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Iraqi style (poetry)

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Iraqi style refers to a style of Persian poetry that has been popular and continued since the end of the 11th century to the 15th century. The name of this style is derived from Persian Iraq (Persian: عراقِ عجم Erāq-e Ajam), but the spread of this style was not limited to Persian Iraq and was popular in other areas as well. Abu-al-Faraj Runi, Hassan Ghaznavi and Jamal al-Din Muhammad Isfahani are founders and Kamal al-Din Isfahani, Saadi, Fakhr al-Din Iraqi and Hafez are among the representatives of this style.

History and Origin[edit]

The Iraqi style was created by the coming of the Seljuks in Khorasan at that time and the Atabegs in Iraq and Azerbaijan. At this time (11h century), parts of western Iran were also called Iraq, but to distinguish it from the Mesopotamia part, they called that place Arab Iraq and this place Persian Iraq. At this time, the literary treasure of Iran was transferred to Azerbaijan and Persian Iraq. Historically, the Iraqi style extends from the 13th to the 15th century.

Style features[edit]

  • The basis of the Iraqi style is the same as the Khorasani style, with the difference that Arabic words are more abundant in it, and due to the shift of power centers and the expansion of science in the fields of scientific and cultural education in different cities of Iran, scientific, wisdom, philosophical, religious, astronomy, and medical words in the works. The poets entered and gave their color and appearance to the poetry of the Iraqi style poets.
  • In this style, the ode gave its place to the sonnet, and the simplicity, fluency and strength gave way to the tenderness and abundance of similes, interpretations and allusions, which are beautiful and fresh and at the same time precise and narrow, and the Arabic words also increased. With the introduction of Sufism and mysticism in poetry, mystic speakers such as Sanai, Attar, Rumi, Hafez and dozens of other poets appeared. At the same time, moral and educational themes and admonitions took the place of exaggerated praises.
  • Poetic meanings in this new way of praise, which is accompanied by a lot of exaggerations and humility towards the praiser. There is also humor and jokes which is more popular than in the previous period, and people like Anvari, Suzani, and Khaqani.
  • Love, mysticism and morality are common themes in this style. Ghazal, which Anvari first presented as a new type, is tested in the poetry of most of the poets of this period. However, its peak is manifested in Saadi and Hafez's sonnets.
  • Poetry forms, apart from the ode, which Anvari and Khaqani, Jamal al-Din Isfahani and Zahir-al-Din Faryabi bring to its peak, the form of masnavi and ghazal are becoming popular. In Khamsa, Nizami Ganjavi presents a new type of literary genre in the form of Masnavi.
  • Although the poets of Fars and Isfahan like Jamal al-Din Isfahani's style, they prefer the form of ghazal over other forms. Fars becomes the center of lyrical poetry in the Iraqi style. Saadi and Hafez, the Gods of Ghazal, each create a new style. Of course, the Iraqi style in Ghazal is different from what is in Qaseedah and Masnavi.
  • Attention to the beauty of words, simplicity, and melody, which is actually Saadi's special style, has an effect on Ghazal, and people like Salman, Khwaju Kermani, Hummam Tabrizi, Awhadi, Amir Khusrau Dehlavi, and Jami, both in Fars and elsewhere, have that style in mind. Despite all this, Hafez creates a great transformation in Persian singing and creates an independent and free style that should be considered a high style. In the Iraqi style, the form of masnavi and ghazal becomes more important and continues until later periods. Poetry in local dialects was forgotten due to the insecurity, poverty and gloom of the people, and the language progressed towards complexity and ambiguity. A large amount of Arabic and Quranic words and terms were included in the poems and writings.


  • Bahar, Mohammad Taghi. Stylology, second edition, Tehran, 1958
  • Bahar, Mohammad Taghi. History of the development of Persian poetry, Tehran, 1955
  • Shamisa, Sirus. Stylology, 9th edition, Tehran, 2002

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