1,801. By “moon”, māh, is meant each beauty. “Fish” in Persian is māhī.

1,802. The diram. (See Note 569.) Dirams mean here moonbeams.

1,803. i.e., puellarum pulchritudine visa ejus membrum virile se erexit.

1,804. i.e., their fair and bright skins scintillated, as it were, with pearls.

1,805. An allusion to their bosoms and chins.

1,806. Bīstūn, which is taken popularly to mean “columnless”, as though from bī-sutūn, is a mountain which Farhād, the lover of Shīrīn, cut through at her command. The story is told in Nizāmī’s poem Khusrau-u Shīrīn.

The real meaning of the hemistich is that their beauty would have, even upon those sexually deficient, the effect alluded to in Note 1,803. (See also Notes 1,163, 1,165, 1,234, and 1,555.)

1,807. For Farhād, see Notes 1,163, 1,165, 1,234, and 1,555.

1,808. “The milky stream which Shīrīn’s Palace had.”

There is no allusion to this that I have seen in Nizāmī’s poem, Khusrau-u Shīrīn.

Qaṣr-i Shīrīn, “Shīrīn’s Palace,” was and is, however, the name of a town in Kermānshāh, Persia, situated on the Ḥolvān Chāi (Stream), and the fact that Ḥolvān (Ḥulwān) means “being sweet”, or “sweetness”, and that shīrī, “milky,” might also, as shīrīn, be rendered “sweet”, may, I think, offer us an explanation of the Author’s allusion. Qaṣr-i Shīrīn is in about latitude 34° 28' N., and longitude 45° 34' E. Istakhrī (about A.D. 950) places it in ‘Irāq ‘Arabī, five stations (i.e., about 100 miles) east of Baghdād. As a matter of fact, however, it is about 105 miles north-east of Baghdād, and nine or ten miles within the present-day Persian border. The Ḥolvān Chāi flows into the Diyāla, a tributary of the Tigris.

It might be added that although, in accordance with the dictionaries, I have translated shīrī as “milky”, such attribute can scarcely be applied to a stream except in respect of the quality “sweetness”, which is connoted by “milk”. There is no reason either why shīrī should not amongst its senses have that of shīrīn, i.e., “sweet.”

As an alternative, however, it may be suggested that the stream in question might be that which Shīrīn wished to flow through the rock of Bīstūn when Farhād, at her request, had cut through that rock. (See also Notes 1,163, 1,165, 1,234, and 1,555.)

1,809. Qāmat and Qiyāmat, “stature” and “Resurrection”, are used together rhetorically because of their similarity in sound; but qiyāmat, besides “Resurrection”, means “a great disturbance” or “the cause of one”, such as a beautiful woman who causes disturbance amongst her lovers.

1,810. See Note 1,803.

1,811. Aperture and hole in one sense mean the aperture or hole through which he was looking; sed sensu altero vulvam significant. Et avis et anguis membrum virile significant.

1,812. “Grecian face” means fair face. “Ethiop locks” mean black locks.

1,813. The “laden cypress”, perhaps better here, “cedar,” means literally the tree so laden by branches and foliage as to droop over any water that might be near. Metaphorically the “cypress” means the form of the beauty, and “pomegranates” her breasts.

By their being “dipped in water” is meant their being on her white, resplendent bosom or body. Āb means both “water” and “lustre”, but in each respective sense is from a different root.

“Water dipped in pomegranates” signifies literally their juiciness; metaphorically it means that there was lustre, whiteness and resplendency in her breasts.

1,814. Lit., “love would become sober, and intellect drunk.”

1,815. From this and several of the following distichs it would appear that the word khvāja, “master,” means in this story a learned religious man of an ascetic character.

1,816. “The musk-deer” means here the beauties, and “the cheeta” the master.

1,817. i.e., as ushers.

1,818. Ghurfa, “an upper room,” means also “paradise, the seventh heaven”.

The meaning is that when they took her into the room and closed the door upon her, she being as that which made the beauty of heaven, they closed the door of heaven.

