Art And Culture

Rare Bahar Manuscript Found

Rare Bahar Manuscript FoundRare Bahar Manuscript Found

A rare manuscript of ‘Divan’ written by celebrated contemporary poet Mohammad-Taqi Bahar was uncovered among the library treasures of the Literature Faculty of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad.

The manuscript was discovered when a university instructor, Mojtaba Mojarrad, was busy studying the notations taken on an old book by the late literary scholar and poet Mahmoud Farrokh Khorasani (1896-1981), who was also collecting Bahar’s dispersed pieces of verses from the Divan, Honaronline reported.

Bahar (1884-1951), widely known as Malek-o-Sho’ara (literally: the king of poets) was a renowned Iranian poet and scholar, who was also a politician, journalist, historian and literature professor. His poems are fairly traditional and strongly nationalistic in character.

Khorasani began compiling the manuscript in 1956. “The last noted date on the manuscript is 1975, showing that he had been working on it for a long time,” said Mojarrad.

The verses are written on two kinds of paper, “the older papers are russet and the newer ones are white thin paper sheets.”

According to Mojarrad, the less comprehensible terms and words in the verses are explained in the paper margins, “obviously with a different handwriting, most likely Khorasani’s.”

The collection is in alphabetic order, but follows a chronological sequence, starting with the verses written in Bahar’s youth and ending with verses of older poets.

“I’ve been searching for the collection for years,” he said, adding that he was quite confident he would discover it one day.

Bahar had a significant impact on the development of modern Persian poetry and literature. It may be argued that, to varying degrees, almost all the early advocates of modernism in Persian poetry and literature found their inspiration in the new developments and changes that had taken place in western literature.

Nonetheless, such inspirations would not have easily resulted in changes without the efforts and support of literati like Bahar, whose contributions are in consonance with Iranian culture. In Bahar’s collection of poems, one finds poems composed in almost every tradition of Persian poetry.