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I sought my heart, that I might ask of patience the force to sustain, for a moment, rigours of my beloved; but I neither found my heart nor patience. The sunshine of our fond intercourse was gone; darkness had overshadowed the paths of love, and I stopped amazed and confounded; but a single instant had scarce elapsed when I saw her again a sovereign mistress, and my heart her captive.

These verses also are by the same person:

Those whom I love departed, and how copious were the tears of blood which they then let loose (from our eyes); and how many hearts did they bring back into bondage! Blame me not if grief for their absence make me reject the controul of reason; what I have just said will suffice for my excuse.

For them my heart is in affliction; for them I shed tears of blood; for them I am con- 358 sumed with flames; for them my heart is broken. At their door we are a crowd of suitors; our hearts melting away with apprehension; they have left us scarcely a breath of life; O that they saw our state. Kindness or aversion, sleep or waking, despair or hope, patience or restlessness,-these exist for us no longer. O that they had remained even after they had broken the ties of friendship and treated me with cruelty! Were the love I bear them to deprive me of existence, the perfume of that love would yet remain! I am like the taper, useful to those around it, but consuming itself away.

I never went to meet thee, Laila! without feeling as if the earth were folded up from under me (so rapid was my pace); but when my resolution turned me from thy door, I stumbled over the skirts of my garment.

Most of his poetry is in the same style. He was born in the month of Shaabân, A. H. 465 (April-May, A. D. 1073); he died at Mosul in the month of the first Rabi, A. H. 511 (July, A. D. 1117), and was interred in the sepulchral chapel of the Shahrozûri family. The kâtib Imâd ad-din says in his Kharida, where he gives a notice on al-Murtada: "As-Samâni mentions having heard "that the kâdi Abû Muhammad,"-meaning al-Murtada,-" died some time "later than the year 520."

(1) All the ideas of the kasida are borrowed from pastoral life in the following piece they have a mystic import besides, as shall be here indicated. The light of their fire: the presence of the Divinity manifested to the saints. The night: moral darkness. The camel-driver: the preacher. The guide: the divine. The beloved: God. Laila: the name of the beloved, God. Desire: the love of God. Passion: The anxious wish to enjoy the divine Presence. The time-worn ruins: the world, the seat of desolation in the eyes of the devout, inasmuch as the presence of the Divinity is not always felt in it. The wounded, the captive, and the victim: the vanquished by the love of God. From us a guest never departeth more: till his soul is released by death. The people: the devout, the Sufi brethren. Wine the delight caused by the perception of God's preStations: degrees of exaltation attained by the soul through the means of spiritual exercises and contemplation. People of desire: another name for the lovers of the Divinity. The warmth of the fire: the


beneficial influence of God's presence. The morning: the entrance of the novice into the Sufi life after abandoning the world, which is the seat of darkness. The gardens: paradise. The banner of fulfilment: the sign that the novice has become an adept and fulfilled all the necessary duties of spiritual life. The chiefs, liteterally, the people of the truths: so called because they have obtained a clear insight into the spiritual world, which is the abode of truth as this earth is the abode of illusion. To charge: literally, to canter round and round the field of battle and challenge the enemy; it then signifies, to turn round as the dervishes do. The enemy: the world and its passions. The abyss: the Divine nature. Thrown back among the ruins: recovering from an ecstasy of divine love and finding oneself in the world. One whom you well know the prophet Moses. The brand: see Koran, surat 27, verse 7; Exod. III. (2) In the Arabic text, for a read .

(3) The autograph alone has, not

as the other MSS.; the first is certainly the

right reading. Imâd ad-Din has a notice on this person in the Kharida, the sum of which is: The emir Majd al-Arab Muzaffar ad-Dawlat Abû Farâs Ali Ibn Muhammad Ibn Ghâlib al-Aâmiri was the wonder of the age for his poetic talent, and his verses were proverbially said to be as fine as those of his namesake Abû Farâs (see Ibn Khallikan's Biograph. Dict. vol. I. page 366). He was born in the province of Irak and went to Ispahân, A. H. 537 (A. D. 1142-3), where he pronounced his eulogistic kasidas and acquired great reputation. The katib saw him for the last time at Mosul, A. H. 570.- (Kharida MS. No 1447, fol 27, where some long extracts from his poetry are given.)