1,819. i.e., had made his business well-ordered or concordant, as a harp is “harmonious”, bā-āhang. Chang, rendered “harp”, means also “Mānī’s book”; i.e., the collection of paintings by Mānī or Manes, the founder of the sect of Manichæans, so that the hemistich might be rendered, “had ordered his affairs like Mānī’s book.”

In this case the sense would be, “had arranged his affairs in fine style.”

1,820. “Drew, from her, iron from silver”; i.e., robbed her silvery bosom of its iron-hard heart. “Silver which was gold”; i.e., of course, in value, not colour.

1,821. For an explanation of the expression “in chiding tones”, see Note 943.

1,822. Parda, “curtain,” means also “music”. The sense is presumably, “Where and how do you live?”

1,823. i.e., illam vitiare voluit.

1,824. “The place”; i.e., the room in which they were.

1,825. See Note 1,784.

1,826. “The gardener”; i.e., the master.

1,827. “A cup of wine”; i.e., the beauty.

1,828. This refers to the accident that had happened.

1,829. i.e., of my heart and peace.

1,830. “The yellow wall-flower” (cheiranthus cheiri). This is probably the equivalent here of the word khīrī. Redhouse, how­ever, gives also “the stock-gilliflower” (matthiola odoratissima).

1,831. i.e., his fair face became yellow through vexation.

1,832. i.e., they made all clear and easy, and showed the way.

1,833. “The rose” means the master, and “the rose-water” the lady.

1,834. “The cypress” means the lady. (For the “free cypress”, see Note 1,246.)

The “jasmine and Sāmānian rug” refer to her fairness and colouring.

The Sāmānians reigned in Eastern Persia for 128 years, the last king dying in A.D. 999. It is to be presumed that Sāmānian carpets were still existent and famous in the Author’s time.

1,835. In this distich “the cypress” means apparently the master, and “the rose” the lady.

1,836. Khāna-gīr, “house-securing,” or “taking a house”, is explained as “the fourth of the seven rounds of the game of nard (the Persian backgammon)”. For an account of this game reference may be made to Dr. Hyde’s work, De Nerdiludio.

The sense intended by the metaphor may, I think, be understood without explanation.

1,837. The “panther” means the master; the “deer” the lady.

1,838. “The inspector (or superintendent) of police of a town,” shaḥna.

1,839. “The censor,” or “censor-inspector”, muḥtasib, who inspects weights and measures, and corrects immorality.

1,840. Vā rasīdand-ash az chunān khvārī. The B. ed. of 1328 reads,

Bar kashīdand-ash az chunān khvārī: “from such dejection did they raise him up.”

1,841. See Note 1,815.

1,842. “Raised its standard to a wall”; i.e., I think, “rose as a wall.” I do not think a real wall is meant, though it may possibly be so.

1,843. I have translated from the B. ed. of 1328, with which several of the I.O. MSS. agree:

Bar sar-ash bīsha-ū ba-bun ghārī, suggesting, however, bīsha-ī for bīsha-ū.

I.O. MS. 1168 has,

Bar tah-ash bīsha-ī, ba-bar ghārī: “At the bottom of it (was) a wood, at the breast a cave.”

The literal rendering of the reading of the B. ed. is, “On its head a wood, at the root a cave,” and the sense is, I think, that the branches and foliage of the jasmine-trees formed, as it were, a wood, and that near or behind the lower parts of the trunks there was a cave.

1,844. “No better place”; lit., “no better court, place of congress or meeting.”

1,845. “A pleasant couch”; lit., “a place of business.”

1,846. “The curved dome”; i.e., the sky in the sense of fortune.

1,847. “The master’s court.” (See Note 1,844.)

1,848. “Pomegranates, narcissi”; i.e., breasts and eyes.

1,849. “The dawn” means both the lady and the real dawn.

“A pair of shears” means both the two girls who are ill-using her, and also streaks of the dawn, which the Author likens to shears.

1,850. He implies that he himself is to blame.