Ghazal 216, Verse 5x

{216,5x}

vuh daad-o-diid-e giraa;N-maayah shar:t hai hamdam
vagarnah muhr-e sulaimaan-o-jaam-e jam kyaa hai

1) that valuable/weighty justice and vision is the condition, oh confidant
2) otherwise, the Seal-ring of Solomon and the Cup of Jamshid-- what is it?!

Notes:

daad : 'Statute, law; equity; justice'. (Platts p.499)

 

diid : 'Seeing, sight, vision'. (Platts p.556)

 

giraa;N-maayah : 'Weighty, ponderous; precious, of great value, valuable; of noble birth or stock'. (Platts p.902)

 

shar:t : 'A condition, stipulation, agreement, term, provision, engagement, bargain'. (Platts p.725)

 

muhr : 'A seal; seal-ring; — impression of a seal; a stamp'. (Platts p.1099)

Zamin:

That is, there ought to be a judgment and awareness and justice like that of Solomon, and a farsightedness and forethought like that of Jamshid. Without that, neither Solomon's ring nor Jamshid's cup has any value. (508)

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, 'Oh confidant, look at this divine bestowal and this spectacle of the world! They can be a cause for esteeming and valuing curiosities/wonders. Otherwise, without seeing them we cannot understand what the Seal-ring of Soloman and the Cup of Jamshid are like.' (305)

FWP:

SETS

For background see S. R. Faruqi's choices. This verse is NOT one of his choices; I thought it was intere sting and have added it myself. For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.

The Seal (or Ring) of Solomon and the Cup of Jamshid have complex histories as symbolic objects, and as names to conjure with. The present verse seems to argue that they are really worthless in their own right, and derive their value entirely from Solomon's famously astute legal decisions (as in the 'Judgment of Solomon') and from Jamshid's visionary insight.

The only thing I can think of that could give this verse any punch would be the somber inscrutability of the first line (with its nice sound effects of daad-o-diid ), followed by an unexpected shock: the sudden and airy dismissal of two legendarily revered objects.

But in any case, why do we need hamdam ? It adds no information whatsoever to the verse. It looks like plain old padding, to me.

For a more complex take on the relationship between owners and symbolic objects, see {4,15x}.