Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Wadh.Minasian 26 (The Ferdowsi Library, Wadham College, University of Oxford)

Oriental Manuscripts Minasian Collection


Summary of Contents: Tārīkh-i Vaṣṣāf is one of the oldest historical sources of the Ilkhanate era, including an introduction and five volumes describing the events of the Ilkhnate government, beginning from the death of Möngke Khaqan (ruled 648-657 AH) through 723 AH, which is at the middle of the kingdom of Abū Saʿīd Bahādur (ruled 716-736 AH). This is one of the trustworthy historical sources, because the author himself has been a member of the court, and has either seen many of the events through his own eyes, or heard them from the higher ranks of the Ilkhante court. Another important feature of this book is its recording of many administrative terms of the Ilkhante court. The book is also importantly featured for its consideration of giving a fair-minded account of the historical incidents, its attention to the conditions of Shiraz and the Fars province at the time of the author, and his attitude towards the lives of the lower-class society. Tārīkh-i Vaṣṣāf is written in an ornate (mutikallif) and rhymed (musajjaʿ) prose, full of phrasing variations and repeating synonyms, with excessive use of Arabic facts, poems, and Quranic verses. Many of the book's Arabic or Persian poems are from the historian himself. Vaṣṣāf has dedicated part of his book to Ghazan Khan (ruled 694-703 AH), and another part to Öljeitü (ruled 703-716 AH) in Muḥarram 712. ʿAṭā Malik Juvaynī (623-981) is praised by him, and he calls his history book a continuation of Tārīkh-i Jahāngushā-yi Juvaynī. He has added some part of this book at the end of his fourth volume. These are the parts which account for the events of the Mongol and Tatar tribes, Genghis Khan's coming into power, and his invasions in Khurasan and Transoxiana, as well as a summary of the history of Khwarazmian dynasty. In addition, he has also appended to his book some treatises such as Madrasat Sayyār ( مدرسة سیار ), Uṣūl-i Fann-i Bayān ( اصول فن بیان ), and Rasālah-'i dar Tashbīh ( رساله‌ای در تشبیه ). The cataloguer of the Central Library of University of Tehran (2/525) records the book's compilation date between the years of 699-711 AH. He believes that Vaṣṣāf al-Ḥaz̤rat has downgraded his history to the level of an oration or lecture, despite all his accurateness and correctness. This copy is the second volume of a work on the history of Iran. The first volume has been about the Kublai Khan's accession to the throne, and this volume covers the Persian history from the beginning of the rule of Salghurids to the end of Arghun Khan era.
Language(s): Persian


Incipit: فرّخ‌ترین نوایی که نای مرغ زمزمه‌سرای زبان بدان دستان داستان سراید و دلنوازترین یادگاری که بدستیاری کلک سرگردان و کاغذ دو روی نگارپذیر شود… در مجلد اوّل چون ذکر جلوس قبلاقاآن و مبادی و مقدمات آن و خواتیم حال هولاکو خان و خانیت اولاد و احفاد او در اقالیم ثالث و رابع و خامس تا زمان دولت ارغون خان کرده شد و احوال و ملوک اطراف و صنادید ایام در عهد ایشان… مسطور گشت در این مجلد شرح تجددات امور ملک سلیمان فارس از مبادی انتقال سلطنت بدودمان کریم سلغری و بعضی احوال خانان اروغ میمون نسل چنگیزی تا آخر عهد ارغون خان…ایراد کرده میشود…
Explicit: … شیخ کمال‌الدین عبدالرحمن را برسالت و سفارت معین گردانید… بعد از ارسال و مراسله اقضی القضاة قطب شیرازی و اتابک پهلوانرا با این مکتوب روانه کرد… ||


Sequence Number in the Persian Catalogue:

  • FAW 141

Similar copies in other libraries:

  • NLI, 3/68
  • MNL, 8/202
  • MAJ, 10/325

Similar manuscripts listed in other catalogues:

  • FAP, 1/1185
  • DEN, 2/800

Printed editions:

  • Tehran, 1388/2009

On the Web:

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Oriental paper, natural buff, regular, one size, glossy.
Extent: 77 ff.
Dimensions (leaf): 38.5 × 22 cm.
Dimensions (written): 28.5 × 13.5 cm.


24 lines per page


Graceful Nastaʿaliq, regular, one hand; titles unwritten.


Black leather, 23 × 39.5 cm, front + back cover, single layer of leather only.

Tooled, ruled edges.


Origin: Unknown place of origin; 12-13th century AH; 18th century CE

Provenance and Acquisition

Donated to The Ferdowsi Library by Dr Caro Minasian in 1972.

Record Sources

This record was created based on the information published in: Mir-Ansari, Ali, Catalogue of the Persian and Arabic Manuscripts in the Ferdowsi Library, Wadham College, University of Oxford (Minasian Collection), Tehran: Miras-e Maktoob, 2016.


Entry to the Library is permitted upon presentation of a valid university ID card (for admissions procedures, please visit Wadham College Library, Persian Studies Section). Please Contact persian.library@wadham.ox.ac.uk for further information on the availability of this manuscript.

Key to bibliographical abbreviations of alternative versions:


AQR: Central Library of Astan Quds Razavi; FAW: Ferdowsi Library, Wadham College, University of Oxford (Minasian Collection); GIE: Great Islamic Encyclopedia Library, Manuscripts; GIP: Great Islamic Encyclopedia Library, Photographed and Microfilmed Manuscripts; GUL: Library of Ayatollah Gulpayigani; LAH: Library of Ayatollah Ha'iri (Library of Faydiyya Seminary); MAJ: Library, Museum and Documentation Center of the Islamic Consultative Assembly; MAL: Malek National Museum and Library; MNL: Mar'ashi Najafi Library; NLI: National Library of Iran; SEP: Sepahsalar (Shahid Motahari) Mosque and School of Tehran; TCL: Tabriz Central Public Library; UTA: Library of Literature Faculty, University of Tehran; UTL: Central Library of University of Tehran.


ALZ: الذریعه; ARP: فهرست کتاب‌های چاپی عربی; COM: فهرست مشترک نسخه‌های خطی فارسی; DEN: فهرستواره دست‌نوشته‌های ایران (دنا); FAM: فهرست نسخه‌های خطی فارسی; FAP: فهرست کتاب‌های چاپی فارسی; FIH: فهرستواره کتاب‌های فارسی; KAS: کشف الظنون عن اسامی الکتب و الفنون; RAY: ریحانة الادب فی تراجمِ المعروفین بالکنیة او اللّقب; TAB: طبقات اعلام الشیعه.

Funding of Cataloguing

Wadham College (University of Oxford)


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