The story of Shamsunnihar, the beloved of Prince Abul Hasan and Haroon Rashid
During the reign of Caliph Harun Rashid, there lived a very wealthy and cultured merchant in Baghdad. He was not only beautiful physically, he was more beautiful mentally. The Amir-Umrah of there respected him very much. Even in the people of the Caliph’s residence, he was trusted and the high servants of the palace used to take clothes and ornaments from him. Being a beneficiary of the Caliph, all the distinguished citizens were his customers and his business flourished. Abul Hasan, the son of an emir named Baka, was especially his friend and used to sit at his shop for two-three hours every day. Baka Faras was the person of the last dynasty of the country, hence Abul Hasan was also called as Shahzada.
Abul Hasan was a very handsome young man. The men and women who saw him were fascinated. Apart from this, Abul Hasan was a great artist. He was also unique in singing and writing poetry. When he started playing songs in the merchant’s shop, a crowd of people gathered to listen to him.
One day Prince Abul Hasan was sitting at the merchant’s shop. At the same time a young woman riding on a pied-coloured mule came. Ten servants were also behind him. The beauty was wearing a white belt around her waist, in which four fingers wide lace was stitched. She was wearing so many jewels studded with diamonds and pearls, the value of which is difficult to estimate. The beauty of her maidservants was also reflected from inside the shimmering masks, then what to say about the beauty of the mistress herself.
The girl came to the shop of the said merchant to get some items of her need. Seeing him, the merchant hurried forward and with great hospitality brought him inside the shop and made him sit in a furnished room. Prince Abul Hasan also brought a tripod mounted from a dream and placed it in front of the beauty, laid her feet on it and bent down and kissed the place on the carpet where her feet were.
Now that beauty took off her face mask considering it to be a safe place. Prince Abul Hasan was astonished to see her incomparable beauty. That beauty too was fascinated by the seductive look of the prince. Both got caught in each other’s love-loop. Sundari said that you sit down, it is not right for you to stand in front of me. Abul Hasan sat down but kept looking at him in the picture.
The beauty understood from the condition of the princess that she was infatuated with me. He got up and took the merchant apart, inquired and bargained about the things he wanted and then asked the name and address of that prince. The merchant said, Madam, this young man is Abul Hasan. He is the son of Baka. Its grandfather was the last emperor of Iran. Many daughters of his family were married in the lineage of the Caliph. That beauty was very happy that she is of high descent. He said to the merchant, I find this young man very cultured and I am very happy to talk with him. With your help I hope to meet this. I will send a special maidservant to you. At that time you take it with you and come to my place. I will take him to my garden and palace and it will make him happy. Please do bring me this with you.
The merchant understood that the beauty is also infatuated with the prince. He promised to bring the prince. After this, that indescribable beauty, spreading the shade of her form, went to her house. The prince gazed for a long time at the path through which he had gone. After a long time like this, the merchant said, brother, what has happened to you? Looking like crazy in one place. If people see you in this condition, they will laugh so much. Take care of yourself and concentrate on other things.
The prince said, friend, if you had known the condition of my heart, you probably would not have said this. Ever since I have seen that Manmohini, I am becoming of him. I can’t forget his attention at all. For God’s sake, tell me what is her name and where does she live. The merchant said, my dear friend, the name of this beauty is Shamsunnihar. She is the most loved servant of the Caliph. Abul Hasan said, This beauty is as name and quality. Shamsunnihar means afternoon sun. Its beauty is really as dazzling as the midday sun which cannot be noticed. That’s why once I see it, I can’t see anything else.
The merchant wanted to explain that it is not right to fall in love with that beauty. She said, “This is the Caliph’s most beloved servant, and they consider it so much that they have told me to give it immediately whatever it needs, this is my definite order.” In this way, the merchant said other things that there is a danger of life in becoming the love-rival of the Caliph. But there was no effect of his persuasion on Abul Hasan and he continued to yearn for Shamsunnihar.
All this was going on that one day a special maid sent by Shamsunnihar came. She secretly told the merchant that the mistress has called you and the prince. They both immediately joined him. Shamsunnihar lived in a grand residence built in a corner of the huge palace of the Caliph. The maid took the two men to her mistress’s house through a secret door. Taking him inside, he made both of them sit in a clean and beautiful place. Immediately the cultured servants brought a variety of foodstuffs in golden plates. When they had eaten enough, a maid brought for them fragrant wine in valuable cups. After drinking their hands were washed and various perfumes were brought before them which they rubbed on their clothes.
After this the same trusted maid took these people in a very beautiful barahdari. Its roof was like a dome and it was studded with gems. In the front were two huge marble camps, in which at the bottom were beautiful pictures of various animals and birds in beautiful colors. Different types of flowers and boots were painted on the floor of the barahdari. On one side were two delicate cupboards. In which very beautiful characters of Chinese, Billaur, Sangamusa etc. were kept. Those vessels were made of gilded water with beautiful pictures and calligraphy written on them. The pillars on the other side had doors. Then there was the verandah. After the verandah was the garden. Colorful stones were also inlaid on the land of the garden. There were two beautiful and big cisterns on either side of the barahdari, in which hundreds of fountains were missing. Twenty kinds of birds were chirping sitting on the trees in the garden.
These people were just enjoying that wonderful splendor that many maidservants who were dressed in beautiful robes came and sat on the golden work posts set in the barahdari and put different kinds of instruments in front of them to fix them so that Start singing as soon as you meet. Both of them also sat in such a place from where they could see everything. He saw that on one side there was a high gemstone post. The merchant said secretly to the prince, presumably this big post is for the sitting of Shamsunnihar himself. This palace is a part of the palace of the Caliph itself, but it has been specially built for Shamsunnihar. The reason is that out of all the maids and servants in the palace of the Caliph, he wants the most shamannihar. Shamsunnihar is allowed to go wherever he wants without asking the Caliph. When the Khalifa himself wants to come near him, he sends a message in advance. She must have come soon.
