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Book/Printed Material Kitāb al-Munqidh min al-halakah fī dafʻ maḍārr al-sumūm al-muhlikah كتاب المنقذ من الهلكة في دفع مضار السموم المهلكة

About this Item


  • Kitāb al-Munqidh min al-halakah fī dafʻ maḍārr al-sumūm al-muhlikah

Other Title

  • كتاب المنقذ من الهلكة في دفع مضار السموم المهلكة


  • Manuscript is a medical work on poisons and their antidotes, and discusses poisons from plants, animals, and minerals. It consists of 3 essays: the first begins with a table of contexts (fol. 3b-6b), and each of the others begins with a full-page gilded plate.
  • The study of poisons and their remedies has played an important role in the Islamic medical tradition since the first century of the Hijra, and mention of the treatment of poisoning is already found in the hadith. The major Arabic medical encyclopedias--al-Rāzī's Kitāb Al-Manṣūrī and Al-Ḥāwī fī al-Ṭibb and Avicenna's Canon--included chapters on poisons in the early tenth and early 11th centuries. Famous authors such as Jābir ibn Ḥayyān (circa 721-815) and Moses Maimonides (the Jewish philosopher, theologian, and physician whose medical works were written mainly in Arabic) some 400 years later devoted monographs to this subject. The present manuscript preserves a beautifully adorned copy of the book on poisons written by Ḥusayn Ibn al-Mubārak (died after 1372) in the first half of the 14th century. The treatise is divided into three large sections, each opened by a richly gilded decorative page and by an extremely detailed rubricated table of contents. The first table of contents begins at folio 3 verso following an extensive preface and three introductory remarks. Ibn al-Mubārak's work is a true comprehensive manual dealing with all the possible causes of poisoning. It covers the various kinds of poisonous food--including toxins derived from dairy products, oils, fruits, vegetables, and poisonous waters and flowers--as well as poisonous mineral substances. It also describes in detail the different animals with a bite or sting that can be deadly or harmful and the possible antidotes to their poisons. World Digital Library.


  • Ibn al-Mubārak, al-Ḥasan ibn Abī Thaʻlab, -after 1372
  • Fikrī, Muḥammad, former owner
  • idqī, Muṣṭafá, former owner
  • Wasīm, ʻAbbās, former owner

Created / Published

  • 2 Rajab 834 H [16 March 1431].


  • -  Antidotes--Early works to 1800
  • -  Manuscripts, Arabic--Washington (D.C.)
  • -  Poisons--Early works to 1800
  • -  Toxicology--Early works to 1800


  • -  [Egypt or Syria]
  • -  According to the colophon (fol. 130b), the text was compared with the author's copy, dated 7 Shaʻbān 774 H [1 February 1373].
  • -  Binding: Gilded framed leather; flap has been lost.
  • -  Fol. 1a-130b.
  • -  Fol. 1b gives author's first name as al-Ḥasan, but all other sources (fol. 1a, 60a, and 89a) read al-Ḥusayn.
  • -  Library of Congress. Arabic manuscripts, SM-47.
  • -  Ms.
  • -  Naskhī script; 23 lines in written area, 19 x 13 cm.
  • -  Paper: yellowed cream, thick, no visible watermarks, affected by termites. First page repaired. Bottom of first leaves affected by humidity. Title page covered with gilded plate and blue ornaments; text is mainly in black with some rubricated words; diacritical marks. Fol. 71a-97b appear to have been written by a second hand. Occasional marginal notes. Catchwords on rectos.
  • -  Signatures of previous owners and several ownership stamps on title page: Muṣṭafá Ṣidqī (in 1179 H [1765]); ʻAbbās Wasīm; Masʻūd Sarāṭāī[?] (in 1227 H [1812]). One ownership stamp is illegible; one ownership inscription has been partially erased. Another stamp with a Qur'anic verse appears to be either Mamluk or early Ottoman. Another faint stamp on fol. 1b. On title page and fol. 130b, Muḥammad Fikrī written in violet pencil.
  • -  The colophon (fol. 130a) states that the work was written in the country of Barsbāy, the Mamluk sultan of Egypt and Syria from 1422-1438.
  • -  Three full-page illuminated plates (fol. 1a, 60a, 89a)
  • -  Fihris al-makhṭūṭāt al-ʻArabīyah fi Maktabat al-Kūnghris, 37.
  • -  Also available in digital form on the Library of Congress website.
  • -  Arabic.
  • -  Incipit: الحمد لله الواحد بلا كيفية تقع بها الإحاطة عليه، والأزلي بلا وقت ينسب به إليه. لم تتقدمه الأزمنة ولم تحط به الأمكنة ولم تصفه الألسنة ... أما بعد فإن النعمة تزرع المحبة، ومن أحب المنعم استدام بقاؤه، ولما كانت ثمرة المحبة الشفقة وكان المشفق لا يزال كلفا مولعا بتفقد أحوال من أشفق عليه ....


  • 130 leaves (23 lines), bound : paper ; 26 x 18 cm.

Call Number/Physical Location

  • RA1201 .I22 1431

Digital Id

Library of Congress Control Number

  • 2008401929

Online Format

  • pdf
  • image

Additional Metadata Formats

IIIF Presentation Manifest

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Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Ibn Al-Mubārak, Al-Ḥasan Ibn Abī ThaʻLab, -After 1372, Muḥammad Fikrī, Muṣṭafá Idqī, and ʻAbbās Wasīm. Kitāb al-Munqidh min al-halakah fī dafʻ maḍārr al-sumūm al-muhlikah. [2 Rajab 834 H 16 March, 1431] Pdf.

APA citation style:

Ibn Al-Mubārak, A. I. A. T., Fikrī, M., Idqī, M. & Wasīm, ʻ. (1431) Kitāb al-Munqidh min al-halakah fī dafʻ maḍārr al-sumūm al-muhlikah. [2 Rajab 834 H 16 March] [Pdf] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Ibn Al-Mubārak, Al-Ḥasan Ibn Abī ThaʻLab, -After 1372, et al. Kitāb al-Munqidh min al-halakah fī dafʻ maḍārr al-sumūm al-muhlikah. [2 Rajab 834 H 16 March, 1431] Pdf. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.