Ferdowsi

Ferdowsi Toosi Iranian poet name And poet Shahnameh EPIC Of Pesian

Ferdowsi

Ferdowsi

Hakim Abu ʾl-Qasim Ferdowsi Tusi (940–1020 CE), or Firdawsi,was a highly revered Persian poet and the author of the epic of Shahnameh – the Persian “Book of Kings” – which is the world’s longest epic poetry created by a single poet, and the national epic of Iran and the Persian speaking world. Having drafted the Shahnameh under patronage of the Samanid and the Ghaznavid courts of Persia, Ferdowsi is celebrated as one of the most influential Persian poets of all time, and an influential figure in Persian literature.

Ferdowsi was born into a family of Iranian landowners (dehqans) in 940 C.E. in the village of Paj, near the city of Tus, in Khorasan region of the Samanid Empire, currently in the Razavi Khorasan Province of northeastern Iran. Little is known about Ferdowsi’s early life. The poet had a wife, who was probably literate and came from the same dehqan class. He had a son, who died aged 37, and was mourned by the poet in an elegy which he inserted into the Shahnameh. Ferdowsī was a Shi’ite Muslim, which is apparent from the Shahnameh it self and confirmed by early accounts.In recent times, however, some have cast doubt on his religion and his Shi’ism, and have suggested that he was a deist.

Ferdowsi belonged to the class of dehqans. These were landowning Iranian aristocrats who had flourished under the Sassanid dynasty (the last pre-Islamic dynasty to rule Iran) and whose power, though diminished, had survived into the Islamic era which followed the Arab conquests of the seventh century. The dehqans were intensely patriotic (so much so that dehqan is sometimes used as a synonym for “Iranian” in the Shahnameh) and saw it as their task to preserve the cultural traditions of Iran, including the legendary tales about its kings.

It is possible that Ferdowsi wrote some early poems which have not survived. He began work on the Shahnameh around 977, intending it as a continuation of the work of his fellow poet Daqiqi, who had been assassinated by a slave.

Like Daqiqi, Ferdowsi employed the prose Shahnameh of ʿAbd-al-Razzāq as a source. He received generous patronage from the Samanid prince Mansur and completed the first version of the Shahnameh in 994. When the Turkic Ghaznavids overthrew the Samanids in the late 990s, Ferdowsi continued to work on the poem, rewriting sections to praise the Ghaznavid Sultan Mahmud.

Mahmud’s attitude to Ferdowsi and how well he rewarded the poet are matters which have long been subject to dispute and have formed the basis of legends about the poet and his patron (see below). The Turkic Mahmud may have been less interested in tales from Iranian history than the Samanids.

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