Freshwater Fishes of Iran
Introduction - Quotes
A weak fisherman caught a strong fish in his net and not being able to retain it the fish overcame him and pulled the net from his hand. A boy went to bring water from the torrent. The torrent came and took the boy away. The net brought every time a fish. This time the fish went and carried off the net. The other fishermen were sorry and blamed him for not being able to retain such a fish which had fallen into his net. He replied: 'O brothers, what can be done? My day was not lucky but the fish had yet one remaining'. Moral: A fisherman cannot catch a fish in the Tigris without a day of luck and a fish cannot die on dry ground without the decree of fate. ---- Story 24 from the Gulistan of Sheikh Muslih-uddin Sa'di Shirazi, 1258.
The Caspian sea is marueilous full of fish, but no kind of monstrous fish, as farre as I could vnderstand, yet hath it sundry sortes of fishes which are not in these parts of the world. ---- Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation, Richard Hakluyt, 1599.
Fresh-water Fish is not so plentiful, because there are but few Rivers in Persia, and they take abundance of Water out of them, so that very little Fish can breed there..... There are three sorts of Fresh-water Fish in that large Empire; that of Lakes, that of Rivers, and that of Kerises, or Subterraneous Canals. ---- Sir John Chardin, 1724.
No sea, perhaps, in the world, produces so great a quantity of fish. ---- Said of the Caspian Sea by J. M. Kinneir, 1813.
Thus a man told me that the Caspian Sea, (on the shore of which we conversed) was a Maaden-i-mahi or mine of fish. ---- Sir William Ouseley, 1819.
I may remark as a curious fact in zoology, that many of the cannauts, both here and at Shahrood, swarmed with fish, some of which were of considerable size. ---- James B. Fraser, 1825.
Of fish, in a country which possesses so few rivers, we are not to look for either abundance or variety; nor do the inhabitants make any great use of what they have." ---- James B. Fraser, 1834.
"If you trip over a pebble on the ground, you can be sure that an Englishman put it there" (Persian saying) - as an Englishman I hope there are not too many pebbles in this work, and those that are were inadvertent.
© Brian W. Coad (www.briancoad.com)