The Speech of the Birds - Mantiqu't-Tair (Maqamat al-Tuyur)
By: Faridu'd-Din Attar / Tr: Avery, Peter
«Maqamat al-Tuyur» ('The Conference of the Birds' or 'Speech of the Birds', 1177 CE), the masterpiece of Persian literature by poet Farid ud-Din Attar, commonly known as Attar of Nishapur, with translation and annotation of Peter Avery.
Mantiqu't-Tair (Mantiq al-Tayr/Maqamat al-Tuyur) is one of the masterpieces of Persian literature of which a complete and annotated translation into English is here presented for the first time as The Speech of the Birds. The text revolves around the decision of the birds of the world to seek out a king. Their debilitating doubts and fears, the knowing counsel of their leader Hoopoe, and their choice of the Simurgh as a king, is in reality an allegory of the spiritual path of Sufism with its demands, its hazards and its infinite rewards. The poem contains many admonitory anecdotes and exemplary stories, including numerous references to some of the early Muslim mystics such as Rabi'a al-'Adawiyya, Abu Sa'id ibn Abi'l-Khair, Mansur al-Hallaj and Shibli, among others. In The Speech of the Birds, Peter Avery has not only given us a precise and moving translation, but also ample annotation providing much information to fill in what Attar would have expected his readers to know. The result is a fascinating insight into a remarkable aspect of Islam: the world of ecstatic love of the Persian mystics. The Speech of the Birds will be of interest to everyone who values great literature, as well as to all students of Persian and Sufism.
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Faridu'd-Din Attar / Tr: Avery, Peter
ITS, Cambridge, UK, 1998
6 x 9 inches
Early Work - Sufi Poetry - Persian - trans. to English
Peter Avery was a well-known expert in Persian literature. He lived in the Middle East for over ten years and was Persian lecturer at Cambridge from 1958 until 1990. In his retirement, he devoted his time to translating and annotating works of the great Persian poets, including the «Dream» of Hafiz.