Ghazals by Sa'di


This calligraphic fragment includes a number of ghazals (lyrical verses), composed by Shaykh Sa'di (died 691 AH/1292). Many of these verses express the pain at separation from a friend and exhort faithfulness to one's companions. Sa'di's name appears in one of the verses at the very bottom of the right column. The text is executed in black Shikastah script and is surrounded by cloud band motifs on a background covered with gold leaf. The central gutter separating the main text panel into two columns is decorated with interlacing blue flower and vine motifs. The text panel is provided with several decorative frames and is pasted onto a blue paper ornamented with gold painted interlacing floral vines. In the lower center of the text panel (that is, at the bottom of the central gutter) appears the calligrapher's signature. It reads: mashaqahu al-'abd 'Abd al-Majid (written by the servant 'Abd al-Majid). A note on the fragment's verso, not visible in this image, also states: "''Abd al-Majid, the inventor of Shikastah, 18th century." This is certainly Darvish 'Abd al-Majid al-Taliqani (died 1185 AH/1771–72), who resided in Isfahan, the capital city of Persia during the 18th century. He was a master calligrapher in Nasta'liq and is credited with the invention of Shikastah, a very fluid and literally "broken" script derivative of Nasta'liq. He was a poet in his own right and signed his poems with the pen name Khamush (the Extinguished One).

Last updated: April 6, 2016