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'ARIFI.

Guy U Chawng [The Ball and Polo-Mallett],

signed by Muhammad Ali bin Mahmoud al-Munajjim.

Stock Code
103468
Safavid Persia, 1535
£8,500

The text, also known as the Halnama of 'Arifi, uses the ball and mallet from the game of polo as allegorical representations of mystical love.

Safavid calligrapher Muhammad Ali b. Mahmoud al-Munajjim worked in the court of Shah Tahmasb (r. 1524-1576) and was a considered a master of nas-ta'liq script by his contemporaries. There are only two known manuscripts recorded under the same name, these are: a manuscript of Abd al-Rahman Jami's Mathnawi, dated 1566 AD in the Chester Beatty Library (Dublin, cat. 213), and an anthology of Persian poetry dated 1545-46 AD, that included poems of Qasim Anwar, Amir Khusrau Dihlawi, Hafiz, Asafi, dated 1547 in the Topkapi Palace Museum Library (Istanbul, R. 958).

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Description

Illuminated manuscript on gold-speckled paper with illuminated borders of thicker pink paper, in Farsi, 22 leaves (each leaf tipped-in with linen edging, exact collation not possible), 190 by 130 mm.; double column, 12 lines elegant refined scribal nasta'liq, illuminated polychrome headpiece opening the text, further decorated banners separating chapters, text columns framed and ruled within spiralling vines of gilt foliage, thick card borders painted with delicate floral sprays and geometric designs in gold with accents of green and turquoise; some small scattered wormholes and a few edges repaired along text panels (rarely affecting text), some scattered brown spots and leaves slightly cockled; housed in eighteenth-century gilt ruled morocco with gilt corner-pieces, spine ends and extremities very slightly discoloured, overall bright and attractive, housed in twentieth-century red cloth portfolio with matching red morocco-backed slip-case by J.S. Macdonald of New York.

Bibliography

Stock ID:103468

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