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Hafez issues[edit]

I was always told hafez was called hafez because he had memorized the quran and 25 different tafsirs. I was under the impression that he was a devout individual and his allusions to wine throughout his poetry where metaphors of a divine love. Am i wrong? this article makes hafez out to be some heathen hedonistic alcoholic bum. It does a poor job of relaying the most important information about him.

I read this article with amazement. There is hardly any authentic information about Hafiz' life that we know, other than the fact that he lived in Shiraz and at what time. His life is as mysterious as his poetry. This article seems more like a pop magazine article about Hafiz rather than an encyclopedic article. Especially with childish claims like "he had memorized a zillion works of x and y and z" or "at age 21 he worked in a bakery". None of this is factual or provable. I suggest we cut out most of the meaningless hearsay and myth and curtail the article to a minimal but factual one. I would be happy to contribute. Ardavan 13:19, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)

If myths are persistant enough and widely enough spread, then I think it is reasonable to report on them in a style similar to the current article. I think though it would be useful that these "myths" are somewhat better referenced. I agree here with you Ardavan. Refdoc 17:41, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Have made a stab at adding sub categories that try to tease the 'fact' (such as it is) from the folk-tales. Also various additions. Fontgirl, 19:26, 11 Feb 2005
Thank you Fontgirl, for your modifications. I think they made the article much better. I made two changes. One is that I changed "erotic" to "love", because Hafiz' stongest point is his subtlety and multi-dimentional or multi-interpretability of his art. I think very few people would characterize his poetry, or even aspects of it, "erotic", although even that interpretation is also possible. The other is about Western scholars have changed the gender in translation. I take issue with that. In Modern Persian langauge we do not have "gender" (no "he/she/it") and the only places when in his poem there is a gender, is when the subject is obviously male or female according to the context and not according to the pronoun. In such cases, I don't think there is any room for confusion. But if you (or others) have specific sonnets in mind about this, I would be happy to know which ones they are. Ardavan 06:01, 16 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Ardavan; have added a fuller and more subtle passage on this, thus...
In Turkish & Persian there is & was no gender in the third person pronoun. Consequently, many translators into English have assumed 'she' instead of 'he' as the object of affection. But by examining the verse's context, it is possible to discern that the beloved is in fact male. Western scholars have commented on this apparent gender-changing in the poetry; e.g. The Theme of Wine-drinking and the Concept of the Beloved in Early Persian Poetry, in: Studia Islamica, volume 13, 1960.

Fontgirl 20:09, 16 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Sorry due to work I am not able to come here often. I removed the above statement from the article because it is plain false. It suggests that there are homosexual poems in Hafez' work, but some Western scholars have intentionally translated "he" to "she". I do not know of any Hafez translations, but I certainly know his poems in the original language. I can say I live with those poems. Are you saying that Hafez was a homosexual? Ardavan 07:01, 21 Feb 2005 (UTC)
And you ask _us_ to 'remove the myths' about Hafiz? I'm afraid that you would be laughed out of any western conference on Hafiz.
  • What gender are the Arabic words used, in Persian poetry, for the beloved?
  • Were, or were not, women totally secluded and forbidden from men's gatherings and houses (unless married to the male)? Were women permitted to be seen drunk and wearing a shirt, in the public street? Is this, thus, the description of a woman? ...
"Disheveled hair, perspiring, with laughing lips and drunk / With open shirt, singing a ghazal, a jug of wine in hand." (No. 22).
  • Why is there frequent mention of soft hair budding on the upper lip and aaround the jawline of the beloved? (No. 3, 35, 62, 67, 90, 153, 307, 359, 386, 454). Did Persian women grow beards? Hafez even expresses the unwanted effects of growing a beard and the beloved youth growing up (No. 155).
  • How do you explain the military color of lyrical imagery?
  • How would you translate No. 396? ...
What choices have I, if I should not fall in love with that child? / Mother Time does not possess a better son.
  • Have you ever seen an uncensored copy of the Encyclopædia Iranica?
Fontgirl, 20:39. 24th Feb 2005

I am not particularly worried if I "would be laughed out of any western conference on Hafiz" as I have a degree in Persian Literature from the University most authoritative on Persian language in the world, as Persian is my mother tongue and as I teach Persian in high school. And all of that is pale compared to my own love for Hafez' untranslatable wizadry. Of the Ghazal numberrs that you listed above, none of them contains anything that even remotely suggests any homosexual tendencies or promotion of such deviations. A quick look at your edit history explains where this comes from. Your "beard" statement is simply nonsense and untrue. Apparently my Hafez book has a different numbering scheme than yours. Perhaps you can exactly write down which of his Ghazals is referring to beards (which you seem to suggest it's a "he" who is translated as "she" in "western languages").

The No. 22 that you mention, which in my book it is not No. 22, but I immediately recognized which one you mean form your translation, is clearly about a female and not a male. The couplet immediately after it mentions "chashm Narges" (Narcissus eyes) which is a quite commonly used symbolism in Persian poetry and is ALWAYS female. You left that part out. Besides, if you could understand the symbolic nature of this type of poetry and what they are talking about, you would know that even if it was a male, or lion or eagle or anything else, makes no difference in the essence and the concept for which it stands for and symbolizes. The fact that some "western experts" have made a carnal interpretation of is says it all.

In connection with that same Ghazal you write: "Were, or were not, women totally secluded and forbidden from men's gatherings and houses (unless married to the male)? Were women permitted to be seen drunk and wearing a shirt, in the public street? Is this, thus, the description of a woman?" -- well, first of all, the scene of that Ghazal is not in a bar or pub (Meykada in Persian), rather, it is at midnight and in privacy. But to answer your question, since you are making such direct interpretation of everything, then why don't you ask yourself was there a public wine house in the Islamic society of Hafez' time? If there was, then sure, there could also be female wine servers. The existence of a public wine house in that society would be much more shocking than female servants working in such a place.

