HE Arabian Nights, Lallah Rooke, and
Eastern fable generally, coupled with the sack of Delhi by Nadir Shah,
and the accumulation of its strange hordes of wealth in
'' That deiightful Province of the Sun,"
surrounded Persia with a halo of romance studded with precious gems.
There was once a brilliant reality in the " untold treasures " of
Persia, but that time, it is to be feared, is past, and the tendency of
the prosaic age in which we live is to go to the extremes in
discounting the exaggerations of history, leaving nothing to the
imagination. For example, when the Shah visited England for the first
time satirists questioned the genuineness of his jewelled decorations,
and horticulturists declared that in spite of " the Bower of Roses by
Bendemere's stream," his majesty saw more and finer examples of
Persia's favourite flower in London than ever he saw at home. The Shah,
wore what appeared to be fine gems, but they were