. مذك عداها but the sense certainly requires ; في علاها The autograph has (5)


Abû Saad Abd Allah Ibn Abi 's-Sari Muhammad Ibn Hibat Allah Ibn Mutahhar Ibn Ali Ibn Abi Usrûn Ibn Abi 's-Sari at-Tamimi, surnamed first alHadithi and then al-Mausili (native of Mosul), entitled also Sharaf [ad-din (nobleness of religion), was a doctor of the Shafite sect, and one of the first men of the age by his talents and his learning as a jurisconsult. His reputation spread to distant countries and his influence was most extensive. In his youth he studied the ten readings (1) of the koran under Abû 'l-Ghanâim as-Sulami as-Sarûji, al-Bâri Abu Abd Allah Ibn ad-Dabbâs (see vol. I. page 459), Abu Bakr al-Mazrafi (2), and other masters. He commenced learning jurisprudence under the kâdi al-Murtada Ibn as-Shahrozûri (vol. II. p. 29), and Abû Abd Allah al-Husain, Ibn Khamis al-Mausili (see vol. I. page 422); he had afterwards, when in Baghdad, Asaad al-Mihani (vol. I. p. 189) for preceptor in that science. He studied dogmatic theology under Ibn Barhân al-Usûli (vol. I. p. 80), and learned there

also dialectics. From Baghdad he proceeded to Wâsit and read the Koran under the tuition of Abû Ali 'l-Fâriki (vol. I. p. 376), the kâdi of that city, by whom he was instructed also in the Fawaid al-Muhaddab. In the year 523 (A.D. 1129) he himself gave public lessons at Mosul, after which he resided for some time at Sinjâr whence he proceeded to Aleppo, A. H. 545: from that he removed to Damascus, when Nûr ad-din Mahmûd Ibn Zinki got possession of that city in the month of Safar, A. H. 549 (April-May, A. D. 1154). He then opened a class in the western corner of the great mosque, and was appointed administrator of the endowments (wakfs) possessed by the mosques. He then returned to Aleppo, where he settled. A great number of works were composed by him to elucidate the doctrines of the sect to which he belonged; of these may be mentioned the Safwat al-Mazhab (quintessence of the Shafte doctrines), extracted from the (Imâm al-Haramain's) Nihâyat al-Matlab, in seven volumes; the Kitâb al-Intisar (vindication of the Shafites), in four volumes; the Kitâb alMurshid (the guide, a work on the secondary points of law), in two volumes; and the Kitâb az-Zaria fi Marafat as-Sharia (means of acquiring a knowledge of the law). He composed also the Tafsir (explanation), a work forming four volumes treating of the points in which his sect differs from the others; the Mâkhaz anNazar (point of view); a short treatise on the dividing of inherited property; and a work entitled al-Irshad al-Mughrib fi Nusrati 'l-Mazhab (plain directions for the defence of the Shafite sect); this last however he did not complete, as it was stolen from him with other property at Aleppo. The number of students who followed his lessons and profited by his tuition was very great. His merit having at length rendered him conspicuous, he obtained the esteem and favour of Nûr ad-din, lord of Syria, who erected colleges in Aleppo, Emessa, Hamât, 359 Baalbek, and other cities, for the express purpose of having him to teach in these places. (At different periods) he filled the post of kâdi at Sinjâr, Nisibîn, Harrân, and elsewhere in Diâr Bakr; he then returned to Damascus, A. H. 570 (A. D. 1174-5), and three years afterwards, he was appointed to fill the same functions in that city when the kâdi Diâ ad-dîn as-Shahrozûri gave in his resignation; an act of which I shall state the motive in the life of Kamâl ad-din Muhammad as-Shahrozûri. Ten years before his death he lost his sight, but continued to hold his office, the duties of which were discharged by his son and deputy, Muhi ad-din Muhammad. At that time, he composed a short treatise



