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Help needed: Does anyone read Farsi or know something about Mughal manuscript illumination?


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Dear  Nvmis Forvms community,

I recently bought two illuminated pages from an old non-western manuscript. I usually do not collect Asian art or books, and this therefore was a purely opportunistic purchase. The pair cost me only 25€, which is less than the flea market value of the frames the pages came in, and I found the two gouache miniatures decorative.

Now, I would like to know more about what I bought. I can identify the calligraphy on the two manuscript pages as nastaliq (Perso-Arabic script), and judging from the style of the two miniatures, I suspect them to probably be 16th to 18th century works from the Mughal Empire. Yet, I unfortunately do not read Farsi, and although I am somewhat familiar with European medieval and early modern books, I know preciously little about Persian manuscripts.

Thus, since I am certain that a rather large chunk of the world's antiquarian knowledge is assembled here on this board, I would like to ask for your help. Can anyone tell me more about the two manuscript pages below, the miniatures or the accompanying text? Any information is appreciated!



Edited by Ursus
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16 hours ago, John Conduitt said:

Use Google Translate (Persian). It seems to mention Karna, from the Hindu epic Mahābhārata. And the Qur'an. So a religious book, although that doesn't help date it as the epic was written by 400.

Thanks for the advice. I didn't know that Google Translate can now translate from images. I'm impressed that it recognized anything at all from manuscript pages - below is what I got from feeding the program my manuscript pictures. Most of the machine translation seems to be gibberish, though some of it is strangely poetic:



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