Colour Semantics in the Sufism of Rumi
This paper aims to propose a semantic analysis of colour used in Mawlana Jalal-al-Din Rumi’s Sufi poetry which was created following the lost of his mystical love, Sams-al-Din Tabrizi. Due to Sams’s guidance, the Sufism of Rumi (1207-1273), had shifted towards ‘Sama’. This form of worship including music and whirling dance, caused the mystical mentor Sams to leave Konya, and to disappear for ever. After his abandonment, Rumi devoted himself to producing works. His poetry was world wide known both in his native tongue Persian, and in many other languages including Turkish after six hundred years. Even one work by Rumi, that is Divan-i Kebir, is composed of more than 43.000 distichs thanks to his creative genius by synthesising Islam, Sufism, Iranian Literature and Culture. This paper investigates his works as a historical corpus with a synchronic approach by refering to Turkish, English and French translations when needed. Does the Turkish translation, correspond to the Basic Colour Terms (BCT) of Old Anatolian Turkish? How many of Arabic and Persian references which were blended together are reflected to Old Anatolian Turkish and then to modern Turkish? How many of BCT is Turkish? The urban vernacular features can be identified in the compiled colour data. BCT of universal and evolutionary paradigm apart from Turkish, is as follows: ak<Tk /white<Eng (sefıd<Pers) I kara<Tk /black<Eng (siyah<Pers) 1 kizil<Tk /red<Eng (surh<Pers)I yeşil<Tk /green<Eng (sebz<Pers) I sari<Tk /yellow<Eng (zerd> Pers) I Besides, there is the relation among yeşil and gök, rendered in English as turquoise (firuze<Pers). And some interesting expressions denoting literally ‘the green sky’ like yemyeşil gök, yeşil gök or gömgök/ göğermek appear for non-focal usages of‘GRUE’ in G/Bu macro category. What is more, Persian and Arabic loan words started to appear in translations: Beyaz<Ar /white (sefid), siyah<Pers/black (siyah) and kırmızı<Pers/ red (kirmiz<Pers). While Persian kabut is equal to deep blue and azraq to sky blue or azure, equivalences among gök/ mavi<Ar / blue (kabud/ azraq), mavi/blue and mavi/azure emerged. Pembe/rose colored, al/ scarlet for orange, boz/grey/ with boz/brune<Fr /brown and benefşe/violet (banafsha<Pers) exemplify the last terms of the paradigm.
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