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Ab'ul Hasan Yamin ud-Din Khusrow (1253 1325 CE) Hindi ???? ?????, (Urdu: ????????

?????????? ?????;, better known as Amir Khusrow (also Khusrau, Khusro) Dehlawi (
meaning Amir Khusrow of Delhi) (???? ???? ?????) was a Sufi musician, great poet
and scholar. A polymath an iconic figure in the cultural history of the Indian
subcontinent. A mystic and a spiritual disciple of Nizamuddin Auliya of Delhi. A
mir Khusrow was not only a notable poet but also a prolific and seminal musician
in the time of the Delhi Sultanate, being reputed to have invented both the Sit
ar and the Tabla. He wrote poetry primarily in Persian, but also in Hindavi. A v
ocabulary in verse, the ?haliq Bari, containing Arabic, Persian, and Hindavi ter
ms is often attributed to him.[2]
He is regarded as the "father of Qawwali" (the devotional music of the Sufis in
the Indian subcontinent).Introduced the Ghazal style of song into India. These t
raditions have been kept very much alive in India and Pakistan to this day.[3][4
] He is also credited with enriching Indian classical music by introducing Persi
an, Arabic and Turkish elements into it and was the originator of the khayal and
tarana styles of music.
A musician and a scholar, Amir Khusrow was as prolific in tender lyrics as in hi
ghly involved prose and could easily emulate all styles of Persian poetry which
had developed in medieval Persia, from Khaqani's forceful qasidas to Nizami's kh
amsa. He used only 11 metrical schemes with 35 distinct divisions. The verse for
ms he has written in include Ghazal, Masnavi, Qata, Rubai, Do-Beti and Tarkibhan
d. His contribution to the development of the g?hazal, hitherto little used in I
ndia, is particularly significant.[5]

1 Early life and background
1.1 Life and career
1.2 Major life events in chronological order
1.3 Khusrow the royal poet
1.4 Urdu language and its development
2 Amir Khusrow and the origins of the Sitar and the Tabla
3 Samples of Khusrow's poetry
4 Works
5 See also
6 References
7 Further reading
8 Bibliography
9 External links
Early life and background
Amir Khusrow was born in Patiyali in Etah Uttar Pradesh. His father, Amir Sayf u
d-Din Mahmud, was a Turkic officer and a member of the Lachin tribe of Transoxan
ia, themselves belonging to the Kara-Khitais.[5][6][7] His mother was the daught
er of Rawat Arz, the famous war minister of Balban, and belonged to the Rajput t
ribes of Uttar Pradesh.[7][8]
Life and career
Hazrat Amir Khusro (R.A) was the son of Amir Saif-ud-Din Mehmood a Turk of Lache
en Hazara. At the invasion of Changez Khan (Genghis Khan) He migrated from his H
ometown Kesh near Samarkand to Balkah. Saif-ud-Din was chieftain of Hazara. Sham
s-ud-Din. Altamish the empire od Delhi welcomed them to his country.. He provide
d shelter to the dislodged princes artisans, scholars and rich nobles. Saifuddin
was among them. It was around 1226 CE. In 1230, he was granted a fief in the di
strict of Patiali (in Etah District of present Uttar Pradesh).
Amir Saif-ud-Din married Bibi Daulat Naz, who bore him four children, three sons
and one daughter. Amir Khusro was one among them born in the year 1252-53 CE at
Patiyali ( Hazrat Amir khusro Nagar ). His father Saif-ud-Din died in 1260 CE.
Khusro was an intelligent child. Poetry came to him at the early age of eight. A
fter the death of his father, he came to Delhi to his grandfather s (maternal) Ima
dul Mulk (Rawat Arz) house. He grew under his grand father s guardianship. When Am
ir Khusro was 20 years old, his grandfather who was 113 years old in 1271 CE die
Deeply saddened by this event he was desperate to find some meaning and purpose
in his life. He joined as a soldier in the Army of Malik Chajju a nephew of Sult
an Balban. This in turn brought his poetry to the attention of the Assembly of t
he Royal Court where he was highly honoured. His devoted mother brought him up a
nd little is known about his mother Hazrat Bibi Daulat Naz, but no doubt she was
an inspiration for him throughout his life.
Then a double tragedy struck him when he was forty seven years old (1298 A.D.) a
nd on the crest of a wave in his career. His beloved mother and brother died.
He cried like a child and said:
"A double radiance left my star this year
Gone are my brother and my mother,
My two full moons have set and ceased to Shine
In one short week through this ill-luck of mine."
