I read the following remark about wine, in the book of “The teachings of Zoroaster, and the Philosophy of the Parsi Religion” published in 1913.  Wine has been the source of delight and inspiration, from khayam to Hafiz, their work is filled with peoms of love, wine and the soul.

So legend has it that wine was an accidental discovery during the riegh of King Jamshid.  A lover of fresh fruit and in particular grapes which were grown in abundance in famous area of Shiraz, a large supply of the fruit was always kept in a special jar.  As time passed the grapes fermented and as such became unfit to consume at mealtime when it was usually served.  As such due to the bitter taste and the intermediate phase during the fermentation (aldehyde) that was nothing less than a nasty food poisining, the jar was labelled poison and as such was stored for its new found purpose in a secular part of the palace.

Now a favourite lady of the king’s household wished (for reasons best known to herself) to put an end to her life, and knowning that this deadly poison lay so close at hand she took  a huge sip from this jar and boldly courted death.  However she merely became intoxicated and fell into a deep sleep.  Upon wakening she found herself very much more alive than dead.  She repeated the experiment again and again, and to her surprise each time she felt more and more alive until she regained her former cheerfulness.

Such a change did not pass unnoticed by King Jamshid, who inquired the cause of this change.  The lady unwillingly confessed that in order to put an end to her miserable existence had resorted to drinking the poison but to her surprise the poison had freed her soul from her troubles.

From that time onwards, large quantities of this poison were ordered by King Jamshid, who in company of his courtiers took great pleasure of posioning themselves, renaming the bitter drink “Zahre khosh” or the “pleasant poison”.

 

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