Poetry Kaleidoscope: Guide to Poetry

Urdu Poetry

Beher | Maqta | Qaafiyaa | Radif

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Like other languages, the history of Urdu poetry does not have a firm starting point and shares origins and influences with other linguistic traditions within the Urdu-Hindi-Hindustani mix. Literary figures as far back as Kabir (1440 - 1518) and even Amir Khusro (1253-1325 AD) deserve mention as influences later Urdu poets draw on for inspiration as well as intellectual and linguistic sources. The tradition is centered in the Indian subcontinent. Following the Partition of India in 1947, it found major poets and scholars residing primarily in modern Pakistan and India. Mushairas (or poetic expositions) are today held in almost every major metropolitan area in the world. Over this period, Urdu poets have produced a large number of primarily poetic works.


The major genres of poetry found in Urdu are:

  • Ghazal
  • Nazm
  • Qaseeda
  • Marsia
  • Sehra
  • Rubai
  • Noha
  • Shehr Aashob
  • Qata
  • Doha

Pen names (Takhallus)

In the Urdu poetic tradition, most poets use a pen name called the takhallus. This can be either a part of a poet's given name or something else adopted as an identity. The traditional convention in identifying Urdu poets is to mention the takhallus at the end of the name. Thus, Ghalib, whose given name was Mirza Asadullah Beg (the prefix Mirza and suffix Beg identifying him as a Chughtai) and official name and title was Mirza Asadullah Beg Khan is referred to formally as Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib, or, in common parlance, as just Mirza Ghalib. An interesting sidebar to this is that some poets end up having a part of their name repeated; thus, Faiz Ahmad Faiz.

The word takhallus is derived from Arabic, meaning "ending". This is because in the ghazal form, the poet would usually incorporate his or her pen name into the final couplet (maqta) of each poem as a type of 'signature'.


The most acclaimed Urdu poets include Ghalib, Mir, Dard, Daag, Iqbal, Faiz, Momin, Sahir, Wali and many more.

External links

  • Urdu Website If you want to watch services purily in urdu graphics then visit the link above.
  • Urdu Poetry:) Free Urdu Poetry Section, You can navigate to all the Popular and New Poets of All World.Just visit the link
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  • Urdu-Poetry: Are you looking for Urdu Poetry books? From funny urdu poetry to sad Urdu petry, indian urdu poetry to pakistani urdu poetry and even male urdu poetry to female urdu poetry it is here. Get it now
  • shairy.com: Largest collection of Online Urdu poetry,Urdu Shairee, Shairy and forum
  • Online Free Urdu Books: Largest collection of Online Urdu poetry,Urdu Shairee, Shairy Downloadable books. 117+ Books, 21,600+Pages! available. Download Now!
  • Eurdubazaar.com: Large collection of Urdu poetry, some with audio recitations and songs.
  • Organic brewery: Weblog with a selection of Urdu poetry translations and transliterations.
  • Alphabetical Index of Poets : A collection of representative poems of a number of leading Urdu poets.Script: English (Phonetic).

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