The merchant was talking to the prince when a maidservant came and told the singers to start singing. They immediately started playing their respective instruments and the choirs started singing. The prince was stunned after listening to that heavenly music. In the meantime, the maids announced the arrival of Shamsunnihar. The prince sat down calmly. First of all, the same special and main maid came who got the ten laborers to be picked up and kept a big post near the Shahzare’s sitting area. Then many Habshin prisoners took arms and lined up behind that post. Twenty singers and instrumentalists stood in front of where she was about to come.
In no time, the shamsunnihar, who was walking slowly and slowly, started coming towards his post among the same waiting servants. His maidservants were also beautiful, but the beauty of her form was unique. She was strewn with gemstones from head to toe and walked slowly with her hands on the shoulders of two maidservants. She came and sat on her seat very graciously. After sitting down, he greeted her with a gesture. Then Shamsunnihar ordered the singing maids to perform their art. The Hubshin put up the post of the singers near the place where the merchant and the prince’s post were located. Those singers systematically sat down on their posts.
Shamsunnihar asked a singer to sing some sringarik raga. He sang a agonizing song in a very soft voice. This song was expressing the condition of the prince and Shamsunnihar. The prince became helpless in emotion. He took the flute from one of the instruments and, agonizingly, made a sound of love on the flute and played it for a long time. When he finished playing, Shamsunnihar took the same flute from him and made a heart-rending sound which was more yearning than the melody played by the prince. The prince again took a musical instrument and began to play a very seductive melody on it. Now such an atmosphere has arisen that the prince and Shamsunnihar became so infatuated with love that their restraint kept on going. Shamsunnihar got up from his post and started going to the inner part of Barhadari. The prince also followed him. After two moments, both of them embraced and lost their senses and fell on the ground.
The maidservants ran and took care of both of them and sprinkling the arak of Bedamushka to animate both of them. Shamsunnihar came to his senses and asked where the merchant was. The poor merchant was sitting in his place trembling. He could not understand where this incident would end and what would happen if the Caliph came to know about this condition. The prince came and said that Shamsunnihar calls you, so he got up and came to her. Shamsunnihar told him that I am very grateful to you that you got me to meet the prince. The merchant said, “I wonder why you guys are so excited even when you meet each other.” Shamsunnihar said that this is the condition of true lovers, they not only suffer the pain of separation, their anxiety in meeting also does not diminish.
After saying this, Shamsunnihar ordered the maidservants to bring food. Shamsunnihar, the prince and the merchant ate delicious food. Then Shamsunnihar picked up the cup of wine and sang a song and drank it. He gave the second cup to the prince. He also drank the cup after singing a song.
It was just being blissful that a maid said softly that the chief servant of the Khalifa had brought the message of Masroor Khalifa and is standing waiting for you. Hearing this, the prince and the merchant were very frightened and the wind started blowing in their faces. The shamunnihar patient them and told the maid that you should entangle Masroor in things for some time so that I can hide the prince, if I hide the prince, then I will call Masroor. When she went to the maidservant, the shaman ordered that the doors of the barahdari be closed and the big curtains on the side of the garden should be dropped so that the light would not come. Then he made the prince and the merchant sit in such a corner of the barahdari from where they could not be seen by anyone. Having done all this, he ordered the former singers to perform art and ordered that Masroor be brought inside.
Masroor came with twenty slaves and after bowing down to Shamsunnihar said that the Caliph is distraught with your separation and is very much eager to meet you. Shamsunnihar said happily, it is my great fortune that he wants to have mercy. I am his maidservant. Come whenever you want But Mr. Masroor, you should bring them only after taking some time. Lest there be some error in the arrangements for the reception of the Caliph in a hurry.
Saying this Shamsunnihar sent off Masroor and his servants and himself came to the prince with tears in his eyes. Seeing her shedding tears, the merchant panicked lest the secret should be exposed. The prince also started sighing very sad after seeing this sudden break in love meeting. At the same time, a trusted maid told the shamannihar that what are you doing sitting, the servants have started coming and the caliph can come at any time. Shamsunnihar said with a cold sigh that God is so cruel that as soon as we meet, he has put the sorrow of separation on us. Saying this he said to the maidservant, “Take these two and keep them in the house which is on the other corner of the garden.” Make them sit and lock the house. Then, on getting the opportunity, take them out from the secret door of the house and take them to the banks of the Tigris river and put them on the boat.
Saying this he embraced the prince and sent him away. The maid intelligently took the prince and the merchant to the house on the banks of the Tigris river and said that you stay here without any fear, no one will know. Saying this, the maid went away after locking the house from outside, but both of them roamed here and there for a long time, looking for a way to escape somewhere, but they could not find any way. Then he saw through the window that the bodyguards of the Caliph were coming into the garden on foot and riders. Seeing this, the lives of both of them started drying up. Then I saw a number of young servants coming from one side with candles in their hands, behind them a hundred armed bodyguards, and among them the Caliph and his chief minister Masroor. When the Caliph went to the house of a loved one at night, arrangements were made for complete security.
Shamsunnihar left her house and stood in the garden to welcome the Caliph with twenty beautifully decorated maidservants. Simultaneously, the maidens started singing the welcome anthem. When the caliph came, the shamannihar went ahead and laid his head on the caliph’s feet. The Caliph lifted him up and put him on his chest and said, “Don’t fall on your feet, sit next to me so that I can be satisfied by seeing your beauty.” Shamsunnihar sat next to the Caliph and pointed to a singer. Ganewali sang a sad song in a very compassionate voice. The Caliph understood that it wanted to express its estrangement from my neglect, whereas the reality was that the Shamannihar wanted an expression of his condition in the face of the prince.
