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Tuesday, 16-May-2006 02:13 Email | Share | Bookmark
Shiraz's Nights

Mausoleum of Hafez
 
 
 
Hafezieh
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sa’dieh: Mausoleum of Sa’di
 
Sa’dieh: Mausoleum of Sa’di
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Koran Gate
The Koran Gate
The Koran Gate
The Koran Gate
Streets of Shiraz
Streets of Shiraz
Bagh-e Delgosha
Delgosha garden
 
 
Streets of Shiraz
 
A restaurant( Fast foods & Pizza)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Welcome to Shiraz, the present-day capital of Fars Province, and the heartland of Iran, which gave its name to the Persian language: Farsi. Welcome to Shiraz, the city of historic monuments, poets and philosophers, warriors and kings, orchards, orangeries, roses, Adonises and fragrant blossoms, in southern Iran. Nearly 8-km long uninterrupted rose gardens are what you will see on both sides of a highway to the same length connecting the Shiraz Airport to outskirts of the town. Shiraz is located in an altitude of 1,600 m, and 895 km to the south of Tehran, being accessible both by road and an airport for domestic and local flights.
Spring and autumn, particularly from early February till May and then from October till ate November, are the most delightful and exhilarating seasons accompanied by the warmth and passion of its people, parks with magnificent trees, and long wide shady avenues leading from one end of the town to the other end, apart from being an incitement to leisurely wanderings during siesta time have always lured famous scholars and travelers to visit Shiraz. So much so that:

"The visitor forgets his homeland When in May he comes to Shiraz"

Shiraz with a population of 973,161 inhabitants lies in a pleasant green valley surrounded by high mountains, in the vicinity of Lake Maharlou. Its climate is extremely agreeable and generally temperate because of the city’s altitude (1,600m). During Now Ruz (the Iranian New Year beginning on 21st March) the city becomes a field of flowers and greenery, heady with scent of orange blossom. The heat on very hot summer days does not exceed 40 degrees centigrade nor does the cold on winter days drop below minus 3 degrees centigrade.
On coming from Esfahan "suddenly we turned a corner", EG Browne relates in his fascinating Year Among the Persians, "and in that moment – a moment of which the recollection will never fade from my mind – there burst upon my delighted gaze a view the like of which (in its way) I never saw. We were now at that point known to all students of Hafez, called Tang-e Allahu Akbar, because whoever first beholds Shiraz here is constrained by the exceeding beauty of the sight to cry in admiration Allahu Akbar! – God is most Great! And the inimitable Hafez cried: Delightful is Shiraz and its incomparable situation – Oh God! Preserve it from decay!" This might have held true for the Shiraz of at least 60 years ago, but today with the town growing westwards, a much better view of the town can be obtained anywhere after passing through the Koran Gate.
But, like all Iranian cities south of the Caspian belt, all its luxuriance is man made. There exist first-class commercial lifelines to Esfahan, Tehran, Kerman, Bandar Abbas and Ahwaz. Shiraz is an oasis in both the literal and the metaphorical senses of the word; it s numerous gardens are miraculous havens after tiring drive from any direction.
The home of Sa’di and Hafez has seen many an ancient day, the clay tablets at Persepolis referring to wages paid to workers from Shi-Razi-Ish, or what is known today as Shiraz. The prosperity and magnificence of Shiraz are, however, products of the Islamic era.
The 9th century AD saw developments in Shiraz, the pace accelerated during the 10th century, when the town was promoted to the status of capital of Persia. During the Atabakan-e Fars period (12-13th centuries) and continuing through to the 14th century, Shiraz was one of the largest and most populous Islamic cities.
During the reign of Shah Abbas the Great (turn of the 17th century) and the emirate of his celebrated general, in Fars, Imam Gholi Khan, Shiraz once again enjoyed peace and prosperity.
Karim Khan Zand (18th century), the righteous king, promoted Shiraz once more to become the capital of the empire, contributing greatly to its prosperity by building mosques, bazaars, roads, citadels and other structures in the town.
With the termination of the Zand era, Shiraz too, began to decline. Today, however, the famous Shiraz University and Hospital, as well as the various electronic, chemical, spinning, weaving and cement factories in addition to the flourishing agriculture of the environs of Shiraz, contribute towards making the city a place of considerable standing and prosperity.
The following is a brief description of the places of interest in Shiraz, with the historic sites such as the Persepolis, Nawsh-e Rostam, and Naqsh-e Rajab being separately treated under the heading EXCURSIONS AROUND SHIRAZ.

