The Kasidah Of Haji Abdul El-Yezdi

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Netlancers Inc, Mar 20, 2014 - Philosophy - 71 pages
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The Kasidah Of Haji Abdul El-Yezdi
by Sir Richard Burton

"This was written by Sir Richard Burton under the pseudonym of Haji Abdu El-Yezdi after his return from Mecca in 1854. Observant readers will note that the Kasidah contains many references to 19th Century scientific and philosophical concepts, most notably the evolution of species. Nonetheless, it is a Sufi text to the core, and one of the few instances of Burton writing in the first person about his belief system, albeit under the cloak of pseudonymity. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, a Kasidah is a classical Arabic or Persian panegyric, which must begin with a reference to a forsaken campground, followed by a lament, and a prayer to ones comrades to halt while the memory of the departed dwellers is invoked. The same rhyme has to run through the entire composition, not matter how long the poem is."

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About the author (2014)

"Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton KCMG FRGS (March 19, 1821 - October 20, 1890) was a British explorer, translator, writer, soldier, orientalist, ethnologist, linguist, poet, hypnotist, fencer and diplomat. He was known for his travels and explorations within Asia and Africa as well as his extraordinary knowledge of languages and cultures. According to one count, he spoke 29 European, Asian, and African languages.

Burton's best-known achievements viendolo include traveling in disguise to Mecca, making an unexpurgated translation of The Book of One Thousand Nights and A Night (the collection is more commonly called The Arabian Nights in English because of Andrew Lang's abridgment) and the Kama Sutra and journeying with John Hanning Speke to discover the Great Lakes of Africa in search of the source of the Nile. He was a prolific author and wrote numerous books and scholarly articles about subjects including travel, fencing and ethnography.

He was a captain in the army of the East India Company serving in India (and later, briefly, in the Crimean War). Following this he was engaged by the Royal Geographical Society to explore the east coast of Africa and led an expedition which discovered Lake Tanganyika. In later life he served as British consul in Fernando Po, Damascus and, finally, Trieste. He was a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and was awarded a knighthood (KCMG) in 1886. Burton was considered a controversial figure in his day; some considered him a hero, others a scoundrel."

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