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VOL. n. 






K 193» L 

7^ L^ 



HaJjI Baba gives an account of his proceedhigi to fail foperiors, Had 
shows btiBselta friend lo the distressed - • • Page 5 

He describes an expedition sgaiost the RussiMS, and does kniple juaUce 
to the cowardice oi' his chief - - - - -14 

He proceedstoilieltiiig'acainp&givesaspeeimenoflyiiigOnacvaBdscale 19 

CHAin^R IV. 
fle relates a horrid tale, the con8e<|aeiicei of which plunge him in the 
greatest misery . - - - - - - 82 

Ilajjl Baba meets with an old friend, who ctieers him up, gires him good 
advice, siod secures him^ frooa danger - . - - - 3Q 

He takes rrfnge in asancloary^ wbetehis melancholy thoughts are divert- 
ed bf a curioas story - • - - . . 40 

He be comes a saint, &cassociateSM»tthlh^mostcelebrated divine in Persia 65 

ilAJji Baba is robbed by his friend, and letl utterly destitute ; but is re- 
leased from his confinement . - . . " 7ii 

Hajjl Baba reaches Ispahan, and his paternal roof, just time enoagb to 
close the eyes of his dying fethei* • - - - 79^ 

Me becomes heir to pt^perty which i^ iiot to be found, and his suspicions 
thereepun - . - - • - - 89 

Showing the steps he takes lo discover his property, and who the diviner, 
Teez Negah, was - - - - - -95 

Of the diviner's success in making discoveries, and of the resolution which 
Hajji Baba takes in consequence . ,. . - 101 

Hajj! Baba quits his mother, and becomes the scribe to k celebrated man 
of the law - - - - - - . 106 

Tiie mollah Nndl^n gives an account of his neWscheiAes for raising money 
and for making men happy « - - - - 112 


jBUdji Baba becomes a promoter of inairiinony,& of the register be keeps 116 

Of the man H»jjl Baba meets, thinking him dead, and of the marriage 
which he brings about - r - - * - 121 

Showing how the ambition of the mollah Nad4n involves both him and his 
disciple jo ruin - -...-. 127 

^»jjf Baba meets with an eailraordioary adventure in the bath, which mi- 
. TBCDlously saves him from the hnrrors of despair - - 133 

Of the coosequenees of the adventure, which threaten danger, but end io 
juaparent goOd lartune - - - - - - 138 

jpUyjl Baba doea not shine in tiouesty. 1 he lite and adiventares of the 
soUab Naddn - - - - - - -143 

.Haj[^imd the mollah makes plans suited to their er\^«\«lMkii<v^)^Q>^- 
leg tbalt uo eoB^fhoee can exist between ron^a - - '^^^ 



The puniihineQt doe toHajji Btiba, falls upon Nad&n, which roakea 
fonner a staunch pred< siinMriAii • - - ' - 

Haijl Babfl bears an extraordinary sequel to his adventurehi the bath, 
/eels alt the alarms of guilt - - 

He is diMOvered and seized^ but his good stars again befriend and set 
free -------- 

He reaches Bagdad, meets bis first master^ and turns his views to i 
meroe - - - - - 

He purchases pipe-sticks, and inspires a hopeless paWion in the brea 
his old master's daughter - - - 

He becomes a merohant, leaves Bagrlad, and aoeompanies a earavti 
Coikstaulinople .- - - - - - 

Hajjl Baba makes a conquest of the widow of an Emir, which at 
^ alarms, but afterwards elates hira - - - - 

He obtains an interview with the fair Shekerleb, makes a settlement i 
her, and becomes her husb»ind 

From a vender of pipe-sticks 4ie becoines a rich Ags, but feels all ih 
convenience of supporting a false charact<'r - 

His desire to excite eovy lays the foundation of his disgrace. He qqai 
with his wife - - - - - - - 

He is discovered to be an imposter, loses his wife, and the wide wor 
again betbre him .-..-. 

An incident in the street diverts his despair; he seeks consolation in 
advice of old Osman • • 

In endeavouring to gain satisfnotion from his enemies he acquires a fri 
Some account of Miraa Firouz . . 

He'fl^oomes useful to an ambassador, who makes him a partaker i 
eonfidenee - - - - - . • 

Of his first essays in public life, and of the use he was of to his em- 
ployer . 1 - . - . . . 


Hajj) Baba writes the History of Europe, and with his ambassador ret 
to Persia - - - - - - - 

The ceremony of receiving a Frank ambassador at the court of the i 
is described - 

Hajjl is noticed by the grand vizier, and is the means of gratifying 
minister's favourite passion • - - - - 

Of the manner in which he turn«^d bis iufloenee to use, and how he 
again noticed by the vizier • - 

The conclusion. Misibrtune seems t^ take leave of Hhj j! Baba, wb< 
taiTu to big utuife city a greater man than when he first left it 




lEii^^Ii: IBAIBiio 


H^jji Babu gives an accourtt of his proceedings to his 
superiors, anH shows himself a friend to the dis* 

The monastery of EtchmiaziD/so called in the 
Armenifan tongue, or Utch Klisseh, or the Three 
C^burches, by the Turks and Persians, is ^situated in a 
• large and well cultivated plain, watered by the Araxes, 
§UAd several smaller streams. J t stands at the foot of 
'iiie high mountain of Agri Dagh, which the Chris- 
tians, and in particular the Armenians, hold in great 
L veneration, because (so Ydsuf informed me) upon its 
co^picuous snow-capt summit the ark of Moah rest- 
ed. The monastery and church celebrated through*- 
out Asia for the riches which they contain, are inclosed 
tthin high walls, and secured by strong and massive 
ttes. It is here that the head of the Armenian 
constantly resides, together with a large reti* 
of bishops, priests, and deacons, who form the 
;ic which provides clergy for most of the Armenian 
^uvches in Asia. The tjitl^ by w}iich» he is known in 
Vol. II— B 

J > 

J > 


Persia IS khalifeh or caliph^ a de»ignation which, com- 
prising the head of the civil as well as tKe religious 
government, the Mussulmans used formerly to be- 
stow on the sovereigns who held their sWay at Bag- 
dad. By the Christians he is generally known by 
the name of patriarch, and his church is an object of 
pilgrimage for the Armenians, who flock there at par- 
ticular seasons in great numbers ^rom different parts 
of the world. 

Hither we bent our steps. We discovered the 
united camps of the Serdar and the chief executioner, 
spreading their white tents iti an irregular figure all 
round the monastery ; and before we had reached its 
walls, we heard that the two chiefs had taken up their 
abode within it, and were the guests of the caliph. 

< We'll burn the fathers of these giaours^ (infidels) 
said the young delikhan, as he rode up to me in great 
joy at this intelligence; ^ and will makeup for the 
fatigues we have undergone, by drinlcing abundantly 
of their wine.' 

^ Are you a Mussulman, 'said I, ^ and talk of drink- 
ing wine F You yourself will become a giaour.' 

< Oh, as for that,' answered he, < the Serdar drinks 
wine like any Christian, and I do not see why I shotild 

As we approached the monastery^ I called Yusiif 
to me, and told him to be in readiness whenever he 
should be called for, and be prepared to confirm any 
oath that I might think it necessary to takeibr his in- 
terests. He was particularly enjoined, when he came 
to talk of the services he had rendered^ to deviate 
from the truth as much as he chose, to set forth every 
sort of danger he had or had not incurred, and in par-, 
ticulai^ to score up an account of sums expended, all 
for the use and advantage of the Serdar and of the 
Shah's government. ^ I hope at that rate,' said I to 
him, ^ your accounts may be balanced, by having your 
wife restored to you ; for which, after considerable 
difficulty, you may agree to give a receipt in full of 
all demands.' 

Thus agreed^ we-pas8cd«thrpujgh the heavy arch- 


way which leads into the first court of the monastery. 
TWs we found encumbered by the equipages and ser- 
rants of the Serdar and the chief executioner. Here 
aind there' were strings of horses, piqueted by ropes 
and pegs, with their grooms established in diflferent 
corners among their saddles and horse furniture ; and 
a corner wa^ taken up by a set of mules, distinguish- 
ed by the eternal jingle of their bells^ and the no less 
eternal wranglins of their drivers. 

In the second yard were the horses of the chief 
servants^ who themselves inhabited small rooms that 
surrounded two sides of the court. 

We alighted at the first courts and I immediately 
inquired for the quarters of my master, the chief ex- 
ecutioner. It was noon, and t was informed he was 
then with the Serdar, before whom, in all the boots, 
dust, and dirt of my travelling dress, I was immedi- 
ately conducted. 

They seemed to have entirely taken possession of 
the Armenian sanctliary, and to have dispossessed the 
Caliph of his place and authority ^ for they had taken 
np their abode in his very rooms, whtlst th^^oof 
j>riests were skulking about with humble and down- 
ciist looks, as if fearful and ashamed of being the law- 
ful iDhabitants of their own possessions. The favou- 
rite horses of both the Persian chiefs Were piqueted 
dose to the very walls of the church, more care being 
^aiken of their comforts than of the convenience of the 

i^ sMjr reader is already acquainted with the person 
md character of the chief executioner ; and, before I 
^^roeeed farther, I must also make him acquainted 
with the Serdar. A man of a more sinister aspect 
warnever seen. His eyes, which, in the common 
compression of his countenance, were like opaque bits 
I'glasSy glared terribly whenever he became anima- 
1, and almost started out of their old shriveled 
tllifeikf ts ; and when this happenedr it was always re- 
, ^MM^d that a corresponding smile broke out upon his 
:^a^ai»tfi, which made the Shah's poet say, that Hassan 
*-*J^iBa& face was like Ag-ri daghy the mountain u^«.\: 

t-' - 


in^hich he liv^d. When clouded at thj6 top^ and the 
sun shone in the plain, a storm was sure to ensue. 
Time had worn two deep wrinkles down his cheeks, 
which Were not hid by a scanty beard, notwithstand- 
ing all the pains he took to m^ke it thick ; and the 
same enemy having despoiled him of all his teeth save 
one, which projected froiii his mouth, had produced 
deep cavities, that made the shaggy hairs, thinly 
spread over them, look like burnt stubble on the slopes 
of a valley. Altqgetherf it was difficult to say whe- 
ther the goat or the tiger was most predominant ; but 
this is most certain, that never was the human form 
so nearly allied to that of the brute as in this insts^nce. 
His character corresponded to his looks ; for no law, 
human or divine, ever stopd in the way of his sensu- 
ality ; and when his passions were roused, he put no 
bounds to his violence and cruelty. But with all 
this, he had several qualities, which attached his fol- 
lowers to him. He was liberal and enterprising. He 
had much quickness and penetration, and ^cted so 
politically towards the Shah and his government, that 
he A7a3 always treated with the greatest confidence 
and consideration. He lived in princely magnificence ; 
was remarkable for his hospitality^ and making no 
mystery of his irregularity as a Mussulmah; was 
frank and open in his demeanour^ afiable to his infe- 
riors, and the very best companion to those who 
shared in his debaucheries. No bolder drinker of 
wine existed in Persia, except perhaps his present 
companion, the executioner, who, as long as he could 
indulge without incurring the Shah's displeasure, had 
ratified an eternal treaty of alliance between his mouth 
and every skin of wine that came within his reach. 

It was before these two worshipful personages that 
I was introduce!^, followed by two or three of my 
principal attendants. I stood at the end of the apart- 
ment until I was spoken to. 

* You are welcome,' said the chief executioner. 
* Hajji, by my soul, tell me, how many Russians have 
you killed ? have you brought a head~let me see ?* 

Here the Serdar took him up, and said, < What 




have you done ? What Russians are on the frontier ? 
and wtien shall we get at them ?' 

To all of which I answered, after making the usual 
prefatory speech, * Yes, Agas, I have done all that 
Was id my power to do. It was a lucky hour when 
we set off, for every thing that you wish to know I 
can^ explain ; and it is evident that the destinies of the 
Serdar and of my master are much on the rise, since 
80 insignificant a slave as I can be of use to them.' 

*Good luck is no bad thing, that's true,' said the 
Serdar, * but we trust a great deal to our swords, too,' 
»-<rolling his eyes about at the same^ime, and smiling 
in the face of the chief executioner. 

'Yes, yes,' said his companion, * swords and gun- 
powder^spears and pistols, — those are our astrologers. 
it will always be a fortunate hour that will bring me 
within slice of an infidel's neck. As for me, I am a 
iizzil bash (^ red head,) and pretend to nothing else. 
A good horse, a sharp sword, a spear in my hand, 
and a large maidan (an op^n space) before me, with 
plenty of Muscovites in it,— that is all I want.' 

* And what do you s^y to good wine, too ?' said the 
Serdar; * I think that is as good a thing as any you 
Mve mentioned. * We'll have the Caliph in, and 
i&aie hun give Hajji a cup of his best. But tdl us 
first,' addressing himself to me, * what have you seen 
anii done ? Where are the Russians posted ?— -how 
many of them are there ?-^have they any guns ?— 
who'commands them? — where are their Cossacks ?— 
ifaVe you heard any thing of the Georgians ? — where 
is ilie Russian commander-in-chief? — what are the 
tesgi about ?— where is the renegade Ismael Khan? 
i^Come, tell us all : and you, Mirza, addressing him- 
self to his scribe, write down all he says' 

Upon this I drew myself up, and putting on a face 
of'wisdoin, I made the following speech :— 

*.By the soul of the Serdar ! by the salt of the chief 

executioner! the Muscovites are nothing. In com- 

o&JM^on to the Persians, they are mere dogs. I, who 

havjp seen with my own eyes, can tell you, that one 

* ft 2 


■ ^1.. 


Persiao, with a spear in his band, would kill ten of 
those miserable, bqardlesSf creatures*^ 

* Ah, you male lion ! exclaimed my masterf appa- 
rently delighted with what I said, * I always knew 
that you would be something. Leave an Ispahan! 
alone ; he will always shew his good sense.' 

* There are but few Muscovites on the frontier. 
Five, six, seven, or eight hundred,— perhaps a thou- 
sand or two thousands— <but certainly not more than 
three. They have some ten, twenty, or thirty guns ; 
and as for the Cossacks, plUch andy they are nothing. 
It is very inconveiiient that they are to be found every 
where when least wanted, with those thick spears of 
theirs, which look more like the gpad of an ox thati 
a warlike weapon, and they kill, 'tis true ; but then, 
they are mounted tipon yabous (jades,) which can ne- 
ver come up to our horses which are worth thirty, 
forty, Qfty tomauns each, and which are out of sight 
before they can even get theirs into a gallop.' 

* Why do you waste your breath upon the Cossacks 
and their horses V said the chief executioner ; * you 
might as well talk of monkeys mounted upon bears. 
Who commands the infidels V 

* They call him the deli may or, or the mad major : 
and the reason why he is called so is, because he ne- 
ver will run away. Stories without number are de- 
lated of him. Among others, that he has got the 
pocket Koran of his excellency the Serdar in his pos- 
session, which he shews to every one as a great tro- 

< Ay, that's true,' exclaimed' the Serdar. * These 
bankrupt dogs surprised me last year, when encamp. 
ed not five parasangs hence, and I had only time to 
save myself, in my shirt and trowsers, on the back of 
an unsaddled horse. Of course, they pillaged my 
tent, and among other things stole my Koran. But 
I'll be even with them. I have shown them what I 
can do at Gavmishlu, and we still have much more 
to perform upon their fathers' graves. How many 
guns, did you say they had ?' 

* Four or five^ or six/ said I. 


' Iwrote downlwienty br thirty just now/ remarked 
the Q^irza, who was writing at the edge of the carpet, 
-•♦frtiich of the two is rigRt?' 

♦Why do ypu teU us Ues?^ exclaimed the Serdar, 
his eyes becoming more animated as he spoken ^ If 
we jind that any part of what you say be false^ by the 
head of AH ! you will soon discover that our beards 
are not to be laughed at with impunity.' 

^ In truth, then/ said I, ^ this intelligence is not of 
of my own acquiringi The greatness of the Serdar's, . 
aibd my Aga's good forturie, consists in my having 
fallen upofi a means of getting the most perfect infor- 
mattoci through a young Armenian, who risked his 
life for us, upon my making him a promise of recom- 
pense in the name of the Serdar.' , 

f A recompense in my name r exclaimed the Ser- 
dar^ ;^ * who is this Armenian ? — and what Armenian 
was .ever worthy of a recompense V 

Upon this, I related the Whole of Yu^uf's history, 
irom the beginning to the end. In pleading his cause 
in this public manner, I hop^d that the Serdar would 
feci it invpossible to resist the justice of the demand 
which I made upon him, and that my young protege 
would at once be released from his fears and appre- 
hensions of the chfef 's resentment, and restored to the 
undisputed possession of his wife. 

When I had done speaking, nothiftg was said ; but 
here and there Alldh! Allah! il Allah I (there is but 
ooe God!) in suppressed exclamations from the lips 
«f the Moham^dans present ; whilst the Serdar, hav- 
itig rolled his eyes about, and twitched his mouth into 
various odd shapes, at lens;th mumbled out, ^ the Ar- 
BMaian has performed wonders;' and then called 
sdmid to his servants to bring his water-pipe. 

Having snjoked two or three long whifis, he said, 
•Where is this Armenian ? Order the Caliph also to 
came before us«' 

'jppon which Yusuf was ushered in, with the shoves 
sili thrusts by which a poor man of his nation is gene- 
lB0if introduced before a Persian grandee; and he 
gkiod ia face of the assembly as fine a specimen of 


manly beauty as waa ever* seen, evidently creatiM 
much sensation upon all present by the intrepidity (» 
his appearance. The 3erdar, in particular, fixed his 
eyes upon him with looks of approbation ; and, turn- 
ing round to the executioner in chief, made signs^^^ 
well known among Persians, of his great admi ration..;^ 

The Caliph, a heavy, coarse man, of a rosy and jo- 
vial appearance, dressed in the black hood peculiar to 
the Armenian clergy, appeared soon after, followed by^ 
two or three of his priests. Having stood for a shot* t 
time before the Serdar and his companion, he was in- 
vited to sity which he did, not without going through 
all the ceremonial of complimentary phrases, and co- 
vering the feet and hands in a manner usual on such 

The Serdar then, addressing himself to the Caliph, 
saidf ^ It is plain that we Mussulmans are become less 
than dogs in the land of Iran. I'he Armenians now 
break Into our harems, steal pur wives and slaves from 
before our faces, and invite men to defile our fathers' 
graves. What news is this, O Caliph ? Is this Allah's 
work or yours V 

The Caliphy attacked in this unexpected manner, 
looked very much alarmed, and the dew broke out 
upon his ample and porous forehead. Experience had 
taught him that these sorts of attacks were generally 
the forerunners <rf some heavy fine, and he already put 
himself in a posture of defence to resist it. 

* What language is this?' said he in answer. * We, 
whose dogs are we, who should dare even to think 
upon the evil of which your highness speaks? We 
are the Shah's subjects— -You are our protector, and 
the Armenians sit in peace under your shade. What 
manner of man is this who has brought these ashes 
upon our heads ?' 

* That is he,' answered the Serdar, pointing to Yu- 
suf. * Say, fellow, have you stolen my slave or not r' 

* If I am guilty,' said the youth, ' of having taken 
aught from any man, save my own, here* am I, ready- 
to answer for myself with my life. She who ihntw 
herself out of your windows into my arms was my v/ife 




^4|^<^ she wais your slave. We are both the Shah's 
i^if0^i smd it is best known t6 yourself if you can en- 
d||1re them or no* We are Armenians, 'tis true, but 
;W!»llav£-the feelings of men. It is well known to all 
Peraia, that otir illustrious Shah has never forced the 
herein of even the meanest of his subjects ;^and, se- 
cuire in that feeling, how could I ever suppose^ most 
ni^Ie Serdar, that we shctuld notTeceive the same pro- 
.tect}pn under your government? You were certainly 
deceived when told that she was a Georgian prisoner; 
and had you known that she was the wife of one of 
your peasantry, yon never would have mad^ her your 

The Caliph, frightened at the language of the youth, 
stopped him, by loud and angry exclamations ; but the 
Serdar, apparently struck by language so unusual to 
his ears, instead of appearing angry, on the contrary, 
looked delighted (if the looks of such a countenance 
could ever express delight) ; and, staring with aston- 
ished eyes upon the youth, seemed to .forget even the 
reason of his having been brought before hini. Of a 
sudti^Sy ttS if dispelling his former indignation, he 
sfippped all further discussion by saying to him, 
iv£fiough^ enough ; go, take your wife, and say no 
jBore; ; and, since you have rendered us a service at 
fiamamlu, you shall remain my servant, and wait upon 
my person. Go, my head valet will instruct you in 
yom? duties; and when attired in clothes suited to 
yiNiy situation, you will return again to our presence. 
0O, and recollect that my condescension towards you 
depends upon your future conduct.' Upon this Yusuf, 
i|( the fulness of his heart, ran up to him with great 
'mparent gratitude, fell upon his knees, and kissed the 
bem of his garment, not knowing what to §ay;or^what 
coiyiitenai^ce to keep upon such uniooked for good 
fortune. . 

/Every one present seemed astonished: the chief 

clspa^tttioner gave a shrug, and indulged in a deep 

•^Hfn ; the Caliph, as if he had been disincumbered 

*^ii heavy weight, stretched his limbs, and the huge 

^drc^ that were before glittering on his brow now dis- 



appeared, and his fade agam expanded into gd^d^u- 
roour. Alt congratulated the Serdar upon his humfi^ 
nit3r and benevolence, and compared him to the cele- 
brated Noushirwan. Barikallah and MashallcAvf9» 
repeated and echoed fromipouth to mouth, and the 
story of his magnanimity was ispread abroad^ and 
formed the talk of the whole camp. I will not pre- 
tend to explain what were the SerdarV real senti- 
ments ; but those who well knew the nian were agreed 
that he could be actuated by ncr generous motive. 


He describes an expeditiofi against the Russians^ and 'I 
does ample Justice to the cowardice cf his chief. 

My chief and the Serdar having acquired all the 
information which Yusuf and I could give them upon 
the force and position of the Muscovites, it was de* 
termiined that an attack should immediately be made, 
and the army was ordered to march upon Hamanil^. 

Every thing was soon in motion ; the artillery be* 
gan its tedious and difficult march through the moun- 
tains ; the infantry made their way in the best manner 
they could, and the cavalry were seen in uticdnnected 
groupcs all over the plain. I must not omit to say, that 
before the march began I received a visit from the Ar- 
menian; He was no longer, in appearance, the rude 
mountaineer with his rough sheepskin cap, his short 
Georgian tunifek, his sandalkd feet, his long knife hung 
over his knee andhis gun slungobliquely across his body; 
but he was now attired in a long dress of crimson velvet, 
trimmed with gold lace and gold buttons ; a beautiful \ 
Cashmerian shawl Was tied gracefully round his waist; 
his small cap, of Bokhara lamb-skin, was duly indent- 
ed at the top, and the two long curls behind his ears 
were combed out with all proper care. He had now 



DoicQre the appearance, of a woman than a man, so much 
INTO his £ne Itmbs hid by his robes ; and as he ap- 
pfbached nie^ he could ndt help blushing and looking 
nrkward at the metamorphosis. He thanked me with 
stpreabtons that indicated much gratittide, and assur- 
ed me, that solar from having expected this result to 
bi^cinterview with the Sefdar, he had^ in fact, made 
apliis nkind to the loss of both his wife and life, and 
therefore had spoken with the boldness of one deter- 
mined to die* «But,' said he, 'notwithstanding this 
great change in my fortunes, this new existence of 
mine will never do. I cannot endure the degradation 
of being a mere idle appendage to the state of the 
Serdar ; and be not angry if, ere long, I decline the 
honour of his service, i will submit to every thing as 
long as my wife is not in a place of safety ; but when 
once I have secured that, then adieu. Better live a 
^wine-herd in the Georgian mountains, naked and 
houseless, than in all these silks and velvets, a despised 
hatfger On, be it even in the most luxurious court of 
Persia.' - 

I could not help applauding such sentiments, al- 
thQtigh I should have been happy had he made any 
one else his confidant^ conscious that if he did run 
awaiy I should in some measitre be made answerable 
for bim. 

lo the niean while the army proceeded on its march. 
Arwe passed Ashtarek, Yusuf got permission to take 
possession of Mariam, who, now transformed into the 
wife of one who had the reputation of being in the 
good graces of the Serdar, travelled with great re- 
spectability and consideration on horseback, and form- 
ed one among the numerous camp-followers that are 
always attached to a Persian army. The camp was 
pitched between Gavmishlu and Aheran, where all 
that was not necessaYy for the expedition was order- 
ed to remain until its return. It was settled that the 
Serdar and the chief executioner, each accompanied 
by their own men, with two pieces of artillery, should 
form the expedition, and towards the c\o^^ oi \\x^ 
eveDtnff it set off. 


As we approached the scene of action, the SeVdar 
became impatient of delays aad, like every Persi^o 
who despises the utility of infantry, expressed his 
wish to push on with the cavalry. I will not say ^ 
mu^h for the impatience of my chief. He continued 
his boastings to the last, 'tis true, and endeavoured to 
make every one believe that he had only to appear,, 
and the enemy would instantly be seized with a panic; 
but at length he ceded to the Serdar^s wishes of bring* 
ing oA the rear-guard, whilst the Matter pushed on to 
Hamamlu with the main body of the cavalry. I, of 
course, remained behind, to act under the orders of 
my chief. The Serdar intended to reach Hamamlu 
before break of day in order to surprise the gates^ 
and deviated from the road to ford the Pembaki H^n T 
We continued our march straight for that place, and f 
were to appear as the day dawned, to give a retreat 
to the Serdar, in case he should be beaten back* 

The morning had just broke when we reached the j 
banks of the riven The chief executioner was sur- 
rounded by a body of about five hundred cavalry, 
and the infantry was coming up as well as it could* 
We* were about fording the river, when of a sudden 
we were accosted by a voice' on the other side, which 
shouting out two or three strange words in a language 
unknown to us, explaining their meaning by a musket 
sho't. This stopped our career, and called the attention 
of our chief, who came up, looking paler than death. 

* What^s the news ?' exclaimed he, in a voice far 
below its usual pitch — * what are we doing ?— where 
are we going? — ^Hajjl Baba^' accosting me, < was it 
you that fired ?' 

* No,' said I, catching rathef more of his apprehen- 
sion than was convenient ; *no, I did not fire. Per- 
haps there are g-hols here among the Muscovites, as 
well as at Ashtarek among the Armenians.' 

In > another minute more «barbarous cries were 
heard, and another shot was fired, and by this time 
day had sufficiently advanced to show two men, on ^ 
the other bank, whom we discovered to be Russian 
" Miers. As soon as our chief saw the extent of the 

C^ ^A^JI BABjAl. 


4p^^« .and ^ foe opposed to us^ his comteDanee 

4 li^P* ^^^ ^^ instantly- put on the face of the 

l^&t resoltttioQ and vigour. ^ Go, seize, strike, 

It /^e exclaimed, almost in one breath, to those 

|^<)ai|d him»ir«< Go, bring me the heads of yonder two 

. /loilf^ediately several men dasHed into the rivers 
Vfl0i, drawn swords, whilst the two^oldiers^^ withdrew 
te^ji small rising ground, and, placing themselves bacfc 
fl/l^ck:, began a regular, though alternate^ discharge 
C^ their muskets upon their assailants^ with a steadi« 
9$9^ <hat surprised us. They killed two men^ which 
(ll^is^^ the remainder to retreat back to our com- 
f|iailder,yand: no one else seemed at all anadous to foU 
law their, example. In vain he swore^ entreated^ 
y^shed, and offered money for their heads: not one 
^f his men Would advance^ At length, he said, with 
a^ost magnanimous shout, ^ I myself will go ; here, 
l^ake way ! will nobody a folio w me V Theny stopping, 
p^ addressing" himself to me, he satd, ^Hajji! n^y 
S^C^jny friend, won't you go and cut those men's 
4a off? I'll give you every thing, you can ask.' 
^,. putting, his hand round my neck, he said^ <Go, 
fl^ rjL am, sure you can cut their heads^off.' 

ji^^w^re parleying in this manner, when a shol? 

one of the Russians hit the chief executioner's 

f which awoke his fears to such a degree, that 

||i^in^edtately fell to uttering the most violent oaths. 

^ng away his troops, and retreating himself at a 

^ac^f he exclaimed, ^Curses be on theirbeards! 

their fathers, mothers, their ancestry, and pos- 

if I Whoever fought after this fashion? Killing, 

9 as if we were so many hogs. Seey see, what 

ab they are ! They will not run away, do all you 

^_,^ to Miem. They are worse than brutes ;— -brutes 

iPlr^' feeling,— 4hey have none. O Allah, Allah, if 

Was no dying in the case, how the Persians 

this time he had proceeded some distance, and' 
ted. . Our chief, expecting to find the Rus- 
k to back under eyery bush, did not know 
• II.~C 


what course to pursue, when the decision was soon 
made for us by the appearance of the S.erdar, who, 
followed by his cavalryt was seen retreating in all 
haste from before the enemy* It was evident that his 
enterprise had entirely failed, and nothing was left 
for the whole army but to return whence it t:ame. 

I will not attempt to draw a picture of the misera- 
ble aspect of the Skerdar's troopsj they all looked ha** 
rassed and worn cfown by fatigue* and seemed so lit- 
tle disposed to rally, that one and all, as if by tacil 
consent, proceeded straight on their course home- 
wards, without once looking back. But. as much as 
they were depressed in spirits, in the same degree 
were raised those of our commander. He so talked 
of his prowess, of the wound he had received, and of 
his intended feats, that at length, seizing a spear, he 
put his horse at the full gallop, and overtaking his 
own cook, who was making the best of his way to his 
pots and pans, darted it at him, in the exuberance of 
his valour, and actually pierced hifti in the back 
through his shawl girdle* 

Thus ended an expedition which the Serdar ex- 
pected would have given him a great harvest of glory 
and of Muscovites' heads ; and which, the chief exe- 
cutioner flattered himself, would afford him exultation 
and boasting for the remainder of his life. But, not- 
withstanding its total failure, still he bad ingenuity 
enough to discover matter for self-congratulation. 

Surrounded by a circle of his adherents, amongst 
whom I was one, he was in the midst of .a peal of 
boasting, when a message came from the Serdar, re- 
questing that Hajji Baba might be sent to him. I 
returned with the messenger, and the first words 
which the Serdar said, upon my appearing before him, 
were, * Where is Yusut ? Where is his wife ?' 

It immediately occurred to me that they had es- 
caped ; and putting on one of my most innocent looks, 
I denied having the least knowledge of their move- 

The Serdar then began to roll his eye-balls about, 
and to twist up his mouth into various shapes. Pas- 



noA \mtst from him in the grossest and m^o^t violent 
^pressions] he vowed vengeance upon himi his raCe^ 
I£b village^ and upon every thing and every body in 
db least connected with him ; and whilst he express- 
ed a^otal disbelief of all my protestations of igno- 
ranccy he gave me to understand, that if i was found 
to have been in the sipallest degree an accessary to 
his escape, he would use all his influence to sweep my 
vile person from the face of the earth. 

I afterwards heard that he had sent a party of men 
to Gavmifthlu, to seize and bring before him Yiisiif's 
parents and kindred, with every thing that belonged 
to them ; to take possession of their property^ and to 
bum and destroy whatever they could not bring away : 
hat the sagacious and active youth had foreseen this, 
and had taken his measures with such prudence and 
promptitude, that he had completely baffled the tyrant. 
He, hisi wife, hi% wife's relations, his own parents and 
family V with aU their effects (leaving only their tilled 
ground behind thein), had concerted one common 
plan of migration into the Russian territory. It had 
fully succeeded^ as I afterwards heard, for they were 
received with great kindness, both by the government 
and by their own sect ; lands were allotted, and every 
help afforded them for the re^establishment of their 


He proceeds to the king^s camp 9 and gives a specimen 

of lying on a grand scale. 

I RETURNED to my chief full of apprehension at the 
threat which I had received \ and knowing how very 
tenacious all our great men are of power Over their 
own servants, I did not fail immediately to inform 
bJD} of the ianguage which the Sexdt^t Vv^di t.xiX^xv»xi.- 


cd ma witfa. .He became furious^ aild I had only ta 
fan the flame which t had raised in order to create 
a quarrel between them ; but, having more fears about 
the Sterdar's power of htirting me than I had confi- 
dence in the ability of the chief executioner to pro- 
tect mty I thought it best for all parties that I should 
retire from the scenCf and craved my master^s per- 
mission to return to Tehran. Pleased with an oppor- 
tunity of showing the Serdar that nobody bul himself 
could control hisf servants, he at once assented to my 
proposal ; and forthwith began to give me instfuctioni 
concerning what I should say to the grand vizier 
touching the late expedition, and particularly in 'what 
light I was to place his own individual prowess. 

* You yourself was there, Haj ji, said he to me, ^aod 
therefore can describe the whole action as well as 1 
coHld.— We cannot precisely say that we gained a vic- 
tory 9 because alas ! we have no heads' to show; but 
we also were not defeated. The Serdar, ass that he 
is, instead of waiting for the artillery, and availing 
himself of the infantry, attacks a walled town with his 
cavalry only, -and is very much surprised that the gar- 
rison shut their gates, and fire at him from the ram- 
parts : of course he can achieve nothing, and retires 
in disgrace. Had I been your leader, things would 
have gone otherwise; and as it was^ I was the only 
man who came hand to hand with the enemy. I was 
wounded in a desperate manner ; and hadit not been 
for the river between us, Hot a man oLthem would 
have been left to tell ^e tale. You will say all 
this, and as much more as you please;' and then, 
giving me a packet of letters to the grand vizier, and 
to the different men in office, and an arizeh (a memo- 
rial) to the Shah, he ordered me to departs 

1 found the Shah still encamped at Sult^pieh, 
although the autumn was now far advanced, and the 
season for returning to Tehran near at hand. I pre- 
sented myself at the grand vizier's levee, with seve- 
ral other couriers, froni different parts of the empire, 
and delivered my despatches* When he had inspect- 
ed mine, he called me to him, and«a\d aloud^ ^ You 




arc ifelcom^ ! ^ You also tvere at Hamamlfi? ^ The 
ii£^9 diid not dare to face the Kizzii bashes^ eh i 
Tke Persian horseman, and the Persian sword, after 
aft^ Imbodf^ can face. Your khan, I see, has been 
woiinded ; he is indeed one of the Shah^s best ser« 
vttfitii Well it was no wbrse^ You must have had 
hot/w6rk on each bank of the river/ 

Tfoall of this, and much more,^ I said * Yes, yes,' 
a^^ no, no;' as fast as the necessity of the remark re« 
quired ^ and I enjoyed the satisfaction of beinj^ look- 
.^ upon as a man just come out of a battle^ The vi- 
zi^ then xalled €o one of hid mfrzas or seci^etari^s, 
* H^rc,' aaid he, < you must make out a fatteh nameh 
(a proclamation of victory,) which must iounediately 
be sent into the diffierent provinces, particularly to 
Kli6nuisan, in order to overawe the rebel khans there; 
and'let the account be suited to the dignity and cha- 
rapfcrof our victorious monarch. We are in want 
df a victory just at present; but, recollect, a good, 
s#»ftfcantia^, and bloody victory/ 

*fifow many strong were the enemy ?' inquired the 
nd^^a, looking towards me. ^ Bisyar^ bisyar^ many ^ 
Ettany,' answered I, hesitating and embarrassed how 
nslmtf^ft would be agreeable that I should say. — ' Put 
ddfrc fifty thousand^' said the vizier cooly. * How 
many killed V said the mirza, looking first at the vi. 
zier, .then at^ me. ^ Write ten to fifteen thousand 
\CM^i answered the minister : ^ remember these let. 
tera have to travel a great' distance. It is beneath 
die dignity of the Shah to kill less than his thousands 
aiud tens of thousands. Would you have him less 
Aan Rustaniy and weaker than Afrasiab ? No, our 
l^iilgs must be drinkers of blood, and slayers of men, 
lir%e'held in estimation by their subjects, and sur- 
rQttii4iQg nations. Well, have you written V said the 
gffnd vitier. 

ii'Ycii, at your highnesses service,' atiswered the 
S <^1' have written (I'eading from his paper) that 
m^Meldbgs of M oscovites (whom mav Alkih in 
iercy impale on staked of living fires !) dared to 
ill arms tathe oumber of fifty thousand, flank- 

c 2 


ed and supported by a hjandred mouths spouting fire 
and brimstone ; but that as soon as the aU-victorious 
armies of the Shah appeared, ten to fifteen thousand 
of them gave up theii* souls i whilst prisoners poured 
in in such vast numbers, that the prices of slaves have 
diminished one hundred per cent, in all the slave mar- 
ketsof Asia.' 

* Barikallah ! Well done,' said the grand vizier. 
< you have written well. If the thing be not exactly 
so, yet, by the good luck of the Shah, it wilU and 
therefore it aniounts to the same thing. Truth is an 
excellent thing when it suits one's purpose, but very 
inconvenient when otherwise.' 

* Yes,' said the mirza, as he looked up from his 
knee, upon which he rested his hand to write his let- 
ter, and quoting a well known passage in Saadi, 
' Falsehood mixed with good intentions^ is preferable 
to truth tending to excite strife." 

The vizier then called for his shoes, rose from his 
seat, mounted the horse that was waiting for him at 
the door of his tent, and proceeded to the audience 
of the Shah, to give an account of the diflferent des- 
patches that he had just received. I followed him, 
and mixed in with his large retinue of servants, un* 
til he turned round to me, and said, « You are dis- 
missed i go and take your rest.' 


He relates a horrid tale^ the consequences of which 
plunge him inthe greatest misery* 

In a few days after the camp was struck, and the 
Shah rt-turned to his winter quarters at Tehran, in the 
same pomp and parade with which he had left it. I 
had resumed my post as sub-lieutenant to the chief 
executioner, and was busily engaged in disposing of 

OF HA331 BABA. 23 

Uie jaeo .^nder my confirmand, that the best order 
tti%^ be preserved during the marchy when I ^as 
i^oiiQakagiied tovsend off a messenger to Tehran, with 
Qlders that the ^zi^er^, the dancers and singers^ 
^loliU be in readiness to receive the Shah on his ar- 
rival at Sulimanieh. This place, as Ihave said be- 
iJEire, is a palace situated on the banks of the Caraj, 
about nine parasangs from the capital. 
.vC^ receiving this order^ my long-forgotten Zeenab 
came again to my recollection, and all my tender feel- 
Jpgs which, owing to my active life, had hitherto lain 
^rmanty were now revived. Seven, months were 
lapsed since we had first become 'acquainted ; and al- 
though during :that time 1 had lived with men of a 
future sufficiently barbarous to destroy every good 
^eKug, yet there was something so terrible in what 
limagined must now be her situation, and I felt my- 
self so much the cause of it, that my heart smote me 
#Veiy time that the subject came across my mind. 
^:Wp shall soon see,* thought I, < if my fears be well 
foiUiided. In a few days more we reach Sulimanieh, 
i6i tbei) her fate will be decided.' 
'; On the day of our arrival T headed the procession, 
J| see that every proper arrangement had been made 
ll^diin the palace ; and as I approached the walls of 
the harem, within which the bazigers had already 
taken their station, I heard thejsounds of their voices 
and , of their musical instrument^ What would I 
ndt have given to have spoken to Zeenab, or even to 
J^iye^bserved her at a distance ! But I knew that it 
Would noj: be .prudent to ask many questions con- 
coming her, as suspicions, dangerous Jboth to her and 
^ '10^. mi^ht arise, and probably involve us in imme- 
^t4| ruiiu Indeed, had I been inclined to give my- 
j|4f-,0At>c^ stir on the sii^bject, it would have been 
t«Ki>Chpurpose ; for very shortly after I heard the sa- 
'^red from the Zamburek camels, which indi« 
;,that the Shah: had alighted frotici his horse. 
;r be had smoked one pipe in his hall of state^ 
dismissed the courtiers who attended him, he 
4o the harem. 


Upb^ Ki8 entrance there, I heard the 80flg;s of the 
women, Accompanied by tambourines, guitars, and lit- 
tle drums^ rending the ^ir as they walked in proces- 
sion before him. Well did I listen with all my ears 
to discover Zeenaib^s voice, but c.yery endeavour wais 
baffled, and I remained in a disagreeable state of vi- 
bration betwixt hope and f«ar, until a hasty order wad 
issued for my old master, M»rza Ahmak, the king's 
physician,, to appear immediately before the Shah. 
Conibinations of the mind in all matters of deep in- 
terest are formed as quick as thought, and act like 
the fore tellings of prophecy. When I heardthat the 
hikim was sent for, a cold thrill ran through my 
veins, and I said to myself * Zeendb is lost for ever P 

He came, was soon dismissed, and seeing me at the 
door of the harem, took me on one side, and said, 
* Jlajji^ the Shah is much enraged; You remember 
the Curdish slave which 1 presented to him at the fes- 
tival of the No ruz. She has not appeared among the 
dancing women, and pretends to be ill. He loves her, 
and had set his heart upon s«ejing her. He has ^Ued 
me to an account for her conduct, as if 1 could con- 
trol the caprice of this daughter of the devil ; and" 
says, that if he does not find her in full health and 
beauty when he reaches iht arky (the palace), which 
will be on the next best fortunate hour, he will pluck 
my beard out by the roots. Curse the unlucky mo- 
ment which made her my slave ; and still more the 
hour when { first invited the Shah into my house.' 

Upon this he left me, to set off immediately for 
Tehran, whilst I retired to my tent, to rumiciate over 
the horrid fate that awaited this unfortunate girl. I 
endeavoured to rally my spirits by the hope that per- 
haps she was actually ill, and that it had been impose 
sible for her to appear before the king; and then I 
condoled my^t^ If with the idea, that if my fears were 
well founded, the doctor's heart might b^ softened, 
and he might screen her from the S4>ah's observation, 
by giving some evasive reason for her non-appear- 
ance; Then^ after aU, as if bravi^mg my feelings, I 


rdptzttd to myself the lines of one of our poets, who, 
like in<6, had lost his mistress. 

^Id Aere but one pair of stag eyes, or pne cypress 
w^ist^ or one full-moon face in the world, that I should 
so mourn over the loss of my cruel one ? 

^ Why should I burn, why should I cut mj^s'elf, and 
sigfiout my griefs under the windows of the deaf-eared 

^BTo, let me love where love is cheap ; for I am a 
Blilfer of my feelings.* 

Tblis I endeavoured to make light of the subject, 
aot to sWw myself a true Mussulman by my contempt 
fof^womanlind. But still, turn where I would, go 
vra^ r would, the image of Zeenab, a torn and man- 
gfejdf corpse^ was ever before my eyes, and haunted my 
iim^iiia^ton at all seasons and at all hours. 

>At length the fortunate hour for the Shah's entry 
wis announced, and he entered Tehran amidst the 
die whole of its population, who' had been turned out 
Kl^jreet his arrival. My most pressing want was to 
see^e hakini, as if by chance, in order that no sus- 
ji^n might fall upon me, in case poor Zeenab was 
feighS guilty. On the very evening of our arrival, my 
wMrss (alas ! how fatally !) were accomplished. As 
I il^ taken up in giving some orders 19 a Nasakchi, 
I M^Dr imm come out of the Shah's private apartment, 
l9oklQ|; full of care, with one hand stuck in his girdle, 
Af d^er in his side, his back more bent than usual, 
W^ Willi his eyes fixed on the ground. I placed my- 
i^m tits way, and gave him the salutation of peace, 
wtSch caused him to look up. 

When he had recognised me, he stopped, saying, 
<you.ate the very man I was seeking. Come hither;' 
aa#1fe took me on one side. ^^ Here is a strange story 
afti|i^'"^id he ; Uhis Curd has brought all sorts of 
|dii^.^|iniy head. IVallah! by Heaven, the Shah has 
ii0i^i0tL ni2iA. He talks of making a general massa- 
CV^f^ that is male, within and without his harem, 
with his viziers, and finishing by the eu- 
e swears by his own head, that he will 


make me the first e&ample i/l do not find put the 

* What culprit? who? what?' said^, * what has 
happened ?' 

* Why, Zeenab,' answered he, * Zeenab/ 

* Gh ! I understand^' said J ; < Ay! she you used to 
love so much/ 

^ I ?' answered the Hakim, as if afraid of being hioi. 
self suspected, * I ? Astaferallah! Heaven forbid ! Do 
not say so, for pity's sake, Hajji, for if such a suspi- 
cion were once hinted, the Shah v/ould put his threat 
into immediate execution. Where did you ever hear 
that I loved Zeenab ?' 

* Many things were reported concerning you. at that 
time,' said I, < and all were astonished that a man of 
your wisdom, the Locman of his time, the Galenus 
of Petsia, should have embarked in so frail and dan- 
gerous a commodity as a Curdish maid, one of the 
undoubted progeny of the devil himself, whose foot- 
steps could not be otherwise than notoriously unfor- 
tunate ; who, of herself, was enough to bring ill luck 
to a whole empire, much more to a single family like 

< You say true, Hajji,' said Mir za Ahmak, as he 
shook his head from side to side, and struck his left 
hand on the pit of his stomach. * Ah ! marvellous fool 
was I ever to have been caught by her black eyes ! in 
fact, they were not eyes, the^y were spells,— -the devil 
hin[)self looked out of them, not she, and if he is not 
in her now, may I be called Gorumsak ?\\ the rest of 
my days. But, after all, what shall I do ?' 

< What can I say ?' answered I. « What will the 
Shah do with her ?' 

' Let her go to Jehanum,' answered the doctor y 
* let her go to her father's mansion, and a good jour- 
ney to her. I am only thinking of my own skin.' 

Upon this, looking up teaderly at me, he said, * Ah, 
Hajji ! you know how much I have always loved you: 
I took you into my house when you were houseless 
—I placed you in a good situation, and you have 
risen in your profession all through me — allow that 

^ Of* HAJJI BABA. 27 

^re i8| or that there ought to be such a thing in the 
idrld ^s gratitude — you have now an opportunity of 
ti^ercising it :' then pausing for a while, and playing 
#ith the tip of nny beard, he said, ^ Have you guessed 
what S wished to say r 

*No,* said I, t it has not yet reached my under- 

* Wf llj» then/ said he, * in two words, own that you 
aire the culprit. A great loss of consideration would 
accrue to me, but none to you ; you are young, and 
1^ bear such a story to be told of you.' 

<X«oss of consideration, indeed !' exclaimed I, ^ what 
i$ t}iat when the loss of life will ensue i Are you 
a^, oh Halcim, or 'do you think me so i Why should 
Idle? why do you wish to l^ve my blood upon your 
head ? All I can say, if f am questioned on the sub- 
ject^ isj that I do not think you guilty, because you 
H^ ever too much in fear of the khanum, your wife; 
tet I will never say th^ I am guilty.' 

■Whilst in the middle of our conversation, one of 
j^'Shab^s eunuchs came up to me, and said that his 
mef liad been ordered to see that the sub-lieutenant 
tiihe chief executioner, with five men, were in wait- 
VB^j^t the foot of the high tower at the entrance of the 
l^b^m, at the hour of midnight ; and that they were 
^^ring a taboot^ or hand-bier, with them, to bear 
'Itiliy a corpse for interment. 

I' ^tl I could say in answer was * be cheshm^ (by my 
Ijihes ;) and lucky was it for me that he quitted me 
^^^ftedtately, that Mirza Ahmak had also left me, 
"^iiyr that it was dusk, or else the fear aiid anguish 
jRbich overwhelmed me upon hearing this message 
ilJiiyESt have betrayed me. A cold sweat broke out ail 

prmy body, my eyes swam, my knees knocked un- 

o^lf^a^di should perhaps have fallen into a swoon, 

€ cowiter fear of being seen in such a state, in 

ycsry centre of the palace, had not roused me. 

at,' said I to myself, * is it not enough that I 

been the cause of her death, must I be her exe- 

too f must I be the grave digger to my own 

Tlttttst 1 be the iU*fated he who is to stretch her 




cold limbs in the grave, and send my own life's blood 
back again to its mother earth i Why am I called 
upon to do this^oh cruel» most cruel destiny ? Cais- 
not I fly from the horrid seene i Cannot I rather rim 
a dagger into my heart ?. But no, 'tis plain txky fate is 
ordained, sealed, fixed! and in vain I struggle^— I 
must fulfil the task appointed for me ! Ob world, 
world ! what art thou, and how much niore wouldst 
thou be known, if each man ws^s to lift np the veil 
that hideth his own actions, and show himself as he 
really is!' 

With these feelings, oppressed as if the mountain of 
Demawend and all its sulphurs were on m^ hearty I 
went about nny work doggedly, collecting the several 
men who were to be my colleagues in this bloodiy tra- 
gedy ; who, heedless and unconcerned at an event of 
no unfrequent occurrence^ were indifferent whether 
they were to be the bearers of a murdered corpse^ or 
themselves the instruments of murder. 

The night was dark and lowering, and well suited 
to the horrid scene about to be acted. The sun, unu^ 
sual in these climates, had set, surrounded by clouds 
of the colour of blood ; and, as the night advanced, 
they rolled on in unceasing thunders over the summits 
of the adjacent range of Albors. At sudden intervals 
the moon was seen through the dense vapour, which 
covered her again as suddenly, and restored the night 
to its darkness and solemnity. I was seated lonely in 
the guard-room of the palace, when I heard the cries 
of the sentinels on the watch-towers, announcing mid- 
night, and the voices of the muezzins from the 
mosqueSf the wild notes of whose chant floating on 
the wind, ran through my veins with the chilling 
creep of death, and announced to me that the hour of 
mnrder was at hand ! They were the harbingers of 
death to the helpless ^oman. I started up,*^ could 
not bear to hear them more,— I rushed on in despe- 
rate haste, and as I came to the appointed spot, I 
found my five companions already arrived, sitting un^ 
concerned on and about the coffin that was to carry 
my Zeenab to her eternal mansion^ The only. word 


wtuch I had power to say to them was, < Shoud? Is 
it done ? to which they answered, * Ne Shoud^ It is 
not dooe. To which ensued an awful silence. I had 
&bped that all was over, and that I should have been 
spared every other horror, excepting that of conduct- 
ing the melantholy procession to the place of burial ; 
bilt np, the deed was still to be done, and I could not 

On the confines of the apartments allotted to the 
Women in the Shah's palace stands a high octagonal 
tower^p some thirty ghez in height, seen coqspiciious 
frbm all parts of the city, at the summit of which is a 
chamber, in which he frequently reposes and takes 
tKe air. It is surrounded by unappropriated ground, 
aint) the principal gate of the harem is close to its base. 
Oq thjp top of all is a terrace (a spot, ah ! never by me 
to be forgotten !) and it was^ to this that our whole 
attention was now riveted. I had scarcely^ arrived, 
when looking up, we saw three figures, two men and 
a female, whose forms were lighted up by an occa- 
sitmal gleam of moonshine, that shone in a wild and 
voieertain manner upon them. They seemed to drag 
^eir victim between them with much violence, whilst 
die was seen in attitudes of supplication, on her knees, 
with her h^nds extended* and in all the agony of the 
djiepest desperation. When they were at the brink 
c^the tower her shrieks were audible, but so wild, so 
VIrted by the blasts of wind that blew round the build- 
iiigythat they appeared to me like the sounds of laugh- 
ing madness. ' 

We all kejpt a dead and breathless silence : even 
i8y*five ruffians seemed moved-— I was transfixed like 
Ooiiip of lifeless clay, and if I am asked what my 
^ns^tions were at the time, I should be at a loss to 
Ofscribe them,— I was totally inanimate, and still I 
fiBPe.w what was going on. At length, one loud, shrill, 
sriC searching scream of the bitterest woe was heard, 
whi^ch was suddenly losjt in an interval of the most 

l^tful silence. A heavy fall, which immediately 

f;e«ded, told us that all was over. I was then 
i^liiAed, and with my head confused, half crazed and 

Vol- II— D 


half conscious, I immediately rushed to the spot, 
where my Zeenab aud her burthen lay struggling, a 
mangled and mutilated corpse. She still breathed, 
but the convulsions of death were upon her, and her 
lips moved as if she would sp^ak, although the blood 
was fast flowing from h^r mouth. I could not catch 
a word, although she uttered sounds that aeemed like 
words. I thought she said, < my child ! my child !' 
but perhaps it was an illusion of my brain. I hung 
over her in the deepest despair, and having lost alt 
sense of prudence and of self-preservation, I acted so 
niuch up to my own feelings, that if the men around 
me had had the smallest suspicion of my real situa- 
tion, nothing could have saved nke from destruction. 
I even carried my phrensy so far as to steep my hand- 
kerchief in her blood, saying to myself, f this, at least, 
shall never part from me !' I came to myself, how- 
ever, upon hearing the shrill and dsemon-like voice of 
one of her murderers from the! tower's height, crying 
cut — * Is she dead :* < Ay, as a stone/ answered one 
of my ruffians. * Carry her away, then,' said the voice. 

* To hell yourself,' in a suppressed tone, said another 
ruffian ; upon which my men lifted the dead body into 
the taboot, placed it upon their shoulders, and walked 
off with it to the burial ground without the city, 
where they found a grave ready dug to receive it. 
I walked mechanically after them, absorbed in most 
melancholy thoughts, and when we had arrived at 
the burial-place, I sat myself down on a grave-stone, 
scarcely conscious of what(Vvas going on. I watched 
the operations of the Nasackchies with a sort of un- 

y! meaning stare ; saw them place the dead body in the 
earth ; then shovel the mould over it ; then place two 
stones, one at the feet and the other at the head. 
When they had finished, ihey came upto me and said 

* that all was done :' to which I answered, * Go home;- 
I will follow.' They left me seated on the grave, and 
returned to the town. • 

The night continued dark, and distant thunders 
still echoed through the mountains. No other sound 
was heard, save now and then the infant-like cries of 


tbejackally that now In packs, and then by two or three 
at the time, kept prowling round the mansions of the 

The longer I remained near the grave, tlie less I 
felt inclined to r<?turn to my home, and to my horrid 
employment of executioner. I loathed my existence, 
and longed to be so secluded from the world, and 
from all dealings with those of high authority in it» 
that the only scheme which I could relish was that of 
becoming a real dervish, and passing «lhe rest of my 
days in penitence and privations. Besides, the fear 
of having disclosed^ both by my words and actions, 
how much I was involved in the fate of the deceased, 
came across my mind, and added to my repugnance 
pf returning. 
'Day by this time began to dawn, and impelled, both 
by a sense of my danger and by my desire to quit a 
place, which had become odious to me, I determined 
to proceed on foot to Kinaragrrd, the first stage to Is. 
ps^an, and then take advantage of the first caravan 
that should be going to that city. 

'I will go and seek con$olation in retirement, and 
in the bosom of my family,' said I to myself; « I will 
see what is become of my parents— perhaps I may 
r^lich the paternal ropf in time to receive my father's 
dying blessing, and by my presence, give him in his 
old age the happiniess of seeing his long lost son re«. 
stored to him^— How shall I be able to go through my 
liuties, with this misfortune about my neck f— *! have 
liVcd long enough in vice, and it is time that I should 
xndke the tobehy or renounce my wicked ways.' 
' In short, this horrid event produced such an effect 
upon my mind, that had I continued in the sentiments 
it inspired me with through life, I might well have 
aspired to be placed at the head of our most holy der- 


if ■ ' r V ■ 



Hajjt Baha meets with an old friend^ who cheers him 
up^ gives him good advice^ and secures him from dan-- 

Pulling out the handkerchief from my breast, 
still wet with the blood of the unfortunate Zeenab, I 
contemplated it with feelings of the most bitter an- 
guish 'y then spreading it before me on her grave, I 
went through a ceremony to which I had long beep 
unaccustomed, — I said my prayers. Refreshed by 
this act,^ and strengthened in my resolutions of leav- 
ing Tehran^^ I tore myself away^ and stept valiantly 
onwards towards Ispahan. 

Having reached Kinaragird, without seeing the 
trace of a caravan, and feeling myself sufEciently 
strong to proceed on my journey, I pushed on for the 
caravanserai of the Sultan's Reservoir, where I in- 
tended to halt for the night. 

As I came in sight of the building, at some dis- 
tance in the desert, I saw a man putting himself into 
strange attitudes, playing anticks by himself, and ap- 
parently addressing himself to something on the 
ground. I approached him, and found that he was 
talking with great animation to his cap, which was 
thrown some yards before him. Going still nearer 
to him, I discovered a face that was familiar to me. 

* Who can it be V said I to myself : < it must be one 
of my old friends, the dervishes of Meshed.' 

