Famous Syrian Writers

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 1 
Ignatius of Antioch
4
Birthplace: Roman Syria
Died: 0140 AD

Ignatius of Antioch went down in history as a man who was arrested and executed for his non-allegiance to Roman gods. The seven letters he wrote while being escorted from Antioch to Rome as a prisoner later served as a mirror that reflected his concern for Christianity, against false teachings.

 2 
Nizar Qabbani
(Diplomat)
Nizar Qabbani
3
Birthdate: March 21, 1923
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Damascus
Died: April 30, 1998

Nizar Qabbani was a Syrian writer, diplomat, publisher, and poet. Renowned for incorporating themes like eroticism, religion, love, feminism, and Arab nationalism into his poetry, Qabbani's poems have achieved worldwide acclaim; they have been translated into many languages, including English and Russian. Regarded as Syria's National Poet, Qabbani is also one of the most respected poets in the Arab world.

 3 
Al-Ma'arri
(One of the Best Classical Arabic Poets of All Time)
Al-Ma'arri
2
Birthdate: December 23, 0973
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Ma`arat al-Nu`man, Syria
Died: April 30, 1057

Al-Ma'arri was an Arab poet, philosopher, and writer. Counted among the best classical Arabic poets of all time, Al-Ma'arri was also regarded as a controversial rationalist. He advocated social justice and opposed all forms of violence. Some of his best known works include The Tinder Spark, The Epistle of Forgiveness, and Unnecessary Necessity.
 

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 4 
Publilius Syrus
(Latin Writer Best Remembered for His Sententiae, a Collection of Brief Moral Sayings)
Publilius Syrus
3
Birthdate: 0085 BC
Died: 0043 BC

Publilius Syrus was a Latin writer best remembered for his sententiae, a collection of brief moral sayings. He was also a popular mime artist who drew the attention of famous political figures like Julius Caesar. Publilius Syrus' work, especially his sententiae, has inspired people like Seneca the Younger and William Shakespeare.
 

 5 
Tatian
(Assyrian Writer and Theologian)
Tatian
2
Birthdate: 0120 AD
Died: 0180 AD
Tatian was an Assyrian writer and theologian. He is best remembered for his attempt to merge the texts of all four gospels into a single narrative of Jesus Christ's life and death; his work came to be known as the Diatessaron. The Syriac-speaking churches adopted the Diatessaron as the standard text of the four gospels until the 5th century.
 6 
Wafa Sultan
(Syrian-American Writer, Physician, and Critic of Islam)
Wafa Sultan
3
Birthdate: June 14, 1958
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Baniyas
Wafa Sultan is a Syrian-American writer, physician, and critic of Islam. In 2006, Time magazine included her in its 100 influential people in the world list. The same year, Wafa Sultan was honored by the Freedom from Religion Foundation with the Freethought Heroine Award for her radical political and religious views.
 7 
Theophilus Of Antioch
(Apologist and Patriarch of Antioch)
Theophilus Of Antioch
2
Birthplace: Mesopotamia, Iraq
Died: 0184 AD
Theophilus of Antioch was the Apologist and Patriarch of Antioch from 169 to 182. He made immense contributions to Christian literature, exegetics, apologetics, and polemics. Theophilus of Antioch is also credited with writing a series of books titled Apology to Autolycus, which defends Christianity.
 8 
Sophronius of Jerusalem
(Patriarch of Jerusalem)
Sophronius of Jerusalem
2
Birthdate: 0560 AD
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
Died: March 11, 0638
Sophronius of Jerusalem served as the Patriarch of Jerusalem from 634 to 638. He is revered as a saint in the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches. Prior to his rise to the primacy of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Sophronius of Jerusalem served as a theologian and monk.
 9 
Damascius
(Last Scholarch of the 'School of Athens')
Damascius
2
Birthdate: 0458 AD
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
Died: 0538 AD
One of the pagan philosophers oppressed by Emperor Justinian I, Damascius was a scholarch of the School of Athens. Among his extant works are commentaries on the works of Greek philosopher, Plato. Damascius started his career as a professor of rhetoric and went on to serve as the principal of the School of Athens.
 10 
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi
(Syrian Author and Pan-Arab Solidarity Supporter)
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi
2
Birthdate: 1855 AD
Birthplace: Aleppo, Ottoman Empire
Died: June 13, 1902
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi was a Syrian author and one of the most important intellectuals of his time. A Pan-Arab solidarity supporter, Al-Kawakibi's criticisms of the Ottoman Empire was the basis for Pan-Arab nationalism. Among his most influential books are Mother of All Villages and The Nature of Despotism. Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi’s ideas influenced many Pan-Arab nationalists like Gamal Abdel Nasser.
 11 
Abū Tammām
(Arab Poet Who is Known for His Compilation of Poems Called 'Hamasah')
Abū Tammām
2
Birthplace: Jasim, Syria
Died: 0845 AD
Abū Tammām was an Arab poet best remembered for his compilation of poems known as the Hamasah. Hamasah, which consists of 10 books of poems, is counted among the most important anthologies of Arabic literature. Born to Christian parents, Abu Tammam converted to Islam before traveling to the eastern part of the Abbasid Caliphate where he gained admirers.
 12 
May Ziadeh
(A Pioneer of Oriental Feminism in Arab Literary World and Key Figure in the 'Nahda' Movement)
May Ziadeh
1
Birthdate: February 11, 1886
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Nazareth, Vilayet of Syria
Died: October 17, 1941

A pioneering Arab feminist and romantic poet, May Ziadeh was a major figure of the Nahda, or the Arab Enlightenment of the 20th century. She initially mostly wrote in French, using the pseudonym Isis Copia, while she later drifted toward Arabic. Al-Mûsawât and Sawâneh fatât remain 2 of her best-known works.

