Research Article


DOI :10.26650/meshk.2024.0003   IUP :10.26650/meshk.2024.0003    Full Text (PDF)

A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown

Milad Salmani

Mīr Sayyid Sharīf al-Jurjānī was a well-known scholar from the 14th and 15th centuries. Al-Jurjānī, who rose to prominence through his studies in fiqh, theology, philosophy, and philology, is said to have been interested in the science of music. A letter of recommendation was written for a musician named “Hāfez-e Adwār” under the name “Mīr Sayyid al-Sharīf” in some surviving collections and jönks. Although this letter of recommendation appears to have been written by al-Jurjānī, a closer examination reveals that it was not written with his pen. In this letter of recommendation, probably written by al-Jurjānī’s fourth-generation grandson, a rich Shirazite was asked to patronize a musician who intended to emigrate to other countries due to financial difficulties and living conditions. This letter contains information about the music literature of the time and can be interpreted as evidence that letters of recommendation from noble families were effective in the patronage of artisans by the wealthy. This study uses new academic studies to provide information on Sayyid al-Sharīf al-Jurjānī. The letter of recommendation is then analyzed and translated into Turkish.

DOI :10.26650/meshk.2024.0003   IUP :10.26650/meshk.2024.0003    Full Text (PDF)

XV. Asırda Memleketini Terk Etmek İsteyen Şirazlı Müzisyen İçin Yazılan Tavsiye Mektubu

Milad Salmani

Mîr Seyyid Şerîf Cürcânî, XIV. ve XV. asrın en tanınmış âlimlerinden biridir. Cürcânî’den sonra torunları Şiraz’da yaşamış ve “Şerîf” ailesi, Şiraz’ın önde gelen ailelerinden olmuştur. Asıl şöhretini fıkıh, kelam, felsefe ve filoloji çalışmalarıyla kazanan Cürcânî’nin mûsıkî ilmiyle de ilgili oluduğu ileri sürülmektedir. Günümüze ulaşan bazı mecmualar ve cönklerde, “Mîr Seyyid Şerîf” adıyla “Hâfız-ı Edvâr” isimli mûsıkî erbabı için yazılmış bir tavsiye mektubu bulunmaktadır. Bu tavsiye mektubu, ilk bakışta Cürcânî’nin yazdığı bir mektup olarak gözükse de dikkatle incelendiğinde onun kaleminden çıkmadığı anlaşılmaktadır. Kuvvetle muhtemel Cürcânî’nin dördüncü kuşak torununun yazdığı bu tavsiye mektubunda geçim sıkıntısı ve hayat şartlarından dolayı başka memleketlere göç etmek niyetinde olan bir müzisyenin zengin bir Şirazlı tarafından himâye edilmesi talep edilmiştir. Cürcânî, durumu anlatmak için berâat-i istihlal sanatından faydalanarak müzik ıstılahlarını kullanmıştır. Bu mektup dönemin mûsıkî literatürüyle ilgili bilgiler ihtiva etmekle beraber sanat erbabının zenginler tarafından himâyesi hususunda soylu ailelerin tavsiye mektuplarının etkili olduğunun bir göstergesi olarak değerlendirilebilmektedir. Ayrıca metnin edebî değerinden dolayı sonraki asırlarda mecmualar içinde kopyalarının bulunması dikkat çekicidir. Bu çalışmada, öncelikle yeni akademik çalışmalar ışığında Seyyid Şerîf Cürcânî ile ilgili bilgi verilmiştir. Akabinde, Cürcânî’nin dördüncü kuşak torunu olan “Mîr Seyyid Şerîf”in kaleminden çıktığı düşünülen tavsiye mektubu incelenmiş ve Türkçeye aktarılmıştır.


EXTENDED ABSTRACT


Mīr Sayyid al-Sharīf al-Jurjānī is a well-known scholar of Islamic geography from the 14th and 15th centuries. Mīr Sayyid al-Sharīf was born in Jurjan, Iran, and completed his primary education there. He spent the majority of his life in Shiraz and died there. Following al-Jurjānī, his children and grandchildren settled in Shiraz, and the “Sharīf” family became one of Shiraz’s most prominent families for centuries. Al-Jurjānī’s main contributions to fiqh, theology, philosophy, and philology earned him widespread recognition. However, some sources claim that this great scholar was also interested in music and wrote a treatise. According to the renowned music theorist Abd al-Qadir Marāghi, al-Jurjānī was well-versed in music theory and even had an opinion on the subject. Marāghi speaks highly of Sayyid alSharīf in his works Jami al-Alhan and Sharh al-Adwar. However, no definitive information exists regarding al-Jurjānī’s independent music treatise.

