901. The Persian dīv corresponds sometimes with the Arab “evil jinn” or genius, but often has the sense of “demon”, “assistant-devil to Satan”, or “Satan” himself. In fact, Satan and the demons are of the evil “jinn”.

902. “A cypress free”; i.e., the girl herself. (For the “free cypress”, see Note 1,246.)

903. I have written ‘Ummān on the supposition that the Author writes the name so met. caus. for ‘Umān, the country in the south-east of Arabia, not far from which are pearl-fisheries. The geographer Ṣādiq Iṣfahānī (about A.D. 1635) too gives the spelling ‘Ummān, not ‘Umān. Firdausī also spells it in the same way. Irrespective of this, however, there is, so far as I can ascertain, no such place as ‘Ummān, and the only ‘Ammān of which I find mention is that described in the Encyclopœdia of Islām as follows:

“‘Ammān, the old capital of the Ammonites, in the Old Testament Rabbat Benē ‘Ammōn or Rabba, later Rabbatamana, Amman, Ammana, or called by the Hellenistic name Philadelphia. This city, which at the time of the Romans was of great importance, was taken by Yazīdu ’bnu Abī Sufyān after the capture of Damascus (A.H. 14-A.D. 635). It became the capital of the fruitful region of al-Balqā’ with a trade in corn, sheep, and honey. . . . . The magnificent ruins date back to Roman times, with the exception of an Arab building on the castle hill (the castle of Jālūt with the tomb of Uriah).”

If this town be meant, it is probably taken, as towns often are, as representing the region, a fruitful one, but one cannot explain why the Author should select it in particular.

Both Ibn Khurdādbih (about A.D. 846), and Istakhrī (about A.D. 950) mention ‘Ammān as a town in Syria.

904. Lit., “do not carry (your) head (away) from occupation”; i.e., employ yourself in the house as a plausible reason for being in it.

905. As though the moon were in, or given to, Draco.

Auger Ferrier in his Jugements Astronomiques sur les Nativités (1592), says:

“La queue du Dragon: horrible mort, petit douaire, et nul bien appartenant à la signification de ceste maison.” The allusion has probably some connexion with the superstition that the moon when eclipsed is swallowed by the Dragon.

Cf., the expression, zindān-i naiyirain, “the prison of the two lights” (i.e., the sun and the moon), which is applied to Azhdahā, “the Dragon.”

In the other sense azhdahā, “the dragon,” means “sword”, and “the moon”, of course, “the girl.”

906. Lit., “a village.”

907. “To the apogee”; i.e., “to the apogee of the moon,” which means simply “to a lofty height”.

908. i.e., the palace was so lofty that the heavens were as waves around it.

909. “A terrace-belvedere,” rivāq-i manzar.

Rivāq amongst its various meanings has that of “a terrace, a gallery, an upper room”.

Manzar is “a place of seeing, a place in which to enjoy sights, a belvedere”. The two words are in apposition.

Cf. Ḥāfiz:

Rivāq-i manzar-i chashm-i man āshyāna-yi tu-’st;
karam namā-u farūd ā ki khāna khāna-yi tu-’st:

“The terrace-belvedere my eye’s your nest; be kind, descend, for the room is your room.”

On this distich Sūdī, the Turkish commentator, quoting authorities, says, “rivāq is an aivān, and a large chārdāq is an aivān; hence it is seen that rivāq is a large chārdāq.

A chārdāq (from the Persian chār-ṭāq) is “a terrace on a house­top”.

The reading of the genitive between the two nouns is confirmed by Sūdī, who says, rivāq-y̌n manzar-a iẓāfet-ī bayānīye dir, “the genitive between rivāq and manzar is that of apposition.”

910. “An honoured place”; or, “a commanding place.”

911. i.e., the sun is in Taurus in Spring.

912. Kār-gar, “efficient,” means also “a pack-horse which goes well and bears its load briskly”.

913. Like paradise; lit., “like the garden of the Ḥūrīs.”

Kabābs. (See Notes 568 and 1,340.)

914. i.e., he will consent to exalt you (by becoming your guest).

915. Shīr, “milk,” means also “wine”, so that the sense of the hemistich may be that they will ply him assiduously with wine. The sense, however, may be simply “milk”; for see the distich to which Note 924 is appended.

