BahÄr-i DÄnish (Garden of Wisdom) by Munshi InÄyat Allah Kanbuh in the mid-seventeenth century. These are hikayÄt (tales) of a romance between a prince Jahandar Sultan and a maiden Bahrawar Banu, translated by the narrator into Persian. Think Sheherzade, but with a Munshi.
I was delighted to find this on Google Books - though, it is scanned backwards, and is hard to read in the browser. The scanned edition is from the famed Naval Kishore Press, produced in 1879. Take a look at the way the text, the footnotes, and the notes intermingle on that front page. I absolutely love the upside-down notations. The day our web reaches this level of textual interminglings, is the day I will worry about print.
It looks positively Talmudic. Scanned backwards, though, that's a bit of a flaw....
That is just lovely