2,051. i.e., on villagers who cheat in selling curds and whey by giving too much whey and too little curds.

2,052. i.e., in the village, the world.

2,053. “He is graced,” bihā dārad. “(High) price,” bahā. “Integrity,” lit., “goodness,” bihī.

2,054. i.e., whether you be noble or plebeian there are many like you in the world who share in the possessions of the world. These possessions are not special to any particular person, and they pass too from one to another, so that, as intimated in the next distich, it is foolish to fix one’s heart upon any of them.

The B. ed. of 1328 has,

Dar jahān khair-i khāṣṣ-u ‘ām (for ‘āmm) basī-’st: “In the world the good things of noble and plebeian are many”; or, “In the world special and common good things are many.” But the sense of neither is so satisfactory.

2,055. “This place of snares”; i.e., the world. “Its high seats”; lit., “its pulpits.”

2,056. i.e., in aiming at high places you aim at the cross of suffering and death.

Another, an I.O. MS. reading of the first hemistich, is,

Zinda raftan ba-dār bar havas ast.

If this be not interrogative and practically equivalent to the other, the sense would be,

“It is ambition to go living to the cross.”

2,057. i.e., if a human being should reach the height of his ambition, death would ultimately claim him. “One of earth” is, I think, the most probable sense of zamīnī, which may be taken as analogous to khākī in the line,

Hast khākī ki ba-ābī na-kharad ṭūfān-rā: “There is a bit of earth (i.e., Noah) which does not reckon the Deluge (even) as a drop of water.”

2,058. Another, an I.O. MS. reading, gives “If a head should raise (its) crown up to the heavens”.

2,059. “The Seven Climes”; i.e., the whole inhabited world. (See Note 207.)

2,060. Lit., “with lowered head carrying away a headache.”

2,061. “Rude oppressive acts,” ḥaif-i lā-ubālī.

The B. ed. of 1328 has khisht-i lā-ubālī, “darts of oppression.” (See the last paragraph of Note 2,043.)

2,062. “Without a spine.” (See Notes 56 and 527.)

2,063. See Note 1,693.

2,064. “A draught of honey-wine,” or mead, nūsh-bāda-ī.

The B. ed. of 1328 has nūsh-pāra-ī, “a piece of honey.” With this reading one would render, “Who is there eats a piece of honeycomb.”

2,065. The B. ed. of 1328 reads,

dū dam-ū dar damī yakī nafas ast: “are but two moments, each one but a breath.”

2,066. “The veil of dark and light”; i.e., the world, in which things of dark and light of every description are found.

The “cowries of the ass” are an allusion to the cowries used as ornaments on the trappings of asses.

The ass on which Jesus rode is frequently alluded to by Muslim writers.

The distich occurs in this place in the B. ed. of 1328, and is better placed than in the I.O. MSS. I have consulted.

2,067. This and the following two distichs may be a prayer for the general welfare of the Author, or possibly a prayer for the success in every way of his poem.

2,068. The Author means possibly that the coin was as a reflected image of good coin, and showed all its brilliance: that, in fine, it exactly corresponded with it.

2,069. Speaking of his work as coin, the Author intimates that it passes successfully all tests.

The word “Grecian” is used to imply that his work has the merit attached to that of Grecian artists.

2,070. i.e., I have dedicated it to the king.

2,071. “The inscription”; i.e., the inscription on the coin, by which latter is meant the poem.

2,072. The Author must, I think, be alluding to his work as consisting mainly of seven stories under which deep, religious, mystical thoughts are concealed.

If even there were seven internal senses, instead of five, such meaning would scarcely be applicable, since they could scarcely all be called treasuries or storehouses of secret thought.

2,073. i.e., the key is veiled in darkness.

2,074. i.e., “I praise the king’s qualities,” the king being likened here to a date-palm=tree.

2,075. Compliments to the king on implied victories.

2,076. “The Law”; i.e., the holy Law. “Dogma is divided into two portions, uṣūl and furū‘—(i.e., roots and branches.) The former include the doctrine about God; the latter, as the name implies, consist of truths which result from the acceptance of the former. The orthodox belief is that reason has only to do with the furū‘, for the uṣūl, being founded on the Qur’ān and Sunnat, have an objective basis.” (Sell: The Faith of Islām.)

2,077. An allusion to the curve of the sky.

2,078. “The Seven Feasts” or “Seven Trays”, Haft Khvān.

