A Light Note on the Science of Writing and Inks


This manuscript in 20 folios contains two works. The first is a treatise by Muḥammad ibn ʻĪsā al-Ṭanṭāwī on writing tools and the craft of making ink. The work is organized in seven chapters. In the first chapter, the author briefly discusses the best type of reed pens to select for writing. In subsequent chapters, he explains ways to make red, black, and other kinds of ink, including how to write in gold. The treatise was completed on Friday, 1 Rabī‘ II 1268 AH (January 24, 1852). The second work is a short treatise, in approximately 2½ folios, believed to be by Abū al-‘Abbās Aḥmad ibn ‘Alī al-Bawashī , on the origins, significance, and healing qualities of the Qurʼanic formula known as the basmala.

Date Created

Subject Date


Title in Original Language

نبذة لطيفة فى علم الكتابة والأحبار

Type of Item

Physical Description

20 leaves (19 lines), bound : paper ; 22 x 16 centimeters


  • Alternate title: A Treatise on Inks


Last updated: May 2, 2015