Nezami was born at Ganja in the Caucasus in 1140. He was a prolific writer who was famous especially for his Khamseh ("Quintet"). It consists of the Makhzan al-Asrar ("Treasure House of Secrets"), a mystical epic inspired by the 12th-century Persian poet Sanai; the popular romances Khosrow and Shir in and Leili and Majnun; the epic Iskandar-Nameh ("The Story of Alexander the Great"); and Haft Peikar ("Seven Beauties"), the life story of the Sasanid king Bahrain Gur. Nezami's works enjoyed great popularity, and many of their episodes became popular themes of Persian miniatures.

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