The Burhān-i Qāṭi‘ says that when the king Kai-Kā’ūs had become a captive in Māzandarān, Rustam, the Persian champion, set out to deliver him. He traversed the distance in seven stages, making each stage a day’s journey. On the way he encountered demons and magicians, whom he slew; and in thanksgiving for his success in surmounting all the dangers and difficulties of each stage he held a grand feast or entertainment at the end of it. He concluded his expedition by delivering the king from captivity. (See also Notes 212 and 1,035.)

2,079. The elements were supposed to lie in four strata, the lowest being earth, the next water, the third air, and the fourth fire.

2,080. Lit., “which gives moist pearls from dry earth”; i.e., which brightens and beautifies the earth.

2,081. An allusion to its glittering.

2,082. “Mail-clad moon.” The surface of the moon some­what resembles ring-armour.

“The ring”; i.e., either the lunar halo or the moon itself.

2,083. i.e., is protected by him.

2,084. An address to the king.

2,085. i.e., keen of intellect, and steady and deliberate in judgment.

2,086. “Your steadfast namesake”; i.e., the lion.

This distich, if not spurious, seems to indicate that the king had the honorific title of Arslān, Lion; or that he was called Arslān as being bin Arslān, the son or grandson of Arslān. He might possibly, however, have been called a second Qizil Arslān (Red Lion), but that he was not the Qizil Arslān has, I venture to say, been sufficiently shown in Note 204. (See also Notes 204 and 213.)

2,087. i.e., since I conclude it with praises of the king, which are as rubies.

2,088. This is, I think, the most probable sense of the second hemistich, dar ‘ibārat kilīd-i pur dārad.

2,089. The real meaning of this highly metaphorical distich is that as the pearl is released or unlocked, as it were, by the loosening or untying of knots on the string, so the occult meaning presented by the Author is free to that person only who has perspicuity enough to solve the difficulties of it.

2,090. In this and the following two distichs the Author alludes obscurely to his having borrowed material for his work. This is more fully dwelt upon in the Section entitled “On the cause of writing the Book”. The principal source was, of course, the Shāh-nāma of Firdausī.

2,091. Mercury is “the Scribe of the Sky” and the god of wisdom.

By “ears of corn” are meant the Author’s thoughts and contributions to learning.

2,092. When Virgo is the ascendant in a person’s nativity his ruling planet is Mercury, the ruler over Virgo. Such a person, says Alan Leo, “can criticize and analyse all that comes under his notice, as he is inclined to look on the world from an intel­lectual standpoint. He is also very ingenious, systematic, thoughtful, and inventive. He generally takes a philosophical view of things and knows how to discriminate.”

It should be added that the planet is as the spirit in connexion with the zodiacal sign over which it rules, and the sign is as the soul, the zodiacal mansion being as the body.

2,093. Al-qāṣṣu lā yuḥibbu ’l-qāṣṣ, an Arabic saying. But I do not remember seeing that story-telling is attributed to Virgo.

2,094. The use of the expression qanā‘at, “contented state,” or contentment, seems a hint from the Author that he will be content with whatever the king may bestow. He is entrenched, as it were, in contentment.

2,095. The term the “Brazen Fort”, Rūyīn Diz, is probably applied to the king’s court for a reason given in the next distich but five. (For an account of the Brazen Fort, see Note 1,541.)

2,096. I have translated from the reading—

Vām-dārī na az tahī-karamī; diz-i rūyīn buvad zi-bī-diramī.

But another reading is—

Vām-dārī bih az tahī-karamī: “Debt better is than want of will to give.”

And another—

Vām-dārī bih az tahī-shikamī: “Debt’s better than to have an empty stomach.”

I suppose the Author is affecting to take his image of the Brazen Fort as a reality, and implying that since it is of brass it cannot pay him in silver or gold. The only sense, I think, is that the king’s generosity to others has been so excessive that he must remain in debt to the Author.

2,097. The term “Rocky Mount” is possibly applied to the king’s dominions.

“The rubies and diamonds” are the scintillations of the king’s sword; but they are taken in the next distich as a symbol of his generosity to friends and severity to enemies.

Another reading is girīva-yi tang, “narrow pass,” a term which might be applied to the king’s dominions in respect of their inaccessibility to enemies.

2,098. The Ka‘ba is the cubical house in the temple of Mecca.

2,099. Qāf, the name of the fabulous mountain range which was supposed to encompass the earth.

2,100. I translate from the reading, dar digar ham zi-rāh-i dīda-yi ū.

The B. ed. of 1328 gives,

zar hama(h) ẕarra-yī darīda-yi ū (or, durīda-yi ū), which seems to offer no good sense.

One might suggest,

zar hama(h) ẕarra-ī ba-dīda-yi ū: “gold is nothing but a mote in its view,” but there is no authority for this.