Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.


a. a Muslim law court, council chamber, or counting house
b. a Muslim council of state
2. a collection of poems
3. (in Muslim law) an account book
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(1) During the rule of the caliph Omar (634-644), divan appeared as a register of the state income that was to be distributed among groups of the ruling class and used to pay soldiers, as well as the place where these registers were kept.

(2) Under the Ommiad and the Abbasid caliphs and in a number of other medieval Muslim states divan came to denote the department of taxation and finance; the term was also applied to other government institutions.

(3) The council of the Turkish sultan consisting of the grand vizier, the head of the Muslim priesthood, and several other high officials.

(4) The state council of the rulers of Moldavia and Wallachia that existed prior to the unification of these principalities in 1859.

(5) In some modern countries of the Muslim East, divans are government institutions for administrative and judicial affairs.


“Diwan.” Encyclopedic de I’slam, 2nd ed., vol. 2. Leiden-Paris, 1965. Pages 332-47.



in the classical literatures of the Middle East, a collection of the poetry of one author. The poems in the divan are usually arranged in alphabetical order by rhyme (according to the last letter of the rhyme). The works are not dated and, as a rule, do not have titles. Also, the first line of each poem often does not identify the work since in classical poetry each bayt (distch) is a complete idea, and, in rewriting, bayts can easily be transposed.


Krymskii, A. E. Istoriia Persii, ee literatury i dervishskoi teosofii. Moscow, 1900-07.
Krymskii, A. E. Istoriia arabov i arabskoi literatury. Moscow, 1912.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. In Muslim countries, a council room or hall for a court of justice.
2. A smoking room.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Credit Suisse analyst Vamil Divan said a $29M jury award to a woman who claimed that asbestos in baby powder led to her development of mesothelioma has brought potential litigation risk for Johnson & Johnson back into the headlines.
A handwritten copy of the previously unknown divan was foundat the National Library of Ankara.
Another unique trait that no other poet of Urdu shares with Ghalib, not even Iqbal, is that his Urdu divan is the book of which the most sharhs, or commentaries, have been written in Urdu.
Create a sleep sanctuary with a divan set, ideal for adding a focal point to your room while creating additional storage - our range of divans are available in a variety of styles and designs.
New Delhi [India], Dec 17 ( ANI ): The Central government on Monday appointed advocate Madhavi Divan the Additional Solicitor General (ASG).
Claire Busby, 46, suffered a serious injury to her spine after she toppled off the end of the super king-size double divan as she shifted her position, the court was told.
The Pakistani duo of Zain Tahir and Tahir Mehmood Zahid were paired with the Indian gold corporate team comprising Rahul Divan and Ghautamin in the first round.
Whether it is right or wrong, or she (Hadiya) did not marry a right person, it is for the consenting individuals to decide."We can't stand in the (their) way,"said Justice DY Chandrachud as senior counsel Shyam Divan justified the Kerala High Court annulling the marriage.
In a recent paper Walter Andrews deplored what he finds to be the situation in an area of Ottoman literature of special interest to him, sixteenth-century divan poetry.
The poet's divan, his only piece of furniture, pushed against the ecstasy of the window, bears the weight of his longing for the beloved to appear.
The company, which manages business interests in segments ranging from arts and photography to high-end retail, distribution and F&B, announced the opening of Divan Patisserie at The Dubai Mall.