When the curst war-whoops, known so well,
Came echoing from the distant dell
Sudden each oar, upheld and still,
Hung dripping o'er the vessel's side,
And, driving at the current's will,
They rock'd along the whispering tide ;
While every eye, in mute dismay,
Was tow'rd that fatal mountain turn'd,
Where the dim altar's quivering ray
As yet all lone and tranquil burn'd.
Oh ! 'tis not, HIXDA, in the power
Of Fancy's most terrific touch
To paint thy pangs in that dread hour
Thy silent agony 'twas such
As those who feel could paint too well,
But none e'er felt and lived to tell !
'Twas not alone the dreary state
Of a lorn spirit crush'd by fate,
When, though no more remains to dread^
The panic chill will not depart ;
When, though the inmate Hope be dead,
Her ghost still haunts the mouldering heart.
No pleasures, hopes, affections gone,
The wretch may bear, and yet live on,
Like things, within the cold rock found
Alive, when all's congeal'd around.
But there's a blank repose in this,
A calm stagnation, that were bliss
To the keen, burning, harrowing pain,
Now felt through all thy breast and brain;
That spasm of terror, mute, intense,
That breathless, agoniz'd suspense,
From whose hot throb, whose deadly aching,
The heart hath no relief but breaking !
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 195
Calm is the wave heaven's brilliant lights
Reflected dance beneath the prow ;
Time was when, on such lovely nights,
She who is there, so desolate now,
Could sit all cheerful, though alone,
And ask no happier joy than seeing
That starlight o'er the waters thrown
No joy but that, to make her blest,
And the fresh, buoyant sense of being,
Which bounds in youth's yet careless breast,
Itself a star, not borrowing light,
But in its own glad essence bright.
How different now ! but, hark, again
The yell of havoc rings brave men !
In vain, with beating hearts, ye stand
On the bark's edge in vain each hand
Half draws the falchion from its sheath ;
All's o'er in rust your blades may lie :
He, at whose word they've scatter'd death,
E'en now, this night, himself must die !
Well may ye look to yon dim tower,
And ask, and wondering guess what means
The battle-cry at this dead hour
Ah ! she could tell you she, who leans
Unheeded there, pale, sunk, aghast,
With brow against the dew-oold mast;
Too well she knows her more than life,
Her soul's first idol and its last,
Lies bleeding in that murderous strife.
But see what moves upon the height ?
Some signal ! 'tis a torch's light.
What bodes its solitary glare ?
In gasping silence tow'rd the Shrine
All eyes are turn'd thine, HINDA, thine
196 LALLA EOOKIL
Fix their last fading life-beams there.
'Twas but a moment fierce and high
The death-pile blaz'd into the sky,
And far away, o'er rock and flood,
Its melancholy radiance sent ;
While HAFED, like a vision, stood
Reveal'd before the burning pyre,
Tall, shadowy, like a Spirit of Fire
Shrin'd in its own grand element !
" 'Tis he ! " the shuddering maid exclaims,
But, while she speaks, he's seen no more ;
^ High burst in air the funeral flames,
And IRAN'S hopes and hers are o'er !
One wild, heart-broken shriek she gave ;
Then sprung, as if to reach that blaze,
"Where still she fix'd her dying gaze,
And, gazing, sunk into the wave,
Deep, deep, where never care or pain
Shall reach her innocent heart again !
Farewell farewell to thee, ARABY'S daughter !
(Thus warbled a PERI beneath the dark sea,)
No pearl ever lay, under OMAN'S green water,
More pure in its shell than thy spirit in thee.
Oh ! fair as the sea-flower close to thee growing,
How light was thy heart till Love's witchery came,
Like the wind of the south 296 o'er a summer lute blowing,
And hush'd all its music, and wither'd its frame 1
But long, upon ARABY'S green sunny highlands,
Shall maids and their lovers remember the doom
Of her, who lies sleeping among the Pearl Islands,
With nought but the sea-star 297 to light up her tomb.
THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS. 197
And still, when the merry date-season is burning, 298
And calls to the palm-groves the young and the old,
The happiest there, from their pastime returning
At sunset, will weep when thy story is told.
The young village-maid, when with flowers she dresses
Her dark flowing hair for some festival day,
Will think of thy fate till, neglecting her tresses,
She mournfully turns from the mirror away.
Nor shall IRAN, belov'd of her Hero ! forget thee
Though tyrants watch over her tears as they start.
Close, close by the side of that Hero she'll set thee,
Embalm'd in the innermost shrine of her heart.
Farewell be it ours to embellish thy pillow
With everything beauteous that grows in the deep ;
Each flower of the rock and each gem of the billow
Shall sweeten thy bed and illumine thy sleep.
Around thee shall glisten the loveliest amber
That ever the sorrowing sea-bird has wept ; 2M
With many a shell, in whose hollow-wreath'd chamber
We, Peris of Ocean, by moonlight have slept.
We'll dive where the gardens of coral lie darkling,
And plant all the rosiest steins at thy head ;
We'll seek where the sands of the Caspian ao are spark-
And gather their gold to strew over thy bed.
Farewell farewell until I'ity's sweet fountain
Is lost in the hearts of the fair and tin- brave,
They'll weep for the Chieftain who died on that mountain,
They'll weep for the Maiden who sleeps in this wavw.
198 LALLA ROOKH.
THE singular placidity with which FADLADEEN had lis
tened, during the latter part of this obnoxious story,
surprised the Princess and FERAMORZ exceedingly ; and
even inclined towards him the hearts of these unsus-
picious young persons, who little knew the source of a
complacency so marvellous. The truth was, he had
been organizing, for the last few days, a most notable
plan of persecution against the Poet, in consequence of
some passages that had fallen from him on the second
evening of recital, which appeared to this worthy
Chamberlain to contain language and principles, for
which nothing short of the summary criticism of the
Chabuk 301 would be advisable. It was his intention,
therefore, immediately on their arrival at Cashmere, to
give information to the King of Bucharia of the very
dangerous sentiments of his minstrel ; and if, unfortu-
nately, that monarch did not act with suitable vigor on
the occasion, (that is, if he did not give the Chabuk to
FERAMORZ, and a place to FADLADEEN,) there would be
an end, he feared, of all legitimate government in
Bucharia. He could not help, however, auguring better
both for himself and the cause of potentates in general ;
and it was the pleasure arising from these mingled
anticipations that diffused such unusual satisfaction
through his features, and made his eyes shine out, like
poppies of the desert, over the wide and lifeless wilder-
ness of that countenance.
Having decided upon the Poet's chastisement in this
manner, he thought it but humanity to spare him the
minor tortures of criticism. Accordingly, when they
assembled the following evening in the pavilion, and
LALLA ROOKH. 199
LALLA ROOKH was expecting to see all the beauties of
her bard melt away, one by one, in the acidity of criti-
cism, like pearls in the cup of the Egyptian queen, he
agreeably disappointed her, by merely saying, with an
ironical smile, that the merits of such a poem dererved
to be tried at a much higher tribunal ; and then suddenly
passed off into a panegyric upon all Mussulman sover-
eigns, more particularly his august and Imperial master,
Aurungzebe, the wisest and best of the descendants
of Timur, who, among other great things he had done
for mankind, had given to him, FADLADEEN, the very
profitable posts of Betel-carrier and Taster of Sherbets
to the Emperor, Chief Holder of the Girdle of Beautiful
Forms, 802 and Grand Xazir, or Chamberlain of the Haram.
They were now not far from that Forbidden River, 808
beyond which no pure Hindoo can pass ; and were repos-
ing for a time in the rich valley of Hussun Abdaul,
which had always been a favorite resting-place of the
Emperors in their annual migrations to Cashmere. Here
often had the Light of the Faith, Jehan-Gtiire, been
known to wander with his beloved and beautiful Nour-
mahal; and here would LALLA ROOKH have been happy
to remain forever, giving up the throne of Bucharia and
the world for FKRAMOKZ and love in this sweet, lonely
valley. But the time was now fast approaching when
she must see him no longer, or, what was still worse,
behold him with eyes whose every look Ix-longed to
another; and then 1 was a melancholy preciousness in
these last moments, which made her heart cling to them
as it would to life. During the latter part of the journey,
indeed, she had sunk into a deep sadness, from which
nothing but the presence of the young minstrel could
awake her. Like those lamps in tombs, which only
light up when tbe air is admitted, it was only at his
200 LALLA ROOKH.
approach that her eyes became smiling and animated.
But here, in this dear valley, every moment appeared an
age of pleasure ; she saw him all day, and was, there-
fore, all day happy, resembling, she often thought,
that people of Zinge, who attribute the unfading cheer-
fulness they enjoy to one genial star that rises nightly
over their heads. 804
The whole party, indeed, seemed in their liveliest
mood during the few days they passed in this delightful
solitude. The young attendants of the Princess, who
were here allowed a much freer range than they could
safely be indulged with in a less sequestered place,
ran wild among the gardens and bounded through the
meadows, lightly as young roes over the aromatic plains
of Tibet. While FADLADEEX, in addition to the spirit-
ual comfort derived by him from a pilgrimage to the
tomb of the Saint from whom the valley is named, had
also opportunities of indulging, in a small way, his taste
for victims, by putting to death some hundreds of those
unfortunate little lizards 305 which all pious Mussulmans
make it a point to kill ; taking for granted, that the
manner in which the creature hangs its head is meant as
a mimicry of the attitude in which the Faithful say their
About two miles from Hussun Abdaul were those
Koyal Gardens 806 which had grown beautiful under the
care of so many lovely eyes, and were beautiful still,
though those eyes could see them no longer. This place,
with its flowers and its holy silence, interrupted only by
the dipping of the wings of birds in its marble basins
filled with the pure water of those hills, was to LALLA
EOOKH all that her heart could fancy of fragrance, cool-
ness, and almost heavenly tranquillity. As the Prophet
LALLA ROOKU. 201
said of Damascus, "It was too delicious;" 807 and here,
in listening to the sweet voice of FERAMOKZ, or reading
in his eyes what yet he never dared to tell her, the most
exquisite moments of her whole life were passed. One
evening, when they had been talking of the Sultana
Nourmahal, the Light of the Haram, 808 who had so often
wandered among these flowers, and fed with her own
hands, in those marble basins, the small shining fishes of
which she was so fond, 809 the youth, in order to delay
the moment of separation, proposed to recite a short
story, or rather rhapsody, of which this adored Sultana
was the heroine. It related, he said, to the reconcile-
ment of a sort of lovers' quarrel which took place
between her and the Emperor during a Feast of Hoses
at Cashmere ; and would remind the Princess of that
difference between Haroun-al-Raschid and his fair mis-
tress Marida 810 which was so happily made up by the
soft strains of the musician Moussali. As the story was
chiefly to be told in song, and FEKAMORZ had unluckily
forgotten his own lute in the valley, he borrowed the
vina of LALLA KOOKH'S little Persian slave, and thus
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM.
WHO has not heard of the vale of CASHMERE,
With its roses the brightest that earth ever gave, 311
Its temples, and grottos, and fountains as clear
As the love-lighted eyes that hang over their wave ?
Oh ! to see it at sunset, when warm o'er the Lake
Its splendor at parting a summer eve throws,
Like a bride, full of blushes, when ling'ring to take
A last look of her mirror at night ere she goes !
When the shrines through the foliage are gleaming
And each hallows the hour by some rites of its own.
Here the music of pray'r from a minaret swells,
Here the Magian his urn, full of perfume, is
And here, at the altar, a zone of sweet bells
Round the waist of some fair Indian dancer is
Or to see it by moonlight, when mellowly shines
The light o'er its palaces, gardens, and shrines ;
When the Avater-falls gleam, like a quick fall of stars,
And the nightingale's hymn from the Isle of Chenars
Is broken by laughs and light echoes of feet
From the cool, shining walks where the young people
Or at morn, when the magic of daylight awakes
A new wonder each minute, as slowly it breaks,
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 203
Hills, cupolas, fountains, call'd forth every one
Out of darkness, as if but just born of the Sun.
When the Spirit of Fragrance is up with the day,
From his Harain of night-flowers stealing away ;
And the wind, full of wantonness, woos like a lover
The young aspen-trees, 818 till they tremble all over.
"When the East is as warm as the light of first hopes,
And Day, with his banner of radiance unfurl'd,
Shines in through the mountainous portal 814 that opes,
Sublime, from that Valley of bliss to the world !
But never yet, by night or day,
In dew of spring or summer's ray,
Did the sweet Valley shine so gay
As now it shines all love and light,
Visions by day and feasts by night !
A happier smile illumes each brow,
With quicker spread each heart uncloses,
And all is ecstasy for now
The Valley holds its Feast of Roses ; 816
The joyous Time, when pleasures pour
Profusely round, and, in their shower,
Hearts open, like the Season's Rose,
The Flow'ret of a hundred leaves, 81 *
Expanding while the dew-fall flows,
And every leaf its balm receives.
'Twos when the hour of evening came
Upon the Lake, serene and cool,
When Day had hid his sultry flame
Behind tin- palms of BxRAMOULE,* 11
When maids Ix-gan to lift their heads,
Hefresh'd from their emhroider'd Ixxls,
Where they had slept the sun away,
And wak'd to moonlight and to play.
204 LALLA ROOKH.
All were abroad the busiest hive
On BELA'S 818 hills is less alive,
When saffron-beds are full in flower,
Than look'd the Valley in that hour.
A thousand restless torches play'd
Through every grove and island shade ;
A thousand sparkling lamps were set
On every dome and minaret ;
And fields and pathways, far and near,
Were lighted by a blaze so clear,
That you could see, in wandering round,
The smallest rose-leaf on the ground.
Yet did the maids and matrons leave
Their veils at home, that brilliant eve ;
And there were glancing eyes about,
And cheeks, that would not dare shine out
In open day, but thought they might
Look lovely then, because 'twas night.
And all were free, and wandering,
And all exclaim'd to all they met,
That never did the summer bring
So gay a Feast of Koses yet ;
The moon had never shed a light
So clear as that which bless'd them there;
The roses ne'er shone half so bright,
Nor they themselves look'd half so fair.
And what a wilderness of flowers !
It seem'd as though from all the bowers
And fairest fields of all the year,
The mingled spoil were scatter'd here.
The Lake, too, like a garden breathes,
With the rich buds that o'er it lie,
As if a shower of fairy wreaths
Had fall'n upon it from the sky !
THE LIGIIT OF THE HABAM. 205
And then the sounds of joy, the beat
Of tabors and of dancing feet ;
The minaret-crier's chant of glee
Sung from his lighted gallery, 819
And answer'd by a ziraleet
From neighboring Haram, wild and sweet ;
The merry laughter, echoing
From gardens, where the silken swing 82
Wafts some delighted girl above
The top leaves of the orange grove ;
Or, from those infant groups at play
Among the tents 821 that line the way,
Flinging, unaw'd by slave or mother,
Handfuls of roses at each other.
Then, the sounds from the Lake, the low whispering
As they shoot through the moonlight ; the dipping
A.nd the wild, airy warbling that everywhere floats,
Through the groves, round the islands, as if all the
Like those of KATHAY, utter'd music, and gave
An answer in song to the kiss of each wave. 8 - 2
Hut the gentlest of all are those sounds, full of feeling,
That soft from the lute of some lover are stealing,
Some lover, who knows all the heart-touching power
Of a lute and a sigh in this magical hour.
Oh ! best of delights as it everywhere is
To l>c near the lov'd One, what a rapture is his
Who in moonlight and music thus sweetly may glide
O'er the Lake of CASIIMKKK, with that One by his side!
If woman can make the worst wilderness dear,
Think, think what a Heaven she must make of CASH-
So felt the magnificent Son of A< u.ut, 8:a
206 LALLA BOOKH.
When from power and pomp and the trophies of war
He flew to that Valley, forgetting them all
With the Light of the Hararn, his young NOURMAIIAL,
When free and uncrown'd as the Conqueror rov'd
By the banks of that Lake, with his only belov'd,
He saw, in the wreaths she would playfully snatch
From the hedges, a glory his crown could not match,
And preferr'd in his heart the least ringlet that curl'd
Down her exquisite neck to the throne of the world.
There's a beauty, forever unchangingly bright,
Like the long, sunny lapse of a summer-day's light.
Shining on, shining on, by no shadow made tender,
Till Love falls asleep in its sameness of splendor.
This was not the beauty oh, nothing like this,
That to young NOURMAHAL gave such magic of bliss !
But that loveliness, ever in motion, which plays
Like the light upon autumn's soft shadowy days,
Now here and now there, giving warmth as it flies
From the lip to the cheek, from the cheek to the eyes ;
Now melting in mist and now breaking in gleams,
Like the glimpses a saint hath of Heav'n in his
When pensive, it seein'd as if that very grace,
That charm of all others, was born with her face !
And when angry, for e'en in the tranquillest climes
Light breezes will ruffle the blossoms sometimes
The short, passing anger but seem'd to awaken
New beauty, like flowers that are sweetest when shaken.
If tenderness touch'd her, the dark of her eye
At once took a darker, a heavenlier dye,
From the depth of whose shadow, like holy revealings
From innermost shrines, came the light of her feelings.
Then her mirth oh ! 'twas sportive as ever took wing
From the heart with a burst, like the wild-bird in spring ;
TEE LIGHT OF THE HABAM. 07
Illum'd by a wit that would fascinate sages,
Yet playful as Peris just loos'd from their cages. 824
While her laugh, full of life, without any control
P>ut the sweet one of gracefulness, rung from her soul ;
And where it most sparkled no glance could discover,
In lip, cheek, or eyes, for she brighten' d all over,
Like any fair lake that the breeze is upon,
When it breaks into dimples and laughs in the sun.
Such, such were the peerless enchantments that gave
NOURMAHAL the proud Lord of the East for her slave :
And though bright was his Haram, a living parterre
Of the flowers 826 of this planet though treasures
For which SOLIMAN'S self might have giv'n all the
That the navy from OPHIR e'er wing'dto his shore,
Yet dim before her were the smiles of them all,
And the Light of his Haram was young NOURMAIIAL !
But where is she now, this night of joy,
When bliss is every heart's employ ?
When all around her is so bright,
So like the visions of a trance,
That one might think, who came by chance
Into the Vale this happy night,
He saw that City of Delight 829
In Fairy-land whose streets and towers
Are made of gems and light and flowers !
Where is the lov'd Sultana '.' where.
When mirth brings out the young and fair,
Dws she, the fairest, hide her brow,
In melancholy stillness now ?
Alas! how light a cause may move
Dissension between hearts that love !
Hearts that the world in vain had tried,
208 LALLA HOOKS.
And sorrow but more closely tied ;
That stood the storm, when waves were rough,
Yet in a sunny hour fall off,
Like ships that have gone down at sea,
When heaven was all tranquillity !
A something, light as air a look,
A word unkind or wrongly taken
Oh ! love, that tempests never shook,
A breath, a touch like this hath shaken.
And ruder words will soon rush in
To spread the breach that words begin ;
And eyes forget the gentle ray
They wore in courtship's smiling day ;
And voices lose the tone that shed
A tenderness round all they said;
Till fast declining, one by one,
The sweetnesses of love are gone,
And hearts, so lately mingled, seem
Like broken clouds, or like the stream,
That smiling left the mountain's brow
As though its waters ne'er could sever,
Yet, ere it reach the plain below,
Breaks into floods, that part forever.
Oh, you, that have the charge of Love,
Keep him in rosy bondage bound,
As in the Fields of Bliss above
He sits, with flow'rets fetter'd round ; 827
Loose not a tie that round him clings,
Nor ever let him use his wings ;
For e'en an hour, a minute's flight
Will rob the plumes of half their light :
Like that celestial bird, whose nest
Is found beneath far Eastern skies,
Whose wings, though radiant when at rest,
Lose all their glory when he flies 1 828
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 209
Some difference, of this dangerous kind,
By which, though light, the links that bind
The fondest hearts may soon be riven ;
Some shadow in Love's summer heaven,
Which, though a fleecy speck at first,
May yet in awful thunder burst ;
Such cloud it is that now hangs over
The heart of the Imperial Lover,
And far hath banish'd from his sight
His NOURMAHAL, his Haram's Light !