 13 
Muhammad al-Maghut
(Syrian Poet and Writer)
Muhammad al-Maghut
1
Birthdate: December 12, 1934
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Salamiyah, Syria
Died: April 3, 2006
Muhammad al-Maghut was a Syrian poet and writer. Apart from revolutionizing Arabic poems, Al-Maghut also wrote for TV, films, and theater. An ardent critic of totalitarian governments, Muhammad al-Maghut often satirized his works. Over the course of his illustrious career, Muhammad al-Maghut received several awards including the Medal of the Experimental Theater.
 14 
Jacob Of Serugh
(One of the Most Important Syriac Poet-Theologians of His Time)
Jacob Of Serugh
1
Birthdate: 0451 AD
Birthplace: Suruç, Turkey
Died: November 29, 0521
Jacob of Serugh was a Syriac poet-theologian best remembered for his prodigious corpus of over 700 verse homilies. One of the most important Syriac poet-theologians of his time, Jacob is considered equal in stature to Narsai.
 15 
Bardaisan
(Syriac Gnostic and the Founder of Bardaisanites)
Bardaisan
2
Birthdate: July 11, 0154
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Edessa
Died: 0222 AD
Bardaisan was a Syriac gnostic who is credited with founding the Bardaisanites. A multi-talented personality, Bardaisan was a scientist, scholar, philosopher, astrologer, poet, and hymnographer. Bardaisan is also remembered for his extensive knowledge of India; he also wrote a book on India and its religious men, which is now lost.
 16 
Heliodorus of Emesa
(Author of the Ancient Greek Novel 'Aethiopica')
Heliodorus of Emesa
1
Birthplace: Homs‎, Syria
Heliodorus of Emesa was a Syrian writer best remembered for writing an ancient Greek novel titled the Aethiopica. The novel, which is his only known work, had a profound influence on many Byzantine Greeks, Italian, Spanish, and French writers. The Aethiopica was also adapted into an opera with music by Henri Desmarets.
 17 
Saadallah Wannous
(Syrian Writer, Playwright, and Editor)
Saadallah Wannous
1
Birthdate: March 27, 1941
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Hosain Al Bahir, Syria
Died: May 15, 1997
Saadallah Wannous was a Syrian writer, playwright, and editor. He is credited with editing the cultural and art sections of a popular newspaper called Al-Baath. He also worked as the editor of a Lebanese daily called As-Safir. Saadallah Wannous also served as the director of the department for theater and music in Syria's Ministry for Culture and National Guidance.
 18 
Al-Buḥturī
(Arab Poet and Panegyrist)
Al-Buḥturī
1
Birthdate: 0820 AD
Birthplace: Manbij, Syria
Died: 0897 AD
Al-Buḥturī was an Arab poet whose works often drew comparisons with the work of another famous Arab poet, Abu Tammâm. As a matter of fact, Abu Tammâm was his contemporary and mentor. Al-Buḥturī's poems serve as examples of classic Arabic poems. Al-Buḥturī gained fame as a panegyrist in the court of Al-Mutawakkil ʿalā Allāh, the tenth Abbasid caliph.
 19 
Jacob of Edessa
(One of the Most Prominent Scholars of the Christian-Aramean Tradition)
Jacob of Edessa
1
Birthdate: 0640 AD
Birthplace: Syria
Died: June 5, 0708
Jacob of Edessa was an important Syriac Christian writer who also served as the Bishop of Edessa. One of the earliest Syriac grammarians, Jacob contributed immensely to literary and scholarly development of Syriac Christianity. Jacob of Edessa is widely regarded as one of the most prominent scholars of the Christian-Aramean tradition.
 20 
Dima Khatib
(One of the Most Influential and Famous Arabs on Social Media)
Dima Khatib
1
Birthdate: July 14, 1971
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
Dima Khatib is a Syrian-born journalist, translator, and poet. She is currently working as the managing director of a popular digital news service called AJ+, which was launched in San Francisco, USA, by Al Jazeera Media Network. Dima Khatib is also a popular social media influencer and is counted among the most influential and famous Arabs on social media.
 21 
Omar Abu Risha
(Syrian Poet and Diplomat)
Omar Abu Risha
1
Birthdate: April 10, 1910
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Manbij, Syria
Died: July 15, 1990
Omar Abu Risha was a Syrian poet and diplomat. He served as the fourth ambassador of Syria to the USA from 1961 to 1964. He also served as ambassador to Brazil, Argentina, Austria, India, and Chile. Best remembered for his pioneering works, Omar Abu Risha wrote several volumes of poetic dramas and poetry.
 22 
Nadia Hijab
(Palestinian Political Analyst, Journalist, and Author)
Nadia Hijab
1
Birthdate: 1950 AD
Birthplace: Aleppo, Syria
Nadia Hijab is a Palestinian political analyst, journalist, and author. Best known for her comments on Middle East affairs and human rights, Nadia Hijab is credited with co-founding Al-Shabaka, a transnational think tank that aims at bringing together Palestinian writers and thinkers from all over the world.
 23 
Severian of Gabala
(Popular Preacher and Bishop of Gabala)
Severian of Gabala
1
Birthplace: Unknown
Died: 0408 AD
Severian of Gabala was a popular preacher who served as the Bishop of Gabala in Syria. His preachings became popular and over 50 of his sermons have survived the test of time. An enemy of John Chrysostom, Severian of Gabala played a key role in condemning the former at the Synod of the Oak.   
 24 
Aëtius of Antioch
(Syrian Theologian Who Advocated Arianism)
Aëtius of Antioch
1
Birthdate: 0300 AD
Birthplace: Coele-Syria
Died: 0367 AD
Aëtius of Antioch was a Syrian theologian and goldsmith. He played a key role in advocating Arianism in Alexandria along with Eunomius. He was then ordained a bishop and used his political power to spread Arianism in many places including Constantinople.
 25 
Rabbula
(Bishop of Edessa)
Rabbula
1
Birthdate: 0411 AD
Birthplace: Qenneshrin, Syria
Died: July 31, 0435
Rabbula served as a bishop of Edessa between 411 and 435 AD. Best remembered for his objection to the views of Nestorius and Theodore of Mopsuestia, Rabbula practiced Christian asceticism and lived in a monastery before living as a solitary hermit. He is revered as a Saint by the Syriac Orthodox Church and Eastern Orthodox Church.
 26 
Abhdisho bar Berikha
(The First Bishop of Shiggar)
Abhdisho bar Berikha
1
Birthdate: 1250 AD
Birthplace: Nusaybin, Turkey
Died: October 31, 1318
Abhdisho bar Berikha was a Syriac writer who served as the first bishop of Shiggar. He is credited with writing the Marganitha, one of the most prominent ecclesiastical texts of the Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East.
 27 
Abdul-Salam Ojeili
(Syrian Doctor, Novelist, and Politician Who Held Portfolios Such as the Culture and Foreign Ministries)
Abdul-Salam Ojeili
0
Birthdate: 1918 AD
Birthplace: Ar Raqqah, Syria
Died: April 5, 2006

