“The Phoenix” by Nima Yushij and George Darley: The Poet-bird’s Yearning for a Resurrection of Poetry

Document Type : Research Papers


Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics, Shiraz University


At the time of its publication, Nima Yushij’s “Qoqnus” (The Phoenix) emerged as a radical departure from the norms and conventions of classical Persian poetry. Nima employed phoenix symbolism in this poem to present his zeal for a literary renaissance. Likewise, George Darley (1795-1846), the Irish Romantic poet who found himself lonely and isolated at the mitigating time borders of Romanticism and Victorianism, articulated himself through a poem entitled “The Phoenix”. “Qoqnus” is comparable to Darley’s “The Phoenix” in terms of theme, symbolization, and context. Darley, living on the ending edges of Romanticism and Nima, on the course of leaving classical poetry behind in favor of New Persian Poetry, both move against the literary and social currents of their time. To demonstrate this tendency, they employ the symbol of the phoenix, the mythological bird of rebirth and resurrection, and represent not only their own position as poets in the society, but also their desire for a revival of literary and social attitudes. As Jungian view on archetypes and human psyche suggests, the two poets’ vision of the phoenix has an archetypal and psychological significance in that, in a rather similar way, the image serves as a reflection of these poets’ mental and spiritual conditions.


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