Many scholars have justifiably used the term "poetical capital" for the town which gave Iran two of the greatest poets of the world, Sa’di and Hafez

Hafezieh: Mausoleum of Hafez

Hafez (1324-1391), the greatest master of Persian lyric poetry and the literary giant of the 14th century, was born in Shiraz, chose to live there all his life (except for a short journey), sang its praises in incomparable verse and was buried there in a garden known after him as the Hafezieh, in the northeast part of the city. The extraordinary popularity and the wide appeal of this great lyric poet among all Persian speaking people make his tomb a venerated place, visited by all.
The present mausoleum, standing in a lovely garden, dates from 1936-38. It is approached by flights of stone steps, at the top of which a double colonnade is crossed to reach the tomb under a tiled cupola. The cupola resembles a dervish’s hat, is in slabs, and is covered inside with mosaic faience of wonderful design. The alabaster tombstone and four central columns of the colonnade alone date from the reign of Karim Khan Zand. The tombstone is beautifully inscribed with two of Hafez’s Ghazals. Visitors to the tomb can still, as they have done for centuries, take the omens, or faals, by picking a page at random from a volume of Hafez, kept ready for this purpose.
His near-contemporary Jami considered that the virtually untranslatable poetry of Hafez "with all its sweetness, delicacy, freshness, ease, elegance, flow, agreeableness and unaffectedness, is something very near a miracle; it is a just object of pride not only for Persians: it is a source of glory for all mankind."
Hafez is the pen-name of Shams ad-Din Mohammad, and means "he who knows [The Koran] by heart."

Sa’dieh: Mausoleum of Sa’di

The tomb of Sa’di of Shiraz will scent of love

Even a thousand years after his death.

This line of poetry by Sa’di, inscribed on the gate leading into the garden surrounding the mausoleum, welcomes all those who enter to pay homage to this unparalleled master of the Persian language and literature.
Even from the very early days after the poet’s death, the mausoleum of Sa’di became a place of pilgrimage to lovers of poetry and literature. In 1808 AD Karim Khan Zand renovated the mausoleum.
His tomb, in the northeast of the city, is as overpowering as that of Hafez is congenially intimate. Tombs of both poets were rebuilt in early ‘50s. Sa’di’s mausoleum stands on the spot that was once the poet’s convent. Though modern in its simplicity, the portico or talar with its tall columns of pinkish marble is a traditional feature of Persian architecture. Steps lead up to the tomb with its turquoise-blue dome. A short double colonnade to the left leads to a tiled sunken enclosure containing a pool filled with voracious fish.

The Koran Gate

The Koran Gate was originally built as an ornamental entrance to the north of the town by the Buyvayhids about 1,000 years ago. Karim Khan Zand placed a volume of the holy Koran in the small room built on top of the gate, for the blessing. By the sanction of the same Koran, the gate guarantees safe return to all Shirazis, who pass under it. The original gate was demolished nearly in the 50’s and a local merchant erected the present one on its site

Bagh-e Delgosha
(the Garden of Heart’s-ease): To the northeast of Shiraz, near the mausoleum of Hafez, is the large and pleasant Delgosha Garden. Flower-beds decorate Delgosha Garden. Flowerbeds decorate the center of the wide main walk of the garden and a mass of orange trees borders the two sides. The walk leads to a residential home, standing in the center of the garden dating from the Zand and Qajar eras. The building has a verandah supported by two monolithic pillars. Its facade is covered with glazed tiles and plaster moldings, its doors are fine examples of inlay work and mirrorwork, and there are some lovely paintings on wood with flower, shrub and bird designs.
Old Houses





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