Shamsunnihar was so infuriated after hearing this song that he started falling down after gasping. The maids ran and took care of him. On the other hand, the prince too was so distraught after hearing that song that he fell unconscious. The merchant took care of him. Within a few moments, the same trusted maid came and said to the merchant, it is not right for both of you to stay here, get out of here as soon as possible. There the appearance of the meeting is not good. Anything can happen at any moment. The merchant said, you see that the prince has fainted, how can we go out in such a condition.
The maid hurriedly brought the water and the snoring medicine, and thus the prince came to his senses.
Now the merchant told the prince that it is dangerous for us to stay here, we should leave immediately. After this, the maid took both of them out of the secret gate and brought them on the canal which passed through the garden and met the Tijla river. When he reached there, he raised his voice softly. A man came to that place while rowing a boat. The maid put them both on the boat. The manjhi hurriedly took the rowed boat to the Tigris river. The condition of the prince was still bad. The merchant was constantly explaining to him that you take care of yourself, we have to go away, if we get patrol soldiers in this time, then we will be in pain because they will consider us as thieves.
By God-God, these people got down from the boat at a safe place. But neither the prince’s mental state was fine nor did he have much power to walk. The merchant was worried about what to do. Suddenly he remembered that a friend of his lived near that place. He somehow dragged the prince to his friend’s house. The friend came running on seeing him. He brought both of them to his meeting and asked where did you come from in such a condition. The merchant said, I’m in a weird mess. I owed a lot of money to a man. I came to know that he was running away from the city. I was worried about chasing him and recovering my money. This man who is with me knows the fugitive. With its help, I followed him. But this friend of mine suddenly fell ill on the way. That fugitive also got out of my hands and I have to take care of this sick fellow too. Now we will stay here at night and leave from here only in the morning.
The merchant’s friend started trying to treat the prince, but the merchant said that you do not worry, if he sleeps comfortably throughout the night, then he will be able to go home in the morning. The friend put the beds of both of them in a ventilated room. The prince fell asleep, but after a while he dreamed that Shamsunnihar had fainted and fell at the feet of the Caliph. He woke up and started crying again. The merchant was also spending the night doing God-God’s tax so that he would reach his home as soon as morning. He knew that his family members must be worried because he was never out of the house at night. Early in the morning, he left the friend and took the prince and reached his house. Seeing him, the family got patience. He made the point that he had to suddenly go out for an important business work. In his heart he used to thank God that he had managed to escape from such a dangerous place.
The prince stayed at the merchant’s house for two-three days, then his relatives came and took him to his house. While leaving, the prince said to the merchant, brother, do not forget my condition. Ever since I saw Shamsunnihar unconscious in a dream, my condition has become very deplorable. If you find anything about him, then definitely tell me. The merchant said, don’t you worry. That special maid will definitely bring the news of Shamsunnihar to me.
After two or three days, the merchant went to see the prince and saw that he was moaning on the bed and his relatives and several rulers were discussing sitting around his bed. They told the merchant that the Hakim people are trying a lot but the prince is not getting any benefit. After two moments, the prince opened his eyes and smiled at the merchant but also started laughing. There were two reasons for the laughter. One is that the merchant has come and must have brought the news of shamannihar, the second reason is that the Hakim people are wasting their heads unnecessarily because they have no cure for this disease.
The prince said to the Hakims and relatives, I want to talk to them in private. On their departure, he said to the merchant, Friend, you see how the separation of this indescribable beauty mixes and kills me. All the relatives and friends are equally sad seeing this condition of mine. Seeing those people sad makes me sad. I also feel ashamed to tell my condition to them, so I am suffocating myself. Your arrival made me very patient. Now tell me what news of Shamsunnihar you have brought. When did that maid talk to you and what was the condition of her mistress.
The merchant told that the maid has not come yet. Hearing this, the prince started shedding tears. The merchant said that you should take care of yourself, there is nothing good to be done by crying. The prince said what should I do, I take care of myself but I can not handle it. The merchant said, don’t worry unnecessarily. The maid will come tomorrow if not today and will give the news of Shamsunnihar’s skill. Thus tying him a lot of patience, the merchant came to his house. Coming home, he saw that Shamsunnihar’s maid was waiting for him. He told the merchant that tell your condition, what happened on you and the prince after leaving the palace because the condition of the prince was not good at the time of departure. The merchant mentioned the hardships of the road and the prolonged illness of the prince.
The maid said, the condition of the mistress is the same as that of the prince. When I went to his palace after leaving you, I saw that he was unconscious. The Caliph also wondered why she fainted.
When he asked us the reason for this unconsciousness, we hid the real secret. We said, we don’t know anything. We just kept on crying. After a while the eyes of the mistress opened.
The Caliph asked, Shamsunnihar, why did you get this unconsciousness. Swamini said, suddenly you have showered me with so much kindness that you yourself came and did your gratitude. I could not handle this blissfulness and became unconscious. I am very sorry that you have been so kind to me and I made you worry.
