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The legacy of a poet commemorated by UNESCO: Nabi
1.       tunci
7149 posts
 29 May 2012 Tue 05:59 pm

 

The legacy of a poet commemorated by UNESCO: Nabi

 

29 May 2012 / SEVİM ŞENTÜRK , İSTANBUL [Todays Zaman]
UNESCO has announced this to be the year of Turkish poet Nabi. But who is this poet and what is his importance for our cultural heritage?

According to the study of divan literature, Nabi was the founder of hikemi poetry (a type of didactic poetry that aims to warn and enlighten readers on what is morally and socially beneficial) who blazed a trail in classical Turkish poetry. He was also a poet enamored of the Prophet Muhammad.

UNESCO beat us to the punch and announced that they were commemorating the poet Nabi on the 300th anniversary of his death, the composer Itri and the 500th anniversary of Ottoman admiral and cartographer Piri Reis’ famous map in 2012 in line with their policy of preservinig societies’ cultural heritage.

We know Nabi due to the verses he wrote for the Prophet. His verses have even become proverbs in Anatolia. You may have possibly seen his verse “Refrain from behaving disrespectfully/Here is the place of the beloved of God/Here is where God keeps an eye on/Here is the maqam of Mustafa [the second name of Prophet Muhammad]” written on the gate of a mosque, hung on the wall of an office or somewhere in a house.

So who was the poet Nabi? Nabi, whose actual name was Yusuf, was born in Urfa in 1642. He studied under a renowned sheikh named Yakup Halife and became inclined to Sufism. Following the advice of the sheikh, he went to the capital İstanbul when he was 24. There, Nabi met Damat Mustafa Pasha, a friend of Sultan Mehmed IV, and thanks to the friendship that emerged between them, the doors of a comfortable life were opened to Nabi.

His bureaucratic relations led his poems to become renowned. After participating in the circumcision festivities held for the sultan’s sons in Edirne, Nabi mentioned the festivities, which went on for 15 days, in his work “Surname.” Nabi accompanied a military expedition to Poland with Mustafa Pasha, and upon the conquest of Kamenets Castle he wrote a poem that was subsequently carved on the wall of the castle.

‘One of my admirers is coming to visit me’

An event which was a milestone Nabi’s life which possibly also led us to write this article occurred when he intended to make a pilgrimage in Mecca between 1678-79. With the consent of Sultan Mehmed IV, the poet set off for the holy land with Rami Mehmed Pasha. The two arrived in Medina on camels just before sunrise, and Nabi was excited to finally see the tomb of the Prophet. On the other side of the mahmil (a wooden frame loaded on a camel for passengers), Pasha was sleeping.

The situation made the poet feel sorry, reflecting that “we are in the land where the sun of two universes [an expression praising the Prophet and likening him to the sun of both the world and afterlife] rests. How can lying down be proper behavior?” Nabi then uttered the verses “Refrain from behaving disrespectfully/Here is the place of the beloved of God/Here is where God keeps an eye on/Here is the maqam of Mustafa.”

Pasha heard the verses and asked Nabi about them. The poet explained that they were in Medina, the holy city where the grave of the holy Prophet Muhammad was situated, and some feelings had been stirred up within him. The two men performed their ablutions and walked towards Ravza-i Mutahhara (the tomb of the Prophet). Just then, a muezzin recited a poem from the minarets of Masjid-i Nabawi -- the poem which Nabi had just recited for the Prophet earlier.

Nabi rushed to the muezzin and queried him on the verses and why he had recited them, informing him that he was the one who owned the verses.

The muezzin was surprised and asked: “Is your name Nabi?” Nabi answered, “Yes,” upon which the muezzin grabbed his hands and hugged him. Rami Mehmed Pasha asked the muezzin how he knew of Nabi’s name and the muezzin told them of his dream.

“Last night, I dreamt of our Prophet. He said to me: ‘Muezzin! Don’t sleep, wake up! One of my admirers is coming to visit my tomb. Read these verses from the minaret and welcome him!’ Immediately, I woke up, performed my ablutions and rushed to the minaret, wondering who it might be that was glorified with the compliment of our Prophet.”

After the death of his friend Mustafa Pasha, Nabi went to Aleppo and lived there for 25 years. He got married in this city, and his son Mehmet Çelebi was born there. The poet wrote the masnawi titled “Hayriye” and began writing divan poems while in Aleppo. In his declining years Nabi went to İstanbul again and passed away on April 12, 1712.

