Persian Illustrated and Illuminated Manuscripts
|Region / Country||
- Arab Countries > Egypt
|Year of Registration||2007|
|Possessing Institutions||The National Library and Archives of Egypt|
|Management Institution||The National Library and Archives of Egypt|
The National Library and Archives of Egypt (Dar al Kotob) is the custodian of a unique collection of Persian illustrated and illuminated manuscripts from different royal ateliers. The collection comprises 71 rare illustrated and illuminated Persian manuscripts that highlight the development of royal ateliers from the 14th century to the 19th century. The collection is unique as it illustrates the history of Persian Islamic Miniature Painting, the development of Persian calligraphic script styles, and the art of Single folios and Album compilation (Muraqqa'). The collection was produced at renowned art centres and royal ateliers that flourished in the vast geographical region: Asia Minor, Central Asia, Persia, and India. The collection includes miniature paintings from the foregone Mosol and Baghdad School which was devastated by the Mongol invasion in 1258, from the Timurid school which flourished in 1368 under Shah Timor, in Iran, Turkistan and Khurasan, and from the Safavid Dynasty (1502 – 1736 ) as well as from the Mughal Empire of India (15th -18th century). Among the rare manuscripts are a copy of "Khalila wa Dimna" (includes 112 miniatures) inscribed in the 12th century by Abu al Muzafar Bahramshah of Ghaznah, a Shahnameh of Firdawsy (166 miniature) inscribed and illustrate by Mani during the 15th century and a copy of Bustan al Sa'adi al Shirazi inscribed by the famous Sultan Ali al Katib in 1488 and illustrated by the renowned Behzad who proudly signed and dated his miniatures to 1489. The collection is a treasure that will settle many misunderstandings and solve many questions of art historians, historians and language specialists.