Browse Lots

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
JAMAL AL-DIN ABU MUHAMMAD NIZAMI (D. AH 598/1202 AD): KHULASAT AL-KHAMSA
JAMAL AL-DIN ABU MUHAMMAD NIZAMI (D. AH 598/1202 AD): KHULASAT AL-KHAMSA
1 More
No VAT on hammer price or buyer's premium.
JAMAL AL-DIN ABU MUHAMMAD NIZAMI (D. AH 598/1202 AD): KHULASAT AL-KHAMSA

SIGNED MUHAMMAD HUSAYN AL-KASHMIRI, KNOWN AS ZARRIN QALAM, MUGHAL INDIA, DATED AH 1012/1603-04 AD

Details
JAMAL AL-DIN ABU MUHAMMAD NIZAMI (D. AH 598/1202 AD): KHULASAT AL-KHAMSA
SIGNED MUHAMMAD HUSAYN AL-KASHMIRI, KNOWN AS ZARRIN QALAM, MUGHAL INDIA, DATED AH 1012/1603-04 AD
An abridgment of Nizami's Khamsa, Persian manuscript on paper, 37ff., each folio with 12ll. of elegant black nasta'liq arranged in two gold-sprinkled columns, with double intercolumnar division, cartouche dividers with pairs of polychrome birds, the manuscript probably remargined in the 18th or 19th century, text panels with gold floral borders and gold and polychrome rules on polychrome paper, opening preface bifolio with fully gold-illuminated borders and headpiece, followed by another fully illuminated bifolio with gold and polychrome borders and headpiece, colophon signed and dated, in later 18th century reddish brown morocco with gilt medallions, with associated cutout paper doublures
Text panel 5 ¼ x 2 ½in. (13.5 x 6.3cm.); folio 10 x 7 1/8in, (25.5 x 18.2cm.)
Special notice

No VAT on hammer price or buyer's premium.

Brought to you by

Sara Plumbly
Sara Plumbly

Lot Essay

Muhammad Husayn al-Katib Kashmiri (d. AH 1020/1611-12 AD), was the most celebrated calligrapher at the court of the emperor Akbar, who gave him the title of Zarrin Qalam (‘Golden Pen’). Abu al-Fazl in his Chronicle of Akbar’s reign said of him ‘the artist who, in the shadow of the throne of His Majesty, has become a master of calligraphy, is Muhammad Husayn of Kashmir’. He continued to work at the court of Jahangir and his recorded work is dated between 988 (1580-1AD) and 1017 (1608-9AD) (Mehdi Bayani, Ahval va asar-e khosh-nevisan, Vol. III, Teheran, 1348 sh., pp 702-704). He executed a copy of the Akbarnama (the ‘Book of Akbar’) which is divided between the British Library (OR.12988) and the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin; a copy of Sa’di’s Gulistan dated 1583 AD, now in the Royal Asiatic Society (Persian 258), London and a copy of Jami’s Baharistan dated 1595 AD, now at the Bodleian Library, Oxford (ms. Elliot 254).

Many examples of his work are decorated with small pictures of birds as are found here although most appear on calligraphic panels and not on bound manuscripts. See for instance Sotheby's, London, 22 April 1980, lot 165; Christie’s, London, 17 April 2007, lot 214; 25 April 2013, lot 51. Other calligraphic folios are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (1993.380) and Victoria and Albert Museum, London (IS.89-1965). An imperial copy of Amir Khusraw Dehlawi’s Khamsa signed by Zarrin Qalam and dated 1597-98 is shared between the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Walters Art gallery, Baltimore (W.624).

More from Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds Including Oriental Rugs and Carpets

View All
View All