The Clarification of the General Principles of Medicine


In the introduction of this manuscript entitled al-Īḍāḥ fī kullīyāt al-ṭibb (The clarification of the general principles of medicine), the author identifies himself as ‘Alī ibn Muḥammad ibn ‘Abdullāh al-Anwarī, but nothing else is known about him. As the title suggests, the work is a medical text in the tradition of second-century physician and philosopher Galen and the great polymath and physician, Abū ʻAlī ibn Sīnā (known as Avicenna, 980–1037). The manuscript is arranged as an introductory section containing definitions followed by sections on theoretical medical knowledge and on practical medical knowledge. The theoretical section is further divided into four parts, which consider topics of natural philosophy, such as the four elements, and matters relating to the state of the body in health or illness. The practical section of the work is divided into two parts: the first concentrates on the preservation of health, and the second on the treatment of disease. The manuscript, in Naskh script, contains 23 lines to a page, with section headings highlighted in red ink, and numerous marginal notes in Persian and Arabic. The colophon indicates that the manuscript was completed on July 30, 1727, in Delhi.

Subject Date

Publication Information

Delhi, India

Title in Original Language

الايضاح في كليات الطب

Type of Item

Physical Description

16 x 24.5 centimeters

Last updated: June 17, 2014