Isl. Ms. 895


Gulistān,[1185?, i.e. 1771 or 1772?].گلستان,[1185ه؟, 1771 او 1772م؟].



Place/Date of Production:

[Chīnāpatan,1771 or 1772?].


141 leaves :paper ;206 x 132 (150 x 80) mm. bound to 212 x 140 mm.


Elegant copy of the Gulistān, celebrated collection of moralizing anecdotes in rhymed prose interspersed with verse (maqāmah form), composed in 1258 by the renowned Persian poet and prose writer, Saʻdī (d.1292).

Other Title(s):



Persian poetry--747-1500
Sufi poetry, Persian--Early works to 1800.
Manuscripts, Persian--Michigan--Ann Arbor.


Headpieces (layout features)18th century.




Ms. codex.
Title from close on p.298.


"منت مر خدا یرا عز و جل که طاعتش موجب قربت است ..."


Can you help transcribe the explicit? Please comment!


"Scribal," triangular, reads "این کتاب مستطاب کلستان از معین واهب متعال ... بشب دوشنبه در سنه ۱۱۸۴ [۱۱۸۵] چیناپتن باتمام رسید کاتب الحروف محمد جعفر بن محمد ادم غفر الله ذنوبهى بیت ... تم"


Can you help transcribe the dedication? Please comment!


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

Physical Details:

iv, 17 IV(136), II+1 (141), iv ; almost exclusively quaternions (though original sewing now impossible to discern, mid-quire marks designate centers of gatherings) ; middle of the quire marks in the form of black oblique strokes in the upper outer corner of the right-hand leaf ; final leaves ruled but left blank ; catchwords present ; pagination in now light grey ink, Western numerals (every other leaf, not always visible) ; pagination in pencil, Western numerals, supplied during digitization (includes inserts and flyleaves).


Written in 12 lines per page ; frame-ruled.


Nastaʻlīq ; elegant, somewhat compact hand in a medium line ; serifless with effect of words descending to baseline, many closed counters, pointing (two and three dots) mainly in strokes or conjoined dots.


Illuminated headpiece (ʻunwān / sarlawḥ) at opening on p.22 consisting of rectangular piece with gold cartouche (carrying the basmalah set off by cloud bands) flanked by floral vegetal motifs in gold, red and dark grey blue, surmounted by scalloped w-shaped piece with swirling floral vegetal designs in red, grey blue [or dark green?], and gold on fields of gold and grey blue, all surmounted by vertical stalks (tīgh) grey blue and set in a well of gold and grey bands with red vegetal accents ; written area of incipit and facing page surrounded by frame consisting of a gold band defined by black fillets with outermost black and red rules ; elsewhere written area surrounded by triple rule-border in two red rules and one blue ; keywords, abbreviation symbols (mainly two-teeth stroke overlining some keywords), and vocalization rubricated ; textual dividers in the form of horizontal stroke with closed loop, three dots, etc.


non-European laid paper with roughly 9 laid lines per cm. (vertical, fairly indistinct, curving) and chain lines only faintly visible at roughly 25 mm. apart (see p.302, etc.), thin and crisp though sturdy, well-sized and burnished, stark white in color ; original leaves have been mounted in frames of wove paper (applied to the recto) which have then been sewn in the current rebinding ; outer edges of original leaves and mounts have been trimmed together ; minor pest damage in original leaves.


Boards covered in reddish cloth with red-brown leather over spine (quarter binding) ; Western style binding ; pastedowns and flyleaves in faintly marbled paper with a pinkish hue ; head edge of text block gilt ; spine blind-tooled with leaf and decorative lines as well as gold-stamped with "SAʻDĪ |GULISTĀN | MS. | A.H. 1185" ; sewn in white thread over five recessed cords ; overall in good condition.

Accompanying Materials:

a. Slip or tag with "#2" in red pencil (paginated pp.1-2) -- b. Slip of ruled paper with inscription in ink "Chambers. See Ethé, Bodleian cat., col. 260." (paginated pp.3-4) -- c. Slip with description in hand of G. Meredith-Owens "MO 15 Gulistān of Saʻdī | copied in 1185 (6 ?) in Chināpatan (?) by Muḥammad b. Jaʻfar b. Muḥammad" (paginated pp.5-6) -- d. Slip with description (in hand of E. Husselman ?) "Muṣliḥ ibn ʻAbd Allāh, Musharrif al-Dīn, called Saʻdī, Shīrāzī. Gulistān. Copied A.H. 1185. Have several other MSS in U. of M. Isl. MSS." (paginated pp.7-8) -- e. Slip with note "Persian MSS (Heyworth-Dunne?) with Husselman and Meredith-Owen notes" (paginated pp.9-10) -- f. Slip with note "Counted for 1968/69 Annual Report" (paginated pp.11-12) -- g. Card with description in pencil "Gulestān (MS) | Saʻdi | Date: 1185 AH (1766±) | Pages: 284" (paginated pp.13-14).

Former Shelfmarks:

Mich. Isl. Ms. temp. no 44


As appears in colophon on p.298, copied by Muḥammad Jaʻfar ibn Muḥammad Ādam in Chīnāpatan (چيناپتن, i.e. Madras or Chennai) with transcription completed in 1184 [1770 or 71] or 1185 [1771 or 2] ; likely 1185 as numerals appear to have been overwritten in red by the rubricator.

Ownership and History:

Note "Persian MSS." and former inventory mark "10/6" on flyleaf (p.15) ; back flyleaf stamped in black ink "J. ADAMS MANCHESTER" ; Western numerals in the margins mark lines of verse at intervals ; occasional marginal correction.

Contributor(s) / Included work(s):

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


05 Muḥammad Jaʻfar ibn Muḥammad Ādam, fl. 1771, scribe. 05 محمد جعفر بن محمد آدم, ناسخ.

Former Owner(s):

Nuttall, Frank E., 1875-1943, former owner.

In Collection:

F. E. Nuttall Collection.


Cat. Pers. MSS Brit. Mus.,p.595 ff.Browne,v. ii, p.525-532Rypka,p.251-253

Images1 2

Posted by evyn on March 9, 2011
Tags: F. E. Nuttall Collection, Fully Catalogued, Persian MSS

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