Sheikh Ibrahim Zauq's Photo'

Sheikh Ibrahim Zauq

1790 - 1854 | Delhi, India

Poet laureate of the Mughal Court and mentor of Bahadur Shah Zafar. His 'poetic' rivalry with Ghalib is well known.

Poet laureate of the Mughal Court and mentor of Bahadur Shah Zafar. His 'poetic' rivalry with Ghalib is well known.

Pen Name : 'zauq'

Real Name : Sheikh Mohammad Ibrahim

Born : 22 Aug 1790

Died : 16 Nov 1854

Relatives : Zaheer Dehlvi (Disciple), Mohammad Husain Azad (Disciple), Anwar Dehlvi (Disciple)

ab to ghabrā ke ye kahte haiñ ki mar jā.eñge

mar ke bhī chain na paayā to kidhar jā.eñge

being agitated I express the hope to die, although

in death, if solace is not found, then where shall I go?

ab to ghabra ke ye kahte hain ki mar jaenge

mar ke bhi chain na paya to kidhar jaenge

being agitated I express the hope to die, although

in death, if solace is not found, then where shall I go?

Mohammad Ibrahim Zauq was one of the most acclaimed Urdu poets and a shayar laureate of the Mughal Court in Delhi. His father was a humble soldier in the Mughal army and was able to impart only basic education to Zauq. He was sent to an elementary religious school where he developed an attraction for Urdu poetry. His flair was further honed under the mentorship of the famous poet Shah Nasir. Zauq was introduced to the Mughal Court through his friend and going forward, he became the guide of Bahadur Shah Zafar. He persisted to be the poet laureate of the Mughal Court till 1854, the year of his passing away. Zauq was a major contemporary of Ghalib and in the history of Urdu sher-o-shayari the rivalry of the two poets is widely known. When he was alive, Zauq’s popularity exceeded that of Ghalib for the critical values in those days were mainly confined to judging a piece of poetry on the play of words, phrases and idioms. Matter and flair were barely taken into account while relishing poetry. The credit of Zauq’s reputation in Urdu poetry goes to his eulogies that reflect his command over the language and his expertise in composing poetry in extremely difficult meters.