1,601. A dissociative-associative simile simply expressing that they had passed the house.

1,602. The garden was presumably near the Nile.

1,603. “The bird of early morning”; i.e. early morning itself.

1,604. “Tripod” as referred to “night” is “the moon”; as referred to “monarch” it probably means “a seat or throne” set down on a halt. (Cf. the distich which follows that to which Note 266 is appended.)

1,605. “Iram’s gardens”; a fabulous earthly paradise somewhere in the deserts of southern Arabia (Yaman), constructed by the genii for Shaddād the son of ‘Ād. (Redhouse.) (See the Qur’ān, lxxxix., 5-7. See also Notes 90 and 1,203.)

1,606. “Beat the tattoo,” duhul bar kashīd; lit., “raised the drum,” which is taken generally to mean “prepared to depart”, but is here equivalent to duhul ba-bālā-yi bām burd, “carried the drum to the top of the roof,” i.e., “beat the drum,” naubat navākht. This is an allusion to the practice of beating a large drum five times a day at the gate of a king, prince, or governor, the first beat being at dawn.

1,607. “The camel” here means the sky. “A gold drum” means the sun.

1,608. i.e., an unsolvable mystery, or, a thing from which no good resulted.

1,609. The red glow of early morning is considered here as the blood of night which is killed, as it were, by the coming day.

1,610. Freely translated.

1,611. Lā ḥaul, “There is no power,” is an exclamation used to ward off the ill-effects of any evil encountered. The full phrase is Lā ḥaula wa-lā qūwata illā bi-’llāh: “There is no power or strength except in God.” Muslims often use this exclamation on meeting a Christian, especially a Christian missionary.

1,612. Ghūls are a species of inferior evil jinn or demons, who mislead people, especially in deserts, and draw them to destruction, or kill and eat them. For this purpose they assume the form of any human being they please, sometimes taking that of an acquaintance of the person to be misled. They are said also to haunt graveyards and eat dead bodies.

1,613. This means that from the trampling of the ghūls the plain rose in the form of dust to the mountain, and from their trampling and shouting the mountain was levelled with the plain. Cf. the Shāh-nāma (Turner Macan’s edition, vol. i., p. 243):

Az āvāz-i tū kūh hāmūn shavad, “The mountain from your voice becomes a plain.”

1,614. “The horn and blade,” shākh-shāna; i.e., a ram’s horn and a shoulder-blade used by mendicants to extort alms. Owing to the threats also employed if their requests were not granted, the term comes to mean also “threatening, terrorizing”.

1,615. I have included this distich, but have enclosed it in brackets as probably spurious. It is weak and not consistent with the preceding distich.

1,616. The wearing of a belt is a token of servitude.

The sky by means of the planets governs from an astrological point of view our destinies, and is hence our master. It is a seven-headed dragon in respect of the seven planets, and it is no wonder that it is around us as a belt, since it is a dragon which writhes and coils round its victims like any other serpent.

1,617. i.e., when the dawn appeared, preceding the sun, which is here compared with a lion.

1,618. i.e., all the black ghūls had ceased making a noise, and had disappeared.

1,619. Lit., “the demon-rider,” but this is ambiguous.

1,620. One who sees a demon is supposed to become demoniacal, crazy, and helpless. (See also Notes 1,342 and 1,525.)

1,621. See Note 1,554.

1,622. One of the names of “desert” is mafāza, “a place where people perish.”

The “cloth” as regards the desert is its expanse.

1,623. “A gain to the distressed”; lit., “towards the troubled”; but cf. sūy-i kasī giriftan, “to take the side or part of a person; to protect, to guard anyone.”

1,624. Presumably stones.

1,625. i.e., he found nothing but darkness.

1,626. See Note 569.

1,627. See Notes 90, 1,203, and 1,605.

1,628. “Thirsty wights”; lit., dry-lipped people.

1,629. i.e., they were so much in demand and so much used that they were troubled, and, as it were, called for help and deliverance. For ḥalvā see Note 1,459.

1,630. Lit., “three kisses used its dates.” The mention of “three” is so peculiar that one might conjecture “kisses” are not intended, but some kind of “sweetmeat”, though there is no dictionary authority for this.

1,631. “Guavas”; or possibly “pears”, amrūd.

1,632. “Fashioners of gems”; i.e., being themselves as gems.

1,633. “To its bowl”; i.e., to the place itself considered as a bowl.

1,634. Pālūda. Described in Steingass’s Dictionary as “a kind of sweet beverage made of water, flour, and honey”. Some say, “a kind of jelly made of water, starch, and honey.” According to others it is “a mixture of grated apples with sugar and cardamoms”.

1,635. “White and black” refer in the first place to the colours of the grapes, but the expression means also “good and bad”; “Persians and Arabs”; “all creatures”; “day and night.”

1,636. These are all, presumably, names of species of grapes, but they are not identified by the dictionaries, and only the first two are mentioned at all as grapes, the rāziqī, and the mulāḥī. The rāziqī is not described. The mulāḥī is given as a species of oblong and whitish grape.

1,637. Āb-i angūr-u nār-i ātish-gūn ham bar angūr basta maḥẓar-i khūn. A rather unsatisfactory distich.

1,638. An apparent contrast in colour, but by “sugar” reference is made simply to the sweetness of the fruits.

1,639. “That auspicious lamp”; i.e., the hole in the cavern through which the light came.

1,640. See Notes 1,342, 1,525, and 1,620.

1,641. “A single spark”; or perhaps “a single sin”, yak sharāra. This refers possibly to Māhān’s getting drunk with his friends. Or it may possibly refer to the simple fact of his getting lost at first. (See the next distich but twenty-five.)

1,642. i.e., vile qualities.

1,643. A contrast between complaining of his eyes for what they saw, and stroking (i.e., rubbing) them to wipe his tears.

1,644. See Note 1,611.

1,645. Bi-’smi’llāh, “In the name of God,” is a general invocation preliminary to any act or undertaking.

1,646. For “the Stream or Water of Life”, see Notes 274, 1,201, 1,562, and 1,698.

1,647. See Notes 90, 1,203, and 1,605.

1,648. “A prelude”; lit., “a guide.”

1,649. i.e., they blame others for faults which they themselves have.

1,650. Lit., “they drink a poison”; i.e., they pervert in their own minds everything good and true which they come across into something bad and false.