Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Delhi Persian 975 (Oriental Manuscripts, British Library)

India Office Library

Work on Sufism


Untitled Persian translation and commentary endorsed as ʿAyn al-ʿilm mutarajjim by the fifteenth-century writer, Muḥammad ibn ʿUs̲mān ibn ʿUmar al-Balkhī, based on the well-known manual of Sufism, ʿAyn al-ʿilm. The Arabic original is thought to be a summary of al-Ghazālī’s Iḥyāʾ al-ʿulūm al-dīn.

The work begins with a brief preface (f. 2v). However, the preface of the Arabic original has been copied by a later hand, along with several Arabic prayers (f. 1r), beginning originally on the volume’s opening flyleaves and flowing into the margins and empty spaces around the Persian text (ff. 1v-3r).

The work comprises twenty bāb and a khātimah.

Dated colophon (f. 155r): completed by Salāmat Allāh al-Ḥusaynī al-ʿArabī on the morning of 5 Jumādá al-S̲ānī 1115/16 October 1703.

At the end are prescriptions of prayer formulae for elective prayers (f. 155v-158v).

The volume is notable for its use of alternating pale multi-coloured sheets of paper, some flecked with silver (such as, ff. 109v-110r).

Folios loosely bound. Later leather binding dismantled, boards of differing dimensions and design do not match.

Language(s): Persian and Arabic

Physical Description

Form: codex
Extent: 158 ff.
Dimensions (leaf): 251 × 146 mm.
Dimensions (written):



Origin: 5 Jumādá al-S̲ānī 1115 AH; 16 October 1703 CE ; India

Record Sources

Based on unpublished description in Catalogue of Persian Manuscripts in the India Office Library, vol. 3. Available on British Library Digitised Manuscripts, manuscript number: MSS Eur E207/1_f060r


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