In fact, it proved to be the Kessehgou^ the story- 
teller, who was practising a new story by himself, 
making his cap act audience. As soon as he saw, he 
recognised me, and came up to embrace me with 
seeming rapture. 

* Ahi, Hajji,' said he, ^ peace be with you ! Where 
have you been these many years I Your place has 
long been empty. My eyes are refreshed by the sight 


of you.* Then he repeated himself in the same strain 
several times over» until we at length got upon more 
rational subjects. 

He related his adventures since we had last met ; 
whicii consisted in the detail of long and painful jour- 
neys^ and of the various methods which his ingenuity 
had suggested to him of gaining his bread. He was 
now on his return from Constantinople, from whence 
he had walked, and had it in contemplation to make 
his way in the same manner to Delhi, after having 
passed a summer at Ispahan^ whither he was now 

Although little inclifled to talk, in the melancholy 
mood in which my mind had been plunged, still I 
could not refrain in some measure from catching the 
exuberance of spirits with which my companion seem- 
ed to overflow, and I also gave him an account of my- 
self since the day I left Meshed with Dervish Sefer, 
when r had just recovered froni the bastinado on the 
soles of my feet. 

As I proceeded in my narrative, showing him how, 
step by step, I had advanced in station and dignity, it 
was amusing to see with what increased reverence he 
treated me. At length, when I came to my promo- 
tion to the rank of sub-lieutenant to the chief execu- 
ttonerf I verily believe that he would have prostrated 
himself before me, with such extreme respect had ex- 
perience taught him to treat gentlemen of that profes^ 
ston. But when he heard the sequel of my story; how 
for d woman I had abandoned my high situation and 
ail the prospects of advancement which it held out to 
nh ; 1 perceived the low estimation to which I fell in 
his opinion. He exclaimed that I was not worthy of 
the kaladt (iht^ dress of distinction,) which fortune 
had Cut out, fashioned, and invested me with. * So, 
because the Shah thinks it fitting to destroy a faithless 
slaVe,* said he, * in whose guilt you have at most only 
half the share, you think it necessary to abandon the 
e^etlent station in life to which you had reached, and^ 
tc^Vtegtn again the drudgery of an existence lower and 
ind^^ uncertain than even the one which I enjoy. 




Well/ (making a pause,) Uhere is no accountinj; for 
the different roads which men take in their search after 
happiness : some keep the high road ; some take short 
cuts; others strike out new paths for themselves; and 
others again permit themselves to be led on without 
asking the road^ but I never yet heard of one, but 
yourself*, who, having every road and every path 
tlirown open to him, preferred losing his way, with 
the risk of never again finding it,' And then he fin- 
ished by quoting a reflection of the poet Ferdusi, ap- 
plicable to the uncertainty of a soldier's life, by Vfay 
of consoling me for the vicissitudes of mine, saying, 
* Gahi pAsht ber zeen^gahi zeen ber pUsht^ (sometinaes 
the saddle bears the weight of his back^ and sometimes 
his back the weight of a saddle*) 

Whilst we were conversing, a caravan appeared on 
the road from Ispahan, and nuiking straight for the 
caravanserai, took up its abode there for the night. 

* Come,' said the Dervish, who was a merry soci- 
able fellow, < come, forget your sorrows for the pre- 
sent ; we will pass an agreeable evening, not withs taw- 
ing we are in the midst of this dreary and thirsty ae-. 
sert. Let us get together the travellers, the merchants, 
and the mule-drivers who compose the caravan, and 
after we have well supped and smoked, I will relate to 
you a story that has recently happened at Stamboul, 
and which 1 am sure cannot yet have been imported 
into Persia.* 

Most willingly did I accede to his proposal ; for I 
was happy to drive melancholy from my thoughts at 
any rate, and we strolled into the building together. 

Here we found men from different parts of Persia,^ 
unloading their beasts and putting their effects in or- 
der, settling themselves in the different open rooms 
which look upon the square of the caravanserai, A 
Dervish, and a story-teller too, wa« a great aciquisition 
to them, after the fatigue and dulness of a journey 
across the Salt Desert; and when we had made a 
hearty meal, he collected them on the square platform 
in the middle of the court, making them sit round, 


irliiiBChe tQok his station in the midst. He then rela- 
ted his promised story. 

I endeavoured to pay every attention to it; but I 
found that my min4 so constantly strayed from the 
Barrative to the scenes I had lately witnessed, that 
it became impossible for me to retain what he said. I 
remarked^ however, that be interested his audience in 
the higbest degree ; for when plunged in one of my 
deepest reveries, I was frequently rousepl by the 
laughter and applause which the Dervish excited. I 
promised myself , on some future occasion to make him 
relate it pver agaiuv^md in the meanwhile continue to 
give myself up wholly to my feelings of misery. 
Much^id I envy the apparent light-heartedness. that 
pervaded my companions, and \^hich at intervals 
made the vaulted rooms of the building resound with 
ahouts of merriment. I longed for the time when I 
shotild again be like them, and enjoy the blessings of 
existence without care; but grief, like every other 
paasion, must have its course^ and^ as the spring which 
gushes with violence from the rocky by degrees dwin- 
dlea into a rivulet, so it must be let to pass off gradu- 
ally until it becomes a moderate feeling, and at length 
l« lost in the vortex of the world. 

Day had closed by the time that the Dervish had 
finished his story. The blue vault of heaven was com- 
pletely furnished with bright twinkling stars, which 
seemed to haVe acquired a fresh brilliancy after the 
sterms of the preceding night i and the moon was pre*- 
paring to add her soft lustre to the scene, when a 
boraeman, fully equipped, entered the porch that leads 
into the caravanserai. 

The principal persons of the caravan had still kept 
4beir station on. the platform, jquietly smoking their 
|»pes and^ discussing the merits of the tale they had 
juat heard ; the servants had dispersed to spread their 
/Bisters' beds ; and the muleteers h^d retired for the 
.night to nestle in among their mules and their bag- 
4^9^^: I, destitute of every thing, had made up my 
jUIIhI to pass my night on the bare ground with a stone 
f^r my pillow ; but when Hooked at the horseman, as 


he tiergcd from the darkness of the porch into th« 
light, my idras took another tura. 

I recognised in him one of xhe Nasakchiesy who 
under my orders had witnessed the death of the 
wretched Zeenab ; and I very soon guessed what the 
olijectof his journey might be, when I Jieard him ask, 
if the caravan was coming from, or going to Tehran ; 
and whether they had seen a person, who, b3^e des- 
cription he gave, I instantly recognised to be myself. 

My friend the Denrish immediately divined how 
the matter stood ; and deeply versed in every strata*- 
gem of deceity without hesitation took upon himself 
to answer for the whole company. 

He said, that aU were going to the capital, with the 
exception of himself atid his friend, who, both Der* 
vishes, were just arrived from Constantinople ; but 
that he had met one answering to the person he had 
described, one who seemed oppressed with care, and 
worn with grief, wandering about in a sort of chance 
manner through the wilds of the desert. He added 
many more particukirs which corresponded so entire- 
ly to my appearance and history, that the horseman 
could not doubt for a moment but that this was the 
person he was in search of, and rode off in great haste 
according to the directions of the dervish, who, as 
may be imsgioed, purposely led him wrong. 

When he had been gone some time, the dervish 
took me on one side, and said, « If you want to secure 
yourself from this man, you must instantly depart ; 
for when he finds his search fruitless, and is tired of 
wandering about the desert, he will certainly return 
here, and then what can hinder your being discover- 

« I wiU do any thing rather than be discovered by 
him,* said I : * he is evidently sent to seize me. I 
can expect no mercy from such a ruffian, particularly 
as I have not enough money to offer hiro, for I know 
his price. Where can I go V 

The dervish reflected a while, and said, * You must 
go to Kom : you will reach it before morning, and as 
soon as you arrive there, lose not a moment in getting 


witliiQ the precincts of the sanctuary of the tomb of 
Fatimeh. You will then, and not till then, be safe, 
even from the Shah's power. Should you be caught 
without itsifralls, there is no hope for you. You will 
he seized ; and then may Allah take you into his holy 
keepog !' 

* But when I am there/ said I, < what shall I do ? 
how shall I liver 

« Leave that tame,' said the dervish ;^ I shall soon 
overtake you, and^s I know the place and many of 
the people in it, inshaliah , please God, you will not 
fare so ill as you. may imagine. I myself was once 
obliged to do the same thing, for having been the 
meams of procuring poison for one of the; Shah's wo- 
jBeOy who used it to destroy a rival. Orders were 
jielit to seize me, and I managed to reach the l^ust (the 
^refuge seat) at Shahabdul Azim just five minutes be- 
ion the executioner who was to have apprehended 
Qlbe* I never fared better in my life : for I did no- 
tluDg ; I was supported by the charity of those who 
^me to say their prayers at the shrine of the saint : 
aiid the women, who constantly came thus far to pray 
and take their pleasure, always contrived to comfort 
me in my confinement. The only evil you have to 
fear is an order from th&Shah, that no one on pain 
of death shall give you food : if so, you will be starve 
ed into a surrender, and then the Prophet be your 
protector! But your case is not one of sufficient con- 
neque^c to make you fear this. The Shah cannot 
care so mnch for one slave, when he haa a hundred 
others to fill her place. After all, men do not die so 
easily as we Persians imagine. Recollect what the 
^eikh says, ^ clouds and wind, the moon, the sun, 
f$^ firmament, (and he might have added dervishes) 
att are busied, that thou, O man, mayest obtain thy 
bread : only eat it not in neglect.' ' 
: « I am not the man,' said I, < who will forget your 
HagAntss. Perhaps my fortune may again be on the 
1^^'Wd then I will put my beard into your hand. 
l[0a know- Hajji Baba of old, and that he is not one 
df'lliOBe who * exposes his .virtues on the palm of his 


hand, and hid^s his vices under his arnfiptt.* What 
I was at Meshed, the same I am now : the seller of 
adulterated smoke, and the deputy lieutenant to the 
chief executioner, are one and the same.' 

< Well then go,' said thfe dervish, as he embratcd 
me, * and God be with you ! Take care of the ^hob 
and gins as you cross the Salt Desert ; and again, I 
repeat, may Allah, peace, and safety attend you V 

As the day broke I could distinguish the gilt cupo- 
la of the tomb, at a considerable distance before me; 
and thl« beacon of my security inspired me with fresh 
vigour in my solitary march over the dreary waste. 
I had scarcely reached the outskirts of the town of 
Kom, beforje I perceived the horseman at some dis- 
tance behind, making the best of his way in search of 
me ; and therefore I looked iieither right nor left un- 
til the massive chains that hangs across the principal 
gateway of the sanctuary was placed between myself 
and my pursuer. I then exclaimed, * Ilhamd*tllah P 
Praises to Allah ! O Mahomed : O Ali ! and kissini; 
the threshold of the tomb, I said my prayers with all 
the fervency of one who hairing escaped ^ tempest 
has got safe into port. 

I had scarcely time to look about me before I per- 
ceived the Nasakchi coming towards me. He accost- 
ed me with a cold salutation of peace, and then said, 
' that he had a royal order to Conduct me into the 
Shah's presence wherever I might be found.' 

I told him, that, with all reverence for his firmaDi 
it was my intention to avail myself of the acknow- 
ledged privilege of every true believer, to seek re- 
fuge at the shrine of the saint, and that, of course, \it 
could not violate it by dragging me from it. * Be* 
sides, this is the favourite saint of the King of Kings,' 
said I, *and iie respects this shrine more than any 

* What shall I do then, Hajji V said he. ' You 
know this is not written in the order. If I go back 
without you, perhaps the Shah may cut off my ears 
instead of yours.' ^ 

^ //2sAaJ/uh J please God,' said 1. 


^Please GN>clf do you say i* said he in a fury : « am 
I come all this way that men should call me ass ? I 
am not a man if 1 do not make you return with me.' 
And forthwith we began to wrangle to such a degree, 
that several of the priests, attached to the endow- 
n^enty came from their rooms to inquire into the cause 
of the disturbance. 

« Here is one^' exclaimed I, ^ who presumes to vio« 
late the sanctuar}\**I have taken refuge in it, and he 
talks of forcing me away ! You, that are men of God,' 
addressing myself to the mollahs^ * speak, and say 
whether you will allbw this V 

They all took mry part. * This is unheard of,' said 
they, * in Persia. If you dare tb take one from the 
hisi^ you will not only have the vengeance of the saint 
op your head; but the whole corps of the Ullemah 
will be upon you ; and be you protected by the King 
of Kings, or the king of demons, nothing can screen 
y4M^ from their fury.' 

The Nasakchiremainejd quite uncertain what to do, 
and at length, softening his tone, he endeavoured to 
make a virtue of necessity, and began to negotiate 
wjrth me upon what he might get, if he went away 
Without further molesting me. 

I did not deny the right he had of being paid for 
ht^ trouble, for it is precisely what I should have ex- 
paeted myself had I been In his place ; but I made 
him recollect how little I was able to requite him ; 
fa^r.he knew as well as I all the circumstances of my 
ffight, and that I had brought nothing 'away with me 
fimi^im Tehran. 

f^Hjts suggested that I might give him what effects I 
1^ left behind me ; to which I did not in the least 
tuf/fi^Cf but recommended him to go whence he came, 
anid to leave the afflicted to their miseries. 

The fact is, as I afterwards found out, the rogue 
bud- already taken possession of my property, which 
C|^»Mated of clothes, trunks, bedding, horse-furniture, 
1^^^, &c. having himself been the cause of denounc- 
11% me to the Shah. He had watched the effect which 
Ite.imirderoxis death of the unhappy Ciird had pi^o. 



duced upon me, and immedtately had laid his phn 
for my destruction, and for stepping into my situation. 
Finding that he could not exert the power which 
had been vested in him, and that his firman was ^o 
much waste* paper, as long as I continued to hold fait 
to my refuge^place, he thought it best to return to 
Tehran ; but in so doing, he delivered his powers iiito 
the hands of the governor of the towii, with strict in- 
junctions to keep watch over my actions, and in ease 
I stirred from the saiK:tuary, to seize and send me a 
prisoner to the seat of government. 


He takes refuge in a sanctuary^ where hhihilaneholtf 
thoughts are diverted by a curious story, 

I HAD scarcely got rid i5f the Na8akchl,\vheft I 
heard the voice of my friend the Dervish, who was 
announcing his arrival in the holy city, by ail the dif* 
ferent invocations of the Almighty and his attrihtitcs, 
which are frequently made by true believers. 

Very soon after, T was delighted to see him eofifi- 
ing towards me, and to hear him express hfs satifefac- 
tion that I had reached my resting-place before my 
pursuer had had time to-come up with me. 

He proposed to keep me company for a short time, 
and We took possession of one of the cells situated in 
the square court forming part of the buildings in the 
centre of which the tomb is placed, f had by good 
luck brought away my ready money, consisting of 
twenty tomauns in gold, besides some silver ; and we 
expended some of this in articles of the first necessi- 
ty, such as a mat to cover the bare floor of our room, 
and an eartherji jug for our Water. 

But before we had got any further in our domestic 


armagtoieiits^ the Derviah accosted me in the.foUow- 
i&gjnanaer : 

^ I n^ust be informed ^f one thing before we pro- 
ceed. Do you ever say your prayers ?— do you keep 
your fa^s ^---do you make your ablutions regularly ? 
or, do you continue to live in that fit state for eternal 
podiUQUy which we were wont to do at Meshed V 

« Why do you speak thus to me r said I « Whatjcan 
it be to you whether I pray or not i* 

fit b not much to me/ ans^red the Dervish, «but 
it b a^^at deal to yourself. This Kom is a place 
tfaat^ excepting on the subject of religion, and settling 
who are worthy of salvation and whb to be damnejd, 
no one opens his lips. Every man you meet is»either 
a desco^ant of the Prophet or a man of the law. All 
wear long and mortified faces» Mid seem to look upon 
that man as an appointed subject for the eternal fires, 
who happens to have a rosy cheek and a. laughing 
eye. Therefore^ as soon as k a})proach the place, I 
alw8^8 change the atmosphere of my countenance 
from fair to haze, and from haze to downright clouds 
and^^arkness, according as circumstances may re- 
quire. My knees, which scarcely ever touch, the 
praying jcar pet, now perform their functions five good 
Hmes per day ; and I, who in any other place never 
consult any ^iebleh bsii that of my own pleasure and 
iocitiiatiansy n^ow know the direction of the true one, 
as well as l,know the way to my mouth.' 

* AU this is, very well,' said I ; < but what may be 
the use of it? I am a Mussulman^ 'tis true, but to such 
a pitch as this-^no, never.' 

^ The use?' answered the Defvisli. < The use is 
this ; tliat it will save you from being staryed or ston- 
ed to death. These priests \¥ill hearken to no me-, 
dium,— --either yoa are a true believer or you are not. 
If they were ' to have the least suspicion that you 
doubted any one of the articles of the faithy— •that you 
did not look upon the Koran as a living miracle, and 
did not read it with becoming reverence, whether you 

< * I e, MeeoB, k> whith all MahQmedaiift^u\mWv^vc^t«3«t%. 
Vol. II.— E 



utsderstaBd or not, — they would soon shew you what 
power they possess. And if they wer« to suppose 
you to be a Biifi (a free thinker) by the death of your 
father and mother, they would tear you into little 
pieces, and then feel contented that they had got on 
another post on the high road to paradise. Perhaps, 
friend Hajji, you do not know that this is the resi- 
dence of the celebrated Mirza Abdul Cossim, the 
iir&t mushtehed (divine) of Persia a man who, if he 
were to give himself sufficient stir, would make the 
people believe any doctrine that he might choose to 
promulgate. Such is his influence, that many believe 
he could even subvert the authority of the Shah him- 
self, and make his subjects look upon his firmans as 
worthless, as so much waste paper. But the truth is, 
he is a good man ; and except stoning \A& siiji^ and 
holding us wandering dervishes as the dirt under his 
feet, I know of no fault in him.' 

Having heard him out, I agreed that, however I 
might deplore the want of habit in my religious du- 
ties, yet, situated as I was, it was necessary that I 
should acquire them, in order^to be held in proper es- 
timation by the great authorities, under whose eye I 
was immediately placed; and forthwith I set about 
saying my prayers and making my ablutions, as if my 
very existence depended upon my regularity. Indeed, 
what I had formerly looked upon as irksome cere- 
mony, now became an agreeable pastime, and helped 
greatly to soften the tedium of my melancholy life. 
I never omitted to rise at the first call ; to make my 
ablutions at the cistern, — using all the forms of the 
strictestshiah,— -and then to pray in the most conspi- 
cuous spot I could find. The intonations of my Alloh 
ho akbar were to be heai'd in each corner of the tomb, 
and I hoped they came to the ear of every inhabitant 
of it. No face wore a nK)re mortified appearance 
than mine : even the Dervish, who was the best mi- 
mic possible, could not beat me in the downcast eye, 
the hypocritical ejaculation, the affected taciturnity of 
the sour, proud, and bigoted man of the law. 

It became known that i was a xdug^^t ax the aaac- 


tuaryj and I very soon discovered the advantages 
which the Derviah had promised me, from taking 
upon me the airs of the place, and assuming the cha- 
racter of a rigid Mussulman. He spread abroad the 
history of my misfortune, — of course much to my ad- 
vantage,— -giving me out for one who was suffering 
fo)- the sins of another, and asserting that the doctor 
ought, in fact, to have been the sufferer. 

I became acquainted with the principal personages 
pf the town^ who were agreed that they had never 
l^nawn a better model of a true believer than I ; and 
had I not been confined to the walls of the sanctuary, 
it was in contemplation to have made me a peish na- 
maz (a leader of the prayers) at their religious meet- 
ings in the nipsque. I found that the profound taci- 
turnity which I had adopted was the best help tOr 
wards the establishment of a high reputation for wis- 
dom ; and that, by the help of my beads, — which I 
tept constantly counting, — a mumble of my lips, and 
occasional groans and pious exclamatiQUs, the road to 
the highest consideration was open to me. 

jSiy Dervish and I lived almost free of expense, so 
plentifully were we supplied with food. The women 
in particular, did not lose an opportunity of bringing 
me presents of fruit, honey, bread, and other neces- 
saries, for which I repaid them with kind thanks, and 
now and then with a talisman, written with my own 

But although our life was one of ease, yet it was so 
^uU) and so void of incident, that even the spirits of 
fviy companion began to sink under it. In order to 
^1 up some of the long hours of listlessness which op- 
pressed us, I encouraged him to recite all his stories, 
owe by one, not forgetting 'the one which he had re- 
lated with so much effect in the caravanserai of the 
Saltan's Reservoir, and we found this a very agreeable 
mode of closing the day. 

' "1 feel, O reader, that you may also partake of that 
same dulness which oppressed me ; and I think it but 
fair that I should endeavour to dissipate it, in the 
si^e manner as mine was by the Dervish, — 'there- 


fore I will repeat the story which he related to me i 
and, whether it amuses you or noty yet perhaps you 
Will be glad to know how the mind of a poor pri- 
soner^in the sanctuary at Kom, was diverted from 
its miseries. 


* The present* Khbn-khor of Roum is a staunch 
Mussulmati, and a rigid upholder of the true faith. 
Upon his coming to the throne; he announced his in- 
tefation of doing away with man};^' customs common' to 
the infidelsy which had crept^into the administration 
of the state during the reign of his predecessor ; and 
he thought it his duty to endeavo\ir to restore things 
to their primitive simplicityt and to adopt a mode of 
governmenit purely Turkish. Accordingly, he re- 
sumed a custom- which had almost got into disuse^^-^ 
that of going about the city in tebdiif or disguise; 
and he was so cautious about the disguises which he 
adopted, and the people whom he admitted into his 
secrets on these occasions, that he took all sorts of 
precautions, and invented all sorts of schemes of se* 
crecy, in whatever related to his dresses, and the cha- 
racters in which he chose to appear. 

^ It is not long ago that considerable discontent 
prevailed throughbut Turkey, and rebellion threaten- 
ed to break out in Constantinople itself. He was then 
very anxious to ascertain the temper of the public 
mind ; and, in his usual cautious manner, he deter- 
mined to get a dress made that would make him un- 
discoverable by even his own immediate attendants. 

< He usually sent^for different tailors at different 
times, and in different places, and made them make 
up dresses for him. On this occasion, he ordered his 
favourite slave, the white eunuch Mansouri, to bring 
him a tailor of no repute, adopting all the necessary 
precautions, at midnight, in order that he might re. 
ceive instructions about a dress. 

* JP%on-X:Aor,— literally * Blood drinker;* so the Saltan of Hmmor 
Tarkej it styled in Persia. 



< The slave in great humility made his bash ustun 
(on my head be it,) and went his way to execute the 

* Close to the gate of the Bezesten^ or cloth-market, 
he saw an old man in a stalls so narrow, that he could 
scarce turn himself about in it, who was taken up in 
patching an old cloak. He was almost bent double 
with constant labour at his shop-board ; and his eyes 
seemed not to have benefited by his application, for 
a pair of glasses were mounted on his nose. * This is 
precisely the man I want,' said the slave to himself : 
' I am sure he can be of no repute.^ So intent was he 
upon his work, that he did not heed the salutation of 
'Peace be with yoq, friend !' with which Mansouri 
accosted him ; and when he did look up, and saw the 
well dressed personage .whom he thought had spoken, 
he continued his work, without making the usual re- 
ply ; for he could not suppose that the salutation was 
meant for such a poor d^vil as he. 

* However, finding that he was the object of the eu- 
nucVs attention, he doffed the spectacles, threw away 
his work, and was about getting on his legs, wheQ 
he was stopped, and requested not to disturb him- 

« ' What is your nanie V said Mansouri. 

* ' Abdallah,' said the tailor, ' at your service ; but 
I am generally called Babadul by my friends, and the 
world at large.' 

** You arc a tailor, are not you?' continued the 

* * Yes,' said the other, ^ I am a tailor as well as the 
Muezxin at the little mosque in the fish-market. What 
Diore can I do?' 

\ ' * Well, Babadul,' said Mansouri, <have you a 
.niiad for a job,—- a good job ?' 
^w*AAm I a fool,' answered the old man, ^ that I 
^^ukL^islike it ? Say what it is.' 

** Softly, my friend,' remarked the eunuch ; ' we 
must go on slow and sure. Will you suffer yourself 
tolieled blindfolded at midnight wherever I choose 
ts>mke you, for a job ?' 

E 2 




« ^ That's another qoestioQ/ said Babadul ; ^ times 
are critical, heads fly in abiindance, and a poor tai« 
lor's may go as well as a vizier's or a capitan patha's. 
But pay me welly and I believe I would make a suit 
of clothes for Eblis, the foul fiend, himself/ 

* ' Well{ then, you agree to my proposal ?* said the 
eunuch, who at the same time put two pieces of gold 
in his hand. 

« « Yes, most surely/ said Babadul, * I agree. Tell 
me what I am to do, and you may depend upon mie.' 

< Accordingly, they settled between them that the 
eunuch was to come to the stall at midnight, and lead 
him away blindfolded. 

*• Babadul, being left alone, continued bis work, 
wondering what could be the job upon which he was 
to be so mysteriously employed ; and, anxioiis to make 
his wife a partaker of the news of his good luck, he 
shut up his stall earlier than usual, and went to his 
house, that was situated not far from the little mosque 
in the fish-market, of which he was the Muezzin, 

* Old Dilferib, his wife, was almost as much beet 
double as her husband; and in consequence of the two 
gold pieces, and in contemplation of more which they 
expected to receive, they treated themselves to a dish 
of smoking kabobs^ a salad, dried grapes, and sweet- 
meats, after which they consoled themselves with some 
of the hottest' and most bitter coffee which the old 
woman could make. 

< True to his appointment, Babadul was at his stall 
at midnight, where he was as punctually met by Man- 
souri. Without any words, the former permitted 
hmselftobe blindfolded, whilst the latter led him 
away by the hand, making many and devious tumg, 
until they reached the imperial seraglio ; there, stop- 
ping only to open the private iron gate, Mansouri in- 
troduced the tailor into the very heart of the Sultanas 
private apartments. The bandage over his eyes was 
taken off in a dark chamber, lighted up only by a 
small lamp, which stood on the shelf surrounding the 
top of the room, but which was splendidly furnished 

by sofas of the richest brocade, and by carpets of the 


most costly manufacture. Here Babadul was com- 
manded to sit^ until Mansouri returned with a bundle 
Wrapped in a large shawl handkerchief: this being 
open^dy asort Of dervish's dress was displayed to the 
tailor, and he was requested to look at it, to/consider 
how long he would be making such a one, «tnd then to 
return it again, duly foldect up, to its shawl covering. 
In the mean while, Mansouri told him to stay there 
until be should return to take him away again^ and 
then left him. 

* Babadul, having turned the dress over and over 
again, calculated each stitch, and come to his proper 
conclusions, packed it up in the handkerchief, as he 
had been commanded ; but no sooner had he done 
this, than a man of lofty demeanour and appearance, 
"whose look made the poor tailor shrink within him- 
self, came into the room^ took up the bundle, and 
walked away with it, wifthout uttering a single word. 

^ A few minutes after,, as Babadul was pondering 
over the strangeness of his situation, and just recover- 
ing from the effects of this apparition, a door opened 
in another part of the apartment, and a mysterious 
figure, richly dressed, came in, bearing a bundle, 
equally covered with a shawl, about the size of that 
which had just been takeh away ; and making the 
lowest prostrations before the tailor, in great apparent 
trepidation, approached him, placed it at his feet, kiss- 
ed the ground, and retreated without saying a word, 
of even looking up. 

* ' Well,' said Babadul to himself, * this may be 

-something very finey and I may be sothe very great 

personage, for aught 1 know ; but this is very certain, 

t^at I had rather be patching my old cloak in the stall 

than doing this job, however grand and lucrative it 

may be. Who knows what I may have been brought 

' here for ? Th6se comings in and goings out of strange 

looking people, apparently without tongues in their 

. lie^ds, does not argue well. I wish they would give 

3tt€ fewer bows and a greater supply of words, from 

which I might learn what I am to get* by all this. 

^jhave heard of poor women having been sewn up in 


sacks and thrown into the sea. Who knows ? perhaps 
I am destined to be the tailor on such an occasion.' 

* He had scarcely got thns far in his soliloquy, when 
the slave Matisouri re-entered the roojny and told^hjm, 
without more wordsy to take up the bundle ; which 
having ddc>e,his eyes were again blWid-fplded, and he 
was led to the spot from whence he came* BabaduU 
true to his agreement, asked no questions^ but agreed 
with the slave that in three days the dress should be 
ready for delivery at his stall, for which he.was to re- 
ceive ten more pieces of gold. 

* Having got rid of his companion, he proceeded 
with all haste to his house, where he knew his wife 
would be impatiently waiting his return ; and as he 
walked onwards he congrs^tulated himself that at 
length he had succeeded in getting indeed a job worth 
the having, and that his fate had finally turned up 
something good for his old-age. It was about two 
o'clock in the morning when he reached the door of 
his house. He was received by his wife with expres*- 
sions of great impatience at his long absence ; but 
when 'he held up the bundle to her face, as she held 
up the lamp to his, and when he said, *> Mujdeh^ give 
me a reward for good news : — see, I have got my 
work, and a handsome reward we shall get when it is 
finished,' she was all smiles and good humour. 

• < ' Leave it there till we get up, and let us go to bed 
now,' said the tailor. 

<' No, no,* said the wife, ' I must look at what you 
have got before I retire, or I shall not be able to sleep:' 
upon which, whilst he held up the lamp she opened 
the bundle. Guess, guess at the astonishment of the 
tailor and hi^ wife, when, instead of seeing a suit of 
clothes, they discovered, wrapped in a napkin, in its 
most horrid and ghastly state, a human head ! 

' It fell from the old woman's hands, and rolled 
away sonde paces, whilst the horror-struck couple first 
hid their faces with their hands, and then looked at 
each other with countenances which nothing can de- 

« ' Work !' cried the. wife, ' work, indeed ! pretty 



work you have made of it ! Was it necessary to go so 
fari and to take such precautioDs, to bring this mis* 
fortune on our heads ? Did you bring home this dead 
man's head to make a suit of clothes of?' 

^ Anna senna ! Bdba senna! Curses be on his mo- 
ther! Perdition seize his father !' exclaimed the poor 
tsdlar, < for bringipg me into* this dilein^roa. My heart 
misgave me as that dog of an eunuch talked of blind- 
foldings and silence to me : I thought, as true as I am 
a Turk 9 that the job could not consist only in making 
a suit of clothes ; and sure enough thi^ dog*s son has 
tacked a head to it. Allah ! Allah ! what am I to do 
D01HF? I know not the way to his home, or else 1 would 
take it baek to him immediately, and throw it in his 
face. We shall have the Bostangt Bashi and an hun- 
dred bther.Bashis here in a minute^ and we shall be 
mkde to pay the price of. blood ; or, who knows, be 
hung, or drowned, or impaled ! What shall we do, 
eh, Dilferib, my soul, say V * 

* * Do ?' said his wife > * get rid of the head, to be 
sure: we have no more right to have it palmed upon 
us than any body else.' 

* < But the day will soon dawn/ said the tailor, * and 
then it will be too late. Let us be doing something 
at once.' 

^ < A thought has struck me/ said the old woman. 
' Our neighbour, the baker, Hassan, heats his oven at 
this hour, and begins^ soon after to bake his bread for 
his- morning's customers. He frequently has different 
sorts of things to bake from the neighbouring houses, 
which are placed near the oyen's mouth over-night : 
suppose I put this head into one of our earthen pots 
and send it to be baked ; nobody will find it out until 
it is done, and then we need not send for it, so it will 
remain on the baker's hands.' 

^ Babadul admired his wi£e's sagacity, and forthwith 
she put her plans into execution. When the head had 
been placed in a baking-pan, she watched a moment 
when nobody was at hand, and set it on the ground^ 
in the same row with the other articles \.V\?l\. vj'^x^ x.^ 
be inserted w Hassan's oven. The o\d co\rj\^ ^^"^ 


double-barred the door of their house, and retired to 
rest, comforting themselves with the acquisition of the 
fine shawl and napkin in which the head had been 

^ The baker Hassan and his son Mahmud were heat- 
ing their oven, inserting therein thomsy chips, and old 
rubbish at a great rate, when their attention was ar- 
rested by the extraordinary wbinings and barking of 
a dogy that was a constant customer at the oven for 
stray bits of bread, and much befriended by Hassan 
and his son, who were noted for being conscientious 
Mussulmans. * 

< ^ Look, Mahmud,' said the father to the son, ^ see 
what is the matter with the dog : something extraot- 
dinary is in the wind.' 

^ The son did what his father bade him, and seeing 
no reason for the dog's noises, said, ^ Bir chey yaky 
there is nothing,' and drove him away. 

* But the ho)vlings not ceasing, Hassan went him- 
self, and found the dog most extremely intent upoa 
smelling and pointing at the tailor's pipkin. He jump- 
ed upon Hassan, then at the pot, then upon Hassan 
again, until the baker no longer doubted that the beast 
took great interest in its contents. He therefore gent- 
ly drew off the lid, when need I mention his horror 
and surprise at seeing a human head staring him in 
the face ? 

' < Allah ! Allah !' cried the baker ; but being a man 
of strong nerves, instead of letting it fall, as most 
people would have done, he quietly put on the lid 
again, and called his son to him. 

** Mahmud,' said he, 'this is a bad worlcJ', and 
there are bad men in it. Some wicked infidel has 
sent me a man's head to bake ; but thanks to our good 
fortune, and to the dog, our oven has been saved from 
pollution, and we can go on making pnr bread with 
clean hands and clear consciences. But since the 
devil is at work, let others have a visit from him as 
well as ourselves. If it be known that we have had 
a dead man's head to bake, who will ever employ us 
again? we must starve, we must shut up our oven; 



we shall get the reputation of mixing up our dough 
with human grease, and if perchance a hair is found, 
it will immediately be said that it came from the dead 
man's beard.' 

< Mahmud, a youth of about twenty, who partook 
of his fathers insensibility and coolness^ and who 
moreover had a great deal of dry humour and ready 
wit, looked upon the incident in the light of a good 
joke^ and broke out into a hearty laugh when he saw 
the ugly picture which the grinning head made, set' 
in its earthen frame. 

* * J-et us pop it into. the shop of Kior Ali, the bar- 
ber, opposite/ said the youth ; ^ he is just beginning 
to open it, and as he has but one eye, we shall be bet* 
ter able to do so without being seen. Do, father, said 
Mahmud, ^ let me ; noboby shall discover me ; and 
let it be done before there is more daylight.* 

< The father consented, and Mahmud catching the 
moment when the barber had walked to the corner of 
the street to perform certain ablutions, stept into his 
shop, and placed the head on a sort of takcheh^ or 
bracket on the wall, arranged some shaving towels 
ai3klHit it, as if it had been a customer ready seated to 
be ffhaved, and, with a boy's mischief in his heart, 
stept back to his oven again, to watch the effects 
which this new sort of customer would have upon the 
blind barber. 

* Kior Ali hobbled into his shop, which was but ill 
lighted by a glimmering of daylight that hardly pier- 
ced through the oiUpapered windows, and looking about 
htm, saw this figure, as he supposed, seated against 
tlif; wall ready to be operated upon. 

/^ ♦ * Ha ! peace be unto you !' said he to it : * you 
Irire rather early this morning ; I did not see you at 
first* My water is not yet hot. Oh, I see you want 
yoar head shaved ! but why do you take off yawrfese 
/^cuU-cap) so soon t you will catch cold.' Then he 
fposed. ^ No answer,' said the barber to himself. 
^ Jljsappose he is dumb, and deaf too perhaps. Well, 
I ^Mn half blind ; so we are nearly upon equal terms : 
HJlirever, if I were even to lose my other eye,' ad- 


dressing himself to the head, ^ I dare sdy^ my old im* 
cle, I conld shave you for all that ; for my razor 
would glide as naturally over your head, as a draught 
of gdod wine does over my throat* 

^ He went methodically about his preparati6ns : he 
*took down his tin basin from a peg, prepared his soap^ 
then stropped his razor on the long bit of leather that 
was fastened to his girdle* Having made his lather^ 
he walked op to the supposed customer, holding the 
basin in his left hand^ whilst his right was extended 
to sprinkle the first preparation of water on the sconce* 
No sooner had he placed his hand on the cold iiead^ 
than he withdrew it, as if he had been burnt* -^ £h ! 
why, what's the matter with you, friend f' said the 
barber : ^ you are as cold as a piece of ice.' But when 
he attempted a second time to lather it^ down it-came 
with a terrible bounce from the shelf to the floor, and 
made the poor shaver jump quite across his shop with 
the fright, 

**Aman! aman ! O mercy, mercy!' cried Kior 
Ali, as he thrust himself into the furthermost corner 
without daring to move : < take my shop, my razors^ 
my towels,-r*take all I have ; but don't touch n^y life ! 
If you are the Shaitan^ speak; but excuse my 6hav^ 
ing youP 

But when he found that all was hushed after the 
catastrophe, and that nothing was to be feared, he ap- 
proached the head, and taking it up by the lodk of 
hair at the top, he looked at it in amazement* ^ A 
head, by all the Imams !* said he, accosting it : f and 
how did you get here ! Do you want to disgrace me, 
you filthy piece of flesh ? but you shall not ! Although 
Kior Ali has lost one eye, yet his other is a sharp one, 
and knows what it is about* I would give you to the 
baker Hassan there, if his togue of a son, who is noW 
looking this way, was not even sharper than this self- 
same eye ; but now labink of it, I will take you where 
you can do no harm* The Giaour Yanaki, the Greek 
Kabobchi^ (roast meat man,) shall have you, and shall 

The Xra6o6j^ops at CoDttintiiio[>le are eating houses^ where at a roo' 


cot you up into tninceixieat for his infidel customers/ 
Upon this, Kior All, drawing in one hand, in which 
he carried the head, through the slit on the sides of 
his beniche^ or cloak, and taking up his pipe in the 
other, he walked down two streets to the shop of the 
aforesaid Greek. 

He frequented it in preference to that of a Mussul- 
man^ because he could here drink wine with .impu- 
nity. From long practice he knew precisely where 
the provision of fresh meat was kept, and as he en- 
tered the shop, casting his eye furtively round, he 
threw thd hesud in a dark corner, behind one of the 
large sides of a sheep that was to be used for the ka- 
bobs of the day. No one saw him perform this feat ; 
for the morning was still sufficiently obscure to screen 
him. He lighted his pipe at Yanaki's charcoal fire, 
and as a pri:text for his visits ordered a dish of meat 
to be sent to him for breakfast; a treat to which he 
thought himself fully entitled after his morning's ad- 

C Yanaki, meanwhile, having cleaned his platters, 
but his skewers in order, lit his fires, made his sher- 
bets, and swept out his shop, went to the larder for 
some meat for the shaver's breakfast. Yanaki was a 
true Greek :-^cunntng, cautious, deceitful ; cringing 
to his superiors, tyrannical towards his inferiors ; de- 
testing with a mortal hatred his proud jnasters, the 
Osmanlies, yet fawning, flattering, and abject when- 
ever any of them, however low in life, deigned to 
lake notice of him. Turning over his stock, he look- 
ed about for some old bits that might serve the pre- 
sent purpose, muttering to himself, that any carion 
was good enough for a Turk's stomach. He survey- 
ed his half sheep from top to bottom ; felt it, and said, 
^ No, this will keep; but as he turned up its fat tail, 
the eye of the dead man's head caught his eye, and 
made him start, and step back some paces. ^ As ye 
love your eyes,' exclaimed he, * who is there ?' Re- 

ment's notice, a dish of roast meat, and small bits of meat done on skew- 
ers^ are served op to whoever asks for them. 


54 1*HK A0Vl^)rrURES 

ceivitig; no atisirert tie looked again, and agpiin ; then 
Marer^-^^then, thrusting his hand amopg sheep's heads 
and trotters, old remnants of meat, and the like, he 
pulled out the head-— 4he horrid head—- which he held 
teteiided at arm's lengthy as if he were afraid that it 
would do him mischief, ^ Anathemas attend your 
beard !' exclaimed Yanaki, as soon as he discovered^ 
by the tuft of hair on the tpp^ that it had belonged to 
a Mussulman, < Och ! if I had but every one of your 
heads in this manner, ye cursed race of Omar ! I 
would make kabobs of them, and every cur in Con« 
stantinople should get fat for nothing. May ye all 
come to this end ! May the vultures feed oo your car- 
casses ! and may every Greek have the good fortune 
which has befallen me this davt of having one of your 
worthless skulls for his foothall !' Upon which, in 
his rage, he threw it down and kicked it from him $ 
but, recollecting himself, he said, < But, after all, what 
shall I do with it ? If it is seen here, I am lost for 
ever : nobody will believe but what I have kilted a 

* All of a sudden he cried out, in a sort of malr- 
cious ecstasy, < 'Tis well I remembered,— the Jew ! 
the Jew ! — a properer place for such a head was never 
thought or heard of ; and there you shall go, thou vile 
remnant of a Mahomedan r 

^ Upon which he seized it, and hiding it under his 
coat, ran with it down the street to where the dead 
body of a Jew lay extended, with its head placed im* 
n^ediately between its legs. 

< • In Turkey, you must know,* said, the Dervbh, 
< when a Mohamedan is beheaded, his head is placed 
under his arm, by way of an honourable distinction 
from the Christian or Jew, who, when a similar mis- 
fortune befalls them, have theirs inserted between 
their legs, as close to the seat of dishonour as possi- 

« It was in that situation then, that Yanaki placed 
the Turk's head, putting it as near, cheek by jowl, 
with the Jew's, as the hurry of the case would allow. 
He had been able to effect this without being seen. 




because tiie day was stlU bat little advanced, aod no 
doe stirring ; and he returned to his shop^ full of ex?- 
ultatibn at having been able to discharge his feelings 
of hatred against his oppressors^ by placing one of 
their heads^on the spot in nature, which, according 
to his estimation, was the most teeming with oppro 

« I'he unfortunate suflferer oh this occasion had been 
accused of stealing and putting to death a Mohame- 
dan child (a ceremony in their religion, which, they 
have been known to practise both in Turkey and Per* 
sia,) and which created such an extraordinary tumult 
arifiong the mob of Constantinople, that, in order to 
appease it, he had been decapitated. His execution 
had taken place purposely before the door of a weal- 
thy Greek, and the body was ordered to remain there 
three days before it was permitted to be csfrried away 
for interment. Tlie expectation that the Greek would 
be induced to pay down a handsome sum, in order 
that this nuisance might be removed from his door, 
and save him from the ill luck which such an object 
is generally supposed to bring, made the officer en- 
trusted with the execution, prefer this spot to every 
other. But, careless of the consequences, the Greek 
shut up the windows of his houde, determined to de- 
prive his oppressors of their expected perquisite ; and 
^ the dead Jew remained exposed his full time* Few 
excepting those of the true faith ventured to approach 
Htke spot, fearful that the Mohamedan authorities 
would, in their wanton propensities' to heap up insults 
ttpon the Giaours, oblige some one of them to carry 
the carcass to the place of burial ; and thus the hor- 
ftd and disgusting object was left abandoned to itself, 
and this had given an opportunity to the kabobchi, 
Tanaki, to dispose of the head in the manner above 
related, uiiseen and unmolested. But when, as the 
day advanced, and as the stir of the streets became 
itmc active, this additional head was discovered^ the 
li^wd, which gathered about it became immense. It 
#m immediately rumoured that a miracle had been 
^lierformed ; for a dead Jew was to be seen with two 


hedds. The extraordinary intelligence flew from 
mouth to tnouth, until the whole city was in an up* 
roar, and all were running to see the miracle. The 
Sanhedrim immediately pronounced that something 
extraordinary was about to happen to their persecuted 
race. Rabbins were to be seen running to arid ffo^ 
and their whole community was now poured around 
the dead body, in expectation that he would perhaps 
arise, put on his heads, and deliver them from the 
gripe of their oppressors, 

< But as ill luck would have it for them, a Janissary, 
who had mixed in the crowd, and had taken a close 
survey of the supernumerary head, exclaimed in a mix- 
ture of doubt and amazement, * Allah, Allah, il Al- 
lah ! thiese are no infidel's heads. One is the head of 
our lord and master; the Aga of the Janissaries. 
Upon which, seeing more of his companions, he call- 
ed them to him; and making known his discovery, 
they became violent with rage, and set off to commu- 
nicate the intelligence to their Orta. 

* The news spread like wildfire throughout the 
whole of the corps of the Janissaries, and a most 
alarming tumult was immediately e^^cited : for it 
seems that it was unknown in the capital that their 
chief, to whom they were devotedly attached, and 
one of their own selection, had been put to death. 

* ' What! said they, * is it not enough to deal thus 
treacherously with us, and deprive us of a chief to 
whom we are attached ; but we must be treated with 
the greatest contempt that it is possible for men to 
receive ? What ! the head of our most noble Aga of 
the Janissaries to be placed upon the most ignoble 
part of a Jew ! what are we to come to? We alone 
are not insulted ; the whole of Islam is insulted, de- 
graded, debased ! No : this is unh<*ard-of insolence^ 
a stain never to be wiped off, without the extermina- 
tion of the whole race ! — And what dog has done this 
deed ? How did the head get there ? Is it that dog 
of a Vizier's work, or has the Reis Effendi and those 
traitors of Frank ambassadors been at work ?— ^a/- 
lah^ Billah^ Tallah ! by the holy Caaba, by the beard 


of Osman, and by the sword of Omar, wp will be re- 
venged !' ^ 

We must leave the tumult to rage for a short time, 
we must request the reader to imagine a scene, i)n 
which Jews are^ying in all directions^ hiding them- 
selves with great precaution against enraged Turks, 
whof with expressions like those just mentioned in 
their mouths, are to be seen walking about in groups, 
armed to their teeth whh pistols and scimitars, and 
vowmg vengeance upon every thing which came in 
their way. He must imagine a city of narrow streets 
and low houses, thronged with a numerous popula- 
tion, in dresses the most various in shape and the 
most lively in coloura^ all anxious, all talking, all 
agog as if something extraordinary was to happen ; 
in the midst of whom 1 will leave him, to take a look 
Into the interior of the Sultan's seraglio, and to inquire 
in what his eminency himself had been engaged since 
we last noticed him, 

* On the very same night of the tailor's atten- 
dance, the Sultan had given a secret order for tak- 
ing off the head of the Aga of the Janissaries (the 
fomenter of all the disturbances which had lately tak- 
en place among his corps, and consequently their 
idol ;) and so anxious was he about its execution^ that 
he had ordered it to be brought to him the moment 
it was off. The man entrusted with the execution, 
upon entering the room where he had been directcfd 
to bring the head, seeing some one seated, naturally 
look him for the Sultan, and, without daring to look 
up, immediately placed the burthen at his feet, with 
rdie prostrations which we have already described as 
having been performed before the tailor. The Sul- 
tan, who not a minute before had taken away the bun- 
dle 'containing the Dervish's dress, had done so in 
the intention of deceiving his slave Mansouri him- 
self; so anxious was he of being unknown in his new 
4isgnise even to him ; and intended to have sui>sti- 
j^ited another in its stead ; but not calculating either 
iq>on the reception of the head, or upon iMjinsduri's 
|i|inediate return to the tailor, he was himself com- 

r 2 


pletely puzzled how to act when he found the tailor 
was gone, led off by his slave. To have sent after 
them would have disconcerted bis schemes, and 
therefore he felt himself obliged to wait Mansouri's 
return, before he could get an explanation of what had 
happened i for he knew that they would not have gone 
away without the dress, and that dress he had then 
in his possession. In the mean while, anxious and 
impatient to know what had become of the expected 
^heady he sent for the officer who was entrusted with 
the execution ; and the astonishment of both may be 
imagined when an explanation took place. 

< < By my beard !' exclaimed the Sultan, having 
thought awhile within himself; ^by my beardy the 
tailor must have got the head !' . 

^ His impatience for Mansouri^s return then becanae 
extreme. In vain he fretted, fumed, and cried * Al- 
lah ! Allah !' it did not make the slavp return a mi- 
nute the sooner, who, good man, would have gone 
quietly to rest, had he not Jbeen called to appear be- 
fore the Sultan. 

^ As soon as he was within hearing, he called out^ 
* Ahi ! Mansouri, run immediately to the tailor-— he 
has got the head of the Aga of the Janissaries instead 
of the Dervish's dress— run, fetch it without loss of 
time, or something unfortunate will happen !' He then 
explained how this untoward- event had occurred. 
Matisouri now, in his turn, felt himself greatly embar- 
rassed ; for he only knew the road to the tailor's stall, 
but was totally unacquainted with his dwelling-house. 
However, rather than excite his master's anxiety in a 
higher degree, he set off in quest of the tailor, and 
Went straight to his stall, in the hopes of hearing from 
the neighbours where his house was. It was too early 
in the day for the opening of the Bezestan, and ex- 
cept a coffee-house that had just prepared for the re- 
ception of customers, where he applied and could gain 
no intelligence, he found himself completely at a stand- 
still. By the greatest good luck, he recollected Ba- 
badul had told him that he was the muezzin to the 
little mosque in the Fish Market, and thither he im- 




miecliately bent his steps. The azan, or morning in- 
vitation to prayers, was now chanting forth from all 
the minarets^ and he expected that be might catch the 
purloinerof his head in the very act of inviting the 
faithful to prayers. 

^ As he approached the spot, he heard an old bro- 
ken and treoHilous voice, which he imagined might be 
Babadul's, breaking the stillness of the morning by all 
the energy of its Jungs 9 and he was not mistaken, for 
as he stood under the jninaret^ he perceived the old 
man walking round the gallery which encircles it, 
with his hand applied to the back of his ear, and with 
his moath wide open, pouring out his whole throat in 
the execution of his office. As soon as the tailor saw 
Mansouri making signs tohim^ the profession of faith 
atuck in his throat ; and between the fright of being 
brought to account for the beadf and the words which 
he had to pronounce. It is said that he made so strange 
a jumble^ that some of the stricter Mussulmans, his 
neighbours, who were paying attention to the call, 
professed themselves quite scandalised at his perfor- 
mance. ..He descended with all haste, aqd locking the 
door after him which lead^ up the winding staircase, 
he met Mansouri in the street. He did not wait to 
be questioned respecting the fate of the horrid object, 
but at once attacked the slave concerning the trick, as 
he jcalled it, which had been put upon him. 

* ' Are you a man,' said he, * to treat a poor Emir 
like me in the manner you hs^ve done, as if my house 
.was a charnel-house? I suppose you will ask nie the 
price of blood next !' 

** Friend,' said Mansouri,' what are you talking 
iabout? do not you see that it has been a mistake?' 

* < A mistake, indeed !' cried the tailor, < a mistake 

done on purpose to bring a poor man into trouble. 

.One man laughs at my stupid beard, and makes me 

^believe that I am to make a suit of clothes for him*-r> 

another takes away the pattern— and a third substitutes 

\m dead man's head for it. Allah ! Allah ! I have got 

into the hands of a pretty nest of rogues, a set of ill- 

-^ll^gGtten knaves !' 


' Upon which Mansouri placed his hand upon tht 
tailor's mouth, and said^ ♦ Say no more, say no more ; 
you are getting deeper into the dirt. Do you know 
whom you are abusing ?' 

. ** I know not, nor care not,* answered Babadul ; 
^all I know is, that whoever gives me a dead man's 
head for a suit of clothes can onlybe an infidel <Jog.' 

^*Do you call God's vicegerent upon earth, ypu 
old dcmi-stitching, demi-prayingfbol, ah infidel dog?' 
exclaimed Mansouri in a rage. * Are your vile lips 
to defile the name of him who is the Alempenah^ the 
refuge of the world ? What dirt are you eating, what 
ashes are you heaping on your head? Come, no more 
words ; tell me where the dead man's head is, or I 
will take yours off in hi« stead.' 

< Upon hearing this* the tailor stood with his mouth 
wide open, as if the doors of his understanding had 
just been unlocked. 

* * Amarin aman^ Mercy mercy, O A§a !' cried Ba- 
badul to Mansouri, ^ I was^ignorant of what I was say- 
ifig^ Who would have thought it ? Ass, fool, dolt, 
that I am, not to have known better. Bismillak! in 
the name of the Prophet, pray come to my house; your 
steps will be fortunate, and your slave's head will 
touch the stars/ 

«* I am in a hurry, a great hurry,' said Mansouri. 
« Where is the head, the head of the Aga of the Jan- 
issaries V 

* W hen the tailor heard whose head it had been, and 
recollected what he and his wife had done with it, his 
knees knocked under him with fear, and he began to 
exude from every pore. 

*' Where is it, indeed ?' said he. < Oh ! what has 
come upon us! Oh I what cursed kismet^ (fate) is 

** Where is it?' exclaimed the slave, again and 
again, * where is it ? speak quick!' 

* The poor tailor was completely puzzled what to 
say, and kept floundering from one answer to another 
until he was quite entangled as in a net. 

* * Have you burnt it ?' 



< * Have vou thrown it away?' 

* * No/ ' 

* * Then, in the name of the prophet, what have you 
done with it ? Have you eat it ?* 

•-* No/ 

* * Is it lying in your house ?' 

^ * Is it hiding in any other person's house ?^ 
*^No.' . 

* Then at last qtiite out of patience, the slave Man- 
souri took Babadul by his beard, and shaking his head 
for him, exclaimed with a roar, * Then tell me, yoU 
old dotard ! what is it doing V 

* * It is baking,' answered the tailor, half choked : 
< I have said it,' 

* * Baking ! did you say V exclaimed the slave, in the 
greatest amazement, * what did you bake it for ? Are 
you going to eat itiV 

* • True, I said : what would you have more ?' an- 
swered Babadul, < it is now baking/ And then he gave 
a full account of what he and his wife had done in the 
sad dilemma in .which they had been placed. 

* * Show me the way to the baker's,' said Mansouri; 
<at least, we will get it in its singed state, if we can 
get it in no other. Who ever thougVjt of baking the 
head of the Aga of the Janissaries ? Allah il allah /' 

* They then proceeded to the baker Hassan's who 
was now about taking his bread from his oven. As 
doon as he became acquainted with their errand, he 
did not hesitate in telling all the circumstances attend- 
ing the transmission of the head from the pipkin to 
the barber's bracket ; happy to have had an opportu- 
nity of exculpating himself of what might possibly 
have been brought up against him as a crime. 

< The three (Mansouri, the tailor, and the baker) 
then proceeded to the barber's, and inquired from 
him what he had done with the head of his earliest 

* Kior Ali, after some hesitation, made great as- 
surances that he looked upon this V\otx\d oVi^^^\. ^'s^ ^ 


donation from Eblts himself, and consequenfly that 
he had thought himself justified in transferring it over 
to the Giaour Yanaki^ who, he made no doubt^ had 
already made his brother-infidels partake of it in the 
shape of kabobs* . Full of wonder and amazement^ 
invoking the prophet at each step, and uncertain as to 
the result of such unheard of adventures, they then 
added the barber to their party, and proceeded to 
Yanaki's cook-shop. 

* The Greek* confounded at seeing so many of the 
true believers enter his house, had a sort of feeling 
that their business wasnot'of roast meat, but that they 
were in search of meat of a less savoury nature. As 
soon as the question had been put to him concerning 
the head, he atoutly denied having seen it, or know- 
ing any thing at all concerning it. 

< The barber showed the spot where he had placed 
it, and swore it upon the Koran. 

* Mansduri had undertaken the investigation of the 
point in question, when thay discovered symptoms of 
the extraordidary agitation that prevailed in the city 
in consequence of the discovery which had been 
made of the doubk-headed Jew, apd of the subse* 
queni discovery that had produced «uch great sensa- 
tion among the whole corps of Janissaries. 

* Mansouri, Followed by the tailor, the baker, and 
the barber, then proceeded to the spot where the dead 
Israelite was prostrate ; and there, to their astonish- 
ment, they each recognised their morning visitor*-^ 
the head iso long sought after. 

< Yanaki, the Greek, in the meanwhile, conscious 
of what was likely to befal him, without loss of time 
gathered what money he had ready at hand, and fled 
the city. 

* * Where is the Greek ?* said Mansouri, turning 
round to look for him in the supposition that he had 
joined his party ; «'we must all go before the Sultan.' 

* * I dare say he is run off,' said the barber. • I am 
not so blind but I. can see that he it is who gifted the 
Jew with his additional head.' 

* Mansouri now would have carried off the head ; 


OFHAJJifi^BA. 5^ 

but stiiTDiiiided as it was by a band of enraged and 
armed soldiers^ who vowed vengeance upon him who 
had deprived them of their chief, he thought it most 
prodent to withdraw. Leading with him his three 
witnesses, he at once proceeded to the presence of 
his master. 

