Union Catalogue of Manuscripts from the Islamicate World

Persian MS 626 (The John Rylands Research Institute and Library, The University of Manchester)

Persian Manuscripts


Summary of Contents: This brief text entitled Chashmah-'i Kaws̲ar (Fountain of Abundance) compiles together poems on various subjects by a little-known Mughal-era poet Muḥammad Maqṣūd, pen-named Jāmi‘ (or Jāmi‘ī) Kashmīrī (fl. 17th c), who originally completed it in 1074 AH (1663–1664 CE), as indicated by a chronogram derived from the title. A scribe named Muḥammad Ya‘qūb copied this manuscript for himself, which he completed on 22 Rabī‘ II 1098 AH (7 Mar. 1687) in the 30th year of the Mughal Emperor ‘Ālamgīr I's reign. This manuscript appears to be the sole surviving copy of this work known today.
Scribe, Autographer, Seal and Inscriber: Muḥammad Ya‘qūb;
‌محمد یعقوب
Rubric: بستایش آفرید کاری که ردخت تاک را بمرتبه بر‌ کشید که رست صبح گل خون خار بدانش نرسیده
Incipit: (basmala) برگ ۱پ (folio 1b):
Rubric: بستایش آفرید کاری که ردخت تاک را بمرتبه بر‌ کشید که رست صبح گل خون خار بدانش نرسیده
Incipit: جهان آفرین کخ تاک آفرید * ز خاک چمن جان پاک آفرید
Explicit: برگ ۲۳۳ر (folio 233a): بداند هر آنکی خرد پرور است * که تاریخ هم «چشمهٔ کوثر» است.
Colophon: ۱۰۹۸ هجری موافق بهسنه ۳۰ جلوس مالک بالاست کتاب محمد یعقوب. تمت بتاریخ ۲۲ شهر ربیع الثانی بید الاحقر الانسان محمد آرزانی
Colophon: Completed by Muḥamamd Ya‘qūb on 22 Rabī‘ II 1098 AH (7 Mar. 1687) equal to the year 30 of the reign of [‘Alamgīr I].
Language(s): Persian

A prior record describes this as a spurious work misattributed to Timurid-era poet Jāmī, instead of Mullā Jāmi‘ī. While that author and his oeuvre await investigation, he appears to be the same as ‘Mullā Jāmi‘ī’ who compiled a collection of ornate prose correspondence during ‘Alāmgīr's reign, entitled Khāṣṣ al-Īnshā' (see Storey and Ethé catalogue), the title for which provides a chronogram indicating that he ironically completed it the exact same year as the present work. Ikhlāṣ Chand and Bindraban Das Khvushgū, 18th cent. reports a poet by that name who lived in Kashmir, a student of ٍRashīd Mīrzā ‘Abd al-Ghanī Bayg Qabūl (probably the author of Persian MS 575, Bahāristān: Sharḥ-i Gulistān (Garden of Spring, A Commentary on the Rosegarden of Sa‘dī, see Sprenger catalogue, Dādbih, and Ikhlāṣ Chand Hamīshah Bahār (Rylands Persian MS 323, folio 24b) and Safīnah-'i Khvushgū (see Sachau and Ethé catalogue).

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Textblock of straight-grained, externally sized and polished, buff-coloured paper probably handmade in the Mughal Empire with ~9 laid lines per cm and few discernible chain lines.
Extent: 11 folios, 2 flyleaves (ff. i + 11 + i).
Dimensions (leaf): 231 × 138 mm.
Dimensions (written): 177 × 85 mm.
Foliation: Pencilled Arabic numerals added to the upper-left corners of the a sides when catalogued.


1IV+1(9)1II(11). Catchwords throughout most of the lower-left corners of the b sides.


Textblock in fair condition, with moderate water and insect damage and historical repairs.


Written in 3 columns with 16 lines per page. Ruled with a misṭarah hand guide.


Written in somewhat hasty but clear black nasta‘līq with shikastah finials and ligratures, and red subheaders by Muḥamamd Ya‘qūb.


Ruling: Columns ruled in double red lines throughout, with occasional diagonal lines indicating section breaks.

