magnificent emerald carved with a Shi`ite invocation; Deccani?, 1695/6AD.


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magnificent emerald carved with a Shi`ite invocation; Deccani?, 1695/6AD.

The inscription contains a Shi’a prayer blessing Muhammad and the twelve Imams; and the hijra date 1107 which transposes to 1695 -96 A.D. In full it reads:

O Merciful One, O Compassionate One
O God
God bless Muhammad and ‘Ali
and Fatima and al-Husain
and al-Hasan and ‘Ali
and Muhammad and Ja’far
and Musa
1107
and ‘Ali and Muhammad
and ‘Ali
and al-Husaini and the steadfast Mahdi

An early 19th-century finial from an ‘alam

 

“A SILVER GILT ‘ALAM, PROBABLY DECCAN, INDIA, AH 1308 (1890-1 AD). In the form of a hand (panj tang) with applied bands with dragon’s head terminals, tubular attachment element, cast in silver, the front decorated in repoussé, engraved and gilded, the four fingers with sura from the Qur’an (I, CXII, CXIII, CXIV), central roundel with the Nada ‘Ali quatrain surrounded by roundels with the names of the twelve Imams, invocations to the Prophet Muhammad on the thumb and to Fatima al-Zahra below the fingers, dated below 1308- 30.in. (76.3cm.) high; 16½in. (42cm.) wide.”

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An elaborately calligraphed Hand of Fatimah, 1800’s, India

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A modern computer-aided Shi`ite calligraphic design, with the name of `Ali in the center

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