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The history of folklore, as oral poetic creativity of Azeri people, dates back to the time of first people settlement in the territory of Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan has got one of the richest folklore wealth in the world.
One can still find out rich and deeply meaningful folklore samples in Azerbaijan literature. The signs of mythological and belles-lettres experience are remained both in folklore and classical literature up to day. The mythology of Azerbaijan is not of systematic and full character in comparison with that of the ancient India and the ancient Greek. But it is possible to find out the traces of Azerbaijan mythology in Azerbaijan folklore. They are generally the elements of cosmogonic, seasonal and ethnogonic myths. Those mythic elements, being the result of artistic thinking of primary formation of human society, reflect cosmos and chaos, i.e. mixture in world life, disorder, the creation of world life(order) off this irregularity and the reflection of all this in human society. Cosmos in mythic world-outlook, i.e. rules accepted by most of the people, reflects the process of mutual understanding between the major rule of the society- family, life, man and the nature. Separate details of mythological world-outlook are still remained in the texts concerning sorcery, cheers, curses, tales, godu and the ceremony of counting(sayachy) of the folklore. The old Turkish mythological thinking is the leading motive In the majority of mythological texts. This could be seen cosmogonic myths concerning the creation of the world, as well as in ethnogonic myths concerning the origin of the ethnos and calendar myths concerning season processes. The creation of the mythological texts and their preservation in the form of the elements in folklore texts is closely related with human attitude towards the nature and natural forces. Human desire to effect natural forces by word, movement and dance the provoked necessity to create mythological texts and perform them. For instance, ceremonial songs and dances such as "Kosa-Kosa", "Godu-Godu", "Novruz", "xidir Nabi" are of that kind.
Common features with other Turkish people folklore is another peculiarity of that of Azerbaijan. Many coincidences in oral texts of these people proves that these samples were created in the same ethno-geographical area. "Oguzname"s preserve peculiar series among the epics of common Turkish folklore. The main problems of prototurks found its thorough literary-mythological solution in such epics as "Koch"("Camp"), "Ergenekon", "Shu", "Gayidish"("Return"). The short content of majority of those epics found its reflection in "Divani Lugat-it-Turk"("Divan of Turkish language") by XI century Turkish scientist Kashgarli Mahmud , which still preserve the literary-mythic world outlook of people in the period of migration.
Azerbaijan folklore is rich genres. Tales and epics, proverbs and sayings, reflecting the wisdom of the people, being the genres of epic folklore, greatly influenced the folklore and classic literature of the neighbors. Bayati-the specimen of lyrical genre, has multisided literary-emotional reflection of people life. Ancient Turkish people had their own poetry and it was written in national syllabic and "barmag" ('finger') measures. The number of syllables in different poetic samples is different, but long poems of epical character and epics are generally of seven-syllable form. The poem of such structure is strongly remembered. Bayati-one of the richest genres of Azerbaijan folklore is based on seven syllables.
There are known two kinds of folklore genres-archaic and modern. Sinamalar (believes based on definite actions), sorcery, fortune-telling, oaths, prays, curses take a large position among the genre of archaic folklore. Nevertheless this division is relative, for these genres are widened by new samples appearing during the long history of folklore formation.
According to the character of the event and the process ceremonial folklore and labour songs are known. Ceremonial folklore includes seasonal ceremonies, ceremonies concerning different natural processes, everyday life ceremonies, weddings and funerals.
Bayaties are one of the richest genres of Azerbaijan folklore. The usually reflect lyrical-philosophical feelings of a human being in short poetic form. For instance we may count lulling, petting, elegy, counting words, holavar(labour poems), vesfi-hal (praising), bayati-baglama, bayati-deyishme(competition in ssaying bayati), bayati-tapmaca(bayati-puzzles) and others as the forms of this genre. Bayati is the form of poem containing of four lines with seven syllable in each. The form of rhyme is as follows: a-a-b-a. Ginas (the form of rhyming ) historically takes a large place in Turkish poetry, so we may come across with bayati samples with ginas, too. One of the forms of bayati is that the first line of which contains only rhyme. Such kind of bayati can generally be seen in Karkuk folklore. The first two lines in bayati are somewhat like entrance to the main meaning.
Folk songs are also among wide-spread folklore genres. These are poetic texts of different form with concrete musical motive. Singers still include such songs as "Aman nene" ("Oh, grandmother"), "Ay lolo", "Sona bulbullar" ('Beautiful nightingales'), "susan sunbul"('iris spike') in their repertoire. Folk song is performed in solo, chorus and wrangling forms.
If the epic folklore genre is to be analyzed chronologically, legends should come the first. The main distinctive feature of the legend is -existence of fantastic elements and events. In comparison with fairy tales, having the same distinctive feature, the subject of the legend is not completed, it exist only in the form of a fragment. Based on the object described and the context of the event legends may be cosmogonic, zoonimic, toponimic, ethnographic, religious, historical, heroic, etc. The oldest legends tell us about the universe, the world and the heavenly body.
Stories, as the wide-spread epic specimen of literature, occupy the next position after legends and tales among the folklore genres of Azerbaijan.
Proverbs and sayings are widely spread among the epic genres of Azerbaijan folklore as well. The proverbs and sayings, as the generalized conclusion and result of people century-old experience, are famous among Turkish people, and in many cases somewhat replaced the moral code in the society. The first samples of this genre could be seen in such classical written monuments as "Divanu lugat-it-turk" by Mahmud Kashgari, "Kitabi- Dada Gorgud" ("The book of old Gorgud"). Special proverbs collection-"Oguzname"z, reflecting wisdom of Turkish tribes are invaluable monuments of Azerbaijan folklore as well.
The dramatic genres of Azerbaijan folklore are represented by folk games ans square performances. The drama of "Kosa-Kosa" is the best example to the said. Well known among the people shabihs, based on the tragedy of the family of prophet, appeared after acceptance of Islam, are also included into the folk dramas.
A great group of folklore specimen of Azerbaijan had specially been created for children. They are of lyric, epic and dramatic content. Lyric includes the genres of lulling, petting, caress, child songs; epic includes puzzle, tongue-twisted, garavelli; drama includes children games and performances.
Middle centuries occupy a particular place among the levels of evolution of Azerbaijan folklore. In this period of XII-XVIII centuries, the genre of epos had specially been developed. Great artists like Gurbani, Tufarganli Abbas, Sari Ashig, Xasta Gasim are the lived and created at this period. This period is also popular with the appearance of such love eposes as "Gurbani", "Ashig Garib-Shahsanam", "Asli-Kerem", "Abbas-Gulgas", " Shah Ismail- Gulzar", "Nahir-Zohra", 'Alikhan-Peri', 'Arzu-Gamber', mainly connected with irfan, and heroic epos 'Koroglu'. In comparison with love eposes 'Koroglu' is the collection of different branches, thus continues the tradition of "Dada Gorgud" epos. That is why it is called epos. Though the main subject of "Koroglu" is based ob the concrete historical event- the movement of Jalairilar in Azerbaijan and Turkey in the XVI-XVII, some extra subjects were added to the monument in the process of formation. Here and there one can find mythic motives.
For the reason that the specimen of folklore are anonym, i.e. they do not have an author, ashug literature with concrete authors occupies a particular place in Azerbaijan folklore. The great representatives of art of ashug, foundered in XVI century and still existing up today, are called "ustad ashuglar"-"masters". The firs master ashug in Azerbaijan folklore was Gurbani. Gurbani was elder than Shah Ismail Khatai(1478-1524) and there was some kind of attitude between them. One can take some information about this artist from the history of Sefevids and epos "Gurbani".
Three hundred year long traditions of ashug art reed in the XIX century the great artist of people, Ahug Alesker(1821-1926). In the creation of Ashug Alesker lyrical and moral-didactic motives joined as a whole. The great artist influenced posterior ashug literature and the development of written poem. During 105 year long life, ashug reflected many historical events and persons in his creative activity.
Azerbaijan oral folk creation, especially the art of ashug, deeply influenced the literature of neighboring people, for many of Georgian and Armenian poets wrote in Turkish. Savat Nova, XVIII century Armenian poet, created majority of his works in Turkish(Azeri), the language which his descendants unsympathise.
In written form The first specimen of Azerbaijan folklore came to our times by Herodot, the ancient Greek historian, in "History" (V cent, B.C.). They are the reflection of people literary thinking concerning the reasons of collapsing Midia, an ancient Azerbaijan state, and its occupation by Iran. The legends "Astiyag", 'Tomris' and others found their written reflection in the work of Herodot. Herodot, the work of which is not only the historical , but also a kind of fiction, literarily worked out Azerbaijan legends and created effective psychological scenes. The legend of 'Tomris' deserves special attention from this aspect. Heroin Tomris, the warlord of Midia which was destroyed by shah(king) of Iran, defeated the shah cutting of his head and sinking it into the barrel of blood, so that 'he could quench his blood thirst'…
Mythological aspect in the myth of 'Astiag' is stronger. The main event are based here on dreams and forecast. The weakness of a man in changing the fate defined by divine powers has been presented in the example of Astiag tragedy. Same motives are widely spread in most ancient literatures, as well as ancient Greek literature.
The greatest specimen of Azernaijan folklore remained in written form till our days is the epos "Kitabi- Dada Gorgud". Though different characters and motives of the epos influenced the following Azerbaijan folklore and classic literature, it has not been preserved thoroughly in oral generation. So 'Dada Gorgud' the eposes is also investigated as the specimen of written literature. The same principle is preserved in this article.
THE LITERATURE OF THE MIDDLE AGES
At the beginning of the XIII century in Azerbaijan literature, developed in Arabian and Persian languages under the influence of objective historical reality, we notice that poets and artists creating in their mother tongue increase in number. The ancient literature gives its turn to the beginning of middle ages in Azerbaijan literature.
