User talk:Vortexion/Nizami Ganjavi - Backup

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These notes are for the articles such as these:

  • If you are looking for a summary quote go to sections "Briefly" and also Sections 5.1 (On Iranian Culture)
  • This also has useful stuff for the Nezami article [30].
  • If there is indeed a separate article one day trying to represent non-RS sources (see below) these notes can also be used.
  • Here are some more notes:[31] (note 125+ sources are there if necessary) and also here: [32]
  • Also see the recent peer-reviewed book by Lornejad et al. with this regard: [33]][34] [35]
  • Note I collected 125+ (and also many current living specialist sources) on Nezami here:[36] and also see this userpage here[37].
  • These notes (the ones about politicization of history) are simply meant to be an overview of distortions. I would rather not include it in any article as I sincerely believe that Wikipedia should follow standard specialist Encyclopedias like Encyclopaedia of Islam. However other users are free to include them where they see fit and if the situation arises. My comment: Let scholars do their job in educating people without any nationalist biases. In the end, the nation building politicians and their lobbyists cannot change history for those who know history no matter if billions are spent and lobbyists are sent worldwide and on the internet. It can only distort and muddy history for a short period (it won't last), but it won't change history, so it is useless effort.
  • Some of the material typed here has footnotes and paranthesis, so it is always good to check the actual books. Indeed many portions of here are actual summaries taken from various books, the free-online books may be read..

A Ghazal of Nezami translated by Lornejad et al (below):

.

Contents

Reason for these notes and Arbcomm[edit]

  • This issue is severely politicized as noted by this article:[38]..copied here incase it is deleted:[39]. There are active nationalistic lobbyists around the world pushing politicized theories. The statement of Elham Aliev below also shows that Nezami is being politicized. In a word of a respected European Nezami scholar, they are trying to "buy a piece of history". In the long term, this effort will fail as history cannot be changed.
  • These notes are here in case of an arbcomm as there are a lot of active nationalist editors(see case in Russian Wikipedia [40]).
  • In the case of arbcomm in English wikipedia, it is recommended that besides these notes, the active view of living Western Nezami scholars (Orsatti, Talatoff, van Ruyumbeke, etc.) be sought.
  • Note by Nezami scholar, we mean people that a) can read Persian and know Persian literature (throws out basically all the spurious one sentence stuff which have no weight as they are not specialized) b) have written books and articles that focus on Nezami and are about him.
  • One should not waste too much time with nationalistic users and go straight to mediation/arbcomm. Specially in this case, there is no historical basis for the usage of the term Azerbaijani for Nezami as such an ethnic identity, language and culture did not exist in 1130 (some say 1140) (see below) and at most, groups of Turcoman nomads with at most a tribal identity existed in the area and had entered during the Saljuq era.

Briefly[edit]

The history of linguistic Turkicization of Azerbaijan (NW Iran proper) and Eastern Trans-Caucasia (classical Arran and Sharvan, modern Azerbaijan republic) was a long and multi-stage process that started from the Saljuq era and culminated during the Safavid era[1] with smaller number of native Iranian speakers (e.g. Talysh people, Tats, Kurds) now remaining in the Eastern Caucasus and Iranian Azerbaijan. An Azerbaijani Turkic language and ethnos began to stabilize around XIV-XV[2] with migrations of in the Caucasus and North-Western, with a heavy Iranian contribution and layer[1][2]. Up until the 20th century, the concept of an "Azerbaijani identity" did not exist, and the ethnic term "Azerbaijani" and linguistic term "Azerbaijani" were not used by the general masses of the Turcophone speakers in Eastern Transcaucasia[3][4]. Azerbaijan was a simple geographical area[3][4]. The general masses were called by the Russians as Tatars while they considered themselves as "Muslims", "Turks" and sometime Persian[3][4] while their language was generally called "Turki" by their Muslim neighbours.

After the establishment of Soviet satellite states, it was determined by Soviet authorities that each Soviet client state must build up its national culture and identity[5][6]. The Soviets discouraged the usage of the terms "Turks", and "Muslims" and encouraged a formation of a new Azerbaijani identity that had little to do with Turks and more to do with the non-Turkish Caucasian Albanians and Iranian Medes[5][7]. As part of this new nation-building and based on mainly the territorial principle of ethno-genesis, historic Iranian factors including Nizami Ganjavi, Babak Khorramdin, Medes and even the Avesta were now considered part of the new Azerbaijani identity and literature[5][8]. As an example, the Avesta became known as the earliest form of Azerbaijani literature by the Great Soviet Encyclopaedia[8]. Thus, the Azerbaijani identity created under Soviets was not necessarily a Turkic based identity, as it started is ethno-genesis with the Medes during the Stalinistic era and later on in the post-Stalinistic era it claimed descent from the Caucasian Albanians and Medes for the Azerbaijanis[7]. In later Soviet period and specially post-Soviet Azerbaijan, the role of Turkic groups in the ethno-genesis is now emphasized while revisionist authors actively try to Turkify non-Turkish groups such as the Caucasian Albanians[5].

Until the Soviet Anniversary of 1930s, all Russian specialist sources like their specialist Western counter part considered Nezami Ganjavi to be a Persian poet[5]. The USSR campaign for Nezami's 800th anniversary in the 1930s and 1940s was a political campaign that proclaimed Nezami an "Azerbaijani poet"[5][9]. However, Soviet scholars such as Bertels only claimed that Nezami's mother was Kurdish and did not claim to know about his father's ethnicity[10]. At the same time, the Soviets referenced the works of Nezami as "Azerbaijani literature" and him as an "Azerbaijani poet" based on the territorial principle[9][8]. In this Soviet era, the role of Turkic identity of Azerbaijanis was de-emphasized and the Medes and Caucasian Albanians were given the primary role of Azerbaijani ethno-genesis. Nizami Ganjavi considered his own poetry as Persian poetry and Persian pearl[11], and outside of former USSR and modern Azerbaijan, he is considered as a representative of Persian poetry[12]. In Western Nizami scholarship and mainstream specialist Encyclopaedias about the region (e.g. Encyclopaedia of Islam), Nizami Ganjavi is considered a Persian poet and thinker, and within the realm of Iranian culture of his time; while Ganja at that time is considered an bastion of Persian culture with an Iranian population[13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][5].

Authors that have explicitly discussed and subsequently dismissed the Turkich claim on Nezami include specialists on Persian literature and Nezami[16][18], major Iranologists[15] experts on Caucasian history[21], specialist on politicization of culture[5][9] and authors outside of the realm of Iranology and Nezami studies who discuss world events[22][23]. All of these have dismissed the Turkish claim.

Lornejad et al. mention that besides the Persian culture, and the native Iranian words recorded from the speech of Ganja at that time, Nezami references himself as Persian Dehqan[24]. They also mention that the Persian term torkzad" used for Nezami by his son from his first wife (who was given to him as a gift and was of a Turkish Qifchaq background) excludes the possibility of Nezami being a Turk, since this term in the literature of that time was used for a person with an Iranian father and Turkish mother[24]. They also conclude that: Nezami’s cultural orientation - the language, literary heritage, mythology and philosophy - are more than sufficient to characterize him as a prominent figure of the Iranian cultural history. None of these concepts can be applied to a Turkish cultural history, since Nezami did not write in Turkish, nor did he use Turkish literary heritage. Finally, the philosophy and cultural heritage of Nezami is built upon his Iranian predecessors.[24]. In Azerbaijan, Nezami, who was orphaned early and raised by his Kurdish maternal uncle, is claimed to be an ethnic Turk by modern Azerbaijani writers such as Manaf-Oglu[25]and his works in Azerbaijan are considered "Azerbaijani literature", while this has been criticized, since Nezami calls his own work as Persian poetry and Persian pearl, and in the West he is seen as a representative of Persian poetry. Arguments that allege a Turkish background of Nezami are summarized in a recent source by Manaf-Oglu (2010)[26] and Javad Heyat. These arguments were critically analysed and examined by Lornejad and Doostzadeh (2012) who reject all the arguments by those authors as either falsifications, misreading or 20th century anachronistic reading of Persian texts.

Politicization means a different article than article about poet[edit]

The poet was born the early part of the 12th century when there was no Azerbaijani ethnicity, culture or language. There were Turcoman Oghuz nomads who had entered the area after Saljuqs took over around 1070 A.D. in the Caucasus and the Shaddadids lost control of the area. But these nomads did not have any identity beyond a tribal identity. They were not sedentary nor was their language exactly the modern Azerbaijani Turkish language (which went after several phases to reach its current state). Anyhow, the point is that the Soviet campaign and its political aftermath deserve a separate article all together.

The Soviet campaign as well as the modern politicization in Azerbaijan SSR, as well numerous falsification (including sources) and the trial of Nevruz Ali Mamemodov shows the issue is political. Here are samples:


    • [41] (here a scholar is accused of betrayal and is chastised for claiming Nezami/Babak as Talysh. He is killed later on. I am not saying his case has only to do with nizami/babak, but the fact that mentioning Nezami/Babak as Talysh is covered under an article talking about national betrayal is upsetting. One of the charges against him was exactly stating Nezami was not a Turk but a Talysh (Iranian)[42][43].
    • [44] "An Azerbaijani newspaper, for example, has claimed that president Khatami of Iran is a “Persian chauvinist” because he has stated the obvious fact that Nezami is a representative of Persian literature". (Okay so Nizami himself considered his work Persian poetry and Persian pearl, so does he become a chauvinist)? This source from Ayna is mentioned in Lornejad et al.
    • [45] Day.az, “Pisatel' El'chin Gasanov: ‘Nam nuzhno rabotat' nad tem, chtoby vo vsem mire poverili v to, chto Nezami i Fizuli – azerbajdzhancy’ “ 22 March, 2006. Azerbaijani scholar: "“We need to build a proper line of propaganda …, in order to prove to the world that Nezami is Azerbaijani”. This source is also mentioned in Lornejad et al.
    • [46] Heydar Aliev is quoted as stating: “I would encourage our youth to learn as many foreign languages as possible. But prior to that ambitious goal, they all should know their own language - Azeri. They should feel it as a mother language and be able to think in it. I wish for the day when our youth can read Shakespeare in English, Pushkin in Russian, and our own Azerbaijani poets - Nezami, Fizuli and Nasimi - in Azerbaijani" (So why not Nezami also in Persian like Shakespeare in English?..Translations can do much better on Shakespeare than Nezami infact.). This source is also mentioned by LOrnejad et al.
    • Ilham Aliyev (per the article)"I think that proposals on the establishment of a Nizami centre are praiseworthy. No-one doubts that Nizami Ganjavi is an Azerbaijani poet of genius. The whole world knows this. If there is a need to prove this to anyone, we can do so very easily. The memory of Nizami is dear to every Azerbaijani. Nizami's works, of course, are an integral part of our national consciousness. As for the fact that some forces are trying to misappropriate these works, unfortunately, we have repeatedly faced such cases. The main reason is that Azerbaijani literature and culture are so rich that others are trying to misappropriate our national assets. This does not apply only to literature or Nizami's works. The Armenians are shamelessly stealing our music. They misappropriate the works of genius Uzeyir. The Armenians are also stealing our national cuisine." (Okay but Nezami considered his work as Persian literature, he didn't write in Azerbaijani. Who these others? If we are talking about regional shared heritage? Do people consider the other guy that wrote in English as Galeic literature?).(Official website of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan. 26 April 2011. Closing speech by Ilham Aliyev at the annual general assembly of the National Academy of Sciences[47][48])
    • Stalin: "Nezami should not be surrendered to Iranian literature" mentioned by many sources(e.g. Korlaz [23], Tamazishvill [12], Lornejad et al).

So the politicization of Nezami starts from USSR and continues today. The fact that Ilham Aliev calls Persian literature as Turkish literature (Azerbaijani literature) is a case in point, while Nezami himself has called his work as Persian literature.

RS Book - Lornejad et al.[edit]

Note the book is not copy righted as long as all statements from the book are cited and the authors,publisher..are given credit[49][50].

Many (if not most) of the notes here do not need the Lornejad et al. book. By by definition of Wikipedia WP:RS, the book meets RS. This is confirmed by Russian Wikipedia where admins decide if a source is RS as well[51]. However going to English WP:RS:

  • WP:RS: Material such as an article, book, monograph, or research paper that has been vetted by the scholarly community is regarded as reliable. If the material has been published in reputable peer-reviewed sources or by well-regarded academic presses, generally it has been vetted by one or more other scholars.
  • So the book can be quoted per above, and if there are people who disagree, then can always make attribution to the authors (as done here).
  • Kamran Talattof((Note Talattof is a major scholar of Nezami with multiple articles on him) Review of Siavash Lornejad and Ali Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi (Yerevan Series for Oriental Studies—l), Yerevan: "Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies", 2012, (review) // Iran and the Caucasus (journal) 16 (2012) 380-383. [52].

    In conclusion, the book under review can be considered a great contribution not only to the scholarship on Nezami Ganjavi but also to cultural history of Greater Iran.

  • Preface of the book:

    "In the sixteen years of publishing the international journal Iran and the Caucasus (BRILL: Leiden-Boston), we have often faced a problem when an important contribution to the field remained beyond the journal’s scope because of its format. Thus, the Series has been created to promote scholarly works, which successfully pass the peer-reviewing, but exceed the limited space allotted to articles in Iran and the Caucasus. The authors of the present monograph, Siavash Lornejad and Ali Doostzadeh, and I as the Guest Editor, are privileged to open the Yerevan Series with research on one of the pillars of the Persian poetry — Nizami Ganjavi."

  • Consequently the book has the same status as the peer-reviewed journal Iran and the Caucasus (journal) (published by Brill). As the prefaces states, it was accepted to be published in Iran & Caucasus originally, but it became too long as noted by the editor of the journal and assistant editor of the journal in the preface. Iran and the Caucasus (journal) has excellent reviews and citations in Google scholars. Here are some reviews of Iran & Caucasus journal[53]:
  • “Iran and the Caucasus uniquely explores all periods and disciplines connected to this region, and the journal numbers among its authors and editors scholars from the area and the world: in every way it is a truly cosmopolitan bridge of civilization, and an indispensable tool for Near Eastern studies, folklore, comparative religion, history and politics.” Prof. James R. Russell, Harvard University
  • “Since its very first issue ten years ago Iran and the Caucasus has added a refreshing new perspective to our field. It covers not only Armenia and the Caucasus but also the cultural, ethnic, and linguistic regions adjacent to and interacting with the Iranian lands, ranging from Turkey and Iraq to Afghanistan and Central Asia as well as others, from Antiquity to the present. With admirable editorial verve and vision, each issue presents a panorama of succinct articles and reviews which continue to be most stimulating.”Prof. Gernot Windfuhr, Professor of Iranian Studies, University of Michigan
  • “Iran and the Caucasus is a unique periodical covering two vast Orientalistic fields and, thus, the huge Caucasian-Near Eastern region. I follow the journal since its first issue and would specially emphasize its high academic standards. Iran and the Caucasus definitely incorporates the best traditions of 19th century Orientalistic publication, focusing, at the same time, on the most topical present-day subjects. Vladimir Aronovich Livshits, Prof. Dr. Sc. Fellow of the British Academy

.

Short reviews from other scholars (one Nezami specialist, one major Iranologist, and one expert on Caucasian history):


This book provides a full survey of the distortions – dictated by nationalistic purposes – which have been pervading the field of the studies on the Persian poet Nezami of Ganje since the Soviet campaign for Nezami’s 800th birthday anniversary. The authors discuss, with critical accuracy, the arguments put forward by Soviet scholars, and more recently by scholars from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which term Nezami as an “Azerbaijani poet” and his work as pertaining to an alleged “Azerbaijani literature;” and show the historic unsoundness of such theses. Beyond this pars destruens, the book provides also a very rich pars construens, with a bulk of information and data drawn from a first-hand reading of Nezami’s own works and the works by other coeval poets, as well as from historical sources. This book represents an interesting and meticulously documented study on Persian classical literature and on many historic, ethnographic and linguistic questions related to ancient Arran and Transcaucasia. We should be grateful to the authors for having tackled a subject - the politicized use of culture - whose importance has been generally underestimated by European scholars. However the unveiling of a statue in Rome of the “Azerbaijani poet” Nezami compels us to react to such distortions; and makes this book of great topical interest, too.


Dr. Paola Orsatti, Associate Professor of Persian language and literature-Sapienza University of Rome

Using admirable caution in the mined field of the reconstruction and critical evaluation of the national stereotypes and clichés stratified through different generations about the interpretation of great literary figures, the authors analyze the ideological constructs created about the figure and work of Nezami Ganjevi. The book presents a thorough review of many relevant aspects of the question, concerning ethnic history and identity, no less than linguistic and literary details, relevant to the regions of NW Iran and southern Caucasus in which the poetical activity of Nezami found expression. The authors make extensive use of all available data, many of which never previously examined in connection to the subject, thus contributing to a better understanding of a difficult and sensitive issue both of political and literary history of the Persianate culture.



Prof. Dr. Adriano V. Rossi,

University of Naples


Siavash Lornejad and Ali Doostzadeh have produced a first-rate scholarly work to expose the attempts by the Soviet Union in the 1930s to falsely label Nezami as “the great national poet of Azerbaijan.” This was done specifically to eliminate the Iranian cultural heritage from among the Shi’i Muslims of Transcaucasia, as well as to give the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic a national identity. To accomplish this and to lay claim to the historical Azarbaijan (in northwestern Iran), Moscow pressured its historians and writers to view the entire region of eastern Transcaucasia as “Azerbaijan,” centuries prior to the establishment of the Azerbaijan Republic in the 20th century. In addition, in order to occupy historical Azarbaijan (which the Soviets did in 1946) they began to refer to the Iranian province as “Southern Azerbaijan.” The present work not only debunks the numerous falsehoods, but, by carefully examining Nezami’s works, also proves that Nezami, without a doubt, was an Iranian poet.



Dr. George Bournoutian
Senior Professor of History

Iona College, New York

comment on the location of the publisher[edit]

There is a claim by some users from the Caucasus that the book is published in Yerevan, so that is not fair. However:

  • Wikipedia RS WP:RS cares about peer review and reliable publishers, the publisher in Yerevan is the same one that also edits the Iran and the Caucasus (journal) journal. Iran and the Caucasus (journal) is an enormous Iranian studies journal and is amongst the top 5 Iranian studies English journal in the world.
  • Yerevan has a strong and world renowned Iranian studies program. One of the most scholarly and most prestigious in the world.
  • The book could have been also say published in US, Iran, Canada, etc and obtained the same reviews. However, the topic has to do with Iran & Caucasus (the poet being from there) and it is natural that a journal that connects Iran and the Caucasus (journal) is the most appropriate venue.
  • Since Iran and the Caucasus (journal), decided that the book was too long for a journal format (see above) and consequently published it in their own series. However, as noted by them, it met their peer-review process for Iran and the Caucasus (journal). Iran and the Caucasus (journal) is very well respected journal when it comes to Iranian studies and consequently, it is one of the most appropriate place for issues on Iranian studies that intersect with the Caucasus.
  • Example of expertise by reviewers:
    • Paolo Orsatti:[[54]](ḴOSROW O ŠIRIN Encyclopaedia Iranica) (she has several other articles on Nezami).
    • Kamran Talattof. "Nizami Ganjavi, the Wordsmith: The Concept of sakhun in Classical Persian Poetry", Christoph Bürgel, C. van (Christine van) Ruymbeke. "A Key to the Treasure of the Hakīm: Artistic and Humanistic Aspects of Nizāmī Ganjavī's Khamsa", Amsterdam University Press, 2011.
  • Wikipedia cares about peer review of a book as noted above that has been vetted by the appropriate scholars (the above professors mentioned are all experts in either Nezami and/or history and Iranology).

Current concensus and Western Specialists[edit]

Nizami Specialists, experts in history and experts on politicization dismiss the Turkish viewpoint[edit]

By specialists: a) someone that knows Persian and classical Persian literature b) has written articles and/or books on the subject (that is the article or book focuses on Nezami specifically and not external matters or just touch upon him in a paragraph). As far as I have researched not a single Western Nezami specialist has even taken the Turkish theory seriously.

Authors that have explicitly discussed and subsequently dismissed the Turkich claim on Nezami include specialists on Persian literature and Nezami[16][18], major Iranologists[15] experts on Caucasian history[27], specialist on politicization of culture[5][9] and authors outside of the realm of Iranology and Nezami studies who discuss world events[28][23]. All of these have dismissed the Turkish claim.

This is significant also for place like Wikipedia, since it shows scholars dismiss the Turkish viewpoint (when making comparison to Iranian viewpoint) while there is not a Western World Class Nezami scholar (knows Persian, is in a major Western university and has written books/articles on him) that mentions the Turkish viewpoint or dismisses the actual fact that Nezami was an Iranian.

Scholarly Consensus on Nezami and Wikipedia[edit]

Of course a consensus is evident when one looks at the work of Nezami specialists (know Persian, study Persian literature and have written books/articles on him). The following are three sources show the consensus that Nezami is Persian/Iranian poet and thinker, and representative of Persian literature[12][16][19].

See Wikipedia policy WP:RS/AC. Quoted:The statement that all or most scientists or scholars hold a certain view requires reliable sourcing that directly says that all or most scientists or scholars hold that view. Otherwise, individual opinions should be identified as those of particular, named sources. Editors should avoid original research especially with regard to making blanket statements based on novel syntheses of disparate material. Stated simply, any statement in Wikipedia that academic consensus exists on a topic must be sourced rather than being based on the opinion or assessment of editors. Note Wikipedia needs sources mentioning a consensus. That is wikipedia users cannot comeup and claim there is a consensus without sources.

Summary of Western scholarship[edit]

In Western Nizami scholarship and mainstream specialist Encyclopaedias about the region (e.g. Encyclopaedia of Islam), Nizami Ganjavi is considered a Persian poet and thinker, and within the realm of Iranian culture of his time; while Ganja at that time is considered an bastion of Persian culture with an Iranian population[12][16][17][18][19][20][14].

In Western Nizami scholarship and mainstream specialist Encyclopaedias about the region (e.g. Encyclopaedia of Islam), Nizami Ganjavi is considered a Persian poet and thinker, and within the realm of Iranian culture of his time; while Ganja at that time is considered an bastion of Persian culture with an Iranian population[12][16][17][18][19][20][14]. Lornejad et al. mention that besides the Persian culture, and the native Iranian words recorded from the speech of Ganja at that time, Nezami references himself as Persian Dehqan[24]. They also mention that the Persian term torkzad" used for Nezami by his son from his first wife (who was given to him as a gift and was of a Turkish Qifchaq background) excludes the possibility of Nezami being a Turk, since this term in the literature of that time was used for a person with an Iranian father and Turkish mother[24]. They also conclude that: Nezami’s cultural orientation - the language, literary heritage, mythology and philosophy - are more than sufficient to characterize him as a prominent figure of the Iranian cultural history. None of these concepts can be applied to a Turkish cultural history, since Nezami did not write in Turkish, nor did he use Turkish literary heritage. Finally, the philosophy and cultural heritage of Nezami is built upon his Iranian predecessors.[24].

A list of 125+ English sources (some specialist and some non-specialist) that call Nezami Ganjavi a Persian poet are mentioned here:[55]

Here is ten of them (have books or articles on Nezami and know Persian and are university affiliated):

  • Chelkowski, P.J (1995), “Nizami Gandjawi”, Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Ed., vol. 8: 76-81. Online Version: Chelkowski, P. "Nizami Gandjawi, jamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muayyad . Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2008. Brill Online. Excerpt one:"Nizami Gandjawi, Djamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muʾayyad, one of the greatest Persian poets and thinkers." .
  • Rudolf Gelpke, “The Story of Layla and Majnun”, Translated by Rudolf Gelpke, Omega Publications, 1997. Excerpt from pg xi: “somewhere in the western half of the Arabic peninsula, about 500 years before AD 1188 (584 H), the year in which the Persian poet Nizami wrote his poem”
  • C. A. (Charles Ambrose) Storey and Franço de Blois (2004), “Persian Literature - A Biobibliographical Survey: Volume V Poetry of the Pre-Mongol Period.”, RoutledgeCurzon; 2nd revised edition (June 21, 2004). Pg 363: “Nizami Ganja’i, whose personal name was Ilyas, is the most celebrated native poet of the Persians after Firdausi. His nisbah designates him as a native of Ganja (Elizavetpol, Kirovabad) in Azerbaijan, then still a country with an Iranian population..”
  • Julie Scott Meisami, Paul Starkeym, “Encyclopedia of Arabic Literature”, Taylor & Francis, 1998. Pg 69:“In Arabic literature there has been no artistic elaboration of the story comparable to that undertaken by the Persian poet Nizami “
  • Maria Subtenly, “Visionary Rose: Methaphorical Application of Horticultural Practice in Persian Culture” in Michel Conan and W. John Kress, “Botanical progress, horticultural information and cultural changes”, Dumbarton Oaks, 2007. Pg 12: “In a highly evocative tale he relates in the Makhzan al-Asrar (“Treasury of Secrets”), the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowleged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination”
  • Annemarie Schimmel, "And Muhammad Is His Messenger: The Veneration of the Prophet in Islamic Piety (Studies in Religion)",The University of North Carolina Press (November 30, 1985) . pg 18: “In Persian sources, his search for knowledge takes precedence over world conquest. In the Iskandar-namah (Book of Alexander) by the Persian poet Nizami, Alexander is depicted as the half-brother of the conquered King “
  • Abel, A. (1978), “Eskandar nāma”, Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Ed., vol. 4:127-129. Online: Abel, A.; Ed(s). "Iskandar Nama." Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2007. Brill onlien edition. Excerpt: "In the Shahnama, Firdawsi already makes Iskandar an exemplary figure, whom the companionship of Aristotle helps to rise still higher, by the path of wisdom and moderation, in the direction of abstinence and contempt for this world. And Firdwasi laid stress on the defeat of Dārā (the Darius of the Greeks) as something desired by "the rotation of the Heavens"....At the time of Niẓami, however, Islam is from then onwards well established in Iran, and it is the prophetic and ecumenical aspect of his destiny that the poet makes evident in his hero. As a learned Iranian poet, Niẓami, who demonstrates his eclecticism in the information he gives (he says, "I have taken from everything just what suited me and I have borrowed from recent histories, Christian, Pahlavi and Jewish ... and of them I have made a whole"), locates the story of his hero principally in Iran.
  • A.A. Seyed-Gorhab, "Magic in classical Persian amatory literature", Iranian Studies, 1475-4819, Volume 32, Issue 1, 1999, Pages 71 – 97. Excerpts: "A meticulous description of Qays's demoniac had to wait till the twelfth century when the Persian poet Nizami of Ganjah composed an artistic and refined story of Majnun's legend. In recounting his version of the lives and love of Layla and Majnun, Nizami relies on a popular folkloristic theme in which a young prince is smitten by love for a fairy."
  • Paola Orsatti (Associate Professor of Persian language and literature, Sapienza University of Rome). Back Cover Comments // Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh. On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi. Edited by Victoria Arakelova. YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES, Yerevan 2012. This book provides a full survey of the distortions – dictated by nationalistic purposes – which have been pervading the field of the studies on the Persian poet Nezami of Ganje since the Soviet campaign for Nezami’s 800th birthday anniversary. The authors discuss, with critical accuracy, the arguments put forward by Soviet scholars, and more recently by scholars from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which term Nezami as an “Azerbaijani poet” and his work as pertaining to an alleged “Azerbaijani literature;” and show the historic unsoundness of such theses.
  • Kamran Talattof review of Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi (Yerevan Series for Oriental Studies—l), Yerevan: "Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies", 2012, 215 pp. (review) // Iran and the Caucasus (journal) 16 (2012) 380-383. "Nezami Ganjavi is one of the most famous Iranian poets of the classical period. He was born to native Iranian parents in the city of Ganja, which is now located in Azerbaijan Republic. At Nezami’s time, Iranian ethnic elements and Persian culture and language were dominant in Ganja as noted by primary sources. Nezami is famous for his five monumental books of narrative poems collectively known as Panǰ-ganǰ or “Five Treasures”, all considered Persian masterpieces. He also wrote a number of Persian lyric poems.

Two notable historians:

  • Bernard Lewis, “Music of a distant drum”, Princeton University Press, 2001. Pg 9: “The Persians went a step further, creating authentic epic tradition comparables with those of Greece, Rome and the Vikings. This too, became in time, a form of Persian national self definition. The most famous of Persian epic poets, Firdawsi (940-1020) has been translated several times. An extract from the story of Farhad and Shirin, as told by the twelfth century Persian poet Nizami, exmpelified another form of narrative”
  • Richard N. Frye Reviewed work(s): The Turkic Languages and Literatures of Central Asia: A Bibliography by Rudolf Loewenthal. Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies, Vol. 21, (Dec., 1958), p. 186. excerpt: Many works that appear in this bibliography have no proper place in it; for example, publications on the Persian poet, Nizami (page 73), as well as articles on such political matters as pan-Turkism

Other Distortions and why local USSR/Azerbaijan SSR/republic sources as not WP:RS[edit]

Lornejad et al. accuse Manaf-Oglu of attributed false statement to the historian Ibn Azraq and also accuse him of wrongly claiming groups such as Scythians, Caucasian Albanians, Salarids, etc. as Turks[24]. They also mention other misreadings including baseless interpretations with regards to some words akdash, manjaniq, forgery of false Turkish divan by TUrkish nationalist and false verses about wolf from a scholar in republic of Azerbaijan, etc.[24].

Major Iranologist and Nezami scholars, political expert on history claim there is academic fraud in the Azerbaijan republic[15][18][5][16] with regards to Nezami. So Soviet and Azerbaijan republic sources are not WP:RS.

Authors that have explicitly discussed and subsequently dismissed the Turkich claim on Nezami include specialists on Persian literature and Nezami[16][18], major Iranologists[15] experts on Caucasian history[29], specialist on politicization of culture[5][9] and authors outside of the realm of Iranology and Nezami studies who discuss world events[13][23]. All of these have dismissed the Turkish claim.

Another reason these sources not WP:RS is because in the country of Azerbaijan, someone with a different opinion was accused of betrayal with regards to Nezami. This shows that the issue is political and part of the state ideology to present Nezami as a Oghuz Turk.

  • In 2007 an “unacceptable” opinion on Nizami’s Talysh people rather than Turk origin was mentioned by the prosecution on the trial of Novruzali Mammadov who was charged with

state treason[30][31] (note both links mention Nezami and the first link mentions it as a charge against Mammedov considering him a Talysh). This shows that Azerbaijan republic sources are not reliable as the government considers someone who calls Nezami a non-Azerbaijani as someone that has committed treason. See also statements from Aliyev son and father in the section "political issue".

  • Consequently sources that mention Nezami in one sentence and rely upon Soviet/Azerbaijan republic sources are not reliable. See also the section above: "Nizami Specialists, experts in history and experts on politicization dismiss the Turkish viewpoint"

Evaluation of the distorted claims from Azerbaijan/USSR sources[edit]

Lornejad et al. have examined many of the arguments that have been put forth by Soviet and Azerbaijan republic sources. Here are some of them.

Name of Iran and usage of Iran[edit]

Manaf-Oglu (Turkish author) claims Iran was not used and there was no such as state of Iran, while claiming that there was a state by the name Azerbaijan at that time. However, this claim has been criticized by Lornejad et al. They mention that Nezami praises three of his patrons as kings of Iran and Persian realm, and An examination of the number of occurrences of some regional geographic terms in the work of Nezami reveals that the term Iran has appeared 32 times, ‘Ajam (Persia) has appeared 21 times, Arman (Armenia) has appeared 23 times (mostly in KH), Ādharābādhagān appears twice (like the form in the Shāhnāma), Adharbāyagān appears once (like the form in the Vis o Ramin) and Arrān appears twice (one time in the ghazals and one time in the pentalogue). [24].

For example they note this line from the Haft Paykar:the world as a body and Iran as its heart”].-Iran, the world’s most precious heart- Excels the body, there is no doubt-Among the realms the kings posses-The best place goes to the best and mention that: that Iran just like India or China, existed for the Persian/Arabic (as well as Armenian as shown in Part IV) writers as an ethno-cultural-geographical region despite being ruled by a variety of dynasties. With regards to the name of Azerbaijan, they mentioned: However, the author (Manaf-Oglu) ignores that there was no ethnic concept attached to the Iranian word ‘Azerbaijan’ in the 12th century and so such a naming cannot have any sort of ethnic connotation. Furthermore, it should be noted that the term “Atabegs of Azerbaijan” for the Eldiguzids is simply a name used by later historians for the family itself rather than a name for an official geographical area" and "the term “Atabeg of Azerbaijan” was not unique to the Eldiguzids as it also has been used to reference the Ahmadilis" by other historical works.[24].


C.E. Wilson , the early translator of the Haft Paykar into the English language comments on these three verses: “The sense is apparently, ‘since Persia is the heart of the earth, Persia is the best part of the earth, because it is certain that the heart is better than the body.’”<ref name="Lornejad/>.

