June 30, 2022

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Khayyam, known as a poet, is in fact expert in various sciences

By Mahmoud As’adi*

Khayyam is like a metaphor because some of his characteristics are evident and some others are hidden or less known to the public.
Khayyam was the inventor of the Persian Jalali Calendar, an astronomer who long before Galileo said the Earth travels around the Sun and had several other scientific and philosophical discoveries. It is not fair to remember him only as a poet.
It is crystal clear that FitzGerald introduced the Persian poet to the world, however, other aspects of Khayyam’s personality have been overshadowed.
Professor Hossein Sadeqi, who has recently translated Khayyam’s quatrains to eight international languages, believes that Khayyam talked about the Earth’s revolving around the Sun centuries before Galileo did.

Khayyam, known as a poet, is in fact expert in various sciences
Mausoleum of Persian mathematician, astronomer and poet Omar Khayyam in Neyshabur

Khayyam used the simile of a lantern for the Earth and lamp for the Sun, and this vividly shows that the former rotates around the latter.
It is also true that Khayyam was the student of Persian jurist Imam al-Haramayn Al-Juwayni and followed Avicenna.
The Dutch scientist Nathan Mirman finds a version of one of Khayyam’s books in the Leiden Library of the Netherlands and was surprised by its scientific wonders.
The theologian Al-Zamakhshar considers Khayyam as a world philosopher and Abolfazl Beihaqi believes that Khayyam dominated all the details of mathematics and other sciences of his time.
Although someone by the name of Nelson and French orientalist Joseph Héliodore Sagesse Vertu Garcin de Tassy had translated Khayyam’s poems before FitzGerald, it was the English poet who made Khayyam an internationally-recognized figure.

Khayyam, known as a poet, is in fact expert in various sciences
Persian mathematician, astronomer and poet Omar Khayyam

On the one hand, the world must appreciate FitzGerald’s efforts to introduce Khayyam as a poet; however, it must be noted that his translation rendered him a one-dimensional person.
Historical research reveals that Khayyam, in his own time, was not well-known as a poet; rather, he was famous as an expert in astronomy, mathematics, and rhetoric.
In a nutshell, he is a scientist and a sage, and the quatrains are only a medium for expressing his thoughts.

*Mahmoud As’adi is an author and literary critic.

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Original News : https://en.irna.ir/news/84758445/Khayyam-known-as-a-poet-is-in-fact-expert-in-various-sciences

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