Regarding Encyclopedia Iranica, no, I haven't seen it. Regarding the Ghazal numbers you are asking, it is obvious that your book has different numbers from mine. Regarding "military color of lyrical imagery" I have no idea what you are talking about.

There have been many respectable Western scholars who were very well familiar with Hafez' works. Goethe is certainly no small figure. How did he miss this obviously "homoeroticism" (I learned this word by reviewing your edit history) of Hafez and never mentioned it at all? Edward G. Browne was another Western scholar who was well familiar with Persian literature. How come he never mentioned anything about such aspects of Hafez? Reynold A. Nicholson was another Western scholar who wrote extensively about Hafez. There are many others. And what about Iranian scholars? None of them have enough brain to understand their own native language and see the "homoerotic" aspects of Hafez, but only a certain "western conferences on Hafez" are capable of seeing it? Would the Islamic Republic of Iran include the poetry of a "homoerotic" poet in the books and educational system of Iran? Ardavan 07:22, 25 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Evidence: Columbia University's Encyclopædia Iranica - entries on Hafez; see especially vii and viii. Are you going to argue with the definitive multi-volume encyclopedia of Iranian culture, editied and published by Columbia University and funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities? (A free font download is required to handle the need for textual accenting.) Fontgirl, 14:46, 26th Feb 2005

Thank you for the link. Sadly, even after installing the font the text is with strange characters, making it nearly impossible for me to read it meaningfully. Perhaps you can copy and paste the exact part of that article (with exact reference to the section it comes from). I would be most interested to see what they have written about this alleged "homoeroticality" of Hafez' lyrics. Nevertheless, are you disputing what I have already presented to you? The fact that in Islamic Republic of Iran Hafez' poems are not only included in the educational system throughout, they are highly respected? What about the numerous Iranian and Western scholars who have written extensively on Hafez and nobody has ever before mentioned anything like this -- for centuries!; until I guess according to what you seem to be telling me, just recently such "aspects" of his poetry have been discovered and revealed to us from certain "Western quarters". Isn't that a little strange? At any rate, please point out exactly where in that encyclopedia it says that Hafez' poems were of a homosexual nature. I find it mildly amusing that you are trying to convince someone who has read Hafez all his life in the original langauge, and happens to be a teacher who, of all subjects, teaches Persian language and literature in high school, that he doesn't understand the poetry of Hafez as well as certain Western quarters do. Ardavan 19:15, 26 Feb 2005 (UTC)

A minor point - Iranian girls are pale skinned, but dark haired, making adolescent girls particularly prone to have "soft hair budding on the upper lip" - until they get into the habit of pulling them out - usually when a bit older. This is a normal feature and I have so far not seen one Iranian girl who would not have during/shortly after puberty have this feature. I am at a loss whether this would ever have been seen as a mark of particular beauty - it is not now - but in a poem, in a girl I would mostly see it as a sign of youth, naturalness, lack of vanity, naievty etc, but I have not studied literature Refdoc 20:06, 26 Feb 2005 (UTC)

That is exactly what you just described. It is a sort of "youthful or puberty peach fuzz" which both men and women get, but in women it is of course softer and milder. If you pay close attention to any Persian miniature painting, this "peach fuzz" is almost always present on the sideburns (and even above the lips) of the female wine stewardesses. That has nothing to do with homosexuality or homoeroticism as Fontgirl seems to insist on calling it. Ardavan 21:00, 26 Feb 2005 (UTC)

This article , in many aspects seems very low-quality to me.It provides very little useful information about Hafez and most of it is about folk myths.The section "Hafez in contemporary Iranian culture" is very poor in particular.And there are phrases like :"His work is also notable for making frequent reference to astrology and displaying a knowledge of astronomy and the zodiac." which do not seem appropriate , Hafez's poetry is not about astronomy, nor displays any extensive knowledge of it.I think we should cooperate and expand this article.Pasha Abd 00:57, 14 October 2005 (UTC)

Abd Pasha is right. The references to wine, love and intoxication are traditional in Persian poetry AND are esoteric references to Persian mysticism which ALWAYS uses these allegories. The Wikipedia article is pathetic.--Zubedar (talk) 20:25, 22 September 2009 (UTC)

Hardly. Take a look at the Quatrains of Omar-e-Khayyâm, the ghazals of Rudaki and the work of Jahan Khatun. Their work is of obviously non-mystical content and references wine and intoxication quite often.

Szfski (talk) 00:08, 23 September 2009 (UTC) Szfski (talk) 00:08, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

(talk) 13:53, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

What you say is OR. It is the most fascinating feature of poetry (Persian or otherwise) that a piece of poetry can have conflicting interpretations. You say "Most people don't know what he's talking about when he talks of wine, affection, etc." which means yourself are probably one of them. I offer you one sentence common among Iranians: if those poets (Hafez for example) had no "real" experience with "real wine, love", they could not talk about it so fine that their poetry has nothing but "real, common, and eternal application". Xashaiar (talk) 15:04, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

NO you do not know what you are talking about as your attempt to prove otherwise show that. Sadi said: "من از آن گذشتم ای یار که بشنوم نصیحت - برو ای فقیه و با ما مفروش پارسایی" and for Hafez here you go:

به یکی جرعه که آزار کسش در پی نیست / زحمتی می‌کشم از مردم نادان که مپرس

. Drinking wine and appreciation of beautiful women is the most natural behaviour of human being. Shiraz had a good wine that Hafez knew well. Do not make up story for those humans! Xashaiar (talk) 21:20, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