* When Mansouri had infortned the Sultan of all 
that had happened, where he had found the head of 
the Aga of the Janissaries, bow it had got there, Jlnd 
of the tumult it had raised, the reader may better 
imagine than I can describe the state of the monarch'^ 
mind. To tell the story with all its particulars he 
fclt would be derogatory to his dignity, for it was 
sure to cover him with ridicule ; but at. the same time 
to let the matter rest as it now stood was impf>ssible, 
because the tumult would increase until there would 
be no means of quelling it, and the aiiair might ter- 
minate by depriving him of his crown together with 
his life» 

^ He remained in a state of indecision for some 
time, twisting up the ends of his mustachios, and 
muttering Allah ! Allah ! in low ejaculations, until 
at length he ordered the Prime, Vizier and the Mufti 
to his presence. 

* Atarmed by the abruptness ol the summons, these 
two great dignitaries arrired at the imperial gate in 
no enviable state of mind ; but when the Sultan had 
informed them of the tumult then raging in the capi- 
tal, they resumed their usual tranquillity 

* After some deliberation it was resolved, that the 
tailor, the baker, the barber, and the kabobchi, should 
appear before the tribunal of the Mufti, accused of 
having entered into a conspiracy against the Aga of 
the Janissaries, and stealing his head for the purpose 
of baking, shaving, and roasting it, and that they 
should be condemned to pay the price of his blood ; 
but as the kabobchi had been the immediate cause of 
the tumult by treating the head with such gross /and 
unheard-of insult, and as he was a Greek and an infi- 
del, it was further resolved that the Mufti should issue 
2ifetwah, aathorisiDg his head to be cut oS^ «ixA^\^^^^ 


on the same odious spot where he had exposed that 
of the Aga of the Janissaries. 

^ It wad then agreed between the Sultan and his 
grand vizier, that in order to appease the Janissaries 
a new Aga should be appointed who wa^ agreeable to 
them, and that the deceased should be buried with 
becoming distinction. All this (except killing the 
Greek, who had fled) was done, and tranquillity again 
restored to the city. But it must furt|)er be added to 
the honour of the Sultan, that he not only paid every 
expense which the tailor, the baker, and the barber 
were condemned to incur, but also gave them each a 
handsome reward for the difficulties into which they 
had so unfortunately been thrown.' 

I have much curtailed the story, particularly where 
Mansouri proceeds to relate to the Sultan the fate ef 
the head, because, had. I given it with all the details 
the Dervish didy it, would have been over long^ ^ In- 
deed, I have confined myself as much as possible to 
the outline ; for to have swelled the narrative with 
the innumerable digressions of my companion a whole 
volume would not have contained it. The art of a 
story-teller (and it is that which marks a man of ge- 
nius) is to make his tale interminable, and still to in-^ 
terest his audience. So the/Dervish assured me ; and 
added, that with the materials of the one which I have 
now attempted to repeat, he would bind himself to 
keep talking for a whole moon, and still have some- 
thing to say. 



; ) 

He becames^ a saint^ and associates with the most cele* 

brated divine in Persia. 

At len^h Mirza Abdul Cossim himself, haviog 
heard much of my sanctity, took an opportunity, when 
visiting the shrine of the sa^nt, to send for me* This 
was an event n^hich I contemplated with apprehen- 
Aon ; for how could I possibly conceal my ignorance 
from one who would certainly put my pretensions of 
knowledge to the test ? — an ignorance so profound, 
that I could scarcely give an account of what were the 
first principles of the Mohamedan foith. 

I therefore began to take myself to task upon what 
I did know. Let tne see^ said I, I know, firsts That 
all those who do not believe in Mahomed, and in Ali 
hib fieutenant, are infidels and heretics, and are wor- 
thy of death* ' 

52tid. I also know that all men will gb to Jehanum^ 
(hAl) excepting the true believers ; and I farther be- 
heve that it is right to curse Omar. — ^I am certain that 
ink the Turks will go to Jehanum, — that all Christians 
and Jews are nejis (unclean), and will go to Jehanum, 
—that it is not lawful to drink wine or eat pork,— -that 
it is necessary to say prayers five times a day, and to 
make the ablution before each prayer, causing the wa- 
ter to run from the elbow to the fingers^ not contrari- 
wise^ like the heretical Turks. 

1 was proceeding to sum up the stock of my reli- 
gious knowledge, when the Dervish came into the 
room; and I made no scruple of relating to him my 
distress and its cause. 

* Have you lived so long in the world,' said he, <and 
not yet discovered that nothing is to be accomplished 
without impudence ? The stories which Dervish Se- 
fer, his companion, apd I related to you at Meshed^ 
baVe they made so little impression upon you V 

Vol. II.— G 


. « The eRect of those stones upon my mindf' said I 
^produced such a bastinado upon the soles of my feet, 
by way of a motal, that I request you to be well as- 
sured I shall neither forget you nor them as long as 
I live : the feiek is a great help to the memory* And 
now, according to your own account,. instead of the 
bastinado, I am likely to get stoned, should I be found 
wanting; a ceremony which, if it be the same to you, 
I had rather dispense with. Say then, O Dervish, 
what shall I do ?* 

< You are not that £(ajji Baba which I always took 
you to be/ said the Dervish, < if you have not the in- 
genuity to deceive the mushtehed. Keep to your si- 
lence, and your sighs, and your shrugs, and your 
downcast looks, and who is there that will discover 
you to be an ass ? No, even I could not.' 

* Well,' said I, * be it so : Allah hrim I God is 
great ! — but it is being in very ill luck to be invited to 
an entertainment. to eat one's own filth/ 

Upon which I set. forward with my most mortified 
and downcast looks to visit the mushtehed,and, thanks 
to my misfortunes, I truly believe that no man in the 
whole city could boast of so doleful a cast of counte- 
nance as I could. However, as I slowly paced the 
ground, I recollected one of the tales recited by our 
great n^ioralist Saadi, in his chapter upon the Morals 
of Dervishes, which applied so perfectly to my own 
case, that I own it cheered me greatly, and gave me a 
degree of courage to encounter the scrutiny of the 
mushtehed which otherwise I never could have ac- 
quired. It is as follows : 

* A devout personage was once asked, what he 
thought of the character of a certain holy man, of 
whom others had spoken with slight and disrespect ? 
He answered,^ In his exterior I can perceive no fault, 
and of what is concealed within him I am ignorant. 
He who weareth an exterior of religion, doubt not his 
goodness and piety, if you are ignorantof the recesses 
of his heart. What hath the mohtesib to do with the 
insicJiC of the house V ' 

/ then recollected some senlencts from the same 


appeared absorbed in deep meditation, . The miish* 
tebed then breaking the silence, said to me : 

* Is it true, O Hajji ! that your talleh^ your desti- 
ny, has turned its face upon you^ and that you have 
come hither to seek refuge ? We and the world have 
long bid adieu to each other ; so my questions are not 
to satisfy curiosity, but to inform me whether I can 
be of use to you. Our holy Prophet (upon whom be 
blessings and peace !) sayeth, ^ Let our faithful fol- 
lowers help each other : those who see, let them lead 
the blind y those who prosjper^ let them help those 
who are in adversity.* ' 

Uppn this I took courage, spoke my sentences from 
Saadi, as already recited, and told my tale in such a 
modified manner, that my auditors, I verily believe, 
began to look upon me as very little short of a mar-* 

< If it is so,' said the mushtehed,^ perhaps the day 
is not far off, when I may^^be the instrument, in the 
hands of God, to see justice done you. The Shah is 
to visit the tomb before this month is expired, aqd as 
he looks upon me with the eyes of approbation, be 
assured that I will not be deficient in endeavouring 
to procure your release.' 

^ What can such a sinner as I aay to one of your 
high sanctity? I will pray for yoii; the dust of your 
path shall be colly rium for my eyes. Whatever you 
will do for me will be the effect of your goodness.' 

^ It is plain that you are one oif us,' said the miushte* 
hed, apparently well satisfied at the almost divine hon<^ 
ours which I paid him. ^ True Mussulmans always re- 
cognise each other in the same manner, as I have 
heard to be the case among a sect of the Franks, calU 
ed Farantooshi^j who by a word, a look, or a touch, 
will discover one another even among thousands.' 

* Ailah ho akbar / God is great !' and < La Allah it 
Allah! there is but one God!' was echoed by the 
company in admiration of the mushtehed's knowledge; 
and then he continued to address me thus : 

* So the Persians call Freeipasons, about whom they are very inqsisi- 

OP itAJJn BABA. 69 

' There is an Ajem with you, who calls himself a 
Dervish. Is he an acquaintance of yours ? He says 
that he and you are hem dum^ of one breath. Is it so?' 

^ Che arzbekunum ? what supplication can I make ?' 
^id I, not knowing precisely whether to acknow- 
ledge my friend or not. * Yes, he is a fakir, a poor 
man, to whom I have given a path near me. He has 
done me some little service, and I am mindful of 

* You must be mindful of yourself,' said an old 
mollah,^ who sat next to me. «^ Whatever is thief, 
whatever is4cnave, you will be sure to find it among 
these Ajems.' 

* Yes,' said the mushtehed, as he rested both his 
hands upon his girdle, whilst his disciples (who knew 
this to be his favourite attitude when about to make 
1 speech) settled their faces into looks of attention—- 
• yes^, these, and all who call themselves Dervishes, 
be they the fo\\ovf^rsro{ NUr Ali Shahi^ be they ZaAa- 
hUs^ be they Nakshbendies^ or be they of that accurs- 
ed race of Uweisies ; all are kafirs, or heretics*— ^11 
are worthy of death. The one promulgate, that the 
fastings of the Ramazan, our ablutions, the forms and 
mimber of our daily prayers, are all unnecessary tQ 
salvation ; and that the heart is the test of piety, and 
hot the ceremonies of the body. The other acknow- 
ledge the Koran, 'tis true ; but they reject every thing 
else ; the sayings of the Prophet, opinions of saints, 
&c. are odious to them ; and they show their religious 
zeal by shouting out the blessed name of Allah, until 
they foam at the mouth, like so many roaring lions ; . 
and this they are pleased to call religion. Another set 
pretend to superior piety, by disfiguring the outward 
man, making vows, and performing acts of penance, 
that partake more of the tricks of mountebanks than 
of the servants of the Almighty. The fourth, the 
most heretical of all, would make us believe that they 
live in eternal communion with supernatural powers; 
and whilst they put on a patched and threadbare car- 
men t^ affect to despise the goods of xVu^ v«ox\d^ ^w^ 

G 2 


keep themselves w^rm by metaphysical meditations, 
which neither they nor any one else understand. No 
distinction of clean or unclean (may they enjoy the 
eternal grills !) stands in their way : lawful and un- 
lawful is all one to them ; they eat and drink what- 
ever they choose^ and even the Giapurs, the infidels^ 
are undefiled in their sight. A.°d these call the m<«> 
selves Sufics ; these are your wise men ; these are 
your lights of the world ! Curses on their beard !' 
To which all the company answered * ameen^ cr 
amen. « Curses on their fathers and mothers ! Curses^ 
on their children ! Curses on theit- relations ! Curses 
on Sheikh Attar \* Corses on Jel41edin Rumi !' Af- 
ter each curse the whole assembly echoed ^ Ame^a !' 
.When he had concluded, all the company, whUst 
they expressed their admiration at his doctrine, look- 
ed at me to see if I was not struck with amazement. 
I was not backward in making the necessary excla? 
mations, and acted my part so true to the life, that 
the impression in my favour was universal. 

The mushtehed) warmed by his own words, con- 
tinued to harangue against the Sufies with such ve- 
hemence^ that I belieye, had there been one at hand, 
they would have risen in a body apd put him to death. 
I hugged myself in the success which had accompa- 
Died my attempt to appear a good Mussulman, and 
now began to think that I was one in right earnest. 

< If what I do,' said I, ^ constitutes a religious maq, 
and is to acquire me the world's consideration, no- 
thing is more easy. Why theti should I toil through 
life, a slave to some tyrant^ expo$ed to every vicissi- 
tude, uncertain of my existence beyond tlje present 
moment, and a prey to a thousand and one leyils ?' 

I left the miishtehed, and returned to my cell, de- 
termined to persevere in my pious dispositions. When 
i met my companion again^ I told him all that had 
happened, and every thing that had been said about 
him and dervishes in general ; and advised him, con. 

* S^kh ^ilar^ and Jel^lcdt^ B^md^ are tlie two great docters of Uie 
SfiSe^. . f 


sidering the tempter in which I had left the assembly, 
to make the best of his way out of a place in which 
every man's m.ind and hand were turned against him. 
* If they catch you, they stone yjou, friend !' said I ; 
< upon that make your mind easy.' 

^ May the stones alight on their own heads !' ex- 
claimed .the dervish : ^ a set of blood-thirsty heathens! 
What sort of religion can theirs be which makes 
tbeni seek the life of an inoffensive man i I come 
here, having no one thing to do with either Suni or 
Shiali, Sufi or Mohamedan : on the contrary, out of 
GQpipliment to them, I go through all the mummery 
^ five washings and five, prayings per day, and stilt 
that will not 3atisfy them ; howeveri I will be even 
wUh Jthem. I will go ; I will leave their vile hypo- 
critical town ; and neither will I wash nor pray until 
necessity obliges me to pass through it again.' 

% I must own that I was not sorry when I heard the 
dervish make this resolution. I saw him with plea- 
sure gird on his broad leathern belt^ from which was 
suspended great bunches of beads, and stick his long 
^>PQn in it. I helped to fasten his deer-skin to his 
back; and when he had taken up the iron weapon, 
which he carried on his shoulder, in one hand» whilst 
l^is x)ther bore his calabash suspended with three 
chains, we bade each other adieu with great apparent 

.Leaving me to the full possession of my cell, he 
sallied forth v/ith all the lightness and gaiety of heart 
of one who had the world at his command, instead of 
the world before him, with nothing but his two feet 
ai>4 his ingenuity to carry him through it. 

* Bfay the mercy of Allah be poured over you,' said 

{i as I saw the last of him, ^ you merry rogue ! and 

il^yest thou never want a pair of shoes to your feet, 

.^ a pleasant story to your tongue, with both of which 

<lbou miayest go through life with more pleasure both 

%citbyselfand others than the rich man, who is the 

^^V0 of a thousand wants, a dependent upon his 

. idhl^iHleuts for the commonest necessaries of his ex- 

fttefltee.' ^ . 



Hajji Baba is robbed by his friend^ and left utterly 
destitute ; but is released from his confinement. 

My «iind now dwelt upon the promise which the 
mushtehed had made of procuring my pardon and re- 
lease from the Shah, when he came to visit the sanc- 
tuary at Kbm ; and it occurred to me, that to secure 
the favour of so powerful an advocate, I ought to 
make him a present, without which nothing is ever ac- 
complished in Persia. But of what it was to be com- 
posed was the next consideration. The money left 
in my purse was all that I had to subsist upon until I 
should acquire a new livelihood ; and, little as it was, 
1 had kept it safely buried/m an unfrequented corner 
near my cell. 

I fixed upon a praying-carpet, as the best present 
for one who is always upon his knees, and had laid 
my plan for getting some brought to me from the b^- 
zar to look at. 

* Every time the good man prays,' said I, * he will 
think of me ; and as one is apt to make good resolu- 
tions in such moments, perhaps he will be put in mind 
of his promises to endeavour to release me.' 

I forthwith resorted to my secret corner for my 
purse, in the determination of sacrificing qne of my 
remaining tomauns to this purpose. But here let me 
stop, and Kit me request the reader to recollect him- 
self, and reflect upon his feelings after the most se- 
vere disappointment which it may have been his lot 
to sustain, and let me tell him, that it was nothing to 
my grief, to my rage, to my exasperation, when I 
found that my purse was gone. 

My soul came into my mouth ; and without a mo- 
ment's hesitation 1 exclaimed, * O thgu bankrupt dog! 
thou unsainted dervish ! You have brov^ght me safe 
into harbour, his true ; but you have left n^e without 


an ancbon May your life be a bitter one, and naay 
your daily bread be the bread of grief! And so, af- 
ter all, Hajji Baba has become a beggar !' 

I then took to making the most miserable moanings 
and lamentations : for the fear of starvation now star- 
ed me in the face, notwithstanding the charity of the 
people of Kom ; and as despair is a malady which in- 
creases the tnore the mind dwells upon its misfortune 
I seemed to take delight in reverting to all the hor- 
rors which I had lately witnessed in the death of Zee*- 
nab ; then I dwelt upon my confinement, then upon 
my loss, and at, length wound myself up to look upon 
my situation as so desperate, that if I had had poison 
by me, I should certainly have swallowed it. 

At this moment passed by my cell the old mollah, 
who, during my visit to the mushtehed, had warned 
me against putting too much confidence in the Der- 
vish. I told him of my misfortune, and raised such 
doleful wailings, that his heart was touched. 

' You spoke but too well, O mollah ! said I, ' when 
you warned me against the dervish. My money is 
gcu^, and I am left behind. I am a stranger ; and 
he who called himself my friend has proved my bit- 
terest enemy ! Curses on such a friend ! Oh ! whi- 
ther shall I turn for assistance ?' 

* Do not grieve, niy son,' said the mollah ; < we 
know that there is a God, and if it be his will to try 
you with misfortune, why do you repine ? Your mo^ 
ney is gone, — gone it is, and gone let it be : but your 
skin is left,— and what do you want more ? A skin 
is no bad thing, after all !' 

« What words are theSe i* said I : V' know that a 
skin is no bad thing ; but will it get back my money 
from the dervish ?' 

I then requested the old man to state my misfor- 
tuoe to the n^iiishtehed, and, moreover, my impossi- 
bility of shewing him that respect by a present, which 
W9B due to him, and which it had been my intention 

He kft me with promises of setting my case in its 
piffper light before the holy man ; and, to my great 


<» ■ . 

joy, on the Very same day the news of the approach- 
ing arrival of the Shah was brought to Kom by the 
chief of the tent-pitchers, who came to make the ne- 
cessary preparations for his accommodation. 

The large open saloon in the sanctuary in which 
the king prays was spread with fine carpets, the court 
was swept and watered, the fountain in the centre of 
the reservoir was made to play, and the avenues to 
the tomb were put into order, A deputation, con- 
sisting of all tlje priests, was collected, to go before 
him, and meet him on his entry ; and nothing of ce- 
remony was omitted which was due to the honour 
and dignity of the Shadow of the Almighty upon 

I now became exceedingly anxipus about my future 
fate ; for it was long since I had heard from Tehran, 
and I was ignorant of the measure ot the Shah's re- 
sentment against me» Looking upon the dark side of 
things, my imagination led me to think that nothing 
short of my head would satisfy him; but then, cheer- 
ing myself with a more pleasing prospect, I endea- 
voured to believe that I was too insignificant a person- 
age that my death should be of any consequence, and 
built all my hopes upon the intercession of the 

The chief tent-pitcher had formerly been my friend, 
and among his assistants I recognised many of my 
acquaintance. I soon made myself known to them ; 
and they did not, for a wonder, draw back from re- 
cognising me, although one of our greatest sages hath 
said, * that a man in advel*sity is shunned like a piece 
of base money, which nobody will take ; and which, 
if perchance has been received, is -passed off to an- 
other as soon as possible.' 

The new comers gave me iall the intelligence of 
what had happened at court since I had left it ; and 
although I professed to havp renounced the world, and 
to have become a recluse, a sitter in a corner, as it is 
called, yet still I found that I had an ear for what was 
passing in it. They informed me that the chief exe- 
cutioner had returned from his campaign against the 


RossiaiiS) and had brought the Shah a present of two 
Gc^gian slaves, a nvale and a female, besides other 
ninlies, in order the better to persuade him of his 
gireat feats and geperalship. The present had been 
accepted, and his face was to be whitened by a dress 
of honour, provided he made the tobeh^ oath of pen- 
ance, restraining himself from the use of wine for the 
future. I also learnt, notwithstanding it was known 
how deeply I was implicated in Zeenab's guilt, that 
my former master, the hakim, had still been obliged 
tp make a large present to the Shah, besides having 
hkd ^half his beard pulled out by the roots, for the 
loss which his majesty had incurred by her death, 
and for his disappointment at not finding her ready 
ready to dance and sing before him on his return from 
Sultanieh. The king's wrath for the loss of the Cur- 
dish slave had in great measure subsided, owing to 
the chief executioner's gift of the Georgian one, who 
wa3 described as being the finest person of the sort 
who had been exhibited at the slave-market since the 
days of the celebrated Taous^ or Peacock ; and was 
iiishort,-the pearl of the shell of beauty, the marrow 
of the spine of perfection. She had a face like the 
{fill moon, eyes of the circumference of the chief tent- 
pitcher's forefinger and thumb, a waist that he could 
span, and a form tall and majestic as the full-grown 
cypress. And they moreover assured me, that the 
StiiptVs anger against me would very easily cede to a 
present of a few torn auns, 

;^H'ere ^gain my anathemas against the dervish broke 
^hh ; *and.but for him,' said I, 'I might haVe ap- 
plied not empty-handed.' However I was delighted 
to^lbcar that my case was not so desperate as I had 
iSiagined ; and, seated on the carpet of hope, smok- 
ing the pipe of expectation, I determined to await my 
" 1^ :with that comfortable feeling of predestination 
lipfa has been so wisely dispensed by the holy Pro- 

,'|br the peace and quivt of all true believers. 

te King of Kings arrived the next day, and alight- 
*|iis tents, which were pitched about the town. I 
fcOi waste the reader's time in describing all the 

»> ■->' -? 


Ceremonies of bh reception, which, by his desire, 
curtailed as much as possible, inasmuch as his objc 
visiting the tomb of Fatimeh was not to reap wo 
distinctions, but to humble himself before God 
men, in the hope of obtaining better and highc 

His policy has always been tb keep in good c 
with the priesthood of his country ; for he kne^ 
their influence, which is considerable oyer the n 
of the people, was the only bar between him ap< 
limited power. He therefore courted Mirza A 
Cossim, the mushtehed of Kom, by paying him a 
on foot, and by permitting hiip to be seated b 
him, an honour seldom conferred on one of the 
He also went about the town on foot, during the \ 
time of his stay there, giving largely to the poor 
particularly consecrating rich and valuable gifts 
shrine of the s<int. The king hiihself, and all 
who composed his train,. thought, it proper to suit 
looks to the fashion of the place ; and I was deli] 
to find that I was not singular in my wo-smittei 
and my mortified gait. I recollected to have h 
when I was about the coiirt, that the Shah, in po 
fact, was a Sufi at heart, although very rigid i 
outward practices of religion ; and it was refre 
to me to perceive, among the great officers in his 
one of the secretaries of state, a notorious sinn 
that persuasion, whp was now obliged to fold u 
principles in the napkin of oblivion, and clothe 
self in the garments of the true faith. 

On the morning of the Shah's visit to the ton 
the purpose of saying his prayers, I was on the 
in the hopes of being remarked by the musht 
who would thus be reminded of his promises to 

About an hour before the prayer of mid-da 
Shah, on foot, escorted by an immense concou 
attendants, priests, and of the people, entered th 
cincts of the sanctuary. He was dressed in 8 
suit, the sombre colours of which were adapted 
solemn looks of his face, and he held in his h 
long enamelled sticky curiously inlaid at the poi 


He had put b)^ all ornament, weaHng none of his cus- 
toofaiy jewellery, not even his dagger, which on other 
oo^sidna he is never without. The only article of 
great value was his rosary, composed of large pearls^ 
(tile produce of his fishery at Bahrein,) of the most 
beautiful water and symmetry j» and this he kept con- 
ataniiy iu his hdfhd. 
- The iiiushtehed walked two or three steps behind 
hkn OB the left hand, respectfuBy answered the intcr- 
it^atorics' whieh the king was pleased to make, and 
lent a profound attention to all his observations. 
' Wteftthe^ procession came near me (for it passed 
dose to* my celly) I seized an opportunity, when no 
oSttr Was ai hand , to run forward , throw myself on 
xflrj^ kttee», nn^kethe prostration with my face to the 
gpibundVand exelaim, ^ Refuge id the King of Kings, 
di<b'asyiii^ 1^ the world f In the name of the blessed 
ftniiiieh, mercy r 

*Who is thra?' exdatiaedthe kttjgto the miishte- 
IHSdi * Is he one of yours?* 

* He ' has^'talcen thtbU9t (the* santuary,^ answered 
^^ifHTza,' ^ and he claims the accustomed pardon of 
ite Shadow of the Almighty to all unfortunate refu- 
giii^s whenever he visits the tomb. He and we all are 
yJMr-saetifite ; and whatever the Shah ordains, so let 

" * Botwftyand what are you ?' said the^hfeih to me ; 
♦irhr hive you taken refuge here ?' 

^ May I be your sacrifice P said I. * Your slave was 
tli^ aiifcj^eputy executioner to the Centre of the tJni- 
v^^fse, Hajji Baba by name ; and my enemies have 
oipuie me appear criminal in the eyes of the Shah, 
idulst I am innocent.' 

^jTqftih tniy we have understood,' rejoined the king, 
aKbr a minute's pause. <So you are that Hajji Baba? 
00firei^ much good may it do you. Whether it was 
o^^^og or another that did the deed, whether the ha- 
illj or the sub*deputy, it comes to the same thing,*-^ 
1^^ of it has been that the king's goods have burnt. 
via plain enough, is it not, Mirza Abdul Cossim?' 
ii^, addressing himself to the mushtehed» 

Vpi^ 11— H 



< Yes by the sacred head of the king/ answered 
holy man ; *• generally, in all such cases between i 
and woman, they^ and they alone, can speak to 
truth.' • 

< But what does our holy religion say in such cas 
observed the king : ^ the Shah has lost a slave — tl 
is a price of blood for the meanest of human bein£ 
ev»n aFrankora Muscovite have their price, and i 
should we expend our goods gratis^ for the ami 
ment of either our chief physician or our 8ub-de[ 

* There is a price upon each of God's t:reatures, 
blood must not be spilt without its fine ; but thei 
also an injunction of forgiveness and lenity tows 
one's fellow creatures,' said, the mushtehed, * wl 
our holy Prophet, ^upon whom be eternal bles&in^ 
has more particularly addressed to those invested \ 
authority, and which, O king, cannot be better app 
than in this instance. Let the Shah forgive this 
fortunate sinner^ and he will reap greater rewan 
Heaven than if he had killed twenty Muscovites 
impaled the father of all JEuropeans^ Qr even if he 
stoned a Sufi.' 

«Be it so/ said the Shah ; and turning to me, 
said with a loud voice, « Murakhaa^ you are dism 
ed ; and recollect it is owing to the intercessioi 
this man of God,' putting his hand at the same t 
upon the shoulder of the mushtehed, ' that you 
free^ and that you are permitted to enjoy the ligh 
the sun. Bero ! Go ! open your eyes, and never aj 
stand before our presence.' 



Hajji Baba reaches Ispahan^ and his paternal roof^ 
just time enough to close the eyes of his dying father* 

I DID not require to be twice ordered to depart ; 
and, without once looking behind me, I left Kom and 
its [>riests^ and bent my steps towards Ispahan and my 
fottiily. I had a few r^als in my pocket, which would 
supply me with food on the road ; and^ as for resting 
places, the country was well supplied with caravan- 
serais, in which I could always find a corner to lay 
siy head. Young as I was, I began to be disgusted 
With the world; and perhaps hatl I remained long 
enough at Kom, dnd in the mood in which I had 
reached it, I might have devoted the rest of my life 
to following the lectures of Mirza Abdul Cossim, and 
iKrquired worldly consideration by my taciturnity, by 
my austerity, and strict adherence to Mahomedan dis- 
cipline. But fate had woven another destiny for me. 
liie waifl^aw (the race course) of life was still open to 
me| and the courser of my existence had not yet ex- 
Itausted half of the bounds and curvets with which he 
was wont to keep me in constant exercise. I felt that 
'I deserved much of the misfortunes with which I had 
been afflicted, owing to my total neglect of my parents. 
■ * I have been a wicked son,' said I. ' When I was 
a man in authority, and was puffed up with pride at 
my own importance, I then forgot the poor barber at 
Ispahan ; and it is only now, when adversity spreads 
my path, that I recollect the authors of my being.* A 
saying of my schoolmaster, which he frequently quoted 
#ith great emphasis in Arabic, came to my mind. 
^ An old friend,' used he to say, * is not to be bought, 
■eireh if you had the treasures of Hatem to offer for 
<mei Remember then, O youth, that thy first, and 
Jtb^refore thy oldest friends are thy father and thy 


^They shall still find that they have a son/ said I^ 
feeling a great rush of tenderness flow into my hearty 
as I repeated the words ; < and, please God, if I reach 
my home, they shall np longer have to reproach me 
with want of proper respect/ A still soft voice, how- 
ever, whispered to me that I should be too late ; and 
I remembered the prognostics of my mind, when, fill- 
ed with grief for the loss of Zeenab, I left Tehran 
full of virtuous intentions and resolutions. 

When I. could first distinguish the peak in th/e 
mountain of the Colah Cazif which marks the situa- 
tion of Ispahan, my heart bounded within me ; and at 
every step I anxiously considered in what state 1 
should find my family.— -Wpuld my old schoolmaster 
be alive ? — Should I find our neighbour the BagaI(QV 
chandler,) at whose shop 1 used to spend in sweet- 
meats aH the copper money that I could purloin froi^a 
my father^ when I shaved for him* would he be still 
in existence ?— -Aind my old friend, the Capiji^ the 
door-keeper of the caravanserai, he whom I frighten- 
ed so much at the attack of the Turcomans, is the 
door of his life, still 'open, or has it been closed upon 
him for ever? 

In this manner did I muse by the way side^ unUl 
the tops oi the minarets of Ispahan actually came in 
view ; when, enraptured with the' sight, and full of 
gratitude for having been preserved thus far in my 
pilgrimage, I stopped and said my prayers; and tbea 
taking up one. stone, which I placed upon another as a 
memorial, I made the following vow : ^ O Ali, if thou 
wilt grant to thy humblest and most abject of slaves 
the pleasure of reaching my home in safety, I will, on 
arrival, kill a sheep, and make a pilau for my friends 
and family.' 

Traversing the outskirts of the city with z, beating 
hearty every spot was restored to my memory, and I 
threaded my way through the long vaulted bazars 
and intricate streets without missing a single turn^ 
until I fo^nd myself standing opposite both myfather's 
shopj and the well known gate of the caravanserai* 

2%e door of the former was cYos^d^ axid uotkic^S 1 


was. stittii% around it that indicated business. I 
paused a long time before I ventured to proceed, for 
I looked upon this first aspect of things as portentous 
of evil ; but, recollecting myself, I remembered that 
it was the Sheb-i-yumah^ the Friday eve, and that 
probably my father, in his old age, had grown to be 
too scrupulous a Mussulman to work during those 
hours which true believers ought to keep holy. 

However, the caravanserar was open, and present- 
ed the sanie scene td my eyes which it had done ever 
since I had known it. Bales of goods heaped up in 
lot», intermixed with mules, camels, and their drivers 
—Groups of men in various costumes, some seated, 
sdliie in close conversation, others gazing carelessly 
about, and others again coming and going in haste, 
with faces full of care and calculation. I looked 
about for the friend of my boyhood, the Capiji, and 
almost began to fear that he tob had closed his door, 
when J perceived his well known figure crawling qui- 
etly along with his earthern water-pipe, seeking his 
bit of charcoal wherewith to light it. 

His head had sunk considerably between his shoul- 
ders, and recHned more upon his breast since I last had 
Bten htvtki and the additional bend in his knees shew« 
ed that the passing years had kept a steady reckoning 
with him. 

< It is old AH Mohamed,' said I, as I stepped up 
towards him* ^ I should know that crooked nose of 
^ from a thousand, so often have I clipped the whis- 
ter that grows under it.' 

'^ When 1 accosted him with the usual salutation of 
peace, he Jcept-on trimming his pipe, without even 
teokmg up, so much accustomed was he to be spoken 
to, by strangers ; but when I said, < Do not you recog- 
l^-tncv All Mohamed r he turned up his old blood- 
0R^ eye at me,, and pronounced * Friend ! a caravan- 
Hw is a picture of the world ; men coitie in and go 
liitkȣ it^ and no account is taken of them. How am 
i^e^ tto know you ?~All Mohamed is grown old, 
iMrWs memory is gone by.* 

l#flptyott will sorely recollect Hajji Baba— little 

H 2 


Hajji, who used t6 ^ave your bc^ad, and %fm y<>ur 
beard and muetachios V 

*• There id but one God !* exclaimed tbe door-ke^p* 
er in great ama:^ment. * Are you indeed Hajji i**-^ 
Ah! my sop^your place has loQg been empty«p-«re 
you come at last ? Well, then^ praise be to AU, that 
old Kerbelai Hassan will have his eyes closed by bis 
only child, ere he dies/ 

* How !* said I, * tell me where is my father ? 
Why is the shop shut ? What do you s^y about 

^Yes, Hajji, the, old barber has shaved his test. 
Lose not a moment in going to his house^ and y^>u 
may stand a chance to be in tin;ie to receive bis btet^ 
sing ere he leaves this world. Please God, I shftU 
soon follow him, for all is vanity. I have opened and 
shut the gates of this caravanserai for fifty years, a^d 
fipd that all pleasure is departed from me, ^y keys 
retain their polish, whilst I wear out with rust.' 

I did not stop to hear the end of the old man's 
speech, butimmediately made all speed to my father's 

As I approached the wcll*remembejred spot, X 
saw two Moilahs loitering near the loiw aiid narrow 
entrance. ^ 

, * Ha !' thought I, * ye are birds of ill omeo ; wbere^^ 
ever the work of death is going on, there ye are sure 
to be.* 

Entering, without accosting ihenv I waUted at once 
into the principal room, which I found completely 
filled with people, surrounding aa old man, who was 
stretched out upon a bed spread upon xlj^ floor, and 
whom I recognised to be my fathibr* 

No one knew me^ and as it is a Qomn^on custom 
for strangers who have nothing to do with the dying 
to walk in unasked, I. was not noti^ed.^ Oo one side 
sat the doctor, and on the other an old man, who was. 
kneeling near the foed4iead, and in him I recognised 
sny former schoolmaster. He was admi«isfieringcom* 
fort to his dying friend, and his words were some- 
thing to this purpose : < Do m^ he downcast : please 


Gody yt>u still have many days' to ^pend on earth* 
You may still live lo see your son ; Haj ji Baba may 
yet be near at hand. But yet it is a proper and a for- 
jtonate met to make your wilU and to appoint your heir. 
If 8«ch be your wish^ appoint any one here present 
your heir.' 

< Ah,' sighed out my father, * Haj ji has abandoned 
UB^^I shall never see him more — ^He has become too 
much of a personage to think of his poor parents—- He 
Is not Worthjrthat I should make him my heir.'-— 
These words produced an immediate eflect ; I could 
n(» longer restrain my desire to make myself known, 
and I exckimedy « Hajji is here !— Hajji is come to 
receive your blessing— I am vour son— do not reject 

'■■ Upon which I knelt down by the bed side, and 
taking up the dying man's hand, I kissed it, and ad- 
ded loud sobs and lamentations, to demonstrate my 
fiUal affection. ^ 

The sensation which I produced upon all present 
was very great. I saw looks of disappointment in 
some, of incredulity in others, and of astonishmcfkit in 

My father's eyes, that were almost closed, bright- 
ened up for one short interval as he endeavoured to 
make out my features, and clasping his trembling 
hands together, exclaimed, ^Jl hem dillah! Praise be 
to God, I have seen my son, I have got an heir!'— 
'Then addressing the, he said, ^ Have you done well, 
<0 my son, to leave nie for so many years ? Why did 
you <iot come before V 

'He would fafive gone on^ but the exertion and the 
agitation produced by such an event were too much 
imr his strength, and he sunk down inanimate on his 


-M- M Stop,' said my^ old schoolmaster, who had at once 
ieeo^ised me-— ^ stop, Hajji ; say no more : let him 
:feeover himself ; he has still his will to make.' 
tf fYe^^* said a youngish man, who had eyed me with 
Jiaeks df great hostility*<-«< yes, we have also still to 
j«l^ vrhether this is Hajji Baba, or not.' I afterwards 


found he was son to a brother of my father's first 
wife, and had expected to inherit the greatest part of 
the property ; and when I inquired who were the other 
members of the assembly, I found that they were all 
relations of that stamp, who had flocked together in 
tRe hope of getting a share of the spoil,, of which I 
had now deprived them. 

They all Teemed to doubt whether I was myself, 
and perhaps WQuld have unanimot^sly set nie down 
for an impostor, if the schoolmaster had not been pre- 
sent: and from, his testimony there was no appeal. 

However, all doubts as to my identity were imme- 
diately hushed when my mother appeared, who, hav- 
ing heard of my arrival, could no longer keep to the 
limits of her anderun, but rushed -into the assembly 
with extended arms and a flowing veil, exclaim ing^ 
< Where, where is he? where is my son ?— ^Hajji, my 
soul, where art thou V 

As soon as I had made myself known, she threw 
herself upon hly neck, weeping aloud, making use of 
every expression of tenderness whi^h her imagination 
could devise, and looking at me from head to foot, 
with an eagerness of stare, and an impetuosity of ex- 
pression, that none but a mother can command. 

In order to rouse my father from the lethargy into 
which he had apparently falleti, the doctor proposed 
administering a cordial, which, having prepared, he 
endeavoured to pour down his throat ; during the ex- 
ertion of raising the body, the dying nian sneezed 
once, which every one present knew was an omen so 
bad, that no man in his senses would dare venture ta 
give the medicine until two full hours had expired: 
therefore, it remained in the-cup. 

After having waited the expiration of the two hours, 
the medicine was again attempted to be administer- 
ed, when, to the horror of all present, and to thetlis* 
appointment of those who expected that he should 
make his will, he was found to be stone dead. 

* In the name of Allah, arise,' said the old Mollah 
to him; * we are now writing your will.' He endea-^ 


vo^red to raise my father's bead, but to no purpose ; 
life had entirely fled. 

Water steeped in cotton was then squeezed into his 
nK>uthf his feet were carefully placed towards the 
Keblehy and as soon as it was ascertained that no' 
farther hope was left, the priest at his bed-head began 
to read the Koran in a loud and sing-song emphasis. 
A handkerchief was then placed Aindbr his chin, fast- 
ened over his head, and his two great toes were also 
tied tqgether. AH the company then pronounced the 
Kelemeh Shehddet^ (the profession of faith,) a cere- 
mony which was supposed to send him out of this 
world a pure and well-authenticated Mussulman ; and 
during this interval a cup qf water was placed upou 
his head. . 

All these preliminaries having been duly perform- 
ed, the whole company, composed of what were sup- 
posed to be his friends apd relations, gathered close 
round the corpse, and uttered loud and doleful cries. 
This was a signal to the two MoUahs (whom I before 
mentioned,} who had mounted on the house-top, and 
they then began to chauntout in a sonorous cadence 
portions of the Koran, or verses used on such occa- 
sionSf and which are intended as a public notification 
of the death of a true believer. 
. The noise of wailing and lamentation now became 
general, for it soon was communicated to the women, 
who, collected in a separate apartment, gave vent to 
their grief after the most approved forms. My father, 
from his gentleness and obliging disposition, had been 
a great favourite with all ranks of people, and my 
mother, who herself was a professional mourner, and 
a principal performer at burials^ being well acquaint- 
ed with others of her trade, had managed to collect 
such a band around her on this occasion, that no 
Khan, it was said, ever had so much mourning per- 
formed for him on his death-day as my father. 

As for me, whose feelings had previously been set 
to the pitch-pipe of misfortune, I became a real and 
genuine mourner ; and the recollection of all the ac- 
tions o! my life, in which my total rve^Ucx. ol \cv>j >^^- 


rents made so conspicuous a iigure, caused me to look 
upon myself in no enviable light. 

I was seated quietly in a corner, adding my sincere 
sobs to the artificial ones of the rest of the whole 
company, when a priest came up to me, and said, that 
of course it was necessary for me to tear my clothes, 
as I could not prove myself to be a good son without 
^o doing, and that if I permitted him, he would per- 
form that operation for me without spoiling my coat, 

I let him do what he required, and he accordingly 
ripped open the seam of the breast flap, which then 
hung down some three or four inches. He also told 
me that it was the custom to keep the head uncover- 
ed, and the feet naked, at least nintil all the ceremo- 
nies of burial had been performed. 

To this I freely consented, and had the satisfaction 
afterwards to learn, that I was held up as the pattern 
of a good mourner. 

My mother's grief was Outrageous : her hair was 
concealed, and she enveloped her head in a bliack 
shawl, making exclamations expressive/of her anguish^ 
calling upon the name of her husband. 

By this time the neighbours, the passers by, the 
known or unknown to the family, flocked round the 
house for the purpose of either reading the Koran or 
hearing it read, which is also esteemed a meritorious 
acton that occasion. Among these, many came in 
the character of comforters, who, by their knowledge 
in the forms of speech best adaptedjto give consola- 
tion, are looked upon as great acquisitions in the event 
of a mourning. 

My old schoolmaster, an eminent comforter, took 
me in hand, and, seating himself by my side, address- 
ed me in the following words : 

'Yes, at length your father is dead. So be it. 
What harm is done ? Is not death the end of all 
things ? He was born, he got a son, he ran his course, 
and died. Who can do more? You now take his 
place in the world ; you are the rising blade, that with 
millions of others promise a good harvest, whilst he 
is the full ripened ear of corn, that has been cut down 


»ui gathered into the granary. Ought you to repine 
at what is a subject for joy ? Instead of shaving men's 
heads, he is now seated between two Houris, drinking 
milk and eating honey. Ought you to weep at that f 
No ; rather weep that you are not there also* But 
why weep at all ? Consider the many motives for 
which, on the contrary, you have to rejoice. He might 
have been an unbeliever — but he was a true JMussul- 
man. He might hava been a Turk— but he was a 
Persian. He might have been a Suni — but he was a 
Shiah. He might have been an unclean Christian*— • 
he was a lawful son of Islam. He might have died 
accursed^ like a Jew-^he has resigned his breath with 
the profession of the true faith in his mouth. All 
these are subjects of joy !' 

After this manner did he go on ; and, having ex- 
pended all he had to say, left me to join his voice to 
the general wailing. 

Those unclean meuy ihe mUrdeshUr^ or washers of 
the dead, were then called in, who brought with them 
the bier, in which the corpse was to be carried to the 
grave. I was, consulted, whether they should make' 
an imareh of it, which is a sort of canopy, adorned 
with black flags, shawls, and other stufTs-r- a ceremony 
practised only in the burials of great personages ; but 
I referred the decision to my friend, the schoolmas- 
ter, who immediately said, that considering my wor- 
thy father to have been a sort of public character^ he 
should certainly be for giving him such a distinction. 
This was accordingly done ; and the corpse having 
been brought out by the distant relations, and layed 
therein, it was carried to the place of ablution, where 
it was delivered over to the washers, who immediately 
went to work. The body was first washed with clear 
cold water^ then rubbed over with lime, salt^ and cam* 
phor, placed in the winding-sheet, again consigned to 
the bier, and at length conveyed to the place of burial. 

The many who offered themselves to carry the body^ 
was a proof how much my father must have been be- 
loved. Even strangers feeling that it was a praise- 
worthy sictioQ to carry a good Mu^auVcci^iXiX^ ^^^ 


grave, pressed forward to lend their shoulder ta the 
burthen^ and by the time it had reached its last rest- 
ing place, the crowd was considerable^ 

I had followed at a small distance^ escorted by those 
who called themselves friends and relations ; and after 
a moUah had said a prayer, accompanied by the voices 
of all present^ I was invited, as the nearest relative, to 
place tho body in the earth, which having done, the 
ligatures of the winding-sheet were untied^ and ano- 
thei' prayer, called the talkhi^ was pronounced* The 
twelve Imams, in rotation; were then invoked ; and 
the talkht bf ing again read, the grave was covered in. 
—After this, the Fatheh (th^ first chapter of the Ko- 
ran) was repeated by all present, and the grave having 
been sprinkled over with water the whole assembly 
dispersed, to meet again at the house oi the deceased. 
«-«A plriest remained, at the head of the grave, pray- 

I was now called upon to act a part. I had become 
the principal personage in the tragedy^ and an invo- 
luntary thought stole into my mind. 

< Ah,' said I, * the vow which I made upon first see- 
ing the city must now be performed, whether I will or 
no. I must spend boldly, or I shall be esteemed an 
unnatural son;' therefore^ when I returned to the 
house, I blindly ordered every thing to be done in a 
handsome manner. 

Two rooms were prepared, one for the men^ the 
other for the women. According to the received cus- 
tom, If as chief mourner, gave an entertainment to 
all those who had attended the funeral ; and here my 
sheep and my pilau were not forgotten. I also faired 
three mollahs, two of whom were appointed to read 
the Koran in the men's apartment, and the other re- 
mained near the tomb, for the same purpose, inhabit- 
ing a small tetlt, which was pitched for his use. The 
length of the mourning, which lasts, according to the 
means of the family, three, five, or seven days, or even 
a month, I fixed at five days, during which each of 
the relations gave an entertainment. At the end of 
that period^ some of the elders, both men and women. 



trent round to the mourDers, and sewed up their rent 
garments, and on that day I was again invited to give 
an entertainment, when separate sheets of the Koran 
were distributed throughout the whole assembly, and 
read by each individual, until the whole of the sacred 
volume had been completely gone through. 

After this my mother, with several of her relations 
and female friends, proceeded, in a body, to my fa* 
ther's tomb, taking with them sweetmeats, and bread 
baked for the purpose, which they distributed to the 
pobr^ having partaken thereof themselves. They then 
returned, weeping and bewailing. 

Two or three days having elapsed, my mother's 
friends led her to ^he bath, where they took off her 
mourning, put her on a clean dress, and dyed her feet 
and hands with the khernx. 

This completed the whole of the ceremonies ; and, 
much to my delight, I was now left to myself, to re- 
gulate my father's affairs^ and to settle plans for my 
owii future <:onduct. 


Be becomes heir to property which is not to be founds 
and his suspicions thereupon. 

Mt^ father having died without a will, I was, of 
course, proclaimed his sole heir without any opposi- 
tlob, and, consequently, all those who had aspired to 
be sharers of his property, balked by my unexpected 
appearance, immediately withdrew to vent their dis- 

|a]^intment in abusing me. They represented me as 
a wretch, devoid of all respect for my parents, as one 
ulthaut religion, an adventurer in the world, and the 
e^linipanion of LUties and wandering dervishes. 

1^ i had no intention of remaining at Ispahan, I 
yiled tlieir ^deavours to hurt me with corkX.^^DCi^Silh^ 


and consoled myself by giving them a full return of 
all their scurrility, by expressions which neither they 
nor their fathers had ever heard ; expressions which 
I had picked up from amongst the illustrious charac* 
ters with whom I had passed the first years of my 

When we were left to ourselves, my mother and I, 
after having bewailed in sufficiently pathetic Ian. 
guage, she the death of a husband, I the loss of a fa- 
ther, the following conversation took place :— 

< Now tell me, O my mother— for there can be no 
secrets between us — tell me what was the state of 
Kerbelai Hassan's concerns. He loved you, and con. 
£ded in you, and you must therefore be better ac- 
quainted with them than any one else.^ 

* What do I know of them, my son ?* said she, in 
great haste, and seeming confusion. 

I stopt her, to continue my speech. . < You know 
that, according to the law, his heir is bound to pay 
his debts : — they must be ascertained. Then, the ex- 
penses of the funeral are to be defrayed ; they will be 
considerable; and at present I am as destitute of 
means as on the day you gave me birth. To meet all 
this, money is necessary ; or else both mine and my 
father's name will be disgraced among men, and my 
enemies will not fail to overcome me. He must have 
been reputed wealthy, or else his death-bed would 
never have been surrounded by that host of blood- 
suckers and time-servers which have been driven 
away by my presence. You, my mother, must tell 
me where he was accustomed to deposit his ready 
cash ; who were,*or who are, likely to be his debtors; 
and what might be his possessions, beside those which 
are apparent. 

< Oh, Allah!' exclaimed she^ <what words are 
these i Your father was a poor, good man, who had 
neither money nor possessions. Money indeed! We 
had dry bread to eat, and that was all ! Now and 
then, after the arrival of a great caravan, when heads 
to be shavea were plentiful, and his business brisk 
we indulged in our dish of rice, and our skewer 


kabobf but otherwise we lived like beggars. A bit of 
bread, a morsel of cheese, an onion, a basin of sour 
curdd— -that was our daily fare ; and, under these cir- 
cumstances, can you ask me for money, ready money 
too I There is this house, which you see and know; 
then his shop, with its furniture ; and when I have 
said that, I have nearly said all. You are just ar- 
rived in time, my son, to step into your father's shoes, 
and take up his business ; and Inshaliah, please Gody 
may your hand be fortunate ! may it never cease wag- 
ging, from one year's end to the other !* 

* This is very strange !' exclaimed I, in my turn. 
< Fifty years, and more, hard and unceasing toil ! and 
nothing to shew for it ! This is incredible ? We 
must call in the diviners.' 

* The diviners V said my mother, in some agita- 
tion ; of what use can they be ? They are only call- 
ed in when a thief is to be discovered. You will not 
proclaim your mother a thief, Hajji, will you ? Go, 
make inquiries of your friend, and your father's 
friend, the dkhon,* He is acquainted with the whole 
of the concerns, and I am sure he will repeat what I 
have said.' 

* You do not speak amiss, mother,' said I. The ak- 
hon probably does know what were my father's last 
wishes, for he appeared to be the principal director in 
his dying moments ; and he may tell me, if money 
there was left, where it is to be found.' 

Accordingly I went straightway to seek the old 
9ian, whom 1 found seated precisely io the very same 
pother of the little parish mosque, surrounded by his 
scholars, in which some twenty years before I myself 
liad received his instructions. As soon as he saw 
me he dismissed his scholars, saying, that my foot- 
steps were fortunate, and that others, as well as him- 
iftrn^ should partake of the pleasure which I was sure 
'^ 4i8pcnse wherever I went. 

'S: 't Ahi, akhon,' said !» *do not laugh at my beard. 
"^ji^good fortune has entirely forsaken me ; and even 

••■^^>- - ■' ■ 

i ^^>sr^.i • ^ Mollah who is a schoolmaster, is also stjl^d <JA?Ap«. 


DDiVf when I bad hoped that my destiny, in depriv- 
ing me of my father, had made up the loss by giving 
me wealth, I am likely to be disappointed, and to turn 
out a greater beggar than ever.* 

^ Allah kerinin God is merciful,* said the school- 
master ; and, Hfting up his eyes to heaven, whilst be 
placed his hands on his knees, with their palms up- 
permost, he exclaimed, ^ Oh, Allah, whatever is, thou 
art it.' Then addressing himself to me, he said, 
* Yes, my son, such is the worlds and such will it ever 
be, as long as man shuts not up his heart from all hu- 
man desires.— Want nothing, seek nothing, and no- 
thing will setrk you.' 

* How long have you been a 5il^,'8aid I,* that you 
talk after this manner f I can speak on that subject 
also, since my evil star led me to Kom, but now I 
am engrossed with other matters.' I then informed 
him of the object of my visit, and requested him to 
tell me wTiat he knew of my father's concerns. 

Upon this question he coughed, andt making up 
a face of great wisdom^ went through a long string 
of oaths and professions, and finished by repeat- 
ing what I had heard from my mother ; namely, 
that he believed my father to have died possessed of 
no (nagd^) ready cash (for that, after all, was the im* 
mediate object of my search ;) and what his other pro. 
perty was, he reminded me that I knew as well as 

I remained mute for some time with disappoint- 
ment, and then expressed my surprise in strong terms. 
My father, I was aware, was too good a Mussulman, 
to have lent out his money upon interest, for I recol- 
lected a circumstance, when I was quite a youth which 
proved it. Osman Aga, my first master, wanting to 
borrow a sum from him, for which he offered an enor- 
mous interest* my father put his conscience into the 
hands of a rigid moUah, who told him that the pre- 
cepts of the Koran entirely forbade it. Whether 
since that time he had relaxed his principles, I could 
not say, but I was assured that he always set his face 
against the unlawful practice of taking interest, and 



that he dled^ as he had lived, a perfect model of, a 
troe believer. 

I left the mosque in no very agreeable moody and 
took my way to the spot where I had made my first 
appearance in life, namely, niy fathcr^s shop, turning 
over in my mind as I went what steps I should take 
to secure a future livelihood. To remain at Ispahan 
was out of the question— -'the place and the inhabitants 
were odious to me ;— .therefore, it was only left me to 
dispose of every thing that was now my own, and to 
return to the capital, which, after all, I knew to be the 
best market for an adventurer like myself. However, 
I could not relinquish the thought that my father had 
died possessed of some re^idy money, and suspicions 
would haunt my mind, in spite of me, that foul play 
was going on soinewhere^or other. 1 was at a loss to 
Krhom to address myself, unknown as I was in the 
city, and I was thinking of making my case known to 
the Cadi, when^ approaching the gate of the caravan- 
serai, I was accosted by the old Capijt, « Peace be 
unto you, Aga !' said he ; may you live many years, 
and may your abundance increase ! My eyes are en- 
lightened by seeing you.' 

* Are your spirits so well wound up, Ali Moha- 
med,' said I in return^ ^ that you choose to treat me 
^us ? As for the abundance you talk of, 'tis abun- 
dance of grief, for I have none other that I know of. 
Och !' said I, sighing, « my liver has become water, 
and my soul has withered up»' 

' What news is this ?' said the old man. * Your fa- 
ther (peace be unto him !) is just dead— you are his 
heir— ^you are young, and, Mashallah I you are hand- 
jicune—- your wit is not deficient : — what do you want 
more ?' 

♦ I am his heir, 'tis true ; but what of that ?— what 
^ulvantage can accrue to me, when I only get an old 
spud-built house, with some worn out carpets, some 
pots and pans and decayed furniture, and yonder shop 
mkthsi brass basin and a dozen of razors I Let me 
jp^l upon such an inheritance.' 


^ But where Is your money, your ready cash, Hajjif 
Your father (God be with him !) had the reputation of 
being as great a niggard of his money as he was libe- 
ral of his so^p. £very body knows that he amassed 
muchy and never passed a day without adding to hift 

« That may be true,' s^id I ; ^ but what advantage 
will that be to me, since I cannot find where it was 
deposited ? My mother says that be had none— •the 
akhon repeats the same^ — ^I am no conjuror to discover 
the truth. 1 had it in my mind to go to the Cadi.' 

* To the Cadi ?' said Ali Alohamed. * Heaven for* 
bid ! Go not to him — ^you might as well knock at the 
gate of this caravanserai, when I am absent, as try to 
get justice from him without, a heavy fee. No, he 
sells it by the miscal, at a heavy price, ^d very light 
weight does he give after all*—- He does not turn over 
one leaf of the Koran, until hisfingers have been well 
plated with gold» and if those who hav^ appropriated 
your father's sacks are to be your opponents, do not 
you think that they will drain them into the Cadi's 
lap, rather than he should pronounce in your favour^ 

* What, then, is to be done ?' said I. > Perhdps the 
diviners might give me some help.' 

* There will be no harm in that,' answered the door 
keeper. * I have known them make great discoveries 
during my service in this caravanserai. Merchants 
have frequently lost their money, and found it again 
through tbMr means.— It was only in the attack of 
the Turcomans, when much property was' stolen, that 
they were" completely at their wits' end. Ah ! that 
was a strange event. It brought mitch misery on my 
head ; for some wert^ wicked enough to say that I was 
their accomplice, and, what is more extraordinary, 
that you were amongst them, Hajji ! — for it was on 
account of your name, which the dog's son made use 
of to induce me to open the gate, that the whole mis- 
chief was produced.' 

Lucky was it for me, that old Ali Mahomed was 
very dull of sigfit, or else be would have remarked 
strange alterations in my features when he made these' 



obttrvations* However, our conference ended by his 
proinising to send me the most expert diviner of Is- 
pahan J « a inan,' said he^ * who would entice a piece 
of gold out of the earth, if buried twenty gez deep, or 
even if it was hid in the celebrated well* of Kashan/ 


Skoxoing the stefis he takes to discover his property^ 
and who the diviner ^ Teez Negah^was, 

T^B next morning, ^oon after the first prayers, a 
Ettle man canie into my rodmt whom I «oon discover- 
ed to be the diviner. He was a humpback, with an 
immense head, wkh eyes so wonderfully brilliant, and 
a countenance so intelligent, that I felt he could look 
through and through me at one glance. He wore a 
dervish's cap, from under which flowed a profusion of 
jet black hair^ whiehf added to a thick bush of a beard, 
gave an imposing expression to his features. His eyes 
which by a quick action of his eyelid (whether real or 
affected, I know not,) twinkled like stars, made the 
monster, who was not taller than a good bludgeon, 
look like a little demon. 