to prove that the place of kâdi could be lawfully held by a blind man; a point in opposition with the doctrine of as-Shâfi on the subject: I have read, it is true, in the Kitâb az-Zawaid, a work composed by Abû 'l-Hasan al-Imrâni (3), the author of the Kitâb al-Bayân, that, in one point of view, it is lawful; this is, however, quite an extraordinary opinion, and I never found it advanced in any other work but his. (Speaking of this subject I must mention that) a letter fell into my hands, addressed to al-Kâdi 'l-Fâdil at Cairo from the sultan Salah ad-din at Damascus; it was wholly in that prince's handwriting and, among other passages, it contained one relative to Sharaf ad-din's blindness and his opinion that the post of kâdi could be lawfully filled by a blind man, although all the other jurisconsults declared the contrary-"you will therefore," says the writer, "have an interview with the shaikh Abû 't-Tâhir Ibn Aûf al-Iskan

darâni, and ask him what are the traditions on this subject, and if they au"thorise it or not."-But after all, there can be no doubt of his eminent merit. The hâfiz Ibn Asâkir mentions him in the History of Damascus, and the kâtib Imâd ad-din makes his eulogium in the Kharida and pronounces him the last of the muftis he gives also some verses composed by him. The two which follow were recited to me by one of our shaikhs, with the remark that he had heard Ibn Abi Usrûn repeat them very often, but that he did not know if they were his own or not; they are given, however, as that doctor's by the katib in the Kharida:

I hope for a lengthened life; and yet every hour the dead pass by me, as their biers are borne rapidly along. Am I not as they, except that I must pass a few more sad nights to complete the time of my existence?

The following lines also are quoted as his in the same work :

I always hope to meet my beloved, and yet I know full well that I must quit her shortly after. Mounted on the steeds of Mortality, we rush, as if with emulation, towards the goal of death. O that we both might expire together! neither of us then would taste

the bitter loss of the other.

O thou who askest me how I have been since thy departure! God preserve thee from what my heart has felt since our separation. Tears of grief swore never to cease flowing from my eyes, and sleep swore never to visit them till I met thee again.

The time which has passed is gone for ever, and that which is to come exists not. Thy life is only the present moment; the days of man form two sums, one increasing, the other diminishing.

Ibn Abi Usrùn was born at Mosul on Monday, the 22nd of the first Rabi, A. H. 492 (February, A. D. 1099); he died at Damascus on the eve of Tuesday, 560 the 14th of Ramadàn, A. H. 585 (October, A. D. 1189). He was buried in the madrasa which bears his name and which he himself had founded within that city: I have often visited his tomb. On his death (one of his On his death (one of his female relatives) received a letter of condolence from al-Kâdi 'l-Fàdil, in reply to one wherein she announced to him this event: his participation in her grief was expressed in the following terms: "I have received the letter of the honourable lady for whose "welfare may God provide! may He preserve her for the happiness of her


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family; may He smooth for her the path leading to spiritual welfare, and "make her words and actions proceed from the wish to gain his favour." It contained also this passage: "I shall only add-and what I mention is a dimi"nution in the strength of Islamism, and a breach in the frame of human society, so great as nearly to cause its ruin!-I mean that which God decreed "concerning the death of the imâm Sharâf ad-din Ibn Abi Usrûn, may the "divine mercy be upon him!-the loss sustained in him by the world at large; "the affliction of the pious-and the joy of the foes to religion. For he was a "land-mark set up in the tracts of science, and he counted among the last rem"nants of a holy race now passed away. And God knoweth my grief for his death, my desolation in the world now deprived of the blessing of his presence, and my sadness in losing the abundant merits of his charitable pray"ers."-Hadithi means belonging to the Haditha of Mosul, a village on the east bank of the Tigris near (the mouth of) the Upper Zâb. It must not be confounded with another place of the same name, the Haditha of an-Nûra, which is a fortress on an island in the Euphrates, at some parasangs' distance from alAnbar. The former lies at the most eastern extremity of the territory called the Sawâld, and is the one meant by the jurisconsults when they say, in their books: "The land of Sawâd extends in longitude from the Haditha of Mosul to Abbâdân, and in latitude from al-Kàdisiya to Hulwân."


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(1) There are seven authorised readings of the Koran, named after seven great doctors who first taught them and whose lives are given by Ibn Khallikân; three more readings were afterwards admitted, and Yakub Ibn Ishak al-Hadrami, the author of one of them, is considered as the eighth reader. I have not yet been able to discover the names of the two others.

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