The caliph said, we know that you have a greater love than us. We are also very happy about this. Now you don’t go to any other room, put a bed here and go to sleep. Don’t let your health get worse by walking. Saying this the Caliph left. After his departure, the mistress called me to her with a signal and inquired about the condition of you guys. I said that both of them happily left from here safely. I didn’t tell them about the prince’s fainting. Still he cried and said, Prince, don’t know what must have happened to you in my separation. Saying this she fainted again. When the maidservants ran and sprinkled unsweetened arak on her face, she came to her senses. I said, mistress, will you know like this? And kill us all. You have the gift of your beloved prince, divert your mind from other things. He said, you are right but what should I do? The mind itself is not in control. Then he removed the maid only and asked me to stay with him. Throughout the night, she kept crying over the name of the prince. In the morning I picked him up and took him to his main rest room. There was already a Hakim sent by order of the Caliph. After sometime the Caliph himself came there. Medicines were taken but to no avail. On the contrary, his condition became more serious. Two days later he slept for a while at night. Waking up in the morning, he ordered me to come to you and bring the news of the prince to him. The merchant said, tell them, the prince is absolutely fine, but hearing about Shamsunnihar’s illness, he is very worried. Also tell them that they should take care that nothing comes out of their mouth in front of the Caliph, which will land us all in trouble. The prince is all right, but is very worried after hearing about Shamsunnihar’s illness. Also tell them that they should take care that nothing comes out of their mouth in front of the Caliph, which will land us all in trouble.
After saying this to the maid, the merchant sent her off and went near the prince himself and told him that Shamsunnihar had sent the maid to inquire about your condition. He narrated to the prince in detail the things he had heard from the maid. The prince kept the merchant with him throughout the night. In the morning the merchant came to his house. After some time, Shamsunnihar’s maid came to him and saluted him and said that the master had sent this letter for the prince. The merchant took that maid and went to the prince and said that Shamsunnihar has sent this letter for you and has also sent his maid to know your skill. Hearing this, the prince got up. He called the maid, took the letter from her and kissed the letter and applied it to her eyes. In the letter, Shamsunnihar had described the agony of his separation. The prince wrote his answer and gave it to the maid.
After leaving the prince, the maid and the merchant went to their respective homes. The merchant got worried that this maid comes to me every day and I have to take her to the prince every day. Prince and Shamsunnihar are madly in love with each other but if Caliph comes to know then I will be killed for free, All my prestige will get in the soil and what will happen even after knowing my life and my family will also suffer. It is better that I leave this city and settle elsewhere. One day the merchant was sitting in his shop worrying that a friend of his, who was a jeweler, came to meet him. He was constantly seeing the slave of the Shamannihar coming to the merchant and then both of them coming to the prince. Seeing the businessman worried, he understood that some great calamity had fallen on him. So he asked why does the maid of the Caliph’s palace come to you. The merchant was frightened by this question. He said that something like this only comes from the work of transactions. The jeweler said, “No transaction, there is something else.” When the merchant saw that the jeweler was not satisfied with his answer, he decided that it was better to tell him the whole situation. He took a promise to keep the secret secret and said to him, The Shamsunnihar and the Prince of Persia love each other and find each other’s condition through my mediation, I wonder if this thing becomes known to the Caliph, then God knows what will happen to me. That’s why now I think that I should wrap up my business here and go to Basra and settle there.
The jeweler was surprised to hear this. After some time he left. After two days he came to the merchant’s shop and found it closed. He understood that the merchant had settled the account here and went to Basra. In the jeweler’s heart, great compassion arose for the prince. The only support of the poor man was that merchant and he also left, so he thought that instead of the merchant, he himself should become the assistant of the prince. He went to the prince. The prince, knowing that he was a reputed jeweler, respected him and got up from the bed and sat down and asked what work was worth to me. The jeweler said, although I have met you for the first time, I want to serve you. I want to ask one thing at this time. The prince said that whatever you want to ask, ask happily.
The jeweler said, such a merchant was your great friend. You consider me as reliable as you. He was saying that I would leave Baghdad and settle in Basra. Today I went to his shop and found it closed. I understand that the merchant has actually settled in Basra. Can you tell what are the reasons for his leaving Baghdad and going to Basra?
The prince turned pale after listening to the jeweler and said, is it true that the merchant left Baghdad? The jeweler said that this is my view. The prince asked one of his servants to go to the merchant’s house to find out where he was. The servant came a few times and said that the family members of the merchant say that he has gone to Basra after two days and will remain there. The servant also secretly told that the maid of a rich woman has come to meet you. The prince understood that Shamsunnihar would only have a maidservant. He called her. The jeweler got up before his arrival and went to another room. The maid came and saw the condition of the prince better and after talking to him, she left.
Now the jeweler came again and sat beside the prince and said that you seem to have a great connection with the palace of the Caliph. The prince said angrily, how do you say that? Do you know who this woman is? The jeweler said, I know this and its owner very well. This Caliph’s favorite maidservant is Shamsunnihar’s maidservant and comes with her mistress who comes and goes to buy jewels from my shop. I have seen this many times while going to that merchant as well.
The prince was horrified to hear that this man knew all our secrets. He kept silent for a moment and said, really tell me the truth whether you know the secret of this maid’s coming here. The jeweler told all the things that happened to the merchant to the princess and said, I have appeared before you for this reason. After the trader left, I felt very sorry for you who would be your mediator. I decided that instead of the merchant, I should act as your faithful servant. You will not find a more reliable person than me.
The prince felt patience on hearing his words. He told the secret of his mind to the jeweler, but at the same time said, brother, I have full faith in you, but Shamsunnihar’s maid has seen you sitting here. She doesn’t seem happy with you. She was saying that you have advised the merchant to leave this city and settle in Basra. The maid must have said this to her mistress also. How can you become a mediator in such a situation?
The jeweler said, I did not advise the merchant to leave the city. Yes, it is definitely that when he told me that I wanted to settle in Basra, I did not stop him. I thought this man was worried about his reputation and saving his life so why stop him. The prince said, I understand your point and I have full faith in you, but Shamsunnihar’s maid must have said the same thing to her mistress as told to me. Now it has become necessary that just as you have assured me of your righteousness, in the same way you should instill in your maidservant faith in yourself so that even the shaman considers you to be faithful.
