Ahmed Ben Triki

Ahmed Ben Triki, sometimes referred to as Ben Zengli, (1650–1750) was a poet from Tlemcen, Algeria.[1]

Early life

Ben Triki was born in Tlemcen, Algeria, in 1650 to a Turkish father.[2] He began writing poetry at an early age and was taught by the poet Saïd El-Mendassi.[1]


After the Ottoman authorities banished Ben Triki from Tlemcen. Many of his poems were written during this period of exile and express his painful separation from his homeland.[1]

On his return to Algeria, he mainly composed panegyrics of the Prophet Muhammad. Nonetheless, his poem "Burned to the Depths of My Soul!", a religious poem, was an innovative qasida which praised the Kaaba in Mecca; Ben Triki transposed the Sufi ghazal devices originally applied to the love of God or ones "Beloved" to the description of the physical features of a place.[1]

Ben Triki’s acclaimed poems lead his contemporary Sidi Mohammed Ben Msaieb to praise the poet as follows: "Ben Triki is possessed by a great jinn, but this jinn was mistaken when he chose such a home!".[1]


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 Pierre Joris; Habib Tengour (31 January 2013). Poems for the Millennium, Volume Four: The University of California Book of North African Literature. University of California Press. pp. 228–229. ISBN 978-0-520-95379-6.
  2. Dib, Souhel (2007), Pour une poétique du dialectal maghrébin: expression arabe, Editions ANEP, p. 99, ISBN 9947213188, BEN-TRIKI Ahmad (A) Né en 1650 à Tlemcen, Turc d'origine par son père, il meurt, centenaire....
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