916. “Fragrant wine,” rāḥ-i raiḥān; lit., “wine of sweet basil.” The adjective raiḥānī is generally used.

917. “Sweet drinks.” Nūsh means also anything sweet and of pleasant taste.

918. Or, “betook himself to the chase upon the plain.”

919. “Lofty”; lit., “of lofty aim,” buland-āhang.

920. “An estate”; lit., “a village.”

921. i.e., its charm is from its having been one of your delightful possessions bestowed by you on me.

I have adopted the reading of I.O. MSS. 777, and 1168, namely, luṭf-ash, “its charm.”

I.O. MS. 1491 reads bazm-ash, “its banquet,” which might almost be rendered “(the wine of) its banquet”.

922. “The Garden”; i.e., “the garden of paradise.”

923. i.e., it will be greatly exalted.

924. “Will perfume”; lit., “will give ‘abīr.” ‘Abīr is described by Redhouse as “a perfume and unguent made of saffron, musk, ambergris, and perfumed oils.”

925. Lit., “from the hunting-place.”

926. i.e., he had things put into good order.

927. i.e., he appeared in all his pomp and glory.

928. “Khatlian steed.” Khatlān (Kotlan) is a district and town in Badakhshān. It was famous for horses. Khatlī-khirām means literally “one moving like a horse of Khatlān”. The Arab form of the name is Khuttal.

929. The words rivāq and ṭāq, as used in connexion with this palace, mean the same part. Rivāq has reference to it as a species of gallery, terrace, or upper room, and ṭāq as a species of arched or domed balcony or verandah. The word manzar, previously used, has relation to the same upper room as a place from which to enjoy the view. (Cf. Note 909.)

930. i.e., it abased Khavarnaq by its loftiness, and made it seem to be flat on the ground.

931. i.e., its domed roof coincided with the dome of the sky.

932. Lit., “from the rose, his forehead.”

933. “Good”; lit., “wide, extensive.”

934. i.e., whose head is on a level with the sky.

The “lasso” is the sky itself.

935. Lit., “fold it up under your feet.”

936. Kausar, one of the supposed rivers of paradise. Ḥūrī, a virgin of paradise.

937. The reading of I.O. MS. 1168 is bar-ū “to her”. With this reading the sense of yak-dast will be yak-sān; i.e., “equal, indifferent.” (Cf. the Bahār-iAjam.)

The other editions, however, from which I have translated, have barad, which in this connexion must mean “she carries off”; i.e., “traverses.” In this case yak-dast would signify “evenly, without a break, sans désemparer”.

938. To bite the fingers is a sign of astonishment or of perturbation.

939. “The lion’s case”; i.e., what the king had said.

940. Lit., “had known the time.”

941. i.e., she had a languishing look in her narcissus-like eyes.

The “rose” means her “face”.

942. “Musk” signifies here artificial, black beauty spots or patches.

The “moon” means here “face”.

Bar taqvīm rāndan seems to be used in the sense of a causal of taqvīm kardan with the meaning, “to make rectify, to make improve, to make set off.”

943. ‘Itīb (archaic ‘itēb) is the imāla of ‘itāb, and is used apparently in the sense of amatory petulance and feigned reproach. (Cf. also the distich to which Note 1,821 is appended.)

944. “A rosy hue”; lit., “the colour of the Judas’ tree flower,” which means “her rosy cheeks”.

The “cypress” represents her “stature”; the “tulip” her “lips”.

The meaning is that she united beauty of complexion with grace and straightness of form, and the latter with redness of lips.

945. “Pearls” are here real pearls; the “cypress” is her “stature”; the “moon”, her “face”. “The pleiads’ cluster” represents here real pearls.

946. The “lovers’ apple” is “a divided chin”; “a ruby casket” is “the mouth”; “pearls” are “teeth”.

The lips are here supposed to be a little parted at the two front teeth.

947. “Crowned with ambergris”; i.e., “with black hair.”

948. I have included this distich as it is in all the editions I have consulted except I.O. MS. 402, but I think it is probably spurious. It seems spoilt by the word “throne” in the second hemistich. The distich refers apparently to the girl, though the word “king” is used.

The “ivory plates” mean presumably her “haunches”.

949. i.e., they united in war against her lovers.

950. “Her dates”; i.e., “her lips.”

Beauty spots (here, lit., “agate spots”), sometimes put upon the edge of the lips.