A letter of recommendation was written for a musician named “Hāfez-e Adwār” under the name “Mīr Sayyid al-Sharīf” in some of the surviving collections and jönks. At first glance, it appears that al-Jurjānī wrote this letter of recommendation. However, when we carefully analyze the letter’s content, it is clear that he did not write it. Because of its literary value, there is more than one copy of this short letter, and all the surviving copies contain two couplets by ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Jāmī. Because al-Jāmī died in 1492, it is impossible that the famous al-Jurjānī, who died in 1413, wrote this letter. Thus, to find the letter’s author, studies have looked for another al-Jurjānī who can be referred to by adjectives like “Allame” and “Sayyid al-Sharīf.” Sadr al-Dīn al-Jurjānī, a descendant of al-Jurjānī and thought to be his fourthgeneration grandson, has been suggested as the author of this letter. According to sources, Sadr al-Dīn al-Jurjānī, a qazasker for Shah Ismail, the founder of the Safavid government, was killed in the Battle of Chaldiran in 1514. Our study focuses on the letter written by Sadr al-Dīn al-Jurjānī, also known as the “grandson al-Jurjānī.” 

The Persian letter of recommendation was written using the barāat-e estehlal style. The first lines of the work make it clear that the subject is music or a musician. This letter addresses a musician who intends to emigrate to other countries due to financial difficulties and living conditions. The author of the letter, al-Jurjānī, addressed a wealthy man from Shiraz, whose name we do not know, and requested that he patronize this musician using musical terms.

The person for whom the letter of recommendation was written is identified as “Hāfez-e Adwār.” It is understood that Hāfez-e Adwār is a nickname rather than a given name. Hāfez  has been a nickname for people who have known the Qur’an and Hadith since ancient times. However, the term Hāfez was also applied to musicians. Furthermore, the word Adwār refers to the science of adwār or the theoretical aspect of music. Therefore, unless new archival documents become available, the true identity of Hāfez-e Adwār, as mentioned in this recommendation letter, will remain unknown.

The advice discussed in this study has been published twice in Iran. Ahmad Gulchīn-e Ma’ānī published the first edition in 1968, based on Ketabkhane-ye Majles-e Shura-ye Mellī, nr. 2327. Meanwhile, Rokn al-Dīn Homāyun Farrokh published the second edition in 1975, based on a manuscript found in a friend’s private archive. This study is based on a publication by Rokn al-Dīn Homāyun Farrokh.

This study presents information on Sayyid al-Sharīf al-Jurjānī in light of recent academic studies. The relationship between Jurjānī’s and music is then analyzed, and an anecdote about al-Jurjānī narrated by ‘Abd al-Qadir Marāghi is translated into Turkish. In the continuation of the study, we will discuss who wrote the letter of recommendation, who the addressee was, and who was recommended. Subsequently, the information is provided on the manuscripts and two printed editions of this letter that have been discovered thus far. Finally, the letter’s Persian text and Turkish translation are provided, along with a list of over fifty musical terms mentioned in the letter.


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APA

Salmani, M. (2024). A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown. Meshk Journal of Religious Music, 1(1), 35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


AMA

Salmani M. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown. Meshk Journal of Religious Music. 2024;1(1):35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


ABNT

Salmani, M. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown. Meshk Journal of Religious Music, [Publisher Location], v. 1, n. 1, p. 35-50, 2024.


Chicago: Author-Date Style

Salmani, Milad,. 2024. “A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown.” Meshk Journal of Religious Music 1, no. 1: 35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


Chicago: Humanities Style

Salmani, Milad,. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown.” Meshk Journal of Religious Music 1, no. 1 (Jul. 2024): 35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


Harvard: Australian Style

Salmani, M 2024, 'A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown', Meshk Journal of Religious Music, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 35-50, viewed 25 Jul. 2024, https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


Harvard: Author-Date Style

Salmani, M. (2024) ‘A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown’, Meshk Journal of Religious Music, 1(1), pp. 35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003 (25 Jul. 2024).


MLA

Salmani, Milad,. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown.” Meshk Journal of Religious Music, vol. 1, no. 1, 2024, pp. 35-50. [Database Container], https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


Vancouver

Salmani M. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown. Meshk Journal of Religious Music [Internet]. 25 Jul. 2024 [cited 25 Jul. 2024];1(1):35-50. Available from: https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003 doi: 10.26650/meshk.2024.0003


ISNAD

Salmani, Milad. A Letter of Recommendation Written in the 15th Century for a Musician from Shiraz Who Wanted to Leave His Hometown”. Meshk Journal of Religious Music 1/1 (Jul. 2024): 35-50. https://doi.org/10.26650/meshk.2024.0003



TIMELINE


Submitted02.01.2024
Accepted22.02.2024
Published Online24.04.2024

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