Xashaiar, we should admit that Zubedar has as much as half a point. One of the major peculiarities of Persian poetry lies in the pervasion of the poetry by mysticism. Early in Persian literary history, Sufis found that they could "express the ineffable" in poetry better than in prose. They usurped the entire poetic vocabulary, and endowed every word with a mystical implication. What had begun as actual wine on which one gets actual drunk became "the wine of union with divinity" on which the mystic is "drunk for eternity." The beautiful young sâqi whose male beauty the poet appreciated became a Shâhid (bearer of witness) to the beauty of God's existence.
Once the mystics finished transforming the poetic vocabulary, every word had acquired such associated meanings that lyricism and mysticism fused into one. This means that, while it is easy to identify poets whose work is overtly "Sufi" (such as Mawlavi and Sana'i, Qasim-e Anvar and others) it is much harder to identify and isolate poetry that is not mystical. For this reason, it is pretty pointless to ask whether Hafiz' poetry is mystical or not. In the fourteenth century, it was impossible to write a ghazal that did not have mystical overtones forced upon it by the poetic vocabulary itself. In Hafiz case in particular, the ghazals are so multi-dimensional and so densely crafted that carnal and mystical love are completely blended.
This is why W.M. Thackston said that "Hafiz sand a rare blend of human and mystical love so balanced, proportioned and contrived with artful ease that it is impossible to separate one from the other."
I would like to see if we can't make this article similarly balanced so as to display both the human and mystical sides of Hafiz' poems.Szfski (talk) 22:32, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
You are absolutely right and I was not trying to say "Hafiz has nothing to do with mysticism". I was trying to say: look there is no exclusive interpretation of these poems. The point is rather important if you see "who and why" some are trying to make up stories about these poor poets. There are 100s of instances that Hafez complains about the way Din (religion) and its agents (faghih, zahed, waez,..) are foreced upon and expected from them. The above example is only one. Somewhere else hafez states: "Dar nazar bazi-ye m bixabaran hayranand, man choninam ke nemoodam degar ishan danand". There is also the sanaāye-e sheri (īhām, esteāre, ..) that practically give much strange meanings to words/terms: almost any ghazal of hafez has some! Some of the pages on persian poets are really in bad shape and should be improved. Xashaiar (talk) 23:16, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, I noticed that. The article on Jami is pretty sparse. The one on Rumi has more to do with the American obsession with Coleman Barks' "Versions" than with Mawlavi. Not much to be done about the Rumi one, considering that every time I try to change it, I get shouted down by a thousand editors who don't want their beloved New Age guru to be slandered. Szfski (talk) 23:48, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't know how people will react to this, since it seems that this article has become a point of national pride for some editors, but I've condensed the "Work and Influence" section and created an "Interpretation" section as well. As it was, it seemed like everyone who thought they had something to say about Hafez was simply adding it to this article. I've cut down on the untranslated quotations in Persian, added some contextual information and tried to make the whole thing a little more coherent and intelligible to westerners without being unfair to any widely held scholarly point of view. Everything has been sourced appropriately. I'm not sure about keeping the "Sample translations" section. It seems to me that long quotations should be linked to, not included in the body of the article. What do you think?Szfski (talk) 01:01, 25 September 2009 (UTC)
I will have a look at the changes later and will write my opinion here. Thanks. Xashaiar (talk) 15:25, 25 September 2009 (UTC)

Translation of File:Types_of_hafez_poems.jpg into English please[edit]

This fascinating graphic showing influences of Hafez would of course be even more interesting if it were legible by non-Persian speakers on his English language page : ) Anyone able to upload an English translation? Thanks Eric Machmer —Preceding undated comment added 03:54, 21 December 2010 (UTC).

Hafez and the Persian pederastic tradition[edit]

Why are we still denying things that everybody knows? Haiduc 01:52, 26 March 2006 (UTC)

You have not provided any sources that identify him or his poetry as pederastic. SouthernComfort 02:45, 26 March 2006 (UTC)

Ethnic takeover of article[edit]

I would request other editors, preferably some with knowledge of Persian, to repair the damage caused by the editor who posted "I got the data from a persian website, Surely Persian scholars who are experts in persian language know more that a foreigner!!" as justification for the tacky art and sanitizing edits. Haiduc 02:42, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

  • I will surely restore the old picture of Hafez, as it is certainly more accurate since it was made at a time closer to when he lived. However, I am open to creating an image gallery to hold the other photo--among others--at the bottom of the article. Unfortunately, I know nothing about Hafez, but I don't see why the editors have deleted the old poetry. Why haven't they simply expanded the article by adding the new verse? They deleted much of the explanation of it, as well.--Primetime 03:06, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
  • Does it look ok, now?--Primetime 03:32, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
Thank you, that is an acceptable compromise. I will expand the caption of the book cover to clarify its provenance. Haiduc 10:53, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

incorrect interpretation![edit]

The european translator, assumed that since hafez was a follower of sufism and love in sufism had sometimes been pederastic, therefore the beloved should have been a young boy. Well, I am looking at the persian version of the verses translated by Henry Wilberforce-Clarke, and as person whose mother tongue is persian it seems to me that the beloved was an adult female rather than a young boy. Since hafez is using pronouns to refer to his beloved and the cupbeareand and pronouns in persian are the same for both genders, one could go both ways but in persian we always use the phrase 'lock of hair of the beloved' to refer to females (since they have long hair you know). Besides anyone who is familiar with hafez poetry and have an advance understanding of medieval persian language, would know that Hafez is very unlikely to have pederastic inclinations. I am well aware of the existance pederasty in many teachings of sufism and I have seen the pederastic sentiments in Jami and Saadi poems but Not all persian poets that follow sufism have pederastic inclinations!!.

