82 Omar Khayyam, “The Rubaiyat”
Omar Khayyam (c.1034-c.1130) served royal courts as an astronomer and mathematician. His works as scientist were largely eclipsed when his poetry was (loosely) translated by Edward FitzGerald in the 1900’s. Khayyam’s Rubaiyat, a collection of independent quatrains (four line poems) has been translated dozens of times over the years since.
Khayyam was a poet in the Sufi tradition, a mystical sect of Islam founded in the 8th century. Practitioners of this faith try to achieve deeper spiritual understanding through art, dance and poetry. They are also known for rejecting material wealth in favor or an ascetic way of life.
Follow this link to a copy of FitzGerald’s translation of Khayyam’s Rubaiyat.