1 In the name of the Lord life-creating!
The Wise One speech-creating within the tongue!

The Lord, the giver, hand-seizing!
Merciful, sin-forgiving, excuse-accepting!

A King such that whosoever turned away his head from
His door
Found not any respect at the doors to which he went,*

The heads of kings, neck-exalting,
(Are), at His court, on the ground of supplication.

5 He does not instantly seize the froward;
He does not drive away, with violence, those excuse-

And, though He becomes angry at bad conduct,
When thou didst return, He cancelled the past circumstance
(in the book of sins).

The two worlds (this and the next) are (like) a drop in
the sea of His knowledge;
He sees a crime, but in mercy covers it with a screen.

If a person seeks a quarrel with his father,
Doubtless, the father becomes very angry.

And, if a relation be not satisfied with a relation (on
account of bad conduct),
He drives him from before him, like strangers.

10 And if the clever slave is not of use,
The master holds him not dear,

And, if thou art not kind to friends,
The friend will fly from thee to the distance of a league.

And if a soldier abandons service,
The king army-leading becomes quit of him.

But, the Lord of high and low (God),
Shuts not the door of food on anyone, on account of his

The embroidered leather surface of the earth is His common
At this open table, whether enemy (infidel), or friend
(the faithful)—what matter?*

15 And if He had hastened against one tyranny-practising,
Who would have obtained safety from the hand of His

His nature (is) free from suspicion of opposition and simi-
His kingdom independent of the devotion of jinn and

The servant of His order every thing and person:
The son of Ádam, and fowl, and ant, and fly.

He spreads so wide a tray of liberality,
That the Símurgh (in the mountains of) Káf (the Caucasus)
enjoys a portion.*

Grace and liberality diffusing, and work executing;
Because He is the Possessor of Creation, and Knower
of secrets.

20 Grandeur and egotism are proper for Him,
Whose kingdom is ancient, and nature independent.

He places the crown of fortune on the head of one;
He brings another from a throne to the dust.

This one (has) the cap of Good-Fortune on his head;
That one the blanket of Mis-fortune on his body.*

He makes a fire, a rose-garden, for Ibráhím;
He takes a crowd, from the waters of the Nil, to the fire
(of Hell).*

If that (making the fire a rose-garden)—it is the written
order of His beneficence;
And, if this (the destruction of Far'ún in the Níl)—it is
the sign manual of His order.

25 Behind the screen He sees bad acts:
By His own favour, He covers them with a veil.

If, with threatening, He draws forth the sharp sword of
The Cherubim will remain deaf and dumb.

And if, from the tray of Liberality, He gives victuals to be
carried home,
'Azázíl (i.e. Satan) will say, “I may carry away a good

At the Court of His grace and greatness,
The Great Ones have put greatness out of their heads.

In mercy, near to those who are distressed:
A hearer of the prayer of those supplication-making.

30 Concerning circumstances not yet come to pass, His know-
ledge penetrating;
As to secrets unspoken, His grace informed.

By power, the Guardian of high (sky) and low (earth),
The Lord of the Court of the day of reckoning (Judgment-

The back of a person is not free from obedience to Him
(it must bend);
On His word, there is not room for the finger of a person
(in slander).

The ancient doer of good, good-approving;
With the reed of Destiny, in the womb, picture-painting.*

From the east to the west, the moon and sun,
He put into motion; and spread the firmament on the

35 The earth, from distress of earthquake, became stupefied;
On its skirt, He drove down a mountam as a nail.*

He gives to the seed of man, a form like a parí;
Who has made a painting on the water?

He places the ruby and turquoise, in the back-bone (middle)
of the rock;
The red rose, on the branch of green colour.

From the cloud, He casts a drop towards the ocean;
From the back-bone (of the father) He brings the seed
into the womb.

From that drop, He makes an incomparable pearl;
And from this, He makes a form (of man) like the lofty

40 The knowledge of a single atom is not hidden from Him,
To whom the evident and the hidden are one.

He prepares the daily food of the snake and the ant;
Although, they are without hands, and feet, and strength.

By His order, He pourtrayed existence from non-
Who, except Him, knows how to make the existing from
the non-existing?

Another time, He takes away (creation) to the concealment
of non-existence;
And, thence conveys (it) to the plain of the place of assem-
bling (the Resurrection).

(The people of the) world are agreed to His divine origin;
Overpowered in respect to the substance of His essence.

45 The people discovered not what was beyond His majesty;
The vision discovered not the extent of His power.

The bird of Fancy flies not to the summit of His nature;
The power of the intellect arrives not at the skirt of His

In this whirlpool, a thousand ships (of reason) foundered,
In such a way that not a plank was found on the marge.

