Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus

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Escorial, Real Biblioteca del Monasterio de San Lorenzo, ár. 930

[Colour digital images of the body text.]

Single work with the later addition of an appendix from an alternative version of the same work: Arabic. Date:

undated; first half of the 6th/12th century, although Derenbourg gives the 8th/14th century.


al-Andalus; copied by ʿAlī b. Aḥmad b. Mufarrij (fl. 530/1136) for his personal use (1r). The scribe can be identified as the Andalusi faqīh ʿAlī b. Aḥmad b. Mufarrij b. Ziyād al-Sayyārī who was active in 530/1136, when he also copied (khaṭṭa) Ibn Rushd al-Jadd’s (d. 520/1126) al-Bayān wa-l-taḥṣīl. Thus, Ibn Mufarrij was active during Jābir b. Aflaḥ’s lifetime (fl. first half of the 6th/12th century) or shortly after. It is very likely that this manuscript was copied when Jābir b. Aflaḥ was still alive, since the scribe refers to him as shaykh (1r), which suggests that Jābir b. Aflaḥ was still an elder person when the scribe copied the manuscript. The formula raḥimahu Allāh referring to Ibn Mufarrij is written on top of an erased one. Thus, it was changed upon Ibn Mufarrij’s passing away, what suggests that the manuscript was owned by him until his death or that the new owner knew him. On ʿAlī b. Aḥmad b. Mufarrij, see Ibn ʿAbd al-Malik al-Marrākushī, al-Dhayl wa-l-takmila li-kitābay al-Mawṣūl wa-l-Ṣila, ed. M. b. Sharīfa and I. ʿAbbās, 5 vols. (I, IV, V, VI, VIII), Beirut: Dār al-thaqāfa, n.d.-1984, and José Bellver, ‘The Arabic Versions’.


statements of ownership by Muḥammad b. ʿAlī b. Muḥammad b. Sūṣūr* (1r); by Ibrahīm b. Muḥammad b. Ibrahīm b. ʿAbd Allāh (1r; he may be the Mālikī judge and muftī of Fes ⟨Abū Isḥāq⟩ Ibrahīm b. Muḥammad b. Ibrahīm b. ʿAbd Allāh al-Yaznāsī (d. 794/1391) since there is a very blurred nisba on top of the statement that may be consistent with al-Yaznāsī; on him, see Muḥammad Makhlūf, Shajarat al-nūr al-zakiyya fī ṭabaqāt al-mālikiyya, 2 vols. Beirut: Dār al-kutub al-ʿilmiyya, 1424/2003); by Aḥmad b. Muḥammad* ⟨...⟩ al-Judhāmī (1r); and at least one other illegible statement of ownership (1r); a statement of purchase for Muley Muḥammad Naṣr Allāh by his servant Muḥammad b. ʿĪsā (1r; Muley Muḥammad Naṣr Allāh probably refers to one of the twelve Nasrid sultans named Muḥammad who ruled Granada from the 7th/13 century to the 9th/15th century, and thus it is likely that this manuscript was part of the Nasrid palatine library); old shelfmarks: al-taʿlīm 1/4 al-ʿilm (in ghubār numerals) probably written by Muḥammad b. ʿĪsā (1r); V.I.IV.4 and Cod. 870 (1r); V.C.2., num. 44 with Latin title (2r); Escorial RBMSL Cod. 930 (1r, 150v).


paper, 150 ff. (foliated with Arabic-European numerals). A single clear brown naskh hand with letters fāʾ and qāf dotted according to the western custom; chapter headings and first words of paragraphs in bold without rubrics; partially dotted ductus with occasional vowels, hamzas and shaddas. Substantial figures in brown and red. Dimensions: 250x185 mm; 21 lines per page. Some moisture stains throughout.


astronomy. — Index: Ptolemaica (1r-140r and 142r-150v); table of elements and natures related to the planets (141v). Blank: 140v-141r.