Lornejad provide these examples taken from verses from the prologue which is outside of the main stories[24]. In the Haft Paykar, while addressing the local Ahmadili ruler of Maragha, ‘Ala a-din Korp Arslān, Nezami Ganjavi states[24]:

The world is a body, Iran its heart,
No shame to him who says such a word (The word guyande refers to the poet: the poet (guyande, i.e. Nezami) feels not ashamed in making this comparison: “the world as a body and Iran as its heart”.)
Iran, the world’s most precious heart
Excels the body, there is no doubt
Among the realms the kings posses
The best place goes to the best

Original Persian: همه عالم تن است و ایران دل
نیست گوینده زین قیاس خجل
چون که ایران دل زمین باشد
دل ز تن به بود یقین باشد
زان ولایت که مهتران دارند
بهترین جای بهتران دارند

In the Layli o Majnun, in praise of the Sharvānshāh Axsitān[24]:

Especially a king like King of Sharvān
Why (just) Sharvān? He is the King of Iran

خاصه ملکی چو شاه شروان
شروان چه؟ که شهریار ایران


And in praise of the Eldiguzids[24]:

In that day that they bestowed mercy upon all,
Two great ones were given the name Muhammad,
One whose essence was the seal of prophethood,
The other who is the Kingdom’s Seal, in his own days
One whose house/zodiac is moon of the Arabs
The other who is the everlasting Shāh of Realm of Persians

در آن بخشش که رحمت عام کردند
دو صاحب را محمد نام کردند
یکی ختم نبوت گشته ذاتش
یکی ختم ممالک بر حیاتش
یکی برج عرب را تا ابد ماه
یکی ملک عجم را جاودان شاه

Another final example, Nezami Ganjavi, outside of his stories, calls upon the Prophet of Islam[24]:

سوی عجم ران، منشین در عرب
زرده‌ی روز اینک و شبدیز شب
مُلک برآرای و جهان تازه کن
هر دو جهان را پرآوازه کن

Come to Persia, do not stay in Arabia
Thou hast the light and dark steeds of night and day
Adorn the Empire and refresh the world.
Blossom both worlds with thy name and fame

Hamdollah Mostowfi Qazvini also mentioned Ganja as part of Arrān, as well as part of Iran in his work Nozhat al-Qolub

Several cities in Iran are more opulent than many others,
چند شهر است اندر ایران مرتفع‌تر از همه
Of these is Ganja, so full of treasure, in Arrān, Isfahān in `Irāq,
گنجه‌ی پر گنج در اران، صفاهان در عراق


Secondary reference where Nezami is part of historical Persia/Iran[edit]

  • Note the primary references above which can be quoted per Lornejad et al.
  • Peter J. Chelkowski, "Mirror of the Invisible World", New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. p. 1: "The culture of Nizami's Persia is renowned for its deep-rooted tradition and splendor. In pre-Islamic times, it had developed extraordinarily rich and exact means of expression in music, architecture, and daily life as well as in writing, although Iran, its center--or, as the poets believed, its heart--was continually overrun by invading armies and immigrants, this tradition was able to absorb, transform, and ultimately overcome foreign intrusion. Alexander the Great was only one of many conquerors, to be seduced by the Persian way of life
  • With regards to Nezami's poem about Iran being the heart of the world. C.E. Wilson , the early translator of the Haft Paykar into the English language comments on these three verses: "The sense is apparently, ‘since Persia is the heart of the earth, Persia is the best part of the earth, because it is certain that the heart is better than the body.’"(Wilson, C.E.(1924), The Haft Paikar – Translation and Commentary, 2 vols., London. Also available at: http://persian.packhum.org/persian/main?url=pf%3Ffile%3D17601040%26ct%3D11 [accessed May 2011])
  • Lornejad et al. The above examples clearly demonstrates that the cultural-geographical territory of Iran and ‘Ajam during the time of these Iranian Muslim poets included Azerbaijan (ruled by the Eldiguzids and small portion of it by the Ahmadilis), Arrān (ruled mainly by the Eldiguzids with occasional Georgian incursions and control) and Sharvān (ruled by the Sharvānshāhs). [32].

Later title for a family is not name of State/usage of Azerbaijan[edit]

Lornejad et al. comment on the non-existent term " Furthermore, some authors try to anachronistically define ancient poets by modern geographical territories whose ethnic characteristics have changed significantly in the last 1000 years. This method of naming is fallacious as calling an Armenian writer who was born in Ganja (see Part IV) as an “Azerbaijani” or calling Herodotus who was born in the territory that is now modern Turkey as “Turkish”. The same concept applies to Nezami Ganjavi who lived in the 12th century. However, one author with a nationalist viewpoint has used the different historical name for the Eldiguzid, that is “Atabegs of Azerbaijan”, to erroneously claim that the region of Arrān was also part of Azerbaijan. However, the author ignores that there was no ethnic concept attached to the Iranian word ‘Azerbaijan’ in the 12th century and so such a naming cannot have any sort of ethnic connotation. Furthermore, it should be noted that the term “Atabegs of Azerbaijan” for the Eldiguzids is simply a name used by later historians for the family itself rather than a name for an official geographical area . For example, while their capital was in Tabriz (Azerbaijan proper), their territory extended to Northern Jebal, Ray, Hamadan and Isfahan , but this does not mean that these territories were called “Azerbaijan” in any official record of that period. Similarly, they did not control the area of Sharvān which was under the rule of Sharvānshāhs. As mentioned, Nasawi, who describes the battles between the Khwarazmshāhs and Eldiguzids, has clearly mentioned Arrān and Azerbaijan as separate lands. Similarly, later historians also used “Atabegs of Fars” (Salghurids) or “Atabegs of Yazd” or “Atabegs of Mosul” or “Atabegs of Maraghah” who controlled neighboring territories or cities, but it does not mean that their territory was officially designated by such names or there were official states with names such as Fars, Yazd, etc. Rather these are the names assigned to these dynasties by later historians for the territory of their main capital or political center. And even in this case, this term was not necessarily unique. For example, the term “Atabeg of Azerbaijan” was not unique to the Eldiguzids as it also has been used to reference an Ahmadili ruler who is called as the “Atabeg of Maragha and Azerbaijan” . This clearly shows that such a title did not denote an official name of a nation state (which is anachronistic), but rather it was a title for the dynasties (not a name of a country or state or an empire) by historians to distinguish the Atabeg dynasties (mainly by the territory of their capital or their traditional power base) within the larger and decaying Saljuq Empire. A study of the works by Nasawi and the Ilkhanid adaptation of Nishapuri (Rashid al-Din Fazlollah’s adaptation of a work attributed to Nishapuri) explicitly shows that Arrān and Azerbaijan are used as separate lands in their descriptions of the events of the 12th and 13th century. [33].

On terms such as Iranian, Oghuz Turks, Azerbaijani[edit]

Anachronistic terms for the 12th century: "Azerbaijani"..not RS[edit]

The history of linguistic Turkicization of Azerbaijan (NW Iran proper) and Eastern Trans-Caucasia (classical Arran and Sharvan, modern Azerbaijan republic) was a long and multi-stage process that started from the Saljuq era and culminated during the Safavid era[1] with smaller number of native Iranian speakers (e.g. Talysh people, Tats, Kurds) now remaining in the Eastern Caucasus and Iranian Azerbaijan. An Azerbaijani Turkic language and ethnos began to stablize around XIV-XV[2] with migrations of in the Caucasus and North-Western, with a heavy Iranian contribution and layer[1][2]. Up until the 20th century, the concept of an "Azerbaijani identity" did not exist, and the ethnic term "Azerbaijani" and linguistic term "Azerbaijani" were not used by the general masses of the Turcophone speakers in Eastern Transcaucasia[3][4]. Azerbaijan was a simple geographical area[3][4]. The general masses were called by the Russians as Tatars while they considered themselves as "Muslims", "Turks" and sometime Persian[3][4] while their language was generally called "Turki" by their Muslim neighbours. Lornejad and Doostzadeh cite numerous sources under the ethonym section of their book showing the invalidity of using the term "Azerbaijani" ethnic group in the early 12th century[24]. Note also the statement from Prof. Fragner[9] about territorial principle not only being extended in space but in time (i.e. anachronism).


Anyhow: One uses Turkish/Turkic as a cover term for various Turkish languages/dialects/branches such as Oghuz, Qypchaq, Uighyur/Qerqyz..etc. At that time "Azerbaijani Turkish" language was not formed.


geocultural sense rather than ethnic sense of Azerbaijani[edit]

As noted the name Azerbaijan is Iranian and the bulk of the Muslim people that lived there prior to Turkicization were Iranian. So authors use Azerbaijani as a geographical setting. The name Azerbaijani was adopted by Turcophone population only in the 20th century and today "Azerbaijani" is used in the Caucasus for both the Turkish speaking group and also all other groups (Iranian and Caucasian). It is of interest but not surprising that for Persian poets such as Nezami, the Turks are described with features such as narrow eyes and round face like the modern Kazakhs, Qirqiz, overwhelming number of Uighyurs and Turkmens and Uzbeks, etc.

Quote from Lornejad et al (footnote 320-pg 95): In an email correspondence, Prof. Perry ..also has noted that the term “Azerbaijani” has been used by him and some other authors in some works for classical Persian authors not in the ethnic sense but in the “geocultural sense”. He clarifies this point: “I was speaking (using the term Azerbaijani for Caucasian poets) in regional geographical-cultural terms. We know that the majority of the population of Azerbaijan in early Islamic times was Iranian, with their own Iranian language”. On the term “geocultural” he has mentioned that: “geocultural in the sense of being open to all regional influences”. (Correspondence on July 2nd, 2011). However, our opinion is that terms such as “Caucasian” and “Arranian” are the historically correct terms for the Ganja of the 12th as explained in Part I. Furthermore, they do not have the multiple meanings (such as the 20th century adopted ethnic meaning) which can be used to make unscientific claims by unsuspecting researchers.

Some people are unaware and think "Azerbaijani" means Turks, where-as Azerbaijani was only adopted by Turcophone population in the 20th century. The name Azerbaijan is an Iranian name whose roots pre-date the arrival of Turks in the region by at least 1000 years. For the 12th century it is a geographical term and cannot be taken as an ethnic term in any serious history book.

Iranian/Persian, Dari-Persian (literary language) and Persian vernacular[edit]

  • Iranian/Persian
  • These are just some technical details to explain some concepts. For wikipedia what matters is what the sources state and that is Section 5 of this article. That is we do not need to explain the details of these terms in say an article on Nezami because we need to state the sources (material from Lornejad et al. can be quoted below as can primary sources of course if there is a need).
  • To make it short: Iranian for the 12th century is used in the ethnic sense of Iranian people and not in the sense of modern citizens of Iran. Persian and Iranian also used numerously and historically for the context of 12th century for the same grouping.
  • Lornejad et al. comment[24]:The term Iranian is used throughout this paper in the ethno-linguistic sense of people belonging to the Iranian branch of languages and not a citizen of the modern country of Iran. Consequently, the primary meaning designates any society which inherited, adopted or transmitted an Iranian language (Frye 2004). Here it is used in reference to the totality of the Iranian-speaking peoples both historically and today. Khurasani (Dari-Persian) dialect of Middle Persian is distinguished as Dari-Persian when it is contrasted with other dialects of Persian language (see Part IV where Qatrān Tabrizi calls his native language as Pārsi (Persian) and contrasts it with Dari-Persian). According to the famous historian al-Mas’udi, who lived in the 10th Century AD, the Persians are: “a people whose borders are the Māhāt Mountains and Azerbaijan up to Armenia and Arrān, and Baylaqān and Darband, and Ray and Tabaristan and Masqat and Shabaran and Jorjan and Abarshāhr, and that is Nishabur, and Herat and Marv and other places in land of Khurasan, and Sajistan and Kerman and Fars and Ahvaz... All these lands were once one kingdom with one sovereign and one language... although the language differed slightly. The language, however, is one, in that its letters are written the same way and used the same way in composition. There are, then, different languages such as Pahlavi, Dari, Azari, as well as other Persian languages” (Al-Mas'udi 1894:77-8). Other examples include the fact that Warāwini, the translator of Marzabān-Nāma has called the old language of Tabaristan as “farsi-ye qadim-i bāstāni” (Kramers 1991) and the Iranian Chorasmian scholar Abu Rayhan Biruni while mentioning the Chorasmians as a separate group has also mentioned that the Chorasmians (Eastern Iranian language) are a branch of the Persian tree....
  • Consequently, Iranian and Persian are used equivalently by many authors. It should be noted that the Persian/Iranian language of Ganja like many other Iranian cities, had its own characteristics. One of the words mentioned by for a tree by Ganjaketski called chandari (a tree name) is an example, where dari (a tree in Iranian Kurdish (Kurmanji) and not to be confused with Dari-Persian but rather related to the word Derakht. Note Daar is used in Persian/Tabari and other Iranic dialect). Other Persian words recorded are Hark, Sang-e Nim Daang and *do-ru-raan.
  • Dari-Persian and Persian vernacular
  • Summary: Persian in the medieval ages like today is wide encompassing term which covered various Iranian dialects including Dari-Persian, Fahlavi (not to be confused with Middle Persian here it is about Fahlaviyat of post-Islamic era), Azari (old Azari language not to be confused with any Turkish dialects) (See Mas'udi, Moqqadessi below) and variety of other Persian dialects. Today, it is common to use Iranian for the Iranian languages, but at that time, speakers of the Iranian languages and outsiders called it Persian. Anyhow, just like there are variety of English (Australian, Texan, Canadian), French (Quebec, France..), Arabic (Egyptian, Iraqi, Syrian..), Turkish (Oghuz, Qypchaq, and varities within like Uighyur, Kazakh, Turcoman..etc), there are a variety of Persian (Dari, Fahlavi, old Azari...etc). Note some uncareful sources might state "Dari" Persian is relative new-comer to Azerbaijan (say in the 9th/10th century), and then just state "Persian" without the important qualifier of Dari, thus giving a confusing picture that they mean "Persian". Where-as Arran, Sharvan and Azerbaijan all spoke Iranian languages (which has been called Persian in the classical sources) and all of these regions had Persian population. These uncareful sources do not distinguish this point..where as noted already by de Blois, Perry (see the section Geo-cultural above), Schnirelmann..these regions had Iranian languages (which classical sources also call Persian and Dari-Persian being just one type of Persian).
  • Note Literary Persian had already spread to Azarbaijan, Caucasus and Western Iran before the Saljuqs. Examples are Qatran Tabrizi, Asadi Tusi and Avicenna (who wrote Daneshnama for Buyids). As noted by Chelkowski: "By the end of the tenth century, Persian literature was world renowned; it was heralded from the eastern Mediterranean to the banks of the Indus" (Peter J. Chelkowski, "Mirror of the Invisible World", New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975 pg1). (see also the Section 5 for a quote from the book Lornejad et al. with this regard). Minor dynasties like Shaddadids, Rawwadids, Sharvanshahs etc. show that standard Persian had spread widely in the area.
  • Overall, the term Persian language for historians and writers of the era encompasses both Dari-Persian (the literary Persian which was expanding in major cities as a spoken language or mixing with local Iranian languages) as well as local regional Persian dialects. So the sources above make it clear from the context. Ganja, Tabriz, Shiraz, Isfahan like every major Persian speaking city, had its own Persian vernacular which shows the influence of Fahlavi (see Fahlaviyat of Hafez or Awhadi Maraghi..) and standard Dari-Persian was the prominent cultural, administrative and poetry language, that was understood and widely spread amongst the locals as shown by Nozhat al-Majales.
  • The standardized written Dari-Persian, which was the common language (culture,administrative, lingua franca) of the area of the Caucasus of Muslims at that time, while concurrently, many cities had their own Iranian dialect peculiarity and some of the Persian dialects show the influence (or are themselves) Fahlavi type language (like Ganja) (see Moqqadessi below). Written Persian was the language for many areas that was understood to a large extent but possibly some education (although likely very minor due to large overlap between Iranian dialects but the Eastern Persian words were still needed to be learned by Western Persians as noted by de Blois in Lornejad et al. with regards to Qatran) was required to get full fluency in it. For example, just like an Egyptian Arab needs to learn classical Arabic to be fully capable (and his language overlaps greatly with classical Arabic but he still. needs education), Dari-Persian, the standard literary Persian, too had the same positions for many cities which had their own Persian dialects. This is the case in Iran in many areas today where Persian dialects are spoken but Dari-Persian is the standard Persian. Arabic world too uses classical Arabic but each region has its own Arabic. Lornjed et al. for example mention the Tabrizi Persian/Iranic dialect and show that Qatran calls it "Paarsi". For many authors, Dari and Parsi are used interchangeably since Dari became the most popular type of Persian. However, there are authors that are careful and scientific. Scientifically speaking, based on Mas'udi, Moqqaddessi and etc., as noted by Lornejad et al., Dari-Persian is a subset of Persian (much like classical Arabic is a subset of Arabic).
  • Lornejad et al (pg 148): Al-Muqaddasi (d. late 4th/10th century) considers Azerbaijan, Armenia and Arrān as part of the 8th division of lands. He states: “The languages of the eighth division are Iranian (al-’ajamyya). It is partly Dari and partly monqaleq (“convoluted” or “vernacular”) and all of them are named Persian
  • Lornejad et al. (pg 149) Given the testimonies of Estakhri and Ibn Hawqal, with that of Al-Muqaddasi, we can state that three major languages in the area were Armenian, Arrānian and Persian. Estakhri mentions Persian as the prevalent language of Arrān. The Persian close to Khurasanian Persian in sound mentioned by Al-Muqaddasi was likely an ancestor of Tat-Persian (its closest relative being the present-day Dari-Persian). This would make sense, since the essential roots of both Tat-Persian and literary Khurasani Persian (Dari-Persian) is part of the larger Middle Persian continuum. All these testimonies (especially the Arab travelers) clearly show a wide presence of Persian/Iranian languages in the Caucasus. Taking into account these primary sources from the period that has also been designated as the Iranian Intermezzo, a recent source asserts that: “The multi-ethnic population of the Albanian left-bank at this time is increasingly moving to the Persian language. Mainly this applies to the cities of Arrān and Sharvān, as from 9-10th centuries these are two main areas named in the territory of Azerbaijan. With regard to the rural population, it would seem, mostly retained for a long time, their old languages, and related to modern Daghestanian family, especially Lezgin. However, given the presence of Middle Persian in the Sassanid era and Parthian in the Parthian era, it can be stated that the Iranian population of the area dates back at least to these eras, but was strengthened with the Islamization of the area as a Persianate Islamic culture developed throughout the Iranian world. Despite some unsound claims, there is currently no proof of a Caucasian Albanian Islamic culture and the Caucasian Albanians had been largely absorbed by Armenians before the arrival of the Saljuqs" (Note the recent source is: Rybakov 2002/2[34].
  • Lornejad et al. mention:As for Ganja, Gandzakets'i (who was born likely at the time when Nezami was still alive) and the Nozhat al-Majāles show that the city itself had a Persian population which spoke either a South-West Iranian dialect (likely an ancestor of modern day Tati) or a North-West Iranian Fahlavi-type language. .... As noted already, the Iranian word chandari, which Gandzakets'i mentioned for a specific tree in the city, also sheds light on the Iranian language of Ganja. Consequently, the Persians who constituted the cities native Muslim population as mentioned by Gandzakets'i ('a native of the city), either spoke a Fahlavi type language (as claimed by authors such as Riāhi and Safa) with heavy influence of New Persian or a SW Iranian (Persid) language (closer to modern Tati and literary Persian).[35] (That is the literary Persian is a common medium but each Iranian center had its own dialectal variation. The NW regions for example spoke variety of Iranian languages which shows the influence of Fahlavi). (Note Safa and Riahi are important Iranian literary historians quoted widely and they are authors in Iranica..etc).
  • Nozhat al-Majales[36]. The most significant merit of Nozhat al-Majāles, as regards the history of Persian literature, is that it embraces the works of 115 poets from the northwestern Iran (Arrān, Sharvān, Azerbaijan; including 24 poets from Ganja alone), where, due to the change of language, the heritage of Persian literature in that region has almost entirely vanished. [36], Nozhat al-Majāles is thus a mirror of the social conditions at the time, reflecting the full spread of Persian language and the culture of Iran throughout that region, clearly evidenced by the common use of spoken idioms in poems as well as the professions of some of the poets. The influence of the northwestern Pahlavi language, for example, which had been the spoken dialect of the region, is clearly observed in the poems contained in this anthology[36] and In contrast to poets from other parts of Persia, who mostly belonged to higher echelons of society such as scholars, bureaucrats, and secretaries, a good number of poets in the northwestern areas rose from among the common people with working class backgrounds, and they frequently used colloquial expressions in their poetry. They are referred to as water-carrier (saqqā), sparrow-dealer (‘osfuri), saddler (sarrāj), bodyguard (jāndār), oculist (kahhāl), [saddle-bag-maker (akkāfi or pālānduz)], etc., which illustrates the overall use of Persian in that region. Chapter eleven of the anthology contains interesting details about the everyday life of the common people, their clothing, the cosmetics used by women, the games people played and their usual recreational practices such as pigeon-fancying (kabutar-bāzi), even-or-odd game (tak yā joft bāzi), exercising with a sledgehammer (potk zadan), and archery (tir-andāzi). There are also descriptions of the various kinds of musical instruments such as daf (tambourine), ney (reed pipe), and chang (harp), besides details of how these instruments were held by the performers. One even finds in this anthology details of people’s everyday living practices such as using a pumice (sang-e pā) to scrub the sole of their feet and gel-e saršur to wash their hair”[36]. Lornejad et al comment: Given these Persian (e.g. jāndār=bodyguard) and Persianized Arabic terms (e.g. lehāfi - from the Arabic lehāf and Persian suffix -i denoting relation), it is clear that the native urban and sedentary Muslim population of Ganja during the time of Nezami and the Nozhat al-Majāles were Iranians.[37].
  • So overall, the term Persian encompasses both Dari-Persian and regional Persian dialects (every major Iranian speaking city had its own regional term or pecularities, some of them very close to classical Dari-Persian (like modern Tehrani and Herati dialects) and some of them more divergent...(like position of Egyptian Arabic and Yemenese Arabic to classical Arabic where-as Yemenese is closer)) as noted by Al-Masou'di , Al-Muqqadessi and others (explained thoroughly in several places by Lornejad et al. including footnote 20). Native writers like Ganjaketski mention Ganja as densely populated by Persian and Qatran mentions his Iranic dialect as Persian and Masu'di mentions Persians in Arran...etc. So one should say Ganja was Iranian speaking city and the population was Persian, and their Iranian language was a subset of the Persian language continuum..(that is why Riahi has spoken of the Arrani style where regional Persian( Fahlavi) influenced the literary Persian of some of these authors from Sharvan and Arran).
  • The main point is that these urban centers as noted by de Blois, Perry (see the section Geo-cultural above), Schnirelmann were Iranian. If there is confusion, the term Iranian and "an Iranian language" covers everything in the modern sense (classically and to many now, it is equivalent to Persian), and one can say Dari-Persian is a subset of Iranian language and the Iranians. Even the work of Persian poets can be considered both Persian and Iranian literature. In the Caucasus both Dari-Persian and other Iranian languages were spread, and just like modern Tats and Talysh speak a language close to Dari-Persian (they would still have to learn it but it becomes hundreds of times easier relative to speaker of non-Iranian language..just like a Turkmen will learn Istanbuli Turkish much easier than a English speaker and Egyptian Arab will learn classical Arabic much easier than an English speaker), there was some centers in the Caucasus that spoke Persian/Iranian dialects/languages that were divergent from Dari-Persian but are still Persian/Iranian languages (much like Egyptian Arabic is still Arabic and Ottoman/Uiyghur/Chagati are still Turkish languages -modern term Turkic but classically it is just Turki/Turkish - ..Persian too had its own dialect varities, but the uniform term Persian to cover all these varities based on the classical sources can be confirmed.).

Leyli and Majnun section and Stalin[edit]

Summary version[edit]

One of the alleged claims has to do with the chapter "The Reason for Composing the Book" of Nezami's Layla and Majnun which has been translated in full by Lornejad and Doostzadeh, and published in 2012 in English for the first time[38]. Stalin had mentioned in 1939 that Nezami: "Should not be given to the Iranian literature, just because he wrote most of his works in the Iranian language. Nezami, in his poems himself asserts that he was compelled to resort to the Iranian language, because he is not allowed to address his own people in his native tongue.". Lornejad et al. dismiss this claim as politically contrived and note that Nezami's works are all in Persian, and Nezami only mentions Persian poetry in his work, and no one from the Caucasus during his time has had any work in Turkish because a Turkish literary tradition did not exist in the Caucasus[38]. They also point to fact that in one anthology from Nezami's era, 115 Persian poets and writers are mentioned, 24 of them from Ganja while there is not a single Turkish verse from any author during the 12th century[38]

Kalpakli and Andrews who state that Nezami is a famous Persian poet (2006)[39], in a separate work discussing the author Fizuli((2003 - Kalpakli first author, Andrews second author), claim that the same section of Layli o Majnoon of Nezami "seems indicate that Sharvanshah could have asked Nezami to write Turkish, and the poet could have done this"[40]. The Russian scholar Ivan Mikhailovich Steblin-Kamensky, a major Iranologist states that Nezami Ganjavi knew no Azeri Turkish[15][38]. The famous commentator, scholar[17] and authority on Nezami, Vahid Dastgerdi simply interprets the verse as:"The meaning of these verses is that our fidelity is not like the Turks and our faithfulness is not like that of Sultan Mahmud the Turk. Our fidelity and commitment will not be broken, so rhetoric that are befitting for Turkish kings is not befitting for us"[38]. Dastgerdi had passed away before the full Soviet celebration, but the Iranian scholar of Persian literature and history, Abbas Zaryab Khoi, after coming in contact with the Soviet viewpoint wrote a two page commentary analyzing and then dismissing the Soviet viewpoint[38]. This two page commentary was recently translated and included in the book of Lornejad et al (2012) [38]. With regards to the word "torkāneh-sokhan", Abbas Zaryab writes: Thus as we see, he has compared “torkāneh-sokhan” to mannered discourse/rhetoric and thus “torkāneh-sokhan” means unmannered and vulgar rhetoric, and the interpretation of “torkāneh-sokhan” never means to speak/write in the Turkish language. [38]. With regards to the Kakpalki et al. translations, Lornejad et al. mention: The authors themselves correctly translated “Persian and Arabic”, yet they reference a particular language in the singular rather than the plural and mention erroneously that “the language of this recollection”[38]. Lornejad and Doostzadeh mention that that "Persian and Arabic ornaments" is not a reference to a language, since the language is in "Persian" not "Persian and Arabic"[38]. According to them, Arabic poetry did not have an epic tradition and further mention that: Taking into consideration the legacy of Nezami before this poem, i.e. Persian epic poetry (Khusraw o Shirin) and Persian didactic poetry (Makhzan al-Asrār), as well as the fact that Persian is the only language that Nezami proclaims he was skilled in composing poetry; the poem could only be in Persian. Epic poetry itself was not even an Arabic genre, whereas it had a long history in Persian literature before Nezami (e.g. Gurgāni, Asadi Tusi, and Ferdowsi).[38]. According to them: What makes sense after a closer examination is that “Persian and Arabic ornaments” is due to the fact that the story is a mixture of the two different cultures and the epic poem derives elements from both cultures[38]. Lornejad et al. quoting studies of the poem by scholars (Gelpke 1997, de Bruijn 1986, Gohrab 2003) which mention how the original Arabic story was Persianized[38]. They add: Nezami consciously synthesized the Persian and Arabic versions of the story and incorporated aphorism, anecdotes, imagery and themes from both Persian and Arabic cultures.[38]. Lornejad et al. also criticize the reading of Torkaneh Sokhan translated by authors such as Samad Vargun and Kalpakli et al. from the same section and mention: we should once more emphasize that neither the Sharvānshāhs were Turks to request a story in Turkish, nor there existed a Turkish literary tradition in the Caucasus at that time, nor is there any proof that Nezami ever knew Turkish, nor is there a single verse in Turkish from that region in that period, nor is “Persian and Arabic” a particular language, nor did the Arabic language have an epic genre like Persian, nor does the term torkāneh-sokhan mean "Turkish language" but rather it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and in the context of the language of the time, it simply means "vulgar and unmannered speech". [38]. Lornejad and Doostzadeh devote about 35 page translating two full chapters alongside the original Persian analyzing the chapters.. They conclude that the whole section actually shows Nezami was not a Turk[38] and furthermore assert that: Had the ethno-nationalist interpretation mentioned by Stalin been correct, Nezami (assuming that he ever knew a Turkish dialect) would have composed Turkish literature for a Turkish king (not the Sharvānshāh) or written Turkish at his own will. However, Turkish literary tradition did not exist at all in the Caucasus in that period, and Nezami explicitly mentioned only his skill in composing Persian poetry[38].

Longer version (see summary version above)[edit]

One of the alleged claims has to do with the chapter "The Reason for Composing the Book" of Nezami's Layla and Majnun which has been translated in full by Lornejad and Doostzadeh, and published in 2012 in English for the first time[38]. Stalin had mentioned in 1939 that Nezami: "Should not be given to the Iranian literature, just because he wrote most of his works in the Iranian language. Nezami, in his poems himself asserts that he was compelled to resort to the Iranian language, because he is not allowed to address his own people in his native tongue.". Lornejad et al. dismiss this claim as politically contrived and note that Nezami's works are all in Persian, and Nezami only mentions Persian poetry in his work, and no one from the Caucasus during his time has had any work in Turkish because a Turkish literary tradition did not exist in the Caucasus[38]. They also point to fact that in one anthology from Nezami's era, 115 Persian poets and writers are mentioned, 24 of them from Ganja while there is not a single Turkish verse from any author during the 12th century[38]

Kalpakli and Andrews who state that Nezami is a famous Persian poet (2006)[41], in a separate work discussing the author Fizuli((2003 - Kalpakli first author, Andrews second author), claim that the same section of Layli o Majnoon of Nezami "seems indicate that Sharvanshah could have asked Nezami to write Turkish, and the poet could have done this"[42]. The Russian scholar Ivan Mikhailovich Steblin-Kamensky, a major Iranologist states that Nezami Ganjavi knew no Azeri Turkish[15][38]. The famous commentator, scholar[17] and authority on Nezami, Vahid Dastgerdi simply interprets the verse as:"The meaning of these verses is that our fidelity is not like the Turks and our faithfulness is not like that of Sultan Mahmud the Turk. Our fidelity and commitment will not be broken, so rhetoric that are befitting for Turkish kings is not befitting for us"[38]. Dastgerdi had passed away before the full Soviet celebration, but the Iranian scholar of Persian literature and history, Abbas Zaryab Khoi, after coming in contact with the Soviet viewpoint wrote a two page commentary analyzing and then dismissing the Soviet viewpoint[38]. This two page commentary was recently translated and included in the book of Lornejad et al (2012) [38]. With regards to the word "torkāneh-sokhan", Abbas Zaryab writes: Thus as we see, he has compared “torkāneh-sokhan” to mannered discourse/rhetoric and thus “torkāneh-sokhan” means unmannered and vulgar rhetoric, and the interpretation of “torkāneh-sokhan” never means to speak/write in the Turkish language. [38].

Lornejad and Doostzadeh devote about 35 page translating two full chapters alongside the original Persian analyzing the chapters. Lornejad and Doostzadeh first mention that the meter of the poem was chosen by Nezami and the verses are a poetic interpretation and extrapolation of the letter of the Sharvanshah[43]. They mention that the Persian term "Arabic and Persian ornaments" (zivar-e Parsi o Tazi) is not a reference to a particular language or else the poem would have been in Persian and Arabic while the poem is in Persian[38]. They criticize the translations of Samad Vurgun (who put Persian or Arabic instead of Persian and Arabic), as well as the translation of Kalpakli et al. With regards to the Kakpalki et al. translations, they mention: The authors themselves correctly translated “Persian and Arabic”, yet they reference a particular language in the singular rather than the plural and mention erroneously that “the language of this recollection”[38]. Lornejad and Doostzadeh mention that that "Persian and Arabic ornaments" is not a reference to a language, since the language is in "Persian" not "Persian and Arabic"[38]. According to them, Arabic poetry did not have an epic tradition and further mention that: Taking into consideration the legacy of Nezami before this poem, i.e. Persian epic poetry (Khusraw o Shirin) and Persian didactic poetry (Makhzan al-Asrār), as well as the fact that Persian is the only language that Nezami proclaims he was skilled in composing poetry; the poem could only be in Persian. Epic poetry itself was not even an Arabic genre, whereas it had a long history in Persian literature before Nezami (e.g. Gurgāni, Asadi Tusi, and Ferdowsi).[38]. According to them: What makes sense after a closer examination is that “Persian and Arabic ornaments” is due to the fact that the story is a mixture of the two different cultures and the epic poem derives elements from both cultures[38]. Lornejad et al. quoting studies of the poem by scholars (Gelpke 1997, de Bruijn 1986, Gohrab 2003) which mention how the original Arabic story was Persianized[38]. They add: Nezami consciously synthesized the Persian and Arabic versions of the story and incorporated aphorism, anecdotes, imagery and themes from both Persian and Arabic cultures.[38].