Hence is it, on this happy night,
When Pleasure through the fields and groves
Has let loose all her world of loves,
And every heart has found its own,
He wanders, joyless and alone,
And weary as that bird of Thrace
Whose pinion knows no resting-place. 829
In vain the loveliest cheeks and syes
This Eden of the Earth supplies
Come crowding round the cheeks are pale,
The eyes are dim : though rich the spot
With every flow'r this earth has got,
What is it to the nightingale,
If there his darling rose is not? 880
In vain the Valley's smiling throng
Worship him, as he moves along ;
Hi- heeds them not one smile of hers
Is worth a world of worshippers.
They but the Star's adorers are,
She i.s the Heav'n that lights the Star I
Hence is it, too, that NoURMAHAL,
Amid the luxuries of this hour,
Far from the joyous festival,
Sits in her own sequester'd l>ower,
210 LALLA ROOKH.
With no one near, to soothe or aid,
But that inspir'd and wondrous maid,
NAMOUNA, the Ench? -ress ; one,
O'er whom his race tne golden sun
For unremember'd years has run,
Yet never saw her blooming brow
Younger or fairer than 'tis now.
Nay, rather, as the west wind's sigh
Freshens the flower it passes by,
Time's wing but seem'd, in stealing o'er,
To leave her lovelier than before.
Yet on her smiles a sadness hung,
And when, as oft, she spoke or sung
Of other worlds, there came a light
From her dark eyes so strangely bright,
That all believ'd nor man nor earth
Were conscious of NAMOUXA'S birth !
All spells and talismans she knew,
From the great Mantra, 881 which ai-ound
The Air's sublimer Spirits drew,
To the gold gems 832 of AFRIC, bound
Upon the wandering Arab's arm,
To keep him from the Siltim's 888 harm.
And she had pledg'd her powerful art,
Pledg'd it with all the zeal and heart
Of one who knew, though high her sphere,
What 'twas to lose a love so dear,
To find some spell that should recall
Her Selim's 834 smile to NOURMAHAL !
'Twas midnight through the lattice, wreath'd
With woodbine, many a perfume breath'd
From plants that wake when others sleep,
From timid jasmine buds, that keep
Their odor to themselves all day,
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 211
But, when the sun-light dies away,
Let the delicious secret out
To every breeze that roams about ;
When thus NAMOUNA : " Tis the hour
That scatters spells on herb and flower,
And garlands might be gather'd now,
That, twin'd around the sleeper's brow,
Would make him dream of such delights,
Such miracles and dazzling sights,
As Genii of the Sun behold,
At evening, from their tents of gold,
Upon the horizon where they play
Till twilight comes, and, ray by ray,
Their sunny mansions melt away.
Now, too, a chaplet might be wreath'd
Of buds o'er which the moon has breath'd,
Which worn by her, whose love has stray'd,
Might bring some Peri from the skies,
Some sprite, whose very soul is made
Of flow'rets' breaths and lovers' sighs,
And who might tell "
"For me, for me,"
Cried NOURMAHAL impatiently,
"Oh ! twine that wreath for me to-night."
Then, rapidly, witli foot as light
As the young musk-roe's, out she flew,
To cull each shining leaf that grew
Beneath the moonlight's hallowing beams,
For this enchanted Wreath of Dreams.
Anemones and Seas of Gold, 886
And new-blown lilies of the river,
And those sweet flow'rets that unfold
Their buds on CAMADEVA'S quiver;* 8 *
The tuberose, with her silvery light,
That in the Gardens of Malay
212 LALLA EOOKH.
Is call'd the Mistress of the Night, 887
So like a bride, scented and bright,
She comes out when the sun's away ;
Amaranths, such as crown the maids
That wander through ZAMARA'S shades ; 888
And the white moon-flower, as it shows,
On SEREXDIB'S high crags, to those
Who near the isle at evening sail,
Scenting her clove-trees in the gale ;
In short, all flow'rets and all plants,
From the divine Ainrita tree, 389
That blesses heaven's inhabitants
With fruits of immortality,
Down to the basil tuft, 840 that waves
Its fragrant blossom over graves,
And to the humble rosemary,
Whose sweets so thanklessly are shed
To scent the desert 841 and the dead :
All in that garden bloom, and all
Are gather'd by young NOURMAHA.L,
Who heaps her baskets with the flowers
And leaves, till they can hold no more ;
Then to KAMOUXA flies, and showers
Upon her lap the shining store,
With what delight the Enchantress views
So many buds, bath'd with the dews
And beams of that bless'd hour ! her glance
Spoke something, past all mortal pleasures.
As, in a kind of holy trance,
She hung above those fragrant treasures,
Bending to drink their balmy airs,
As if she mix'd her soul with theirs.
And 'twas, indeed, the perfume shed
From flow'rs and scented flame, that fed
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 13
Her charmed life for none had e'er
Beheld her taste of mortal fare,
Nor ever in aught earthly dip,
But the morn's dew, her roseate lip.
Fill'd with the cool, inspiring smell,
The Enchantress now begins her spell,
Thus singing as she winds and weaves
In mystic form the glittering leaves :
I know where the wing'd visions dwell
That around the night-bed play ;
I know each herb and flow'ret's bell,
Where they hide their wings by day.
Then hasten we, maid,
To twine our braid,
To-morrow the dreams and flowers will fade.
The image of love, that nightly flies
To visit the bashful maid,
Steals from the jasmine flower, that sighs
Its soul, like her, in the shade.
The dream of a future, happier hour,
That alights on misery's brow,
Springs out of the silvery almond-flower,
That blooms on a leafless lM>ugh. Ma
Then hasten we, maid,
To twine our braid,
To-morrow the dreams and flowers will fade.
The visions, that oft to worldly eyes
The glittt-r of mines unfold,
Inhabit tin* mountain-herb,* 41 that dyes
The tooth of the fawn like gold.
214 LALLA 11OOKIL
The phantom shapes oh touch not them I
That appal the murderer's sight,
Lurk in the fleshly mandrake's stem,
That shrieks, when pluck'd at night I
Then hasten we, maid,
To twine our braid,
To-morrow the dreams and flowers will fade.
The dream of the injur'd, patient mind,
That smiles at the wrongs of men,
Is found in the bruis'd and wounded rind
Of the cinnamon, sweetest then.
Then hasten we, maid,
To twine our braid,
To-morrow the dreams and flowers will fade.
No sooner was the flowery crown
Plac'd on her head, than sleep came down,
Gently as nights of summer fall,
Upon the lids of NOURMAHAL ;
And, suddenly, a tuneful breeze,
As full of small, rich harmonies
As ever wind, that o'er the tents
Of AzAB 344 blew, was full of scents,
Steals on her ear, and floats and swells,
Like the first air of morning creeping
Into those wreathy, Ked-Sea shells,
Where Love himself, of old, lay sleeping ; * 46
And now a Spirit form'd, 'twould seem,
Of music and of light, so fair,
So brilliantly his features beam,
And such a sound is in the air
Of sweetness when he waves his wings,
Hovers around her, and thus sings :
THE LIGHT OF THE II A RAM. 215
From CHINDARA'S 848 warbling fount I come,
Call'd by that moonlight garland's spell ;
From CHINDARA'S fount, my fairy home,
Where in music, morn and night, I dwell :
Where lutes in the air are heard about,
And voices are singing the whole day long,
And every sigh the heart breathes out
Is turn'd, as it leaves the lips, to song !
Hither I come
From my fairy home ;
And if there's a magic in Music's strain,
I swear by the breath
Of that moonlight wreath,
Thy Lover shall sigh at thy feet again.
For mine is the lay that lightly floats,
And mine are the murmuring, dying notes,
That fall as soft as snow on the sea,
And melt in the heart as instantly :
And the passionate strain that, deeply going,
Refines the bosom it trembles through,
As the musk-wind, over the water blowing,
Ruffles the wave, but sweetens it too.
Mine is the charm, whose mystic sway
The Spirits of past Delight obey;
Let but the tuneful talisman sound,
And they come, like Genii, hovering round.
And mine is the gentle song that bears
From soul to soul, the wishes of love,
As a bird, that wafts through genial airs
The cinnamon-seed from grove to grove. 141
'Tis I that mingle in one sweet measure
The past, the present, and future of pleasure ; ***
216 LALLA ROOKH.
When Memory links the tone that is gone
With the blissful tone that's still in the ear ;
And Hope from a heavenly note flies on
To a note more heavenly still that is near.
The warrior's heart, when touch'd by me,
Can as downy soft and as yielding be
As his own white plume, that high amid death
Through the field has shone yet moves with a
And oh ! how the eyes of Beauty glisten,
When Music has reach'd her inward soul,
Like the silent stars, that wink and listen
While Heaven's eternal melodies roll.
So, hither I come
From my fairy home ;
And if there's a magic in Music's strain,
I swear by the breath
Of that moonlight wreath,
Thy Lover shall sigh at thy feet again.
'Tis dawn at least that earlier dawn,
Whose glimpses are again withdrawn, 8 * 9
As if the morn had wak'd, and then
Shut close her lids of light again.
And NOURMAHAL is up and trying
The wonders of her lute, whose strings
Oh, bliss ! now murmur like the sighing
From that ambrosial Spirit's wings.
And then, her voice 'tis more than human
Never, till now, had it been given
To lips of any mortal woman
To utter notes so fresh from heaven;
Sweet as the breath of angel sighs,
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 217
When angel sighs are most divine.
" Oh ! let it last till night," she cries,
" And he is more than ever mine."
And hourly she renews the lay,
So fearful lest its heavenly sweetness
Should, ere the evening, fade away,
For things so heavenly have such fleetnese !
But, far from fading, it but grows
Richer, diviner as it flows ;
Till rapt she dwells on every string,
And pours again each sound along,
Like echo, lost and languishing,
In love with her own wondrous song.
That evening, (trusting that his soul
Might be from haunting love releas'd
By mirth, by music, and the bowl,)
The Imperial SELIM held a feast
In his magnificent Shalimar : 85
In whose Saloons, when the first star
Of evening o'er the waters trembled,
The Valley's loveliest all assembled ;
All the bright creatures that, like dreams,
Glide through its foliage, and drink beams
Of l>eauty from its founts and streams; 851
And all those wandering minstrel-maids,
Who leave how can they leave ? the shades
Of that dear Valley, and are found
Singing in (iardens of the South 852
Those songs, that ne'er so sweetly sound
As from a young Cashmerian's mouth.
There, too, the Haram's inmates smile;
Maids from the West, with sun-bright hair,
And from the Garden of the NILE,
Delicate as the roses there ; ***
218 LALLA ROOKH.
Daughters of Love from CYPRUS' rocks,
With Paphian diamonds in their locks ; 854
Light PERI forms, such as there are
On the gold meads of CANDAHAR ; 855
And they, before whose sleepy eyes,
In their own bright Kathaian bowers,
Sparkle such rainbow butterflies,
That they might fancy the rich flowers,
That round them in the sun lay sighing,
Had been by magic all set flying. 856
Everything young, everything fair
From East and West is blushing there,
Except except oh, NOURMAHAL !
Thou loveliest, dearest of them all,
The one whose smile shone out alone,
Amidst a world the only one ;
Whose light, among so many lights,
Was like that star on starry nights,
The seaman singles from the sky,
To steer his bark forever by !
Thou wert not there so SELIM thought,
And everything seem'd drear without thee ;
But ah ! thou wert, thou wert, and brought
Thy charm of song all fresh about thee.
Mingling unnoticed Avith a band
Of lutanists from many a land,
And veil'd by such a mask as shades
The features of young Arab maids, 857
A mask that leaves but one eye free,
To do its best in witchery,
She rov'd, with beating heart, around,
And waited, trembling, for the minute,
When she might try if still the sound
Of her lov'd lute had magic in it.
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 219
The board was spread with fruits and wine ;
With grapes of gold, like those that shine
On CASEIN'S hills; M8 pomegranates full
Of melting sweetness, and the pears,
And sunniest apples 869 that CAUBUL
In all its thousand gardens 860 bears;
Plantains, the golden and the green,
MALAYA'S nectar'd mangusteen; M1
Prunes of BOKARA, and sweet nuts
From the far groves of SAMARCAND,
And BASRA dates, and apricots,
Seed of the Sun, 862 from IRAN'S land ;
With rich conserve of Visna cherries, 86 *
Of orange flowers, and of those berries
That, wild and fresh, the young gazelles
Feed on in ERAC'S rocky dells. 864
All these in richest vases smile,
In baskets of pure santal-wood,
And urns of porcelain from that isle 8M
Sunk underneath the Indian flood,
Whence oft the lucky diver brings
Vases to grace the halls of kings.
Wines, too, of every clime and hue,
Around their liquid lustre threw ;
AnilxT Rosolli, 86 * the bright dew
From vineyards of the Green-Sea gushing; 187
And SHIRAZ wine, that richly ran
As if that jewel, large and rare,
The ruby for which Krui.Ai-KiiAX
Offer'd a city's wealth, 868 was blushing
Melted within the goblets there !
And amply SK.I.IM quaffs of each,
And seems resulv'd the flood shall reach
His inward heart, shedding around
220 LALLA ROOKH,
A genial deluge, as they run,
That soon shall leave no spot undrown'd,
lor Love to rest his wings upon.
He little knew how well the boy
Can float upon a goblet's streams,
Lighting them with his smile of joy;
As bards have seen him in their dreams,
Down the blue GANGES laughing glide
Upon a rosy lotus wreath, 369
Catching new lustre from the tide
That with his image shone beneath.
But what are cups, without the aid
Of song to speed them as they flow ?
And see a lovely Georgian maid,
With all the bloom, the freshen'd glow
Of her own country maidens' looks,
When warm they rise from TEFLIS' brooks ; 87
And with an eye, whose restless ray,
Full, floating, dark oh, he, who knows
His heart is weak, of Heaven should pray
To guard him from such eyes as those !
With a voluptuous wildness flings
Her snowy hand across the strings
Of a syrinda, 871 and thus sings :
Come hither, come hither by night and by day,
We linger in pleasures that never are gone ;
Like the waves of the summer, as one dies away,
Another as sweet and as shining comes on.
And the love that is o'er, in expiring, gives birth
To a new one as warm, as unequall'd in bliss ;
And, oh ! if there be an Elysium on earth,
It is this, it is this. 872
THE LIGHT OF THE BAR AM. 221
Here maidens are sighing, and fragrant their sigh
As the flower of the Amra just op'd by a bee ; 878
And precious their tears as that rain from the sky, 874
Which turns into pearls as it falls in the sea.
Oh! think what the kiss and the smile must be
When the sigh and the tear are so perfect in bliss,
And own if there be an Elysium on earth,
It is this, it is this.
Here sparkles the nectar, that, hallow'd by love,
Could draw down those angels of old from their
Who for wine of this earth 876 left the fountains above,
And forgot heaven's stars for the eyes we have here.
And, bless'd with the odor our goblet gives forth,
What Spirit the sweets of his Eden would miss ?
For, oh ! if there be an Elysium on earth,
It is this, it is this.
The Georgian's song was scarcely mute,
When the same measure, sound for sound,
Was caught up by another lute,
And so divinely breathed around,
That all stood hush'd and wondering,
And turn'd and look'd into the air,
As if they thought to see the wing
Of IsKAKii., 876 the Angel, there;
So powerfully on every soul
That new, enchanted measure stole.
While now a voice, sweet as the noto
Of the rharmM lute, was heard to float
Along its chords, and so entwine
Its sounds with theirs, that none knew whether
222 LALLA EOOKS.
The voice or lute was most divine,
So wondrously they went together :
There's a bliss beyond all that the minstrel has told,
When two, that are link'd in one heavenly tie,
With heart never changing, and brow never cold,
Love on through all ills, and love on till they die !
One hour of a passion so sacred is worth
Whole ages of heartless and wandering bliss ;
And, oh ! if there be an Elysium on earth,
It is this, it is this.
'Twas not the air, 'twas not the words,
But that deep magic in the chords
And in the lips, that gave such power
As Music knew not till that hour.
At once a hundred voices said,
" It is the mask'd Arabian maid ! "
While SELIM, who had felt the strain
Deepest of any, and had lain
Some minutes rapt, as in a trance,
After the fairy sounds were o'er,
Too inly touch'd for utterance,
Now motion'd with his hand for more :
Fly to the desert, fly with me,
Our Arab tents are rude for thee ;
But, oh ! the choice what heart can doubt,
Of tents with love, or thrones without ?
THE LIGHT OF THE HARAM. 28
Our rocks are rough^Dut smiling there
The acacia waves her yellow hair,
Lonely and sweet, nor lov'd the less
For flowering in a wilderness.
Our sands are bare, but down their slope
The silvery-footed antelope
As gracefully and gayly springs
As o'er the marble courts of kings.
Then come thy Arab maid will be
The lov'd and lone acacia-tree,
The antelope, whose feet shall bless
With their light sound thy loneliness.
Oh ! there are looks and tones that dart
An instant sunshine through the heart,
As it' the soul that minute caught
Some treasure it through life had sought ;
As if the very lips and eyes,
Predestin'd to have all our sighs,
And never be forgot again,
Sparkled and spoke before us then!
So came thy every glance and tone,
When first on me they breathed and shone ;
New, as if brought from other spheres,
Yet welcome as if loved for years.
Then fly with mo, if thou hast known
No other flame, nor falsely thrown
A gem away, that thou hadst sworn
Should ever in thv heart be worn.
224 LALLA ROOKH.
Come, if the love thou hast for me
Is pure and fresh as mine for thee,
Fresh as the fountain under ground,
When first 'tis by the lapwing found. 877
But if for me thou dost forsake
Some other maid, and rudely break
Her worshipp'd image from its base,
To give to me the ruin'd place ;
Then, fare thee well I'd rather make
My bower upon some icy lake
When thawing suns begin to shine,
Than trust to love so false as thine 1
There was a pathos in this lay,
That, e'en without enchantment's art,
Would instantly have found its way
Deep into SELIM'S burning heart ;
But, breathing, as it did, a tone
To earthly lutes and lips unknown,
With every chord fresh from the touch
Of Music's Spirit, 'twas too much !
Starting, he dash'd away the cup,
Which, all the time of this sweet air,
His hand had held, untasted, up,
As if 'twere fix'd by magic there,
And naming her, so long unnam'd,
So long unseen, wildly exclaim'd,
"0 NOURMAHAL! NOURMAHAL!
Hadst thou but sung this witching strain,
I could forget forgive thee all,
And never leave those eyes again."
THE LIGHT OF THE HABAM. 225
The mask is off the charm is wrought
And SELIM to his heart has caught,
In blushes, more than ever bright,
His XOUKMAHAL, his Harain's Light !
