Ilḥāq Abī Isḥāq إلحاق أبي إسحق Kūbanānī, Abū Isḥāq ibn ‘Abd Allāh كوبناني، أبو إسحق بن عبد الله

Or 1514

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The record is made up of Codex A collection of pages, usually gathered into quires, and bound between covers. ; ff. ii+174+ii. It was created in 886-888. It was written in Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: Oriental Manuscripts.

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Commentary on the first five books ( maqālāt ) of Naṣīr al-Dīn al-Ṭūsī's (نصير الدين الطوسي, d. 1274) recension of Euclid's Elements by Abū Isḥāq ibn ‘Abd Allāh al-Kūbanānī al-Yazdī (أبو إسحق بن عبد الله الكوبناني اليزدي, fl. mid- to late-15th century), also known as Shaykhzādah ibn al-Khādim al-Burhānī al-Kūhbanānī (شيخزاده بن الخادم البرهاني الكوهبناني, see Kheirandish, 'An Early Tradition', 2017, pp. 111-12 and 117-20). At Diyarbakır, al-Kūbanānī was active as an astronomer and mathematician at the court of the Aq Qoyunlu sultan Abū al-MuẓaffarYa‘qūb ibn Uzun Ḥasan Bahādur Khān (أبو المظفر يعقوب بن أزن حسن بهادر خان, reg. 1478-90), to whom the present work is dedicated (see f. 4v, line 4). The title is found at f. 5, lines 5-6.

The manuscript finishes abruptly during the commentary on Book Five, Proposition ( shakl ) Fourteen.

A eulogy in praise of al-Kūbanānī's commentary by the qāḍī of Fars and author of philosophical and mystical commentaries Jalāl al-Dīn Abū ‘Abd Allāh Muḥammad ibn As‘ad ibn Muḥammad ibn ‘Abd al-Raḥīm ibn ‘Alī al-Dawwānī al-Ṣiddīqī (جلال الدين أبو عبد الله محمد بن أسعد بن محمد بن عبد الرحيم بن علي الدواني الصديقي, d. 1502-3), dated Tabriz, 27 Dhū al-Qa‘dah 887/7 January 1483 is found on f. 2r-2v.


  • Author's preface (ff. 3v-5r);
  • Book One (المقالة الأولى, ff. 5r-89r);
  • Book Two (المقالة الثانية, ff. 89v-117r);
  • Book Three (المقالة الثالثة, 117v-144r);
  • Book Four (المقالة الرابعة, ff. 144v-163v);
  • Book Five (المقالة الخامسة, ff. 164v-174r, defective at end).

Books One to Four have colophons dated Dhū al-Qa‘dah 888/December 1483 (f. 89r), Ṣafar 886/April 1481 (f. 117r), Ṣafar 887/March-April 1482 (f. 144r), and 12 Rabī‘ II 887/31 May 1482 (f.163v) respectively.

The text contains numerous diagrams, and some spaces have been left blank for diagrams that were never filled in.

Begins (f. 3v, lines 2-5):

الحمد لله الذي يتلأ لأعلى صفحتي اليل والنهار تباشير آثار

قدرته وينزل من السبع الشداد تفاسير آيات معرفة

رفع سبع سموات طباقًا وأنزل منها على الأرضين كأسًا

وهاقًا ...

Ends (f. 174r, lines 14-17, defective at end):

... وإن كان الأول

أصغر من الثالث كان الثاني أصغر من الرابع وإن كان مساويًا كان مساويًا

مثلًا نسبة ا إلى ب كنسبة ج إلى د وليكن ا أعظم من ج يقول فيه أعظم من د

وذلك لأن نسبة ا الأعظم إلى ب أعظم من نسبة ج إليه بالشكل الثامن

Extent and format
Codex A collection of pages, usually gathered into quires, and bound between covers. ; ff. ii+174+ii
Physical characteristics

Material: Eastern laid paper

Dimensions: 225 x 125 mm leaf [145 x 70 mm written]

Foliation: British Museum foliation in pencil

Ruling: Misṭarah ; 17 lines per page; vertical spacing 12 lines per 10 cm

Script: Naskh ; the scribe is perhaps Abū Isḥāq ibn ‘Abd Allāh al-Kūbanānī al-Yazdī (أبو إسحق بن عبد الله الكوبناني اليزدي)

Ink: Black ink, with rubricated Book titles and lemmata, and diagrams and overlinings in red

Decoration: None

Binding: Red leather binding, with blind-tooled medallion

Condition: Very minor tidemarks at head and tail

Marginalia: Few (but see e.g. ff. 12r, 66v and 72r) by more than one hand

Seals: ff. 3r and 163v

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 1514

History of this record

886-888 (AH, Hijri qamari)
Context of creation


  • Jamāl al-Dīn Muḥammad ibn Ḥusayn al-Khūwānsārī (جمال الدين محمد بن حسين الخوانساري, d. 1709 or 13), known as Āghā Khūwānsārī (آغا خوانساري), Safavid Shī‘ī scholar at Iṣfahān: his inscription, without date (f. 1r);
  • Muḥammad Najīb al-Suwaydī (محمد نجيب السويدي): his inscription with date 1247/1831-2 (f. 1r);
  • Seal with inscription الكاظمين الغيظ والعافين عن الناس (Qur’ān 3:134), without date (f. 3r);
  • Seal with inscription يا من رفع كل رفيع, with date 1107/1695-6 (f. 3r);
  • ‘Abd al-Wāsi‘ (عبد الواسع): his inscription with date Friday 5 Ṣafar 1173/28 September 1759 (f. 3r);
  • Seal with inscription الله حسبي, with date 974/1566-7 (f. 163v).
Immediate source of acquisition

Purchased from Major-General Sir Henry Creswicke Rawlinson (1810-95), 24 November 1877

Related material

Finding aids

Rieu, Charles, Supplement to the Catalogue of the Arabic Manuscripts in the British Museum (London: The British Museum, 1894), Item 751, pp. 509-10

Select Bibliography


  • Kheirandish, Elaheh, 'An Early Tradition in Practical Geometry: The Telling Lines of Unique Arabic and Persian Sources', in The Arts of Ornamental Geometry. A Persian Compendium on Similar and Complementary Interlocking Figures. Fī tadākhul al-ashkāl al-mutashābiha aw al-mutawāfiqa (Bibliothèque national de France, Ms. Persan 169, fols. 180r-199r) , ed. by Gülru Necipoğlu (Leiden-Boston: Brill, 2017), pp. 79-144
  • Rosenfeld, B. A. and Ekmeleddin Ihsanoğlu, Mathematicians, Astronomers, and Other Scholars of Islamic Civilization and Their Works (7th - 19th c.) , (Istanbul: IRCICA, 2003), no. 833, p. 282 (where he is mistakenly called Kubnawī)

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Ilḥāq Abī Isḥāq إلحاق أبي إسحق Kūbanānī, Abū Isḥāq ibn ‘Abd Allāh كوبناني، أبو إسحق بن عبد الله, British Library: Oriental Manuscripts, Or 1514, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 29 February 2020]

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