Imru Al-Qays

Imru Al-Qays

 

(also, Hunduj ibn Hujr al-Kindi). Date of birth unknown; died between 530 and 540. Arab poet.

Imru al-Qays came from the Kinda tribe. For indecent conduct, he was deprived of his inheritance and banished by his father, who headed an early unified state in central Arabia. After his father’s death, he waged war with his native tribe and sought support from the Byzantine emperor Justinian. Love lyrics and bucolic lyrics predominate in his poetry. His joyous verses and the simplicity and expressiveness of their poetic language were highly valued by the Arabs, although many critics considered them somewhat coarse. He was one of the creators of the qasida, the classic genre of Arabic poetry. Particularly well-known is his qasida “Both of you stop, we’ll cry a bit. …”

REFERENCES

Rozen, V. R. Drevnearabskaia poeziia i ee kritika. St. Petersburg, 1872.
Krymskii, A. E. Arabskaia literatura v ocherkakh i obraztsakh, [vols.] 1–3. Moscow, 1911. (Lithographed.)
Fil’shtinskii, I. M. Arabskaia klassicheskaia literatura. Moscow, 1965.
Salikh Samak Amir. Al-Shi’r fi al-asr al-Qadim. Cairo, 1932.
Bückert, F. Amrilkais, der Dichter und König. Stuttgart-Tübingen, 1843.
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Even the names, there's a spring in part of the Imru al-Qays that's called Dar al-Juljul, and even in Arabic it sounds foreign to me.
Certainly a bit about the poet's life, as each one has their own mystique and mythos, Imru al-Qays being a big example of that.
I'd like to at least mention those, because someone like Imru al-Qays is presumably a historical figure, but he's also in many ways a literary figure.
Imru al-Qays really feels like this bad boy, this rebel figure.
The texts are so different--look at Imru al-Qays and Zuhair and maybe Amr ibn Kulthum, which feels very Arab in some way.
I remember, when reading them in Cairo and more recently, Imru al-Qays I love, he's just a fun character.
Thus Imru al-Qays, the earliest of the qasidists, who is believed to have died around 550 CE and whom Mohammad is alleged to have proclaimed "the most poetical of the poets and their leader into Hellfire," launches his qasida with the following words:
This would suggest the poet is consciously following at least one narrative thread that might be loosely called mock "Arabic" or "Muslim," embracing in its irreverence the sort of ludic powers which would have brought a smile to the face of the pre-Islamic hellfire poet Imru al-Qays.
SPS points out that the most important reliance on Gaster has been Adnan Haydar, "The Muallaqa of Imru al-Qays .
Imru al-Qays also uses the other celebrated Pleiades-image in his Mu allaqa (given on p.
Finally--for the Arabic contributions--in "Baqillani's Critique of Imru Al-Qays," Mustansir Mir shows that al-Baqillani's analysis of the poet's qasida not only does not stand up to scrutiny, but even worse, if his criticisms were valid, they would be applicable to the Qur'an as well--a notion that would certainly horrify al-Baqillani, especially since his critique is meant as a vindication of the doctrine of the Qur'an's inimitability.