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La fin de l'époque médiévale : l'ère des derniers Timourides

From Herat to Shiraz: the Unique Manuscript (876/1471) of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s Poetry from Aq Qoyunlu Circle

Aftandil Erkinov
Traduction de Scott Bean
p. 47-79

Résumés

De Hérat à Shiraz: le seul manuscript de poésie de ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’ (876/1471) du royaume des Aq Qoyunlu

Le dīwān manuscrit de ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī (1441-1501), qui est le sujet de cet article, fut copié en 1471 dans le royaume des Aq Qoyunlu (1378-1501), et c’est seulement aujourd’hui que les spécialistes de l’œuvre de Nawā’ī en ont pris connaissance. La dynastie des Aq Qoyunlu, qui a régné sur une partie de l’Est de l’actuelle Turquie, de l’Arménie, de l’Azerbaïdjan, et du Nord de l’Iran et l’Irak, a maintenu des liens étroits avec les Timourides. Les admirateurs de Nawā’ī qui vivaient à la cour des Aq Qoyunlu ont compilé et copié ce dīwān, et ainsi on peut le nommer à titre provisoire Le Dīwān des admirateurs aq qoyunlu. Il a été compilé et copié en 1471, et revêt une grande importance pour l’étude de l’œuvre de Nawā’ī en tant que second dīwān après le Ilk dīwān [Le Premier dīwān], lequel a été compilé par de fervents amateurs de l’œuvre de Nawā’ī en 1465-1466. On suppose qu’il a été copié à Chiraz, ville qui était à l’époque l’un des centres culturels de la dynastie des Aq Qoyunlu. Le dīwān inclut des poèmes de Nawā’ī qui ont été écrits jusqu’en 1471, c’est-à-dire jusqu’au trentième anniversaire du poète. La langue des poèmes a été adaptée pour partie au dialecte turcique oghouz qui dominait dans le royaume des Aq Qoyunlu. Ce dīwān est encore la seule compilation dont nous savons qu’elle a été établie par les admirateurs du poète dans la dynastie des Aq Qoyunlu. Le manuscrit a été copié par le célèbre calligraphe de l’époque qui servait à la cour des dirigeants Aq Qoyunlu, ‘Abd al-Raḥīm Khwārazmī, et qui écrivait des poèmes sous le nom de plume Anīsī.

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Notes de la rédaction

Translated from Russian by Scott Bean

Notes de l’auteur

I wrote this article in 2014 while working on the project “Early Modern Islamic States and the Surrounding World” (coordinated by Prof. Nobuaki Kondo) as a visiting professor at the Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa (ilcaa) at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies (Japan). I am grateful to the Institute’s administration and to Prof. Nobuaki Kondo for their help in making this article possible and I would like to thank for their advice: Francis Richard, Maria Szuppe, Mutsumi Sugahara, Esra Akin-Kivanc, Kasimjan Sadikov, Abdulatif Turdialiev, Kadirjan Ergashev, Alim Davlatov and Hamidulla Aminov. The main lines of this article was presented at the 5e Journée d’études et atelier de travail (Workshop) Series Catalogorum organised by the umr 7528 Mondes iranien et indien on October 17, 2014, Paris, France.

Texte intégral

اکر بیر قوم کر یوز یوقسه مىنكدور
معين ترك اولوسى خود منينك دور
آليب مين تخت فرمانيم غه آسان
چيريك چيكماى ختادين تا خراسان
خراسان دماكيم شيراز و تبريز
كه قيلميش دور نى كلكيم شكرريز

  • 1 Nawā’ī, 1991, p. 475; Erkinov, 1971, p. 247; Qayumov, 1979; Komilov, 2009, pp. 182-192. Translation (...)

No Matter how many there are one – a hundred, a thousand
All the Turkic languages belong to me.
Without warriors nor battles I conquered every country,
From China to Khorasan.
Sugar from the cane of my quill,
Was strewn not only on Khorasan, but also on Shiraz and Tabriz
.
‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī, Farhād u Shīrīn (1483)1

Introduction

  • 2 The poet’s name in Russian texts is traditionally written as Alisher Navoi, but we prefer the spell (...)
  • 3 The poet’s fulfillment with his prosody. Fakhrīya/iftikhār (Arabic for self-aggrandizement, pride, (...)

1You could interpret the foregoing six lines from ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī (1441-1501) as follows:2 Nawā’ī proudly assert that his works prevail amongst the Turkic peoples from China to Khorasan (where Timurid usayn Bāyqarā ruled the centre in Herat). His poems are in fact well known not only in Khorasan, but also in Shiraz and Tabriz, namely amongst the Turkic population of these centres. References to Shiraz and Tabriz to this day have not had a specific context to them and have served as abstract information on the poet’s works that prevailed in these territories, and in a broader sense in the Turkic environment of Central Asia and modern-day Iran. These lines could have been summed up as fakhrīya,3 one of the traditional poetic techniques of oriental Islam. What recently caught my eye, however, was the structure of one manuscript with Nawā’ī’s poetry that is renowned amongst experts in the arts, but not renowned amongst Uzbek literature experts. This manuscript is kept at the National Library of Egypt. With the discovery of this collection of poetry, or dīwān, these Nawā’ī poems became not only an example of the use of the fakhrīya poetic technique, but also gained a specific and real meaning.

  • 4 For more information on this manuscript, read Erkinov, 2012. My gratitude to Dr. Simon Rettig, who (...)

2It is widely known that Herat prospered in the era of the late Timurids (1370-1506) during usayn Bāyqarā’s rule (1469-1506), when greet Turkic classic poet ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī lived and wrote his poetry (Szuppe, 1993; Subtelny, 2007). The Aq Qoyunlu dynasty (1378-1508), neighbouring the Timurids, also paid a lot of attention to developing art. Having ruled partial in modern-day Eastern Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, northern Iran, and Iraq, the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty kept close ties with the Timurids. This dynasty, which came from the environment of the Oghuz Turks, ruled from 1378 to 1501 on the territory of modern-day Eastern Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Northern Iran, and Iraq (Minorsky, 1960; Woods, 1999). Nawā’ī’s collection of poems (dīwān), which was copied on 12 Radjab 876/24 December 1471 in Shiraz – one of the central city of the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty, was one of the unique manuscripts (Nawāʼī, 14714) during this period, the ruler in Shiraz was Khalīl (lived in 1442-1478) (Khunjī, 1957, рp. 25-40). He was the Aq Qoyunlu ruler in 1478 for only six months and lived in Tabriz, the capital of the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty. Subsequently, Sulān Khalīl was attacked and killed by his brother Ya‘qūb (b. 1463, 1478-1490), who replaced him on the throne (Khunjī, 1957; Woods 1999, рp. 125-147).

  • 5 Alī Shīr Nawāʼī, Initial dīwān / Ilk Dīwān / Rannij divan (Nawā’ī, 1968).

