COVER ILLUSTRATION: Detail of Nizamî. Hamse, Topkapi Palace Museum, Hazine 760, fol. 246b. By permission.

Ottoman Lyric Poetry

Walter G. Andrews * Najaat Black * Mehmet Kalpakli

University of Washington Press

"This is the finest literary translation of Ottoman Turkish lyrics ever done and will shape the reception of the poetry from now on. The selection is excellent -- aesthetically superior, historically representative, and stylistically coherent."

VICTORIA HOLBROOK, Associate Professor of Turkish, Ohio State University.

Like a treasure-filled storehouse to which we have lost the key, Ottoman lyric poetry is almost unknown today, particularly among Western readers. Yet, during the centuries in which the Ottoman Empire was one of the world's great powers, poetry was its central medium of cultural expression. From love to the most profound search for spiritual truth to impassioned pleas for employement or largesse, everything that touched people deeply was expressed in poetry.

This anthology, the first major English translation of Ottoman poetry in nearly a century, unlocks the storehouse. The authors offer free verse translations of 75 lyric poems (whose original Ottoman Turkish texts are also included), spanning a period from the fourteenth through the early twentieth centuries.

In addition to the poems, the authors provide concise background information on Ottoman history and literature, informative notes to the poems, and brief biographies of the poets. These materials give students and general readers sufficient context to understand the poems, without burdening the reading experience.

Walter G. Andrews is retired from the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilization at the University of Washington, Najaat Black is a poet and fiction writer. Mehmet Kalpakli teaches at Mimar Sinan University in Istanbul.

The book can be ordered directly from the University of Texas Press.
ISBN 0-295-98595-X, paperback ($20.00)

Instructions for ordering the book from University of Washington Press

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