ĀṢAFĪ HERAVĪ, Āṣaf b. Naʿīm-al-dīn Neʿmatallāh b. ʿAlā-al-dīn ʿAlī Qohestānī, a minor poet of the Timurid period (d. 923/1517). His father was the vizier of the Timurid sultan Abū Saʿīd (r. 855-73/1451-69), and his pen-name Āṣafī was evidently chosen because Āṣaf, the name of Solomon’s minister, was a conventional title of viziers (Toḥfa-ye Sāmī, p. 97; Dawlatšāh, ed. Browne, pp. 517-18). His grandfather, ʿAlāʾ-al-dīn ʿAlī, had served as a government official (mošref-e ḵezāna) under Tīmūr. Having lived for a time in Shiraz, he is sometimes surnamed Šīrazī.
A pupil of ʿAbd-al-Raḥmān Jāmī (Natāʾeǰ al-afkār, p. 36), he enjoyed the favor of the prince Badīʿ-al-zamān Mīrzā and also found work in the service of the sultan Ḥosayn Bāyqarā (Rayḥānat al-adab I, p. 49). He had a good memory and a perceptive mind, but ʿAlī-Šīr Navāʾī, who knew him personally, found him opinionated and conceited (Maǰāles al-nafāʾes, p. 331). His death took place at Herat in 923/1517 (the dates 921/1515, given in Ḥabīb al-sīar [Tehran] IV, p. 354 and followed by S. Nafīsī, Naẓm o naṯr I, p. 309 is evidently wrong; cf. chronograms in Ḥabīb al-sīar, loc. cit., and in al-Ḏarīʿa IX, pt. 1, pp. 8-9).
Āṣafī has left a maṯnawī in the sarīʿ meter (as in Neẓāmī’s Maḵzan al-asrār) and ḡazals amounting to more than 400 pieces and 2,000 verses. His dīvān has been edited by H. Arfaʿ (Tehran, 1342 Š./1963; for manuscripts see al-Ḏarīʿa, ibid., and Monzawī, Nosḵahā III, pp. 2209-10).
See also Ātaškada, ed. Ḥ. Sādāt-e Nāṣerī, II, Tehran, 1338 Š./1949, pp. 750-52.
M. H. Āyatī, Bahārestān dar tārīḵ o tarāǰem-e reǰal-e Qāʾenāt wa Qohestān, Tehran, 1327 Š./1948, pp. 243-46.
M. Q. Gowpāmavī, Natāʾeǰ al-afkār, Bombay, 1336/1918.
Ḵayyāmpūr, Soḵanvarān, pp. 7-8.
M. ʿA. Modarres Tabrīzī, Rayḥānat al-adab I, 3rd. ed., 1346 Š./1967, pp. 49-50.
(A. ʿA. Rajāʾī)
Originally Published: December 15, 1987
Last Updated: August 16, 2011
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Vol. II, Fasc. 7, pp. 700-701