The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám (Maroon Cover)
The text of the first edition translated by Edward Fitzgerald.
Illustrated by Arthur Szyk.
Easton Press Collector's Edition from the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written Series.
Hardcover bound in full marooon leather with raised bands on spine, 22kt gold gilt titles and handsome gilt decorations on boards and spine, moire silk endpapers with a matching silk ribbon placeholder bound in.
Very Good / Near Fine Condition. This particular book has gilt ontop and on the bottom of the pages. Sides of pages are regular with no gilt. Does not appear to have ever been added).
The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám attained fame when it was translated and introduced to a Western audience by the author and poet Edward Fitzgerald. Selected for their lyrical beauty, the poems within the Rubáiyát are attributed to the Persian mathematician and astronomer Omar Khayyám. Writing in the eleventh century, Khayyám was revered as a master of the poetic form, and his works have since been much-quoted by artists and admirers.
The collection received its name from the word ruba'i, which connotes a two-line stanza comprised of two parts. These quatrains are the way in which the entire collection is written. The first edition contains 75 quatrains, while the later, revised edition has 101. Additionally, the fifth edition appended a series of notes explaining the meaning behind various portions of the text.
Over his lifetime, Edward Fitzgerald produced several revisions of his original 1859 translation. Scholars have since come to regard Fitzgerald's effort as containing some of his own poetic input; aspects of the original verses are paraphrased or exchanged with the English poet's own. However, the beauty and succinctness present in many of these verses led to the collection retaining its status as the classic, definitive version - sometimes nicknamed as the 'Rubáiyát of FitzOmar'.