Ghazal 71, Verse 10


asadull;aah ;xaa;N tamaam hu))aa
ay dare;Gaa vuh rind-e shaahid-baaz

1) Asadullah Khan became finished [off]
2) ah, alas!-- that reprobate/rake who was a pursuer of beautiful ones!


tamaam honaa : 'To be completed, finished, or concluded; to come to an end, to cease; to die'. (Platts p.336)


rind : 'A sceptic; a knave, rogue; a lewd fellow, reprobate, drunkard, debauchee, blackguard, profligate, libertine, rake'. (Platts p.600)


baaz : 'Playing, player; --(in comp.) a suffix denoting an 'agent,' 'doer,' 'one who has to do with,' 'fancier,' &c.'. (Platts p.121)


In the second line there's the tone of lament [nau;hah], and it's of the type of inshaa . (74)

== Nazm page 74

Bekhud Mohani:

Asadullah Khan has died. Alas, that reprobate, that pursuer of beautiful ones! From vuh it's clear that the person who is saying this is well acquainted with Asadullah Khan and his worship of beautiful women. (155)


shaahid-baaz means 'worshipper of beauty' [;husn-parast]. rind means 'rash/heedless wine-drinker ' [mai-kash ;Gair mu;htaa:t]. After mentioning two flaws, to express regret at his death, and to say 'ah, alas!' is not without pleasure. (157)


Here, the greatness, venerableness, and loftiness of rank that are apparent in 'Asadullah Khan' are not present in 'Asad' alone. [For another such example, see {158,9}.] (249)

S. R. Faruqi:

[See his extensive comparative discussion of this verse and Mir's M{1080,5}.]



If we put these three comments together, they do the job nicely. The speaker apparently knows the dead man well; he refers to him by his full, dignified title; he speaks of what are (ostensibly at least) his flaws of character; he expresses what feels like sincere sorrow at his death. In a closing-verse, it's very appropriate to appear to 'close out' the poet as well.

Note for nit-pickers: Is the poet's use of his full name to be considered a use of his pen-name 'Asad', which is included within it? I don't know, but it would seem logical. Other such cases: {129,7x}; {158,9}.

About rind : The word rind is the most untranslatable kind of epithet, the kind that is full of complex cultural meaning within a particular social setting. If the word 'rake' (as in 'rakish' [rindaanah]), were still in circulation, instead of so archaic-feeling, that would be the one reasonable satisfactory translation. But alas, 'rake' is no longer really available, and what else is there? An amalgam of carelessness, carefreeness, wine-drinking, sophistication, evening parties, the pursuit of beautiful beloveds-- all this is the flavor. It can no doubt be a reproach (which is how Platts censoriously presents it), but it should also have overtones of rueful, affectionate tolerance and even romantic semi-admiration ('the beautiful and the damned' kind of thing). Other examples: {133,3}; {189,2}.

This verse is discussed by Faruqi in comparison to a similar verse of Mir's, in an essay that is part of the Mir site.