Lyrical poets like Izzeddin Hasanoglu and Sheykh Safiaddin Ardebilli mostly preferred to create worldwide poetic samples relating to the reality of the life, than lyric and epic samples with Sufi-mystic ideas created by the artists of other people. Three gazals of Hasanoglu in Turkish and one in Persian, a little divan of Sheykh Safi gives us full description of native literature of that period, and forms an idea that the future great poetry has got strong foundation. Sufi-Mystic idea and characters weakly-defined in Hasanoglu's gazals, proves that this flow is gradually degraded. Existing poetic samples proves that he was a great poet, with rich creative experience. They hope to find more of his poetic works.
Among the epic poetic samples of XIII century we must name an anonymous 'Dastani-Ahmed Harami'('The epos about Ahmed Harami') and the epic poem 'Gisseyi-Yusif' by Gul Ali. Both of the works can be called the object of presentation of high humanist values of Islam, in both of them the authors call the reader to the well, justice, philanthropy, honesty, conscience and belief, on which shariat of Islam is based, they call a man to keep far away from inhuman bad patterns. Different from Middle century European knight novels, the main aim here is not the presentation of the events in attractive form, but that of moral ideas on which the epic is based.
'Gisseyi Yusif' relating with sura 'Yusuf' in Koran, speaks about honesty and sincerity and their favor to a man.
Humam Tebrizi (1201-1314), the poet of South Azerbaijan, lived and created the whole XIII century and firs decade of the XIV, was a well-known social-political figure and a talented poet of this time. We know the epic poem 'Dehname' ('Ten Letters') and a 'Divan' in Persian by Humam Tebrizi. In his creativity he used the school of Nizami Genjevi and pleasantly mentioned his name. The main idea in Humam Tabrizi's creation is as same as in Nizami Genjevi: admiration of humanism and a human beauty-the main peculiarity of Turkish national mentality.
The epic 'Gulshani Raz' by Sheykh Mahmud Shabustary (1287-1320), well known in Azerbaijan literature as a representative of Sufism, deserves much attention in comparison with his other prosaic and poetic works. This work, written in the form of philosophical questions and answers, puts forward many scientific-social problems interested modern-outlook intellectuals and men of science of the time and they tried to find answers according to the knowledge of the poet.
Suli Fagih and Mustafa Zarir, Azerbaijan poets of the XIV century created works in mother tongue alike 'Yusif and Zuleykha' written on the motives of Koran. The epic 'Varga and Gulsha' by Yusif Maddah, the artist of the same period, is a corresponding specimen of epic poems written in mother tongue. All abovementioned works played certain roles in further development of epic poetry.
To overview general progression of the that-period literature, XIII- XVI century works need particular study. During the mentioned period, the native literature widens and progresses in quality and prevailed Persian-language literature, nevertheless part of literary creators kept the tradition of writing in Persian. Famous Azerbaijan poets and thinkers wrote in Persian-Nasireddin Tusi (1201-1274), Maragali Ohvadi(1274-1338), Arif Ardabili(1311-) tried to create works following traditions of Nizami. Together with scientific-philosophical heritage Nasireddin Tusi, the author of fundamental moral-didactic work 'Ahlaki-Nasiri', created literary-artistic work. Epic poems of Maragali Ovhadi 'Jami-Jem' and 'Dehname' are considered to be honorable specimen of Azerbaijan epic poetry. Most of philosophical and humanitarian problems mentioned in these works keep their actuality for different societies. Stagnation, hopelessness appeared in the society after Nizami, in many of the artists works, as well as in the epic 'Mehr and Mushtari' by Assar Tebrizi (1325-1390) the pure feeling of love, found its genius description and admiration in 'Khosrov and Shirin' and 'Leyli and Mejnun' by Nizami, is looked upon as great and disinterested friendship between two young people. In the work with a difficult subject we seize weak poetic completeness and clearness in comparison with the level of that of Nizami. At the beginning of the epic the poet himself gives a high evaluation to the art of Nizami and praises its inaccessibility.
'Jami-Jem', the largest work of Maragali Ovhadi, is of encyclopedic character, giving artistic description of most humanist ideas widely spread in literary circle of that time. Alike the glass of Jamshid, the legendary ruler, informing him from everywhere of the world, the epic of Magarali Ovhadi discloses like in the mirror to the reader most of aspects of human and social life, as well as natural events. Azerbaijan literature develops in world direction as in past centuries, and literature takes the position of a lively part of social and political life. That was why the creation of Gazi Burhaneddin (1314-1398), the poet and the ruler of the XIV century, was highly evaluated by Edward Brown, an English orientalist, as the first specimen of world poetry in Turkish literature. While reading chronicle 'Bezm ve Rezm'('The assembly and the fight'), by the historian of the palace Astrabadi, , dedicated to life and activity of Gazi Burhaneddin, one greatly admire how such a great man could accompany his poetic activity with intensive and bloody struggle for realization of his ideals in terrible period of time and create 'Divan', which keeps its importance today. Azerbaijan literary language, founded in the creation of Hasanoglu and Sheykh Safi reaches its pick in 'Divan' of Gazi Burhaneddin, many poetic characters and phrases stabilize, and is getting ready to the use of future artists. Gazi Burhaneddin is the first to use tuyug, the pure Turkish poetic genre. This genre is later met in the creativity of Nasimi and to 'Divan' of a great poet of Uzbeks Alishir Navai.
The principles of humanism formed in literature and social-political idea of this period, reaches its pick in the creativity of Seyid Imadeddin Nasimi (1369-1417). The works of this great poet, are somewhat the next great step towards the world, humanism and democracy not only in the literature of Azerbaijan people , but also that of the Near and the Middle East. Imadeddin Nasimi, after his predecessor Nizami Genjevi, is known as one of the publicists, messenger of ideas of humanism, philanthropy in our literature. While people wanted to relax after several-decade Mongolian oppression, Amir Teymur, the famous conflicting ruler of middle century East, starts his attacks and thus new stream of protesting the cruelty and the violence starts. The creativity of Nasimi is the result of such humanist protest, of opposition to cruelty and violence, of struggle for human rights. The ideas of Hurufism used by the poet, was something like facing. The works of Nasimi released from that facing today amazes modern reader with deep humanist plot, the wealth of respect and love to a human. Different from other hurufists, wrote their works in a special coded language, firstly from his teacher Fazlullah Naimi, the purpose of Nasimi was to protest cruelty and violence in his native language, thus calling people to hate anti-human attitude, to strengthen the wave of protection. His idea of a wise man raised to the level of divine, was dedicated to simple people realized their human rights, free from social ugliness and wild instincts, realized himself as a person. Not only the creativity of Nasimi, but also the whole his life surrounded with legend and tale is a school of courage and bravery, insistence on ones ideas, fearlessness of death for generation. The terrible punish given to the poet by reactionary priests for his freedom loving humanist works-stripping off the skin while alive, made this great artist a model to modern generation, as well as future one.
XV century in Azerbaijan literature is crossing level between the picks Gazi-Nasimi and Khatai-Fizuli. Creation, at that period, of independent states Aggoyunlu and Garagoyunlu in the territory of the country brought some enlivening to literary life, developed native-language poem in character and the plot. Khalili, Hamidi, Kishvari, Hagigi,Sururi, wrote in the native language and Shah Gasim Anvar, Badr Shirvani, generally wrote in Persian, are inseparable from literary picture of the period. The name of Jahanshah Hagigi (the reign 1436-1467), the head of Garagoyunlu state, should specially be mentioned among the names of the poets. As his predecessor Gazi Burhaneddin he found the time to raise his head from bloody fight and create his own divan. But his faith was as terrible as that of Gazi Burhanedin's, his 'brothers' turks were killed by members of Aggoyunlu in terrible battles.
Hamidi, born in 1407 in Isfahan, the capital of Sefevids, 20 years lived in the palace of Fateh Sultan Mahammed for his personal application to Turkey in 50-s of the XV century, the author of a divan of lyrical poems, the historical work 'Tavarixi-ali-Osman'('The history of generation of Osman'), 'Jami-suxanguy'('Speaking piyala'), about fortune-telling and autobiographic 'Hasbihalname' is a well-known representative of XV-XVI century Azerbaijan literarure.
One of the great representatives of XV century Azerbaijan literature is Nematullah Kishveri. He generally wrote his poems under the influence of Navai, but showed new original poetic style in Azerbaijan poetic school. Using original poetic characters in poetry, Kishvari occupies a unique place in Azerbaijan literature. He lived in the palace of Sultan Yagub, the ruler of Aggoyunlu and was acquainted with his contemporary, Habibi, malikkushuara (monarch of the assembly) of Aggoyunlu palace.
The creativity of the that-period poets as Habibi, Shahi, Suruhi played a great role in the formation of the poetry of Khatai and Fuzuli. This is proved by the fact the great Fuzuli under the influence of Habibi's poem, and wrote rich with devices taxmis to one of his gazalz.
In the XV century Azerbaijan literature, literary Azerbaijan language, which in many aspects was, till that period, common with literary language of other Turkish people, possesses distinctive features and since XVI century continues its traditions as an independent literature. XVI century Bagdad literary environment is especially characterized by deep influence to the national poetry. We may come across with names of that-time poets, influenced by Bagdad environment, in 'Gulshani Shuara'('The Garden of poets') by Ahdi Bagdadi, the memoirist of the XVI century and in 'Mejmeul-Hevas'('The assembly of the chosens') by Sadig bey Sadigi, the librarian of shah Abbas, the role of which is indisputable in attaining wisdom of Fuzuli .
In XII-XVI centuries Azerbaijan literature the next pick of Renaissance ideas after Nizami is Muhammed Fuzuli, well known as 'heart poet' in western orientalism. The creativity of Fuzuli had not appeared by itself, great artists helped to form the personality of Fuzuli during a definite period of time. Shah Ismail Khatai(1487-1524), the great statesman and poet of Azerbaijan, the contemporary and somewhat patron of Fuzuli, occupies particular place among them.
