Account of that which happened between Nasir-Addin-Sabaktagín and Khalaf-Ahmad, both as regards their Differences and their Friendships, up to the time when the Sultan Yamin-Addoulat wrested the Kingdom from his Hands, and an Account of the Warlike Inroads upon India which ensued.

The retreat of Khalaf-Ahmad and his banish­ment from his home, and the anxious endeavours of the Amír Sadid-Mansur-Ibn-Núh, for the defence and support, and preservation of his kingdom, have already been brought out to mani­festation, up to those days when the affairs of Khurasán became confused and shaken, and the whole kingdom was disturbed. But he remained sitting in perfect quietude, in his own land, and was eminent for his worldly treasures. And the way of perverseness obtained the mastery over his intellect, and brought him from a condition of vigour and virtue into a state of crime. And when the King of India entertained designs against the dwellings of Islam, and Nasir-Addin rose up to repulse them, in the manner described in the contents of this book, then since Khalaf-’bn-Ahmad found Bost empty, he sent an army to that place, and caused the public prayers to be offered and the coin struck in his name therein, and seized upon all the money which had been collected as the revenue of that country. But when Nasir-Addin returned from that battle with Mansúr, and drew near to Bost, the chiefs of the city deserted Khalaf and departed. And Nasir-Addin was angry, on account of his carelessness and his treachery, and entertained an intention of proceeding towards Sistán. But Khalaf sent a person and sought to win him by soothing excuses and by unacceptable words and said, “This audacity proceeded from the most sincere duty, and even if a garrison of cavalry did enter the city of Bost from me, it was done for the sake of guarding thy territory and protecting thy subjects; and if the produce of the taxes were taken it was taken for the sake of thy treasury. But if, on this account, some dust has settled upon the border of the illustrious mind, I shall regard myself as obliged to offer expiation for this crime and to pay a tax for this impertinence.” Nasir-Addin, from his extreme generosity, mild goodness, and amiable disposition, took the path of indifference and of holding himself above taking notice of such things, and replaced the sword of vengeance in its sheath, and returned to his usual state of contentment. But he asked for the return of the revenue-money of Bost, which property the other sent back with a good-will. Thus the state of affection was cleansed from the smears of hatred, and the distinguished mind was settled, until those days when Abu-Ali-Simjur gave battle at the gate of Nishapúr, in the manner which has been declared. And Khalaf displayed words of friendship, offering the aid of friends and the conquest of enemies, and good evi­dences of a desire for the alliance and prosperity of Nasir-Addin. And he girded up his loins and devoted himself and his army, and his property and his goods, to the vindication of the rights of Nasir-Addin. But, however he might outwardly assist and favour the success of Nasir-Addin, his inward object was Abú-Alí, and his aim was to obtain vengeance for the mutual injuries which had long since occurred between them. And Khalaf proceeded in the service and in the aid of the flag of Nasir-Addin, as far as to Bushanj. And Nasir-Addin left him at that place, and com­manded him to repose himself from the trouble of the journey, and from all annoyance of mind. And he took his army with himself, and went to Tús, to fight with Abú-Alí, until he defeated him. And his mind became at rest from that affair, and he sent back the army of Khalaf with honour and caresses, and flattering words. And thus the path of their affection and the fountains of their friendship remained free from the mutations of time and the pollution of accident, from the disputes of deceit and the impurities of dissimula­tion, until the time when Nasir-Addin proceeded towards Mawaralnahr, for the purpose of assisting the Prince Ridha-Núh-’bn-Mansúr, and in order to repulse Ilek-Khán. And, under his direction, affairs, by the benignity of peace and security, remained free from open rent or violence. But Khalaf, in the midst of this state of things, wrote kind letters to Ilek-Khán, and began to deceive him and lead him astray, and to stir him up to attack and estrange himself from Nasir-Addin. And he began to stretch forth the neck of covetousness for the territory of Bost and the provinces annexed thereto, and it was reported that an expression publicly fell from him, that he repented of his enmity to Abú-Alí, and that, in this point, he blamed Nasir-Addin, and said, “To attack noble princes and ancient royal families (is an act) which will never be blest, and to advance upon help-requiring and needy kings is odious and culpable.”

