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The Arts of the Book


Inkwell with Cover

Object Name:
Inkwell with cover
12th century
Bronze; engraved and inlaid with silver and copper
H. 4 1/8 in. (10.5 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1948
Accession Number:
48.108a, b
  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Arabic; on upper and lower bands, good wishes to the owner; translation on cover: "Work of `Abd al-Razzak ibn Ma`sud of Nishapur".

    Translation by Yassir al-Tabba (1978):
    -Lid: "With auspiciousness, blessing, dominion, happiness ... victory, and continuance to its owner. The work of `Abd al-Razzaq bin Mas`ud al-Nisaburi";
    -Body, top: "Glory, prosperity, dominion, happiness, security ... wealth, and continuance to its owner";
    -Body, bottom: "With auspiciousness, blessing, joy, happiness, security, perfection, support, and continuance to its owner".

    Copy of translation and transcription in curatorial file.

    On the lid there are two row of inscriptions in Kufic script:
    1-.../ بالیمن و البرکة / و السعادة و الد
    2-.../ الدولة و السلامة /و النصر و البقا لصاحبه
    On the body there is an inscription in Kufic script:
    بالیمن و البرکة و السر/ور و السعادة و السلا/ و التامة و التأیید و البقا لصا
    On the lower register in Naskhi script:
    العز و الاقبال و الدولة / و السعادة و السلامة و الر/احة و النعمة و البقا لصاحبه
    Under in Kufic script:
    بالیمن و البر/کة وا/
    I tried to find the name of the metalworker on this object which is mentioned below by Yasser al-Tabba but I did not see any name. If the name appears under the cover then it is unreadable.
    The inscription was also read by Yasser al-Tabba as:
    Lid بالیمن و الدوله و السعاده و... و النصره و البقا لصاحبه
    عمل عبدالرزاق بن مسعود النسابوري
    -A.Ghouchani- I did not see the name of metalworker on the object?
    Body top العز و الاقبال و الدوله و السعاده و السلامه و... و النعمه و البقا[ء] لصاحبه
    Body bottom بالیمن و البرکه و السرور و السعاده و السلامه و التامه و التأیید و البقا[ء] لصا[حبه]

  • Provenance

    [ Brummer Gallery, New York, until 1948; sold to MMA]

  • See also
    In the Museum