If you think it's incorrectly phrased, why don't you change it, instead of delete it?--Primetime 19:23, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
That is not an alternative. What matters here is not the opinion of the Wikipedia editors but the scholarship on the topic. That being said, we should also note that a native speaker of Persian is a native speaker of Persian in the 21st century, and it is not reasonable to impute motives to Hafez based on the use of the language seven hundred years after his birth. Not only has the language changed - the culture has changed too, to say the least. Haiduc 23:59, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm afraid there are people here who have another agenda than the truth. In the western world there are two big lobbies nowadays. The first one being the jewish lobby, and the more recent one is the gay lobby. One of the ways for the gay lobby to justify it's way of living is to tag some famous people (especially of the past) with something related to homosexuality. And that's what's happening here. And I as an Iranian, it's the first time that I hear about pederastry of persian poets. Now to answer you one by one ; to fontgirl: I'm afraid the link you gave above about encyp. Iranica doesn't say anything about Hafiz being a pederast or even suggesting anything close to it. READ IT AGAIN AND TELL ME WHERE YOU SEE EVEN AN ALUSION TO LOVE FOR A YOUNG BOY, please. As for women having mildly some hair above their lips, it is still very common and at that time the removal of the hair was done for the first time when the girl got married. to Haiduc : you are definitely from that gay lobby. Let me tell you that there is no difference between the persian of 14th century and the one of 21 century from a litterary point of you. The mistake you make all is two fold; -First there is no pronoun/adjective distinguishing between male or female in persian and -Second anything said in mystical poems referes to god and love of god and the dissolution of the lover (god seeker) and the beloved (god) or in more philosophical term the subject (ego) and the object (egolessness), and those translators who did not take into consideration these two factors were/are just amators wasting their time and the time and energy of their readers.F Mir 05:07, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

Leaving your opinions about me and my opinions about you aside, please consult this link which touches on the homoerotic conventions of the ghazal tradition. Haiduc 05:23, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

Well, there are more than five hundred lines in this link you mentioned, talking about many opinions and you just pick up two lines containing the word "homoerotic", that I don't know which idiot has written. Now let me give you another link [1] where they precisely talk about ghazal, it's formation and it's particularities. And they mention : "The idealized "beloved" in the ghazal tradition is typically a woman, or God." And then why is it believed to be homoerotic????? "The use of masculine grammatical structures suggests that many poems carry homoerotic undertones." As I said it is the structure of the persian language which does not have any distinction between genders, which has made some so-called scholars (probably those with an agenda not related to mystic poetry) to makeing a deliberate mistake of talking about "masculin grammatical structure" while it is neutral in persian. Neutral meaning precisely that if a man wrote it "The idealized "beloved" in the ghazal tradition is typically a woman, or God." And the paragraph ends by ; "The ghazal rarely speaks about specific encounters; rather, it conceives of love as a metaphor for interactions among humans, God, and the world." How about you, Haiduc, going a little bit further in your analysis than just fulfilling your agenda (as I know your contribution in wikipedia very well) and looking for the word homoerotic? 21:22, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

The Miniature[edit]

I deleted the miniature in this page because of its low artistic merit (not the soft nudity it contains). It is actually a pleasurable and imaginative piece of pop art but not in line with Hafiz's style of poetry which is no doubt Persian High Art. I think it gives the page a better look if replaced with a classical miniature belonging to the same era.

Diwan -> Divan & various other corrections[edit]

Last time I checked, the word is divan, not diwan ("w" does not even exist in Farsi). Also, Khwaja is a very bad translitteration. the correct pronunciation would be Khajeh. I believe that it is important to promote correct pronunciation of foreign words (i.e. EYE-RAN -> EE-RON). Otherwise, besides the need for some information on the "Fall-e Hafez" tradition, this article is very informative. -- (talk) 23:21, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

Implications about his lifestyle[edit]

While I am not particularly familiar myself with the information pertaining to the life of Hafiz, I see a lot of things that seem to assert particular things regarding his life without any sources of information or citation on the matter. This makes me extremely suspicious of its accuracy and neutrality, and I have marked one section as such and I shall be tagging the page as needing more sources and verification throughout. I would be interested in hearing anyone's thoughts on this matter especially on better and more verifiable sources to make this more encyclopedic. Peter Deer (talk) 11:11, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

Sadly a month has passed and I see no sources cited on the matter, and I'm going to have to remove the information based on wikipedia's verifiability policy. If someone would like to cite it they are welcome to re-include the information. May you go in God's care. Peter Deer (talk) 14:11, 15 April 2008 (UTC)


I have also removed the word mystic in the first line, as there is no factual evidence proving that Hafez himself was a mystic. I also recommend removing "surrealist" as a description for Hafez's poetry. Persiancowboy 22:53, 28 August 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Persiancowboy (talkcontribs)

I've put back the word 'mystic' as it seems to be fully justified according to the documentary evidence. See in-line citation.
--Yumegusa (talk) 23:44, 30 August 2008 (UTC)
Yumegusa, I don't have access to the book you sighted. However I will appreciate if you can post the quote you sighted from that page in here? Because as far as I know we have so little documentation about Hafez and his life to prove exactly who he was and whether he was a mystic Sufi or no. There are many writers and poets who are in reality very different that the person they represent in their books. Although Hafez could have very well been a Sufi, I haven't seen any evidence proving that he was. Persiancowboy 23:58, 31 August 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Persiancowboy (talkcontribs)
"Khwája Shams ud-Dín Muḥammad Háfiz-i Shírází, the Persian poet of the fourteenth century, is one of the greatest mystics and lyrical poets...". If you doubt there's been plenty written along these lines, just take a glance at Is there counter-evidence? Please cite.
--Yumegusa (talk) 13:40, 1 September 2008 (UTC)


in the right column it is stated that "Notable ideas: Hafez's work has been translated by a number of major Western poets". I really found it disturbing and insulting to Hafez. Should we remove this sentence? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:17, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

To be translated and read all over the world is actually one of the greatest honors an author/writer/philosopher/poet can have, especially when it traverses the East-West dichotomy. I don't feel it is insulting at all. KaraiBorinquen (talk) 13:45, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

do not add that image again, please![edit]

i deleted the image of hafez goote (!) seats. I do not find it appropriate here. If you believe that must be here please write your reasons here first.