Khusro's homage to his mother on death was: "Where ever the dust of your (mother
) feet is found it is like a relic of Para dise for me."
Despite all this tragedy,Khusro buried his sorrow in the power of verse and melo
dy. Bughra Khan son of Balban was invited to listen Amir Khusro. He was so encha
nted that he bestowed countless gold coins. The prize impaired the relations wit
h his master Chajju Khan. Khusro left him and went to his new patron Bughra Khan
, where he served for four years and came to fame. In 677 A.H/1277 A.D. Bughra K
han was then appointed ruler of Bengal but Amir Khusro decided to return to Delh
i. The eldest son Khan, Mohd of Balban (who was in Multan) came to Delhi. When h
e heard about Amir Khusro he invited him to his court. Finally Amir Khusro accom
panied him to Multan in 679 A.H/1279 A.D. Multan at that period was the gateway
to Hind and a center place of knowledge and learning. The caravans of scholars,
tradesmen and emissaries transited from Baghdad, Arab, Iran to Delhi via Multan.
Amir Khusro says that:
"I tied the belt of service on my waist and put on the cap of companionship for
another five years. I imparted lustre to the water of Multan from the ocean of m
y wits and pleasantries." Amir Khusro and another poet Amir Hassan Sijzi were ha
ppy under the patronage of Mohd of Balban. Amir Hasan Sijzi was younger to Amir
Khusro by two years. Both were in the company of the celebrated historian Hazrat
Moulana Ziauddin Barni the writer of "Tareekh-e-Ferozshahi". The work was compl
eted thirty one years after Amir Khusro s death. His Shrine lies south to Hazrat A
mir Khusro s (R.A) Shrine in Nizamuddin (Delhi).
In the year 683A.H./1283A.D Jinar Khan a Mongol, invaded India. Khan Mohd his pa
tron was killed in battle trying to stop the invasion. The deep grief of brave P
rince Khan Mohd remained in his heart forever. He wrote the two elegy (sorrowful
poems) of Prince Khan Mohd describing him the most generous, brave and good hum
an being. At the old age of eighty, King Balban called his second son Bughra Kha
n from Bengal, but he refused to come back to Delhi. After King Balban s death his
grandson Kikabad was made the King of Delhi who was 17 years of age. Khusro rem
ained in his service for two years (686 A.H to 687 A.H/1286 to 1287 A.D.).
After the death of Kikabad, a Turk soldier Jalaluddin Khilji took power and beca
me the King. He was a poet and loved poets. Khusro was highly honoured and respe
cted in his Darbar and was known as "AMIR KHUSRO". He was made secretary to the
King "Mushaf-Dar". His status was raised to Amarat . The darbar life made Amir Khus
ro focus more on literary works. Khusro s Ghazals which he composed in quick succe
ssion were set to music and were sung by singing girls every night before King J
alaluddin Khilji. Amir Khusro was rewarded beyond expectations and was acknowled
ged in a following verse.
"The King of the world Jalal uddin, in reward for my infinite pain which I under
took in composing verses, bestowed upon me an unimaginable treasure of wealth."
King Khilji was a brave soldier and an able administrator. He expanded his Empir
e and won four battles in a year. He ruled for 6 years from 689A.H/1289A.D to 69
5A.H/1295A.D. He was murdered by the men of Allauddin Khilji, his nephew and son
-in-law. Allauddin Khilji then ascended the throne of Delhi on 22nd Zilhaj 695A.
Amir Khusro wrote a short auto-biographical Masnavi called "Shah Name mun" of Alla
uddin s life. Amir Khusro was the few notables who blessed Allauddin Khilji.
Alauddin Khilji was one of the great ruler s of India in the Delhi Sultanate empir
e. He was a strong man, hard in nature, brave and intelligent soldier. He expand
ed his Empire to Deccan in South and far to East and west of India. He ruled for
twenty one years. Hazrat Amir Khusro (R.A) enjoyed his patronage and developed
much of his works. Amir Khusro in his book "Khazinatul-Futuh" (the treasures of
victory) penned down Allauddin s construction works, wars, peace and security, adm
inistrative services. Further in another poetical work Masnavi "Matta-ul-Anwaar"
(Fountain of light) consisted of 3310 verses (completed in 15 days) had the the
me of "Love of God". The second masnavi, "Shireen" consisted of 4000 verses. The
third Masnavi "Laila Majnu" story of Laila and Majnu and their romance. The fou
rth voluminous Masnavi was "Aina-e-Sikandari" had 4500 verses relating to the he
roic deeds of Alexander the Great. The fifth Masnavi was "Hasht Bahisht" related
to the events of King Bahram Gaur. All these works made Amir Khusro a leading l
uminary in the poetical world. The King Allauddin Khilji was highly pleased by h
is works and rewarded him handsomely.
