• Art of the Islamic and Indian  auction at Christies

    Sale 7843

    Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds

    13 April 2010, London, King Street

  • Lot 61

    QUTB AL-DIN MAHMUD BIN MAS'UD BIN MUSLIH AL-SHIRAZI (D. AH 710/1310-11 AD): NIHAYAT AL-IDRAK FI DIRAYAT AL-AFLAK

    IRAN OR EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN, 15TH OR EARLY 16TH CENTURY

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    QUTB AL-DIN MAHMUD BIN MAS'UD BIN MUSLIH AL-SHIRAZI (D. AH 710/1310-11 AD): NIHAYAT AL-IDRAK FI DIRAYAT AL-AFLAK
    IRAN OR EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN, 15TH OR EARLY 16TH CENTURY
    Comprising the second part of The Limit of Comprehension in the Knowledge of Celestial Spheres, Al-Shirazi's presentation of models for planetary motions, Arabic manuscript on paper, 50ff. plus 1 fly-leaf, with 19ll. of black naskh, chapter titles in black thuluth, subtitles in red naskh, important words highlighted and underlined in red, with numerous finely drawn diagrams, catchwords, some pages with text panel bordered with double red lines, later marginal notes, later added frontispiece, colophon with added signature of Ahmad bin Ildigiz bin 'Abdullah, in speckled paper cover binding
    Folio 9 3/8 x 6 1/8in. (24 x 15.4cm.)


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    This work and the Tuhfat al-Shahiyya (lot 62) have been composed by Qutb al-Din al-Shirazi (1236-1311), a prominent astronomer who worked under the direction of Nasir al-Din al-Tusi in the observatory of Maragha. Following al-Tusi's works, Qutb al-Din al-Shirazi improved the representations of the motions of the planets and specifically that of Mercury. He worked at the courts of the Ilkhanid Ghazan Khan (1295-1304) and Uljaytu (1304-1317) and founded a new astronomical observatory in Tabriz. The Nihayat al-Idrak fi Dirayat al-Aflak, completed in 1281, includes four chapters on astronomy, measurement of the Earth, atmospheric phenomena and other subjects. Al-Shirazi's works on Physics are also known for his comprehensive explanation of the rainbow.
    Other copies of this work are in the British Library (399) and the Library of the University of Leiden (203) (IRCICA, Mathematicians, Astronomers and other Scholars of Islamic Civilization and their works, Istanbul, 2003, 668).

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