Ibn Quzman

Abu Bakr Abd al-Malik ibn Quzman (Arabic: أبو بكر بن قزمان, b. 1078d. 1160) was the single most famous poet in the history of al-Andalus and he is also considered to be one of its most original.[1] He was born and died in Cordoba during the reign of the Almoravids, but seemingly spent most of his time in Sevilla. He has earned his fame by his zajals.[2] Characteristic of the zajal or zejel is its colloquial language, as well as a typical rhyming scheme: aaab cccb dddb where b rhymes with a constantly recurring refrain of one or two lines.[3] Zajal is extremely similar to the Malhoun poetry found in North Africa both in style and vocabulary.

The life-style of Ibn Quzman was similar to that of troubadours. His approach to life as expressed in these melodious poems, together with their mixed idiom (occasionally using words of the Romance languages), shows a ressembance to the later vernacular troubadour poetry of France.[4]

A collection of poems by Ibn Quzman (Spanish "Cancionero") was rediscovered in Saint Petersburg in 1881.[5]

See also


  1. Josef W. Meri, Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia, Routledge, 2005, p.364
  2. Josef W. Meri, Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia, Routledge, 2005, p.365
  3. Gorton, T.J., "The Metre of IbnQuzman: a "Classical"Approach", Journal of Arabic Literature, 6 (1975), pp. 1-29
  4. Robert Kehew, Ezra Pound, William De Witt Snodgrass, Lark in the morning: the verses of the troubadours, University of Chicago Press, 2005, p.10
  5. Collectif, hispano - arabic poetry, ed. Slatkine, 1974, p.XII


  • Menocal, María Rosa (EDT) /Scheindlin, Raymond P., "The Literature of Al-Andalus" (The Cambridge History of Arabic Literature) ch. 14, ISBN 0-521-47159-1 (EDT) /Sells, Michael /Publisher: Cambridge Univ Press, 2000
  • Dr. Bonnie D. Irwin Dean, "Cooking With Ibn Quzman: Kitchen Imagery in Azjal nos. 90, 68, and 118." Philological Association of the Pacific Coast Conference. Portland, 13 November 1988.
  • Artifara, n. 1, (luglio - dicembre 2002), sezione Addenda .
  • A Middle East Studies Association conference was held in Anchorage, Alaska, 2003.
  • Collectif, Hispano-arabic poetry, ed. Slatkine, 1974, Ch. IV The Almoravid Period, Ibn Quzman, p. 266-308 (retrieved 26-09-2011)
  • M. Th Houtsma, First encyclopaedia of Islam: 1913-1936 (retrieved 36-09-2011)
  • "Cancionero de Abenguzmán" in Enciclopedia GER (in Spanish)
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