• The Shahnama: Between the Samanids and the Ghaznavids

    Author(s):
    Ghazzal Dabiri (see profile)
    Date:
    2010
    Subject(s):
    Iranian studies, Epic poetry, Historiography, Medieval Islam
    Item Type:
    Article
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6SF2MB7T
    Abstract:
    The paper reconsiders the apocryphal stories regarding the Shahnama’s initial reception to propose that it was only after long narrative poems gained currency that the Shahnama was recognized as a masterpiece. The paper analyzes the structure and themes of several histories written before and during the Samanid period and compares them with the Shahnama and the content of histories and epics produced immediately afterwards, to argue that the initial reception of the Shahnama did not depend on Sultan Mahmud Ghazni alone. It further argues that the Shahnama’s aim, content, and execution differed from the histories and poetry produced in the decades immediately preceding and succeeding it, which would account for the lag in its acceptance and popularity. This led later biographers to superimpose their regret over Firdausi’s treatment onto Sultan Mahmud Ghazni, who by their accounts denied him the fame and glory he deserved in his lifetime.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    12 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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