3I conditionally called the indicated Nawā’ī’s dīwān “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers”. Admirers of Nawā’ī’s poetry from the Aq Qoyunlu environment, before ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī himself began to compile his first dīwān, organised this collection of poems. Nawā’ī’s Ilk dīwān [Initial dīwān], copied in 870/1465-66 is still the only one of Nawā’ī’s collection of poetry that science is aware of.5 The Ilk dīwān was the first collection of Nawā’ī’s poetry that his devotees compiled and that Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī (1432-1520) copied in Herat (Nawā’ī, 1968; Sulaymonov, Sulaymonova, 1982, illustrations 1-13; Isoqov, 1965; Eckmann, 1970). “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” is the second collection of Nawā’ī’s poetry that his adherents compiled, namely the collection was compiled in the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty, next to the Timurids, presumably in Shiraz, and not in Herat. We are aware of only one manuscript of this dīwān, and it is the only collection we know that devotees of Nawā’ī’s poetry compiled in the Aq Qoyunlu state. ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī, known as Anīsī, was the person to have copied this dīwān. Although art experts were aware of this manuscript, Uzbek literature experts were unaware of it, and this manuscript was not the object of research in terms of the collection’s structure and passing on the text of poems that, for example, was adapted to the Oghuz Turkic that prevailed in the Aq Qoyunlu state. We will try in this article to research the dīwān’s composition and the social-cultural context that served as the foundation for copying this manuscript in Nawā’ī’s adolescent years.

The Life and Works of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī

4Niām al-Dīn Mīr ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī (1441-1501) was a poet and stateman in the usayn Bāyqarā court (1469-1506) in Herat. Nawā’ī wrote poems under the pseudonym (takhallūṣ) Nawā’ī (in works written in Chagatay Turkic) and Fānī (in works written in Persian), and is one of the most influential figures in Turkic literature. He wrote more than thirty works, most of them in Turkic. Nawā’ī was born in Herat and spent most of his life in this city. His family was close to the Timurids: as a child, Nawā’ī himself was both friend and studied with usayn Bāyqarā (1469-1506), the future ruler of Khorasan, and then began to write poetry at ten to twelve years of age. According to Nawā’ī’s contemporarian, the historian Ghiyāth al-Dīn Khwāndamīr (1475-1536), the renowned Turkic poet Lufī (1367-1463) at an elderly age would meet with the child Nawā’ī and praise his poetic talent (Birnbaum, 1986).

5Nawā’ī was forced to live far away from Herat (Marv, Taft, Mashhad, Samarkand) during the period of the Timurids’ internal warfare, only occasionally returning, until 1469 when Timurid usayn Bāyqarā would seize Herat and become the ruler of Khorasan. Nawā’ī would live mainly in this city from the beginning of this period until his death (Subtelny, 1993, р. 90). In the 1480s, Nawā’ī would pay to have several madrasa, rabāṭ [a stop for travellers], masjid, khānakāh [Sufi refuges], bathhouses, and bridges in Herat and other regions of the country. He would be more involved in art beginning in 1476, and most of his works would be written starting this very year and until his death.

6Nawā’ī wrote the most important lyrical, lyrical and epical, social and philosophical, and scientific works from 1480 to 1501; the sheer volume of works he wrote is enormous as well. Six of his poems make up 60,000 lines (miṣrā‘). From 1483 to 1485, he wrote Khamsa [Pentalogy], consisting of the following five poems: Ḥayrat al-abrār [Turmoil of the Righteous], Farhād u Shīrīn [Farhad and Shirin], Layli-wu Majnūn [Layli and Majnun], Saba-yi sayyār [Seven Planets], Sadd-i iskandarī [The Alexandrian Wall]. They were written based on the tradition of the khamsanawīsī [writing and creation of the Khamsa]. Nawā’ī’s Khamsa is the first work in this genre written in Turkic (Erkinov, 1999). Moreover, Nawā’ī wrote one more poem called Lisān al-ṭayr [Language of the Birds].

7Nawā’ī wrote an impressive number of lyrical works during his life. He compiled a collection of all his poems in Turkic from 1492 to 1498 and created four dīwān collections called Khazā’in al-ma‘ānī [A Treasure Trove of Thoughts] (Haytmetov, 1961). This consists of the following four dīwān: (1) Gharā’ib al-ṣighar [Miracles of Childhood], (2) Nawādir al-shabāb [Rarities of Youth], (3) Badā’ī‘ al-wasa [Wonders of Middle Age], (4) Fawā’id al-kibar [Helpful Old-Age Advice]. The total volume of all the poems from these four collections makes up more than 50,000 lines (misra’). Furthermore, Nawā’ī wrote poems in seventeen genres out of the existing twenty-one in the poetry of the Islamic Orient. Nawā’ī collected all his poems written in Persian under the title Dīwān-i Fānī [Dīwān of Fanī]. He wanted to compete with Persian poets as well.

Manuscripts of Nawā’ī’s Works

8Not only the writing, but also the popularity of the manuscripts in the Islamic Orient made a big difference in exchanging various information and developing culture (Szuppe, 2004). Manuscripts with Nawā’ī’s works prevailed widely in the Turkic world. You could find them in dozens and sometimes hundreds of copies at manuscript holdings of the Islamic Orient. The brochure was published with information about copyists, who have copied the works of Nawā’ī (Hakimov, 1991). We currently have many manuscripts of Khamsa or individual poems from it. The Institute of Oriental Studies of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan named after Biruni in Tashkent have 166 manuscripts of Nawā’ī’s Khamsa that were copied in the fifteenth-twentieth centuries. The study of the popularity and the quantity of Nawā’ī’s Khamsa manuscripts demonstrate that these works had a special place in the intellectual life and cultural environment of Central Asia (Erkinov, 1998b; Erkinov, 1998c; Erkinov, 1998a). Some years ago was published the catalogue of the manuscripts of this Khamsa (Munirov, Hakimov, 1986).

9In addition to the Khamsa manuscripts, a similar picture is observed in hundreds of manuscripts with Nawā’ī’s works that were copied over more than 500 years, from the end of the fifteenth century to the beginning of the twentieth century. For example, the fund of Institute of Manuscripts of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan had 254 manuscripts with twenty of Nawā’ī’s works (Hakimov, 1983). Moreover, from 1879 to 1917, Nawā’ī’s works were printed seventy times in Central Asian lithogra-phies (Qosimxonov, 1988). These figures are the highest for a poet from the Turkic literary environment. It is worth keeping in mind that the numbers given above manifest the quantity of Nawā’ī’s manuscripts on Central Asia alone. His manuscripts from Turkish holdings at one point were specially described (Levend, 1958). The popularity of Nawā’ī’s works and their manuscripts in the Caucasus was specially studied (Nagieva, 1986; Nagieva, 1990). The publication of Nawā’ī’s texts and both the description and histiographic analysis of the texts of his works continue to this day (Shamsiev, 1961; Sirojiddinov, 2011; Yusupova, 2013). In this perspective, manuscripts with Nawā’ī’s poetry were given special attention (Rieu, 1888, p. 295; Ethe, 1930, pp. 1195-1196; Volin, 1946; Sulaymanov, 1955-1961; Goeseke, 1961; Nawā’ī, 1964, pp. 3-41; G‘anieva, 1991; Adahl, 2000; Erkinov, 2008a; Richard, 2013).

