Facsimile and Transcript
a certain space, we arrived at the foot of hill. I saw a hole in the side of it of such dimensions that the serpent could enter with facility. When he arrived at the mouth of the den, he let me down from his back and made a sign to go in.
“Fairly and softly,” thought I, “this hole no doubt is your den, but why do you particularly wish me to visit it?”
“However,” I further thought, “in God's name let me enter in!”
I went on, but nothing earthly was visible. I presently turned on my heel and met my friend at the mouth of the den. He made me a sign as much as to say “have the goodness to walk back again,” and kept biting his lips most terribly with his teeth. I interpreted that that was to denote “kill,” or some thing of the kind at least.
“Doubtless,” thought I, “this must be some monster’s mansion; and what a frightful brute must it be that a beast like you is afraid of the very thought of it!” This put me in a cold shiver. “If such a portentous monster as you be frightened, the lord have mercy on my luckless soul!” I was terrified and
out of my seven senses, when the monster saw that I was afraid and would not enter into the den again. He came near and, setting his monstrous muzzle to the mouth of the den, raised such a dreadful yell that hill, wild, and wilderness shook at the sound. At that instant a yellow scorpion of two length darted out and assailed the snake. The snake, for all his monstrous ire, was frightened and fled, without once looking behind him, to distance of a whole league. He stopped there.
I, however, plucked up my courage, and, pulling and arrow out of my quiver, struck the scorpion and killed him on the spot.
I presently saw a great light near me and perceived that it was a lustre formed of precious stones each of which was worth a whole kingdom. The serpent now made me a sign to carry off as many of them as I could. I took a goodly number and saw that an immense treasure of them was there deposited. Then the serpent took me up and placed me on his neck and came out of the den.
When I came to the door of den, I saw a sage of a luminous aspect standing. I made him a salam. He returned my salutation,
saying, “You are very welcome here, Roshen Zemir, who is of my acquaintance in the world.
“Can this be?” thought I, quite surprised. “Who can it be that knows my name so well?”
“Most venerable father,” said I, “if I may be allowed to enquire, how come you to know my name?”
“That,” said he, “I know by God’s good favour. This scorpion which you have killed has yet another companion which is at present sitting on her eggs and will come forth at the end of six months. It is therefore absolutely necessary for you to return hither at the end of that period. So take care that you do not forget, for if you do, be assured that wherever you are, this serpent will find you out and devour you. For look you—this female scorpion has killed the companion of the snake and forcibly possessed itself of her residence. Two young snakes have, however, escaped and are concealed by my care. If it please God, at your return I will introduce them to you. That serpent has every day made signs to me to kill the scorpion, but I told it that its death was at my
door. A young man called Roshen Zemir will arrive here and kill it to content you.”
“Most venerable sage,” said I, “may it please you to let me know your name?
“That you will learn at your return,” said he, “for it is written above that you have two or three more pieces of good service to perform. You may now take your departure and God be your guide. But take care not to forget that you have to return here again.”
The serpent stood stock still till the ancient sage had finished his oration, but as soon as he had bid me farewell, he began to move off with me mounted on his shoulders. We had not travelled long before the tents of the caravan began to appear and it fortunately happened to be the very caravan I had left.
When I came near, everybody was in a dreadful alarm, crying, “there comes the monster again! Lord help us!” I sang lustily out to everyone to be cheery, for he would do them no harm. He then let me down from his neck and immediately set out for his own place of residence. I joined the caravan and,
having gone to the chief, to the utter astonishment of everybody related what had befallen me.
“God’s mercy be on your head,” said all of them, “you have performed a wonderful feat!”
“Rosher Zemir,” said the chief of the caravan, “nobody ever has or will perform the like, except the young hers Diu Faz, and he was a man of mettle who could perform a notable feat and demonstrate his loyalty purely.”
“What was that feat?” asked your humble servant. The chief of the caravan answered,
The Story of the Diu Faz, or Kill-Devil
The relators of marvelous stories mention that there lived once on a time a young man of Ormuswhose name was Diu Faz. He set out for India in order to push his fortune and when he arrived in that country he first and foremost paid his respects to the Emperor. The Emperor of India asked who he was, whence he came, and what were his intentions.
“King of the world, my name
is Diu Foz,” answered he, “I am come from the city of Ormus to enter into your service, and am ready to perform whatever task you may please to impose on me.
