Difference between revisions of "The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam"

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&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Beside me singing in the Wilderness&mdash;<br>
 
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Beside me singing in the Wilderness&mdash;<br>
 
&nbsp;&nbsp;Oh, Wilderness were Paradise enow!<br>
 
&nbsp;&nbsp;Oh, Wilderness were Paradise enow!<br>
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Another famous poem is featured in the musical [[Kismet]]:
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&nbsp;&nbsp;The Moving Finger writes; and having writ,<br>
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&nbsp;&nbsp;Moves on; nor all your Piety nor Wit<br>
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&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,<br>
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&nbsp;&nbsp;Nor all your tears wash out a word of it.<br>
  
 
FitzGerald's translation is not literal. FitzGerald believed he was being true to the spirit of the original.
 
FitzGerald's translation is not literal. FitzGerald believed he was being true to the spirit of the original.
  
 
[[Category:Poetry|Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam, The]]
 
[[Category:Poetry|Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam, The]]

Revision as of 15:40, 13 April 2007

The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam is the collection of quatrains—four-line stanzas—written by the Persian astronomer Omar Khayyam (1048 – 1123). They are largely known to the English-speaking world in the translations written by Edward FitzGerald, first published, anonymously, in 1859.

They are perhaps some of the most quoted poetry in the English language: of approximately a hundred stanzas, about forty of them are included in full in the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations.

Undoubtedly the best-known stanza is:

  A Book of Verses underneath the Bough,
  A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread—and Thou
    Beside me singing in the Wilderness—
  Oh, Wilderness were Paradise enow!

Another famous poem is featured in the musical Kismet:

  The Moving Finger writes; and having writ,
  Moves on; nor all your Piety nor Wit
    Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
  Nor all your tears wash out a word of it.

FitzGerald's translation is not literal. FitzGerald believed he was being true to the spirit of the original.