About this Item
- The present manuscript is a commentary entitled Anwār al-nujūm (The lights of the stars) by an author who appears to have stated his name as Jamist al-Rumi (Jamist the Byzantinian). The work is based on Al-zīj al-jadīd (The new astronomical tabulations) by Alī ibn Ibrāhīm Ibn al-Shāṭir (died 1375), the most-distinguished Muslim astronomer of the 14th century. Ibn al-Shāṭir was active as muwaqqit (timekeeper) at the Umayyad mosque in Damascus, where he constructed a magnificent sundial to adorn the central minaret; it had special curves to measure the times for the five daily prayers. The extensive treatise on which this commentary is based is called "the new astronomical tabulations" to distinguish it from a previous, and now lost, work also by Ibn al-Shāṭir simply called Zīj (Astronomical tabulations). Ibn al-Shāṭir's research for the first Zīj allowed him to develop revolutionary ideas regarding planetary astronomy. He departed from the traditional Ptolemaic astronomical model for a system that preserved and even enhanced the correspondence between foreshadowed and observed phenomena. He changed Ptolemy's system whenever it implied non-uniform motions of the planets--uniformity being one of the Aristotelian attributes for the motion of celestial matter. The results of this substitution are of interest for several reasons. While creating a model that was mathematically consistent with the Ptolemaic one, Ibn al-Shāṭir was able to formulate a planetary theory of circular uniform motion, in compliance with Aristotelian ideas on matter. The main text, which extends for almost 300 folios, is surrounded in many places by marginal notes that appear to be in the same hand as the main text. These marginalia not only comment on the text itself, but provide extensive calculations and other information derived from Ibn al-Shāṭir's treatise. The last 100 folios of the manuscript consist of astronomical tables, including tables for the conversion of different dating systems (Coptic, Persian, Byzantine, and Islamic). Jamist al-Rumi also provides times of sunrise and sunset during the year and all the practical information needed to perform timekeeping in Islam. A note on folio 1 recto shows the name of 'Abdallāh Musā ibn Muḥammad as the former owner of the codex, while a plate on the same folio mentions that that the manuscript later belonged to the East Asia Economic Research Bureau of the South Manchuria Railway Company, a Japanese company whose prominent red stamps can be seen the on first folios (1 recto and 2 recto). World Digital Library.
- The text ends on fol. 291b, followed by charts on fol. 292a-385a. Ibn al-Shātir was the muwaqqit of the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus, where he constructed a magnificent sundial to adorn the central minaret. The sundial displayed the time of day relative to sunrise, and midday relative to the time of the afternoon prayer. There were special curves to measure the times for the five daily prayers.
- Ibn al-Shāṭir, ʻAlī ibn Ibrāhīm, 1304-1375
- Abd Allāh, Mūsá ibn Muḥammad, former owner
- Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha. Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku, former owner
Created / Published
- - Astronomy, Arab--Early works to 1800
- - Manuscripts, Arabic--Washington (D.C.)
- - Time measurements--Early works to 1800
- - Binding: old leather, torn from upper edge.
- - Charts fol. 292a-385a.
- - Fol. 1a-385a.
- - Library of Congress. Arabic manuscript, SM-62.
- - Ms.
- - Paper: thick, yellowed cream, watermarks, in good condition, although most of fol. 2a and 3a have sections that have been painted over with black paint or ink. Leaf 1a has notes about various abridgements of Ibn al-Shātir's book by Shihāb al-Dīn Aḥmad ibn Ghulām Allāh ibn Aḥmad and Muḥammad ibn ʻAlī ibn Ibrāhīm al-Shahīr bi-ibn Zurayq al-Shāfiʼī; notes as well on leaf 2a. Marginal notes on many pages; catchwords on rectos.
- - The ownership notation of Mūsá Ibn Muḥammad ʻAbd Allāh appears on fol. 1a. A bookplate (in Arabic) on the pastedown says that the manuscript belongs to the Office of Economic Research on the Far East of the Southern Manchuria Railway Company. On fol. 1a is another stamp in Japanese, also of Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha, Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku; additional stamps in Japanese on fol. 2a.
- - Thuluth script; 15 lines in written area, 20 x 13 cm.
- - Title from fol. 385a.
- - Fihris al-makhṭūṭāt al-ʻArabīyah fi Maktabat al-Kūnghris, 47-48.
- - Also available in digital form on the Library of Congress website.
- - Arabic.
- - Incipit: الحمد الله الذي رفع السماء بقدرته, و دبر أفالكها بحكمته . . .
- 387 leaves (15 lines), bound: paper ; 31 x 22 cm.
Call Number/Physical Location
- QB23 .I25 1600z
Library of Congress Control Number
Additional Metadata Formats
IIIF Presentation Manifest
- Abd Allāh, Mūsá Ibn Muḥammad
- Ibn Al-Shāṭir, ʻalī Ibn Ibrāhīm
- Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha. Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku
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Credit Line: [Original Source citation], World Digital Library
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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-Shāṭir, ʻAlī Ibn Ibrāhīm, Mūsá Ibn Muḥammad Abd Allāh, and Former Owner Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha. Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku. Zīj. [16--?] Manuscript/Mixed Material. https://www.loc.gov/item/2008427047/.
APA citation style:
Ibn Al-Shāṭir, ʻ. I. I., Abd Allāh, M. I. M. & Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha. Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku, F. O. Zīj. [16--?] [Manuscript/Mixed Material] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2008427047/.
MLA citation style:
Ibn Al-Shāṭir, ʻAlī Ibn Ibrāhīm, Mūsá Ibn Muḥammad Abd Allāh, and Former Owner Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha. Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku. Zīj. [16--?] Manuscript/Mixed Material. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/2008427047/>.