'He began by questioning me very narrovily ; made 
]»e relate every circumstance of my life — particularly 
si^e my return to Ispahan — inquired whd were my 
father'^s greatest apparent friends and associates, and 
what my own suspicions led me to conelude. In short, 
he searched into every particular, with the same scru- 
tiny that a doctor would in tracing and unravelling an 
intricate disorder. 

When he had well pondered over every thing that 
i bad unfolded, he then required to be shewn the 


,'?|fc is • popQlar belief, that near the city of Kashan there exists a 
f#, of fi^Milow depth, at the bottom of which are foand enchanted grvves 
Aid gardens. 


premises which my father principally inhabited. My 
mother having gone that morning to the bath, I was 
enabled, unknown to her, to take him into her apart- 
ments, where he requested me to leave him to him- 
self, in order that he might obtain a knowledge of the 
localities necessary to the discoveries which he hoped 
to make. He remained there a full quarter of an 
hour, and when he came out requested me to collect 
those who were in my father's intimacy, and in the 
habit of much frequenting the house, and that- he 
would return, they being assembled^ and begin his 

Without saying a word to my mother about the di- 
viner, I requested her to invite her most intimate 
friends for the following morning, it being my inten- 
tion to give them a breakfast ; and I myself begged 
the attendance of the akhon, the capijif my father's 
nephew by his first wife^ anld a brother of my mo- 
ther, with others who had free entrance into the 

They came punctually ; and when they had par- 
taken of such fare as I could place before them^ they 
were informed of the predicament in which I stood, 
and that I had requested their attendance to be wit- 
nesses to the endeavours bf the diviner to discover 
where my father was wont to keep his money, of the 
existence of which, somewhere or other, nobody who 
knew him could doubt. I looked into each man's 
face as I^ade this speech, hoping to remark some 
expression which might throw a light upon my suspi- 
cions, but every body seemed ready to help my inves- 
tigation, and maintained the most unequivocal inno- 
cence of countenance. 

At length the dervish, Te6z Negah (for that was 
the name of the conjuror,) was introduced, accompa- 
nied by an attendant who carried something wrapt up 
in a handkerchief. Having ordered the women in the 
anderun to keep themselves veiled, because they would 
probably soon be visited by men, I requested the der- 
vish to begin his operations. 

He first looked at every one present with great car- 


iietteess, but more particularly fixed his basilisk eyes 
upon the akhoDy who evidenUy could not stand the 
scrutiny, but exclaimed * Allejh il Allah P — there is 
but one God^ — stroked down his face and beard^ and 
blew first over onr shoulder and then over the other, 
by way of kcfping off the evil spirit. Some merri- 
ment was raisf d at his expense ; hut he did not appear 
to he in a humour any onc^s jokes. 

After this, the dervish called to his attendant, who 
from the handkerchief drew forth a brass cup, of a 
plain surface, but writtea all ovrr with quotations from 
the Koran, having reference to the crime of stealing, 
tod defrauding the orphan of his lawful property. 
He was a n%an of few words, and simply saying, « In 
the nameof Allah, the AlUwise, and All-seeing,' he 
[daced the cup on the floor, treating it with much re- 
verence, both in tduch^and in manner. 

He then said to the lookers-on, < /;a5Aa//t3f A, it will 
lead us^at once to the spot where the money of the de- 
ceased Kerbelai Hassan (may God shew him mercy!) 
is, or was deposited/ 

We all looked at each other, some with expressions 
of incredulit)', others with unfeigned belief, when he 
bent himself towards the cup, and with little shoves 
and pats of hishand, he impelled it forwards, exclaim* 
iDg all the time,^ See, see, the road it takes. Nothing 
can stop it. It will go, in spite of me. Mashalkih^ 
Mashallak /' 

We followed him, until he reached the door of the 
harem, where we knocked for admittance. After 
some negotiation it was opened, and there we found , 
a crowd of women (many of whom had only loosely 
thrown on their veils) waiting with much impatience 
to witness the feats which thi^ wonderful cup was to 

* Make way,' said the diviner to the women who 
stood in his path, as he took his direction towards a 
corner of the court, upon which the windows of the 
room opened — « Make way ; nothing can stop my 

A woman, whom I recognised to be tw^ tCiQ^^^^x^ 



fttopt his progress several times, until he was oblig- 
ed to admonish her, with some bitterness, to keep 
clear of him. 

* Do not you see/ said he, ^ we are on the Lord's 
business i Justice will be done, in spite of the wicked- 
ness of man.' 

At length he reached a distant comer, where it Was 
plain that the earth had been recently disturbed, and 
there he stopped. 

< Bismillah^ in the name of Allalr/ said he, < let all 
present stand around me, and mark what I do.' He' 
dug into the ground with his dagger, clawed the soil 
away with his hands, and discovered a place in which 
were the remains of an earthern vessel, and the marks? 
near it of there having been another. 

^Here,' said he, < here the money was, but is no 
more.' Then taking up his cupt he appeared to ca- 
ress it, and make much of it, calling it his little uncle 
and his little soul. 

Every one stared. All cried out, ^ajaib^ wonder- 
ful ; and the little humpback was looked upon as a su- 
pernatural being. 

The capiji, who was accustomed to such discove- 
ries, was the only one who had the readiness to say, 
< But where is the thief? You have shewn us where the 
gan&e lay, but we want yoti to catch it for us :— the 
thief and the money, or the money without the thief 
—that is whSit we want.' ♦ 

" 'Softly, my friend,* said the dervish to the capiji, 
' don't jump so soon from the crime^to the criminal. 
We have a medicine for every disorder, ahhough it 
may take some time to. work.' 

He then cast his eyes upon the company present, 
twinkling them all the while in quick flashes, and said, 
* I am sure every one here will be happy to be clear 
of suspicion, and will agree to what I shall propose. 
The operation is simple, and soon over. 

< Elbetteh^^ certainly ; • Bellu^ yes ; * Een che harf 
est ?"* what word is this ? was heard to issue from 
every mouth, and I requested the dervish to proceed. 

He called again to his servant, wYio ^to^mc^'^ ^ 


small bag, whilst he agmn took the cup under his 

^ This bag,' said the diviner, « contains sooeie old 
rice. I will put a small handful of it into each pei> 
son's mouth, which they .will forthwith chew. Let 
those who cannot break it beware, for Eblis is near 
at hand.' 

Upon this, placing us in a row, he filled ^ach per« 
Bon^s mouth with rice, and all immediately began to 
masticate. Being the complainant^ of course I was 
exempt from the ordeal ; and my mother, who chose 
to make common cause with me, also stood out of the 
ranks. The quick-sighted dervish would not allow 
of this, but made her undergo the trial with the rest, 
saying,^ The property we seek is not yours, but your 
soa's. Had he been your husband, it would be ano- 
ther thing.' She agreed to his request, though with 
bad grace, and then all the jaws were set to wagging^ 
sonle looking upon it as a good joke, others thinking 
it a hard trial to the nerves. As fast as each person 
had ground his mouthful^ he called to the dervish, 
and showed the contents of his mouth. 

>A11 had now proved their innocence excepting the 
akhon and my mother. The former, whose fac« ex- 
hibitcd the picture of an affected cheerfulness with 
grt'at nervous apprehenston, kept mumbling his ricef 
and turning it over between his jaws, until he cried 
out in a querulous tone* * Why do you give me this 
stuff CO chew f I am old, aad have no teeth :— it is 
impossible for me to reduce the grain ;' and then he 
spit it out.-^My mother, too^ complained of her want 
^f power to break the hard rice, and did the same 
thing. A silenpe ensued, which made us all look 
with more attention than usual upon them, and it was 
only broken by a time-server of my mother, an old 
woman, who cried out, * What child's play is this ? 
Who has ever heard of a son treating his mother with 
ti|is disrespect, and his old schoolmaster, too? Shame, 
il^aoie !*-— let us go—he i^ probably the thief himself.' 
yljpoo this the Dervish said, * Are we fools and 
mt^f (• be dealt with in this manuer ? Either there ' 

100 THE Ai)VEHTimES . 

W9S money in that corner, or there was n6t~«either 
there are thieves in the world, or there are not. This 
man and this woman, pointing to the ikhon and my 
mother, have not done that which all the rest have 
done. Perhaps, they say the truth, they are old, and 
cannot break the hard grain. Nobody say^ that they 
stole the money-^— they themselves know^ that best,' 
said he, looking at them through and through-; (but 
the famous diviner, Hazarfun, he who was truly calU 
ed the bosom friend to the Great Bear, and the confi- 
dent of the planet Saturn,— -he who could tell all that 
a man has ever thought, thinks, or will think,-— he 
hath said that the trial by rice among cowards was 
the best of all tests of a man's honesty. Now, my 
friends, from all I have remarked, none of you are 
slayers of lions, atid fear is esr^ily produced among 
you. However, if you doubt my skill in this instance, 
I will propose a still easier trial,— -one which commits 
nobody, which works like a charm upon the mVnd, 
and makes the thief come forM^ard of his own accord, 
to ease his conscience and purse of its ill-gotten 
wealth, at one and the same time. I propose the H^ 
reez^y or the heaping up earth. Here in this corner 
I will make a mound, and will pray so fervently this 
very night, that, by the blessing of Allah, the Hajj!,' 
pointing to me, ^ will find his money buried nn it to- 
morrow at this hour. Whoever is curious, let them 
be present, and if something be not discovered, i will ^ 
give him a miscal of hair from my beard.' 

He then set to work, and heaped up earth in a cor- 
ner, whilst the lo/>kers on loitered about, discussing 
what they had just seen ; some examining me and the 
dervish as children of the evil spirit, whilst others 
again began to think as much of my mother and the 
schoolmaster. The company then dispersed, most of 
them promising to return the following morning, at 
the appointed time, to witness the search into the 
heap of earth. / 




Of the diviner's success in making' discoveries^ arid cf 
the resolution which Hajjt Baba takes in conse* 


l^ugT own that I began now to look upon the 
reBtoratk>n of my property as hopeless* The divin- 
er's skill had certsunly discovered that money had 
been buried in my father's house, and he hiad suc- 
ceeded in raising u^ly suspicions in my mind against 
two persons whom I felt it be a sin to suspect; but 
I doubted whether he ^ould do more. 
' However 9^ he appeared again on the following 
morning, accompanied by the capiji, and 1)y several 
of those who had been^iresent at the former scene. 
The akhon, however^ did not appear, and my mother 
was also absent, upon pretext of being obliged to vi- 
^ a siek friend. We proceeded in a body to the 
biquikI^ and the Dervish having made an hc^y invo- 
eaiian,* he approached it with a sort of mysterious 

. s**Now we shall see/ said he, 'whether the Gins 
aptd i^e Peris have been at work this night ;' and eic- 
i^ming « dismillah J* he dug into the earth with his 

Havings thrown off some of the soil, a large stone 
appeared, and having disengaged that, to the aston- 
^iiaaent of all, and to my ^treme delight, a canvas 
teg well filled was discovered. 

• Oh my soul ! Oh my heart !' exclaimed the hump- 
bide, as he siezed upon the bag, you see that the Der- 
v|ih Teez Negah is nota man to lose a hair of his 
bel^^• There, there,' said he, putting it itito my hand, 
♦there is your property : go, and give thanks that 
p^ have fallen into my hands, and do not forget my 
Affi ^ni, or my commission." 
rEtvety body crowded round me^ whilst. 1 V>xO«.^ 

Vol. It.— K 



open the wax that was affixed to the mouth of the bag^ 
\ipon which I recognised the impression of ray father's 
seal ; and eag^erness was marked on all their faces as 
I untied the twine with which it was fastened. My 
countenance dropped woefully when i found that it 
only contained silver, for I had made up my mind to 
see gold. Five hundred r^a/s* was the sum of which 
\ became the possessor ; out of which I counted fifty, 
and presented them to the ingenious discoverer of 
them. 'There/ said I, * may your house prosper! 
If I were^rich I would give you more : and although 
this is evidently but a. small part of what my father 
(God be with^him!) must have accumulated, still 
again I say, may your house prosper^ and many sin- 
cere thanks to you.* ^ 

The Dervish was satisfied with my treatment of 
him, and took his leave> and 1 was soon after left by 
the rest of the company — ^ihe capiji alone remaining. 
* Famous business we have made of it this morning,' 
said he* ' Did I not say that these diviners perform- 
ed wonders?' 

* Yes,' said I, * yes, it is wonderful^ for I never 
thought his operations would have come to any thing/ 

Impelled by a spirit of cupidity, now th^t I had 
seen money glistening before me, I began to com- 
plain that I had received so little, and again express- 
ed to Ali Mohamed my wish of bringing the case be- 
fore the Cadi; < for,' said I, < if I am entitled to 
these five hundred reals, I am entitled to all my fa- 
ther left ; and you will acknowledge that this must be 
but a very small part of his savings.' 

* Friend,? said he, < listen to the words of an old 
man. Keep what you have got, and be content. In 
going before the Cadi, tne first thing you will have to % 
do will be to give^ of your certain, to get at that most \^ 
cursed of all property, the uncertain. Be assured 
that after having drained you of your four hundred 
and fifty reals, and having got five hundred from 
your opponents, you will have the satisfaction to hear 

* A real is abput two shillings— <eight reals oae tomaun. 



him tell you both to * go in peace, and do not trouble 
the city with your disputes.' Have not you lived 
long enough in the world to have learnt this common 
saying— *E very one's teeth are blunted by acids, ex- 
cept the Cadi's, which are by sweets V 

< The^ Cadi who takes five cucumbers as a bribe, 
will admit any evidence for ten beds of melons/ 

After some deliberation, I determined to take the 
advice of the capiji ; for it w^s plain that if I intend- 
ed to prosecute ariy one, it could only be my mother 
and the akhon ; and to do that, 1 skould rai^e such a 
host of enenaies^ and give rise to such unheard of 
scandal, that perhaps I should only get stoned by the 
populace for my pains. - 

* I will-dispose of every thing I have at Ispahan,' 
said I to niy adviser, * and, having done that, will 
leave it never to return, unless under better circum- 
stances. It shall never seeme more,' exclaimed I, 
in a vapouring fit, < unless I come as one having 

Little did'*I think, when I made this vain speech, 
how diligently my good stars were at work to realise 
what it had expressed. 

The capiji applauded my intention ; the more so, 
0S he took some little interest that my resolutions 
should be put into practice; for he had a son, a barber, 
whom he wished to set ^ip in business ; and what 
coQld be more desirable, in every respect, than to see 
him installed in the shop in which my poor father had 
4l5urished so successfully, close to his post, at the ca- 
ravanserai ? 

^ ' He made proposals, that I should dispose of the 
aliop and all its furniture to him, which I agreed to 
'doyupon the evaluation of some well-known brother 
crf%her strap, and thus I wa^ relieved of one of my re- 
liQ^Bkig cares. 

>^^>A.s for my father*s house and furrtiture, notwith- 

ibibding my feelings at the recent conduct of my mo- 

?^fl^, I determined, by way of acquiring a good name 

[Sffwhich I was very much in want), to leave her in 

' ill possession of them, reserving to myself the feme- 

i^ ^' 


so,4USj or ^eedsi which constituted me its lawful 

All being settled and agreed upoiiy I iinmediately 
proceeded ^o work. I received fivehundred piastres 
from the capiji for my $l|op ; for he also had been a 
great accumulator of his sovingSf and every body al- 
lowed that money was never laid out to better advan- 
tage, since the. shop was sure to enjoy a great run of 
business, owing to its excellent situation. I therefore 
became worth in all about one" hundred and ten to* 
mauns in gold, a coin into which I changed my silver, 
for the greater facility which it gave me of carrying 
it about my person. Part of this i laid out in clothes^ 
and part in the purchase of a mule, with its necessary 
furniture, I gave the preference to a mule, because^ 
after mature deliberation, I had determined to aban- 
don the character of a £ahib sh^mshir^ or a man of 
the sword, in whicht for the most part) I had hitherto 
appeared in life, and adopt that of a sahib calemy or a 
man of the pen, for which, after my misfortunes, and 
the trial which I had in some measure made t>f it at 
Kom, I now felt a great predilection. 

« Jt will not suit me, now, to be bestriding a horse/ 
said I to myself,^ armed, as I used to be, at all points, 
with sword by my side, pistols in my girdle, and a 
carbine at my baclc. I will neither deeply indent my 
cap, and place it on one side, as before, with my long 
cirfls dangling behind my ears, but wind a shawl 
round it, which will give me a new character ; and, 
moreover, clip the curls, which will inform the world 
that I have renounced it and its vanities. Instead of 
pistols, I will stick a i:oU of papers in my girdle ; and, 
in lieu of a cartouche-box, sling a Koran across my 
person. Besides, I will neither walk on the tips of 
my toes, nor twist about my body, nor screw up my 
waist, nor throw my shoulders forward, nor^wing 
my hands to and fro before me, nor in short take 
upon myself any of the airs of a ia^A^;?^, of a beau, 
in which I indulged when sub-deputy to the ehief 
executioner. No ; I will, for the future, walk with 
my back bent, my head slouching, my eyes looking 


Qtir tht ground, my -h&tidff stuck either in front of my 
girdle, or hanging perpendicular down my sides, 
^md my feet shftll drag one after the other, without the 
8<»alle8t indication of a strut. Looking one's cha- 
racter is all in all ; for if, perchance, I happen to say 
a foolish thing, it will be counted as wisdom, when 
it^ cornea from a mortified looking face, arrd a head 
boQisrd round with a mcdlah's shawl* particularly when 
it is accompanied with a deep sigh,, and an exclama- 
tton of Allah ho Akbar I or Aliah^ Allah il Allah / and 
if, perchance, I am lirought face to face with a man 
of real learning, and am caUed upon to sustain my 
character, I have only to look wise, shut my lips, and 
strictly keep my own counsel. Besides, I can read ; 
and|^ with the practice that I intend to adopt, it will 
not be long before I shall be able to write a good hand: 
-^hat alone, by enabling me to make a copy of the 
JEoran, will entitle m& to the respect of the world/ 
- With reflections such as these I passed my time 
until it was necessary to decide whither I should bend 
my steps.-^£very thing told me that I ought to make 
the most of the good impression which I had left be- 
hind me, on the minds of the mushtehed of Kom and 
his disciples, for he was the most likely person to help 
me in my new career: he might recommend me to 
some mollah of his acquaintance, who would take me 
as his scribe or his attendant, and teach me the way 
that I should go.-— Asides, 1 left him so abruptly 
when through his means I had been released from my 
confinement in the sanctuary, that I felt I had a debt 
of gratitude stiU to pay. * I will take him a present,^ 
J^id I ; * he shall not say that I am unmindful of his 
^{^miness.' Accordingly I turnc^d over in my thoughts 
^bat I ought to present, when I again determined 
tipQl^ a praying-carpet, which I forthwith purchased ^ 
.i^flfsQ^ing, at the same time, that it would make a 
^tpofi^fortabie seat, when duly folded, on the top of my 
4lifiif ^8 pad. 

S^dt'had now nearly finished all that I had to do, pre- 
V> my departure. I was equipped ready for my 
^, and I flattered myself that my outward a\^- 

K 2 


pearance was that of a rigid onoUah. 1 did not take 
upon myself the title of one, but rather left thsit to cir- 
cumstances ; but, in the mean while, the epithet of 
Hajji, which had been given to me as a pet name 
when I was a child, now came very opportunely to 
my assistance, to aid me to sustain my new character. 
One duty I had still to accomplish^ and that:was to 
pay the expenaesr of my father's funeral* I do ow& 
that, cheated-aa^ I had been of my lawful patrimony, 
I felt it hard that such an expense should fall upon 
me ;^ and several times had planned a departure from 
Ispahan unknown to any body, in order that the bur- 
then might fall up the akhon and my mother^ to whom 
I had intended the honour of payment ; but my better 
feelings got the mastery, and reflecting that by acting 
thus I should render myself fully entitled totheodiov^ 
epithet oi p^der 9Ukhtm* (pxxt whose father is burnt,) 
without further combat, I went round to each of the 
attendants, namely^ moUahs, n&ourners, and washers 
of the dead, and^aid them their dues. 


Hajjt Baha quits his mother^ and becomes the scribe to 

a celebrated man of the laxv. 

I TOOK leave of my mother without much regret, 
and she did not indrease the tenderness of our parting 
by any great expression of sorrow. She had her plans, 
I had mine ; and, considering how We stood circum- 
stanced, the less we ran in each others way the better. 

I mounted my mule at break of day, and, ere the 
sun had past its meridian, was already considerably 
advanced on my r6ad to Kom. I loitered but little on 

* Peder tukht^h is the most common term of abuse in a Persian's 
ttouth. It iitiiplies *< one irbote ftither it bttmifig in eternal fires.^ 



ny journeyv ootwithatanding the pleasures whieh a 
fai^tat Kashas might have afibrded mevand on the 
nirnh day I once again saw the gilded cupola of the 
tomb of Fatimeh. . 

Alighting at a small caravanserai in the town, I saw 
my mule well provided, and theny wkh my present to 
the ^miishtehed under my arm, I proceeded tp his 
house. His door was open to every one, for he made 
no parade of servants to keep the stranger in awe, as 
may be seen at the^ houses of the great in Persia ^ and, 
leaving my carpet at >the door with my shoes, I entered 
the. room, in one corner of which I found the gopd 
mair seated. 

'He immediately recognised me, and, giving me a 
welcome reception, he desired me to seat myself, 
which I did, with all proper respect, at the very edge 
of the felt carpet. 

He asked me to relate the history of my adventures 
since I left Kom* for be professed himself interested 
in nciy fate ; mid» having made him all the necessary 
acknowledgments for procuring my release from the 
sanctuary, I related all that had befallen me. I also 
told him what a calling I felt within me to devote my- 
self to a holy life, and entreated his help to procure 
me some situation in which I might show my zeal for 
tiie interests of the true faith. 

He reflected for a moment, and said, * that very 
morning he had received a letter from one of the 
principal men of the law of Tehran, the Mollah Na- 
dio, who was much in want of one who would act as 
half scribe and half servant; one, in short, who might 
be of good materials for a future mollah, and whom 
be would instruct in all that was necessary in that vo- 

-My heart leaped within me when I heard this, for 
U* wasi precisely the place that my imagination had 
Cf4B|iled. * Leave it to me,' thought I, «to become a 
V^ic mollah, when once I have been made half a 

Without hesitation I entreated the miishtehed to 
«i|i^|»iie his good offices in my behalf, which he pro- 
mised to do ; and forthwith addressed a sm^xioxe^ 

'- -^v 


with his own hand, to the Mollah Nadan. This he 
sealed, and, having duly fashioned it into its proper 
shape with his aicissars,ToUed it upland delivered it to 
me; saying, * ProGCcd to Tehran immediately ; no 
doubt you will find the place vacant, and the moUah 
willing ta appoint you to fill it,* 

I was so happy that I kissed the good man^s hand 
and the hem of his.garment, making him thousands of 
acknowlcdgmepts for his goodness. 
/ I have one nK)re favour to ask of my master,' said 
If « which is, that he will deign to accept a smallpei^ 
kesh^ a present from his humble slave ^ it is a praying 
carpet, and, should he honour him so far as to use it^ 
he hopes that now and then he will not forget the do- 
nor in his prayers/ - • - 

< May your house prosper, Hajji,' said he very 
graciously, < and I am thankful to you for remember- 
ing me, not that there was tbe least occasion for this 
present. Be a good Mussulman, ^age war against 
the infidels, and stone the sufis,-^that is the only re«- 
turn I ask ; and be assured that, by so doing, you will 
always find a place in, my memory.' 

I then presented my gift, with which he seemed 
much pleased; and, having received my di^missalf I re- 
turned to my caravanserai, in the determination of pi|r« 
suing my road to the capital as fast as I eoiild. 1 did 
not even give myself time to call upon my other 
friends at Kom, or eyen to take a lopk at my former 
unhappy cell in the sanctuary ; but saddling my mule» 
I pushed on to the caravanserai of the Pul^udalldk 
that very night, 

]^ reached Tehran in the evening, and, in order not 
to see the spot in which the unfortunate Zeenab was 
buried, I made a deviation from niy straight road» 
and entered by the Casbin gate, I was happy to re*, 
mark that I was not recognised by the guards, who, 
when I was in office, were accustomed to shew them, 
selves on the alert at my approach. But indeed it 
was not surprising that the active, bustling, imperious 
Nasakchi should not be known under the garb of the 
would be humble and insignificant priest ; so for the 


present I felt secure in my disguise, and I boldly took 
my way through the bazars and the most public places 
of the city, where foroiierly nothing but my^ face was 
to be seen ; and happy was I to find that no one re- 
collected me. I inquired my way to the house of the 
mollah Nadan, which. was speedily pointed out, for 
he was a well-known character ; but on second 
thoughts/! deemed it more prudent and convenient 
to put up at a small caravanserai, situated near the 
house of my new master, than to present myself, late 
in the day as it then was, to him, upon whom it was 
my interest, by my looks and appearance, to produce 
the best possible impression. 

Having taken good care of my mUle, I slept soundly 
after the fatigues of the journey ; and the next morn- 
ing I repaired to. the bath, where, having given a 
fresh tinge to my t>eard, and plentifully used the khe- 
oa to my hands and feet, 1 flattered myself that in ap- 
pearance I was precisely the sort of person likely to 
meet with success. 

The mollah's house was situated between the royal 
mosque and the quarters' of the camel artillerymen, 
and near to the entrance of the bazar, which, leading 
by the gate of the said mosque, opens at its other ex- 
tremity immediately on the ditch of the Shah's pa* 
lace. It had a mean front ; although, having once 
passed through the gate, the small court-yard' which 
immediately succeeded was clean, and well watered ; 
and the room which looked into it, though only white- 
washed, had a set of carpets, which did not indicate 
wealth, but still spoke the absence of poverty. 

in this room was seated a wan and sickly-looking 
^iest, whom I took to be the master of the house ; 
but I was mis|taketi.— 4he was in his anderun, and I 
was told that he would shortly make his appearance. 

In order to make known my pretensions to being 
something more than a servant, I sat down, and en- 
tered into conversation with the priest, who, from 
what i could pick from him, was a dependent upon 
the moUah. He, in his turn, endeavoured to disco- 
ver what my business could be : but he did not so 


well succeed^ although the strange and mysterious 
questions which he put drew forth my astonishment. 

* You are evidently newly arrived in Tehran ?* said 

* Yes, at your service,' said I. 

* You intend probably to make some stay V added 
he. • 

* That is not quite certain/ said I. 
Then, after a pause, he said, ^ It is dull living alone, 

even for a week, and Tehran is a city full of enjoy- 
ment. If there is any service that I can perform, I 
will do it— <ipon my eyes, be it.' 

* May your kindness never be less ! My busit^ess 
is with the mollah Nadan.' 

< There is no difference between him and me,' said 
he. ^ I can facilitate any business you may have; 
and, praise be to Allah , you will 6e served to your 
heart's content. We have at our disposal of all sorts 
and all prices.* 

^ I am not a merchant,' said L 

' There is no necessity to be a merchant,' said he ; 
< it is enough that you are a man and a stranger. You 
will find, be it for a year, a month, a week, a day, 
or even an hour, that you will pass your time agreea- 
bly : upon my head be it.* 

I became more and more puzzled at his meaning, 
and was on the point of asking him to enlighten my 
understanding, when the mollah Nadan, in person, en- 
tered the room. 

He was a tall handsome man, about forty years of 
age, with a jet-black beard, glossy with fresh dye, and 
with fine brilliant eyes, painted with the powder of 
antimony. He wore on his head an immense turban 
of white muslin, whilst a hirkeh\0T Arab cloak, with 
broad stripes of white and brown alternately, was 
thrown over his shoulders. Although his athletic 
person was belter suited to the profession of arms, 
than to that of the law, yet his countenance had none 
of the frankness of the soldier, but on the contrary 
bespoke cunning and design, while at the same time i 
_,j5tOTi30unced good humour. ^ 


I got up at his^ approach, and immediately present- 
ed my note from the mushtehed, whilst I did not ven- 
ture again to sit. — Having unrolled it, he looked at 
me and then at it, as if to divine what coutd be my 
business ; but as soon as he had decyphered the seal, 
his face expanded into a bright smile, and he request- 
ed me to be seated. 

* You are welcpme/ said he ; and then he asked me 
a series of questions concerning the health of the holy 
man, which I freely answered, as if intimately ac- 
quainted with him. He read the note with great at- 
tention, but said not a word of its contents. He then 
began to make apologies for not having a kalian (a 
pipe) to ofTer me, «-for,* said he, * I am not a smoker 
of tobacco. We, who rigidly uphold the true faith, 
reject all such luxuries, and mortify our senses. Our 
Holy Prophet (upon whom be blessings and peace !) 
has forbidden to his followers whatever intoxicates ; 
and although tobacco be almost universally used 
throughout Persia as, well as Turkey, yet it is known 
sometimes to obscure the understanding, and there- 
fore I abstiain from it.' 

He continued to talk about himself, his fasts, his 
penance, and his self^mortification, until I began to 
think that I should pass my time but so so in his 
house, nor enjoy the delights the Priest had just be- 
fore promised me ; but when I compared his healthy 
and rubicund face, his portly and well-fed body, to 
the regimen which he professed to keep, I consoled 
myself by the hope that he allowed great latitude in 
Iiis interpretation of the law; and perhaps that I 
should find, like the house which he inhabited, which 
had its public and private apartments, that his own 
.exterior was fitted up for the purposes of the world, 
whilst his interior was devoted to himself and his en- 




The mollahNaddn gives fin account of his tiew scheme 
for raising money J and Jormakinff men happj/m 

When left to ourselves, (^of Ae priest soon after 
quitted the room,) moliab Nadan, taking the mushte- 
hed'a note from his breast^ said, that he should be 
happy to receive me in his service upop so good a re* 
commendation J and having questioned me upon mj . 
qualifications^ i gave such answers, that he expressed 
himself satisfied. 

^ I have long been seeking a person of your charac- 
ter/ said he, ^ but hitherto without success. He, who 
just left us, has assisted me in my several duties ; but 
he is too much of a napai (an intriguer) for my puir- 
pose. I want one who will look upon my interest^» his 
own, who will eat his bit of bread with me and be sa- 
tisfied, without taking a larger share than his due.' 

In answer to this, I informed the mollah that al- 
though I had already seen much of the world, yet he 
would findl in me a faithful seryanty and one ready to 
imbibe his principles ; for (as I had already explained 
to the mushtehed)my mind was made up to leading a 
new life, and endeavouring under his direction to be- 
come the mirror of a true Mussulman. 

< In that,' said the mollah, ^ esteem yourself as the 
most fortunate of men ; for I am looked up to as the 
pattern of the followers of the blessed Mahomed. In 
fihort, I may be called a living Koran. None pray 
more regularly than I. No one goes to the bath more 
scrupulously, nor abstains more rigidly from every 
thing that is counted unclean. You will find neither 
silk in my dress, nor gold on my fingers. My ablu^ 
tions are esteemed the most complete of any man's in 
the capital, and the mode of my abstertion the most 
ip use. I neither smoke nor drink wine before men; 
neither do I play at chess^ vdgengifeh (cards,) or any 


game whichy as the law ordains, abstracts the mind 
from holy meditation. I am cstecrmed the model of 
fasters ; ajnd' during the Ramazan give no quarter to 
the many hungry fellows who come to me under va- 
rious pretexts^ to beg a remission of the strictness of 
the law, < No,' do I say to them, * die rather than 
eat, err drink, or smoke. Do like me, who, rather than 
abate one tittle of the sacred ordinance, would man- 
age to exist from Jumah to ywmoA (Friday) without 
polluting my lips with unlawful food,' ' 

Although I did not applaud his tenacity about fast- 
^^gV yet I did not fail to approve all he said, and threw 
in my exclamations so well in time, that I perceived 
he became almost as much pleased with me as he ap- 
peared to be with himself. . 

' * From the same devotedtiess to religion,' continued 
he, ' I h^ve ever abstained from taking to myself a 
wife, and in that respect I may be looked upon as ex- 
ceeding even the perfection of our Holy Prophet; who, 
S>less]ngs attend his beard !) had wives and women 
aves, more even than Sukiman ihn DaotJd himself. 
But although f do not myself marry, yet 1 assist others 
in doing so ; and it is in that particular branch of my 
duty in which I intend more especially to employ you.' 

• 3y my eyes,' said I, * you must command me; for 
hitherto I am ignorant as the Turk in the fields.' 

* You must know, then,' said he, ' that to the scan- 
dal of religion, to the destruction of the law/the com- 
merce of cowiies^ or coiirtezans, had acquired such 
ascendancy in this city, that wives began to be es- 
teemed as useless. Men's houses were ruined, and the 
ordinances of the Prophet were disregarded. The 
S^ah, who is a pious prince, and respects the Ullemah, 
and who holds the ceremony of marriage sacred, com- 
plained to the head of the law, the Mollah Bashi, of 
ttiis' subversion of all morality in his capital, and, with 
a reprimand for his remissness, ordered him to pro- 
vide a remedy of the evil. The Mollah Bashi, (be- 
tween you and I, be it said,) is in every degree an ass 
i*-ii^e who knows as muc^h of religion and its duties, 
at of Frangistan and its kings. But I, I, who am the 

Vol. II— L 


MoUah Nadan,-«I sugg(;sted a scheme in which the 
convenience of the public ^nd the ordinances of the 
law are so well combined, that both may be suited 
without hinderance to either* Yoii know it is lawful 
among us to marry for as long or as short a time as 
may be convenient ; and, in that case, the woman is 
called miit£.^ * Why then ?Vsaid I, to the chief priest, 
^ why not have a sufficient number of such like wives 
in store, for those who know not where to seek for a 
companion? The thing is easy. to be done, and Na- 
dan the man to do it.' 

^ The Mollah Bashi, who, though the cream of 
blockheads in all other cases, is very quick-sighted 
when his interest is concerned, caught at my idea, for 
he foresaw a great harvest of gain for himself.— He 
consequently acquired possession: of several small 
houses of little value, in which he has installed a cer- 
tain number of women, who,^ through his interference, 
are married, in the character and with the privileges 
of muties, to whoever is ambitious of such a marriage; 
and as both parties on such occasion pay. him a. fee, 
he has thus very considerably increased his revenues. 
So eagerly dp the people marry that he has several 
mollahs at work, wholly engaged in reading the mar- 
riage ceremony. He has entirely excluded me from 
any share in his profits,— I, who first suggested the 
plan ; and therefore I am determined to undertake 
the business myself, and thus add to the public con- 
venience. But we must be secret ; for if the Mollah 
Bashi was to hear of my scheme, he would interpose 
his authority, overthrow it, and perhaps have me ex- 
pelled the city.' 

During this exposure of the moUah's plans, I began 
to look at him from head to foot, and to question with- 
in myself whether this in fact could be the celebrated 
pillar of the law, of whom the mushtehed, good man! 
had spoken in such high terms. Ho\»(ever, I was too 
new in holy life to permit any scruples against the fit- . 
ness of such schemes to come across niy mind ; so I 
continued to applaud all that Nadan had said, and he 
continued as follows : 



* I have already three women in readiness, esta- 
blished in a small house in the n<^ighbourKood, and it 
is my intention to employ you in the search of hus- 
bands for them. You will frequent the caravanserais, 
watching the arrival of merchants and other strangers, 
to whom you will propose marriage, upon easier 
ternris than the chief priest can offer, and according 
to the riches of the bridegrobm you will exact a pro- 
portidnate fee, I shall not give you any wages, be- 
cause you will have opportunities of acquiring such 
knowledge from me, that in time you may become a 
moUah yourself, and show the road to all true believ- 
ers in the practices of their duty. You will find every 
thing provided for you in my house ; and, now and 
then, opportunities will offer for putting something 
honestly into your pocket. Whenever my friends 
come to see me, and when they take theW sham (din- 
ner) with me, you will appear as my servant; on 
other occasions you may sit before me, and act as my 

The mollah here finished speaking, in the expect- 
ation of hearing What I should say in answer ; but I 
was so bewildered by this vast field of action that he 
had opened to my view, that it took me some minutes 
to recollect myself. I, who had expected to lead the 
life of a recluse, to sit in a corner all the day long, 
reading my Koran, or mumbling prayers— to frequent 
lectures in the medressehSf (schools) and homilies in 
the mosques,— I, in short, who in my master expected 
to have found a despiser of this world^s goods, and 
"full of no other care than that of preparing for the 
next, — of a sudden was called upon to engage more 
deeply in the business of life than before, and to fol- 
low the footsteps of a man who seemed to exist for 
no other purpose than to amass wealth, and acquire 
consideration. * However, I can but try,' thought I.' 
My circumstances were too desperate to admit of 
much hesitation ; and, after all, to be the pupil <of 
one of the most celebrated men of the capital, was a 
situation not to be despised ; and so I 2icc^^X^^cA xJcv^ 
mollak's offer. 


He then told me that we should soon have some 
further conversation, whichy for^he present^ he was 
obliged to defer, because he was called upon to at- 
tend the chief of the taw ; but, before he went, he 
mentioned, that as he^bstaiued from worldly pomp, 
he kept, no servants but such as were absolutely neces- 
sary. His establishment consisted, of a cook, and i& 
servant who acted in the triple capacity of head-ser- 
vant, valet, and groom ; and his stud, lor the present, 
was composed of one ass. ^ After considerable trdu- 
ble,' said he, < I have managed to procure a white 
one, whichy you know, is an animal that confers^ con- 
sideration on its rider; but, as my business and 
my dignity increase, I intend to promote myself 
to a mule.' I did not lose this opportunity of 
informing him that I had a very gobd one to dispose 
of; and, after some negotiation, it was decided that 
we should keep both mule and ass ; he, as the dignt-^ 
tary, riding the former, whilst 1 should be carried 
about on the humbler beast. 


Hajjt Baba becomes a promoter of matrimony^ and of 

the register he keeps. 

Preparatory to the full comprehension of the 
duties of my office, the moUah Nadan requested me^ 
to introduce myself to the muties, and gain from them 
sufficient information to enable me to make a regis- 
ter, in which I should insert their ages, appearance 
and beauty, tempers, and general qualifications as 
wives. This I should carry about me, in order to be 
able to exhibit it to any stranger who might fall in my 
/ Rrst went to the bazar, and furnished myself with 
a priest's cloak, with a coat xVvat buxxc^xi^ ^^xo^^ ^^ 





breast, and a long piec^ of white musUn, which' I 
twisted round my head. Thus accoutred, in the full 
dress of my new character, I proceeded to the wo- 
men's house, and found a ready admission^ for they 
had been apprised of my intended visit. 
' I found them all three seated in a mean and wretch- 
ed apartment, sntokingr Their veils were loosely 
thrown o Via* their heads, which, upon my appearance, 
by a habit common td all our v(r omen, they drew tight 
over their faces, merely keeping one eye free, 

* Peace be unto you, khanums ! said I, (ior I knew 
how an appearance o/ great respect conciliates,)— -I 
am come^ on the part o^ ^the mollah Nadan, to make 
you a tender of my humble services: and perhaps, as 
you know the object of my visit, you will not object to 
lay your veils on one side.' • 

* May you abide in peace,' said they, * mollah !* 
and then gave me to understand, 4)y many flattering 
speeches, that I was welcome, and that they hoped 
my presence would bring them good luck. 

Two of them immediately unveiled, and discovered 
faces which had long bade adieu to their lilies and 
roses; and upon which, notwithstanding the help of the 
mrmeh round the eyelids, the blue stars on the fore- 
head and chin, and the rouge on -the cheeks, I could, 
in broad characters, make out a long catalogue of 
wrinkles. The third lady carefully continued to keep 
herself veiled. ^ 

I did not hesitate to n^ake an exclamation of sur- 
prise, as soon as the two charmers had opened their 
battery of smiles upon me. < Praises to Allah ! Mas- 
hallah /' said I, < this is a sight worthy of Ferhad 
himself. Do not look too intensely upon me, for fear 
that I consume. What eyes! what noses ! what lips! 
Have pity upon mei and cease looking. But why,' 
said I, * does this khanum' — ^(pointing to the unveiled 
one) — ' why doefe she hold me so long in suspense ? 
Perhaps she thinks me unworthy of tontemplating 
her ch^irms ; and she thinks right, for I am only a 
poor mollah, whilst doubtless even the sun, itv ^11 \S.^ 
majesty^ is not entitled to such high ipTm\^%^? 

L 2 


« Why do ycm make this na:5V (coyness), satdJi^ 
companions to her ; ^ you know ne must be able to 
give an account of us, or ele the curse of single life 
will be our fate, and we shall reoaain the scorn and 
reproach of womankind.' 

* Be it so,' said the third woman ;/ the cat must 
come from under the blanket ;' anrd^ in a sort of pel» 
she drew off her veil, and, to my great astonishment| 
exhibited to my view the well-known features of the 
wife of the Shah's physician, my former master. 

< By all that is most sacred ! by the beard of the 
blessed Prophet !' said If ^ how is this? Are the 
Gins at work, that they should have brought tbit 

* Yes, Hajji/ said she, very composedly, * fate is 
a#^onderful thing. But you, you who killed my 
husband, how came you to be a mollah ? 

* Is your husband dead, then,' said I, Mhat yoa 
talk to me thus ? Why do you throw words away 
in this unguarded manner? Whstthave I to do with 
your husband's death ? He was once my master, and 
I grieve for his loss. But you might as well say 
that 1 killed the martyr Hossein (blessings on hts 
memory !) as that I killed the hakim. Tell me what 
has happened ; for I am walking round and round ia 
the labyrinth of ignorance.' 

* Why do you pretend ignorance/ said s^e with her 
usual scream, * when you must know that it was on 
your account that the Shah ffent Zeenab out of this 
world — that her death led to the doctor having his 
beard pluckt d — that having his beard plucked brought 
on his disgrace-^and his disgrace death ?-^therefore 
you arc the cause of all the misthief.' 

* What ashes are you heaping upon my head, O 
khanum ?' said I with great vehemence ; * why am I 
to be told that 1 am the deatb of a man, when I was 
a hundred parasangs off at the time? You might as 
well say, if your husband had died of a surfeit, that 
the labourer who had planted the rice was th^ cause 
of his death.' 

We conUnued to argue for some time, when the 


OF HAJ.^1 BABA. 119 

Other womeii, fearing that their interests woul4 be ne- 
glected, interposed, and put roe in mind that we had 
bosiness to transact ; for they were anxious that their 
charms should no longer lie barrtrn and neglected^ 
The khanum, top^ who only talked for talking sake, 
and who, tb my knowledge, had cherished a more 
than Gomiyion hatred for her husband, seemed anxious 
that I should' forget her former more flourishing situa- 
tion, and requested me to proceed to business. 

Stilly ta carry on the farce of respect, I began first 
With the doctor's widow, and requested to know some 
of the partici^ars of her history ; in order, when I 
came to describe her to some impatient bridegroom, 
I intght be able to dp so in the best manner for her 

^ > You know as well as I,' said she, that I once en- 
joyed the favour of that rose in the paradise of sweets, 
the king of kings ; that 1 was the first beauty^in his 
harem, and the terror of ail my rivals. But who can 
withstand the decrees of destiny I A new woman 
arrived, who was provided with a more powerful spell 
than I could possess for securing the Shah's love, and 
ahe destroyed my power. She feared my charms sq 
SDUch, that she would not rest until 1 was expelled ; 
and then, for my misfortune^ the Shah made a pre- 
sent of me to his chief physician. Oh, I shall never 
forget the pangs of my mind, when I^was transferred 
from the glories and delights of the royal palace to 
the arms of the doctor, and to a residence among 
physic and gallipots ! I will not repeat all the histo- 
iry of Zeenab. When the hakim died, I endeavour- 
ed to revive the Shah^s good feelings towards me; 
but the avenues to his ear were closed ; and from one 
stage of misery to another, I, who once could lead 
the vicegerent of Allah by the beard, am reduced to 
aeek a husband in the highway.' s^, 

:- Upon this she began to cry and bemoan her cruel 
destiny ; but I in some .measure pacified her, by the 
asstirance that I would do all in my power to procure 
for her a suitable matet 
; '.( You see/ said she, that I am still handsome, and 

fc. . • 


that the career of my youth is yet to run. Look at 
my eyes : — have they lost their brightness ? Admire 
my eyebrows. Where will you meet with a pair that 
are so completely thrown into 6nfe ? Then see my 
waist — it is not a span round.' 

She went on in full enumeration of her most minute 
perfections, upon which I gazed with all my eyes,. a» 
she desired ; but, instead of youth and beauty, I could 
make nothing better of her than an old fat and bloat* 
cd hag, upon whoni I longed to revenge myself, for 
her former ill-treatment to the unfortunate Zeenab. 

The other two ladies then gave, me a sketch of their 
lives. One was the widow of a silversmith, who had 
been blown froip a mortar for purloining some gold^ 
which he had received to make a pair of candlesticks 
for the king ; aiid the other had turned muti in her 
own defence, having been abandoned by her husband, 
who had fled from the wrath of the Shah, and sought 
refuge among the Russians. 

They also endeavoured to persuade me that they 
were young and handsome, to which I agreed with as 
good a grace as I was able ; and, having made the 
necessary notes in my register, I promised to exert 
myself to the best for their advantage. < Recollect,* 
said one, * that I am only eighteen,' < Don't forget,' 
said another, * that I am still a child.' * Always keep, 
in mind my two eyebrows that look like one,^ roared 
out the hakim^s widow. 

* Upon my eyes be it,* exclaimed I, as I left the 
room ; and then I consoled, nnyself for the sight t>f 
such a trio of frights, by giving vent to a peal of ana- 
themas and laughter. . ^ 



Of the man Hajji Baha meets, thinking' him dead^ and 
of the marriage which he brings about. 

Having accomplished this part of my business, t 
strolled to one of the mo^t frequented caravansefdis 
in the <:ity, to see whether, perchance, some circum- 
stance might not turn up to advance n\y master's 
views. As I approached it, I found all the avenues 
blocked up with mules and camels heavily laden, in- 
termixed with travcllci^, some of whom wearing a 
white band, the distinguishing mark of the pilgrims 
who' have visited the tomb of iman Rcza, at Meshed, 
informed me that the caravan came from the pro- 
vince of Khorassan. I waited to see it gradually un- 
ravel from the maze of the narrow streets, and, after 
a due allowance of wrangling and abuse between the 
mule and camel drivers,^ I saw it take up its abode in 
the square of the building.' 

< Perhaps,' said I, * my good stars may throw some 
of my former acquaintance at Meshed into my way;' 
and I looked at each traveller with great earnestness. 
It was true that many years had now elapsed since 
my' memorable bastinado^ and that time would have 
made great changes in the appearances of men ; but 
sttU, I, who knew each face by hearty and had studied 
its expression as it inhaled tny smoke-— hoped that my 
recollection would not fail me. 

I had despaired of making a discovery, and was 
about to walk away, when a certain nose, a certain 
round back, and a certain projecting paunch, met my 
eye, and arrested my attention. 

♦ Those forms are familiar to rtie,' said I ; *they 
iM'e connected with some of my early ideas ; and as- 
soiredly are the property of one who is something 
tegre than a common acqustintance. My first master. 


Osman Aga, came into my mind ; but all idea of him 
I immediately banished, because it was more than 
certain that he had long since fallen a victim to the 
horrors of his captivity among the Turcomans. Still 
I looked at him, and at ever-y glance I felt convinced 
it was either him, his brother, or his ghost, I ap- 
proached to where he was seated, in the hope of hear- 
ing him speak ; but he seemed to be torpid (which 
was another characteristic in favour of my suspicion,) 
and I had waited some time in vain, when; to my 
surprise, I heard him, in a voice well known to my 
ears, inquire of a merchant who was passing, « In 
God's nan^e, what may be the price of lamb's skins 
at Constantinople?' 

' Oh, for once,' said I, * I cannot be mistaken ! You 
can be no one but Osman,'— and I immediately made 
myself known to him. ^ 

He was as slow to believe that it was Hajji Baba 
who accosted him, as I had been to make him ot^t 
Osman Aga. 

After our expressions of mutual astonishment had 
somewhat subsided, we began to survey each other. 

I discussed the gfeyhess of his beard, and he com- 
plimented me upon the beauty and blackness of mine. 
He talked with great serenity of the lapse of time, and 
of the nothingness of this world, from which I per- 
ceived that his belief in predestination had rather in- 
creased than diminished by his misfortunes, and which 
alone could account for the equanimity with which 
he had borne them. In his usual concise manner, he 
related what had befallen him since we last met. He 
said, that after the first feelings of misery at his cap- 
tivity had gone by, his time passed more agreeably 
than he had expected ; for he had nothing to do but 
to sit with the camels, whose-nature being of the sanie 
calm and philosophic cast as his own, suited his quiet 
and sedentary habits. His food was indifferent, but 
then he had excellent water : and the only privation 
which he seemed to regret was tobacco, a want which 
long previous h^bit rendered infinitely painful. Years 
had run on in this manner, and he had made up his 


mind to pass the remainder of his life with the camels, 
when his destiny took another turn, and he once more 
had the cheering hope of being restored to liberty. 
One, who gave himself pnt for a prophet, appeared 
among the Turcomans, According to the custom of 
such personages, he ^tablished his influence by pre- 
tending to work. two or three miracles, and which 
were received as such by that xiredulous people. His 
word became a law. The most celebrated and expe- 
rienced marauders freely laid their spoils at his feet, 
and willingly listed under his banner, in whatever en- 
terprise he chose to propose. Osman Aga presented 
himself before him, asserted his privileges of a sUni^ 
and, moreover, of being an emir^ and at length suc- 
ceeded in making the imposter procure his liberty, 
without ransom, which he did, in order to advance 
the glory of the true f^ith. Once free, he lost no 
time in proceeding to Meshed, where, to his great 
good fortune, he met merchants f'rom Bagdad, one of 
whom being nearly connected to him by marriage, ad- 
vanced him a small suni of i^noney to trade with. He 
received encouraging accounts of the state of the Turk- 
ish markets for the produce of Bokhara, and thither 
he proceeded to make his purchases on the spot. Ow- 
ing to his long residence among the Turcomans, he 
had acquired m^ch useful knowledge concerning 
their manners and customs — particularly on the sub- 
ject of buying and selling— ^and this enabled him to 
trade, with much success, between Bokhara and Per- 
sia, until he had gained a sufficient sum to enable his 
return to his country with advantage. He was now 
on the road to Constantinople, with several mules la- 
den with the merchandise of Bokhara, Samarcand, 
and the east of Persia ; and, having disposed of it 
there, it was then his intention to return to his native 
city, Bagdad. He expressed, however, his intention 
to remain at Tehran until the spring caravan should 
assemble, in-order to enjoy some of the pleasures of 
an imperial residence, alter having, lived so long 
among savages, as he called the Turcomans, and he 


lEKjaired from taie how he might most agreeably }iass 
his thne. ^ 

My fair chargds immediately came into my mind ; 
and recollecting of old that he was a great advoc^ 
for the marriage state, I proposed a wiTe to him with- 
out loss of time. 

Certainly, thought I, nothing was ever more strong*- 
ly pronounced than the doctrine of predestination has 
been in this instance. Here, one of my masters ar- 
rives from regions beyond the rising of the sun, to 
espouse the widow of another of my masters, who 
dies just at the very nrck of time to produce the meet- 
ing, which I, who come from the countries of -the 
south, step in to promote. 

The hakim's widow was the fattest of the three, 
and therefore 1 made no scruple in proposing her to 
Osman, who at once acceded to my offer; Softening 
down the little asperities of h«r temper, making much 
of her two eyebrows in one, and giving a general de- 
scription of her person, suited to the Ottoman taste, 
I succeeded in giving a very favourable opinion to 
the bridt groom of his intended. 

I then proceeded ^o inform the mollah Nadin of 
my success, who appeared to listen with delight to 
the adventures of thi« couple, which I related to him 
with scrupulous detail. He directed me how to pro- 
ceed, and informed me, in order to make the mar- 
riage lawful, that divakeelf or trustee, must appear on 
the part of the woman, and another on that of the 
man. That the woman's vakeel having beforehand 
agreed upon the terms of the marriage, proceeded to 
ask the following question of the man's Vakeel, in the 
Arabic tongue. 

* Have you agreed to. give your soul to me upon 
such and such conditions V to which the other an- 
swers, * I have agreed ;' and then the parties are held 
to be lawfully joined together. Nadan himself pro- 
posed to officiate on the part of the hakim's widow, 
and I on the part of Osman ; and it was left to my in- 
genuity to obtain as large a fee as possible for our- 
selves on this happy occasion. 

Of* HAJJl BABA. 135 

I foithiHPith commumcated the joyfal tidings to the 
khaimm, as I still called her, who did not fail to es*> 
cite the eavy of her other companions, for she imme- 
diately kid her success to her superior beauty, and to 
that never (ailiiig object of her Care, her two eye- 
brows in one. She was, as the reader may be allow- 
ed to suppose, in great anxie^ty at lier appearance ; 
for she dreaded not beipg corpulent enough for her* 
Tork, £tndj from whajt I c^dld judge, rather doubted 
^e briUiancy of her eye, from the great quantity of 
black paint which she had daubed on her eyelids. 

I left her ito return to Osman Aga, who, good man, 
was also arming himself for conquest ; and he seemed 
to think that, owing to his long residence among ca- 
mels, he might have Imbibed so much of their na- 
tilres as to have become a fit subject for the perfumes 
t>f musk and ambergreate. Accord'mgly , he went to 
the bath ^ hid grey beard was died a gtossy black; 
his hands received a golden tinge ; and his inusta- 
chios were invited to curl upwards towards the cor- 
ners of his eyes, instead of downwards into his mouthy 
as they usually had done* 

He then arrayed himself in his best^ and foUolved 
me to the house of the mollah Nadan, where, owing 
to this change in his appearance, he very well passed 
GtfT for a man at least ten years younger than he was 
ID reality* 

As soon as the parties came in sight of each' other, 
an unconcerned bystander would have been amused 
with their first glances-^— he, the bridegroom, ende^. 
vouring-to discover what he was about to espouse-— 
she, the bride, making play with her veil in such an 
artful manner as to induce his belief that it concealed 
celestial charms. But I was too deeply interested in 
the game to make it matter of amusement. Besides^ 
more than once, a certain fifty ducats that had once 
belonged to Osman, and which i had appropriated to 
my own use, came into my mind, and made me fear 
that it also might have a place in his : < and if,' said 
I, <^he gets displeased and angry, who knows what 
ashes may not fall upon my head !' 

Vol. II.— M 



However, they were married ; and I believe most 
truly, that he did not succeed in getting one glimpse 
of his intended until 1 had pronounced the awful 
words, *I agree ;' when in his impatience he partly 
pulled her veil on one side, and I Jieed'not say that 
he was far from fainting with deli ght# 

As soon as he was well satisfied that his charmer, 
w^s not a Zuleika, he called me to him, and said, 
* Hajji, i thought that youth, at least, she would have 
possessed : but she is more wrinkled thaQ any camel. 
How is this ?' - 

I got out of the scrape as well as I was able, by as- 
suring him that she had once been the flower of the 
royal harem, and reminded him that nothing had so 
much to do with marriage as destiny. 

* Ah ! that destiny,' said he, Ms an answer for 
every thing j but be its effects what it may, it\&an no 
more make an old hag a young woman, than it can 
make one and one three.' 

Sorely did I fear that he would return his bargain 
upoi^our hands; but when he found that it was im» 
possible to expect any thing better in a muti^ a class 
of females, who generally were the refuse of woman- 
kind,— -old widows, and deserted wives ; and who^ 
rather thait Ijive under the opprobrium that single life 
entails in our Mohamedan countries, would put up 
with any thing; that came under the denomination of 
husbands, he agreed to take her to his home. I ex» 
pected, lilce an hungry hav/k, who, the instant he is 
unhooded, pounces upon his prey, that Osman, as 
soon as he had got a sight of his charmer, would have 
carried her off with impatience ; but I was disappoint- 
ed. He walked leisurely on to his room in the cara- 
vanserai, and told her that she, might follow him 
whenever it suited her conveniepce. 



