Nor had he any taste for rule; his days were spent in the society of musicians, buffoons and poets, and he himself dabbled in verse-making of a mystic tendency.
It is reported that the caliph even permitted one of his buffoons to turn the person of Ali into mockery.
Some of them played the part of professional jesters (like the later buffoons and court fools), and kept collections of witticisms ready for use at their patrons' table; others relied upon flattery, others again condescended to the most degrading devices (Plutarch, De adulatore, 23; De educatione puerorum, 17).
The crowd drew up to the large table, at which sat gray-haired or bald seventy-year-old magnates, uniformed and besashed almost all of whom Pierre had seen in their own homes with their buffoons, or playing boston at the clubs.
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