In this way, both kept talking for a long time and kept on consulting as to what could be the fate of the union of the two lovers. Then the jeweler went to his house after taking farewell from the prince. The prince had said while leaving the maid that if you come this time, get a letter written for me from Shamsunnihar. The maid went to the palace and told Shamsunnihar about the merchant’s desire to leave the city and get the prince’s letter. Shamsunnihar wrote a long letter in which he had a compassionate description of his estrangement and also expressed sorrow that our intermediary merchant had left the city.
When the maid started coming to the prince with the letter, the letter fell from her hand on the way. After going ten or twenty steps ahead, she did not see the letter in her pocket, then she returned on the opposite foot. On the way he found the jeweler reading the letter. This led to an argument between the two. The maid said, this is my letter, give it back to me. The jeweler did not pay heed to him and kept on reading the letter and then left for his home. The maid also followed him, demanding to return the letter. Reaching the jeweler’s house, he said, “Give me this letter.” It’s none of your business. You do not even know who wrote this letter in whose name. The jeweler showed him a place and gestured him to sit.
When the maid sat down, the jeweler said, “Though there is neither the name of the one who wrote on this letter nor the name of the recipient, I know that this letter was written by Shamsunnihar to Prince Abul Hasan. The maid got terrified on hearing this. The jeweler said, I would have given you this letter on the way, but I have to ask something from you, that’s why I brought you here. You tell the truth, have you not told the prince that this jeweler has advised the merchant to leave Baghdad? The maid admitted that this is what she had said. The jeweler said you are a fool I want that now instead of the merchant, I should help the prince. You have understood the opposite. Of course, I had informed the prince about the merchant’s departure from the city. At first the prince was skeptical of me, but on convincing me, he told the whole secret to me. Now consider me to be a complete confidant in this matter instead of a merchant and also tell your mistress that the jeweler will not only put his reputation at stake, but also his life, for the happiness of you and the prince.
The maid said, “Both Prince Abul Hasan and Shamsunnihar are very fortunate that when the merchant left, they found a wise helper like you.” I will tell the whole thing about your goodwill to my mistress. The jeweler gave the letter to him and said that whatever the prince wrote in his reply, he should also show it to me while returning and also tell our conversation at this time to the prince.
The maid took the letter and went to the prince. He immediately wrote down the answer. According to her promise, the maid also showed the letter of the prince to the jeweler. She went to Shamsunnihar and gave him the letter of the prince and started praising the jeweler very much. The next morning she again came to the jeweler and said, I told my mistress everything you told me. She was overjoyed to hear that the merchant has gone, yet you are present to mediate between the lovers by taking his place. I also told him the things that happened with your prince and said that you are more than him. She became even more happy and started saying that I want to meet such a good psyche who agrees to help others without saying and without taking the risk of prior acquaintance. I myself want to see his intelligence and cleverness and you bring him here tomorrow.
The jeweler said worriedly, Shamsunnihar considers me like a merchant Ibn Tahir. Everyone knew Ibn Tahir in the palace and the gatekeepers used to allow him to come unhindered. Who will let me come?
The maid said, whatever you say is absolutely right. But Shamsunnihar is not a fool. If he has called you, then he must have thought about it. Come fearlessly with me, you will not have any problem. It was my responsibility to bring you to your home efficiently. Thus the maid consoled him a lot, but he was not ready to go to the palace in any way.
Then the maid approached Shamsunnihar and told him that the jeweler was afraid to come here and would not agree to come even after my lakhs of persuasion. Shamsunnihar thought for a while and said, it is right to be afraid of him. I myself will secretly leave here and meet him at his house. You go and tell him that I want to come to his house and talk to him. The maid did the same. Going to the jeweler’s house, he said, don’t go out anywhere. In a while I will come to your place with the mistress.
Saying this, the maid turned back and after sometime reached the jeweler’s house with Shamsunnihar. The jeweler welcomed Shamsunnihar with great respect and made him sit on a high position. When Shamsunnihar removed the mask from his face, the jeweler kept looking at him. He wondered what a surprise if the prince was madly behind this heavenly beauty. Then Shamsunnihar started talking to her. After describing his love in full, he said, I am very happy to meet you. It is God’s great grace that after the passing of Ibn Tahir, he has given us two lovers a helper like you. Now I leave, God protect you.
After the death of Shamsunnihar, the jeweler went to the prince. On seeing him, the prince said, Friend, I was waiting for you only. Yesterday Shamsunnihar’s maid brought me her letter, but it only aggravated my estrangement. Is it not possible that the Supreme Sundari Shamsunihar, by kindly doing some kind of remedy on her own in such a way that both of us can meet. Had Ibn Tahir been there, perhaps there would have been a way out. After his departure, I do not understand how I should meet Shamsunnihar.
There is no need to be so disappointed, said the jeweler. There can be no better way than the one I have thought of to fulfill your purpose. Saying this the jeweler explained to the prince in detail how I persuaded the maid and how Shamsunnihar came to my house and talked to me. He said that both of you will definitely meet but it is not right for me or you to go to the palace, I will arrange to rent a beautiful building where both of you can meet.
The prince was very happy to hear this. He expressed great gratitude to the jeweler and said that I will do as you say. The jeweler left him and came to his house. The next day the maid came again. The jeweler said, it is very good that you came, I was waiting for you. When the maid asked the reason, the jeweler said that the prince is in a bad condition, whatever you are, bring Shamsunnihar so that both can meet.
The maid said, the mistress also has this condition in the face of the prince, as if a fish is suffering on hot sand. But your house is too small, not fit for the union of both of them. The jeweler said that I have repaired a big house, you go with me and see it. The maid saw the house with him and liked it and said that I will come now, if the mistress agrees to come, then I will take her and come immediately. After leaving, the maid came again to the jeweler in a while and gave a bag of asharfis to the jeweler and said, This mistress has sent this so that you can get the necessary furnishings done in that big house and have breakfast, bed, masnad etc. Get ready over there. Saying this the maid went away and here the jeweler decorated the said house by getting many gold and silver utensils and mattresses, pillows, masanads, curtains etc. from her merchant friends.
