Bashshar Ibn Burd

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bashshar Ibn Burd


Date of birth unknown; died 787. Arab poet who is also part of the history of Persian literature. Wrote in Persian and Arabic. Persian by origin. Lived in Basra and Baghdad. Founder of a “new style” in Arabic poetry.

Bashshar ibn Burd openly defended Mazdaism, the dualis-tic teaching of the ancient Persians and Medes based on the acknowledgment of the existence of two opposite forces in nature, good and evil. He was a panegyrist of the caliph al-Mahdi. He satirized the vizier, for which he paid with his life. Bashshar ibn Burd was the subject of many anecdotes which are preserved in the Kitab al-Aghani.


Brockelmann, C. Geschichte der arabischen Literatur, vol. 1. Weimar, 1898.
Abu-al-Faraj al-Isfahani. Kitab al-Aghani, vols. 3, 6. Bulaq, 1873.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The book aims to share the beauty and the depths of feeling expressed in the texts, and includes poems by Abu Firas, Bashshar ibn Burd and Ibn Udhainah amongst others.
It was the Persian designation to The followers of Mani, founder of Manichaeism.(9) However, the term acquired a wider use during the Abbasid period to include not only those who preached heresies deemed to be a threat to the state and to Islam, but also those who exhibited irreverence toward The Shari'a, and libertarian tendencies.(10) In this category were many well known poets, such as Bashshar ibn Burd, Hammad Ajrad, Ishaq ibn Khalaf, and many others.(11) Poets accused each other of zandaqa.
Apart from Bashshar ibn Burd, a known Shi'ite sympathizer, other executions took place.