(a.), lit. “description”.
I. In poetry
This literary genre, through its dimensions, its significative function and its evolution, has played a role of the greatest importance in the long process of the development of Arabic poetry. By its etymology, the term signifies embellishment (al-D̲j̲awharī, al-Ṣiḥāḥ , Beirut 1404/1984, iv, 1438-9; Tahd̲h̲īb al-lug̲h̲a , xii, 248a; al-Zamak̲h̲s̲h̲arī, Asās al-balāg̲h̲a , 1024a-1025a; LA, s.v. w-ṣ-f , waṣafa al-s̲h̲ayʾa ḥallāhu “he described a thing, meaning that he embellished it”). This sense has been retai…