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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Birth Centenary of Hafiz Mahmood Shairani (October 5, 1980)

Hafiz Mahmood Shairani, great critic and renowned scholar of the sub-continent, was born at Tonk, Rajputana, on 5th October, 1880. He received his early education on the conventional pattern. He was admitted to the University Oriental College, Lahore, in 1897 and passed Honours in Persian examination in 1901. In 1904 Mahmood Shairani proceeded to England to study law and joined Lincoln’s Inn. He earned the honour of being a founder member of the Pak-Islamic Society. London and served it, first as Joint Secretary and later as Secretary. In 1906 his father passed away and he had to leave his education of law incomplete and got appointment as an Adviser of Oriental Affairs in the famous Luzac and Company.
2. In 1913 Mahmood Shairani came to his home for a short stay but could not return to England due to the breaking out of the First World War. During those idle years he started writing his scholarly essays on the ‘History of Persian, Literature’. Some of his essays which were published in 1921 drew wide applause from every nook and corner of the sub-continent. In 1922 Mahmood Shairani joined Islamia College, Lahore, as a lecturer In 1928 his marvelous book “Punjab main Urdu” was published which is a milestone for the linguistics of the Urdu language. The same year a chair for the Urdu Language was created in the Punjab University and he was selected for the post.
3. Although essentially a scholar of Persian language and literature, Hafiz Mahmood Shairani held complete mastery over a field of diversified subjects such as Urdu language, literature and linguistics, history of Muslims of Iran, Central Asia and India, numismatics and calligraphy. Mahmood Shairani went on retirement in 1 940 and breathed his last on 15th February, 1946.
4. As almost all of his published works are in Urdu, Shairani and his valuable research-works are not very well known in Europe. An academy namely MAJLIS-E-YADGARI-E-HAFIZ MAHMOOD SHAIRANI has been established at Lahore to celebrate the Centenary of this great scholar and also to publish his remaining works.
5. Apart from scores of his scholarly articles the following works of Hafiz Mahmood Shairani have been published in book form;
1. “Rise and Progress of Mohometanism” by Henry Stubbe (edited) London 1911.
2.“Punjab main Urdu” - Lahore 1928.
3.“Majmua-i-Naghz” By Qudrat Ullah Qasim (edited) Lahore 1933.
4.“Tanquid-i-Shirul Ajam” - Delhi 1942.
5.“Firdausi Par Char Maqalay” - Delhi 1942
6.“Prithi Raj Rasa”- Delhi 1943
7.“Khaliq Bari”- Delhi 1944
8.“Maqafat-i-Shairani” in seven Volumes - Lahore 1966 to 1976.
6. Pakistan Post Office is issuing a stamp of 40-paisa denomination on 5th October,
1980, to commemorate the birth centenary of Hafiz Mahmood Shairani,