Lornejad et al. also criticize another verse translated by authors such as Samad Vargun and Kalpakli et al. from the same section. The Persian original is: : torki sefat vafā-ye mā nist / torkāneh sokhan sazā-ye mā nist. Kalpakli et al. translate the line as Not in the Turkish way do we keep a promise so writing in the Turkish manner doesn't suit us while Lornejad et al. translate it as: "Our fidelity is not like that of Turkish characteristics - Torkāneh-Sokhan (literally Turkish mannered rhetoric and in the context of the poem meaning vulgarity/lampoon) is not what we deserve- (Vahid Dastgerdi interpretation: (thus) Rhetoric associated for Turks (Turkish Kings) is not what we deserve)". Lornejad et al. criticize the translation of Kalpakli et al. and mention: Here rhetoric (sokhan) does not mean language. For example, fārsāneh sokhan or arabāneh sokhan does not mean the Persian or Arabic language, and no one in Persian literature has used such a word formation to refer to a language[38]. They mention that in the translation of Kalpakli, there is the verb writing in the Turkish manner whereas Nezami uses the word rhetoric (sokhan), not writing (neveshtan), and conclude that this is a mistranslation[38]. Lornejad et al. also claim that: The word “writing” could have been inserted in their (Kalpakli et al.) translation due to the fact that the authors were influenced by the Soviet viewpoint.[38]. Lornejad et al. further mention:As per torkāneh-sokhan, as already mentioned, it does not mean Turkish language; also neither fārsāneh-sokhan means the Persian language, nor tāziyāneh-sokhan and arabāneh-sokhan have the meaning of the Arabic language. No such a term for referencing a particular language has ever been used in Persian literature. In other words, the inflectional suffix “-āneh” here, means something resembling the stem it is added to (not the stem itself), and can have a completely different meaning and usage in a context from the actual stem. .. As noted by Zaryāb, torkāneh-sokhan in the context of the poem is a reference to the lampoon, and means “vulgarity” or “unmannered discourse[38]. Lornejad et al. cross-reference with a verse of Khaqani (contemporary of Nezami) to understand the usage of this term better in the Persian of the time and note that Khaqani uses the term torkaneh Xordan (eating in the Turkish manner) as an antonym of eating with adab (Persian for politeness and with manners)[38]. They then mention: That is torkāneh-xordan (“Turkish-like/Turkish-mannered eating”) is used by Khāqāni as an opposite to bā adab nān xordan (“eating with manners/eating in civilized fashion”). Similarly, torkāneh-sokhan is contrasted with high rhetoric sokhan-e boland meaning “high praise”, “mannered rhetoric”. The opposite of sokhan-e boland as noted by Zaryāb is sokhan-e past (“vulgarity”). This is the way Nezami Ganjavi uses torkāneh-sokhan (“Turkish-manner/Turkish-like rhetoric”) in the section as opposed to sokhan-e boland (“high praises/lofty rhetoric”).[38].

Lornejad et al. continue:The meanings elucidated by Dastgerdi and Zaryāb are complementary. Counting the elements in these four lines:

  • The high descent of the Sharvānshāh is emphasized by Nezami, while the low descent of Mahmud is mentioned in the versified lampoon of Ferdowsi. These two aspects are contrasted.
  • Sultan Mahmud broke his vow as mentioned by Nezami ‘Aruzi, Nezami Ganjavi and in the long version of the versified lampoon of Ferdowsi. The Sharvānshāhs, on the other hand, are praised for not breaking their vow and their faithfulness of not being of “Turkish characteristics”.
  • As the legend goes, since Sultan Mahmud broke his vow (due to possible sectarian reasons), he was addressed with the versified lampoon which are “unmannered words”. That is torkāneh-sokhan has the complementary meanings mentioned by Dastgerdi and Zaryāb: the rhetoric used for Sultan Mahmud (an example of Turkish king) and unmannered speech (versified lampoon). However, the Sharvānshāh deserves polite and mannered addressing, lofty rhetoric and high praises (all encompassed by the term sokhan-e boland) because of his claim of high descent and for keeping his words. Thus, the above mentioned false interpretations by Soviet authors and those who followed them are flawed within themselves.

Lornejad et al. mention that: Reviewing this section of the epic, after praising this story as the king of stories, the verses of Nezami through the mouth of the Sharvānshāhs ask Nezami to utilize these jewels (stories) and ornaments (stories and anecdotes of Arab origin with Persian anecdotes, sources and cultural symbols/imagery/romantic epic) by bringing out a new version of the story through the magic of his rhetoric. At the same time, the LMZA (this particular section of Leyli and Majnun) states that he should not imitate other poets, since the King is praised as literary expert by Nezami, expecting his magical discourse. Instead, Nezami should show his magic discourse and he will be rewarded for his endeavor, unlike Ferdowsi who was not rewarded for the monumental Shāhnāma, according to the widely popular legend. Ferdowsi thus bestowed Mahmud the versified lampoon (unmannered speech) in which he satirized Mahmud for breaking his covenant. Thus, torkāneh-sokhan means unmannered and vulgar speech, but in the context of this section, it also ties to the versified lampoon of Ferdowsi which satirizes Mahmud of Ghazna. That is, Nezami is stating that the Sharvānshāhs did not deserve vulgar and unmannered speech of the lampoon (containing many insults - examples of unmannered speech) because they did not break their vow. Probably, the reason this section of the Layli o Majnun was written last was to remind the Sharvānshāh about the reward Nezami deserved. [38]. Lornejad et al. summarize:we should once more emphasize that neither the Sharvānshāhs were Turks to request a story in Turkish, nor there existed a Turkish literary tradition in the Caucasus at that time, nor is there any proof that Nezami ever knew Turkish, nor is there a single verse in Turkish from that region in that period, nor is “Persian and Arabic” a particular language, nor did the Arabic language have an epic genre like Persian, nor does the term torkāneh-sokhan mean "Turkish language" but rather it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and in the context of the language of the time, it simply means "vulgar and unmannered speech". [38].

With regards to the last section of the poem in terms of page number, Lornejad et al. note that the two Turkish authors Manaf-Oglu and Javad Heyat claim that Nezami insults the Shirvanshahs at the end of the poem and was upset at the letter of the Sharvanshah[38]. Lornejad et al. dismiss this claim[38]. They also note that Nezami was only hesitant about the nature of the poem: As it can be seen, Nezami's only hesitation was about the nature of the story itself and LMZA shows that he did not want to approach the story at first. This is clear from the rest of the section LMZA:45-65. This has been recognized also by mainstream scholars. As noted by the 19th century British scholar Robinson: “But the subject appears to Nezami too dry to be manufactured into a great poem. The desolate Arabian wilderness for his theatre, two simple children of the desert as his heroes, nothing but an unhappy passion — this might well daunt the poet of Khosru and Shirin, which, in everything, place, persons, and treatment, presented the greatest variety and grandeur”. And as also noted by the Encyclopaedia of Islam: “Nezami states in the introduction to his poem that he accepted the assignment with some hesitation. At first, he doubted whether this tale of madness and wanderings through the wilderness would be suitable for a royal court”". As per the insulting of the Shirvanshah in the last chapter of the poem, Lornejad et al. fully translate the last section of the poem and criticize the misreading of the term bidartarak((بیدارتَرَک))) as bidar tork by nationalist authors as a distortion of the poem that contradicts the meter of the poem[38].

They note that Nezami praises the letter of the Sharvanshah, the son of the Sharvanshah and the Sharvanshah Axsitan in both the Leyli and Majnun as well as some of his Ghazals. They conclude that the whole section actually shows Nezami was not a Turk and furthermore assert that: Had the ethno-nationalist interpretation mentioned by Stalin been correct, Nezami (assuming that he ever knew a Turkish dialect) would have composed Turkish literature for a Turkish king (not the Sharvānshāh) or written Turkish at his own will. However, Turkish literary tradition did not exist at all in the Caucasus in that period, and Nezami explicitly mentioned only his skill in composing Persian poetry[38].

Side Note- Two other Mistakes in the Kalpakli translation[edit]

  • Actually there also two other problems (in addition to what has been pointed out here: with Kalpalki's quote. First the Persin line is خواهم که به یاد عشق مجنون or in some other manuscripts خواهم که کنون به یاد مجنون. "Khaaham (classical Persian Xwaaham but I am writing with post-15th century transliteration) keh be yaad-e 'eshq-e Majnun" or "Khaaham keh konun be-yaad-e Majnun" (note but Kalpalki has transliterated it mistakenly as "Mikhaaham keh konun be-yaad Majnun". The "mi" in "MiKhaaham"is not in the actual poetry of Nezami (I checked three editions including the one based on the oldest manuscript), redundant and it messes up the flow of the poetry. This shows these authors do not really have a handle on the Persian language which is understandable as the Turkish Professor is a Professor of Ottoman language not Persian.
  • The second mistake is on the line "in taazeh 'arus raa taraazi"(این تازه عروس را طرازی). The correct translation is: "Beautify and dress this new bride afresh" (see Lornejad et al.) where-as Kalpalki et al. have translated it as: "adorn this bride so fresh and new". The Kalpalki translation has put the word "new" in the wrong place and this is a mistake for the meaning of the poem. "New bride" here refers to the fact that this is a new story for epic poetry, that is why it is a new bride. That Nezami is not going to imitate and make the bride new. So it is "New bride" not "adorning the bride new". "New Bride" is an important word here, or else without the qualification "new", the whole meaning is distorted.

Falsification of reading the last chapter (in terms of page number) of Leyli and Majnun and the distortion of the word “bidārtarak”[edit]

See Lornejad et al. pages from 74-84 for the details. S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012 for overview of this falsification.

Lornejad et al. comment: Heyat and Manaf-Oglu read the word bidārtarak (“slightly more awake”) in LMZB:17 as bidār-tork (“Awakened Turk”). They have made an egregious mistake in reading and understanding the line. The Persian word causing this misreading is bidārtarak (بیدارترک) which consists of the words bidārtar, the comparative adjective of bidār (awake/aware), plus -ak, a diminutive suffix (sometimes denoting “gentle”, “kind”), e.g., delbarak meaning “little or lovely sweetheart”; but they read the word as bidār-tork (awakened Turk!). However, bidār-tork does not make any sense in the context: You are [already] an awake/aware king in running affairs, become an awakened Turk if you can. Moreover, their misreading would produce an unacceptable pause or sakteh in the meter of the poem, which would be a major fault in the meter, implausible for a poet of Nezami’s caliber. The meter of the epic Layli o Majnun is مفعول مفاعلن فعولن (maf’ul o mafā’elon fa’ulon) but the wrong reading would make it مفعال مفاعل فعولن (mef’aāl o mafā’elo fa’ulon). A possible reason for this mistake by these two authors is that in the Persian script, the short vowels are not written and diacritic signs are used to clarify when required. So ترک (“TRK”) could be read differently including تُرک (“tork=Turk”), تَرک (“tark=leave”) or تَرَک (“tarak=crack”). The correct reading requires education and familiarity with the language, the meter of the poem and the context of the lines. It is unfortunate that even the meter of the poem has been disregarded in order to arrive at such false misinterpretations. Even the Soviet edition transliterates the term bidārtarak which is the correct reading and does not create the major fault in the meter. [44].

Persian poetic imagery[edit]

Another verse where Manaf-Oglu alleges that Nezami was a Turk is the verse which has been translated by Wilson (1924): This Ethiopia likes not Turkish wares - hence it will have not palatable curds and Julie Meisami in (1995) as: The Ethiop scorns my Turkish wares - rejects the fine foods I prepare. Manaf-Oglu takes an ethnic translation of the verse: My Turkishness is not appreciated in this Ethiopia – That’s why my tasty dugh-bā (curd) is not eaten. Lornejad et al. comment on Manaf-Oglu's claim: First, no one has referred or claimed his ethnicity in Persian poetry with the possessive ending iyyam rā. For example ‘arabiyyam rā nakharand, fārsiyyam rā nakharand or torkiyyam rā nakharand, literally means that “my Arabic is not bought”, “my Persian is not bought”, “my Turkish is not bought”. It does not mean that “my Arabness is not bought” (‘arabiyyatam rā nakharand), “my Persianness is not bought” (fārsiyyatam rā nakharand, Irāniyyatam rā nakharand) or “my Turkishness is not bought” (Torkiyyatam rā nakharand). Consequently, torkiyyam means “My Turkish” rather than “My Turkishness” (torkiyyatam). Also the buying (literal meaning from kharidan) of ethnic “Turkishness” (tokiyyat - which is not used here), “Arabness” or “Persianness” does not make any sense in the Persian language, and in the context and content of the section. The content and context of the section has nothing to do with the poet talking about any sort of ethnicity or ethnic language as this whole section (“In praise of rhetoric, wisdom and advice”) is about imparting moral advices and encouragement of spiritual values. The second problem with Manaf-Oglu's interpretation is that dugh-bā is a Persian word and cannot be interpreted as “the national food of Turkic peoples”. While Nezami and many other writers used numerous food names, there was no notion of “national food” in the 12th century. The third problem is that, as already mentioned, these authors take torkiyyam literally (and interpret it with a 20th century ethno-centric viewpoint) while interpreting habash (Ethiop), kharidan (to buy) and dugh-bā metaphorically. This is an arbitrary and cherry-picked reading that is applied to extract the thought that Nezami had some Turkish writings. In actuality, this line is using the metaphorical and non-ethnic meaning of “Turk” and “Habash” to contrast opposites, as often used in Persian poetry by Nezami, as well as many poets before and after Nezami.

Lornejad et al. also state that:Since in this section, Nezami composes these lines about knowledge, spiritual and moral advices, and self-consciousness, then the possessive non-ethnic term “my Turkish” refers to the inner content of the advices, which in Persian poetry has the attributes of the non-ethnic symbol “Turk” – “bright, sweetness, white, luminous, light and beautiful”. But the poet laments that what he considers his bright spiritual and moral advices are ignored in his land, contrasted with the non-ethnic symbol “Ethiopia” i.e. a place of darkness and ignorance. As per dugh-bā, Schimmel notes that: “pāludeh, a dish of milk, fine flour, and some spices, was popular enough in the thirteenth century to be mentioned several times as the symbol of spiritual sweetness” . Similarly, dugh-bā (curd) which is actually of a bright and near white color, is a symbol for spiritual sweetness. In reality, the actual poetry of Nezami was widely acclaimed and praised during his time. That is, Nezami and Nezami’s actual poetry were appreciated by rulers and normal people, but rather, he is pointing to the fact that the luminous (symbolized by the non-ethnic imagery Tork) moral and spiritual advices he is imparting in the section (“In praise of rhetoric, wisdom and advice”) are ignored (“is not bought”) in his land (symbolized by the non-ethnic imagery Habash i.e. place of darkness and ignorance). According to Nezami, the consequence of ignoring and not heeding these advices is deprivation of dugh-bā, which, like pāludeh mentioned by Schimmel, is a reference to spiritual sweetness.

Lornejad et al. note that:This distortion stems from the lack of understanding of symbolic and allegorical usage of the words “Turk”, “Hindu”, “Rome”, “Ethiop” and “Zang” in Persian poetry" and note that: "The symbols and imagery of tork (“Turk”), hendu (“Hindu”), rum (“Greek”), zang (“Black/African”), habash (“Blacks”, “Ethiopians”) are among the favorite symbols of Persian poets in the medieval era for forming imagery and metaphor as well as describing attributes. In the context of comparison and contrast, as well as in other contexts describing characters and objects, these words did not have any ethnic meaning but rather were used in an allegorical and metaphorical sense, to contrast various moods, colors, stations and feelings. However, since these symbols are not used anymore in Persian poetry, an unaware reader of classical Persian poetry, under the impression of modern ethnic mindset, might take these terms to have an ethnic meaning rather than their primary non-ethnic metaphorical, poetic imagery and symbolic meanings.. "With regards to adjectives and nouns, and the symbolic usage of such terms as Hindu, Turk, Rumi, Habash and Zang, they have no ethnic attribution. As noted by Kafadar when quoting the Turkish scholar Golpiranli and such ethnonyms in the works of Rumi: “Golpiranli rightly insists that ethnonyms were deployed allegorically and metaphorically in classical Islamic literatures, which operated on the basis of a staple set of images and their well recognized contextual associations by readers; there, ‘turk’ had both a negative and positive connotation. In fact, the two dimensions could be blended: the ‘turk’ was ‘cruel’ and hence, at the same time, the ‘beautiful beloved’” . And also noted by de Bruijn: “In such imagery the link to ethnic characteristics is hardly relevant, so that it may be used together with features of another ethnic type in the characterization of a single person, e.g., when Nezami describes the princess of Hend as āhu-ye tork-čašm-e hendu-zād (“a gazelle with Turkish eyes, of Indian blood”.

To illustrate this point, Lornejad et al. mention a Ghazal where Nezami: Uses the poetic image of Ethiop twice and claims himself as an Ethiopian slave, but they mention that this is due to fact that Ethiop, Turk, Rum, Zang (black), Hind(Indian) in terms of Persian poetry were used profusely as non-ethnic symbol and furthermore comment that: There are other examples where Rumi compares himself to a Greek (his posthumous epithet ―Rumi” actually means Greek even though he never used this epithet in his poetry and sometimes used “Khāmush” (Silent) as his pen-name), Turk, Hindu and Zang. We also mentioned Nezami calling himself Ethiopian allegorically, Khāqāni and Attār using the non-ethnic Hindu symbol for themselves, many figures, moods, attributes and objects in Persian poetry, including the poetry of Nezami, being described by these non-ethnic symbols. Consequently, the interpretation of Persian literature which uses symbolism, especially those infiltrated into Islamic mysticism and Persian poetic imagery, cannot be anachronistically interpreted from a 20th century nation-building viewpoint (e.g. Heyat 2006; Manaf-Oglu 2010). As mentioned already, such authors as Heyat and Manaf-Oglu do not concentrate on the negative attributes of these non-ethnic symbols as well as the negative attributes of the denominatives mentioned (e.g. torki-kardan). Nezami and many other poets such Attār, Khāqāni, Sanāi, Rumi, Hafez, Sa'di allegorically and metaphorically used these common staple set of non-ethnic imagery and symbols -- with their concurrent positive and negative meanings in different contexts-- to enrich their poetry.. Lornejad provide a whole summary of such imagery in Persian literature and quote scholars such as Schimmel, De Bruijn, Affifi and the poets of themselves to substantiate their point[24].

Negative usage of the term Turk[edit]

Here we are discussing mainly non-ethnic metaphor.

Lornejad et al. mention: As mentioned already, such authors as Heyat and Manaf-Oglu do not concentrate on the negative attributes of these non-ethnic symbols as well as the negative attributes of the denominatives mentioned (e.g. torki-kardan). Nezami and many other poets such Attār, Khāqāni, Sanāi, Rumi, Hafez, Sa'di allegorically and metaphorically used these common staple set of non-ethnic imagery and symbols -- with their concurrent positive and negative meanings in different contexts-- to enrich their poetry..[24]. To see examples of negative usage of the word Turk, see Lornejad et al. pages 122-125 of Lornejad et al. They also point to the words Torkaaneh" and Torki kardan (cruelty) as two other examples.

False claim on relating Turkish loanwords to ethnicity[edit]

Overall summary: Turkish nationalist authors claim that Nezami Ganjavi uses Turkish words and this points to Turkish origin. Lornejad et al. after an analysis of these words note that unlike what has been claimed, the Turkish vocabulary of Nezami is used by previous and concurrent Persian poets or writers, and it is extremely small, less than what is used in modern Persian and these loanwords have been used by other poets and writers; especially from Khurasan, Fars and other regions[24]. '

With regards to total vocabulary and Turkish words, Lornejad et al. summarize:

  • About 1/6 of a percent Turkish words with regards to Frequency of usage (assuming the total number of words Nezami uses is about 300000 words in 30000 verses)[24]
  • At most 1/4 to 1/2 a percent (the 1/2 percent being a loose upper-bound) of Turkish words (all the words being used by other Persian poets or writers from other places) relative to the total number of unique words used by Nezami.[24]

Lornejad et al. mention: All the Turkish loanwords used by Nezami – some of which are still in use -- were part of the common Persian language of his era and have also been used by other poets and writers; especially from Khurasan, Fars and other regions of Persia.[24] and As per Nezami, it will be shown that the Turkish loanwords used by Nezami are not unique to him (almost all of them being used by Khurasani predecessors and all of them being used by poets and prose writers from other regions), they are extremely miniscule (less than half of one percent of his vocabulary in terms of both frequency and usage), and they were common words used in the Persian poetry and prose of that era. and None of these terms is prerogative of Nezami, all being used by other Iranian authors as well.[24]. They also mention: Turkish nationalist authors have either misattributed to Nezami words, which do not occur in his poetry or claim Iranian words to be Turkish without any etymological substantiation . They also claim that Nezami spelled the above 26 listed Turkish loanwords with an “Azerbaijani Turkish” pronunciation. First they don’t explain the method they have used to realize Nezami’s “pronunciation” of these words based on the Persian script; secondly, such a language did not exist during the time of Nezami. Nezami spelled the above words exactly the same way as other Persian poets had spelled before him and continued spelling after him.[24].

They also dismiss such argumentation: then one may also claim that many of the writers who wrote Ottoman Turkish works are Persians because the Persian vocabulary in many of their works and poems exceeds those of their genuine Turkish vocabulary. and "such argumentation:"is equivalent to highlighting a dozen to couple of dozen common Persian words in English (such as Magic, Paradise, Azure, Bazaar, Pistachio, Spinach, Pajama, Caravan, Jackal(from or cognate with Sanskrit), Chess, Musk (footnote: see King 2007), Parasang, Arsenic, Pilaf, etc.) and claiming that whoever uses these words is an Iranian. "[24]. (Hopefully a new book on Persian etymology is coming out soon).

Other points about the Turkish claim[edit]

Already scholars disclaiming and rejecting the Turkish claim were given above (Nezami specialists (which is foremost), specialists on politicization (which is also important), specialists on Caucasian history and world even specialists). Just to reiterate some more points:

  • Authors that have explicitly discussed and subsequently dismissed the Turkich claim on Nezami include specialists on Persian literature and Nezami[16][18], major Iranologists[15] experts on Caucasian history[45], specialist on politicization of culture[5][9] and authors outside of the realm of Iranology and Nezami studies who discuss world events[46][23]. All of these have dismissed the Turkish claim.


  • There was no Azerbaijani ethnicity, culture ethnonym or language at this time. One can only discuss Turcoman Oghuz nomads who had entered the area after the Saljuq invasion for two generations. (See above for sources on this). See discussion above: "Anachronistic terms for the 12th century: "Azerbaijani" ".


  • Lornejad et al. mentioned: Nezami consistently called his poetry as Persian pearls, demonstrating his great love for the language. This is not surprising, since as shown in Part IV, in the era of Nezami, the name of 24 Persian poets from Ganja and 115 Persian poets from the area are given in one anthology. While there is no mention of even a single Turkish verse in the Caucasus in the 12th century by any anthology of poets; due to the fact that there was no Turkish literary tradition in this area and also due to the fact that the sedentary population and urban centers of that time, such as Ganja, were part of the Iranian civilization and not that of the Turkish nomads that had just started entering the area.[47].
  • K.A. Luther:.. the Turks were illiterate and uncultivated when they arrived in Khurasan and had to depend on Iranian scribes, poets, jurists and theologians to man the institution of the Empire[48] and even Turkish scholar Tourkhan Gandjei mentioned: The Oghuz tribes which formed the basis of the Saljuq power, and to one the Saljuqs belonged, were culturally backward, and contrary to the opinion advanced by some scholars (example he provides is a Turkish scholar), did not possess a written language. Thus the Saljuqs did not, or rather could not, take steps towards the propagating the Turkish language, in a written form, much less the patronage of Turkish letters” and also mentioned K.A. Luther:”.. the Turks were illiterate and uncultivated when they arrived in Khurasan and had to depend on Iranian scribes, poets, jurists and theologians to man the institution of the Empire[49]. Lornejad et al. mentioned about the nomadic Turks that entered the Caucasus and Azerbaijan after the Saljuq invasion: It took many generations for some of these nomads to give up their long tradition of nomadic lifestyle, then adopt semi-nomadism and then agricultural settlements, and finally migrate to the urban centers. That is why there does not exist any cultural relics and proof of any urban and developed Turcoman culture from the 12th century Caucasus. [50].
  • It should be mentioned that there is a difference between ‘’Tork’’ and ‘’Torkzaad’’ in Persian. Nezami calls his first wife ‘’Tork’’ (she was a Qipchaq slave given to him as gift and became his first wife) and bore him a son called Muhammad which Nezami refers to as a ‘’Torkzaad’’ (not a Tork but Torkzaad).
    • Lornejad et al comment: Thus this word ("tork-zād") in the contexts of classical Persian literature referenced a nezhād (“race/origin/lineage”) as Ferdowsi mentions, and it particularly designates a son whose mother was a Turk and whose father was an Iranian. Consequently, this statement provides another clear proof of Nezami’s Iranian background as he was the father of a tork-zād. Besides, had Nezami Ganjavi been Turkish himself, there would be no reason for him to constantly and explicitly distinguish his wife in KH:114/8-9 as a Turk, his son as a tork-zād (which means a person with Iranian father and Turkish mother in terms of the context of that time) and to make reference to the common stereotype of plundering... His first wife was of a different background (which is atypical) and that is why Nezami emphasizes her background. [51]
  • Fabrication of a False Verse and a Turkish Divan Falsely Ascribed To Nezami. See Lornejad et al. Section 3.3.
  • Host of Turkish nationalistic and USSR arguments have been examined, including outright falsification (forged verses), misreadings (incompatible with the meter of the poem) and also other nationalistic arguments by Lornejad et al[52], and subsequently dismissed[16][18].

On the word Manjaniq and nationalistic interpretations[edit]

Lornejad et al. comment[53]:: See Dastgerdi 1999 Vol1:412 for the meaning related to silk-spinning based on KH:73/36. A website with an ethno-centric viewpoint has wrongly claimed that Nezami consulted a dictionary to clarify the meaning of this Greek word in KH:73/36, so he was Turkish! However, this whole section and also the particular couplet are Shirin‖s word to Khusraw and have nothing to do with Nezami looking up manjaniq in any lexicon. Shirin is criticizing Khusraw for choosing Shakkar (his other wife) and these are examples that she gives: “Heaven is a wide expanse but a narrow path leads there and not everyone gets there”(compares narrow and wide),” “qassāb (butcher) is very different from qasab-bāf (cloth-weaver)” (compares two similar sounding words; of course qasab and qassāb are Arabic and Shirin could not have used them in pre-Islamic Iran. Here Nezami is just giving examples), “fire and water do not mix” ,“to the learned person, manjaniq could be a machine that throws stone or the other which is used to spin silk”. Shirin is basically telling Khusraw that even though Shakkar (the other wife, literally: sugar) is sweet (in Persian: shirin), she cannot be another Shirin! The same way that manjaniq used to throw stone (a harsh and cheap object) is very different from manjaniq used to spin silk (a soft and expensive object).

On the word Akdash (mixture of objects, things, concepts, etc.)[edit]

Note this term has been used by other Persian poets such as Sa'adi as well Persian writers such as Ibn Isfandyar and Fazollah Rashid al-Din. It has also been used by Rumi. Lornejad et al. comment[54]:KH:9/28-30. An author with an ethno-nationalist view on Nezami (who also claims many ancient peoples like the Elamites as Turkish) and also an internet website, while quoting the first couplet above and ignoring the context and other surrounding couplets, have claimed that the word akdash (hybrid) in here means Nezami was half Kurd and half Turkish, and that sour means Kurdish and honey means Turkish! Although Nezami himself was half Kurdish and half Persian Dehqān, and these two Iranian groups or social classes are mentioned separately by Nezami, Kirakos Gandzakets'i and other authors; the verse here has no implication about ethnicity at all and to take an ethnic meaning from the verse is an out-of-context and baseless interpretation. Dehkhoda notes that sweet and sour is a reference towards a type of wine. Nezami is actually conveying to the king "that the reason I don't come to the court is that I am seeking seclusion and even though I am the village-owner or master of village (kad-khoda), and should be very active and seeking to be present in the courts, on one side, I am sour (not very adept in social gatherings) and accustomed to asceticism and long prayers and seclusion; and on the other hand, my words are sweet and suitable for gatherings and recitation in Royal courts." If authors who are reading Nezami with a 20th century ethno-centrist mindset had enough familiarity with Persian poetry concepts of zohd-e khoshk (dryness of asceticism) or talkhi-ye zohd (bitterness of asceticism) and shirini-ye sokhan (the sweetness of rhetoric), they would not interpret the word as an ethnic identifier in the middle of something totally unrelated to Nezami's background.

Lornejad et al. also provide an explanation of the word: ) akdash (اکدش) (3x) (Dehkhoda: Sa’di, Rumi, Ibn Esfandyar). The word means a hybrid and mixture of objects, characteristics, groups and extreme opposites. For example, Nezami uses it in the meaning for hybrid of extreme opposites; that is for a mixture of honey or vinegar in this verse . //Nezami is a seclusion-seeking hybrid//نظامی اکدشی خلوت‌نشین است//Who is half vinegar, half honey//که نیمی سرکه نیمی انگبین است//He has dug up a sweet spring from his delicate poetry talent//ز طبع تر گشاده چشمه‌ی نوش//He has packed his luggage (in this world) with his dry asceticism//به زهد خشک بسته بار بر دوش//Even though the mouth of my asceticism is a dry fountain//دهان زهدم ارچه خشک خانی است//My delicious palm-date of words are the Spring of Life//لسان رطبم آب زندگانی است//

He also uses it as the heart being a mixture of body and spirit (MA:15/48); and references the epic Khusrow o Shirin as a product of a Hindu father and a Turkish mother (i.e. black and white, or sadness and happiness)(KH:119/107). In all three cases, Nezami has used the term as a hybrid with two extremely opposite characteristics. Sa’di also uses it as a reference for a mixture of black and white. Rumi uses it as an equivalent of an official. One of other meanings of the word akdash in the Dehkhoda dictionary also involves a mixture of Arab and non-Arab, a Hindu and non-Hindu, as well as Hindu father and Turkish mother (or vice versa which is a metaphor for the opposite quality of these two in Persian literature). Various types of hybrids (like breeds of horses and other animals) are also called akdash. However, the primary meanings of this word are composition of two opposite qualities and an equivalent term for the symbol of the beloved, with the context making the usage clear. Dehkhoda also shows a reference to the soul being a mixture (akdash) composed of lāhuti (divine) and nāsuti (earthly) characteristics.

Explanation of the metaphor "Turks of Pen" plundering and being bestowed crowns[edit]

According to Lornejad et al. The combination of soldier and plunder provide a rich imagery. In praise of the Eldiguzid ruler, Shams al-Din Muhammad, Nezami states: From jealousy of his name, ―ālam (world) is split in two//The word ―ālam has only one Mim, but his name has two Mims//To the army (Turks) of pen without revoking the permission to plunder//One Mim bestows sash/waistband, the other bestows the crown//..Here the letter mim is compared to a waistband and to a crown in its short form, and when a pen writes “Muhammad”, the first mim is likened to giving the pen a crown (at the top of word) and the second mim is giving the pen a waistband (in the middle of the word).[55].

Furthermore Lornejad et al. comment on footnote 398[56]:See Dastgerdi 1999 vol. 1:371 for usage of soldiers (army) here. A forum post has claimed that torkān-e qalam (“Turks of Pen”) here means a specific group of “writing Turks” and Nezami was part of “this group”. However, if taken literally, the word translates to “Turks of pen” and not “writing Turks”, and Nezami is not claiming to be part of any “group” in the verse. The verse here is not about any such group and is not literal, but is about using the common Persian poetic imagery of “plundering Turks” (both words are in the couplet) for the pen; where the pen is bestowed plunder (“crown” and “waistband”) every time it writes the name Muhammad. Torkān-e qalam is part of the non-ethnic metaphors where torkān-e (“Turks of”) is used as a preposition term of an object (conceptual or physical) X i.e. “Turks of X”. For example, torkān-e falak (“Turks of the fate/sky” -PD:Khaqani)– meaning the seven planets and symbolizing destiny – is also called a plunderer in the singular tork-e falak (“Turk of sky/fate”) by Hafez (PD:Hafez, Attar,Rumi) and torkān-e sokhan (“Turks of rhetoric” ترکانِ سخن - used by Khāqāni in Afifi 1993) -- not to be confused with grammatically and semantically different torkāneh-sokhan ترکانه سخن in Chapter 2 as “Turks of rhetoric go forth from the tent of the mind” by Khāqāni could be taken as “army of rhetoric” and according to Afifi “sweet rhetorics”; see Afifi 1993:46. Other such non-ethnic metaphorical terms include torkān-e charx (“Turks of the wheel”), tork-e gardun, tork-e āseman (“the turk of sky” i.e. the sun) and torkan-e aflāk, etc (see Afifi 1993). Often, these terms are connected to plundering warriors and soldiers, nomadic migration and tent dwelling; terms connected with Turkish nomads.

