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Perzsa Fol. 3
Budapest, Library of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (in index)
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Sample Page
Accession Number:
Perzsa Fol. 3
Gregorian Date:
19th century
Qajar Iran
In possession of a Turkish owner, Hajji Hasan, inscription dated 1231 AH / 1815-16.
Folios extant in ms.:
Estimated num folios in ms.:
Columns x Rows:
4 x 25
Page Size (h x w):
370 x 220 mm
Text Size (h x w):
250 x 143 mm
Sample Page Folio:
Ms Type:
Ms Status:
Various lacunae
Completion Status:
Ready to upload to website
Illuminations in ms:
Illustrations in ms:
32 ( 1 other [ Barkhiyas ] )
Illustration Records in archive:
Last updated by:
Date last updated:
2008-11-26 18:27
Public Notes
The binding is in plain dark blue leather, with a central medallion and two pendants, and a tooled margin round the edge, 372 x 225 x 70. The spine is plain. Doublures are of plain yellowish paper.

The paper is quite thick, grainy, with impurities, of a biege colour, and some water discolorations at the top.

Fol. 1r has an inscription with the date 1231 (AH). The poem starts on fol. 1v under a decorative unvan, 128 x 150 mm.

The margins are ruled in red, space, blue, space, blue; columns are 2 single blue lines; rubric boxes also a single blue line. The rubrics are written in tomato red nasta'liq.

The text is accompanied by several very neat marginal annotations and comments, sometimes explaining the vocabulary. The catchwords are in place. The calligraphy altogether is neat and clear.

The text is divided into two books, at the reign of Luhrasp (f. 231v). The space left for an unvan at the start of 'book two' is unused. 'Book one' ends on f. 230r and ff. 230v-231r are left blank. The text breaks off at the end (though apparently after the end of the Shahnama itself: Explicit: chu az mustafa man hikayat kunam // chu Mahmud .. (Muhammad?) .. ra himayat kunam, with the catchwords "chu sultan...". the next fol. (508r) is however left blank.

At least two other folios are missing from the ms. Approximately 168 verses from Mohl's text are missing between ff. 187 and 188, in the story of Bizhan and Manizha; at a maximum of 50 verses per page, this suggests one of the two folios contained a painting. It is thus possible that other pictures and folios are missing too; this still needs to be checked.

The illustrations themselves are well-executed and rather attractive in their way, with some fine passages of painting. There is a very heavy emphasis on the earlier part of the Shahnama, and particularly the exploits of Rustam: after his death (f. 305r) there are only three more paintings: two of Ardashir and one of Bahram Gur. Some of the pictures are preceded by passages of chalipa (diagonal) script. In some cases also, especially after f. 137v, the outer margins of the paintings are not properly finished off. The iconography of the paintings and the subject matter is sometimes quite at variance with the text and with traditional depictions of the scenes.


Illustration in archive - 34     (back to top)
sample page
f. 001v
Illuminated title page (verso side)
f. 022v
Manuchihr kills Tur in battle
f. 024r
Manuchihr fights Kakuy, grandson of Zahhak
f. 039v
Zal displays his skills before Manuchihr
f. 050r
Zal kills Khazarvan in combat
f. 055v
Rustam lifts Afrasiyab by the belt
f. 062r
Rustam's third labour: he kills a dragon
f. 064v
Rustam's seventh labour: he kills the White Div
f. 087v
Rustam mortally wounds Suhrab
f. 095v
The fire ordeal of Siyavush
f. 119v
Rustam kills Pilsam
f. 125r
Giv captures Piran
f. 137v
Farud retreats to his fortress and is mortally wounded by Ruhham
f. 158v
Rustam kills Ashkabus and his horse
f. 161r
Rustam kills Chingish
f. 165v
Rustam leads an attack on the Turanians' allies
f. 169v
Rustam fights Kafur the Cannibal
f. 173v
Rustam overthrows Puladvand
f. 175v
Akvan Div flings Rustam into the sea
f. 180r
Manizha entertains Bizhan in the meadows
f. 190r
Rustam fights Barkhiyas Div (interpolation)
f. 198r
Bizhan and Human wrestle for a second time
f. 203v
The second combat: Giv stuns Guruy Zirih
f. 205v
The eleventh combat: Gudarz kills Piran
f. 218v
Kay Khusrau crosses Lake Zara
f. 230r
f. 254r
Isfandiyar kills Bidarafsh
f. 266r
Isfandiyar lassoes the Turanian hero Gurgsar
f. 274v
Isfandiyar kills Arjasp to rescue his sisters
f. 297v
Rustam shoots Isfandiyar in the eyes with a double-pointed arrow
f. 305r
Rustam kills Shaghad before dying
f. 345v
Ardashir hunts with Ardavan's sons
f. 348v
Ardavan led captive before Ardashir
f. 378v
Bahram Gur kills the dragon that had killed a youth