“What pay will content you?” asked the emperor.
“Every day,” answered Diu Faz, “you must pay me a thousand pieces of silver [500 Rupees]. I will not serve you for farthing less.
“No,” thought the Emperor, “he shall not receive such a pay for so much as a single day till we can see what kind of service he can perform, for doubtless he will turn out to be only a high flyer.”
The Emperor answered him neither good nor bad, but entered his palace and mentioned the circumstance to the queen. The daughter of the Emperor was sitting in the presence and said
“By all means, engage this person for one day or another. He may do you good service. He must certainly be a man of ability, to make such demand” When the Emperor heard his daughter talk thus, he flew into a violent passion.
“Worthless wretch,” said he, “you durst
not utter such words in my presence, unless you had fallen in love with him yourself! If this man should enter into my service, everyone would say that the Emperor had engaged him to please his daughter, and by this my name would be defamed.”
“God forbid,” said the princess when she heard such a speech from her father, “that ever your daughter should waste a single thought on a person of his description, who has never seen the face of man excepting that of a relation. But of you, speak of your real opinion. Nothing remains for me but regret.
The Emperor was still more enraged at this observation and said to the queen, “she shall not remain in the palace, for I cannot bear the sight of her.”
“If that is the case,” said the queen, “in God’s name send her where you please and give her to whom you will.” “My own fate shall befall me and if you cast me off; God will not reject me,” said the princess. “I will give you to this very fellow,”
said the Emperor .
“According to your majesty’s pleasure,” said the princess.
The Emperor immediately ordered the eunuchs of the seraglioto take his daughter and carry her to the young man. They did according to their orders, saying
“Receive the maiden which the Emperor presents to you. God’s favour and the Emperor’s forgiveness be up to you, but get out of the kingdom instantly.”
The young man and the princess, equally amazed and concerned, set forward on their journey. The princess, casting back a look on her father’s palace,
“Father,” said she, “you have in this unkind manner expelled me from the city. It is we shall now see what favour God has in store for me.” So saying she set forward.
When Diu Faz and the princess had arrived without the city, they walked on for some furlongs, until they came to a place where two roads met. They were quite as a loss to know whither either of them led. Looking round, they observed a stone seat and certain characters inscribed on the stone. On examining
the characters attentively, they saw that the meaning was,
“Whoever arrives here and is ignorant of the road, let him know that the road on the right hand is without danger and without difficulty, but that on the left is full of difficulty and danger.”
When Diu Faz had read the inscription, he looked to the daughter of the Emperor, as much as to say, “what would you have me do?”
“Why do you ask me such a question?” said the fair princess, “ask your own courage. I will follow you wherever your heart leads you. Go on.”
“Hap what may,” said Diu Faz, “God be on my guard.” He proceeded on the left-hand road and the lady followed on close behind him.
For three days and three nights they saw no appearance of danger. On the fourth day an immense desert expanded before them, devoid of house and whole without wells and without water, in which two tremendous elephants of prodigious size appeared. As soon as they smelled the scent of man, they attacked them with the utmost fury.
“Fair lady, what say you now to the matter?” inquired Diu Faz. The lady answered,
“For what do you carry that bow and arrow? For I wonder if you can hit your mark.”
He immediately clapped his hand on his quiver and, laying hold of an arrow, exclaimed—
“The champion when takes his stand
With bow and quiver in his hand
The might of lions can deride
Or elephants inflamed with pride”
The lady answered in the same strain—
“Such as the youth for me has charms
The coward ne’er shall reach my arms”
“Love-frenzied force impels the blow
Instant lies low” 22
Upon the instant the elephants approached the young warrior, he drew the arrow home even to his ear and struck it up to the feather and notch in the elephant’s eye. Seizing another arrow, he instantly struck it so forcibly through the elephant’s other eye, that, with a dreadful yell, it fell on the ground and expired. The second elephant advanced still more furiously, and was slain as quickly as the first. He then drew his scimitar and cut off both their trunks. The Emperor’s daughter was greatly delighted with
Observing the bodies a little more carefully, they perceived a scar on each of their foreheads. “What can this be?” said they, and pulling out a knife, cut open the scars,and perceived that there was a jewelin each of them, brilliant as the rays of the sun.
