Khwajeh Shams al-Din Muhammad Hafez-e Shirazi (also spelled Hafiz) was a Persian mystic and poet who is now revered as one of the most influential Persian poets of all time. He was born sometime between the years 1310-1337, in the city of Shiraz in present-day Iran. Hafez today is primarily remembered for his lyrical poetry written in ghazals, a difficult and uniquely Persian verse-form. Prior to Hafez, ghazals were primarily used to write songs celebrating wine and earthly pleasure. Hafez revolutionized the form by utilizing the stock symbols of wine and pleasure as metaphors for spiritual experience. In so doing, Hafez elevated his short, simple verses to the level of high art. Hafez's poetry advocated abandoning all restraints and preconceptions so as to come into direct contact with the spiritual realm. As a result of his mystical and profoundly transcendent subject-matter, Hafez has become an inspiration for poets of all cultures. Arguably the most influential Persian poet of all time, Hafez has been translated into countless languages, and his works were particularly influential to a number of the early European Romantics, including Goethe and Friedrich Schiller.