Arts of the Book: Manuscripts, Folios, Bindings
Manuscript Of The Qanun Fi’l-Tibb Of Ibn Sina, Vol. 5
Iran or Mesopotamia (?)
dated 444 H/1052 CE
Materials and technique
Ink on paper
21.2 x 16.4 cm
Ibn Sina’s Qanun fi’l-tibb (Canon of Medicine) is the most important encyclopaedic corpus of mediaeval medical knowledge in the Islamic world. With the transfer of knowledge to the Latin west in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries it became the most used of all mediaeval references in the medical schools of Europe, almost until the beginning of modern times.The Qanun is organised into five books. The present manuscript is a copy of the fifth book, on compound drugs and pharmacopoeia. Copied only fifteen years after the death of Ibn Sina (Avicenna), it is one of the earliest, if not the earliest manuscript of this work. The other books cover topics including anatomy, the humours, the temperament, the effects of environment on health and disease, materia medica, specific pathology and diseases of various parts of the body, general pathology, fevers, leprosy, surgery, dislocations and fractures. Born near Bukhara in 980 CE to a Samanid government official, Ibn Sina received a proper education and was, at eighteen, a talented physician who had mastered all the sciences and made a great number of medical discoveries and observations that remain relevant today.
© 2007 The Aga Khan Development Network. This is the only authorised Website of the Aga Khan Development Network.