* Showing how the ambition of the mollah Naddn in^ 
tohes both him and his disciple in ruin* 

Upon a closer acquaintance with my ntaster, the 
mollah Nadai), I found that, besides his being the 
most covetous of men, h& was also the most ambiti- 
ous ; an^d that his great and principal object was to 
become the chief priest of Tehran. To that he turn- 
ed all his thoughts, and left nothing untried which 
might bring hun into notice, either as a zealous prac- 
tiser of the ordinances of his religion, or a persecutor 
of those who might be its enemies. He was the leader 
in prai^r at the principal mosque ; he lectured at the 
toydX medresseh^ or college ; and, whenever he could, 
he encogiraged litigants to appeal to him for the settle- 
ment of their disputes. On every occasion, particu- 
larly at the festival of the No Rouz, when the whole 
corps of mollahs are draw« up in array before the 
king^to pray for his prosperity, he always managed to 
-make himself conspicuous by the over-abundance -of 
adulation which he exhibited, and by making his so- 
norous voice predonainate oyer that of others. 

By such means, he had acquired considerable cele- 
brity among the people, although those who knew him 
better held him in no great estimation. An opportu- 
nity soon occurred which abundantly proved this, and 
which, as I will now narrate, gave an entire new turn 
to my fortunesV 

The winter had passed over our heads, and spring 
was already far advanced, when reports reached the 
capital, that in the southern provinces of the kingdom, 
particularly in Lar and Fars, there had been such, a 
total want of rain, that serious apprehensions of a fa- 
mine were entertained. As the year rolled on, the 
sanae apprehensions prevailed in the more northern 
provinces ; and a drought, such as before was never 
known, gave rise to the most dismal forebodings. The 


Shah ordered that prayers should bre put up at all the 
mosques in the city for rain^ and the MoUah Bashi 
was very active in enforcing the order. 
' My master Nadan had here too good an opportu- 
nity of manifesting his religious zeal^ and of making 
himself conspicuous by his exertions, not to lake ad* 
vantage of it • and he Jost not a moment in giving 
himself all the stir in his power. Conscious of the 
influence he had obtained over the popula$:e, he went 
a step farther than his rival ihe chief priest, and invi- 
ted an immense crowd of the lower orders to follow" 
him to a large open space without the city, whei;e he 
took the lead in prayer. 

The drought still continuing, ttie Sh^h ordered all 
ranks of people to attend him, and join in t)ie siipplica- 
tions which he had first comn^enced. He accounted this 
so great a triumph, thsit his Z€;al now knew no bounds. 
He caused all sects» Christians, Jews, and Guebres, 
as well as Mussulmans, tQ put up their prayers ; still 
the heavens were inexorable ; no rain came, the des- 
pair increased, and Nadan redoubled his» zeal. 

At length, one morning when the weather was more 
than usually sultry, he addressed a mob which he had 
purposely gathered round his house, in words some- 
thing to this purpose : 

* Is there nothing more to be done, O men of Teh^ 
ran ! to avert this misfortune which awaits the land of 
Irak? 'Tis plain that the Heavens have declared 
against us, and that this city contains some, whoSi£ 
vices and crimes must bring the Altnighty vengeance 
upon us. Who can they be but the Kafirs, the infi- 
dels, those transgressors of our law, those wretches 
who defile the purity of our walls by openly drinking 
wine, that liquor forbidden by the holy Prophet, (upon 
whom be blessing and peace !) and by making our 
streets the scene of their vices ? Lt^t us go ; follow 
me to where these odious wine-bibbers live ; let us 
break their jars, and at least destroy one of the causes 
of the displeasure of Allah against us.' 4^; 

Upon this a general sti^ ensued ; and fanaticism, 
such as I never thought could be excited in the breasts 

OP HAJJi BAB A. 129 

of incn, broke out in the most angry expressions, 
which were only the forerunners of the violence that 
s&on after ensued. Nadan, putting himself at the head 
of the crowd, haranguing as he pressed onwards, and 
folfowed by me — who had become as outrageous a 
fanatic as the rest — led us to the Armenian quarter of 
the city. ^ 

1 he peaceaBle Christians, seeing this body of enra- 
ged Mohamedans making for their houses, knew not 
what to do. Some barricadocd their doors, others 
fled, and others again stood transfixed, like men im- 
paled. But they did not long remain in doubt of our 
intentions ; for first they were assailed with volleys of 
stones, and then with such shouts of execration and 
abuse, that they expected nothing less than a general 
massacre to ensue. 

The mollah entered the houses of the principal Ar- 
meniansy^ followed by the most violent of the mob, and 
began an active search for witie. He made no dis- 
tinction between the women's apartments and the 
ptiblic ones, but broke open every door ; and when at 
length he had found the jars in which the liquor was 
contained, I leave the reader to imagine what was the 
havoc which ensued. They were broken into a thou- 
sand pieces ; the wine flowed in every direction ; and 
the poor owners could do nothing but look on and 
wring their hands^. 

By the time that this ceremony had been perform- 
W in every houses the fury of the mob had risen to 
the utmost, and from the houses they proceeded to the 
church, which being forced open, they demolished 
every thing within, — books, crucifixes, ornaments, fur- 
niture — nothing was spared ; and as there would not 
be wanting abundance of rogues on such occasions, it 
was soon discovered that whatever valuables the de- 
spoiled had possessed were carried away. 

The ruin was now complete ; and nothing more was 
left to the fury of the mob but the unfortunate suffer- 
ers themselves, who perhaps would next have been at- 
tacked^ had not a king's j^ra^A appeared^ accow^^-^ 
nicd by one of the principal AtrntTJA^w^v ^"^^ ^^^^ 



presence produced aa almost instantaneous return tp 

Apprehensive of the consequences of their conduct, 
all Nadan's followers made a precipitate retreat, leav- 
ing that revered personage and myself to fac« the 
king's officer. I presume our feelings will not be 
much envied when we heard him inform uSf that the 
King of Kings demanded our immediate presence. 
The mollah looked at me, and I at htm ; and, per- 
hapSf two bearded men never looked ii(iore like ravr 
fools than we did at that moment* He ei^deavoured 
to temporise, and requested our conductor to accom- 
pany him to his house^ in order that he n^ight put on 
his red cloth stockings, 

^ There will be no occasion for red cloth stockings/ 
said the ferashi drily. 

This produced an universal tremor in the mollah^ 
and I must own that it communicated itself .to me ia 
no agreeable manner^ « But what have I done, in the 
name of the Prophet ?' exclaimed he : — ^ the enemiesr 
of our faith must be overthrown* Is it not so V saidr 
he to the ferash. 

^ You will see/ returned the. impenetrable man of 

We at length reached the palace, and at the en- 
trance found the Grand Vizier, seated with the Mol- 
lah Bishi, in the chief executioner's apartment. 

As we stood at the windoWf the Grand Vizier said 
to the Mollah Naddn, * In the name, of AU,^ what in 
this that we hear? Have your wits forsaken you? 
Do you forget that there is a king in Tehran ?' 

Then the Mollah Bashi exclaimed, ^ And who am 
I, that you should presume t6 take the lead against 
the infidels?' 

« Conduct them before the king,* exclaimed the 
executioner, as he arose and took his staff of office in 
hand. ^ Do not keep the Centre of the Universe wait- 

More dead than alive, we were paraded through 
the avenues of the palace, and then stepped through 
the amail lo w door^ which introduced us into the en- 


closed gardeOf where we^ found the king seated in an 
upper room* 

As we approached, I perceiv'ed the august monarch 
twisting his mustachios, which is always esteemed a 
sigh of Wrath. I cast a glance at Nadan, and I saw 
him streaming from'every pore. We took our shoes 
oflF, as soon as we had come withiii sight of him» and 
advanced ta the brink of the marble basin of water. 
The party who stood before the king consisted of the 
MoUah Bashi, the chief executioner, the Armenian, 
Nadauy and myself. 

The chief executioner then placed his staff of office 
on the ground^ and, making a low prostration, said, 
with aU the prefatory form of words Usual in address- 
iog^the Sbah, ^ This is the moUah NadaD, and this his 
servant,' pointing to me. 

* Say, mollah,^ said the king, addressing himself to 
my niaster in a very composed tone t)f voice, ^ how 
long is it since you have undertaken to ruin my sub- 
jects.? Who gave you the power? Have you be- 
come a prophet ? or do you perhaps condescend to 
make yourself the king? Say, fellow, what dirt is 
this that you have been eating ?* 

The culprit, who on every other occasion never 
wanted words, here lost all power of utterance. He 
stammered out a few incoherent sentences about infi- 
dels, wine^ and the want of rain, and then remained 

> * What does he say?' said the king to the Mollah 
Bashi. * I have not learnt from whom he claims his 

* May I be your sacrifice,' said the chief priest ; 
*he says, that he acted for the benefit of your majes- 
ty's subjects who wanted rain, which they could not 
get so long as the ihfidels drank wine in Tehran.' 

* So you destroy part of my subjects to benefit the 
f emainder ! By the king's beard,' said the king to 
Nadan, ^ tell me, do I stand for nothing in my own 
tipital i Are a parcel of poor dogs of infidels to be 
i>iisned under my nose, without my being asked a 
fuestion whether it be my will or not that they 



should be SO ? Speak man ; what dream have you 
been dreaming ? Your brain has dried up,' . Then 
raising his voice, he said, * ACter all, we are some- 
thing in our dominions, and the kafirs, though such 
they be, shall know it. Here, ferashes (calling his 
officers to him,) here, tear this w'retch's tiirban from 
his head and his cloak from his back ; pluck the beard 
from his chin ; tie his hands behind him, place him 
on an ass with his face to the tail, parade him through 
the streets, and then thrust him neck and shoulders 
out of the city, and let his hopeful disciple (pointing 
to me) accompany him.' 

Happy was I not to have been recognised for the 
lover of the unfortunate Zeenab. My fate was para- 
dise compared to that of my master ; for never was 
order more completely executed than that which had 
passed the Shah's lips. 

Nadan's beard was ripped from his chin with as 
much ease by the ferashes as if they were plucking a 
fowl; and then, with abundance of blows to hasteo 
our steps, they seized upon the first ass which they 
met, and mounted the priest, the once proud and 
ambitious priest, upon it, and paced him slowly 
through the streets. I walked mournfully behind, 
having had my mollah's shawl torn from my head 
and my hirhh (cloak) from my back. 

When we had reached one of the gates Nadan was 
dismounted, and, with ^arcely a rag to bur backs, 
we were turned out into the open country ; and it Is' 
worthy of remark, that no sooner had we left the 
city than rain began to pour in torrents, as if the 
heavens had been waiting to witness the disgrace of 
two of Persians greatest rogues, and to give the mol- 
lah Nadan the lie in favour of the poor, injured, and 
ruined Armenians, 



Hajjt Baba meets with an extraordinary adventure in 
the bath^ which miraculoM^ly.sav^ him from the hor- 
rors of despair. 

^SOf'said I to my companion, as soop as we were 

Ikft to ourselves, * so I am ludebted to you for this 
piece of happiness. If I had thought that this ad- 
venture was to have been the result of the mushtehed's 
recommendation, you would never have seen Hajji 
fiaba in this trim. What could it signify to you 
whether rain fell or no» or whether the Armenians 
got drunk or remained sober i This is what we have 
got by your officiousness.' 

The mollah was ia too pitiable a condition for. me 
to continue unbraiding him any longer. We walked 
ioj silence by the side of each other in the saddest 
manner possible, until we reached the first village on 
our road. Here we made a halt^ in order to deliber- 
ate upon what we should do. My unfortunate com- 
panipn was expelled the city, therefore it was impos- 
sible for him to show himself in it uiitil the storm had 
blown over ; but as we were both very anxious to 
know what had become of our respective properties 
•—he. of his house and effects, I of my clothes and 
mule—it was determined that I should return and 
gain the necessary intelligence. 

I entered Tehran in the evening, and, making my- 
self as little recognisable as possible, I slunk through 
the streets to the moUah's house. At the first glimpse 
I discovered that we were entirely ruined ; for it was 
in possession of a swarm of harpies who made free 
property of every thing that fell under their hands. 
One of the first persons whom I met coming from it 
was the very ferash who had been sent by the Shah 
to, conduct us to his presence ; and he was mouuted 
on my mulej with a bundle in his lap before him, 


doubtless containing my wardrobe or that of the 
xnollab. . 

So borne down was I by this sight, and so fearful 
of being discovered, that I hurried away from the 
spot; and, scarcely knowing whither I was bending 
my stepsy I strolled into a bath, situated not far from 
the house of our enemy the chief priest. 

I went in, undressed myself, and, it being almost 
dark J I was scarcely perceived by the bathing^attend- 
ants. Going from the first heated room into the hot- 
test of all, 1 there took my station in a dark riecess, 
unseen by any one, and gave free course to my 
thoughts. I considered to what I could now possibly 
turn my hands for a livelihood; for fortune seemed 
to have abandoned me for ever, audit appeared that I 
was marked out for the strrcken deer, as the choice 
game of misfortune. 

< I no sooner fall in love,' said I, musing, * than the 
king himself becomes my rival, sjays my mistress, 
and degrades me from my employment.— -I am the 
lawful heir to a man of undoubted wealth : he lives 
just long enough to acknowledge me ; and although 
every body tells me that 1 ought to be rich, yet I 
have the mortification to see myself cheated before 
my face, and I turn out a greater beggar than ever. — 
The most devout and powerful man of the law in Per- 
sia takes a fancy to me, and secures to me what I ex- 
pect will be a happy retreat for life : my master in an 
evil hour prays for the blessings of heaven to be pour- 
ed upon us, instead of which we are visited with its 
v.engeance, driven as exiles from the city, and lose all 
our property.' Never did man count up such a sum 
of miseries as I did when seated in the corner of the 
bath. The world seemed for ever gone from me, and 
I wished for nothing better than to die in the very spot 
in which I had nestled mvself. 

The bath had now been almost entirely abandoned 
by the bathers, when of a sudden a stir ensued, and I 
perceived a man walk in, with a certain degree of pa- 
rade, whom, through the glimmering of light that 
was still left, 1 recognised to be the Mollah Bashi in 


( j person. Neither he nor his attendants perceived me ; 

I and as soon as he was left to himself, (for so he 

ilj thought,) he immediately got into the reservoir of hot 

water, or the hazneh^ (the treasury,) as it is called in 

the baths of Persia. 

Here I heard him for some time splashing about 
and puffing with all his might ; a sort of playfulness 
which struckme as remarkable for so grave and se- 
date a character ; and then a most unusual fiounder- 
t-l ing, attended with a gurglit)g of the throat, struck my 
car. I conceived that 4ie might be practising some 
extraordinary bodily exercise, and curiosity impelled 
me to rise gently from my corner, and, with all the 
precaution possible, to steal softly on the tips of my 
toe^ to the aperture of the i-escrvoir and look in. 

To my horror, I perceived the head of the law at 
his last gasp, apparently without a struggle left in 
him. It was evident that he had been seized with a 
fit, aod had been drowned before he could call for 

All the terrible Consequences of this unfortunate 
event stared me full in the face. What can now hin- 
der me, said 1,'from being taken up as his murderer? 
Every body knew how evilly my master, the mollah 
Nadan^ was disposed against him, and I shall be call- 
ed the vile instrument of his enmity. 

Whilst making these reflections, standing upon the 
step that leads into the reservoir, the Mollah Bashi's 
servant, followed by a bathing attendant, came in, 
with^the warm linen that is used on leaving the bath ; 
H I and seeing a man apparently coming out of the water, 
nl naturally took me for the deceased, and without any 
tel words proceeded to rub me down and to put on the 
d| bathing linen. This gave me time for thought ; and 
>tK as I foresaw an adventure that might perhaps lead me 
safely out of the scrape into which my destiny had 
i r thrown me, I let it take its course, and at once resolv- 
[ f . ed^o personify the chief priest. 

dim lamp, suspended from on high, was the 

light that shone in the large vault of the dressing 

; and as I happened to be about the size and 








Stature of the deceased, his servants^ who were with, 
out suspicion, very naturally took me for their tnas- 
ter. I had known ^nd seen a great deal of hrm dd- 
ring my stay with the moUah Nadan, an jl therefore 
wa^ sufficiently acquainted with the manners of the 
xnan, to be able to copy him for the short time it 
would take to be attended upon by his servants, until 
we reached his house. The most diffirult part of the 
imposture would be, when I should enter the wo- 
men's apartments ; for I was quite unacquainted with 
the locality there, and totally ignorant of the sort of 
footing he was upon with the inmates of his anden^n. 
Indeed, I once heard that he was a perfect tyrant over 
the fairer part of the creation ; and as much gossip 
was carried on at niy master's, it came to my recol- 
lection, that it had been said he waged a continued 
war with his lawful wife, for certain causes of jea- 
lousy which his conduct was said to promote. He 
was a man of few words, and when he spoke gene- 
rally expressed himself in' short broken sentiences ; 
and as he affected to use wordsit>f Arabic origin on 
all occasions, more guttural sounds obtruded them- 
selves upon th« eSr than are generally heard from 
those who talk pure Persian. 

I did not permit myself to open my lips during the 
whole time that I was dressing. I kept my face in 
shade as much as possible; and when the water-pipe 
was offered to me, I smoked it in the mariner that I 
had seen the chief priest do ; that ia, taking two or 
three long whiffs, and then disgorging a seemingly 
interminable stream of smoke. 

One of the servants appeared to be struck by some- 
thing unusual, as I pronounced my Khoda hafiz ! to 
the owner of the bath upon leaving it ; but all suspi- 
cion was^at an end when they felt the weight which 
I gave myself, as they helped me to mount the horse 
that was in waiting. 

I deliberately dismounted at the gate of the house 
of the deceased ; and although I bungled about the 
passages, yet, following the man who seemed to act 
as the confidential servant^ I came to the little door 



which leads into the anderd.n; I permitted him to do 
what he no doubt was daily a,ccustomed to do, and 
just as he had opened the door^ and I had advanced 
two or three pactrs, he shouted out, < Cheragh biar, 
bring lights,' and then retired.^ 

A clatter of slippers and woroens' voices were then 
immediately heard* ^nd two young slaves came run- 
ning towards me with tapers in their hai^ds, apparently 
striving who should first reach me. 

The largest apartment of the building was lighted 
up, and 1 could perceive in it more women than one; 
That I took to be the residence^ of the principal per- 
sonage, the now widow of the deceased ; and I dread* 
ed lest. the' slaves should conduct me thither. But, 
aided by my good stars, I must have fallen upon a 
most propitious moment, whtn the Mollah Bashi and 
his wife had ({uarrelled ; an event which seemed to be 
understood by my conductors^ who, seeing me unwil- 
ling to proceed to the lighted apartment, drew me on to 
a. door which led into a small inner court, where I 
{blind a khehuet^ or retiring room, into which they in* 
trodi^ced me;. 

.How to get rid of them was my next care ; for as 

they had walked before me, they could not have got 

ft sight of my face, and had they entered the room 

with me, perhaps they would have made a discovery 

fatal to my, safe ty* I took the light from the hand of 

ooe, and dismissed the other with a sign of the head, 

I|[acji 1 been the same inconsiderate youth as at the 

t)meof my acquaintance with Zeenab, perhaps I should 

have committed some act of imprudence that might 

iiave led to my discovery : but now I eyed the two 

yoiung slaves with apprehension and even with terror ; 

and certainly one of the most agreeable moments of 

^ ' pyr existence was, when I saw them turn their backs 

upon me and leave me to my own meditations. The 

change in my fortune, which had taken place during 

ibe last hour, was so unexpectedy that I felt like one 

- ^^ding j>etween heaven and earth \ and my first im- 

::^.||ilsey upon finding myself in safety, after having got 

t4^«rer. the most difficult part of the imposture, was at 

'Vol. II.— N 

1 33 TH& ADVENT OlffiS 

one mometit to exult and be joyfuU and at aiiother to 
shiver with apprehension lest my good fortune might 
iibantfon me. 


Of the consequences of the adventure, whidh threaten 
danger^ but end in apparent good fortune. 

I CAREFULLY fastened the inside of niy door as soon 
as I was left to myself, and put my candle in so re«» 
mote a comer of the room, that if any one was curious 
to look through the paintbd glass windbwy they could 
never discover that I w^s not the MoUah Bashi. 

Having done this, it then struck me that somethiiig 
more might be elicited from this adventure than I had 
at first iihagined. ^ Let me inspect the good man^s 
pockets,' said I, * and the roll of paper in his girdle ; 
perhaps they may contain the history of my future 
plans.' In his right hand pocket were two notes, a 
tosary, and his seals. In the left, his ink-stand, a 
small looking-glass, and a comb. His watch was kept 
in the breast of his coat, and in another small pocket, 
nearly Under his arm-pit, was his purse. 

The purse first came under inspection, and there I 
found five tomauns in gold and two pieces of silver. 
The watch was gold, and of English manufacture. 
His ink-stand, beautifiilly painted, was also valuable, 
and contained a penknife, scissars, and pens. All these 
tod the other trinkets I duly looked upon as my own, 

J for I was determined to play the whole game,) and 
replaced them in their proper places on my persoh. 
The notes then came under inspection. One was to 
this purpose^ without a seal. 

* O friend ! my intimate ! my brother ! (* Oh,* said 
I, ^ this is from an equal!') You know the affection 
that the friend Who addresses you entertains for that 


bright star of the age, the shadow of otir.bleGised Fro* 
phety and his only wUh is, that their intimacy should 
daily increase and strengthen. He sends him sis 
choice Ispahan melons, such as are not to be fpund 
every. day, and requests him, as he. valines his beard, 
to give him aa unlimited permission to drink wine ; 
for the doctors assure him if he does not take it ia 
abundance, he will not have long to be the scourge 
and extirpator of the enemies of the true faith.' 

' This cl?in only be from the chief executioner,' said 
I immediately, > Who else in Persia could express 
in such few words his own character, nanaely, flatte- 
rer, drunkard, and braggart? I will make something 
of this ; but, let me look at the other note.' I opened 
ity and read as follows : 

^ O my lord and master, 

* The humble inferior who presumes to address the 
prop of the true faith^ the terror of infidels, and the 
refuge of the sinner, begs Ijeaye to lay before him, that 
after having encountered a thousand difficultieSf he 
bfts at length succeeded in getting from the peasantry 
of his villages one hundred tomauns in ready money, 
besides the fifty khefwars^ or ass loads of grain. That 
the aian, Hossein Ali, could or would not pay any 
thing, although he had bas,tinadoed him twice, a§|d he 
had in consequence taken possession of his two cows: 
that he would go on bes^ting and exerting himself to 
the best of his abilities ; and if some one was sent for 
th« money which he had now in hand, he would deli- 
ver it over upon receiving a proper order.' 

The note then finished with the usual form of words 
from. an inferior to his master, and was sealed with a 
small seal, upon which w^s impressed, Abdul Kerim, 
the name of the writer. 

J ^Ah,' said I,^may my lucky stats still protect me, and 
I will discover who this Abdul Kerim is, and where 
the village from whence he writes, and then the hun- 
dred tomauns become mine. However, I let that mat- 
ter rest for the moment, to think of the good account 
^ip which I might turn the note from the chief execu- 
Slipoer. After due reflection, I wrote as follows : 


< Oh my frierrd ! my soul ! 

* The note of that friend without compare has been 
received, and its contents understood. When the 
sacred standard of Islam runs the risk of losing that 
lion of lions, that double-bladed sword^ that tower of 
strength, when he may be saved and preserved, who 
can doubt what is to be done ? Drink, O friend, 
drink -wine, and copiously too ; and let the enemies of 
all true believers tremble. May thy house prosper, 
for the melons ; but add one more favour to the many 
already conferred ; lend thy friend a horse, duly ca- 
parisoned, for he has pressing business on hand, and' 
he will return it safe and 'sound, as soon as the star 
of his destiny shall direct him home again.^ 

This I impressed with the seal of the deceased, and 
determined to present it myself very early in the 

To the other note I wrote the following answer : 

* To the well beloved Abdul Rerim, 

* We have received your note, and hav^ understood 
its contents. This will be delivered to you by pUr 
confidential Hajji Baba Beg, to whom you will deliver 
whatever money you have in hand for us. On other 
subjects, you will hear from us soon ; but in the mean 
while go on with the bastinado, and we pray Allah to 
take you into his holy keeping.- 

Having duly accomplished this, I waited for a pro- 
per hour to make my escape from a place where I was * 
in momentary danger of a discovery, which pefhiaps 
might bring me to an ignominious end. It was past 
midnight, and I was preparing to issue in great se- 
crecy from my room, when the door was gently press- 
ed as if some one wanted admittance. My fright 
may better be imagined than described. I expected 
to scfe, at least, the daroga (police magistrate) and all 
his officers rush in and seize me ; and I waited in 
agony for the result of the intrusion, when I heard 
the sound of a female voice whispering words which 
my agitation prevented my understanding. What- 
ever might have been the object of the visit, I had 
but one answer to give, and that was a loud and heavy 


snore^ which sufficiently proclaimed that the occu- 
pant 6f the apartment was in no humour to be dis- 
turbed. , 

I waited for some time until I thought that every 
thing was hushed throughout the mansion, then made 
my way quietly to the prinxripal entrance, which having 
easily opened, I Aid as if pursued* I watched the 
best opportunities to steal along the streets without 
meeting the police* and without being discovered by 
the sentinels on duty. The day at length dawned, 
and the bazars^ little by little, began to open. Dress- 
ed as I was in the M oUah Bashi^s clothes, my first 
care Was to m^ke such alterations in them that they 
should not hold me up to suspicion, and this I did 
for a trifling expense at an old clothes' shop, although, 
at the same time, I took care not to part with any of 
the valuable articles which had fallen into my posses- 

I then proceeded to the house of the chief execu- 
tioner, where I presented my note to a servant, an 
utter stranger to me, saying, that the Mollah Bashi 
requested an immediate answer, as he was about going 
from the city on important business. / 

To my delight, 1 was informed that the great per- 
sonage was in his anderun, and that he must for the 
present delay sending a written atiswer; but that in 
the mean while he had ordered one of his horses to 
be delivered to me. 

Oh how I eyed the beast as I saw him led out of 
the stable, with the gold-pommeled and velvet-seated 
saddle, with the gold chain dangling over his head^ 
and the bridle inlaid with enamelled knobs. I almost 
dreadtd to think that all this was about to become my 
property, and that such luck could not 'last long. So 
strong was this apprehension, that I was about asking 
for trappings less gaudy and more serviceable; but 
again, I thought that any delay might be my ruin, so 
yrithout mincing the matter, 1 mounted him, and in a 
very short time had passed the gates of the city, and 
was far advanced into the country. 

i rode ODj without stopping or otiC^\oo\Ati%\i^\^^-k 



until I had got among some of the' broken ^ou&d 
produced by the large and undefined^ bed of the river 
C^raj, and there I made a halt. I recollected to have 
heard that the village of the Moliah Bashi lay some- 
where ID the direction of Hamadan, and consequently 
I directed my course thither. But, to say the truth, 
when pausing to breathe, I was so iilarmed at the ex« 
traordinary turn which my fortunes had taken, that, 
like one dizzy on the brink of a precipice, invaded by 
a sort of impulse to precipitate himself, it was with 
some difficulty that I could persuade myself not to 
return, and deliver up my person to justice. « I am/ 
said I9 ^ nothing more nor less than a thief* and, if 
caught, should duly be blown from the mouth of a 
mortar. But then, on the other hahd, who made me 
80 ? Surely, if takdeer (destiny) will work such won- 
derful efiects, it can be no fault of mine. I sought 
not the death of the Moliah Bashi ; but if he chooses 
to come and\ breathe his la$t in my lap^ and If, whe- 
ther I will or noy I am to be taken for him, then it is 
plain that fate has made me his vakeel^ his represen- 
tative ; and whatever I do so long as I reml^n in that 
character is lawful-— then his clothes are my clothes, 
his hundred tomauns are my hundred tomauns, and 
whatever I have written in his name is lawfully writ- 
ten/ . 

Revived by these conclusions, I again niounted, 
and proceeded to th/e nearest village, to inquire where 
the property of the chief priest was situated, and if a 
person of the name of Abdul Kerim was known in 
the neighbourhood. As if the dice were determined 
to keep turning up in my favour, I found that the 
very next village, about one parasang distant, was the 
one in question, and Abdul Kerim a priest of that 
name who superintended the interests and collected 
the revenues of his deceased master. * Ho,' said I, 
< a priest ! I must change the tone of the letter, and 
insert his proper titles.* I immediately sat down on 
the ground, taking the ink-st^d from my pocket, and 
cutting off a slip of paper from the roll in my girdle, 
I framed my note anew, wad then proceeded on my 



lenanci, ckitermined, if I obtaiqed possession of the 
itttDdred tomaunsy to take the shortest road to the 
nearest Persian frontier. 


Hajjt Baba does not shine in honesty. The life and 
adventures oj the i^olldh Naddn. 

-I FTT on an air of consequeiKe suited to the fine 
kofse which I bestrode as soon as I reached Seidabad 
{for that was the pame of the vi^llage,) and rode 
through its gates with such a look of authority, that 
the peasants who saw me, did not fail to make very 
low inclinations ,of the head. 

* Where is Abdul Kerim ?' said I, as I dismount- 
tdf and gave my horse to one of the bystanders. 

In a moment every one was in motion to find him» 
and he very soon appeared. 

*l am come,' said I9 (after the usual salutations) 
>pii the part of the qhief priest, upon certain business 
well known to you ; and straight I delivered him my 

Abdul Kerim had a piercing eye, which did not at 
all suit me, particularly as he kept conning me over 
through a comer of it ; but I was relieved as soon as 
lie had read the npte to hear him say be chesm, ' By 
H^ eyes ! the money is ready. But you must refresh 
yourself# In the name of God, come in.' 
,4- I pretended great hurry, not at all liking to remain 
, wader the fire of his sharp eyes ; but by way of not ex- 
citing suspicion, I consented to eat some fruit and 
' ifiovir milk. 

,^ * I do not remeinber to have seen you at the chief 
V^piest's,' said he to me, as I was opening wide my 
. ^-^liiV^th to swallow a piece of melon ; ^ and yet I am 
t^'^iifSfaidoted mtjci every one of his servants perfectly*' 



* No,' said I, halt choked at the question, *np; I 
do not belong to him. 1 am an attendant upon the 
chief 'executioner, with whom the Mollah Bashi, I hp' 
lieve, has som€ money transactions.* 

This seemed to setde every diflSculty which Isaw 
had been>rising in the. mind of my entertainet j and 
thus the fine horse, the gold-pommelled saddle, and 
the brilliant bridle, were at once accounted for. 

Having received the ope hundred tomauns, I safely 
deposited theni in niy breast; and then, apparently 
taking the road back to the city, 1 left the village with 
a heart much lighter than I had brought. But as 
soon as I was fairly Out of sight, I turned my horse's 
bridle in the contrary direction, and clapping the stir- 
rups into his flanjcs, galloped on without stopping, 
until the foam fairly ran down his sides. 

I determined to proceed direct to Kermanahah, 
there sell horse, saddle, and bridle, and then make 
my way to Bagdad, where I should be safe from all 
danger of molestation. 

Having proceeded some, five parasangs on my road, 
I saw a strange figure walking before me at a good 
pace, singing with all his throat. He was lightly 
dressed, having only a skull-cap on his head, iiis face 
bound round with a piece of linen, a pair of slippers 
on his feet, and nothing to indicate that he was a 
way-faring man. As I drew near I thought that I 
had seen his form bt-fore ; he was tall and well-shap- 
ed, with broad shoulders, and a narrow waist. I 
should immediately have taken him for the niollah 
Nadan but for his singing; for it never struck me as 
possible that one of his grave character and manneis 
could ever lower himself by so ignoble an act. But 
little by little, I saw so much of him, although he had 
not yet discovered me, that I could not be mistaken ; 
it was the mollah himself. 

I stopped my horse to deliberate whether I should 

notice, or make myself known to him. 1 o pass hirti 

would be the height of cruelty ; but to recognise hi pi 

would of necessity burthen me with an inconvenient 

companhn. But then, shouVd Vie tf\^^?:i\!i \«\\a Vhi^^ 



and find that I had shjinned him, he would very pro- 
bahiy denounce me as a thief on the very first occa- 
sion ; and if I escaped him now^ I should have the 
fbar ever after of knowing him to be my enemy. 

We were both approaching a villagr where we must 
pass^the night, therefore there was no retreating on 
my part; for it was necessary to see that proper care 
was taken of my horse, considering the long journey 
it had to travel, and to push him on further was im-. 

I took a middle line. Should he recognise me, I 
would speak to him ; if not, I would pass him unheed- 
ed. . I urged my horse on, and as t approached he 
turned round and surveyed me from head to foot, but 
apparently without^ making me out. 

'Oh Aga, for pity's sake,' exclaimed , he, *have 
compassion on an unfortunate man, who has no other 
refuge in this world than God and you !* 

I could not resist such an appeal to my feelings, 
and, keeping silence for some little while by way of 
hearing what more he would say, I at length burst 
into an immoderate fit of laughter. My laughter 
seefncd to be as much put of season as his singing ; 
for he was extremely puzzled what to make of me ; 
but' when I began to speak, all doubts were removed, 
and he ran up to me with a sort of joy and ecstasy 
that bordered upon madness. 

« Ay, Hajji, my soul, my uncle, light of my eyes !* 
sai'd he, as he kissed my knee. * From^what heaven 
ha^e you dropped ? What means this finery, this 
horse, this gold, these trappings ? Do you deal with 
the Gins and the Dives^ or has fortune fallen in love, 
anct adopted you its heir V 

I continued laughing, so amused was I at these 
sallies, and he went on, saying : * How comes it that 
you have so soon turned your mule into this fine 
hol'sef And my property, what is become of it ? 
Have you not even saved my ass, for I am sorely tir. 
ed'bf going on foot ? Tell me, tell me all : by the 
tj^rd of the Prophet, tell me all.* 

I soon found that had I refused to give him a full 

N ' '" 


account of my adventures, he would suspect* me of 
having got possession of his property, and turned it 
into the finery which had just drawn forth his admi- 
ration : so I promised faithfully to relate every thing, 
but I entreated him at the same time to prepare a 
large quantity of credulity, for what I had t6 say was 
so marvellous, that he would very probably conceive 
it was my intention to impose upon him* 

We then proceeded to the village, where wc took 
up our quarters at the mehman khaneh^ or strangers' 
hoiise, a convenience generally to be found in every 
hamlet throughout Persia, and there established our- 
selves for the night. ^ 

A person of my appearance could not long remain 
unnoticed, and I was duly waited upon by the kedkboda 
who supplied us with a good supper ; and during the 
time required for its preparation, I related my adveop 

tures to my companion. 

Their singulari^ty was in no manner thrown away 
npon him ; and he seemed to die away with delight 
when he found that all my present prosperity was at 
the cost of his old enemy the Mollah Bashi. As we 
sat communicating to each other in the full confidence 
of our hearts (for the miserable are ever greatly relie- 
ved by talking of themselves^) I discovered that never 
before had I acquired an insight into the real charac* 
ter of my associate. 

* There must have beien an assumed importance in 
you,^ said I to him, ^ as long as I was in your service; 
for how could one really proud be so amiable as yott 
appear now V 

* Ah, Hajji !* said he, < adversity is a great altera- 
tive. My life has been one eternal up and down. I 
have often compared it to those whirligigs set up by 
louts in our market-places on the No Rouz, which 
keep one dangling between heaven and earth. Unfor- 
tunately, I am one of those who has never adopted 
the maxim of, * spread not your carpet in a wet place." 

* 1 ell me,* said 1, * the history of your adventures. 
We cannot better pass our time, and I hope that you 

■ - «'■ 


kfiow me well enough now not to refase me your con* 

♦You^iH hear nothing in my history but what is 
common to many Persians, who one day are princes 
and the next beggars ; but since you are curious to 
know, I will relate it with pleasure ;'^nd he began in 
the following words : 

• I am a native of Hamadan. My father was a mol- 
hh of such eminence, that he was ambitious of becom- 
ing the mushtehed of Persia ; but his controversies 
upon particular points of faith unfortunately carried 
htm so far, that a party was created against him, which 
deprived him of the elevation he sought. His most 
prominent quality was the hatred he bore to the Os- 
manlies, and to Sunis in general. One of our ances- 
tors is said to have first introduced into Persia a more 
universal hatred against them than ever before exist- 
ed, by a simple innovation in the education of the 
Shiah children, by which means their very first ideas 
were trained to be inimical to the race of Omar. I 
me^,' said the mollah, ^ that which you no doubt very 
well remember : when a little boy in schooi-time is 
pressed upon certain occasions to ask his master's 
leave to retire, the form of words in which he is en- 
joined 4o make his request is, * Lahnet heh Omar^ 
curae be upon Omar. I dare say you have through 
lifey as I have, never omitted to unite the name of 
Omar with every thing that is unclean, and at least 
once a day to repeat the curse which you were taught 
at school.' 

I fully assented to this, and then he proceeded with 
his story. 

• My father^s hatred for the sectaries of Omac ex- 
tended itself to all sorts of infidels. Jews, Christians, 
Fire-worshippers, and worshippers of images, all 
came within the scope of his execration ; and what at 
first he had practised from motives of ambition, at 
length became the ruling principle of his nature. His 
family, and Ixamong the number, were brought up in 
his tenets, and imbibed all his violent prejudices; and 

"to much did we hang together by ticvem^xYiax^^lcfcXTtv- 



ed as it were a distinct sect,— the terror of lofiddbij 
and the most zealous upholders of the Shiah faltlu 

* After this you will not be surprised at the part I 
lately took in the destruction of the Armenian wine- 
jars at Tehran. But that is not the only scrape my 
zeal has led me into. Very early in life, when still a 
student at Hamadan, I was involved in a terrible dis- 
turbance, of which I was the principal promoter. 

^ An ambassador from the Pasha of Bagdad^ with 
his suite, was quietly taking his road through our 
city^ having sojourned there two or three days on his 
way to the court of the Shah, when burningto put iatb 
practice my father's lessons, I collected a band of 
young fanatics like myself^ and^ making them an ap- 
propriate address, I so excited their passions, that we 
resolved to perform some feat worthy of our pritici- 
ples. We determined to attack our Turkish guests, 
inform them of the curses we denounced against Omar, 
and invite thetn to become adherents to the doctrine 
of Ali. Heedless, and, perhaps, ignorant of what is 
due to the character of Elchi^ or ambassador, we only 
saw in Suleiman EfFendi an enemy to the Shiahsj atid 
one calling himself a Suni. One day, as he was set- 
ting forth from his house to visit the governor of Ha- 
madan, we gathered overselves into a body, and 
greeted him by loud cries of ' Curses be upon Omar!* 
This enraged his domestics, who retorted the insult 
by blows. Showers of stones ensued from our party, 
and this led to a general fray, in which the Pasha's re- 
presentative had his turban knocked from his iiead, 
his beard spit upon, and his clothes nearly torn from 
his back. 

* Such an outrage of course could not be overlooked. 
The ambassador was outrageous, he threatened to send 
off couriers to the Shah, and was even on the point of 
returning to his own master, when the governori 
frightened at the consequences if his wrath was new 
appeased, proniised that he should have all satisfac- 
tion, and that the ringleaders of the disturbance should 
iiiinjediatcly be delivered up to him. 

' Trusting to my faiVitt^a cous^c^M^tkK.^ vck \.V\^ c 


aaditfil of vap^WITg pride at what we had achieved, 
I at first made light of the vows of vengeance which 
the Turks breathed against us ; but the governor, 
who.'only contemplated the loss of his place if the 
titw^ of this event reached Tehran ; and caring little 
whether All was the true successor to the Prophet, or 
whetlier Osman, Omar, and Abubekr were usurpers 
or not, he at once ordered me to be seized, as well 
sd two others of my companions, and forthwith we 
wete placed at the disposal of the enraged Osmanlies. 
< I shall never forget the contending emotions of 
my mind, when brought face to face before these ob- 
jects o^my hatred. I did not at all relish the sound 
beating which they had it in contemplation to inflict 
upon me ; and, at the. same time, I groaned under the 
necessity of keeping to myself that stream of abuse 
which was ready to fliow against them upon the small- 
est provocation. \ . 

• They seemed, however, quite ready to return all 

jQl^r hatred with interest, and did not lose this oppor- 

^tUBity of letting us know its full extent. They were 

abt generous enough to let us ofT, but ordered the ad- 

JBinistration of the bastinado with a degree of reli- 

^^os zest that I thought could never have existed in 

wiy breast except my own. To be short, our feet 

were beat into a jelly, and our only consolation dur- 

i»g the operation was the opportunity afforded us of 

Ijiyttig vent to our pent up rage. Tht Turk, however, 

ifAS revenged, and we were set free. 

' ;>;This adventure cooled my zeal for many years ; 

imough, in the pursuit of the distinctions which my 

f^her sought, I continued to addict myself to contro- 

"fersy. When about twenty-five years old, and my 

b^ard had acquired a respectable consistency, I went 

tb Ispahan, in order to improve myself by associating ^ 

ith our celebrated doctors, arid to make my own 

iilities known by the part which I might take in 

cir disputations. I succeeded to the utmost of my 

isfies, and acquired considerable reputation. I only 

anted an opportunity of distinguishing myself^ and 

¥ot. II.— O 


that was soon aflbrded me by th^^MCwing circum- 

^ In the time of our famous Shah Seffi^ who was 
himself half a heretic, the Franks (a sect of the Chris- 
tians) had considerable establishments at Ispahan for 
the purposes of commerce, and were much patronised 
and encouraged by him. He allowed them free ex- 
ercise of their religion, — permitted them to build 
churches,— to impoi't priests, — and, to the scandal of 
the true faith > even allowed them the use of bells td 
call them to prayer. These Franks have a supreme 
head of their church,—^ sort of caliph, whom they 
call Papa^ — part of whose duty, like that of our owti 
blessed^Prophet, is to propagate his religion through- 
out the world. Under different pretexts, convents of 
his dervishes were established, some in Ispahan itself^ 
and some in Julfa among the Armenians* Most of 
these have been abandoned, and the buildings fallen 
into decay; but one whose object more particularly 
was the propagation of the christian faith still exist- 
ed, and to its destruction my endeavour and those of 
pur most zealous mollahs were directed, notwith- 
standing the opposite views of the government, who 
are anxious to encourage the Christians to settle in 
Persia, owing to the riches which they introduce by 
their trade. 

* This convent was served by two dervishes, one of 
whom was in himself a calamity !— one who under- 
stood the world,-^a man of deep design, — and of a 
wit so sharp, that the shaitan in person was not £t to 
be his father. He was tall, thin, and strong. His 
eyes were like live charcoal, and his voice like a high 
wind. He never lost an op{>ortunity of entering into 
argument with our most learned men upon points of 
religion, and would boldly assert, with the heart of a 
lion, that our holy Prophet, ' the chief of created be- 
ifags, the sealed intercessor, Mohamp:ied Mustapha,' 
(upon whom be eternal blessings !) was a cheat and 
an impostor. In short, he embarked in the sea of 
controversy, as if he had Noah for a pilot ; and, not 
content, with words, he even wrote a book|in which 


he pretended to prove the truth of his mad assertions. 
This book was unfortunately attempted to be answer- 
ed by one of our divinesy who did not recollect that 
it is folly to play with fire^ unless there be plenty of 
water at hand to extinguish it, • His book said any 
thing but what it ought, and tended more to throw 
ridicule upon Islamism than to uphold its glory and 
perfection* Ispahan ^as full of this subject when I 
arrived there ; and, being anxious to bring myself for- 
ward, I proposed that an invitation should be made 
to the Frank dervish to meet the mollahs of the city 
in person^ on an appointed day, in the Medresseh Je- 
deed, when they would argue every point of their 
respective faiths, and when they would either make 
the dervish turn Mohamedan, by producing convic- 
tion in his mind, or they would become Christians, if 
his arguments prevailed. To this he immediately as- 
sented; but we determined beforehand, amongst our- 
selves, that such a thorn in the side of our Ullemah 
should no longer exist in Persia, and that the over- 
whelming truth of our belief should not be left to the 
chances of vain words and uplifted voices, but show 
itself in the zeal and numbers of its adherents. Ac- 
cordingly every turbaned head, and every beard that 
waggedj were secretly invited to appear on the ap- 
pointed day ; and never was attendance more com- 
pleted—never did the children of Islam make such a 
show of their unresisting forcfe^ as they did on that 
ntiemorable occasion. 

'< The Medresseh was already filled ; 'for, besides 
the mollahs, a great crowd, all anxious to witness the 
triumph of the true faith, had taken possession of the 
courts. Head over head and turban over turban were 
piled upon each other, in thick array, along the walls 
and in the utmost corners of the hall, when the Frank 
dervish, alone, unsupported, and unfriende^, appear- 
ed before us. He looked around in dismay, and ap- 
peared appalled by our numbers. Two or three of 
the principal mollahs, Who were to carry on the con- 

oversy, were seated in front of their bodY^^tA L 
dose at hand. We had pre^^x^d c^^^uoxx's^^ 


^-■. y 

152 THE ADVBNl ini^ r^H^ ^ 

which were to be proposed to him, and accarduig to 
the answers he gave, so were we to act. He appear- 
ed to be provided with no other weapon of 4eftnce 
save his tongue ; and he sat down opposite to w$ evi* 
dently much alarmed at the hostUitjr which be re- 
marked on the countenances of all present. 

^ Without giving him any time for reflection^ we 
immediately began : 

« < Do you believe,' said one, « that the God tn 
Heaven put himself into a humsm form 7' ^ Do you,' 
said another, < acknowledge that God is composed of 
three persons, and still is only one V ^ Are you con- 
vinced,' said a thirds Mhat what you call the Holy 
Ghost came down from heaven in the body of a 
dove V - 

* These questions were put sq <j[uickly, that he 
knew not which way to turn, until, collecting within 
himself all the powers of his voice, he exclaimed, * If 
your intention is to kill me, be it so ; but what good 
will that do your argument i If your intention be to 
argue, attacking me in this manner by nunotbera and 
personal violence will prove that you can only pppose 
passion to argument ; and show the world, that by 
me you have been overcome/ 

< Seeing that we were likely to fare ill, and observ- 
ing that his words were4>roducing an effect inJiis 
favour, I was the first to exclaim to the surrQundtng 
inob, and to the assembly present :> O Mussulmans ! 
Mussulmans ! come to our help,*-^ur religion is at- 
tacked,— *the infidel is trying to subvert our. faith,*^ 
vengeance ! help !' 

« These words produced an immediate effect, jand a 
thousand voices were lifted up against him. * Seize 
him !' said some ; ^ kill him !' said others. The mob 
was agitated to and fro, like the waves of the sea ; 
when the dervish, seeing himself in danger, made an 
attempt to escape, which was seconded by one of the 
xhoUahs, whose compassion was moved towards him. 
He threw his own cloak over the infidel's shoulders, 
and just as violent hands were about to be lain upon 
A/nj, he pushed vigorouiVy iVitom^ \}cv& cxo^A^ ^^ 


^ OP HAJJI BABA. 1 53 

succeeded in reaching the house of an Armenian in 

. ♦We, the moHahs, being disappointed of our prey, 
proceeded' in a body to the house of the governor of 
the city, followed by an immense crowd of the people. 
A great fermentation had been excited, and we pro- 
moted it all in our power. "' 

* The governor himself was a strict and pioiis Mus- 
sulman, iand we expected that he would without hesi- 
tation join in the cry we had raised. We accused the 
Frank dervish of preaching false doctrine, with a view 
to subvert our religion. 

* * This fellow,' said we, * calls our Prophet cheat, 
and talks abomination. We demand that he be de- 
livered over to us.' 

< The governor was perplexed how to act ; for he 
knew how dangerous it was to interfere in matters in 
which the subjects of Europe were concerned ; and he 
was far from seconding our disposition to violence. 

< * Why invite the dervish to an argument,* said he, 
* if you will not hear what he has to say ? If you have 
no arguments to oppose to his, violence only makes 
your cause worse, and you do more harm than good 
to our religion. But if on the other hand your argu- 
ments are better than his, and he can bring no answer 
to them, then indeed he is a kaiir, an infidel ; and ac- 
cording to our law is worthy of death.' 

- ( FiiKiing ourselves balked again, we departed 
breathing vengeance ; and I verily believe, had we 
met the dervish at that moment, he would have been 
torn into a thousand pieces. He was so well aware of 
this, that we soon after heard that he had left the city 
io secret; and so far our endeavours were successful, 
for it was long before he ventured again to show him- 


* I had put myself so much forward on this occa- 
on, and had shown my zeal in so many different 
ays, that I had become a prominent character. But 
khertoj I had got nothing by it. The capital I felt, 
W all, was the place where I ought to endea- 

"** to gain some permanent and lucrative situ* 

o 2 


ation; and to that I turned my views. To gam this 
end, I took myself to Kom, with a view of ingrati^- 
ing myself with the mushtehed,* whose recominendaT 
tion I knew would do me more good than ten years of 
prayer and fasting. I succeeded perfectly ; for with 
the character I had acquired of being the scourge of 
infidels^ I was received by hinv with great favour» and 
he was delighted to acknowledge me for one of his 
most diligent disciples. I soon took up his cause 
against the Sufies with all t4ie ardour that he could 
wish ; and it was not long before I ventured to solicit 
his recommendation to the body of the Uilemah at 
Tehran, and to the principal men in office at court. 
He professed to be sorry to part with me, but acceded 
to my request ; and I was soon after counted one of 
the holy fraternity at the seat of empire. 

^ I confess to yoUf although I enjoy as good an opi- 
nion of myself as most men, that I was much less suc- 
cessful in making my way at court than I had expect- 
ed. My competitors for advancement were numer- 
ous, and more versed in the ways of the world than I. 
Like themt I was obliged to begin by paying a most 
assiduous attention to mea in office. Having once 
gained the privilege of being seated in the mejlis (as- 
sembly) of the head of the law, who was in fact my 
chief, I little by little became noticed by the grand 
vizier, the lord high treasurer, the secretary of state; 
the chief executioner, and #hers. I was. constantly to 
be seen at their uprisings, and at their evening meet- 
ings ; but after all, I was nothing but a poor mollah, 
and I longed for some opportunity of distinguishing 
myself from the common herd. The prime vizier 
first noticed me, owing to my once having succeeded 
in making him shed tears, at the commemoration of 
the death of the blessed Hossein, which he held at his 
house, and where I preached and chaunted the service 
in a manner that drew forth his approbation, and that 
of all the assembly. Since then I have made great 
progress, particularly in the eyes erf* the people, whose 
good opinion I look upcm as the fir^ of acquisitions to 
an ambitious man. 

r?^-' ■ 


^ ^Sutji^a have had an opportutirty of judging how 
lilde their assistance is to be depended upon, when 
opposed to the will of an absolute king* Trusting too 
much to m^y influence over them, I have lost myself; 
and I $km now what you see^ a miserable wanderer, 
returning to my native city, ^is pennyless as when I 
firat left it/ 


Mtfjt and the mollah make plans suited to their critic 
cat situation^ showing that no confidence can exist 
between rogues. 

Tbe mollah Nadan having finished his narrative, I 
endeavoured to persuade him that the same destiny 
which had presided over his success in life, and after- 
wards over his misfortunes. Would no doubt serve him 
again, and restore him to his lost situation : * for,' 
said I, ^ we both of us have seen enough of life in Per- 
sia to have ascertained its extreme instability. When 
events depend upon the will of one man, he may with 
as much consistency order you back from exile, as he 
did the plucking your bearrd and the thrusting you 
forth from the city. There is a reaction in misfortune 
which frequently produces increased prosperity. Thus 
when the smith sprinkles water upon his burning char- ' 
coal^ h is extinguished for a moment, and smoke takes 
the place of flame ; but again, at the slightest blast of 
his bellows^ the fire breaks out with redoubled bril- 

<That is precisely the thought with which I was 
consoling myself,' said my companion, * and which set 
itic singing, when you overtook me on the road. The 
Shah most probably thought it necessary to make an 
exhibition of justice, by way of ingratlauiv^h\ttt^^\£ 
With the C/iristian merchants : but xVi^ A"a^ v«^ cws^fe 


when he wiH feel the necessity of making friends of 
the upholders of the Mohamedan religion, and then 
the good opinion of such a man as I, who am beloved 
by the people^ will be pf consequence to him. I had 
some thoughts^ I confess, of relinquishing priestcraft, 
and becoming<a merchant ; but^ all things considered, 
1 shall continue to follow my briginal destiny. I have 
now an opportunity of setting up for a martyr, and 
that^ now I recollect it, is worth more than the loss of 
my worldly goods, my house, my furniture, my whifc 
ass,^ and even my muties.' *" * 

* Then what do you propose doing V said I. * Will 
you acconapany me to Bagdad, or i^ill you wait the 
tide of events in Persia i' 

* My plan,' said he, *is to proceed to my native 
place, Hamadan, where my father, who is still alive, 
enjoys considerable reputation : through his means I 
will set negotiations on foot- for my re-admission to 
the capital, and ultimately for my restoration to the 
situations of which I have been deprived. But you,-^ 
what road do you intend to pursue ? When, Inshallahy 
please God, lam restored, I shall require your talents 
to make my muti establishment prosper. You had 
better remain at Hamadan with me, and follow my 
fortunes.' . 

' Ah, my friend,' said I, ' with all my present appa- 
rent prosperity, I am more of an exile than you. 
Events have played wick^jjly into my lap, and here 
am 1, (God knows how unwillingly) an avowed thief, 
I could not do othenvise than follow my destiny, 
which has clothed me with thcgarments of the chief 
priest, enriched me with his money, and mounted me 
upon the finely caparisoned steed of the executioner 
in chief. That same destiny compels me to fly nvy 
country : I cannot remain in it to run the chance of 
being discovered and cut into quarters, to grace the 
gates of the city. No, before many days have expired 
I hope to have reached the Turkish frontier, and then 
only shall I call myself in safety.' 

Upon this I made him an offer of part of my ac- 
quired spoils, by which I hoped to secure his secresy, 



tndhappy was I to find him nothing loth. He ac- 
cepted of ten tomauns (leaving me ninety-five in hand,) 
irhich he said would be enough fot* present purpo- 
ses, and^hich he promised to repay whenever his 
fortunes should be re-established. But upon taking 
^em from me he again urged me to proceed with 
bim to Hamadan. He represented in the strongest 
colours the danger I ran of being seized before I 
could escape from the Shah's territories, and even 
when X should have quitted them ; ^ For/ said he, 
^ the moment the death of the Mc^ah Basht is known, 
and as soon as the chief executioner shall have dis- 
covered the loss of his horse, he will not fail to des- 
patch officers throughout the country in search of 
ypUy and. you are too conspicuous a character now not 
to be easily traced. It will he much better for you to 
take refuge with me, who will not fail to avert any 
inquiries, until the event has blown over, when you 
will be at liberty to follow your plans in safety. My 
father owns a village at some distance from Hama- 
dan, where you can live unsuspected ; and as for your 
horse and trappings^ we may dispose of them in such 
a manner that they cannot lead to your discovery. 
Hamadan is not very far distant. If we depart hence 
at midnight, we shall reach it early to-morrow ; and 
this we can easily do by making your horse carry us 
l^oth* Consider that the journey is long to the Turk- 
ish frontier ; and should tty beast fail you, what is to 
Under your being taken ?' 

His words gave a new turn to my thoughts, and I 
saw that he spoke the language of reason. Totally 
ignorant of this part of Persia, and /eeling how ne- 
oesi^ry it was for my safety not only to be acquaint- 
ed with the high roads, but also with the unfrequent- 
ed paths, I looked upon a rapid flight to the frontier 
a»^ undertaking not so easily performed as imagin^- 
ed; If the moUah was inclined to betray me, he 
liquid MS easily do so whether I fled or whether I 
a4opted his plan ; aod of the two, it appeared to me 
If^ safer line of conduct to confide in than to distrust 
^m : and accordingly I agreed to accompany bim. 



