Two cleverly written Syriac poems   1 comment

At the beginning of CCM (Chaldean Cathedral, Mardin) 13, from the 18th century, are two Syriac poems, in the twelve-syllable meter with six lines each of six words each, and as it says in Syriac at the top of the page, they may be read in the conventional way from right to left, top to bottom, or from top to bottom, right to left. That is, if we assign a number to each identical word, the pattern is as follows:

⟸⟸⟸

6 5 4 3 2 1 ⇓

11 10 9 8 7 2 ⇓

15 14 13 12 8 3 ⇓

18 17 16 13 9 4 ⇓

20 19 17 14 10 5 ⇓

21 20 18 15 11 6

In addition, the six lines of each poem rhyme. Here’s an image:

CCM 13, f. 1r

CCM 13, f. 1r

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Posted December 2, 2013 by adamcmccollum in Poetry, Syriac

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One response to “Two cleverly written Syriac poems

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  1. There are five more examples of the same kind of poem in CCM 12, two by ʿAbdišoʿ of Gāzartā (d. 1567) and three by a certain Gabriel that are said to have been composed in 1938 AG (1626/7 CE).

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