Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī | Monography or Translations of known period | Medicine | Survey | Perso-Indica

Medicine

Monography or Translations of known period
Ḫwāja Šams Mustawfī, Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī

The Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī (Collection of Šams) is the earliest recorded Persian work on Ayurvedic medicine written in India. The text is not extant but is mentioned in a few works of later Muslim authors. This treatise was most likely composed around the beginning or during the first decades of the 14th century. Little is known about its author, Ḫwāja Šams Mustawfī, and his title suggests that he was a state auditor or chief accountant (mustawfī). The references found in later Persian works show that the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī was used by Indian physicians of the 14th century and was still known to authors of the Mughal period, at least until the first half of the 17th century.

References to the treatise are found in Persian works which contain chapters on Indian medicine. The first is the Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’ written by Żiyā’ Muḥammad Mas‘ūd Rašīd Zangī ‘Umar Ġaznawī during the reign of Muḥammad ibn Tuġluq (r. 1325-1351). Żiyā’ Muḥammad mentions the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī in the bibliography given in the preface where he specifies that his work is based on the books of the Indian physicians (az kutub aṭibbā-yi hind pārsī karda ast). Ḫwāja Šams Mustawfī was the uncle of Żiyā’ Muḥammad, and he appears in the dream narrated in the preface of the Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’ where the sick Żiyā’ Muḥammad is instructed to find a certain remedy located in his uncle’s treatise (Ġaznawī, Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’ī, ms. Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh Oriental Manuscript Library and Research Institute, ṭibb 344, ff. 2a-b). It is likely that Żiyā’ Muḥammad used the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī for the compilation of the chapter on Indian medicine, which is devoted to medical alchemy, in the Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’, but he may also have used other sources on this topic.

Another text of the pre-Moghol period which refers to the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī shows that it included a description of fevers and of the terminology related to this ailment. The text is the Šifā al-maraż, know also as the Ṭibb-i Šihābī from the author Šihāb al-Dīn Nāgawrī, a physician active towards the end of 14th century. The twentieth chapter, on fevers (taphā), presents the view of Muslim physicians which consider nine types of this disease and then that of the Indian physicians which distinguish thirty kind (nu‘) of fevers. About their Indian names, Šihāb al-Dīn says to the reader that all can be found in the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī, here referred as Ṭibb-i Šamsī (Nāgawrī, 1295/1878-79, p. 61). It is also plausible that the Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī included descriptions of the pharmacopeia as it is mentioned by Amān Allāh Ḫān ‘Amānī’ (d. 1046/1637) in the bibliography of the sources he used for the compilation of the Ganj-i bād-āward, a pharmacological treatise (Amān Allāh Ḫān, Ganj-i bād-āward, Ms. Delhi, Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine, 43, p. 7).

Bibliography:

Amān Allāh Ḫān, Ganj-i bād-āward, Ms. Delhi, Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine, 43. 

Ġaznawī, Żiyā’ Muḥammad Mas‘ūd Rašīd Zangī ‘Umar, Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’ī, ms. Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh Oriental Manuscript Library and Research Institute, ṭibb 344.

Nāgawrī, Šihāb al-Dīn, Šifā al-maraż, Bombay 1295/1878-79. 

Fabrizio Speziale


Originally published: 30 April 2013
How to quote this article:

Speziale, Fabrizio, 2013, "Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī", Perso-Indica. An Analytical Survey of Persian Works on Indian Learned Traditions, F. Speziale - C. W. Ernst, eds..

available at http://www.perso-indica.net/work/majmua-yi_samsi.
 
Main Persian Title: Majmū‘a-yi Šamsī
English Translation of Main Persian Title: Collection of Šams
Author: Ḫwāja Šams Mustawfī
Alternative Title(s):
Ṭibb-i Šamsī
Approximate period of composition: 1300-1325
Later texts quoting this Work:

Majmū‘a-yi Żiyā’ by Żiyā’ Muḥammad ‘Umar Ġaznawī (q.v.)

Šifā al-maraż by Šihāb al-Dīn Nāgawrī (q.v.)

Ganj-i bād-āward by Amān Allāh Ḫān ‘Amānī’