After making all the arrangements he went to the prince and asked her to accompany him. The prince walked with the jeweler wearing exquisite and elegant clothes. The jeweler brought him through the deserted streets to a bigger house. The prince was pleased to see the house and the furnishings and kept talking to the jeweler here and there. Day fell and Shamsunnihar went there with the same special maidservant and other maidservants. Both the prince and Shamsunnihar were delighted to see each other which cannot be described in words. For a long time they stared at each other without speaking.
Then both of them described their separation woes in such a way that tears came to the eyes of the jeweler and the three maids of Shamsunnihar wept. The jeweler consoled both of them and persuaded them to act patiently. Then both were brought to the place where there was a system of refreshments. After the refreshment, they came there and sat on the mosques from where they got up and went to have breakfast. They started talking to each other lovingly. Shamsunnihar asked whether there would be any flute here. The jeweler had already made all the arrangements. He brought a flute and handed it over. Shamsunnihar played for a long time a tune expressing love and separation on the flute. After this, the prince also uttered a dispassionate raga on the same flute in a very compassionate voice in response to him.
Just then, a huge noise was heard outside the house. After two moments a servant of the jeweler came running and said that many men were gathered at the door and they wanted to break through the door and enter. He said that when I asked him who you are and what do you want, he started beating me and I ran inside after closing the door to save my life. Hearing this, the jeweler himself went to the door to see what was the matter. When he opened the door, he saw a hundred men standing with drawn swords in their hands. He neither dared to talk to them nor came back inside. He climbed the wall of a neighbor whom he already knew and jumped into his house. He told the neighbor what was happening to me. The neighbor hid him in a corner of the house.
In the middle of the night the jeweler came out with the neighbor’s sword because at that time all the noise had stopped and there was a lull. When he looked in the big house, he found it deserted. There were no princes or shamsunnihars or their maids, nor were there any utensils or utensils. While walking around the house, he heard a man’s voice in one corner. He asked, who are you? The hidden man recognized his voice and came out. He was a servant of the jeweler.
The jeweler asked him whether those armed men were patrol soldiers. He said that they were not patrol soldiers but robbers and robbed everything, for many days these people have been looting and going to many localities and have robbed many houses.
The jeweler was also convinced that they were robbers because they had robbed everything. When he saw all the equipment missing along with the prince and shamannihar, he started beating his head as to what answer I would give to the friends from whom he had brought those things. The servant gave him patience and said, trust that both the prince and the shamannihar will be well. As far as the things demanded are concerned, even your friends will not say anything about it because the news of this robbery will be known to all. The jeweler started thinking that it was good that Ibn Tahir had left in time. My property has been looted, see what happens next, whether life is saved or not.
At dawn, the news of the robbery spread throughout the city. The jeweler’s friends also came to his house to express their sympathy as they knew that the house was rented by him. The friends from whom they had brought things, they said that do not worry about the goods, but the jeweler started worrying about the prince and the shamannihar that they did not know what was happening to them. After the departure of the friends, the jeweler’s servants brought food for him, but he was so worried about the shamannihar and the prince that he ate a nominal meal.
He was similarly worried that in the afternoon a servant told him that a man wanted to meet you. The man went inside and told the jeweler that not here, go to your rented big house, I will talk to you there. The jeweler wondered how did this stranger know that I had rented a house. The man took him through the winding streets and said that the dacoits had come to your house yesterday through these streets. The jeweler was surprised not only how he knew everything, but was also surprised and afraid that he was not taking her to his other house also but was taking her somewhere else.
By the way, it was evening. The jeweler was also very tired and his fear had also increased a lot, but he did not have the courage to say anything. In the evening they reached the Tigris river and crossed the river by boat and walking in the streets in the area beyond the river, they reached in front of a house where the man stood and clapped.
When the door opened, the man took the jeweler inside. There were ten men inside who welcomed the jeweler and made him sit respectfully next to him. After sometime his chief came after which everyone had food. After the meal they asked the jeweler if you had ever seen us before. He said that neither I have seen you people before nor have I seen the streets of this part across the river. Then those people said that tell clearly what happened to you last night. The jeweler said in surprise that how do you know that some special incident happened to me last night. They said that we came to know about this from the man and woman who were with you last night but we want to hear the full details from your mouth. The jeweler started thinking that it was not the robbers who had come at night.
He said, brothers, whatever was meant to happen has happened but the real concern for me is the same man and the same beauty. If you know anything about him, then tell me. Those people said that you stop worrying about both of them, they are both well. He showed the jeweler two rooms and said, they are both in different rooms. From him we have come to know you and he has told that you are his helper and friend. The work of us is not to show mercy to anyone, yet contrary to our nature, we kept both of them with great comfort and did not allow them to cause any kind of trouble. And we won’t let you suffer either.
Now the jeweler is convinced that he is a dacoit. He expressed gratitude for their kindness and narrated the love story of the prince and Shamsunnihar in detail from the beginning to the last night. They asked in amazement, is it true that this man is Abul Hasan, the son of the prince of Persia, Baqa, and that this woman is the Caliph’s beloved Shasunnihar? Johri said that whatever I have said is absolutely true. When the bandits believed the jeweler, they went one by one to Abul Hasan and Shamsunnihar and apologized for their crime. He said that we did not know you that is why this crime has been committed against us.
He said that whatever we robbed from your house, we cannot return all of it because our other companions have taken away a lot of it, but gold and silver utensils are definitely here, we will return them. Those bandits gave the utensils and told all three of them that we will safely take you across the river. But you guys have to promise that you will not reveal our secret. The three of them swore that we would not tell anyone about you.
