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    Sale 13206

    Islamic Manuscripts Featuring The Mohamed Makiya Collection

    18 April 2016, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 89

    ZAKARIYA BIN MUHAMMAD BIN MAHMUD AL-QAZWINI (D.1283 AD): AJA'IB AL-MAKHLUQAT WA GHARA'IB AL-MAWJUDAT

    SAFAVID IRAN, MID-17TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    ZAKARIYA BIN MUHAMMAD BIN MAHMUD AL-QAZWINI (D.1283 AD): AJA'IB AL-MAKHLUQAT WA GHARA'IB AL-MAWJUDAT
    SAFAVID IRAN, MID-17TH CENTURY
    The wonders of creation, Arabic manuscript on paper, 273ff., each with 20ll. black naskh script in red and blue ruled panels, words and phrases in red, catchwords, numerous gouache illustrations including some in the margins, opening folio with illuminated margins, probable illuminated heading lacking, colophon on final folio rubbed but possibly with date AH 971(?) and 105[.]?, in brown morocco binding with light brown stamped medallions
    Text 6 7/8 x 4in. (17.6 x 10cm.); folio 9 ¾ x 6 5/8in. (24.8 x 17cm.)


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    Zakariyia bin Muhammad bin Mahmud al-Qazwini was born in Qazwin and spent some years in Damascus before settling in Iraq, where he became the Qadi of Wasit and Hilla. His two compilations, a Cosmology and a Geography, were translated several times from Arabic into Persian and Turkish. The Cosmology 'Aja'ib al-Makhluqat wa Ghara'ib al-Mawjudat, describes all of creation: the superlunary sphere, the planets and stars, together with the angels and the method of determining time by observation of heavenly cycles; the description the sublunary sphere follows this, and includes sections on the four elements, minerals, plants, beasts, and man.

    The material was collected from written sources including somewhat distorted travellers' tales with echoes of ancient mythology, found alongside much genuinely factual information, giving this work its curious character. Sections on the strangely formed race of humans with no head and faces on their chest, or with various numbers of limbs recall similar descriptions in Western medieval literature. For further reading, see Esin Atil, Art of the Arab World, Washington 1975, p. 115.

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    Provenance

    The Hagop Kevorkian Collection (1073)