After Alauddin Khilji's death, his son Qutubuddin Mukarak Shah became the king.
Amir Khusro wrote a Masnavi on Mubarak Shah as "Nahsi Pahar" (Nine Skies), a his
torical poetry relating the events of Mubarak Shah. He classified his poetry in
nine chapters, each part is considered as a sky. In the third chapter he wrote a
bout India and its environment, the atmosphere and seasons, flowers their variet
ies beauty and the fragrances, the chirping of birds and their colourful gaiety
the animals world, education and sciences, ideology and religions of India, lang
uages spoken and their zones etc. This shows how patriotic Khusro was to his mot
herland and had deep knowledge of it. He wrote another voluminious book in the p
eriod of Qutubuddin Mubarak Shah by name "Ejaze Khusravi", the book consisted of
five volumes. Thus it reflected Amir Khusro s ocean of knowledge and scholarship.
After Mubarak Shah, Ghyasuddin Tughlaq came to the throne. Amir Khusro wrote a h
istoric Masnavi "Tughlaq Name" on him. Thus all Kings of their period, honoured
Amir Khusro as the jewel of their crown. They felt proud of his writing. In tota
l Amir Khusro served under Seven Sultans. He was also an astronomer and an astro
loger. When Qutubuddin Mubarak Shah son was born, he prepared the horoscope of c
hild where certain predictions, were made. This horoscope is included in the Mas
navi "Saqiana".[9] In 1321 Mubarak Khilji (sometimes spelled "Mubarak Khalji") w
as murdered and Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq came to power.
Khusro started to write the Tughluqnama. Then in 1325 Sultan Muhammad bin Tughlu
q came to power.
On 3 April 1325 Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya died, and six months later so did Hazra
t Amir Khusrow. Khusrow 's tomb is next to that of his master in the Nizamuddin
Dargah of Delhi.[10]
Major life events in chronological order
Khusrow was born in Patiyali in Kasganj district which is also known as Kansiram
Nagar near Etah in what is today the state of Uttar Pradesh in northern India.
His father Amir Saifuddin came from Balkh in modern day Afghanistan and his moth
er hailed from Delhi.
1260 After the death of his father, Khusrow went to Delhi with his mother.
1271 Khusrow compiled his first divan of poetry, "Tuhfatus-Sighr".
1272 Khusrow got his first job as court poet with King Balban's nephew Malik
1276 Khusrow started working as a poet with Bughra Khan (Balban's son).
1279 While writing his second divan, Wastul-Hayat, Khusrau visited Bengal.
1281 Employed by Sultan Mohammad (Balban's second son) and went to Multan wi
th him.
1285 Khusrow participated as a soldier in the war against the invading Mongo
ls. He was taken prisoner, but escaped.
1287 Khusrow went to Awadh with Ameer Ali Hatim (another patron).
1288 His first mathnavi, "Qiranus-Sa'dain" was completed.
1290 When Jalal ud din Firuz Khilji came to power, Khusro's second mathnavi,
"Miftahul Futooh" was ready.
1294 His third divan "Ghurratul-Kamal" was complete.
1295 Alauddin Khilji (sometimes spelled "Khalji") came to power and invaded
Devagiri and Gujarat.
1298 Khusrow completed his "Khamsa-e-Nizami".
1301 Khilji attacked Ranthambhor, Chittor, Malwa and other places, and Khusr
o remained with the king in order to write chronicles.
1310 Khusrow became close to Nizamuddin Auliya, and completed Khazain-ul-Fut
1315 Alauddin Khilji died. Khusrow completed the mathnavi "Duval Rani-Khizr
Khan" (a romantic poem).
1316 Qutb ud din Mubarak Shah became the king, and the fourth historical mat
hnavi "Noh-Sepehr" was completed.
1321 Mubarak Khilji (sometimes spelled "Mubarak Khalji") was murdered and Gh
iyath al-Din Tughluq came to power. Khusro started to write the Tughluqnama.
1325 Sultan Muhammad bin Tughluq came to power. Nizamuddin Auliya died, and
six months later so did Khusrow . Khusrow 's tomb is next to that of his master
in the Nizamuddin Dargah of Delhi.