And well do vanish'd frowns enhance
The charm of every brighten'd glance;
And dearer seems each dawning smile
For having lost its light awhile :
And, happier now for all her sighs,
As on his arm her head reposes,
She whispers him with laughing eyes,
" Beinember, love, the Feast of Roses ! *
226 LALLA EOOKH.
FADLADEEN, at the conclusion of this light rhapsody,
took occasion to sum up his opinion of the young Cash-
meriaii's poetry, of which, he trusted, they had that
evening heard the last. Having recapitulated the epi-
thets " frivolous " " inharmonious " " nonsensical,"
he proceeded to say that, viewing it in the most favor-
able light, it resembled one of those Maldivian boats to
which the Princess had alluded in the relation of her
dream, 378 a slight, gilded thing, sent adrift without
rudder or ballast, and with nothing but vapid sweets and
faded flowers on board. The profusion, indeed, of
flowers and birds which this poet had ready on all occa-
sions, not to mention dews, gems, etc., was a most
oppressive kind of opulence to his hearers ; and had the
unlucky effect of giving to his style all the glitter of
the flower-garden without its method, and all the flutter
of the aviary without its song. In addition to this, he
chose his subjects badly, and was always most inspired
by the worst parts of them. The charms of paganism,
the merits of rebellion, these were the themes honored
with his particular enthusiasm ; and, in the poem just
recited, one of his most palatable passages was in praise
of that beverage of the Unfaithful, wine ; " being, per-
haps," said he, relaxing into a smile, as conscious of his
own character in the Haram on this point, " one of those
bards whose fancy owes all its illumination to the grape,
like that painted porcelain, 879 so curious and so rare,
whose images are only visible when liquor is poured into
it." Upon the whole, it was his opinion, from the spec-
imens which they had heard, and which, he begged to
say, were the most tiresome part of the journey, that
LALLA ROOKIT. 227
whatever other merits this well-dressed young gentleman
might possess poetry was by no means his proper avo-
cation: "and indeed," continued the critic, "from his
fondness for flowers and for birds, I would venture to
suggest that a florist or a bird-catcher is a much more
suitable calling for him than a poet."
They had now begun to ascend those barren mountains
which separate Cashmere from the rest of India ; and as
the heats were intolerable, and the time of their encamp-
ments limited to the few hours necessary for refresh-
ment and repose, there \vas an end to all their delightful
evenings, and LALLA ROOKII saw no more of FERAMORZ.
She now felt that her short dream of happiness was over,
and that she had nothing but the recollection of its few
blissful hours, like the one draught of sweet water that
serves the camel across the wilderness, tp be her heart's
refreshment during the dreary waste of life that was
before her. The blight that had fallen upon her spirits
soon found its way to her cheek, and her ladies saw with
regret though not without some suspicion of the cause
that the beauty of their mistress, of which they were
almost as proud as of their own, was fast vanishing
away at the very moment of all when she had most need
of it. What must the King of Bueharia feel, when,
instead of the lively and beautiful LALLA ROOKH. whom
the poets of Delhi had described as more perfect than
the divinest images in the house of A/ou, 8M> lie should
receive a pale and inanimate victim, upon whose cheek
neither health nor pleasure bloomed, and from whose,
eyes Love had fled, to hide himself in her heart '.'
If anything could have charmed away the melancholy
of her spirits, it would have been the fresh airs and en-
chanting scenery of that Valley which the IVrsians so
justly called the Unequalled.* 11 I'ut neither the coolness
of its atmosphere, so luxurious after toiling up those
228 LALLA ROOKH.
bare and burning mountains, neither the splendor of
the minarets and pagodas that shone out from the
depth of its woods, nor the grottos, hermitages, and
miraculous fountains 882 which make every spot of that
region holy ground, neither the countless water-falls
that rush into the Valley from all those high and roman-
tic mountains that encircle it, nor the fair city on the
Lake, whose houses, roofed with flowers, 388 appeared at a
distance like one vast and variegated parterre ; not all
these wonders and glories of the most lovely country
iinder the sun could steal her heart for a minute from
those sad thoughts, which but darkened and grew bitterer
every step she advanced.
The gay pomps and processions that met her upon her
entrance into the Valley, and the magnificence with
which the roads all along were decorated, did honor to
the taste and gallantry of the young King. It was night
when they approached the city, and, for the last two
miles, they had passed under arches, thrown from hedge
to hedge, festooned with only those rarest roses from
which the Attar Gul, more precious than gold, is dis-
tilled, and illuminated in rich and fanciful forms with
lanterns of the triple-colored tortoise-shell of Pegu. 884
Sometimes, from a dark wood by the side of the road, a
display of fireworks would break out, so sudden and so
brilliant, that a Brahmin might fancy he beheld that
grove in whose purple shade the God of Battles was
born, bursting into a flame at the moment of his birth ;
while, at other times, a quick and playful irradiation
continued to brighten all the fields and gardens by which
they passed, forming a line of dancing lights along the
horizon ; like the meteors of the north, as they are seen
by those hunters 88S who pursue the white and blue foxes
on the confines of the Icy Sea.
These arches and fireworks delighted the Ladies of
LALLA ROOKH. 229
the Princess exceedingly; and with their usual good
logic, they deduced from his taste for illuminations, that
the King of Bucharia would make the most exemplary
husband imaginable. Nor, indeed, could LALLA EOOKH
herself help feeling the kindness and splendor with
which the young bridegroom welcomed her; but she
also felt how painful is the gratitude which kindness
from those we cannot love excites ; and that their best
blandishments come over the heart with all that chilling
and deadly sweetness which we can fancy in the cold,
odoriferous wind 886 that is to blow over this earth in the
The marriage was fixed for the morning after her
arrival, when she was, for the first time, to be presented
to the monarch in that Imperial Palace beyond the lake
called the Shalimar. Though never before had a night
of more wakeful and anxious thought been passed in the
Happy Valley, yet, when she rose in the morning, and
her Ladies came around her, to assist in the adjustment
of the bridal ornaments, they thought they had never
seen her look half so beautiful. What she had lost of
the bloom and radiancy of her charms was more than
made up by that intellectual expression, that soul beam-
ing forth from the eyes, which is worth all the rest of
loveliness. When they had tinged her fingers with the
Henna leaf, and placed upon her brow a small coronet of
jewels, of the shape worn by the ancient Queens of
Bucharia, they flung over her head the rose-colored
bridal veil, and she proceeded to the barge that was to
convey her across the Lake; first kissing, with a
mournful look, the little amulet of cornelian which her
father at parting had hung about her neck.
The morning was as fresh and fair as the maid on
whose nuptials it rose, and the shining Lake, all covered
with boats, the minstrels phiying upon the shores of the
230 LALLA EOOKH.
islands, and the crowded summer-houses on the green
hills around, with shawls and banners waving from their
roofs, presented such a picture of animated rejoicing, as
only she, who was the object of it all, did not feel with
transport. To LALLA KOOKH alone it was a melancholy
pageant; nor could she have even borne to look upon
the scene, were it not for a hope that, among the crowds
around, she might once more perhaps catch a glimpse of
FEKAMOKZ. So much was her imagination haunted by
this thought, that there was scarcely an ^slet or boat she
passed on the way, at which her heart did not flutter
with the momentary fancy that he was there. Happy,
in her eyes, the humblest slave upon whom the light of
his dear looks fell ! in the barge immediately after the
Princess sat FADLADEEN, with his silken curtains thrown
widely apart, that all might have the benefit of his
august presence, and with his head full of the speech
he was to deliver to the King, "concerning FERAMOHZ,
and literature, and the Chabuk, as connected therewith."
They now had entered the canal which leads from the
Lake to the splendid domes and saloons of the Shaliniar,
and went gliding on through the gardens that ascended
from each bank, full of flowering shrubs that made the
air all perfume; while from the middle of the canal
rose jets of water, smooth and unbroken, to such a daz-
zling height, that they stood like tall pillars of diamond
in the sunshine. After sailing under the arches of vari-
ous saloons, they at length arrived at the last and most
magnificent, where the monarch awaited the coming of
his bride ; and such was the agitation of her heart and
frame that it was with difficulty she could walk up the
marble steps, which were covered with cloth of gold for
her ascent from the barge. At the end of the hall stood
two thrones, as precious as the Cerulean Throne of Cool-
burga, 887 on oue of which sat ALIRIS, the youthful King
LALLA ROOKH. 231
of Bneharia, and on the other was, in a few minutes,
to be placed the most beautiful Princess in the world.
Immediately upon the entrance of LALLA EOOKH into
the saloon, the monarch descended from his throne to
meet her ; but scarcely had he time to take her hand in
his, when she screamed with surprise, and fainted at his
feet. It was FERAMORZ himself that stood before her !
FEKAMOKZ was, himself, the Sovereign of Bucharia, who
in this disguise had accompanied his young bride from
Delhi, and, having won her love as an humble minstrel,
now amply deserved to enjoy it as a King.
The consternation of FADLADEEX at this discovery
was, for the moment, almost pitiable. But change of
opinion is a resource too convenient in courts for this
experienced courtier not to have learned to avail himself
of it. His criticisms were all, of course, recanted in-
stantly : he was seized with an admiration of the King's
verses, as unbounded as, he begged him to believe, it
was disinterested ; and the following week saw him in
possession of an additional place, swearing by all the
Saints of Islam that never had there existed so great
a poet as the Monarch ALIRIS, and, moreover, ready to
prescribe his favorite regimen of the Chabuk for every
man, woman, and child th;it dared to think otherwise.
Of the happiness of the King and Queen of Bucharia,
after such a beginning, there can be but little doubt;
and. among the lesser symptoms, it is recorded of LALLA
ROOK ii. that, to the day of her death, in memory of
their delightful journey, she never called the, King bjr
any other name than FEKAMOKZ.
Note 1, p. 21. He embarked for Arabia. These particulars
of the visit of the King of Bucharia to Aurungzebe are found in
Dow's History of Uindost an, vol. iii. p. 392.
Note 2, p. 21. LALLA ROOKH. Tulip cheek.
Note 3. p. 21. Leila. The mistress of Mejnoun, upon whose
story so many romances in all the languages of the East are
Note 4, p. 21. Shirine. For the loves of this celebrated
beauty with Khosrou and with Ferliad, see U'llerbelot, Gibbon,
Oriental Collections, etc.
Note 5, p. 21. Deicildt. "The history of the loves of Do-
wild*? and Chizer, the son of the Emperor Alia, is written in an
elegant poem, by the noble Chusero." Ferixhta.
Note 6, p. 22. Scatti-riny of the Hoses. Gul Heazee.
Note 7, p. 22. Emperor's far or. "One mark of honor or
knighthood bestowed by the Emperor is the permission to wear a
small kettledrum at the bows of their saddles, which at first was
invented for the training of hawks, and to call them to the lure,
and is worn in the field by all sportsmen to that end." Fryer's
"Those on whom the King has conferred the privilege must
wear an ornament of jewels on the right side of the (urban. Mir-
nionnted by a high plninc of the feathers of a kind of egret. This
bird i found only in Cashmere, and the feather-* are can-fiitlv col-
lected for the King, who bestows them on his nobles." Kli'liin-
stonc'x Account nf ('antml.
Note , p. 2*2. Kfilrr Khun. " Khedar Khan, the Khakan. or
Xing of Turqnestan beyond the Gihon (at the end of the eleventh
century), whenever he appeared abroad, was preceded by seveu
hundred horsemen with silver battle-axes, and was followed by an
equal number bearing maces of gold. He was a great patron of
poetry, and it was he who used to preside at public exercises of
genius, with four basins of gold and silver by him to distribute
among the poets who excelled." Richardson' 1 s Dissertation pre-
fixed to his Dictionary.
Note 9, p. 22. Gilt pine-apples. " The kubdeh, a large gold-
en knob, generally in the shape of a pine-apple, on the top of the
canopy over the litter or palanquin." Scott's Notes on the
Note 10, p. 22. Sumptuous litter. In the Poein of Zohair, in
the Moallakat, there is the following lively description of " a com-
pany of maidens seated on camels."
" They are mounted in carriages covered with costly awnings,
and with rose-colored veils, the linings of which have the hue of
crimson Andem wood.
" When they ascend from the bosom of the vale, they sit forward
on the saddle-cloth, with every mark of a voluptuous gayety.
" Now, when they have reached the brink of yon blue-gushing
rivulet, they fix the poles of their tents like the Arab with a settled
Note 11, p. 22. Argus pheasant's wing. See Bernier's de-
scription of the attendants on Raucha-nara-Begum, in her progress
Note 12, p. 23. Munificent protector. This hypocritical
Emperor would have made a worthy associate of certain Holy
Leagues. " He held the cloak of religion," says Dow, "between
his actions and the vulgar; and impiously thanked the Divinity for
a success which he owed to his own wickedness. When he was
murdering and persecuting his brothers and their families, he was
building a magnificent mosque at Delhi, as an offering to God for
his assistance to him in the civil wars. He acted as high priest at
the consecration of this temple; and made a practice of attending
divine service there, in the humble dress of a Fakeer. But when
he lifted one hand to the Divinity, he, with the other, signed war-
rants for the assassination of his relations." History of Hindo-
stan, vol. iii. p. 335. See also the curious letter of Aurungzebe,
given in the Oriental Collections, -vol. i. p. 320.
Note 18, p. 23. The Idol of Jaghernaut." The idol at Jaglier-
nat lias two fine diamonds for eyes. No goldsmith is suffered to
enter the Pagoda, one having stolen one of these eyes, being locked
up all night with the Idol." Taternier.
Note 14, p. 23. Jioyal Gardens of DelJn. See a description
of these Royal Gardens in "An Account of the present State of
Delhi," by Lieut. \V. Franklin; Axiat. Itesearch, vol. iv. p. 417.
Note 15, p. 23. Lake of Pearl. "In the neighborhood is
Notte Gill, or the Lake of Pearl, which receives this name from its
pellucid water." Pennant's Hindostan.
"Nasir Jung encamped in the vicinity of the Lake of Tonoor,
amused himself with sailing on that clear and beautiful water, and
gave it the fanciful name of ilotee Talah, 'the Lake of Pearls,'
which it still retains." Wilks's South of India.
Note 10, p. 24. Isles of the Went. Sir Thomas Roe, Ambas-
sador from James I. to Jehan-Guire.
Note 17, p. 24. Ezra. " The romance Wemakweazra, writ-
ten in Persian verse, which contains the loves of Wamak and Ezra,
two celebrated lovers who lived before the time of Mahoir.et."
Note on the Oriental Tales.
Note 18, p. 24. Rodahrer. Their amour is recounted in the
Shah-Nameh of Ferdousi; and there is much beauty in the passage
which describes the slaves of liodahvor sitting on the bank of the
river, ami throwing flowers into the stream, in order to draw the
attention of the young Hero who is encamped on the opposite side.
(See Champion's translation.)
Note 10, p. 24. White Demon. liustam is the Hercules of
the Persians. For the particulars of his victory over the Sopped
IVevo, or White Demon, see Oriental ('ollcrtiuns. vol. ii. p. 4".
" Near the city of Shiran/ is an immense quadrangular monument,
in commemoration of this romh:it. railed the Kelaat-i-Deev Sejierd,
or castle of the. White Giant, which Father A ngclo, in his d'azn-
jihiltirlmn 1'ernirnm, p. \'2~, declares to have been the most memo-
rable monument of antiquity which he had M-en in Persia." (Sec
Ouseley's Persian Hisctll&niei.)
Note 20, p. 24. Golden anklet*. " The wom.-n of the Idol,
or dancing girls of the Pagoda, have little golden bvlU fastened to
their feet, the soft harmonious tinkling of wliicli vibrates in unison
with the exquisite melody of their voices." Maurice's Indian
" The Arabian courtesans, like the Indian women, have little
golden bells fastened round their legs, neck, and elbows, to the
sound of which they dance before the King. The Arabian prin-
cesses wear golden rings on their fingers, to which little bells are
suspended, as well as in tlie flowing tresses of their hair, that their
superior rank may be known, and they themselves receive in
passing the homage due to them." (See Calmet's Dictionary, art.
Note 21, p. 25. Delicious opium. " Abou-Tige, ville de la
Theba'ide, ou il croit beaucoup de pavot noir, dont se fait le meil-
leur opium." D'Herbelot.
Note 22, p. 25. Crishna. The Indian Apollo. " He and
the three Ramas are described as youths of perfect beauty; and the
princesses of Hindustan were all passionately in love with Chrishna,
who continues to this hour the darling God of the Indian women."
Sir W. Jones, on the Gods of Greece, Italy, and India.
Note 23. p. 25. Shatcl-goats of Tibet. See Tumor's Enibassy
for a description of this animal, " the most beauMful among the
whole tribe of goats." The material for the shawls (which is car-
ried to Cashmere) is found next the skin.
Note 24, p. 26. Veiled Prophet of Khorassan. For the real
history of this Impostor, whose original name was Hakem ben
Haschem, and who was called Mokanna from the veil of silver
gauze (or, as others say, golden) which he always wore, see D'Her-
Note 25, p. 27. Khorassan. Khorassan signifies, in the
old Persian language, Province or Region of the Sun. Sir W.
Note 26, p. 27. Flowerets and fruits blush orer every stream.
"The fruits of Meru are finer than those of any other place;
and one cannot see in any other city such palaces with groves, and
streams, and gardens." Ebn Haukal's Geography.
Note 27, p. 27. Among MEROU'S bright palaces and groves.
One of the royal cities of Khorassan.
Note 28, p. 27. MOUSSA'S. Moses.
Note 29, p. 27. O'er MOUSSA'S cheek, when doicn the Mount
" Ses disciples assuroient qu'il se couvroit le visage, pour ne pas
e"blouir ceux qui 1'approchoient par 1'eclat de son visage comme
Moyse." D' llerbelot.
Note 30, p. 27. In hatred to the Caliph's hue of night.
Black was the color adopted by the Caliphs of the House of
Abbas, in their garments, turbans, and standards. " 11 faut
remarqtier ici touchant les habits blancs des disciples de Hakem,
que la couleur des habits, des coiffures et des etendards dea
Khalifes Abassides etant la noire, ce chef de Rebelles ne pouvoit
pas clioisir une qui lui fut plus opposee." D'Herbelot.
Note 31, p. 28. H'ithjavrlins of the lijht Kathalan reed.
"Our dark javelins, exquisitely wrought of Khathaiau reeds,
slender and delicate." Poem of Amru.
Note 32, p. 28. Fill'd icith the stems.
Pichula, used anciently for arrows by the Persians.
Note 33, p. 28. That bloom on IUAN'S rivers.
The Persians call this plant Gaz. The celebrated shaft of Is-
fendlar, one of their ancient heroes, was made of it. "Nothing
can be more beautiful than the appearance of this plant in flower
during the rains on the banks of rivers, where it is usually inter-
woven with a lovely twining asdepias." .Sir \\'. Jones, Botanical
Select Indian I'laiit.i.
Note 34, p. 28. Like a ch<-nar-'.ree yrore, ichrn winter thrown.
The Oriental plane. "The chenar is a delightful tree; its bole
is of a fine white and smooth bark; and its foliage, which grows in
a tuft at the summit, is of a bright green." Murier's Travel*.
Note 3."), p. 28. Fro. tho.ie trho knwl at HKAIIMA'S burning
The burning fountains of lirahma near Chittagong, esteemed
as holy. Turin r.
Note 30, p. 28. To the small, half-nhitt ylances of K ATM AT.
Note 37, p. 29. Like tulip-beds, of different shape and dyes.
"The name of tulip is said to be of Turkish extraction, and
given to the flower on account of its resembling a turban." Beck-
mann's History of Intentions.
Note 38, p. 29. And fur-bound bonnet of Bucharian shape.
"The inhabitants of Bucharia wear a round cloth bonnet,
shaped much after the Polish fashion, having a large fur border.
They tie their kaftans about the middle with a girdle of a kind of
silk crape, several times round the body." Account of Independ-
ent Tartary, in Pinko-ton's Collection.
Note 39, p. 29. Overwhelmed in fight and captive to the Greek.
In the war of the Caliph Mahadi against the Empress Irene, for
an account of which vide Gibbon, vol. x.
Note 40, p. 31. The flying throne of star-taught SOIJMAN.
This wonderful throne was called The Star of the Genii. For
a full description of it, see the Fragment, translated by Captain
Franklin, from a Persian MS. entitled, " The History of Jerusa-
lem," Oriental Collections, vol. i. p. 235. When Soliman travelled,
the Eastern writers say, " He had a carpet of green silk on which
his throne was placed, being of a prodigious length and breadth,
and sufficient for all his forces to stand upon, the men placing
themselves on his right hand, and the spirits on his left; and that
when all were in order, the wind, at his command, took up the car-
pet, and transported it, with all that were upon it, wherever he
pleased ; the army of birds at the same time flying over their heads,
and forming a kind of canopy to shade them from the sun."