Refreshed both by food and rest, we departed at 
midnight, and made great progress on the road to 
Hamadan ere the sun rose* Having reached a rising 
ground which gave us a view of the city^j^^ made^a 
halt, in order to decide upon our present operations* 
Nadan pointed with his hand to a village about a pa-< 
rasang distant, and said, ' That is the village in which 
you must take up your quarters, until the story of the 
Mollah Bashi's extraordinary death be blown over ; 
but you cannot present yourself in this magnificent 
garb, and mounted on this fine horse, without creating 
suspicion. I propose that we exchange dresses, and 
that you surrender the horse up to me. By this 
means ydu will appear in the character of a dependent 
of my father at his village, and I shall keep up the 
respectability of mine, by returning to the paternal 
roof properly equipped. This arrangement will ad-, 
vance'our mutual as well as our combined interests* 
You will be safe from suspicion, and I shall not look 
the pauper that I do now. The history of my dis- 
grace has no doubt ere this reached the ears of my 
family, and perhaps lowered them in the eyes of the 
world ; but in this country, where so much depends 
upon the effect of outward show, as soon as it is 
known that I returned to them mounted on a horse 
with an enamelled bridle, a gold-pommeled saddle, 
and with a Cashmerian shawl round my waist, they 
as well as I will be restored«(o our proper places again. 
After I have enjoyed the advantage of these things 
for a few days, it will be very easy to sell them under 
some f>lausible pretext, and then you shall duly re- 
ceive their amount.* 

I was rather startled by this proposal, for certainly 
my companion had not inspired me with sufficient con- 
fidence to encourage me trusting him with so much 
property without any other security than his word* 
But I felt the truth of all he said. It was impossible 
for me to keep my incognito at the village for ten 
days or a fortnight dressed as I was, and the posses- 
sor of a fine horse, without creating suspicion. I was 
now, 'tis true, completely in the power of the mollah j 


OP HAJJl BAB A. 159 

but by his proposed arrangement he .would have be- 
coti^esuch an accomplice in my guilt, that he could 
never denounce me without at the same time involv- 
ing himself. 

« But/ said I, 'suppose a Nasakchi discovers the 
horse, what becomcfs of us then ? You will be seized 
as well as I.' 

« God is great,* answered the mollah ; * no. one can 
have travelled as fast as we, and before any officer can 
arrive at Hamadan I shall have reached my father's 
house^ and produced all the sensation I require in the 
city. It will be , easy after that to secrete both the 
horse and his trappings. I take all the risk upon my* 

Nothing more after this was to be said on my part. 
We immediately stripped, and made ap exchange of 
clothes. He got from me the de.ceased Mollah Ba- 
shi's under garment, his caba, or coat, his Cashme- 
rian girdle, and his outward c^oak, made of a dark 
green broad cloth ; and I, in return, received his old 
clothes^ which had been torn on his person the day he 
bad been thrust out of Tehran. I gave him my black 
cap, round which he wound the chief priest's head- 
shawl, which I had still preserved ; and, in return, he 
delivered over to me his skull-cap. I preserved the 
Mollah Bashi's purse, the remaining money, the 
watch and seals ; whilst I permitted him the use of 
the ink-stand, the rosary, the pocket looking-glass, 
and the comb. He then stuck the roll of paper in his 
girdle ; and when completely made up and mounted, 
he looked so much like the deceased chief priest him- 
seiff that I quite started at the resemblance. 

We parted with great apparent affection : he pro- 
mised that I should hear from him immediately, and 
IQ the^ meanwhile gave me every necessary informa- 
tion concerning his father's village, leaving it to my 
own ingenuity to make out as plausible a story for 
Ijdjfself as I might be able. 

/^'Jle then rode away, leaving me with no very agree- 

* atilfe fe^ings, on finding myself alone in the world, 

l^edt^aia of the future, and suspicious of my present 

fi^. ' ' ' 


I made thrliest of my road to the village ; but was 
extremely puzzled in what character to inrroduce my- 
self to the inhabitants. In fact, I looked like one 
dropped from the skies ; for what could be possibly 
said for a man of good appearance, without a shawl 
to his waist^ or an oiUer coat to his back, with a pair 
of slippers to his feet, and a skull cap on his hpad i 
After much hesitation, I determined to call myself a 
merchant, who had been robbed and plundered by 
the Curds, and then sham asickness, which might be 
a pretext for remaining in the village until I could 
hear from the mollah, who would no doubt furnish 
me with intelligence which might enable me to de- 
termine how long I ought to remain in my hiding- 

In this I succeeded perfectly. TKe good people 
of the villiige, whom Heaven for my good lock ha^ 
endowed with a considerable share of dulness, be- 
lieved my story, and tdok me in. The only incon- 
venience which I had to endure was the necessity of 
swallowing the prescriptions of an old wonmn, the 
doctor of the community, who was called to shew her 
skill upon me. 


The punishment due to Hajjt Buba falls upon Na- 
ddny which makes the former a staunch predestinp- 

I HAD passed ten long and tedious days in my hh 
>ng-place, without the smallest tidings from the mr 
lah Nadan. I was suspicious thai his star Vas st 
glancing obliquely at him, and that matters had n 
gone quite so well as he had expected. Little cor 
munication existed between the city and the village 
and I began to despair of ever again hearing of n 



horse, my rich trappings and clothes, when, one even- 
ing, a peasant, who had gone to the market-place of 
-Hamadan for the purpose of hiring himself as a la- 
bourer in the fields, and who had retimed disap- 
pointed, by his discourse threw some light upon my 

He said, that a great stir had been excited by the 
arrival of a Nasakchi, who had seized the son of their 
Aga (the owner of the village,) taken away his horse, 
^nd carried him off prisoner to the capital, under the 
accusation of being the murderer of the M ollah Bashi 
of Tehran. 

I leave the gentle reader to judge of my feelings 
Upon hearing this intelligence. I soon became satis- 
fied of the reason of the mollah's silence; and although 
1 felt myself secure for the present, yet I was far 
from certain how long I might remain so. I imme- 
diately declared that I was perfectly restored to 
health, and taking a has^y leave of my hospitable 
villagers, made the best of my way to Hamadan, in 
order to ascertain the truth of the peasant's intelli- 
gence. ^ 

Nadan's father was well known in the city, and I 
found no difficulty in discovering where he lived. I 
abstained from entering his house, and making any - 
direct inquiries concerning the fate of my friend : 
but I stopped at the shop of a barber in the neigh. ^ 
bouthood, both because I wanted his assistance in 
giving a decent appearance to my head and face, and 
because I knew that he would be the most likely per- 
son to inform me of the r,eal state of the case. 

I found him as talkative and as officious as I could 
Vish. When I had asked him the news of the day, 
and had pleaded my ignorance of the recent occur- 
rence that had filled every body with astonishment, 
:>he stepped back two paces, and exclaimed, « Whence 
*^3o you come, that the iniquities of that dog the mol- 
'"^ah Nadan are unknown to you ? He was not satis- 
;^jsd with killing the chief priest, but he must needs 
^diress himself in his very clothes ; and, not content 
v||»j^ that, he has also stolen one of the chief execu- 

VoL. II.— P 



tioner's best horses and furniture. WondrQus dirt 
has be been eating !* 

I entreated my informant to relate all the particu- 
lars of a story of which I pretended to be totally ig- 
norant ; and without waiting for a second request^ he 
spoke as follows ; — 

^ About ten days ago^this Nadan arrived^t the gate 
of his fathcr^s house, mounted on a superb hors6, ca- 
parisoned in a style more fitting a khan and a man of 
the sword than a poor servant^f God* He was dress- 
ed in shawls of the finest quality, and looked indeed 
like the high priest himselfi His appearance in this 
fashion of dress and equipage created an extraordi- 
nary sensation ; because a very short time before it 
was reported that he had incurred the Shah's displea- 
sure) and had been turned put of Tehran in the most 
Ignominious manner. He gave himself all sorts of 
airs upon alighting ; and when questioned concerning 
his expulsion from the capital, he appeared to make 
very light of it, and said that he had been made to 
understand, in a secret manner, that his disgrace M^as 
only temporary ; and that, by way of softening it, he 
had been presented with the horse which he then 

' This tale* was believed by every one, and he was 
received at his father's hojuse with great honours; 
but most unfortunately, the next day, when about 
mounting his horse to shew himself in the city, a Na- 
sakchi passed the gate of the house, having just ar. 
rived from Tehran. He stopped, and looked at the 
animal very earnestly; inspected the bridle, and gold 
pommeled saddle, and then cried out. La Allah il Al- 
lah ! there is but one God ! He inquired of the by- 
standers to whom the horse belonged, and was inform- 
ed that it was the property of the moUah Nadan* 

< i'he mollah Nadan !' exclaimed he in a great 
rage : > whose dog is he ? That horse is the property 
of my master, the chief executioner ; and whoever 
says it is not is a liar, whoever he may be, mollah or 
no mollah !' 

^ At this interval appeared the delinquent himself. 


who, upon seeing what was going on, endeavoured to 
hide himself from the observation of the Nasakchi ; 
for it so happened that he was one of the officers who 
had paraded him through the capital on the day of his 

* Wearing the gariiients and turbaned cap^^ of the 
deceased chief priest, the dangers of his situation im- 
mediately stared him in the face, and he would have 
decamped on the spotf had he not been recognised by 
the Nasakchi, who, as Sbon as he saw him cried out, 
< Seize him, take his soul, that is he — the very man. 
Well done, my happy stars ! By the head of Ali, by 
the beard' of the prophet, that is the bankrupt rogue 
who killed the chief priest and stole my master's horse/ 

^ By this time the Nasakchi had dismounted, and, 
with the assistance of his own attendant, and of the 
bystanders (who sbon discovered that he was acting un- 
der authority,) he secured the mollah, who, in his de- 
fence, made oath upon oath that he was neither thief 
nor murderer, and that he was ready to swear hrs in- 
nocence upon the Koran.' 

The barber related very faithfully the whole con- 
versation which took place between Nadan and the 
Nasakchi, the result of which was that the latter took 
the former with him to Tehran, notwithstanding all 
the interest made in his favour by the mollah's father 
and friends. " 

Never was breast torn by so many contending feel- 
ings as mine^ upon hearing the fate that had befallen 
my companion, as related to me by the barber. In the 
first place, I bemoaned the loss of my horse and his 
rich trappings, and of my fine shawl dresses ; but in 
the next, I enjoyed a feeling oi security when I con- 
sidered, that if poor Nadan Ahbuld happen tb lose his 
head, no account would everbe asked from me of my 
late iniquities. I still could not help looking upon 
myself as one under the protection of a good star, 
whilst the mollah, I concluded, was inevitably, doom- 
ed to be unfortunate: else why should we have ex- 
changed clothes, and^ie taken my horse from me ^ at 
a time when I was in no way 'mcWued Xo ^i^^^i^^x^^sv^ 


proposals? But, notwithstandiDg there was every 
likelihood that he^would suffer the punishment due to 
me, still, ibr the present, I could not feel myself se- 
cure so long as I remained in Persia, and therefore 
determined to proceed upon my original intention, and 
quit it without further delay. I consoled myself for 
the loss of the horse and clothes, by th^ possession of 
the remaining ninety -five tomauns, which would be 
sufficient for my present wants; and then those, pow- 
erful words, *Khoda buzurg^ est / God is great, stood 
me in lieu (as they do many a poor wretch besides) 
of a provision for the future, and of protection againsi 
all the unforeseen misfortunes preparing for us by the. ' 
hand of fate. 


Hajjt B&ba hears an extraordinary sequel to his ad' 
venture in the bath, and feels all the alarms of guilt. 

Having equipped myself as a merchant, for I had 
long since determined to abandon the character of a 
priest, considering how ill I had succeeded in it, I 
sought out the conductor of a caravan, which was on 
its road to Kermanahah, and bargained with him for 
the hire of a mule. He had a spare one, that had run 
unloaded from Tehran, and which he let me have for 
a trifle ; and as I had no baggage but what I carried 
on my back, my beast and I agreed very well togeth^. 

We reached our destination on the seventh day, an)i 
here I was obliged to look out for a fresh conveyance. 
I was informed that none Was likely to offer under a 
month, because, owing to the Curdish robbers, who 
infested^he frontier, no caravan ventured on the rosKl 
unless its numbers were considerable, and it would 
take some time to collect them; but I was told 
that ar caravan of "^Igrims and dead bodies had setoff 


for Kerbelah only the dsi% before, and that, with a lit- 
tle exertion, i might easily overtake them before they 
had reached the dangerous passes. 
- Constantly apprehensive of being drscovered and 
detatnedy I did not hesitate upon the course to adopt, 
and forthwith set off on foot^ My money was safely 
deposited- in my girdle ; and without any other bag- 
gage than a good my hand, I left Kermanshah 
and proceeded on my road. 

T On the evening of the third day, when nearly ex- 
hausted with fatigue, my eyes were cheered by the 
sight of fires at a distance^ the smoke of which curled 
v^ over the brow of a hill ; and approaching them, I 
discovered cattle spread over the plain grazing, and 
thus was not mistaken in supposing that the caravan 
was nigh at hand« As I advanced towards the bag- 
gage which was piled tip in a hollow sc^uare, and where 
I knew I should find the conductor, I observed a small 
white tent, pitched at some little distance, which indi- 
cated that pilgrims of consequence were of the party ; 
and, moreover, that women were amongst them, for a 
TaAhteravan {a litter) and a Kejaveh (panniers) were 
seen near the tent. 

I gave myself out for a pilgrim, and found the con- 
ductor very ready to furnish me with a mule for my 
conveyance; I was anxious to pass unnoticed, consi- 
dering the predicament in which I stood ; but still the 
conscious dignity which the ninety-five pieces of gold 
in my girdle gave me made it difficult for me to re- 
strain that vanity of display so common to all my 

Among the baggage, at a small distance from the 
square, in which I was seated, were several long and 
narrow packages sewn up. in thick felts, which were 
spread in pairs upon the ground, apparently having 
been unloaded there from the backs of camels. I in- 
quired what they might be, for the sight of them was 
new to me, and was informed that they contained dead 
bodies bound to Kerbelah. 

> It is evident you are a stranger,' ssud the condac«» 
toTy who appeared to be as loquasfvo;^ ^isA tsDk5^'*^tx- 

P 2 

i ,A 

t6d thb'Adve;nturbs 

v^ttted as those of his profession - generally' are, < or 
otherwise you would have been better informed* We ' 
are carrying rare things to Kerbelah !' 

* Yes/ said I, ' I am a stranger ; I come from afar, 
and am like one descended from the mountains. In 
Gpd's name, what are you carrying to Kerbelah V 

* What!' answered he, > have you heard nothing of 
the extraordinary death of the MoUah Bashi of 1 ehv 
ran ; how he died in the bath ; and hgw his ghost was 
seen on horseback, and then in his harem ; and ho# 
it afterwards ran off with one of the chief execution- 
er's best horses ? Where have you been living all this 
while V added he, shaking both his hands before him 
as he spoke, and shrug;ging up his shoulders. 

Alarmed at what he had said, I pretended ignor- 
ance ; and requested him to satisfy my curiosity con- 
cerning the story in qUestipn, which he did in a man- 
ner that, but for my being so deeply implicated in ir^ 
would have afforded me much anuikenient. 

^You must know then/ said the muleteer^ f that 
what I am about to relate is truev because I was on 
the spot in person, at the tiihe it happened. 

< The chief priest having gone to the bath. at the 
close of dky, just after the evening prayer, returned 
to hts house surrounded by hib servants, and retired 
to bed for the night in the kheiwet of his women's 

^ You need not be told that most of the public baths 
in Persia are open to the women the first thing in the 
morning, to a certain hour in the day, and are then 
appropriated to the men. The wife of the MoUah 
Ba^hi, attended by her servants and slaves, the morn- 
ing after her husband had bathed, at th^ earliest sound 
of the cow horn, prbccfeded to the same bath ^ and she 
and her suite were the first party who entered it on 
that day. Out of respect to th^ir mistress, none of 
her attendants ventured to get into the reservoir of 
hot water before her.^ The cupola of the bath was 
but very dimly I'rghted by the dawn; s^nd the chief 
priest's wife was almost in utter darkndss when she 
ent^eredi die water. Quess at ber hcorror, when scarce* 



If havrog proceeded two steps, her extended hand 
fell upon %i large mass ol floating flesh. H. . 

^Her first impulse was to utter an amazing shriek; 
her second to tumble headlong out as if she had been 
pursued, and straight to faint away. 

* The consternation which she produced amoirgst 
her women mny easify be conceived. One after the 
other, with the lamp in their hand, they looked in, 
shrieked, and then run back, not One among them 
having yet discovered what was the object of their, 

^ An length, the old duenna taking courage, looked 
boldly into the reservbir, and to her surprise she there 
found a dtrad man. More screams and cries ensued, 
which having brought the chief priest's wife to her 
senses, caused her to join the inspecting party. Lit- 
tle could be recognised of a floating corpse inflated 
with water, presenting various odd surfaces to the 
eye, and giving but little clue to discovery. At 
leCigth the head and face appeared to view ; and, as 
soon as the old duenna had applied her lamp to it, 
one and all cried out, « O Ali ! it is the MoUah Bashi; 
it is the MoUah Bashi!' 

^ The wife again fell into a trance ; the slaves made 

their cries ; in short, there was that stir amongst them, 

that one would have thought th^y had heard the 

. ^ blast of consternation from the trumpets of the re- 


* But amidst all the wailing, which by this time 
had attracted every woman in the building, one of 
the slaves cried out, < But it ocmnot-be our Aga, for 
I saw him return from the bath, I made his btd, and 
I am sure he was soon after asleep. It is impossible 
that he can be in bed and asleep, and in the bath, 
drowned, at one and the same time. It must be some- 
ftody else.' 

*This observation threw them all into greater con- 
sternation than ever, becaiise ^they infimcdiately felt 
ll^at what the slave had seen must have been her mas- 
ttcr's ghost. *See,* said the wife, — who had again 
tome to lifie,-^*poiiitteg to the face of the corpse, ^ I 


am sore this was my husband ; there^s the scratch I 
^2Lv€,lBilf$i^i^t yesttrd'dv,'-^^ And ihcref* said one of 
her servcents, ' that is the, place in his beard from 
which you plucked a handful of hairs,' 

These tender recollections threw the poor widow 
into a violent flood 6f tears, which were only stopped 
by her slaves assuring her that the Moilah Bashi was 
still alive : < How elsfe could he have taken the lamp 
from my hand V said the slave— ^^how^pouid he bavc> 
shut^the door ? how, dismissed me ? how snored V So 
persuaded was she of the truth of what she said^ that' 
she forthwith dressed iierself, a6d volunteered to go 
to her master's bed^room, where no doubt she wouldl 
find him asleep. - / 

< < But if he is therc,^ said one of the women, * then 
what can this be ?' (pointing to the corpse.) 

* * Why, this must be his ghost/ said another ; *for 
surely no man can possess two bodies,*— one in which 
he lives, and the other by way of a change.' 

*' ^'No,' said a third in a waggish tone, ^ that would « 
be quite new. He might then make the same ns^ of- 
them as he would of a town and country hoUse.' 

« All this time, (many additional bathers having 
poured in) whilst those who were indifferent were 
speculating after this fashinnv the chief priest's wo- 
men were uttering^ loud and piercing shriek's particu- 
larly when the slave returned and:in formed them that, 
no Moilah Bashi had she found, and that he had left 
no trace behind except the print of his body in the 

* The story had no W' got abroad, the bath was sur- 
rounded by a crowd, who pressed to gain admittance; 
and ere the women had had time to dress themselves, • 
the place was full of men. Such a scene of confusion as 
then ensued had never before been witnessed in a 
public baih at Tehran. What with the wailing and" 
lamentations of the women of the chief priest, — what 
with the noise and cries of those who inVeighed 
against the intrusion of the men— *the clamour was 

* At length the friends and relations of the deceased 


appeared^ and^ with them, the washers of the deadf 
who immediately bore the corpse to the place of ab- 
lution, where it was embalmed, and prepared to per- 
form its journey to Kerbelab^ for thither it Was judg- 
ed expedient to send it for burial. 

« His widow at onte avowed her intention of ac- 
companying the body; ^ and my mules,' added my 
iirformant, * wt;re hired on the occasion. The tent you 
see yonder is occupied by her and her slaves ; and 
there/ pointing to the^ packages, *4ies the carcass 
of her husband*' The accompanying dead bodies aro' 
the remain^ of those, who both at Tehran and op^ our 
i:oad hither died abotit the time that this event took 
place, and are now sent to JLerbelah to be buried in 
the suite and under the protections of one who at the 
day of resurrection, it is hppcd^ may lend them a 
helpiTi^>haDd into paradise.' ' 

Here the conductor stopped, whilst I, who had 
been struck by the latter part of his speech, became 
almost mute from fear. I felt that having endeavour- 
ed to escape danger, I had fallen i*fto its very mouth. 
Were I to be recognised by the chtef priest's ser- 
vaotst some of whom I had known intimately, their 
knowledge of my person would lead to my discovery. 

^ But, what happened after the corpse was carried 
out of the bath V said I, anxious to ]^now whether the 
clothes which I had left iti one of its corners had been 
nc^iced* ^ 

^1^ the head of Ali !' said the man, * I do not very 
^ip^ll recollect. This I know, ^at many stories were 
iirelrculation ; and every person had a different one. 
Some said that the chief priest, after being drowned, 
was seen in his anderun and went to bed. Others 
th^t he appeared the next morning at the chief exe^ 
cUtioner's and rode away with one of his best horses. 
fh^ chief executioner himself shows a note of his, 
sealed with his seal, giving him permission to drink 
Wtne. In short, so many and so contradictory were 
tW reports, that no one knew what to believe. All 
lirer^ puzzled to find out how he managed to get alive 
oat of the bith, (for that is attested by his servants, 


aiid by the master of the bath,) and still remain in the 
reservoir* OifEculties continuexl to increase as fast 
as people argued, until a discovery took place which 
threw a marvellous light upon the subject. Some 
clothes were found in a dark corner of the bath. They 
weretorh and in bad case ; but without much difficulty 
they were known tohave belonged tbone Hajji Baba, 
a drivelling priest, and an attendant upon that famous 
breeder of disturbance, the moUah ^adin, the open 
and avowed enemy of the head of the law. Then 
every body exclaimed^ < Hajji Baba is the murdererl 
without doubt he^ is the mur<i«rerof the holy- man, 
he must pay the price of blood !' and all the city wasr 
in full search for Hajji Baba. Many said, that Na- 
dan was the culprit ; in short, messengers have been 
sent all over the country, to seize them both, and carry 
them dead or alive to Tehran. I only wish that my 
fate may be sufhciently on the ascent, to throw either 
of them into my hands ; suQh a prize would be worth 
my whole mule hire to Kerbelah. 

I leave every one to guess my feelings upon hear- 
ing this language ; I who was never famous for facing 
difficulties with courage, and who would always ra- 
ther as a preliminary to safety make use of the swift- 
ness of my heels, in preference to adopting any other 
measure. But h^re to retreat was more dangerous 
than to proceed ; for in a very short time I should be 
in the territory of another government, until when, 
I promised faithfully to wrap myself up in the folds 
of my own counsel ; aad to continue my road with all 
the wariness of one who is surrounded by imminent 



Ife is discBvered and seized^ but his good stars again 

befriend and set him free. 

Thr caravan pursued its march early the next 
morning, and I took iny station among the muleteers 
and the hangers on, (many> of whom are always at 
hand,) in order to screen myself from notice. The 
litter with the chief priest's widow, and her atten- 
dants, preceded the line of march, the camels with 
the bodies followed, and the remainder of the cara- 
van, consisting^ principally of loaded mules, spread it., 
self in a. Long straggling line over the road. 

I envied every fellow who had a more ruffian*like 
face, or a more ragged coat than my own ; so fearful 
was I of being thought good-looking enough to be 
noticed. . More particularly I dreaded the approach 
of the widow's servants, for although I was dying to 
know if any of them were of my acquaintance, yet I 
carefully turned my head on one side, as soon as there 
was the smallest likelibood of their looking towards 
me. ' 

The first day's march had passed over in safety ; 
and I laid my head on a projecting part of the bag- 
gage, where I slept sound through the night. I was 
equally fortunate on the second day, and with so 
much confidence did this success inspire me, that I 
began to be ambitious of associating with something 
better than a common mule-driver. 

I had opened a conversation with one whom I was 
informed was ati Armenian bishop ; and had already 
made him understand hbw thanktul he ought to be 
for being thus noticed by a true believer, when one 
of the much dreaded attendants rode by us, and in 
tim I recognised the man who had endeavoured to 
palm off a muti upon me, upon my first introduction 
to the mollah Nadlin. My heart leapt into my mouth 


at the sight of him. The chief priest's ghost, had it 
appeared, could not have frightened me more. I 
turned my head quickly on one side, but he passed 
on without heeding me ; so for this time I was let 
off only with the fright ; b^t I resolved to return to 
my humble station again, and forthwith left the bishop 
to his own meditations. 

On the following day we were to pass through the 
defiles infested by the Curdiah banditti, when every 
one would be too much taken up with his owa safety 
to think of me« Once having passed them, we should 
no longer be in the Persian territory, and I might 
then claim proteption of the Turks, in case I were 
discovered and seized. • v. 

On that eventful day,, a day well remembered in 
the annals of my adventurous life, the caravan wore 
a military appearance. All thpse who possessfsd any 
thing in the form of a weapon brought it forth .and 
made a display. The whole scene put me in mind 
of a similar one which I have recorded in the first 
pages of my history ; when, in company with Osman 
Aga, we encountered an attack from the TurcpipaQs. 
The same symptoms of fear shewed themselves on 
this occasion as on that ; and I am honest enough to 
own thjat Mme had not strengthened my nerves, nor 
given me any right to the title of lion^ater. * 

The whole caravan aiarched in compact order^ 
marshalled by a chaoush and by the conductor, who, 
with the servants of the chief priest's wife, formed a 
sort of vanguard to the main body. I who had my 
own safety to consult for more reasons than one, hud- 
dled myself among the crowds and enjoyed the idea 
that I was incumbered with no other property than 
the money in my girdle. 

We were proceeding in silence ; nothing was heard 
save the bells of the caravan, and I was deep in 
thought in what manner I might dispose of my nine, 
ty-five tomauns, on our arrival at Bagdad ; when, 
turning up my eyes, I perceived the conductor and a 
well equipped Persian riding towards me. 


rJne conductor pointed with his hapd to-me^ and 
said to his com|>anioD ^ hem ten est^ this is even he ! 

* By the beard of AH !' thought I, > my good for- 
tune has turned its back upon me.' 

I looked at the conductor's companion, whom I in* 
stantly discovered to be the very Abdul Kerim^ from 
whom I had extracted the one hundred tomauns, at 
the village of Seidabad, by means of the letter which 
I had written in the name of the deceased chief prie^; 

I was about giving myself up for lost, when the 
conductor relieved me a little, by sayings « You are 
the last man who joined our caravan : perhaps you 
can tell us upon what part of the frontier Kelb All 
Khan, the robber, is said to be at^resent^' 

I answered him in a great state', of perturbation ; 
but kept my eyes fixed upon Abdul all the while, who 
also began to stare at me with those penetrating eyes 
of his, which almost turned my heart inside out. He 
continued looking at me like one in doubt, whilst I 
endeavoured to sculk away ; but at length appearing 
to recollect himself, he exclaimed, < I have it, I hav« 
it! it is the very man ; he it was who laughed at my 
beard and stole the hundred tomauns. Then ad- 
dressing himself to the bystanders, he said, ^ If you 
want a thti^f, there is one. Seize him in the name of 
the Prophet !* 

i began to expostulate, and to deny t^e accusation, 
and probably should have succeeded to convince those 
who surroui^ded us that I was wrongly accused, when, 
to my consternation,^ the promoter of matrimony 
came up, at once recognised me, and called me by 
my name. Then my whole history came to light. I 
was denounced as. the murderer of the chief priest, 
and this event produced so general a bustle through- 
out the caravan, that fear of the robbers was for a 
while suspended, and every one came to gaze upon 

I was seized, my hands were pinioned behind my 
back, I was about being dragged before the chief 
priest's widow to be exhibited, when my good planet 
came to my help and showed its asct.tidacDX% ^^ "^ 

Vol. IL—Q 


sudden a great cry was head at a distance, and to my 
delight I beheld a boHy of cavaliers rushing down the 
slope of an adjacent hili. These were the very Gurds 
so much dreaded. The consternation was universal, 
the w hole* caravs^n was thrown into confusion, and re- 
sistance; was unavailing when both heart and hand, 
were wanting. Those who were mounted ran away ; \ 
the muleteers, anxious for the ^fety of their cattle, 
Cjit the ropes of their loads, which fell and were left 
spread on ihe plain to the mercy of the marauders. « 
The camels were also disencumbered of their bur- l 
thens, and coffins wt^re to be seen in all parts of the ^ 
road. I remarked that the one containing the chief* | 
priest had fallen into a riyulet, as if fate was not tired 
of drowning him* In short, the rout was universal 
and complete. 

I soon was-left to myself, and easily found meatis 
to disengage my bonds. I perceived that the Curds 
had directed their attention principally to the litter 
and its attendants, where they naturally expected to 
find prisoners of consequence ; and it rejoiced me to 
observe, that those whpm but a few minutes before I 
had looked upon as destined to be the perpetrators of 
my ruin, and very possibly of my death, where now 
(hemseives thrown into a dilemma neatly equally dis- 
astrous with the one from which I was now relieved. 

In vain theiwidow's attendants threatened, swore, 
and bade durance ; nothing would soften their wild 
and barbarotus assailants, who, under some lawless 
pretext of fees to be paid, began a regular pillage of 
such parts of the caravan as had not fied their attack. 
I again had an opportunity of ascertaining that my 
good star was prevailing ; for now^ whilst those who 
possessed any article of dress which might give res- 
pectability to their appearance became the object of 
the robbers's attention, I and my solitary mule had 
the satisfaction to find ourselves so totally unworthy 
of notice, that we proceeded without molestation on ] 
the original object of our journey. I owned no corpse { 
—I was not called upon to pay duty upon a dead re- ^ 
lation— 1 was free as air ; and as soon as I once found 


myself Released from the thousand miseries which 
had arisen all around me, and which, as if by magic, 
had been as quickly dispelled, I went 6n my way, ex-- 
c\si\inmg^ ^Barikallah, at talkh mun! Well done, oh 
my good fortune !' 


He reaches Bagdad^ meets his first master^ and turns 

his views to commerce^ 

Leaving the Mollah Bashi*s widow, her slaves, 
and attendants ii^ the hands of the Curds, I made the 
best of my way to my destination ; and caring little 
to hold converse with any one, after what had so re- 
cently taken place, I shaped my course in such a man- 
ner as not to attract observation. 

Many stragglers, flying from the Curds, were to' 
be seen on the road ; but as they all, ntore or less, had 
interest In the fate of the caravan, they did not pro- 
ceed far, but hovered about the scene of action, in the 
hopes of reclaiming either their friends or their pro- 
perty. I alone seemed to be totally independent, and 
by the time I had travelled two or three parasangs 
from the danger, I had the road to myself. Every 
thing that had befallen rtie was turned over and over 
again in my mind, and I came to this conclusion, that 
powerfully protected as I seemed to be by fate, I 
might again turn my steps towards the paths of am- 
bition, and hbpe^that my last failure in the pursuits of 
advancement was to be made up by realising a speedy 
and ample fortune. 

'Ninety-five tomaiins in my girdle, and all the 
iworld before me,' said I, 'is no insignificant prospect. 
^Aiid if Nadan be but blown from a mortar, and the 
i^hief priest's widow detained and ruined by the Curds, 


I do not see vfhy I may not put my cap on one side 
as well as the best man in Penjia,' 

At length the walls and turrets of Bagdad appear, 
ed in view, and I entered the city a total stranger, 
and ignorant of its localities. Caravanserais I knew 
that 1 should find at every tarn, and indifTerent whi- 
ther I bent my steps, or where I alighted, I let my 
mule take the road it liked best. Well acquainted 
with every street, the animal tooK^me to a large cara- 
vanserai, where it no doubt had long been accustom- 
ed to resort, and there stopping, gave several loud 
grunts as it entered the porch, in the expectation of 
meeting its companions of the caravan. Although 
disappointed, yet I was more fortunate (if fortunate 
I could call myself,) in seeing some of my country- 
men in the square, and I soon found out that this was 
their usual rendezvous. 

My person, I flattered myself, could attract no no- 
tice, go where I might : but I was sorry to find it 
otherwise. Upon alighting I was assailed by a thou- 
sand questions — the caravan was hourly expected^ 
the merchants were eager for the reception of their 
goods, and I might possibly give them some intelli- 
gence respecting it. I made such answers as were 
necessary for the occasion ; but resolved within my- 
self very soon to quit so inquisitive a society, and 
bury myself in obscurity. I accordingly left my mule 
to its fate, reflecting that its owner would very soon 
arrive and take possession of it, and straightway set- 
tled myself in another part of the city. 

As a first step towards preserving my incognito, I 
exchanged my dusty and weather-beaten sheep's-skin 
cap for a head-dress of the country, namely, a long 
red cloth bag, which fell down in a flap behind, and 
fastened to my head with a party-coloured silk. . I 
also bought a second-hand beniche^ or tloak, usually 
worn by the Turks, whicht going over my Persian 
garments, gave me the general appearance of an Os- 
manli \ and finished my adjustment by a pair of bright 
crimson leather slippers. 

Having done this, it came into vc^y head that much 


good might accrue if I made myaclf known to the fa- 
mily of my first master, Osmap Aga, for through 
them I might make acquaintance in the city, and pro- 
mote my views in trade. 

I accordingly sallied forth, and took my ro^ad 
through the principal bazars and hezestensy in order 
to make inquiries, and particularly stopped where 
lambskins were sold, for I wclL recollected that.thev 
were his favourite article of trade. I also recollect- 
ed many particulars concerning Bagdad, which he 
used to take pleasure in relating during our journeys, 
and I fancied that I could almost find my way to his 
very door without inquiry. 

Howevetr my ^trouble was soon at an end, for in 
putting my head into the shop of one of the principal 
Bokhara merchants, and inquiring if any news had 
reached Bagdad of one Osman Aga, I heard a well 
kQown voice, tn answer say, • Who wants me ? In the 
name of the Prophet, I am he !' 

Guess at my joy and surprise—- it was the old man 
himself. I was almost as much astonished to see 
him at Bagdad, as I had before been to meet him at 
Tehran, and his surprise was equal to mine* I re- 
lated as^much of my history as I thought it necessary 
for him to know, and he told me his in return, which 
in twp words was as< follows. 

He had left Tehran in the determination of pro- 
ceeding to Constantinople, there to dispose of his 
merchandise, but hearing that gfeat danger of being 
robbed existed on the road between Erivan and Arz 
Koum, he had deemed it a safer plan to visit Bag- 
dad ; and here he was restored to his native city after 
an absetice of many years* He had found his son 
grown up to man's estate, who, having gone through 
all the ceremony of mourning for his loss, had duly 
taken possession of his patrinaotiy, which, according 
to the law, he had shared in the prescribed portions 
between his mother and sister. But as soon as his 
father was restored to him, he made no wry faces, 
but, like a good Mussulman, put into practice that 
precept of the Koran which ordaineth map to shovr 



kindQess to his parents*— but not to say unto tbcmv 
* fie upon you !' The old naan added, that he had 
found his wife alive, and that his daughter was old 
enough to be married. 

But having thus disburthened himself of this short 
history of his adventures, he turned round upon nie 
in a sharper maimer than he. had ever done before, 
and said^ ^ But, Hajji, my friend, in the name of the 
blessed Mohammed, wtiat could have possessed you 
to join me to that female Satan at Tehran^ by way of 
making me pass my time agreeably? By the salt 
which we have so often eat together, the few days- 
that I passed in her company. M^ere filled with more 
misery than was the whole time I spent among the 
Turcomans ! Was it right to treat an old friend 
thus ?' 

I assured him that I had no object in view but his 
happiness, taking it for granted that she, who had 
been the favourite of the monarch of Persia, must, 
even in her latter days, have had charms more than 
enough for one who had passed some of the best years 
of his life with camels. 

* Camels r exclaimed Osman, ^camels, indeed ! 
they are angels compared to this fury. Wduld to 
Heaven that you had married me to a camel instead, 
for it, at least, poor animal, would have sat quiet, 
with calm and thoughtful gravity, and let me have 
my own way ; whereas your dragon, she, the viper, 
she passed her whole time in telling me bow vastly 
honoured 1 was in having taken to wife one who had 
led the Shah by the beard, and enforced each word 
with either a slap or a scratch. -Amdn ! Amdn ! said 
the old man, rubbing his hand on his cheek, ^ 1 think 
I feel them now,' 

He at length ceded to my assurances that I had no 
other object in view than his happiness, and then very 
kindly asked me to take up my abode at his house 
during my stay at Bagdad, to which, of course, I ac^ 
ceded with all manner of pleasure. 

This conversation had taken place in the back room 
•f the Bokhara merchant's shop, during which the 


J man had treated me to^ve paras worth of cofFee, 
.'ought from a neighbouring coffee-house ; and when 
was over, he proposed going to his son's shop, situ- 
ed in the same bazar, some few doors farther on. 
His son's name was Suleiman. Having set himself 
up in the cloth trade during his father's long absence, 
he bad acquired an easy livelihood, and passed the 
greatest part of the day, (except when necessary to 
go to his prayers,) seated in the little platform in the 
front of his shop, surrounded by his merchandise, 
neatly arranged on shelves.fixed in the wall.^ He was 
a fat, squat little man, very like his lather ; and lyhen 
he was informed that I was Hajji Baha, of whom no'" 
doubt he had heard much, he said that I was wel- 
60fne» and taking the pipe which he was smoking 
from his own mouth, he immediately transferred it 

to DlLQe. 

These preliminaries of mutual good-will being es- 
tablishe^d, I enjoyed the prospect of an easy and quiet 
sojourn at Bagdad, in the company of these good 
people ; but in order to show that I did not intend 
wholly to be a dependent upon them, I made it known 
that i was possessed of ve tomauns, and ask- 
ed their opinion upon the mode of laying them out 
to the best advantage in trade. I gave them to un- 
derstand that, tired of the buffetings of an adventu- 
rer's life, it was my intention for the future to devote 
my time to securing ah independence by my own in- 
dustry. Many had acquired wealth from beginnings 
nauch smaller than mine, said I ; to which they both 
agreed : and, as we anticipated the fortune that I was 
to make, Osman Aga gravely let off the only bit of 
Persian poetry^ which he had picked up during his 
travels—* Drop by drop water distilleth from the 
rock, till at length it becometh a sea.' 

Upon this conclusion we, that is, the father and I, 
proceeded to his house, which was situated at a con- 
venient distance from the bazars. 



tie purchases pip€'$ticks^ and) inspires a hopeless pas^ 
sion in the breast of his oldjnaster'js da\ight€r* 

OsMAN Aga's house was situated in a narrow lane^ 
leading out of the street which leads into one of the 
principal bazars* Immediately in front of the door 
was a heap of rubbish, upon which a Utter of kittens 
had just bisen thrown, making an essay of their young 
voices, as we passed ; and a little • further, on a si- 
milar mound 9 a colony of puppies had been planted^ 
guarded by a mangy mother, which, by their united 
cries, left us nothing to desire in the way of discord. 
Between these was situated the^ate of Os man Aga's 
house, into which we entered. It Was a small build- 
ing, consisting of some crazy rooms, which neitherjn- 
dicated riches nor cleapliness. As I had aq baggage 
belonging to me, except 9 small carpet,- my removal 
here from the caravanserai was soon accomplished^ 
and I took up my future abpde in a corner ojE mine 
host's principal room, where he also spread his bed 
and slept. 

By way of celebrating my arrival, he treated me 
with roasted lamb, and an abundant dish of rice, to 
which were added dates, cheese, and onions. The 
dishes were cooked in the harem by the hand^ of his 
wife and daughter, aided by a female slave, the only 
domestic in the establishment. Neither of these had 
I yet seen, for it was dusk when we reached the house; 
nor, from good manners, did I ask more about them 
than Osman was inclined to tell me. 

Besides myself and his son, the old man had invited 
a brother dealer in lambskins to. the entertainment, 
with whom he had formed a close intimacy during his 
travels in Bokhara. The conversation turned exclu- 
sively upon commerce, about which I was ^o ignorant, 
that I took very little share in it, although considering 


at it was my intention to enter it myself, I was v«ry 

ippy to open my ears to all that was said. 

They entered deeply info the subject, and discuss- 
ed the relative merits of each article of trade. To 
hear them talk, one might have inferred that the end 
of the world was at handy because it was rumpured 
that the price of their favourite commodity had fallen 
at Constantinople. They dissuaded me from embark- 
ing my capital in that articleti but recommended in 
preference that I should invest it in pipe-sticks, 
which, they remarked, were subject to no decay, and 
for which there was a constant demand in the markeit 
of Constantinople. 

The entertainment being over, and the guests hav- 
ing parted, I ruminated deeply upon what I had 
heard, and forthwith turned the whole weight of my 
thoughts to pipe-sticks. There, in a corner, I sat all 
day calculating what number of pipes I might acquire 
for my tomauns, and what would be my profit when 
sold at Constantinople; and when my imagination 
was heated by the hopes of the ultimate fortune that 
might be realised^ I gave myself up to the most ex* 
travagant expectations. The plan of the merchant, 
whom 'Saadi relates he met in the island of Kish, was 
trifling when compared^ to the one which I/formed. 
< With the produce of my pipe-sticks,' said/I, * I will 
buy figs at Smyrna, which Iwill take to Europe, and 
having made great profit by them there, my money 
shall then be invested in skull-caps, which I will carry 
to Grand Cairo ; these being sold in detail, for ready 
cash, I will carefi^Uy pack tny money in sacks, and 
proceed to Ethiopia, where I will purchase slaves, 
bach of whom I will sell for great profit at Moccha, 
and thence I will make the pilgrimage to the tomb of 
the Prophet, From Moccha I will transport coffee 
to Persia, which will fetch an amazing price ; and 
dien I will repose in my native city, until I can pur- 
chase a high situation at court, which may in time 
lead me to become the grand via^icr to the King of 

Having thus disposed of the future in my favour, I 


set>myself actively to work in laying in my merchan- 
dise. According to the most approved method, I 
made a bargain with a wood-cutter, who was to pro- 
ceed to the mountains of Lour and Bakhtiari, where 
he would find forests of the wild cherry-tree, .from 
which he would make his sefections, according tolro 
sizes with which I should furnish him. He was tflen 
to return to Bagdad, where the sticks Would be bored, 
and made up into appropriate parcels for the markets 
of Turkey. 

All this was duly executed ; but during the time 
that I was waiting for the return of the wood-cutter, 
I was attacked by a disorder, from which few resi- 
dents, as well as strangers, at Bagdad are exempt, 
which terminating by a large pimple, as it dries up, 
leaves an indelible mark on the skin. To my great 
mortification, it broke out upon the middle of my 
right cheek, immediately upon the confines of the 
beard, and there left its baleful print, destroying some 
of the most favourite of my hairs, and making that 
appear a broken and irregular waste, which before 
might be likened to a highly cultivated slope. 

I bore this calamity as well as 1 was able, although 
I could not help frequently quarrelling with fate, fcJr 
having chosen so conspicuous a spot to place that 
which might have been so conveniently settled any 
where else. x 

• So be it,' said I, heaving a sigh at the same time ; 
' the wise man said true when he remarked, * if everv 
stone was left to choose what it would be, most pro- 
bably it would be a diaradnd ;• and if every man 
might choose whereabouts he would have his pimple, 
there would be no ugly faces in Bagdad.' 

However, by way of consolation, I recollected that 
Osman Aga's face was the mirror of deformity, al- 
though his pimple had budded elsewhere. He, in- 
stead of condoling with me on my misfortune, rather 
jseemed to enjoy it. 

* Hajji,' said he to me, ' if you are not afflicted with 
any greater calamity than this in life, look upon it as 
a blessing : although one side of your face be de- 

of* HAJJI BABA. Ig3 

.wTmed, still the other is perfect. The turquoise is 
the perfection of colour on one side, but is black 
and dirty on the other ; still it is a turquoise, and a 
precious stone/ 

* Ah ,' said I to myself, < the ugly tnan cannot endure 
the sight of the handsome, no more than the vicious 
can the virtuous : in Ihe same manner as the curs of 
the market hovl at a fi|inting-dog, but dare not ap- 
proach him.' ^r^ ., 

Notwithstanding the deformity of my cheek, I 
found as I continued to be an inmate in the house of 
my old master, that I had made no small impression 
upon the heart of his daughter, the fair Dilaram, who, 
by a thousand little arts, did not fail to make me ac- « 
qualnted with the state of hernfTtctions. Her mother 
apd she were both experienced in the mode of curing 
the Bagdad disorder, and they undertook to super- 
intend mine. My pimple and Dilaram's love appear 
to have risen at about the same time \ their progress 
was mutual, and by the time that the former had risen 
to its full height, the latter had become quite inconve- 

I, 'tis true, had not caught the infection ; for my 
charmer was the very imageof her father, whose face 
and that of an old camel's were so entirely identi- 
fied in my mind^ that I never could lose that ugly 
association of ideas when I gazed iipon her. It was 
therefore a considerable relief to me when the season 
for travelling approached, and when the caravan for 
Constantinople was about to assemble. My pipe- 
sticks were collected and packed into their proper 
bundles, my accounts with my creditors regularly 
discharged, my wardrobe complete, and I was all de- 
light when it was announced, that at the very next 
favourable conjunction of the planets, the caravan was 
to take its departure. But as^ for poor Dilaram, she 
hovered about my cheek with looks of despair ; and 
as fast as the swelling subsided, she appeared to lose 
the only tie which kept her united to this world and 
iii vanities. 




He becomes a merehcmt, leaves Bagdad, and accompO' 
nies a caravan to Constantinople, 


It was a fine spring morning when the caravan took 
its departure from the Constantinople gate of the 

Mounted on the top of one of my loads, with my 
bed tied on the pad by way of a soft seat, and my 
bags surrounding mcy I contemplated the scene with 
pleasure, listened to the bells of the mules as I would 
to miisic, and surveyed myself as a merchant of no 
small consequence. 

My more inimediate companions were Osnian Aga, 
and his associate in lambskins (he of whom I have 
already made honourable mention at the entertain- 
ment,) and one or two other Bagdad merchants ; but 
besides, there were many of my own countrymen, na- 
tives of different cities of Persia, all bound upon pur« 
poses of trade to Constantinople, and with wh^m I 
was more or less acquainted. My adventure with 
the chitf priest of Tehran had in great measure blowB 
over ; and indeed the dress I had adopted, with the 
scar on my cheek, made me look so entirely like a 
native of Bagdad, that I retained little in my ap- 
pearance to remind the world that I was in fact a Per- 

I will not tire the reader with a recital of our ad- 
ventures through Turkey, which consisted of the 
usual fear of robbers, squabbles with muleteers, and 
frays at caravanserais. It will be sufficient to say, 
that we reached our destination in safety ; but I can- 
not omit the expression of my first emotions upon j 
seeing Constantinople. j 

'I, a Persian, and an Ispahani, had ever been ac | 
customed to hold my native city as the first in the 


'Id : never had it crossed my mind that any other 
id, in the smallest degree, enter into competition 
^h it, and when the capital of Roum was described 
to me as finer, I always laughed the describc^r to 
scorn. But what was my astonishment, and I may 
add mortification, on beholding, for the first time, thi^ 
magnificent city. I had always looked upon the royal 
mosque, in the great square at Ispahan, as the most 
superb building in the world ; but hefr^werc an hun* 
dred finer, each surpassing the other in beauty and 
in splendour. Nothing, did I ever conceive, could 
equal the extent of my native place ; but here my eyes 
became tired with wandering over the' numerous 
hills and creeks thickly covered with buildings, which 
seemed to bid defiance to calculation. If Ispahan 
Wa,s half the world, this indeed was the whole. And 
then this gem of cities possesses this great advantage 
over Ispahan, that it is situated on the borders of a 
beautiful succession of waters, instead of being sur- 
rounded by arid and craggy mountains ; and in ad- 
ditioQ to its own extent and beauty, enjoys the ad« 
vantage of being reflected in one never-failing mir. 
ror^ ever at hand to multiply them. But where 
should I stop, if I attempted to describe the nume- 
rous moving objects which attracted my attention ? 
Thousands of boata, of all forms and sizes, skimmed 
along in every direction, whilst the larger vessels 
ithoae masts looking like forests, more numerous than 
those of M azansluan, lined the shores of the intricate 
and widely extended harbour. 

< Oh, this is a paradise,' said I to those around me$ 
' and may I never leave it !' But when I recollected 
in whose hands it was, possjtrssed by a race of the most 
accursed of heretics, whose beards were not fit to be 
brooms to our dust*hbles, then I thought myself too 
condescending in allowing them to possess me 
amongst them. One consolation, howevery I did not 
fail to derive from reflection, which was, that if they 
were allowed the possession of so choice a spot for 
their use in this worlds they would doubly feel the 
Vol. II.— R 



hoiTor of that which was doubtless preparing i 
tbem in the next* 

Att^r undergoing the necessary forms and exam 
nations at the custptn house, 1 and my companions 
took boat at Scutari, crossed over to Constantinoplef 
aj»d established ourselves and merchandise in a large 
caravanserai, the resort of Persian traders, situated 
in a very central part of the city, near the pru^cipal 
ba2^s, I felt myself a slender personage indeed^ 
Vih^n I considered that I was only one among the- 
crowd of |he immense population that was continusdly 
floating through thje. great thoroughfares* And when 
I saw the riches displayed in the shops, the magiiifi» 
cence of dress of aUnost every inhabitant, and the 
constant succession, of great lords and agas, riding 
about on the finest and o^ost richly c^aparisoned horses, 
I; could not help exclaimiiig, in a secret whisper to 
myselff where is Constantinople and her splendoun^ 
and where Persia, apd her pov^riy ! 

I« in conjunction with old Osmanf hired a room in 
the caravanserai, in which we deposited our mevf 
cbandise. During the day time I displayed «iy pipe 
sticks in goodly rows on a platform ; and as my asr 
sortments were good, 1 beganmy sales with gr^at vi- 
gour, and reaped considerable profit* In proportion 
as I found money returning to my purse, so did I 
launch out into luxuries which I little heeded before* 
I increased the beauty and conveniences of my dress; 
I bought a handsome amberheaded chibouk ; I girded 
my waist with a lively coloured shawl ; my tobacco 
ppuch was made of silk, covered with spangles ; my 
slippf^rs were of bright yellow^ and I treated mysetf 
to a glittering dagger. Temptations to expense sur- 
rounded, me every where, and I began to think that 
there was something worth living for in this world. 
So numerous were the places in which I might exhibit 
my person in public, that I could not refrain from vi- 
siting the most frequented coffee-houses, where, 
mounted on a. high bench, with soft cushions to re. 
e}ioc upon, I smoked my pipe and sipped my coffee 
like one of the highest degree. 


Implicated as I had been in disagreeable adven- 
tures in Persia, I was mistrustful of my own coun- 
trymen, and rather shunned them» whilst I sought the 
acquaintance of the Turks. But they, my country- 
men, who are always so inquisitive, and who feel 
tHemselves slighted Upbn the least inattention, they 
idiiscovered who and what I was, and eyed me with 
no great feelings of approbation. However, I endea- 
voured to live upon good terms with them ; and as 
long as we did not enter^ into competitton in matters 
of trade, they left me tfnmolested. 

In places of public resort I gave myself oQt for a 
rich Bagdad merchant; and now my scar, which I 
•Ifad before estieemed a great misfortune, was eonve- 
Dienfly conspicuous to atteist the truth of iny asser- 
tions. Nothing, I found, was so easy as to deceive 
the Turks by outward appearance^ Their taciturtn- 
ty, the dignity and composure of their manner and 
deportment, their slow walk, their set phraafes, were 
all sd ^asy to acqi^re^ that in tbe icourse of a very 
short time I managed to imitate them so wtell, that I 
tould at pleasure make tnyvelf one of the dullest and 
naost solemn of th«eif species. So perfect a hearer had 
I become, so well did I sigh out, every liow and then, 
in soft accents, my sacred ejaculations of ^ Allah ! and 
there is but one Allah !' and so steady was I in count- 
ing my beads, that I wa^ received at the coffee-house^ 
which I frequented, with distinguished attention. 
The owner of it himself made my coffee, an^ as h^ 
poured it out with a high flourish pf his arm, bt never 
failed to welcome me by the friendly epithets of * my 
Aga, my Sultan.' Sucii influence had the respecta- 
bility of my appearance secured for me, that in every 
trifling dispute which might take place in the coffee- 
room, either upon the subjects of horses, dogs, afflEis, 
or tobacco, (the principal topics of conversation) I 
was ever referred to, and aity low growl from my 
lips, of either belii (ye8,y or f^k (no,) was sure to set 
the matter at rest* 



imagining that 1 might. fall a victim to the f ary of 
some mach injured man. Zeenab and her tower, 
Mariam an4 her Yusuf, Dilaram and her.pimplevall 
the instances of unfortunate loves came across my 
mind in succession, and damped any desire that I 
might at first have felt in prosecuting fhi^ adventure. 
However, my blood was yet young and warm enough 
to carry me forwards, and I determined, though re** 
luctantly, to proceed. 

On the noon of the ensuing day I faithfully kept 
my engagement, looked for the first green*turbaned 
tomb, which 1 duly found on my right hand, where I 
discovered the old woman with her red shawl over 
her left shoulder. We retired from the road-side, 
and retreated to the shade of some of the loftiest cy-* 
press trees in the burial ground; where, seated on the 
ground, with the magnificent view of the harbour of 
Constantinople before us, ive calmly entered upon the 
subject of our conference* 

She first complimented me upon my punctuality, and 
then again assured me, that I had nothing, to fear from 
what she was about to propose. $he had all the gar* 
rulity oi her age, and spoke for some time but to lit- 
tle purpose, making professions of her attachment, and 
of her desire to serve me } all of which 1 foresaw 
would ultimately diminish the profits of my pipe- 
sticks, and I therefore stopped her progress, and re- 
quested her at once to let me know the history of the 
fair lady at the window. 

Divf sting her narrative of all her repetitions Si^i 
circumlocutions, jshe spoke nearly to the following 
effect ; , 

* The lady whom you saw, and whose servant I am^ 
is the only daughter of a rich Aleppo merchant, who, 
besides her, had two sons. The father died not long 
l^go, and was succeeded in, his business by his sons, 
who are now wealthy merchants, and reside in this 
dty. My mistress, whose name is ShekeNeb, or Su- 
gar-lips, was married when very young to an old, but 
rich flmir^ who scrupulpusly refrained from having 
more (ban one wife at a time^ bec^iM^^ ftooi experi- 



eoee he knew that he could have no peace at home if he 
took advantage of the permissions of his law in muU 
tiplying to himself hi&, female companions. He was 
very fond of doiBestic quiet, and therefore hoped, by 
taking one so young, he might be able to mould her 
to his wishes, and that. she would n^ver thwart him in 
his inclinations. Injthat he was fortunate, for a more 
gentle and docile creature than my mistress does not 
exist. There was only one point upon which they 
could never agree, which proved indeed one of the 
causes of the Emir's death, which happened soon af- 
ter. She liked tarts m^de with cream, and he prefer- 
red his with cheese. On this subject regularly for 
five years they daily at breakfast had a dispute, until, 
about six months ago, the old man, having eat over 
n^och of his favourite cheese-t^rts, had an indigestion 
and died. He bequeathed one-fpurth of his wealth, 
the house which you saw, his furniture, his slaves, in 
short,, all that he could leave according to the Ma- 
homedan'law, to the fair Shekel leb, now his discon- 
solate widow. With the advantages of youth, beauty, 
and riches, you may be certain that she has not lived 
without admirers ; but she has wisdom and discre- 
tion beyond most young women of her age, and hith- 
erto has resisted forming any new tie, resolving^ to 
wait until some good opportunity to marry one whom 
she might really love, and who would neither be sway- 
ed by interest nor ambition. 

^Living opposite to one of the most fashionable 
coffee-houses in the city, she has had an opportunity 
of watching those who frequent it ; and without a 
compliment, I n^ed not say that she soon distinguish- 
ed you as the handsomest amongst them, and, indeed^ 
as the man most to her fancy whom she had ever 
seen. My brother,' said the old woman, 'is the 
owner of the coffee-house, and as the opportunities of 
seeing him are frequent, I requested him to inquire 
who you were ; and to let me know what sort of a 
character you bdte. His report was such as highly 
pleased my mistress ;. and we resolved to endeavour 
to make you notice us, and if possible X,o ^<tx^^c^^\)2^* 

■ "W. 


ed with you. You best know how we have succeed- 
ed, and now will be able to judge whether I have ren- 
dered you a service or not.' 

Little did 1 expect to hear such suresult whcairst 
the old woman began her tale. I now felt like one 
w.ho had received his reprieve after condemnation. 
Instead of the mysteries, disguises, scaling of walls 
$nd windows, drawn scinietars, and bloody -woujids 
attendant on a Turkish intrigue, I saw nothing before 
me but riches, e^se, and repose from^all future care. 
I blessed my star ; in short, I held my fortune ta be 
made. I was so transported at what I heard, that I 
made use of a thousand incoherent expressions to my 
companion ; I protested and vowed eternal love to her 
mistress, and promised the most liberal remuneraUon 
to herself. 