They praised God for so lucky a chance and proceeded on their way till they arrived at a vast and populous city with minarets, marquis,and lofty domes raised up to the heavens in every quarter. Diu Faz covered the lady with a veil and conducted her to the caravansera. Towards the close of the day, Diu Faz, having taken his bow and arrows in his hand, came out of the caravansera and saw the Emperor’s vizier marching along with great pomp and tumult. He inquired who it was and was informed that it was the Emperor’s vizier going to counsel. He approached and saluted him.
”What do you want?” said the Vizier, “And whence do you come?”
“I am a nature of Ormus,” said Diu Faz, “And am now come from India.”
“How did you contrive to reach this country?” said the Vizier.
“Blessed be God,” answered the young warrior, “I reached it through his favor.”
“Did you meet with no dangerous adventure?”
asked the vizier.
Diu Faz answered, “I met with nothing the world except two furious elephants on my road which by God’s assistance I killed.”
When the Vizier heard that he was amazed and said, “Killed both the elephants did you say? Where is the man who could kill two such prodigious animals?”
”That man am I by God’s favor,”said Diu Faz.
“How can you prove your words to be true?” said the Vizier.
“What proof would you have?” said Diu Faz.
“Was there anything in their foreheads?” said the Vizier.
“Whatever there was I have brought it along with me,” said he.
“Seeing is believing,“ replied the Vizier.
“It is at my lodging,” replied Diu Faz.
The vizier accompanied him to the door of the caravansera. Diu Faz went in and having brought out the precious stones, showed him. Then the vizier was convinced and said, “God’s mercy rest on your head nobody could have slain them but yourself. They have long blocked up that road and a considerable period has now elapsed since the precious stones were inserted in their forehead and they were turned loose. Come
along with me that I may present you to the sunlike presence of the Emperor.”
Having caused Diu Faz to mount his own horse, he conducted him to the Emperor’s Court. Diu Faz saluted him with due reverence.
“Who is young man?” said the Emperor, and the Vizir related the circumstances of his story. The Emperor praised him highly and presented him the jewels he had brought.
“But who,” said he, “was your companion on this journey?”
“The Indian emperor’s daughter,” said he.
“What connection has she with you?” asked the Prince then.
Diu Faz related to him the whole story. The Emperor greatly blamed the father of the princess and invited Diu Faz to enter into his service.
“That is the very thing which your servant desires,” answered he.
“But what pay do you demand?” said the Emperor.
“A thousand pieces of silver per day,” answered the warrior.
The emperor agreed to the condition.
“But,” said Diu Faz, “this lady is still an unblemished virgin. I have rigorously refrained from all connection with her until I should have an opportunity of celebrating our marriage.”
The Shah instantly
ordered the treasure to deburse on the spot. The sun was requisite for the marriage and so were the constellations of valour and beauty (Jupiter and the Moon) united in a princely and splendid style. Afterwards, the Shah ordered him to send his spouse to visit the royal haram.
“In order,” said he, “that she may form acquaintance with the ladies of my family.”
“That I will with all my heart,” said Diu Faz and as soon as he came home he mentioned the King’s proposal to his lady. The princess however did not so easily assent to it. “What have I to do with the with the Kings family?” said she, “Once for all that will never do.”
When Diu Faz met the king, “Lay may you live majesty,” said he, “I have delivered your message but the lady will not assent to it. Pray excuse but that she is the daughter of an Emperor.
The ladies of the Sultan, however went one day to visit the princess and were received in the politest style. They were entertained with imperial Magnificence and the whole day was devoted to the entertainment so that the Night was arrayed in her sable vestments before the family of the Emperor
returned to the palace full of the praises of the princess. Diu Faz increased more and more in the favour of the Emperor and in the mean time a son was born unto him by the princess. When the Emperor was informed of this event to distinguish him still more by his royal munificence, he was gratified with his conduct. It happened one day that the king went a hunting accompanied by Diu Faz when a deer startled before him.
The king said, “Now show your archery and nail the hinder foot of this deer to his neck.”
Diu Faz drew his arrow in the name of God and as the deer was scratching his ear with his hinder foot, he left fly and nailed both foot and ear to his neck. The deer gave a struggle and fell on the ground. The Shah was delighted to perceive the accuracy with which his order was executed and applauded his archery to the skies. As they returned to the city there was a gull of wind accompanied with some drops of rain.
