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Saadi's Day


Annually, on April 21 (Apr. 20 in leap years) a crowd of foreign tourists and Iranians gather at Saadi's tomb in order to mark the day.


This commemoration day is held on the 1st of Ordibehesht, the second month of the Solar Hijri calendar (see Iranian calendar), the day on which Saadi states that he finished the Golestan in 1256.


Abū-Muhammad Muslih al-Dīn bin Abdallāh Shīrāzī, better known by his pen name Saadi, also known as Sadi of Shiraz; born 1210; died 1291 or 1292, was a major Persian poet and prose writer of the medieval period. He is recognized for the quality of his writings and for the depth of his social and moral thoughts. Saadi is widely recognized as one of the greatest poets of the classical literary tradition, earning him the nickname "The Master of Speech" or "The Wordsmith" or simply "Master" among Persian scholars. He has been quoted in the Western traditions as well.Bustan has been ranked as one of the 100 greatest books of all time by The Guardian.


Saadi is well known for his aphorisms, the most famous of which, Bani Adam, is part of the Gulistan. In a delicate way it calls for breaking down all barriers between human beings


The original Persian text is as follows:

بنى آدم اعضای یکدیگرند

که در آفرینش ز یک گوهرند

چو عضوى بدرد آورَد روزگار

دگر عضوها را نمانَد قرار

تو کز محنت دیگران بی غمی

نشاید که نامت نهند آدمی


banī ādam a'zā-ye yekdīgar-and

ke dar āfarīn-aš ze yek gowhar-and

čo 'ozvī be dard āvarad rūzgār

degar 'ozvhā-rā na-mānad qarār

to k-az mehnat-ē dīgarān bīqam-ī

na-šāyad ke nām-at nahand ādamī


This is a verse translation by Ali Salami:


Human beings are limbs of one body indeed;

For, they’re created of the same soul and seed.

When one limb is afflicted with pain,

Other limbs will feel the bane.

He who has no sympathy for human suffering,

Is not worthy of being called a human being.


And by Richard Jeffrey Newman:


All men and women are to each other

the limbs of a single body, each of us drawn

from life’s shimmering essence, God’s perfect pearl;

and when this life we share wounds one of us,

all share the hurt as if it were our own.

You, who will not feel another’s pain,

you forfeit the right to be called human.



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