Hafez (1315-1390)

Hafez (Khāje Shams o-Dīn Moḥammad Ḥāfeẓ-e Shīrāzī)

Khāje Shams o-Din Mohammad Ben Bahā Alddin Hafez Shirazi (Shiraz, 1315) is a celebrated Persian poet and one of the world's top speakers.

Few are the news we have about his family and his ancestors; apparently his father was called Bahā Alddin and his mother was originally from the city of Kāzerun.

In his poems, which are the only reliable source of his biography, there are some references to his private life. In his youth he memorized fourteen interpretations of the Qur'an and this earned him the nickname of Hāfez (lett: "the memorizer").

His most important work is the Divan o Canzoniere which is composed of around 500 ghazal (lyrics), some qasideh (monorima-ode poetry), two masnavi, (long poetic composition in rhyming couplets) some ghat'e (strophes) and some robā'i (quatrains) and until today it has been published more than four hundred editions in Persian and in other languages ​​in different forms. Probably the number of simple or illustrated manuscript copies in the libraries of Iran, Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Turkey and even Western countries surpasses that of any other Divan Persian.

Hafez is considered the best composer of ghazal in Persian language. It is so famous that today one of his own is present in the home of every Iranian Divan. The Iranians, according to ancient customs, on national or religious holiday days like the Nouruz on the table of haft sin or on that of Shab-e Yaldā, they put the Canzoniere, they open it at random and they draw auspices from it. Some call Hāfez "lisān al ghayb" or "Invisible language"To mean the one who speaks of the Occult.

Hafez sings the divine love that is the object of his ghazal mystics. The poet has never left Shiraz and he has never embarked on long journeys or anyway he has undertaken some, it has certainly been brief. Hāfez's interest and point of view towards Shiraz from the perspective of his Divan and his ghazal, it is very evident and these hints find a correspondence with the historical events of his time.

Hafez, before becoming a poet, had a wide knowledge of religious, philosophical and mystical questions and his conception is in the end culminating in the search for social considerations and reflections. So far the Canzoniere has been translated and published in various languages. The attention and interest of Italians for his compositions, resulted in numerous Italian translations of his poems by some professors of Italian universities such as Giovanni D'Erme, Stefano Pellò, Gianroberto Scarcia and Carlo Saccone.

Goethe, the most brilliant German scholar, in the composition of his "Western-Eastern Songbook" was influenced by the Divan of Hāfez and dedicated the second chapter of the work that has the name of "Hāfeznāme" to the poems in his honor. Hafez died at Shiraz in the 1390 year. Every year the October 11 takes place the commemoration ceremony in its mausoleum a Shiraz in the neighborhood called "Hāfezie"In the presence of Iranian and foreign researchers. In Iran they called this day "day of the commemoration of Hāfez".

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