About “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” Manuscript

  • 6 See hereafter about this scribe.

10The first details regarding the manuscript of this dīwān are found in the illustrative catalogue of manuscripts at the Cairo library that was published in 1935 and gives the following description (Stchoukine, 1935, p. 151, fig. 8): the manuscript of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s (Lit. Turс. 68) is sixty-seven pages long. The text was copied in nasta‘liq style in two columns. The size of the manuscript is 200x130 mm, and the size of the text is 140x75 mm. The date of copy is 876/1471-1472 (Nawāʼī, 1471). The copyist is ‘Abd al-Raīm ibn ‘Abd al-Ramān al-Khwārazmī.6 The manuscript has two miniatures. The scribe’s name in the description is denoted correctly and corresponds to what is written on the colophon composed in Arabic. Only the year copied is provided, although the day and month the work was completed were noted on the colophon. Apparently, Ivan Stchoukine, who had described the manuscript, did not catch this.

11The manuscript colophon (67a) provides the following details in Arabic (see annex n° 1):

تمت الكتاب بعون الملك الوهاب كتبه العبد الفقير المحتاج الى رحمة الله الغنى عبدالرحيم بن عبدالرحمن الخوارزمى سترالله عيوبه و احسن احواله و غفر ذنوبه فى ثانى عشر رجب المرجب سنه ست و سبعين و ثما نما الهجريه

The All-Bestowing Lord (Allah) contributed to copying this book. The poor slave ‘Abd al-Raīm ibn ‘Abd al- Raīm al-Khwārazmī, needing the mercy of the self-sufficient Allah, copied it (may Allah cloak his flaws, improve his standing, and forgive his sins on the 12th [day] of the holy [month] of rajab, 876, according to the [chronology] hijra.

12The manuscript has two miniatures written in the Aq Qoyunlu school style (see annexes n° 2 and 3). The manuscript provides a total of 229 poems by ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī that fall under the following genres:

Genre

Quantity

Pages

1

Ghazal

224

1b-62b

2

Mustazād

1

62b-63а

3

Mukhammas

3

63а-65a

4

Tarji‘band

1

65а-67а

13The fact that the language of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s poems is adapted to the Oghuz Turkic, most likely to draw them closer to the audience that speaks this dialect (which the poems provided below as an example show) is one of the particularities of the manuscript. We were not able to find any details related to this manuscript in works on the popularity amongst Oghuz Turks of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s compositions or in manuscripts that include his poems (Birnbaum, 1976; Kleinmichel, 2006; Küt, 1989; Nagieva, 2001; Çetindağ, 2006). This manuscript is for the moment the only copy of a dīwān to have come out of the Aq Qoyunlu environment that Nawā’ī researchers are aware of.

  • 7 See about him: Minorsky, 1965.

14Priscilla Soucek, a miniature specialist, writes the following about the manuscript of this dīwān: ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī rewrote the Nawā’ī dīwān. It could be that he copied it for Khalīl, the son of the Aq Qoyunlu Sulān Uzūn asan (1453-1478),7 who was appointed by the alderman in Shiraz in 1471-1478 or for another certain seigneur, since the artist presumably to have decorated the manuscript in miniatures, Darwīsh Muammad also lived and worked under the Khalīl court (Soucek, 1985b).

15Therefore, Nawā’ī’s Aq Qoyunlu dīwān was copied in Shiraz; however, art historian Priscilla Soucek, believing the manuscript to be one of the copies of Nawā’ī’s dīwān, did not pay attention to its content. Apparently, she was not familiar with the manuscript and indicates the time it was copied as 876/1471-1472. Since only several art historians, interested only in miniatures and not in the poems and the date the manuscript was copied, were aware of the manuscript, its meaning for Nawā’ī specialists was left unrevealed (Robinson, 1958, р. 79).

16Beginning of the manuscript (1b) (see annex n° 4):

اى صفحه رخسارينك ازل خطيدن انشا
ديباچه حسننكده ابد نقطه سى طغرا

17End (67 a):

يادينك نى قيلاى حريف مجلس
فكرينك نى ايتاى كونكولكا مونس

Copyist of the manuscript

  • 8 For more information on this calligrapher: Dost-Muammad, 1936, p. 16; Çağman, 1972-73, p. 603; Stc (...)

18The manuscript was copied at the end of 1471 by calligrapher and poet Niām al-Dīn ‘Abd al-Raīm ibn ‘Abd al-Ramān Khwārazmī, who wrote poems under the pseudonym (takhalluṣ) Anīsī.8 He is a representative of the Khwārazmī family, which wrote poetry during the era of the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty’s rule. Three renowned calligraphers came from this family.

19Abd al-Ramān Khwārazmī – father of ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī. He was a deft calligrapher of his time. Details show that the manuscripts he copied and his work date back to 1436-1462 (Bayānī, 1363/1985, p. 378-380; Soucek, 1985c.)

20Abd al-Karīm Khwārazmī – younger brother of ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī. Medieval sources on the history of calligraphical art note that he also was a renowned calligrapher during his time and wrote poems under the pseudonym Padshāh [ruler] (Sām Mīrzā afawī, 1384/2005, p. 28; Qāī Amad, 1959, p. 101; Bayānī, 1363[1985], pp. 409-411, 1107; Soucek, 1985a.). His calligraphy copied his older brother (Mustaqīm-zāde, f. 19b.)

21Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī is Anīsī himself. He was a pupil of renowned calligrapher ahīr al-Dīn Ahar Tabrīzī and perfected his calligraphic style (Muṣṭafa ‘Ālī, 1369/1990; Mīrzā Sanglākh Khurāsānī, 1388 [2009], pp. 175-182. Stchoukine, 1977, р. 78; Mālik Daylamī, 1989, p. 352; Rettig, 2011, Vol. i, pp. 147-155). He completed copying one manuscript that Ahar started (Lentz, Lowry, 1989, р. 245; Thackston, 2001, p. 50; Blair, 2006, pp. 283-284). Two adroit scribes copying one manuscript is a rather rare phenomenon in the history of calligraphical art. This requires a lot of expertise from the calligrapher continuing the copying, since this calligrapher must preserve his colleague’s style. Anīsī was a skilled calligrapher that was able to accomplish this demanding challenge (Anushta, 1380/2001, p. 144). He copied manuscripts from works such as Bustān of Sa’di, the dīwān of āfi, Khamsa of Niāmī Ganjawī, and his own collection of poems called Dīwān-i Anīsī (Bayānī, 1363/1985, pp. 386-387; Soudavar, 1992, pp. 136-137; Thackston, 2001, p. 50; Rettig, 2011, Vol. ii, pp. 123, 242, 247).

