Persian MS 874 (The John Rylands Library, The University of Manchester)
Student of Delhi master Sayyid Abū-l-Ḥasan Raz̤avī, known as 'Mīr Kallan' (who copied Persian MS 572), Muḥammad Jān ultimately served as the munshī (secretary) to the last Mughal emperor, Muḥmammad Bahādur Shāh II (1775–1862, r. 1837–1857).
Written in a single column with 12 lines per page. Ruled with a misṭarah hand guide.
Copied in clear large nasta‘līq script in black ink with subheaders in red.
- Label:The right board exterior bears a paper label with the Persian title written in nasta‘līq script, and several English inscriptions.
- Bookplates: left paste-down: ‘Bibliotheca Lindesiana’ with shelf mark ‘I/B’, and ‘Persian 80’.
Resewn at four stations, probably on cord supports laced or frayed out onto the pasteboards. Twined Islamic-style chevron endbands in red and white. Covered in a later Indian style binding in full, tight backed, red goatskin leather over pasteboards, flush with the edges, and without a flap (type III binding per Déroche). Earlier endleaves of comparatively heavy paper handmade in India, and later flyleaves of European laid paper added when the volume was rebacked.
Gold-stamped onlays of either paper or leather featuring floral designs for the central mandorla, detached pendants, and corners. Boards decorated with a black border ~25 mm wide on the perimeters of the boards, outlined with ruled lines in yellow, with another single line in the centres. Pastedowns of vivid comb-patterned marbled paper manufactured in India. Spine rebacked in smooth, medium-brown goatskin leather, and the boards reattached with hinges of European 'Spanish' wave-patterned marbled paper.
325 × 218 × 39 mm.
Provenance and Acquisition
Subsequently acquired by Alexander Lindsay, 25th Earl of Crawford (1812–1880) possibly from London bookseller Bernard Quaritch (1819–1899) .
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.
Bibliographical description based on an index created by Reza Navabpour circa 1993, derived from a manuscript catalogue by Michael Kerney, circa 1890s and his Bibliotheca Lindesiana, Hand-list of Oriental Manuscripts: Arabic, Persian, Turkish, 1898.
Manuscript description by Jake Benson in 2021 with reference to the volume.
Manchester Digital Collections (full digital facsimile)
Funding of Cataloguing
Iran Heritage Foundation and The John Rylands Research Institute