Poet Kassim Amiri

Abul Kassim Muhammad Kuhpayai, known as Amiri Shirazi, or Kassim Amiri was a famous Ismaili scholar and poet. He was born possibly in 953/1545 in Kuhpayai, a village in the vicinity of Ispahan. He served Shah Tahmasp in the Safavid court for 30 years, then fell into disfavour. It is recounted in the native tradition that a court theologian, Hilli Hasan bin Yousuf aroused the king against him. Shah Tahmasp arrested him for alleged impeachment being an infidel, and blinded him in 973/1565. He was imprisoned in Shiraz, and was executed by Shah Abbas in 999/1591. He passed a tragic life, and none dared to quote or collect his poetical works. His poems are accessible almost disorderly, in which few historical events are composed, dating around 987/1579. In his "Ash'ar-i Amiri", he eulogized Imam Murad Mirza and Imam Nuruddin Ali. It sounds from his poems that being an Ismaili, he had to face troubles, therefore, he had presented his religious feelings very carefully. Abu Baqi Nihawand writes in "Ma'athir'i Rahimi" (Calcutta, 1931, 3rd vol., p. 1506) that the poems of Kassim Amiri were collected by his nephew Maulana Dakhli, who later on migrated to India.

The tradition of vakil in Hind and Sind was retained by Nuruddin Ali. The term vakil was a short form of vakil'i shah (vicegerent of the Lord) or vakil'i mawla (vicegerent of the Imam), and the term vakil'i nafs'i nafis'i humayun (vicegerent of the Imam in both his spiritual and temporal capacities) was used in Iran for the Indian hujjat, or pir. While in Badakhshan, the tradition of numainda (representative) had been retained, and the local chiefs were selected for the office. Nuruddin Ali began to appoint the vakil, numainda or hujjat from his family members, and the local chiefs were directed to work under them. This newly system gave a gravity to the Ismaili mission. The names of many other vakils in Central Asia are found without their biographies, and it is difficult to locate their periods.

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