22The Khwārazmī brothers were renowned calligraphers of their time (Huart, 1972, pp. 257-258; Aminov, 2010, pp. 7, 64). The Khwārazmī family served under the court of the Aq Qoyunlu ruler Sulān Ya‘qūb (Kostygova, 1963, р. 11; Uluç, 2006a, pp. 25-28; Uluç, 2006b, pp. 25-28; Seki, 2009, рp. 1, 11, 86). Anīsī was friend with him. Sources provide details about their work (Mustaqīm-zāde, f. 17a; Mustaqīm-zāde Sa‘d al-Dīn Efendi, 1928, pp. 653, 673). What is interesting is that some of these sources say that the Khwārazmī family (father and sons) competed in calligraphical art with the famous Herat calligrapher Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī and developed its own nasta‘liq style against him. This style is called style of Anīsī (uslūb-i Anīsī, shīwa-yi Anīsī) (Mustaqīm-zāde, f. 17a; Mustaqīm-zāde Sa‘d al-Dīn Efendi, 1928, p. 673; Mustafa Âli, 2011, p. 253). Although ‘Abd al-Ramān Khwārazmī was the inventor of this style of writing, his son (‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī) also made some novelties (Habīb Ifahānī, 1887, p. 232; Huart, 1972, p. 258; Murodov, 1971, p. 104). Shiraz calligraphers imitate them in their work (Mīr Sayyid Amad, 1989, p. 354).

23Alī Shīr Nawā’ī, in his work Majālis al-nafāʼis [Assembly of the Elegant] in the second majlis, provides details on the poet Mawlānā Anīsī (Nawā’ī, 1997, p. 54). We know that the scribe of the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān also wrote poetry; however, is the Anīsī that Nawā’ī mentioned also and the Anīsī dīwān scribe the same person or are they different people? We still cannot say. It is most likely that Anīsī is not ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī. akīm-shāh Muammad Qazwīnī (died in 1559) translated the indicated Nawā’ī works Majālis al-nafā‘is into Persian (1522). While translating it, he added new details about poets, in particularly from the Aq Qoyunlu environment. Amongst them, he gives brief details about Anīsī as a calligrapher and poet (Mīr Niām al-Dīn ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī, 1363/1984, p. 301).

24Sām Mīrzā Safawī (1517-1576), in his tadhkira of ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī, presents him as a poet to have written poems under the pseu-donym Anīsī and notes the following: “Mawlānā Anīsī is from Khwarezm. He served the Sulān Ya‘qūb. He wrote in the nasta‘liq style with great skill. The people considered him equal in this to Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī” (Sām Mīrzā afawī, 1384/2005, р. 28). Anīsī served in the Aq Qoyunlu court between 1460 and 1494, namely for more than thirty years, and copied several manuscripts (Soucek , 1985b; Sakisian, 1929, p. 35; Stchoukine, 1966; Stchoukine, 1977, p. 71; Bayānī, 1363/1985, pp. 384-388). According to Qāī Amad, who wrote a tract dedicated to calligraphers and artists, Anīsī took this pseudonym, because Aq Qoyunlu ruler Sulān Ya‘qūb (who had drawn him closer to himself) called him anīs, namely friend. Qāī Amad also notes that many Shiraz poets were the pupils of Anīsī and wrote poems by imitating him (Kazi Ahmed, 1947, p. 87; Qāī Amad, 1959, рp. 100-101). Therefore, Anīsī was an extraordinary poet. He compiled a dīwān from his Persian poems and copied it in 899/1493-94; this signature dīwān has now been conveyed to us (Bayānī, 1363 [1985], p 386; Alparslan, 1988). At the same time, we do not know whether he is the compiler of the Aq Qoyunlus dīwān or only the scribe of the Nawā’ī manuscript.

25It should be noted that having Oghuz elements in the language of poems included in the dīwān does not have to do with the scribe being from Khwarezm. Rather, this is explained by the need to draw them closer to the audience of the readers’ region. The conclusion can be made from this that in 1471 Nawā’ī, who had just turned thirty, was a renowned and respected poet amongst Oghuz Turks, which is proven by the compilation of a dīwān of his select poems. At this time, Nawā’ī had already become famous in his homeland as a poet and started to become involved in politics in the usayn Bāyqarā court. All the information that we have collected in this regard gives an idea of Anīsī’s life. Unfortunately, they do not provide enough information to understand the problems at the foundations of copying the Nawā’ī dīwān.

Nawā’ī and Shiraz, Tabriz

26To specify the context that Nawā’ī’s dīwān occurred in, we have to briefly mention the history of the Timurids’ relations with Shiraz, the city in question. As is known, the city of Tabriz was the capital of Aq Qoyunlu, while Shiraz was famous as the cultural centre, in particularly for bookmaking. The first Timurid governor of Shiraz was Timur’s grandson, Iskandar Sulān b. ‘Umar Shaykh (1409-1415). He was succeded by another grandson, Ibrāhim b. Shāhrukh (1415-1435), who was succeeded by his son ‘Abdallah (1435-1452). After the Timurid ruler Shāhrukh b. Timur died in 1447, contending Timurid princes started quarrelling over the succession among themselves. Weakened by strife, they were unable to protect all their territory, and western Iran was conquered first by the Qara Qoyunlu (1375-1468) and then by the Aq Qoyunlu armies.

27Shiraz was occupied in 1452 and remained under Qara Qoyunlu (1375-1468) control until 1469. During these years, the Qara Qoyunlu prince Pīr Budāq ibn Jahān-shāh became the governor of Shiraz (1453-1460) and soon proved to be a patron of the arts. Pīr Budāq remained in Shiraz until 1458 when he joined his father Muaffar al-Dīn Jahān-shāh (1436-1467) to invade Khorasan. The Qara Qoyunlu army briefly occupied Herat and possibly took some artists with them back to western Iran. Pīr Budāq then returned to Shiraz, but soon began to fight with his father, which resulted in his transfer to Baghdad in 1460. He ruled there for a further six years until 1466, when his attempt at independent rule caused his downfall and he was assassinated (Soucek, 1979, p. 26; Uluç, 2006a, p. 13; Uluç, 2006b, p. 13).

28Iskandar Sulān ibn ‘Umar Shaykh went down in history as mainly a patron of culture and the arts (Soucek, 1998). When Iskandar Sulān was the alderman in Shiraz, the poems of the renowned poems Gul u Nawrūz [Gul and Nawruz] by Lufī and Makhzan al-asrār [Treasure Trove of Secrets] by aydar Khwārazmī were written in Turkic at his suggestions. During the first half of the fifteenth century, many poets, calligraphers, and artists lived and worked in Shiraz. Strong cultural contacts were established between the large cultural centre of the Timurids, Herat and Shiraz, Tabriz (Titley, 1983, рp. 47, 53, 61, 68, 72, 74, 80; Pfeiffer, 2014).

29The relations between the Timurid environment at the end of the fifteenth century with the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty as far as cultural ties, and in particularly literary ties, are concerned, were demonstrated in the recently published book on the relationship of Sulān Ya‘qūb with the renowned classical author of Persian literature ‘Abd al-Raman Jāmī (1414-1492) (Lingwood, 2014). Jāmī had dedicated his poem Salāmān wa Absāl [Salaman and Absal] to this Sulān Ya‘qūb.

