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Târîh-i seyyâh der beyân-i zuhûr-i Agvâniyân ve sebeb-i inhidâm-i binâ-i devlet-i Sâhân-i Safevîyân [A Traveller's Chronicle Concerning the Emergence of the Afghans and the Cause of the Collapse of the Safavid Dynasty]
Qustantiniyeh [Istanbul]: Dar al-Tiba'ah al-Ma'murah,, 1142 AH [1729]. Octavo (215 × 152 mm). Contemporary dark red quarter morocco, marbled sides, catch-title (Târîh-i Agvân) to bottom edge in black ink. Housed in a black quarter morocco solander box made by the Chelsea Bindery. Four distinct Ottoman ownership stamps to ff. 1 and 21, later (1189 AH) ownership inscription to f. 1 by "Ahmad", possibly the owner of the seal directly below; additional inscriptions to f. 66 and verso of final blank. Minor loss to head and foot of spine with short split to head of front joint, earlier leaves with very faint damp-staining to bottom edge and slight finger-marking to bottom corners, very occasional light spotting to margins as usual, minute worm hole to gutter ff. [7]-10 and 72-97, old repair to f. 97v. with no loss of text, neat double incision to fore edge f. 66, ink-smudge to f. [5] r. and margin of f. 39 to no loss, f. 95 misbound between ff. 93 and 94. Overall a nice, crisp copy. A scarce title in a pleasing contemporary binding, this copy bearing several distinct Ottoman ownership seals yet with little real sign of wear. First edition in Turkish of this eyewitness account of the Afghan invasion of Persia in 1722 by Father Judasz Thaddeus Krusinksi (1675-1756), first published in French as Histoire de la dernière révolution de Perse in Paris, 1728. Krusinski, "the best known of the Polish Jesuits active in Iran" in the early 18th century (Encyclopaedia Iranica), lived in Isfahan from 1707 to 1728 and again in the 1740s, serving as court translator, ambassador of French kings Louis XIV and XV and intermediary between the Safavids and the Papacy. The Afghan invasion saw the Safavid ruler Shah Sultan Husayn executed and the capital Isfahan sacked, precipitating the eventual downfall of the once-great empire in 1736 following a brief period of Safavid reconquest. Originally composed in Latin, Târîh-i seyyâh was translated into Turkish by the Ottoman diplomat Ibrahim Müteferrika and became only the third text to be printed on his new printing press, the first press established under Muslim auspices. Following a long struggle against conservative religious sentiment, Müteferrika was finally granted permission for his project by Sultan Ahmet III in 1729. The first book printed was Kitab-i Lügat-i Vankulu an Arabic-Persian-Turkish dictionary based on the Sihah of al-Jawhari, with the second being Kâtib Çelebi's Tühfet ül-kibâr fi esfâr il-bihâr (Concerning Naval Expeditions), followed by the present title in the same year. The press was discontinued 1742, with the consequence that any such "Turkish incunabula" are uncommon.
      [Bookseller: Peter Harrington]
Last Found On: 2015-06-23           Check availability:      Biblio    

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