Syrian novelist and politician Abdul-Salam Ojeili was also a doctor. Apart from teaching at institutes such as Damascus University, he wrote iconic novels and short story collections, such as Hearts on Wires and Land of the Lords. As a politician, he held major portfolios, such as the foreign and cultural ministries.

 28 
Salwa Al Neimi
(Syrian Writer, Journalist, and Poet)
Salwa Al Neimi
0
Birthdate: 1950 AD
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
Salwa Al Neimi is a Syrian writer, journalist, and poet. She is best known for her honest views on controversial and sensitive topics like sexuality, which are considered taboo in the Muslim world. Salwa Al Neimi achieved popularity after the release of her debut novel Burhān al-ʿasal, which was translated into several languages including English and French. 
 29 
Isaac of Antioch
(Syrian Author Who is Remembered for His Large Number of Metrical Homilies)
Isaac of Antioch
0
Birthplace: Unknown
Died: 0460 AD
Isaac of Antioch was a Syrian author best remembered for his large number of metrical homilies. A star of Syriac literature, Isaac also served as a priest of an independent Christian church in Syria. He is also known for his works that describe events in Asia Minor and Rome.
 30 
Riad Ismat
(Syrian Writer, Theatre Director, Critic, and Diplomat)
Riad Ismat
1
Birthdate: July 11, 1947
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Damascus, First Syrian Republic Syria
Died: May 13, 2020
Riad Ismat was a Syrian writer, theatre director, and critic. Also a political figure, Ismat served as the Minister of Culture from 2010 to 2012. Prior to his service as Minister of Culture, Riad Ismat served as Syrian ambassador to Pakistan and Qatar. A renowned playwright and theatre director, Riad Ismat is also credited with founding Syria's first mime troupe.
 31 
Abdulla Issa
(National Poet of Palestine)
Abdulla Issa
0
Birthdate: January 15, 1964
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Yarmouk Camp, Syria
Abdulla Issa is a Palestinian poet, journalist, film producer, political analyst, and winner of several literary awards. Recognized as the national poet of Palestine, Abdulla Issa is also known for his work as the editor of several magazines like New Tomorrow and Poets.
 32 
Anthony Of Tagrit
(West Syrian Syriac Rhetor and Theologian)
Anthony Of Tagrit
0
Birthplace: Tikrit, Iraq
Anthony of Tagrit was a West Syrian Syriac rhetor and theologian. He is best known for his immense contribution to Syriac literature. The Book of the Rhetoric, one of Anthony's few extant works, was translated into several languages including English.