Sale's Koran, vol. ii. p. 214, note.
Note 41, p. 31. Formany an age, in every chance and change.
The transmigration of souls was one of his doctrines. ( Vide
Note 42, p. 31. To which all Heaven, except the Proud One,
" And when we said unto the angels, Worship Adam, they all
worshipped except Eblis (Lucifer), who refused." The Koran,
Note 43, p. 31. In MoussA's/rame, and, thence descending,
Note 44, p. 31. Through many a Prophet's breast.
This is according to D'Herbelot's account of the doctrines of
Mokanna: " Sa doctrine e*toit, que Dieu avoit pris une forme
et figure huraaine, depuis qu'il eut coinmande aux Anges d'adorer
Adam, le premier des hommes. Qu'apres la mort d'Adam, Dieu
e"toit apparu sous la figure de plusieurs Prophetes, et autres grands
hommes qu'il avoit choisis, jusqu'a ce qu'il prit ct-lled'Abu Moslem,
Prince de Kliorassan, lequel professoit 1'erreur de la Tenassukhiah
ou Metempsychose; et qu'apres la inort de ce Prince, la Divinite
e"toit passe'e et descendue eu sa personne."
Note 45, p. 31. In ISSA shone. Jesus.
Note 46, p. 34. Born by that ancient flood, ichich from its
The Amoo, which rises in the Belur Tag, or Dark Mountains,
anfc, running nearly from east lowest, splits into two branches;
one of which falls into the Caspian Sea, and the other into Aral
Nahr, or the Lake of Eagles.
Note 47, p. 35. The bulbul utters, ere her soul depart. The
Note 48, p. 42. In holy ROOM, or MECCA'S dim arcades.
The Cities of Com (or Koom) and Cashan are full of mosques,
mausoleums, and sepulchres of the descendants of Ali, the Saints
of Persia. Chardin.
Note 49, p. 42. Stood rases, fiWd with KIPHMKE'S golden
An island in the Persian Gulf, celebrated for its white wine.
Note 5O, p. 42. Like ZKMZKM'S Spring of Holiness, had
The miraculous wHI at Mecca; so called, says Sale, from the
murmuring of its waters.
\oto 51, p. 42. Whom INDIA xrrrr.t. the monkey d> ity.
The (!ol Hannaman. "Apes arc in many part-* of India
highly venerated, out of respect to tin- (lod Ilamiainati. a deity
partaking of the form of that race." V< niwnt'* llin<ln*titn.
Si-e a curious account, iti S'cpli>n's /Vr*ii, of a solemn 'in-
bassy from some part of the Indies to (ioa. when the Portuguese
were there, offering vast treasures for the recovery of a monkey's
tooth, which they held in great veneration, and which had been
taken away upon the conquest of the kingdom of Jafanapatan.
Note 52, p. 42. To bend in worship, LUCIFER was right.
The resolution of Eblis not to acknowledge the new creature,
man, was, according to Mahometan tradition, thus adopted:
"The earth (which God had selected for the materials of His
work ) was carried into Arabia to a place between Mecca and Tayef ,
where, being first kneaded by the angels, it was afterwards fash-
ioned by God himself into a human form, and left to dry for the
space of forty days, or, as others say, as many years; the angels, in
the meantime, often visiting it, and Eblis (then one of the angels
nearest to God's presence, afterwards the devil) among the rest;
but he, not contented with looking at it, kicked it with his foot till
it rung; and knowing God designed that creature to be his supe-
rior, took a secret resolution never to acknowledge him as such."
Sale oil the Koran.
Note 53, p. 43. From dead men's marrow guides them best at
A kind of lantern formerly used by robbers, called the Hand of
Glory, the candle for which was made of the fat of a dead male-
factor. This, however, was rather a "Western than an Eastern
Note 54, p. 43. In that best-marble ofichich Gods are made.
The material of which images of Gaudma (the Birman Deity)
are made, is held sacred. " Birmans may not purchase the mar-
ble in mass, but are suffered, and indeed encouraged, to buy
figures of the Deity ready made." Symes's Ava, vol. ii. p. 376.
Note 55, p. 46. Of Eerzrah flowers, came filVd with pesti-
" It is commonly said in Persia that if a man breathe in the hot
south wind, which in June or July passes over that flower (the
Kerzereh), it will kill him." Thevenot.
Note 56, p. 49. Within the crocodile's stretch'd jaws to
The humming-bird is said to run this risk for the purpose of
picking the crocodile's teeth. The same circumstance is related of
the lapwing, as a fact to which he was witness, by Paul Lucas,
Voyage fait en 1714.
The ancient story concerning the Trochilus, or humming-bird,
entering with impunity into the mouth of the crocodile, is firmly
believed at Java. Harrow's Cochin China.
Note 57, p. 50. That rank and venomous food on which she
' Circum easdem ripas (Nili, viz.) ales est Ibis. Ea serpentimn
populatur ova, gratissimamque ex his cscain nidis suis refert."
Note 58, p. 51. Yamtcheou. "The Feast of Lanterns is
celebrated at Yamtcheou with more magnificence than anywhere
else: and the report goes that the illuminations there are so splen-
did that an Emperor once, not daring openly to leave his Court to
go thither, committed himself with the Queen and several Prin-
cesses of his family into the hands of a magician, who promised to
transport them thither in a trice. lie made them in the night to
ascend magnificent thrones that were borne up by swans, which in a
moment arrived at Yamtcheou. The Emperor saw at his leisure
all the solemnity, being carried upon a cloud that hovered over the
city and descended by degrees; and came back again with the same
s]>eed ami equipage, nobody at court perceiving his absence."
77<e Present Mate of China, p. 150.
Note 59, p. 51. Sceneries of bamboo-icork. See a description
of the nuptials of Vizier Alee in the Asiatic Annual Register for
Note 60, p. 51. Chinese illuminations. " The vulgar ascribe
it to an accident that happened in the family of a famous mandarin,
whose daughter, walking one evening upon the shore of a lake, fell
in and was drowned; tin: afllictod father, with bis family, ran
thither, and, the bettor to find IHT. he caused a great company of
lanterns to be lighted. All the inhabitants of the place thronged
afti-r him with torches. The year ensuing they made tires upon
tin- shores the same day; they ron tinned the ceremony every year,
every one lighted his lantern, and by degrees it grew into a cus-
tom." l'rcnrnt Nlate of China.
Note 01, p. 52. Like SKUA'S (Jitrcn could rntiqnixh with that
"Thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine oyes." SoL
Note 62, p. 52. The fingers' ends with a bright roseate hue.
"They tinged the ends of their fingers scarlet with henna, so
that they resembled branches of coral." Story of Prince Futtun
Note 63, p. 53. To give that long, dark languish to the eye.
" The women blacken the inside of their eyelids with a powder
named the black kohol." Russel.
" None of these ladies," says Shaw, " take themselves to be
completely dressed, till they have tinged the hair and edges of their
eyelids with the powder of lead ore. Now, as this operation is
performed by dipping first into the powder a small wooden bodkin
of the thickness of a quill, and then drawing it afterwards through
the eyelids over the ball of the eye, we shall have a lively image of
what the Prophet ( Jer. iv. 30) may be supposed to mean by rend-
ing the eyes with painting. This practice is no doubt of great an-
tiquity; for besides the instance already taken notice of, we find
that where Jezebel is said (2 Kings ix. 30) to have painted her face,
the original words are, she adjusted her eyes with the powder of
lead ore." Shaw's Travels.
Note 64, p. 53. In her full lap the Champac's leaves of gold.
The appearance of the blossoms of the gold-colored Champac
on the black hair of the Indian women has supplied the Sanscrit
poets with many elegant allusions. (See Asiatic Researches,
Note 65, p. 53. The sweet Elcaya, and that courteous tree.
A tree famous for its perfume, and common on the hills of
Note 66, p. 53. Which bows to all who seek its canopy.
Of the genus mimosa, "which droops its branches whenever
any person approaches it, seeming as if it saluted those who retire
under its shade." Ibid.
Note 67, p. 54. The bowers of TIBET, send forth odorous
" Cloves are a principal ingredient in the composition of the per-
fumed rods, which men of rank keep constantly burning in their
presence." Turner's Tibet.
Note <58, p. 54. With odoriferous woods of COMORIN.
" C'est d'oii vient le bois d'alocs que les Arabes appellent Cud
Comari, et celui du sandal, qui s'y trouve en grande quantite."
Note 69, p. 54. The crimson blossoms of the coral tree.
" Thousands of variegated lories visit the coral trees." Barrow.
Note 70, p. 51. Mecca's blue sacred pigeon.
" In Mecca there are quantities of blue pigeons, which none
will affright or abuse, much less kill." PitVs account of the Ma-
Note 71, p. 54. The thrush of Hindostan.
" The Pagoda Thrush is esteemed among the first choristers of
India. It sits perched on the sacred pagodas, and from thence
delivers its melodious song." Pennant's Hindostan.
Note 72, p. 55. About the gardens, drunk with that sweet
Ta vernier adds, that while the birds of Paradise lie in this intoxi-
cated state, the emmets come and eat off their legs ; and that hence
it is they are said to have no feet.
Note 73, p. 55. Whose scent hatlt litr'd them o'pr the summer
Birds of Paradise, which, at the nutmeg season, come in flights
from the .southern isles to India; and '' the strength of the nut-
meg," says Tavernier, " so intoxicates them, that they fall dead
drunk to the earth."
Note 74, p. 55. Build their hi'/fi nests of Innldinrj rhinainon.
"That bird which liveth in Arabia, and buildeth its nest with
cinnamon. 1 ' Bnncni''* \'nl<i<ir Krrors.
Note 75, p. 55. Slt-Pinny in lit/lit. llki- the ijreen birds that
" The spirits of the martyrs will !> lodged in the crops of green
birds." (iibbim, vol. ix. p. 421.
Note 7*5. p. 55. Morr likf tin- Injuries of Hint inii'ion* Kin-i.
Shedad, who made tho delicious gardens of I rim. in imitation
of Paradise, ami w.is destroyed by lightning the first time he at-
tempted to enter them.
Note 77, p. 56. In its blue blossoms hum themselves to sleep.
" My Pandits assure me that the plant before us (the Nilica) is
their Sephalica, thus named because the bees are supposed to sleep
on its blossoms." Sir W. Jones.
Note 78, p. 58. As they were captives to the King of Flowers.
" They deferred it till the King of Flowers should ascend his
throne of enamelled foliage." The Bahardanush.
Note 79, p. 58. But a light golden chain-work round her hair.
" One of the head-dresses of the Persian women is composed
of a light golden chain-work, set with small pearls, with a thin
gold plate pendant, about the bigness of a crown-piece, on which
is impressed an Arabian prayer, and which hangs upon the cheek
below the ear." Hamcay's Travels.
Note 80, p. 58. Siich as the maids of TEZD and SIIIRAS
" Certainly the women of Yezd are the handsomest women in
Persia. The proverb is, that to live happy a man must have a
wife of Yezd, eat the bread of Yezdecas, and drink the wine of
Note 81, p. 59. Upon a musnud's edge.
Musnuds are cushioned seats, usually reserved for persons of
Note 82, p. 59. In the pathetic mode of ISFAHAN.
The Persians, like the ancient Greeks, call their musical modes
or Perclas by the names of different coimtries or cities, as the mode
of Isfahan, the mode of Irak, etc.
Note 83, p. 59. There's a bower of roses by BENDEMEER'S
A river which flows near the ruins of Chilminar.
Note 84, p. 61. The hills of crystal on the Caspian shore.
" To the north of us (on the coast of the Caspian, near Badku)
was a mountain, which sparkled like diamonds, arising from the
sea-glass and crystals with which it abounds." Journey of the
Russian Ambassador to Persia, 1746.
Note 85, p. 61. Of EDEX, shake in the eternal breeze.
" To which will be added the sound of the bells, hanging on
the trees, which will be put in motion by the wind proceeding
from the throne of God, as often as the blessed wish for music."
Note 86, p. 62. And his floating eyes oh! they resemble.
" Whose wanton eyes resemble blue water-lilies, agitated by
the breeze." Jayadeva.
Note 87, p. 62. Blue water-lilies.
The blue lotus, which grows in Cashmere and in Persia.
Note 88, p. 63. To muse upon the pictures that huny round.
It has been generally supposed that the Mahometans prohibit
all pictures of animals; but Toderini shows that, though the prac-
tice is forbidden by the Koran, they are not more averse to painted
figures and images than other people. From Mr. 'Murphy's work,
too, we find that the Arabs of Spain had no objection to the intro-
duction of figures into painting.
Note 89, p. 63. Whose orb when half retired looks loveliest.
This is not quite astronomically true. " Dr. Hadley (says
Keil) has shown that Venus is brightest when she is about forty
degrees removed from the sun; and that then but only a fourth
part of her lucid disk is to be seen from the earth."
Note 90, p. 63- He read that to be blest is to be icise.
For the lores of King Solomon (who was supposed to preside
over the whole race of Genii) with Balkis. the Queen of Shcba or
Saba. see D'llerbe'ot, and the Notes on the Koran, chap ii.
" In the palace which Solomon ordered to be built against the
arrival of the Queen of Saba, the floor or pavement was of trans-
parent glass, laid over running water, in which fish were swim-
ming." This led the Queen into a very natural mistake, which the
Koran has not thought beneath its dignity to commemorate. It
was said unto her, ' Enter the palace.' And when she saw it sne
Imagined it to be a great water; and she discovered her legs, by
lifting up her robe to pass through it. Whereupon Solomon said
to her, 'Verily, this Is the place evenly floored with glass.'"
Note 91, p. 63. Here fond ZI:I,F.IKA woo* with open arms.
The wife of Potiphar, thus named by the Orientals.
"The passion which this frail lieauty of uuti<|ui!y conceived for
her young Hebrew slave has given rise to a much-esteemed |Meiii
in the Persian language, entitled Yuscf run ZrlilJiu. by Noure.ldin
.laini; the manuscript copy of which, in the Ho.lleian Library at
Oxford, is supposed to In- the linest in the whole world." Aufe
Note 92, p. 63. With a new text to consecrate their love.
The particulars of Mahomet's amour with Mary, the Coptic
girl, in justification of which lie added a new chapter to the Koran,
may be found in Gagnier's Notes upon Abulfeda, p. 151.
Note 93, p. 65. But in that deep-blue, melancholy dress.
"Deep blue is their mourning color."' Hanway.
Note 94, p. 05. Sat in her sorrow like the sweet night-flower.
The sorrowful nyctanthes, which begins to spread its rich odor
Note 95, p. 67. As the viper weaves its wily covering.
" Concerning the vipers, which Pliny says were frequent among
the balsam-trees, I made very particular inquiry: several were
brought me alive both to Yambo and Jidda." Bruce.
Note 96, p. 72. The sunny apples of Istkahar. ' In the ter-
ritory of Istkahar there is a kind of apple, half of which is sweet
and half sour." Ebn Haukal.
Note 97, p. 72. They saio a young Hindoo girl upon the bank.
For an account of this ceremony, see Grandpre's Voyage in the
Note 98, p. 72. The Olon-tala, or Sea of Stars. " The place
where the Whangho, a river of Tibet, rises, and where there are
more than a hundred springs, which sparkle like stars; whence it
is called Ilotun-nor, that is, the Sea of Stars." Pinkerton's De-
scription of Tibet.
Note 99, p. 74. Hath sprung up here.
" The Lescar or Imperial Camp is divided, like a regular town,
into squares, alleys, and streets, and from a rising ground furnishes
one of the most agreeable prospects in the world. Starting up in
a few hours in an uninhabited plain, it raises the idea of a city
built by enchantment. Even those who leave their houses in cities
to follow the prince in his progress are frequently so charmed by
the Lescar, when situated in a beautiful and convenient place, that
they cannot prevail with themselves to remove. To prevent this
inconvenience to the court, the Emperor, after sufficient time is
allowed to the tradesmen to follow, orders them to be burnt out of
their tents." Dow's Hindostan.
Colonel Wilks gives a lively picture of an Eastern encampment:
" His camp, like that of most Indian armies, exhibited a motley
collection of covers from the scorching sun and dews of the night,
variegated according to the taste or means of each individual, by
extensive inclosures of colored calico surrounding superb suites of
tents; by ragged cloths or blankets stretched over sticks or branches ;
palm-leaves hastily spread over similar supports; handsome tents
and splendid canopies; horses, oxen, elephants, and camels; all in-
termixed without any exterior mark of order or design, except the
flags of the chiefs, which usually mark the centres of a congeries
of these masses; the only regular part of the encampment being
the streets of shops, each of which is constructed nearly in the
manner of a booth at an English fair." Historical Sketches of
the South of India.
Note 100, p. 74. Built the high pillar' d halls O/CUILMINAK.
The edifices of Chilminar and Balbec are supposed to have been
built by the Genii, acting under the orders of Jan ben Jan, who
governed the world long before the time of Adam.
Note 101, p. 74. And camels, tufted o'er with Yemen's shells.
" A superb camel, ornamented with strings and tufts of small
shells." All Bey.
Note 102, p. 74. But the far torrent, or the locust bird.
A native of Khorassan, and allured southward by means of the
water of a fountain between Sliira/. and Ispahan, called the Foun-
tain of Birds, of which it is so fond that it will follow wherever
that water is carried.
Note 103, p. 74. Of laden camels and their drivers' songs.
" Some of the camels have bells about their necks, and some
about their legs, like those which our carriers put about their fore-
horses' necks, which, together with the servants (who belong to
the camels, and travel on foot), singing all night, make a pleasant
noise, ami the journey passes away delightfully." I'itt's Account
of tlir Mahometans.
" The camel-driver follows the camels, singing, and sometimes
playing upon his pipe; the louder he sinps and pipes, the faster the
camels go. Nay, they will stand still when he gives over his mu-
Note 104, p. 7">. Of the Al>i/nxlni<in tnim/xt. Kind <md float.
" This trutnpH. is often called, in Abyssinia, nrwr runiio, which
signifies the Note of the K.igle." .V/r of Itrucc's L''lit<>r.
Note 105, p. 75. The Night and Shadow, over yonder tent.
The two black standards borne before the Caliphs of the House
of Abbas were called, allegorically, The Night and the Shadow.
Note 106, p. 75. Defiance fierce at Islam. The Mahometan
Note 107, p. 75. But, having sworn upon the Holy Grave.
" The Persians swear by the tomb of Shah Besade, who is buried
at Casbin ; and when one desires another to asseverate a matter, he
will ask him if he dare swear by the Holy Grave." Struy.
Note 108, p. 75. Werespoil'd to feed the Pilgrim's luxury.
Mahadi, in a single pilgrimage to Mecca, expended six millions
of dinars of gold.
Note 109, p. 75. Of MECCA'S sun, with urns of Persian snow.
" Nivem Meccam apportavit, rem ibi aut nunquain aut raro
Note 110, p. 75. First, in the van, the People of the Rock.
The inhabitants of Hejaz or Arabia Petrsea, called by an East-
ern writer " The People of the Rock." (See Ebn Haukal. )
Note 111, p. 75. On their light mountain steeds, of royal stock.
" Those horses, called by the Arabians Kochlam, of whom a
written genealogy has been kept for 2,000 years. They are said to
derive their origin from King Solomon's steeds." Niebuhr.
Note 112, p. 76. The flashing of their sicords* rich marquetry.
" Many of the figures on the blades of their swords are wrought
in gold or silver, or in marquetry with small gems." Asiat.
Misc. v. i.
Note 113, p. 76. With dusky legions from the land of Myrrh.