the point is that 1. that image puts an stress on gooote and the city weimer. 2. hafez is great without and before the western people tell us. 3. this is wikipedia english and not necessarily wikipedia for western people. 4. any image on a wikipedia must put the subject matter (here hafez) as the one and only central figure in the image. 5. we do not want to impress western people. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:22, 14 October 2008 (UTC), kindly desist from deleting page content, or other materials from Wikipedia. If you persist, you will be blocked from editing. This is an encyclopedia, and whom you wish to impress is of no relevance here. Please adhere to the rules of the WP community, and sign your posts by adding ~~~~ at the end.
--Yumegusa (talk) 17:14, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
why i should be blocked. who are you? i want to know the relevance of that silly image. the image is irrelevant. lets others tell us their opinion. you better care about writing on onions and not hafez. i made my points and would like to know the others opinion. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:10, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
Anonymous IP editor, please see User talk: you have been warned as follows:
Stop hand nuvola.svg This is the last warning you will receive for your disruptive edits.
The next time you delete or blank page content or templates from Wikipedia, as you did to Hafez, you will be blocked from editing.
Additionally, if you continue to vandalize, abuse reports may be sent to your network administrator at Universitaet Bielefeld, Germany, for further investigation.
--Yumegusa (talk) 13:35, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Comment: The above mentioned image showing two stone chairs in Germany, seems like a graphic creation, not even a real photograph, hence inappropriate, please do not add it, be respectful! Also memorials dedicated to Hafez can be added when there is separate section to it; meanwhile, wikicommons link has been place, where all such images can be safely uploaded for now! Thanks! --Ekabhishektalk 14:48, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

Daniel Ladinsky fraud & translations into English[edit]

Given the fact that many Western readers are likely to encounter Ladinsky's works such as "The Gift: Poems by Hafiz, the Sufi Master" (the cover spells his name as "Hafiz") when looking for some Hafez to read in English, I think that Ladinsky's fraud should have more emphasis in this article. To me, the fact has been established that Ladinsky's works attributed to Hafez are actually original works by Ladinsky, perhaps "inspired by" Hafez, but not actual trasnlations from the Persian. Ladinsky himself has publicly tried to justify this without actually denying that they are not really translations, as in his review of his own book, "The Gift," posted on Amazon. Yet, this does not seem to be well known, given the commercial success of his books. I think the issue is a bit buried in this article, and downplays it. I'm not sure that it is appropriate under the section "Works and Influence," as it should be noted as a separate issue of fradulent attribution. Perhaps it should given its own section under "Controversy," or part of a separate section about English translation (I think more discussion of the differences in the English translations is needed, and would be helpful in guiding an English speaker to appropriate readings). I even think that this should be mentioned in the intro briefly, referring to the corresponding section for more info. I would be willing to work on this, as I am currently researching the issue and looking at some of the various translations, such as those by Robert Bly & Leonard Lewisohn, Elizabeth T. Gray, and Thomas Rain Crowe. But I wanted to see what others thought first for the best plan of action? Putrescent stench (talk) 14:23, 27 May 2010 (UTC)

