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Saturday, July 26, 2008
Historical manuscript bearing Imam Ali’s devotions published in Iran
Tehran Times Art Desk
TEHRAN -- A book carrying devotions attributed to Imam Ali (AS) was published by the Astan-e Qods Razavi Center for Artistic Creations last week.
An addition of the historical book, which has been calligraphed by Master Mir Ali Hervai in 1533 CE, was unveiled during a ceremony at the Imam Ali (AS) Religious Arts Museum in Tehran on Thursday.
The original version of the book, which is also known as “Hervi Devotions”, is keep at the Astan-e Qods Razavi Museum and Library in Mashhad.
Master Gholam-Hossein Amirkhani, who has done the calligraphy for the book’s preface, and Mohammad Jafar Yahaqqi, professor of the Ferdowsi University of Mashhad who has written the preface, some officials from Astan-e Qods Museum, and a number of Iranian cultural figures attended the ceremony.
“This is the first time a book from a manuscript in the museum has been published by Astan-e Qods Razavi Center for Artistic Creations,” Hossein Abedi a member of Astan-e Qods Museum board of directors said.
In the future, according to Abedi, the center plans to publish three versions of the Holy Quran written by Safavid-era calligrapher Alireza Abbasi, a selection of verses from the Holy Quran with calligraphy by Ibrahim Sultan (1394–1435), and the Divan of Hafez written by the 18-century calligrapher Abdolmajid Taleqani.
“‘Hervi Devotions’ is a complex of arts,” Yahaqqi said.
“The eloquence of Imam Ali’s words and nastaliq calligraphy of an artist like Mir Ali Heravi have turned the book into one of world’s most valuable manuscripts,” he added.
The ceremony went on with a film clip depicting the printing process of the book. Afterward Amirkhani criticized the Astan-e Qods Museum and Library for not providing public access to manuscripts kept the museum and library.
“The museum has restricted public access to its treasury for years. Publishing the precious manuscripts is a cultural action that should have been carried out long ago,” he noted.
“Heravi was an artist, who was the epitomy of Persian calligraphy who distanced himself ahead of other forerunners of the art,” Amirkhani explained.
“Although Heravi wrote the book when he was a tyro, the calligraphy of the book well illustrates the novelty of his art,” he added.
Two editions of the book were presented to Amirkhani and Yahaqqi during the ceremony.
Photo: Master Gholam-Hossein Amirkhani holds an edition of a book carrying devotions attributed to Imam Ali (AS) during a ceremony at the Imam Ali (AS) Religious Arts Museum in Tehran on July 24. The original version of the book has been calligraphed by Master Mir Ali Hervai in 1533 CE. (Mehr/Majid Asgaripur)