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of the scenery through which they passed to interest her mind, and delight her imagination; and when at evening, or in the heat of the day, they turned off from the high road to those retired and romantic places which had been selected for her encampments, sometimes on the banks of a small rivulet, as clear as the waters of the Lake of Pearl ;? sometimes under the sacred shade of a Banyan tree, from which the view opened upon a glade covered with antelopes; and often in those hidden, embowered spots, described by one from the Isles of the West,2 as places of melancholy, delight, and safety, where all the company around was wild peacocks and turtle-doves; "she felt a charm in these scenes, so lovely and so new to her, which, for a time, made her indifferent to every other amusement. But LALLA Rookh was young, and the young love variety; nor could the conversation of her Ladies and the Great Chamberlain FADLADEEN, (the only persons, of course, admitted to her pavilion,) sufficiently enliven those many vacant hours, which were devoted neither to the pillow nor the palankeen. There was a little Persian slave who sung sweetly to the Vina, and who, now. and then, lulled the Princess to sleep with the ancient ditties of her country, about the loves of Wamak and Ezra,3 the fair-haired Zal and his mistress Rodahver, * not forgetting the combat of Rustam with the terrible White Demon. At other times she was amused by those graceful dancing-girls of Delhi, who had been permitted by the Bramins of the Great Pagoda to attend her, much to the horror of the good Mussulman FADLADEEN, who could see nothing graceful or agreeable in idolaters, and to whom the very tinkling of their golden anklets 2 was an abomination.
? “In the neighborhood is Notte Gill, or the Lake of Pearl, which receives this name from its pellucid water." Pennant's Hindostan.
“ Nasir Jung, encamped in the vicinity of the Lake of Tonoor, amused himself with sailing on that clear and beautiful water, and gave it the fanci. ful name of Motee Talah, the Lake of Pearls,' which it still retains.". Wilks's South of India.
2 Sir Thomas Roe, Ambassador from James I. to Jehanguire.
3 “ The romance Wemakweazra, written in Persian verse, which con. tains the loves of Wamak and Ezra, two celebrated lovers who lived before the time of Mahomet." Note on the Oriental Tales.
4 Their amour is recounted in the Shah-Namêh of Ferdousi ; and there is much beauty in the passage which describes the slaves of Rodahver sitting on the bank of the river and throwing flowers into the stream, in order to draw the attention of the young Hero who is encamped on the opposite side. - See Champion's translation,
But these and many other diversions were repeated till they lost all their charm, and the nights and noondays were beginning to move heavily, when, at length, it was recollected that, among the attendants sent by the bridegroom, was a young poet of Cashmere, much celebrated throughout the Valley for his manner of reciting the Stories of the East, on whom his Royal Master had conferred the privilege of being admitted to the pavilion of the Princess, that he might help to beguile the tediousness of the journey, by some of his most agreeable recitals. At the mention of a poet FADLADEEN elevated his critical eyebrows, and, hav ing refreshed his faculties with a dose of that delicious opium 3 which is distilled from the black poppy of the Thebais, gave orders for the minstrel to be forthwith introduced into the presence.
i Rustam is the Hercules of the Persians. For the particulars of his vic tory over the Sepeed Deeve, or White Demon, see Oriental Collections vol. ii. p. 45. - Near the city of Shirauz is an immense quadrangular mon ument, in commemoration of this combat, called the Kelaat-i-Deev Sepeed or castle of the
White Giant, which Father Angelo, in his Gazophilacium Persicum, p. 127, declares to have been the most memorable monument of antiquity which he had seon in Persia. - See Ouseley's Persian Miscel lanies.
2 “ The women of the Idol, or dancing-girls of the Pagoda, have little golden bells, fastened to their feet, the soft, harmonious tinkling of which vibrates in unison with the exquisite melody of their voices.” — -Maurice's Indian Antiquities.
“ The Arabian courtesans, like the Indian women, have little golden bells fastened round their legs, neek, and elbows, to the sound of which they dance before the King. The Arabian princesses wear golden rings on their fingers, to which little bells are suspended, as well as in the flowing tresses of their hair, that their superior rank may be known, and they themselves receive in passing the homage due to them." - See Calmets Dic: tionary, art. Bells.
3 « Abou-Tige, ville de la Thebarde, où il croit beaucoup de pavot noir, dont se fait le meilleur opium.” - D' Herbelot,
The Princess, who had once in her life seen a poet from behind the screens of gauze in her Father's hall, and had conceived from that specimen no very favorable ideas of the Caste, expected but little in this new exhibition to interest her; — she felt inclined, however, to alter her opinion on the very first appearance of FERAMORZ. He was a youth about LALLA Rookh's own age, and graceful as that idol of women, Crishna, - such as he appears to their young imaginations, heroic, beautiful, breathing music from his very eyes, and exalting the religion of his worshippers into love. His dress was simple, yet not without some marks of costliness; and the Ladies of the Princess were not long in discovering that the cloth, which encircled his high Tartarian cap, was of the most delicate kind that the shawl-goats of Tibet supply. Here and there, too, over his vest, which was confined by a flowered girdle of Kashan, hung strings of fine pearl, disposed with an air of studied negligence; - nor did the exquisite embroidery of his sandals escape the observation of these fair critics; who, however they might give way to FADLADEEN upon the unimportant topics of religion and government, had the spirit of martyrs in every thing relating to such momentous matters as jewels and embroidery.
For the purpose of relieving the pauses of recitation by music, the young Cashmerian held in his hand a kitar; - such as, in old times, the Arab maids of the West used to listen to by moonlight in the gardens of the Alhambra --and, having premised, with much humility, that the story he was about to relate was founded on the adventures of that Veiled Prophet of Khorassan,' who, in the year of the Hegira 163, created such alarm throughout the Eastern Empire, made an obeisance to the Princess, and thus began :
1 The Indian Apollo. -—“He and the three Rámas are described as youths of perfect beauty; and the princesses of Hindustán were all passionately in love with Chrishna, who continues to this hour the darling God of the Indian women.” - Sir W. Jones, on the Gods of Greece, Italy, and India.
% See Turner's Embassy for a description of this animal, “ the most beautiful among the whole tribe of goats." The material for the shawls (which is carried to Cashmere) is found next the skin.
1 For the real history of this Impostor, whose original name was Hakem ben Haschem, and who was called Mocanna from the veil of silver gauze (or, as others say, golden) which he always wore, see D'Herbelot.
VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN.1
In that delightful Province of the Sun,
On either side, with ready hearts and hands, His chosen guard of bold Believers stands;
Khorassan signifies, in the old Persian language, Province or Region of the Sun. - Sir W. Jones.
2 “ The fruits of Meru are finer than those of any other place; and one cannot see in any other city such palaces with groves, and streams, and gardens." - Ein Haukal's Geography. 3 One of the royal cities of Khorassan.
4 Moses. 6 “Ses disciples assuroient qu'il se couvroit le visage, pour ne pas