Shirvan School or Tabriz School or TransCaucasian School or Azerbaijan School or Iraq School nothing to do with Turks[edit]

Another example which Lornejad et al. point out is that the terminology "Azerbaijani School of Persian poetry" has nothing to do with the Turcophone group "Azerbaijani" which adopted the name "Azerbaijani" in the 19th/20th century[24]. They note the school has also been called the "Shirvan School", "Trans-Caucasian School of Persian poetry", and "Tabriz Schoo". Rather they note the main elements from the literature that uses this term are[24]: 1- The school started with Qatrān Tabrizi. 2- More usage of Arabic words relative to Khurasani School. 3- Usage of Persian archaism; that is Fahlavi which in Azerbaijan is called Old Iranian Azari not to be confused with the later Turkish language. 4- “Christian imagery and quotations from the Bible, and other expressions inspired by Christian sources, so that understanding Khāqāni and Nezami is impossible without a thorough knowledge of Christianity”. 5- “Relative freedom from mysticism”. 6- Complexity of terms and new concepts[24].

Furthermore, they note about Qatran Tabrizi:"An important fact to note is that, Rypka and Bertels claim that Qatrān allegedly started the “Azerbaijani School of Persian poetry”. Qatrān who spoke Persian vernacular language (denoted as Fahlavi, see Part IV for direct attestation of the Tabrizi Iranian language and Qatrān's contrast of his native vernacular Pārsi with literary Persian or Dari) however has also intensely derided the plundering and massacres brought by the attack of the nomadic Oghuz Turks who ravaged and plundered Azerbaijan. He calls these Oghuz nomads as khunkhār (“blood suckers”), virāngar (“bringers of ruin”) to Iran, kin-kār (“workers of hatred”), āfat (“a calamity”), ghaddār (“covenant breakers”) and makkār (“charlatan and deceivers”). This portion of Qatrān Tabrizi's poetry which is very useful for historical analysis would present a major contradiction between the construction of “Azerbaijani School of Persian poetry” and attempting to connect such an imaginary school to the Oghuz Turcomans that were not settled in Azerbaijan at that time. Of course, the “Azerbaijani School of Poetry” was not connected to the Oghuz Turcophones or any other group, but rather it was a term based on the Soviet conception of a new Azerbaijani identity (that did not exist in the 12th century) based on the Medes and Caucasian Albanians."[24]

(Side Note: The Oghuz Turcomans only settled after the Saljuq era and Qatran is pre-Saljuq..they attacked the area during the time of Qatran several times but were routed by local dynasties).

Siavash Lornejad et al. point to traditional literary classification of Persian literature (e.g. Bahar, Safa, Foruzanfar) as well as the Encyclopaedia of Islam which terms Nezami as a corner stone of the Iraqi school[24]. Furthermore, they bring verses from Nezami, Mujir al-Din Beylaqani, Zulfaqar Sharvani and other poets of the region who all affirmed their work as the Iraqi Style[24]. At the same time, they note that the influence of Fahlavi (Iranian) language has led to a preliminary sketch of 'Arranian style by the Iranian literary scholar Prof. Mohammad-Amin Riahi[24].

Side note:It should be noted that Iranica under Saljuqid literature has used this term "Azerbaijani school" (which is geographical term not related to the modern ethnic group). However, after pointing out that these poets use the term 'Iraqi school themselves and such a term was first used by Soviet scholars, Prof. Daniella Meneghini (author of Saljuq literature in Iranica) "I thank you a lot for your observation and the suggestion you propose to me. I agree with you, you are right from all poit of view. At the time I wrote that article, some years ago, I didn't think sufficiently to that label 'Azerbaijan school'.". What is of main concern here is that these poets themselves are classified as 'Iraqi school in traditional Persian literature. More importantly, as shown in Lornejad et al. they actually mention their own style as 'Iraqi style and no where do they mention "Shirvani", "Tabriz", "Trans-Caucasian" or "Azerbaijani style".

Argument about some of the regional rulers being Turk[edit]

  • During the time of Nezami most regional rulers were Turkish. However, they did not have Turkish culture and were Persianized.
  • K.A. Luther:.. the Turks were illiterate and uncultivated when they arrived in Khurasan and had to depend on Iranian scribes, poets, jurists and theologians to man the institution of the Empire[57]
  • C.E. Bosworth, "Ildenizids or Eldiguzids", Encyclopaedia of Islam, Edited by P.J. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs et al., Encyclopædia of Islam, 2nd Edition., 12 vols. with indexes and etc., Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1960–2005. Vol 3. pp 1110-111. Excerpt 1: "Ildenizids or Eldiguzids, a line of Atabegs of Turkish slave commanders who governed most of northwestern Persia, including Arran, most of Azarbaijan, and Djibal, during the second half of the 6th/12th century and the early decades of the 7th/13th century". Excerpt 2: "The Turkish Ildenizids shared to the full in the Perso-Islamic civilization"
  • Rene Grousset coments:"It is to be noted that the Saljuqs, those Turcomans who became sultans of Persia, did not Turkify Persia; no doubt, because they did not wish to do so. On the contrary, it was they who voluntarily became Persians and who, in the manner of the great old Sassanid kings, strove to protect the Iranian populations from the plundering of Ghuzz bands and save Iranian culture from the Turcoman menace"[58].
  • As noted by Prof. Chelkowski:Like Alexander, Arabs, Turks, Mongols and other people who overran the Iranian plateau also came under the spell of Persian culture. Foreign invaders remained to become contributors and patrons of Persian art and culture. To give one example, some of Nizami's benefactors were of Turkic stock.[59]
  • E. Yarshater notes: By all accounts, weary of the miseries and devastations of never-ending conflicts and wars, Persians seemed to have sighed with relief and to have welcomed the stability of the Saljuqid rule, all the more so since the Saljuqids mitigated the effect of their foreignness, quickly adopting the Persian culture and court customs and procedures and leaving the civil administration in the hand of Persian personnel, headed by such capable and learned viziers as ―Amid-al-Molk Kondori and Nezam-al-Molk” (quoted also by Lornejad et al.) (Yarshater, Ehsan (2004), “Iran: Iranian History in the Islamic Period”, Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition.)
  • Lornejad et al. mention: "another false claim is that Nezami was a Turk because he lived under the Seljuqs or later Eldiguzids. This fallacious claim is equivalent to stating that Nizam al-Molk, or Jāmi, or Ferdowsi, or Iranians in the Qajar era who lived under the Qajar rulers, were Turks. This would be as erroneous as stating that since Iranians, Arabs, Armenians, Greeks, etc. lived under the Seljuqids, they were Turks. It should also be noted that the Seljuqids and short-lived regional dynasties such as the Eldiguzids/Ahmadilis were Persianized in culture and protected Iranian lands from the Turcoman menace (Nishapuri 2001:9; Grousset 1970:164). They also had to depend upon Iranian scribes, poets, jurists and theologians to administer and run the everyday affairs of their kingdoms and empires (Nishapuri 2001:9). Ganja during the time of Nezami was an outpost of Persian culture where Persian was the main language and Persian civil servants were in great demand (Chelkowski 1975:2)."[60].
    • Grousset, Rene, The Empire of the Steppes, (Rutgers University Press, 1991), 161,164; "..renewed the Seljuk attempt to found a great Turko-Persian empire in eastern Iran..", "It is to be noted that the Seljuks, those Turkomans who became sultans of Persia, did not Turkify Persia-no doubt because they did not wish to do so. On the contrary, it was they who voluntarily became Persians and who, in the manner of the great old Sassanid kings, strove to protect the Iranian populations from the plundering of Ghuzz bands and save Iranian culture from the Turkoman menace."
    • Nishapuri, Zahir al-Din Nishapuri (2001), "The History of the Seljuq Turks from the Jami’ al-Tawarikh: An Ilkhanid Adaptation of the Saljuq-nama of Zahir al-Din Nishapuri," Partial tr. K.A. Luther, ed. C.E. Bosworth, Richmond, UK. K.A. Luther: "... the Turks were illiteratre and uncultivated when they arrived in Khurasan and had to depend on Iranian scribes, poets, jurists and theologians to man the institution of the Empire"(pg 9)
  • A point should be remembered that the administration and everyday affar of the domain of these dynaties were left in the hand of Iranians.

Influenced other Literatures.[edit]

Lornejad et al. mentioned: Another claim was that Nezami influenced Azeri-Turkic literature and so he can be claimed to be Azeri-Turkic. There can be little doubt, that Ferdowsi greatly influenced the Ottoman Turkish or Indo-Muslim literature (see Oguzdenli 2006), which does not make him an Ottoman Turk or Indian. Indeed, Nezami’s influence, like that of Ferdowsi, extends to the Eastern Islamic lands where Persianate culture was followed uninterrupted from Anatolia to the Indian subcontinent. Furthermore, actual complete translations of the poems of Nezami to Azeri-Turkic occurred in the 20th century, i.e. later than translations to many of the European languages. Besides, a Persian speaker from Samarqand can read Nezami’s legacy in original while the citizens of the modern Azerbaijan Republic are deprived of this opportunity. Good Poetry unlike scientific writing cannot be translated without losing its meaning. Consequently, Nezami’s influence to any tradition can occur through the mediation of Persian literature. [61]. Anyhow, outside of Azerbaijan SSR and some former USSR sources, Nezami is seen as representative of Persian literature not Turkish as he does not have a single verse in Turkish and there is no evidence he even knew the language.

Concept of national poet[edit]

I had seen this WP:OR argument several times where someone states: "Poet X from country Y did not write in language Z, but he is the national poet of country Y". In other words, they might say: "Nezami did not write in Turkish (Azeri) but he is a national poet of Azerbaijan". However, the comparisons are flawed where during the of time X, the identity associated with the language of Z might have existed, this is not the case with Nezami as one cannot talk about an Azerbaijani Turkish national identity during 1130s (some say 1140s). Simply one can state Turcoman tribal nomads entered the area after the Saljuq with a tribal non-urban identity which has nothing to do with the Iranian (Iranian people) culture of Nezami. A concept of national poet is invalid when the said nation did not exist during 1130(some say 1140).

Did Nezami know Turkish? No Proof he even knew the language[edit]

  • Prof. Ivan Steblin-Kamensky, Dean of the Oriental Department of St. Petersburg University, with regards to students from some of the former Soviet Republics and presently, CIS countries : “We trained such specialists, but … there are a lot of nationalistic tendencies there and academic fraud. Apparently it's related to the first years of independence. Their works include nationalist beginnings. Objective perspective, scientific understanding of the problems and timeline of historical developments are lacking. Sometimes there is an outright falsification. For example, Nezami, the monument of whom was erected at Kamennoostrovsk Boulevard, is proclaimed a great Azerbaijani poet. Although he did not even speak Azeri, they justify this by saying that he lived in the territory of current Azerbaijan. But Nezami wrote his poems in Persian language!” [15].
  • Lornejad et al.:The unsubstantiated claim that since the first wife of Nezami was of Qifchāq background (she was a captured slave that was sent to him as a gift for his composition of Makhzan al-Asrār and became his first wife), then Nezami knew Qifchāq Turkish (which is not the Oghuz Turkish of Azerbaijan SSR but another Turkish dialect) is not provable and mere speculation. It is apparent that he sends his son to the court of the Persian speaking Sharvānshāhs and the advices he imparts on his son are all in Persian. So if his son knows Persian, then obviously his wife could have learned it as well. Slaves were actually trained before being sent as gifts in that era. There is no proof that Nezami knew any Turkish (let alone the Qifchāq version) and spoke any type of Turkish. [24].

Sharvanshahs language, Qasida and three generations of poets and Jan Rypka[edit]

  • Jan Rypka is a Soviet bloc scholars and he passed away around 1968. His work overall except those that intersect Soviet political claims may be deemed positive. Some of his Soviet style view has been criticized by Lornejad et al. using primary sources such as Nozhat al-Majales etc..
  • Someone quoted this on Rypka: the Caucasian and Azerbayjanian panegyrists must be placed in a special chapter; they form a clearly defined group of three generations of teachers and pupils, one of whom, as a grand master of qasida, had a powerful influence on the development of this form of poetry. To this group belonged the most brilliant poet of Azerbayjan, the romantic Nizami. All the poets worked at court or at least within the realm of the Shirvan-Shahs, who favoured literature written in the Persian tongue with their especial patronage, for the Shirvan-Shahs traced their descent from Bahram Chobin. Yet Persian was not their native language, though it predominated in works of literature; folk-poetry of course developed in consistence with local idiom.

Response:

  • Except that the source of Rypka is very out-dated (published in 1968 but written even beforehand) and he is from the Soviet block. Also no where does he claim Nezami was a Turk, but he simply goes with the cautious Soviet position (Kurdish mother and unknown father, but within the realm of Iranian culture). And here are reasons that the statements of Rypka are outdated with this regard (although the overall book has good information, but we are discussing this specific topic):
  • Nezami did not work in the courts or even in the realm of the Shirvanshahs. So the statement does not apply to him.
  • Lornejad et al. comment: However, as shown in Part IV of this book, the most common poetic output of the region should now be considered the ruba’i (Quatrains), which is not a genre of court poetry like the qasida (Odes) or epic poetry. Rypka also claims with regards to the Sharvānshāh that “Persian was not the language of the princes whose praise they sang” , whereas the Sharvānshāhs were already Persianized by the middle of 10th or early 11th century, composed Persian poetry themselves and claimed descent from ancient Sassanid Kings . Biruni (d. 1048) states that the common belief of people is that the Sharvānshāhs are descendants of the Sassanids (Biruni 1879:48) and Al-Mas’udi (d. circa 950) in the middle of the 10th century states there is no doubt that their pedigree goes back to Bahram Gur . By the 10th century they had adopted the new Iranian languages that had evolved from Middle Persian dialects (e.g. Tat-Persian in the Caucasus) and composed Persian poetry themselves . According to Minorsky, “The Iranicisation of the family must have proceeded continuously” and “the most likely explanation of this change must be a marriage link established on the spot, possibly with the family of the ancient rulers of Shābarān. The attraction of a Sasanian pedigree proved stronger than the recollections of the Shaybani lineage” . On a similar line, Rypka while trying to distinguish between the languages of folk literature and court literature (which he states was mainly intended for the courts of the Sharvānshāh), makes the erroneous statement that: “folk poetry of course developed in consistence with local idioms” without providing a single sample of such folk poetry. As clearly described by the book Nozhat al-Majāles, primary sources describing the population of the area, and modern secondary scholarly sources, Iranian vernacular languages and Persian poetry were the folk and common languages of the urban Muslim population of the major cities of the Caucasus (see Part IV). Consequently, due to political reasons and as a direct result of Soviet nation building, a set of non-historical and non-factual statements were contrived to minimizing the influence of Persian culture and Iranian ethnic elements of the Caucasus.
  • Lornejad & Doostzadeh: "However, no such group of “teachers and pupils” is found in the annals of history with the exception of Khāqāni and Falaki Sharvāni who were pupils of Abu ‘Ala Ganjavi..(See (Beelaert 2010 for rejection of this claim with regards to Abu ―Ala being a teacher of Khāqāni and Falaki Sharvāni.). For example, no one knows who were the teachers of Abu ‘Ala Ganjavi or Nezami Ganjavi or that of more than 100 poets (24 of them from Ganja) from Sharvān, Arrān and Azerbaijan (see Part IV) in the 11th -13th century. Indeed the generation gap between Qatrān (circa. 1009-1070 A.D.) and Nezami Ganjavi (circa. 1130-1200 A.D.) is also more than three generation. As the recently discovered manuscript of Nozhat al-Majāles (see Part IV for more details) shows, Persian poetry was the common and folk expression of the average people and not just associated with the elites of the courts of the Sharvānshāhs." & "Rypka also notes that: “With the exception of Nezami’s work, the entire poetic output of the region was confined to lyric poetry, to the qasida in particular” . However, as shown in Part IV of this book, the most common poetic output of the region should now be considered the ruba’i (Quatrains), which is not a genre of court poetry like the qasida (Odes) or epic poetry. "
  • Even Rypka, despite Soviet bloc backgrounds, mentions Haft Paykar, Khusraw Shirin are drawn from Iranian culture and Layli o Majnun is a Persianization of an Arabic story. All of this shows that Nezami was within the realm of Iranian culture not the Turcoman Oghuz culture. He states: In this epos (Khursaw o Shirin), and if we except Layli o Majnun, in all his other epic poems the poet draws on Iranian materials, especially those having some connection with Azerbaijan. The Sassanid Prince (later Shāh) Khusraw Parviz hears of the lovely Armenian princess Shirin…” (Note Azerbaijan in the 11th century is a simple geographical era and is an Iranian name..no ethnic identifiers here).
  • The Nozhat al-Majales which is found after Rypka shows that Persian was the everyday language of the people, while there is not a single relic of Oghuz Turkish culture from the 12th century Caucasus. Virtually none of the people in Nozhat al-Majales had any association with the courts.
  • Modern living Western Nezami scholars Francois de Blois[20], Chelkowski[14], Orsatti[18], Talatoff[16], etc. can be listed and they are listed below. They clearly affirm Nezami was Iranian (Rypka never says he was a Turk), Iranian languages were the language of urban Muslim population and Nozhat al-Majales is a mirror of the common culture of the people while there is not a single verse of Oghuz turcoman culture or any culture relic from the Oghuz Turcomans.



Persian literature or Turkish literature?[edit]

People from republic of Azerbaijan, USSR, and non-specialist authors have tried to call Nezami's work as "Azerbaijani literature" where Azerbaijani is simply another word for Turk for many of them. However, the term Azerbaijani language did not exist prior to the 20th century.

  • Paola Orsatti (Associate Professor of Persian language and literature, Sapienza University of Rome). Back Cover Comments // Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh. On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi. Edited by Victoria Arakelova. YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES, Yerevan 2012. This book provides a full survey of the distortions – dictated by nationalistic purposes – which have been pervading the field of the studies on the Persian poet Nezami of Ganje since the Soviet campaign for Nezami’s 800th birthday anniversary. The authors discuss, with critical accuracy, the arguments put forward by Soviet scholars, and more recently by scholars from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which term Nezami as an “Azerbaijani poet” and his work as pertaining to an alleged “Azerbaijani literature;” and show the historic unsoundness of such theses.
  • Lornejad et al. mentioned:Clearly, Nezami has called his own work as dorr-e dari (“Persian Pearl”) and nazm-e dari (Persian Poetry). Consequently, there is no historical basis to use politically invented anachronistic terms, such as “Azerbaijani literature”, which Nezami never used. [62].


From Persian culture or from Turcoman culture[edit]

  • Chelkowski notes:Nizami's strong character, his social sensibility, and his poetic genius fused with his rich Persian cultural heritage to create a new standard of literary achievement. Using themes from the oral tradition and written historical records, his poems unite pre-Islamic and Islamic Iran[14].
    • Peter J. Chelkowski, "Mirror of the Invisible World", New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. p. 1: "The culture of Nizami's Persia is renowned for its deep-rooted tradition and splendor. In pre-Islamic times, it had developed extraordinarily rich and exact means of expression in music, architecture, and daily life as well as in writing, although Iran, its center--or, as the poets believed, its heart--was continually overrun by invading armies and immigrants, this tradition was able to absorb, transform, and ultimately overcome foreign intrusion. Alexander the Great was only one of many conquerors, to be seduced by the Persian way of life
    • Chelkowski also affirms: Nizami was a typical product of the Iranian culture. He created a bridge between Islamic Iran and pre-Islamic Iran and also between Iran and the whole ancient world. His great humanism, strong character, sensibility, drama, colorful description of nature, rich language, and the poetic genius created a new standard of literary achievements and captured the imagination of countless imitators[59].
  • Comment on Turcoman Nomads
    • Turcoman nomads had just entered the area in the Saljuq era, and they would not be the sedentary population. Even Nezami in one poem references the tent of Turcomans as a fragile under the foot of an elephant. Lornejad et al. comment on the Turcomans (Oghuz): ,.. their nomadic lifestyle was not compatible with the lifestyle of the Iranian urban centers . It took many generations for some of these nomads to give up their long tradition of nomadic lifestyle, then adopt semi-nomadism and then agricultural settlements, and finally migrate to the urban centers. That is why there does not exist any cultural relics and proof of any urban and developed Turcoman culture from the 12th century Caucasus[63]


    • Lorned et al. criticizing Altdsdat (scholar does not know Persian and has no expertise on Nezami): In another recent book , the author (Altstadt) claims that: “Nezami Ganjevi, because of his wide fame and enormous contributions to Persian-language literature, is seen as an example of interconnections between Turkish and Persian cultural strands, and of Azerbaijan’s place in Turco-Persian culture” . However, the statement is not sourced, and there is no literary basis to claim that Nezami’s work shows an interconnection of such two strands. Nezami in his many works has referenced such works as Shāhnāma and the Quran (see Part IV below). However, there is no such reference in any work of Nezami for any Turkish language sources as the Oghuz nomads who had just entered the area lacked a written literature (see Part II). (pg 3).
    • Lornejat et al: Nezami’s cultural orientation - the language, literary heritage, mythology and philosophy - are more than sufficient to characterize him as a prominent figure of the Iranian cultural history. None of these concepts can be applied to a Turkish cultural history, since Nezami did not write in Turkish, nor did he use Turkish literary heritage. Finally, the philosophy and cultural heritage of Nezami is built upon his Iranian predecessors.
  • Persian Music
    • According to Chelkowski: The Khamsa serves as a principal source of our knowledge of 6th/12th century Persian musical composition and instruments.[17]
    • According to Chelkowski: "The details with which Nizami describes musicians are one of the delights of the Khamseh and make it a principal source of our present knowledge of twelfth-century Persian musical composition and instruments.[14]
    • Chelkowski notes:Nizami's strong character, his social sensibility, and his poetic genius fused with his rich Persian cultural heritage to create a new standard of literary achievement. Using themes from the oral tradition and written historical records, his poems unite pre-Islamic and Islamic Iran"[14]
  • He expounds Persian myths and legend[14]. and not Turkish legends.
    • Khusraw and Shirin. Chelkowski: "In the case of previous romances of Khosraw and Bahram, Nizami dealt with national Iranian heroes, though from pre-Islamic times. In the tale of Layla and Majnun, the Arab nationality of the lover is of no importance since the story is based on a simple Arab folktale which was later absorbed and embellished by the Persians"
    • Haft Paykar. Chelkowski: "In the case of previous romances of Khosraw and Bahram, Nizami dealt with national Iranian heroes, though from pre-Islamic times. In the tale of Layla and Majnun, the Arab nationality of the lover is of no importance since the story is based on a simple Arab folktale which was later absorbed and embellished by the Persians"
    • Eskandarnama. [[[Encyclopaedia of Islam]], Abel comments: At the time of Niẓami, however, Islam is from then onwards well established in Iran, and it is the prophetic and ecumenical aspect of his destiny that the poet makes evident in his hero. As a learned Iranian poet, Niẓami, who demonstrates his eclecticism in the information he gives (he says, "I have taken from everything just what suited me and I have borrowed from recent histories, Christian, Pahlavi and Jewish ... and of them I have made a whole"), locates the story of his hero principally in Iran. He makes him the image of the Iranian "knight", peace-loving and moderate, courteous and always ready for any noble action.[64]. Chelkowski comments: "The Persian legend of Alexander the Great seems to overshadow all of the other fantastic Alexander stories not only in the tale of the successful accomplishment of many a "mission-impossible" but especially concerning the nature of his career. In Iran he rose from the stature of a damned evil conquerer of the country, to that of a national Iranian hero king, and even more, to that of the great prophet of God, preparing all the nations for the true religion. Yet the Persian legend of Alexander is very little known in the Western world." .
    • Leili and Majnun. Persianization of an Arabic romance. According to Gelkpke, the Western scholar and translator: "Nizami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomad's tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world...Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization"[65]. According to Prof. De Buijn, scholar of Persian literature and Nezami:He adapted the disconnected stories to fit the requirements of a Persian romance. ...In some respects, the Bedouin setting of the original has been changed under the influence of urban conditions more familiar to the poet and his audience: the young lovers become acquainted at school; the generous Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than an Arab official.[66]
    • Makhzan al-Asrar (not an epic poem but nevertheless modeled after Sanai)[67]


  • Nezami a repository of Iranian myths and legends.
    • Prof. Maria Subtenly[56] notes[68]: the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowledged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination.

Britannica[edit]

  • Britannica is really the top ource as it is a tertiary source without many times expert authors writing in it. If it does not contradict expert sources, then one can say it is okay, but if it contradicts expert sources, then it is not valuable.
  • Britannica mentions Nezami Ganjavi as a Persian poet:[57] [58](see also the title of the page on Nezami top top left corner)
  • The statement quoted by some users is this:In the course of its long history, Azerbaijan has given the world a number of outstanding thinkers, poets, and scientists. Among the medieval scientists and philosophers, Abul Hasan Bakhmanyar (11th century), the author of numerous works on mathematics and philosophy, and Abul Hasan Shirvani (11th–12th centuries), the author of Astronomy, may be noted. The poet and philosopher Nẹzāmī, called Ganjavī after his place of birth, Ganja, was the author of Khamseh (“The Quintuplet”), composed of five romantic poems, including “The Treasure of Mysteries,” “Khosrow and Shīrīn,” and “Leyli and Mejnūn.”

Some mistakes:

    • It is Bahmanyar not Bakhmanyar.. He was an Iranian Zoroastrian (no relationship with Turkic culture).
    • "the treasure of mysteries" is not a romanic poem.
    • Britannica is tertiary source. If it has no author, then it doesn't have the value to discuss it.
    • The author of that particular sections are: Evgeny Dmitrievich Silaev, Edward Allworth, G. Melvyn Howe None of them are well known authors, let alone any of them know Persian

Some comments:

    • Azerbaijani ethnos did not exist during the time of Nezami, Bahmanyar and etc.
    • Bahmanyar is a Zoroastrian Iranian, and he even lived before there was any Turkish in the area. He wrote exclusively in Arabic also. So this kind of shows that USSR by "Azerbaijani" did not mean a Turk, but simply anyone that lived in Azerbaijan. However, the definition of Azerbaijani (specially post-USSR) is now increasingly becoming a "Turkic people" (by their own choice) and Turkic state (by their own choice). Obviously the Iranian Zoroastrian Bahmanyar does not fit this framework as he was not a Turk.
    • Also this statement is about the territory of Azerbaijan not the Turcophone ethnic group which adopted the name in the 20th century in the Caucasus and was not present during the time of Bahmnayar and Nezami.

Claim on idioms[edit]

Lornejad et al. There are many other examples from the pre-Nezami period – such as those from the Qābus-Nāma, Kashf al-Mahjub, Siyāsat-Nāma, etc. In actuality, in most of Nezami’s work, he mentions among his sources Arabic, Persian, Pahlavi, Jewish and Nestorian texts, apart from the Shāhnāma, Bukhāri, Tabari and also implicitly the Qur’an. He does not mention any Turkish sources by the way. In the Khusraw o Shirin, he quoted the Indian-origin and Persian-revised story of the Kalila o Demna about 40 times and summarized each moral of the story in one line. So Javad Heyat’s claim, that the Persian idioms used by Nezami are originally from Turkish, and such idioms had never existed in any other language in the region, nor had they been used in Persian before Nezami, etc., are unsubstantiated methodologically. As was shown in the multiple examples above, similar expressions had existed in Persian (as well as definitely in other languages of the regions, having then had literary tradition long before Turkish) prior to the time of Nezami. (S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. - pg 142)

Wolf Verse[edit]

Lornejad et al. :Another forgery is a verse that a Soviet Azerbaijani author, Nushaba Arasly, falsely attributed to Nezami Ganjavi: Father upon father of mine were Turks پدر بر پدر مر مرا ترک بود Each of them in wisdom was like a Wolf به فرزانگی هر یکی گرگ بود


Lornejad et al. continue: According to Nushaba Arasly : “The Azerbaijani scholar, Ali Ganj’ali while in the Aya Sufya library noted this verse but does not remember in which manuscript it occurred” (emphasis added). However, the mistake in this verse is apparent, since this verse does not even have a correct rhyme (rhyming the word gorg with tork) and makes no sense for the Persian poetry of that period. The verse mentioned by Nushaba Arasly was definitely forged and is a clear example of a nationalistic falsification. M.R. Heyat tries to explain the forged verse: “Unlike other cultures where the wolf is seen as a savage creature, in Turkish culture, the wolf is a sacred symbol for Turks and is seen as a representation of someone who is knowledgeable and wise…” . In actuality, Nezami Ganjavi considers the wolf as a savage beast which is mentally inferior to the fox. He also sees it as below lion in terms of courage. Consequently, if one were to accept the claim of Heyat about the wolf and its association with Turkish culture, then Nezami Ganjavi is definitely outside of the realm of such a culture.

Lornejat et al. continue: Nezami Ganjavi considers wolf as a mentally inferior creature relative to fox and fox as the king of wolf :

The reason that fox is the king over wolf از آن بر گرگ روبه راست شاهی Is because fox sees the trap while wolf sees only fish که روبه دام بیند گرگ ماهی

Nezami Ganjavi, referencing people who are bothersome and burdensome :

In our life time, we are distressed and burdened به وقت زندگی رنجور حالیم Because we are in the same hole with savage wolves که با گرگان وحشی در جوالیم

Nezami Ganjavi, making a point about the courage of lion :

Your message is supreme and your name is supreme پیامت بزرگست و نامت بزرگ Do not hide a lion underneath the skin of a wolf نهفته مکن شیر در چرم گرگ

False Turkish Divan Attributed to Nezami[edit]

Lornejad et al.: Another significant recent forgery is the ascription of an Ottoman Turkish Divan by Nezami Qunavi (d. late 15th century) to Nezami Ganjavi by some Turkish nationalist writers in Iran and, according to some websites, in the Republic of Azerbaijan. The Azerbaijan Republic news portal APA on the 8th of June 2007 had a headline entitled: “Nezami Ganjavi’s divan in Turkish published in Iran” . However, that was not Nezami Ganjavi’s divan, but by Nezami Qunavi who was an Ottoman poet writing in Ottoman Turkish, Persian and Arabic . Such a misattribution is another example of the current process of politicization of Nezami for ethno-nationalistic reasons...

footnote 310: Azerbaijan Press Agency (APA) news, “Nezami Ganjavi’s divan in Turkish published in Iran”, 08 June 2007. [59] [accessed May 2011]. We should note this forgery has found its way in other internet forums (e.g. [60] [accessed May 2011]. A curious note is that the APA report also had claimed that Saeed Nafisi is an Azerbaijani Turk whereas his background is actually from a long distinguished line of Kermani Persian Physicians going back to Hakim Burhan al-Din Nafis Kermani. In some internet forums, it has also been claimed that Vahid Dastgerdi is an Azerbaijani Turk and that is “why it is not surprising that he was the major scholar of Nezami”. However, Vahid Dastgerdi is from the village of Dastgerd in Isfahan and was not an Azerbaijani Turk. Both scholars, who hold the distinction of publishing the first critical edition of the Khamsa and the Divan of Nezami respectively, are not from a Turkic linguistic background.

Statues[edit]

The republic of Azerbaijan (headed by Heydar Aliev and his wife Leila Aliev) have personally taken an initative of building Nezami statues around the world and then putting a sign "Great Azerbaijan (Or Azerbaijani) poet". None of these constitute a WP:RS source and they are simply violation of WP:OR. Scholars actually dismiss this forgery.

  • Dr. Paola Orsatti (Associate Professor of Persian language and literature, Sapienza University of Rome). Back Cover Comments // Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh. On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi. Edited by Victoria Arakelova. YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES, Yerevan 2012. The unveiling of a statue in Rome of the “Azerbaijani poet” Nezami compels us to react to such distortions; and makes this book of great topical interest, too. Dr. Paola Orsatti, Associate Professor of Persian language and literature-Sapienza University of Rome[18].
  • Prof. Ivan Steblin-Kamensky, Dean of the Oriental Department of St. Petersburg University, with regards to students from some of the former Soviet Republics and presently, CIS countries : “We trained such specialists, but … there are a lot of nationalistic tendencies there and academic fraud. Apparently it's related to the first years of independence. Their works include nationalist beginnings. Objective perspective, scientific understanding of the problems and timeline of historical developments are lacking. Sometimes there is an outright falsification. For example, Nezami, the monument of whom was erected at Kamennoostrovsk Boulevard, is proclaimed a great Azerbaijani poet. Although he did not even speak Azeri, they justify this by saying that he lived in the territory of current Azerbaijan. But Nezami wrote his poems in Persian language!”[15]
  • So one can write, Nezami scholar Prof. Orsatti and Iranologist Steblin-Kamesky have termed the statue building campaign of the republic of Azerbaijan as a distortion[15][18].
  • In my opinion: Ultimately, there is no organic connection between Nezami and Turkish countries, as Nezamis greatness is precisely tied to the Persian language poetry he created and which is not translatable. Poetry unlike scientific writing cannot be translated. In actuality, parts of the poetry of Nezami look awkward when translated and although one can follow the general story, it is really the rhytmicness and rhymes that give it a flavor that makes him among the top 7 Persian poets and the greatest in terms of Romantic Epic Poetry, Hafez being the greatest in lyrical poetry, Ferdowsi greatest in Heroic Epic poetry, Sa'adi being the greatest in moral poetry, KHaqani being the greatest in Qasida, Khayyam in quatrains.

