• 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 218

    TWO MAMLUK MEDICAL TREATISES

    POSSIBLY DAMASCUS, SYRIA, COLOPHON WITH DATE OF AH 780/1378 AD

    Price Realised  

    TWO MAMLUK MEDICAL TREATISES
    POSSIBLY DAMASCUS, SYRIA, COLOPHON WITH DATE OF AH 780/1378 AD
    Comprising Isma'il bin Muhammad al-Husayn al-Hassani al-Jurjani (d. 1136 AD), Zubda al-Tibb (The Quintessence of Medicine) and Ibn Butlan (d. circa 1066 AD), Kitab taqwim al-sihha, Arabic manuscript on paper, 152ff. as numbered plus two fly-leaves, numerous sections on various ailments and diseases affecting the parts of the body, each text panel with dense black ta'liq organized in columns and cartouches, text sometimes written on the diagonal, titles in larger black, red or green naskh or thuluth in a cartouche above the text, later owners' notes on the opening folio, the added colophon with date of Sha'ban AH 780 and stating that it was copied in Damascus, in later gilt maroon morocco binding
    7¾ x 4 7/8in. (19.7 x 12.8cm.)


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    Al-Jurjani originally composed his work Al-Zubda fi al-tibb (The Quintessence of Medicine) in Arabic, unlike his most celebrated work Al-Dhakhira al-Khwarazmshahiya (see lot 177). It is divided in two parts: a first section on theoretical medicine and a second section on the treatments of ailments. Al-Zubda fi al-tibb is famous for giving a classification of drugs into three categories: mineral, herbal and animal. Only a few copy of this work appear to be preserved, one of which is the United States National Library of Medicine (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/hmd/arabic/E14_E16.html). For a further discussion on Al-Jurjani's works please see lot 177

    The Taqwim al-Sihha [bi al-asbab al-sitta] (The Almanac of Health) by Ibn al-Butlan is his most famous work and one of the most celebrated works on the rules of good health and hygiene. The Taqwim al-sihha gives the principles of medicine using numerous tables and precise examples, however with a particular interest for questions related to nutrition. Another copy of this work, dated 1213 AD, is in the British Library (À l'ombre d'Avicenne, La médecine au temps des califes, exhibition catalogue, Paris, 1996, p.236). The 13th century Latin translation of the work, titled Tacuinum sanitatis, knew great popularity in Europe.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium, which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.