1,651. i.e., lies are soon exploded, but truth has something in it that makes it permanent, and this permanence establishes the fact that it is truth. (Cf. the next distich.)

1,652. i.e., a simple person may sometimes entertain idle fancies as truth; it is only the astute who can always distinguish truth from such fancies.

1,653. For ghūls, see Note 1,612.

1,654. i.e., clear your mind of all disagreeable and unhappy ideas and fancies—make it a tabula rasa.

1,655. i.e., though I should be in an authoritative position by being as your son, I should consider myself your slave.

1,656. The flowers of the sandal-tree are red.

1,657. Buried treasure was supposed to be always guarded by a snake or dragon.

1,658. i.e., the exhilaration of enjoyment cannot be yours till the morning. (For ḥalvā, and “saffron”, see Note 1,459.)

1,659. i.e., the pleasant fruits of enjoyment will be yours at the dawn. The pomegranate, on account of the colour of its pulp, is likened here to the glow of dawn.

1,660. Lit., “possessed of ambergris-scented garments.” This is an allusion to the odour of the sandal-tree, and is not to be taken literally, though ‘ambar may have the general sense of “perfume”.

1,661. The north wind renounces the world, as it were, by casting away everything before it.

1,662. Both Grecian and Chinese art-workmanship were much admired by the Persians.

1,663. The “pastilles of camphor scent” refer most probably to the flowers and blossoms of the garden.

1,664. “The king enthroned”; i.e., Māhān on his couch, the word takht meaning both “couch” and “throne”.

1,665. This refers to the personal charms of the beauties.

1,666. i.e., the candles rested in their hands as they do in lanterns.

1,667. Lit., “they opened out a foremost place of carpet, or a chief seat of carpet.”

1,668. “The moon,” named possibly as the most conspicuous object at night, and also perhaps because māh, the name of it in Persian, is similar in form to the name Māhān.

1,669. This refers probably to the beauties’ bosoms.

1,670. Sandal-wood was bruised with water on a stone and used as a remedy in fever and headache. In a literal sense, Māhān was resting against the sandal-tree.

1,671. Bulgaria, Bulghār; i.e., probably the old territory of the Eastern Bulgarians on the west of the Ural Mountains to the north and north-east of the Burṭās people, (identified with the Finnish Mordwa), whose land extended from about Saratof to Nizhni Novgorod.

The word Bulghār means also the inhabitants of Bulgaria.

1,672. Ḥalvā. (See Note 1,459.)

1,673. i.e., I shall shortly have a companion.

1,674. Implies that mere scent is not sufficient to content or please her mind.

But the correct reading may be bā ṭīb, “with perfume,” not yā ṭīb, “or perfume.” In this case one would render,

“Content of mind and scent are good conjoined”: Ṭībat-ī nafs khvash buvad bā ṭīb.

The sense would be that content or pleasure of mind is well added to the enjoyment of scent.

1,675. As regards the rose, the sense is that the latter attracts the nightingale from the tree on which it may be perching.

1,676. “A ruby seal on red cornelian”; i.e., “his lips on her lips,” with the secondary sense of a red seal put upon a jar of red wine.

1,677. An ‘ifrīt is the most powerful of the hideous evil genii except the marīd.

1,678. The reading of the last word in the second hemistich is doubtful. It should probably be tūz or tōz. This might possibly represent the town of Tūz or Tōz, which, according to the Burhān-i Qāṭi‘, was a flourishing place in the reign of Qubād, a king of the Sāsānian dynasty, and was situated near Ahvāz in Khūzistān (Susiana).

Ahvāz, which is now a deserted town, is in latitude 31° 33' N., and longitude 48° 45' E.

According to other authorities Tūz or Tōz was a town near Kūfa in ‘Irāq ‘Arabī, to the west of Khūzistān.

The town is mentioned n Firdausī’s Shāh-nāma. I am not aware, however, that the town was notable for a particular kind of bow, and if the correct pronunciation of the name be Tōz, as given by Vullers, and the rhyming word be pronounced kūz, as given by Steingass, we cannot properly read Tōz in the second hemistich.

I do not know, however, of any other rhyming word that would give sense here.

1,679. i.e., the effects of sensual love are pernicious, but they are not appreciated as such till after satiety.

1,680. This and the next distich are most probably remarks of the Author’s.

The meaning of the first is, “Do not give way to lusts and passions, since doing so is detrimental to the intellect and the higher spirit.”

The sense of the second is that as you should not dwell in a street where the police-director is a thief, since the result would be the loss of material possessions, so you should not yield to lusts and passions, the result of doing so being the loss of intellectual and spiritual possessions.

1,681. Lit., this-like (act) and that-like (act) are befitting.

1,682. i.e., if the pursuit of objects which are apparently beautiful, but are radically and essentially ugly, did not lead to evil and unpleasant consequences, then they would be really beautiful, but it is implied here that the consequences are evil and the objects, therefore, really ugly, though at first apparently beautiful.

1,683. “The White Dīv,” i.e., “the White Demon,” Dīv-i Safīd, is described in the Shāh-nāma as the general in chief of the army of Māzandarān (Hyrcania), and as a being of gigantic stature, black in face and body, but with white hair. From this last quality he probably derived his agnomen. He was killed by the Persian champion Rustam, who came to Māzandarān to deliver King Kai-Kā’ūs and his army who were held captive there.

1,684. “The willow”; probably an allusion to Māhān in respect of his trembling, the willow apparently being confused with the aspen. (Cf. bīd-vash larzān, “trembling like a willow.” Cf. also Note 1,759.)

1,685. This, of course, refers to those who appeared at first beautiful, but were ultimately found to be hideous.

1,686. “The sweet basil of the shining day” means “the sun” or “the sun’s rays”. (Cf. raiḥān-i zard, “yellow basil”; “the sun’s rays.”)

1,687. “The flag,” rāyat. The correct reading may, however, be āyat, “the miracle or wonder.”

But “a flag”, however, is a thing set up, and since it flutters may be called fickle.

In the second hemistich I venture to conjecture ṭirf, “fickle, changeable,” for the ṭarfa or ṭurfa of the editions I have consulted, none of which make good sense.

1,688. Ants and snakes were associated with graves and desolate places.

1,689. In the Turkish book of stories edited by Major Rif‘at Bey it is said that dogs’ dung is used in tanning leather.

1,690. Lit., “He said to himself.”

1,691. “A skin drawn over blood”; i.e., the human body; but there is a sub-allusion to a skin of wine.

1,692. “Wine outside”; i.e., the beauty of colouring of the human face.

1,693. Lit., “Many a keen man who buys a snake-stone thinks it a snake-stone, (but) sees a snake in the basket.”

The “snake-stone”, mār-muhra, is a stone found in the head of a snake and supposed to be an antidote against its poison.

1,694. “This dry bag,” īn kharīṭa-yi khushk; i.e., the world in respect of the earth, which in the East, at all events, is often dry.

1,695. i.e., find things which they thought most charming and valuable comparatively worthless.

1,696. The lady who tells the story to Bahrām is speaking here on her own part.

1,697. i.e., suffered distress.

1,698. Khiẓr. “The prophet Khiẓr, who discovered and drank of the Water of Life, figures in Oriental tradition as the vazīr of Iskandar (Alexander), and also as Elias and St. George, on the supposition that the same soul animated them by trans­migration.” (Steingass.) (See also Notes 274, 1,201, and 1,562.)

1,699. See Notes 274, 1,201, 1,562, and 1,698.