History of Yemen under Hasan Pasha


Historia Jemanae sub Hasano Pascha (History of Yemen under Hasan Pasha) is the translation into Latin, and a critical edition, of an Arabic history of the reign of Ottoman governor Hasan Pasha in Yemen in the 16th century, written by his contemporary, ʻAmir ibn Muhammad al-Ruʻami (or al-Du’ami). The original work in Arabic is entitled al-Rawd al-hasan fi akhbar sayir mawlana sahib al-sa’adah al-Basha Hasan fi ayyam wilayatih bi-iqlim Yaman (Agreeable gardens or the sojourn of Lord Hasan Pasha during his governorship of Yemen). The work was translated by Antonius Rutgers (1805−84), a Dutch biblical scholar and professor of oriental languages. Hasan Pasha was one of the most successful Ottoman governors of Yemen. His mission was to restore Yemen to firm Ottoman control and maintain peace against rebellious local rulers, which he accomplished during his 24-year rule (1580−1604). The events of the period are chronicled by the historian al-Ruʻami, about whom little else is known. He was clearly a partisan of Hasan Pasha and never missed an opportunity to praise him with the highest honorifics. Antonius Rutgers based his translation on a manuscript now at the University of Leiden. His work is annotated with historical, linguistic, and cultural commentary. He also supplied many examples of al-Ruʻami’s original Arabic text. The book contains an index containing lengthy descriptions of locations mentioned in the text.  Rutgers taught theology and oriental languages at the University of Leiden and elsewhere, and is considered the founder of Sanskrit studies in the Netherlands.

Date Created

Publication Information

Jordaan Luchtmans, Leiden

Title in Original Language

Historia Jemanae sub Hasano Pascha

Type of Item

Physical Description

219 pages ; 27 centimeters


  • The Library of Congress copy has an ink stamp in Japanese: Minami Manshū Tetsudō Kabushiki Kaisha Tōa Keizai Chōsakyoku zōsho no in (Seal of the collection at the South Manchuria Railway Company, East Asia Economic Research Bureau). The volume most likely was confiscated by the U.S. Armed Forces at the end of World War II and subsequently transferred to the Library of Congress. The South Manchuria Railway Company engaged in extensive intelligence gathering and operational activities on behalf of the Japanese Imperial Army, including efforts to agitate Muslims against Chinese and Russian rule.


  1. “Hasan Pasha,” in Encyclopaedia of Islam, first edition (Leiden: Brill, 1913−36).
  2. “Rutgers, Antonie,” in Nieuw Nederlandsch biografisch woordenboek (Leiden: Sijthoff, 1912).
  3. Witkam, Jan Just, “The Oriental Manuscripts in the Juynboll Family Library in Leiden,” Journal of Islamic Manuscripts 3 (2012).

Last updated: October 29, 2015