Thursday, May 24, 2012

Book of kings

Book of kings (Shahnama)
This copy of Firdawsī's Shāhnāmah (Book of kings) was written by Muḥammad Mīrak ibn Mīr Muḥammad al-Ḥusaynī al-Ustādī, most probably in Herat (present-day Afghanistan). It was completed in 1028 AH / 1618-9 CE. There are two Arabic colophons, one at the end of the preface (fol. 7a) and the other at the end of part 1 (fol. 334a). The preface is by Abū Manṣūr Muḥammad ibn ʿAbd al-Razzāq, who composed it in 346 AH / 957-8 CE. Although incomplete at the end, the manuscript contains eighty-three illustrations. Some are by a later hand and attributed to Safavid artists Rizā ʿAbbāsī and Shaykh ʿAbbāsī in the eleventh century AH / seventeenth CE (fols. 55b, 62b, 391b, 476b, and 479b). The lacquer binding is not contemporary with the manuscript and dates to the thirteenth century AH / nineteenth CE.


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