He created a cult in poetry

Professor Dr. Nâmık Açıkgöz: Nabi is a poet who created a new cult in classical Turkish poetry. Classical Turkish poetry that was developed on a lyrical basis developed into hikemi poetry thanks to Nabi. He is a poet who combined lyricism, Sufism and hikemi poetry. He fictionalized the secret of interpersonal and social relations and the depth of concepts which drive the lives of people, with a sharp intelligence, a perfect wording and a broad world of meaning. While hikemi poetry structures were still in the nascent stage, Nabi caused Turkish poetry to follow a different course. He paved the way for the poetry tradition to go on for 200 more years. Nabi influenced all poets who lived after him, and the most recent representative of Nabi’s cult was Ziya Pasha, a poet of the 19th century.

The owner of erudite poems

Hüseyin Yorulmaz: Nabi is like a university. This university has faculties consisting of poets such as Alaaddin Sabit, Koca Ragıp Pasha, Sünbülzade Vehbi and Ziya Pasha. These faculties have departments consisting of poets such as Muallim Naci and Hersekli Arif Hikmet. This university consists of professors of poets like Kani Effendi and Fıtnat Hanım. According to Nabi and the poetry movement that he represents, a poem should bear wisdom and show the right way. Or else, a poem lacking of wisdom and reality resembles “pulling your fishing net from sea empty; an empty almond shell; a scentless tulip; a plain ring without any embroideries; a woman who will never be able to get pregnant again; a community consisting of only men.”

His poems became source of inspiration

Mehmet Güntekin: Nabi’s poems became a source of inspiration for our music, too. Various composers such as Itri, Bolâhenk Nuri Bey, Şeyh Ethem Effendi, Şevki Bey and Subhi Ziya Özekkan in the classical period and İsmail Baha Sürelsan, Kanunî Nuri Sesören, Dr. Cahit Öney, Dr. İrfan Doğrusöz, Bekir Sıdkı Sezgin, Kaya Bekât, Âmir Ateş, Hasan Şanlıtürk, Necmi Pişkin and Nabi Çakar in the contemporary period have composed music from Nabi’s poems.

Note : I think that is a great news as Nabi should be known by the people of  all nations.

Abla liked this message
2.       gokuyum
5050 posts
 18 Nov 2012 Sun 05:37 pm

Here is a gazelle from Nabi.

 

GAZEL

GAZELLE

 


Bir devlet içün çarha temennâdan usandık .
Bir vasi içün ağyâra müdârâdan usandık

We have got bored of begging to fate for a fortune
We have got bored of acting nice to others for a patron

Hicran çekerek zevk-ı mülâkatı unuttuk
Mahmur olarak lezzet-i sabâdan usandık

We have forgotten the pleasure of meeting  suffering from seperation
We have got sick of taste of wine being drunk


Düşdük kati çokdan heves-i devlete ammâ
Ol dâiye-i dağdağa-fermadan usandık

We have already fallen into desire of fortune but
We have got bored of that disturbing inner desire.


Dil gamla dahi dest ü giribandan usanmaz
Bir yâr içün ağyâr ile gavgâdan usandık

Heart isn´t bored of struggling with sorrow
We have got bored fighting with a stranger for a beloved.


Nâbi ile ol âfetin ahvâlini naklet
Efsâne-i Mecnun ile Leyla?dan usandık

Tell me the story of that beautiful with Nabi
We have got bored of story of Leyla and Mecnun.

 

Nabi(1641-1712)



Edited (11/18/2012) by gokuyum

3.       Abla
3647 posts
 18 Nov 2012 Sun 07:38 pm

Quote:gokuyum

Hicran çekerek zevk-ı mülâkatı unuttuk

 

I have begun to see how these old compounds are all upside down. The language is Turkish, the words are Arabic and the word order of the noun phrases is Persian. These compounds must have sounded so strange in the commons´ ears.

4.       gokuyum
5050 posts
 19 Nov 2012 Mon 09:03 am

 

Quoting Abla

 

 

I have begun to see how these old compounds are all upside down. The language is Turkish, the words are Arabic and the word order of the noun phrases is Persian. These compounds must have sounded so strange in the commons´ ears.

In Ottoman times common people were famillier with Ottoman poetry and they would understand these poems at least to a certain degree. Because there was a certain vocabulary which poets used to describe their beloved and their emotions.  And this would make some vocabulary easier to learn. I am sure Ottoman poetry was popular in the common folk.

 

 

 

5.       AlphaF
5677 posts
 19 Nov 2012 Mon 02:37 pm

 

Quoting Abla

 

 

I have begun to see how these old compounds are all upside down. The language is Turkish, the words are Arabic and the word order of the noun phrases is Persian. These compounds must have sounded so strange in the commons´ ears.

 

Decent commons did not give a hoot to this language.....{#emotions_dlg.alcoholics}

6.       gokuyum
5050 posts
 20 Nov 2012 Tue 05:45 pm

 

Quoting AlphaF

 

 

Decent commons did not give a hoot to this language.....{#emotions_dlg.alcoholics}

Lol.

 

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