< But there is one circumstance,' said she, ^ which 
my mistress has ordered me to ascertain before she 
can receive you ; which is, the respectability of your 
family and the extent of your fortuae. You must knpv 
that her brothers and relations are very proud ; add 
if she were to make an unworthy alliance, they would 
treat her with the greatest harshness, and not faiito 
ill-treat, if not to make away with her husband.* 

Although I was not prepared for this, yet such wai 
the quickness with which I had seized the whole ex^ 
tent of the good fortune awaiting me, that with the 
same quickness I without hesitation said,^ Family? 
Family, did you say? Who is there that doe& not 
know Hajji Baba? Let him inquire from the confines 
of Yemen to those of Irak, and from the seas of Hind 
to the shores of the Caspian, and his name will be well 
known.' . _ 

* But who was your father ?' said the old woman. 

* My father ?' said I, after a pa^jse ;/ he was a inaa 
of great power. More heads came under his thumb, 
and he took more men with impunity by the beard^ 
than even the chief of the Waiiabi himself;' 

I had now gained sufficient time \o> arrange a little 
off-hand genealogy for myself ; and ^^s the old woman^ . 
cot/ntenance expanded at wVv2ixV\vi\5i^^vd^lcQmhiiied 
to speak to her after tYvis^m^ainei \ 


f If your mistress wants high blood, then let her 
look to me. Be assured, that she and her brotherSf 
be they who they- may, will never exceed me in de- 
scent. Arab blood floWs in my veins, and that of the 
purest kind. My ancestor was a Mansouri Arab, 
from the province of Nejd in Arabia Felix, who with 
the whole of his tribe was established by Shah Ismael 
of Persia in some of the finest pastures of Irak, and 
where they have lived ever since. My great ances- 
tor Kdtir^ ben Khur^ ben Asp, ben Al Madian^ was of 
the tribe of Koreish, and that brought him in direct 
relationship with the family of our blessed Prophet, 
from whom all the best blood of Islam fiows.' 

* Allah, Allah V exclaimed the old woman, ^enough, 
enough. If you are all this, my mistress wants no 
more. And if your riches are equal to ybur birth^ 
we shall be entirely satisfied.' 

* As for my riches,' said I, * I cannot boast of 
much cash ; but what merchant ever has cash at com- 
mand I You must know as %^ell as myself, that it is 
always laid out in merchandise, which is dispersed 
over different parts of the world, and which in due 
time returns back to him with increase. My Persian 
silks and velvets are now travelling into Khorassan, 
and will bring me back the lamb-skins of Bokhara. 
My agents, provided with gold and otter skins, are 
ready at Meshed to buy the shawls of Cashmire, and 
the precious stones of Itidia. At Astracan, my cot- 
ton stuffs are to be bartered against sables, cloth, and 
glass ware ;^and the Indian goods which I buy at 
Bassorah and send to Aleppo are to return to me in 
the shape of skull-caps and shalli stuffs. In short, to 
say precisely what I am worth, would be as difficult ^ 
as to count the ears in a field of wheat ; but you may 
safely tell your mistress that the man of her choice, 
whenever he gathers his Wealth together, will asto- 
nish her and her fstmrly by its extent/ 

* Praise be to Allah !' said the confidant, * all is now 
as it should be, and it only remains to make you ac- 
quainted with each other. You must not &il to be 
at the coTDer of the street at mgV\X.-la\\, N^V^^ti ^vCcv ^ 


the necessary precautions you will be introduced to 
the divine Shekerleb ; and if she approves of you, no- 
thing will interpose to defer your marriage and your 
happiness. There is only one piece of advice which 
I have to give ; that is, be sure to like cream tarts, 
and to disapprove of cheese ones. Upon every other 
topic she is liberal and without prejudice. May At* 
lah keep you in peace and safety !' 

So saying, she drew up the lower part of her veil 
over her mouth ; and receiving two pieces of gold 
without a struggle which I put into her hand, s^e 
walked away, and left me again to my nieditations. ^ 


He obtains an interview with the fair Sheierlebf maiee 
a settlement upon her^ and becomes her husband, 

I DID not long remain at the foot of the tree, fori 
felt that much was to be done before the time of as- 
signation. It would be necessary to put on an ap- 
pearance of wealth, to have a purse well furnished, and 
a dress suited to my character ; and moreover, it quite 
behoved me to make my person as acceptable as pas- 
sible by going to the bath, and using all the requisite 
perfumes. Frequently as I walked along did 1 apos- 
trophise myself in^ terms of the highest approbation. 
< Ahi Hajji, friend Hajji,' would 1 exclaim, < by the 
beard of your father, and by your own soul, for this 
once you have shown the difference between a fool 
and a sage. Well done* thou descendant from the 
Mansouris ! thou scign of ih^root of Koreish !* 

Deeply pondering over my future destinies, at 
length I reached ray caravanserai. I saw the old 
Osman seated in one corner of our apartment, calcu- 
lating the profits of his merchandise, and in the other 
I observed my bundles of pipe-sticks. The contrast 


which these ignoble objects formed to the grcut 
schemes then planning in my mind struck me so for- 
cibly^ that it affected my ordinary deportnvcnty and 
gave a certain tone of superiority to my manner which 
1 bad never before felt. 1 know not whether it was 
noticed by Osman ; but he seemed rather startled 
when I asked him immediately to advance me fifty 
gold pieces, for which I offered to deliver over my 
merchandise as security. 

*^*My son/ said he, ^ what ne^s is this ? What can 
yott want with so- much money, and in such haste? 
Are you mad,-or are you become a ganibler V 

* God forgive me,' answered I, < I am neither a 
madman nor a gambler. My brain is in good order, 
and the world has taken me into favour; but give me^ 
the money, and you will hear the rest herealter.' 

{ He did not longer hesitate to accede to my wishes, 
for he well knew the value of my gotids, and that the 
transaction could not fail to be safe and profitable. 
So without further hesitation he counted out the mo. 
ney, and I forthwith left him. ' . " ■ 

I immediately bought s6me very handsome addi- 
tions to my wardrobe, and proceeded without delay 
to the bath, where I went through all the necessary 
lustrations, and attired m^^self like a man of the highest 
fashion. ^ 

By the tinie that my new arrangements were com- 
plete, the hour of assignation had arrived^ and with a 
beating heart I proceeded to the place appointed. 

I found the old woman waiting, and having looked 
well round to see that nobody remarked us, she in- 
troduced me into the house through a door situated 
in a remote corner. 

1 was charmed at the great ease and comfort which 
tippeared to exist throughout the whole establishment; 
for I now looked upon myself as lord and master of 
all I saw. We had entered at once into the ap%K£ 
ments kept sacred for the use of the women, becauHe 
itBeems that the principal entrance of the house had 
been but little used since the emir's death, out of re- 


yerence to his memor)^ ; and the s^me sort of mys- 
tery and precaution in entering here was kept up as 
if the good man . was still^in existence, liaving pass- 
ed through the sma)l^treet*door, we entered into a 
court yard, in which was a fountain. We then as- 
cended a wooden flight of steps, at the top of which 
we found a cloth curtain, composed of various co- 
lours, which being lifted up, I was introduced into an 
ante room, the only furniture of which consisted of 
women's slippers and a lamp« Four doors,, which 
were now closed, opened upon this, and here I was 
left to myself, whilst my old -coDductress shuffled off 
to prepare her mistress Cor my reception. I heard 
voicesi in the different apartments, the - owners of 
which I presumed belonged to the slippers : and ima- 
gined that many eyes were directed at me, for I could 
distinguish them through the crannies. At length 
the door of the further tangle was opened, and I was 
beckoned to approach. 

My heart beat within me as I stepped forwards, and 
covering myself close with the flaps of my cloak, in 
order to shew my respect, I entered a room that was 
lighted up by ^nly one lamp, which shed a soft and 
dubious light over the objects within it. 

It was surrounded by a divan, covered with the 
richest light blue satins fringed with gold, in one an- 
gle of which, near the window, was seated the object 
of all my desires. She was carefully veiled from 
head to foot, and all I could then distinguish of her 
person was a pair of brilliant black eyesy that seemed 
to delight in the anxious curiosity which they had 
roused in my features. 

She pointed to me with her hand to be seated ; but 
this I obstinately refused, so s^nxious was I to shew 
the depth of my respect and gratitude. At length, 
when further resistance was useless, I took off my 
slippers, and seated myself with a corner of my 
h*p just resting upon the edge of the sofa, keeping 
ray hands covered witt) the sleeves of my garment, 
and aO^ecting a coyness and a backwardness, at which, 
now that I recollect myself) I cannot help laughing. 


After we bad sat facing each other for some few 
minutes, little, except common-place compliments, 
having passed, my fair mistress ordered the old Aye- 
sha (for that was the name of my conductress,) to 
leave the room, and then leaning forwards, as if to 
fake lip her fan of peacock's feathers, which was on 
the cushion, she permitted her veil to faU, and exhi- 
bited to my impatient eyes the most beautiful face 
that nature had ever formed. 

This was the signal for laying by all reserve, and 
I prostrated myself before this divinity with all the 
adoration of a profound devotee, and poured out such 
a rhapsody of love and admiration, as to leavv no 
doubt in her mind of the tenderness t>f my heart, the 
acuteness of my wit, and the excellence of my taste. 
In short, the emir's widow had every reason to be sa- 
tisfied with the choice she had made ;, and she very 
soon shewed the confidence which she intended to 
place in me, by making me at once the depositary of 
her secrets. 

^ I am in a difficult situation,' said she, ^ and the 
evil eye which many cast upon me hath embittered 
my soul. You may conceive, that owing to the wealth 
with which I have been endowed by my late hu /ognd 

Supon whom be eternal blessings !) and to my own 
ower besides, which was considerable, I have been 
tormented by many persecutions, and they have al- 
most driven me mad. My relations all claim a right 
to me, as if I were part of the family estate. My 
brothers have their own interest in view when they 
would negotiate a husband for me^ as if they would 
barter a sack of wool against bags of rice. A nephew 
of my husband, a man of the law pretends to claim an 
old custoni, by which, when a roan died, one of his 
relations had a right to his widow, which he might 
assert by throwing his cloak over her. Another re- 
lation again pretends, that according to the law, I am 
not entitled to the whole of what I now possess, and 
th^-eatens to dispute it. In short, so sadly perplexed 
havb I been under these circumstances, that I only 
saw one way to set the matter at rest, which was to 
Vol. II.— S 


marry again. Fate has thrown you in my way, aod I 
am no longer at a loss. ' 

She then informed me of the arrangements she had 
made for our immediate union, in case I was- not 
averse to it, and referred me to a man of the law,- 
whom she had secured to act in her behalf, who 
would make out all the proper papers^and whom she 
informed me was how in the house ready to officiate. 

I was not prepared for quite so much despatch, 
and felt my heart misgive me, as if it were hovering 
between heaven and earth ; but I did not hesitate to 
reiterate my protestations of eternal love and devo- 
tion, and said nothing to my intended but what seem- 
ed to overwhelm her with delight. 

So impatient was she of any delay, that she imme- 
diately ordered the old Ayesha to conduct me to the 
man of the law, who was in attendance in a small 
apartment, in a more distant paf t of the house. Be- 
sides himself he had brought another* who, he inform- 
ed me, would act as my vakeel or trustee, such ah in. 
tervention being necessary on the part of the man as 
well as the woman ; and then he exhibited before me 
the akdnameh or marriage deed, in which he had 
already inscribed the dower of my intendedf consist- 
ing of her own property, and demanded from me what 
additions it was my intention to make thereto. 

I was again thrown back upon my ingenuity, and 
as the best answer I could give, repeated what I had 
before said to Ayesha, namely, that a mercnant was 
uncertain of his wealth, which was dispersed in trade 
in different parts of the world ; but I did not hesitate 
to settle all that I possessed upon my wife, provided 
such engagement were mutual. 

* That is very liberal,' replied my wily scribe ; * but 
we require something more specific. As for instance, 
what do you possess here at Constantinople f You 
cannot have come thus far, except for important pur- 
poses. Settle the wealth which you can command 
upon the spot, be it in cash, merchandise, or houses^ 
and that will suffice for the ^Tesent.' 
*Bc it sOf* said 1, pux.\\Tig tVi« b^^*^ i^^^ ^^K^i'^c^& 



ttpon the demand. ^ Be it so— let us see/ Then ap- 
pearing to calculate within myself what I could com- 
mand, I boldly 3aid, *• You may insert that I gave 
twenty purses in money, and ten in clothes,' 
: Upon this* a communication took place between the 
Emir's widow and her agent, for the purpose of in- 
forming her what were my proposals, and for gain- 
ing her consent to them. After some little negotia- 
tion, the whole was arranged to the apparent satisfac- 
tion of both parties, and our different seals having 
beet) affixed to the documents, and the necessary 
forms of speech having been pronounced by our dif- 
ferent vakeels, the marriage was declared lawful, and 
I received the compliments of all present. 

I did not fail to reward the scribes before they 
were dismissed, and also to send a very liberal dona- 
tion to be distributed throughout the household of my 
fair bride. 

Then instead of returning to old Osman, and my 
pillow of pipe-sticks, I retired, with all the dignity 
and consequence of the gravest Turk, into the inmost 
recesses of my harem. 


From a vender of pipe'Stkks he becomes a rich Aga^ 
but feels ali the inconvenience of supporting a false 


I 800N found that I had a very difficult paft to per- 
form. A Chinese philosopher is said to have re- 
marked, that if the operation of eating was confined 
to what takes place between the mouth and the palate, 
then nothing could be more pleasant, and one might 
eat for ever ; but it is the stomach, the digestive or- 
gans, and, in fact, the rest of the body, which decide 
ultimate]/ whether the said o]peTs^X\otv Vv»9k>a^^T\. V^^- 



judicial or healthful. So it is in marriage. If it 
vere confined to \vh^t takes place between man and 
wife, nothing more simple ; but then come the ties of 
relationship and the interests of families, and they de- 
cide much upon its happiness or misery. 

My fair spouse entertained me for several succes- 
sive days after our marriage with such manifold and 
intricate stories of her family, of their quarrels and 
their makings-up, of their jealousies and their ha- 
treds, and particularly of their interested motives in 
their conduct towards her, that she made me feel as 
if 1 might have got into a nest of scorpions. She re- 
commended that we should use the greatest circum- 
spection in the manner of informing her brothers of 
our marriage; and remarked that although we were 
so far secure in being lawful man and wife, still as 
much of our future happiness depended upon their 
good will towards us, (they being men of wealth, and 
consequently of influence in the city) we ought to do 
every thing in our power to conciliate them. As a 
precautionary noeasure she had spread a report that 
she was on the point of being married, to one of the 
richest and most respectable of the Bagdad merchants, 
and in a conversation with one of her brothers, had 
not denied, although she had abstained from confess- 
ing it to be the case. She now requested that our 
marriage might be proclaimed, and to that effect re- 
commended that we should give an entertainment to 
all her relations, and that no expense should be spared 
in making it as magnificent as possible, in order that 
they might be convinced she had not thrown herself 
away upon an adventurer, but, in fact, had made an 
alliance worthy of them and of herself. 

She found me ready in seconding her wishes, and I 
was delighted to have so early an opportunity to make 
a display of our wealth. I began by hiring a suite of 
servants, each of whom had their appropriate situa- 
tion and title. I exchanged the deceased emir's fami- 
ly of pipes foi: others of gr^eater value, and of the 
newest fashion. In the same manner I provided my- 
self with a new set of cofEe^-cu^^^xVv^ ^^Mjw^x^^f vfhich 


were fashioned in the most expensive manher ; some 
of filigreed gold, others of enamel, and one or two, 
for my own particular use, inlaid with precious stones. 
Then,- as 1 had stepped into the emir's shoes, 1 de- 
termined to slip-on his pelissc§ also. He was curious 
in the luxuries of dress, for his wardrobe consisted of 
robes and furs of great valiie, which his widow in- 
formed me had existed in his family for many years, 
and which 1 did not now blush to adjust to my own 
shoulders. In short, before the day of the entertain- 
ment came, I had time to set up an establishment 
worthy of a great Aga ; and 1 do believe, although 
born a barber, yet in look, manner, and deportment, 
no one co\tld have acted a part truer to my new cha- 
racter than 1" dfid. 

But I must not omit to mention, that previously to 
the feast, I had not failed to visit my new relations iti 
all due form ; and although I was greatly anxious res- 
pecting the result of our meeting, yet when 1 rode 
through the streets mounted on one of the emir's fat 
horses, caparisoned in velvet housings that swept the 
ground, and surrounded by a crowd of well-dressed 
servants, my deUght and exultation exceeded any 
feeling that 1 had ever before experienced. To see 
the crowd make way, look up, and lay their hands on 
their breast as I passed, — to feel and hear the fretting 
and xhamping of my horse's bit as he moved under 
me, apparently proud of the burthen he bore, — to en- 
joy the luxpry of a soft and easy seat, whilst others 
were on foot,— in fine, to revel in those feelings of 
consequence and consideration which my appearance 
procured, and not to have been intoxicated, was more 
than mere humanity could withstand, and according- 
ly i was completely beside myself. But what added 
most to the zest of this iny first exhibition, was nieet- 
ing some of my own needy countrymen in the streets, 
who had been my companions in the caravan from 
Bagdad, and who, in their sheepskin caps and thin 
scanty cotton garments, made but a sorry figure among 
the gaily dressed Osmanlies, and seemed -to stand 
forth expressly to make me relish in the highest degree 

s 2 


the good fortune with which I had been visited. 
Whether or no ihey recognised me, I know not ; but 
this I recollect, that I turned my head on one side as 
I passed, and buried my face as well as I could in the 
combined shade of my beard, great turban, and furred 

My visits succeeded better than I could have ex- 
pected. Whatever might have been the motives of 
my wife's brothers, they behaved to me with marked 
civility, and indeed flattered me into the belief that I 
had conferred an honour on their family in taking 
their sister off their hands. Merchants as they were, 
their conversation turned principally upon trade, and 
I made my best endeavours to -talk up to the charac- 
ter I had assumed, and convinced them oi the extent 
of my undertakings in commerce. But, at the same 
time, great was my circumspection not to commit my- 
self ; for when they began to question and cross-ex« 
amine me upon the trade of Bagdad and Bassorah, the 
relations of those cities and of Arabia in general with 
India and China, and to propose joint concerns in their 
various articles and produce, I immediately reduced 
my speech to mcnosyllablesi entrenched myself in 
general terms, and assented to proposals which led to 

Having completed my visits, t felt that one duty 
was still left, which was, to make the gt)od old Osman 
a partaker of my happiness, to inform him of my mar- 
riage, and to invite him to our ensuing entertainment. 
But, shall I own it ? so much did I feel that I was act- 
ing a false part, and so fearful was I of being detect- 
ed, that I dared not trust even him, taciturn as he na- 
turally was, with my secret, and therefore determined 
for the present to have no communication with himy 
or, in fact, with any of my countrymen, until I could 
feel myself so securely fixed in my new situation as to 
be fearless of being displaced. 



ffi& desire to excite envy lays the foundation of his 
disgrace. He quarrels with his wife. 

The entertainment went oiff with the greatest suc- 
cess, and there was every reason to suppose that I 
fully succeeded in making my guests believe I was 
really the personage whom I pretended to be. I there- 
fore began to feel secure in my new possessions, and 
gpve myself up to Enjoyment, associating with men of 
pleasure, dressing in the gayest attire, and, in short, 
keeping a house that was the talk and envy of the c\iy* 
'Tis true that I almost daily felt the inconvenience of 
being indebted to my wife for such good fortune; for 
notwithstanding the previous assurances of the old 
Ayesha, I soon found that differences of opinion would 
arise on many other subjects besides the comparative 
delicacy of cream and cheese tarts. ' Excellent man 
must that old emir have been,' frequently did I ex- 
claim^ *who could go througlflife with only one sub- 
ject of dispute with his wife ! For my part, if there 
happens to be two sides to a question, we are sure to 
appropriate them one in opposition to the other.' 

I had long promised to myself the enjoyment of one 
of the principal pleasures arising from my good for- 
tune ; 1 mean, the exhibition of myself in all my splen- 
dour before my countrymen in the caravanserai, and 
enjoying the astonishment which I should excite in 
the old Osman, my former master. 

Now, that all was safe, as I fully hoped, I could no 
longer resist the temptation, and accordingly dressed 
myself in my best attire, mounted the finest horse in 
my stable, gathered my whole suit of servants about 
me, and in the very busiest hour of the day proceeded 
to the caravanserai, in which, on my first arrival at 
Constantinople, I had appeared as a vender oC ^v^^- 
sticks. Upon entering the gate, tvo otv^ ^^^tcv^^ v:^ 


know me, but all were anxious to do me hotiouf, hop- 
ing that in me they might find a purchaser of their 
merchandise. I inquired for Osman Aga, whilst my 
servants spread a beautiful Persian cafpet for my seat, 
and at the same time dfTeried me one of my moat costly 
amber-headed chibouks to smoke. He came and seated 
himself, with all due respect, on the edge of my car-i 
pet, without recognising /me. I talked to him without 
reserve for some time, and remarked that he eyed me 
with looks of peculiar interest, when, at length, una^ 
ble to restrain himself any longer, he exclaimed, < By 
the beard of the blessed Mohammed, you are either 
Hajji Baba, or you are nobody J' 

I laughed with all my heart at bis exclamation, and 
when we had mutually explained, very soon related 
how I was situated, and to what profit I had turned 
the fifty pieces of gold which he had lent me. His 
philosophic mind did not appear so much elated with 
my change of fortune «s 1 had anticipated ; but my 
countrymen, the Persians, as soon as they heard that 
under that large turban and that heavy pelisse was 
seated Hajji Baba, the once vender of little wares like 
themselves, and that all that splendour and circum- 
stance of horse, servants, and rich pipes, was attendant 
upon his person, their national feelings were awaken- 
ed, and they could neither contain their envy nor their 

I flow, too late, discovered the mistake 1 had com- 
mitted in showing myself offin this manner, and would 
willmgly have isneaked away without further triumph. 

< What ! is this Hajji Baba V said one, * the son of 
the Ispahan barber ? May his father's grave be pollu- 
ted, and his mother abused !' 

* Well acted, true child of Iran !' said another; 'you 
have done your utmost w/ith the Turk's beard, and, 
may others do the same with yours !' 

< Look at his great turban, and his large trowsers, 
and his long pipe,' said a third: *his father never saw 
such things, not eveij in a dream !' 

In this manner did my envious countrymen taunt 
me, until, asserting all my dignity, I rose from my 


scat, mounted my horse, and left the place amidst 
their scofTs and expressions of contempt. 

My first sensation was that of indignation at them, 
xny second of anger at myself, 

* You have been rightly served,' said I to myself, 
< by the soul of Kerbelai Hassan, the barber ! What 
well-fed hound ever went among wolves without be- 
ing torn to pieces ? What fool of a townsman ever 
risked himself amongst the wild Arabs of the.desert 
without being robbed and beaten? Perhaps Hajji 
may one day become a. wise man, but plentiful is the 
vexation he must eat first ! Of what use is a beard,' 
said I, taking mine into my hand, « when an empty 
sconce is tied to the end of it? about as much as a 
handle is to a basket without dates. Great wisdom 
had the sage who declared that no man was ever pleas- 
ed with the elevation -of his fellow, except perhaps 
when he saw him dangling on a gibbet !' 
' In this manner did I soliloquise until I reached my 
house, where, having retired to the harem, I endea- 
voured to seek repose for the remainder of the day, 
in order to chew the cud of r(iy bitter reflections. But 
I was mistaken ; for, to add to my misery, Shekerleb, 
my wife, as if impelled by Some wicked demon, de- 
manded that I should immediately advance ,her the 
money inserted. in tl^ marriage settlement for clothes, 
and so v^orked upon me by her very unreasonable en- 
treaties, that, involving her in the ill-humour in which 
I had continued against my own countrymen, I poured 
forth the current of my feelings in language and ges- 
tures the most violent. Curses upon them and male- 
dictions upon her came from my lips in horrid suc- 
cession, until 1, the once mild and patient Hajji, had 
become more furious than a.Mazanderan lion. 

My wife at first was all astonishment, and as she 
drew herself up at the head of her slaves and hand- 
maids, seconded by the old Ayesha, waited with im- 
patient silence for an opportunity to speak. At length, 
when she had found utterance, her mouth appeared 
too small for the yolunriC of words which flowed from 
it. Her volubility unloosed the tongue of Ayesha, 



and the old woman's those of all the otherwomen, un- 
til there arose such a tempest of words and screams, 
all of whicb were directed against me, that I was 
nearly overwheliped. 

I would have resisted, but I found it impossible. It j 
raged with such fury, that the room in which we all 
stood was not large enough to contain us. I was the » 
first to seek shelter, and made a retreat from my ha* i 
rem agiid the groans, the revilings, and the clapyplng '-j 
of hands of the beings within it, .who» with my wife at , 
their head, looked more like maniacs than those fair 
creatures promised by our Pfophet to all true believ- 
ers in paradise. 

Tired, jaded, and distressed by my day's adven*- 
tures, I retired into my own apartment, locked the 
door, and there, though surrounded by and master of 
every luxury that man can enjoy, I felt myself the -. 
most miserable of beings^ detesting myself for my 
idiotical conduct in the present posture of my aflairs, 
and full of evil forebodings for the future. The in- - 
conveniences of lying now stared me full in the face* 
I felt that I was caught in my own snare ; for if I en* I 
deavourcd to extricate myself from my present dilem- 
ma by telling more liesy it was evident that at the end ] 
I should not fail to be entirely entangled. 

* Would to Heaven!' did I exclaim, * that I had^^* 
been fair and candid at first ; for now I should be free [ 
as air, and my wife might have stormed until the day 
of judgment, without being a single shift the better for 
it ; but 1 am bound by writings, sealed and doubly 
sealed, and I musty and ever shall, stand before the 
wprld a liar both by word and deed.' 



OF HAJJl BAB A. 207 


He is discovered to be an impostor^ Joses his wtfe^ and 
the wide world is again before him, 

I PASSED a feverish night, and did not fall asleep 
until the muezzins from the minarets had announced 
the break of day. Scarcely had an hour elapsed, ere 
I was awoke hy an unusual stir, and then was inform- 
ed by one of my servants that my wife's brothers, at- 
tended by several other persons, were in the house, 
■ Involuntarily,' dpon hearing this, I was seized with 
a trembling, which at first deprived me of all power 
of action, and the consequences of lying now spoke 
for themselves. Fifty horrors, one more hideous than 
the other, rose in my mind, and I began to feel a ting- 
ling in the soles of my feet^ which the lapse of years 
had not been able to dispel, so impressive had been 
the lesson received at Mashed. < But, after all,' I 
reflected, *Shekerleb is my wife, happen what may ; 
and if I have pretended to be richer than is really the 
case, I have only done what thousands before me 
have done also,* 1 then turned to my servant, and 
said, * In the name of the Prophet^ let them come in, 
^-and make feady the pipes and coffee.' 

My bed was then rolled up and carried out of the 
room, and my visitors one after the other in silent 
procession walked in, and seated themselves on my 
divan. They consisted of my wife's two brothers, 
of her late father's brother, and his son, and of a stern 
looking man whom I had never before seen. These 
firere seatfd ; but besides, a numerous train of ser- 
vants followed, who stood in a row at the end of the 
room, amongst whom, standing foremost, were two 
ruffian-like looking fellows armed with heavy canes, 
eyeing me as I thought with peculiar fierceness. 

I endeavoured to appear as innocent and undisturb- 
ed as possible, and pretended the greatest delight at 



seeing them. Having made them every civil speech 
which I could devise, to which indeed I received no- 
thing but monosyllables for answers, I ordered pipes 
and coffee, at the partaking of which 1 hoped to ac- 
quire some insight into the object of their visit, 

* May your hours be fortunate !* said I to the elder 
brother. * Is there any thing at this early time of the 
day in which 'I can be of use ? *" If there is, corhmand 

< Hajji,' said he, after an ominous pause, * look at 
me! Do you take us for animals, without under- 
standing, without common sense? or do you look Upon 
yourself as the man of his day without compare, spe- 
cially privileged to take the beards of humankind into 
your hand, and to do what you like with them ?* 

* What is this that you say?' I replied. *0 roy 
Agai I am nobody and nothing; I am less than ah 
ounce of dust,* 

* Man !' said the second brother, in a warmer tone 
of voice, < nobody and nothing, do you say? then what 
have you made of us ? Ar6 we nothing, that you 
should come all this distance fromi Bagdad to make 
us dance like apes at your bidding ?' 

• ' O Allah, great and good !* exclaimed I, ' what is 
all this? Why do you speak after this manner? What 
have I done ?— Speak, and speak truth !* 

< Ah, Hajji, Hajji !^ said my wife's uncle, shaking 
his head and grey beard at the same time, * you have 
been eating much abomination ! Could a man who 
has seen the world like you, suppose that others will 
eat it with you, and say, Thanks be to Allah ! No, 
no — we may eat, but will ilSftt digest your insolence.' 

* But what have I done^ O my uncle ?Vsaid I to 
him ; ' by my soul speak !' " 

* What have you done ?' said my wife's cousin : *I| 
lying nothing ? is stealing nothing ? is marrying a wife 
under false pretences nothing ? You must be a rare 
man without shame to call such acts nothing !' 

* Perhaps,' said the eldest brother, «you think it a 
great honour which the son of an Ispahan barber con- 


fers upon one of the richest families of Constantino- 
ple, when he marries their daughter !' 

^ And perhaps/ said the other, < you may look upon 
A heggarly vender of pipe-§ticks in the light of a mer» 
chant, and think him worthy of any alliance !' 

^ But Hajji^ praise J»e' to Allah ! is a great mer- 
chant,' sard the uncle ironically : < his silks and vel- 
vets are now on their^ay to bring us lambskins from 
Bokhara <; his shawls are travelling to us from Cash- 
mere, and his shi[i6 are blackening the surface of the 
seas between China and Bassorah !' ^ 

< And iiis parentage,' continued his son in the same 
strain, ^ a barber's son did you say f forbid it Allah ! 
No, no i he dates from the Koreish. He is not even 
the descendant, but, by the blessing of God, of the an- 
cestry of the Prophet ; and who can come in compe- 
tition with a Mansouri Arab ?' 

' What is all this ?' again and again did I exclaim, 
as I «aw the storm gatherings about my ears. < If you 
want to kill me, do so ; but do not pull off my skin by 

* I tell you wiiat it is, man without faith,' said the 
stern man, who hitherto had remained immovable; 
^ you are a wretch who deserves not to live ! and if 
you do not immediately give up all pretensions to 
your wif(^ and leave this house and every thing that 
belongs to it, without a moment's delay, do you see 
those men (pointing to the two ruffians before men- 
tioned ;) they will Just make your soul take leave of 
your body as easy as they would knock the tobacco 
out of their pipes. I have spoken, and you are mas- 
ter to act as you please*' 

Then the whole, of the assembly, as if excited by 
diis speech, unloosed their tongues at' once, and, with- 
^«^Out reserve of words or. action, told qpie a great num- 
ber, of disagreeable truths. 

This storm, which I permitted to rage without 

opening my lips, gave me time for reflection, and I 

determined to try what a little resistance would do. 

* * And who are you,' said I to the stern man, * who 

dares come into my house^ and treat me as your dog? 

Vol. II.— T 


As for these/ pointing to my wife's relations^ * the 
house is theirs, and they are welcomf ; but you, whp 
are neither her father^ her brother, nor her uncle, 
what have you to do here ? 1 neither married your 
daughter, nor ^your sister, and therefore what Can it 
be to you who I am ?' - 

All this while he seemed swelling with rs^ge. He 
•and his rufiians were curling ilp their muscachios to 
the corners of their eyes, and eyeing me, as the lion 
dbes the hind, befortr he pounces upon it. 

* Who am 1?' said he with a voice of anger. * If 
yon want to know, -ask those who brought me h^ere, I 
and my men act from authority, which if you dispute^^ 
it will be the worse for you.' 

* But,* said I, softening my X ton?, for I now found 
that they were officers of the police, * but if you iiiskt 
upon "separating me from my^ wite, to. whonivl have 
been lawfully married, give me time to consult the 
men of the law. Every son of Islam has the blessed 
Koran as his refuge, and ye would not be such infi- 
dels as to deprive me of that? Besides,^! 'haye not 
been told yet that she agrees to what you propose. 
She first sought me out; I did not seek her. She 
wooed me for my t)wn sake, not for any worldly inte- 
rest: and when I accepted |ier 1 knew her not, nei- 
ther had I any tidings of either her wealtl^or her fa- 
mily. The whole has been the business of predesti- 
nation, and if ye are Mussulmans will ye dare to op* 
pose that ?' ' 

< As to the wishes of Shekerleb upon the subject,* 
said the eldest brother, * make your mind easy. She 
desires a separation ntiore^ even, than we do.' 

* Yes, yes, in the n^me of the Prophet, yes, let him 
go in peace. For the sake of Allah, let us be free,' 
and fifty Qthe5i.spch exclamations, aU at once struck^ 
my ear ; and on looking to the door which led into 
the women!s apartments, from whence the sound 
came, I beheld my woitien veiled, headed by my wife, 
who had been conducted there on purpose to give 
evidence against me, and who all seemed possessed 
by so many e^il siurits, shouting and wailing out 


their lamentatitDns and entreaties for ihy dismissal, as 
if I were the wicked one in person to be exorcised 
from the house,^ 

Finding that all was over with me, that it was in 
vain to contend a^ai.nst a power I could not with- 
stand, stranger and unprotected as I was iti a foreign 
land, r put the best face I could upon my forlorn si- 
toation, and getting up from my seat, I exclain^ed; 
*irit is So, be it so. 1 neither want Shekerleb nor 
her money, nor her brothers, nor her uncle, nor any 
thing that belongs to them, since they do not want 
me I but this I will say, that they have treated me in 
a manner unworthy of the creed and name of Mussul- 
mans.^ Had X been a dog amongst the unbelievers, I 
should have been treated befter. From the bottom 
of- my heart I believe that the same punishment wiiich 
sh^il be it|fflicted on the last dav, upon those who re- 
ject our holy Prophet, shall be inflicted upon my op- 
pressors,' I thep, with great emphasis, pronounped 
the following sentence against' them, as near as my 
memory would serve me, from the blessed Koran ; 
' They shall hav^e garments of living fire^ fitted tight 
upon them ; boiling water shall be poured over them^ 
their bowels and skins shall be dissolved, and, in this 
state, they be beaten with red hot maces of iron, and 
flogged with whips, whose lashes are made of light- 
nings, and the noise of which shall be claps of thun- 

Upon this, roused and excited as 1 was with the 
speech I had made, I stood in the middle of the room, 
and divested myself of every part of my dress which 
had belonged to my wife, or which Imighthav^ pur- 
chased with her money. Throwing down every ar- 
ticle h6m me, as if it had been abomination, and then 
xalHng for an old cloak which hadpri||H^ally belonged 
totne,I threw it over my shoulders and made my 
exit, denouncing a curse upon the staring assembly 
I left behind me. 

212 Tlffi ABYBNTtlBES 


An incident in the street diverts his despair ; he seeks 
consolation in the advice x>f old Osman. 

When I had got into the street I walked hastily, 
on, without, for some time, heeding whither I Was 
bending my steps. My breast was convulsed by a 
thousand contending passions ; and so nearly had I 
lost possessiofi of my reason, that; when in sight o£ 
the sea, I began seriously to consider whether it would 
not be wisdom to throw myself headlong in. 

But, crossing a large open space, an occurrence 
happened which, howevertrrfltngit may appear, wa8» 
of great consequence to me, inasmuch as it turned the 
current of my thoughts into a new channel, atd saved 
me from destruction. I was witness to one of those 
dog fights do frequently seen in the streets of Con- 
stantinople. A dog had strayed into the territory of 
another community, had infringed their rights,^ sad. 
stolen a bone. Immediately an immense uproar en- 
sued ; all were on foot, and in full cry^ and the strange 
dog was chased across the border into his own terri-* 
tory. Here, meeting some of his own friends, he calU 
ed them about him, returned to the attack| and a ge-* 
neral engagement ensued as I was passing. 

While I stood by, intent upon the scene, a thought 
struck me, and I exclaimed, « Allah, oh AU^h, how 
inscrutable are thy designs ! and how Httl^ ought 
man, narrow-minded, short-sighted man, ever to re« 
pine at thy decrees ! Thou throwest into my path a 
lesson, which teaches me the way that I should go, 
and that assisttpdce is ever at hand to those who will 
seeknt ; and, though given by a dog, let me not des- 
pise it. No, am I to be surprised at any thing when 
I see ahimals, witho\it reason, acting like men, with 
it ? Let me not be cast down, but rather retreat to 
where I may still find a friend^ and seek consolation 
in bis advice and f3(perience V 


Upon this, I turned almost mechanically to where 
J knew I should Bnd my faithful friend and adviser^ 
the old Osman,>vho^ although a Turk and a SCini, 
had always hetiaved to me as if he had been my coun* 
t;ryman, and one of my own religious persuasion. He 
received nie in hi^ usual quiet manner; and when I 

. had related all my misfortunes, he puffed out a long 

volume of smoke from his oevej-failing chibouk, <\nd 

exclaimed, with a deep sigh, < Allah kerim P (God is 

merciful!) , 

; < My friend/ said he^ * when you appeared here in 

.all your magnificence before the Persians, from that 
moment I was apprehepsive that some evil would 
befall you. You, perhaps, are yet not old enough to 
have, learnt bow odious are comparisons. Could you 
for a moment suppose, that men, in your own station 
in life, who are drudging on, day after day, intent 
upon the sale of a pipestick or a bag of Shiraz tobac- 
co, that they cpuld bead* to be bearded by an appear- 
ance of greatness andj^rosperity, so much beyond any 
thing which they could ever expect to attain ? Had 
you appeared with a bt- tter.coat or a richer cap than 
tbcy^ or had yoii been mounted on a horse, when they 
could only aflbrd^an ass, then, perhaps, nothing more 
would have been said, but tliat you were more expert 
in making your fortune, ^nd a better retailer of your 
wares. But to crush, to beat them down, with your 
magnificent dress, your amber-headed pipes, your 
train of servants, your richly caparisoned horse, and, 
above all, the airs of grandeur and protectign which 
you took upon yourself, was more than they could al- 
low, and they immediately rose in hostility, and de- 
termined to bring you down to their own level again, 

'^ if possible. Evidently, it is they who have whisper- 
ed into, the ear of your wife's brothers that you were 
not a Bagdad merchant, but only tw son ot an Ispa- 
han barber, and a. sorry vender of little wares. They, 
.ijquhtless, soon undeceived them respecting the pos- 

/^ij^ility pF fulfilling the sjtipulations to which you have 
'^)>ound .yourself in you wife's marriage ccytract ; and 
Wey, it is plain, have conimentcd freely upon your 

T 2 



'S. A. 



pretensions to noble birth, and upon the flourishing 
account which you gave of your mercantile concerns, 
of your transactions in Bokhara, and of your ships 
sailing to China. - 

< Had you first visited me id a quiet way, as Hajji 
Baba, the Ispahani, and not as Hajji Baba, the Turk- 
ish Aga, I would have warned you against making an 
undue exhibition of you rself^and your prosp<rrity be<^ 
fore your countrymen ; but the mischief was done as 
soon as the deed was over, and now all that can be 
recommended is, that from the past you gain expe- 
rience for the future/ After this speech he took to 
his pipe again, and puffed away with redoubled vigour 

/•This may be very true,* said. I. * What is done 
is done, and peace abide with it: but, after all» I am 
a Mussulman, and justice is due to nie as well as ta 
another. I never heard of a woman putting away her 
husband, although the contrary frequently happens ; 
and it has not yet reached my understanding why I 
should be the only true believer who is called into 
the house, and thrust out of it again, in a manner that 
would even disgrace a dog, merely because it suits a 
capricious woman one morning to like, and the even- 
ing after to dislike, me. Cadies, mufties, sheikh el 
Islams, abound here as well as in other Mohamedan 
cities, and why should I not have recourse to them I 
They are paid to administer justice, and wherefore 
should they sit, with their hands across, counting their 
beads, when such itijustice as that, wUh which I have 
been visited, is going about the land seeking for re^* 

< Are you mad, Hajji,* rejoined the old man, * to 
think oPredress from the widow and relations of one 
of the most powerful emirs of Islam, and thatt too, 
when she is si^orted by her brothers, two of the 
richest merchants in Constantinople ?•— Where have 
you lived all your lifetime, not to know, that he who 
hath most gold hath most justice ? and that, if such a 
man as you were to appear before the tribunal of the 
mufti, with^ every word, line, leaf^ and surai of the 
Koran in yo||r favour, and one as rich and powerful 


as your wife's brother were to appear on the other 
side agaiost you, as long as he had gold in his favour^ 
you might appeal to your sacred book until you and 
it were tired of walking round each other, for justice 
you would never obtain.' 

* G, All I O; Mohamed V cxlaimed I, * if the world 
is indeed as iniq:uitou^ as this, then Hajji Baba, truly, 
has .made a bad bargain, and I wish- he were again in 
possession of his pipesticks : but I cannot, and will 
not, losc^all and every thing in this easy manner,—^! 
will go and proclaim my misfortunes from the house- 
top, rather.' 

Upon which, in utter despair, I began to cry and 
moan, and pulled oiit some of my beard by the roots* 

Osman Aga endeavoured to comfort me,^^made 
me look back upon my past life, and brought to my 
recollection our mutual adventures while prisoners 
among the Turcomans. 

^ God is all-powerful and all-merciful,' said he. 
< Our destinies are written in the book, and therefore 
wliat is there left, but to submit ?' 

< But 1 am a Persian,- exclaimed I, (a new thought 
having crossed my mind,) ^ as well as a Mussulman ; 
why^ therefore, should I submit to injustice from a 
Turkf— rWe are^ after all, a nation, and have had our 
Jinghizs, our Timours, and our Nadirs, who made 
our name respected throughout the world, and who 
burnt the fathers of the Turks wherever .they could 
find them. I will seek our ambassador, and, if he be 
a man, he will insist upon justice being done me. 
Yes, yes ! the ambassador shall get back my wife ; 
(oh, lucky thought !) and then we shall see who will 
t^e her from me again.' 

So elated was I by this idea, that I did not stop to 
hear what Osman might have to say on the subject, 
but immediately sallied forth, full of fresh spirits and 
viggbur, to seek put the representative of our King of 
Kings, whoy at the best of all fortunate hours, had 
ve^y recently arrived on a mission to the Sublime 



In §ndeavoiiring to gain satisfaction from his enemies 
he af quires a friend. . Some Qccount of Mirza Fi" 
rouz. V , . 

Upon iivqulry I found thjat the ambassadpr had 
been provided with a residence at Scutari, and thither 
I immediately bent my course, happy to have the 
time which I should pass'in the boat at my disposal^ 
in order to arrange niy ideas for the purpose of mak- 
ing out a clear and strong case of complaint. ^ 

Having landed, I inquired the way to his house, 
the avenues of which were thrpnged by his numerous 
servants, vyho reminded me of my country, (so dif- 
ferent from that in which we were), by their loqua- 
ciousness and quick gesticulation. 

They soon found by my discourse, that I was one 
of them, although disguised by a Turkish dress, ?ind 
without any difficulty 1 was promised immediately to 
be ushered into the presence of their master. But 
previously to this, I was anxious to acquire some lit- 
tle insight into his character, i\i order that I might 
shape my discourse accordingly ; and therefore en- 
tered into conversation with one of his valets, who did 
not scruple to talk fully and unreservedly upon every 
topic upon which I required information. 

The result of my inquiries was as follows : — The 
ambassador, by name JVlirza Firouz, was by birth a 
Shirazi, of respectable though not of high parentage, 
excepting in the instance of his mother, who vvas sister 
to a former grand vizier of great power, who, in fact, 
had been the. means of placing the Shah upon his 
throne. The mirza married his tousin, a daughter of 
the said vizier ; and this led to his being employed in 
the government, though he had previously undergone 
many vicissitudes, which had caused him to travel | 
into various countries. This circumstance, however, ^ 

was one of the reasoiia of his being selected by the 
Shah to transact his business at foreign courts. « He 
is a man of a quick and penetrating mind,' said my 
informant : * irascible^ but easy to soothe, of a tender 
and forgiving nature, although in his first anger led to 
coorimit acts of viplence. He is gifted with the most 
overwhelming powers of speech, which always are 
sure to get him out of the scrapes into which his in- 
discreet use of them very frequent^ leads him. To 
his servants and followers he is kind, and the contrary 
I^ tarns. Sometimes he permits them to do and say 
everything which they choose^ at others, he keeps 
them at^ most chilling distance. But, on the whole^ 
be is easy of access^^f agreeable commerce^ of most 
fascinating manners, and of a joyous and sociable 

Such was the man into whose presence I was con- 
ducted. He was seated in a corner^ after the manner 
of Persia ; therefore, I could not ascertain what his 
height ought be, but his bugi wai3 extremely fine. His 
head wassymmetripalliy placed on his shoulders, which 
were blended in an easy curve with his neck ; whilst 
his tight dress helped to give great breadth to his 
breast. His face was one of the handsomest I had 
ever seen amongst my countrymen, his nose aquiline, 
his eyes large and sparkling, his teeth and mouth ex- 
quisite^ and his beard the envy of all beholders. In 
short, as a specimen of the country he represented^ 
none could have been better selected. 

When we had interchanged our greetings as true 
believers, he said to me, < Are you an Irani ?' 

* Yes,^ said I, * so please you.* 

i Then wliy in looks an Osmanli i'said he. ^ Praise 
be to Allah, that we have a king and a country of 
whom no one need be ashamed.' 

* Yes,' answered I,* your ordonnances are truth, and 
I am become less than a dog, since I have put on the 
airs of a Turk. My days have been passed in bitter- 
ness, and my liver has melted into water, since I 
have entangled myself by a connexion with this hated 
people ; and my only refuge is m GoOl ?ccv^ '^^vs.? 


* How is this V said he : ' speak.-^Has a child of 
Ispahan (for such you are by your accent) beeti taken 
in by a Turk ? This is wonderful indeed ! We travel 
all this way to make them feed upon our abominatidn, 
not to learn to eat theirs,' 

I then related the whole of my adventures from be- 
ginning to end. As I proceeded he seemed wonder- 
fully interested. Whfin I got to my marriage he be- 
came much amusidy and roared with laughter at the 
settlements I had made on my wife. Th>; account I 
gave of the entertainment, the respect with which I' 
was treated, my magnificence and grandeur, afforded 
him great delight ; and the more I descanted upon the 
deception which I had practised upon the cows of 
Turks, as he called them, the more interest he took in 
my narrative, which he constantly interrupted by his 
excjamations, * Ay, well done, oh Ispahani!— -Oh! thou 
bankrupt ! — By Allah ! You did well !— If I had been 
ithere, I could not have done better.' 

'But when I informed him of the manner I had been 
served by my envious countrymen, of the finishing 
scene in my own house^ of th^ screams of my women^ 
of the speeches of my wife's relations,— and when I 
represented the Very words, look> and attitude with 
which I made my exit, far from having produced 
the sympathy *I expected, his mirth was excited to 
such a degree, that I thought the veins ,iii his fore- 
head would have burst ; and he actually rolled him- 
self on hiis sofa ia the convulsions of laughter. 

« But, may it please you to consider,' said I, ' oh 
my Aga! the situation in which I am now placed. 
Instead of the bed of roses upon which I slept, I have 
not even a pillow whereoiv to lay my he'ad. As for 
the horses and velvet which I used to bestride, happy 
should I now be could I claim even an ass for my 
own. And when! call to my mind the luxuries in 
which I revelled, my rich dresses, my splendid horses, 
my train of servants, my marble baths, my pipes, my 
coffee-cups-^in short, what shall I say, my every thing 
a man could wish for, and now find myself a beggar 
—conceive the bitter recollections which prey upon 


me, add which excite any thing but laughter in my 
breast, whatever they may do in yours.' 

* But those Turks, those heavy buffaloes of Turks,' 
roared he, still screaming with laughter ; « praise be 
to Allah! I can- see them now with their long beards, 
their great ca^s^ aifid their empty heads, believing all 
that the sharp-witted madman of Persia chose to tell 
tbein, and they would have gone on believing, had 
they not been undpceived by a similtr species of mad- 

* But what have I to do in the business ?' said he to 
me. * I am neither your father nor your uncle, to in- 
terfere and make it up with your wife's relations ; 
nor am I a cadi, or a mufti, who can judge the case 
between you.' 

* No,* answered I ; * but you are my refuge here, 
and the representative of God's Vicegerent upon earth j 
and you can see justice done me, and not let a poor 
unfriended stranger be oppressed.' 

* But would you get back possession of your wife,' 
said lie, ^ and stand a chance of being murdered ? Of 
what good would' all your riches be, if the day after 
re-possessing them you were found dead* in your bed? 
No, no:; lend me your ear, and hearken to good coun- 
cil. Throw off vour Turkish clothes, and be a Persian 
again ; aud when in your proper character, I will keep 
you in mind, and see what may be done for you. Your 
story has interested me, your wit and manner are 
agreeable, and believe me that many better things are 
to be done in the world than to smoke a long pipe all 
day, with no other object in^life than to sleep upon a 
bed of roses, and to ride a fat horse. In the mean- 
While, take up your quarters here*; look upon yourself 
as one of my suite for the present, and whenever I 
wish to be merry you shall come and relate your story 
over again. 

. r .Upon this I went up to him, kissed his knee in to- 
ten of acknowledgment, and retired, scarcely knowing 
wrbat steps to take in this unsettled posture of my 




He becomes useful to an ambassador^ who makes him a 

partaker of bis confidence. 

* NecessitYj^so the poet sayelhf^ is ad a strong 
rider with sharp stirrups, who maketh the sorry jade 
do that which the strong horse sometimes wilFnot do.' 

I was disappointed, vexfd, and mottified. My 
hopes of living a life of ease and enjoyment had dis- 
appeared, and I once more saw myself obliged <to 
have recourse to vtiy own ingenuity to keep me fn^n 

* If I have lost a home,' said I, ^ see I have found 
a friend. Let me not reject his proffered protecttoh ; \ 
and the same powerful destiny which has led me on L 
step by step through the labyrinth of life will doubt- ^ 
less again take me by the hand, and perhaps at length 
safely land me where I shall no longer be perplexed 
respecting the path I ought to pursue^' \ 

I determined to make the most of my alccess to the \ 
ambassador ; and happy was I to find, that the liking ^ 
which he had taken to me at first sensibly, though L 
gradually^ increased during our succeeding^ inter- ^ 
views. He made use of me to acquire information^ 
and conveised freely upon the business of his govern- 
ment, and upon matters connected with his mission. 

Having all niy Mfe been taken up in making^my own 
fortune, I had turned my mind but little to public 
events. Of the nations of the world I scarcely, knew 
any but my own and the Turks. By iiame only the 
Chinese, the Indians, the AfTghans, the Tartars, the 
Ciirds, and the Arabs were known to me ; and of the 
Africans I ha^ some knowledge, having seen different 
specimens of them as slaves in our houses. Of the 
Franks,--the Russians (if such they may be called) 
were those of whom we had the most knowledge in 5 
Persia, and I had also heard of the Ingliz and the 


Franciz. When I reached Constantinople, I wassur- 
prised to hear that many more Frank nations existed 
besides the three above mentioned ; but still, occupi« 
ed with my own affairs, -I acquired but little know- 
ledge coneeming them. 

^ow that I was thrown Into the ambassador's so- 
ciety, my ideas took a new turn, and hearing matters 
discussed which had never even reached my under- 
standing, i became more inquisitive. He seemed 
pleased to have found in me one who took interest 
in his views and at length let me entirely into his con- 

One mornings hayings received letters from his 
ccHirty he called me to him, said that he wished for 
same private conversation, and accord Tngly ordered 
every one to depart from before him except myself. 

He-made me sit, and then in a low voice said, *• Hajji, 
I. baye long wished to speak to you. Those who com- 
pose my suite, between you and 1, do not possess the 
sort ofunderstanding 1 require. 'Tis true, they are 
J^ersians, and are endowed with more wit than ail the 
"world beside ; but in affairs of the dowlet (the state,) 
they are nothing, and rather impede than forward the 
business upon which I have been sent. Now, praise 
be to Allah ! I see that you arc not one of them. You 
^ ^^IH^ much of a mao^ one who has seen the world and 
^ business, and something may come from out of 
jawr hands. You are a man who can make play un- 
-^iel^ another's beard, and suck the marrow out of an 
i^lr without touching its outside. Such I am in want 
if^HHrfi, and if you will devote yourself to me, and to our 
JoiShah, the King of Kings, both my face as well as 
^^j^our own will be duly whitewashed; and, by jthe 
^^^Aessings of our good destinies, both our Heads will 
=^^^uch the skies.' 

MIa'^ Whatever is of my strength,' replied I, 'is at 
.Jig^^ur service. 1 am your slave and your servant, and 
rflf fiiyself will place my own ear into your hand. Or- 
i%|bBr and command me: by my head and eyes, I am 

[^;iiV 4 Perhaps you have heard it reported in the world,'- 
Vol. II.— U 


said he, < that the object of my tnissioD is to buy wotneQ 
slaVes for the Shah, to see them instructed in danc- 
ing, musiCy and embroidery , and to purchase spangled 
silks and other luxuritrs for the ro3'al harem j butthat 
is of course a blind for the 'multitude. I am -not an 
ambassador for such miserable prurposes : no, my bu- 
siness is of greater import ; and pur king, whose pene- 
tration is as searching as lightning itself, does not ^^ 
lect men to transact his affairs 'without very substan- 
tial reasons. He has chosen me, and that's enovhgh. 
Now hearken to what I shall tell you. 

» But a few months ago an ambassador from Europe 
arrived at the Gate of £mpire, Tehran, and said he 
was sent by a certain Boonapoort, calling himself 
Emperor of (he French nation, to bring a letter and 
presents to the Shah. He exhibited full powers, by 
which his words were to be looked upon as his roas- 
ter's, and his actions as his actions ; and he also af- 
firmed, that he had full instructions to make a treaty. 
He held himself very high indeed, and talked of all 
other nations of Franks as dirt under his feet, and 
not worth even a name. He promised to make the 
Russians restore their conquests in Georgia to us, to 
put the SHah in possession of Tcflis, Baadkoo, Der- 
bent, and of all which belonged to Persia in former 
times. He said, that he would conquer India for lis, 
and^drive the English from It ; and, in short, what- 
ever we asked he promised to be ready to grant. 

* Now, 'tis true, we had heard of the French be- 
fore, and knew that they made good cloth and rich 
brocades ; but we never heard that they could do all 
this ambassador proclaimed. 

♦Something we had heard also of their attacking 
Egypt, for coffee and khentia had become dear in 
consequence ; and it was in the recollection of oneof 
our old khans of the SeBli family, that an ambassador 
from a certain Shah Louis of France had been seen 
at the court of Shah Sultan Hosein; but how this 
Boonapoort had become Shah, not a single man in 
Persia could explain. The Armenian merchants who 
travel into all countries, affirmed, that to their know- 


ledge such a person in fact did exist, and that h^ was 
a great breeder of disturbance ; and it was from what 
they said and from other circumstances, that the Shah 
agreed to receive his ambassador; but whether the 
papers which he exhibited, written in characters that 
no one could read, were ^true or false, or whether all 
he said was to the purpose or not, who was to say ? 
Our viziers, great and small, knew nothing of the 
matter J our Shah, who,, (may Allah preserve him !) 
knows every thing under the sun, he had no know* 
ledge of it; and excepting one Coja Obed,,an Arme- 
nian, who had been to Marsilia, a town in France, 
where he had been shut up in a prison for forty days,* 
atid one Narses, a priest. of that nation. Who had stu- 
died in a convent of dervishes somewhere in those 
countries, we had no one at the gate of the King of 
-Kings who could let any light into the chambers of 
our brain, or jivho could in the least explain whether 
this Boonapoort or his representative were impostors 
or not,«— ^whether they were come to take our caps 
from off our heads, or to clothe us with the kalaats of 
good fortune. 

* However, we were not very long in doubt ; for 
when the English infidels who trade between India 
^od Persia, some of whom reside at Abusheher, heard 
of the arrival of this ambassador, they immediately 
sent off messengers, letters, and an^gent, to endeav- 
our to impede the reception of this Frenchman, and 
.made such extraordinary efforts to prevent his sue 
cess, that we soon discovered much was to be got be- 
tvreen the rival dogs. 

• 'By my crown,' exclaimed the Shah, 'all this 
Hppmeth from the ascendant of my good stars. Here 

sit 1 upon my throne, whilst the curs of uncleanness 
come from the north and the south, from the east and 
west^ bringing nie vast presents for the liberty of 
. fighting and quarreling at the foot of it. In the name 
of the Prophet, let them approach !' 

