Nizami Ganjavi was a 12th-century Persian Sunni Muslim poet, who is considered the greatest romantic epic poet in Persian literature. His heritage is widely appreciated and shared by Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, the Kurdistan region and Tajikistan.
He was born in Ganja (Seljuq empire, now Azerbaijan) with the formal name was Jamal ad-Din Abu Muhammad Ilyas ibn-Yusuf ibn-Zakki. Nezami lived in an age of both political instability and intense intellectual activity, which his poems reflect. Nezami was a master of the Masnavi style (double-rhymed verses).
He was commemorated by issuing a special coin as well as on a banknote of Azerbaijan. Nezami was depicted on the obverse of the Azerbaijani 500 manat banknote which circulated between 1993 and 2006, which depicts the portrait of the poet on the obverse and the ornamental design in the reverse.
In 2008, coinciding with the 800th anniversary of his death, the National Bank of Azerbaijan minted a 100 manat gold commemorative coin dedicated to his memory. The obverse of the coin depicts a portrait of Nizami under an arc along with the year of Issue and his name. The Outer circle bears an inscription which reads the Republic of Azerbaijan and the denomination value at the bottom. The reverse of the coin depicts the Sitting figure of the poet facing left reading poetry in front of 2 small trees.
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