Shah Ismail Khatai is the founder of dynasty playing particular role in social and political history of Azerbaijan. In the face of poet-ruler Khatai continued and developed the traditions of his predecessors Gazi Burhaneddin and Mirza Jahan Hagigi, and during his 36 year long life he did not only create and stretch the great state of Azerbaijan, but also prepared the 'passage' to Fuzuli pick with his special role in development of native literature. The literary heritage of Khatai includes works written both in different genres of lyric and that of poem-couplet. Different from Fuzuli, who paid great attention to scientific character of the poem and the usage of poly-layered poetic figures, Khatai preferred to write in plain native language, and created poetic samples such as goshma, gerayli, varsagi, bayati, which are considered to be of second importance in classical poetry. His epic 'Dahname'('Ten letters') of sweet language is the first work written in Azrbaijan language on this theme. The poem presents ten letters from Lover to Beloved written in the form of epical-lyrical tahkiye. Gazels given in the text serve to disclose the mood of the heroes.
Khatai checked his capacity in didactic genre and created the epic 'Neshhetname', calling to breeding and training of younger generation. Shah Ismail Khatai, coming on reign when he was 14 and during 20 year long ruling creating a great empire, as well as with his rich artistic heritage aries the feelings of admiration and proud in the hearts of the following generation. Political activity, life and creative activity of Khatai awoke deep interest not only in Azerbaijan but also in world orientalists. Under the influence of such interest, the life and creativity of Shah Ismail Khatai, Azerbaijan poet and a statesman, is still object of investigation of different generations of orientalists.
In Western civilization the creativity of Muhammed Fuzuli (1494-1556) is often compared with Barokko; the smallest poetic details found here their place, nothing is extra or unknown, poetic elements hardly seen with a simple eye, form 'monolit' artistic organism in harmony. According to individual artistic miracle the creativity of Fuzuli can be compared with the great artists, the masters of a word, such as Dante, Shakespeare, Pushkin, breeded by the world mentality history-long; all these artists are immortal for admirable beauty coming out from their poetic talent. That is why classic Azerbaijan literature realizes its eternity is displayed in a new perspective for different cultural-social generation at different historical period. So every passage-period has its own Nizami, Fuzuli,Vagif and they different from Nizami, Fuzuli and Vagif of previous generation and turn into the carrier of new cultural-aesthehtic, social-ideological functions.
Globalism seen in Nizami, shows itself in immortal works of Fuzuli written in three leading living languages of whole Islam culture- Arabic, Persian and Turkish. The poet has 'Divan's in three languages, philosophical treatise 'Metleul-Etigad' in Arabic. 'Divan' in Persian prevails in number, while 'Divan' in Turkish in quality. His gasidas written in native language may be called purls of this Genre in the middle century literature. The epic 'Leyli and Mejnun'(1536) written in Azerbaijan language, is a unique sample of this genre. It is true that Nizami created works on the same theme in Persian, Navai, Zamiri and Hagigi has that of in Turkish before Fuzuli. But all this epics lack the interpretation of love as Fuzuli did, i.e. Fuzuli managed to create something different from abovementioned. Though the beginning of the epic presents the work as a metaphor to divine love, the whole poem is full of lively, real, accepted by all its contradictories human characters created by Fuzuli.
Fuzuli played a great role in further development and purification of Azerbaijan literary language, turning into the language of a high-level poetry. He also played a great role in the development of the language of prose by a gift 'Shikayetname'. The main text of the largest work of the poet 'Hadigatus-Suada' ('The garden of the luckies'), dedicated to the misfortune of torturer imams, is written in prose, but here and there Fuzuli used poems according to the subject of the context.
Fuzuli is the artist read not only in Azerbaijan, but a great geographical-ethnical area where ogus-turkish language is excellently understood. The works of Fuzuli are famous in Iran, Turkey, Tatarstan, Uzbekistan, and even Uygurstan up today.
XVI-XVII centuries in Azerbaijan literature are also famous as the period of formation of middle century love and heroic eposes. In the works of Gurbani, Ashig Abbas Tufarganli, the representatives of oral folk-lore we are about to see the same experience of Fuzuli in written poetry. Perfect love eposes like 'Ashig Garib', 'Abbas and Gulgaz', 'Asli and Kerem', heroic epos 'Koroglu' as the heir of 'Kitabi-Dadam Gorgud' are the products of this period and are added into the repertoire of folk artists. Folk poetry samples goshma, gerayli, varsagi, bayati, known to us from the time of Shah Ismail Khatai, progresses. In order to show how Azerbaijan eposes of Middle Centuries affect, it is enough to mention that the subject of ' Koroglu' influenced turkmenian, uzbek, tajick, armenian, georgian folk-lore and created their own eposes.
Under the influence of another representatives of folk creation-ashugs, in XVII-XVIII centuries Azerbaijan literature approaches to life and lively language, this was the foundation of the passage to realism in Azerbaijan literature. Though the traditions of Fuzuli still have strong effect, such artists as Saib Tabrizi, Govsi Tabrizi, Muhammed Amani tried to be free from this effect. In the works of Shakir, Nishat and Mahjur, the poets of XVIII century Shirvan literary environment, we may see the description of different problems of the time, as well as artistic expression of anxiety about the terrible life condition of simple people. Molla Veli Vidadi (1707-1808), especially Molla Panah Vagif (1707-1797), with their works written in plain, lively language brought the poetry close to the people. In Vidadi's epic 'Musibatname' many of historical events and personalities found their high poetic-vivid description. In this period the poetry tries to avid the control of special individuals, and embraces the all, becomes more popular. People quickly approach to and join with aesthetic values. The creativity of Vagif plays a particular role in this meaning. With simple, real, world beauty images, from classic romantic art he made a great step towards the realism and defined the further direction of the development of the literature. Vagif was also a famous political figure of his time, for a long time defined the foreign affairs of Karabakh khanate. XVIII century in Azerbaijan literature serves is a passage between middle ages and the beginning of new period.
CLASSICS OF AZERBAIJAN LITERATURE
Manisa khatun Mehseti Genjevi
Manisa khatun Mehseti Genjevi, one of the founders of new poetic school and poetic exhibition in XII century Azerbaijan literature, played a great role in creation and development of the idea of humanism in our literature. Different opinions about her are known to us. The poetess is a heroine the epos 'Amir Ahmed and Mehseti" of the time.The works of Mesheti had been copied out during her life and a divan was created. They say, that the divan of the poetess existed till the beginning of the XV century and was disappeared at the end of that century after the occupation of Heart by Abdulla khan Ozbek. As one of her rubais tells, she tried her hand also in gazals and gitas. As the divan of the poetess is considered to be disappeared for today, her poems, mainly containing of rubais had been gathered up from different historical and literary sources, memoirs and from the epos 'Amir Ahmed and Mehseti".
Though we may come across some information about her beginning with Mehseti period, a great Russian scientist Y.E.Bertels states, that there didn't exist any such poetess and she was not the heroine of the epos. The idea is denied by the fact that, the name of the poetess is shown in praising of the sultan of Seljugs Togrul II in the foreword of 'Khosrov and Shirin' by Nizami , as well as in a story in 'Ilahiname' written by the contemporary of Mesheti, the great sufi poet Farideddin Attar.
Mir Abbas Mirbagirzadeh, first mentioned the name of Mesheti in the 20-30-s of the XX century, came to a conclusion that the poetess was born in 491 (1097-1098); he considered that Mesheti described in "Amir Ahmed and Mehseti" was 20 years old, and this fact approaches her to the period of palace ofsultan Mahmud Seljugi (1117-1132). Iranian authors also base on this fact when speaking about her. This fact is shown by the German scientist Frits Meyer, in his work 'Gozel Mesheti', written in 1984, where he proved abovementioned dates (491 (1097-1098)in the analysis of a rubai, the date of which was known. The article 'The dates of born and the passing away of Mesheti' in the journal of NASA 'Meruzeler'('Reports'). About 200 authors and investigators spoke about Mecheti till up today.
1) Shahab Tabrizi gathered rubaiz, gitas and gazals from different sources in Iran and for the first time in 1957 created a divan of about 200 poems of the poetess.
2) The German scientist Frits Meyer created a result of 20 year hard work monograph 'Gozal Mesheti' in 1963, giving 257 rubais and about 30 poems of the poetess.
3) The Azeri scientist, professor, the doctor of philological sciences Khalil Yusifov wrote "Mehseti Genjevi", where at the end he gave the translations of about 190 rubais of Mesheti into Azerbaijan keeping its original measure of eruz.
4) Rafail Huseynov created scientific-publisistic monograph "Mehseti nece varsa" ('Mesheti in her original').
Mesheti wrote in Persian so popular for that time. The rubais of Mezheti taken from "Amir Ahmed and Mehseti" 11 times were translated into Azerbaijan with syllabic measure. The rubais of Mesheti have also been translated into Russian, English, Germany, French and Italian languages.
The real name of the poet was Ibrahim , the name of his father was Ali. His full name in samples of the Middle Ages is Abu Badil Afzaladdin Ibrahim ibn Ali Najjar ibn Osman ibn Ibrahim Hagaigi Hassanul-Acem Khagani Shirvani . Hagaigi, Hassanul-Acem and Khagani are his pen-names, Afzaladdin is his nick-name, Abu Badil is his kunya and Shirvani is the name of his birth-place.
Khagani was born in 1126 in Shamakhi. His first education he got from his uncle (father's brother) and showed deep interest in different sciences of the time. Showing his poetic talent in his youth Khagani was had been invited to the palace and get the fame. The poet had been arrested it the result of intrigues and envies of the people of the palace. Later the poet visited the Near east countries and reflected his impressions in poetic works. The end of his life the poet spent in Tebriz and died there in 1199. He was buried in "Shairler qebristanligi"('the poets graveyard').
