The Author sets out on a journey to Hamadân.— Returns from Hamadân to Nahâvend.— Travels through the province of Bakhtiâri.— Arrives at Khorram Abâd— Dezfôl— Shôshter— Hoveizah— Basrah.— Embarks on a sea-voyage, bound to Mecca the Revered.— Arrives at Bender Môkha.— Travels to Taîz and Sanaâ.— Returns from Yemen to Bender Môkha, and thence to Basrah— Hoveizah, and Shôshter.

AS a great number of my acquaintances and friends had perished in the storm of Hamadân, and their families were marched in the crowd of prisoners, I formed the design of going to that country to enquire into their condition and to use my endeavours towards the release of the captives, as far as my utmost ability would carry me. I set out, therefore, in the direction of Hamadân, and with my own people and a company of persons who joined me on the road we were in all seventy horsemen. The highways and by-passages were so full of disturbance and confusion that it was difficult to pass along. In one or two of the stages, we fell in with the Turkish troops, and were surrounded by them. After suffering hard trials and severe vexations we got away in safety, by the favour of the Almighty, and arrived at Hamadan. A number of the well known inhabitants of Kermanshah and other towns, who accompanied the Pasha and the Turkish army against their wills, and had a former acquaintance with me, united in the undertaking; and we made great exertions for the release of some of the prisoners; until by the employment of every sort of persuasion a body of them were set at liberty, and arrived in a place of security. Whilst on this business God knows what trouble, care, and afflic­tion passed over me. In some of the main streets of the city it was impossible to pass for the bodies of the slain, which had fallen one upon the other; and in most places it appeared to view, in what manner during the onset the Hamadanians, having closed up the entrances of the streets, repelled the assaults of the Turks; and, whatever number of them was killed, still others stood up in their places to be slaughtered, until the bodies of the slain, heaped on one another, reached to the top of the highest walls.

Though I had many friends among the Turks and was greatly respected by them, still it was very distressing to me to be in their camp; and retiring therefore from amongst them I arrived with a vast deal of difficulty at Nahâvend, which town up to that period had not been reduced to their possession: here I found the excellent Mawla, the late Cadzi Ibrahim, a native of the place, who at that time had undertaken the administration of the law in that town, and was in truth one of the best of men and a collector of perfections. This is a delightful spot, and I made here a stay of some days, during which I enjoyed the society of the said Mawla.

Thence I proceeded to the collected villages of the Bakhtiâri Tribe, known by the name of Lor Bozorg, where at that time the noble Mohammed Hosein Khân was governor. I travelled over a great part of that province, and the Amirs and Ayans of that tribe were perfectly kind to me: but to stay in those borders proved disagreeable, and being sick and weary I conceived an inclination to pass into the Arabian Irâk, and taking up my abode amidst the holy mesheds to spend there the remainder of my life. I went therefore back to Khorram Abâd, which city I found entirely empty in consequence of apprehensions of attacks from the Turkish army. Turning my steps towards Shôshter and the districts of Khozistân, I arrived at the small town of Dezfôl, which is one of the dependencies of Shôshter. The governor of that country, Abo El Fatah Khân, one of the slave-born sons of the Safavean family, and a sensible youth, was residing in the place, and took a great liking to my society. Of the gran­dees of that place were, the excellent Seyyid Mir Abd El Bâki, and the store of perfections Cadzi Majd Eddin Dezfôli, one of my ancient friends. Thence I went to Shôshter, where a great num­ber of the lords and grandees belonging to the town took me into their intimacy; and here I staid some time. Among my friends were the excellent Seyyid, Seyyid Nor Eddin, son of Seyyid Nea­met Allah Jezâïri, since deceased, who overflowed in kindness towards me; as also were Mirza Mohammed Taki and Mirza Abd El Bâki of Maragha.* Then I went to the city of Hoveizah. Seyyid Mohammed Khân, son of Farj Allah Khân Mosha­sha, was governor of that province, and offered me the dues of friendship. One of the distinguished men of that town was Sheikh Yacôb, a native of the place, who in the humanities, and tradition, law, and significations, and in genealogical history and biography had great ability, and possessed a powerful memory. Afterwards I went to Bas­rah, and intended to go on to Bagdad, when, a vessel being about to sail for Yemen, and a num­ber of persons having embarked for the purpose of performing their pilgrimage to Mecca, I also was seized with a return of my former wish, and hav­ing furnished myself with provisions I went on board the ship. In consequence of a storm which we weathered, and the usual distress from which a sea-voyage can scarcely ever be exempt, I fell sick and helpless, weak and full of pain. After forty days I arrived on the coast of Yemen, at the port of Môkha, and having landed from the ship, I lay down on the bed of sickness, in that town; but as the air of the place disagreed with me, by the advice of some of the citizens I removed to the populous city of Taïz,* which is celebrated through­out Yemen for amenity of air and pleasantness of situation. There my health was restored; but in the mean time the proper season of the pilgrimage had elapsed. By a favourable occasion I went to Sanaâ, which is the centre of government and the residence of the Sovereign of Yemen. Of the class of generous Seniors, Sheikh Hasan Ben Saïd Olesi Yemeni Imâmi, on whom be mercy! was residing in that town, and was pleased to shew a particu­lar affection and kindness towards me. Having gone back to Môkha, I returned with some ships that were bound to Basra; so that this year also I was forbidden the happiness of visiting the holy temple. At that time the journey from Basra to Bagdad, by means of the military garrisons on the roads, was impracticable; and as Basra is situated on the sea-shore, and its atmosphere is disagree­able, I found it unpleasant to remain there, and had no choice but to return to Hoveizah and Shôshter. here I was a prey to perplexity, amid the disturbance of the world and the giddiness of my own mind; and in no corner could I find any rest, as appears from the sense of my following quatrain;*

I am he, who in the kingdom of nothingness am a Soltân;
Though provisionless, I am still furnished with provision.
In these ruined possessions I resemble a mill-stone;
My head goes round, puzzled for why it goes round.

The inhabitants of most of the places which I visited, wishing through their friendship for me that I should stay with them, proposed marriage to me: but having regard to my own circumstances and the exigences of the times, so full of dis­turbance and so excessively changeable, I found it in no wise desirable; and to remain among them, for various reasons, appeared to me odious and disagreeable.