Abu Al-Atahiya

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Abu Al-Atahiya


(pseudonym of Abu-Ishak Ismail ibn-al-Kasim). Born 748 in Kufa; died 825 in Baghdad. Arab poet.

Born into the family of a physician, Abu al-Atahiya was a potter in his youth. His early poetry, which mocks the rich and ridicules scholasticism, made him popular among the poorest elements of Baghdad. He was noted for anacreontic and love lyrics, fragments of which have been preserved. His later ascetic poetry (zuhdayat) showed him to be the first representative of the philosophic trend in Arab poetry and a forerunner of Abu al-ala al-Maarri. The simplicity of his language contributed to the success of his poetry.


Krachkovskii, I. Iu. Poeticheskoe tvorchestvo Abu-l’-Atakhii, Izbr. soch., vol. 2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1956.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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