Obituary: Idries Shah

Beryl Graves
Sunday 23 October 2011 00:35
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I was surprised to read in Robert Cecil's obituary of Idries Shah [26 November] the following, writes Beryl Graves.

"When in 1967 [Robert] Graves published his new translation of Omar Khayym, challenging Edward Fitzgerald's refusal to treat the Persian Khayym as a Sufi poet, critics saw a chance to attack Shah, despite the fact that he had had no hand in Graves's version."

Idries Shah was a close friend of my husband, and the translation was a collaboration with his brother Omar Ali-Shah, based on the 12th-century text which belonged to the Shah family. Although he never actually saw the text, because of his friendship with Idries Shah Graves had complete faith in its authenticity.

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