Khwaja Shams ud-Din Muhammad Hafiz-e-Shirazi,b. early 14th century AD - Shiraz, Persia
Very little is known about Khwaja Shams ud-Din Muhammad’s early life. It is believed that he memorized the Qur’an at an early age after hearing his father recite passages from it, hence acquiring his pen name Hafez - a title given to those who have memorized the Quran by heart. In his early twenties, Hafez became a poet in the court of Abu Ishak in Shiraz (Iran) where he began his career and eventually became a master of form. Hafez primarily used the ghazal as his medium of expression. He is the author of approximately 500 ghazals, 42rubaiyees and several qasidas expressing ideas on love, spirituality, and activism.