Persian Historiography - EIr (4)

After reading the Encyclopedia articles on historiography (other than those covering the 20th century), my thoughts on the impact to my List of 150 are as follows:


1. Inclusion of Rashid-al-Din is generally a good choice in terms of being influential to later key historiographical works in Persian.


2. However, in terms popularity, Rashid-al-Din is probably not as strong as Rawżat al-ṣafā fi sirat al-anbiyā wa’l-moluk wa’l-ḵolafā, that in its first parts were written by Mirkᵛānd (d. 903/1498) with the last (the 7th) volume and epilogue written by his grandson Ḵᵛāndamir (d. 941/1534-35). The first 2 volumes have been translated in the late 19th century as The Rauzat-us-safa; or, Garden of Purity which is available on this site.


3. There are many historical works in Persian in India, especially the Mughal period. While Ḵᵛāndamir followed Babur and wrote something about India, it seems like  Ḵᵛāndamir's major influence was in Safavid Persia. In India, Babur's memoirs written in Chagatay Turki had quite a big influence - at least in a series of royal memoirs, all the way to his great grandson's Jahangir's memoir. 


4. While Abul-Fazl's Akbarnama (together with its third volume Ain-i Akbari) are clearly important works, he was alone in his descriptions of political institutions. His influence, according to the EIr's article on him (, is mostly in the imperial ideology that encompassed all religious communities. So, if I am true to picking the canonical authors based on influence, his slot may need to go to Babur instead.


5. Persian histories were also written in the Ottoman Empire, mostly between 1450-1600. The amount of histories written in Persian is about 1/6th of those written in Turkish - thus my choice of an Turkish historian (Naima) is at least not wrong in its linguistic aspect.

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