651. “A musky line”; i.e., “a black line.” “Streak on streak”; lit., “spot upon spot.”

652. Lit., “from its fellow-runners.”

653. The first hemistich describes the russet verging upon yellow colour of the onager. The second speaks of the white or cream-coloured parts of the body. The face is perhaps the ruddiest part.

654. The Arabs made their arrows of reeds. The onager’s leg is peculiarly straight, with joints like those of the reed.

655. “A diamond dagger”; i.e., “a bright dagger.” The onager’s ears are very white and bright, particularly in summer.

656. The breast stands out free from the shoulder which is peculiarly flat.

657. I read katāra, “dagger,” with I.O. MS. 777.

The ear stands upright away from the neck.

658. I read for the second hemistich with the B. ed. of 1328:

mānda zīn-kūha-rā miyān-i du rāh.

Most of the I.O. MSS. and printed editions have,

mānda zīn-kūh-rā miyāna du rāh.

By “the strap” is meant the dark line along the back.

“The saddle-pommel” is the ridge on the back near the neck.

The “two roads” are two white lines on each side of the central dark line.

Kūha, “pommel,” means also “hill”, so that, in a secondary sense, it is as if a hill were standing between two roads.

659. The secondary meaning of the first hemistich is,

“The deviation of its crupper (in colour) from the dark part of the skin.”

The meaning is that it gained by the contrast of colour, as the brightness of silver is enhanced when it is set against some­thing dark. Kullun ga‘izzu min ḍiddi-h, “Everything is enhanced by its opposite.”

660. There is a suggestion of a secondary sense in pīh, “fat,” and khūn, “blood,” which both mean “pride”.

661. One species of marvel of Peru, the ṣaḥrā-yī or “wild”, is, says Vullers, alba et rubra. I have omitted in translation the distich which follows the present one, as it seems to me to have no sense. It does not occur in I.O. MS. 1168.

The least unintelligible reading is, I think, that of I.O. MS. 1491:

Rangi-y-az khūn bar-ū duvāl-andāz rāst chun Zangi-yī duvālak-bāz.

662. The tail is closely joined to the hind-quarters.

By the second hemistich the Author means probably that it was proud and contumacious. The onager is certainly a deter­mined biter and kicker.

663. “The lion”; i.e., Bahrām.

664. Gūr in the first hemistich means “onager”, and in the second “grave”.

665. Gūrkhān. (See Note 636.)

Here, however, the term, which may bear the sense of wild-ass = King, is applied to Bahrām as an ardent hunter of the onager. (See also Note 2,002.)

666. Some I.O. MSS. and the B. ed. of 1328 have kas, “a person,” instead of bas, but the latter word seems to have here the sense of qaṭ‘ kun, i.e., “cut off, omit (the idea of).”

667. By “plain” is meant presumably the ordinary hunting-ground.

668. I read with I.O. MS. 402,

kūh az-ān kūh-pāra hīch shuda.

Most I.O. MSS. read,

ba-shikār-afganī basīch shuda, but I do not think we can have basīch shuda for basīch karda. It might possibly, however, be used in an impersonal way.

669. The “fire” is that which comes from the dragon’s mouth; the “smoke” is its long black body.

670. Azhdahā, “a dragon,” means also “a brave man”.

671. Lit., “I, and justice to the onager, and giving redress.”

672. “Two-headed shafts.” The word used is miqrāẓa, which means “an instrument like a pair of scissors”, and signifies here a double-headed arrow formed to cut as well as pierce. (See Note 1,885.) The Persians made their arrows of wood— commonly of the white poplar. The Arabs made theirs of reeds. (Cf. Note 654.)

673. Tūz or tūzh (archaic tōz or tōzh) is the bark of a tree used for covering saddles, bows, etc.

674. Lit., “when the plain became narrow to the dragon.”

675. Nāchakh seems to be used by Nizāmī in the sense of “a short javelin”. The dictionaries give also the senses of “battle-axe”, “halbert”, and “two-headed spear”. For the length of the nāchakh, cf. the distich:

Chunān zad bar-ū nāchakhī nuh girih
ki ham kālbud sufta shud ham zirih:

“He gave him such a stroke of the twenty-two inch javelin that both (his) coat of mail and also (his) body were pierced.” The girih is “three finger-breadths”, so that nuh girih, “nine girih,” would be about twenty-two inches.

676. All the I.O. MSS. and printed copies I have consulted, except 1168, read hasht-musht. 1168 has hasht-pusht. The B. ed. of 1328 has hasht-bakhsh. The first means “eight-fisted”; the second “eight-backed”; the third “eight-giving”, or “eight-portioned”. Only the first two need, I think, be considered.

The literal sense of the first can be only “having eight handles”, or “having the length of eight fists”. “Having eight handles,” taken literally, would be a perfectly useless qualification, since a javelin could be brandished only by holding it in a particular part.

“Having the length of eight fists” is, however, quite probable, since “fist” is used as a measure of length.

