Jalāl u Jamāl

A 15th century love poem from Persia

Jalāl was a prince born in the fairytale town "Fard". He was the son of King Tahmas. In a far off province, beyond the "Qaf" mountains, lived Princess Jamāl, the daughter of King Mihraray...

The manuscript has shelfmark: O Nova 2

Fol. 46b


One night, when Jalāl was sleeping outside in his garden, Jamāl came flying like an angel. She saw Jalāl and painted his portrait on a canvas and laid it on Jalāl's bed before disappearing. When Jalāl woke up in the morning, he saw the canvas with the picture that Jamāl had painted. He fell in love with her instantly. In order to trace her down, he assembled his army and began a long, exhausting journey.

Fol. 50a


After four years of adventure, dangers and battles in fields and mountains, he finally reached Jamāl and they could get married.

Fol. 92b


The fairytale about Jalāl and Jamāl is love poem in Persian inspired by Sufi poetry and written in Herat in the year A.H. 818  (1415-16) by Amin ul-din Muhammad Nazlabadi Bayhaqi Sabzavari, also known as Amin. Roughly ninety years later, at the beginning of the 16th century, this copy was made by the famous calligrapher Sultan Ali Qa'inis. The manuscript is embellished with 34 expensive, colourful and highly detailed miniatures each of which is a unique work of art. It was donated to the Library in 1839 by Count Carl Gustaf Löwenhjelm, who served at one time as a diplomat in Constantinople. 


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