After this, the robbers put all three of them in a boat and left them across the river. But as soon as all three of them landed on the shore, the patrol soldiers came here. On seeing them, the robbers ran away fasting their boat, but the patrolmen caught all three of them and asked what were you doing in this deserted place.
The jeweler did not tell the truth, but said that the bandits took me after robbing my house and took both of them from my place. Today, not knowing what to think, they took all of us across the river and returned some of the looted goods. He said that those people who are crossing the river in the boat are the robbers. The chief of patrol believed him. Leaving her, the prince and shaman started asking who are you and who has brought this beauty from her house. The prince did not say anything on this, but Shamsunnihar took the chief of the patrol party apart and said something. He immediately got off the horse and saluted him and ordered that two boats be brought. He ordered Shamsunnihar to be seated on one of him and sent to his house. On the other, the prince and the jeweler were placed along with the bundles of goods and made two of their soldiers with them so that they could safely take them to their homes.
But those soldiers were not happy with these people. Instead of taking the boat to the pier of the city, he diverted it to the prison and took him to the prison even after the jeweler made lakhs of rebuttals. The principal officer of the prison asked these people who are you and why have you been arrested. The jeweler also told the whole thing to this officer and said that the chief of the patrol had ordered us to take us to our house believing us, but these two soldiers took us to the prison – maybe these people wanted some bribe from us And when he did not find it, he did so. The prison officer also got the confidence of the jeweler.
He reprimanded both the soldiers of the patrol and ordered two of his soldiers that both of them should be delivered to the prince’s house along with the furnishings.
When both of them reached the prince’s house, they were so tired that it was difficult to even walk a step, but the servants of the prince supported both of them and brought them inside and made them sit comfortably. When the jeweler was fresh, the prince ordered his servants to bring the jeweler to his house comfortably with the furnishings. When the jeweler came to his house, he saw that the family members were weeping because of his concern. Seeing the jeweler in good health, they were consoled and everyone started asking him where you had gone and what had happened. He silenced everyone saying that I was very tired and lay down on his bed silently.
Within two days the jeweler was able to recover from his fatigue and mental trauma. On the third day, he was going to a friend’s house to pretend that a woman on the way signaled him to come near her. When the jeweler went near, he recognized that it was Shamsunnihar’s trusted maidservant. The jeweler was so frightened that he did not talk to him there and, indicating to him to follow him, started walking towards one side. The maid also followed behind. They went to a deserted mosque while walking and there the maid asked the jeweler that how did you escape from the bandits. The jeweler said First you tell your condition, how did you and the two other maidservants survive. The maid said that when the robbers came to your house, all three of us understood that the caliph has come to know and has sent his soldiers. Fearing for our lives, all three of us climbed onto the roof of the house and went through the roofs and came to the house of a good mind. He kindly kept us safe at his place for the whole night. In the morning we reached our residence. When the other maidservants were worried not to see the mistress with us, we comforted them that they had stayed at a friend’s house.
The maid said, we were also worried about the mistress. We sent a man on a boat that evening to bring a beauty here if we saw a wandering man.
We kept listening to every sound till midnight. Heard the sound of a boat at the pier of the backyard of his residence in the middle of the night. We went and saw that the mistress has come on the boat with our sent man and another person. She was so weak that she could not even walk a step. We took care of them. He secretly sent the two men away by giving them one thousand Asharfi. Now they are good. He also told us the story of being caught and released by the bandits. After the maid said this, the jeweler also told everything that had happened to him and the prince.
The maid gave two bags of ashrafis and said, Our mistress has sent this for you because she is very aware that you have caused great pain and loss because of them, so you are being compensated. The jeweler thankfully took the money. He spent some of it in order to buy the things asked from friends and return them. Still enough was left so that he started building a huge and beautiful house on the same day.
Then he went to the prince’s house to inquire about her well being. The prince’s servants told that they have been lying on their bed with their eyes closed since they came. He hasn’t eaten or drank anything. This worried the jeweler. He went to the prince and gave him great patience. Hearing the jeweler’s voice, the prince opened his eyes and kept listening to his words. Then he pressed the jeweler’s hand and said that friend, you suffered a lot for us, how should I express my gratitude to you. The jeweler said, I am your servant, I can do everything for you, but start eating and drinking for the sake of God and take care of your health.
The prince ate and drank something at the behest of the jeweler. Then in solitude he asked the news of Shamsunnihar. The jeweler said, “He is in good health, and only yesterday he had sent his maidservant to ask me for your well being.” After this the jeweler wanted to come to his house but the prince stopped him and did not let him go till midnight. In the middle of the night the jeweler went to his house and the next day again reached the prince. The prince wanted to give some money for the compensation of the jeweler, but the jeweler did not take it and said that Shamsunnihar has given me a lot of money for this. In the afternoon the jeweler left the prince and reached his house.
It was not too late for him to reach home that the same trusted maid of Shamsunnihar reached his house weeping and beating. He told that now your life and the prince’s life is in danger. If you people are dear to your life, then immediately leave the city and go somewhere. The jeweler was surprised and said, what happened after all? Why are you crying so much and showing me so much fear? Tell me the whole thing clearly. The maid said, when we ran away from that house and reached our house and later Shamsunnihar also reached the house, she ordered one of the two maidservants with me to be angry on some matter and punish her. She was hit hard and that night out of fear and anger she ran away from the palace of Shamsunnihar and went to take shelter with the chief of the guards of the palace.
The maid told the chief of the guards the whole situation of that night. What advice did the chief of the guards give him? Then she went to the Caliph’s palace and probably told everything to the Caliph as well. The Caliph sent twenty soldiers and summoned Shamsunnihar to get him caught. Beyond that I don’t know whether he got her killed or did something else. Seeing this, I have come to tell you the whole situation.