  • The right flyleaf a side (f. ia) bears the title in nasta'līq.
  • Folio 1a signed by the scribe Muḥamamd Ya‘qūb adjacent to his seal impression:
    ⟨ـسر با سا ی؟⟩ ملا ن جامعی رحمت الله علی مالک الکتاب محمد یعقوب عفا عنه و لولدینه ’
  • Folio 11b bears the title and number of folios in nasta‘līq.
  • The left flyleaf a side (f. iia) bears a transliterated title ‘Chushmae Kausur’(?), written upside-down at bottom.
Bookplates: The left pastedown: ‘Bibliotheca Lindesiana’ with pencilled shelfmark ‘1/I’, and ‘Hamilton MSS No. 543’, with the name and number crossed out and ‘Persian’ and ‘626’ written aside.


Contemporary semi-limp binding. Textblock pamphlet-sewn at 4 stations, unsupported, through comparatively rough endpapers. Covered in natural sheepskin leather, then flush-cut at the edges.

Exterior margins blind-tooled with a European-style decorative roll featuring a floriate scrollwork design.

232 × 139 × 5 mm.

Binding in good condition.


Folio 1a bears a black round seal impression, intaglio-carved in three stacked nasta‘līq lines, double-ruled, read from bottom upwards then back down to the middle, with the name of Muḥamamd Ya‘qūb adjacent to his notation, partly indicated by an invocation to his namesake, the Imām Muḥamad Taqī, and probably dated 1032 AH (Aug–Sept. 1623 CE):
‘یعقوب خاک گاهی محمد تاقی ۱۱ ۱۰۳۲’
~25 mm. diam.


Origin: Completed by Muḥamamd Ya‘qūb in the Mughal Empire 22 Rabī‘ II 1098 AH (7 Mar. 1687) equal to the year 30 of the reign of [‘Alamgīr I].

Provenance and Acquisition

Subsequently acquired by Colonel George William Hamilton (1807-1868) who served in India from 1823 to 1867, latterly as Commissioner in Delhi. He acquired over a thousand Indian and Persian manuscripts, from which the British Museum purchased 352 from his widow, Charlotte Logie Hamilton (1817–1893), now held in the British Library.

Alexander Lindsay, 25th Earl of Crawford (1812–1880) purchased the remainder of Hamilton's collection in 1868.

Purchased by Enriqueta Rylands (1843–1908) in 1901 from James Ludovic Lindsay, 26th Earl of Crawford (1847–1913).

Bequeathed by Enriqueta Rylands (1843–1908) in 1908 to the John Rylands Library, Manchester.

Record Sources

Bibliographical description based on an index created by Reza Navabpour circa 1993, derived from a manuscript catalogue by Michael Kerney, circa 1890s, concisely published as Bibliotheca Lindesiana, Hand-list of Oriental Manuscripts: Arabic, Persian, Turkish, 1898.

Subsequently augmented and enhanced by Jake Benson in 2023 with reference to the manuscript in hand.


To book an in-person or online appointment to consult the manuscript, visit Using the Special Collections Reading Rooms. For any other enquiries please email uml.special-collections@manchester.ac.uk.


    N. Dādbih, 'Jāmi‘, takhalluṣ': 1) Jāmi‘ Kashmīrī Dā'irat al-Ma‘ārif-i Buzurg-i Islāmī, Vol. 17 (Tehran: Dā'irat al-Ma‘ārif Buzug-i Islāmī, 1383 SH (2004-05 CE), pp. 338–339.
    H. Ethé, Catalogue of Persian manuscripts in the library of the India Office, Vol. 1 (London: Printed for the India Office by H. Hart, 1903), col. 1154, nos. 2095–2096, [British Library IO Islamic 1858 and 1187].
    C. Rieu, Catalogue of the Persian manuscripts in the British Museum, Vol. II (London: British Museum, 1881), p. 435 [BL Add. 16827].
    E. Sachau and H. Ethé, Catalogue of the Persian, Turkish, Hindûstani, and Pushtû manuscripts in the Bodleian Library, Vol. I (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1889), col. 541, no. 376/543 [Ms. Elliott 400, folio 91a].
    A. Sprenger, A Catalogue of Arabic, Persian and Hindustany Manuscripts in the Libraries of the King of Oudh. (Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press, 1854), p. 120, no. 16.
    C. A. Storey, Persian Literature: A Bio-bibliographical Survey, Vol. II Pt. 1 (London: Luzac & Co., 1972), pp. 67–70, no. 104(2).

Funding of Cataloguing

Iran Heritage Foundation

The John Rylands Research Institute

The Persian Heritage Foundation


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