Azab or Saba.
Note 114, p. 76. Waving their heron crests with martial grace.
" The chiefs of the Uzbek Tartars wear a plume of white heron's
feathers in their turbans." Account of Independent Tartary.
Note 115, p. 76. Wild warriors of the turquoise hills.
" In the mountains- of Nishapour and Tons (inKhorassan) they
find turquoises." Ebn Haukal.
Note 116, p. 76. Cf HINDOO Kosn, in stormy freedom bred.
For a description of these stupendous ranges of mountains, see
Note 117, p. 76. Tier Worshippers of Fire.
The Ghebers or Guebres, those original natives of Persia who
adhered to their ancient faith, the religion of Zoroaster, and who,
after the conquest of their country by the Arabs, were either per-
secuted at home, or forced to become wanderers abroad.
Note 118, p. 76. From YEZD'S Eternal Mansion of the Fire.
" Yezd, the chief residence of those ancient natives who wor-
ship the Sun and the Fire, which latter they have carefully kept
lighted, without being once extinguished for a moment, about
3,000 years, on a mountain near Yezd, called Ater Quedali, signify-
ing the House or Mansion of the Fire. He is reckoned very unfor-
tunate who dies off that mountain." Stephen's Persia.
Note 119, p. 76. That burn into the CASPIAN, fierce they
" When the weather is hazy, the springs of naphtha (on an
island near Baku) boil up the higher, and the naphtha often takes
fire on the surface of the earth, and runs in a flame into the sea to
a distance almost incredible." llanway on the Ecerlastiny Fire
Note 120, p. 77. By which the prostrate Caravan is rtic'J.
Savary says of the south wind, which blows in Kgypt from
February to May, " Sometimes it appears only in the shape of an
impetuous whirlwind, which passes rapidly, and is fatal to the
traveller surprised in the middle of the deserts. Torrents of burn-
ing sand roll before it, the firmament is enveloped in a thick veil,
and the sun appears of the color of blood. Sometimes whole cara-
vans are buried in it."
Note 121, p. 77. The Champions of the Faith throiiyh UKDKK'H
In the preat victor)' gained by Mahomed at Heder, he was
assisted, say the Mussulmans, by three thousand angels, led by
Gabriel, mounted on his horse Hia/.um. (See The Koran an<l it*
Note !', p. 70. " Alia AUmr!"
The Teehir. or cry of the Arabs. " Alia Arbar! " says Ockley,
means "God is most mighty."
Note 123, p. 79. And light your shrines and chant your
The ziraleet is a kind of chorus, which the women of the East
sing upon joyful occasions. Russel.
Note 124, p. 79. Or warm or brighten, like that Syrian
The Dead Sea, which contains neither animal nor vegetable life.
Note 125, p. 80. O'er his lost throne then pass'd the
The ancient Oxus.
Note 126, p. 80. Eais'd the white banner within NEKSHEB'S
A city of Transoxiana.
Note 127, p. 81. To-day's young flower is springing in its
" You never can cast your eyes on this tree, but you meet there
either blossoms or fruit; and as the blossoms drop underneath
on the ground (which is frequently covered with these purple-
colored flowers), others come forth in their stead," etc., etc.
Note 128, p. 81. With which the Dives have gifted him.
The Demons of the Persian mythology.
Note 129, p. 81. That spangle INDIA'S fields on showery
Carreri mentions the fire-flies in India during the rainy seasons.
(See his Travels. )
Note 130, p. 82. Who brush'd the thousands of the Assyrian
Sennacherib, called by the Orientals King of Moussal. D'Her-
Note 131, p. 82. Of PARVIZ.
Chosroes. For the description of his Throne or Palace, see
Gibbon and D'Herbelot.
There were said to be under this Throne or Palace of Khosrou
Parviz a hundred vaults filled with " treasures so immense that
some Mahometan writers tell us, their Prophet, to encourage hw
disciples, carried them to a rock, which, at his command, opened,
and gave them a prospect through it of the treasures of Khosrou."
Note 132, p. 82. And the heron crest that shone.
"The crown of Gerashid is cloudy and tarnished before the
heron tuft of thy turban." From one of the elegies or songs in
praise of Ali, written in characters of gold round the gallery of
Abbas's tomb. (See Chardin.)
Note 133, p. 82. Magnificent, o'er AM'S beauteous eyes.
The beauty of Ali's eyes was so remarkable that whenever the
Persians would describe anything as very lovely, they say it is
Ayn Hali, or the Eyes of Ali. Chardin.
Note 134, p. 83. Rise from the Holy Well, and cast its li<jht.
We are not told more of this trick of the Impostor than that it
was " une machine qu'il disoit etre la Lune." According to IJich-
ardson, the miracle is perpetuated in Nekscheb. " Nakshab, the
name of a city in Transoxiana, where they say there is a well, in
which the appearance of the moon is to be seen night and day."
Note 135, p. 83. lionnd the rich city and the plain for miles.
" II amusa pendant deux mois le peuple de la ville de Nekscheb,
en faisant sortir toutes les nuits du fond d'un puits un corps lumi-
neux semblable a la Lune, qui portoit sa lumiere jusqu'a la dis-
tance de plusieiirs milles." I)' Hrrbelot. Hence he was called
Sazende'hinah, or the Moon-maker.
Note 130, p. 83. Had rested on the Ark:
The Shechinali, called Sakinat in the Koran. (See Sale's Note,
Note 137, p. 83. Of the small drum icith which they count the
The parts of the night are made known as well by instruments
of music, as by the rounds of the watchmen with cries and small
drums. (See Murder's Oriental Cimtoinn, vol. i. p. 1H>.)
Note 138, p. 83. On for tht> linni>n. that li'i/it yon lofty screen.
The Serrapunla. high screens of rrtl cloth, stiffened with cane,
used to enclose a considerable space round the royal tents. Xotc*
on the liahardanimh.
The tents of I'rinces were generally illuminated. Norden tells
us that the tent of the Bey of Girge was distinguished from the
other tents by forty lanterns being suspended before it. (See
Banner's Observations on Job).
Note 139, p. 84. Pour to the spot, like bees of KAUZEROON.
"From the groves of orange-trees at Kauzeroon the bees cull a
celebrated honey." Morier's Travels.
Note 140, p. 85. Of nuptial pomp, she sinks into his tide.
" A custom still subsisting at this day seems to me to prove that
the Egyptians formerly sacrificed a young virgin to the God of the
Nile; for they now make a statue of earth in shape of a girl, to
which they give the name of the Betrothed Bride, and throw it into
the river." Savary.
Note 141, p. 86. Engines of havoc in, unknown 'before.
That they knew the secret'of the Greek fire among the Mussul-
mans early in the eleventh century, appears from Dow's Account
of Mamood I. " When he arrived at Moultan, finding that the
country of the Jits was defended by great rivers, he ordered fifteen
hundred boats to be built, each of which he armed with six iron
spikes, projecting from their prows and sides, to prevent their be-
ing boarded by the enemy, who were very expert in that kind of
war. When he had launched this fleet, he ordered twenty archers
into each boat, and five others with fire-balls, to burn the craft of
the Jits, and naphtha to set the whole river on fire."
The agnee aster, too, in Indian poems the Instrument of Fire,
whose flame cannot be extinguished, is supposed to signify the
Greek fire. (See Wilks's South of India, vol. i. p. 471.) And in
the curious Javan Poem, the Brata Yudha, given by Sir Stamford
Raffles in his History of Java, we find, " He aimed at the heart of
Soeta with the sharp-pointed Weapon of Fire."
The mention of gunpowder as in use among the Arabians, long
before its supposed discovery in Europe, is introduced by Ebn
Fad hi, the Egyptian geographer, who lived in the thirteen century.
Bodies, he says, " in the form of scorpions, bound round and
filled with nitrous powder, glide along, making a gentle noise;
then, exploding, they lighten, as it were, and burn. But there are
others which, cast into the air, stretch along like a cloud, roaring
horribly, as thunder roars, and on all sides vomiting out flames,
burst, burn, and reduce to cinders whatever comes in their way."
The historian Ben Abdalla, in speaking of the sieges of Abulualid
In the year of the Hegira 712, says, " A fiery globe, by means of
combustible matter, with a mighty noise suddenly emitted, strikes
with the force of lightning, and shakes the citadel." (See the ex-
tracts from Casiri's Biblioth. Arab. Ilispan. in the Appendix to
Berington's Literary History of the Middle Ayt'*.)
Note 142, p. 86. And horrible as new ; javelins that fly.
The Greek fire, that was occasionally lent by the emperors to
their allies. " It was," says Gibbon, "either launched in red-hot
balls of stone and iron, or darted in arrows or javelins, t'.visted
round with flax and tow, which had deeply imbibed the inflamma-
Note 143, p. 86. Discharge, as from a kindled Naphtha fount.
See Hanway's Account of the Sprint/ 8 of Naphtha at liitku
(which is called by Lieutenant Pottinger " Joala Mokee," or the
Flaming Mouth) taking fire and running into the st>a. Dr. Cooke,
in his Journal, mentions some wells in Circassia, strongly impreg-
nated with this inflammable oil, from which issues boiling water.
"Though the weather," he adds, " was now very cold, the warmth
of these wells of hot water produced near them the verdure and
flowers of spring."
Major Scott Waring says, that naphtha is used by the Persians,
as we are told it was in hell, for lamps.
" many a row
Of starry lamps and blazing cressets, fed
With naphtha and asphaltus, yielding light
As from a sky."
Note 144, p. 86. Like those icild birds (hat by (he Mayiar*
" At the grrat festival of (ire. c:illi>d the Shel> Sex.e, they used to
set fire to large bunches of dry combustibles, fastened round wiid
beasts and birds, which being then let loose, the air and earih
appeared one great illumination; and as these terrified creatures
naturally lied to the woods for shelter, it is easy to conceive the
conflagrations they produced." Itichardnon'a Dlmtertution,
Note 143, p 88. Keep, aral'd irith prrciona iimxk, for thvae
" The righteous shall be given to drink of pure wine, sealed; the
seal whereof shall be musk." Kurau, chap. Ixxxiii.
Note 146, p. 90. Chi Us own brood; no Demon of the Waste.
" The Afghauns believe each of the numerous solitudes and
deserts of their country to be inhabited by a lonely demon, whom
they call the Ghoolee Beeabau, or Spirit of the Waste. They often
illustrate the wildness of any sequestered tribe, by saying, They
are wild as the Demon of the Waste." El^hinstone's Caubul.
Note 147, p. 91. With burning drugs, for this last hour dis-
" II donna dn poison dans le vin a tous ses gens, et se jeta lui-
meme ensuite dans une cuve pleine de drogues briilantes et consu-
mantes, afin qu'il ne restat rien de tous les meinbres de son corps,
et que ceux qui restoient de sa secte pussent croire qu'il etoit
monte au ciel, ce qui ne manqua pas d'arriver." D'Herbelot.
Note 148, p. 92. In the lone Cities of the Silent dwell.
"They have all a great reverence for burial-grounds, which
they sometimes call by the poetical name of Cities of the Silent,
and which they people with the ghosts of the departed, who sit
each at the head of his own grave, invisible to mortal eyes."
Note 149, p. 97. And to eat any mangoes but those of Maza-
gong was, of course, impossible. " The celebrity of Alazagong is
owing to its mangoes, which are certainly the best fruit I ever
tasted. The parent tree, from which all those of this species have
been grafted, is honored during the fruit-season by a guard of
sepoys; and, in the reign of Shah Jehan, couriers were stationed
between Delhi and the Mahratta coast to secure an abundant and
fresh supply of mangoes for the royal table." Mrs. Graham's
Journal of a Residence in India.
Note 150, p. 97. Laden with his fine antique porcelain.
This old porcelain is found in digging, and "if it is esteemed, it is
not because it has acquired any new degree of beauty in the earth,
but because it has retained its ancient beauty; and this alone is of
great importance in China, where they give large sums for the
smallest vessels which were used tinder the Emperors Yan and
Chun, who reigned many ages before the dynasty of Tang, at which
time porcelain began to be used by the Emperors " (about the year
442). Dunn's Collection of curious Observations, etc.; a bad
translation of some parts of the Lettt es $d\fiantes et curieuses of
the Missionary Jesuits.
Note 151, p. 98. And if Nasser, the Arabian merchant, told
no better. " La lecture de ces Fables plaisoit si fort aux Arabcs,
que, quand Mahomet les entretenoit de 1'IIistoire de 1'Ancien Tes-
tament, ils la meprisoient, lui disant que celles que Nasser leur
racontoit etoient beaucoup plus belles. Cette preference attira a
Nasser la malediction de Mahomet et de tous ses disciples."
Note 152, p. 99. Like the blacksmith's apron converted into a
banner. The blacksmith Gao, who successfully resisted the tyrant
Zohak and whose apron became the Koyal Standard of Persia.
Note 153, p. 100. That xnblime bird, which flies always in the
air, and never touches the earth. " The Huma, a bird peculiar to
the East. It is supposed to fly constantly in the air, and never
touch the ground: it is looked upon as a bird of happy omen; and
that every head it overshades will in time wear a crown." liich-
In the terms of alliance made by Fuzzel Oola Khan with Hyder
in 17(50, one of the stipulations was, " that he should have the dis-
tinction of two honorary attendants standing behind him, holding
fans composed of the feathers of the Humma, according to the
practice of his family." Wilk^s Smith of India. He adds in a
note: " The Humma is a fabulous bird. The head over which
its shadow once passes will assuredly be circled with a crown. The
splendid little bird suspended over the throne of Tippoo Sultaun,
found at Seringapatam in 171*9, was intended to represent this
Note 154, p. 101. Like those on the Written Mnitntiiin, lastfor-
erer. " To the pilgrims to Mount Sinai we inns' attribute the
inscriptions, figures, etc.. on those rocks, whirh have from thence
acquired the name of the Written Mountain." Volm-y. M. (Jebe-
lin and others have been at much pains to attach some mysterious
and important meaning to these inscriptions; but Niebiilir, as well
as Volney. thinks that they must have been executed at idle hours
by thi 1 travellers to Mount Sinai, " who were satisfied with cutting
the iin|H>l:shcd rock with any pointed instrument: adding to thHr
names and the date of their journeys some rude figures, which lie-
speak the hand of a people but little skilled in the arts." \itbuhr.
Note 155, p. 101. Like the Old M<in of tin- &a, upon his back.
The. Story of binbad.
Note 156, p. 101. To which Hafez compares his mistress's hair.
See Nott's Hafez, Ode v.
Note 157, p. 101. To the Camalata, by whose rosy blossoms the
heaven of Indra is scented. " The Camalata (called by Linnaeus,
Iponuea) is the most beautiful of its order, both in the color and
form of its leaves and flowers; its elegant blossoms are 'celestial
rosy red, Love's proper hue,' and have justly procured it the name
of Camalata, or Love's Creeper." Sir W. Jones.
" Camalata may also mean a mythological plant by which all
desires are granted to such as inhabit the heaven of Indra; and if
ever flower was worthy of Paradise, it is our charming Ipomsea."
Sir W. Jones.
Note 158, p. 101. That flower-loving nymph whom they wor-
ship in the temples of Kathay. " According to Father Premare,
in his tract on Chinese Mythology, the mother of Fo-hi was the
daughter of heaven, surnamed Flower-loving; and as the nymph
was walking alone on the bank of a river, she found herself encir-
cled by a rainbow, after which she became pregnant, and, at the
end of twelve years, was delivered of a son radiant as herself."
Note 159, p. 103. With its plane-tree Isle reflected clear.
" Numerous small islands emerge from the Lake of Cashmere.
One is called Char Chenaur, from the plane-trees upon it."
Note ICO, p. 103. And the golden floods that thitherward stray.
" The Altan Kol or Golden River of Tibet, which runs into the
Lakes of Sing-su-hay, has abundance of gold in its sands, which
employs the inhabitants all the summer ingathering it." Pinker-
ton 1 s Description of Tibet.
Note 161, p. 104. Blooms nowhere but in Paradise.
"The Brahmins of this .province insist that the blue campac
flowers only in Paradise." Sir W. Jones. It anpoars, however,
from a curious letter of the Sultan of Menangcabow, given by
Marsden, that one place on earth may lay claim to the possession
of it. " This is the Sultan, who keeps the flower champaka that
is blue, and to be found in no other country but his, being yellow
elsewhere." Marsden' s Sumatra.
Note 162, p. 104. Flung at night from angel hands.
" The Mahometans suppose that falling stars are the firebrands
wherewith the good angels drive away the had, when they approach
too near the empyrean or verge of the heavens." Fryer,
Note 163, p. 105. Beneath the pillars of CHILMINAR.
The Forty Pillars; so the Persians call the ruins of Persepolis.
It is imagined by them that this palace and the edifices at Balbec
were built by Genii, for the purpose of hiding in their subter-
raneous caverns immense treasures, which still remain there. (See
D'Herbelot and Volney. )
Note 164, p. 105. To the ^outh of sun-bright Araby.
The Isles of Panchaia.
Diodorus mentions the Isle of Panchaia, to the sotith of Arabia
Felix, where there was a temple of Jupiter. This island, or rather
cluster of isles, has disappeared, "sunk (says Grandpre) in the
abyss made by the fire beneath their foundations." Voyage to the
165, p. 105. ThejeweWd cup of their King JAMSHID.
" The cup of Jamshid, discovered, they say, when digging for
the foundations of Persepolis." Richardson.
Mote 10(5. p. 105. O'er coral rocks, and amber beds.
" It is not like the Sea of India, whose bottom is rich with pearls
and ambergris, whose mountains of the coast are stored with
gold and precious stones, whose gulfs breed creatures that yield
ivory, and among the plants of whose shores are ebony, red wood,
and the wood of llaiizan, aloes, camphor, cloves, sandal-wood, and
all other spices and aromatics: where parrots and peacocks are
birds of the forest, and musk and civet are collected upon the
lands." Travels of Two Mohammedans.
Note 107, p. 105. Thy Pajodn and thy pillur'd shades.
......... " in the ground
The bended twigs take root, and daughters grow
About the mother-tree, a ]iillar'<l nhti<lc,
High over-areh'd, and echoing walks between." Mii.TON.
For a particular description and plate of the lianyan-lrce, see
Cordiner's fry Ion.
Note 1*W. p. 105. Tin/ if onarcha and their Thousand Thrones.
"With this irnmen e treaure M.unooil returned to (ihizni, and
in the year 400 prepared a magnificent festival, where he dis-
played to the people his wealth in golden thrones and in other
ornaments, in a great plain without the city of Ghizni." Fa-
Note 169, p. 106. Tis he of Gazna fierce in wrath.
" Malmiood of Gazna, or Ghizni, who conquered India in the
beginning of the eleventh century." (See his history in Uow and
Sir J. Malcolm.)
Note 170, p. 106. Of many a young and loc'd Sultana.
" It is reported that the hunting equipage of the Sultan Mah-
mood was so magnificent that he kept 400 greyhounds and blood-
hounds, each of which wore a collar set with jewels, and a cover-
ing edged with gold and pearls." Universal History, vol. iii.
Note 171, p. 107. -For Liberty shed, so holy is.
Objections may be made to my use of the word Liberty in
this, and more especially in the story that follows it, as totally in-
applicable to any state of things that has ever existed in the East;
but though I cannot, of course, mean to employ it in that en-
larged and noble sense which is so well understood at the present
day, and, I grieve to say, so little acted upon, yet it is no dispar-
agement to the word to apply it to that national independence,
that freedom from the interference and dictation of foreigners,
without which, indeed, no liberty of any kind can exist; and for
which both Hindoos and Persians fought against their Mussulman
invaders with, in many cases, a bravery that deserved much better
Note 172, p. 107. Now among AFRIC'S lunar Mountains.
