Persian Manuscripts : دبستان مذاهب

Mīr Ẕū-al-Fiqār ‘Alī al-Ḥusaynī Ardistānī, ca. 1615–1670; ذو الفقار الحسینی; Mūbad Shāh; مو بدشاه, Fānī, Muḥsin, d. 1671 or 2

Persian Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'>This illustrated copy of the <i>Dabistān-i Maẕāhib</i> (School of Doctrines) presents an encyclopedia of comparative religion recounting various creeds, ideologies, and philosophies found in Asia, divided into twelve <i>ta‘līm</i> (teachings) and subdivided into a various <i>naẓar</i> (observations). The author, whose name appears here as Mīr Ẕū-al-Fiqār ‘Alī al-Ḥusaynī (ca. 1615–70), lived during the reign of the Mughal ruler ‘Ālamgīr I (r. 1658–1707) and apparently followed an Indian branch of an Iranian <i>Ishrāqī</i> illuminationist sect founded by Zoroastrian high priest Āẕar Kayvān (ca. 1529–1618). The author not only travelled throughout the northern Indian subcontinent, but also to Mashhad in Iran. As a result, he became thoroughly acquainted with a great number of religious and scientific Parsi, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim personalities and their doctrines. Completed by Munshī Ghulām Muḥammad bin Muḥammad Jamāl in Surat on 28 Ramaz̤ān 1215 AH (12 Feb. 1801 CE), the manuscript contains seven tinted drawings that depict the planets according to Hindu mythology.</p>

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