Have you heard about famous ancient calligraphers?

The art of calligraphy has long been developed in Uzbekistan.

This type of art has its own special direction and has risen to the level of science. Exquisite nasta‘liq script by Mir ‘Ali al-katib became a gold standard for his students and followers, the most respected of them was Mir Husain al-Husaini al-Nasafi al-katib al-khaqani, known as Mir Kulangi. 

Qati‘i Haravi in his work “Majma‘ al-Shu‘arayi Jahangirshahi” (“Anthology of the Poets of Shah Jahangir”) mentioned Mir Kulangi and another Bukharan master, khwaja Mahmud-i Ishaq Siyavushani, who worked in India at the court of the Baburid (Mughal) Shah Akbar (r. 1556 – 1605); besides that, he pointed out that Mir Kulangi participated in Akbar’s grand project, the copying of “Qissa-yi Amir Hamza”. 

Haravi is sure that the calligrapher was no stranger to poetry writing and created his own collection of poems. It is also known that by 1585 he had already returned to Bukhara, having previously made a pilgrimage to Mecca. Two out of 19 of Mir Kulangi’s manuscripts identified by O. F. Akimushkin are stored in the National Library of Russia. They are the undated copy of Jami’s poem “Tuhfat al-Ahrar” (“A Gift to the Nobles”) and a “Bustan” by Sa‘di 983 / 1575 – 1576.

You can learn more about the topic in the book-album "Arts of the book in the 15th–17th-century Mawarannahr" (Volume XVII) in the series "Cultural Legacy of Uzbekistan in the World Collections". 

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