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Opening Page of the Kalila wa Dimna

Opening Page of the Kalila wa Dimna

The Kalila wa Dimna is a collection of animal tales that originally came from India, where it is known as the Panchatantra. According to Ferdowsi’s Shahnameh, the stories came to pre-Islamic Iran in the late 6th century, when an Iranian doctor went to India in search of a plant he heard about that could supposedly make the dead talk. After a long search, the doctor discovers that it isn’t a plant at all, but rather a book full of wisdom, which he brings back to Iran.  After the arrival of Islam, Kalila wa Dimna was translated into Arabic, and from there it was re-translated into Persian.

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