This Persian metrical compendium on therapeutics was composed in 1388/790 and written entirely in verse. It was known under two titles, "Shihāb's Medicine" and the more formal title of "The Healing of Diseases". The metrical therapeutic guide consists of 164 chapters (babs) and includes considerable autobiographical material at the beginning and the end. It served also as one of the main sources for a much later anonymous Persian prose treatise on the treatment of diseases titled Tuhfat al-mujarrabat that is preserved in numerous copies today (see Keshavarz, "Wellcome", pp. 201-3 no. 75).
For other copies, see Storey PL II,2, p. 224.
Shifā’ al-maraḍ / Ṭibb-i Shihāb-i (MS P 16.1, item 2)
Persian. 100 leaves (fols. 5a-104b). Dimensions 20.0 x 11.2 cm (text area 14.5 x 7.2) cm; two columns. 15 lines per page. The title is given on folio 10a, line 13, where it says "this is Kitāb Shifā’ al-maraḍ"; an alternative title is given on folio 5b, line 1: Kitāb-i Ṭibb-i Shihāb. The title on the paper label on the front cover reads: Ṭibb-i Shihāb-i. The author is given at the beginning of the treatise as Shihāb al-Dīn ibn ‘Abd al-Karīm Qivām Nāgawrī, and at the end of the treatise (fol. 104b line 15) as Shihāb. A later hand has written the author's name as Ḥakīm Shihāb in the margin of fol. 5a.
The copy is undated and unsigned (the colophon has been defaced). The appearance of the paper, script, and ink suggests a date of the 17th century.
A complete copy. The text of the poem itself occupies fols. 8b-104b. There is a table of contents to the poem on fols. 5b-8a. The text is written in two columns in a medium-small ta‘liq script, professionally and carefully executed with dense black ink and headings in red. The text area has been frame-ruled. There are catchwords. Standard Arabic numerals 1-39 have been written on fols. 8b-46a. A piece of magenta paper with a gilt design, now mostly rubbed off, is pasted to the top of fol. 8b.
There are marginalia in several hands.
The glossy, beige paper is thin and rather brittle, with very wavy laid lines but no visible chain lines. The leaves are dyed pink or pale green. The edges have been trimmed from their original size, and the paper has been soiled through thumbing.
The volume consists of 118 leaves plus a preliminary leaf. The verso of the preliminary leaf and fols. 1a-2b, 4a, and 117a are blank. The recto of the preliminary leaf as well as fols. 3a-3b, 105a-108a, and 117b-118b have casually written recipes and notes added by a later hand. Item 1, fols. 4b-5a is an anonymous poem on sexual hygiene (MS P 16.1, item 1), and item 3, fols. 108b-115b, is a Persian treatise on foodstuffs by Ghiyāth al-Dīn ‘Ali al-Iṣfahānī (MS P 16.1, item 3).
The volume is bound in red leather over boards. In the center of each cover there is a blind tooled medallion framed by blind tooled lines and circular designs. The spine and edges have been repaired. There are brown leather doublures. There are no endpapers.
The volume was acquired by the National Library of Medicine after 1946; no further information is available on the provenance or when it came into the collections.
Unpublished. Not included in Schullian/Sommer, Cat. of incun. & MSS.
NLM Microfilm Reel: FILM 55-42 no. 2