ARISTOTLE, AVERROES [IBN RUSHD], and AVICENNA [IBN SINA]. Aristotelis Stagiritae Omnia, quae extant Opera, nunc primum selectis translationibus, emendationibus ex collatione graecorum exemplarium, scholiis in margine illustrata, novo etiam ordine digesta : Additis praeterea non nullis libris nunquam antea latinitate donatis. Averrois Cordubensis in ea opera omnes, qui ad nos pervenere, commentarii. Non nulla super addita dubia, figurae, notationes, nunquam antea editae, ut Averrois media in libros Metaphys. commentatio : eiusdem de Spermate libellus. Graecorum, Arabum, et Latinorum monumenta quaedam, ad hoc opus spectantia. Marci Antonii Zimarae in Arist. et Aver. dicta contradictionum solutiones, quibus nunc addidimus doctissimorum virorum solutiones 100. Haec autem omnia tum ex praefatione, tum ex indice librorum clarius innotescunt. Venice, Comin de Trino, di Monferrato, 1560[-62].
An exceptional copy, bound in early 18th-century morocco ‘a la Duseuil’ for Zacharie Morel, Seigneur de la Brosse et de Saint-Ouen, of the extremely rare complete set of Marco Antonio Zimara’s monumental edition of Aristotle’s works with the extensive commentaries by Averroes, as well as on Avicenna’s Canticum de Medicina, and here with the additional and extremely thorough Thesaurus or index by Antonio Poso, published two years later at the same press and almost always absent.
AVICENNA [Abū 'Alī al-Husayn ibn 'Abdallāh IBN SῙNᾹ]. [Arabice:] Liber canonis. Libri quinque canonis medicinae.’ Rome, Typographia Medicea, 1593.
Very rare first edition of the first Arabic edition of Avicenna’s Canon of medicine, printed in Europe well over a hundred years before the establishment of Arabic printing presses in Aleppo, Istanbul, or Beirut.
Here bound without Avicenna’s compendium of logic, metaphysics and philosophy, al-Najat, this is a wonderful copy and, with the exception of a couple of tiny repairs to the title and final leaf, void of the extensive repairs or restorations commonly encountered in this extremely rare Arabic edition.
[BAHĀʾ-AL-DĪN ʿĀMELĪ, SHAIKH MOḤAMMAD B. ḤOSAYN BAHĀʾĪ]. Khulāṣat al‐ḥisāb [The Summa of arithmetic or Quintessence of calculation]. [Near or Middle East], 1075 AH[1664 CE].
A very early and well preserved copy of this important and influential mathematical work by Shaykh Baha’ al-din (1547-1621), famed for his excellent command of mathematics, architecture and geometry, and one of the earliest astronomers in the Islamic world to suggest the possibility of the earth’s movement prior to the spread of the Copernican theory.
‘Quintessence of Calculation was a highly influential mathematics textbook in Central Asia between the 17th century and the beginning of the 20th century. Its influence was partly due to the soundness of its mathematical algorithms resulting from Sheikh Bahai’s mastery of mathematics, especially the one enhanced by al-Kashi, a celebrated mathematician in the 15th century. The study provides evidence that Sheikh Bahai studied al-Kashi’s work. By utilizing these algorithms, Sheikh Bahai made the highly practical aspects of seven centuries of Islamic-culture mathematical achievements available to the region at large. Furthermore, the study concludes that the remarkable influence of ‘Quintessence of Calculation’ can be attributed to the specific approaches of Sheikh Bahai’s presentations of mathematical concepts and algorithms.
[QUR’AN]. Qur’an in Arabic. Northern India (perhaps Delhi), dated 1288 AH (1870/71 AD).
A monumental (ca. 1120 x 2060 mm) and highly unusual Qur’an manuscript, containing the entire text of the Qur’an in 217 exceptionally long lines of an accomplished micrographic naskh in black ink across a single writing surface formed from six sheets of paper joined together and painted to evoke embroidered silk, with geometric decoration in shell gold over a salmon pink ground, wide border painted in dark blue with floral motifs in shell gold and incorporating a cartouche at top for the title (Al-Qur’an al-karim) and at foot for the colophon.
The colophon states that the Qur’an was written and designed by those who supported the Bakht during the time and in the court of the Shah, i.e. presumably Bahadur Shah II Zafar (1775–1862), the last Mughal Emperor. Two of the Shah’s sons, Bahadur Shah and Mirza Jawan Bakht had been exiled to Rangoon following the Indian Rebellion in 1857, and the Qur’an would thus seem partly to have a commemorative function, harking back to the last years before direct British control.
While not legible from a distance on account of the small size of the script, as with any other Qur’an the sacred text nevertheless had to be clear, legible and accurate. The few corrections here are evidence of the care taken by the scribe in this regard.
We are aware of only one other comparable Qur’an on the market in recent years, a smaller and later example signed by one Ghulam Khaydar Sirhindi in Malerkotla and dated 1296 AH.