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Lewis O. 59
Philadelphia, Free Library of Philadelphia (in index)
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© Rare Book Department, Free Library of Philadelphia
This record is incomplete and has not been verified by the project. It is a work in progress. Use this information with caution.
Accession Number:
Lewis O. 59
Hijri Date:
1244 Sha'ban 16
Gregorian Date:
1829 February 20
'Abd al-Wahhab al-Husaini al-Mazandarani
Folios extant in ms.:
Columns x Rows:
4 x 24
Page Size (h x w):
292 x 188 mm
Text Size (h x w):
225 x 114 mm
Colophon Folio:
Sample Page Folio:
Num Other Colophons:
177v, 333r, 506r
Ms Type:
Ms Status:
Completion Status:
Search not completed
Illuminations in ms:
Illustrations in ms:
Illustration Records in archive:
Last updated by:
Date last updated:
2009-06-29 07:55
Public Notes
The recording of this ms. is based on inspections by Ch.M. in June 2006, and by B.M. in December 2008, and on the catalogue of Simsar (p. 91), which is brief and does not list the 68 paintings contained in the copy.

The binding is of heavy dark maroon leather, richly embossed in gilt on the outside. The doublures are lined with plain paper (Simsar).

The manuscript, which was paginated in December 2008, contains 630 folios. It has been reserved in complete order, and all of its catch-words fit.

Simsar notes several blank pages preceding each section (daftar): the work is divided into four sections, each beginning with an illuminated unvan (ff. 1v, 178v, 334v and 507v). There is no Preface to this copy.

The ms. is on thin glazed native paper (Simsar). Marginal rulings are in blue and gold, and the columns are filled with an alternating blue and red ground, decorated with gold leaf designs.

The day and month of completion are given at the end (f. 629r); the year (1244 A.H.) is given on f. 177v, at the end of the first daftar. The colophon also contains details of the place of copying, in the quarter (mahalla) of Zadi Bal in the town (balda) of Simundu in Kashmir.

Simsar ascribes the paintings to be the work of a single artist. Nonetheless, it seems as though at least two artists of different styles illustrated the manuscript. Painter A illustrated fols. 65v, 211v, 341r, 396r, etc., while among the works of Painter B are fols. 88r, 556v, 159v, 474v.

The style of Painter A is also apparent in the Free Library's ms. O.57. It is therefore possible that this painter illustrated both mss. O.57 and O.59. The iconographies of Painter B are quite repetitve. For example, the scene in which Rustam wounds Suhrab (fol. 106v) is almost identical to the illustration where Rustam kills Sudaba (fol. 142r).

A few working images made by Ch.M. on 8 June 2006, by kind permission of Bill Lang. The rest were taken in December 2008 by kind permission of Mrs. Janine Pollock.

Project Notes
Update and investigation to be done by BM.

Done. A few notes:

Charles, I updated the ms. data, uploaded all images, and listed the paintings+lines. As for the Public notes, I made some minor changes in the first part, and added a paragraph on the painters of the manuscript. Please also read my recent note for ms. O.57. If you think it is appropriate we could add it to the public notes of that ms.

Reagrding the colophon of O.59: Are you sure the name of the balda is Simundu? Perhaps it could also be read as Maymuna? BM

What do you think about the name of the balda? BM

Thanks for this excellent write-up of the ms. I will have another look at the colophon: it could be Maymuneh, but then what do we do with the next word (mutabarrakeh): why would there be a vav between the two words? It will also help to know if there is a Maymuneh - Simundu in Kashmir! I will try to check. . C

Thank you, Charles, my pleasure! As for the colophon: mutabarraka may be connected to the word Kashmir at the beginning of the following line? also, the shape of the ha/ ta marbuta at the end of mutabarraka and presumebly maymuna looks the same. This is fun!

