In the 9th century two of the best-known poets - Abu Tammam and Bulhturi (q.v.) - were renowned for their knowledge of old poetry (see Hamasa) and were influenced by it in their own verse.
From the 9th century we have the Hamasas of Abu Tammam and Buhturi, and a collection of poems of the tribe Hudhail (second half ed.
Like Abu Tammam, he was of the tribe of Tai.
While still young, he went to visit Abu Tammam at Homs, and by him was commended to the authorities at Ma'arrat unNu`man, who gave him a pension of 4000 dirhems (about X90) yearly.
Like Abu Tammam he made a collection of early poems, known as the Hamasa (index of the poems contained in it, in the Journal of the German Oriental Society, vol.
He died about fifty years before Abu `Ubaida and al-Asma`i, to whose labours posterity is largely indebted for the arrangement, elucidation and criticism of ancient Arabian verse; and his anthology was put together between fifty and sixty years before the compilation by Abu Tammam of the Ilamasa (q.v.).
Many are mere fragments, and even in the longest there are often lacunae; but the compiler evidently set down all that he could collect of a poem from the memory of the rawis, and did not, like Abu Tammam, choose only the best portions.