Many nights, I sate lost in this journey (of thought
of God),
When (suddenly) terror seized my sleeve, saying, “Get

The knowledge of the King (God) is the encircler of the
wide plain (of creation);
Thy conjecture becomes not the encircler of Him.*

50 Genius reaches not to the substance of His nature,
Thought reaches not to the profundity of His qualities.

One can attain to (the 'Arab poet), Suhbán, in eloquence;
(But) one cannot reach to the substance of God without

Because the immature ones have on this road urged the
steed (of thought),
At (the words) “lá ahsá,” they have wearied of the

One cannot gallop a steed in every place,
Places there are where it is proper to cast the shield (yield).*

And, if a traveller (a pious one) becomes acquainted with
the secret of God,
They (the angels) will shut on him the door of returning
(to the world).*

55 In this banquet (of the mystery of God), they give a cup
(of the wine of the love of God) to that one,
To whom they give a draft of senselessness (that he may
not utter the mystery of God).

The wise man fears this sea of blood (the mystery of God),
Out of which no one has taken the bark (of his life).

Of this hawk (the Rationalist), the eye is sewn up (blind
to the knowledge of God);
Of the other (the holy man), the eyes are open (to the
knowledge of God); and feathers (of flight to the
world) burned.

No one went to the (buried) treasure of Kárún (mystery of
And if he found a way, he found not (a way) out of it.*

If thou art a seeker, who over this ground (of the know-
ledge of God) dost travel,
First thou shouldst pluck up the foot of the steed of

60 Shouldst reflect, in the mirror of the mind;
Shouldst acquire purity by degrees.

Possibly the perfume of the love (of God) makes thee
Makes thee a seeker of the Covenant—“Am I your

With the foot of search thou dost travel to that place (the
mystery of God);
And thence, thou dost fly with the wing of the love of

Truth tears the curtains of fancy;
There remains not a lofty curtain, save the glory of God.

Again for the steed of reason there is no running;
Astonishment will seize its rein, saying, “Stand!”

65 In this sea (of God) only the man-guardian (Muhammad)
That one became lost, who went not behind the inviter

Those persons, who have turned back from this road (of
following Muhammad)
Travelled much, and are distressed.

That person, who chooses the way opposite to the Prophet,
Will never arrive at the stage (of his journey).

Oh Sa'dí! think not that the path of purity,
One can travel, except behind the Chosen One (Mu-

Generous of dispositions, beautiful of natures!
The Prophet of creatures, the Intercessor of nations!*

70 The Imám of the prophets, the Leader of the road!
The faithful of God, the place of descent of the Angel

The Intercessor of mortals, the Lord of raising and dis-
persing (the Judgment-day)!
The Imám of the guides, the Chief of the Court of
Assembling (the Resurrection)!

The Speaker, whose Mount Sinai is the celestial sphere;
All lights are the rays of his light.*

The orphan (Muhammad) who, the Kurán un-completed,
Washed the library of (effaced) so many religions,

When anger drew forth his sword of terror,
Struck, by a miracle, the waist of the moon in two halves.*

75 When his fame fell in the mouths of the people of the
An earthquake occurred in the court of Kisrí (King Nau-

By the words—lá iláha illa-lláh—he broke into small pieces
(the idol) Lát;
For the honour of religion, he took away the reputation of
(the idol) 'Uzzá.*

He brought not forth the dust of (the idols) Lát and
'Uzzá (only);
But made the Old Testament and Gospel obsolete.*

One night he sate (on the beast Burák); he passed beyond
the Heavens:
In majesty and grandeur, he exceeded the angels.*

So impetuous, he urged (his steed) into the plain of propin-
quity (to God),
While Jibrá,il remained behind him, at the tree of paradise.*

80 The Chief of the sacred house (of the Ka'ba) spoke to him,
Saying:—“Oh, bearer of the Divine Revelation! move
proudly higher.

“When thou didst find me sincere in friendship,
“Why didst thou twist the reins from my love?”

Jibrá,il said:—“The power to move higher was not to me:
“I remained here, because the power of wing remained
not to me.

“If I fly one hair's breadth higher,
“The effulgence of splendour will burn my feathers.”

On account of sins, a person remains not in restraint,
Who has such a Lord (Muhammad) as guide.

85 What acceptable praise may I say to thee?
Oh, Prophet of Mortals! peace be on thee!

May the benedictions of angels be on thy soul!
May they be on thy companions and followers!*

First Abú-Bakr, the old disciple;
'Umar, grasp on the convolution of the contumacious demon

The wise 'Usmán, night, alive-keeping;
The fourth 'Alí-Shán, Duldul, riding.*

Oh God! by the right of the sons of Fátima,
May I, on the word of faith, conclude (my life)!*

90 If thou dost reject my claim, or if thou dost accept,
I, and the hand, and the skirt of the offspring of the
Prophet (are together).

