Isl. Ms. 270


Majālis al-ʻushshāq,[1006, i.e. 1597 or 1598].مجالس العشاق,[1006ه, 1597 او 1598م].


Gāzurgāhī, Ḥusayn ibn Ismāʻīl,15th cent.گازرگاهى, حسين بن اساعيل.

Place/Date of Production:

[1597 or 1598].


138 leaves :paper ;355 x 245 (242 x 140) mm.


Elegant and extensively illustrated copy of Majālis al-ʻushshāq, a Ṣūfī work on the ecstasy of mystic and material love, compiled at the court of Sulṭān Ḥusayn Bāyqarā (r.1469-1506) at Herat.

Other Title(s):

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


Sufis--Biography--Early works to 1800.
Sufi poetry, Persian--Early works to 1800.
Manuscripts, Persian--Michigan--Ann Arbor.


Headpieces (layout features)16th century.




Ms. codex.
Title from colophon.


"ای جمیلی که اشعه لمعات حسنت هرجا چراغی بر افروخت ز آتش عشقش خان ..."


"در نهصد و هشت شد روانم خامه در نهصد و نه تمام کشت این نامه م"


"Scribal," triangular, reads " تمام شد اين شريف كتاب المسمى مجالس العشاق فى شهور سنه ۱۰۰۶ كاتبه فولاد محمد بن يار محمد البخارى غفر لهما"


Can you help transcribe the dedication? Please comment!


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

Physical Details:

v, IV-2 (6), IV-1 (13), 2 IV(29), 2 IV-1(43), IV-4 (47), 3 IV(71), III (77), IV-4 (81), 5 IV(121), III+2 (129), III (135), I+1 (138), v ; chiefly quaternions (several anomalous) ; catchwords present.


Written in 29 lines per page with written area occasionally divided to three columns to set-off poetry ; frame-ruled.


Nastaʻlīq ; exquisite hand, large though delicate, in a medium line ; serifless, with effect of words descending to baseline, elongation and exaggerated thickness of horizontal strokes, pointing in distinct dots.


Exquisite illuminated roundel / shamsah frontispiece on 'title page' carries a patronage statement in white on a central field of gold surrounded by ornamented bands of white, black with delicate floral motifs in white, yellow and red, gold with black crosses and outermost lapis lazuli with arabesques and floral motifs in gold, yellow, white, red, light blue and black and radiating stalks (tīgh) ; superb illuminated headpiece (ʻunwān / sarlawḥ) at opening consisting of rectangular piece with empty gold cartouche surrounded by delicate arabesques and floral motifs in white, yellow, red, etc. on grounds of lapis, yelow and black as well as decorative bands in heavy gold interlace, white with black crosses, and black with delicate floral motifs in white, yellow, red, etc., surmounted by scalloped triangular piece or hasp set in heavy band all overlaid with arabesques and floral motifs on fields of gold, black, lapis, red, etc. with vertical stalks (tīgh) above in lapis ; gold vegetal motifs above and in the margin (where they are accented with a crudely applied blue wash) appear to be a later addition ; keywords and headings rubricated, chrysographed or in light blue ; written area surrounded by heavy frame consisting of narrow bands of gold, light blue, dark red / brown and turquoise with outermost black fillets and blue rule ; divisions within written area defined by narrow gold band outlined with black fillets ; extensively illustrated with roughly 68 half to three-quarter page miniatures ; thread tabs marking location of illustrations now covered with paper.


non-European (likely Persian) laid paper with 6-7 laid lines per cm. (horizontal, fairly distinct) and no chain lines clearly visible, quite sturdy and fairly thick though transluscent, well-burnished.


Quite heavy pasteboards (8 mm. thick) now faced in dark mahogany-painted tan leather over red leather with edges / turn-ins in "shagreen" (turquoise in color) and rebacked in dark green coated cloth ; Type III binding (without flap) ; pastedowns and flyleaves in a light aquamarine wove paper ; upper and lower covers carry stamped (with once gold-painted leather onlays) central mandorla, epigraphic pendants with binder's signature ("عمل مير محمد يعقوب خواجه"), and bordering lozenges and cornerpieces ; now sewn in heavy white thread, two stations ; worked chevron endbands in yellow and light blue, fair condition ; overall in fairly poor condition with significant abrasion, lifting and losses of leather and paper, staining, etc. ; seems much repaired.

Accompanying Materials:

Full and half sheets of pastel blue and yellow tipped in to protect painted illuminations and illustrations.

Former Shelfmarks:

"155" inscribed in pencil on upper pastedown and recto of front flyleaf.


As appears in colophon at close, copied by Fūlād Muḥammad ibn Yār Muḥammad al-Bukhārī with transcription completed in 1006 [1597 or 8].

Ownership and History:

Inscription in pencil on upper pastedown and front flyleaf "50" ; exquisite roundel /shamsah frontispiece on 'title page' carries patronage statement for the library of ʻAbdī [?] Khvājah ibn Khvājah Saʻd ibn Khvājah Muḥammad Islām [?] ( عبدى خواجه بن خواجه سعد بن خواجه محمد اسلام ؟) ; fairly clean copy.

Contributor(s) / Included work(s):

06--Mīr Muḥammad Yaʻqūb,--binder.
06--مير محمد يعقوب،--مجلد.


05 Fūlād Muḥammad ibn Yār Muḥammad al-Bukhārī, fl. 1597, scribe. 05 فولاد محمد بن يار محمد البخارى، ناسخ.

Former Owner(s):

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

In Collection:

Abdul Hamid Collection.


University of Michigan Library. Manuscripts & papyri : an exhibition arranged for the XXVII International Congress of Orientalists, Ann Arbor, Michigan, August 13-19, 1967. (Ann Arbor, MI [?], 1967),no.50, p.13Uluç, Lale."Majālis al-'Ushshāq: Written in Herat, Copied in Shiraz and Read in Istanbul," in M. Uğur Derman 65 Yaş Armağanı/65th Birthday Festschrift, ed. İrvin C. Schick (Istanbul: Sabancı University, 2000),pp. 569-603.Cat. Pers. MSS. Brit. Mus,pp.351-53Browne, A literary history of Persia,v.4, pp.439-40Storey, Persian literature,v.2, pp. 959-62

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Posted by evyn on July 12, 2010
Tags: Abdul Hamid Collection, Fully Catalogued, Persian MSS

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