Page images

Bedem gufti va khursendem afák alla neku gufti
Juvabi telkhi mizeibed lebi lâli shekerkhára.

غزل گفتي و در سنتي بیا و خوش بخوان حافظ که بر نظم تو افشاند فلك عقد ثریارا

Gazel gufti va durr fufti ben va khofh bukhán Hafiz
Ke ber názmi to affháned felek ikdi suriára.

In this specimen of Persian writing the learner will observe a few combinations of letters, which he must by no means forget; as Y lamelif, compounded of J l and I a, in the word jheo mosella: but the most usual combinations are formed with TÉTÈ which have the fingular property of causing all the preceding letters to rise above the line, as 16

nakhára, zustes tas-héch. The letters that prem are also sometimes raised. The Arabick characters, like those of the Europeans, are written in a variety of different hands; but the most common of them are the

جیر ,nakcheer


-She شکسته Talik, or hanging, and the تعليق Nikhi, the نسخي

kesteh, or broken. Our books are printed in the Niskhi hand, and all Arabick manuscripts, as well as most Persian and Turkish histories, are written in it; but the Persians write their poetical works in the Talik, which answers to the most elegant of our Italick hands. As to the Shekesteh, it is very irregular and inelegant, and is chiefly used by the idle Indians, who will not take time to form their letters perfectly, or even to insert the diacritical points ; but this hand, however difficult




and barbarous, must be learned by all men of business in India, as the letters from the princes of the country are seldom written in any

other A specimen of these different forms of writing is engraved, and inserted at the end of this Grammar.


OF NOUNS; AND FIRST, OF GENDERS. The reader will soon perceive with pleasure a great resemblance between the Persian and English languages, in the facility and simplicity of their form and construction: the former, as well as the latter, has no difference of termination to mark the gender, either in substantives or adjectives: all inanimate things are neuter, and animals of different sexes either have different names, as a boy, keneez a girl, or are distinguished by the words i ner

, ; sheeri madé a lioness.

Sometimes, indeed, a word is made feminine, after the manner of the Arabians, by having o added to it, as ögrico mashuk a friend, amicus, döguido malhúka a mistress, amica, as in this verse:

pufer پسر

شیر ماده ,theeri ner a lion شیر نر made female ; as ماله male, and

کل دربرو مي برکف و معشوقه بکامست

Flowers are in my bosom, wine in my hand; and my mistress yields

to my desire.

But in general, when the Persians adopt an Arabick noun of the feminine gender, they make it neuter, and change the final into w; thus ä ei nimet a benefit is written Ene: and almost all the Persian nouns ending in w, which are very numerous, are borrowed from the Arabs.



پسر را

The Persian substantives, like ours, have but one variation of case, which is formed by adding the syllable ly to the nominative in both numbers; and answers often to the dative, but generally to the accusative case in other languages ; as,

Nominative, mis puser a child.

Dative and Acc. puserra to a child or the child. When the accusative is used indefinitely, the syllable 1, is omitted, as Cicho I gul chíden to gather a flower, that is, any flower; but when the noun is definite or limited, that fyllable is added to it, as dus les gulra chíd be gathered the flower, that is, the particular flower. There is no genitive case in Persian, but when two substantives of different meanings come together, a kesra or short e () is added in reading to the former of them, and the latter remains unaltered, vää eling the musk of Tartary, which must be read mushke Khoten. same rule must be observed before a pronoun poffeffive; as pusere men my child: and before an adjective; as cristiquü shemshire tabnak a bright scymitar. If the first word ends in 1 the S

. vaháï shireen sweet fruits : if nouns ending in y come before other nouns or adjectives, the mark Hamza $ is added to them, as oleva Sami cheshméi heyván the fountain of life.



پدر من

pathai پاشاي موصل ,patha a bala پاشا is affixed to it; as ي letter -mi میوهاي شيرين ,mivaha fruits میوها .Moufel the bala of Moufel


The other cases are expressed for the most part, as in our language, by particles placed before the nominative, as



[blocks in formation]


The poets, indeed, often form a vocative case by adding I to the nominative, as wölu fakia O cup-bearer, Loli Thaha O king; thus Sadi uses to bulbula as the vocative of his bulbul a nightingale.

بلبلا منزل بہار بیار خبر بد ببوم باز بكذار

Bring, 0 nightingale, the tidings of spring ; leave all unpleasant news

to the owl.

اورا دیدم fative cafe : as

In some old compositions the particle po mer is prefixed to the accu

mer ora deedem I saw him; but this is either obsolete or inelegant, and is seldom used by the moderns.

The reader, who has been used to the inflexions of European languages, will, perhaps, be pleased to see an example of Persian nouns, as they answer to the cases in Latin :

I gul a rose, rofa.
Nom. Na rose, rofa.

Les roses, rosa.



[blocks in formation]

Boy, bring the wine, for the season of the rose approaches; let us again


« PreviousContinue »