Oh chief happy footed! what loss occurs
Of thy exalted dignity, at the court of the Living One,

That there are a few beggars of the tribe,
Humble companions, guests, at the House of Safety

God praised and honoured thee (oh Muhammad!)
Jabrá,il performed the ground-kiss of thy worth.

The lofty sky, before thy worth, (is) ashamed,
Thou created, and man yet water and clay.*

95 Thou from the first, the essence of the existence of man;
Whatever else became existent is an offshoot from thee.

I know not what words I may say to thee,
Who art higher than what I say of thee.

To thee, the honour of—“but for thee”—is sufficient
Thy praise in the verse of the Kurán—táhá wa yasín—is

What praise may the imperfect Sa'dí make?
Oh Prophet! on thee be benedictions, and safety!

In the extremes of the world, I wondered much;
With every one, I passed my time.*

100 From every corner, I found pleasure;
From every harvest, I obtained an ear of corn.

Like the pure ones of Shíráz of dust-like (submissive) dis-
I saw not (one).—May mercy be on this pure soil (of

The cultivating of friendship of the men of this pure soil,
Drew away my heart from Syria and Turkey.

I said to my heart:—“From Egypt, they bring sugar;
They take it as a present to friends.”

From all that garden (of the world), I was loath
To go empty-handed to my friends.*

105 If my hand be empty of that sugar,
There are words sweeter than sugar—

Not that sugar that men apparently enjoy;
But that, which the lords of truth take away on paper
(with respect).*

When I completed this palace of wealth,
I prepared in it ten doors (chapters) of instruction.*

One chapter is on Justice, and Deliberation, and Judgment;
The guarding of the people, and the fear of God.*

(In) the second chapter, I laid the foundation of Benefi-
That the benefactor may praise (by liberality) the excel-
lence of God.

110 The third chapter is on Love (of God), and Phrenzy, and
Not the worldly love that men fasten, with force, on them-

The fourth chapter is on Humility; the fifth,—Content-
The sixth,—the description of the man Contentment-

The seventh chapter on the description of the Science of
The eighth chapter,—on thanks for safety.*

The ninth chapter is on Repentance and the way of
The tenth,—on Prayers and the Conclusion of the book.

On the august day, and happy year;
On the auspicious date, between the two 'ídds,—*

115 It was fifty-five years more than six hundred,
Since that this renowned treasury (the Bústán) became full
of pearls (of eloquence).

My jewel of speech has remained in a woman's veil;
Yet from shame, I carry my head on my bosom.*

Because, in the sea there is the pearl and also the oyster
In the garden there is the lofty tree and the small.

Ho! oh wise man of happy disposition!
I have not heard the skilful one, a defect-seeker.

If the coat be of silk, or if painted and embroidered,
Of necessity, its quilting (of cotton) is in the interior.

120 If thou dost not obtain the painted and embroidered silk,
fret not,
Do the work of Liberality, and cover my redundant words.

I boast not of the capital of my own excellence;
I have brought my hands in front, in beggary.

I (have) heard that in the day of hope and fear (the resur-
The Merciful One will pardon the bad for the sake of the

If thou also dost see evil in my words,
Act, in imitation of the world-Creator.*

When one couplet, out of a thousand, is pleasing to thee,
In the name of manliness! restrain thy hand from

125 Assuredly, in Persia, my creation (the Bústán),
Is priceless, like musk in Khutn.*

Like the noise of the drum, the fear of me was afar.
In my absence, my defect was veiled.*

Sa'dí brings the rose to the garden
With sauciness; and pepper to Hindústán.*

Like the date, skin with sweetness encrusted;
When thou dost open it, a bone (a stone or difficulty) is

My disposition had no desire for this kind (of composition);
It had no wish for the praising of kings.*

130 But, I threaded the pearls (of poetry) in the name of a
certain one;
Perhaps, the holy men may unfold,

That Sa'dí, who snatched the ball of eloquence,
Was (lived) in the days of Abú-Bakr, the son of Sa'd.

If in his time, I boast—it is fit;
Even as, the Lord (Muhammad) in the time of (King)

A world-guardian, and Faith-cherisher, and justice-distri-
Came not after (Khalífa) 'Umar, like (King) Abú-Bakr.*

Chief of the head-exalting ones, and crown of the great
The world will boast, in the time of his justice.

135 If a person comes from tumult into shelter,
He has no shelter-place, save this country (Shíráz).

Happiness for the door (of Abú-Bakr), like the old house
From every broad road around it, men come.*

I saw not such a country, and treasure, and throne
Which is a bequest to the child, and to the young man, and
to the old.*

The one sorrowful on account of a grief came not to him,
On whose heart he placed not a plaster.

He (Abú-Bakr) is a seeker of good, and hopeful (of good):
Oh God! fulfil the hope that he has.

