Skip to main content
Select Source:

Hafiz

Hafiz (häfēz´) [Arab.,=one who has memorized the Qur'an], 1319–1389?, Persian lyric poet, b. Shiraz. His original name was Shams al-Din Muhammad. He acquired the surname from having memorized the Qur'an at an early age. A teacher of the Qur'an who associated with mystics, his lyrical poetry is acclaimed as the finest ever written in Persian. His lyrics are always vehement, especially his amatory verses, his drinking songs, and his invective. Muslim critics interpret his passionate lines as allegorical, while critics in the West incline to construe them literally. Hafiz enlivened the conventional imagery of the ghazal, a form of love poetry in rhyming couplets, comparable to the sonnet. His poetry, in ghazal and in the other poetic forms of qasida (long rhyming poem), mathnawi (couplets), and rubaiyyat (quatrains), survives in his Divan or Diwan, a collection that prompted numerous commentaries. His Diwan was so popular that it is used for bibliomancy: predictions are made from randomly selected verses. Goethe's Westöstlicher Diwan (1819) was inspired by Hafiz. Hafiz is buried in a splendid tomb near Shiraz, Iran.

See his News of Love (tr. 1984).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Hafiz." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Hafiz." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 25, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/hafiz

"Hafiz." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved September 25, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/hafiz

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Hafiz

Hafiz (c.1325–c.1390) ( Shams ed-Din Muhammad) Persian poet, one of the finest lyricists in the Persian language. His verse, in rhyming couplets, deals with sensual pleasures, most famously in the Divan. He was a devout Sufi and dervish, and much of his poetry is religious in content. See also Sufism

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Hafiz." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Hafiz." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 25, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/hafiz

"Hafiz." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved September 25, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/hafiz

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

ḥāfiz̳

Ḥāfiz̳ (one who learns the Qurʾān by heart): see QURʾĀN.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"ḥāfiz̳." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"ḥāfiz̳." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 25, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/hafiz

"ḥāfiz̳." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Retrieved September 25, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/hafiz

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

hafiz

hafizbiz, Cadíz, Cadiz, fizz, frizz, gee-whiz, his, is, jizz, Liz, Ms, phiz, quiz, squiz, swizz, tizz, viz, whizz, wiz, zizz •louis, Suez •scabies •Celebes, heebie-jeebies •showbiz • laches • Marches • breeches •Indies • undies • hafiz • Kyrgyz •Hedges • Bridges • Hodges • Judges •Rockies • walkies •Gillies, Scillies •pennies • Benares •Jefferies, Jeffreys •Canaries •Delores, Flores, furores •series • miniseries • Furies •congeries • Potteries • molasses •glasses • sunglasses • missus • suffix •falsies • fracases • galluses •Pontine Marshes • species •subspecies • conches • munchies •treatise •civvies, Skivvies •Velázquez • exequies • obsequies •Menzies • elevenses •cosies (US cozies), Moses •Joneses

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"hafiz." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"hafiz." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 25, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/hafiz

"hafiz." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved September 25, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/hafiz

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Hafiz

Hafiz

Circa 1325–1390

Poet

Sources

Early Life . Hafiz is the nickname of Shams al-Din Muhammad Shirazi, a major Persian poet who was born and died in Shiraz in southern Iran. His nickname means “Qur’an memorizer” and is given to people who have learned the entire Muslim holy book by heart. Hafiz had humble beginnings and is said to have worked as a baker’s apprentice and a manuscript copyist, the latter an occupation through which he may have obtained his broad education. In addition to having memorized the entire Qur’an, he knew Arabic well and was widely read in Persian literature. By the time he was in his twenties, Hafiz had begun serving as a poet who sang the praises of the local rulers of Shiraz. It is uncertain how close he was to the court, and since he seems to have sometimes lectured on the interpretation of the Qur’an at an Islamic college, he may have still been earning his living from sources other than royal largess. His fame spread throughout Persia after about 1360, but he suffered royal disfavor for a period of about ten years (1366–1376), during which he spent a couple of years away from Shiraz in the Iranian cities of Isfahan and Yazd. Although distant rulers invited him to their capitals, he turned down such offers and returned to Shiraz. His lack of travel was rather unusual among well-known Muslim scholars and literary figures.

Poetic Works . Hafiz’s poetry is entirely contained in his Diwan (Collected Poems), a collection said to have been finalized by Hafiz in 1368 but quite possibly arranged by one of his followers shortly after his death. His great popularity has contributed to a massive accretion of poems falsely attributed to him over the centuries; his authentic poems seem to number about five hundred, which is not a large body of work in comparison with those of other Persian poets. Almost all his poems are short ghazals. Though the ghazal is the form employed for love poetry, Hafiz often drew the vocabulary for his ghazals from the idiom of such love-and-wine poetry but used the convention for another purpose, such as praise of his patron, and some have suggested that he was a Sufi mystic. His subtleness of expression, use of conventional vehicles to suggest other meanings, technical perfection, and linguistic virtuosity have led many readers to call him the best of all Persian poets. Over the centuries he was especially well known among non-Iranian users of Persian as a literary language in Turkey and India, and enthusiasm for him in Iran revived only in the twentieth century.

Sources

Elizabeth T. Gray, trans., The Green Sea of Heaven: Fifty Ghazals from the Diwdn of Hdflz (Ashland, Ore.: White Cloud, 1995).

Michael C. Hillmann, Unity in the Ghazals of Hafez (Minneapolis: Biblio-theca Islamica, 1976).

G. M. Wickens, “Hafiz,” Encyclopedia of Islam, CD-ROM version (Leiden: Brill, 1999).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Hafiz." World Eras. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Hafiz." World Eras. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 25, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/hafiz

"Hafiz." World Eras. . Retrieved September 25, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/hafiz

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.