Kitāb al-masā’il كتاب المسائل Qaṣrānī, Ya‘qūb ibn ‘Alī قصراني، يعقوب بن علي

Delhi Arabic 1916

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The record is made up of Two codices. It was created in 640 and 768. It was written in Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: Oriental Manuscripts.

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Two volumes (جزءان) of an extensive treatise on astrological interrogations by Abū Yūsuf Ya‘qūb ibn ‘Alī al-Qarshī al-Qaṣrānī (أبو يوسف يعقوب بن علي القرشي القصراني, fl. late 9th century).

Both volumes were copied in Mamluk Egypt, the title pages of the volumes label them as Volume One and Volume Two, and the beginning of the treatise is found in Volume One and the end in Volume Two. Two facts, however, make it clear that the two volumes did not originally form a single set. First, volume One was copied in 768/1367 and Volume Two was copied over a century earlier in 640/1243. Second, the colophon Section at the end of a manuscript text. of Volume One states that the subsequent volume will begin with Chapter Seven: The Matter of the Two Opponents (الباب السابع في أمر الخصمين), but this chapter begins at the foot of f. 20r of Volume Two. The first 20 folios of Volume Two repeat text already found in Volume One.

The volumes contain numerous diagrams, mostly horoscopes.

Extent and format
Two codices
Written in
Arabic in Arabic script

Archive information for this record

Access & Reference

Original held at
British Library: Oriental Manuscripts
Access conditions


Archive reference
Delhi Arabic 1916

History of this record

640 and 768 (AH, Hijri qamari)
Immediate source of acquisition

Purchased by the Government of India at sale organised by Delhi Prize Agents, 1859; administrative deposit India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Library, 1876

Related material

Select Bibliography


Burnett, Charles, ‘Al-Kindi on Judicial Astrology: "The Forty Chapters"’, Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 3.1 (1993), pp. 77-117 (see pp. 85-86)

Burnett, Charles, Keiji Yamamoto and Michio Yano, ‘Al-Kindī on Finding Buried Treasure’, Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 7.1 (1997), pp. 57-90 (see pp. 62 and 66-71)

Pingree, David and Wilferd Madelung, ‘Political horoscopes relating to late 9th century ‘Alids’, Journal of Near Eastern Studies 36.4 (1977), pp. 247-75

Rosenfeld, B. A. and Ekmeleddin Ihsanoğlu, Mathematicians, Astronomers, and Other Scholars of Islamic Civilization and Their Works (7th - 19th c.) , (Istanbul: IRCICA, 2003), p. 46, no. 95

Sezgin, Fuat, Geschichte des arabischen Schrifttums , vol. 7 (Leiden: Brill, 1977), pp. 138-39

Ullmann, Manfred, Die Natur- und Geheimwissenschaften im Islam (Leiden: Brill, 1972), pp. 314-15

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Kitāb al-masā’il كتاب المسائل Qaṣrānī, Ya‘qūb ibn ‘Alī قصراني، يعقوب بن علي, British Library: Oriental Manuscripts, Delhi Arabic 1916, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 18 April 2024]

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