Khusrow the royal poet
Khusrow was a prolific classical poet associated with the royal courts of more t
han seven rulers of the Delhi Sultanate.[11] He is still loved and respected tod
ay in India, Pakistan and by lovers of Poetry and Sufi music throughout the worl
d. With so many playful riddles, songs and legends attributed to him. Through hi
s enormous literary output and the legendary folk personality, Khusrow represent
s one of the first (recorded) Indian personages with a true multi-cultural or pl
uralistic identity.To unite mankind through the power of Poetry, Music and Dance
Urdu language and its development
Amir Khusrow was the author of a Khamsa which emulated that of the earlier poet
of Persian epics Nizami Ganjavi. His work was considered to be one of the great
classics of Persian poetry during the Timurid period in Transoxiana.
He wrote primarily in Persian and Hindustani. He also wrote a war ballad in Punj
abi.[12] In addition, he spoke Arabic and Sanskrit.[7][13][14][15][16][17][18] H
is poetry is still sung today at Sufi shrines throughout Pakistan and India.
Amir Khusrow and the origins of the Sitar and the Tabla
Amir Khusro's genius as a musician speak volumes, for he is responsible for the
invention of the tabla. The term tabla is derived from an Arabic word, tabl, whi
ch simply means "drum.",. Together with the invention of the sitar, the grand lu
te. Named after a Persian instrument called the setar (meaning "three strings").
The instrument appears to have descended from long-necked lutes taken to India
from Central Asia. The first prototype instruments were invented during the Delh
i Sultanate period of the 13th/14th centuries when the Persian patrons of music
and poetry encouraged innovation in Indian art. The sitar flourished in the 16th
and 17th centuries and arrived at its present form in the 18th century. Today i
t is the dominant instrument in Hindustani music. Both these instruments are the
foundation of India's classical musical heritage.[19][20][21]
The development of the Tabla originated from the need to have a drum that could
be played from the top in the sitting position to enable more complex rhythm str
ucture's that were required for the new Indian Sufi vocal style of singing/chant
ing and Zikr. At the same time to complement the complex early Sitar melodies th
at Khusro was composing. The Tabla uses a "complex finger tip and hand percussiv
e" technique played from the top, unlike the Pakhawaj and mridangam which mainly
use the full palm and are sideways in motion and are more limited in terms of s
ound complexity.
Samples of Khusrow's poetry
Amir Khusrow,once said a famous couplet for Kashmir.
"Gar firdaus bar roo-e zameen ast,
Hameen ast-o hameen ast-o hameen ast "
This means,If there is a paradise on earth,It is this, it is this, it is this.[2
Tuhfa-tus-Sighr (Offering of a Minor) his first divan, contains poems compos
ed between the age of 16 and 19
Wastul-Hayat (The Middle of Life) his second divan, contains poems composed
at the peak of his poetic career
Ghurratul-Kamaal (The Prime of Perfection) poems composed between the age of
34 and 43
Baqia-Naqia (The Rest/The Miscellany) compiled at the age of 64
Qissa Chahar Darvesh The Tale of the Four Dervishes
Nihayatul-Kamaal (The Height of Wonders) compiled probably a few weeks befor
e his death.
Qiran-us-Sa dain (Meeting of the Two Auspicious Stars) Mathnavi about the hist
oric meeting of Bughra Khan and his son Kyqbad after long enmity (1289)
Miftah-ul-Futooh (Key to the Victories) in praise of the victories of Jalalu
ddin Firuz Khilji (1291)
Ishqia/Mathnavi Duval Rani-Khizr Khan (Romance of Duval Rani and Khizr Khan)
a tragic love poem about Gujarat s princess Duval and Alauddin s son Khizr (1316)
Noh Sepehr Mathnavi. (Mathnavi of the Nine Skies) Khusrau s perceptions of Ind
ia and its culture (1318)
Tarikh-i-Alai ('Times of Alai'- Alauddin Khilji)
Tughluq Nama (Book of the Tughluqs) in prose (1320)
Khamsa-e-Nizami (Khamsa-e-Khusrau) five classical romances: Hasht-Bahisht, M
atlaul-Anwar, Sheerin-Khusrau, Majnun-Laila and Aaina-Sikandari
Ejaaz-e-Khusrovi (The Miracles of Khusrau) an assortment of prose compiled b
y himself
Khazain-ul-Futooh (The Treasures of Victories) one of his more controversial
books, in prose (1311 12)
Afzal-ul-Fawaid utterances of Nizamuddin Auliya
?haliq Bari a versified glossary of Persian, Arabic, and Hindavi words and p
hrases often attributed to Amir Khusrau. ?afiz Ma?mud Shirani argued that it was
completed in 1622 in Gwalior by ?iya ud-Din ?husrau.[25]
Jawahar-e- Khusrovi often dubbed as the Hindawi divan of Khusrau