A book in the wilderness

A book in the wilderness. FitzGerald’s Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám 150 years in print and image. Jos Biegstraaten en Jos Coumans. Amsterdam, Rozenberg, 2009. 125 p. ISBN 978903610141.

Catalogue issued in conjunction with the exhibition „Een boek in de woestijn. Omar Khayyám, 150 jaar in Engelse vertaling“ held at Museum Meermanno, The Hague from January 31st to 5th April 2009

Illustrated catalogue to the exhibition, focusing on aspects of typography and illustration of the Rubáiyát, showing the development of the private press movement. Several versions of FitzGeralds translation, including American private presses, such as the Roycrofters, were exhibited, together with commercial illustrated editions that were influenced by Morris’ Kelmscott Press, on the one hand and imitations of Persian manuscripts on the other hand. Attention was also drawn to Dutch illustrated editions of Omar Khayyám and miniature book editions of Omar Khayyam. In all about one hundred books were on show.

– Foreword by Leo Voogt
– Introduction
– Edward FitzGerald: first editions
– Edward FitzGerald: pirated and facsimile editions
– USA: Mosher and Bradley
– Morris’ influence: UK, USA and The Netherlands
– USA: The Roycroft Printing Shop
– English presses
– The first illustrated editions
– Illustrated editions: commercial publishers
– Illustrated editions: some techniques
– Dutch illustrators
– Miniatures and small books
– Select bibhography and further reading
– Index

The erring finger writes

The erring finger writes. The Leicester pirate cyclostyles of the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám. Jos Coumans, John Drew. Cambridge, Cambridge Poetry Workshop, 2015. 43 p. ISBN: 9781871214260

The story of Holyoak’s cyclostyle editions of the Rubáiyát, the interference by Macmillans who saw the work of a simple Leicester book seller as a threat to their business and the respons by W.H. Holyoak and G.J. Holyoake. The booklet also shows documents and descriptions of the various versions of Holyoak’s printings.

The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám

The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám. An updated bibliography. Jos Coumans. Leiden, Leiden University Press, 2010. (Iranian Series). ISBN 9789087280963

Bibliografisch overzicht met beschrijvingen van meer dan 1.000 uitgaven van Rubáiyát van Omar Khayyám. De eerste volledige bibliografie sinds de Rubáiyát bibliografie van A.G. Potter, die in 1929 verscheen.

Acknowledgements, p. 11
Introduction, p. 13
Appendix 1: Manuscripts, p. 29
Appendix 2: Bibliographic references, p. 33
Appendix 3: Statistics
Bibliography of the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, p. 51
1. FitzGerald’s versions, nrs. 1-294
2. Other translations, nrs. 295-879
3. Multilingual editions, nrs. 880-921
4. Miniature books, nrs. 922-960
5. Miscellanea, nrs. 961-980
6. Study & criticism, nrs. 981-998
7. Interpretation, nrs. 990-1015
Indices, p. 223

Op zoek naar de waarheid

Op zoek naar de waarheid. Jos Coumans
In: De Literatuurkrant, november 1984, p. 15-17.

Algemeen artikel over Khayyam, de rubaiyat en de vertalingen, met name ook de Nederlandse.

Leven is lijden

Leven is lijden. Jos Coumans
In: De Literatuurkrant, najaar 1982, p. 27-28.

Over de poëzie van J.H. Leopold, met bespreking van enkele kwatrijnen van Khayyam.

Bois du vin …

Bois du vin … English, French and German translations in Persian polyglot editions of The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám. Jos Coumans
In: Persica, No. XXVI (2017-2018), pp. 103-163.

Many recent editions of the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, published in Iran, have more than one translation, sometimes up to thirty or more. Usually they contain the English translation by Edward FitzGerald, accompanied by a text in Persian and translations in French, German, Spanish, Russian, Urdu and so on. However, it is seldom clear who these translators are, as their names are usually not mentioned. In this article I have tried to identify these quatrains: who was the translator and from which edition were the quatrains selected. Nineteen editions, published in Iran between 1955 and 2016 were examined. The analyses are restricted to translations in English, French and German.