30The work of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī was very popular amongst the Turkic peoples of the Orient and his proximity to the Timurid court played a big role in this. Attention to Amir Timur and imitating him is observed in countries of the Orient starting in the fifteenth century, while the influence of the Timurid era on the culture of the Orient is featured in various aspects in numerous academic works (Lockhart, 1938, р. 233; Michael, 1996; Szuppe, 1992; Kügelgen, 2006). Beginning at the end of the fifteenth century under the Ottoman court (1299-1922) and Safavids (1502-1736) rulers, the rule of Timurid usayn Bāyqarā (1469-1506) began to be seen and assessed as a model for cultural imitation (Fleischer, 1986, pp. 273-292; Quinn, 1998; Quinn, 2000, pp. 89, 99-102, 127-128; Bernardini, 1992; Bernardini, [2002] 2003; Bernardini, 2003; Tucker, 2006b, pp. 10-13,38, 68-75, 78; Tucker, 2006a; Dale, 2007). Imitating the relations between usayn Bāyqarā and ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī, as well as the traditions of court literary and cultural life, to a certain extent is observed in the eras of the Kokand (1710-1876) and the Khiva (1804-1910) khanate (Solihov, 1930; Erkinov, 2008b; Erkinov, 2009). The personality and legacy of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī played a big role in this process. Therefore, special attention is given to his work in research written in western languages (Kleinmichel, 1999; Kellner-Heinkele & Kleinmichel, 2003).

31Unfortunately, on this backdrop the relationship between ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī and the Aq Qoyunlu environment has been studied relatively less. For example, we still do not have details about Nawā’ī’s ties with the Aq Qoyunlu ruler of Khalīl (ruled only in 1478). When he was the alderman in Shiraz (1471-1478), “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” manuscript that we are examining was copied. If regarding the ties between Nawā’ī and the Aq Qoyunlu rulers, then he had amicable relations with Khalīl’s successor, Sulān Ya‘qūb (Nawā’ī, 1999, p. 25). In his anthology of poets, Majālis al-nafā‘is, Nawā’ī provides details about and praises Sulān Ya‘qūb, and cites his poems in Persian (Nawa’ī, 1997, pp. 167-168). Ghiyāth al-Dīn Khwāndamīr (1475-1536), a renowned historian from the Herat cultural environment during the usayn Bāyqarā era, mentions an instance in his Ḥabīb al-siyar [Friend of Biographies], finished in 1524, that has to do with Nawā’ī and Sulān Ya‘qūb. Nawā’ī at one time decided to send Sulān Ya‘qūb a complete collection of compositions by ‘Abd al-Raman Jāmī. The librarian mistakenly gave the ambassador a different book with a binding similar to Jāmī’s composition. The mistake was discovered only when the ambassador wanted to boast about his erudition, and when Sulān Ya‘qūb asked him whether the trip was boring, he answered that he had a companion that excluded any possibility of boredom; he explained that Nawā’ī sent Jāmī’s compositions as a present to Sulān Ya‘qūb. As soon as he became bored, he would take the book and read, and his boredoom would dissipate. The Sulān wished to take a look at the book, upon which it was discovered that the ambassador did not have Jāmī’s compositions at all (Khwāndamīr, 1353/1974, pp. 350-351). These mutual relations, however, fall under the time after 1478 when Sulān Ya‘qūb assumed the Aq Qoyunlu throne. I did not find details about their mutual relations at the beginning of the 1470s.

32To be specific, we currently do not have any details about whether Nawā’ī knew about the existence of “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers”; however, there is some certain information. In the introduction to Badā’i‘ al-bidāya [Rare Beginning], the first dīwān that Nawā’ī himself compiled, he writes that collections including approximately 1,000 to 2,000 bayt of his poems were popular amongst the people, and he stresses that there were se-veral such dīwān that readers themselves compiled: “…The poems of roughly 1,000 to 2,000 baytes that people collected themselves became extremely well known amongst the people” (Nawā’ī, 1987, p. 24). The compilation of yet another new Aq Qoyunlu dīwān five years after the compilation of the Ilk dīwān [Initial dīwān] proves the poet’s words. The fact that volume of the newly discovered dīwān also matches up with what Nawā’ī indicated, namely the dīwān had more than 1,300 bayt, merits attention as well.

33In his poem Farhād wa Shīrīn, however, Nawā’ī wrote that his poems were popular amongst the Turkic peoples not only in Khorasan, but also amongst the enthusiasts of the poetry of Shiraz and Tabriz (Nawā’ī, 1991, p. 475):

آليب مين تخت فرمانيم غه آسان
چيريك چيكماى ختادين تا خراسان
خراسان دماكيم شيراز و تبريز
كه قيلميش دور نى كلكيم شكرريز

No Matter how many there are one – a hundred, a thousand
All the Turkic languages belong to me.
Without warriors nor battles I conquered every country,
From China to Khorasan.
Sugar from the cane of my quill,
Was strewn not only on Khorasan, but also on Shiraz and Tabriz

  • 9 Shiraz was the centre of art and literatures. The Ottoman Turks had strong ties with this centre: U (...)

34It was Shiraz and Tabriz that were the major cultural and political centres of the Aq Qoyunlu state.9 The Aq Qoyunlu and Timurid states had amicable relations at this time (Melville, 2008; Lingwood, 2011). The most renowned representative of the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty, Uzūn asan, even exalted his clan to Amīr Tīmūr (Babinger, 1978, p. 190). Moreover, Nawā’ī stresses that his poems received recognition not only amongst the Turkic peoples, but also amongst the Oghuz Turks. This demonstrates that the emergence of the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān is not a coincidence (Nawā’ī, 1991, p. 475):

كونكل بيرميش سوزوم كه ترك جان هم
نى يالغوز ترك بلكيم تركمان هم

The Turks devote their heart and soul to my words
And not just the Turks, but also the Turkmen as well.

35These words prove the bayt below of the poet Ni’matallah Kishwarī, who lived and worked in the Aq Qoyunlu state during the rule of Sulān Ya‘qūb, and who was envious of the Timurid court (Nagieva, 1990, p. 60):

كشورى شعرى نوايى شعريدين اكسيك ايماس
بختينا دوش سايدى بير
سلطان حسين بايقرا

Kishwarī's poems are not inferior to Nawā'ī's.
If only lucky fate would send him a protector such as Sulṭan usayn Bayqara.

36This means that the Aq-Qoyunlu saw the environment of the usayn Bāyqarā court as a model environment. It is also worth noting here that in addition to the dīwān in question Anīsī is also given credit for copying Jāmī’s poems (Kostigova, 1963, p. 11). This could show interest in the Aq Qoyunlu environment toward what they see as the modern Timurid environment.

About the Manuscript Language

37The texts of the Oghuz Turks that lived in the Aq Qoyunlu state were written in the ancient version of the local Turkic language, which is why Oghuz elements in the manuscript we discovered are found in Nawā’ī’s Chaghatay Turkic poems. The following versions of words can be used as an example: quyāsh-gunash, ber-ver, yighlar-aghlar, ermas-ermaz, sargharib-sararub, yoq-yokh, etc.