Rich literary heritage of Khagani consists of divan of lyrical poems of 17 thousand stanzas, the epic "Tohfatul-Irageyn", 60 letters- the interesting patterns of verse. The poems in divan are gasida, gazal, medhiye, mersiye, rubai and so on. The gasidas "Shiniyye" and "Medain harabeleri', the poems 'Habsiye' and the epic 'Tohfatul-Irageyn' are of social and political character.
Though the works of Khagani are in Persian and Arabian languages, for many innovations brought to the poem by him and for literary and artistic peculiarities, he represented the school of Azerbaijan.
Many well-known Oriental poets wrote naziras- imitative poems to Khagani's literary works. The investigators of Azerbaijan, Iran, Russia, India, Pakistan and that of Eastern Europe took an active part in the investigation of poet's heritage. Among Azerbaijan scientists investigating the life and the creativity we may count the academician Hamid Arasli, the Caucasus peasant Herischi and Mammadaga Sultanov.
Translation of some of poetic works of Khagani into Azerbaijan language is the achievement of M. Rahim, A.Vahid, M.Mubariz and others.
Nizami Ilyas the son of Yusif is a great master of word and philosopher of the XII century culture of Renaissance. He was born, got his education and created in old Ganja, situated on 'ipek yolu' the way of silk, along which the eastern and the western culture are mixed. In the XI century, being the center of Aran, it was a city of highly developed culture, with a state palace, medrese, medical and scientific institutions. It was also the center of education of the literature, the history, the philosophy, the astrology, the mathematics and the religious sciences.
The first biographical information about Nizami's personality were recorded 300 years after his passing away, thus there is no exact information about his age, the dates of his birth and death, about his visits, his parents and relatives. So the information given about him is only the supposition of the scientists. Nizami mentioned about himself, his father, grandfather and his mother.
Alike his predecessors and the contemporaries Nizami started his activity with writing gazals and gasidas. Being unsatisfied with it he inclined to create his work in the genre of epic novel-epos, extending since the XI century after Firdovsi. His first attempt in this direction was created about his forties "Makhzanul-asrar", the original pattern of epic couplet genre of the XII century. The work is characterized as a combination of tale the epos in belles-lettres. The tales and the eposes reflect the major features of the epic genre-language, devices and the context of the belles-lettres. The mesnevi (couplet) contains of 13 eposes and 7 stories. As a rule the eposes and the stories followed the articles and decoded and gave artistic analysis of their philosophical and ethic significance and the symbols.
"Makhzanul-asrar" ('The treasure of secrets') begins with tovhi and minacat, and forewords about praising and Ascension of the Prophet. It tells about the origin and the essence of Allah, that he is single, he is the creator, he is the inventor and the beginning of everything, he appointed Muhammed excellency (s) to be a prophet to accept and to represent Him, also about Gurani-Kerim (Koran) sent to the Prophet as a book of knowledge for Moslems, etc. there is a essential-contextual relation between the artistic parts of the book and the forewords, time-to time ayes of Koran are mentioned here. Thus 'The treasure of secrets' can be named a complete Islamic literary work about the world, a perfect man and a perfect society.
The second work of Nizami 'Khosrov and Shirin' was written in 1180 and dedicated to Jahan Pahlavan, the ruler of Azerbaijan. Though the theme of the work is about the history of pre-Islamic Iran, the poet used a verse different from Firdovsi. Alike the literary works of 'Khamsa' 'Khosrov and Shirin' begins with minacat, praising and Ascention of the Prophet, addresses to the king. In the part of the book where poet tells about its creation, he also gives the philosophical characteristics of love, here described. He calls it cosmic love and: 'there is no other mehrab of the destiny as love…, the world is (completely full of ) the love'. As to him if love falls on to the heart of the stone, it will attract the inner jewelery of it. It is the love that draws iron to magnet.' With these words, Nizami wished to see beautifully described universal and real love in the hearts of Turan and Iran expressing his wish indirectly by the personages of Khosrov and Shirin. The poet made a hint describing Shirin as a princess of turan from the family of Arasiyab. He had political aim in presenting all abovementioned to the state of Atabeys.
In this literary work Nizami tries to solve cosial-political problems by means of love and moral evolution, but orgy and voluptuousness of Khosrov brings a reat obstacle in front of him; he has been killed by his son Shiruya, as in saying 'The ash is the son of the fire'("Odun oglu kul olar") Comig to a phylosophical conclusion poet points to the periodicity of natural life and says:'Realise yourself to regognise the reality with sensity, if so, inspite of far distance the destiny is like a mirror in front of you. You are made of two worlds.' Nizami states that though a human body may perfect in the four elements, he should avoid the characters and the differences of those elements. He gives the examples of natural events and calls a man to moral-sensitive evolution and to avoid physical pleasures. In the face of a naturalist Nizami tries to solve social problems with natural philosophy.
'Khosrov and Shirin' is an original pattern also for literary- artistic structure and the style. The competition between Khosrov and Shirin and reading of gazals by Barbet and Nakisa under musical accompaniment praising the heroes, proves that the phylosophi of life is reflected in the relation of music and poetry.
The subject of 'Leyli and Mejnun' written by Nizami in 1188, with the request of Shirvanshah Akhistan, had been taken from pre-islamic Arabic folk-lore, the central subject is the nature of aravia and the the live of badavies. The poet tried to show processes that platonic love in lives of tribes carried in the period of Islam. While the center of translation and investigation founded in Bagdad in the VIII century spread the ancient and old Greek literary-philosophical works, rabis in the IX-X centuries showed great interest toward the love andventures of Mejnun and Leyli and gathered their rayets. The process of Islamisation mentioned in stories, happened at this period.
In Islamic period the social ethics found it to be humiliation and unpermittable to manifest love gazals, but the uluhiyyet of love in the life of uzries deeenies any kind of prohibitions. This is named wandering or 'madness' in Islam. Nizami explaines love from the aspect of the Renaissance philosophy, to be the main rule of life and says there is no opposition to this love. Mejnun sees love in Kaba, in the desert, in the sky, and ask Kaba and the stars to help his love.
The natural love of Mejnun failes for it could not passed the obstacles crested by tribal traditiond. Themain attention in the literary work is paid to deep contradictions of innivation, new life and the sense of the renaissance with antiquity and ignorance which was so peculiar at the beginning of the Renaissance.
In forewords of this poem Nizami critsizes Akhsitan's idea to rich the epic with Arabic-persian words and to avoid Turkish elements and charaster. He names Leyli and Mejnun the turks with Turkish language living among the Arabians. The abovementioned thoughts were the chacteristic features of XII century Azerbaijan enaissance.
The epic ''Heft Peyker' ('the seven beauties') written by Nizami in 1197 dedicated to ruler of Maraga Agsungur Korpe Arslan, alike Leyli and Mejnun', is a work of the renaissance the the theme of which is taken from the history of the dynasty of Sasani rulers. The plot of the epic is based on love, social life and statehood of the VIII-X century, when Midia-Greek literary-philosophical cultures synthesized in the period of Islamic renaissance. The love described in the epic is alike that of between 'Khosrov and Shirin', 'Leyli and Mejnun', i.e. cosmic-worldy. This love as to its nature creates peace and equality between the parties and destroys all the exicted contradictions.
In the given epic the cosmos is estaclished in the Earth in the pattern of seven domes. Easc of these domes, symbolizing seven planets for their particular colour and character are adapted to the character and the deeds of human inner and outher body-members and thus reveal the beauties and the faults of human ethics. According to this conception, for its origin a human is the combination of perceptible(material) and mental (moral-spiritual or mental-passionate) worlds.
"Faziletli adamların sheheri' by Farabi greatly influenced the poet for reation of 'Seven beuties'("Yeddi gozel"). In former the body was compared with a city, a country. The conseption of antic Zoroastric and Greek natural-philosophical ides found their literary reflection in this epic.
'Isgencername', supposed to be written in 1200-1203 was dedicated to his dear Nusrateddin Abubekr, by writer's own wish. The theme of this work also was taken from the history of Iran-Greek wars. This as the main pecularity of East renaissance.
The aim of Nizami in this work is not the description of the wars, but introduction of eastern culture to the greek and thereby synthes of the two cultures. When Iskender burnt Iranian teshkeders, the philosophers around him insisted that he should take the texts of 'Avesta' written on the leather, send them to Greece and translate and learn them. Greek scientists confirm that antic greek scientists studied and used the natural-philosophical conceptions of the mugs and. As Nizami writes, Iskender look upon the real events related with the culture and the society absent in his motherland as the miracle of the life. He meets different countries, people and cultures along his way, gets aquainted with school of Indian charbaks, arrivea to diamond field on his way back to the north, the soldiers gather the pieces the diamond with them. The most important cultural point of the work is Iskender's presentation in the'country without a head'. He admired the life, thinking, the system of ruling based on equality in this country. Iskender hears about the water of life in northern darkness and tried to find away there. The search of sources of the eternity existed in the ancient cultures; in shumer epics. This source,in Shumer epic, is shown in the east, possible on the islans of the Caspian lake of the lake Urmu. The aborigen of the island Uminanitdin knows the way out. According to Zoroastric traditions the source of eternity is the plant 'Hoym".
Iskender on his way to the darkness with the Prphet Khizir, losses his way, Khizir finds the water of eternity, drinks it and inform Iskender about it.
Thus Iskender gets the opportunity of prophecy, the pick of mental evolution, not in Greece, butafter getting acquainted with culture, scientific-philosophical world outlook of the east during his trip. According to this aspect "Iskendername" is the final completed work of renissance in the literary- philosophical creativity of Nizami.
Mirza Shefi Vazeh
Mirza Shefi Vazeh is one of the prominent representatives of Azerbaijan literature in the first part of the XIX century.
Shefi was born in 1794 in Ganja in a little fanily of bricklayer. His religious educationhe got in medrese, he perfectly mastered Arabic and percian languages, and get introduced with the works of famous poets of classic East literaure. At the beginning of the 30-s Mirza shefi worked as a teacher in a medrese of Ganja and taught nastal(a kind of signature in Arabic nd Persian) to children. With his artistic talent and deep knowledge of ideal-literary dignity of the poets of the East, he started his creative ctivity in his youth and wrote poems under the pseudonym of Vazeh.