" The Mountains of the Moon, or the Monies Lunse of an-
tiquity, at the foot of which the Nile is supposed to rise." Bruce.
"Sometimes called," says Jackson, "Jibbel Kumrie, or the
white or lunar-colored mountains; so a white horse is called by the
Arabians a moon-colored horse."
Note 173, p. 107. And hail the new-born Giant's smile.
"The Nile, which the Abyssinians know by the names of Abey
and Alawy, or the Giant." Asiatic Researches, vol. i. p. 387.
Note 174, p. 107. Her grots, and sepulchres of Kings.
See Perry's View of the Levant for an account of the sepulchres
in Upper Thebes, and the numberless grots, covered all over with
hieroglyphics, in the mountains of Upper Egypt.
Note 175, p. 107. In warm ROSETTA'S rale now loves.
" The orchards of Rosetta are filled with turtle-doves." Son-
Note 176, p. 108. The azure calm of M<EUIS' Lake.
Savary mentions the pelicans upon Lake Moeris.
Note 177, p. 108. Warns them to their silken beds,
"The superb date-tree, whose head languidly reclines, like
that of a handsome woman overcome with sleep." Dafard el
Note 178, p. 108. Some purple-winy* d Sultana sitting.
" That beautiful bird, with plumage of the finest shining blue,
with purple beak and legs, the natural and living ornament of the
temples and palaces of the Greeks and Romans, which, from the
stateliness of its port, as well as the brilliancy of its colors, has
obtained the title of Sultana." Sonnini.
Note 170, p. 109. Only the fierce hyaena stalks.
Jackson, speaking of the plague that occurred in West Bar-
bary, when he was thi:re, says, ''The birds of the air fled away
from the abodes of men. The hyienas, on the contrary, visited the
Note 180, p. 10!). Throughout the city's desolate icalks.
" Gondar was full of hyaenas from the time it turned dark till
the dawn of day, seeking the different pieces of slaughtered car-
casses which this cruel and unclean people expose in the streets
without burial, and who firmly believe that these animals are Ka-
lashta from the neighboring mountains, transformed by magic, and
come down to eat human llesh in the dark in safety." Hrurc.
Note 181, p. 100. The glaring of those large blue eyes. Hruce.
Note 182, p. 110. lint see who yonder comes by nlcallh.
This circumstance has been often introduced into poetry. by
Vincent ius Fabrieius, by Darwin, and lately, with very powerful
effect, by Mr. Wilson.
Note 183, p. 112. Who slugs at the last his own death-lay.
" In the Ku.it. they suppose the I'lm ni\ to have fifty orifuvs in
his bill, whieh are continued to his t.ii 1 ; and that, after living one
thousand years, he builds himself a funeral pile, sings a melodious
air of different harmonies through his fifty organ pipes, flaps his
wings with a velocity which sets fire to the wood, and consumes
Note 184, p. 113. Their first sweet draught of glory take.
" On the shore? of a quadrangular lake stand a thousand gob-
lets, made of stars, out of which souls predestined to enjoy felicity
drink the crystal wave." From Chate-.ubriand's Description of the
Mahometan Paradise in his Beauties of Christianity.
Note 185, p. 113. Now, upon SYRIA'S land of roses.
Richardson thinks that Syria had its name from Suri, a beautiful
and delicate species of rose, for which that country has been always
famous; hence, Suristan, the Laud of Roses.
Note*186, p. 114. Gay lizards, glittering on the walls.
" The number of lizards I saw one day in the great court of the
Temple of the Sun at Balbec amounted to many thousands; the
ground, the walls, and stones of the ruined buildings, were covered
with them." Bruce.
Note 187, p. 114. Of shepherd's ancient reed.
" The Syrinx, or Pan's pipe, is still a pas-toral instrument in
Note 188, p. 114. Of the wild bees of PALESTINE.
" Wild bees, frequent in Palestine, in hollow trunks or branches
of trees, and the clefts of rocks. Thus it is said (Psalm Ixxxi. ),
' honey out of the stony rock.' " Burdens Oriental Ciistoms.
Note 189, p. 114. And woods, so full of nightingales.
"The river Jordan is on both sides beset with little, thick, and
pleasant woods, among which thousands of nightingales warble all
Note 190, p. 114. On that great Temple, once his own.
The Temple of the Sun at Balbec.
Note 191, p. 115. The beautiful blue damsel flies.
" You behold there a considerable number of a remarkable spe-
cies of beautiful insects, the elegance of whose appearance and
their attire procured for them the name of Damsels." Sonnini.
Note 192, p. 115. Of a small imarefs rustic fount.
Imaret, "hospice oh on loge et nourrit, gratis, les pelerins pen-
dant trois jours." Toderini, translated by the Abbe de Cournand.
(See also Castellan's Mceurs des Othomans, torn. v. p. 145.)
Note 193, p. 116. Kneels, with Ids forehead to the south.
" Such Turks as at the common hours of prayer are on the road,
or so employed as not to find convenience to attend the mosques,
are still obliged to execute that duty; nor are they ever known to
fail, whatever business they are then about, but pray immediately
when the hour alarms them, whatever they are about, in that very
place they chance to stand on; insomuch that when a janissary,
whom you have to guard you up and down the city, hears the notice
which is given him from the steeples, he will turn about, stand still,
and beckon with his hand, to tell his charge he must have patience
fora while; when, taking out his handkerchief, he spreads it on
the ground, sits cross-legged thereupon, and says his prayers, though
in the open market, which having ended, he leaps briskly up, sa-
lutes the person whom he undertook to convey, and renews his
journey with the mild expression of Glie II ghonnum yhell, or, Come,
dear, follow me." Aaron HilVs Travels.
Note 194, p. 117. Upon EGYPT'S land, of so healing a power.
The Nucta, or Miraculous Drop, which falls in Egypt precisely
on St. John's Day, in June, and is supposed to have the effect of
stopping the plague.
Note 10"), p. 118. Are the diamond turrets of SIIATU'KIAM.
The Country of Delight the name of a province in the king-
dom of Jinnistan, or Fairy Land, the capital of which is called the
City of Jewels. Amberabad is another of the cities of Jinnistan.
Note 190, p. 118. Myfeaxt is now of the Tooba Tree.
The tree Tooba, that stands in Paradise, in the palace of Ma-
homet. See Sale's t'relim. Dixr. Tooba, says D'Herbrlot, signi-
fies beatitude, or eternal happiness.
Note 197, p. 118. To the luff-tree, />n'nf/inf/ by AI.I.A'S throne.
Mahomet is described, in the Md chapter of the Koran, as hav-
ing seen the Angel (Jabrid " by the lote-tree, beyond wiiich there
is no passing: near it is the (larden of Eternal Abode." This
tree, say the coimiifiitators, stands in the seventh Heaven, on the
right hand of the Throne of God.
Note 108, p. 119. As the hundred and twenty thousand streams
of Basra. " It is said that the rivers or streams of Basra were
reckoned in the time of Pelal ben Abi Bordeh, and amounted to
the number of one hundred and twenty thousand streams."
Note 199, p. 119. Who, like them, flan;/ the jereed carelessly.
The name of the javelin with which the Easterns exercise. (See
Castellan, Mozurs des Othomans, torn. iii. p. 161.)
Note 200, p. 120. The Banyan Hospital. " This account
excited a desire of visiting the Banyan Hospital, as 1 had heard
much of their benevolence to all kinds of animals that were either
sick, lame, or infirm, through age or accident. On my arrival,
there were presented to my view many horses, cows, and oxen, in
one apartment; in another, dogs, sheep, goats, and monkoys, with
clean straw for them to repose on. Above stairs were depositories
for seeds of many sorts, and flat, broad dishes for water, for the use
of birds and insects." Parsons'* Travels.
It is said that all animals know the Banyans, that the most timid
approach them, and that birds will fly nearer to them than to other
people. (See Grandpre.)
Note 201, p. 120. Like that of the fragrant grass near the
Ganges. " A very fragrant grass from the banks of the Ganges,
near Heridwar, which in some places covers whole acres, and dif-
fuses, when crushed, a strong odor." Sir W. Jones, on the Spike-
nard of the Ancients.
Note 202, p. 120. No one had ever yet reached its summit.
" Near this is a curious hill, called Koh Talism, the Mountain of
the Talisman, because, according to the traditions of the country,
no person ever succeeded in gaining its summit." Kinneir.
Note 203, p. 122. Is warmed into life by the eyes alone. "The
Arabians believe that the ostriches hatch their young by only look-
ing at them." P. Vanslebe, Kelat. d'Eyypte.
Note 204, p. 122. And then lost them again forever. See
Sale's Koran, note, vol. ii. p. 484.
Note 205, p. 122. While the artisans in chariots. Oriental
Note 206, p. 122. Who kept waring over their heads plates of
gold an'l silver flowers, Ferishta. "Or rather," says Scott, upon
the passage of Ferislita, from which this is taken, " smail coins,
stamped with the figure of a flower. They are still used in India to
distribute in charity, and, on occasion, thrown by the purse-bearers
of the great among the populace."
Note 207, p. 123. Alley of trees. The fine road made by the
Emperor Jehan-Guire from Agra to Lahore, planted with trees on
each side. This road is 250 leagues in length. It has " little pyra-
mids or turrets," says Bernier, " erected every half league, to mark
the ways, and frequent wells to afford drink to passengers, and to
water the young trees."
No:e 208, p. 124. That favorite tree of the luxurious bird that
li'/hts M/> the chambers of its next icith fire-flies. The Baya, or
Indian Grosbeak. Sir W. Jones.
Note 209, p. 124. On the clear cold waters of ichich floated
multitudes of the benuflfttl red lotus. " Here is a large pagoda by
a tank, on the water of which float multitudes of the beautiful red
lotus; the flower is larger than that of the white water-lily, and is
the most lovely of the nymphreas I have seen." Mrs. Graham's
Journal of a Residence in India.
Note 210, p. 125. Had fled hither fror.i their Arab conquerors.
" On les voit persecutes par les Khalifes se retirer dans les mon-
tagnes du Kerman : plusieurs choisircnt pour retraite laTartarieet
la Chine; d'autrcs s'arretcrent sur les Lords du Gauge, a Test de
Delhi." 37. Awjuetil, Memoires de I'Acadt'inie, torn. xxxi. p. 346.
Note 211, p. 125. Like their own F!re in the Burininj Field at
liAKOL". The " Ager ardens " described by Kaempfer, Amamitat.
Note 212, p. 12-". TJir prey of stranr/rrs. " Cashmere (says
its historians) had its own princes 4000 years before its conquest
by Akbar in 15S5. Akhar would have found sonic difficulty to
reduce this paradise of the Indies, situated as it is within such a
fortress of mountains, but its monarch Yuscf Khan, was basely
betrayed by his Omrahs." 1'ennant.
Note 213, p. 120. Firc-ict>rliii>]nr*. Voltaire tells us that
iti his Tragedy, " l.cs Guebres," he was generally Mipposed to have
alluded to the Jansenists. I should not be surprised if thi< story
of the Fire- worshipper, were found capable of a similar doulileness
Note 214, p. 127. 'Tis moonlight over OMAN'S Sea.
The Persian Gulf, sometimes so called, which separates the
shores of Persia and Arabia.
Note 215, p. 127. Tis moonlight in HARSIOZIA'S walls.
The present Gombaroon, a town on the Persian side of the
Note 216, p. 127. Of trumpet and the clash of zel.
A Moorish instrument of music.
Note 217, p. 127. The wind-tower on the EMIK'S dome.
" At Gombaroon and other places in Persia,they have towers for
the purpose of catching the wind, and cooling the houses." Le
Note 218, p. 127. His race hath brought on IRAN'S name.
" Iran is the true general name for the empire of Persia."
Asiatic Researches, Disc. 5.
Note 219, p. 128. Engraven on his reeking sword.
" On the blades of their scimitars some verse from the Koran
is usually inscribed." Eussel.
Note 220, p. 128. Draw venom forth that drives men mad.
" There is a kind of Rhododendron about Trebizond whose
flowers the bee feeds upon, and the -honey thence drives people
Note 221, p. 129. Upon the turban of a king.
" Their kings wear plumes of black herons' feathers upon the
right side as a badge of sovereignty." Hanway.
Note 222, p. 129. Springing in a desolate mountain.
" The Fountain of Youth, by a Mahometan tradition, is situ-
ated in some dark region of the East." Richardson.
Note 223, p. 130. On summer-eves, through YEMEN'S dales.
Note 224, p. 130. 117(0, lulFd in cool kiosk or bower.
"In the midst of the garden is the chiosk, that is, a large
room, commonly beautified with a fine fountain in the midst of it.
It is raised nine or ten steps, and enclosed with gilded lattices,
round which vines, jessamines, and honeysuckles make a sort of
green wall; large trees are planted round this place, which is the
scene of their greatest pleasures." Lady M. W. Montagu.
Note 225, p. 130. Before their mirrors count the time.
The women of the East are never without their looking-glasses.
"In Barbary," says Shaw, "they are so fond of their looking-
glasses, which they hang upon their breasts, that they will not lay
them aside, even when, after the drudgery of the day, they are
obliged to go two or three miles with a pitcher or a goat's skin to
fetch water/' Travels.
In other parts of Asia they wear little looking-glasses on their
thumbs. " Hence (and from the lotus being considered the emblem
of beauty) is the meaning of the following mute intercourse of two
lovers before their parents:
" ' He, with salute of deference due,
A lotus to his forehead prest;
She rais'd her mirror to his view,
Then turn'd it inward to her breast.' "
Asiatic Miscellany, vol. ii.
Note 226, p. 131. Upon the emerald's tiryin blaze.
" They say that if a snake or serpent fix his eyes on the lustre
01 those stones (emeralds), he immediately becomes blind."
Ahmed lien Abdalaziz, Treatise on Jewels.
Note 227, p. 131. After the day beam's withering fire.
" At Gombaroon and the Isle of Onnus, it is sometimes so hot
that the people are obliged to lie all d;iy in the water." Marco
Note 228, p. 132. Of ARARAT'S tremendous
This mountain is generally supposed to ht> inaccessible. Stniy
MJ8, " I can well assure the reader that their opinion is not true,
who suppose this mount to be Inaccessible." He adds, th.it " the
lower part of the mountain is cloudy, misty, and dark; the middle-
most part very cold, and like clouds of snow; but the upper regions
perfectly calm." It was on this mountain that the Ark was sup-
posed to have rested after the IMugo. and part of it, they say, ex-
ists there still, which Struy thus gravely account M fr: " Whereas
none can remember that the air on the top of the lull did ever
change or was subject, either to wind v>r rain, which is presumed to
be the reason that the Ark has endured so long without being rot-
ten." (See Carreri's Travels, where the Doctor laughs at this
whole account of Mount Ararat. )
Note 229, p. 132. The Bridegroom, with his locks of light.
In one of the hooks of the Shah Nameh, when Zal (a celebrated
hero of Persia, remarkable for his white hair) comes to the terrace
of his mistress Rodahver at night, she lets down her long tresses
to assist him in his ascent; he, however, manages it in a less
romantic way, by fixing his crook in a projecting beam. (See
Note 230, p. 133. The rock-goats of ARABIA clamber.
"On the lofty hills of Arabia Petrsea are rock-goats." Nie~
Note 231, p. 133. Some ditty to her soft Kanoon.
"Canun, espece de psaltdrion, avec des eord^* de boyaux; les
dames en touchent dans le serail, avec des ecailles rmees de pointes
de cooc." Toderini, translated by De Coumund*
Note 232, p. 137. The Ghcber belt that rounu, \im cluny.
"They (the Ghebers) lay so much stress on 'heir cushee or
girdle, as not to dare to be an instant without it." Grose's Voy-
age. " Le jeunehomme nia d'abord la chose; mais, ayant ete de-
pouille de sa robe, et la large ceinture qu'il portoit comme Gliebr."
etc., etc. D'Herbelot, art. Agdnani. "Pour se distinguer des
Idolatres de 1'Inde, les Guebres se ceignent tous d'un cordon de
iaine, ou de poil de chameau." Encyclopedic Franqoise.
D'Herbelot says this belt was generally of leather.
Note 233, p. 138. Among the living lights of heaven.
" They suppose the Throne of the Almighty is seated in the sun,
and hence their worship of that luminary." Hanway. " As to
fire, the Ghebers place the spring-head of it in that globe of fire,
the Sun, by them called Mythras, or Mihir, to which they pay the
highest reverence, in gratitude for the manifold benefits flowing
from its ministerial omniscience. But they are so far from con-
founding the subordination of the Servant with the majesty of its
Creator, that they not only attribute no sort of sense or reasoning
to the sun or fire, in any of its operations, but consider it as a
purely passive blind instrument, directed and governed Dy the iin-
mediate impression on it of the will of God: but they do not even
give that luminary, all-glorious as it is, more than the second rank
amongst His works, reserving the first for that stupendous produc-
tion of divine power, the mind of man." Grose. The false
charges brought against the religion of these people by their Mus-
sulman tyrants is but one proof among many of the truth of this
writer's remark, that " calumny is often added to oppression, if
but for the sake of justifying it."
Note 234, p. 139. And fiery darts, at intermix.
" The Mameluks that were in the other boat, when it was dark,
used to shoot up a sort of fiery arrows into the air, which in some
measure resembled lightning or falling stars." Baumyarten.
Note 235, p. 141. Which grows orer the tomb of the musician,
Tan-Sein. " Within the enclosure which surrounds this monu-
ment (at Gualior) is a small tomb to the memory of Tan-Sein, a
musician of incomparable skill, wlio flourished at the court of Ak-
bar. The tomb is overshadowed by a tree concerning which a
superstitious notion prevails, that the chewing of its leaves will
give an extraordinary melody to the voice." Narrative of a Jour-
ney from Agra to Oitzein, by W. Hunter, Esq.
Note 236, p. 141. The awful niijnalof the bamboo staff. " It
Is usual to place a small white triangular fla<;, fixed to a bamboo
staff of ten or twelve feet long, at the place where a tiger has de-
stroyed a man. It is common for the passengers also to throw each
a stone or brick near the spot, so that in the course of a little lime
a pile equal to a good wagon-load is collected. The sight of these
flags and piles of stones imparts a certain melancholy, not perhaps
altogether void of apprehension." Oriental Fiflil S]>t-tx, vol. ii.
Note 237, p. 141. Ornamented irith the most beautiful porce-
lain. ''The Ficus Indica is called the Pagod Tree and Tree of
Councils; the first, from the idols placed under its shade; the sec-
ond, Iwcause meetings were held under its cool branches. In some
places it is believed to be the haunt of sjwctres, as the ancient
spreading oaks of Wales have been of fairies; in others are erected
beneath the shade pillars of stone, or posts, elegantly carved, ami
ornamented with the most beautiful porcelain to supply the use of
Note 2.TN. p. 142. /1i/ n'er the dreen Sra )>alrl>/ shines.
The Persian (iulf. "To dive for pearls in the Green Sea, or
Persian Gulf." Sir H*. Jones.
Note 239, p. 142. Bevealing BAHREIN'S groves of palm,
And lighting KISHMA'S amber vines.
Islands in the Gulf.
Note 240, p. 142. Blow round SET.AMA'S sainted cape.
Or Selemeh, the genuine name of the headland at the entrance
of the Gulf, commonly called Cape Musseldom. " The Indians,
when they pass the promontory, throw cocoa nuts, fruits, or
flowers, into the sea, to secure a propitious voyage." Morier.
Note 241, p. 142. The nightingale now bends her flight.
"The nightingale sings from the pomegranate groves in the
daytime, and from the loftiest trees at night." EusseVs Aleppo.
Note 242, p. 142. The best and brightest scimitar.
In speaking of the climate of Shiraz, Francklin says, " The dew-
is of such a pure nature, that if the brightest scimitar should be
exposed to it all night, it would not receive the least rust."
