The Zoological Section of the Nuzhatu-I-Qulub

J. Stephenson

Isis, 11:2, 1928, 285-315

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"I have been for some time past engaged in preparing an edition, with a translation and notes, of the text of the Zoological part of the Nuzhatu-l-Qulub Of Hamdullah Mustaufi Qazwini, a Persian Encyclopaedia of science, completed in A. D. 1339-40. This will shortly be published by the Royal Asiatic Society. In the meantime, it may perhaps be permitted me to give some account of the work, and to explain the place of the Nuzhat in the history of Zoology. ... The Nuzhatu-l-Qulub may be described as a kind of scientific encyclopaedia, or perhaps better as a scientific popular educator; it gives a conspectus of scientific knowledge, from astronomy to psychology and ethics. Its style, in general, is short, terse and homely, often of an almost notebooklike brevity, the very reverse of the high-flown artificial 'literary' idiom. An introductory section deals with the spheres, heavenly bodies, and elements, and then considers the 'inhabited quarter' of the earth, longitude and latitude, and the climates. The body of the work is divided into three maqalas, the first treating of the mineral, vegetable, and animal kingdoms; the second of man, his bodily structure (anatomy), faculties and moral qualities; and the third of geography. An epilogue is devoted to wonders and curiosities - those of Iran and of the rest of the world." - Stephenson

Language: English


Last update December 6, 2021