Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Or 15687 (Oriental Manuscripts, British Library)

Oriental Manuscripts

Treatise on invocation and supplication


1 copy of Mir’āt al-kawnayn va kashf al-ẓulam ‘an mu‘ẓilat al-khāfiqayn

A treatise on various types of invocation (zikr) and supplication (du‘ā), their merits, and Sufis and others who are said to have used them. The author mentions the titles of an important, probably royal, patron, but reveals neither the patron's name nor his own. The author mentions (f. 18v) that in the year 920/1514-15 he was in Damascus in the presence of Ustād al-‘Ulamā Muḥammad Qavvāṣ Tabrīzī. The date 18 Rabī‘ al-avval 937/9 November 1530 is mentioned within the text (f. 5r).

The plan of the work is outlined at the end of the preface, on f. 6r-v: it comprises the preface (f. 1r-6r); an introduction, Fātiḥat al-kitāb (6r-28r), discussing the forms of invocation associated wih particular renowned Sufis; Part 1, Mir’āt al-avval (sic) (28r-49v) is concerned with formulae of invocation, especially variations on the tahlīl; Part 2, Mir’āt al-sānī (49v-62v) discusses formulae of supplication (49v-62v); and a conclusion, Khātimat al-kitāb (no heading: 63r-70r), commenting on some quotations from spiritual authorities concerning esoteric formulae. The whole of f. 55r is devoted to a table containing the Divine Names written in black or red.

Colophon on f. 70, which is at present attached to the rear endpaper.

The present manuscript is slightly incomplete: f. 69 is severely damaged, about one-third of the text being lost, and very little of the text on the final folio is legible.

Other contents: front flyleaf, owner’s note on title, copyist, and former owner.

Language(s): Persian

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Beige laid paper.
Extent: 70 ff.
Dimensions (leaf): 140 × 92 mm.
Dimensions (written): 77 × 49 mm.


Manuscript incomplete: f. 69 severely damaged, about one-third of the text being lost, and very little of the text on the final folio is legible.



Vocalised naskhī; headings in gold or red suls


Overlinings and text markers in red. Fine illuminated text opening, 1v-2r. Text frames: gold, black, blue.



Binding: brown morocco with worn impressed medallions and border lines, with flap.


Origin: 19th-20th centuries CE ; India

Provenance and Acquisition


Acquired from Christies sale 12 October 2000 Lot 228.

Record Sources

Based on unpublished description in M.I. Waley, Catalogue of Persian Manuscripts acquired 2000-2014.


Entry to read in the Library is permitted only on presentation of a valid reader's card for admissions procedures contact British Library, Registering for a Reader Pass. Contact apac-enquiries@bl.uk for further information on the availability of this manuscript. For information on catalogues and ordering manuscripts see Finding and ordering Persian manuscripts in the British Library.

Funding of Cataloguing



Comment on this record

Please fill out your details.

How are we using your feedback? See our privacy policy.

See the Availability section of this record for information on viewing the item in a reading room.