Dating Ref:
Colophon Extracted from the colophon of the work.
Origin Ref:
Colophon Extracted from the colophon of the work.
Illustration Ref:
Simsar, M.A. Oriental manuscripts of the John Frederick Lewis Collection in the Free Library of Philadelphia: a descriptive catalogue. Philadelphia. USA.
Illustration in archive - 87     (back to top)
sample page
Binding (1829)
f. 001v
Illuminated unvan (1829)
f. 004v
Kayumars enthroned (1829)
f. 005v
Hushang kills the Black Div (1829)
f. 007r
Jamshid enthroned (1829)
f. 011v
Scene from another epic (1829)
f. 018v
Kava carries his standard (1829)
f. 027v
The murder of Iraj (1829)
f. 032r
Manuchihr kills Tur in battle (1829)
f. 036r
The Simurgh carries Zal to her nest (1829)
f. 042v
Rudaba and Zal together (1829)
f. 053v
The birth of Rustam (1829)
f. 065v
Rustam catches Rakhsh (1829)
f. 073r
f. 088r
Kay Kavus fights the King of Hamavaran (1829)
f. 096v
Suhrab fights Gurdafarid (1829)
f. 106v
Rustam mortally wounds Suhrab (1829)
f. 116r
The fire ordeal of Siyavush (1829)
f. 132v
Siyavush and Garsivaz play polo (1829)
f. 142r
Rustam kills Sudaba (1829)
f. 153v
Afrasiyab interrogates the ferry man about the passage of Kay Khusrau (1829)
f. 159v
Kay Khusrau enumerates his champions (1829)
f. 177v
f. 178v
Illuminated unvan (1829)
f. 183r
Ruhham overcomes Bazur the Turanian wizard (1829)
f. 190r
Rustam kills Ashkabus and his horse (1829)
f. 208r
Rustam overthrows Puladvand (1829)
f. 210v
Rustam fights a sea monster (1829)
f. 211v
Rustam kills Akvan Div (1829)
f. 226r
Rustam rescues Bizhan from the pit (1829)
f. 230r
Scene from the Barzunama (1829)
f. 242r
Scene from the Barzunama (1829)
f. 268v
Scene from the Barzunama (1829)
f. 292vA
The ninth combat: Gurgin kills Andariman (1829)
f. 292vB
The tenth combat: Barta fights Kuhram (1829)
f. 305r
Kay Khusrau throws Shida to the ground (1829)
f. 323r
The execution of Afrasiyab (1829)
f. 333r
f. 334v
Illuminated unvan (1829)
f. 339r
Gushtasp kills a wolf in Rum (1829)
f. 341r
Gushtasp kills a dragon in Rum (1829)
f. 352r
Bidarafsh kills Zarir, the brother of Gushtasp (1829)
f. 358r
The death of Luhrasp in battle against the forces of Arjasp (1829)
f. 365v
Isfandiyar's first labour: he fights the wolves (1829)
f. 366v
Isfandiyar's third labour: he fights the dragon (1829)
f. 369r
Isfandiyar's sixth labour: he escapes from a snow storm (1829)
f. 371v
Isfandiyar's sisters recognize him in merchant's clothes (1829)
f. 378v
Rustam kicks aside the rock pushed by Bahman (1829)
f. 386v
Zavara and Faramarz kill Isfandiyar's sons Nush-Azar and Mihr-i Nush (1829)
f. 390r
Rustam shoots Isfandiyar in the eyes with a double-pointed arrow (1829)
f. 396r
Rustam kills Shaghad before dying (1829)
f. 399v
The execution of Faramarz (1829)
f. 403v
Darab receives the crown (1829)
f. 409r
Iskandar attends the dying Dara (1829)
f. 411v
Iskandar marries Raushanak (1829)
f. 417r
Iskandar kills Fur (1829)
f. 420r
Iskandar visits Qaydafa disguised as a messenger (1829)
f. 423r
Iskandar in the land of the Brahmins (1829)
f. 431v
The great sages mourn the death of Iskandar (1829)
f. 434v
Ardashir hunts with Ardavan's sons (1829)
f. 437v
The execution of Ardavan by Ardashir (1829)
f. 441v
Ardashir hangs Haftvad and his eldest son Shahuy (1829)
f. 443v
Ardavan's daughter tries to poison her husband Ardashir (1829)
f. 460r
Shapur names his brother, Ardashir, as crown prince (1829)
f. 469r
Bahram Gur enthroned after killing the lions (1829)
f. 474v
f. 486v
f. 496v
Shangul returns from Iran to Hindustan (1829)
f. 506r
f. 507v
Illuminated unvan (1829)
f. 530r
Mihran Sitad asks the Khaqan to give his daughter to Anushirvan as a wife (1829)
f. 556v
Bahram Chubina defeats the army of Sava Shah (1829)
f. 587r
Bahram Chubina and Khusrau fight on a mountain (1829)
f. 592v
Bahram Chubina kills Maqatura (1829)
f. 616r
Mihr Hurmuzd murders Khusrau Parviz (1829)
f. 622v
Sa'd-i Vaqqas kills Rustam (1829)