Hāfiz, the greatest lyric poet of Persia, was first introduced to English readers in the translation by Sir William Jones in the latter half of the eighteenth century. The present selection (fifty poems, with their English poetical versions by fourteen different hands) has the double object of exhibiting the various aspects of Hāfiz' style and thought, and of representing how English scholars have attempted to render his poetry in their own language. Professor Arberry writes a long introduction, biographical and critical, suggesting fresh approaches to the study and some lines along which future research might with advantage be directed. The fifty Persian texts are printed first; these are followed by the English translations, and these again by the editor's notes on the texts.
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