Many other unsound and politically driven claims[edit]

  • See: S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012.
  • See comment by Prof. Orsatti on the book: "This book provides a full survey of the distortions – dictated by nationalistic purposes – which have been pervading the field of the studies on the Persian poet Nezami of Ganje since the Soviet campaign for Nezami’s 800th birthday anniversary. The authors discuss, with critical accuracy, the arguments put forward by Soviet scholars, and more recently by scholars from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which term Nezami as an “Azerbaijani poet” and his work as pertaining to an alleged “Azerbaijani literature;” and show the historic unsoundness of such theses."

Iranian ethnic, Persian culture and New manuscripts[edit]

Summarizing quote of Iranian heritage[edit]

Nezami was an Iranian[18][16][64][17]poet and thinker who lived in Ganja, then an Iranian speaking city[20][5] and was a typical product of the Iranian[59] culture of his time. During this time, Persian culture and language was prominent[14][16] and Iranian culture fully spread in the Caucasus[69], an example of which is the book Nozhat al-Majales which shows everyday common people composed Persian influenced by Falavi (Iranian vernacular)[69]. Besides all of his work being in Persian, Nezami expounded Persian myths and legends such Khusraw and Shirin, and Haft Peykar[59], Persianized the Arabic origin story of Leili and Majun[66][70][65], and the Persian legend of Alexandar (Iranicized Alexandar the Great)[64]. He is considered a repository of Iranian myths and legends[71], and his work provide the most details available of Persian music in the 12th century[14][17]. He considered himself an inheritor of Ferdowsi[72], and three of his five works mention Shahnama as a main source[73].

His Favorite past-time was reading the Shahnama[14] and he advises the son of the King of Sharvan to also read the national Iranian epic of Shahnama[74]. He loved the Persian language for its own sake and calls his work Persian pearl[11], and is considered a representative of Persian literature[12]. The recent book by Lornejad et al. provides a critical examination of the USSR and Turkish claims in Chapters 2-3 and expounds on the ethnic Iranian and Persian cultural heritage of Nezami and that of the Caucasus during that period. As Chelkowski notes:Nizami's strong character, his social sensibility, and his poetic genius fused with his rich Persian cultural heritage to create a new standard of literary achievement. Using themes from the oral tradition and written historical records, his poems unite pre-Islamic and Islamic Iran"[14]. Today, the memorization and recitation of their literary heritage has always been vital to Iranians, whose attitude towards the power of the written and spoken word is reverential. Even today the national passion for poetry is constantly expressed over radio and television, in teahouses, in literary societies, in daily conversation, and in the Musha'areh, the poetry recitation contest. Nizami's work serves as a vehicle and a symbol of this tradition[14].

Iranian ethnicity, Iranian dialect of Ganja and Iranian culture of Nezami[edit]

  • Ganja and Iranian people and Persian language:
    • Nezami came from an Iranian urban background in Ganja, which at that time was inhabited by Iranians[20][14][16].
    • For example Kirakos of Gandzak Ganjeksti states before the Mongol invasion of Ganja: ““This city was densely populated with Persians”[75][76]. He also mentions a tree name: “An extremely large poplar tree (which they call chandari) which was close to the city was observed to turn around”. Lornejad et al. comment: “With regards to the word chandar (c.f. with sepidār which has been used for a type of poplar tree in Persian), it is Iranian and dār in classical Persian (as in many Persian and Iranian dialects today) and dar in modern Kurdish (Kurmanji) means tree. For example the wood-pecker is called dārkub (literally tree-banger) in Persian. The Persian affix -i in the end of chandari denotes a particular object, association or belonging. Such a clear Iranian word used by the natives of Ganja provides us a sample of the Persian language of the city.”[77] . Lornejad et al. comment: Many other examples of the differentiation of various ethnic groups by Gandzakets’i can be cited: “kingdoms conquered by them: from the Persians, Tachiks, Turks, Armenians, Georgians, Aghbanians/Aghuans and from all peoples under them” , “He then assembled his countless troops from among the Persians, Tāchiks and Turks, and came to Armenia” , “[The Qifchāqs] brought the honorable men [of the captives] and sold them for some clothing or food. Persians bought them...” , “Persian and Tachiks who were especially inimical toward the Christians” , “… to go against the Tachik capital, Baghdad, which was the seat of the Tachik dominion. The king who sat in Baghdad was not called sultan or melik as the Turkish, Persian or Kurdish autocrats customarily are, but caliph, that is, a descendant of Mahmet” . Since Gandzakets'i was from the city of Ganja itself and was born during the time of Nezami, when he described it as densely populated with Persians, he gives a firsthand account. .”[78].
    • As noted by Chelkowski:Persian culture characteristically flourished when political power was diffused rather than centralized, and so Persian remained the primary language, Persian civil servants were in great demand, Persian merchants were successful, and princedoms continued to vie for the service of Persian poets. This was especially true in Ganjeh, the Caucasian outpost town where Nizami lived[14].
    • Nozhat al-Majales[36]. The most significant merit of Nozhat al-Majāles, as regards the history of Persian literature, is that it embraces the works of 115 poets from the northwestern Iran (Arrān, Sharvān, Azerbaijan; including 24 poets from Ganja alone), where, due to the change of language, the heritage of Persian literature in that region has almost entirely vanished. [36], Nozhat al-Majāles is thus a mirror of the social conditions at the time, reflecting the full spread of Persian language and the culture of Iran throughout that region, clearly evidenced by the common use of spoken idioms in poems as well as the professions of some of the poets. The influence of the northwestern Pahlavi language, for example, which had been the spoken dialect of the region, is clearly observed in the poems contained in this anthology[36] and In contrast to poets from other parts of Persia, who mostly belonged to higher echelons of society such as scholars, bureaucrats, and secretaries, a good number of poets in the northwestern areas rose from among the common people with working class backgrounds, and they frequently used colloquial expressions in their poetry. They ar e referred to as water-carrier (saqqā), sparrow-dealer (‘osfuri), saddler (sarrāj), bodyguard (jāndār), oculist (kahhāl), [saddle-bag-maker (akkāfi or pālānduz)], etc., which illustrates the overall use of Persian in that region. Chapter eleven of the anthology contains interesting details about the everyday life of the common people, their clothing, the cosmetics used by women, the games people played and their usual recreational practices such as pigeon-fancying (kabutar-bāzi), even-or-odd game (tak yā joft bāzi), exercising with a sledgehammer (potk zadan), and archery (tir-andāzi). There are also descriptions of the various kinds of musical instruments such as daf (tambourine), ney (reed pipe), and chang (harp), besides details of how these instruments were held by the performers. One even finds in this anthology details of people’s everyday living practices such as using a pumice (sang-e pā) to scrub the sole of their feet and gel-e saršur to wash their hair”[36]. Lornejad et al comment: Given these Persian (e.g. jāndār=bodyguard) and Persianized Arabic terms (e.g. lehāfi - from the Arabic lehāf and Persian suffix -i denoting relation), it is clear that the native urban and sedentary Muslim population of Ganja during the time of Nezami and the Nozhat al-Majāles were Iranians.[79].
  • Persian the language of the common people
    • Mohammad-Amin Riahi quoted and translated by Lornejad et al.: Taking into consideration this historical information, Riāhi severely criticized the false claim that Persian was just a court language that was imposed by Iranian and Iranicized (i.e. Saljuqs and their regional Atabak dynasties) rulers of the area . Rather, as he correctly mentions, it was the culture of the area that Iranicized the local rulers (e.g. Sharvānshāhs and Muhammad ibn Ba’ith) and the number of common people detached from courts and with working-class background using colloquial expressions proves that it was the local Iranian language and culture that imposed itself on these rulers . As noted by Riāhi and by other scholars , the Sharvānshāhs ancestors were Arabs but it was the local Iranian culture that Persianized them . In conclusion, Riāhi mentions that: “Nozhat al-Majāles is thus a mirror of the social situations at the time, reflecting the full spread of the Persian language and the culture” and indeed putting to rest the false claims such as: “With the exception of Nezami’s work, the entire poetic output was confined to lyric poetry, to the Qasida in particular. Moreover all these poets were employed by Royal courts”[80]
    • As noted by Chelkowski:Persian culture characteristically flourished when political power was diffused rather than centralized, and so Persian remained the primary language, Persian civil servants were in great demand, Persian merchants were successful, and princedoms continued to vie for the service of Persian poets. This was especially true in Ganjeh, the Caucasian outpost town where Nizami lived[14].
    • Disregarding comments from Soviet and Soviet block authors about Persian being an elite language..Lornejad et al. also comment: Before the full publication of the Nozhat al-Majāles, Chelkowski had already noted: “Persian remained the primary language, Persian civil servants were in great demand, Persian merchants were successful, and princedoms continued to vie for the service of Persian poets. This was especially true in Ganjeh, the Caucasian outpost town where Nezami lived” . De Blois, after the publication of this book, also notes with regards to Nezami: “His nisbah designates him as a native of Ganja (Elizavetpol, Kirovabad) in Azerbaijan, then still a country with an Iranian population”. The Nozhat al-Majāles provides direct and decisive evidence that Persian was not just a court language used by a select few poets. This important fact is proven by the overwhelming number of poets with ordinary backgrounds from Azerbaijan, Sharvān and Arrān not associated with royal courts. Furthermore, quatrains are not the style typical of court poetry. Unlike the embellished qasida and epic poetry, they are the common style of folk poetry. Quatrains were sung with the harp, reed and other instruments; bards would use them to entertain guests and the Sufis would use them in their spiritual gatherings . The frequency of colloquial and common expressions in the quatrains of the Nozhat al-Majāles (as well as quatrains in general) are not found in the qasida and epic poetry . That is, quatrain by its nature was a non-elite form of poetry. Epic poetry, which was often devoted to a ruler, was popular both at the courts and among common people. However, the quatrains of poets, particularly those mentioned in the Nozhat al-Majāles, are not dedicated to any particular ruler or person. The important aspect of the Nozhat al-Majāles is that it mirrors the social conditions and thoughts of the common urban and sedentary Iranian people of Arrān and Sharvān on a rich variety of subjects.[81]
  • Appearance of Iranian poetry:
    • Lornejad et al. mention: Currently, Qatrān Tabrizi and Asadi Tusi (originally from Tus, but fled to Naxchivan during the Ghaznavid era) represent the oldest known authors who lived in the Caucasus and Azerbaijan, and who composed Dari-Persian poetry. However, Tabari mentioned that the elders (Arabic: shaykhs) of Marāgha praised the bravery and literary ability of Muhammad ibn Ba’ith (local Arab ruler in Azerbaijan circa early 9th century) and quoted his Persian poetry . According to Minorsky: “This important passage, already quoted by Barthold, is evidence of the existence of the cultivation of poetry in Persian in northwestern Persia at the beginning of the 9th century” . Riāhi believes that these poems belong to the Fahlaviyāt Persian dialects . What is clear is that Iranian language poetry had already been present even before Asadi Tusi. The oldest extant testimony of written New Persian literature (not Middle Persian inscriptions) from Azerbaijan and the Caucasus shows that before the Saljuqs, Persian-Dari poetry had been patronized by various minor dynasties. Qatrān Tabrizi or Asadi Tusi served the courts of such rulers as the Shaddādids of Ganja, the Rawwādids of Tabriz and Abu Dulaf of Naxchivan. The fact that these minor dynasties were patronizing Persian poetry shows that Dari-Persian had already spread in the region prior to the Saljuq invasion.[82]
  • Iranian languages in general:
    • Lornejad et al. mention: Given the testimonies of Estakhri and Ibn Hawqal, with that of Al-Muqaddasi, we can state that three major languages in the area were Armenian, Arrānian and Persian. Estakhri mentions Persian as the prevalent language of Arrān. The Persian close to Khurasanian Persian in sound mentioned by Al-Muqaddasi was likely an ancestor of Tat-Persian (its closest relative being the present-day Dari-Persian). This would make sense, since the essential roots of both Tat-Persian and literary Khurasani Persian (Dari-Persian) is part of the larger Middle Persian continuum. All these testimonies (especially the Arab travelers) clearly show a wide presence of Persian/Iranian languages in the Caucasus. Taking into account these primary sources from the period that has also been designated as the Iranian Intermezzo, a recent source (Rybakov 2002/2) asserts that: “The multi-ethnic population of the Albanian left-bank at this time is increasingly moving to the Persian language. Mainly this applies to the cities of Arrān and Sharvān, as from 9-10th centuries these are two main areas named in the territory of Azerbaijan. With regard to the rural population, it would seem, mostly retained for a long time, their old languages, and related to modern Daghestanian family, especially Lezgin”. However, given the presence of Middle Persian in the Sassanid era and Parthian in the Parthian era, it can be stated that the Iranian population of the area dates back at least to these eras, but was strengthened with the Islamization of the area as a Persianate Islamic culture developed throughout the Iranian world. Despite some unsound claims, there is currently no proof of a Caucasian Albanian Islamic culture and the Caucasian Albanians had been largely absorbed by Armenians before the arrival of the Saljuqs.[83]
  • Nezami the Persian Dehqan
    • Lornejad et al. analyze a verse about Nezami himself in Section 4.9 and conclude that:[84]: The function of the dehqāns in preserving the epic genre is prevalent for the Iranian history and literature. They were actually responsible for the preservation of the stories of the national epic, the Shāhnāma, and pre-Islamic historical traditions; the romances of ancient Iran belong to the dehqāns as well . Summarizing, Nezami definitely means himself writing of the “Eloquent Persian dehqān”, in fact the poet having possessed all the specific characteristics of this social group.
  • Comment on Turcoman Nomads
    • Turcoman nomads had just entered the area in the Saljuq era, and they would not be the sedentary population. Even Nezami in one poem references the tent of Turcomans as a fragile under the foot of an elephant. Lornejad et al. comment on the Turcomans (Oghuz): ,.. their nomadic lifestyle was not compatible with the lifestyle of the Iranian urban centers . It took many generations for some of these nomads to give up their long tradition of nomadic lifestyle, then adopt semi-nomadism and then agricultural settlements, and finally migrate to the urban centers. That is why there does not exist any cultural relics and proof of any urban and developed Turcoman culture from the 12th century Caucasus[85]
  • Persia/Iran
    • Peter J. Chelkowski, "Mirror of the Invisible World", New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. p. 1: "The culture of Nizami's Persia is renowned for its deep-rooted tradition and splendor. In pre-Islamic times, it had developed extraordinarily rich and exact means of expression in music, architecture, and daily life as well as in writing, although Iran, its center--or, as the poets believed, its heart--was continually overrun by invading armies and immigrants, this tradition was able to absorb, transform, and ultimately overcome foreign intrusion. Alexander the Great was only one of many conquerors, to be seduced by the Persian way of life
    • With regards to Nezami's poem about Iran being the heart of the world. C.E. Wilson , the early translator of the Haft Paykar into the English language comments on these three verses: "The sense is apparently, ‘since Persia is the heart of the earth, Persia is the best part of the earth, because it is certain that the heart is better than the body.’"(Wilson, C.E.(1924), The Haft Paikar – Translation and Commentary, 2 vols., London. Also available at: http://persian.packhum.org/persian/main?url=pf%3Ffile%3D17601040%26ct%3D11 [accessed May 2011])
    • Lornejad et al. The above examples clearly demonstrates that the cultural-geographical territory of Iran and ‘Ajam during the time of these Iranian Muslim poets included Azerbaijan (ruled by the Eldiguzids and small portion of it by the Ahmadilis), Arrān (ruled mainly by the Eldiguzids with occasional Georgian incursions and control) and Sharvān (ruled by the Sharvānshāhs). [86].
  • Nezami Loved language for its own sake.
    • He consistently called his poetry as Persian pearls, demonstrating his great love for the language.[87]
    • Britannica:Neẓāmī is admired in Persian-speaking lands for his originality and clarity of style, though his love of language for its own sake and of philosophical and scientific learning makes his work difficult for the average reader.[88].
  • Persian Music
    • According to Chelkowski: The Khamsa serves as a principal source of our knowledge of 6th/12th century Persian musical composition and instruments.[17]
    • According to Chelkowski: "The details with which Nizami describes musicians are one of the delights of the Khamseh and make it a principal source of our present knowledge of twelfth-century Persian musical composition and instruments.[14]
  • Nezami Persian heritage unites pre-Islamic and post-Islamic Iran[14].
    • Chelkowski notes:Nizami's strong character, his social sensibility, and his poetic genius fused with his rich Persian cultural heritage to create a new standard of literary achievement. Using themes from the oral tradition and written historical records, his poems unite pre-Islamic and Islamic Iran"[14]
  • He expounds Persian myths and legend[14]. and not Turkish legends.
    • Khusraw and Shirin. Chelkowski: "In the case of previous romances of Khosraw and Bahram, Nizami dealt with national Iranian heroes, though from pre-Islamic times. In the tale of Layla and Majnun, the Arab nationality of the lover is of no importance since the story is based on a simple Arab folktale which was later absorbed and embellished by the Persians"
    • Haft Paykar. Chelkowski: "In the case of previous romances of Khosraw and Bahram, Nizami dealt with national Iranian heroes, though from pre-Islamic times. In the tale of Layla and Majnun, the Arab nationality of the lover is of no importance since the story is based on a simple Arab folktale which was later absorbed and embellished by the Persians"
    • Eskandarnama. [[[Encyclopaedia of Islam]], Abel comments: At the time of Niẓami, however, Islam is from then onwards well established in Iran, and it is the prophetic and ecumenical aspect of his destiny that the poet makes evident in his hero. As a learned Iranian poet, Niẓami, who demonstrates his eclecticism in the information he gives (he says, "I have taken from everything just what suited me and I have borrowed from recent histories, Christian, Pahlavi and Jewish ... and of them I have made a whole"), locates the story of his hero principally in Iran. He makes him the image of the Iranian "knight", peace-loving and moderate, courteous and always ready for any noble action.[64]. Chelkowski comments: "The Persian legend of Alexander the Great seems to overshadow all of the other fantastic Alexander stories not only in the tale of the successful accomplishment of many a "mission-impossible" but especially concerning the nature of his career. In Iran he rose from the stature of a damned evil conquerer of the country, to that of a national Iranian hero king, and even more, to that of the great prophet of God, preparing all the nations for the true religion. Yet the Persian legend of Alexander is very little known in the Western world." .
    • Leili and Majnun. Persianization of an Arabic romance. According to Gelkpke, the Western scholar and translator: "Nizami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomad's tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world...Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization"[65]. According to Prof. De Buijn, scholar of Persian literature and Nezami:He adapted the disconnected stories to fit the requirements of a Persian romance. ...In some respects, the Bedouin setting of the original has been changed under the influence of urban conditions more familiar to the poet and his audience: the young lovers become acquainted at school; the generous Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than an Arab official.[66]
    • Makhzan al-Asrar (not an epic poem but nevertheless modeled after Sanai)[67]
  • Iranian (Kurdish) maternal connection
    • Iranian maternal uncle (Khwaja Umar) that raised him (his father and mother passed away at an early stage and according to some possibly in the earthquake of Ganja).
    • This is sourced already in various articles (e.g. V. Minorsky, Studies in Caucasian History, Cambridge University Press, 1957. p. 34:"The author of the collection of documents relating to Arran Mas’ud b. Namdar (c. 1100) claims Kurdish nationality. The mother of the poet Nizami of Ganja was Kurdish (see autobiographical digression in the introduction of Layli wa Majnun). In the 16th century there was a group of 24 septs of Kurds in Qarabagh, see Sharaf-nama, I, 323. Even now the Kurds of the USSR are chiefly grouped south of Ganja. Many place-names composed with Kurd are found on both banks of the Kur").
  • Nezami and Ferdowsi.
    • Nezami mentions the Shahnameh and/or Ferdowsi in four of his five works.
    • Chelkowski mentions: "However, it was not Tabari directly, but Ferdowsi who was Nizami's source of inspiration and material in composing Iskandarnameh. Nizami constantly alludes to the Shahnameh in his writing, especially in the prologue to the Iskandarnameh. It seems that he was always fascinated by the work of Firdawsi and made it a goal of his life to write an heroic epic of the same stature. p. 22: "It seems that Nezami's favorite pastime was reading Firdawsi's monumental epic Shahnameh (The book of Kings)"[59]
    • Prof. Gohrab notes: The relationship between Shirwanshah and his son, Manuchir, is mentioned in chapter eight. Nizami advises the king's son to read Firdausi's Shah-nama and to remember the pity sayings of the wise[89].
    • Lornejad et al: "He mentions Ferdowsi and/or his Shāhnāma in the Khusraw o Shirin, Layli o Majnun, Haft Paykar and Eskandar-Nāma. As mentioned already in Part II, in the Sharaf-Nāma, Nezami Ganjavi expresses his desire to imitate the Shāhnāma, but then decides that: “One cannot pierce two holes in a single pearl"[90]
    • Lornejad et al: An interesting episode in this epic is the fact that Nezami entrusts his own son to the son of the Sharvānshāh . Nezami Ganjavi in this episode advises the son of the Sharvānshāh to read the Shāhnāma which again shows the importance of the national Persian epic in the culture of Nezami.[91]
  • Nezami a repository of Iranian myths and legends.
    • Prof. Maria Subtenly[61] notes[92]: the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowledged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination.


  • Succinctly:
    • Chelkowski: Nizami was a typical product of the Iranian culture. He created a bridge between Islamic Iran and pre-Islamic Iran and also between Iran and the whole ancient world.[59]
    • Lornejad et al. comment: Nezami’s cultural orientation - the language, literary heritage, mythology and philosophy - are more than sufficient to characterize him as a prominent figure of the Iranian cultural history. None of these concepts can be applied to a Turkish cultural history, since Nezami did not write in Turkish, nor did he use Turkish literary heritage. Finally, the philosophy and cultural heritage of Nezami is built upon his Iranian predecessors. No cultural background comes from a vacuum, and Nezami was part of the Iranian ethnic and culture of his time. It was the same culture that was responsible for the Persianization of the Sharvānshāhs, other local rulers and the Saljuqs. After the Mongol invasion, the Turcoman upheavals, the Safavid interlude, and the subsequent Turkicization of Eastern-Transcaucasia, the Caucasus regions has not given birth to any outstanding Persian poets – not only of such a level as Khāqāni and Nezami were, but even of the rank of Mujir or Mahsati Ganjavi . There was an underlying Persian culture and massive Iranian ethnic element which allowed the region to produce the two outstanding figures of Khāqāni and Nezāmi amongst the hundreds of the Persian poets of that era.


Portion of the book[edit]

Lornejad et al. point to the fact that primary manuscripts such as Kirakos Gandzakets'i (1200/1202-1271) have mentioned that Ganja was densly inhabited by Persians and extract mentioned the native Iranian word tree name chandari that was mentioned by Kirakos Gandzakets'i. They note the Nozhat al-Majales has mentioned 24 Persian poets from Ganja at this time while there is not a single Turkish poet mentioned from the region in the 12th century. With regards to Nezami's culture, they conclude that:

"A noticeable portion of Nezami Ganjavi’s poetry with its rich imagery, allusions and symbolism requires in-depth contemplation to be understood in the original language. It is no exaggeration to state that Nezami Ganjavi’ poetry is among the most difficult to translate into any other language. As for the main themes of his poetry is that it is mainly based upon Iranian motifs and stories. The poet was particularly influenced by Ferdowsi. He mentions Ferdowsi and/or his Shāhnāma in the Khusraw o Shirin, Layli o Majnun, Haft Paykar and Eskandar-Nāma. As mentioned already in Part II, in the Sharaf-Nāma, Nezami Ganjavi expresses his desire to imitate the Shāhnāma, but then decides that: “One cannot pierce two holes in a single pearl” . '

He was upset that he did not accomplish this task, but then Khizr (possibly a symbol for his inner inspiration and divine guidance) tells him to accept this fate. Consequently, despite his inner inclinations, Nezami did not recompose the Shāhnāma, because he did not want to be known as an imitator, but he wanted his legacy to be known throughout the ages as that of a new initiator and leader in Persian poetry. The epic of the Khusraw o Shirin deals with national heroes of pre-Islamic Iran . In the Khusraw o Shirin, Nezami calls Ferdowsi as a Hakim (“sage”) and dānā (“wise, knowledgeable”) . He also believes that since Ferdowsi was in his sixties when he was composing his epic, he did not expand upon the romantic nature of the story, since at that age, romance would not suit Ferdowsi. However, the reason Nezami pursued romantic epics in his later years is possibly due to the great popularity of such epics during that era as alluded by him .

It should be noted that these romantic epics, according to medieval Persian poets, such as Jāmi, were an out-layer used to impart ethics, philosophical and spiritual truths . The romantic epic portion of the story is obviously part of Iranian folklore and all the characters such as Shirin, Mahin Bānu, Farhād, Khusraw, Bārbad, Nakisā, Bāmshād, Shāpur, etc. provide a glimpse of the culture of Iran at that time. The story has historical value for the study of the culture of ancient Iran. For example, it mentions the names of songs and modes of ancient Iranian music .

The themes of the Haft Paykar and Khusraw o Shirin which dealt with pre-Islamic Sassanid Iran were chosen by Nezami himself. For example, on the Khusraw o Shirin, Nezami states that "a sweeter story does not exist" . For the Haft Paykar, Nezami chose the theme about the Iranian king Bahram Gur, in the pseudo-historical epic genre. As for the Eskandar-Nāma, Nezami mentions that he first wanted to recompose the Iranian national epic, but Khizr tells him that there cannot be “two holes pierced in one pearl” and he should not be upset that he did not come before Ferdowsi. Instead, Khizr reminds the poet that the story of Eskandar was not covered in detail in the Shāhnāma and suggests that this would be the theme of the Eskandar-Nāma. All of these stories were part of the inclinations of Nezami as of an Iranian Muslim, and that is why he chose the themes from his own Iranian culture. The story whose theme was not chosen by Nezami himself, as noted already, was the Layli o Majnun.

In the Layli o Majnun, the Arab origin of the lovers is inconsequential, since the story was later absorbed and embellished by the Iranians . We noted the Persianization of the story in Part I, and even Jan Rypka states that the story is “closer to the Persian conception of Arabia” . Rudolph Gelpke also notes that: “Nezami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomad’s tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world ... Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies, and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization” . An interesting episode in this epic is the fact that Nezami entrusts his own son to the son of the Sharvānshāh . Nezami Ganjavi in this episode advises the son of the Sharvānshāh to read the Shāhnāma which again shows the importance of the national Persian epic in the culture of Nezami.

In the Sharaf-Nāma, Nezami Ganjavi mentions Ferdowsi as the “Wise poet of Tus who decorated the face of rhetoric like a new bride” . We should note that Alexander was glorified by Iranian Muslims (as opposed to Iranian Zoroastrians) as a prophet-king and identified as the Dhul-Qarnain of the Qur’an by many prominent Muslim figures. Thus, after the Islamic conquest, “he rose from the stature of a damned evil conqueror of the country, to that of a national Iranian hero king, and even more, to that of the great prophet of God, preparing all the nations for the true religion” . According to Chelkowski, the main source of Nezami’s Eskandar-Nāma, beside Tabari, was Ferdowsi. He states with this regard: “It was Firdawsi who was Nezami’s source of inspiration and material in composing Eskandar-Nāma. Nezami constantly alludes to the Shāhnāma in his writing, especially in the prologue to the Eskandar-Nāma. It seems that he was always fascinated by the work of Firdawsi and made it a goal of his life to write an heroic epic of the same stature”.

The final product was Alexander who is a hero, principally located in Iran in the image of traditional “Iranian Knight” . Besides, before the Iranicization of Alexander in the Persian epic tradition, in the case of previous romances of Khusraw and Bahram, Nezami had dealt with national Iranian heroes from pre-Islamic times .

Ancient Iranian figures, mythical figures and terms that occur both in the Shāhnāma and the pentalogue of Nezami are many, and here we just list some of them: Simorgh (mythical Iranian bird mentioned in Avesta), Rustam (the most prominent Iranian hero in the Shāhnāma), Faramarz (the son of Rustam), Darafsh Kāwiyāni (Kāveh’s flag and the symbol of the Iranian nation), Fereydun (legendary ancestor of Iranians), Anushirawān (a famous Sassanid King), Esfandyār, Zand/Avesta, Zahāk/Bivarasb, Siyāvash (an Iranian martyr), Sikandar (Alexander mentioned extensively in the Shāhnāma), Siāmak (the son of Kayumarth who was killed by Daemons/Divs) , Div (Demons), Bahrām Gur (a celebrated Sassanid King), Bahrām Chubin (a celebrated Sassanid General), Afrasiyāb (a famous villain in the Shāhnāma of the Turanian origin - an Iranian tribe in the Avesta), Zāl (the father of Rustam who was abandoned by Sām but saved by Simorgh and later on reclaimed by Sām), Sām (the father of Zāl), Shirin (Armenian/Christian princess according to later poets, but also mentioned in the Shāhnāma as a beloved of Khusraw and a historical figure at Sassanid court), Farhād (who falls in love with Shirin - a legend both in the Shāhnāma and in the Iranian tradition from the Sassanid time), the Kayanids (Royal Iranian dynasty), Parviz (“victorious”, the title of Khusraw II), nard (the backgammon, which is considered to be of Iranian origin and which history is given in the Shāhnāma), Magi (Zoroastrian priest), Kisrā/Khusraw (Sassanid Kings), Kayumarth (the Adam of Zoroastrianism), Kay-Qubād (the first Kayanid King), Kay-Khusraw (the great mystic/hero/king of the Shāhnāma), Kay-Kāvus (the father of Siyāvash and a Kayanid King), Jamshid (the great mythical King of the Shāhnāma and Zoroastrian texts), Iraj (the father of Iranians in the Shāhnāma and one of the sons of Fereydun.), Giv (a famous hero in the Shāhnāma), Darius/Dārā (the name of several Kayanid and Achaemenid kings), Bistun (the famous mountain with the Old Persian inscription in Kermanshāh), Bahman (the Zoroastrian and Shāhnāma King and son of Esfandyār), Artang (the art work of Mani), Ardashir-e Bābakān (the founder of the Sassanid dynasty), Arash (the famous Iranian hero and archer who sacrificed his life for the sake of Iran), Bārbad and Nakisā (the renowned Sassanid musicians), the Kalila o Demna (a collection of stories brought by the Vizir of Anushirawan from India and expanded by means of its Persian version). Consequently, as Chelkowski has noted: “It seems that Nezami’s favorite pastime was reading Firdawsi’s monumental epic Shāhnāma” .

Besides Ferdowsi , Nezami Ganjavi was also heavily influenced by As’ad Gurgāni. Richard Davis, the current foremost expert and the translator of the Vis o Rāmin notes that: “The poem had an immense influence on Nezami, who takes the bases for most of his plots from Ferdowsi but the basis for his rhetoric from Gurgāni” . Gurgāni can currently be considered as the initiator of the distinct rhetoric and poetic atmosphere of the Persian romance tradition , and the elaborate astrological descriptions or the lovers arguing in the snow, as well as the meter of the Khusraw o Shirin are based on Gurgāni’s Vis o Rāmin . Gurgāni’s influence in the Caucasus can also be seen in the Georgian literature, his work having been translated to Georgian in an early period.

The other poetic work that Nezami took as his model is the Hadiqat al-Haqiqa by Sanāi. This poem was the first in the tradition of the Persian didactical mathnawis and played a great role in Persian literature. Poets that took this work as a model include Nezami, Attār, Rumi, Awhadi and Jāmi . Khāqāni Sharvāni also exercised a great influence upon Nezami through his usage of new terms and imagery . Indeed, both poets are unique in terms of the amount of new concepts and imagery that they employ; they both stand out among all the Persian poets from the Caucasus. Finally, another author who also had influence upon Nezami, though, as to our knowledge, it has not been emphasized by anyone, was Asadi Tusi. Asadi Tusi is mentioned by Nezami in the Haft Paykar, but his influence can be seen in the Eskandar-Nāma. Garshāsp displays a personality of both a hero as well as a sage interested in philosophy. Just like the Iqbāl-Nāma, in which Eskandar asks philosophical questions from the Greek sages, Garshāsp also asks similar philosophical questions about existence, destiny, faith and other ideas from Indian Brahmins and Greek sages. Thus, Nezami’ poetry would not have been possible without his Persian predecessors’ ideas and themes, incorporated into it.

Nezami’s cultural orientation - the language, literary heritage, mythology and philosophy - are more than sufficient to characterize him as a prominent figure of the Iranian cultural history. None of these concepts can be applied to a Turkish cultural history, since Nezami did not write in Turkish, nor did he use Turkish literary heritage. Finally, the philosophy and cultural heritage of Nezami is built upon his Iranian predecessors. No cultural background comes from a vacuum, and Nezami was part of the Iranian ethnic and culture of his time. It was the same culture that was responsible for the Persianization of the Sharvānshāhs, other local rulers and the Saljuqs. After the Mongol invasion, the Turcoman upheavals, the Safavid interlude, and the subsequent Turkicization of Eastern-Transcaucasia, the Caucasus regions has not given birth to any outstanding Persian poets – not only of such a level as Khāqāni and Nezami were, but even of the rank of Mujir or Mahsati Ganjavi . There was an underlying Persian culture and massive Iranian ethnic element which allowed the region to produce the two outstanding figures of Khāqāni and Nezāmi amongst the hundreds of the Persian poets of that era.

