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Khosrow and Shirin is the title of a famous Persian tragic romance by the Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi (1141–1209) who also wrote Layla Majnun. It tells a highly elaborated fictional version of the story of the love of the Sassanian king Khosrow II for the Armenian princess Shirin, who becomes his queen. The essential narrative is a love story of Persian origin which was already well-known from the great epico-historical poem the Shahnameh and other Persian writers and popular tales, and other works have the same title.

Nizami-Khusraw discovers Shirin bathing in a pool. This is a famous moment in Persian Literature

Nizami-Khusraw discovers Shirin bathing in a pool. This is a famous moment in Persian Literature

Variants of the story were also told under the titles “Shirin and Farhad” or “Farhad and Shirin”.

Although the story was known before Nizami, it was brought to its greatest romantic height by him. Unlike theShahnameh, which focuses on the history, kingship and battles of Khosrow, Nizami decided to focus on the romantic aspect of the story.


  • In India,The story is usually told under the name of “Shirin Farhad”. It is a standard tale used in Punjabi Kisse. The story has been put to film five times: 1926,1931, 1945, 1956 starring Madhubala and Pradeep Kumar and 1975.
  • In Iran, The influence of the legend of Farhad is not limited to literature, but permeates the whole of Persian culture, including folklore and the fine arts. Farhad’s helve supposedly grew into a tree with medicinal qualities, and there are popular laments for Farhad, especially among the Kurds 
  • Orhan Pamuk’s novel, My Name is Red  (1998), has a plot line between two characters, Shekure and Black, which echoes the Khosrow and Shirin story, which is also retold in the book. The novel uses the Turkish spelling of Koshrow’s name, Hüsrev.
  • The tale was used as the inspiration for a 2008 Iranian film, Shirin made by Abbas Kiarostami.

We found the story which is translated from Farsi to English here ( it is divided into 6 parts): http://iranian.com/main/blog/nazy-kaviani/story-khosrow-and-shirin-part-i.html