In 1840 Mirza Shefi came to Tiflis (Tbilisi) and was appointed to the position of a teacher of Azerbaijan language in primary school for girls. In 1846 he returned to Ganja, and again started to work as a teacher at a new school. After 4 years Vazeh returnes to Tiflis and became a teacher of Azerbaijan and Percian languages at nobles gymnasium in Tiflis.
Mirza Shefi died in 1852 and buried in Tiflis Moslem graveyard.
In 1844 Vazeh organized a literary society in Tiflis under the name of "Divana-hikmet". The prominent Azerbaijan poets, Abasgulu aga Bakikhanov, Mirza Fatali Akhundov and others lived in Tilis at that time attended that society. Fridrix Bodenschted, German poet and interpreter working as a teacher at that gymnasium, created close relations with Mirza Shefi, took the lessons of Persian from him and became one of the members of the society. In 1846, returning to Germany Bodenschted took the divan of written poems of Mirza Shefi Vazeh, translated his poems into germany and published some of them in the book 'Min bir geje' ('1001 nights') in 1848, in 1851 he printed all the poems under the name of "Mirza Shefinin shergileri"('The songs o Mirza Shefi'). Those poems quickly spread about Germany and admired the readers. Soon the poems had been translated into rensh, English, Russian and other foreign languages and Mirza Shefi turned into a worl-wide famous poet.
The whole his life Mirza Shefi Vazeh was busy with his creative activity and under the influence of the representatives of classic oriental poetry especially, Hafiz, Sadi, Rumi and Fuzuli, gazals, muhammases, rubais, gitas,qəzəl, məxəmməs, rübai, qitə, hajvs (pamhplets) of a highly ideological-literary character, and created a precious heritage. But we have received very few of his poems. Most of them are those translated into German.
The poems of Mirza Shefi Vazeh are different in theme and idea. An important part of them is dedicated to love. They describe feelings and anxiety, joy and trouble experienced by the poet in his own life.
The poet also created poems of critical-satiric character. Here he sritisize the social drawbacks of feudal socity, religious fanatism, dishonest and ignorant priests using the religion for their personal purposes.
Mirza Feteli Akhundov
Mirza Feteli Akhundov is a prominent writer, thinker and social figure played a great role in the development of new period Azerbaijan literature and social, political and philosophical ideas.
Feteli was born in 1812 in Nukha (today's Sheki). The first his education he got in mollakhana (the house of mollas). In 1818 Fatali is taken under the care of Akhund Alesker, the uncle of his mother. Being a prominent glergyman of his time, Akhund Alesker noticed talent and intellect of little Fatali and decided personally to be busy with his education and breeding. He taught him percian and Arabic languages, Koran, religius-phylosophical sciences, introduced him with prominent representatives of classic East literature.
In 1832 Akhundov continued his religious education in madrasa in Ganja and made friends with teacher Mirza Shefi Vazeh. Being a talented and a man of independent thought, Mirza Shefi Vazeh affected the world experience of young Mirza Fatali. Under thisinfluence Akhundov denied to be a clergyman and decide to deal with world affairs.
In 1833 M.F.Akhundov studied in Russian primary school in Sheki. Since 1834 he had been working in the position of an interpreter on Estern languages at chief Caucasus office of Russia in Tiflis. Beginning with that period he had been working as a translator on sivil, and for some time on diplomatic and military affairs near chief judges of Caucasus during the whole his life.
In Tiflis M.F.Akhundov was surrounded with multi-sided and important situation. Here he improved his knowledge of Eastern literature, philosophy and history. Also he got knowledge about the new period literature, culture, social-political and psychological thinking of Wesern Europe and that of Russia, as well as the world sciences.
While served, M.F.Akhundov harldy worked as a poet, playwriter, a literary critic, philosopher and sociologist, created rich reritage.
Since 1857 and durind the whole his life, M.F.Akhundov struggled for correction of Islamic alphabet and replacement of it by latin alphabet at thebeginning of 70-s. He was famous in the Near East and in the countries of Europe as the first 'reformer' of Arabic alphabet.
The great Azerbaijan writer, thinker and social figure M.F.Akhundov died in 1878 february 26(or march 10according to new calendar) and was buried in Tiflis.
Beginning his creativity in his youth as a poet and from time to time continuing his poetic creativity , under a pen-name 'Sabuhi', M.F.Akhundov created in Azerbaijan and percian languages the patterns of classical poetry, as well as that of in folk genres, such as goshma, gerayli, muhammes,also written in verse letters, satiric and etic-didactic poems nad gasidas. 'Sherg poemasə'('Oriental epic') dedicated to the passing away of A.S.Pushkin, his goshma and muhammases wrote under the influence of his predecessors M. P.Vagif and G. Zakir, 'Yeni Elifba haggənda' ('About new alphabet'), satire critisizing viziers of Nasireddin shah, the ruler of Iran and other didactic poems are of special importance among his works.
M.F.Akhundov remained in Azerbaijan literature became famous as a great dramatist. At the 50-s of the XIX century with his high comedy talent Mirza Feteli wrote comedies "Hekayeti-Molla Ibrahimkhalil kimyager"(1850), "Hekayeti musyo Jordan and dervish Mestelik shah", "Jadugini-Meshur" (1850), "Hekayeti-Khirs guldurbasan" (1851), "Serguzeshti-veziri-khani Lenkeran" (1852), "Hekayeti-merdi khesis" (1852), and "Murafie vekilleri", thus founded the national dramaturgy in Azerbaijan literature. With those 6 comedies he strengthen relations Azerbaijan literature with real life and major actual social and moral problems of his time, brought new theme and ideas reflecting necessary demands and needs of the people, founded new realistic literature. In his comedies we find the description of the life of Azerbajan people in 30-50-s, the characters of that time families, social and moral conditions of that time, and also various and colourful descriprion of different social layers and classes.
As a master of the comedies M.F.Akhundov was famous not only in his motherland, but also in Moslem countries of the Near East, in Russia and the West Europe countries.
In 1857 M.F.Akhundov wrote the narrative "Aldanmish kevakib" and founded new tipe literary prose in Azerbaijan literature. In the narrative he supports the conception of European enlighteners as 'the world is ruled by healthy mind' and he criticized social faults of feudal-despotic ruling in Iran and the heads of the state and popularized the ideas of enlightenment and humanism. Akhundov's narration 'Aldanmish Kavakib' is one of the original and splendid patterns of world proseof enlightenment.
In 50-70-s of passed century he wrote series of literary-critical rtcles in azerbaijanand Persian languages and his role in literary critis of Azerbaijan literature is considered to be invaluable.
The critisism of critical-formalist and religious-mystic literature, popularization of new realistic literary pinciples are the main plot and the problems in his literary-crtical and aesthetic views.
In 60-70-s of the XIX century M.F.Akhundov worked as a philosopher and a sociologist and created a philosophical treatise as "Kemaludovle mektublari" philosophical-sociological works as "Hekim ingilis Yuma javab", "John Stuart Milli azadlig hagginda 2, "Mollayi-Rumi ve teskifi" and others. By these works he made a change in philosophical, political and social idea of Azerbaijan and the Moslem countries of the Near East, founded stable basis of the ideology of enlightenment.
The tipological peculiarities of word ideology of enlightenment found their wde, deep and right reflection in philosophical treatises and other philosophical works of M.F.Akhundov. Alike prominent representatives of the enlightenment of XVIII century Western Europe and that of Russia in 40-60-s of the XIX century, in his philosophical-cosiological works M.F.Akhundov confronted the feudal-despotic ruling, system ruling of feudal state , feudal social relations and legal institutions, religion as ideological and moral support of feudalism, middle- century religious-ideological experience, sociological education and the rules of instruction and education and thus popularized new state structure-parliamentary ruling, new social relationsand rules, new liberal- democratic and moral-ethic thinking, as well as new period scientific-cultural achievements in the European countries.
M.F.Axundov was famous as a writer and a philosopher having great role in the development of new-period literary-philosophic ideas of Azerbaijan and the Moslem people of the Near East. He is also considered to be one of the representatives of the movement for the ideology of enlightenment in the world.
Seyid Ezim Shirvani
He is well-known as a talented lyric and satirist of the XIX century Azerbaijan literature. He is also known with his educational poems and prosaic stories and fables. Seyid Ezim was born in 1835 in July 10 in Shamakhi, when he was 7-8 years he lost his father Seyid Mahammed and left with her mother to Dagistan to his grandfather Molla Huseyn. He lived in there for 10 years and there his first education. In 1835 when he was 18 he returned to Shamakhi and here he lived the whole his life, and worked over his literary and scientific-pedagogical creativity. He opened a scholl and gave there lessons. He also gave lessons at scholl 'Mejlis' crated by Seid effendi Unsizadeh attached to Shamakhi ecclesiastical society. After S. Unsizadeh moved to Tiflis Seyid Ezim ruled that school. Since 1877 he at the same time began to work as a teacher of sheriat and the native language at Shamakhi city school. According to pedagogical experience that he got in the period of his work as a teacher he wrote a manual for pupils of Iltisav School, but all his attempts to publish it were desperate. The bodies prohibiting him this action were that-time government powers of Tsarism.
S.E.Shirvani contributed poems and articles of educational, etical and didactic character to all national press organs of the XIX century: 'Ekinchi' (1875-1877), "Ziya (Ziyayi-Gafgasiyye)" (1879-1884) and "Keshkul" (188 -1891). The poet considered publishment of 'Ekinchi' to be a tremendous event in social and cultural environment of Azerbaijan. He represented it with lyrical powm, but he nedded about a year to understand the essence of literary and cultural ideas popularized by the newspaper. Since the middle of 1876 the progressive, educational poems of Seyid Ezim had been oftern published in the newspaper 'Ekinchi', then in "Ziya (Ziyayi-Gafgasiyye)" and "Keshkul". Thus he became famous as a poet-enlightener in the history of literature.
