Tadhkirat al-kaḥḥālīn تذكرة الكحّالين Kaḥḥāl, ‘Alī ibn ‘Īsá كحّال، علي بن عيسى

Or 5856

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The record is made up of Codex A collection of pages, usually gathered into quires, and bound between covers. ; ff. i+162+i. It was created in 690. It was written in Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: Oriental Manuscripts.

About this record


A treatise on diseases of the eye by ‘Alī ibn ‘Īsá al-Kaḥḥāl (علي بن عيسى الكحّال; d. AD 1038/9), the leading oculist of his time at the Abbasid capital, Baghdad.

The text is divided into three books (مقالات):

المقالة الأولى (‘Book 1’; ff. 3v-16r);

المقالة الثاني أذكر فيها أمراض العين الظاهرة للحسّ (‘Book 2, in which I discuss perceptible eye diseases’; ff. 16r-120v);

المقالة الثالثة أذكر فيها أمراض العين الخفية عن الحسّ (‘Book 3, in which I mention imperceptible eye diseases’; ff. 120v-162v).

The copy was completed on 20 Ṣafar 690 (22 February 1291) in the Baghdad suburb of Balkh by Muḥamad ibn ‘Alī ibn Quddāmah al-Baghdādī (see colophon Section at the end of a manuscript text. , f. 162r, lines 3-8, transcribed below).

Folio 1r contains notes by various hands, including some lines of verse and erroneous speculations about the meaning of Galen's name and the inscription supposedly found on his ring.

Begins (f. 1v, lines 2-7):

رسالة على بن عيسى الكحّال جوابًا عمّا سأله

بعض إخوانه من تعريفه أمراض العين

وعلاجاتها وأدويتها

وصل كتابك أيها الأخ الفاضل حفظك الله برأفته وأرشدك

إلى الصواب برحمته تسئل عن جوامع كتب جالينوس في أمراض

العين وعلاج كل مرض منها ...

Ends (ff. 161v, line 11-162r, line 2):

... وقد بلغت

ذلك ما سألت وندلت المحمود في الاختصار وأمل استوالت (؟)

أن ينفع به كل من قرأ وأسئلك أعزل الله ابقال إذا

[f. 162r] قراءته أن تتأمله جيدًا فإن كان فيه سهو فهو من الناقل

له واختلاف النسخ يحرف تذكرة الكحالين والحمد لله وحده (؟)

Colophon Section at the end of a manuscript text. (f. 162r, lines 3-9):

الفراغ في عشرين صفر سنة تسعين وستمائة الهلالية

ببغداد والحمد لله رب العالمين

وصلواته على خير خلقه محمد

النبي وآله الطيبين


كتبه العبد الضعيف محمد بن علي بن قُدّامة البغدادي في بلدة بلخ

فنعم الله من صامحه ودعا له وللمؤمنين بالمغفرة

Extent and format
Codex A collection of pages, usually gathered into quires, and bound between covers. ; ff. i+162+i
Physical characteristics

Material: Paper

Dimensions: 181 x 143 mm leaf [153 x 102 mm written]

Foliation: British Museum foliation in pencil

Ruling: Misṭarah ; 13 lines per page; vertical spacing 8 lines per 10 cm

Script: Vocalised naskh

Ink: Black ink, with rubricated headings and over-inking in red

Binding: British Museum binding

Condition: Light foxing and some grime due mostly to thumbing

Marginalia: Many annotations by numerous hands in black and red ink

Written in
Arabic in Arabic script

Archive information for this record

Access & Reference

Original held at
British Library: Oriental Manuscripts
Access conditions


Archive reference
Or 5856

History of this record

690 (CE, Gregorian)
Context of creation

Balkh, Baghdad

Immediate source of acquisition

Purchased from Messrs Hannan and Watson, October 15, 1900

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Tadhkirat al-kaḥḥālīn تذكرة الكحّالين Kaḥḥāl, ‘Alī ibn ‘Īsá كحّال، علي بن عيسى, British Library: Oriental Manuscripts, Or 5856, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100000006524.0x000001> [accessed 7 December 2023]

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