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NAMOUNA.

By K. MEADOWS.

66

Her glance
Spoke something, past all mortal pleasures,
As, in a kind of holy trance,
She hung above those fragrant treasures,
Bending to drink their balmy airs,
As if she mix'd her soul with theirs."

The Light of the Haram, p. 358.

NOURMAHAL ASLEEP.

By T. P. STEPHANOFF.

“ No sooner was the flowery crown

Placed on her head, than sleep came down,
Gently as nights of summer fall,
Upon the lids of NourmaHAL."

The Light of the Haram, p. 362.

L ALLA ROOK H.

In the eleventh year of the reign of Aurungzebe, Abdalla, King of the Lesser Bucharia, a lineal descendant from the Great Zingis, having abdicated the throne in favour of his son, set out on a pilgrimage to the Shrine of the Prophet; and, passing into India through the delightful valley of Cashmere, rested for a short time at Delhi on his way. He was entertained by Aurungzebe in a style of magnificent hospitality, worthy alike of the visiter and the host, and was afterwards escorted with the same splendour to Surat, where he embarked for Arabia.* During the stay of the Royal Pilgrim at Delhi, a marriage was agreed upon between the Prince, his son, and the youngest

These particulars of the visit of the King of Bucharia to Aurungzebe are found in Dow's History of Hindostan, vol. iii. p. 392.

B В

daughter of the emperor, LALLA Rookh*;- a Princess described by the poets of her time as more beautiful than Leila f, Shirine ț, Dewildés, or any of those heroines whose names and loves embellish the songs of Persia and Hindostan. It was intended that the nuptials should be celebrated at Cashmere; where the young King, as soon as the cares of empire would permit, was to meet, for the first time, his lovely bride, and, after a few months' repose in that enchanting valley, conduct her over the snowy hills into Bucharia.

The day of LALLA Rooki's departure from Delhi was as splendid as sunshine and pageantry could make it. The bazaars and baths were all covered with the

richest tapestry; hundreds of gilded barges upon the Jumna floated with their banners shining in the water ;

*

Tulip cheek. † The mistress of Mejnoun, upon whose story so many Romances in all the languages of the East are founded.

# For the loves of this celebrated beauty with Khosrou and with Ferhad, see D'Herbelot, Gibbon, Oriental Collections, &c.

§ “ The history of the loves of Dewildé and Chizer, the son of the Emperor Alla, is written in an elegant poem,

the noble Chusero." Ferishta.

while through the streets groups of beautiful children went strewing the most delicious flowers around, as in that Persian festival called the Scattering of the Roses * ; till every part of the city was as fragrant as if a caravan of musk from Khoten had passed through it. The Princess, having taken leave of her kind father, who at parting hung a cornelian of Yemen round her

neck, on which was inscribed a verse from the Koran,

and having sent a considerable present to the Fakirs, who kept up the Perpetual Lamp in her sister's tomb, meekly ascended the palankeen prepared for her; and, while Aurungzebe stood to take a last look from his balcony, the procession moved slowly on the road to Lahore.

Seldom had the Eastern world seen a cavalcade so

superb. From the gardens in the suburbs to the Imperial palace, it was one unbroken line of splendour. The gallant appearance of the Rajahs and Mogul Lords, distinguished by those insignia of the Emperor's favour*, the feathers of the egret of Cashmere in their turbans, and the small silver-rimmed kettledrums at the bows of their saddles; the costly armour of their cavaliers, who vied, on this occasion, with the guards of the great Keder Khan f, in the brightness of their silver battle-axes and the massiness of their maces of gold; the glittering of the gilt pine-apples f on the tops of the

* Gul Reazee.

*“ One mark of honour or knighthood bestowed by the Emperor is the permission to wear a small kettledrum at the bows of their saddles, which at first was invented for the training of hawks, and to call them to the lure, and is worn in the field by all sportsmen to that end."— Fryer's Travels.

“ Those on whom the King has conferred the privilege must wear an ornament of jewels on the right side of the turban, surmounted by a high plume of the feathers of a kind of egret. This bird is found only in Cashmere, and the feathers are carefully collected for the King, who bestows them on his nobles.” Elphinstone's Account of Caubul.

† “ Khedar Khan, the Khakan, or King of Turquestan, beyond the Gihon (at the end of the eleventh century), whenever he appeared abroad, was preceded by seven hundred horsemen with silver battle-axes, and was followed by an equal number bearing maces of gold. He was a great patron of poetry, and it was he who used to preside at public exercises of genius, with four basins of gold and silver by him to distribute among the poets who excelled.” - Richardson's Dissertation prefixed to his Dictionary.

“ The kubdeh, a large golden knob, generally in the shape of a pine-apple, on the top of the canopy over the litter or palanquin." - Scott's Notes on the Bahardanush.

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