Note 243, p. 143. Who, on CADESSIA'S bloody plains.
The place where the Persians were finally defeated by the Arabs,
and their ancient monarchy destroyed.
Note 244, p. 143. Beyond the Caspian 's Iron Gates.
Derbend. " Les Turcs appellent cette ville Demir Capi, Porte
de Fer: ce sont les Caspise Porta? des anciens." D'Herbelot.
Note 245, p. 143. They burst, like ZKII.AN'S giant palm.
The Talpot or Talipot tree. " This beautiful palm-tree, which
grows in the heart of the forests, may be classed among the loftiest
trees, and becomes still higher when on the po'nt of bursting forth
from its leafy summit. The sheath which then envelops the
flower is very large, and, when it bursts, makes an explosion like
the report of a cannon." Thunberg.
Note 246, p. 145. Before whose sabre's dazzling light.
" When the bright cimitars make the eyes of our heroes wink."
The Moallakat, Poem of Amru.
Note 247, p. 146. Sprung from those old enchanted kings.
Tahmuras, and other ancient kings of Persia; whose adventures
in Fairy-land among the Peris and Dives may be found in Richard-
son's curious Dissertation. The griffin Simoorgh, they say, took
some feathers from her breast for Tahmuras, with which he adorned
his helmet, and transmitted them afterwards to his descendants.
Note 248, p. 146. Of sainted cedars on its banks.
This rivulet, says Uandini, is called the Holy River, from the
" cedar saints " among which it rises.
In the Leltres Edijiantes, there is a different cause assigned for
its name of iloly. "In these are deep caverns, which formerly
served as so many cells for a great number of recluses, who liad
chosen these retreats as the only witnesses upon earth of the sever-
ity of their penance. The tears of these pious penitents gave the
river of which we have just treated tlie name of the Holy River."
See Chateaubriand's Beauties of Christianity.
Note 249, p. 147. Of OMAN beetling awfully.
This mountain is my own creation, as the "stupendous chain,"
of which I suppose it a link, does not extend quite so far as the
shores of the Persian Gulf. " This long and lofty range of moun-
tains formerly divided Media from Assyria, and now forms the
boundary of the Persian and Turkish empires. It runs parallel
with the river Tigris and Persian CJtilf, and, almost disappearing
in the vicinity of Gomberoon (Hannozia), se<>m< once more to rise
in the southern districts of Kerman, and following an easterly
course through the centre of Meckraun and Balouchistan, is en-
tirely lost in the deserts of Sinde." Kinneir's Persian Empire.
Note 250, p. 148. That oft the sleeping albatross.
These birds slo^p in the air. They are most common about the
Cape of Good Hope.
Note 251, p. 148. Beneath the Gheber's lonely cliff.
"There is an extraordinary hill in this neighborhood, called
Kohe Gubr, or the Guebre's mountain. It rises in the form of a
lofty cupola, and on the summit of i'. they say, are the remains of
an Atush Kudu, or Fire-Temple. It Is snperstitionsly held to be
the residence of Deeves or Sprites, and many marvellous stories are
recounted of the injury and witchcraft suffered by those who
essayed in former days to ascend or explore it." I'uttinijtr's
Note 2.VJ, p. 149. Of that rant mountain stood onjirc.
The (ihebors generally built their temples over subterraneous
Note 2~'.}, p. 149. Still did the iiii'/htif Jlamr burn on.
"At the city of Yezd. in IVrsia, which is distinguished by tha
appellation of thtt Darub Ahadut, or Scat of Religion, the Gueb.-es
are permitted to have an Atush Kudu, or Fire-Temple (which, they
assert, has had the sacred fire in it since the days of Zoroaster), in
their own compartment of the city; but for this indulgence they
are indebted to the avarice, not the tolerance, of the Persian gov-
ernment, which taxes them at twenty-five rupees each man."
Note 254, p. 150. The blood of ZAL and RUST AM rolls.
Ancient heroes of Persia. " Among the Guebres there are some
who boast their descent from Rustam." Stephen's Persia.
Note 255, p. 150. Across the dark sea robber's way.
See Russel's account of the panther's attacking travellers in the
night on the sea-shore about the roots of Lebanon.
Note 256, p. 151. The wandering Spirits of their Dead.
" Among other ceremonies the Magi used to place upon the tops
of high towers various kinds of rich viands, upon which it was
supposed the Peris and the spirits of their departed heroes regaled
Note 257, p. 151. Nor charmed leaf of pure pomegranate.
In the ceremonies of the Ghebres round their Fire, as described
by Lord, "the Daroo," he says, "giveth them water to drink, and
a pomegranate leaf to chew in the mouth, to cleanse them from
Note 258, p. 151. Nor symbol of their worshipped planet.
" Early in the morning, they (the Parsees or Ghebers at Oulam)
go in crowds to pay their devotions to the Sun, to whom upon all
the altars there are spheres consecrated, made by magic, resembling
the circles of the sun, and when the sun rises these orbs seem to be
inflamed, and to turn round with a great noise. They have every
one a censer in their hands, and offer incense to the sun." Rabbi
Note 259, p. 151. They swore the latest, holiest deed.
" Nul d'entre eux oseroit se parjurer, quand il a pris & temoin
cet element terrible et vengeur." Encyclopedic Franc.oi.te.
Note 2GO, p. 151. The Persian lily shines and towers.
" A vivid verdure succeeds the autumnal rains, and the ploughed
fields are covered with the Persian lily, of a resplendent yellow
color." Russel's Aleppo.
Note 261, p. 154. When toss'd at midnight furiously.
"It is observed, with respect to the Sea of Herkeml, that when
it is tossed by tempestuous winds it sparkles like fire." Travels
of Two Mohammedans.
Note 262, p. 154. Up, daughter, up the KEKXA'S breath.
A kind of trumpet; it " was that used by Tamerlane, the sound
of which is described as uncommonly dreadful, and so loud as to be
beard at the distance of several miles." Richardson.
Note 20:5, p. 155. Thou wor'st on OIIOD'S field of death.
"Mohammed had two helmets, an interior and exterior one; the
latter of which, called Al Mawashah, the fillet, wreath, or wreathed
garland, he wore at the battle of Ohod." Universal History.
Note 264, p. 150. But turn to ashes on the lips.
They say that there are apple-trees upon the sides of this sea,
which boar very lovely fruit, but within are all full of ashes.
Thevenot. The same is asserted of the oranges there; tide Wit-
man's Travels in Asiatic Turkey.
41 The Asphalt Lake, known by the name of the Dead Sea, is
very remarkable on account of the considerable proportion of salt
which it contains. In this respect it surpasses every other known
water on the surface of the earth. This great proportion of bitter-
tasted salts is the reason why neither animal nor plant can live in
this water." Klaproth's Chemical Analysis of the Water of the
Dead Sea, Annals of Philosophy, January, 1813. Hasselquist, how-
ever, doubts the truth of this last assertion, as there are shell-fish
to be found in the lake.
Lord Hyron has a similar allusion to the fruits of the Dead Sea,
in that wonderful display of genius, his third canto of Child?
llnrold. magnificent beyond anything, perhaps, that even he has
Note 205, p. 150. While lake*, that, shone in mockery niyh.
"The Stihrab, or Water of tlic Desert, is said to be caused by
the rarefaction of the atmosphere from extreme heat; and, which
augments the delusion, it is most frequent in hollows, where water
might lx! expected to lodge. I have seen bushes and trees reflected
in it with as much accuracy as though it had been the face of a clear
and still lake." I'oHinijrr.
44 As to the unbelievers, tbeir works are like a vapor in a plain
which the thirsty traveller thiiikelli to In- water, until when lie
comet h thereto he fmdeth it to be nothing." Kurun, chap. xxiv.
Note 266, p. 157. TJie Bidmusk had just passed over. "A
wind which prevails in February, called Bidmusk, from a small and
odoriferous flower of that name." " The wind which blows these
flowers commonly lasts till the end of the month." Le Eruyn.
Note 267, p. 157. The sea-gipsies, who live forever on the
water. " The Biajus are of two races: the one is settled on Borneo,
and are a rude but warlike and industrious nation, who reckon
themselves the original possessors of the Island of Borneo. The
other is a species of sea-gipsies or itinerant fishermen, who live in
small covered boats, and enjoy a perpetual summer on the Eastern
Ocean, shifting to leeward from island to island, with the variations
of the monsocn. In some of their customs this singular race resem-
ble the natives of the Maldivia islands. The Maldivians annually
launch a small bark, loaded with perfumes, gums, flowers, and
odoriferous wood, and turn it adrift at the mercy of winds and
waves, as an offering to the Spirit of the Winds ; and sometimes
similar offerings are made to the spirit whom they term the King
of the Sea. In like manner the Biajus perform their offering to
the God of Evil, launching a small bark, loaded with all the sins
and misfortunes of the nation, which are imagined to fall on the
unhappy crew that may be so unlucky as first to meet with it."
Dr. Ley den on the Languages and Literature of the Indo-Chinese
Note 268, p. 157. The violet sherbets. " The sweet-scented
violet is one of the plants most esteemed, particularly for its great
use in Sorbet, which they make of violet sugar." Hasselquist.
" The sherbet they most esteem, and which is drunk by the
Grand Signer himself, is made of violets and sugar." Tavernier.
Note 269, p. 157. The pathetic measure of Nava. " Last of
all she took a guitar, and sung a pathetic air in the measure called
Nava, which is always used to express the lamentations of absent
lovers." Persian Tales.
Note 270, p. 158. No music tintd her parting oar.
" The Easterns used to set out on their longer voyages with
Note 271, p. 159. 7/i silence through the Gate of Tears.
" The Gate of Tears, the straits or passage into the Red Sea.
commonly called Babelmandel. It received this name from the old
Arabians, on account of the danger of the navigation, and the
number of shipwrecks by which it was distinguished; which induced
them to consider as dead, and to wear mourning for, all who had
the boldness to hazard the passage through it into the Ethiopic
Note 272, p. 159. In the still warm and living breath.
" I have been told that whensoever an animal falls down dead,
one or more vultures, unseen before, instantly appear." Pennant.
Note 273, p. 159. As a young bird of BABYLON.
" They fasten some writing to the wings of a Bagdat or Baby-
lonian pigeon." Travels of certain Englishmen.
Note 274, p. 159. Shooting around their jasper fount.
" The Empress of Jehan-Guire used to divert herself with feed-
ing tame fish in her canals, some of which were many years after-
wards known by fillets of gold, which she caused to be put round
Note 275, p. 159. To tell her ruby rosary.
" Le Tespih, qui est un chapelet compose" de 99 petites boules
d'agate, de jaspe, d'ambre, de corail, ou d'autre matiere pre"cieuse.
J'en ai vu un superbe an Seigneur Jerpos; il etoit de belles et
grosses perles parfaites et egales, estime trente mille piastres."
Note 276, p. 162. Like meteor brands as if throughout.
The meteors that Pliny calls " faces."
Note 277, p. 163. The Star of EGYPT whose proud light.
" The brilliant Canopus, unseen in European climates."
Note 278, p. 163. In the White Islands of the West.
See Wilford's learned Essays on the Sacred Isles of the West.
Note 279, p. 163. Sparkles, as 'twere that lightning gem.
A precious stone of the Indies, called by the ancients Orau-
nrinn. because it was supposed tube found in places where thunder
had fallen. Tcrtnllian says it lias a glittering appearance, as if
there had been fire in it; and the author of the Dissertation in
Harris's Voyages supposes it to be the opal.
Note 280, p. 165. Their garb the leathern belt that wraps.
D'Lierbelot, art. Agduanl.
Note 281, p. 165. Each yellow vest that rebel hue.
"The Guebres are known by a dark yellow color, which the
men affect in their clothes." Thevenot.
Note 282, p. 165. The Tartar fleece upon their caps.
" The Kolah or cap, worn by the Persians, is made of the skin
of the sheep of Tartary." Waring.
Note 283, p. 169. Open her bosom's glowing veil.
A frequent image among the Oriental poets. " The nightin-
gales warbled their enchanting notes, and rent the thin veils of the
rosebud and the rose." Jami.
Note 284, p. 172. The sorrowful tree, Nilica. "Blossoms
of the sorrowful Nyctanthes give a durable color to silk." Re-
marks on the Husbandry of Bengal, p. 200. Nilica is one of the
Indian names of this flower. Sir W. Jones. The Persians call
it Gul. Can-en.
Note 285, p. 173. That cooling feast the traveller loves.
" In parts of Kerman. whatever dates are shaken from the
trees by the wind they do not touch, but leave them for those who
have not any, or for travellers." Ebn Haukal.
Note 286, p. 174. The Searchers of the Grave appear.
The two terrible angels Monkir and Nakir, who are called "the
Searchers of the Grave" in the " Creed of the orthodox Mahome-
tans " given by Ockley, vol. ii.
Note 287, p. 174. The mandrake's charnel leaves at night.
" The Arabians call the mandrake ' the Devil's candle,' on
account of its shining appearance in the night." Richardson.
Note 288, p. 179. Of the still Halls of ISHMONIE.
For an account of Ishmonie, the petrified city in Upper Egypt,
where it is said there are many statues of men, women, etc., to be
seen to this day, see Perry's View of the Levant.
Note 289, p. 180. And ne'er did saint of ISSA gaze. Jesus.
Note 290, p. 181. The death-flames that beneath him burn'd.
The Ghebers say that when Abraham, their great Prophet, was
thrown into the fire by order of Nimrod, the flame turned in-
stantly into "a bed of roses, where the child sweetly reposed."
Of their other Prophet, Zoroaster, there is a story told in Dion
Prusams, Oral. 30, that the love of wisdom and virtue leading
him to a solitary life upon a mountain, he found it one day all in
a flame, shining with celestial fire, out of which he came without
any harm, and instituted certain sacrifices to God, who, he de-
clared, then appeared to him. (See Patrick on Exodus iii. 2.)
Note 291, p. 183. A ponderous sea-horn hung, and blew.
'* The shell called Siiankos, common to India, Africa, and the
Mediterranean, and still used in many parts as a trumpet for blow-
ing alarms or giving signals: it sends forth a deep and hollow
Note 292, p. 184. And the white ox-tails stream' d behind.
" The finest ornament for the horses is made of six large flying
tassels of long white hair, taken out of the tails of wild oxen, that
are to he found in some places of the Indies." Thetenot.
Note 293, p. 18.">. Sweet as the angel ISKAKIL'S.
" The angel Israfil, W!K> has the most melodious voice of all
God's creatures." Sale.
Note 294, p. 188. Wound slow, as through GOLCONDA'S vale.
See Hoole upon the Story of Sinhad.
Note 295, p. 190. From the wild covert where he lay.
" In this thicket upon the banks of the Jordan several sorts of
wiM beasts are wont to harbor themselves, whose being washed
out of the covert by the overflowings of the river gave occasion to
that allusion of Jeremiah, he shall come up like a lion from the
swelling of Jordan." MaundrelVa Aleppo.
Note 290, p. 190. Like the wind of the south o'er a summer
"This wind (the Samoor) so softens the strings of lutes that
they can never be timed while it lasts." Stephen's Persia.
Note 297, p. 190. With nought but the sea-star to light up her
"One of the greatest curiosities found in the Persian Gulf is a
fish wbirli I lie Knglish call Mar-fish. It is circular, and at night
very luminous, resembling the full moon surrounded by rays.''
3/irzu Aim Taleb.
Note 298, p. 197. And still, when the merry date-season is
For a description of the merriment of the date-time, of their
work, their dances, and their return home from the palm-groves
at the end of autumn with the fruits, see Kaenipfer, Amanitat.
Note 299, p. 197. That ever the sorrowing sea-bird has wept.
Some naturalists have imagined that amber is a concretion of
the tears of birds. (See Trevoux, Chambers.)
Note 300, p. 197. We'll seek where the sands of the Caspian
" The bay Kieselarke, which is otherwise called the Golden Bay,
the sand whereof shines as fire." Struy.
Note 301, p. 198. The summary criticism of the Chabuk.'
" The application of whips or rods." Dubois.
Note 302, p. 199. Chief Holder of the Girdle of Beautiful
Forms. Kaempfer mentions such an officer among the attendants
of the King of Persia, and calls him " formse corporis aestinialor."
His business w r as, at stated periods, to measure the la.lies of the
Haram by a sort of regulation-girdle, whose limits it was not
thought graceful to exceed. If any of them outgrew this standard
of shape, they were reduced by abstinence till they came within
Note 303, p. 199. Forbidden River. The Attock.
" Akbar on his way ordered a fort to be built upon the Nilab,
which he called Attock, which means in the Indian language For-
bidden; for, by the superstition of the Hindoos, it was held unlaw-
ful to cross that river." Dow's Hindustan.
Note 304, p. 200. One genial star that rises ni<jhtly over their
heads. " The inhabitants of this country (Zinge) are never
afflicted with sadness or melancholy; on this subject the Sheikh
Abu-al-Kheir-Azhari has the following distich:
" ' Who is the man without care or sorrow, (tell) that I may rub
my hand to him.
"'(Behold) the Zingians, without care or sorrow, frolicsome
with tipsiness and mirth.'
" The philosophers have discovered that the cause of this cheer-
fulness proceeds from the influence of the star Soheil or Canopus,
which rises over them every night." Extract from a Geographi-
cal Perxian Manuscript called Heft Aklim, or the Seven Climates,
translated by W. Ouseley, Esq.
Note 305, p. 200. Lizards. " The lizard Stellio. The Arabs
call it Hardun. The Turks kill it, for they imagine that by de-
clining the head it mimics them when they say their prayers."
Note 300, p. 200. Royal Gardens. For these particulars re-
specting Hussun Abdaul, I am indebted to the very interesting
Introduction of Mr. Elphinstone's work upon Caubul.
Note 307, p. 201. It was too delicious. " As you enter at
that liazar, without the gate of Damascus, you see the Green
Mosque, so called because it hath a steeple faced with green glazed
bricks, which render it very resplendent; it is covered at top with
a p.-ivilion of the same stuff. The Turks say this mosque was
made in that place, because Mahomet being come so far, would
not enter the town, saying it was too delicious." Thevenot. This
reminds one of the following pretty passage in Isaac Walton:
" When I sat last on this primrose bank, and looked down these
meadows, I thought of them as Charles the Emperor did of the city
of Florence, ' that they were too pleasant to be looked on, but only
on holidays.' "
Note 308, p. 201. The Rultana Nourmahal, the Light of the
Hnruni. Nourmahal signifies Light of the liar mi. She was after-
wards called Nourjehan, or the Light of the World.
Note 300, p. 201. The small shining fishes of which she was so
fond. See note 274, p. 322.
Note 310, p. 201. l[nro>iii-al-Itasi'hid and his fair mixtresa
Murida. " Flaroun-al-Kaachld, cinquiiMiic Khalifedcs Alussides,
sY'tant mi jour brouillt- avcc tine de st-s maiircsses nommt ; e Mari-
dah, <ju'il aimoit cependant jusqu'a 1'exres, etortte mdsintclligeiice
ayant d ; ja dun; quclqut! terns, cominem;a a s'mnnyrr. (iiafar
Hanuaki, son favori, qui sVn ap<-reut, romiuaiida ii Abbas hen-
Ahnaf, px<vllent \H> -te de c tons-lit, de coin;>or qu< > l-|ii>.<4 vers
sur lo sujet de < % ette hrouillcric. Cc portt: ext'-i-iila 1'ordn 1 'If (Jia-
far, qui lit clianUr ces vcrs par MoiHsali on pn'-scniM' du Kli ilifc, et
ce prince fut trllcini-ut touch*'' di 1 la t<'ii Iri'ssi' ih'.s vors du jxn'-te ot
de la douceur de la voix du musiricn. qiril alia aussitot trouver
Maridah, ct fit sa palx av-c Hie." D' ll<rl,>l,>t.