Google Books[edit]

Google books could have write or wrong information. Many of the authors are not specialists. That is why we have only mentioned specialists on the top. However, sometimes people like to choose random non-specialist sources and ignore WP:RS. Here we have collected 125+ sources (some specialists and some non-specialist) as a general favoring. Note the only sources that really count is Nezami specialists (who read Persian, and have written articles/books about him..). So the list here is not about specialist/non-specialist but simply to show that random google books search easily yields 125+ sources. Here are 125+ or so sources or so that use Persian poet. On purpose they cover both sources related to Nezami, but also sources that have to do with other subjects like art, science, fiction, history of literature and etc. Here are the same sources for Wikipedia formatting: [93][94][95][96][97][98][99][100][101][102][103][104][105][106][107][108][109][110][111]

[112][113][114][115][116][117][118][119][120][121][122][123][124][125][126]


[127][128][129][130][131][132][133][134][135][136][137][138][139]

[140][141][142][143][144][145][146][147][148][149][150][151][152][153][154][155][156][157][158][159][160][161][162][163][164][165][166][167][168][169][170][171][172][173][174][175][176][177][178][179][180][181][182][183][184][185][186][187][188][189][190][191]

[192][193][194][195][196][197][198][199][200][201][202][203][204][205][206][207][208][209][210][211][212][213][214][215][216][217][218]

[219].

References[edit]

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[25]

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[11].

[73]


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[23].


[72]

[74].

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[69].

