Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Or 16431 (Oriental Manuscripts, British Library)

Oriental Manuscripts

Divan-i Hafiz


1 copy of Dīvān-i Ḥāfiẓ by Ḥāfiẓ, active 14th century

Collected poems of Shams al-Dīn Muḥammad Ḥāfiẓ of Shiraz (d. ca. 791/1389), widely regarded as the greatest of all Persian lyric poets. For a detailed treatment of this author in English, see the articles under ‘Ḥāfeẓ (Hafez), Šams al-Dīn Moḥammad’, in EIr XI, pp. 461-507.

For the textual history of this Dīvān and for other manuscripts, see J.S. Meisami, ‘Ḥāfeẓ V: manuscripts of Ḥāfeẓ’, EIr XI, pp. 476-9; also Aḥmad Munzavī, FNKhF III, pp. 2276-91. For printed editions see Bahā’ al-Dīn Khurramshāhī, ‘Ḥāfeẓ VI; printed editions of the Dīvān of Hafez’, EIr XI, pp. 479-483.

Begins: ‘Alā ya ayyuhā l-sāqī adir ka’san va nāvilhā / ki ‘ishq āsān namūd avval valī uftād mushkilhā ’

Ends: ‘Guftam Sukhan-i tū guft Ḥāfiẓ guftā / Shādī-i hama laṭīfa-gūyān ṣalāvāt ’

Other contents: f. 257r, seal impression with the name Mīr Ḥasan; back endpaper, seal impression dated 1284/1867-8 and including the namer (or words) Vālida Shujā‘.

Undated: 11th/17th century. Copied by Shāh Muḥammad al-Kātib.

Nasta‘līq script. 12 lines in double columns. No catchwords: remargined. Illuminated heading, f. 1v; interlinear gilding, 1v-2r. The space between text columns is either gold or blue throughout, with tendril arabesques in black. Illuminated panels with gilt and polychrome arabesque at either side of every concluding bayt. Text frames: red, gold, black, blue; space between columns has tendril ornament in gold on a blue ground. Original paper: off-white, gold-sprinkled. Margins are slightly thinner, nearer to cream in colour. 257 folios. 245 x 150 mm.; text area 155 x 83 mm. Painted lacquer covers with floral motifs in a central medallion, pendants and borders on a gold-sprinkled brown ground, and flower paintings on a red ground on the doublures.

Purchased from Christies (17 April 2007, lot 142).

Language(s): Persian

Physical Description

Form: codex
Extent: 257 ff.
Dimensions (leaf): 245 × 150 mm.
Dimensions (written):



Origin: 17th century CE ; India or Iran

Record Sources

Based on unpublished description in M.I. Waley, Catalogue of Persian Manuscripts acquired 2000-2014.


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