Seyid Ezim was at the head of 'Beytus-Shafa', a literary school functioning in Shamakhi, at the same time he kept close relations and share his poems with literary societies of Baki, Karabakh, Lenkeran and other centers of culture. S.A. Shirvani direred from his contemporaries by tender lyrical gazels of deep sense and ideal-aesthetic peculiarity, and realistic poems. His satiric poems, with their literary-ideal character, formulated the genre of satire in Azerbaijan literature an thus gave it social shape. Among greatly appreciated satires of Shirvani we may name "Gazi saggalini yandirir"(Gazi burns his beard), "Mustahidin tehsilden gayitmasi" and others… The poet also has a scientific work "Shirvan khanliginin tarixi" ('The history of Shirvan Khanate').
S.E.Shirvani died in Shamakhi in 1888. His works had regularly been published in books and ther exist many articles, dissertations and monographs about him. His life and creativity is also studied at schools.
Mirza Alekber Sabir
M.A. Sabir, popular as real national poet in Azerbaijan literature was born in 1862, May 30 in Shamakhi. His first education Alekber got in mollakhana (the school for mollas), then he went t scholl opened by S.E.Shirvani and in his early ages began his creative activity. The first literary works of Sabir were analised and edited by his teacher, the famous poet S.E.Shirvani, who gave his young pupil his own advices. The pen-mane of Alekber was 'Sabir'. His first poems, calling character, coming out rom the spirit of the XX century were published in 1903 in newspaper 'Shargi-Rus'.
His poems of social character were published in 'Hayat'(The life) and satiric poems in "Bir mejlisde on iki kishinin sohbeti" (Talks of 12 men at a meeting) in 1905 and 1906. The fame and talent of Sabir as a poet riched its pick in pages of the journal 'Molla Nasireddin'. His first satiric work in the journal was "Millet taraj olur, olsun, ne ishim var?!"(Let the nation be destroyed, be it far from me) which founded a revolutionary satiric school with him at its top. Sabir's poetry at the same time played a reat role that 'Molla Nasreddin' became popular. The poet published his "Hop-hop", "Gulayan" (Laughing), "Aglar gulayan" (Crying laughing), "Chayda chapan" (Galloped in the river ), "Gabagda geden zenjirli"(The chained going ahead), "Mejzub", "Nizedar", "Yetim gəzjəg"(Poor little girl), "Goja iranlə" (An old Iranian) and other secret satiric poems not only in 'Molla Nasreddin', but also in press organs as "Bahlul", "Zanbur", "Hayat", "Irshad", "Teze hayat"(New life), "Seda", Hagiget" (The truth), "Gunesh"(The sun), "Yeni hagiget"(New truths).
Sabir's works (poems for children) were also published in journals "Dabistan", "Rehber", and the manuals "Birinji il" (The firat year ), "Ikinji il" (The second year), "Yeni mekteb" (A new school). We may also name famous poems of the poet as "Faxriyya", "Satiram!", "Bura say!..", "Okhutmuram, el chekin!..", "Pula tavajjoh", "Khasisin heyfi, varisin keyfi", "Nefsin gezeti, eglim merezi", "Istigbalimiz laglagdir", "Istigbal bizimdir", "Shekibai", "Ruhum!" and others. Along with his satiric poems he published publisistic articles and articles of different kind in the periodicals (in newspapers "Hayat", "Irshad", "Taze hayat" etc.), where he touched upon major social-national problems of the time. Those articles were "Geyrat"(Honour), "Islamiyyetin insaniyyetperverliyi"(Humanity of Islam), "Juma"( Friday), "Zaman ne isteyir?! Amma biz…"(What does time whants?! And we…). Sabir is also the author of topical satires.
Together with his literary activity after examinations in 1908 M.A.Sabir got the right of teaching, opened a shool in Shamakhi under the name of 'Ummid'(The hope), gave there lessons, later worked as a teacher at public school in Balakhani village of Baki. He took n active part in oundation of libraries-reaing houses, staging of shows for theatre and other mass cultural measures.With his literary creation and deeds, to 'elimination of troubles' brought by Azerbaijan abolishment by Armenian agressors, he showed himself as a real citizen
M.A.Sabir died of liver-desease in June 12 in 1911. His works were regularly published under the name 'Hophopname'. Many scientific articles, monographs and dissertatons had beeen dediated to him.
At the beginning of he XX century Jalil Mammadgulu oglu Mammadguluzadeh, who is named together with world literature classicists, was famous as the creator of Azerbaijan literary school of critical realism and of revolutionary- democratic and catiric journal 'Molla Nasreddin', also as writer innovator, dramatist, journalist, literary and cultural figure, found new way in national literature. He popularized the ideas of humanism, democracy and freedom.
J. Mammadguluzadeh was born in Azerbaijan, in ancient Nakhchivan, he studied Arabic, Persian languages, and graduated from Azerbaijani section of Gori Teachers Seminary of Georgia(1882-1887). Here he studied about the cultures of the East and Europe, the creativity of W.Shakespeare, M.Volter, V. Hugo, A.S.Pushkin, L.Tolstoy, N.Gogol and others and became famous as a prominent writerand a dramatist.
The great master of short stories, the author of wise comedies, a prominent journalist, a citizen and an intellectual J. Mammadguluzadeh were troubled with the faith of both parts of Azerbaijan, the North and the West, he reflected people dreams of freedom, their difficult life and criticized bordering countries, exploitating powers, social backwardness, passivity and fanatism.
His work at newspaper 'Shargi-Rus' in Tiflis in 1905, publication of literary works and slogans about revolution and freedom in printing-house 'Geyrat', deep investigation of social-political events and the life of the people formed him as an artist with new wrld outlook. He created new works under the inluence of the events of 1905. His tales "Pocht gutusu" (Post-box), "Usta Zeynal" (Master Zeynal), "Iranda hurriyyet" (Liberty in Iran), "Rus gizi" (Russian girl), "Konsulun arvadə"(Consu'l wife), "Gurbanalibey'' and many others turned into a new event in Azerbaijan literature and in that of the Near East. The comedies "Oluler", "Anamən kitabə", "Deli yəgənjagə", "Kamancha" opened a new page in Azerbaijan literature and taegd on the Azerbaijan scene. "Oluler got succession in the theathes of Turkey, Rusia, Iran, the Middle Asia, people stretched along the bank of Volga, and turkish people of the Northern Caucasus, and resultened in creation of new literary and artistic figures.
Another character brought the fame to J. Mammedguluzadeh in social thought, the history of literature and culture of Azerbaijan, beginning with 1906 during 30 years was publication of revolutionary satiric journal 'Molla Nasreddin' in Tiflis, Tebriz, Baki and other great cities, together with O.F.Nemanzadeh , A.Gamkusar and other his friends in deed. This journal played a great role in national-moral, literary-cultural developemt and renaissance of our people, as well as that of the Near East.
His works have been published in the edition of 100 000 copies. 100 year anniversary of poets birth was celebrate in the wold according to the decosion of UNESCO in 1996. J. Mammedguluzadeh is with us today-in independent Azerbaijan.
(Huseyn Abdulla oglu Rasizadeh) was born on 24.10.1882 in Nakhchivan and died on 5.12.1941 in province of Irkutsk in deportation.
He is a prominent poet and a dramatist of Azerbaijan. He was born in Nakhchivan in the family of a glergyman, the primary education he got there in molakhana, the secondary education in a new-ethod school 'Mektebi-Terbiye' founded by M.T.Sidgi, a prominent intellectual and teacher(years 1894-98). Here he wrte the first poems in classical style under the pen-names 'Gulchin' and 'Salik'. In 1899-1903 he had been to Southern Azerbaijan and continued his education in Talibiyye school of Tebriz. He had graduated from literary section of Istanbul University (1909), and gave lessons first in Nakhchivan, then in Ganja, Tiflis and in 1915 in Baki.
Javid's literary heritage inspired from ancient Eastern culture, having an important, gradually sparkling, everlining postion taken in Azerbaijan culture, literary thinking and the treasure of the theatre, as well as from paterns of Azerbaijan classical poetry and from deeply moral-philosophical samples. He is one of XX century Azerbaijan romantism.
Javid's heritage is literary rich in genre and the form.he is the author of lyrical poems, lyrical and epic poems, the first prosaic tragedy and dramas in Azerbaijan literature. His first book of poems "Kechmish gunler" was published in 1913. Lyrical poems of social, philosophical and etical caracter prevailed at the beginning of his creativity ("Oksuz Anver", "Choban turkusu", "Kichik serseri", "Dun ve bu gun", "Gadən", "Gormedim", "Veremli gəz" etc.) where he gave the description of troubles of a human in the family and in his life, tyranny and unjustice of the time and difficulties brought by it. In "Mezlumlar uchun", (1914) "Guruba garshə", "Herb ve felaket" (1916) "Herb allahə garshəsənda" (1917) are the reflection of hatred to the wars and imperial policy, bringing troubles to the mankind.
Huseyn was generally known as a dramatist. His philosophical and historical tragedies, family-life dramas created a new step in Azerbaijan dramaturgy, from the point of stylistics, the norm of writing, innovation of the form, and enriched the culture of national theatre in a new sense. He highlited world-wide, social and political and cultural problems in a special way. The first prosodic play 'Ana' (Mother) (1910) praises nobility, loyalty, courage, in tragedy 'Maral' (1912) he speaks of personality and freedom of a woman, in first prosaic tragedy of Azerbaijan literature 'Sheykh Sanan'(1914) he protests national and religious fanatism separating people.
The same ideas are repeated in drama "Sheyda" (1917), and epic "Haggini sen mubarize ile ala bilersen" (1918).
