Category Archives: Strategies of transmission

An Ottoman Humanist on the Long Road to Egypt

Salih Celalzade’s Tārīḫ-i Mıṣır Al-Cedid [DYNTRAN Working Paper, no. 29, October 2017]

by Giancarlo CASALE

Mustafa Celalzade (d. 1567) was a towering figure of Ottoman history, a larger-than-life scholar-statesman who served more than two decades as the empire’s grand chancellor. But his younger brother, Salih Celalzade (d. 1565), was cut from a different cloth, Continue reading An Ottoman Humanist on the Long Road to Egypt

Mausoleums in Safavid Family History

An Unpublished Royal Edict from the Ardabil Shrine (912/1507) [DYNTRAN WORKING PAPER 28, September 2017]

by Naofumi ABE

The presence of family mausoleums is a common phenomenon in Muslim-majority regions of Western and Central Asia, Northern Africa, and the Indian Subcontinent. Modern research on Muslim mausoleums has been mainly linked to scholarly interest Continue reading Mausoleums in Safavid Family History

Binge Reading in Fifteenth-Century Damascus

Binge Reading in Fifteenth-Century Damascus [DYNTRAN Working Paper, no. 27, August 2017]


At the end of the ninth/fifteenth century, in the year 897/1492, a Damascene scholar sat down in his garden to read through his considerable library. He neither did so silently nor alone, rather he read the books aloud with members of his family. Over the course of Continue reading Binge Reading in Fifteenth-Century Damascus

A Family of Woodworkers

The work of Master Faḫr al-dīn and his son ‘Alī in the Māzandarān (Iran, end 15th c.)*   [DYNTRAN WORKING PAPER 25, June 2017]

by Sandra AUBE

Medieval Iranian woodcarving is quite unknown. Unlike calligraphers or painters, the woodworkers usually did not appear in biographical or other Persian sources, and many wooden pieces of art have nowadays vanished. In this context, the remarkable corpus Continue reading A Family of Woodworkers

From the Centre to the Margins

The Transfer of Books Across the Early Modern Western Indian Ocean        [DYNTRAN WORKING PAPER 24, May 2017]

by Christopher D. BAHL

The early modern Western Indian Ocean (1400-1700) represented a transregional space with various historical phenomena of circulation. Movements of people and goods linked the Red Sea in the West via the Persian Gulf and across the baḥr al-hind to the Continue reading From the Centre to the Margins