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Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e De Planhol, X. (2004), “Iran i. Lands of Iran”, Encyloapedia Iranica, Online Edition. “Azeri material culture, a result of this multi-secular symbiosis, is thus a subtle combination of indigenous elements and nomadic contributions…. It is a Turkish language learned and spoken by Iranian peasants” (de Planhol 2004). "Azeri material culture, a result of this multi-secular symbiosis, is thus a subtle combination of indigenous elements and nomadic contributions, but the ratio between them is remains to be determined. The few researches undertaken (Planhol, 1960) demonstrate the indisputable predominance of Iranian tradition in agricultural techniques (irrigation, rotation systems, terraced cultivation) and in several settlement traits (winter troglodytism of people and livestock, evident in the widespread underground stables). The large villages of Iranian peasants in the irrigated valleys have worked as points for crystallization of the newcomers even in the course of linguistic transformation; these places have preserved their sites and transmitted their knowledge. The toponymy, with more than half of the place names of Iranian origin in some areas, such as the Sahand, a huge volcanic massif south of Tabriz, or the Qarā Dāḡ, near the border (Planhol, 1966, p. 305; Bazin, 1982, p. 28) bears witness to this continuity. The language itself provides eloquent proof. Azeri, not unlike Uzbek (see above), lost the vocal harmony typical of Turkish languages. It is a Turkish language learned and spoken by Iranian peasants."
  2. ^ a b c d e (“Transcaucasia in XI-XV centuries” in Rostislav Borisovich Rybakov (editor), History of the East. 6 volumes. v. 2. “East during the Middle Ages: Chapter V., 2002. – ISBN 5-02-017711-3. http://gumilevica.kulichki.com/HE2/he2510.htm. Quote: “In the XIV-XV cc., as the Azerbaijani Turkic-language ethnos was beginning to form, arose its culture, as well. At first it had no stable centers of its own (recall that one of its early representatives, Nesimi, met his death in Syria) and it is rather difficult at that time to separate from the Osman (Turkish) culture. Even the ethnic boundary between the Turks and the Azerbaijanis stabilized only in the XVI c., and even then it was not quite defined yet. Nevertheless, in the XV c., two centers of the Azerbaijani culture are forming: the South Azerbaijan and (lowland) Karabakh. They took final shape later, in the XVI-XVIII cc. Speaking of the Azerbaijan culture originating at that time, in the XIV-XV cc., one must bear in mind, first of all, literature and other parts of culture organically connected with the language. As for the material culture, it remained traditional even after the Turkicization of the local population. However, the presence of a massive layer of Iranians that took part in the formation of the Azerbaijani ethnos, have imposed its imprint, primarily on the lexicon of the Azerbaijani language which contains a great number of Iranian and Arabic words. The latter entered both the Azerbaijani and the Turkish language mainly through the Iranian intermediary. Having become independent, the Azerbaijani culture retained close connections with the Iranian and Arab cultures. They were reinforced by common religion and common cultural-historical traditions.”
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Olivier Roy, "The New Central Asia: The Creation of Nations", I.B.Tauris, 2000.pg 18:"The concept of an Azeri identity barely appears at all before 1920. Up until that point Azerbaijan had been purely a geographic area. Before 1924, the Russians called the Azeri Tatars 'Turks' or 'Muslims'. Prior to 1914, the reformist leaders of Azerbaijan stressed their Turkish and Muslim identity. The Great Azerbaijani author Mirza Fath Ali Akhundzadeh (1812-78), who wrote in the vernacular and campaigned for a simplified and adapted Arabic script chose to refer to himself as Persian"
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Kaufman, S. (2001), Modern Hatreds: The Symbolic Politics of Ethnic War, Cornell University Press. “In contrast with the Armenians, the Azerbaijani national identity is very recent. In fact, the very name “Azerbaijani” was not widely used until the 1930s; before that Azerbaijani intellectuals were unsure whether they should call themselves Caucasian Turks, Muslims, Tatars, or something else”(Kaufman 2001:56)."
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Victor Schnirelmann. The Value of the Past: Myths, Identity and Politics in Transcaucasia. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan, 2001. *P.102-103:"In brief, Azerbaijan was in great need of its own history, and in 1940-1941 the Department of History of Azerbaijan was established and a course in the history of Azerbaijan was introduced to the curriculum of the Historical Faculty of the ASU (Ibragimov, Tokarzhevsky 1964: 27). By that time, both aforementioned Iranian and Armenian factors had been conducive to rapid Azerbaijanization of historical heroes and historical political formations in the territory of Azerbaijan, hi particular, in 1938 the 800-year anniversary of Nizami was celebrated, and he was declared a great Azeri poet (Istoriia 1939: 88-91). In fact, he was a Persian poet and that was no wonder, since the Persians accounted for the entire urban population in those days (Diakonov 1995: 731). This was recognized in all the encyclopedias published in Russia before the 1930s, and only in 1939 did the Big Soviet Encyclopaedia called Nizami a "great Azeri poet" for the first time (Cf. Brokgauz, Efron 1897: 58; Granai 1917: 195; BSE 1939: 94). In the 1940s the Safavi Dynasty became Azerbaijani rather than Turkic, let alone Iranian (Altstadt 1992: 159; Astourian 1994: 53)." *p. 144: "Thus, the continuing anti-religious struggle, on one hand, and Soviet suspicions towards the Turks, on the other, excluded both Islam and Turkic from those resources the Azeris might use in order to shape their identity. That is why they emphasized so much their links with the territory. Indeed this was only ground left for their claims to authenticity; this puzzled the Armenian scholars though..Moreover, being affected by Soviet internalism, they initially tried to find the sort of ancestors who could move them closer to Armenians, and discovered them in the early Iranian world (Medes). * p 145:"The Albanian theory provided the Soviet Azeris with the status of an indigenous ethnic group and also made them heirs of very early culture. It also enriched them with historical arguments for claims to the Nagorny Karabagh lands. Both theories intentially isolated th Azeris from the Turkic world. Indeed, the first Soviet authorities were quite suspicious about the Turks and several times used punitive measures against them." *pg 145:"At the same time, the image of Turks began to lose its negative connotations with the increase of the Turkic population of the USSR, the growth of their educational status and the economic powers of their republics, and the indigenization of the bureaucratic elites of those republics. The prestige of the Turkic languages had grown as well. The negation by the Turkic scholars of their remote ancestors 'Turkic language was perceived now with surprise and discontent. " pg 146: "The Azeri revisionists kept emphasizing their early local cultural heritage in order to claim indigenous status, and thus the right to all the local territories, based on the traditional settler principle. At the same time, they gradually began to Turkify the early indigenous inhabitants"
    • pg 141: "Instead the authors did his best to prove that "Avesta" was composed by Turks who lived near lake Urmia"
  6. ^ a b Slezkine, Yuri. “The Soviet Union as a Communal Apartment.” in Stalinism: New Directions. Ed. Sheila Fitzpatrick, Routledge, New York, 2000. pages 330-335. ISBN 041515233X.:
  7. ^ a b c Susha Bolukbashi, ‘Nation building in Azerbaijan: The Soviet Legacy and the Impact of the Karabakh Conflict’ in Van Schendel, Willem(Editor) . Identity Politics in Central Asia and the Muslim World: Nationalism, Ethnicity and Labour in the Twentieth Century. London , GBR: I. B. Tauris & Company, Limited, 2001.) "During the Stalin era, Azeri historians were forced to link Azeri history to Persian Medes, whose appearance in Iran and the southern Caucasus dates back to the ninth century BC. In the post-Stalin era, this theory gave away to one which linked the Azeris’ origin to the Atropathenes and Caucasian Albania. By the early 1970s, however, the Turkic role in Azeri history had begun to be admitted, so that until the Gorbachev era the Azerbaijani historiography based Azeri identity on a combination of the Medes, the Atropathenes, the Albanians and the Turkic settlers, a formula which helped prevent the emergence of an all-Turkic historiography"
  8. ^ a b c Great Soviet Encyclopaedia, “Azerbaijan SSR”, 3rd edition, pp 467.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h ‘Soviet Nationalism’: An Ideological Legacy to the Independent Republics of Central Asia’». Dr. Bert G. Fragner (Austrian Academy of Sciences (Vienna): Executive Director (Institute of Iranian Studies)) // Willem van Schendel (PhD, Professor of Modern Asian History at the University of Amsterdam), Erik Jan Zürcher (PhD. held the chair of Turkish Studies in the University of Leiden). Identity Politics in Central Asia and the Muslim World: Nationalism, Ethnicity and Labour in the Twentieth Century. I.B.Tauris, 2001. ISBN 1-86064-261-6. Стр. 20:"It was up to the central power to solve these kinds of contradiction by arbitrary decisions. This makes clear that Soviet nationalism was embedded into the political structure of what used to be called ‘Democratic Centralism’. The territorial principle was extended to all aspects of national histories, not only in space but also in time: ‘Urartu was the oldest manifestation of a state not only on Armenian soil but throughout the whole Union (and, therefore, implicitly the earliest forerunner of the Soviet state)’, ‘Nezami from Ganja is an Azerbaijani Poet’, and so on."
  10. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 25:"For example, Bertels states with regards to Nezami: “About the family of Nezami, we know almost nothing. The only thing we can say with certainty is that at the time of writing the poem ‘Layli o Majnun’, i.e. in 1188, his father had passed away. His mother too, had passed away and the poet calls her ‘a Kurdish lady’”"
  11. ^ a b c Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public. Available at: [1] [2][3] (note work is not copy righted). pg 32: "Clearly, Nezami has called his own work as dorr-e dari (“Persian Pearl”) and nazm-e dari (Persian Poetry). Consequently, there is no historical basis to use politically invented anachronistic terms, such as “Azerbaijani literature”, which Nezami never used."
  12. ^ a b c d e f g Tamazishvili, «главным, революционным для отечественной науки результатом этой кампании стало отнесение Низами к поэтам азербайджанским, а его творчества к достижениям азербайджанской литературы, в то время как в мировом востоковедении (а ранее и в советском) доминировал взгляд на него как представителя литературы персидской. Точки зрения, что Низами персидский поэт, и сегодня придерживаются ученые многих стран, в первую очередь — Ирана» (translation: "Main, revolutionary result of this campaign for our native scholarship became attributing Nezami as an Azerbaijani poet, and his works as achievements of the Azerbaijani literature, while in the realm of the world Oriental Studies (and prior to this in the Soviet as well), the viewpoint of him as a representative of Persian literature"). Tamazishvili, A.O. (2004), “Iz istorii izučenija v SSSR tvorčestva Nizami Gjandževi: vokrug jubileja — E. È. Bertels, I. V. Stalin i drugie”, ed. by Vitaly Naumkin, N. G. Romanova, I. M. Smiljanskaja (eds.), Neizvestnye stranicy otečestvennogo vostokovedenija: [sbornik], Oriental Studies Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg: 173-99.
  13. ^ a b Yo'av Karny, “Highlanders : A Journey to the Caucasus in Quest of Memory”, Published by Macmillan, 2000. Pg 124: “In 1991 he published a translation into Khynalug of the famous medieval poet Nezami, who is known as Persian but is claimed by Azeri nationalists as their own.”
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Peter J. Chelkowski, "Mirror of the Invisible World", New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. p. 1: "The culture of Nizami's Persia is renowned for its deep-rooted tradition and splendor. In pre-Islamic times, it had developed extraordinarily rich and exact means of expression in music, architecture, and daily life as well as in writing, although Iran, its center--or, as the poets believed, its heart--was continually overrun by invading armies and immigrants, this tradition was able to absorb, transform, and ultimately ocercome foreign intrusion. Alexander the Great was only one of many conquerors, to be seduced by the Persian way of life." p. 2:"During the last quarter of the twelfth century, when Nizami began his Khamsa, Seljuq supremacy was on the decline and political unrest and social ferments were increasing. However, Persian culture characteristically flourished when political power was diffused rather than centralized, and so Persian remained the primary language, Persian civil servants were in great demand, Persian merchants were successful, and princedoms continued to vie for the service of Persian poets. This was especially true in Ganjeh, the Caucasian outpost town where Nizami lived." p.4: "The details with which Nizami describes musicians are one of the delights of the Khamseh and make it a principal source of our present knowledge of twelfth-century Persian musical composition and instruments." p. 6: "Nizami's strong character, his social sensibility, and his poetic genius fused with his rich Persian cultural heritage to create a new standard of literary achievement. Using themes from the oral tradition and written historical records, his poems unite pre-Islamic and Islamic Iran", p. 9:"Probably no Persian writer has inspired succeeding generation of poets more than Nizami". . p. 9: "The memorization and recitation of their literary heritage has always been vital to Iranians, whose attitude towards the power of the written and spoken word is reverential. Even today the national passion for poetry is constantly expressed over radio and television, in teahouses, in literary societies, in daily conversation, and in the Musha'areh, the poetry recitation contest. Nizami's work serves as a vehicle and a symbol of this tradition, for it unites universality with deep-rooted artistic endeavor, a sense of justice and passion for the arts and sciences with spirituality and genuine piety. For richness and fineness of metaphor, accuracy, and profundity of psychological observation, and sheer virtuosity of storytelling, Nizami is unequaled"
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Steblin-Kamensky, I.M (2003), “Vostochnayy fakulytet davno gotov sotrudnichaty s Zapadom”, Saint Petersburg University newspaper, № 24—25 (3648—49), 1 November 2003”. [4] (Internet Archive) [5]. (Also quoted in Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. pg 85-86]. Prof. Ivan Steblin-Kamensky, Dean of the Oriental Department of St. Petersburg University, with regards to students from some of the former Soviet Republics and presently, CIS countries : “We trained such specialists, but … there are a lot of nationalistic tendencies there and academic fraud. Apparently it's related to the first years of independence. Their works include nationalist beginnings. Objective perspective, scientific understanding of the problems and timeline of historical developments are lacking. Sometimes there is an outright falsification. For example, Nezami, the monument of whom was erected at Kamennoostrovsk Boulevard, is proclaimed a great Azerbaijani poet. Although he did not even speak Azeri, they justify this by saying that he lived in the territory of current Azerbaijan. But Nezami wrote his poems in Persian language!” Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Ivan" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  16. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Kamran Talattof. Siavash Lornejad: Ali Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi (Yerevan Series for Oriental Studies—l), Yerevan: "Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies", 2012, 215 pp. (review) // Iran and the Caucasus (journal) 16 (2012) 380-383. "Nezami Ganjavi is one of the most famous Iranian poets of the classical period. He was born to native Iranian parents in the city of Ganja, which is now located in Azerbaijan Republic. At Nezami’s time, Iranian ethnic elements and Persian culture and language were dominant in Ganja as noted by primary sources. Nezami is famous for his five monumental books of narrative poems collectively known as Panǰ-ganǰ or “Five Treasures”, all considered Persian masterpieces. He also wrote a number of Persian lyric poems. The above information about the poet is very basic, universally acknowledged, and found in countless literary and encyclopaedic publications over the past several centuries and has thus never been a point of contention. That is until recently. A number of politicians and activists in the newly established Azerbaijan Republic have attempted to deny Nezami’s Iranian nationality and even his native language. Amazingly, the Iranian authorities seem to not have even noticed this distortion of history.
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Chelkowski, P.J (1995), “Nizami Gandjawi”, Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Ed., vol. 8: 76-81. Online Version: Chelkowski, P. "Nizami Gandjawi, jamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muayyad . Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2008. Brill Online. Excerpt one:*"Nizami Gandjawi, Djamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muʾayyad, one of the greatest Persian poets and thinkers." Excerpt two: "In Haft Paykar, the phantasmagoric movement of its hero, Bahram Gūr, as he visits each princess, covers a symbolic path between black, or the hidden majesty of the Divine, and white, or purity and unity. The princesses and their pavilions are manifestations of specific planets, specific climes, colours, and days. The pavilions are domed, representing the structure of the heavens. Nizami illustrates the harmony of the universe, the affinity of the sacred and the profane, and the concordance of ancient and Islamic Iran." (Nizami Ganjavi in Encyclopedia of Islam, Chelkowski)." *"The great Persian authority on Niẓāmī, Waḥīd Dastgirdī, calls Ḵh̲usraw wa S̲h̲īrīn “the best historical fable of love and chastity, the treasure of eloquence, counsel and wisdom,”" Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Chelkowski_1995" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Paola Orsatti (Associate Professor of Persian language and literature, Sapienza University of Rome). Back Cover Comments // Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh. On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi. Edited by Victoria Arakelova. YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES, Yerevan 2012. This book provides a full survey of the distortions – dictated by nationalistic purposes – which have been pervading the field of the studies on the Persian poet Nezami of Ganje since the Soviet campaign for Nezami’s 800th birthday anniversary. The authors discuss, with critical accuracy, the arguments put forward by Soviet scholars, and more recently by scholars from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which term Nezami as an “Azerbaijani poet” and his work as pertaining to an alleged “Azerbaijani literature;” and show the historic unsoundness of such theses.
  19. ^ a b c d e Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public. pg 2:These sources which are written by scholars of Persian literature and Nezami specialist, affirm clearly that the uniform consensus of Nezami scholars is that Nezami Ganjavi is a Persian poet and thinker
  20. ^ a b c d e f g C. A. (Charles Ambrose) Storey and Franço de Blois (2004), "Persian Literature - A Biobibliographical Survey: Volume V Poetry of the Pre-Mongol Period.", RoutledgeCurzon; 2nd revised edition (June 21, 2004). p. 363: "Nizami Ganja’i, whose personal name was Ilyas, is the most celebrated native poet of the Persians after Firdausi. His nisbah designates him as a native of Ganja (Elizavetpol, Kirovabad) in Azerbaijan, then still a country with an Iranian population, and he spent the whole of his life in Transcaucasia; the verse in some of his poetic works which makes him a native of the hinterland of Qom is a spurious interpolation."
  21. ^ George A. Bournoutian. A brief history of the Aghuankʻ region. Mazda Publishers, 2009. ISBN 1-56859-171-3. pg 28. "This was done to distance the Turkic groups from Islam, as well as to instill in them the pride in a glorious, albeit fictional, national identity by claiming the Persian or Byzantine heritage as their own. Hence, the great Persian poet Nezami became the national poet of Azerbaijan; the medieval Persian poets and thinkers of Central Asia, such as Rudaki, became the national poets and philosophers of Uzbekistan, while Rumi was transformed into a great Turkish mystic "
  22. ^ Yo'av Karny, “Highlanders : A Journey to the Caucasus in Quest of Memory”, Published by Macmillan, 2000. Pg 124: “In 1991 he published a translation into Khynalug of the famous medieval poet Nezami, who is known as Persian but is claimed by Azeri nationalists as their own.”
  23. ^ a b c d e f Walter Kolarz. Russia and Her Colonies. Archon Books, 1967, с. 245. The attempt to ‘annex’an important part of Persian literature and to transform it into ‘Azerbaidzhani literature’can be best exemplified by the way in which the memory of the great Persian poet Nizami (1141—1203) is exploited in the Soviet Union. The Soviet regime does not pay tribute to Nizami as a great representative of world literature, but is mainly interested in him as a ‘poet of the Soviet Union’, which he is considered to be because he was born in Gandzha in the territory of the present Azerbaidzhani Soviet Republic. The Soviet regime proclaims its ownership over Nizami also by ‘interpreting’his works in accordance with the general pattern of Soviet ideology. Thus the leading Soviet journal Bolshevik stressed that Nizami’s ‘great merit’consisted in having undermined Islam by ‘opposing the theological teaching of the unchangeable character of the world’. // Stalin himself intervened in the dispute over Nizami and gave an authoritative verdict on the matter. In a talk with the Ukrainian writer, Mikola Bazhan, Stalin referred to Nizami as ‘the great poet of our brotherly Azerbaidzhani people’who must not be surrendered to Iranian literature, despite having written most of his poems in Persian.
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public. Available at: [6] [7][8] (note work is not copy righted).
  25. ^ a b Manaf-Oglu, M.J. (2010), O nekotorykh spornykh voprosakh otnositel'no rodiny i nacional'nosti Nizami Gyandzhevi, Vestnik St. Petersburgskogo Universita. Oriental and African Scientific-theoretical journal, 13/1:106-116, March 2010.
  26. ^ Manaf-Oglu, M.J. (2010), O nekotorykh spornykh voprosakh otnositel'no rodiny i nacional'nosti Nizami Gyandzhevi, Vestnik St. Petersburgskogo Universita. Oriental and African Scientific-theoretical journal, 13/1:106-116, March 2010.
  27. ^ George A. Bournoutian. A brief history of the Aghuankʻ region. Mazda Publishers, 2009. ISBN 1-56859-171-3. pg 28. "This was done to distance the Turkic groups from Islam, as well as to instill in them the pride in a glorious, albeit fictional, national identity by claiming the Persian or Byzantine heritage as their own. Hence, the great Persian poet Nezami became the national poet of Azerbaijan; the medieval Persian poets and thinkers of Central Asia, such as Rudaki, became the national poets and philosophers of Uzbekistan, while Rumi was transformed into a great Turkish mystic "
  28. ^ Yo'av Karny, “Highlanders : A Journey to the Caucasus in Quest of Memory”, Published by Macmillan, 2000. Pg 124: “In 1991 he published a translation into Khynalug of the famous medieval poet Nezami, who is known as Persian but is claimed by Azeri nationalists as their own.”
  29. ^ George A. Bournoutian. A brief history of the Aghuankʻ region. Mazda Publishers, 2009. ISBN 1-56859-171-3. pg 28. "This was done to distance the Turkic groups from Islam, as well as to instill in them the pride in a glorious, albeit fictional, national identity by claiming the Persian or Byzantine heritage as their own. Hence, the great Persian poet Nezami became the national poet of Azerbaijan; the medieval Persian poets and thinkers of Central Asia, such as Rudaki, became the national poets and philosophers of Uzbekistan, while Rumi was transformed into a great Turkish mystic "
  30. ^ [9]
  31. ^ [10]
  32. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. pg 16
  33. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. pg 12
  34. ^ Rybakov, R.B. (2002), Istoriya Vostoka, Vol. 2: Vostok v sredniye veka: Zakavkaz'e v XI-XV vv, Moscow.. “The multi-ethnic population of the Albanian left-bank at this time is increasingly moving to the Persian language. Mainly this applies to the cities of Arrān and Sharvān, as from 9-10th centuries these are two main areas named in the territory of Azerbaijan. With regard to the rural population, it would seem, mostly retained for a long time, their old languages, and related to modern Daghestanian family, especially Lezgin”. Accessed here [11].
  35. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Poilticization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012).
  36. ^ a b c d e f g h Riāhi, M.A. (2008), “Nozhat al-mājales”, Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition.
  37. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 159.
  38. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public. Available at: [12] [13][14] (note work is not copy righted). pg 70: "For example, Mehmet Kalpakli and Water Andrews commenting on LMZA:30-31, make the unsound statement that: “Sometime in the last fifteen years of the twelfth century, the Sharvānshāh Akhsitān made a request of the poet Nezami. At the same time the ruler also made it quite clear what the language of this recollection should be: dar zivar-e pársi o tázi / in táza `arús rá terázi - In jewels of Persian and Arabic / Adorn this bride so fresh and new” . With regards to this inaccurate interpretation, we note that the poem is in Persian and not “Persian and Arabic”. Consequently, the verse has nothing to do with the language issue, since the poem is not in two different languages. The metaphor “in jewels of Persian and Arabic”, which can be interpreted as “in reflection of the two cultures (cultural realities of Iran and the Arabian world)” (see below), has, of course, nothing to do with the Sharvānshāh’s order of poetry in terms of its language. If it did, then the poem would in fact be in “Arabic and Persian”, rather than in Persian only. The authors (Mehmet Kalpakli and Water Andrews) themselves correctly translated “Persian and Arabic”, yet they reference a particular language in the singular rather than the plural and mention erroneously that “the language of this recollection”. We also note in the Azeri translation of Samad Vurgun, it is given as: “bu təzə gəlinə, çəkəndə zəhmət / fars, ərəb diliylə vur ona zinət” . This is a mistranslation, since instead of putting a conjunction “and”, the author put the word “fars” and then a comma, and then the word “arab”. This creates an ambiguity since the conjunction “and” was turned into “or”. He added the word “diliylə” (language), whereas the correct translation is “In Persian and Arabic ornaments, beautify and dress this new bride afresh”. Thus there is no mention of a language since the poetic interpretation of the words that Nezami ascribes to the Sharvānshāh are “Persian and Arabic ornaments” while the poem itself is in Persian. " .... What makes sense after a closer examination is that "Persian and Arabic ornaments" is due to the fact that the story is a mixture of the two different cultures and the epic poem derives elements from both cultures . Incidentally, even authors like Jan Rypka admit that the story is “closer to the Persian conception of Arabia” . Nezami himself alluded to his sources in many of the chapters of Layli o Majnun (see Part IV) and the story is a unification of various Arabic and Persian sources and anecdotes (“ornaments”). In a reference to himself, when composing one of the chapters of Layli o Majnun, he mentions the Arabic writings..From the Arabic elements of the Layli o Majnun, besides the Bedouin setting of the story in the deserts of Arabia, Nezami uses: “many of the Arabic anecdotes and considered several key elements of the Udri genre’’ . Naturally, due to the story’s Arabic origin, the motif, theme and many of the imagery of the poem relate to Arabic culture. At the same time, the story of Layli o Majnun had already been familiar to Iranians at least since the time of Rudaki, and other Persians had absorbed and embellished it before him . Nezami also mentions that the story is well known (LMZA:53). Some of the episodes are not found in any of the known Arabic versions of the story and probably are derived from local Persian cultural elements. Thus, Nezami adapts disconnected stories and turns them into the Persian epic romance by using a Persian genre (epic poetry), whose correspondence did not exist in Arabic literature of the time. Persian elements in the story include Persian sources, Persian anecdotes, the obvious epic poetry (which was a Persian genre not attested in Arabic) and such a detail that Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than Arabic . Other Persian elements are noted by Rudolph Gelpke: “Nezami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomads’ tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world... Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization” . And according to Seyed-Gohrab: “Other Persian motifs added to the story are the childless king, who desires an heir; nature poetry, especially about gardens in spring and autumn, and sunset and sunrise; the story of an ascetic living in a cave; the account of the king of Marv and his dogs; the Zeyd and Zeynab episode; Majnun’s supplication to the heavenly bodies and God; his kingship over animals, and his didactic conversations with several characters” . Consequently, the section on “the reason for composing the book” which was the last part to be written, is a poetic interpretation, commentary upon and extrapolation of the letter of the Sharvānshāh. The poetic interpretation and extrapolation ascribed to the Sharvānshāh’s letter, attests to the fact that Nezami himself consciously mixed elements of the Persian and Arabic anecdotes/sources. The final product is a Persian epic that is very sharp break from the Arabic versions of the story. In this final product, Nezami consciously synthesized the Persian and Arabic versions of the story and incorporated aphorism, anecdotes, imagery and themes from both Persian and Arabic cultures. The final result is a Persian epic (or as Nezami states a “necklace”) which is a mixture of “Persian and Arabic ornaments”. More misinterpretations and mistranslations (based on politicized writings) of this section has occurred. With regards to LMZA:34-35, Kalpakli and Andrews erroneously claim that: “But he also goes on to say what language he does not want the poet to use – apparently alluding to Mahmud of Ghazna’s legendary cheapness in the matter of Ferdawsi: torki sefat vafā-ye mā nist / torkāna sokhan sazā-ye mā nist --Not in the Turkish way do we keep a promise so writing in the Turkish manner doesn’t suit us. This couplet seems to indicate that the Sharvānshāh could have asked Nezami to write in Turkish and that the poet could have done this. But – either alas or fortunately, depending on your point of view – the ruler preferred Persian. So, a vastly influential tale was born, and the first complete Turkish version of the story had to wait for almost three hundred years.” The Azeri translation of Samad Vurgun adds further mistranslations of these lines: “Türk dili yaramaz şah nəslimizə, Əskiklik gətirər türk dili bizə. Yüksək olmalıdır bizim dilimiz, Yüksək yaranmışdır bizim nəslimiz”. Thus both Kalpakli and Vurgun have mistakenly taken the term “torkāneh-sokhan” to mean “Turkish language”, but it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and “rhetoric associated with Turks” while in the context of the poem, it has the double meaning of unmannered speech and rhetoric associated with or deserved by Turks. Here rhetoric (sokhan) does not mean language. For example, fārsāneh sokhan or arabāneh sokhan does not mean the Persian or Arabic language, and no one in Persian literature has used such a word formation to refer to a language. Also it should be noted that in the translation of Kalpakli, there is the verb “writing in the Turkish manner” whereas Nezami uses the word “rhetoric” (sokhan), not “writing” (neveshtan) here and thus, this is a mistranslation. The word “writing” could have been inserted in their translation due to the fact that the authors were influenced by the Soviet viewpoint. Before the politicized interpretation of these verses in the USSR, Vahid Dastgerdi had already provided a sound commentary on these lines: The meaning of these verses is that our fidelity is not like the Turks and our faithfulness is not like that of Sultan Mahmud the Turk. Our fidelity and commitment will not be broken, so rhetoric that are befitting for Turkish kings is not befitting for us. Reiterating why the arguments of politicized authors and those who have quoted them ignorantly are incorrect, we should once more emphasize that neither the Sharvānshāhs were Turks to request a story in Turkish, nor there existed a Turkish literary tradition in the Caucasus at that time, nor is there any proof that Nezami ever knew Turkish, nor is there a single verse in Turkish from that region in that period, nor is “Persian and Arabic” a particular language, nor did the Arabic language have an epic genre like Persian, nor does the term torkāneh-sokhan mean “Turkish language” but rather it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and in the context of the language of the time, it simply means “vulgar and unmannered speech”.
  39. ^ (Walter G. Andrews, Najaat Black, Mehmet Kalpaklı, "Ottoman Lyric Poetry", Published by University of Washington, 2006. pp 70). excerpt: "The story of Layla and Majnun by Ottoman times was a tale told often appearing in numerous poetic-narrative versions, including rendition by famous Persian poets Nizami (1140-1202) and Jami (1414-1492)."
  40. ^ Sometime in the last fifteen years of the twelfth century, the Shirvanshah Akhsatan made a request of the poet Nizami: Mïkháham ke konún be yád-e majnñn ráni sokhan cho dorr-e makninn I wish you now in Majnun's recollection to speak poetic words like pearls of perfection At the same time the ruler also made it quite clear what the language of this recollection should be: dar zivar-e pársi vo tázi in táza `arús rá terázi In jewels of Persian and Arabic too adorn this bride so fresh and new But he also goes on to say what language he does not want the poet to use — apparently alluding to Mahmmúd of Gazna’s legendary cheapness in the matter of Ferdawsi: torki sefät vafá-ye má nist torkána sokhan sazá-ye má nist Not in the Turkish way do we keep a promise so writing in the Turkish manner doesn’t suit us This couplet seems to indicate that the Sharvanshah could have asked Nizami to write in Turkish and that the poet could have done this. But alas — or fortunately, depending on your point of view — the ruler preferred Persian. So a vastly influential tale was born, and the first complete Turkish version of the story had to wait for almost three hundred years. Mahmet Kalpakli & Walter Andrews . Chapter "Layli Grows Up: Nizami's Layla and Majnun "in the Turkish Manner"; in Kamran Talattof and Jerome W. Clinton. The Poetry of Nizami Ganjavi: Knowledge, Love, and Rhetoric. Palgrave Macmillan, 2001. ISBN: 978-0-312-22810-1, p. 29-30.
  41. ^ (Walter G. Andrews, Najaat Black, Mehmet Kalpaklı, "Ottoman Lyric Poetry", Published by University of Washington, 2006. pp 70). excerpt: "The story of Layla and Majnun by Ottoman times was a tale told often appearing in numerous poetic-narrative versions, including rendition by famous Persian poets Nizami (1140-1202) and Jami (1414-1492)."
  42. ^ Sometime in the last fifteen years of the twelfth century, the Shirvanshah Akhsatan made a request of the poet Nizami: Mïkháham ke konún be yád-e majnñn ráni sokhan cho dorr-e makninn I wish you now in Majnun's recollection to speak poetic words like pearls of perfection At the same time the ruler also made it quite clear what the language of this recollection should be: dar zivar-e pársi vo tázi in táza `arús rá terázi In jewels of Persian and Arabic too adorn this bride so fresh and new But he also goes on to say what language he does not want the poet to use — apparently alluding to Mahmmúd of Gazna’s legendary cheapness in the matter of Ferdawsi: torki sefät vafá-ye má nist torkána sokhan sazá-ye má nist Not in the Turkish way do we keep a promise so writing in the Turkish manner doesn’t suit us This couplet seems to indicate that the Sharvanshah could have asked Nizami to write in Turkish and that the poet could have done this. But alas — or fortunately, depending on your point of view — the ruler preferred Persian. So a vastly influential tale was born, and the first complete Turkish version of the story had to wait for almost three hundred years. Mahmet Kalpakli & Walter Andrews . Chapter "Layli Grows Up: Nizami's Layla and Majnun "in the Turkish Manner"; in Kamran Talattof and Jerome W. Clinton. The Poetry of Nizami Ganjavi: Knowledge, Love, and Rhetoric. Palgrave Macmillan, 2001. ISBN: 978-0-312-22810-1, p. 29-30.
  43. ^ They mention several key points about this section (last chronological section of the poem) and consider it a poetic interpretation and commentary upon the letter of the Sharvanshah. As an example, they state: "The word sațr (Persian سطر meaning “line”, but more often used in the context of prose) likely implies prose and not poetry. Consequently, we do not know what the Sharvānshāh actually wrote, but we have at our disposal a poetic interpretation and extrapolation of his letter by Nezami designed to fit the meter that Nezami (and not the Sharvānshāh) chose for the epic poem. This by itself means that one cannot make a firm historical judgments (let alone the 20th century anachronistic interpretations) based on poetic interpretation (with likely interpolation) of a letter on historical matters.".
  44. ^ See Lornejad et al. pages from 74-84. S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012
  45. ^ George A. Bournoutian. A brief history of the Aghuankʻ region. Mazda Publishers, 2009. ISBN 1-56859-171-3. pg 28. "This was done to distance the Turkic groups from Islam, as well as to instill in them the pride in a glorious, albeit fictional, national identity by claiming the Persian or Byzantine heritage as their own. Hence, the great Persian poet Nezami became the national poet of Azerbaijan; the medieval Persian poets and thinkers of Central Asia, such as Rudaki, became the national poets and philosophers of Uzbekistan, while Rumi was transformed into a great Turkish mystic "
  46. ^ Yo'av Karny, “Highlanders : A Journey to the Caucasus in Quest of Memory”, Published by Macmillan, 2000. Pg 124: “In 1991 he published a translation into Khynalug of the famous medieval poet Nezami, who is known as Persian but is claimed by Azeri nationalists as their own.”
  47. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 73.
  48. ^ (Nishapuri, Zahir al-Din Nishapuri (2001), The History of the Saljuq Turks from the Jāmi’ al-Tawarikh: An Ilkhanid Adaptation of the Saljuq-Nāma of Zahir al-Din Nishapuri, Partial tr. K.A. Luther, ed. C.E. Bosworth, Richmond, UK.)
  49. ^ (Nishapuri, Zahir al-Din Nishapuri (2001), The History of the Saljuq Turks from the Jāmi’ al-Tawarikh: An Ilkhanid Adaptation of the Saljuq-Nāma of Zahir al-Din Nishapuri, Partial tr. K.A. Luther, ed. C.E. Bosworth, Richmond, UK.).
  50. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 166-167.
  51. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 178. [15][16].
  52. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi , Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). [17][18]
  53. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012)pg 118.
  54. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012)pg 103.
  55. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012) pg 118.
  56. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012)pg 118.
  57. ^ (Nishapuri, Zahir al-Din Nishapuri (2001), The History of the Saljuq Turks from the Jāmi’ al-Tawarikh: An Ilkhanid Adaptation of the Saljuq-Nāma of Zahir al-Din Nishapuri, Partial tr. K.A. Luther, ed. C.E. Bosworth, Richmond, UK.)
  58. ^ Grousset, René (1970). The Empire of the Steppes, Rutgers University Press.
  59. ^ a b c d e f g Chelkowski, P. "Nezami's Iskandarnameh:"in Colloquio sul poeta persiano Nizami e la leggenda iranica di Alessandro magno, Roma,1977).
    • p. 10: "The Persian legend of Alexander the Great seems to overshadow all of the other fantastic Alexander stories not only in the tale of the successful accomplishment of many a "mission-impossible" but especially concerning the nature of his career. In Iran he rose from the stature of a damned evil conquerer of the country, to that of a national Iranian hero king, and even more, to that of the great prophet of God, preparing all the nations for the true religion. Yet the Persian legend of Alexander is very little known in the Western world." *p. 13: "Nizami was a typical product of the Iranian culture. He created a bridge between Islamic Iran and pre-Islamic Iran and also between Iran and the whole ancient world. His great humanism, strong character, sensibility, drama, colorful description of nature, rich language, and the poetic genius created a new standard of literary achievements and captured the imagination of countless imitators".*p. 17: "In the case of previous romances of Khosraw and Bahram, Nizami dealt with national Iranian heroes, though from pre-Islamic times. In the tale of Layla and Majnun, the Arab nationality of the lover is of no importance since the story is based on a simple Arab folktale which was later absorbed and embellished by the Persians". *p. 19: "Alexander was glorified by the Muslims as a divine agent, a prophet-king and the blessed conqueror of the lands that were to become the stronghold of Islam. To some Muslims, Islam was a realization of Alexander's "koine" --- a commonwealth where people could live in harmony and in peace of heart and mind. In this atmosphere attempts were made to make out of Alexander not only a Muslim but a Persian as well". *p. 21: "However, it was not Tabari directly, but Ferdowsi who was Nizami's source of inspiration and material in composing Iskandarnameh. Nizami constantly alludes to the Shahnameh in his writing, especially in the prologue to the Iskandarnameh. It seems that he was always fascinated by the work of Firdawsi and made it a goal of his life to write an heroic epic of the same stature. p. 22: "It seems that Nezami's favorite pastime was reading Firdawsi's monumental epic Shahnameh (The book of Kings)". *p. 22: "In fact, although Alexander conquered Iran, he was soon conquered by Persian customs and ways of life. In many aspects he was so overwhelmed by Persian civilization that he became more Persian than the Persians. He tried to make a blend of the Greek and Persian civilization --- even genetically, when he sponsored mass marriages between his troops and Persian women. He himself married Roxane (Rowshanak) the daughter of the Sogdian prince -- not the daughter of Darius the Third, as both Firdawsi and Nizami believed. Like Alexander, Arabs, Turks, Mongols and other people who overran the Iranian plateau also came under the spell of Persian culture. Foreign invaders remained to become contributors and patrons of Persian art and culture. To give one example, some of Nizami's benefactors were of Turkic stock.
  60. ^ Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. pg 89
  61. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 73.
  62. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 32.
  63. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 166.
  64. ^ a b c d e *Abel, A. (1978), “Eskandar nāma”, Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Ed., vol. 4:127-129. Online: Abel, A.; Ed(s). "Iskandar Nama." Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill. In the Shahnama, Firdawsi already makes Iskandar an exemplary figure, whom the companionship of Aristotle helps to rise still higher, by the path of wisdom and moderation, in the direction of abstinence and contempt for this world. And Firdwasi laid stress on the defeat of Dārā (the Darius of the Greeks) as something desired by "the rotation of the Heavens"....At the time of Niẓami, however, Islam is from then onwards well established in Iran, and it is the prophetic and ecumenical aspect of his destiny that the poet makes evident in his hero. As a learned Iranian poet, Niẓami, who demonstrates his eclecticism in the information he gives (he says, "I have taken from everything just what suited me and I have borrowed from recent histories, Christian, Pahlavi and Jewish ... and of them I have made a whole"), locates the story of his hero principally in Iran. He makes him the image of the Iranian "knight", peace-loving and moderate, courteous and always ready for any noble action. Like all Niẓami's heroes, he conquers the passions of the flesh, and devotes his attention to his undertakings and his friendships. These features appear in the account, which follows ancient tradition, of his conduct towards the women of the family of Darius, in his brotherly attitude on the death of that ruler, in his behaviour towards queen Nushaba (the Kaydaf of Firdawsi, the Kandake of the pseudo-Callisthenes) whom he defends against the Russians.
  65. ^ a b c d The Story of Layla and Majnun, by Nizami. Translated Dr. Rudolf. Gelpke in collaboration with E. Mattin and G. Hill, Omega Publications, 1966, ISBN #0-930872-52-5. Excerpt from the introduction:"Nizami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomad's tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world...Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization"
  66. ^ a b c d De Bruijn, J.T.P. (1986), “Madjnun Laylā: In Persian, Kurdish and Pashto literature”, Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Ed., vol. 5:1103-1105. He adapted the disconnected stories to fit the requirements of a Persian romance. ...In some respects, the Bedouin setting of the original has been changed under the influence of urban conditions more familiar to the poet and his audience: the young lovers become acquainted at school; the generous Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than an Arab official. Niẓāmī added a second pair of lovers, Zayn and Zaynab, in whom the love between the main characters is reflected. It is Zayn who in a dream sees Madjnūn and Laylī united in paradise at the end of the romance
  67. ^ a b c :The Ḥadiqat al-ḥaqiqa is not only one of the first of a long line of Persian didactical maṯnawis, it is also one of the most popular works of its kind as the great number of copies made throughout the centuries attest. Its great impact on Persian literature is evidenced by the numerous citations from the poem occurring in mystical as well as profane works. It has been taken as a model by several other poets, including Neẓāmi, ʿAṭṭār, Rumi, Awḥadi, and Jāmi. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Hadiqa" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  68. ^ Maria Subtenly (scholar of Persian literature), “Visionary Rose: Methaphorical Application of Horticultural Practice in Persian Culture” in Michel Conan and W. John Kress, “Botanical progress, horticultural information and cultural changes”, Dumbarton Oaks, 2007. Pg 12: “In a highly evocative tale he relates in the Makhzan al-Asrar (“Treasury of Secrets”), the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowledged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination
  69. ^ a b c Moḥammad Amin Riāḥi, “NOZHAT AL-MAJĀLES". Encyclopædia Iranica. [19] The most significant merit of Nozhat al-majāles, as regards the history of Persian literature, is that it embraces the works of some 115 poets from the northwestern Iran (Arrān, Šarvān, Azerbaijan; including 24 poets from Ganja alone), where, due to the change of language, the heritage of Persian literature in that region has almost entirely vanished. The fact that numerous quatrains of some poets (e.g. Amir Šams-al-Din Asʿad of Ganja, ʿAziz Šarvāni, Šams Sojāsi, Amir Najib-al-Din ʿOmar of Ganja, Badr Teflisi, Kamāl Marāḡi, Šaraf Ṣāleḥ Baylaqāni, Borhān Ganjaʾi, Elyās Ganjaʾi, Baḵtiār Šarvāni) are mentioned together like a series tends to suggest the author was in possession of their collected works. Nozhat al-mājales is thus a mirror of the social conditions at the time, reflecting the full spread of Persian language and the culture of Iran throughout that region, clearly evidenced by the common use of spoken idioms in poems as well as the professions of the some of the poets (see below). The influence of the northwestern Pahlavi language, for example, which had been the spoken dialect of the region, is clearly observed in the poems contained in this anthology.
  70. ^ a b Ali Asghar Seyed-Gohrab, "Layli and Majnun: Madness and Mystic Longing" Brill Studies in Middle Eastern literature, Jun. 2003, pp. 76-77, excerpt: Although Majnun was to some extent a popular figure before Nizami's time, his popularity increased dramatically after the appearance of Nizami's romance. By collecting information from both secular and mystical sources about Majnun, Nizami portrayed such a vivid picture of this legendary lover that all subsequent poets were inspired by him, many of them imitated him and wrote their own versions of the romance. As we shall see in the following chapters, the poet uses various characteristics deriving from ‘Udhrite love poetry and weaves them into his own Persian culture. In other words, Nizami Persianises the poem by adding several techniques borrowed from the Persian epic tradition, such as the portrayal of characters, the relationship between characters, description of time and setting, etc.
  71. ^ a b Maria Subtenly, "Visionary Rose: Metaphorical Application of Horticultural Practice in Persian Culture" in Michel Conan and W. John Kress, "Botanical progress, horticultural information and cultural changes", Dumbarton Oaks, 2007. p. 12: "In a highly evocative tale he relates in the Makhzan al-Asrar ("Treasury of Secrets"), the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowledged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination"
  72. ^ a b
    • Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public.
    Available at: [20] [21][22] (note work is not copy righted). pg 66:Nezami, while addressing his patron, also mentions this legend in his Iqbāl-Nāma and claims himself as the inheritor of Ferdowsi.
  73. ^ a b
    • Lornejad et al: "He mentions Ferdowsi and/or his Shāhnāma in the Khusraw o Shirin, Layli o Majnun, Haft Paykar and Eskandar-Nāma. As mentioned already in Part II, in the Sharaf-Nāma, Nezami Ganjavi expresses his desire to imitate the Shāhnāma, but then decides that: “One cannot pierce two holes in a single pearl"S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 183-184
    • Lornejad et al: An interesting episode in this epic is the fact that Nezami entrusts his own son to the son of the Sharvānshāh . Nezami Ganjavi in this episode advises the son of the Sharvānshāh to read the Shāhnāma which again shows the importance of the national Persian epic in the culture of Nezami.S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 185
    • Lornejad et al: As for the main themes of his poetry is that it is mainly based upon Iranian motifs and stories. The poet was particularly influenced by Ferdowsi. He mentions Ferdowsi and/or his Shāhnāma in the Khusraw o Shirin, Layli o Majnun, Haft Paykar and Eskandar-Nāma.