Note 311, p. 202. With its roses the brightest that earth ever
" The rose of Kashmire, for its brilliancy and delicacy of odor,
has long been proverbial in the East." Forster.
Note 312, p. 202. Bound the waist of some fair Indian dancer
" Tied round her waist the zone of bells, that sounded with rav-
ishing melody." Song of Jayadeva.
Note 313, p. 203. The young aspen-trees.
" The little isles in the lake of Cachemire are set with arbors
and large-leaved aspen-trees, slender and tall." Bernier.
Note 314, p. 203. Shines in through the mountainous portal
" The Tuckt Suliman, the name bestowed by the Mahometans
on this hill, forms one side of a grand portal to the Lake."
Note 315, p. 203. The Valley holds its Feast of Roses.
" The Feast of Roses continues the whole time of their remain-
ing in bloom." (See Pietro cle la Valle.)
Note 316, p. 203. The Flow'ret of a hundred leaves.
" Gul sad berk, the Rose of a hundred leaves. I believe a par-
ticular species." Ouseley.
Note 317, p. 203. Behind the palms of BABAMOULE. Ber-
Note 318, p. 204. On BKLA'S hills is less alive.
A place mentioned in the Toozek Jehangeery, or Memoirs of
Jehan-Guire, where there is an account of the beds of saffron-
flowers about Cashmere.
Note 319, p. 205. Sung from his lighted gallery.
" It is the custom among the women to employ the Maazeen to
chant from the gallery of the nearest minaret, which on that occa-
sion is illuminated, and the women assembled at the house respond
at intervals with a ziraleet or joyous chorus." Russel.
Note 320, p. 205. From gardens, where the silken swing.
" The sw ing is a favorite pastime in the East, as promoting a
circulation of air, extremely refreshing in those sultry climates."
" Tlie swings are adorned with festoons. This pastime is accom-
panied with the music of voices and of instruments, hired by the
masters of the swings." Thevenot.
Note 321, p. 205. Among the tents that line the way.
"At the keeping of the Feast of Roses we beheld an infinite
number of tents pitched, with such a crowd of men, women, boys,
and girls, with music, dances," etc., etc. Herbert.
Note 322, p. 205. An ansicer in song to the kiss of each wave.
" An old commentator of the Chou-King says, the ancients hav-
ing remarked that a current of water made some of the stones near
its banks send forth a sound, they detached some of them, and
being charmed with the delightful sound they emitted, constructed
King or musical instruments of them." Grosier.
This miraculous quality has been attributed also to the shore of
Attica. " II u jus littus, ait Capella, concentum musicum illisis
terne undis reddere, quod propter tantam eruditionis vim puto dic-
tum." Ludoc. Vives in Auyustin. de Cititat. Dei, lib. xviii. c. 8.
Note 323, p. 200. So felt the magnificent Son of Acbar.
Jehan-Guire was the son of the Great Acbar.
Note 324, p. 207. Yet playful as Peris just loos'd from their
In the wars of the Dives with the Peris, whenever the former
took the latter prisoners, " they shut them up in iron capes, and
hung them on the highest trees. Here they were visited by their
companions, who brought them the choicest odors." IHchardson.
Note 325, p. 207. Of thejfoiccrs of this plain' t though treas-
ures id-re there.
In the Malay language the same word signifies women and
Note 320, p. 207. lie saro that City of
The capital of Shadukiam. Sec note 1!>5, p. 203.
Note :J27, p. 208. He sits, withjiinc'rctxfrttcr'd round.
See tin- representation of the Kastern Cupid, pinioned closely
round with wreaths of (lowers in 1'ieart's (Vr< ; moiii< * / liyiciuica.
Note 328, p. 208. Lose all their glory ivhen he flies.
" Among the birds of Tonquin is a species of goldfinch, which,
sings so melodiously that it is called the Celestial Bird. Its wings,
when it is perched, appear variegated with beautiful colors, but
when it flies they lose all their splendor." Grosier.
Note 329, p. 209. Whose pinion knows no resting-place.
"As these birds on the Bosphorus are never known to rest,
they are called by the French 'les aines damnees.' " Dalloway.
Note 330, p. 209. //' there his darling rose is not.
" You may place a hundred handfuls of fragrant herbs and
flowers before the nightingale, yet he wishes not, in his constant
heart, for more than the sweet breath of his beloved rose."
Note 331, p. 210. From the great Mantra, which around.
" Hi: is said to have found the great Mantra, spell or talisman,
through which he ruled over the elements and spirits of all denom-
Note 332, p. 210. To the gold gems of AFRIO.
"The gold jewels of Jinnie, which are called by the Arabs El
Herrez, from the supposed charm they contain." Jackson.
Note 333, p. 210. To keep him from the Sillim's harm.
" A demon, supposed to haunt woods, etc., in a human shape."
Note 334, p. 210. Her ScUm's smile to NOURMAHAL.
The name of Jehan-Guire before his accession to the throne.
Note 335, p. 211. Anemones and Seas of Gold.
" Hemasagara, or the Sea of Gold, with flowers of the brightest
gold color." Sir W. Jones.
Note 336, p. 211. Their buds on CAMADEVA'S quiver.
" This tree (the Nagacesara) is one of the most delightful on
earth, and the delicious odor of its blossoms justly gives them a
place in the quiver of Camadeva, or the God of Love." Id.
Note 337, p. 212. Is caWd the Mistress of the Night.
" The Malayans style the tuberose (Pvlianthes tuberosa) San-
dal Mafem, or the Mistress of ilie Night." Pennant.
Note 338, p. 212. That wander through ZAM ARA'S shades.
The people of the Batta country in Sumatra (of which Zamara
is one of the ancient names), " when not engaged in war, lead an
idle, inactive life, passing the day in playing on a kind of flute,
crowned with garlands of flowers, among which the globe-amaran-
thus, a native of the country, mostly prevails." Marsden.
Note 339, p. 212. From the divine Amrita tree.
" The largest and richest sort (of the Jambn, or rose-apple) is
called Arnrita, or immortal, and the mythologists of Tibet apply
the same word to a celestial tree, bearing ambrosial fruit." Sir
Note 340, p. 212. Doicn to the basil tuft, that waves.
Sweet basil, called Ilayhan in Persia, and generally found in
"The women in Egypt go, at least two days in the week, to
pray and weep at the sepulchres of the dead; and the custom then
is to throw upon the tombs a sort of herb, which the Arabs call
rihan, and which is our sweet basil." Maillet, Lett. 10.
Note 341, p. 212. To scent the desert and the dead.
" In the Great Desert are found many stalks of lavender and
rosemary." Asiatic Researches.
Note 342, p. 213. That blooms on a leaflets bough.
"The almond-tree, with white flowers, blossoms on the bare
Note 343, p. 213. Inhabit the mountain-herb, that dyes.
An herb on Mount Lihamis, which is said to communicate a
yellow golilen hue to the teeth of the goats and other animals that
graze upon it.
Niebuhr thinks this may he the herb which the Eastern alchy-
mlsts look to as a means of making gold. " Most of those alchy-
mical enthusiasts think themselves sure of success, if they could
but find out the herb which gilds tho teeth and gives a yellow
color to the flesh of the sheep that eat it. Even the oil of this
plant must be of a golden color. It is called llfim-hixrhnt cd dab."
Father Jerom Dandini, however, asserts that the teeth of the
goats at Mount Lihanus are of a ai'/rrr color; and adds, "This
confirms to me that which I observed in f'andia: to wit, that the
animal- that live on Mount Ida cat a certain herb which render*
their teeth of a golden color; which, according to my judgment,
cannot otherwise proceed than from the mines which are under
ground." Dandini's Voyage to Mount Libauus.
Note 344, p. 214. Of AZAB blew, icas full of scents. The
Note 345, p. 214. Where Love himself, of old, lay sleeping.
"This idea (of deities living in shells) was not unknown to the
Greeks, who represent the young Nerites, one of the Cupids, as
living in shells on the shores of the Red Sea." Wilford.
Note 340, p. 215. From CHINDARA'S warbling fount I come.
"A fahulous fountain, where instruments are said to be con-
stantly playing." liichardson.
Note 347, p. 215. The cinnamon-seed from grove to grove.
" The Pompadour pigeon is the species, which, by carrying the
fruit of the cinnamon to different places, is a great disseminator of
this valuable tree." (See Brown's Illustr. Tab. 19.)
Note 348, p. 215. The past, the present, and future of
" Whenever our pleasure arises from a succession of sounds, it is
a perception of a complicated nature, made up of a sensation of
the present sound or note, and an idea or remembrance of the fore-
going, while their mixture and concurrence produce such a myste-
rious delight, as neither could have produced alone. And it is often
heightened by an anticipation of the succeeding notes. Thus
Sense, Memory, and Imagination are conjunctively employed."
Gerrard on Taste.
This is exactly the Epicurean theory of Pleasure, as explained
by Cicero: "Quocirca corpus gaudere tanuliu, dum pra?sentem
sentiat voluptatem: animum et praesentem percipere pariter cum
corpore, et prospicere venientem, nee praeteritam pneterfluere
Madame de Stae'l accounts upon the same principle for the grat-
ification we derive from rhyme : " Elle est I' image de 1 esperance
et du souvenir. Un son nous fait desirer celui qui doit lui repon-
dre, et quand le second retentit il nous rappelle celui qui vient de
Note 340, p. 216. Whose glimpses are again withdrawn.
"The Persians have two mornings, the Soobhi Kazim and the
Soobhi Sadig, the false and the real daybreak. They account for
this phenomenon in a most whimsical manner. They say that as
the sun rises from behind the Kohi Qaf (Mount Caucasus), it passes
a hole perforated through that mountain, and that darting its rays
through it, it is the cause of the Soobhi Kazim, or this temporary
appearance of daybreak. As it ascends, the earth is again veiled
in darkness, until the sun rises above the mountain and brings
with it the Soobhi Sadig, or real morning." Scott Waring. He
thinks Milton may allude to this, when he says:
" Ere the blabbing Eastern scout,
The nice morn, on the Indian steep
From her cabin'd loop-hole peep."
Note 350, p. 217. In his magn(fii~.it Shalimar.
" In the centre of the plain, as it approaches the Lake, one of
the Delhi Emperors, I believe Shah Jehan, constructed a spacious
garden called the Shalimar, which is abundantly stored with fruit-
trees and flowering shrubs. Seme of the rivulets which intersect
the plain are led into a canal at the back of the garden, and flow-
ing through its centre, or occasionally thrown into a variety of
water-works, compose the chief beauty of the Shalimar. To deco-
rate this spot, the Mogul princes of India have displayed an equal
magnificence and taste; especially Jehan Gheer, who, with the en-
chanting Xoor Mahl, made Kashmire his usual residence during
the summer months. On arches thrown over the canal are erected,
at equal distances, four or five suites of apartments, each consisting
of a saloon, with four rooms at the angles, where the followers of
the court attend, and the servants prepare sherbets, coffee, and the
hookah. The frame of the doors of the principal saloon is com-
posed of pieces of a stone of a black color, streaked with yellow
lines, and of a closer grain and higher polish than porphyry. They
were taken, it is said, from a Hindoo temple, by one of the Mogul
princes, ami are esteemed of great value." Forstcr.
Note 351, p. 217. Of beauty from its fount* and stream*.
*' The waters of Carhemir are the mo-t renowned from its being
supposed that the Cachemirians are indebted for their beauty to
them." All Yezili.
Note- :if>2, p. 217. Sinying In ytmlrn* oj the South.
" From him I received the following little Ca/./el, or I.ove Song,
the notes of which he committed to pajxT from the voice of one of
those singing girls of C'ashmere. who wander from that delightful
valley over the various parts of India." 1'rrninn Miscellanies.
Note 353, p. 217. Delicate as the roses there.
"The roses of the Jinan Kile, or the Garden of the Nile (at-
tached to the Emperor of Marocco's palace), are unequalled, and
mattresses are made of their leaves for the men of rank to recline
Note 354, p. 218. With Paphian diamonds in their locks.
" On the side of a mountain near Paphos there is a cavern which
produces the most beautiful rock-crystal. On account of its brill-
iancy it has been called the Paphian diamond." Mariti.
Note 355, p. 218. On the gold meads of Candahar.
" There is a part of Candahar, called Peria, or Fairy Land."
Thevenot. In some of those countries to the north of India, vege-
table gold is supposed to be produced.
Note 356, p. 218. Had been by magic all set flying.
" These are the butterflies which are called in the Chinese lan-
guage Flying Leaves. Some of them have such shining colors,
and are so variegated, that they may be called flying flowers; and
indeed they are always produced in the finest flower-gardens."
Note 357, p. 218. The features of young Arab maids.
" The Arabian women wear black masks with little clasps pret-
tily ordered." Carreri. Niebuhr mentions their showing but one
eye in conversation.
Note 358, p. 219. On CASEIN'S hills.
" The golden grapes of Casbin." Description of Persia.
Note 359, p. 219. And sunniest apples that CAUBUL
" The fruits exported from Caubul are apples, pears, pome-
granates," etc. Elphinstone.
Note 360, p. 219. In all its thousand gardens bears.
"We sat down under a tree, listened to the birds, and talked
with the son of our Mehmaundar about our country and Caubul, of
which he gave an enchanting account: that city and its 100,000
gardens," etc. Id.
Note 361, p. 219. MALAYA'S nectar 1 d mangusteen.
" The mangusteen, the most delicate fruit in the world ; the
pride of the Malay islands." Marsden.
Note 362, p. 219. Seed of the Sun, from IRAN'S land.
" A delicious kind of apricot, called by the Persians Tokm-ek-
shems, signifying sun's seed." Description of Persia.
Note 363, p. 219. With rich conserve of Visna cherries.
" Sweetmeats, in a crystal cup, consisting of rose-leaves in con-
serve, with lemon of Visna cherry, orange flowers," etc. Russel.
Note 364, p. 219. Feed on in EKAC'S rocky dells.
"Antelopes, cropping the fresh berries of Erac." The Moal-
lakat, Poem of Tarafa.
Note 365, p. 219. And urns of porcelain Jrom that isle.
Mauri-ga-Sima, an island near Formosa, supposed to have been
sunk in the sea for the crimes of its inhabitants. The vessels
which the fishermen and divers bring up from it are sold at an
immense price in China and Japan. (See Kaempfer.)
Note 366, p. 219. Amber Rosolli. Persian Tales.
Note 367, p. 219. From vineyards of the Green-Sea gushing.
The white wine of Kishma.
Note 368, p. 219. Offered a city's wealth.
" The King of Zeilan is said to have the very finest ruby that
was ever seen. Kublai-Klian sent and offered the value of a city
for it, but the Kins answered he would not give it for the treasure
of th world." Marco Polo.
Note 309, p. 220. Upon a rosy lotus wreath.
The Indians feign that Cupid was first swn floating down the
Ganges on the yymphiea yelumbo. (See Pennant.)
Note ;J7<), p. 220. When warm they Hue from TEFI.IS' brook*.
Teflis is celebrated for its natural warm baths. (See Ebn
Note 371, p. 220. Of a syrinda.
" Tli Indian Syritula, or guitar." Symez.
Note 372, p. 220. It i this, it In this.
" Around the exterior of the Dewan Khar* (a building of Shah
AlliimN), In the cornice are the following lines in letters of p>M
Upon a ground of whitu marble: ' //' there be a paradise ujwn
earth, it is this, it is this.' " Franklin.
Note 373, p. 221. As the flower of the Amr a just op y d by a bee.
" Delightful are the flowers of the Amra trees on the mountain-
tops, while the murmuring bees pursue their voluptuous toil."
Song of Jayadeva.
Note 374, p. 221. And precious tueir tears as that rain from
" The Nisan or drops of spring rain, which they believe to pro-
duce pearls if they fall into shells." Richardson.
Note 375, p. 221. Who for wine of this earth left the foun-
For an account of the share which wine had in the fall of the
angels, see Mariti.
Note 376, p. 221. Of ISKAFIL, the Angel, there.
The Angel of Music. See note 293, p. 185.
Note 377, p. 224. When first 'tis by the lapwing found.
The Hudhud, or Lapwing, is supposed to have the poweV of
discovering water under ground.
Note 378, p. 226. Of her dream. See p. 157.
Note 379, p. 226. Like that painted porcelain. " The Chi-
nese had formerly the art of painting on the side of porcelain ves-
sels fish and other animals, which were only perceptible when the
vessel was full of some liquor. They call this species Kia-tsin ;
that is, azure is put in press, on account of the manner in which
the azure is laid on." " They are every now and then trying to
recover the art of this magical painting, but to no purpose."
Note 380, p. 227. House of Azor. An eminent carver of
idols, said in the Koran to be father to Abraham. "I have such
a lovely idol as is not to be met with in the house of Azor."
Note 381, p. 227. The Unequalled. Kachmire be Nazeer.
Note 382, p. 228. Miraculous fountains." The pardonable
superstition of the sequestered inhabitants has multiplied the
places of worship of Mahadeo, of Beshan, and of Brama. All
Cashmere is holy land, and miraculous fountains abound."
Major Kennel's Memoirs of a Map of Hindostan.
Jehan-Guire mentions "a fountain in Cashmere called Tirnagh,
which signifies a snake; probably because some large snake had
formerly been seen there." "During the lifetime of my father,
I went twice to this fountain, which is about twenty coss from the
city of Cashmere. The vestiges of places of worship and sanctity
are to be traced without number amongst the ruins and the caves
which are interspersed in its neighborhood." Toozek Jehan-
geery. Vide Asiat. Misc. vol. ii.
There is another account of Cashmere by Abul-Fazil, the author
of the Ayin-Acbaree, "who," says Major Rennel, "appears to
have caught some of the enthusiasm of the valley, by his descrip-
tion of the holy places in it."
Note 383, p. 228. Roofed with flowers. " On a standing roof
of wood is laid a covering of fine earth, which shelters the build-
ing from the great quantity of snow that falls in the winter season.
This fence communicates an equal warmth in winter, as a refresh-
ing coolness in the summer season, when the tops of the houses,
which are planted with a variety of flowers, exhibit at a distance
the spacious view of a beautifully chequered parterre." Forster.
Note 384, p. 228. The triple-colored tortoise-shell of Pegu.
" Two hundred slaves there are who have no other office than to
hunt the woods and marshes for triple-colored tortoises for the
King's Vivary. Of the shells of these also lanterns are made."
Vincent le Blanc's Tratels.
Note :>85, p. 228. Like the meteors of the north as they are
seen by those hunters. For a description of the Aurora Borealis
as it appears to these hunters, vide Encyclopedia.
Note 386, p. 229. Odoriferous wind. This wind, which is to
blow from Syria Damascena, is, according to the Mahometans, one
of the signs of the Last Day's approach.
Another of the signs is, " Great distress in the world, so that a
man when he passes by another's grave shall say, ' Would to God
I were in his place!' " Sale's Preliminary Discourse.
Note 387, p. 230. As precious as the Cerulean Throne of
Conlnunju. " On Mahommed J-'haw's return to Koolburga (the
capital of Dckkan), he made a grtat festival, and mounted thia
throne with much pomp and magnificence, calling it Firozeh or
Cerulean. I have heard some old persons, who saw the throne
Firozeh in the reign of Sultan Mainood Bhamenee, describe it.
They say that it was in length nine feet, and three in breadth;
made of ebony, covered with plates of pure gold, and set with
precious stones of immense value. Every prince of the house of
Bhamenee, who possessed this throne, made a point of adding to it
some rich stones; so that when, in the reign of Sultan Mamood, it
was taken to pieces, to remove some of the jewels to be set in vases
and cups, the jewellers valued it at one corore of oons (nearly four
millions sterling). I learned also that it was called Firozeh from
being partly enamelled of a sky-blue color, which was in time
totally concealed by the number of jewels." Ferishta.
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