140 A corner of his hat on the highest Heaven,—
Yet, from humility, his head on the ground.

If the beggar supplicates,—it is his nature;
Humility from the neck-exalting ones is good.

If an inferior falls (in humility) it is proper;
The superior prostrate (in humility) is a man of God.*

The recollection of his grace is not concealed;
Nay, the clamour of his liberality travels in the world.*

A wise man of happy disposition like him,
The world, so long as it was a world, recollects not.

145 In his age, thou dost not see a sorrowing one,
Who complains of the injustice of the one of strong

No one has seen this custom, and order, and regulation:
King Firídún, with the majesty that he had, saw not this.*

On that account, his dignity before God is great;
Because by his might, the hand of the weak ones is

He so spreads his shadow over a world,
That an old man fears not a Rustam.

In every age, men of the violence of time,
And of the revolution of the skies,—groan.

150 Oh great monarch! in thy just age,
No one complains in respect to time.

In thy time, I behold the peace of the people;
After thee, I know not (what will be) the end of the

It is also by reason of thy fortune of happy ending,
That the date of Sa'dí is in thy era.

So long as the moon and sun are in the sky,
In this book, remembrance of thee is eternal.

If kings have gathered a good name,
They have learned a good way of life from former kings.

155 Thou, in the administration of thy own kingdom,
Surpassed former kings.

Alexander, with a wall of brass and stone,
Confined the way of Ya,júj from the world.*

Thy barrier against Ya,júj-kufr is of gold;
It is not brass, like the wall of Alexander.*

That eloquent one—who, in security and justice,
Utters not thy praise,—let him not have a tongue!

Well done! The sea of gift and mine of liberality!
Because the implorer for aid is existent from thy existence.

160 I consider the qualities of the King beyond computation;
Within this narrow plain of the book, they are not

If Sa'dí writes all thy good qualities,
He will assuredly make another book.

I desist from thanks for such liberality;
It is indeed better, that I should spread forth the hand of

May the world be to thy desire, and Heaven thy friend!
May the Creator of the World be thy guardian!

Thy lofty star has illumined a world;
The declination of thy star has burned the enemy.

165 Of the revolution of Time let there not be grief to thee!
And of reflection, let there not be dust (of grief) on thy

Because a single grief, on the heart of kings,
Disturbs the heart of a world.

May thy heart and territory be tranquil and prosperous!
May confusion be far from thy kingdom!

May thy body be always (sound) like thy true religion (of
May the heart of thy enemy be sluggish, like deliberation!

May thy inward parts, by the strengthening of God, be
May thy heart, and religion, and territory be prosperous!

170 May the World-Creator have mercy on thee!
Whatever more I may say is empty talk and wind.

This indeed is enough from the Glorious Omnipotent One,
That the grace of thy welfare is on the increase.

(King) Sa'd, the son of Zangí, departed not with pain from
the world;
When he begot a renowned successor, like thee (Muham-
mad Sa'd).*

This branch, from that pure stock (Sa'd, son of Zangí), is
not wonderful;
Because his soul is on the summit (of paradise), and his
body in the dust (of the grave).

Oh God! On that renowned tomb (of Sa'd, son of Zangí),
By Thy grace, let the rain of mercy fall!

175 If of Sa'd, son of Zangí, an example and recollection
May Heaven be the Protector of Sa'd, son of Abú-Bakr!*

Atábak Muhammad, a king of good fortune,
Lord of crown, and Lord of throne.*

A youth of fresh fortune, enlightened mind;
In fortune, young; in deliberation, old.

In wisdom, great; and in spirit, lofty;
In arm, strong; and in heart, sensible.

Oh happy fortune of the mother of Time!
Who cherishes such a son in her bosom.

180 With the hand of liberality, he took away the water (of
reputation) of the river:
In exaltation, he took the place of the Pleiades.*

Bravo! may the eye of Fortune be open (joyous) on thy
Oh chief of monarchs, neck exalting!

The oyster, that thou dost see full of pearl-grains,
Has not that value that one pearl-grain has.*

Thou art that hidden (rare) pearl of one grain;
Because, thou art the ornament of the house of the

Oh God! preserve him by Thy grace:
Keep him from injury and the evil eye.

185 Oh God! make him renowned in every horizon:
Make him precious, by the grace of devotion.

Keep him a dweller in justice and piety;
Fulfil his wish in this world and the next.

Let there not be grief to thee on account of the hateful
Let there not be injury to thee, from the revolution of the

The tree of paradise like thee brings forth fruit:
The son fame-seeking; the father fame-possessing.

Know that welfare is a stranger of that household
Who are evil speakers of this household.

190 Bravo! Religion and knowledge. Bravo! justice and
Bravo! country and government.— May it always be