In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

245 245 The Isfahan Maqāmah by Badīʿ al-Zamān al-Hamadhānī695 : ‫ل‬� � ‫ق�ا‬ � � � ‫م‬ �‫ش�ا‬ ���‫ه‬� ‫ن‬ �‫�ب‬ ‫ى‬ � ‫س‬��‫ي‬ ��‫ع‬ � ‫�ا‬‫ن‬ �‫ث‬ ��‫د‬��‫ح‬ � ‫ب‬ � ‫ق‬ � � �‫ر‬ ‫�ت‬‫أ‬ �‫و‬�� ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ ��‫ح‬ � ‫م‬ ‫ل‬ � ‫ل‬�‫ك‬� � ��‫ة‬ ��‫ل‬�� ‫ف‬ � � � ‫�ق�ا‬�‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ع‬ �‫ق‬ � � �‫و‬� ‫�ت‬� ‫أ‬ � ‫٭‬ ‫ي‬ � � ‫�ف‬�‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ل‬� � ‫و‬�‫ل‬��‫ح‬ � ‫�ا‬‫ه‬ � ‫ت‬ �‫ل‬�‫ل‬��‫ح‬ � ‫ف‬ � � � ‫٭‬ ّ ‫ي‬ � � � ‫ر‬‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ى‬ � ‫ل‬�� ‫�إ‬ ‫ر‬‫ي‬ ��‫س‬��‫م‬ ‫ل‬ �� ‫ا‬ ‫م‬ �‫ز‬ � ‫ت‬ ��‫ع‬ � ‫أ‬ � ‫ن‬ �‫�ا‬‫ه‬ � ‫�ف‬�‫ص‬� �‫إ‬ ��‫ب‬ �� ‫ت‬ � ‫ن‬ �‫ك‬ � �� ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ ��‫ب‬ ��‫�ج�ا‬ � ‫�إ‬� ‫ل‬ � � ‫ا‬ ُ‫ض‬ �� �‫ر‬ ‫ف‬ � � � ‫ن‬ � ّ ‫ي‬ ��‫ع‬ �‫ت‬ ��‫و‬�� ‫٭‬ ‫ه‬�‫ت‬ �‫ع‬ �‫م‬ �‫س‬�� ً‫ء‬‫ا‬‫�د‬‫ن‬�� ‫ة‬ �‫ا‬� ‫ل‬�‫ص‬� � ‫ل‬��‫ل‬� � ‫ي‬ � � �‫د‬‫و‬� ُ‫ن‬ �� ‫٭‬ ‫ه‬�‫ت‬ �‫ع‬ �‫ق‬ � � �‫و‬� ‫�ت‬� ‫�ا‬‫م‬� ّ ‫م‬ � ُ ‫ح‬ � ‫�ا‬ّ ‫�م‬‫ل‬�� ‫ف‬ � � � ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ ��‫ح‬ �‫ص�ب‬�� �‫ل‬�‫ك‬� � ��‫ة‬ ��‫ل‬��‫ح‬ �‫ا‬‫ر‬‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ت‬ �‫ن‬ �‫ع‬ � ‫ت‬ �‫�س‬�‫ا‬ ‫ي‬ � � ‫ن‬�‫ك‬ � � �‫ل‬�� ‫٭‬ ‫�ا‬‫ه‬ � ‫ك‬ � �� ‫ر‬ ‫�ت‬‫أ‬ � ‫ة‬ ��‫ل‬�� ‫ف‬ � � � ‫�ق�ا‬�‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ت‬ �‫و‬� ‫�ف‬ � � ‫ى‬ � ‫ش‬ ��� ‫�خ‬ � ‫أ‬ �‫و‬�� ‫٭‬ ‫�ا‬‫ه‬ � ‫ك‬ � �� ‫ر‬‫د‬ ‫أ‬ � ‫ة‬ ��‫ع‬ � ‫ا‬� ‫م‬�‫ج‬ � � ‫ل‬�� ‫ا‬ ‫م‬ � ‫ن‬ �‫�غ�ت‬ � ‫أ‬ � ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ ��‫ب‬ ��‫�ا‬‫ح‬ � ‫ص‬�� � ‫ل‬�� ‫ا‬ ‫ن‬ �‫ي‬ ��‫ب‬ �� ‫ن‬ �‫م‬� ‫ت‬ �‫ل‬�‫ل‬��‫س‬�� ‫ن‬ �‫ف�ا‬� � � ‫٭‬ ‫ف‬ � � �‫و‬� ‫�ق‬ � �‫و‬�‫ل‬��‫ل‬� � ‫ت‬ �‫ل‬��‫ث‬ �‫م‬�‫و‬�� ‫٭‬ ‫ف‬ � � �‫و‬� ‫�ف‬�‫ص‬� � ‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ل‬� � ‫و‬�� ‫أ‬ � ‫ى‬ � ‫ل‬�� ‫�إ‬ ‫ت‬ �‫ر‬‫�ص‬ � ‫�ف‬ � � ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ �‫ا‬� ‫ل‬�‫�ف‬�‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ء‬‫�ا‬‫ث‬ �‫ع‬ �‫و‬�� ‫ى‬ � ‫ل‬��‫ع‬ � ‫٭‬ ‫ة‬ �‫ا‬� ‫ل‬�‫ص‬� � ‫ل‬� � ‫ا‬ ‫ت‬ �‫�ا‬‫ك‬ � �� ‫بر‬ ��‫ب‬ �� ḥaddathanā ʿīsa bnu hishāmin qāl: kuntu bi-ʾiṣfahāna ʾaʿtazimu l-masīra ʾila r-rayy * fa-ḥalaltuhā ḥulūla l-fayy * ʾatawaqqaʿu l-qāfilata kulla lamḥah * wa-ʾataraqqabu r-rāḥilata kulla ṣabḥah * falamm ā ḥumma mā tawaqqaʿtuh * nūdiya liṣ-ṣalāti nidāʾan samiʿtuh * wa-taʿayyana farḍu l-ʾijābah * fa-nsalaltu min bayni ṣ-ṣaḥābah * ʾaghtanimu l-jamāʿata ʾudrikuhā * wa-ʾakhshā fawta l-qāfilati ʾatrukuhā * lākinnī staʿāntu bi-barakāti ṣ-ṣalāh * ʿalā waʿthāʾi l-falāh * fa-ṣirtu ʾilā ʾawwali ṣ-ṣufūf * wa-mathaltu lil-wuqūf... A maqāmah (literally, “place or occasion where one stands,” sometimes translated as “assembly”) is a short, usually narrative “picaresque” text in ornate rhymed prose, often with interspersed poetry, involving a fictional narrator and a fictional vagabond-like character, who reappears (in a series of individually independent maqāmahs) in various disguises, usually swindling or coaxing people (including the narrator) to part with their money. The term is also