38To provide a complete idea of the particularities in adapting the language of Nawā’ī’s poems included in the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān, it is enough to look at part of the ghazal text that is renowned amongst Nawā’ī’s Uzbek readers and that starts with the words ‘Mehr köp körgüzdüm…’ (42b):

مهر جوخ كورستدم اما مهربانى داپمدم
جان بسى قلدم فدا ارام جانى داپمدم

غم بيله جانمه يتدم غمكسارى كورمدم
هجر ايله دلخسته اولدوم دلستانى داپمدم

عشق ارا يوز مينك ملامت اوخينه اولدم نشان
بير كمان ابروده دوزلكدن نشانى داپمدم

39It is appropriate here to recall the particularities that existed in text copying: by modernising the language of an artifact with their ‘corrections,’ simplifying the syntax and phrases, and inserting explanatory bayt to the text, the scribes in no way thought that they were distorting the author’s text. In fact, they believed that they were drawing the text closer to their contemporarians and making it easier for them to perceive this text (Smirnova, 1970, pp. 160-161). For example, the eleventh century poem Kutadgu Bilig [Blessed Knowledge] by Yusūf Khāajib was copied in Herat in the fifteenth century. At the time,Turkic words were used to replace some words in the Turkic language of the eleventh century (Sugahara, 2011). It turns out that the partial adaptation of the text language from another region and era is a phenomenon that occurred in the Turkic linguistic culture.

40Nawā’ī’s dīwān were copied six times in Tabriz in the sixteenth century. His poem Lisān al-ṭayr [Language of the Birds] was copied in Shiraz in 907/1530-31. Just like “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers,” they were copied in the Oghuz Turkic environment; however, as opposed to the dīwān in question, their texts do not have an adaptation of the Chaghatay language to the Oghuz Turkic environment (Sulaymonov, Sulaymonova, 1982, illustrations pp. 123-133, 141-163, 182-189, 201-210, 231-237, 253-257). What lies ahead is to focus on the fact that although Nawā’ī’s poems were copied as indicated, Persian was primarily the language of poetry in the Aq Qoyunlu court. The numerous examples from the Aq Qoyunlu environment demonstrate this fact (Nawā’ī, 1363/1984, pp. 286-312; Losensky, 1998; Lingwood, 2014, pp. 111-131).

  • 10 Еleazar Birnbaum calls this phenomenon as osmanism (Birnbaum, 1976).

41Hence, not all of Nawā’ī’s manuscripts, however, from the Oghuz Turk environment that were copied in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries have adapted Chaghatay, such as “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” does. For example, at the beginning of the sixteenth century, manuscripts with Nawā’ī’s poetry were copied in the Ottoman environment. As opposed to the dīwān that Anīsī copied, the Chaghatay in them is almost preserved as Nawā’ī’s. They feature only several Oghuz Turk changes, while Arabic writing, used for texts in the Ottoman language, influences the text’s spelling; for example, the indication of diactric symbols in the text of Nawā’ī’s poems.10

Reforming the Successive Study of Nawā’ī’s lyrical poetry

42This manuscript is very significant in studying Nawā’ī’s creative laboratory. Badā’i‘ al-bidāya [Rare Beginning] is the first dīwān that the poet himself compiled. Ilk Dīwān, which readers compiled and calligrapher Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī copied in 870/1465-1466, was the only one to come before it. Therefore, if Ilk Dīwān is poetry that Nawā’ī wrote before twenty-five years of age, then the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān helps study the creative world of the thirty-year-old Nawā’ī. More than 15 per cent of the ghazal that are in the Ilk Dīwān are included in the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān. Thus, a large number of the ghazal in the new dīwān could be written between 870/1465-1466 and 1471. This is yet to be determined.

43When studying Nawā’ī’s poetry, it is still common to study his lyrical art in four stages. Moreover, the following stages are highlighted based on the time the dīwān were compiled:

Stages

Nawā’ī`s dīwān

Compilation date

I

Ilk Dīwān

1465-1466

II

Badā’i‘ al-bidāya

1470-1480*

III

Nawādir al-nihāya

1480-1490*

IV

Khazā’in al-ma‘ānī

1492-1498

44Given the discovery of “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers,” there is the need to study Nawā’ī’s lyrical poetry by highlighting the following five stages in it:

Stages

Nawā’ī`s dīwān

Compilation date

I

Ilk Dīwān

1465-1466

II

The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers

1471

III

Badā’i‘ al-bidāya

1470-1480*

IV

Nawādir al-nihāya

1480-1490*

V

Khazā’in al-ma‘ānī

1492-1498

Note: The dīwān that have various compilation dates in science are denoted with an asterisk.

45The study of Nawā’ī’s creative laboratory commenced at a certain point and some work has been accomplished (Isoqov, 1965; Salohiy, 2004; Salohiy, 2005; Ramazonov, 2006; Salohiy, 2007; Ramazonov, 2007). Given the discovery of the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān, continuing this work and studying the evolution of Nawā’ī’s work is suggested in the new succession that we indicate in the table provided. Therefore, the Nawā’ī manuscript in question has great significance for studying the poetry and creative laboratory of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī. This article looks to familiarise readers with this collection. The next goal is to continue studying Nawā’ī’s creative laboratory and to comparatively study “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” with other Nawā’ī dīwān.

46This manuscript’s meaning for the study of Nawā’ī’s creative laboratory is not limited to what is laid out above. It is of interest in another aspect as well: it includes two ghazal that are not found in existing publications. One of them begins with the following bayt (61b):

مونجه كيم هردم [...] جسمومه هجرينكدن غمى
روزى اولمسون منكا سنسيز نشاط ايتمك دمى

47It is worth finding out whether these ghazals exist in the manuscripts we are aware of in Nawā’ī dīwān.

The Manuscript Context: A Rivalry between the oriental/Mashhadī and occidental/Anīsī Nasta‘liq School

  • 11 Dr.Esra Akin-Kivanc (USA) also presumed that there was such a rivalry (personal communication).
  • 12 Similar claim: Dost-Muammad, 2001, p. 10.

48The compilation of Nawā’ī’s dīwān in Shiraz raises the question of the reasons for why it occurred. Mashhadī and Anīsī are mentioned in a lot of research as masters of nasta‘liq script (Bayānī, 1363/1985, p. 195), and this could be the basis for their rivalry. The rivalry between Mashhadī and Anīsī has been tracked in literature. As was indicated above, the Khwārazmī family developed its own nasta‘liq style against him. This style is called Anīsī Style (uslūb-i Anīsī, shīwa-yi Anīsī) (Mustafa Âli, 2011, p. 253; Mustaqīm-zāde, 1928, p. 673). This probably led to the rivalry between these two types of nasta‘liq, namely between the two schools. As far as we know, Mutafa ‘Ālī (1541-1600) (Fleischer, 1986), a historian from the Ottoman court, is the first to mention this in his work Manāqib-i hunarwarān [Epic Deeds of Artists], finished in 1587 (Huart, 1972, pp. 6-7, 86-87, 235): “Although they were contemporaries of Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī, they became his competitors when it came to capability and talent (Muṣṭafa ‘Ālī, 1926, p. 27; 2011, p. 253).”11 Based on sources available to us, however, we have to admit that these are the only details from that era. There is no information about the denoted rivalry in primary sources about calligraphers of this era, such as Sām Mīrzā Safawī’s (1517-1567) Tuḥfa-yi Sāmī and Amad Qūmī’s (born in 1546) Gulistān-i hunar, finished in 1608 (Akimushkin, 1995; Akimushkin, 2004, pp. 190-205). Sāmī contends that the people considered him equal to Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī in nasta‘liq script (Sām Mīrzā, 1384/2005, р. 28). The result is that Anīsī’s skill is evaluated through Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī,12 who was more famous than Anīsī.

