Persian Literature (2/5)

In addition to the previous books mentioned in the first part, “One Thousand and One Nights” (a folk collection from the 8th to 13th century) has roots in the translation of Persian “Hezar Afsan”. The last remarkable written work stretching back to Anushirvan (Sasanian King, 531-579) era is the “Kelileh Va Demneh” which was a translation work from Sanskrit to the Middle Persian language.

During the Islamic era in Iran, the territory of the Persian language was stretched from Xinjiang in China to Anatolia in modern-day Turkey and Abbasid Caliphate’s (750-1258 CE) territory. From that time on, a big number of poets and writers created immortal works from the majority of Iran’s cities. Not any country has developed such scholars in every existing city. Persian is considered a musical-toned language and Iranians enjoy the hive of literary works.

Persian literature did not undergo major alterations after Arabs came to Iran; Egypt could not resist the change of its language in a similar condition. Ghaznavid and Seljuk Turks also ruled in Iran but they promoted the Persian language which also helped them in researching and administrative affairs. When Mahmud Ghaznavi conducted a military campaign to India (1001), he spread the Persian language there. The same happened in the Mongol era (1162–1227), Shah Rukh and Baysunghur’s (Timur’s successors) time in particular.

Indian Gurkanis also enjoyed Persian in the administration. Dara Shukoh (1615-1659) was a Persian prince of the Mughal emperor who published some books including Persian translation of the Upanishads. The same spread of Persian also happened in Ottoman Empire (1299–1922) where Sultan Suleiman’s pen name was “Muhibbi” in his Persian poetry works.

September 7, 2022