applied more loosely, for non-narrative didactic or moralistic pieces employing rhymed prose.696 ʿĪsā ibn Hishām and Abū l-Fatḥ al-Iskandarī are the two fictional personages who occur in most maqāmahs by al-Hamadhānī, as narrator and trickster-vagabond, respectively. Aḥmad ibn al-Ḥusayn al-Hamadhānī (358/968–398/1008), nicknamed Badīʿ al-Zamān (“Wonder of the Age”) is the “inventor” of the maqāmah; his fame was overshadowed by later and more artful practitioners of the form such as al-Ḥarīrī (d. 516/1122). To sepa- 246 246 246 246 Prose rate the rhyming segments full stops are used in Arabic editions; this would be confusing in my English rhymed version and they have been replaced by asterisks. ʿĪsā ibn Hishām related to us: Once I * was in Isfahan, * though going to Rayy697 * was my plan. * Therefore I only stayed * as briefly as the fleeting shade, * expecting the arrival of the caravan every second * and any morning to departure to be beckoned. * Now when the expected event was near, * the call to prayer I could hear: * it was a religious obligation, * so I slipped away from my friends to join the congregation, * and for the mosque I headed. * To miss the caravan was what I dreaded, * but it would be for the best * if by this prayer I would be blessed * so as to withstand * hardship in the desert land. * I found a place in front and there * I stood for the start of the prayer. * The imam came to the prayer niche and at this site * he started to recite * and began * with the “Opening” Sura from the Holy Qur’an * according to the manner of Ḥamzah, * lengthening each “stretching” with the “glottal stop,” i.e. the hamzah.698 * On tenterhooks I sat, in suspension * and full of apprehension * about missing the caravan and being left in this place. * But the imam followed up the “Opening” with “The Great Case,”699 * while I was being roasted upon the fire of patience, burning, * and grilled upon the coals of frustration, tossing and turning. * But I could only be silent and be brave, * or else speak up and then the grave! * For I knew that the uncouth people of that city * would not have any pity * in case of the prayer’s truncation * before the final salutation. * So under duress * I remained in this situation of stress * until the end of the sura * while my chances of catching the caravan grew ever poorer, * and I was filled with despair * of ever getting away from there. * Then the imam bent his back for the prostration * with an uncommonly humble self-abnegation * and an unusual manner of resignation. * Then, with his head and his hands raised, * he said, “May God listen to those by whom He is praised!” * Then he stood for a while, making me suppose * he had fallen into a doze. * But he came round * and bent down, hand and forehead to the ground. * I raised my head, looking for an opportunity * to slip away with impunity, * but between the rows I found no space, * so I sat down to prostrate myself in that place, * until the imam said “God is great!” for the sitting position. * And then the son-of-a-whore700 stood up for a...


Additional Information

Related ISBN
MARC Record
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.