Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

RSPA 32 (Oriental Manuscripts, British Library)

India Office Library

Jones Collection

Royal Society Arabic and Persian


1 copy of Makhzan al-Asrār by Niẓāmī Ganjavī

Language(s): Persian

Incipit: بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم *** حست کلید در گنج حکیم
Explicit: پای زهر کرد وزلب در فشاء *** مخزن اسرار بـآ اخر رسید
Colophon: شکر که این نامه بعنوان رسید بیشتر از عمر پایان رسید تمت الکتاب بعون الله الملک الوهاب الموسوم بمخزن الاسرار از دست ملک الشعراء شیخ نظامی گنجوی علیه الرحمه والغفران فی یوم الاربعا من شهر صفر ختم الحر واللطفه لسنه ثمانیه عشر والف الهجره النبویه وسلم

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: This cream woven paper.
Extent: ff. iv+40+iv
Dimensions (leaf): 280 × 170 mm.
Dimensions (written): 220 × 110 mm.

European numerals in pencil.


Good condition.


Irregular layout.


Fine nastaʿlīq script in black ink.



After the colophon, there is an ownership note of someone called Jamāl al-Dīn walad ʿAbd al-Wahāb Khān.

On fiv-iir, there are several paragraphs of Persian written in William Jones's handwriting, including a paragraph attributed to Amīr Khusraw. On f38r, Jones has written out the sounds of both the Persian and Hindavi alphabets with keywords to remember certain letters.


Standard India Office half leather binding with wine coloured marbled endpapers.


Seal of Muhammad Quli Qutubshah, Sultan of Golconda (r.1612-26), dated 1021 (1612/13).

Accompanying Material


Origin: 8_Ṣafar_1018 AH; 9 May 1609 CE ; India

Provenance and Acquisition

Purchased by Jones, his note: "W. Jones 4th November 1783 Bought at Calcutta for 11Rs".

RSPA 1-118 were presented to the Royal Society in January 1792 by Sir William and Lady Jones. This manuscript was given by Lady Jones.

The Royal Society's collection of 280 Persian and Arabic, and 86 Sanskrit manuscripts were transferred to the India Office Library in 1876.


India Office Library

Record Sources

Manuscript description based on E. Denison Ross and E. G. Browne, Catalogue of two collections of Persian and Arabic manuscripts preserved in the India Office Library (London: Eyre and Spottiswoode, 1902), p. 28 no. XXXII


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



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