EMĀMĪ HERĀVĪ, RAŻĪ-AL-DĪN ABŪ ʿABD-ALLĀH MOḤAMMAD b. Abī Bakr b. ʿOṯmān, Persian poet of the Mongol period, also noted for his learning (b. in Herat; d. in Isfahan in 686/1287). During the decade 650-60/1250-60 he wrote panegyrics for the Qara Khitai rulers of Kermān and their officials. His residence in Kermān more or less coincided with the reign of Qotloḡ Terken (Tarkān) ʿEṣmat-al-Donyā wa’l-Dīn (655-81/1257-82 or 83), a period of cultural prosperity in the history of that province (cf. Lambton, “Kirmān,” pp. 161-62; idem, Continuity, passim). His most important patron was the vizier Šams-al-Dīn Faḵr-al-Molk ʿAlī, for whom Emāmī wrote several poems, one of which celebrates the building of a garden-palace in 658/1260 (Cat. Chester Beatty Library, p. 8). Later he moved to Isfahan, where he seems to have been in touch with Šams-al-Dīn Moḥammad Joveynī, the famous ṣāheb-e dīvān. The date and place of Emāmī’s death are given in Jājarmī (II, p. 837).

The dīvān of Emāmī remains unpublished. The oldest extant manuscript is a section of Majmūʿa-ye dawāwīn, dated 699/1300, in the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin (no. 103, fols. 286-305). Besides panegyric odes, he wrote ḡazals (lyrics), moqaṭṭaʿāt (fragments), and a few stanzaic poems. Sufi ideas are often expressed in his poems; in one of his mystical qaṣīdas Emāmī mentions Zayn-al-Dīn Pīr-e Hend as his spiritual guide (Ṣafā, pp. 554-55). He is believed to have been a Shiʿite because he expressed his devotion to the Twelve Imams (Cat. Chester Beatty Library, p. 8). He was also an expert in Arabic literature, writing a commentary on a well-known qaṣīda by Ḏu’l-Romma (Eqbāl; Ṣafā, p. 552).

Emāmī had a considerable reputation among his contemporaries. Further interest in his poetry can be seen in the many quotations from his dīvān in 14th-century anthologies such as Jājarmī’s Mūnes al-aḥrār.


Bibliography (for cited works not given in detail, see “Short References”):

“Ašʿār-e ḵūb az goftahā-ye qodamāʾ,” Yādgār 4/9-10, 1327 Š./1948-49, pp. 129-31.

A. Ateş, Eserler, pp. 210-15.

E. G. Browne, “Biographies of Persian Poets in the Táríkh-i-Guzída,” JRAS, 1900, pp. 733-35.

Idem, Lit. Hist. Persia II, p. 391. Cat. Bankipore, pp. 124-25.

Cat. Bodleian Library, I, cols. 523-24. Dawlatšāh, ed. Browne, pp. 166-70.

ʿA. Eqbāl, “Yak resāla az Emāmī Heravī” in M. Dabīrsīāqī, ed., Majmūʿa-ye maqālāt-e ʿAbbās Eqbāl Āštīānī, Tehran, 1369 Š./1990, pp. 456-61.

Moḥammad b. Badr Jājarmī, Mūnes al-aḥrār, ed. M.-S. Ṭabībī, Tehran, 1337-50 Š./1958-71, I, pp. 60-61, 97-98, 247-53; II, pp. 595-96, 604-7, 657-61, 697-700, 837, 878-81.

Ḵayyāmpūr, Soḵanvarān, p. 57. A. K. S. Lambton, “Kirmān” in EI2 V, pp. 147-66.

Majāles al-nafāʾes, p. 327.

Majmaʿ al-foṣahāʾ I, pp. 259-65.

Monzawī, Nosḵahā III, pp. 2231-32.

Rieu, PersianManuscripts, suppl., p. 144.

Ṣafā, Adabīyāt III/1, pp. 546-57.

A. Sprenger, A Catalogue. . . of the Libraries of the King of Oudh I, Calcutta, 1854, pp. 439-40.Tārīḵ-e gozīda, ed. Browne, pp. 814-15.

(J. T. P. de Bruijn)

Originally Published: December 15, 1998

Last Updated: December 13, 2011

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