Hearing this, the jeweler’s senses were blown away. He then ran towards the prince’s house. The prince was astonished to see his insolence and immediately made him secluded to talk to the jeweler. When the jeweler told him the whole situation and said that the Caliph had got Shamsunnihar arrested, the prince was gasped. On regaining consciousness after some time, he asked what could be done for Shamsunnihar. The jeweler said that you cannot do anything for Shamannihar, but if you stay here, you yourself will die and you will also get me killed. You kindly get up immediately and proceed with me towards Ivanajpur. At any time the caliph’s soldiers can come and seize us both and later we will both be killed with great humiliation.
The prince immediately ordered to bring some fast-moving horses and kept several thousand asharfis with him and the jeweler and left the city with some servants. He walked day and night in the same way for many days. One day in the afternoon, he lay under the trees to rest due to fatigue. In the meantime, a group of bandits attacked them. The prince’s servants confronted them but all were killed. The bandits took all the weapons, horses and money of the prince and the jeweler, but also took off their clothes and left them both helpless and left.
The prince said, who in the world will be more unfortunate than me that one calamity does not end when another comes. If suicide was not considered a sin in Islam, I would have given my life with my own hands. Now I have decided that I will not go anywhere from here, but I will give my life here in memory of Shamsunnihar. The jeweler explained to him a lot that he should not be disappointed in this way and accept the will of God. After much persuasion, the prince got up and both of them started walking on a footpath. After walking several miles, they found a mosque. Both of them lay there hungry and thirsty for the whole night.
In the morning a good mind came there to offer Namaz. After the prayer he saw two men sitting in a corner. He said that you people seem to be foreigners. The jeweler said, you are seeing our condition. We were coming from Baghdad when on the way the bandits robbed us, leaving nothing with us. The man said that you guys go to my house and take rest. The jeweler said, how to go? They took our clothes too and we are sitting naked. The man went out and took two sheets from his house and came to the mosque and asked these people to walk.
Now the jeweler had some other doubt as to why this man was so kind. He thought that it is not that the Caliph has given a reward advertisement for the arrest of us and he wants to get us caught in the greed of reward. He said, “Thank you for your kindness but my companion’s condition has worsened due to illness and hunger and he is not able to move.” The good man also sent some food for both of them from a maid. The jeweler ate his full stomach.
But the condition of the prince was really bad. Not even a mouthful was eaten from him. He understood that my end time has come and he said to the jeweler, brother, now I cannot escape, you are seeing what troubles I have faced in the love of Shamsunnihar and in this last time also I am remembering the same. I am I don’t regret dying. Now the last request to you is that if I die, then leave my dead body under the supervision of this good man for a few days and go to Baghdad and inform my mother about my death and tell me to get my dead body taken from here and buried lawfully. Get it done
Saying this the prince gave up his life. The jeweler mourned for him for a long time. That day, after keeping the dead body with that good man, he went towards Baghdad with a traveler. Upon reaching Baghdad, he informed his mother about the death of the prince. The poor old woman cried a lot for the young son, beating her head. Then she went with several servants to the place where the body of the prince was kept.
Here the jeweler sitting in his house was mourning that even after all his efforts, this love affair had such a sad end. One day he was walking in front of his house in mourning that he found the same trusted maidservant of Shamsunnihar. He took her to his house and told her what happened when I ran with the prince after his information and how the prince died remembering Shamsunnihar. And now the prince’s mother has gone to collect the dead body of her son.
Hearing this, the maid also started crying by beating her head. Later the maid said, now even Shamsunnihar is not in this world. When the Caliph asked to betray him, he admitted in front of the Caliph that he was madly in love with Abul Hasan. As soon as she took the name of Abul Hasan, she began to torment and sobbing in such a way that even the Caliph was impressed by her true love and instead of anger, sympathy was awakened in her heart. He hugged Shamsunnihar and sent him away with many gifts and prizes. He came to his palace and told me that you have done me a great favor but I am also a guest for two hours now. I gave him patience and told him not to do such things. In the evening the Caliph came to her again and singing and playing started but love-music made her condition worse and she died.
The Caliph at first thought her unconscious and made many efforts to bring her to her senses, but when it was decided that she was dead, she ordered in mourning that all the musical instruments should be broken. Now instead of music, the voices of crying started rising in that meeting. The Caliph himself could not even sit there much and went to his palace. I sat all night near the dead body of the swami. In the morning I bathed the body and buried it inside the palace in the large tomb, where permission for burial had already been taken from the Caliph by the Shamsunnihar. Now I want that when the dead body of the prince arrives, it should also be buried next to the tomb of the mistress so that both the lovers die and stay in one place.
Johri said that how is this possible without the permission of the Caliph. The maid said, don’t worry about it. The caliph told me that you have always been loyal to him, now even after your death, be in his service and look after his grave. The Caliph has given me all the rights there. Anyway, he knows the condition of the love of Prince and Shamsunnihar and he is not even angry with this incident.
When the prince’s body reached Baghdad, the jeweler sent the information to that maid. She came and took the dead body of the prince to the tomb of the palace with the permission of the prince’s mother. Thousands of people were involved in the funeral procession of the prince. Eventually the prince was also buried next to his beloved. Since then, people from far and wide countries come and pray at their graves.
When Shehrzad finished this story, his sister Duniyajad said that this story was very beautiful, do you know any other story. Shehrzad said, if I do not get the death penalty today, then tomorrow I will narrate the story of Shahzada Kamaruzzaman. In the greed of hearing the new story, Emperor Shahryar did not get Shahrajad killed even that day and before the next morning, Shahryar started a new story.