Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib (1797-1869), noble, poet, and wit of Mughal Delhi in the twilight years before the crushing of the revolt of 1857 finally extinguished Mughal power, has long been possibly the most famous and the most popular of the poets of Urdu and Persian that the Indo-Pakistan subcontinent has produced. His frankness, his humorous good nature, and his cheerfully avowed unorthodoxy with regard to the more irksome formalities of his Muslim religion, made him something of a legend even in his own lifetime. Collections of his numerous letters to his friends were published just before his death, and not many years later his friend and younger contemporary Hali wrote his Memoir of Ghalib, itself one of the classics of Urdu literature. Hitherto very little of Ghalib has appeared in English, and that little has circulated almost entirely within India and Pakistan. The present volume consists in the main of translations from Hali s Memoir, Ghalib s Persian and Urdu letters, his diary of the revolt of 1857, and other materials. These materials are arranged, with the minimum of connective narrative, to tell the story of his life.
About the Author
Ralph Russell (Translator) Emeritus Professor of Urdu, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.
Khurshidul Islam (Translator) Formerly Professor of Urdu, Aligarh Muslim University.