A timeline of Allama Iqbal’s life.


Here is a timeline of Dr Sir Allama Muhammad Iqbal life.  This timeline is an account of the poet, philosopher, scholar and a person who gave Urdu Poetry a new life.

November 9, 1877  ~ Born in Sialkot, Panjab; father a tailor; large pious family, Kashmiri Brahman ancestry.

1892 ~ Graduates from Scotch Mission High School, Sialkot.

1892 ~ Parents marry him to Karim Bibi.

1893 ~ Enters Scotch Mission College, in liberal arts course.

1894(?) ~ Takes Dagh as his ustad, begins to send him verses by mail.

1895 ~ Daughter, Mi’raj Begam (d. 1914), born to Karim Bibi.

1895 ~ Passes Intermediate examination.

1895 ~ Goes to Lahore, enters Government College.

1897 ~ Receives B.A., second division; stands first in Arabic.

1898 ~ Begins to study Philosophy with Prof. Thomas Arnold.

1898 ~ After some study, appears for exams in law; but fails in Jurisprudence.

1899 ~ Receives M.A. in Philosophy, third division; gets gold medal since he’s the only successful candidate in Phil.

1899 ~ Becomes known in Lahore for his Urdu poetry.

1899 ~ Son, Aftab Iqbal, born to Karim Bibi.

1899 ~ Appointed Reader in Arabic, Oriental College, Lahore.

1900 ~ Recites, or ‘sings’, his poem naalah-e yatiim (Orphan’s lament) at Anjuman-e Himayat ul-Islam; receives tremendous acclaim, becomes instantly famous.

1901 ~ Baby boy born to Karim Bibi, dies soon after birth.

1901 ~ Applies for post as Extra Ass’t Commissioner, rejected for eye defect.

1901-05 ~ Publishes poems in ‘Abd ul-Qadir’s new journal ‘Makhzan’; including the patriotic ones taraanah-e hindii (Indian song) (Oct. 1904), hindustaanii bachchon kaa qaumii giit (Indian children’s national song) (Feb. 1905), nayaa shivaalah (New Shiva-temple) (Mar. 1905); becomes well-known as a nationalist.

1903 ~ Becomes Ass’t Prof. of Philosophy and English Literature, Government College, Lahore.

1903 ~ Publishes ilm ul-iqtisaad , the first book in Urdu on economics.

1905 ~ Goes to Europe: studies in London at Lincoln’s Inn (law), Trinity Colleg e (B.A.); simultaneously prepares doctoral dissertation on ‘The Development of Metaphysics in Persia’ for University of Munich.

1907 ~ Meets ‘Atiyah Faizi, and begins close personal relationship with her.

1907 ~ Awarded B.A. degree from Trinity College, Cambridge University.

1907 ~ Awarded doctorate in philosophy by University of Munich.

1908 ~ Qualifies as barrister-at-law, Lincoln’s Inn.

1908 ~ Dissertation published in London.

1908 ~ Elected to Executive Committee, London Branch, All-India Muslim League.

1908 ~ Returns from Europe; is offered academic positions, but gives up academia in favor of law for financial reasons.

1909 ~ Marries Sardar Begam; but has doubts about her based on anonymous letters; rejects her.

1909 ~ Marries Mukhtar Begam.

1909 ~ Takes a temporary professorship at Government College, in addition to law practice.

1909 ~ In a letter to Munshi Ghulam Qadir Farrukh, he writes that contrary to his personal views, it may prove ‘too difficult for the Hindus and the Muslims to forge a common policy’ because their ‘basic cultures’ are different ‘and the Muslims would not like to submerge their identity among the Hindu majority’; (M. ul-H. v.1, p. 94).

1910 ~ Keeps the notebooks which become ‘Stray Reflections’.

1910 ~ Composes taraanah-e millii (Song of the religious community) as a children’s song.

1911 ~ Recites shikvah (Complaint) at annual meeting, Anjuman-e Hidayat ul-Islam, Lahore; insists on speaking it taht ul-laf;z though the audience demands singing in tarannum , because the subject is so important.

1911 ~ Resigns from professorship, but continues to act as Examiner.

1911 ~ Acquires an all-India reputation.

1912 ~ ‘Atiyah Faizi marries someone else (Faizi Rahman).

1913 ~ Recites javaab-e shikvah (Answer to the complaint) at a mushairah in Mochi Gate, Lahore.

1913 ~ Remarries Sardar Begam; lives with both women together.

1915 ~ Publishes asraar-e khudii (Secrets of the self).

1916 ~ Karim Bibi begins to live separately, supported by Iqbal (d. 1946).

1918 ~ Publishes rumuuz-e be-xvudii (Mysteries of selflessness).

1919 ~ Elected General Secretary, Anjuman-e Himayat ul-Islam.

1920 ~ ‘The Secrets of the Self’ (trans. of asraar-e ;xvudii ) published in England by Reynold Nicholson of Cambridge University.

1923 ~ Publishes payaam-e mashriq (Message of the east) (P), a response to Goethes ‘West-Ostlicher Divan’.

1923 ~ Knighted by British Government.

1924 ~ Resigns from Secretaryship of Anjuman.

1924 ~ Publishes baang-e daraa (Sound of the bell).

1924 ~ Mukhtar Begam dies of pregnancy complications and pneumonia.

1924 ~ Son Javed Iqbal born to Sardar Begam.

1926 ~ Elected to a Lahore seat in the new Punjab Legislative Assembly, begins active political involvement.

1927 ~ Publishes zubuur ul-ajam (Persian psalms).

1929 ~ Travels to Madras, delivers ‘The reconstruction of religious thought in Islam’, lectures to the Madras Muslim Association.

1929 ~ Schoolchildren greet him in Hyderabad singing chiin-o-arab hamaaraa from taraanah-e millii.

1930 ~ Daughter Munirah born to Sardar Begam.

1930 ~ Publishes ‘The reconstruction of religious thought in Islam’ (English), in which he declares the baab-e ijtihaad to be open again.

1930 ~ Giving his Presidential Address to the Muslim League in Allahabad, speaks of the possibility of a separate Muslim state.

1931 ~ Last known poetry recitation: masjid-e qurtubah (Mosque of Cordoba), Jamia Millia, Delhi.

1931-32 ~ Revisits England for Second and Third Round Table Conferences, travels extensively in Europe; visits Bergson in Paris; sees Spain; meets Mussolini in Rome; visits Egypt, Palestine.

1932 ~ Giving his Presidential Address to the Muslim League, he declares his opposition to nationalism ‘as it is understood in Europe’.

1932 ~ Publishes jaaved-naamah (The book of eternity) , perhaps his favorite Persian work, with Miltonic overtones.

1933 ~ Briefly visits Afghanistan, as part of a commission for educational reforms.

1934 ~ Health deteriorates; ceases practicing law.

1935 ~ Publishes baal-e jibriil (The wing of Gabriel) , his Urdu masterpiece.

1935 ~ Sardar Begam dies.

1935 ~ Granted pension by Navab of Bhopal.

1935-36 ~ Visits Bhopal several times.

1936 ~ Publishes zarb-e kaliim (The staff of Moses)

1938 ~ Publishes armu;Gaan-e hijaaz (Gift of the Hijaz).

1938 ~ Dies in Lahore; buried next to Badshahi Masjid.



Mirza Ghalib’s Timeline. 

An extensive timeline of Allama Iqbal’s life.

A Day In the Life of Allama Iqbal

Hope this was informative.  This is not my work. Like always I am just a messenger trying to pass on the history and poetry of Great Poets, however a lot of effort does go into this. If there are any errors or if you would like to add anything, please leave a comment.




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