On the Poetics of Classical Turkish Poets

Coskun M.

BILIG, no.56, pp.57-80, 2011 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: Issue: 56
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Journal Name: BILIG
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.57-80
  • Süleyman Demirel University Affiliated: Yes


Poetics as a literary term is a whole of the poetical ideas and rules that poets depend on or are inclined to while composing poems. In this sense there should be a poetics - either written or unwritten - for each poet or for a poetical tradition. Poets subjected to a literary tradition such as Turkish divan poetry do not have their individual poetics. Ottoman poets are those poets who tried to compose the best poems of their own literary tradition. It is possible to find some differences in their poems depending on their personal characteristics, abilities and tendencies. However, these differences are not so great as to change the poetics of the tradition they are subjected to. Their poetics were determined beforehand by tradition. Because of that they did not need to write a poetics in the modern sense. Nevertheless, they composed poems dealing with poetry, and employed conventional metaphors and similes for their descriptions of poetry. This study brings together a number of descriptions and metaphors for poetry in Divans, which are important for the correct perception of the divan poetry. The study suggests that an Ottoman poet composed witty and impressive poems in order to show his poetical skill, to entertain himself and his readers/audience and to gain appreciation from his social and literary circles.