The Sea of Gems


Muḥammad ibn Yūsuf al-Harawī, who flourished in the late 15th–early 16th centuries, was a physician and author of at least two medical treatises, including this lexicon Baḥr al-jawāhir (The sea of gems). It is a medical dictionary arranged alphabetically, covering anatomical and pathological terms and concepts and medicinal substances. The colophon gives the composition date as 924 AH (1518 AD). This manuscript was copied in 1601 in a clear medium-sized naskh script with some rubrication. The manuscript was a gift of Harvey Cushing (1869–1939), a Yale-educated neurosurgeon, whose collection of rare medical books forms a key part of the Medical Historical Library in the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library, Yale University.

Last updated: October 24, 2012