A gentle fanning gale of Spring
Scarce mid the flowers was heard to sing
A gentle shower scarce heard to fall
Spread o’er the sun a shadowy pall
While purpling rose leaves burst to view
Wherever the folded rose bud grew
It happened that the Shah entered his garden and caused splendid carpets to be spread. When having seated himself on his throne, the ruby coloured wine was jovially circulated before him. The voice of heart alluring music resounded and Diu Faz, particularly, was ordered to seat himself in the presence and join in the society when the sun veiled his imperial countenance and the Moon appeared in the East.
When Rumsbright Monarch from the Hindus flies
And dark the throne of heavenly Jemshid lies,
The Mighty former mid the vault of blue
Innumerous forms of beauty call to view
But two fair sisters of celestial line
He bids o’er all their charms superior shine
The golden rose adorns the eldests veil
The silver suits the younger’s features pale
Khowers Turk Khowers Turk for sakes the eastern height
Dark turbaned by the amber look of night
Now seven fair orbs in radiant circles set
Well round the proud celestial minaret
And from the starry tapers of the sky
The lamp of night relumes her beams on high 23
At the time of sunset, the Shah of the sun-like countenance dissolved the festive party, returned to the palace, and everyone went to his own abode. The Shah was in a tranquil slumber when a tempest and whirlwind arose and the thunder began to resound dreadfully, and the face of the earth was still and black. After some time, the violence of the wind and rain abated and the voice of the thunder ceased. When the Shah, being awake, suddenly heard a voice of lamentation he listened to the voice which seemed evidently to proceed from a soul in deep distress. The Shah arose and entered the hall of audience where he found Diu Faz. He instantly laid hold of his hand and conducted him to his own chamber.
“Listen,” said he, “What voice is that which I heard?”
Diu Faz answered, “It is the same voice which I have heard these several nights but I was unwilling to attend to it without your permission. If
,however, it be your Majesty’s pleasure, I will instantly examine into its cause.”
“I think you had better,” said the Shah and Diu Faz immediately proceeded in quest of that voice.
When he arrived at the gate of the city, he perceived that the cry came from without and having opened the gates, he went out. The Shah, however, sent a person after him to observe his actions at a distance. When Diu Faz beheld a person following him, he placed an arrow in his bow and asked sternly who was there.
“Do not shoot,” said the person, “the Shah sent me to bring intelligence of you,”
Both of them then proceeded in quest of the voice till they reached a large walled tomb from which it issued and where there was a lamp burning. The young warrior of Ormus left the king’s messenger without and entered alone. He saw an ancient man there seated and a lamp burning before him, while he was sharpening a couple of daggers on a stone. Observing him more attentively, he perceived such a countenance
as he had never beheld. His size was that of a hill and his head like a vaulted dome. His mouth was a perfect cavern, his stature that of a steeple, his arm like tall poplar, his nose like the eastern mound of a fort, his fore-teeth like anvils, his lips like the rim of an immense black vat, and his eyes like basons of blood. It was a form of this portentous kind that sat sharpening the daggers, which he placed on the ground and then uttered a deep sigh.
When his eye fell on Diu Faz, he demanded, “Who are you and what brings you here?”
“I am came,” said Diu Faz, “to enquire into the cause of your sorrow.”
The ancient man said, “It is now some time since I have been here. The king of this land is pious and for some nights, I have lamented over his fate, for such a prince the world will never see again.”
When Diu Faz heard this declaration from the form that resembled a blood drinking Diu more than a man, he expired a sigh of anguish from his heart and liver and asked, “O ancient man is there no way of detaining the departing
life of the king?”
The sanguinary monster replied, “There is no way to accomplish it but one. If Diu Faz, the king’s favourite, will deliver to me his son to kill and drink his blood as a ransom for the blood of the king, the king’s life will be lengthened.”
Diu Faz uttered a profound sigh but the bread and salt of his prince prevailed and he thought, “If the princess and I live, God may give us another son, but when will we see so good a king?”
Horrified and confounded, he took the road to his house. The king’s messenger also heard what passed and returned to the city. Diu Faz came to his house and awoke the princess who was sleeping with her child in her arms.
“Lady,” said he, “Take your heart off this child, he is devoted to death for a pious purpose.”
The princess wailed and wept and besought her husband not to repeat so dreadful a speech. He related to her the whole story, adding “Be patient for it is for a pious purpose that he must die. He that gave us this will give us another. Besides, the action will be