Isl. Ms. 228


al-Kawākib al-durrīyah fī madḥ khayr al-barīyah,[783, i.e. 1381].الكواكب الدرية في مدح خير البرية,[783ه, 1381م].


Būṣīrī, Sharaf al-Dīn Muḥammad ibn Saʻīd,1213?-1296?بوصيري, شرف الدين محمد بن سعيد.

Place/Date of Production:



28 leaves :paper ;349 x 265 (309 x 212) mm. bound to 355 x 270 mm.


An elegant copy of al-Būṣīrī's poem in praise of the Prophet with its amplification (takhmīs) by Nāṣir al-Dīn Muḥammad al-Fayyūmī (mid-14th century), this ms. is also a fine specimen of Mamlūk calligraphy as executed by al-Ziftāwī (d.806/1403 or 4).

Other Title(s):



Calligraphy, Arabic--Specimens.
Writing, Arabic--Specimens.
Islamic calligraphy--Specimens.
Manuscripts, Arabic--Michigan--Ann Arbor.
Muḥammad,--Prophet,--d. 632--Poetry--Early works to 1800.


Headpieces (layout features)Islamic empire14th century.Tailpieces (layout features)Islamic empire14th century.




Ms. codex.
Title from titlepiece.


"بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم الحمد لله رب العالمين ما بال قلبك لا ينفك ذا ألم ... امن تذكر جيران بذي سلم مزجت دمعا جرى من مقلة بدم ..."


"ما رنحت عذبات البان ريح صبا واطرب العيس حادي العيس بالنغم"


"Scribal," reads: "تمت مع التخميس بحمد الله وعونه وصلى الله على نبيه محمد كتبها محمد بن علي الشهير بالزفتاوي عفا الله عنه بكرمه في العشر الاول من شهر الله المحرم افتتاح عام ثلاث وثمانين وسبعمائة حسبنا الله ونعم الوكيل"


Can you help transcribe the dedication? Please comment!


Unidentified-Can you help supply this information? Please comment!

Physical Details:

i, III (6), II (4), 4 I(18), I+1 (21), 2 I(25), I+1(28), i ; difficult to discern original gatherings, but appears to consist mainly in single bifolia (singulions) ; no catchwords present.


Written in 12 lines per page, 3 lines of the poem and 9 of the amplification, with the saṭr and first few words of the ʻajuz of each bayt filling the column width horizontally and the remainder of the ʻajuz appended slanting down diagonally, and three lines of amplification centered below the saṭr and first few words of the ʻajuz ; frame-ruled.


Very fine Mamlūk calligraphy ; saṭr and first words of ʻajuz for each bayt in thuluth, final words of ʻajuz in tawqīʻ and amplification in serifless naskh ; text and takhmīs fully vocalized ; title of titlepiece in foliated Kufic ; ex libris of titlepiece and text of tailpiece in tawqīʻ.


Exquisite richly illuminated titlepiece; ansa in the form of roundel with rosette attached to upper panel, which is surmounted by fine arabesque and vertical stalks in blue, lavender, gold, green, etc. ; upper panel contains cartouche carrying title in foliated Kufic lettered in gold on a field of blue with green swirling vegetal pattern ; lower panel contains large scalloped medallion (shamsah) carrying statement of authorship and ex libris lettered in gold with lined cloud-bands and vegetal accents, surrounded by a field of blue with floral vegetal design in gold, lavender, and green ; decorative strapwork border in gold surrounds entire piece ; illuminated headpiece consisting of a rectangular panel with roundel/rosette ansa ; within the panel, the basmalah is executed in gold accented with cloud-bands and cross-hatch pattern ; illuminated tailpiece consists of a rectangular panel with roundel/rosette ansa ; within the panel two roundels with rosettes flank the date of transcription accented with cloud-bands and cross-hatch pattern ; a red rule-border outlines the text itself, with illuminated rosettes flanking the lines of the amplification (takhmīs) ; on the opening and facing page, rosettes in blue and gold along with roundel in gold bearing word "تخميس" [?] ; text partially chrysographed with final words of each line in gold.


non-European (Arab) laid paper with chain lines grouped in threes running horizontally, spaced roughly 12-15 mm. apart with roughly 42 mm. between the groups ; laid lines running vertically spaced roughly 9 laid lines per cm. ; heavy and well-burnished with undissolved fibers and inclusions visible ; numerous reinforcements and repairs throughout, most notably to the first folio carrying the titlepiece and opening.


Pasteboards covered in a medium brown leather ; Type III binding (without flap) in Western style ; pastedowns and flyleaves in heavy untinted paper ; upper and lower covers carry decoration evoking the Islamic style with central oval panel and cornerpieces (stamped, in green) as well as border (stamped, in red) with floral and wove designs ; sewn in white thread, roughly six stations ; no endbands ; paper label on spine ; in good condition.

Former Shelfmarks:

Unidentified-Can you help supply this information? Please comment!


As appears in colophon, executed by Muḥammad ibn ʻAlī [ibn Aḥmad] al-Ziftāwī in the first tenth of Muḥarram 783 [March-April 1381].

Ownership and History:

From ex libris in shamsah of titlepiece, "لخزانة الجناب العالي المولوي القاضوي ...[؟] عمرها الله ببقاية محمد واله".

Contributor(s) / Included work(s):

04--Fayyūmī, Nāṣir al-Dīn Muḥammad ibn ʻAbd al-Ṣamad,--ca. 14th cent.,--Takhmīs Qaṣīdat al-burdah.
04--فيومي، ناصر الدين محمد بن عبد الصبد،--تخميس قصيدة البردة.


Unidentified-Can you help supply this information? Please comment!

Former Owner(s):

Abdülhamid II, Sultan of the Turks, 1842-1918, former owner.

In calligrapher:

05 Ziftāwī, Muḥammad ibn ʻAlī, d. 1403 or 4, calligrapher. 05 زفتاوي، محمد بن علي، خطاط.

Related Works:

Takhmīs Qaṣīdat al-burdah.تخميس قصيدة البردة.

In Collection:

Abdul Hamid Collection.

Images1 2

Posted by evyn on March 16, 2010
Tags: Abdul Hamid Collection, Arabic MSS, Fully Catalogued

Total comments on this page: 1

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Hashim Al-Tawil on whole page :

Calligraphic specimen, 783, i.e. 1381].[نموذج من فن الخط العربي, 783ه, 1381م].This is actually the complete text of the Burda by al-Busairy. The Kufic title reads:
الكواكب الدرية  في مدح خير البرية سيدنا محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم
I suggest changing the title of this MS to reflect its content.

May 31, 2010 5:24 am

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