Art And Culture

Jami’s Stories for Children

Jami’s Stories for ChildrenJami’s Stories for Children

A book on children’s literature ‘Camel for the Price of Cat’, written by Morteza Hamedi has been published by Narenj Publishing House.

Adapted from the fable ‘The Lost Camel’ from the Persian classic work ‘Baharestan’ by poet, scholar and writer Jami (1414-1492), the book is the first volume of a collection of 12 books that will cover most stories from the original work, ISNA quoted the author as saying.

The story is about a man who lost his camel and swore that should he find her, he would sell her for a dirham (unit of currency in several Arab states). At length his search was successful, and he at once regretted his oath; but such an oath must not be violated, so he tied a cat round the camel’s neck, and went about proclaiming: “I will sell this camel for a dirham, and this cat for a hundred dirhams; but I will not sell one without the other.” A man who passed by and heard this exclaimed: “What a very desirable bargain that camel would be if she did not have such a collar round her neck!”

Thus the camel owner was able to outsmart prospective buyers.

Introducing Iran’s classic literature to the young generation is a big task, as “the ancient Persian texts and poems are replete with valuable and ethical messages, which can be used effectively for children’s moral growth, if recreated and suitably adapted for the different age groups,” said Hamedi.

Reference to verses from the holy Qur’an and beautiful illustrations by Parisa Mobaraki makes the book appealing to readers, he said.

Baharestan is one of the most valuable ancient Persian literary works that embodies many fruitful stories and discourses. Jami is known for his achievements as a scholar, mystic, writer, composer of numerous lyrics and idylls, historian, and the greatest Sufi poet of the 15th century.

Among his famous poetical works are ‘Haft Awrang’ (Seven Thrones), ‘Tuhfat al-Ahrar’ (The Gift to the Noble), ‘Lawa’ih’ (Shafts of Light), ‘Diwanha-ye Sehganeh’ (Triplet Divans) and ‘Nafahat al-Uns’ (Breaths of Fellowship).