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AN ELEGANT ASTROLABE MATER AND PLATES ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE PROLIFIC HÂJJÎ 'ALÎ, ISFAHAN

Decorative Astrolabes and Compass

Close to 20 astrolabes, all virtually identical in appearance, are known from the hand of Hâjjî ‘Alî, who seems to be identical with ‘Alî ibn Sâdiq Qummî. They date from the period around 1780-1800, although…

Kitab-i Bahriye

Kitab-i Bahriye (Book of the Sea)

Originally composed in 932 AH / 1525 CE and dedicated to Sultan Süleyman I (“The Magnificent”), this great work by Piri Reis (d. 962 AH / 1555 CE) on navigation was later revised and expanded. The present manuscript, made mostly in the late 11th century AH / 17th CE, is based on the later expanded version and has approximately 240 exquisitely executed maps and portolan charts.

Minbar (pulpit) formerly in the Qutubia mosque. From Cordoba, Spain, 1137, Almoravid period. Detail of the marquetry on the sides of the minbar. Cedar wood, ebony and ivory, H:3,86 m

The Masterpiece Minbar

Until relatively recent times, wooden furniture—in the sense of tables and chairs was little known in traditional Islamic societies. Throughout the warm and dry lands of North Africa, the Middle East, India and Central…

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