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Marsia

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Title: Marsia  
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Subject: Urdu, Azerbaijani language, Urdu poetry, Altaf Hussain Hali, Mir Babar Ali Anis, Brij Narayan Chakbast, Ibn-e-Safi, Persian and Urdu, Nazm, Noha
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Marsia

Marsiya (or Marsia, Persian: مرثیہ‎) is an elegiac poem written to commemorate the martyrdom and valour of Hussain ibn Ali and his comrades of the Karbala.[1] Marsiyas are essentially religious.[1]

Background

The word Marsiya is derived from the Arabic word marthiyya (root R-TH-Y), meaning a great tragedy or lamentation for a departed soul.[2]

Marsiya (or elegy) is nearly always on the death of Hasan and Hussein and their families, but occasionally on the death of relatives and friends. It is usually in six-lined stanzas with the rhyme aaaabb. The recitation of these elegies in the first ten days of Muharram is one of the greatest event in Muslim life. A fully developed marsiya is always an epic.[3]

This form found a specially congenial soil in Lucknow, chiefly because it was one of the centres of Shia Muslim communities in Indian sub-continent, which regarded it an act of piety and religious duty to eulogies and bemoan the martyrs of the battle of Karbala. The form reached its peak in the writing of Mir Babar Ali Anis. Marsiya is a poem written to commemorate the martyrdom of Ahl al-Bayt, Imam Hussain and Battle of Karbala. It is usually a poem of mourning. Even a short poem written to mourn the death of a friend can be called marsiya. Lord Alfred Tennyson's poem 'In Memoriam' can rightly be called marsiya. The sub-parts of marsiya are called noha and soz which means lamentation and burning of (heart) respectively.[4]

The famous marsiya writers in Urdu are Mir Babar Ali Anis, Mir Moonis, Salamat Ali Dabeer, Mir Zameer and Ali Haider Tabatabai.Dr.Syed Ali Imam Zaidi (Gauhar Lucknavi)Great Grand son of Mir Baber Ali Anees,Syed Sajjad Husain "Shadeed"

Mir Babar Ali Anis, a renowned Urdu poet, composed salāms, elegies, nohas and quatrains. While the length of elegy initially had no more than forty or fifty stanzas, it now was beyond one hundred fifty or even longer than two hundred stanzas or bunds, as each unit of marsiya in musaddas format is known. Mir Anis has drawn upon the vocabulary of Arabic, Persian, Urdu/Hindi/Awadhi in such a good measure that he symbolizes the full spectrum of the cultural mosaic that Urdu has come to be.[2][5]

Mir Anis has become an essential element of Muharram for Urdu-lovers of the Indo-Pak subcontinent.

The first major and still current critical articulation about Mir Anis was Muazna-e-Anis-o-Dabir (1907) written by Shibli Nomani in which he said "the poetic qualities and merits of Anis are not matched by any other poet".

See also

References

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