49Twentieth century scholars used their research to focus on the rivalry between the two schools through Mashhadī and Anīsī/the Khwārazmī family. Armenag bey Sakisian wrote that:

  • 13 Namely the father and his son, the Khwārazmī – A.E.

While Timurids were ruling in Eastern Iran, in the second half of the fifteenth century, Tabriz competed with Herat. Binā’ī, who was in competition against Nawā’ī, when he got out from Herat, went to the court of Sulān Ya‘qūb. Three calligraphers, who introduced innovations in the letter nasta‘liq lived at the court of the King.13 The letter, changed by calligraphers, was based on traditional style, other contemporaries, from Khorasan, were competed with style of the famous Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī.
(Sakisian, 1929, рp. 34-35)

50Of the modern-day scholars who worked on the history of calligraphy in Central Asia and Iran, Galina Kostygova (†1999) wrote that there is information that Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī had opponents of his style. They were ‘Abd al-Ramān Khwārazmī and his sons (Kostygova, 1963, p. 11). A. Murdov claims that the Khwārazmī family destroyed the writing style that existed during that period. Since members of the Khwārazmī family were contemporaries of Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī, the rivalry arose between them; however, the followers of Sulān ‘Ali Mashhadī were victorious (Murodov, 1971, p. 104). In an article on calligraphy from Encyclopædia Iranica on the rivalry in question, the focus is put on the styles of the two schools and regions: “Two styles of writing nasta‘līq came into use in Persia. One, called the style of Ja‘far (Mīrzā Ja‘far Tabrīzī Bāysonghorī, fifteenth century) or of Ahar earned much admiration and, after further refinement by Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī, came into general use in Khorasan; for this reason it is known as Khorasanī or eastern nasta‘līq. The other was the style of ‘Abd al-Ramān Khwārazmī and his sons ‘Abd al-Raīm and ‘Abd-al-Karīm, who were calligraphers at the court of the Sulān Ya’qūb Āq Qoyunlū in the late fifteenth century; it was used in the west and south of Persia and is known as western (gharbī) nasta‘līq. In the western style, the letters and words have a sharp appearance. The elongations are level and unusually long, and the semicircles are also rather large; the letter and word dimensions are on the whole not well proportioned; and thus it does not have the consistency and grace of the eastern (sharqī) or Khorasani style. Because of these imperfections the western style was eventually discarded in Persia” (Yūsofī, 1990, p. 697).

51Oleg Akimushkin (1929-2010), in addressing the styles of nasta‘liq script, claims that two schools in it stand out by the end of the fifteenth century:

The Khorasan school. For example, such outstanding calligraphers as Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī, Mir ‘Alī irawī, and ‘Imad al-asanī are its representatives.

The western Iranian/Shiraz school. ‘Abd al-Raman Khwārazmī and his sons are mainly the representatives of this school. “The names of the second school’s representatives (excluding its founders) are not found on the pages of tracts on the art of artistic writing. Apparently, this circumstance can be explained only in that their authors did not recognize the style of writing that this school had developed and did not consider it possible to include its representatives in the pantheon of exceptional calligraphers. The oriental style displaced the occidental style by the sixteenth century” (Bayānī, 1363/1985, pp. 384-386; Soudavar, 1992, p. 136). “In a continuation of the sixteenth century, this school operated out of Shiraz and gradually shriveled up by the beginning of the seventeenth century” (Akimushkin, 1987, pp. 351-352). Just like the above-mentioned researchers, the author of the book on calligraphers Mehdi Bayānī (1906-1968) shows the difference in handwriting style of the two nasta‘liq schools (Dabīrsīāqī, 1998). He claims that copying the manuscripts in the western Iranian nasta‘liq is partially still preserved in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India (Bayānī, 1363/1985, pp. 385-386). Despite this, it is worth taking into account that Anīsī’s style was called alternative relative to the style of Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī (Roxburgh, 2001, pp. 236, 240). One of the Tabriz poets wrote the following poem about Anīsī’s skill in calligraphy (apparently exaggerating):

Yārān makunīd khushnawīsī
Ki-īn khatm shud ast bar Anīsī

Friends, do not practice calligraphy
For Anīsī has completed this art

(Bayānī, 1363/1985, pp. 384-385; Roxburgh, 2001, p. 101)

52I find these ideas interesting, because the emergence of nasta‘liq schools/styles most likely led to the second of them (western Iranian/Shiraz), of which Anīsī was a part, being not as popular as the oriental style. As a result, this leads to the conclusion that there must have been some sort of rivalry between the two schools. If being more specific, from 1465 to 1470 there possibly may have well been a rivalry between the representatives of these two styles: Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī/Herat and Anīsī/Shiraz. It is worth keeping in mind the circumstance that they both were pupils of Azhar (Thackston, 2001, p. 36). This results in that the conflict arose between the two former pupils of one master teacher. This circumstance could serve as an additional argument in favour of this rivalry having existed.

53My presumptions are that the body of “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” could serve as a way to show this rivalry. For example, of the 224 ghazal in it, 216 were included in the Badā’i‘ al-bidāya [Rare Beginning], and only one in the Nawādir al-nihāya [Perpetual Rarities]. It can be concluded based on this that it is closer to Badā’i‘ al-bidāya as far as its content is concerned. As was already noted, we know that Anīsī and other people compiled the dīwān; however, we can presume that Anīsī was familiar with the Ilk dīwān and possibly included Nawā’ī’s poems in it that were written after 870/1465-1466 in order to not repeat it and create a new collection that would be different from the Ilk Dīwān. It could have been that he was interested only in Nawā’ī’s new poems written in recent years and he considered it important to familiarise the reader with these specimens of Nawā’ī’s work, which demonstrate his ever-growing talent. What is interesting is that most ghazal included in the Aq Qoyunlu dīwān consist of five or seven bayt. Ghazal large in volume that are found in the Ilk Dīwān were included in the collection as abridged versions, namely they consist of five or seven bayt. Apparently, ‘Abd al-Raīm Khwārazmī, who according to presumptions is the dīwān’s compiler, for unknown reasons preferred to include them in the collection as abridged versions. It is possible that this step was made for the sake of formally distancing himself from the Ilk Dīwān.

