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Catalogue: Pharmaceutics

Blue arrow pointing to the right [Collection of recipes]   (MS A 83/I, item 3)

An untitled collection of miscellaneous notes, mostly in Turkish, on compound remedies and various therapies. The notes are written by several different hands and at many different angles on the pages. It is a very casually produced notebook.

No other copy has been identified.

Physical Description

Arabic. 15 leaves (fols. 171b-179a, 180a (lower two-thirds)-185b). Dimensions 20.7 x 14.5 (text area ca. 20 x 12, variable) cm; 21 lines per page. No title or author are given.

The copy (or at least portions of it ) appears to have been made by the same copyist as transcribed the first and second items in the volume. The first item was made in 1097 (= 1685-6) by Amad ibn afar 'the physician in Üsküdar' (abīb bi-dār Üsküdar) (MS A 83/I, item 1). Üsküdar is a suburb of Istanbul.

The text is written in a medium-small naskh hand typical of Turkish products, in black ink with headings in red. The text area has been frame-ruled, but the writing does not conform to the ruling, and the notes are often written diagonally or vertically and extend to the edges of the pages. Several hands are involved. There are catchwords.

The volume was apparently heavily used and appears to be a working notebook.

The thin biscuit paper has a nearly matte-finish; it is watermarked and has visible laid lines and single chain lines. The paper is water damaged and heavily soiled. The edges are damaged and some have been repaired.

The volume consists of 185 leaves and one preliminary folio. Fols. 2b-4a contain a table of contents for the volume bound together with this manuscript (MS A 83/II). Preliminary fol. [1] and fols. 1a-2a and 4b contain miscellaneous recipes and notes, mostly in Turkish, in a number of different hands. Fols. 5a-166b are numbered with Arabic numerals 1 to162. Fols. 5a-166b (item 1) is Kitāb al-Asbāb wa-al-‘alāmāt by Najīb al-Dīn al-Samarqandī (MS A 83/I, item 1). Throughout items one and two (fols. 5-166 and 171-179), one or more small loose sheets of paper are tipped in between nearly every folio; between fols. 42 and 43 there is a large sheet nearly the size of the volume itself. These extra sheets are unnumbered and contain miscellaneous notes and recipes, in a variety of hands, mostly in Turkish. Fols. 167a-171a (item 2) is an anonymous treatise on methods of washing (MS A 83/I, item 2). Fols. 171b-179a, and fols. 180a (lower two-thirds) to 185b, contain the collection of recipes and remedies here catalogued. Fols. 179b-180a contain a table of contents for the treatise by al-Īlāqī which is found in the manuscript with which this volume is bound together (MS A 83/II); this table of contents was written after the two manuscripts were bound into one volume. The front endpapers has very recent recipes and contents notes in Turkish; there is also a penciled note in English on the contents.


The volume is bound in soft dark-brown leather covers. Macrophotographs of the binding, examined by the University of Cincinnati Leather Industries Research Laboratory, identified the leather as water buffalo or sheep or goat or calf. The binding is not original with the manuscript. There are paper pastedowns and endpapers. Manuscript A83/I is bound together with a treatise by al-Īlāqī (MS A 83/II)


There is an impression of an undated oval owner's stamp on the title page (fol. 5a).

The volume was purchased in 1941 by the Army Medical Library from A.S. Yahuda, who acquired it in Cairo (ELS 2368 Med., former no. 141).


Schullian/Sommer, Cat. of incun. & MSS., p. 325 entry A83. This item not mentioned.

NLM Microfilm Reel: FILM 48-148 no. 1

Blue arrow pointing to the right [Collection of recipes]   (MS A 1.1, item 3)

An anonymous and untitled collection of 16 recipes and procedures for remedies.

No other copy has been identified.

Physical Description

Arabic. 3 pages (pp. 35-37). Dimensions 23.4 x 15.7 (text area ca. 18 x 14, variable) cm; 19-30 lines per page. There is no title or author given.

A collection of sixteen recipes and therapeutic procedures.

The copy was made shortly after the first two items in the volume were transcribed; the first was completed during the last ten days of the month of Ramadan (al-‘ashr al-akhir min Ramadan) 740 (= March 1340) Muammad ibn ‘Abd Allāh, called (al-mulaqqab bi) al-Shams al-Tasatturī the physician (al-mutaabbib).

It was written by a different person from the one who transcribed the first two items in the volume, although the hand is related and the paper remains the same. It is written in a small naskh script, in black ink with dark-red overlinings. There are no catchwords, and the texts have been written in several directions on the pages.

The thick, lightly-glossed, biscuit paper has indistinct wavy laid lines and no chain lines. The paper is fibrous with uneven patches. There is some soiling through thumbing and some dampstaining.

The volume consists of 37 pages. Pages 28-30 and 34 are blank. Item 1 (pp. 1-27) is al-Adwiyah al-mufradah al-musta‘malah bi-khawahā wa-af‘ālhā al-mashhūrah bi-hā bi-hā by Najīb al-Dīn al-Samarqandī (MS A 1.1, item 1), item 2 (p. 31-33) is Fī Ittikhādh mā’ al-jubn wa-manāfi‘uhu wa-kayfiyat isti‘mālihi apparently also by Najīb al-Dīn al-Samarqandī (MS A 1.1, item 2), and item 3(p. 35-37) consists of the collection of remedies here catalogued.


Modern library binding of blue cloth over pasteboards with black leather spine; modern paper pastedowns and endpapers.


There is the impression of a small round owner's stamp on both p. 1 and p. 27 that has the name ‘Abd Amin Muammad and is dated 1165/1751-2. The same stamp is to be found in NLM MS A 28.

Purchased from A. S. Yahuda (ELS No. 1664, Med. 33); received by the Armed Forces Medical Library in September 1954, from the office of Dr. Claudius Mayer.


Hamarneh, "NLM", p. 99.

NLM Microfilm Reel: FILM 55-43 no. 6

NLM Microfilm Reel: FILM 69-30 no. 4

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