As a poet and translator I can assure you that Ladinsky's practise of creating versions and interpretations from others' verbatim translations is quite standard. See Translation: theory and practice : a historical reader By Daniel Weissbort and Ástráður Eysteinsson or Translation of poetry and poetic prose By Sture Allén. Ezra Pound did not speak Chinese, Seamus Heaney does not speak fluent Anglo-Saxon. Robert Bly - one the most celebrated international poetry translators - has worked with text from Kabir, Hafez, Tomas Tranströmer, Pablo Neruda and Rilke and hundreds of others during his career, in German, Swedish, French, Arabic, Russian and many other languages. If the work is fully credited, it is not at all a source of shame or embarrassment. Heaney or Billy Collins or Daljit Nagra could not take offence if a Iranian poet chose to interpret his work. This is the (credited) way of the world.
"The fact that Ladinsky's poems do not actually represent Hafez' work was a source of embarrassment for Dalton McGuinty, the Premier of Ontario, when it was discovered that the poem McGuinty had recited from Ladinsky's book at a Nowruz celebration in Toronto in 2009 had no corresponding Persian original. " I removed the McGuinty reference as the citation was from a blog. See WP:CITE for reliable sources.Spanglej (talk) 00:19, 13 July 2010 (UTC)
Spanglej, I am well aware of the practice of translators. I have read Robert Bly's translations which, though they have been criticized as being too loose, are at least based on English versions. Ladinsky's book is neither based on Persian originals nor on English versions. He does mention Clark's translations, but Ladinsky's poems are not re-interpretations of those, either; I would challenge you to name a specific translation of Clark's that a poem in "The Gift" is based on.
Ladinksy doesn't even claim to be re-interpreting Clark, but his ambiguity may trick people into thinking that. He actually says Hafiz came to him in a dream and recited the poems to him. Perhaps actual quotations should be used in the article for clarity. I would advise you to read A.Z. Foreman's review on his Poetry in Translation site, which goes in-depth about this:
Unfortunately, as Foreman points out, not many printed articles have commented on Ladinksy's work either way, which leads to me to think that the newspaper blog citation you removed is necessary (although I didn't add it). Have you read both Ladinsky's book (including his introduction) and other translations of Hafiz? I have read both The Gift in its entirety and other translations. After doing so, you would have a better understanding of this issue.Putrescent stench (talk) 18:02, 22 July 2010 (UTC)
I don't know whether it is wise for me to jump in here and say this, but I'll do it anyway because I think I have a good reason: I actually am A.Z. Foreman. Since I published that review of Ladinsky's lamentable activities, many readers have emailed me with print sources which describe what's really going on with Ladinsky. One of then is Parvin Loloi, whose statement I later added to the review. Another is Franklin Lewis who, in his discussion of Rumi translations Swallowing the Sun, also touches upon Ladinsky's behavior. Furthermore there's Chris Shackle who in chapter 2 of Translation and religion: holy untranslatable? describes it as "not so much a paraphrase as a parody." I don't understand why the newspaper citation got deleted. Ladinsky's deception is extraordinarily obvious to anyone who has ever read anything Hafiz actually wrote (and is therefore common knowledge among such persianists as even dignify Ladinsky with their attention.) One of the reasons why Wikipedia so often annoys me, actually, is that even such an obvious fact such as "Bananas are yellow" can't be included until someone digs up a print source which states that, in fact, bananas are yellow. But the above references should suffice. Szfski (talk) 06:49, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
So glad you could join the efforts here. What do you think of the idea of adding some comments about the different translations to this page? Personal interpretations could be considered original research, but perhaps quotations from the intro of those books could serve as descriptions?
Unfortunately, it seems Attilios is making unfounded edits, removing needed pieces of information, and undid your edit, though I undid his. I don't know if he has good intentions and just doesn't understand the issues properly, or is purposefully distorting the article or trying to agitate people. One of the things that irks ME about Wikipedia is when people who don't really have knowledge of a subject try to edit articles. I think some other pieces of info have been deleted that need to be added back in, such as Hafiz' diwan being the most popular book in Iran (this was unreferenced, but I'm going to add this back in with the reference). Do you think someone should report Attilios? I don't believe unreferenced material should be deleted if it is important info, and it can be traced to a reliable source, yet he has been doing this.Putrescent stench (talk) 15:41, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Well, there are a few translators whose work is historically important in terms of the West's relationship to Hafiz, such as first European translation of Hafiz (into Latin) by Thomas Hyde in 1690. Also, the Austrian diplomat Rewiczki produced a (really excellent) Latin verse translation of some of Hāfiz' poems in his Specimen Poeseos Asiaticæ in the 18th century. At about the same time the Englishman Sir William Jones' free translation of a several of Hafiz' poems into French, English, coupled with his success at making Persian-study popular in England, helped spark a veritable Hafiz-mania in Europe throughout the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Then there are Joseph v. Hammer Purgstall's 19th century translations of Hafiz into German verse which, though received negatively by many scholars, were inspiring enough to Goethe and Emerson to profoundly influence those two poets' own work. Paul Lagarde and Friedrich Rückert also produced influential translations later. Unfortunately many of these volumes are now extremely rare. And, of course, most of the original print sources are in Latin (as was most scholarly work up until the 19th century) and German. I would, however, be happy to go through said material and translate some relevant portions for use in footnotes in this article. Also, I believe Annemarie Schimmel's article Hafiz and his Critics (which can be accessed online here) offers a good, mostly accurate, summary of much of Hafiz' translational history in the west. Hope this helps. I'll try and add some footnotes which quote some of these sources in excerpt. But the citations will have to be my own translations into English from German, Latin and French. Would that be considered OR? Szfski (talk) 14:27, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
It is shaky ground. The best thing would be to post the originals here so that editors with knowledge of the languages can comment on your work. But I don't see how including translations of other translations illuminates this article. Am I missing the point? Rumiton (talk) 11:56, 13 August 2010 (UTC)
I did some painstaking work on the article for accuracy and adding references. Hopefully these are not reverted without good reason.Putrescent stench (talk) 19:28, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Putrescent, I am in agreement, and i think Spanglej's confusion in response underscores your point. It is actually still little known that Landisky's "translations" are wholecloth fabrications. I wish someone would bring a lawsuit against him and the publisher, it really is outrageous. I agree that this article would do the general public a service by making this as clear as possible.Sylvain1972 (talk) 14:17, 23 July 2010 (UTC)

Ladinsky fact is wrong[edit]

Dan Ladinsky does not know Persian, a little or a lot. I don't want to change it because I don't know how to cite it. To know that he doesn't know Persian you just need to call him on the phone and ask him. His poems are entirely made up by him. There is not one relation between one single Ladinsky poem and a single Hafez poem and Ladinsky has admitted that in a published inerview. They are "renderings" of poems by Hafiz, by Mr. Ladinsky. It's sad people don't know this. Darwin394 (talk) 14:58, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

Many do know it. See the topic right above this one. Also see this blog entry. But Ladinsky's dickishness can never be overstated, and he therefore deserves all the scorn he gets, redundant though it may at times be. Personally, I doubt that Ladinsky's punishment will be complete until Andrea Dwarkin, Valerie Solanas and Edward Said have each taken their turn sodomizing him with a brick. Szfski (talk) 05:54, 13 August 2010 (UTC)
Understandable and even commendable though your passion may be, Wikipedia needs to be very careful how it characterizes living persons, either in articles directly about them, or tangentially, in other articles and talk pages etc. There are a bunch of real good reasons why this is so. We should concentrate on article content rather than individuals. Nothing ad hominem. Thanks for your understanding. Rumiton (talk) 12:02, 13 August 2010 (UTC)
Sorry for the proctological barbs. Anyway, it's hard not to sound ad hominem when telling the truth requires you to call your subject a kook or a liar. This is probably a discussion best had over at the Daniel Ladinsky talk page, though. Szfski (talk) 09:36, 15 August 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps, or even better, somewhere away from Wikipedia altogether. Please remember that even talk pages are public spaces. (I am still wincing about those "proctological barbs." Ouch.) Rumiton (talk) 11:04, 15 August 2010 (UTC)

Can anyone tell me[edit]

how Meher Baba recited Hafiz ghazals until his dying day while maintaining a vow of silence? Rumiton (talk) 13:49, 21 August 2010 (UTC)

Probably by using his magical pseudomystical bullshit powers to summon the essence of Hafiz to speak them through his mouth without actually moving his own vocal cords while Ladinsky & other acolytes hugged him like a giant swindling teddybear. Szfski (talk) 21:15, 21 August 2010 (UTC)
Ah. I see. Might there possibly be a more scholarly explanation? Anyone? Rumiton (talk) 11:54, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Hindu mole[edit]

No takers above, looks like the contradiction needs to stand. Now...your new translation reeks of improvement, but what is a Hindu mole? Could it be the tilaka? Rumiton (talk) 10:56, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