At these reproaches, Nasir-Addin was in a rage and determined to seize upon the territory of Sistán. But Abul-Fath-Bosti used his utmost endeavours, by means of various acts of kindness and indications of attachment, to put a stop to this ill-will and to banish this suspicion. And he attributed all these reports to the malice of false speakers, and said, “Some hearts are like birds which fly in the air, and whom we cannot suppose that we shall capture, except by the use of craft; but when they fall into the snare and our object is joined to attainment then there is a further neces­sity for exertion, to preclude the opportunity of their escape or of letting them fly away, and that we may not have the annoyance of losing them. Such is the case with the hearts of friends, who may come to our hand by skill, by the diffusion of manœuvreings and by the employment of manage­ment, and who have become bound to us by bene­fits and kindness. For one heart-burn they are alienated and the highways of affection are darkened.” He then brought forward, in proof of his assertion, the following text of the Koran, “O ye who believe there comes to you some false prophet, then ye become rebellious and place yourselves in the way of folly, so that you wake one morning full of repentance for that which you have done.” He then mentioned to him the inter­pretation of these verses and further confirmed them, by the evidence of various histories and tales, so that he began to recover of his hatred, and laid aside his haste for meeting and exposing him. And Abul-Fath-Bosti recorded these verses in confirmation of these counsels, and as a gloss upon these events (Verse)

“If thou dost wish to win the love of a brother’s heart,
“And to gain his whole devotion and affection,
“Then cause him to partake of the good wherewith God hath prospered thee,
“And to enter into thy blessings, by the participation of love.
“Dost thou not see the bird of the air? how she loves to pick up the grain,
“In order to divide it, bit by bit, amongst the progeny of her cherished nest;
“Even so no one possessed of mind and sense will expect to win the love of hearts without his grains.

And Khalaf, upon this point, sent letters to His Highness Nasir-Addin, filled with excuses for these transactions, and with endeavours to smooth down his declarations. And the Amír Nasir-Addin listened to these apologies with a favour­able ear, and turned round upon him the head of sincere friendship and ancient regard. And for the rest of the life of Nasir-Addin all the offices of affection remained settled between them, and all the demonstrations of fidelity and devotion were preserved with unshaken truth. But after the event (death) of Nasir-Addin, they brought to the hearing of the Sultán his former intention (re­specting attacking Sistán), and intimated that, in his subsequent conduct to Khalaf, he had only put on the guise of satisfaction, and that he could be spoken of as figured in these verses (Verse)

“Tell those who remain in this world after those who have passed away, that in the next world there is prepared for them that which is like what hath already been.”*

These words made a deep impression upon the mind of the Sultán, and the arrow of this scan­dalous remark fully reached the middle of the target, and he kept these words within his heart, until the time when an opportunity of alluding to it occurred. And when the kingdom of Khurasán became settled in the possession of the Sultán, and meddlers were removed, and the various parts of the kingdom were freed from the dust of uproar and confusion (Khalaf) then, during the sickness that prevailed in the kingdom, and at the time of the last illness that befell Nasir-Addin, sent his son Tahir to Kohistan, and obtained possession of Kohistan and Bushanj. Now Bushanj was one of the annexations of Herát, and was numbered as one of the estates of Bagrajak, the uncle of the Sultán; and, as it was one of his best sources of revenue, Bagrajak requested assistance from the Sultán, that he might release his territory from the hand of violence, and return a reply of opposi­tion and expulsion. To this the Sultán consented, and Bagrajak went to Bushanj, and Tahir came out to oppose him. A sharp contest ensued between them, but the end of the affair was that Tahir took to flight, and Bagrajak proceeded after him and killed his guards, and plundered his goods and heavy baggage. But, having drank several cups of wine, the fantasies of drunkenness obtained the mastery over him, and the eyes of clear vision and of self-command, through the carelessness of intoxication, became unable to fight with any one, so that he cast himself into the precipice of folly and error. And Tahir wheeled round his horse and cast him down from his saddle, at one blow, and came down and took his head. Upon this, both armies became dispersed and put to flight; but Tahir collected his own troops and came to Kohistan. And the Sultán was extremely dis­turbed upon the intelligence of this event, and was grieved at the affair of the son of Khalaf, and at the thought of his being hemmed in by sorrow, and darkly walking amidst the dangers of calamity, and falling headlong into the deep fissures of care, and that he should be like an ant, whose wing is the cause of its injury, or like the serpent, which, although the wrestler of death, struts as a poet in the streets (i. e., dances to music).* And he wrote these parabolic verses (Verse)

“Have the Persians ever recorded, in their histories, any thing like this?
“Have the Arabians, in their times, ever beheld any thing like this?
“They said, ‘Behold the camel, when his end draws nigh,
“‘Walks round and round the well, until the rope is destroyed.’”