Miguel Casiri, Bibliotheca Arabico-Hispana Escurialensis sive Librorum omnium Mss. quos Arabicè ab auctoribus magnam partem Arabo-Hispanis compositos Bibliotheca Coenobii Escurialensis complectitur, recensio & explanatio, 2 vols, Madrid: Antonius Perez de Soto, 1760–1770, vol. I, p. 367 (no. CMXXV); Hartwig Derenbourg and H.-P.-J. Renaud, Les manuscrits arabes de l’Escurial. Tome II. — fascicule 3: Sciences exactes et sciences occultes, Paris: Paul Geuthner, 1941, p. 39; María José Parra Pérez, ‘A Previously Unnoticed Appendix in the Iṣlāḥ al-Majisṭī by Jābir ibn Aflaḥ’, Suhayl 15 (2016–2017), pp. 113–128; José Bellver, ‘The Arabic Versions of Jābir b. Aflaḥ’s al-Kitāb fī l-Hay’a’, in David Juste, Benno van Dalen, Dag Nikolaus Hasse and Charles Burnett (eds), Ptolemy’s Science of the Stars in the Middle Ages, Turnhout: Brepols, 2020, pp. 181–199.


\1v\ ⟨…⟩ الحمد لله الأول بلا ابتداء الآخر بلا انتهاء الذي خلق الأشياء على غير نظير وقدّرها بحكمته أحسن تقدير. وصلّى الله على محمّد نبيه البشير وسراجه المنير الذي هدى به الخلائق وأبان به الحقائق. وبعد: فإن الله تعلى شرف نوع الإنسان وفصله على جميع أنواع الحيوان بالعقل — \140r\ ⟨…⟩ فلذلك يختل أيضا هذا الظهور الصباحي ويبطل وإذا كان ذلك كذلك فإن سائر الظهورات المسائية والصباحية في هذين البرجين احرى بأن يختل ويبطل وذلك ما أردنا بيانه. تجز الكتب بحمد الله وعونه. وصلّى الله على محمّد وعلى آله وسلّم.

= Jābir ibn Aflaḥ, Iṣlāḥ al-Majisṭī (C.1.1125). — Title: al-Nuskha al-kubrā min Kitāb al-Shaykh Abī Muḥammad Jābir b. Aflaḥ al-Ishbīlī fī l-hayʾa. Khaṭṭahu li-nafsi-hi ʿAlī b. Aḥmad b. Mufarrij, raḥima-hu Allāh (The Long Version of the Book on Astronomy by the Shaykh Jābir b. Aflaḥ al-Ishbīlī. It was copied by ʿAlī b. Aḥmad b. Mufarrij for his personal use, God have mercy on him) (1r). — Additional titles: Astronomia Gebri (1r), Abu Mohamad Geber Sivilianus Astronomia. Caret fine, et aera, sed maximae antiquitans (2r), Abi Mohomad Giaber Liber inscritpus de Sphera (inside back cover). — Index: star table, 1r; author’s preface, 1v-4v; Book I, 4r-17v; Book II, 18r-35v; Book III, 36r-42v; Book IV, 43r-58v; Book V, 59r-82r; Book VI, 82v-95v; Book VII, 96r-118r; Book VIII, 118v-126v; Book IX, 127r-140r; Appendix, 142v-150v. — Substantial collations of this manuscript with additional manuscripts (cf. 27v) and different versions, including that transmitted by Berlin, SBPK, Landberg 132. Minor collations with the Almagest (26v, 89r). Collations, corrections, alternative readings and glosses in the margins mostly by a single hand. As Parra has pointed out, a marginal note on f. 94v refers the reader to the last quire, in which the section on the Milky Way, present in various manuscripts, is appended.

\Appendix, 142v\ في صفة مواضع الفلك اللبني المسمى بالمحرّة فهذا ما نصفه من مراتب الكواكب الثابتة ونحن مضيفون إلى ذلك على ما يجب أحوال الدائرة اللبنية أيضا فنروم نعاته ما نقدر عليه وعلى حسب ما أدركناه بالرصد — \150v\ ⟨…⟩ وأما الزمان الذي بين طلوع الكوكب أو غروبه وبين كل واحد من توسطي السماء فهو في الكرة إذا كانت مائلة ليس زمانا واحدا ولعلى في الكوة إذا كانت.

Title: Fī Ṣiffat mawāḍiʿ al-falak al-labanī al-musammā bi-l-Ma⟨j⟩arra (On the Description of the Positions of the Milky Way Also Called the Galaxy) (142v). — This section was first noticed by M. J. Parra in her ‘A Previously Unnoticed Appendix’. This section was written by the same scribe as the main text. The appended section ends abruptly. As shown by Parra, a gloss in the margin of Book VI (94v) indicates that the text was based on different copies available to the scribe and that it was appended to the rest of the manuscript in a quire of different colour. Thus, it is very likely that it was appended time after the copy of the main text was completed.