The second epithet, shash-pahlū, “six-sided,” is also, I think, to be taken literally, since it is not improbable that the javelin was sometimes made sexagonal. If pusht be the correct reading, it cannot, I think, be taken literally, since the meaning, “blade (of a sword),” the only one applicable, though given by Vullers, is undoubtedly a misinterpretation, the word pusht in his illustrative quotation having the sense of “back (of a sword)”. Now a javelin has no back, and therefore pusht must be taken metaphorically. Hasht-pusht would therefore presumably mean “giving strenuous support”, one sense of pusht being “support”.

In this case the second epithet, shash-pahlū, would mean, I think, khailī pahlū-dār, i.e., “most beneficial or helpful,” one sense of pahlū being “benefit”, or “utility”.

677. All except I.O. MS. 1491 have sutūn-i dirakht, “the column of a tree,” i.e., “a column-like tree.”

678. i.e., it can soar above it.

679. Ahriman, the principle of evil, opposed to Hurmuzd (Hormuzd), the principle of good.

It also means “a fiend, a demon”.

680. I am reading, with I.O. MS. 1168, na-dīd qarār. Some editions have, bi-dīd qarār. If this be taken, the translation should be, “When the onager saw that the king was at rest”; i.e., that he was at liberty from all he had been doing.

681. Gūrkhān. (See Notes 636, 665, and 2,002.)

Gūr-khāna, lit., “a tomb-house,” means “a grave-yard, a tomb”, and also “a cavern”.

Dar khum kardan, “to put into a jar,” has the appearance of an idiom, but the dictionaries do not give it.

Dar fuqā‘ī kardan, “to put into a beer-jar or jug,” means “to try to delude”. (See C. E. Wilson’s Translation of Rūmī’s Masnavī, Book II.)

682. Ravān, “lawful, licit,” means primarily “moving”. It might here be also rendered “immediately”.

683. Ḥisāb-i kasī bā khvad kardan is not explained in the dictionaries, but the sense is obvious.

684. The ant is a type of lowliness and weakness, so that the second hemistich would express the king’s great power and courage, as the first does his clemency.

685. i.e., to the king of Persia.

686. Mushrif, an officer in a treasury who authenticates accounts and writings.

687. I read with the B. ed. of 1328, V-īnchunīn ganj-khānai ki gushād.

The nearest to this are I.O. MSS. 402 and 1168; 402 has,

Īnchunīn ganj-i ganj-khāna gushād.

1168 has,

V-īnchunīn ganj-u ganj-khāna gushād.

688. Ba-‘azīzī sitad ba-khvārī dād.

I.O. MS. 402, only, has,

Jumla bakhshīd-u dāda dād bi-dād, dāda being of course a mistake for dād-i.

689. Lit., “the king”; i.e., Bahrām. Bahrām has generally been called “king” in compliment, but I have rendered generally “prince” for the sake of clearness.

Besides this, the title shāh is often applied to a prince. (Cf. especially the Shāh-nāma.)

690. i.e., the room was so beautifully adorned with paintings that it was like a store-house of treasure.

691. It is evident from this and a former passage (see the distich before that to which Note 559 is appended) that kār-gāh is used in the sense of a work of art, or a place containing works of art, as well as in that of a place where work is done, i.e., a factory, office, or studio.

692. It is clear from this and a former distich (see that to which Note 540 is appended) that the word ‘amārī, “an elephant-litter,” is used in the sense of “room”, or “house”.

693. “India’s rājā”; i.e., the rājā of Qinnauj. Albīrūnī gives rābī as the special title of the rājās of Qinnauj, which was, according to Istakhrī, the geographer (about A.D. 950), the capital of India.

Albīrūnī (quoted by R. C. Dutt) says that in the 11th century “the whole of northern India was divided into small Rajput kingdoms and principalities which formed a strong confederation of Hindu nations. Rajyapala, king of Qinnauj, was the central ruler, and his vast dominions included Bengal in the east”.

As a matter of fact, however, Qinnauj was not in the First Clime, as defined by Jurjānī, the geographer (about A.D. 1460), but lay considerably to the north of it.

The Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ assigns India to the First Clime, in depen­dence upon Saturn.

Taking Jurjānī’s definitions of the Climes, the greater part of India would be situated within the First, Second, Third, and Fourth Climes, which extended from latitude 12° 45' to 20° 30' N., from 20° 30' to 27° 30' N., from 27° 30' to 33° 40' N., and from 33° 40' to 39° N. To the south of Jurjānī’s First Clime it reaches to latitude 8° 6' N.

694. By khāqān, in the Persian poets, is always to be under­stood khāqān-i Chīn, which means literally the emperor of China.

The Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ says the title is that of any king of China, Cathay, or Turkistan; and the Farhang-i Shu‘ūrī adds that by frequent usage it has become the designation of any king.

By khāqān or khāqān-i Chīn, however, the poets generally mean the predominant ruler of Turkistan, whom, rightly or wrongly, they apparently think to have had control also over Chinese Turkistan, from which, possibly, arises the confusion. The title, however, was also ascribed to the emperor of Mongolia. The ruler of China proper they generally designate by his distinctive title faghfūr. Here, however, by khāqān is possibly really meant the emperor of China, though in a later Section it means the ruler of the Hayāṭila, a nation of Turkish stock, who frequently made war against Persia, and at several times brought it under subjection. (See Notes 991, 995, and 1,892.)

