Hakim Abolghasem Ferdowsi
Personal
Other names:
Job / Known for: Epic poet and composer of Shahnameh
Left traces: The Persian epic and cultural heritage
Born
Date: 940
Location: IR Paj village, near Tus, Khorasan, Iran
Died
Date: 1020-12-05 (aged 80)
Resting place: IR
Death Cause: Heart attack
Family
Spouse: Unknown name, from the same dehqan class
Children: One daughter
Parent(s): Unknown names, Iranian landowners (dehqans)
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Slogan
I suffered during these thirty years, but I have revived the Iranians with my poetry.
About me / Bio:
Hakim Abolghasem Ferdowsi was born in 940 CE in a village near Tus, in the Khorasan region of Iran, which was then under the rule of the Samanid dynasty. He belonged to a wealthy family of dehqans, who were Iranian aristocrats and landowners that had preserved their status and culture after the Arab conquest of Iran in the 7th century. Ferdowsi was educated in Persian literature and history, as well as Arabic language and sciences. He married a woman from his own class and had a daughter with her. He devoted most of his adult life to composing his masterpiece, the Shahnameh (The Book of Kings), which is the national epic of Iran and one of the longest poems ever written by a single author. The Shahnameh is based on a prose work of the same name that was compiled in Ferdowsi's youth, which in turn was a translation of a Pahlavi (Middle Persian) work called Khvatay-namak, a history of the kings of Iran from mythical times to the Sassanid dynasty. Ferdowsi also added material from oral traditions, legends, and other sources to his poem, which covers more than 50,000 couplets and spans thousands of years of Iranian history and culture. Ferdowsi composed his poem for the Samanid princes of Khorasan, who were patrons of Persian literature and culture. However, during his lifetime, the Samanid dynasty was overthrown by the Ghaznavid Turks, who were less interested in Ferdowsi's work. Ferdowsi faced many hardships and disappointments in his life, such as the death of his son at a young age, the loss of his patrons and friends, the invasion of his homeland by foreign powers, and the neglect and betrayal of the rulers who commissioned his poem. He died in 1020 CE in Tus, in poverty and bitterness, but also with confidence in his lasting fame. He was buried in his own garden, but later a mausoleum was built over his grave by a Ghaznavid governor. His tomb became a revered site and a symbol of Iranian identity and pride. Ferdowsi is widely regarded as one of the greatest poets in world literature and one of the most influential figures in Iranian history and culture. His Shahnameh is a source of inspiration and identity for Iranians and other Persian-speaking peoples. It is also a valuable document of ancient Iranian myths, legends, history, language, religion, art, and values. Ferdowsi's style is characterized by its epic grandeur, lyrical beauty, moral wisdom, historical accuracy, and cultural richness. He is celebrated as a national hero and a guardian of Persian heritage by Iranians and other admirers around the world.
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