In tragedy 'Iblis' (1918), having a particular place in his creativity, all reactionary, pressing orces of the time, imperialist spheres--'the best cultural wilds of the XX century' are generalized in the personage of 'Iblis'(The Devil).
In historical dramas written by him in 20-30-s, suah as "Peygamber" (1922), "Topal Teymur" (1925), "Sayavush" (1933), "Khayyam" (1935), the role of historical figures, the ruler and the people, frre thought and reaction are the main problems he overviewed with poetic language.
Javid's poetry is different for its literary artistism, deep emotiveness and sincerity.
THE LITERATURE OF THE XX Century
The Bolshevik Russia could not stay indifferent to the formation of the independent Azerbaijan, which bordered with such Islamic countries as Iran and Turkey, in the southern borders of the communist empire. As a result, the first democratic government of Azerbaijan was overthrown by the 11th Red Army. This resulted in the establishment of a soviet government in Azerbaijan. J.Mammedguluzadeh and Huseyn Javid saw the true face of 'the proletarian dictatorship' and 'the paradise of communism' and seized its anti-Azerbaijan policy beforehand.
The repressions of the 1930s began in the very first months that the Soviet power was established. The first intellectual victim of that period was Firidun bey Kocherli (1863-1920), shot by Armenian dashnaks in a Ganja prison. He was the director of the Gazakh Teachers Seminary, the well-known scientist and literary critic, the author of the first multi-volume history of Azerbaijani Literature, and a great enlightener. Those repressions represent an extremely sad page in the history of Azerbaijani literature in the Soviet period. Many guiltless workers and peasants were among sentenced for no particular reason. The intellectuals were however the main victims of the Bolshevik and Dashnak persecution. It was evident that by means of murdering, deportation and sending to prisons of the best intellectuals of Azerbaijan, the Stalinists were trying to prevent the nation from self-recognition, to destroy moral traditions and turn the nation into blind slaves of the communist ideals. The executors of those "special" merciless orders, which came from the higher circles, were terribly afraid of intellectuals and were therefore merciless to scientists, who knew history, philosophy, language, alphabet, culture, psychology, national mentality. They exercised a similar approach to writers, poets and dramatists, who with their literary works written in native language and closely associated with the national spirit, were preventing the destruction of national ideals; and to creative intellectuals as whole.
Among the repressed artist of that time were well-known figures of Azerbaijan literature, arts, literary criticism and linguistics. The list includes, among others, the great dramatist H.Javid; a talented poet M.Mushfig, well-known prose writer and literary critic S.Huseyn; a poet and author of the first and only anthem of the Republic of Azerbaijan A.Javad; literary man and scientist Y.V.Chamanzeminli; the professor of philology, political scientist B.Chobanzadeh; the rector of the Baku State University and writer T.Sh.Simurg; the founder of the first Oriental Conservatoire in Baku Khadija khnum Gayibova; a theologian scientist and gazi of Baku Mir Mahammad Kazim aga; folklore expert H.Zeynalli, the great performers of tragic roles on our stage A.M.Sharifzadeh, U.Rajab and many others... Except Y.V.Chamanzeminli and H.Javid, who died in the deportation and in prison, all the others were shot dead. Murderers did not pay attention to the age of their victims - they were judged and punished very quickly. One of the first translators of Gurani-Kerim in Azerbaijan, the Baku gazi Mir Mahammad Kazim aga was shot at the age of 83 and M.Mushfig at the age of 29. In difficult and contradictory social condition Mikayil Mushfig (1908-1937) enriched the national poetry with immortal works alike "Ohu, tar!" (Sing, Tar). He only had time to create for 10 years, the smallest period known in the history of world poetry. Nevertheless the works published during this period left deep traces in national literature. Mushfig's works are known for exciting feelings, romantic moods, fluency in language. All these attributes ensure an everlasting popularity and high artistic values of Mushvig's works.
Because of the global events in the first decades of the XX century and the social concussion in the region, especially after the occupation of the ADR and the following repressions of the 30s the creative intellectuals of Azerbaijan were constantly persecuted, and were obliged to migrate in order to survive and continue their literary activity. Those who were taken as prisoners of war and prohibited from returning to their homeland during the war against the German fascism, had to find a shelter abroad and are scattered now through Asia, Africa, Europe, America and even Australia.
All intellectuals who migrated from Azerbaijan had something in common - they retained, represented and popularized the national literature and cultural mentality of Azerbaijan, the ideas of azerbaijanizm everywhere they settled. They did their best to draw the attention of foreign powers and communities to the troubles Azerbaijan was facing. Some of those who migrated from Azerbaijan, are still writing today and got vast heritages of literature, scientific-philological articles and publications. These are Alibey Huseynzadeh, Ahmedbey Agaoglu, Mahammed Emin Resulzadeh, Mirza Bala Mahammedzadeh, Alimerdanbey Topchubashov, Jeyhun Hajibeyli, Samed Agaoglu, Ahmed Jaferoglu, Abdulvahab Yurdsever, Almas Ildirim, Benin (Ummulbanu), Nagi Sheykhzamanli, Mammad Sadiq Aran, Huseyn Jamal Yanar, Teymur Ateshli, Musa Zayam, Ibrahim Arslan, Ali Azertekin and many others. After Azerbaijan re-gained its independence the "Caucasian Days" novel by Ummulbanu, "The Black Epos" collection of poems by A.Ildirim, "Siyaseti-furuset" monograph by A.Huseynzadeh and "Azerbaijan shairi Nizami" ('The poet of Azerbaijan NIzami') by M.A.Rasulzadeh, stories by J.Hajibeyli, publicism of M.B.Mahammedzadeh were published in Baku.
The dependence of literature on strict directives, violations of the freedom of word, limitation of literature fantasies with the state policy and other negative facts led to depression, pessimism and passiveness in literature and cultural life.
Nevertheless, this period brought such talents as J.Jabbarli, M.Mushfiq, S.Vurgun, O.Sarivelli, R.Rza - greatly talented artists who frequently affected ideological frames with their Aesopian language. This fact rejects the theory that the literature was entirely dependent on the socio-political situation. We may prove it with a series of strongly patriotic poems 'Southern Cities', the poem 'A Mother and A Postman', gazelles dedicated to the pure feeling of thwart love written by Suleyman Rustam (1906-1989). He was strongly influenced by "The Golden Pens" by Aliaga Vahid (1895-1965), and started his creative life as a Komsomol poet. The delicate and deeply meaningful gazelles, created by the great poet Aliaga Vahid (1895-1965) during the period, when gazelles were deemed as outdated and stylistically limited genre by the official circles, were immortalized by the love of people.
One of the most famous novelists was M.S.Ordubadi (1872-1950), who wrote several famous historical novels particularly. Novels "A Sword and A Pen", dedicated to the Atabeyler state of Azerbaijan and great Azerbaijani poet Nizami Ganjevi, as well as 'The Misty Tebriz', about the freedom movement in the south, written by him have still preserve their historical and aesthetic value. It is impossible to forget about the role of Y.V.Chemenzeminli, the author of the novels "Iki od arasinda" ("Gan ichinde") and "Gizlar bulagi", Suleyman Rahimov (1900-1983), the author of the epopee "Shamo" and the novel "Sachli", Mir Jalal (1908-1978), the author of the novel "Achiq kitab" and laconic tales, Abulhasan Alekberzadeh (1904-1986),the author of the epopee "Dostlug galas?" and the novel "Yokhushlar", Mirza Ibrahimov(1911-1993), the author of the novels "Gelejek gun" and "Pervane".
The dramaturgy of the Soviet period is inseparable from the names of Huseyn Javid, Suleyman Sani Akhundov, Jafar Jabbarli, Mirza Ibrahimov, Samed Vurgun, Sabit Rahman, Anver Mammadkhanli, Ilyas Efendiyev, Shikali Gurbanov and others. Huseyn Javid (1882-1941) is a great playwright and a poet who enriched the literature of Azerbaijan with genre and the theme during his 30 year-long creativity. His works widened the sphere of the themes in our literature, brought global and deep conflicts, tender-hearted, passionate characters to our dramaturgy. He founded the genre of tragedy in verse with such works as "Ana", "Sheykh Sanan" and "Iblis". In the Soviet period e enriched his creativity with plays "Peygamber" (1922),('the Prophet'), "Topal Teymur" (1925), ('Lame Teymur') "Knyaz" (1929), "Sayavush" (1933), "Khayyam" (1935), "Iblisin intigami" (1936) ('The revenge of the Devil') and the epics "Azer" (1923-1932).
Being the heir and the successor of the national dramaturgy founded by M.F.Akhundzadeh, Jafar Jabbarli (1899-1934) enriched it with the problems and the heroes presented in "Ogtay Eloglu", "Od gelini", "Sevil", "Almas".
Samad Vurgun (1906-1956) www.samedvurgun.com was one of the great poets and play-writers o the Soviet period Azerbaijan literature. He philosophically perceived the mysterious beauty of Azerbaijan nature, the history of heroism of Azerbaijan people, our humanist values and reflected them in his poems and epics with a special romantic significance. The past century Azerbaijan poetry is bound, for national character of its language, harmony, figurativeness to the creativity of S. Vurgun, his poem 'Azerbaijan', epic poems 'Aygun'and "Mugan", as well as dramas in verse "Vagif" and "Insan". The importance of 'Vagif' in the process of self-realization of Azerbaijan people in the period of constant suppression of the Soviet regime, can be compared with the role of 'Korolu' opera by Uzeyir Hajibeyov.
The poems and the epics written by Rasul Rza (1910-1981) in free measure played particular role in development of poetic conscience in the Soviet period of Azerbaijan literature. The poetry of innovator R.Rza is distinguished with philosophical lyricism, the vividness of the ideas and the emotions and original poetic characters. His philosophical poems from series of 'Rengler'('Colours"), lyrical epic poems 'Fuzuli' and "Gizilgul olmayaydi" are the best patterns of Azerbaijan poetry.
