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The Bostán of Sádi is well known to educated Mohamedans, and is used in India as a text-book in the Government schools and colleges and for the examination of officers, civil and military.
I commenced the following translation of Mohamed-Abdur-Rahman's edition of the Bostán-printed at the Nizāmiah Press, Cawnpore, in 1869–in the spring of 1877; and since then it has pleasantly occupied some of my leisure time in the intervals of professional duty. I have endeavoured to make it as literal as possible, and, by imitating Sádi's metre (Anapæstic Tetrameters) and rhyme, to give it, in some measure, the ring of the original.
With very few exceptions, each line is the equivalent of the corresponding line in the Persian. This has not been accomplished without sacrificing to some extent elegance of diction; at the same time, I hope I have made the meaning fairly clear.
In addition to the wording of some of the passages in the original being rather doubtful, Sádi is occasionally