' When I left the imperial gate, an ambassador from 

• Qaarantine, we presume, » here meant. 



the English was expected^ and the letteris .which I 
have just received are full of the circumstances of his 
proposed reception, and the negotiations on foot con- 
cerning it,*— but the Shah cannot well enter upon them 
before he hears from* me ; because, having been in- 
formed that specimens of all the diflerent European 
nations were to be seen at Constantinople, each of 
whom had an ambassador there, he in his wisdpm, has 
judged it expedient to despatch me hither, to obtain 
all the information of which we are so much in want^ 
to clear up every doubt thajc exists in Persia about the 
French and English, and if possible to find^out whe- 
ther all they say of themselves be true or false. 

*Now Hajji,' said the ambassador, < I am only one 
man, and this is a business, asl have found out« suffi- 
cient for fifty. The Franks are composed of many^ 
many nations. As fast as I hear of one hog, another 
begins to grunt, and then another and another, until- 
I find that there is a whole herd of them. As I told 
you before, those who compose my suite are not men 
to help me in research, and I have^cast my eyes upon 
you. From your exertions I expect much. You must 
become acquainted with some infidels ; you under- 
stand the Turkish language, and they will be able to 
inform you of much that we want to know. I will 
furnish you with a copy of the Shah's instructions to 
me upon that head, which you will lock up^ of course 
in the secret corners of your brain^ and which will be 
your guide upon what we wish to acquire. And until 
that be done, go, sit in. a corner, and msiike one long 
and deep thought upon the plan of operations that we 
ought to pursue. 

Upon ttiis he dismissed me, and I left him with 
new prospects of advancement in the career of life. 





Of his Jirst essays in public ii/e^ and of the use he was 

of to his employer. 

. As soon as the. ambassador had furnished me with 
an extract of his vqiayeh nameh^ or his instructions^ 
L walked pat to an adjacent cemetry to read it over 
undisturbed. I. kept the paper carefully folded in 
the lining of my csip^ and as it was my first initiation 
into public business^ the principal contents of it have 
rennained in jmy memory through life. 

. The ambassador was, in the first placet enjoined to 
discover, iq truth, what was the extent of that coun« 
try called Frangistan , and if the Shah, known in Per- 
sia by the napie of the Shahi Franks or king of the 
Franks, actually existed, and which was his capital. 

In the second place, he was ordered to discover 
how many lis or tribes of Franks there were ; whe- 
ther they were divided into Shehernisheens and Sah~ 
ranisheens^ inhabitants pf towns and dwellers in the 
desert, as in Persia^ who were their khans, and how 

Thirdly, to inquire what was the extent of France, 
whether it was a tribe of the Franks, or a separate 
kingdom, and who was the infidel Boonapoort, call. 
ing himself emperor of that country. 

In the fourth place, his attention was to be turned 
particularly to what regarded the Ingliz, who had long 
been kno^n in Persia, by means of their broad cloth 
watches, and penknives. He was to inquire what 
description of infidels they were, whether they lived 
tq an island all the year round, without possessing 
any kislak (warm region) to migrate to in the summer, 
and whether most of them did not inhabit ships and 
eat fish; and if they did live there, how it happened that 
they had obtained possession of India ; and he was to 
clear up that question so long agitated in Persia, how 

u 2 



England and London were connectedf whether £ng. 
land was part of London, or London part of Eng- 
land ? , 

In the fifth place, he was commanded to bring po- 
sitive intelligence of who and what the Coampam was, 
of whom so much was saad«— *how connected with 
England, — ^whether an old woman, as sometimes re- 
ported, or whether it consisted of many old women; 
and whether the account whkh was credited of its ne- 
ver dying, like the lama of Thibet, were not a fable. 
He was also enjoined to clear up certain unintelligi- 
ble accounts of the manner in which.£ngland was go- 

In the sixth place, some positive information coo^ 
cerning Tengi duniah^ or the New World, was much 
wanted, and he was to devote part of his attention to 
the subject. 

Lastly, he was ordered to write a general histoiy 
of the Franks, to inquire what would be the easiest 
method of making them renounce pork and wine$ and 
converting them to the true and only faith, that is, to 
the religion of Islam. 

Having well pondered over this p;^per, I consider- 
ed that it would be easy to get it answered through 
the means of a hattk^ or scribe, attached to the then 
Keis Effendi, and with whom, during the short gleam: 
of splendour and riches which' had shone upon me, I 
had formed a great intimacy. I knew the cofTee-house 
he frequented, and the hour when he was most likely 
to be foumd there ; and although he wasnotmnch ad- 
dicted to talking, yet I hoped, as he sipped his coffee 
and smoked his pipe, ^particularly if I treated him) 
his heart might expand,^ and 1 might obtain his real 

Full of this idea, I immediately imparted it to the 
ambassador, who seemrd so delighted, that he at once 
did me the honour to take all the merit of it to him- 

^ Did not I tell you so V exclaimed he ; ^ did I not 
say that you were a man of ingenuity ? Acknowledge 
then, that I am not without penetration ; own, that it 


reqaires asharp discernment to discover at once 
i¥here abilities lie ; and that had it not been for me, 
we should never have discovered this katib, who is to 
tell us every thing, and thus fulfil the instructions of . 
the Asylum of the Universe/ 

He then^ empowered me, if I found it necessary, to 
promise htm a present, by which means, should there 
be any deficiency in his information, he might per- 
haps succeed in obtaining it from the fountain head, 
namely, the Reis EflPendi himself. 

I went to the coffee-house at the proper time, and 
there found my friend. I approached him with great 
denftonstrations of friendship ; and calling to the 
waiting man, ordered some best Yemen coffee, which 
was served up as we sat one opposite the other. In 
the course of conversation he pulled out his watch 
when I seized the opportunity of introducing my sub- 

* That is an European watch,' said I, * is it not ?' 

< Yes, truly,' said he ; * there are none in the world 

* Wonderful,' answered I,— those Franks must be 
Sm extraordinary people.' 

< Yes,' said he,' but they are Kafirs,' (infidels.) 

* In the name of Altah,' taking my pipe from my 
mouth and putting it into his, * tell me something re- 
specting them. This Frangistan, is it a large coun- 
try ? Where does its king reside ? 

< What say you, friend?' answered he; *a large 
country, do you ask ? A large country indeed it is, 

* not governed by one king alone, but by many kings.' 

* But I ha^ e heard,' said I, Mt is composed of many 
"Iribes, all having different names and different chiefs; 
still being, in fact, but one nation.' 

* You may call them one nation if you choose,' said 
he, *and perhaps such is the case, for they all shave 
their chins, let their hair grow, and wear hats,— .they 
all wear tight clothes, — they all drink wine, eat pork, 
4llld do not believe in the blessed Mahomed. But it 
|a plain they are governed by many kings ; see the 
aimierous ambassadors who flock here to rub their 



foreheads against the threshold of our Imperial Gate. 
So many of these dogs are here, that it is necessary 
to put one's trust in the naercics of Allah, such is thp 
pollution they create.' 

* In the name of the Prophet speak on/ said 1/ and. 
I will write, — Praise be to Allah ! you are a man of 
wisdom.' Upon which, whilst 1 took out my ink- 
stand from my girdle, and composed myself to write, 
he stroked his beard, and curled the tips of his mu§- 
tachios, recollecting within himself who were the 
principal nations of Europe. 

He prefaced his information by saying, ' But why 
trouble yourself ? They all are dogs alike, — all sprung 
from one dunghill ; and if there be truth in Heaven^ 
and we believe x)ur blessed Koran,, all will burn here- 
after in one common furnace. But, stop,' said h^, 
counting his fingers ; < in the first place, there is the 
Nemse Giaour^ the Austrian infidel, our .neighbours i 
a quiet^ smoking race, who send us cloth, steel, and 
glassware, and are governed by a Shah, springing 
from the most ancient race of unbelievers ; he sencU 
us a representative to be fed and clothed. 

^ Then come those heretics of Muscovites, a most 
unclean and accursed generation. 1 heir country is 
so large, that one extremity it said to be buried in 
eternal snows, whilst its other is raging with heat. 
They are truly our enemy ; and when we kill them, 
we cry Mashallah, praise be to God ! Men and wo- 
men govern there by turns ; but they resemble us in- 
asmuch as they put their Sovereigns to death almost 
as frequently as we do. 

* Again,' there is a Prussian infidel, who sends us 
an ambassador, Allah only knows why ; for we are in 
no need of such vermin : but, you well know, that the 
Imperial Gate is open to the dog as well as the true 
believer : for th-e rain of Providence descends equally 
upon both. 

' Who shall I say next, in the name of the Prophet? 
Let us See : there are two northern unbelievers, living 
at the extremity of all things,— the Danes and Swedes. 
They are small tj^ibes, scarcely to be accounted among 


men, although it Is said the Shah of Denmark is the 
most despotic of the kings of Franks, not having even 
janissaries to dispute his will ; whilst the Swedes are 
famous for a madman, who once waged a desperate war 
in£urope; caring little in what country he fought, pro- 
vid<^d only that he did fight; and who, in one of his acts 
of desperation, made his way into our borders, where, 
like a wild beast, he was at length brought to bay, and 
taken prisoner. Owing to this circumstance we were 
introduced to the knowledge of his nation ; or other- 
wise, by the blessing of Allah, we should never have 
known that it even existed, 

^I will mention one more, called Flemengs, infidels, 
dullf heavy, jind boorish; who are amongst the Franks 
what the Armenians are amongst us,— ^having no ideas 
beyond those of thrift, and no ambition beyond that 
of riches. They used to send us a sleepy ambassador 
to negotiate the introduction of their cheeses, butter, 
and salt fish ; but their government has been destroy- 
ed since the appearance of a certain Boonapoort, who 
(let them and the patron of all unbelief have their due) 
IS in truth a man ; one whom we need not be ashamed 
to class with the Persian Nadir, and with our own 

Here I stopped the Katib in his narrative, and 
catching at the name, I exclaimed, < Boonapoort, Boo* 
Ulipoort, — that is the word I wanted ! Say something 
Concerning him ; for I have heard he is a rare and a 
daring infidel;' 

* What can I say,' said my companion^ ' except that 
he once was a man of nothing, a mere soldier ; and 
How he is the Sultan of an immense nation, and gives 
llie law to all the Franks I tie did his best endeav- 
ours to molest us also, by taking Egypt, and sent in- 
numerable armies to conquer it ; but he had omitted 
to try the edge of a. true believer's sword ere he set 
out, and was obliged to retreat, after having frightened 
El few Mamelukes, and driven the Bedouins into their 

^'But is there not a certain tribe of infidels called 


Ingli^ ?^ said I, Ithe most unaccountable people on 
earth, who live in an island, and make pen-knives?' 

* Yes, truly/ said the Katib, < they, amongst the 
Franks, are those who for centuries have most rubbed 
their beads against the imperial threshhold, and wh^ 
have found most favour in the sight of our great and 
magnanimous Sultan. They are powerful in ships ; 
and in watches and broadcloth unrivalled.' 

* But what have you heard of their government 2' 
said i i < is it not composed of something besides a 

' Yes,' returned he, * you have been rightly inform* 
ed ; but how can you and I understand the humours of 
such madmen ? They have a Shah, 'tis true ; but it 
is a farce to call him by that title. They feed, clothe, 
and lodge him ; give him a yearly income, surround 
him by all the state and form of a throne ; and mock 
him with as fine words and with as high-sounding -ti« 
ties as we give our sovereigns; but a common Aga of 
the Janissaries has more power than he ; he does not 
dare even to give the bastinado to one of his own vi- 
ziers, be his fault what it may ; whereas the Aga, if 
expedient, could crop the ears of half the city, s^d 
still receive nothing but reward and. encouragement. 

* Then they have certain houses full of madmen, who 
meet half the year round for the purposes of quarrel- 
ling. If one set says white, the other cries black; and 
they throw more words away in settling a common 
question than would suffice one of our muftis during ' 
a whole reign. In short, nothing can be settled in the 
state, be it only whether a rebellious Aga is to have 
his head cut off and his property confiscated, or some 
such trifle, until these people have wrangled. Thea^'' 
what are we to believe I Allah, the Almighty and 
Allwise, to some nations giveth wisdom, and to others 
folly! Let us bless Him and our Prophet, that we 
are not born to eat the miseries of the poor English 
infideisy but can smoke our pipes in quiet on the shores 
of our own peaceful Bosphorus !' 

« Strange, strange things, you tell me,' said I, *-and 
had I not heard them, I could notbelieve^somethiDg 


ntor^, \ivhich Is, that alMndia belongs to them, and 
that it is governed by old women. Do you know 
that fact ?' 

* I shall not be surprised to hear of any thing they 
do,* answered he, < so mad are they generally report- 
ed to be ; but that India is governed by iniidel old 
women, that has never yet reached our cars. Per- 
haps it is so. God knows,' continued he, musing, 
* for mad people do wonderful things.' 

After a pause, * Now,' said I, * have I learnt all, 
or are there more unbelievt- rs I By your beard, tell 
mc ; for who would have thought that the world was 
so composed ?' 

He reflected for some time, and said, ' O yes, I for- 
got to mention two or three nations; but, in trutH^ 
they are- not worthy of notice. Thtre ar^ Spanish, 
Portuguese, and Italian infidels, who eat their swine, 
and worship their image after their own manner ; but 
who, in fact, are nothing even amongst the Franks. 
The first is known to us by their patakas (dollars ;) 
the second sendis us some Jews; and the third im- 
ports different sorts of dervishes, who pay consider- 
able sums into the imperial treasury for building 
churches, and for the privilege of ringing bells. I 
must also mention the fiapa (pope,) the Caliph of the 
[ Franks, who lives in Italia, and does not cease his 
endeavours to make converts to his faith ; but we are 
more than even with him, for we convert the infidels 
ki^inuch greater proportion than they, notwithstand- 
ing all the previous pain which man must suflTcr be- 
fore he is accepted for a true believer.' 

* One more question I must ask,' said I, * and then 

am satisfied. Can you tell me any thing positive 
about Tengi duniah^ ihe New World: for 1 have 
fieard so many contradictory reports, that my brain is 
bewildered? How Co they get at it, under ground, 
or how ? • 

[ * Wc have not had many dealings with it,' said the 
Eatib, * and therefore know not much of the matter ; 
tet this is true, that one can get there b, ship, be- 
^8e ships belonging to the New World have actu- 



ally been seen here. They are all infidels, my friend/ 
exclaimed he, with a sigh ; ^ all infidels, as much as 
those of the old world, and, by the blessing of Allah, 
will all grill in the same furnace/ 

Finding that upon this subject the Katib was de» 
ficient, I ceased questioning; and our conversation 
having now lasted a long time, I released him from 
further importunity, by calling, for more coffee, and 
replenishing our pipes. We then separated^ not with* 
out mutual promises 9f meeting again. 


Hajjt Baba writes the History of Europe ^ and roith 
his ambassador returns to Persia, 

I RETURNED to my ambassador fuil of the ihfornaa'* 
tion I had acquired, and all-joyous at the success 
which had attended my first essay in diplomatic life* 
He was delighted at the menioir I had drav/n up from 
the materials furnished me by the Katib^ and as long 

' as we remained at Constantinople daily sent me in 
search of further particulars, until we both thoifght 
ourselves sufficiently in force to be able to draw up a 
general History of Europe, which the Centre of jfie 
Universe in his instructions to the ambassador had 

* ordered him to present on his return. Most assidu* 
ously did I apply myself in composing this preciods 
morsel of history. 1 made a rough draught, which 
was submitted to the correction of my chief, and when 
he had seasoned its contents to the palate of the 
King of Kings, softening down those parts which 
might appear improbable, and adding to those not 
sufficiently strong, he delivered it over to a clerk, who 
in a fair hand transcribed the whole, until at length a 
very handsome volume was produced. It was duly 
bound, ornamented, and inserted in a silk and muslin 


ba^^ and then the ambassador conceived it might be 
fit to be placed in the hands of the Shah. 

Mirza Firouz having now, as he conceived, accom- 
plished the objects of his mission, prepared to return, 
and announced his intention not only of taking me 
with him, but also of continuing me in the employ of 
the government, as soon as we should reach Tehran^ 
*^for,* said he, * a person so well acquainted with the 
interests of the Franks will be of great use in treat- 
ing with the infidel ambassadors now in Persia.' 

He could not have devised a plan better suited to 
my wishes ; for after my cruel treatment of the Turks, 
I hated every thing relating to them. Their city was 
become odious to me, and whenever I thought upon 
Shekerleb my heart swelled with rage. Much time 
had now elapsed since my affair with the chief priest 
of Tehran. The Mollah Nadan, so I had heard, had 
long ago beeii blown from the niouth of a mortar, and 
the wido\iif, whom I left in the hands of the Curds, 
had never returned to Persia. Therefore I concluded 
I might show myself in all safety, for I argued thus: 
should I even be recognised, still who would venture 
to 'molest me, powerfully protected as I should be by 
.men in oflSi^e ? The chief executioner had recovered 
possession of his horde and furniture, when the un- 
fortunate Nadan had been seized; and there was 
every reason to suppose that Abdul Kerim had shared 
Ae fate of his mistress, the chief priest's widow, for 
.:be had no more been heard of; so I did not fear that 
he would call upon me to refund the hundred to- 
^JQDUiuns. What had I then to apprehend on returningi, 
^16 Tehran ? Nothing that I could foresee ; and if 
^Konce it were knoWn that I was a servant of the Shah's, 
gE^^ven being a thousand times more criminal than I was 
jn factf I might put my cap on one side, and walk all 
IjI ^/ovcr the empire with impunity. 

^if Fortified by these reflections, I made my prepara- 
tions with alacrity to accompany the ambassador. 
But previous to our departure, I determined upon 
If .ijrisiting my countrymen in the caravanserai, where 
qI OvHtii a better chance of success I naVf might give my- 
I Vol. II,— X 




self those airs of importance which had succeeded so 
ill at my last exhibition* Having taken some trouble 
to make it well understood that I was attached to the 
embassy, I no longer dreaded their contempt ; and 
such is the respect that one invested with that cha- 
racter is sure to inspire, that on this occasion I had 
no reason to complain of any want of attention. 
Every word addressed to me was now prefaced with, 
By your favour. By your condescension. May your 
kindness never be less ; and compliments which never 
cndedy interlarded all the fine discourses I beard* 
To hear them^ nobody could have ever supposed that 
I was the same person whom not two months before 
they had laughed to scorn ; on the contrary, one ig- 
norant of the circumstance would have set me down 
for a personage upon whom the issues of life and 
death depended. But when I took my leave of the 
old Osman, I found him unchanged, and every word 
he spoke shewed that his affection for the* son of the 
barber of Ispahan was the feeling which ever actuat- 
ed his conduct towards me, * Go, my son/ said he, 
as lie parted from me, * whether you be a prisoner 
with the Turcomans, or a priest, or a seller of pipe- 
sticks, or a 1 urkish Aga, or a Persian Mirza; be you 
what you may I shall always put up my prayers for 
your prosperity, and may Allah attend your steps 
wherever you go.' _^ 

Having made his visits of ceremony, and taken 
his ledve of the Turkish authorities, the ambassador 
left Scutari, accompanied by a large company of his 
own countrynien, who conducted him about one para- 
sang on the road to Persia, and then received their 
dismissal. Our journey was propitious, and nothing 
took place in it worthy of notice from the day of our 
departure until our arrival in Persia. At Erivan we 
heard the neWs of the day, though but imperfectly ; 
but at Tabriz, the seat of Abba Mirza*s government, 
we were initiated into the various questions which 
then agitated the country and the Court. The prin- 
cipal one. was the rivalry between the French and 
English ambassadors ; the object of the former, who 


had already been received by the Shah, being to keep 
away the latter, who had not yet reached the foot of 
the throne. 

Various were the anecdotes related of the exer- 
tions made by them to attain their ends, and the whole 
of Persia was thrown into astonishment upon seeing 
infidels come so far from their own countries, at so 
much tfouble and expense, to quarrel in the face of a 
whole nation of true believers, who were sure to de- 
spise, to deride, and to take them in. 
^^ The Frenchman, by way of enforcing his demands, 
constantly brought forwards the power of his own 
sovereign, his greatness and preponderance over all 
-the states of Europe, and did not cease to extol the 
immense numbers of troops he could bring into the 

To this he was answered, * That may be very true; 
but what is that to us ? Whole empires intervene, 
and therefore what affinity can there be between France 
and Persia ?' 

< But,' said the Frenchman, * we want to conquer 
India from the English, and we wish to have an open 
road through your territories.' 

< What is that to us ?' again said the Shah: .* you 
n^ay want India, but we are in no way anxious to en* 
tertain your troops.' 

^ But we will conquer Georgia for you, put you in 
possession of Teflis, and secure you from further mo- 
lestation from the Russians. 

* That is another case,* said the Shah ; < when once 
we see the effects of your interference, and hear that 

Hhere are no more Russians on this side the Cauca- 
sus, we will treat with you ; until then we can allow 
no passage through our territories; nor break with 
our old friends the English.* 

On the other hand, the English said, * The French 
can have no other object in coming to Persia than to 
molest us ; we require that you send them away. 

* How V said the Shah,* we cannot do that ; for that 
vrould be against the laws of hospitality. The gate 
of bur palace is open to every one,' 


« But/ urged the Euglish, < you must either retain 
one or the other — and must decide between us. £i- 
tl\er agree to be our friends and expel the French, or 
make up your minds to receive us as enemies/ 

* Why should we make ourselves enemies to please 
you ? We^ want to be friends with all the world.* 

< B>ut,' continued the English, ^we will help and 
strengthea youy and give you money.' 

^ O ! that is another case,' said the Shah ; ^ tell m^ 
how much, and then all may be done.' 

Such was nearly the state of things when we left 
Tabriz, and as my ambassador was expected with im- 
patience at Tehran, %ve did not tarry long with the 
prince roy^l^ but prosecuted our journey with all des- 

On the morning of our arrival at Sultanieh, on the 
road from Tehran, we discovered along train of horse- 
men with their baggage, whom we could niake out 
were not Persians, and whom as they approached we 
saw were Franks. They were accompanied by a 
mehmanderf ^n of^cer from the Shah, who informed 
us, that this was the French embassy on its return, 
who it seems had been politely requested to take its 
leave ; and it was moreover added, that the English 
ambassador would very shortly take its place. 

This at once explained how matters stood at court, 
and that between the rival bidders for his majesty's 
favour, the King of Kings had come to a good mar- 
ket. My ambassador was rather surprised how such 
a determination could have been taken previous to his 
arrival, fraught as he was with important informatioa 
upon ail the nations of Europe ; but every difficulty 
is easily explained away when money is permitted to 
* exert its eloquence, particularly if one recollects the 
words of ttie. Sheikh^— 

Let money only appear, and every head is prostrate. 

Tis thus, the heaviest weight ip the scales lowers the iron heam. 

We were happy to have an opportunity of observ- 
ing the manners of a nation about whom we had lately 
heard so much, and as we passed the day together in 

OP ttAJJl BABA. 237 

the same place* my chier dta not fail to make hims^ 
known to the French ambassador.^ 

We expected of course to find them much depressed 
in splritSf and in no good humour, having been driv- 
en as it were from the presence of the Earth's Cen- 
tre ;^ but what was our surprise to remark the con- 
trary ! Never did Persia see such a company of mad- 
men. They were singing, dancing, and making the 
iittiM the live-long day. They all talked at once, 
one louder than the other, without any apparent de- 
ference to rank, for all seemed on the same footing* 
Without in the least respecting our carpets, they were 
eternally pacing them with rapid strides, and, what 
most shocked our feelings, spitting upon them. As 
I now looked upon myself in some measure identified 
with the Franks, considering at what pains I had lately 
beeato acquire information concerning them, I endea- 
voured to discover if there was any affinity between 
their language and ours ; but not a word could I com- 
prehend. However, I thought to have made some 
progress in it, by recollecting and writing down the 
words in their speech which most frequently occur- 
red-— one was ffacr^«— the other Pam— -and a third 

On the whole we liked them. We thought to dis- 
cern many points of similitude between them and 
ourselves ; and were of opinion, that if as infidels they 
were doomed to the douzak of hereafter, even there, 
instead of moamng over and deploring their lot, they 
would still be found in the same happy mood we saw 
them at Sultanieh. 

We parted on the following morning, they laugh- 
ing, chattering, and screaming with joy ; we, full of 
anxiety and apprehension about the reception with 
which our ambassador would meet from the King of 




The ceremony of receiving a Frank ambassador at the 

court is described. 

My chief, the Mir^a Ftrouz, was received with 
great condescension by the Shah, who was pleased at 
the ready linswers he receiyed to his numerous ques- 
tions concerning the nations of Europcy Never was 
man better adaptued to fill the situation to which he 
had been appointed th^n the Mirza. Every question 
which the Shah put to him was received ,with a ready 
answer. Ignorance did not confound him, no diffi- 
culty stopt him. The words, < nemi danum* I don't 
knoWf ever a sin^in the hearing of a king, were never 
known to pass his lip8« He discoursed upon every 
matter with a confidence that made his hearers be* 
lieve that whatever he said must be conclusive ; and 
upon the subject of Europeans, to listen to him, one 
could not but suppose he had been born and bred 
among them. 

As I was known to have been employed under hitn 
in ^ seizing news,* as the phrase goes, concerning Eu- 
rope, and also in writing its history, I in some mea« 
sure enjoyed the reputation of being learned in what- 
ever regarded its 'inhabitants. Although my assu. 
ranee was nothing equal to my master's, yet I managed 
to answer the questions put to me with tolerable rea* 
diness, although, in so doing I was obliged to be very 
circumspect not to commit him, therefore I passed 
my days in the double fear of appearing ignorant, and 
of having my e^rs cut off in case I happened to be 
too wise. However, as none among our own country- 
men could contradict us, we were listened to as ora- 
cles, and we exemplified what the poet Al Miei has 
so jetstly reinarked ; * That in the country of the dumb 
the sound of one Voice, be it even that of an ass^ 
would be called harmony.' 


The English Elchi (ambassador) 4iad reached Teh« 
ran a few days before we arrived there, and his re- 
ception was as brilliant as it was possible for a dog of 
an unbeliever to expect from our blessed Prophet's 
own lieutenant. Indeed the city was almost shocked 
at the honours paid him, and some 9f the most vio- 
lent of our moUahs declared, that^n treating a Giaour 
so well, we were ourselves in some measure guilty of 
his infidelity, and preparing our own damnation. At 
different stations on the road, the throats of oxen had 
been cut before his horses' fee t^ in many places his 
path was strewn, with, sugar candy, and on the day of 
his entry he was permitted to have his trumpets 
sounded in the procession, all of which were hon- 
ours that could be exacted by none, save our o^n 

Then all the proper attentions of hospitality were 
shown. The house of a khan was taken from him 
and given to the ambassador, and whatever furniture 
was wanting was demanded from the neighbours and 
placed therein^, A handsomt; garden was levied upon 
suiother, and added to the house. The lord high 
treasurer was commanded to feed the strangers at his 
own expense as long as they chose, and clothes and 
shawls were collected from the courtiers and servants 
of the court, for thp dressesof honour which it is the 
custom to make on such occasions. The princes and 
noblemen were enjoined to send the ambassador pre- 
sents, and a general command issued that he and his 
suite were the Shah's guests, and that, on the pain of 
the royal anger, nothing but what was agreeable 
should be said to them. 

All these attentions, one might suppose, would be 
more than sufficient to make infidels contented with 
their lot; but, oti the* contrary, when the subject of 
etiquette came to be discussed, interminable difficul- 
ties seemed to arise. The Elchi was the most in tract, 
able of mortals. First, on the subject of sitting. On 
the day of his audience of the Shah, he would not sit 
on the ground, but insisted upon having a chair ; then 
the ch^ir was to be placed so far, and no further, from 



the throne. In the second place, of shoes, he in- 
sisted upon keeping on his shoes, and not walking 
bare-footed upon the pavement ; and he would not 
even put on our red cloth stockings. Thirdly, with 
respect to hats : he announced his intention of puliihg- 
his off to make his bow to the king, although we as- 
sured him that it was an act of great indecorum to 
uncover the head. And then, on the article of dress, 
a most violent dispute arose : at first, it was intimated ' 
that proper dresses should be sent to him and his 
suite, which would cover their persons (now too in- 
decently exposed) so effectually, that they might be 
fit to be seen by the king ; but this proposal he reject- 
ed with derision. He said, that he would appear be- 
fore the Shah of Bersia in the very sanac dress he 
wore when before his own sovereign. Now, as there 
was not a Persian who had ever been at the court of 
a Frank king, nobody could say what that proper 
dress was ; and, for aught we knew, the Elchi might 
put on his bed-gown and night-cap on the. occasion* 
This was a difficulty apparently not to be overcome, 
when, turning the subject over in my own mind, I 
recollected that among the paintings in the palace of. 
Forty Pillars at Ispahan, there were portraits of Eu- 
ropeans, who, in the days of the great Shah Abbas, 
flocked to his court, and even established themselves ' 
in the city. In particular, I well recollected one in 
the very same painting in which Shah Abbas himself 
is represented, whose dress was doubtless the only 
proper costume to wear before a crowned head.. I 
immediately suggested this to my master, who men- 
tioned it to the grand vizier, who ordered that a copy 
of it should, without loss of time, be made by the? best 
artist of Ispahan, and sent to Tehran. 

So soon as it arrived it was officially presented to 
the English Elchi, with a notification that the Shah 
was satisfied to receive him in the same dress he wore 
before his own sovereign, a model of which was now 
offered to him, and to which it was expected that he 
and his suite would strictly conform. 

The shouts of laughter which the infidels set up, 


upon seeing the picture and hearing the message/are 
not to be described. They asked if we thought them 
monkeys, that they should dress themselves as such at 
our biddings atid were so disagreeably obstinate ia 
their resolution of keeping to their own mode of at- 
tire, that at length they iVere permitted to do as they 
chose. ' 

The audience of the Shah passed off much better 
than could have been expected from such rude and 
uncivilised people, and we were all astonished that 
men, so unaccustomed to the manners and forms of 
the world, should have conducted themselves on this 
difficult occasion without committing some act that 
was flagrant and improper. The king was seated on 
his throne of gold, dressed with a magnificence that 
dazzled the eyes of the strangers, and made even his 
subjects exclaim, * Jemshid ? who was he ? or Darab ? 
or Nushirvan ? that they should be mentioned in the 
same breath ?' On the right and left of the throne 
stood the princes, more beautiful than the gems which 
blazed upon their father's person. At a distance were 
placed the three viziers of the state, those deposita- 
ries Cf ^isdOuTt ^nd good council ; ana, with iheu 
ba^ks to the wally each bearing a part of th^ parapher- 
nalia of the crown, were marshalled in a row the black 
eyed pages of royalty, who might be compared to an- 
gels supporting planets from the starry firmament. In 
the midst appeared the Franks, who with their unhid- 
den legs, their coats cut to the quick, their unbearded 
chins, and unwhiskered lips, looked like birds moult- 
ing, or diseased apes, or any thing but human crea^^ 
tares, when contrasted with the ample and splendidly 
dressed persons by whom they were surrounded. And 
they stood their ground, not in the least abashed by 
the refulgent presence of th^ great king ; but their at- 
titude, manner, and expression of countenance, would 
have made us suppose they were quite as good and as 
undefiled as ourselves. 

The speech made on the occasion by the Elchi was 
characteristic of the people he represented ; that is, 
unadorned, unpolished, neither more nor less than the 


truths such as a camel-driver might use to a mule- 
teer; and had it not been for the ingenuity of the in- 
terpreter, our Shah would neither have been address- 
ed by his title of King of Kings, or of the Kebleh of 
the Universe, 

It would be taking, up the pen of eternity were I to 
attempt to describe the boundless difference that we 
discovered between the manners and sentiments of 
these people and ourselves. Some of our s^ges en- 
deavoured to account for it upon philosophical prin^ 
ciples, and attributed much to the climate of those 
dark, watery, and sunless regions in which they are 
bred and born ; *for,' said they, 'how can men living 
surrounded by water» anc^ who never feel the warmth 
of the sun, be like those who are never a day without 
enjoying the full effulgence of its rays, and do not even 
know what the sea means ?' But thq men of the law 
settled the question in a much more satisfactory man- 
ner, by saying * it was owing to their infidelity that 
thev were xloomed to be cursed even in this life ; and 
that if the ambassador, his suite, and even his whole 
nation, would submit to become Mussulmans, aad 
embrace the only true~ faith, they would immediately 
be like ourselves, their defilements would be washed 
clean, and they even might stand a chance of walking 
in the same story of the heavens as the genuine chil- 
dren of Islam would in the world to come.' 



Hajjt IS noticed by the grand vizier^ and is the means 
of gratifying' that minister's favourite passion. 

The transactions just recorded were all propitious 
to my advancement. Owing to the knowledge I was 
supposed to have acquired respecting Europe, I was 
employed in most of the affairs which concerned the 


Franks in Persia, and this had furnished me with 
many opportunities of becoming known to the grand 
vizier, and «to other ministers and men in power. 

The Mirza Firouz was not rich, and the mainte- 
nance which he received in his public character ceas- 
ing as soon as he returned to Tehran, he could no lon- 
ger afford to support me, and he -was happy to find 
that I was able to work my own way into a livelihood. 
He did not fail to praise my good qualities, and never 
lost an opportunity of extolling my abilities. Nor was 
I backward in seconding his endeavours, for I brought 
every thing and every person, infidefs as well as true 
believers, to bear upon jny ambitious views ; and des- 
tiny (without whose aid man's endeavours are of no 
avail) almost as much as whispered, that the buffet- 
ings of the world had taken their departure from me. 

The grand vizier was, without a doubt, the man in 
Persia who, from his acuteness, tact, and presence of 
mind, had the most influence over the Shah. He had 
enjoyed his high situation almost from the commence- 
ment of the present long reign, and had so inter- 
laced his office with every transacifon public as well 
private, that his councils became as necessary to the 
country as the rising and setting of the sun. 

To secure his protection became then the first ob- 
ject of my endeavours. I began by daily attending 
his levees and standing before him, and as the af- 
fairs relating to Europe now took up his principal 
attention, he, never saw me without asking ^omc 
question referring thereto. This led to my being en- 
trusted with messages to the English ambassador, the 
answers to which 1 always brought back, with some- 
thing of my own surcharged, flattering to his abilities 
as a great statesman, and thus by creating gt>od-will 
between the parties,*! myself became a favourite. 

T he leading passion of the vizier was the love of 
receiving presents. This was my kebleh in all tran- 
sactions with the Elchi, and my ingenuity was con- 
stantly exercised in endeavouring to extract some- 
thing from him which would be acceptable to the 


vizier, and serviceable to myself. That presents of 
ceretnony should be received and given was a matter 
of course^ and therefore I stood no chance of acquir* 
ing any credit on such occasions ; but I was once or 
twice accessory in making the balance strongly pre- 
ponderate in favour of my own countrymen, and the 
vizier from that time began to look upon me with a 
favourable aspect. 

A treaty was to be negotiated between the two 
countries, and my patrop was appointed one of the 
plenipotentiaries on the part of the Shah. Although 
this was matter in which one of my insignificance 
could lipt expect to be employed^ yet I did not cease 
to ply about the negotiators, like a dog at an enter- 
tainment seeking for a chance bone ; and every now 
and tlien I got so much of the scent as to miike me 
almost sure of springing some game for myself. • 

At length, one morning, after a late sitting of the 
negotiators, I was summoned to attend the grand vi- 
zier in his very anderun, a place to which none but 
his most confidential servants were ever admitted. I 
foiiud him still in bed, bolstered up with many soft 
pillows, and entirely alone. 

* Hajji,^ said he, in a familiar tone, < draw near, and 
seat yourself close to me ; I have something of im- 
portance to say.' 

I was staggered by so high an honour ; but as his 
command was law, I did not hesitate to kneel by his 

Without circumlocution^ he at once told me that 
he was placed in a situation of great diflUculty, for the 
English ambassador had made some demands impos- 
sible to be granted, ^nd declared that he must quit 
Tehran^ should they not receive our acquiescence, 

* Now,* said he, ^ the Shah has threatened if I per- 
mit the Elchi to leave Persia dissatisfied, that my 
head shall answer for ft; and at the same time 1 and 
my brother plenipotentiary are half persuaded that his 
majesty will never accede to the demands of Eng- 
land. What is to be done ?* 

* Could he not be bribed ?' said I, with all humili- 


ty, and looking as if I wouM give other meaning to 
my words. 

* He be bribed ?' said the vizier ; < in the first place, 
.whence could the bribe come \ and in the second, these 
people are such fools, that they know not what a bribe 
ifteans. Bnt, give me your ear. We are no fools, 
whatever they may be. The Elchi is very anxious to 
carry his point, and you know me well enough to be 
aware that there is nothing I cannot accomplish if 
once I take it in hand. You must go and talk to him. 
•Vou. are his friend* You may say that you are mine 
*^you may whisper many things to htm which I can- 
not- — do you understand ?' 

Upon this I kissed his hand with much fervour, 
and raising it to my htad^ I exclaimed, ^ by my head 
and by my eyes, I will go—- and Inshallah, please God, 
I will not return without a white face' 

He then dismissed me, and full of happy prospects 
I made the best of my way to the £nglish ambassa- 

I will not relate all I said and did to induce him to 
come into the grand vizier's terms ; but in two words, 
I so entirely and completely succeeded, that I re- 
turned with a heavy sack of gold, of good and solid 
cash, in my hand, as the forerunner of what was to 
follow in case all was concluded to the ambassador's 
satisfaction, and I also secured the promise of a large 
diamond ring that was forthwith to be transferred 
from the^fin^er of England to that of Persia, by way 
of an emblem of eternal friendship between the re- 
presentatives of the two states. 

The vizier was so astonished when he saw me 
place the sack before him, that he looked at me and 
then at it, some time before he spoke, and then broke 
out into all sorts of exclamations in praise of my ac- 
tivity and zeal, 

* Hajji,' said he, * you are now my property. We 
are somebody in^ Persia, and you will not long re- 
main without a cap to your head. Make an arz^ a 
representation, and its accomplishment will rest with 

Vol, II.— Y 


Many were protestations I made him of fidelity and 
redoubled zeal. I disowned any intention of asking 
for any remuneration, extept the favour of being per- 
mitted to stand before him ; and I looked so humble, 
and talked in so disinterested ^a manner, that if he 
ever could have believed a Persian, I flattered myself 
he did me. 

But he understood the value of such speeches a 
great deal better than I, and said, ^ Do not throw 
away your words at randotn. I was once with my 
head turning round and round in the world for a live- 
lihood as well as yourself, and therefore I know the 
value of the service which you have rendered. Pro- 
ceed in the p^th which now lies before you. The 
Franks are proper materials for your ingenuity. I 
give you my sanction to work upon them. They have 
plenty of gold, and are in want of us. What more 
need be said i The people of Iran are like the earth ; 
they require rishweh^f their interests must be highly 
excitedy before they will bring forth fruit. The 
Franks talk of feelings in public life of which vre are 
]g4iorant. 1 hey pretend to be actuated by no other 
principle than the good of their country. These are 
words without meaning for us ; for as soon as I die, 
or when the Shah is no more, all that we may have 
done for the welfare of Persia will most likely be de- 
stroyed ; and when his successor shall have well ruin- 
ed the people in securing himself, the whole busine^ 
of improvement and consolidation must be gone ovir 
again. Certain privileges and enjoyments are d^e 
lawful inheritance of the Shahs of Persia : let th^ 
possess them in the name of Allah ! And 
viziers also have their allotted portion : whv si 
they refuse them ? Certainly not for the good of tlie 
country, because not one individual throughout th$ 
whole empire even understands what that good meanii 
much less would he work for it. • 

My mind was greatly enlightened by this speech, 
and as the curtain which hitherto had darkened my 

• The word rnkwehy bribery , \s «\fto ^-at^ lot manure vcv ^^rlcultarei 


understanding drew up, I discovered new prospects, 
and could extend my view over a new and more di- 
versified region of pro&t. The words ^ the Franks 
are proper materials for your ingenuity* rung in my 
ears, and my wits immediately began their career of 


1 1 Of the manner in which he turned his influence to use, 
■ and how he was again noticed by the vizier, 

I GAVE myself much pains to have it well under- 
stood in the city, that I was a confidential agent of 
the grand vizier, and did my best to endeavour to 
impress upon the infidels that without my interfer- 
ence nothing could be done. The fruits of this pro- 
ceeding were soon manifest, and my services put into 
requisition in a manner highly conducive to our mu- 
tual advantage. 

One of the most remarkable features in the cha- 
racter of our English guests was their extreme desire 
t5 do us good against our inclination. Rather than 
not attempt it, they put themselves to infinite trouble, 
and even did not refrain from expense to secure their 
ends. They felt a great deal more for us than we 
did for ourselves ; and what they could discovier in 
,%% worthy of their love, we, who did not cease to re- 
vile them as unclean infidels, and as creatures doomed 
to eternal fires, we were quite at a loss to discover. 
However, I had nothing to do with their tastes ; my 
business was to study how to turn them to account^ 
and the subject in all conscience was rich, and repaid 
me well for my trouble. 

My readers will perhaps recollect that, in tbe<.first 
volume of this my narrative, I mentioned my acquain- 
tance with an infidel doctor, who, among other novel- 



ties in medicine, did his utifiost endeavours tb^intro- 
duce into Persia a new mode of ctiring the small^poxt 
Since his day, the pactice had been totally laid asid«^' 
our faculty continued to treat the disorder aisout^ 
forefathtrs had done, and the usual quantity of ch'il*' 
dren died as heretofore. A doctor was also attached* 
to the suite of the present Elchi, and he was impelled 
by more than common anxiety' to do us good. His 
zeal to renew the practice^ of the cow medicine was 
unbounded, and the quantity of mothers whom he en* 
ticed to bring their children to him astonishing. 

I, in pursuit of my own schemes, was the first to 
cry out, that this great influx of women of the true 
faith, into the dwelling of an infidel, be the object 
what it mighty was highly indecorous^ and I persuaded 
the grand vizier to place an officer of the police as 
sentry at the doctor's door to prevent the women en- 
tering. WThis very soon stopped his practibe^ and he 
was in despair. 

* But why should you grieve V said I to him; * Yoa 
get nothing for your trouble^ and the people are not 
obliged to you.' / 

^ Xyhf said he, (for he and his countrymen had learnt 
our language) < you know not what you say. This 
blessing must be spread throughout the world ; and 
if your government stops it here, it will be guilty^ 
of the blood of all thoie lives which might have been^ 

* What is that to us :• answered I : *let them die-*— 
we get nothing by their being alive.' 

* If it be profit that you require,' exclaimed the 
doctor, * I will willingly pay any sum you may d^ 
mand, rather than lose my vaccinating matter,/ which' 
must dry up and be lost if my practice ceases.' 

Here we entered into a negotiation^ and after much 
difficulty and show of apprehensiun concerning the 
risk I ran of incurring the grand vizier's displeasure^ 
it was agreed that fbr certain advantages which I 
should enjoy, the restriction should be taken from the 
doctor's house ; and I leave those who know me to 
guess the numbers of children who now flocked to the 


man of medicine. His gate was thronged, and no- 
thing more was said respecting the impropriety of 
the wonien^s attendance. > 

Another of his manias was a desire to cut up dead 
bodies. He did so languish after every corpse that 
wa^ carried by his house for a burial, that I was sur- 
prised the people did not set upon him for his impure 

* But what possible good will accrue to mankind in 
general/ said I to him, ' if you dissect a dead Mus- 
sulman V 

* It is impossible to say what good may be lost by 
my not dissecting him,' said he ; * besides, if I do 
not keep my hand in practice, I shall lose my for-, 
mer skill.' r^ - 

He then of his own accord proposed to give a large 
sum for a corpse, and avowed that he was not parti, 
cular about its quality, for that of a Jew, Christian, or 
a true believer, would be equally acceptable. 

I kept this in remembrance ; and indeed I had so 
niany opportunities afforded me of advancing the de- 
signs of the infidels, and of filling my own pockets at 
the same time, that I felt myself gradually growing 
into wealth. 

The ambassador himself was not without his de- 
sires of improving (as he called it) our state ; and I 
cannot resist relating a circumstance which took place 
between him and the grand vizier. He announced 
it as his attention to make a present to us of a certain 
produce o^ the earth, unknown in most parts of Asia, 
but much cultivated in Europe, which would not fail 
to be of incalculable benefit to the people of Persia; 
and he requested the vizier to assist him in his under- 
taking, promising shortly to send him a specimen of 
the intended gift. The vizier, whose nose was al- 
ways carried very high whenever a present was in the. 
wind, did not fail daily to discuss with me what this 
great benefit which the ambassador was about to con- 
fer might be, and his impatience to gain possession 
r became very great. - He discovered through me, that 
the English representative had brought with him a 

-A " . 

■•sr . ■ . 


store of fine broad cloth, upon which he had consrtantly 
kept a ste«idy ey/e. Finding that the projected public 
benefit Was not forthcoming, he conceived in his wis- 
dom that the Elehi would have an easy bargain, if bt 
agreed to commute it for a private gift to himself. 

Therefore, one morning at his uprising he called 
me, and said, * By the blessing of God, whatever we 
want* we have ; w6 have bread and meat— r-we have 
saltf and rice, and corn, and fruits, such as the infi- 
dels never even saw in a dream ; in short, we have 
every thing that it is possible to conceive. Then 
why should we become indebted to this infidel am« 
bassador for things that we do not want ? A happy 
thought has struck met by which he will be a gainer, 
and be saved the ti^ouble he wishes to incur : I will 
agree to receive cloth in lieu of the public benefit. 
This is so easy a transaction, that you, who, praise 
be to Allah ! are a man of sharp wit, will easily ne- 
gotiate. Go, say this to the ambassador, and with- 
out loss of time bring me the cloth. 

I forthwith presented myself, and delivered the 
message. Will it be believed that he and all his 
beardless Suite, upon hearing it, set up such shouts 
of laughter, as might be heard from the top of Dema- 
wend? * What affinity has cloth to potatoes?' said 
one. * We wish to give a cheap and comfortaMe ar- 
ticle of food to your country-men,' said another. 
« But it seems that your vizier likes to transfer the 
whole advantage of the gift from the bellies of the 
nation to his own back^' cried a third. The ambas- 
sador, however, who appeared the most reasonable 
of the party, without hesitation very politely ordered 
a piece of cloth to be delivered to me, which he re- 
questd me to present to my master with reiterated ex- 
presssions of friendship ; and with the assurance that 
it could make no alteration in the sentiments which 
he entertained for the Persian nation, who he hoped 
Ivould still receive the potatoe, as a mark of his high 
esteem and consideration. 

I returned to the vizier full of exultation at the suc- 
cess of my visit ; and this with the preceding and 


sul^eqiient iHStaDces of my abilities, so entirely won 
his affections, that I s^oon outstript every rival and 
became his principal favourite and confiiant. 


The conclusion. Misfortune seems to take leave of 
Hdjjt Baboy who returns to his native city a greater 
man than when he first left it. 

• ■ 

The negotiations with the infidels were now about 
being closed ; and it was agreed, in order to strengthen 
the bonds of frit-ndship between the two, that an em- 
bassy on the part t»f the Shah should forthwith be sent 
to the king of England. 

The experienced of each succeeding day convinced 
me of the influence I had acquired over the mind of 
the grand vizier ; and the event just recorded, was 
the mcans.of showing nle to what extent he depend- 
ed upon my services -and zeal. Ihe day after the 
treaty with Englalid was signed, he called me into 
his private apartment, and spoke to me in the follow- 
ing manneV : 

* Hajji,' said he, < give me your ear. I have things 
of importance to impart, and as 1 look upon you as 
one exclusively mine, I am sure that you will listen to 
them with becoming attention/ 

1 was proceeding to make the necessary protesta- 
tions of my entire devotedness, when he stopped me, 
and proceeded thus : 

^ * Well or ill, our business with the English ambas- 
sador is at length concluded, and the Shah has ceded 
to his wishes, of sending an ambassador to England 
in return. Now, you know th'e Persians as well as I, 
how they detest leaving their own country, and the 
difficulty I shall find in selecftng a man to devote him- 
self to this service. I have one in my eye, whom I 


wish to send above every other ; and as it is of the 
utmost importance to me that he should be removed 
for the present from Persia, and particularly from the 
presence of the Centre of the Universe, I require that ' 
you use your best endeavours to persuade his accep- 
tance of the appointment.' 

I immediately felt assured that he could mean no 
other than me, although I did not see what reason he 
could have for removing me from the presence of the 
king; and elated by so bright a prospect of sudden 
elevation to rank and honours^ I sprung towards him^, 
and seizing his hand with fervour to kiss, I exclaira- 
ed, 'The least of your slaves will always prove to be 
the most faithful of your servants : speak, and you 
will always find me ready, even to dtjgth.' 

< That is well spoken,* said he, * with great conapo- ^ 
sure, and now listen to me. The man I allude to is 
Mirza Firouz, (here my countenance felly and I 
drawled out in answer a long ' bell'i^ y^s.') * The truth 
is, I have lately discovered that his influence with the 
Shah has been considerably upon the increase. He 
possesses such great volubility of speech, and such 
vast command of language ,»— .he flatters so intensely, 
and lies so profoundly,— that the king is more amus* 
ed by him than by any other man of his court. Who 
knows how far he may go ? Besides, I am assured 
that secretly he is ray most bitter enemy, whilstopen- 
ly he affects to be my roost devoted of servants ; and 
although to this day I have never for a moment dread- 
ed the hatred or the intrigues of any. one» yet I can- 
not but own, that, in this instance, I am not without 
my fears. By sending him among the infidels, as the 
Shah's representative, I at once cut off" the source of 
my uneasiness ; and once let him be gone, I will so 
arrange matters, that even should he return success- 
ful from his mission (which, please Qod, he never 
may !) he shall never acquire the influence oyer the 
Shah which he is now attempting to establish.* 

I agreed to all he said without hesitation ; ^nd was 
losing myself in the reflection how I could possibly 


turn this piece of confidence to my own advantage^ 
when the vizier accosted me again, and said,-— 

* I have only let you into one part of my scheme : 
the second object is, that' yoUf Hajji, should accom^ 
pany the ambassador in the capacity of his first mir. 
za, or chief secretary. You, who are my friend and 
confidant, who know all my wishes, and who have 
an intimate knowledge of all that has occurred since 
the arrival of the infidels, you are precisely the man' 
to fill this situation, and you will render me the great- 
est of services by accepting my proposal.' 

However delighted I might have i^een at the pros- 
pect of becoming the chief of an embassy, yet when I 
was offered the inferior appointment^ my feelings 
were' very different. I felt that in quitting the situa- 
tion I now enjoyed, L should leave the high road topre-^ 
ferment, to get into one of itscrooked lanes* Besides^ 
I stropgly participated in the national antipathy, the 
borror of leaving one's country, and particularly 
dt^esided the idea of going to sea; and when I came 
to reflect that the country to which I was likely to be 
sent wais unknown land; — a land situated in eternal 
darkness, beyond the regions of the sun, and whose 
inhabitants were an unclean and unbelieving race, — F 
drew back from the vizier's offer with the fear of one 
who had the gulf of perdition placed ilefore him. 

The answer I made to the prime minister was by a 
string of cold assents, such as constantly hang on 
every Persian's lips, whatever may be his real feel- 
ings. I said, * By ray eyes ; I am your servant ; my 
car is in your hand ; whatever you ordain I am bound 
to obey :*— and then remained mute as a stone. 

The vizier easily discovered what passed within 
me, and said,- * If you dislike my offer, you are your 
own master, and another may easily be found to ac- 
cept it. I have your advantage in view as well as my 
own. In the first place, you should immediately pro- 
ceed to Ispahan, as the Shah's deputy, to collect a 
considerable portion of the presents intended to be 
sent by our court to the king of England, and which 
must be levied upon the inhabitants of that city. 


You would then have an opportunity of enriching 

I did not let the vizier proceed further. The temp- 
tation of returning to my native place in such a cha- 
racter, clothed with such powers, was too great to be 
withstood, and in a very altered tone 1 immediately 
exclaimed) with great earnestness — 

*> By the salt of your highnesSf i)y your death, and 
by the beard of the Shah, I am ready to go. No other 
word need be said, — I will go wherever you com- 
mand, were it even to fetch the father of all the Franks* 
from the inmost chambers of the world below.' 

< Be it so,' said the vizier ; *• and as the first step 
towards it, go at once to Mirza Firouz, flatter and as- 
sure him that he is the only man in Persia fit to be 
sent upon such an embassy, and persuade him of the 
advantages that will accrue to him. Honour, riches^ 
the good will of the Shah^ and my protection, all wiU 
abound ; and at his return, God best knows to what 
heights he may not ascend. Throw out hints that 
some other man, some rival, whom you may discover, 
has been talked of for the situation, and you will see 
how easily he will swallow the bait. Go, and Allah 
be with you !' 

I left his presence scarcely knowing whether I soar- 
ed in the heavens, or trod on the earth. * What,* 
said I to myself, < shall I then attain the summit of 
all earthly happiness, — shall my long past prognostics 
at length be fulfilled, — and shall I indeed enter my 
native place, clothed with the kalaat of honour, armed 
with the hand of power, and mounted upon the steed 
of splendour? Let those who once scorned Hajjl 
Baba, the barber's son, now beware, for they will 
have to deal with the Shah's deputy. Let those 
crowns, which once submitted to my razor, now be 
prostrate, for he who can cujt the head off is at hand. 
Ye that have deprived me of my inheritance tremble, 
for the power of making you restore it is mine.' 

Indulging in such like feelings, I am aware that I 

strutted along the, street with a swell and dignity of 

manaer, which must have svxt^tx^^^ ^Nt\'^ ^v^a ntVva 



saw me. I could think of nothing save my approach- 
iDg honours ; and my mind was riveted by the one 
idea of seeing myself mounted on a finely caparison- 
ed horse, adorned by a gold chain round its neck, and 
a silver tassel under its throat, preceded by my led 
horses, and my running footmen, and greeted by a de- 
lation from the governor of the city, to welcome my 
arrival in my native place. 

However, I proceeded to the house of Mirza Fi- 
rouz, whom I found prepared to converse on the sub- 
ject of the embassy, because, it seems, that the Eng- 
lish Elchi, had already made proposals to him to the 
same effect as those which the grand vizier intended 
to make. Although I had attached myself almost 
exclusively to the service of the prime minister, yet 
I always persevered in my friendship with the intend- 
ed ambassador, who was very glad to hear that [ was 
to accompany him. We talked long upon our fu- 
ture plans, as well as upon our past adventures, and 
when, roaring with laughter, he asked whether I 
should now endeavour to regain possession of my 
faithless Shekerleb, I slipped away, tiot over-pleased 
to have that event of my life recalled to my recollec- 

The next day, the Shah announced at the public au- 
dience his intention of sending Mirza Firouz to Eng- 
land as his representative, and the grand vizier or- 
dered me to be in readiness to proceed to Ispahan, as 
soon as the proper firmans necessary to arm me with 
power should be prepared. 

I will not tire the reader with a description of the 
numerous details of my preparatives for this expedi- 
tion. He would sicken and I should blush at my van- 
ity. It is sufficient to say that 1 travelled to Ispahan 
with all the parade of a man of consequence ; and that 
I entered my native city with feelings that none but a 
Persian, bred and born in the cravings of ambition, 
can understand. I found myself at the summit of 
what, in my eyes, was perfect human bliss. Misfor- 
tune seemed to have taken its leavCf and every thing 
informed me that a new chapter In iVvt Vi^oV c^^ tcvvj 


life was about to open. Haj ji Baba^ the barber-s son, 
entered his native place, as Mirza Haj ji Baba, the 
Shah's deputy. Need 1 say naore ? 

And here, gentle Reader ! the humble translator 
of the Adventures of Haj ji Baba prestimes to address 
you, and profiting of the hint afforded him by the 
Persian story-tellers, stops his narrative, makes his 
bow, and says, ^ Give me encouragement, and I will 
tell you more. You shall be informed how Hajji 
Baba accompanied a great ambassador to England, of 
their adventures by sea and land, of all he saw, atid 
all he remarked, and of what happened to him on his 
return to Persia.' But he begs to add, should he find, 
like Hajji*s friend the third Deryish, he has not yet 
acquired the art of leading on the attention of the cu- 
rious, he will never venture to appear again before 
the public until he has gained the necessary expe- 
rience to ensure success. And so he very humbly 
takes his leave*