One of the major peculiarities of Azerbaijan literature in the Soviet Period as its constant ruling by ideological organs, the direction of literary activity by directives. The main were: the resolution 'About the policy of the Party in artistic literature' by CC RK(b)P in 1925, the decision 'About reconstruction of literary-artistic organizations' by CC CUK(n)P in 1932 and 'About the periodicals 'Zvezda' and 'Leningrad'' in 1948, the decision 'About the condition of Azerbaijan Soviet Literature and measures for its improvement' by CC Azerbaijan K(b)P in 1948, the decision 'About literary-artistic criticism' by CC Sov.UKP in 1972 and many other political directives. Artistic method of socialist realism defined at the First Common United Congress of Soviet writers in 1934 restricts the activity of the artists and made them to continue their creation within definite frames. After criticism of 'Zvezda' and 'Leningrad' for supposed misinterpretation of the soviet way of life and swelling of faults in social life one may notice in Azerbaijan literature the appearance of patterns based in 'conflictlessness', as well as in the literature of other people of USSR.
Ilyas Efendiyev (1914-1996) is distinguished with his special role in enrichment of Azerbaijan verse with vivid, lively, artistic characters and different devices, as well as development of psychological-lyrical style of dramaturgy. A generation of actors and producers had been grown up in performances staged upon 15 plays created by him during half of the century ('Sen hemishe menimlesen", "Mehv olmush gundelikler", "Mahni daglarda galdi", "Bullur sarayda", "Hurshidbanu Natavan"), appeared 'the theatre of Ilyas Efendiyev'. Ali Veliyev, Huseyn Ibrahimov, Huseyn Abbaszadeh, Bayram Bayramov, Jemil Alibeyov, Vidadi Babanli, Eleviyye Babayeva, Suleyman Veliyev, Azize Ahmedova, Afgan Asgerov, Gulhuseyn Huseynoglu, Alibala Hajizadeh and others brought new themes to Azerbaijan verse and filled it with new personages.
Beginning with the 60-s, softening of social-political atmosphere and with weakening of ideological ties of USSR, appeared young talented artists with works criticizing political situation of that time. Among them were such prosaists and poets as Isa Huseynov, Mammad Araz, Sabir Ahmedov, Anar, Akrem Aylisli, Elchin, Sabir Rustamkhanli, Alekber Salahzadeh and Ferman Kerimzadeh. One should specially name Ismayil Shikhli (1919-1994), recently started his creative activity and his novel 'Deli Kur '. As their predecessors, the abovementioned artists used the symbols and the language of Aesop. This process was already irrevocable and could be evaluated as the 'beginning of the end'. The cross to the 60-s got its beginning and continued with the participation of the generation of 40-s and 50-s and the earlier periods. Many works of an innovator Rasul Rza (1910-1981), especially poems known under the name "Gizilgul olmayaydi" and "Rengler", "Sari dana", "Kefli Iskender", "Men torpagam" Should be considered to be the first patterns on this aspect. The novel "Yeralti chaylar denize akhir", by Mehdi Huseyn (1909-1965), well known as prosaist, play-writer and critic, reflects the real description of the fortunes of the personages with the same mood. Nevertheless, the great event of the literature of 60-90-s the appearance of 'sixtieths'. So after this appearance turned into the real moral opposition to military regime with whole its spirit and essence, thus played an active role in moral ideal formation of today's national movement for democracy and independence.
First of all the 'Sixtieths' deepened its attitude towards the man and his inner world. The literature always based on the man and it goes without saying that literature was named 'study of a human nature'. The attractive point is that the 'Sixtieths' returned the topic of a 'man' into the literature as a new problem of the time. The depth of moral-psychological world of a person, an individual, simple members of the society were the aspect which interested them. The time, moral reality in their narrative and stories were not understood as 'social system and structure' but as aesthetic world of conscience, as the criterion of ethics and culture and turned into the subject of literary analysis. Thoughts and imagination of the heroes in these works contradicted the conception of 'a soviet man' in the literature. The popular personages of the 'Sixtieths' are pure lovers of justice, whose strangeness was looked upon as madness, who could not find their place in the society and thus sometimes wandering, nevertheless being the real human, admiring human feelings. In novels and narratives of historical character, we often see the view of history of state system, the past rich with heroism of the people urged to forget their national beginning and state traditions under socialist suppression, their dreams of freedom and independence.
Movement for freedom of word and thought, for freedom of political thought, pluralism, national sovereignty and social justice, began in the literature and continued in 70-90-s, realized its perspective purposes after Azerbaijan get political independence and sovereignty.
In the poetry and dramaturgy of such artists as Bahiyar Vahabzadeh (1925), Nabi Khazri (1924), Nariman Hasanzadeh (1931) we may seize the abundance of honorable pages of the history of people and corresponding lyrical and psychological moments. Poems of abovementioned poets, as well as the poems, different with their actuality and the epic 'Nasimi' by Gabil (1926) the works of Adil Babayev, Islam Safarli, Huseyn Arif, Gasim Gasimzadeh, Aliaga Kurchayli are valuable patterns of our literature.
In the literature of this period in the creativity of Imran Gasimov, Magsud Ibrahimbekov, Rustam Ibrahimbekov, Chingiz Abdullayev, Chingiz Huseynov, Vladimir Gafarov, Natiq Rasulzadeh, Alla Axundova and others, wrote in Russian, we see the continuation of an old tradition-creation of the patterns of national literature in other languages. Their works periodically published in Baku, Moscow and the countries of Europe are precious patterns enriching our literature and widening to it the range of attraction.
Ali Kerim (1931-1969), Khalil Rza (1932-1994), Jabir Novruz (1933-2002), Mammad Araz (1933-2004), Fikret Goja (1935), Fikret Sadig (1930), Alekber Salahzadeh (1941), Isa Ismayilzadeh (1941), Sabir Rustamkhanli (1946), Famil Mehdi (1934-2002), Tofig Bayram (1934-1991), Arif Abdullazadeh (1940-2002), Huseyn Kurdoglu(1934-2003), Ilyas Tapdig (1934), Musa Yagub (1937), Chingiz Alioglu (1944), Nusrat Kesemenli (1946-2001), Zalimkhan Yagub (1950), Ramiz Rovshan (1946) and other poets created new basis for new level of Azerbaijan literature and played an active part in this process.
Akrem Aylisli (1937) is one of the writers continuing the search of new personages of national verse in the 60-s. His lyrical narration "Menim negmekar bibim" (1966)('My songster aunt'), works "Kur giraginin mesheleri"('The forests of the bank of Kura'), "Bullur kulgabinin nagili" ('The story of crystal ash-tray') reflect the sincere attitude towards the real life and the people.
Anar (1938) is one of the talented representatives of New Azerbaijan verse. The first successful original patterns of Anar's narration is 'Agg liman' ('White port')(1967). He is also famous as a play-writer and the scrip writer. The scripts of "Dede Gorgud", "Uzun omrun akkordlari"('Chords of a long life'), the dramas "Sheherin yay gunleri"('Summer days of the city'), "Tehmine and Zaur" are ones enlarging Azerbaijan literature.
Elchin (1943) is a representative of the same flow. The narrations "Dolcha", "Baladadashin ilk mehebbeti", "Shushaya duman gelir", series of stories, novels "Mahmud and Maryam", "Ag deve", "Olum hokmu" , palys "Menim erim delidir", "Menim sevimli delim" brought him to the level of well-known representatives of modern Azerbaijan literature. Being at the same time a literary critic is the author of monographs "Tenqid ve edebiyyatimizin problemleri"('Critics and the problem of our literature'), "Klassikler ve muasirler"('The classics and the contemporaries'), "cazibe sahesi"('the sphere of attraction').
MODERN LITERATURE IN SOUTHERN AZERBAIJAN
Following the division of the territory of Azerbaijan between Russia and Iran in first part of the XIX century, the literary processes started to diversify in the northern and southern parts, which previously had a similar literary-cultural development in the course of history. Lower educational level and writing skills as compared to northern Azerbaijan, prevented the development of literature in the south for decades. During the period of the national movement for liberty, the literary and cultural life in Southern Azerbaijan, enjoyed a short period of revival and began to develop rapidly, only to become a hostage of the Persian chauvinism soon after.
The first period of liberty from 1918 to 1920 was dominated by Sheikh Muhammed Khiyabani, while the second from 1945 to 1946 - by Sayid Jafar Pishavari. These periods gave freedom of writing books and literary works in mother tongue. Patriotic themes were the main highlight of the national press. The young talents who had their first writing experience in mid-1940s, were given next opportunity to publish their works in Varlig periodical, published in Azerbaijani language, only after the Islamic Revolution victory 30 years after. The most popular writers and poets Hammal, Kerimi, Nitgi, Biriya, Sheyda, Sonmez, Sahand, Sahir, Okhtay, Savalan, Farzane, some of whom are still alive. Founded by the great scientist and public figure of Azerbaijan, Javad Heyyat and published for over 20 years, Varlig played a very important role in the development of modern literature in Southern Azerbaijan.
Muhammedhuseyn Shahriyar (1904-1988) also played a special role in the development of South Azerbaijani literature. He studied Persian in secondary and high schools and created under a strong influence of Nizami Genjevi, Hafiz Shirazi and S.E.Shirvani. Shahriyar started writing at an early age and grew into a prominent figure of modern Iranian and Azerbaijani poetry. He was particularly keen on social lyrics, in which he reflected on daily problems of the world. The largest work Shahriyar wrote in Azeri was a two-part "Heydar Baba". This epic inspired numerous works in Southern and Northern Azerbaijan, and even in Turkey. The development of literature is currently progressing in Southern Azerbaijan. B.Azeroglu, A.Tude, M.Gulgun, H.Bulluri, S.Tahir, who continue their creative work in the Northern Azerbaijan, have enriched the literary heritage of both parts of Azerbaijan with highly valuable contributions.