At the same time it should be remembered that however great the power of the predominant ruler of Turkistan might at any period have been, the influence of the emperor of China, owing partly to a community of religion, was very considerable over that country. In fact, theoretically at least, he was supposed to be sovereign lord over all the Turkish peoples who inhabited the regions north of the Sea of Aral and the province Farghāna. For this reason the predominant ruler of Turkistan might have been supposed to have been merely a governor on behalf of the emperor of China. How great the influence of China was is apparent from the fact that in later times the Hayāṭila, when threatened by the Muslims, requested that their territory should be brought directly under the control of China as Chinese provinces.

China, including Mongolia, would come into all the Seven Climes as defined by Jurjānī, but the Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ assigns it together with Khaṭā to the Second Clime, in dependence upon Jupiter. (See Note 207.)

Khaṭā (Cathay) sometimes means North China, and sometimes Chinese Turkistan. It cannot therefore be properly assigned to the Second Clime.

It may be added in conclusion that when the fair ones of China are spoken of by the Persian poets those of Chinese Turkistan, or of Turkistan are nearly always meant, since most of the towns mentioned in connexion with them are, or were, in those countries.

695. China; i.e., most probably here, either Chinese Turkistan, or Turkistan.

Ṭarāz, an ancient town in Turkistan famous for the beauty of its inhabitants. It was probably in about latitude 42° 36' N., and longitude 71° 15' E. (See the Map to Yule’s Cathay, where it appears under the name Talas.)

696. Khvārazm (Chorasmia), the modern Khanate of Khiva. Khvārazm would come into Jurjānī’s Fifth Clime which, according to him, extended from latitude 39° to 43° 30' N.

697. Ṣaqlāb, generally translated Slavonia, would come into Jurjānī’s Sixth and Seventh or most northerly Climes, which, according to him, extended from latitude 43° 30' to 47° 15' N., and from 47° 15' to 50° 30' N.

Ṣādiq Iṣfahānī, the geographer (about A.D. 1635), in his Taḥqīqu ’l-I‘rāb says of the Ṣaqlāb territory:

“After Ṣaqlāb (the son of Japhet) is named the most northern region of the Seven Climes; and in that region such is the coldness of the air, that the people construct their dwelling-places under­ground.”

In this account the geographer is evidently including territory in European Russia considerably north of Jurjānī’s Seventh Clime.

By Ṣaqlāb are generally designated the regions of modern Russia in Europe inhabited by Slavonic nations, exclusively of the Russians, who in Nizāmī’s time inhabited only the western parts of Russia, and were considered Turanians by the Oriental writers.

Nizāmī, however, uses the term Rūs as an alternative of Ṣaqlāb, from which it must, I think, be inferred that his knowledge of geography was rather imperfect.

The word Turk used in the second hemistich means simply “a beauty”, and might be used of a person of any nation.

698. Lit., “a Turk of Greek dress with Chinese adornment”; Turk-i Chīnī-ṭarāz-i Rūmī-pūsh. Ṭarāz, however, means not only “adornment” but also “the border of a dress”, and this, I think, is its primary sense here. Rūmī, also, besides “Greek”, means “red”, so that we may have as a secondary sense that she had rosy cheeks bordered, as it were, with white— a red and white complexion.

In ṭarāz too there may be an allusion to Ṭarāz, the town in Turkistan famous for the beauty of its inhabitants.

Rūmī also means a particular kind of dress so that Rūmī-pūsh may mean simply “dressed in a Rūmī”.

699. Maghrib, Mauritania, designates generally north-western Africa from Tripoli to Morocco, and more particularly Morocco. It would come into Jurjānī’s Third Clime which, according to him, extended from latitude 27° 30' to 33° 40' N. That it extended farther north than 33° 40' is evident from the latitudes of some of the towns he himself includes in it, one of which, Kairwan, in Tunis, is in latitude 35° N.

The Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ does not include Maghrib among the Climes.

700. The Qaiṣar or Cæsar (of Rūm) is the ruler of the Eastern Empire. (See Note 546.)

Rūm, with Asia Minor, would be included in Jurjānī’s Fourth and Fifth Climes, which, according to him, extended from latitude 33° 40' to 39° N., and from 39° to 43° 30' N.

Although Constantinople comes within these limits, its latitude being 41° 1' N., Jurjānī includes it in the Sixth Clime.

The term Rūm has been also applied by Oriental geographers to Europe generally.

Istakhrī (about A.D. 950) says:

“The Franks, in general, we speak of as belonging to Rūm, because they have the same religion and king, though speaking various dialects.”

The king of whom Istakhrī speaks was the ruler of the Eastern Empire, whose capital, Constantinople, he took to be the chief place of Europe.

The Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ assigns Rūm to the Sixth Clime, in depen­dence upon Mercury.