54Moreover, several of Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī’s mistakes in the Ilk dīwān could have served as the cause for the emergence of “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers,”. ahīr al-Dīn Muammad Bābur (1483-1530) claims, “Although there were many calligraphers in the Sulān usayn Mīrzā court, Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī was the head of them all in using nasta‘liq. He wrote a lot for Mīrzā and ‘Alī-Shīr bek, namely thirty poems each for Mīrzā and twenty poems each for ‘Alī-Shīr bek” (Babur, 1996, p. 226; Babur, 1992, р. 145).

55It is worth here recalling a fact related to Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī. At one point, at Timurid Ruler usayn Bāyqarā’s command, a document was compiled for calligrapher Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī, in which the ruler blamed the scribe for its pitfalls in copying the manuscript and ordered to copy it without any errors (Semenov, 1946, рp. 163-165; Thackston, 2001, p. 351). It is not difficult for the reader with knowledge of the Turkic language to find the errors in the Ilk Dīwān text. They show that Sulān ‘Ali did not have a good knowledge of the Turkic language. Apparently, when he was preparing the manuscript in 870/1465-1466, Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī still did not have much experience in copying text in the Turkic language. With time, he rectified these pitfalls. The number of manuscripts that Mashhadī copied exceeds fifty (Kostygova, 1953). He copied several of Nawā’ī’s works (Sulaymonov, Sulaymonova, 1982). Besides the Ilk Dīwān, for example, he copied the manuscripts of Nawā’ī’s dīwān Gharā’ib al-ṣighar [Miracles of Childhood] and Nawādir al-nihāya [Perpetual Rarities] (Sulaymonov, Sulaymonova, 1982, illustrations 14-22; Lentz, Lowry, 1989, p. 259). It could be that Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī’s errors in the Ilk Dīwān gave an impetus to Anīsī to create “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers”. Simultaneously, it is worth taking into account that the compiler (possibly Anīsī), in starting with Sulān ‘Alī Mashhadī’s text and creating a manuscripts of his own version of Nawā’ī’s dīwān, took a different path by adapting the Chaghatay text to the language of his own surroundings, namely Oghuzal-Turkic. This was not considered to be the compilers’ mistake, but it was a demonstration of the traditions of that era: scribes deliberately and freely worked with the original text of other authors and changed it based on the values and needs of their era (Bertel’s, 1962, p. 463; Bertel’s, 1965, p. 452).

56In my view, the political situation could have served as yet another reason and impetus for creating “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers”. As is known, Prince Sulān Khalīl became the alderman of Shiraz in 1471. “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” admirers was copied this very same year. In 1469, usayn Bāyqarā captured Herat and became the Timurid ruler. Nawā’ī became a muhrdār [Keeper of the seals] in his court. As a poet, he was famous before this period as well; however, as being part of the inner circle in the usayn Bāyqarā court, Nawā’ī became even more famous in the 1470s. It could be that Sulān Khalīl could have, as a political move, ordered to have Nawā’ī’s dīwān copied. Moreover, this could have served to get closer with the Timurids or to increase his authority in their eyes.

Conclusion

57The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” is one of the first of Nawā’ī’s manuscripts compiled while he was alive outside of the Timurid territory and within the Aq Qoyunlu dynasty. It is the second Nawā’ī collection put together by his adherents after the Ilk Dīwān (Initial dīwān). If the Ilk dīwān demonstrates Nawā’ī’s poetry up until 1466, then “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers” admirers was copied in 1471 and is a depiction of Nawā’ī’s creative stage from 1466 to 1471. Moreover, it is a depiction in an even broader sense of a stage of up to thirty years that science does not have specific information about. What I presume to be the rivalry between nasta‘liq styles (oriental/Mashhadī and occidental/Anīsī schools) could have served as grounds for this dīwān to emerge. What is the main thing for us is that Nawā’ī’s poetry in his young years began to ‘progress’ towards one of the cultural centres of his era, onto the territory of the neighbouring Aq Qoyunlu dynasty with its centre in the cities of Tabriz and Shiraz. Under any context of copying “The Dīwān of the Aq Qoyunlu admirers”, choosing the young Nawā’ī’s poetry to create the manuscript shows, just as he himself noted proudly, the recognition of his poetic talent.

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Notes

1 Nawā’ī, 1991, p. 475; Erkinov, 1971, p. 247; Qayumov, 1979; Komilov, 2009, pp. 182-192. Translation here and further on in the author’s text.

2 The poet’s name in Russian texts is traditionally written as Alisher Navoi, but we prefer the spelling ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī, which is closer to the oriental transcription. This concerns several other oriental terms in the article as well.

3 The poet’s fulfillment with his prosody. Fakhrīya/iftikhār (Arabic for self-aggrandizement, pride, glory, honour, superiority, magnificence, etc.) is a poetic technique, a poet’s self-aggrandizement, self-panegyric.

4 For more information on this manuscript, read Erkinov, 2012. My gratitude to Dr. Simon Rettig, who directed me to the manuscript of this dīwān (Rettig, 2011, Vol. ii, p. 243).

5 Alī Shīr Nawāʼī, Initial dīwān / Ilk Dīwān / Rannij divan (Nawā’ī, 1968).

6 See hereafter about this scribe.

7 See about him: Minorsky, 1965.

8 For more information on this calligrapher: Dost-Muammad, 1936, p. 16; Çağman, 1972-73, p. 603; Stchoukine, 1966, pp. 3-4; Soucek, 1985b; Woods, 1999, p. 138; Gholami, Suheyl, 2008.

9 Shiraz was the centre of art and literatures. The Ottoman Turks had strong ties with this centre: Uluç, 2006a; Uluç, 2006b; Kartal, 2008.

10 Еleazar Birnbaum calls this phenomenon as osmanism (Birnbaum, 1976).

11 Dr.Esra Akin-Kivanc (USA) also presumed that there was such a rivalry (personal communication).

12 Similar claim: Dost-Muammad, 2001, p. 10.

13 Namely the father and his son, the Khwārazmī – A.E.

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Référence papier

Aftandil Erkinov, « From Herat to Shiraz: the Unique Manuscript (876/1471) of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s Poetry from Aq Qoyunlu Circle », Cahiers d’Asie centrale, 24 | 2015, 47-79.

Référence électronique

Aftandil Erkinov, « From Herat to Shiraz: the Unique Manuscript (876/1471) of ‘Alī Shīr Nawā’ī’s Poetry from Aq Qoyunlu Circle », Cahiers d’Asie centrale [En ligne], 24 | 2015, mis en ligne le 10 mars 2016, consulté le 24 avril 2017. URL : http://asiecentrale.revues.org/2791

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Auteur

Aftandil Erkinov

Aftandil Erkinov is a professor at the Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies (Department of Classical Oriental Philology). He was a visiting professor with the Slavic-Eurasian Research Center at Hokkaido University (Sapporo, Japan) and with the Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies (Tokyo, Japan) in 2013-2014. Research interests: Persian literary history; Turkic and Persian bilingualism; the history of intellectual life and the transmission of manuscripts in Central Asia (between the 15th and 20th centuries); the influence of the Timurids (1370-1506) on oriental culture; culture under the Islamic court; Islamic culture and Islam in Central Asia under the Russian Empire (1865-1917). Contact: aftandilerkinov@gmail.com

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