Love in Persian Literature[edit]

The notion of love and sex do not interfere in the Persian literature and as such Hafiz cannot be assumed to be a homosexual, just as some westerners who read Hafiz think. Do you also assume that Rumi who wrote Divan-e Shams and mentioned his love for shams several times had a sexual relationship with him?حضرت محمود (talk) 08:34, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Not sure what your first sentence means, but I think Hafiz is quite clear in describing the conflict his worldly, and apparently same-sex, passions created in his life of attempted piety. The love of Rumi for his master bears no comparison. Rumiton (talk) 11:19, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: page moved. nymets2000 (t/c/l) 00:39, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

HafezHafiz Shirazi – per WP:COMMONNAME

But maybe these results include other Hafez/Hafiz. Now let's re-research with the word Shirazi / of Shiraz:

Hafiz is overwhelming Hafez.

-- Takabeg (talk) 17:10, 19 August 2011 (UTC)

 Moved nymets2000 (t/c/l) 00:37, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.
Wow, lots of discussion before making such a controversial move... How the hell have you managed to come up with this state of affairs? Anybody with the barest acquaintance with the subject knows the poet is famous in English as simply "Hafez" or "Hafiz" (with or without diacritics). Take a look at the pages with translations of his books on Amazon, for instance. Encyclopaedia Iranica has its entry under "Hafez" [2]. --Folantin (talk) 12:55, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
We researched in accordance with WP:COMMONNAME. Encyclopaedia Iranica is not almighty. Thank you. Takabeg (talk) 13:12, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
Please educate yourself. A bunch of random numbers does not constitute "research". Look at the names of the books in the bibliography for starters. --Folantin (talk) 13:15, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

Google Books: "Hafiz Shirazi": 751 results. Google books: "Hafez" poet: 9,240 results. --Folantin (talk) 13:22, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

You can throw in the Encyclopaedia Britannica for "Hafez" [3]. Hafez is the most common form among modern scholars. --Folantin (talk) 13:30, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

Normal research of google books research cannot distinguish similar words.

-- Takabeg (talk) 13:32, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

No, please explain your methodology to me. If it results in an article called "Hafiz Shirazi" as allegedly the most common name then it is completely flawed. Try learning a little about the subject and English scholarship on it first. --Folantin (talk) 13:37, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

Books Ngram Viewer can didtinguish similar words. According to Books Nagram, Hafiz is more common.

You can understand how "Hafiz Shirazi" "Hafiz of Shirazi" is common, when you see "Hafiz Shirazi" and "Hafiz of Shirazi". Takabeg (talk) 13:49, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

What the hell is -llc? Again, Iranica, Britannica, the titles of the books listed at the bottom of the page...What on earth is "Hafiz of Shirazi" anyway? It should be "Hafiz of Shiraz". --Folantin (talk) 13:52, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
We use "-Llc" to exclude Books LLC. Takabeg (talk) 14:05, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
Maybe you'd like to explain why the first sources anyone would turn to (Iranica, Britannica, Axworthy's history, A.J. Arberry's and Gertrude Bell's translations, The Cambridge History of Iran etc. etc.) all use either "Hafez" or "Hafiz". --Folantin (talk) 14:16, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

Requested move 2[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: page moved. Vegaswikian (talk) 06:07, 14 September 2011 (UTC)

Hafiz ShiraziHafezRelisted. Vegaswikian (talk) 18:29, 7 September 2011 (UTC) Page moved according to the opinion of a single user, employing a dubious methodology which does not match common English usage. Both Encyclopaedia Britannica and Encyclopaedia Iranica use "Hafez". See also: Google Books for "Hafiz Shirazi": 751 results. Google books for "Hafez" poet: 9,240 results. There may be some argument whether the most common version of the name is "Hafez" or "Hafiz" but it is certainly not "Hafiz Shirazi". Should be moved back to "Hafez". Folantin (talk) 15:05, 27 August 2011 (UTC)

Oppose: First of All, the title was newly changed. Datum indicate Hafez is not common name. Encyclopaedia Britannica, Encyclopaedia Iranica is not almighty. The Cambridge History of Iran Vol. VI doesn't use Hafez. Of course, The Cambridge History of Iran is not almighty. In fact Hafiz is acceptable. But I know common sence and etiquette. So I recommend you to cancel this requested and re-request later (after you research in detail.)Takabeg (talk) 17:01, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
Um, we've already established the current title is wrong and "Hafez" is perfectly acceptable, although apparently Iranica is "not almighty" compared to your dodgy statistical tools. I made the move request because you asked me to [4] after reverting my move back to the wrong name. Otherwise, if you want "Hafiz" that badly, I don't care that much - although I'm not sure why we need to cause the disruption all around Wikipedia such a move would entail and it's obvious to me from my reading that in recent years "e" has replaced "short i" in Persian transliteration. You might also need to "research" whether "Hafiz" takes a macron or a circumflex. I see you've now admitted "Hafiz Shirazi" was a mistake. You might want to look into reviewing your mass page move campaign accordingly. --Folantin (talk) 17:22, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
I assumed you know rules of Wikipedia, common sence and etiquette. Because I behave in accordance with Wikipedia:Assume good faith. So I send that message to you. Takabeg (talk) 17:45, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Books Ngram Viewer can distinguish between similar words. As long as I understand, Hafez is not most common, because it is not traditional transcription and is modern Persian pronounciation. Anyway, it's clear that Hafiz is more common than Hafez in English-language books and articles. Hafiz/Hafez have many other uses: we'd better add Shirazi. Takabeg (talk) 17:40, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
It's clear that "Hafez" is the version most used by modern scholars of Persian. As you imply, "Hafez" also conveniently avoids having to have disambiguation from other forms of "Hafiz". The page has been at the location "Hafez" for years. "Hafiz Shirazi" is not acceptable per "use common English name". If you really want to use "Hafiz" then you will have to call the page "Hafiz (poet)" per standard Wikipedia disambiguation. --Folantin (talk) 17:47, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support. The sources discussed here leave little doubt that "Hafez" is how this poet is referred to in the best reliable sources. Ucucha (talk) 13:58, 9 September 2011 (UTC)
  • Support This clearly should be at "Hafez" for the reasons listed above.Sylvain1972 (talk) 15:57, 9 September 2011 (UTC)


