FEVZİ EFENDİ, MEḤMED

FEVZİ (FAWZĪ) EFENDİ, MEḤMED, Ottoman author who wrote some books in Persian (b. Tavas district of Denizli province, 1826; d. Istanbul, 28 Rabīʿ II 1318/25 August 1900). Fevzi Efendi studied with a number of scholars, including Evliyâzâde Ali Rızâ (Awlīyāʾzada ʿAlī-Reżā) Efendi in Manisa. Fevzi Efendi was appointed mufti of Edirne ca. 1847 and became known as “Edirne Müftüsü” because of his long tenure in that office.

Fevzi Efendi wrote more than sixty works, mostly in Arabic and on religious topics, two of which were all or partly in Persian. The first is Bolbolestān, a work in the style of Golestān and its imitations. Written in flawless and easily-understandable Persian, it was published in Istanbul in 1310/1894 and dedicated to the Ottoman sultan ʿAbd-al-Ḥamīd II (r. 1876-1909). It is Sufi in character and contains stories about famous saints and the qualities of sainthood. Essentially a prose work, like the Golestān, it adds one to three appropriate couplets at the end of each story. Although the author states at the outset that it has eight parts (nehāl) inspired by the eight heavens, there are in fact only two parts. The second book, Meftāḥ al-najāt, is a commentary in three languages (Arabic, Persian, and Turkish) on the Qaṣīdat al-borda by Šaraf-al-Dīn Būṣīrī (d. ca. 694/1294). To facilitate understanding of its couplets, separate prose explanations and translations of them were included. The text, written in a lively, pretty, and open style, was published in Istanbul in 1284/1867-68.

Bibliography:

M. Ṭāher (Tahir), ʿOṯmānlī moʾalleflerī (Osmanlı Müellifleri), Istanbul 1915.

Türk Dili ve Edebiyatı Ansiklopedisi, s.v. Fevzi Efendi. M. Uzun, “Fevzi Efendi,” Türkiye Diyanet Vakfi İslâm Ansiklopedesi XII, Istanbul, 1995, pp. 506-9.

(Tahsin Yazıcı)

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