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descriptions. There is scarce a lesson of morality or a tender sentiment in any European language, to which a parallel may not be brought from the poets of Asia. The verses of eleven syllables, which are used in the great Persian poems, always rhyme together in couplets. It is unnecessary in this section to give an example of the Persian ocluzü or elegy, as it differs only in its length from the J;s or ode, except that the Carfideh often turns upon lofty subjects, and the Gazal comprises for the most

part the praises of love and merriment, like the lighter odes of Horace and Anacreon. The most elegant composers of these odes are Lorol> Jâmi and bisla Hafiz, each of whom has left an ample collection of his lyrick poenis.

I may confidently affirm that few odes of the Greeks or Romans upon similar subjects are more finely polithed than the songs of these Persian poets : they want only a reader that can see them in their original dress, and feel their beauties without the disadvantage of a translation.

I shall transcribe the first ode of Hafiz that offers itself, out of near three hundred that I have paraphrased: when the learner is able to understand the images and allusions in the Persian poems, he will see a reason in every line why they cannot be translated literally into any European language.

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شمل بي رخ یار خوش نباشد بي بالہ بہار خوش نباشد طرف چین و طواف بستان بي صوت هزار خوش نباشد رقصیدن سرو و حالت گل

لاله عذار خوش نباشد بي

با

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The rose is not sweet without the cheek of my beloved ; the spring is

not sweet without wine.

The borders of the bower, and the walks of the garden, are not pleasant

without the notes of the nightingale.

The motion of the dancing cypress and of the waving flowers is not

agreeable without a mistress whose cheeks are like tulips.

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The presence of a damsel with sweet lips and a rosy complexion is

not delightful without kisses and dalliance.

The rose-garden and the wine are sweet, but they are not really charming without the company

of

my beloved.

All the pictures that the hand of art can devise are not agreeable with

out the brighter hues of a beautiful girl.

VOL. II.

II

Thy Thy life, O Hafiz, is a trifling piece of money, it is not valuable enough

to be thrown away at our feast.

The last distich alludes to the Asiatick custom of throwing money among the guests at a bridal feast, or upon any other extraordinary occasion: the Persians call this money JW nisár, and him who collects it

.

.nifar cheen نثارچین

I shall conclude this grammar with a translation of the ode quoted in the section upon the Persian letters ; see

p. 143.

If that lovely maid of Shiraz would accept my heart, I would give for

the mole on her cheek the cities of Samarcand and Bokhara.

para

Boy, bring me the wine that remains, for thou wilt not find in

dise the sweet banks of our Rocnabad, or the rosy bowers of our Mosellâ.

Alas ! these wanton nymphs, these fair deceivers, whose beauty raises a

tumult in our city, rob my heart of rest and patience, like the Turks that are seizing their plunder.

Yet the charms of our darlings have no need of our imperfect love ;

what occasion has a face naturally lovely for perfumes, paint, and arTalk to me of the fingers, and of wine, and seek not to disclose the

tificial ornaments ?

Talk

secrets of futurity; for no one, however wise, ever has discovered, or ever will discover them.

I can easily conceive how the inchanting beauties of Joseph affected Zo

leikha so deeply, that her love tore the veil of her chastity.

Attend, O my soul! to prudent counsels ; for youths of a good disposi

tion love the advice of the aged better than their own souls.

Thou hast spoken ill of me ; yet I am not offended ; may Heaven for

give thee ! thou hast spoken well: but do bitter words become a lip like a ruby, which ought to shed nothing but sweetness ?

O Hafiz ! when thou composest verses, thou seemest to make a string of

pearls : come, sing them sweetly : for Heaven seems to have shed on thy poetry the clearness and beauty of the Pleiads.

The wildness and simplicity of this Persian song pleased me so much, that I have attempted to translate it in verse: the reader will excuse the fingularity of the meafure which I have ufed, if he considers the difficulty of bringing so many eastern proper names into our stanzas.

I have endeavoured, as far as I was able, to give my translation the cafy turn of the original ; and I have, as nearly as possible, imitated the cadence and accent of the Persian measure ; from which every reader,

who

who understands musick, will perceive that the Asiatick numbers are capable of as regular a melody as any air in Metastasio.

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a a common periphrasis for wine in the Persian poetry. See

Hafiz, ode 22.

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