Collection of Works from Hakim Sanai


Kitāb-i mustaṭāb-i Kullīyāt-i (Collection of works from Hakim Sanai) contains poetic works of Abu al-Majd Majdud ibn Adam Sanai Ghaznwai (died circa 1150). Abu al-Majd, better known as Sanai, was a famous medieval classical Persian scholar, poet, and mystic, thought to have been born and died in Ghazna (a present-day province in southeast Afghanistan) and also to have lived in Khorasan. Sanai is considered to be the first to compose qasida (ode), ghazal (lyric), and masnavi (rhymed couplet) poems in Persian, and he is famous for his homiletic poetry and role in the development of early mystical literature. He was connected to the Ghaznavid dynastic courts as a literary person whose patrons were state officials, military men, scholars, and the like. Modern collected works of Sanai are an outcome of a complex textual transmission stretching back centuries, during which their contents have changed in various ways, particularly in the order of poems, variant texts, and the numbers of verses. The oldest copy of his diwan (collection) that was copied in Herat in 1284−85 is housed now in the Bayezit Library in Istanbul. The last page of this lithographed edition, copied from one or multiple old manuscripts, states that it was printed and published at Matb-e Brejis in Bombay by Aqa Muhammad Jafar Saheb in October 1910. This particular collection is arranged by its genres and forms, such as ghazals, masnavis, qasidas, and others and by religious, mystical, ethical, philosophical, and courtly themes concerning God, mysticism, love, humankind, divine knowledge, ideas, and courtly culture. The work concludes with a brief biography of Sanai. The book has more than 130 pages in total, paginated with Indo-Arabic numerals. Verses appear very compressed throughout, covering entire pages including the margins. Almost all the poems have titles and are clearly separated at the end by “Sanai.”

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Matb-e Brejis, Bombay


Title in Original Language

کتاب مستطاب کلیات قصاید رفیعه وغزلیات بدیعه و مقطعات انیقه رباعیات دقیقه...

Type of Item

Physical Description

240 pages ; 27 centimeters


  1. J.T.P. De Bruijn, Of Piety and Poetry: the Interaction of Religion and Literature in the Life and Works of Hakim Sanai of Ghazna (Leiden: Brill, 1983).

Last updated: September 30, 2016