Anthology of Poems and Religious Texts

ink, gold and opaque watercolour on paper; contemporary floral lacquer binding signed ‘Ali Ashraf and dated 1168 AH (1754–4 AD)

text copied in naskh script; 8 lines to the page

305 folios; 21.7 x 13.5cm

The anthology includes the Qasidat al-burdah of al-Busiri, the Qasidat banat su‘ad of Ka‘b ibn Zuhayr, and the Dala’il al-khayrat of al-Jazuli. The two schematic views of the Holy Sanctuary at Mecca and the Prophet’s mosque at Medina (folios 133b–134a, with the view of Medina unusually shown first) differ considerably from the topographical depictions seen in contemporary manuscripts of Ottoman provenance.

The patron, Khidr Khan ibn Mullah Hajji Muhammad, was the commander-in-chief of Azad Khan, the Afghan governor of Isfahan (1753–7).

J.M. Rogers, The Arts of Islam. Masterpieces from the Khalili Collection, London 2010, cat.289, p.254.