Rashid al-Din 1314/2014

0002374d-2    Rashid image   Rashid image 2

Rashid al-Din’s “World History”, 1314 – A Masterpiece of Islamic Painting

This exhibition highlights the Jami’ al-Tawarikh (“World History” or “Compendium of Chronicles”) of Rashid al-Din, one of the masterpieces of medieval Islamic manuscripts. Celebrating the 700th anniversary of its production (1314/2014), the exhibition features approximately twenty representative folios from Edinburgh University Library’s manuscript (Or.MS.20) and loans from the National Museums Scotland. Curated, organised and sponsored by the Alwaleed bin Talal Centre for the Study of Islam in the Contemporary World (Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies [IMES] / School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures [LLC]), University of Edinburgh, in collaboration with the Centre for Research Collections, University of Edinburgh.


While serving as a high-ranking adviser to the Ilkhanid court, the former physician and court historian Rashid al-Din (d. 1318) was commissioned to compile what would become one of the most important historical and artistic documents within Islamic intellectual tradition. The Jami’ al-Tawarikh was to be an illustrated history of the world as it was known to the Mongol court, covering not only the history of the Mongols, but also that of the Chinese, Franks and Indians. Situated in the highly international and multi-cultural city of Tabriz in modern-day Iran, the scriptorium of Rashid al-Din gathered artists from all parts of the Mongol empire and beyond.



Venue – Edinburgh University Library Ground Floor Exhibition Room, 30 George Square, Edinburgh

Find the venue: http://tinyurl.com/kukjf2x

NB: The exhibition room is located in the library lobby, and access from the main entrance to the library lobby is regulated by a set of secure swipe card activated barriers. All registered students and staff of the University of Edinburgh can access the Library with their blue University smartcard. External users should report to the Reception desk.

Ground Floor, Edinburgh University Library. Forum entrance     P1010571

Opening – 1 August 2014 (by invitation)

2 August – 31 October 2014

Monday – Saturday 10:00 – 17:00

Free admission


This exhibition was an Edinburgh Festival Fringe event (August 2014):



“Digital book” of Rashid al-Din’s World History is now online at the Centre for Research Collections:



Further information:



A special issue of the Mongol Empire,  including an essay on the exhibition of Rashid al-Din’s World History, Orientations (Hong Kong), Volume 47, Number 6:


Flyer and order information:


flyer Oct 2014


oct cover-page-001


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