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2 Kashmir manusc.: Hindu literature, incl. the Bhagavad gita 10

€6,000.00

Description: Kashmir manuscript: “five pearls” of Hindu literature,
including the Bhagavad gita, with 5 full-page miniatures

[PANCARATNAGITA].
Pancha ratnani.
[Kashmir, early 19th-century]. Oblong (9 x 15.5 cm). Manuscript in Sanskrit, written in Devanagari script with a reed(?) pen in red and black ink on both sides of the Asian paper leaves, with 5 full-page miniatures in many colours plus gold and silver with decorative borders, and each page of text in a border of multiple lines with orange predominating. 20th-century boards covered with decorated cloth.
€ 6,000
A 19th-century Kashmir manuscript of the Pancha ratnani (five pearls), five of the eighteen books of the Indian epic in Sanskrit verse Mahabharata, including its most famous text, the Bhagavad gita (divine song). The Mahabharata evolved from various sources ca. 400 BCE to ca. 350 CE and relates semi-legendary events from ca. 1400-1000 BCE, but is especially important for its philosophical and devotional aspects. Its central character is Prince Arjuna, the greatest archer of India, and it relates his exploits and his relations with Vishnu, Krishna and other manifestations of god. The Pancha ratnani is a collection of five largely independent books (parvas), the first in four parts, and serves as a Hindu spiritual guide to life. Each of the five books is here preceded by a full-page miniature generally illustrating the story in the book. Although a classic of Hindu spirituality, the text also shows Buddhist influences and the miniatures owe something to Islamic traditions.
In very good condition, book 1 with some leaf numbers shaved or lost in part 2, and none surviving in parts 3 and 4, about 5 leaves with a corner of the margin nibbled and about 6 leaves with minor water stains in the fore-edge margin.
Cf. William Buck, Mahabharata (1981).
  • Number: 1010702
  • Dealer: Speculum Orbis Nauticum







 
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