  1. "Hafez" is the form used by Encyclopaedia Britannica, which doesn't even mention "Shirazi"
  2. "Hafez" is the form used by Encyclopaedia Iranica, the major reference work on Iranian culture and history, written by the leading experts in the field
  3. It is also used by the most recent scholarly works on the subject
  4. Wikipedia's article was at "Hafez" for years before it was changed according to the opinion of a single user who now admits that "Hafiz Shirazi" is not the most common English usage. One user does not equal consensus. Putting this page at "Hafez" is basic common sense since it avoids having to disambiguate from Hafiz. It also avoids having to fix dozens and dozens of incoming links to this page.
  5. The statistical method used to determine "Hafiz Shirazi" as the "most common name" was deeply flawed. Removing "Books LLC" cannot explain the massive discrepancy between Google Books for "Hafiz Shirazi": 751 results and Google Books for "Hafez" poet: 9,240 results. --Folantin (talk) 09:28, 30 August 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

File:Hafez2.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:Hafez2.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Media without a source as of 15 October 2011
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Why he dressed like a Russian in this picture? And what its mean? Hofizi Sherozi? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:50, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

Agree. The ridiculous pictures of him should be removed. There are no renderings of Hafez. None. All 'artist's concepts' are biased - particularly those showing him as a jolly old man with a turban or some kind of weird Russian nobleman. These are absurd. Might as well photograph bums on the street of Tehran. Noh Chung (talk) 21:28, 20 April 2012 (UTC)

There are no "accurate" renderings of Jesus, of Adam, of Ali, of any of the Twelve Apostles, or indeed of loads and loads of figures of historical and religious import. This does not mean that no depictions of them are included in encyclopedia articles. If the cultural and artistic biases of these depictions merit consideration, then cited sources on that subject should mention it in a relevant section of the article, should they not? Peter Deer (talk) 16:45, 21 April 2012 (UTC)

Russian Hafez?[edit]

I don't know I got this picture from Wikimedia and put it on the article, it was already on another language article. What is Russian about it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cauca50 (talkcontribs) 21:13, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

It is not Russian. It is in Persian written by Cyrillic alphabet which is common in Tajiki PersianPouyakhani (talk) 15:18, 7 April 2012 (UTC)

File:Hafez book.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:Hafez book.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Media without a source as of 30 December 2011
What should I do?

Don't panic; a discussion will now take place over on Commons about whether to remove the file. This gives you an opportunity to contest the deletion, although please review Commons guidelines before doing so.

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  • If the image isn't freely licensed and there is no fair use rationale then it cannot be uploaded or used.

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bad link[edit]

English language resources

 the third item is currently a broken link

G. Robert Shiplett 18:59, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Infobox saint[edit]

The infobox for Hafez is classified as Saint. But he was not a saint for sure. I say we should change it to Infobox writer.Pouyakhani (talk) 06:31, 11 April 2012 (UTC)


Can we mention that he was a Shia please?-- (talk) 13:42, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Evidence?-- (talk) 17:48, 29 March 2013 (UTC)

All Qirat?[edit]

we should mention that he knew all 14 Qira'at The Holy Quran Kareem -- (talk) 13:46, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Yes, that's why his pen name is Hafez, it should be mentioned.Pouyakhani (talk) 08:07, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
That knew the Quran of by heart or all 14 Qirat?-- (talk) 18:45, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
He is kinda like THE Hafez, he knew all fourteen so that made him a significant Hafez.Pouyakhani (talk) 21:28, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
So should we mention that?-- (talk) 17:20, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
Yes, as an explanation for the pen name, I think it's necessary.Pouyakhani (talk) 19:40, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
Ok we gonna get refrences?-- (talk) 15:42, 25 December 2012 (UTC)

Not complete references[edit]

There are references that cannot be followed by any means. For instance:

  • Yarshater. Accessed 25 July 2010
  • Khorramshahi. Accessed 25 July 2010
  • Lewisohn, p. 69.
  • Gray, pp. 2-4.

There are neither links (if these are web sites), nor book titles, nor publishers, nor journal sources... I am trying to edit an article about Hafez for Bulgarian wikipedia. So, please, could somebody make these (and the similar) references complete. --Mmm-jun (talk) 15:34, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

I'm guessing...[edit]

His collected works composed of series of Persian literature are to be found in the homes of most people in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, who learn his poems by heart and use them as proverbs and sayings to this day.

So, this line from the introduction, I'm guessing...the person who wrote that comes from either Iran, Afghanistan or Tajikistan. Does the article need this in the introduction, or at least in the way and at the location it is right now? (talk) 22:04, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

Irony and sources[edit]

Regarding this edit there may be a problem with the sources: all three are Arabic, which makes them unverifiable for most English=speaking readers:

Also, the translations offered in this edit are not exactly correct English.

I also found this section to be difficult to understand so I revamped it completely. My aim was to keep the general intent of the section but to provide fuller context, an English source, and a more neutral tone. Moismailzai (talk) 17:29, 11 August 2015 (UTC)

sample poem[edit]

recently i added a sample poem translation from this book, — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:46, 11 July 2017 (UTC)

Which is unnecessary. The external links have plenty of the poetry. Wikipedia pages for poets are not in general comprised of samples of their work. Pinkbeast (talk) 02:01, 12 July 2017 (UTC)
Ok, i got it,see here — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:53, 12 July 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your understanding. Pinkbeast (talk) 14:22, 12 July 2017 (UTC)

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