Al-Hafiz, along with his near contemporary and fellow Shirazi Sa'di, has always been regarded by Persian speakers as the most beloved and sublime of poets. He was famous in his own lifetime. For centuries his tomb in Shiraz in southern Iran has been a shrine, and his poems are still quoted by the broadest spectrum of Iranians. Although his birthdate is widely disputed, scholars believe that Muhammad Shams al-Din died in 1389 or 1390. His pen name, al-Hafiz, means "memorizer," particularly one who has committed the Qur'an to memory. This would seem to indicate that he received a traditional religious education at the very least. Typical of the time in which he lived, al-Hafiz was a court poet, excelling in the ghazal, or ode, although he also wrote in many other forms, including ruba'iyat (quatrains). Al-Hafiz loved Shiraz, and it appears often in his works, particularly the quarter in which he lived. His other themes are those common to his times:youth, love, beauty. His poems are always moralistic. Although he frequently uses Sufi language and images, many of his poems cannot be read allegorically. His diwan (complete works) contains close to 700 poems and has been translated into English several times and in several styles. In Persian, editions of the diwan are innumerable, and literally hundreds of books have been written about al-Hafiz and his works by the great and the nongreat alike.