    • Lornejad et al:The themes of the Haft Paykar and Khusraw o Shirin which dealt with pre-Islamic Sassanid Iran were chosen by Nezami himself. For example, on the Khusraw o Shirin, Nezami states that "a sweeter story does not exist" . For the Haft Paykar, Nezami chose the theme about the Iranian king Bahram Gur, in the pseudo-historical epic genre. As for the Eskandar-Nāma, Nezami mentions that he first wanted to recompose the Iranian national epic, but Khizr tells him that there cannot be “two holes pierced in one pearl” and he should not be upset that he did not come before Ferdowsi. Instead, Khizr reminds the poet that the story of Eskandar was not covered in detail in the Shāhnāma and suggests that this would be the theme of the Eskandar-Nāma. All of these stories were part of the inclinations of Nezami as of an Iranian Muslim, and that is why he chose the themes from his own Iranian culture. The story whose theme was not chosen by Nezami himself, as noted already, was the Layli o Majnun.
  74. ^ a b Ali Asghar Seyed Gohrab. "Layli and Majnun: Love, Madness and Mystic Longing", Brill Studies in Middle Eastern literature, Jun 2003. p. 276.The relationship between Shirwanshah and his son, Manuchir, is mentioned in chapter eight. Nizami advises the king's son to read Firdausi's Shah-nama and to remember the pity sayings of the wise
  75. ^ Ganjakets'i, Kirakos (1986), Kirakos Ganjakets'i's History of the Armenians, Tr. with a preface by Robert Bedrosian, New York. Online version available at http://rbedrosian.com/kg1.htm [accessed May 2011]. See Ganjakets'i 1986:197.
  76. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 155
  77. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 155
  78. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 157
  79. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 159.
  80. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 159.
  81. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Poilticization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 160-161.
  82. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Poilticization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 162.
  83. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Poilticization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 149.
  84. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). p 178-183.
  85. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 166.
  86. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. pg 16
  87. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 173.
  88. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica, Nezami Ganjavi (Persian Poet), [23]
  89. ^ Ali Asghar Seyed Gohrab. "Layli and Majnun: Love, Madness and Mystic Longing", Brill Studies in Middle Eastern literature, Jun 2003. p. 276.The relationship between Shirwanshah and his son, Manuchir, is mentioned in chapter eight. Nizami advises the king's son to read Firdausi's Shah-nama and to remember the pity sayings of the wise
  90. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 183-184
  91. ^ S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). pg 185
  92. ^ Maria Subtenly (scholar of Persian literature), “Visionary Rose: Methaphorical Application of Horticultural Practice in Persian Culture” in Michel Conan and W. John Kress, “Botanical progress, horticultural information and cultural changes”, Dumbarton Oaks, 2007. Pg 12: “In a highly evocative tale he relates in the Makhzan al-Asrar (“Treasury of Secrets”), the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowledged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination
  93. ^ John R. Haule, “Divine madness: archetypes of romantic love”, Shambhala, 1990. Pg 301: “The Persian poet, Nizami, collected most of the lovers' legends into a single poem, which mainly follows the life of Majnun and observes how love transforms”
  94. ^ Bill Beckley, David Shapiro, “Uncontrollable Beauty: Toward a New Aesthetics”, Allworth Communications, Inc., 2002. Excerpt from pg 132: “... and in the epic poems of the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami and in the fifteen century …”
  95. ^ Rudolf Gelpke, “The Story of Layla and Majnun”, Translated by Rudolf Gelpke, Omega Publications, 1997. Excerpt from pg xi: “somewhere in the western half of the Arabic peninsula, about 500 years before AD 1188 (584 H), the year in which the Persian poet Nizami wrote his poem”
  96. ^ Frank Tallis, “Love sick: love as a mental illness”, Thunder's Mouth Press, 2005. Pg 90:”..are the precursors of one of the most influential love stories ever written - the story of Layla and Majnun by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami.”
  97. ^ V. I. Braginskiĭ, “The comparative study of traditional Asian literatures: from reflective traditionalism to neo-traditionalism”, Routledge, 2001. Excerpt from Pg 119: “In the 12th century ideas very similar to those expounded above were graphically expressed in the works of the great Persian poet Nizami, especially in a chapter entitled the “Advantage of Strung Speech over Scattered Speech” in his mathnawi the “Depository of Mysteries” (Makhzan al-Asrar)”
  98. ^ Gülru Necipoğlu, Julia Bailey, “Muqarnas: An Annual on the Visual Culture of the Islamic World”, BRILL, 2005. Pg 99: “Trying to emulate another great Persian poet, Nizami,Hatifi attempted to write a Khamsa (Quintent) but only produced four works …”
  99. ^ Giusto Traina, "428 AD: An Ordinary Year at the End of the Roman Empire",Princeton University Press (May 31, 2009) pg 118:"... in the poem Haft Paikar ("The Seven Beauties") by the Persian poet Nezámi, who lived from 1141 to 1209 in the Caucasian ..."
  100. ^ Svatopluk Soucek, “A history of inner Asia “,Cambridge University Press, 2000 . pg 134: “..based on the number five, translatable as "Quintet") is a cycle of five lyrico-epic poems modeled on the work of the Persian poet Nizami (1141-1203)…”
  101. ^ Barbara Brend, “Perspectives on Persian painting: illustrations to Amīr Khusrau's Khamsah”, Routledge, 2003. Back cover: “..composed between 1298 and 1302, follows the main lines of that of the Persian poet Nizami..”
  102. ^ Nagendra Kr Singh, Nagendra Kumar Singh, “International Encyclopedia of Islamic Dynasties”, Anmol Publications PVT. LTD., 2000. Pg 894: “in the fashion of the famous Persian poet Nizami [qv], with his Khamsa, two well-known poets can be mentioned here”
  103. ^ Julie Scott Meisami, Paul Starkeym, “Encyclopedia of Arabic Literature”, Taylor & Francis, 1998. Pg 69:“In Arabic literature there has been no artistic elaboration of the story comparable to that undertaken by the Persian poet Nizami “
  104. ^ Philippe de Montebello , "The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide Revised Edition (Hardcover)", Metropolitan Museum of Art; 2 edition (2000) page 338: "... hunter in the romantic epic Haft Paykar by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami. This miniature exemplifies the classic style of Persian painting, ..."
  105. ^ María Rosa Menocal, “Shards of love: exile and the origins of the lyric”, Duke University Press, 1994. Pg 143: ““In London he began reading the medieval Persian poet Nizami, author of a renowned version of a story already famous in Arabic..”
  106. ^ Amina Okada,”Indian miniatures of the Mughal court”, H.N. Abrams, 1992. pg 226: “Nizami: An anthology of five poems by the Persian poet Nizami (1140-1202).”
  107. ^ Juvaynī, Alā al-Dīn Atā Malik, 1226–1283 (1997). Genghis Khan: The History of the World-Conqueror [Tarīkh-i jahāngushā]. tr. John Andrew Boyle. Seattle: University of Washington Press. Pg 345-346: “Their story forms the subject of an epic by the Persian poet Nizami”
  108. ^ Francesca Orsini, “Love in South Asia” Cambridge University Press, 2006. Pg 116: “The poet's model was clear from the start, namely the great Persian poet Nizami ...”
  109. ^ Bernard Lewis, “Music of a distant drum”, Princeton University Press, 2001. Pg 9: “The Persians went a step further, creating authentic epic tradition comparables with those of Greece, Rome and the Vikings. This too, became in time, a form of Persian national self definition. The most famous of Persian epic poets, Firdawsi (940-1020) has been translated several times. An extract from the story of Farhad and Shirin, as told by the twelfth century Persian poet Nizami, exmpelified another form of narrative”
  110. ^ Bernard Lewis, “Race and Slavery in the Middle East: An Historical Enquirty”, Oxford University Press US, 1992. Pg 96-97: “In one picture, illustrating a manuscript of the book of Alexander by the Persian poet Nizami, and painted in Qazvin towards the end of the sixteenth century, Alexandar (Iskandar) is seen fighting the blacks”
  111. ^ Howard R. Turner, “Science in medieval Islam“,University of Texas Press, 1997. pg 112:”In a celebrated romantic saga Khusraw and Shirin, written by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami and based on a pre-Islamic legend, Khusrau, princely ruler of Sassanian empire, must endure many trials before finally winning the hands of his love, the Armenian princess Shirin”
  112. ^ Gunilla Lindberg-Wada, “Studying transcultural literary history”, W. de Gruyter, 2006. Pg 237:”It was the Persian poet Nizami (1188) who achieved the major shift in both language and genre”
  113. ^ S. Wise Bauer, “The Middle Ages: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of the Renaissance”, Peace Hill Press, 2003. pg 138: “This beautifully illustrated collection of tale is based on the epic by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami”
  114. ^ Anjaan Chakravery, “Indian Miniature Painting”, Roli Books Private Limited, 2006. Pg 142: “The poetical manuscripts, some of which were prepared for the emperor’s personal delectation, comprise of Gulistan (Rose Garden) of Sadi, Khamsa (The Five Poems) of Persian poet Nizami, Baharistan (The Garden of Spring) by Jami and Divans (Collected Poems) of Hafiz and Anvari.
  115. ^ David James Smith, “Hinduism and Modernity”, Wiley-Blackwell, 2003. Pg 56: “One of the most splendid commissions was the classical ‘Quintent’ of the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami. The last part of this text, the Iskandar Nama, is the Persian version of the deeds of Alexander the Great”
  116. ^ Guida Myrl Jackson-Laufer, Guida M. Jackson. “Encyclopedia of literary epics”, ABC-CLIO, 1996. Pg 269:“Persian poet Nizami composed five epics at the end of the twelfth century; one was based on ill-starred lovers, Layli and her cousin Qays. Qays, distressed that he cannot marry his cousin, goes mad and becomes known as Majnun”
  117. ^ Maria Sutenly, “Visionary Rose: Methaphorical Application of Horticultural Practice in Persian Culture” in Michel Conan and W. John Kress, “Botanical progress, horticultural information and cultural changes”, Dumbarton Oaks, 2007. Pg 12: “In a highly evocative tale he relates in the Makhzan al-Asrar (“Treasury of Secrets”), the twelfth-century Persian poet, Nizami whose oeuvre is an acknowleged repository of Iranian myths and legends, illustrates the way in which the rose was perceived in the Medieval Persian imagination”
  118. ^ Orhan Pamuk, “My name is Red” translated by Erdağ M. Göknar, Vintage International, 2002. Pg 415: “c. 1141-1209: The Persian poet Nizami lived. He wrote the romantic epic the Quintet, comprised of the following stories, all of which have inspired miniaturist”
  119. ^ Percy Brown, “Indian Paintings”, Read Books, 2007. Pg 49: “The adaptability of these Hindu craftsman may be realised by the fact that their royal patron commissioned them to illustrate the works of the Persian poet, Nizami, and other literary productions, normally foreign to theis genius”
  120. ^ Walter G. Andrews, Mehmet Kalpakli, “The age of the beloved”, Duke University Presspg 59:“This was to be the fourth in a series of five mesnevi poems (a hamse or “pentad”) intended to match the famed thirteenth-century hamse of the Persian poet Nizami of Ganja”
  121. ^ Encyclopedia Americana, Glorier incorporated. Pg 421: “..a place named for his Armenian Christian bride, his love for whom was immortalized by the 12th century Persian poet Nizami in Khosrow and Shirin”, Glorier, 1998, v.28.
  122. ^ John R. Haule, “The ecstaties of St. Francis: The way of LadyPoverty”, SteinerBooks, 2004. pg 66: “The Persian poet Nizami collected them into an episodic novel-length poem right around the time of Francis..”
  123. ^ Gene Santoro, “Dancing in your head”, Oxford University Press, 1995. Pg 62: “At the same time, he started to the read The Layla and Majun, by the Persian poet Nizami”.
  124. ^ David Christian, Craig Benjamin, Macquarie University. Ancient History Documentary Research Centre, Australasian Society for Inner Asian Studies. Conference, David Christian, Craig Benjamin, Macquarie University. Ancient History Documentary Research Centre. “Worlds of the silk roads: ancient and modern : proceedings from the Second Conference of the Australasian Society for Inner Asian Studies (A.S.I.A.S.), Macquarie University, September 21-22, 1996”, Brepols, 1998. Pg 258: “Formly and thematically he was influenced by the pentalogies, especially that of the Persian poet Nizami (12th century),..”
  125. ^ Francis Lenormant, “Chaldean Magic Its Origin and Development”, Pg 159:“Later in the period of the Sassanian dynasty, the Persian poet Nizami, author of the Haft-Paykar, describers this style as prevailing in the place of the seven plants built by Bahram Gour or Varahan V.”
  126. ^ Lloyd. V. J. Ridgeon, “’Aziz Nasafi”, Routledge, 1998. pg 159: “By the twelfth and thirteen century, himma had become a technical of the Sufis. For example, the great Persian poet Nizami (b. 1140) refers to himma in his Makhzan al-Asrar (1166) when he describes how Mahmud Ghazna (969-1030) fell sick while besieging an Indian city”
  127. ^ Gerhard Endress, Carole Hillenbrand, “Islam a historical Introduction”, 2nd edition, Edinburgh University Press, pg 2002. Pg 178:“Death of the Persian poet Nizami of Ganja, important author of romantic verse epics.”
  128. ^ Mesrovb Jacob Seth, “Armenians in India, from the earliest times to the present day”, Asian Educational Service, 1992. pg 178: “In the preface to the Lahore edition of Sarmad’s quatrains, it is stated that Sarmad was born in Ganja, an important Armenian ciy in the Karabakh district, south of the Caucasus. The famous Persian poet Nizami, was also born in that city”
  129. ^ Ernst Robest Curtis, Williard Ropes Trask, “European literature and Latin Middle Ages” translated by Williard Ropes Trask and Peter Godman, 7th edition, Princeton University Press, 1990. Pg 347: “Goethe confuses the name with that of the Persian poet Nizami — in pious resignation puts it into the hands of God himself ('Master of Love,' 'Beloved')”
  130. ^ Slezkine, Yuri. “The Soviet Union as a Communal Apartment.”in Stalinism: New Directions. Ed. Sheila Fitzpatrick, Routledge, New York, 2000. pages 335: “The Azerbaijani delegate insisted that the Persian poet Nizami was actually a classic of Azerbaijani literature because he was a “Turk from Giandzha” and that Mirza Fath Ali Akhundov was not a gentry writer, as some proletarian critics had charged, but a “great philosopher-playwright” whose “characters [were] as colorful, diverse and realistic as the characters of Griboedov, Gogol’and Ostrovskii.”
  131. ^ Armando Maggi, “The Resurrection of the Body”, University of Chicago Press, 2009. pg 187: “Pasolini here blends two mythic sources: The Greek Orpheus and Alexandar the Great depicted as a prophetic figure in The Book of Alexandar the Great by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami of Ganja”
  132. ^ Edmund Herzig, Russian and CIS Programme (Royal Institute of International Affairs), Former Soviet South Project, “Iran and the former Soviet South”, Royal Institute of International Affairs, Russian and CIS Programme, 1995. Pg 50: ”It is not hard to understand why Iranians ridicule claims such as Azerbaijan's to the Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi, or Uzbekistan's to the great Ibn Sina”
  133. ^ Sheila Blair, Jonathan M. Bloom, Hood Museum of Art, Asia Society, “Images of Paradise in Iaslamic Art”, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, 1991. Pg 36: “and flying through the firmament are found in manuscripts of several poetic texts, including the popular Khamsa (Five Poems) of the Persian poet Nizami”
  134. ^ D.A. Spelling, “Politics, Gender and Islamic Past: The legacy of ‘Aisha bint Abi Bakr”, Columbia University, Press, 1996. Pg 215:“The Persian poet Nizami (d. 606/ I 209) named one of his female characters Fitna in his work the Khamsa.”
  135. ^ Diane Woklstein, “The first love stories: from Isis and Osiris to Tristan and Iseult “,HarperCollinsPublishers, 1991. Pg 266:“In the twelfth century C.E., Shirvanshah Akhsetan, a a Caucasian ruler, commissioned the elegant Persian poet Nizami to write a Persian romance based on Arabic folk legends, dating back ..”
  136. ^ Jean Bottéro, André Finet, Bertrand Lafont, Antonia Nevill, “Everyday life in ancient Mesopatima”, JHU Press, 2001. Pg 159: “This was a romantic epic written by the Persian poet Nizami (twelfth century), recounting the loves of the Sassanid King Khosroes II Parviz (590-628) and the Christian woman Shirin..”
  137. ^ Geoffrey Wigoder, “Dictionary of Jewish biography”, Simon & Schuster, 1991. Pg 40: “From 1867 he attended the University of Budapest, receiving his doctorate for a thesis on the 12th- century Persian poet, Nizami.”
  138. ^ Edgar Allan Poe, Thomas Ollive Mabbott, Eleanor D. Kewer, Maureen Cobb Mabbott, “Tales and Sketches: 1831-1842”, University of Illinois Press, 2000. Pg 636: “Retelling a traditional Arabian love story from the version by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami”
  139. ^ Luisa Passerini, “Europe in Love, Love in Europe: Imagination and Politics in Britian”, I.B.Tauris, 1999. Pg 22: “and Ibn Hazm al-Andalusi between the end of '900 and the beginning of the first century of our millennium, in the work of the Persian poet Nizami, author of the 1188 tale Layla and Majnun”
  140. ^ Mian Mohammad Sharif, “A history of Muslim philosophy: with short accounts of other disciplines and the modern renaissance in Muslim lands”, Low Price Pub, Vol 1. , 1999. Pg 22:“His version of the Khusrau wa Shirin of the Persian poet Nizami is more than a mere translation”
  141. ^ Emily. A. Haddad, “Orientalist poetics: the Islamic Middle East in nineteenth-century English and French poetry”, Ashgate, 2002. Pg 193:“Goethe's models are, Gautier asserts, Eastern ones in both form and content; Goethe follows the example of the Persian poet Nizami rather than Shakespeare”
  142. ^ John Renard, “101 Question and Answers on Islam”, Paulist Press, 2005. pg 112: “A story told long ago by the Persian Poet Nezami (d. 1209) in his splendid mystical epic, Seven Portraits, offers a solution”
  143. ^ Sharon Kinoshita, “Medieval boundaries: rethinking difference in Old French literature”, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006. Pg 255: “Compare Khamsa by the twelfth- century Persian poet Nizami, in which a ten-year-old boy and girl who meet at Quranic school “embark on a chaste romance lasting the rest of their lives’”.
  144. ^ Rudolf Steiner, Catherine E. Creeger, “An outline of Estoric Sciences”, SteinerBooks, 1997. Pg 316:“A story attributed to the Persian poet Nizami (1141-1203), and adopted by Goethe for inclusion in his West-ostlicher Divan”, Quranic school “embark on a chaste romance lasting the rest of their lives’”.
  145. ^ Daniel Joseph Boorstin, “The Creators”, Random House, 1992. Pg 196: “The Persian poet Nizami (c.H4O-c.1202) depicted an ancient competition at the court of Alexander the Great. One spring day while Alexander was entertaining..”
  146. ^ Anne Varichon, Toula Ballas, “Colors what they mean and how to make them”, Abrams, 2007. Pg 183:”At the end of the twelfth century Persian poet Nizami (c. 1140-1209) wrote The Seven Beauties. which describes the tales told to the Sassanian ruler”
  147. ^ Tony Abboud, “Al-Kindi; the Father of Arab Philosophy”, The Rosen Publishing Group, 2006 . pg 26: “This sixteenth-century illustration from the Khamsa (Five Poems) by Persian poet Nizami portrays Caliph al-Mamun being groomed by a barber and other”
  148. ^ Meyer Waxman, “History of Jewish Literature Part 4”, Kessinger Publishing, 2003. pg 567: “At the age of twenty, he was awarded the doctor's degree by the University of Leipzig for his dissertation on the Persian poet, Nizami.”
  149. ^ Stephen Farthing, Geoff Dyer, ”1001 paintings you must see before you die”, Universe, 2007. Pg 232: “AThe painting once illustrated a copy of the Khamsa (Five Poems), by the twelfth century Persian poet Nizami, which included popular narrative poems..”
  150. ^ Mohan Lan Nigam, Anupama Bhatnagar, “Romance of Hyderabad culture”, Deva Publications, 1997. Pg 64: “He calls himself the disciple of the famous Persian poet, Nizami”
  151. ^ John William Seyller, “Workshop and patron in Mughal India: the Freer Rāmāyaṇa and other illustrated manuscripts of ʹAbd al-Raḥīm”, Artibus Asiae Publishers, 1999. Pg 344: Khamsa Quintet, a collection of five epic romance written by the Persian Poet Nizami (1141-1209)”
  152. ^ Jennifer Doane Upton, Charles Upton, “Dark way to Paradise: Dante’s Inferno in light of the Spiritual Path”, Sophia Perennis, 2005. Pg 15: The great Persian poet Nizami, writing of the lovers Layla and Majnun, tells of how Majnun finds a piece of paper with his name and Layla's written on it"
  153. ^ George Stephen Nestory , “Young Ukraine: the Brotherhood Saints Cyril and Methodius in Kiev”, University of Ottawa Press, 1991. Pg 74: “In his spare time he wrote learned treatises on the Georgian poet Rustaveli, the Persian poet Nizami, and the relation of the Georgian language to ..”
  154. ^ Petra de Bruijin, Abdulhak Hamit, “The two worlds of Eşber: Western orientated verse drama and Ottoman Turkish poetry by 'Abdülḥaḳḳ Ḥāmid (Tarhan)”, Research School CNWS, 1997. Pg 279: “the metre used by the Persian poet Nizami for his romantic mesnevi Leyla ve Mecnun and which was adopted by, amongst others, the Ottoman Turkish poet”
  155. ^ Edward Morgan Forster, Jeffrey M. Heath, “The creator as critic and other writings by E.M. Forster”, Dundurn Press, 2008. Pg 276: “While preparing this broadcast I've been looking at his edition of a sixteenth-century manuscript of the Persian poet Nizami, and reminding myself of what..”
  156. ^ Joseph T. Shipley, “Encyclopedia of Literature Vol. 1”, READ BOOKS, 2007. Pg 504: “A love romance on a theme fro Paykar (1660) and Sikandar Nama (1673), adaptations of two of the famous romances of the Persian poet Nizami (ca. 1141-1203);.."
  157. ^ Paul Pearsall, “The Beethoven Factor: The New Positive Psychology of Hardiness, Happiness, Healing, and Hope”, Hampton Roads Pub. Co., 2003. Pg 219: “The paper had a statement by the Persian poet Nizami, and it can serve as reminder to all of us about the importance of an optimistic explanatory style and”
  158. ^ Kevin Alan Brooks, “The Jews of Khazaria”, Jason Aronson, 1999. Pg 253: “The Persian poet Nizami (circa 1141-1203) described in one of his poems how the Cumans worshipped their ancestors and predecessors by kneeling down before..”
  159. ^ Marie-Luise von Franz, “Individuation in fairy tales”, Shambala, 1990. Pg 82: “Here the role of the storytelling person is represented by an anima figure. In a famous twelfth-century story by the Persian poet Nizami entitled, “The Seven Stories of the Seven Princess,” against every night a princess tells the King a beautiful fairy tale”.
  160. ^ David Comfort, “The First Pet History of the World”, Simon & Schuster, 1994. Pg 38: “..A PARABLE BY PERSIAN POET NIZAMI..”
  161. ^ Tetsuo Nishio, Kokuritsu Minzokugaku Hakubutsuka, “Cultural change in the Arab world”, National Museum of Ethnology, 2001. Pg 148: “it seems that these "randomly strung pearls" of the tale of Majnun were not restrung by a deliberate writer's hand (as the Persian poet Nizami would do..”
  162. ^ Sadiq Naqvi, “The Iranian Afaquies Contribution to the Qutb Shahi and Adil Shahi Kingdoms”, A.A. Hussain Book Shop, 2003. Pg 109:” He started writing a Khamsa in the style of the famous Persian poet Nizami. But he could write only four volumes. He believed that his works were better”
  163. ^ Nathan Light, “Slippery paths: the performance and canonization of Turkic literature and Uyghur muqam song in Islam and modernity”, Indiana University, 1998. Pg 227:”and even suggested that Naval do a nazira ('version') of the tradition of composing a Khamsa (Five Epics) begun by the Persian poet Nizami, and reworked by Amir Khusrau and Jami himself”
  164. ^ Julián Baldick, “Imaginary Muslims: the Uwaysi Sufis of Central Asia”, Imaginary Muslims: the Uwaysi Sufis of Central Asia. Pg 27: “and has included the celebrated Persian poet Nizami”
  165. ^ John Reeve, Karen Armstrong, Everett Fox, Colin F. Baker, F. E. Peters, British Library, “Sacred: books of the three faiths : Judaism, Christianity, Islam”, British Library, 2007. Pg 161: “the poems of the celebrated Persian poet, Nizami. According to tradition, the face of the Prophet Muhammad has been whitened out”
  166. ^ John Renard, “Responses to 101 questions on Islam”, Paulists Press, 1998. Pg 112: “A story told long ago by the Persian poet Nizami..”
  167. ^ Mikhaĭl Borisovich Piotrovskiĭ, John Vrieze, Stichting De Nieuwe Kerk, “Earthly beauty, heavenly art: art of Islam”,De Nieuwe Kerk, 1999. Pg 135: ““A story told long ago by the Persian poet Nizami..”
  168. ^ Wiebke Walther, “Women in Islam”, M. Wiener Pub., 1993. Pg 44: “Also in his Haft Paykar, the hero of a celebrated romance by the Persian poet Nizami, and of many other romances by Turkish imitators..”
  169. ^ Wilhelm Geiger, “Civilization of the Eastern Irnians in Ancient Times: With an Introduction on the Avesta Religion”, BiblioBazaar, LLC, 2009. Pg 229:”Later, in the period of the Sassanian dynasty, the Persian poet Nizami describes this style as prevailing in the ' Palace of the Seven Planets ' built by..”
  170. ^ Sir Richard F. Burton (translator), “Arabian Nights, in 16 Volumes: Vol. V”, Cosimo, Inc., 2008. Pg 254:“Much of the above is taken from the Sikandar-nameh (Alexander Book) of the great Persian poet, Nizami, who flourished AH 515—597, between the days of”
  171. ^ Caitlín Matthews, Olwyn Whelan, “The Barefoot Book of Princesses”, Barefoot Books, 2004.Pg 64: “The Mountain Princess The story comes from the work of the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami, one from a series of delightful stories about seven”
  172. ^ Barbara Brend, “The Emperor Akbar’s Khamsa of Nizami”, British Library, 1995. “a five-part work in verse by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami; its stories are among the most famous in Persian literature”
  173. ^ Wilhem Baum, “Shirin: Christian, Queen, Myth of Love; a Women of late antiquity”, Gorgias Press LLC, 2004. Pg 88: “Among the Persian poets whom Goethe was interested were Firdausi, Nizami and Hafis” (note this book uses anachronistic term as well)
  174. ^ R. Gelpke, “The story of the seven princesses”, Cassirer, 1976. Pg 2: “Haft Paykar (the seven images) by the Persian poet Nizami (1141-1202) is a precious jewel of oriental narrative art, to be compared only with the most beautiful stories out of Thousand and one nights”
  175. ^ Francis Jacques Sypher, Sarah L. Prakken, Bessie Graham, Jack Alden Clarke, Hester Rosalyn Jacoby Hoffman, “The Reader's Adviser: A Layman's Guide to Literature”, Bowker, 1977, v.2 edition 12. Pg 638: “a lyric poet with encyclopedic erudition, whose long poem "Iskender-name" continued the tradition of the Alexander romance of the Persian poet Nizami..”
  176. ^ Classical Arabic poetry: 162 poems from Imrulkais to Maʻarri , “Classical Arabic poetry: 162 poems from Imrulkais to Maʻarri”, KPI, 1985. “Five hundred years later, the subject was taken up by the Persian poet Nizami and formed into an epic running to over 4000 distichs”
  177. ^ Herbert Mason, “A legend of Alexander ; and, The merchant and the parrot: dramatic poems”, University of Notre Dame Press, 1986. Pg 3: “their mythical encounter to the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami, whose celebrated Khamsa includes among its "five epics"”
  178. ^ Janardan Prasad Singh, “Sir William Jones, his mind and art”, S. Chand, 1982. Pg 217: “Of the longest allegory in the collection, The Seven Fountains'. Jones said in his Preface that it was written in imitation of the Persian poet Nizami.”
  179. ^ Henry George Raverty, “Selections from Pushto Poetry”, al-Biruni, 1978. Pg 29: “and his mistress Layla are the subject of one of the most celebrated mystic poems of the Persian poet Nizami, and famous throughout the East”
  180. ^ Joseph Reese Strayer, “Dictionary of the Middle Ages”, v.5 , Scribner, 1985. Pg 418:”This famous composition by the Persian poet NizamI also had a strong influence on..”
  181. ^ Kolarz, Walter. “Russia and her Colonies”, London: George Philip. I952. Pg 245: “The attempt to ‘annex’ an important part of Persian literature and to transform it into ‘Azerbaidzhani literature’ can be best exemplified by the way in which the memory of the great Persian poet Nizami (1141-1203) is exploited in the Soviet Union.”
  182. ^ Claude Cahen, “Pre-Ottoman Turkey: a general survey of the material and spiritual culture and history c. 1071-1330”, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1968. Pg 252: “…of the great Persian poet Nizami of Ganja (a town in the extreme north-west of Iran), and it is possible that he was acquainted with another poet,..”
  183. ^ Pepe Escobar, "Red Zone Blues”, Nimble Books LLC, 2007. Pg 94: “And Eurasia is the would be nothing but echoing the great 12th Century Persian poet Nezami, who in the famous Haft Paykar(“The Seven Portratins”) wrote that “The world is the body and Iran is its heart”
  184. ^ Felix J. Oinas, “Heroic Epic and Saga: An Introduction and Handbook to the World's Great Folk Epics”, Indiana University Press, 1978. Pg 324: “His model was the work of the great Iranian poet Nizami (1 152-1205?). The following generations of Ottoman poets continued to develop the romance genre”
  185. ^ Garth Fowden, “Qusayr’ Amra: art and the Ummayad elite in the late antique Syria”, University of California Press, 2004. Pg111: “As by the twelfth-century Iranian poet Nizami continued to develop the romance genre"
  186. ^ Gregory Minissale, “Framing consciousness in Art: Transcultural Perspectives”, Rodopi, 2009. Pg 304: “The author of the original text in the twelfth century, the Iranian poet Nizami, who composed the poetic imagery which the painting is meant to evoke”
  187. ^ Mikhaĭl Borisovich Piotrovskiĭ, John Vrieze, Stichting De Nieuwe Kerk, “Earthly beauty, heavenly art: art of Islam”, De Nieuwe Kerk, 1999. Pg 140: “The Khamsa (Quintet) by the renowned Iranian poet Nizami Ganjavi (1 141-1209) comprises five poems: The treasury of mysteries', 'Khusraw and Shirin'”
  188. ^ Wilhelm Bacher, Samuel Robinson, “Memoir of the Life and Writings of the Persian Poet Nizami, and Analysis of the Second Part of His Alexander-book”, Williams & Norgate, 1873.
  189. ^ Abraham Valentine Williams Jackson, “Persia Past and Present: A Book of Travel and Research, with More Than Two Hundred Illustrations and a Map”, The Macmillan Company, 1906. Pg 5: “Its chief claim upon our interest perhaps is the fact that Ganjah was the home of the Persian poet Nizami, who died about the year A.D. 1208.”
  190. ^ Friedrich Spiegel, Dārāb dastur Peshotan Sanjānā, “Irānian Art”, H. Frowde, 1886. Pg 2:“Later, in the period of the Sassanian dynasty, the Persian poet Nizami describes this style as prevailing in the ' Palace of the Seven Planets ' built by “
  191. ^ William Alexander Clouston, Edward Rehatsek(Translator), “A Group of Eastern Romances and Stories from the Persian, Tamil, and Urdu”, Privately printed [W. Hodge & Co.], 1889. Pg 173: “Alexander the Great, of whom Muslim writers relate many wonderful stories — especially the Persian poet Nizami, in his famous Sikandar..”
  192. ^ Jullia Scot Meisami, “Nizami c. 1141-c1209: Persian Poet” in Encyclopedia of literary translation in English, Olive Classe, Taylor & Francis, 2000. 2nd edition. pg 1005-1006.
  193. ^ Chelkowski, P. “Nizami Gandjawi , jamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muayyad .”Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman , Th. Bianquis , C.E. Bosworth , E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2008. Brill Online. Excerpt:"Nizami Gandjawi, Djamal al-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas b. Yusuf b. Zaki Muʾayyad, one of the greatest Persian poets and thinkers."
  194. ^ A. Netzer, “BACHER, WILHELM” in Encyclopedia Iranica. http://www.iranica.com/newsite/index.isc?Article=http://www.iranica.com/newsite/articles/unicode/v3f4/v3f4a001.html Excerpt: “In 1870 he earned his doctorate writing a dissertation on the life and poetry of the Persian poet Neẓāmī”
  195. ^ Yo'av Karny, “Highlanders : A Journey to the Caucasus in Quest of Memory”, Published by Macmillan, 2000. Pg 124: “In 1991 he published a translation into Khynalug of the famous medieval poet Nezami, who is known as Persian but is claimed by Azeri nationalists as their own.”
  196. ^ Ronald Grigor Suny, Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies, American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. “Nationalism and Social Change: Essays in the History of Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia”, University of Michigan Press, 1996. page 20. «…the great Persian poet Nizam ud-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas…»
  197. ^ The Oxford Dictionary of Islam, John L. Esposito, Oxford University Press US, 2003. page 235: “Nizami, Jamal al-Din Abu Muhammad II- yas ibn Yusuf ibn Zaki Muayyad (d. ca. 1209) Persian poet. Author of the Khamsa”
  198. ^ Encyclopedia of Asian History: Vols 1-4. Ainslie Thomas Embree (Professor Emeritus of History Columbia University), Robin Jeanne Lewis, Asia Society, Richard W. Bulliet. Scribner, 1988. page.55: “..five historical idylls (1299—1302) as a rejoinder to the Khamsa of the Persian poet Nizami…”
  199. ^ Ali Akbar Husain, "Scent in the Islamic Garden: A Study of Deccani Urdu Literary Sources", Oxford University Press, USA (March 8, 2001). page 29: "... Muhammad Quli acknowledges his debt to the poetry of the Iranian poets, Nizami and Khaqani…”
  200. ^ Dr. Julie Scott Meisami, "The Haft Paykar: A Medieval Persian Romance (Oxford World's Classics)", Oxford University Press (T), 1995. Pg XXXV: “Nizami's imagery was the subject of a study by Hellmut Ritter, who compared the Persian poet's style to that of Goethe, contrasting the vividness and immediacy of the latter to Nizami's supposed ‘metaphorical transformation' of physical phenomena which permits the invention-of new relationships which have no basis in 'reality'.”
  201. ^ Dr. Colin Turner (translator and scholar), Layla and Majnun: The Classic Love Story of Persian Literature [ILLUSTRATED] (Hardcover), “John Blake; illustrated edition edition (June 1, 1997)”. Page ix (Forward): “The Persian poet Nizami was commissioned to write Layla and Majnun by the Caucasian ruler, Shirvanshah in AD 1188. “
  202. ^ Camron Micheal Amin (Editor), Benjamin C. Fortna (Editor), Elizabeth B. Frierson (Editor),"The Modern Middle East: A Sourcebook for History ", Oxford University Press, USA (November 24, 2007). Page 140: "composed by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami and first translated into Ottoman in the fifteenth"
  203. ^ Oxford Encyclopedia of World History, Oxford University Press, USA (April 8, 1999), excerpt page 18: “In Persian sources, his search for knowledge takes precedence over world conquest. In the Iskandar-namah (Book of Alexander) by the Persian poet Nizami, Alexander is depicted as the half-brother of the conquered King”
  204. ^ Edward G. Browne, “A literary History of Persia”, Vol. 2 (London, 1906). Pg 403: “And if his genius has a few rivals amongst the poets of Persia, his character has even fewer. He was genuinely pious, yet singularly devoid of fanaticism and intolerance..” (Also quoted in Mirror of the Invisible World: Tales from the Khamseh of Nizami, Peter J. Chelkowski, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975, pg 5.)
  205. ^ Frank Griffel, “Al-Ghazali’s Philosophical Theology”, Oxford University Press, USA (May 28, 2009). Pg 75: “Janza would become known as the home of the famous Persian poet Nizámi (d. c. 604/1207).”
  206. ^ Giampaolo Casati , "Alexander the Great: Conquerer", Thunder Bay Press (CA) (February 28, 2005). page 131: "Magog behind a wall of iron, while the famous Persian poet Nezami, in Iskander-name, makes the conqueror into a just and wise ..."
  207. ^ W. Ouyang , "New Perspectives On Arabian Nights", Routledge; 1 edition (September 22, 2005) .pg 46: “.. of the latter version in the first tale of the Persian poet Nezámi's (died 1202) Haft peikar-e Bahrám-Gur and..”
  208. ^ Afkham Darbandi, and Dick Davis, “Conference of the Birds” (Attar), Penguin Classics (July 3, 1984). Pg 231: “on this story, the most famous being that of the Persian poet Nezami. Majnoun's madness is a frequent symbol in Islamic mystical poetry”
  209. ^ Nikolaj Serikoff, “Islamic Calligraphy from the Wellcome Library”, Serindia Publications, Inc. (June 1, 2007). Pg 12: "...beings, animals, birds, trees, etc. For example the 12th century Iranian poet Nizami Gandjawih described the master of the world, the Prophet Muhammad, ..."
  210. ^ Gregory Minissale, “Framing Consciousness in Art: Transcultural Perspectives. (Consciousness, Literature & the Arts)”, Rodopi (May 5, 2009). page 304: "... author of the original text in the twelfth century, the Iranian poet Nizami, who composed the poetic imagery which the painting is meant ..."
  211. ^ New Encyclopedia of Islam: A Revised Edition of the Concise Encyclopedia of Islam. Cyril Glasse (Columbia university),Huston Smith, Altamira, 2003. “NizamI (Abu Yusuf Muhammad Ilyas ibn Yusuf Nizam ad-Dîn) (535-598l\ 141—1202). A Persian poet and mystic, he was born in Ganja in Azerbaijan”
  212. ^ Garth Fowden, "Qusayr 'Amra: Art and the Umayyad Elite in Late Antique Syria (Transformation of the Classical Heritage)",University of California Press; 1 edition (September 20, 2004) . page 111:"..As by the twelfth-century Iranian poet Nizami, Haft paykar 25–26..."
  213. ^ Kamran Talattof and Jerome W. Clinton, K. Allin Luthe. The Poetry of Nizami Ganjavi: Knowledge, Love, and Rhetoric. Palgrave, 2001 .Excerpt from Forward of book: “The work of Nezami Ganjavi, one of the great Persian poets, has achieved enduring significance” Excerpt from Pg 51: “Women are featured in the works of three major classical Persian poets, Nizami Ganjavi (1140-1202), Abu al-Qasim Firdawsi (932-1020), and Abd al-Rahman Jami (1414-92)
  214. ^ Seyyed Hossein Nasr, "The Garden of Truth: The Vision and Promise of Sufism, Islam's Mystical Tradition",HarperOne; Reprint edition (September 2, 2008).pg 67:"... on this story, but much elaborated, is by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizámi, who turned it into one of the masterpieces of ..."
  215. ^ C. A. (Charles Ambrose) Storey and Franço de Blois (2004), “Persian Literature - A Biobibliographical Survey: Volume V Poetry of the Pre-Mongol Period.”, RoutledgeCurzon; 2nd revised edition (June 21, 2004). Pg 363: “Nizami Ganja’i, whose personal name was Ilyas, is the most celebrated native poet of the Persians after Firdausi. His nisbah designates him as a native of Ganja (Elizavetpol, Kirovabad) in Azerbaijan, then still a country with an Iranian population..”
  216. ^ Annemarie Schimmel, "And Muhammad Is His Messenger: The Veneration of the Prophet in Islamic Piety (Studies in Religion)",The University of North Carolina Press (November 30, 1985) . pg 18: “In Persian sources, his search for knowledge takes precedence over world conquest. In the Iskandar-namah (Book of Alexander) by the Persian poet Nizami, Alexander is depicted as the half-brother of the conquered King “
  217. ^ Richard N. Frye Reviewed work(s): The Turkic Languages and Literatures of Central Asia: A Bibliography by Rudolf Loewenthal. Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies, Vol. 21, (Dec., 1958), p. 186. excerpt: Many works that appear in this bibliography have no proper place in it; for example, publications on the Persian poet, Nizami (page 73), as well as articles on such political matters as pan-Turkism
  218. ^ (Abel, A.; Ed(s). "Iskandar Nama." Encyclopaedia of Islam. Edited by: P. Bearman , Th. Bianquis , C.E. Bosworth , E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2007. Brill online). Excerpt:"At the time of Niẓami, however, Islam is from then onwards well established in Iran, and it is the prophetic and ecumenical aspect of his destiny that the poet makes evident in his hero. As a learned Iranian poet, Niẓami, who demonstrates his eclecticism in the information he gives (he says, “I have taken from everything just what suited me and I have borrowed from recent histories, Christian, Pahlavi and Jewish ... and of them I have made a whole”), locates the story of his hero principally in Iran. He makes him the image of the Iranian “knight”, peace-loving and moderate, courteous and always ready for any noble action. Like all Niẓami's heroes, he conquers the passions of the flesh, and devotes his attention to his undertakings and his friendships. These features appear in the account, which follows ancient tradition, of his conduct towards the women of the family of Darius, in his brotherly attitude on the death of that ruler, in his behaviour towards queen Nushaba (the Kaydaf of Firdawsi, the Kandake of the pseudo-Callisthenes) whom he defends against the Russians."
  219. ^ (S. Lornejad and A. Doostzadeh, On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi, edited by Victoria Arakelova, Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012). [24]
  220. ^ Britannica:Neẓāmī is admired in Persian-speaking lands for his originality and clarity of style, though his love of language for its own sake and of philosophical and scientific learning makes his work difficult for the average reader. Encyclopaedia Britannica, Nezami Ganjavi (Persian Poet), [25]
  221. ^ Pellat, Ch.; Bruijn, J.T.P. de; Flemming, B.; Haywood, J.A. "Madjnūn Laylā." Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C. E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W. P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2009. Brill Online. Excerpts: "The theme was chosen for the first time as the subject of a Persian narrative poem, but the precedent of the treatment of a similar subject of Arabic origin existed in ʿAyyūḳī's Warḳa u Gulshāh. Niẓāmī states in the introduction to his poem that he accepted the assignment with some hesitation. At first, he doubted whether this tale of madness and wanderings through the wilderness would be suitable for a royal court (ed. Moscow 1965, pp. 41 ff.). He adapted the disconnected stories to fit the requirements of a Persian romance. ...In some respects, the Bedouin setting of the original has been changed under the influence of urban conditions more familiar to the poet and his audience: the young lovers become acquainted at school; the generous Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than an Arab official. Niẓāmī added a second pair of lovers, Zayn and Zaynab, in whom the love between the main characters is reflected. It is Zayn who in a dream sees Madjnūn and Laylī united in paradise at the end of the romance."
  222. ^ Ali Asghar Seyed-Gohrab, "Layli and Majnun: Madness and Mystic Longing" Brill Studies in Middle Eastern literature, Jun. 2003, pp. 76-77, excerpt: Although Majnun was to some extent a popular figure before Nizami's time, his popularity increased dramatically after the appearance of Nizami's romance. By collecting information from both secular and mystical sources about Majnun, Nizami portrayed such a vivid picture of this legendary lover that all subsequent poets were inspired by him, many of them imitated him and wrote their own versions of the romance. As we shall see in the following chapters, the poet uses various characteristics deriving from ‘Udhrite love poetry and weaves them into his own Persian culture. In other words, Nizami Persianises the poem by adding several techniques borrowed from the Persian epic tradition, such as the portrayal of characters, the relationship between characters, description of time and setting, etc.
  223. ^ Siavash Lornejad, Ali Doostzadeh "On the Modern Politicization of the Persian Poet Nezami Ganjavi", Edited by Victoria Arakelova, YEREVAN SERIES FOR ORIENTAL STUDIES (Editor of the Series Garnik Asatrian), Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan, 2012. Copyright released to the public. Available at: [26] [27][28] (note work is not copy righted). pg 70: "For example, Mehmet Kalpakli and Water Andrews commenting on LMZA:30-31, make the unsound statement that: “Sometime in the last fifteen years of the twelfth century, the Sharvānshāh Akhsitān made a request of the poet Nezami. At the same time the ruler also made it quite clear what the language of this recollection should be: dar zivar-e pársi o tázi / in táza `arús rá terázi - In jewels of Persian and Arabic / Adorn this bride so fresh and new” . With regards to this inaccurate interpretation, we note that the poem is in Persian and not “Persian and Arabic”. Consequently, the verse has nothing to do with the language issue, since the poem is not in two different languages. The metaphor “in jewels of Persian and Arabic”, which can be interpreted as “in reflection of the two cultures (cultural realities of Iran and the Arabian world)” (see below), has, of course, nothing to do with the Sharvānshāh’s order of poetry in terms of its language. If it did, then the poem would in fact be in “Arabic and Persian”, rather than in Persian only. The authors (Mehmet Kalpakli and Water Andrews) themselves correctly translated “Persian and Arabic”, yet they reference a particular language in the singular rather than the plural and mention erroneously that “the language of this recollection”. We also note in the Azeri translation of Samad Vurgun, it is given as: “bu təzə gəlinə, çəkəndə zəhmət / fars, ərəb diliylə vur ona zinət” . This is a mistranslation, since instead of putting a conjunction “and”, the author put the word “fars” and then a comma, and then the word “arab”. This creates an ambiguity since the conjunction “and” was turned into “or”. He added the word “diliylə” (language), whereas the correct translation is “In Persian and Arabic ornaments, beautify and dress this new bride afresh”. Thus there is no mention of a language since the poetic interpretation of the words that Nezami ascribes to the Sharvānshāh are “Persian and Arabic ornaments” while the poem itself is in Persian. " .... What makes sense after a closer examination is that "Persian and Arabic ornaments" is due to the fact that the story is a mixture of the two different cultures and the epic poem derives elements from both cultures . Incidentally, even authors like Jan Rypka admit that the story is “closer to the Persian conception of Arabia” . Nezami himself alluded to his sources in many of the chapters of Layli o Majnun (see Part IV) and the story is a unification of various Arabic and Persian sources and anecdotes (“ornaments”). In a reference to himself, when composing one of the chapters of Layli o Majnun, he mentions the Arabic writings .. From the Arabic elements of the Layli o Majnun, besides the Bedouin setting of the story in the deserts of Arabia, Nezami uses: “many of the Arabic anecdotes and considered several key elements of the Udri genre’’ . Naturally, due to the story’s Arabic origin, the motif, theme and many of the imagery of the poem relate to Arabic culture. At the same time, the story of Layli o Majnun had already been familiar to Iranians at least since the time of Rudaki, and other Persians had absorbed and embellished it before him . Nezami also mentions that the story is well known (LMZA:53). Some of the episodes are not found in any of the known Arabic versions of the story and probably are derived from local Persian cultural elements. Thus, Nezami adapts disconnected stories and turns them into the Persian epic romance by using a Persian genre (epic poetry), whose correspondence did not exist in Arabic literature of the time. Persian elements in the story include Persian sources, Persian anecdotes, the obvious epic poetry (which was a Persian genre not attested in Arabic) and such a detail that Nawfal is a prince in the Iranian style rather than Arabic . Other Persian elements are noted by Rudolph Gelpke: “Nezami preserves the Bedouin atmosphere, the nomads’ tents in the desert and the tribal customs of the inhabitants, while at the same time transposing the story into the far more civilized Iranian world... Majnun talks to the planets in the symbolic language of a twelfth century Persian sage, the encounters of small Arabic raiding parties become gigantic battles of royal Persian armies and most of the Bedouins talk like heroes, courtiers, and savants of the refined Iranian Civilization” . And according to Seyed-Gohrab: “Other Persian motifs added to the story are the childless king, who desires an heir; nature poetry, especially about gardens in spring and autumn, and sunset and sunrise; the story of an ascetic living in a cave; the account of the king of Marv and his dogs; the Zeyd and Zeynab episode; Majnun’s supplication to the heavenly bodies and God; his kingship over animals, and his didactic conversations with several characters” . Consequently, the section on “the reason for composing the book” which was the last part to be written, is a poetic interpretation, commentary upon and extrapolation of the letter of the Sharvānshāh. The poetic interpretation and extrapolation ascribed to the Sharvānshāh’s letter, attests to the fact that Nezami himself consciously mixed elements of the Persian and Arabic anecdotes/sources. The final product is a Persian epic that is very sharp break from the Arabic versions of the story. In this final product, Nezami consciously synthesized the Persian and Arabic versions of the story and incorporated aphorism, anecdotes, imagery and themes from both Persian and Arabic cultures. The final result is a Persian epic (or as Nezami states a “necklace”) which is a mixture of “Persian and Arabic ornaments”. More misinterpretations and mistranslations (based on politicized writings) of this section has occurred. With regards to LMZA:34-35, Kalpakli and Andrews erroneously claim that: “But he also goes on to say what language he does not want the poet to use – apparently alluding to Mahmud of Ghazna’s legendary cheapness in the matter of Ferdawsi: torki sefat vafā-ye mā nist / torkāna sokhan sazā-ye mā nist --Not in the Turkish way do we keep a promise so writing in the Turkish manner doesn’t suit us. This couplet seems to indicate that the Sharvānshāh could have asked Nezami to write in Turkish and that the poet could have done this. But – either alas or fortunately, depending on your point of view – the ruler preferred Persian. So, a vastly influential tale was born, and the first complete Turkish version of the story had to wait for almost three hundred years.” The Azeri translation of Samad Vurgun adds further mistranslations of these lines: “Türk dili yaramaz şah nəslimizə, Əskiklik gətirər türk dili bizə. Yüksək olmalıdır bizim dilimiz, Yüksək yaranmışdır bizim nəslimiz”. Thus both Kalpakli and Vurgun have mistakenly taken the term “torkāneh-sokhan” to mean “Turkish language”, but it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and “rhetoric associated with Turks” while in the context of the poem, it has the double meaning of unmannered speech and rhetoric associated with or deserved by Turks. Here rhetoric (sokhan) does not mean language. For example, fārsāneh sokhan or arabāneh sokhan does not mean the Persian or Arabic language, and no one in Persian literature has used such a word formation to refer to a language. Also it should be noted that in the translation of Kalpakli, there is the verb “writing in the Turkish manner” whereas Nezami uses the word “rhetoric” (sokhan), not “writing” (neveshtan) here and thus, this is a mistranslation. The word “writing” could have been inserted in their translation due to the fact that the authors were influenced by the Soviet viewpoint. Before the politicized interpretation of these verses in the USSR, Vahid Dastgerdi had already provided a sound commentary on these lines: The meaning of these verses is that our fidelity is not like the Turks and our faithfulness is not like that of Sultan Mahmud the Turk. Our fidelity and commitment will not be broken, so rhetoric that are befitting for Turkish kings is not befitting for us .Reiterating why the arguments of politicized authors and those who have quoted them ignorantly are incorrect, we should once more emphasize that neither the Sharvānshāhs were Turks to request a story in Turkish, nor there existed a Turkish literary tradition in the Caucasus at that time, nor is there any proof that Nezami ever knew Turkish, nor is there a single verse in Turkish from that region in that period, nor is “Persian and Arabic” a particular language, nor did the Arabic language have an epic genre like Persian, nor does the term torkāneh-sokhan mean “Turkish language” but rather it literally means “Turkish-like rhetoric” and in the context of the language of the time, it simply means “vulgar and unmannered speech”.