Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Delhi Persian 1117 (Oriental Manuscripts, British Library)

India Office Library

Muḥiṭ-i aʻẓam


Summary of Contents: A mas̤navī or Sāqī-nāmah on mystical themes, preceded by a highly ornate prose introduction, generally attributed to the author ʻAbd al-Qādir Bīdil. The title forms a chronogram for the date of completion, 1078 AH (1667-8 CE).
Incipit: حمد نشاء آفرینی که میخانه حقیقت انسانی را از نشاء کرمنا بنی آدم علو مفاخرت بخشید... اما بعد بدانکه این ظهور حقایق است نه ساقی نامه.
Explicit: به هر دم نگردانم اوراق رنگ / که در پرده با خون خویشم به جنگ
Colophon: تمت تمام شد ۴ محرم الحرام سنه ۶.
Colophon: Completed on 4 Muḥarram regnal year 6 of an unspecified ruler.
Language(s): Persian

Physical Description

Form: codex
Extent: ff. 81+wrapper
Dimensions (leaf): 225 × 135 mm.
Dimensions (written): 175 × 94 mm.

India Office stamped foliation.




Slightly worm-eaten. Damp-stained. Some loose leaves. Without binding, encased in a wrapper.


15 lines per page.

The verse is arranged either in 2 columns or in 3 with 2 columns written diagonally either side of a central vertical line.


Nastaʻlīq, written in black ink.


Written on coloured paper.


Folio 1r includes verses in Urdu written directly under the seal of Muḥammad Ṣadr al-Dīn dated 1235 (1819/20) who may possibly be identified with Muḥammad Ṣadr al-Dīn Āzurdah (1798-1868), the poet and Sadr Amin of Delhi whose library was confiscated and auctioned by the Delhi Prize Agents after the rebellion of 1857.


Black rectangular seal of Muḥammad Ṣadr al-Dīn , dated 1235 AH (1819-20 CE) (f. 1r).

Black Government of India Delhi MSS oval stamp (ff. 1r, 81v).

Accompanying Material

Wrapper: East India Company Regulation dated 1793.


Origin: 4 Muḥarram regnal year 6 of unspecified reign. Probably 18th century; India

Provenance and Acquisition

Belonged to Muḥammad Ṣadr al-Dīn (f. 1r).

Purchased by the Government of India at sale organised by Delhi Prize Agents, 1859; administrative deposit India Office Library, 1876.

Acquired by the Government of India in1876

Record Sources

Based on R. Levy's description in in Drafts for Catalogue of Persian Manuscripts in the India Office Library, vol. III,Mss Eur E207/13, f. 58r. Revised by Sheida Heydarishovir


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. For information on catalogues and ordering manuscripts see Finding and ordering Persian manuscripts in the British Library.


    Swapna Liddle, Azurda: Scholar, poet and judge, in Margrit Pernau (ed.), The Delhi College: Traditional elites, the colonial state and education before 1857 (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2006), 125-44.

Funding of Cataloguing



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