Omar Ibn-Abi Rabiah

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Omar Ibn-Abi Rabiah


Born 644, in Medina; died 712. Arabic poet.

The son of a wealthy Qurayshite merchant, Omar ibn-Abi Rabiah spent most of his life in Mecca. In the Middle Ages the Arabs considered him an unsurpassed master of love lyrics (gha-zals). His ghazals are full of confessions of love and complaints of unrequited love. Dialogues with the beloved are an important feature of these short poems, in which the poet portrays the appearance, actions, and words of his feminine contemporaries. He was the first Arabic poet to manifest an interest in man’s character and feelings.


Krachkovskii, I. Iu. “ ‘Omar ibn Abu Rabi’ah.” Izbr. soch., vol. 2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1956.
Fil’shtinskii, I. M. Arabskaia klassicheskaia literatura. Moscow, 1965.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.