“… the nature of man is more deeply affected by verse than by prose.”

What follows is my provisional translation (in other words, not official or authorized; see here for more) of a passage that appears on the title pages of volumes 2, 3, and 4 of Niʻmatu’lláh Dhukáʼí Bayḍáʼí’s anthology of Baháʼí poetry, entitled Tadhkariy-i-Shuʻaráy-i-Qarn-i-Avval-i-Baháʼí, where it is attributed to ʻAbduʼl-Bahá. I am grateful to Franklin Lewis for his helpful descriptions of the terms ghazal and qaṣídih that appear in the footnotes to this translation.

… the nature of man is more deeply affected by verse than by prose. Poetry has an entirely different kind of effect, and ghazals [1] and qaṣídihs [2] boast a uniquely beautiful form of expression …

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[1] A kind of fixed form lyrical poem.

[2] A kind of ode.

A typescript of the Persian text of this passage appears below.

… طبیعت انسان از نظم بیشتر از نثر متأثر گردد. اشعار را تأثیری دیگر است و قصائد و غزل را جلوه‌ای دیگر …