Yet Another Pseudo-al-Jāḥiẓ? Kitāb al-Ḥijāb and its Probable Author Ibn al-Marzbān (d. 309/921)

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This article deals with an epistle known as Kitāb al-Ḥijāb or Kitāb al-Ḥijāb wa-dhammih (“Book of the Chamberlain and its Censure”), published as a work of al-Jāḥiẓ. Based on internal evidence in Kitāb al-Ḥijāb and some specific aspects of al-Jāḥiẓ’s stylistic art of writing, it is argued that the work is yet another of many texts wrongly attributed to him. In addition, the adīb-scholar Muḥammad b. Khalaf b. al-Marzbān (d. 309/921), who reportedly has written one al-Ḥijāb wa-dhammih, is proposed as its probable author.

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References

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2

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 209; Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 2117 (continued pagination). Warrāq is in general a papermaker, copyist of manuscripts and note taker, but when serving a particular author for these purposes, as was the case with Abū Yaḥyā Zakariyyā b. Yaḥyā b. Sulaymān for al-Jāḥiẓ, he acts as secretary, hence my translation “amanuensis.” Al-Dhahabī (Siyar, xi, 528) mentions the addition of a book called al-Jimāl (“The Camels”) to the Ḥayawān, but he remarks that this is not a work of al-Jāḥiẓ nor comes close to his style of writing.

6

Khafājī, Ṭirāz al-majālis, 73-97. Another copy of the text of al-Ḥijāb, not used so far, is kept at Mosul (Maktabat al-Awqāf, 265/12).

7

Al-Sandūbī, Adab al-Jāḥiẓ, 186; Pellat, Nouvel essaie, nr. 89: “Sandūbī doute de son authenticité, et je ne suis pas loin de partage son opinion.”

8

Al-Najm, al-Jāḥiẓ, 10-13.

16

Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 1924; see Bergé, al-Tawḥīdī et al-Ǧāḥiẓ, 188-195.

22

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 163; Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 284.

23

Toorawa, Ibn Abī Ṭāhir Ṭayfūr, 63, 154.

24

Ibid., 178 n. 14.

34

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 167; transl. Dodge, 328; Ṣafadī, Wāfī, iii, 38; Pāshā al-Baghdādī, Īḍāḥ al-maknūn, i, 543; idem, Hadiyya, ii, 26.

37

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 95; Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 2645; Dhahabī, Siyar, xiv, 264; Ṣafadī, Wāfī, iii, 44; Pāshā al-Baghdādī, Hadiyya, ii, 26.

38

Cf. Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 103. The second poem is ascribed to other poets as well, see al-Muʿaybad, Shiʿr al-ʿAṭawī, nr. 7.

39

Zajjājī, Akhbār, 51.

40

Ibn Faqīh, Buldān, 312; Ṣafadī, al-Wāfī, xii, 12. The poem was allegedly addressed to Ibn Abī l-Raʿd’s friend Abū ʿAbdallāh b. al-Ḥasan b. Abī l-Shawārib in Sinjār. Anyway, if the poem was al-ʿAṭawī’s, he must have lived up to the time of al-Muʿtaḍid.

41

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 230.

42

Ibid., 192; a waraq is two pages, each page containing 20 lines, i.e. 4.000 lines in total, cf. ibid., 76.

43

Ibn al-Muʿtazz, Ṭabaqāt al-shuʿarāʾ, 395-396; al-Muʿaybad, Shiʿr al-ʿAṭawī, 73.

45

Ibn al-Jarrāḥ, Waraqa, 63.

48

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 123.

54

Fleischhammer, Quellenuntersuchungen, 23-24; Die Quellen des Kitāb al-Aġānī, 45-46.

55

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 130; Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 2101.

56

Abū Hiffān, Akhbār Abī Nuwās, 9.

57

Ibn al-Marzbān, Faḍl al-kilāb, 10; tr. 5. The extant specimens of Abū Hiffān’s poetry and fragments of his prose writings have been collected and published by Nājī, Abū Hiffān, 191-250; for more information about Abū Ḥiffān, see Toorawa, Ibn Abī Ṭāhir Ṭayfūr, 110-112; Sezgin, gas, ii, 372-373.

59

Ṣūlī, Akhbār al-Buḥturī, 132.

60

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 139; Khālidiyān, al-Tuḥaf wa-l-hadāyā, 237.

61

Marzubānī, Nūr al-qabas, 219.

64

Marzubānī, Muwashshaḥ, 282.

66

Toorawa, Ibn Abī Ṭāhir Ṭayfūr, 113. The Abnāʾ were Khurasanian soldiers who helped bring the Abbasids to power.

67

Cf. Marzubānī, Muʿjam, 447. Abū ʿAlī al-Yamāmī furthermore composed a satirical poem ridiculing Caliph al-Mustaʿīn for his flight from Samarra to Baghdad in 251/865; Ṭabarī, Taʾrīkh, ix, 282; Marzubānī, Muʿjam, 447.

68

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 53; Marzubānī, Muʿjam, 447; Qifṭī, Muḥammadūn, i, 280-281.

71

Cf. Sourdel, Le vizirat Abbaside, 314-326; idem, Ismāʿīl b. Bulbul.

73

Ibn al-Marzbān, Faḍl al-kilāb, 10; cf. tr. 5.

74

Ṣūlī, Akhbār Abī Tammām, 70-71, 196; Bakrī, Simṭ al-laʾālī, i, 197, 244-245; Iṣfahānī, Aghānī, iv, 107.

75

Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 168, 170.

76

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 190; Ibn al-Muʿtazz, Ṭabaqāt, 396-397; al-Khaṭīb al-Baghdādī, Taʾrīkh Baghdād, iv, 202-3. The collection of Ibn Abī Fanan’s poetry consists of 74 pieces, 167 lines of verse in total; see Sāmarrāʾī, Aḥmad b. Abī Fanan, 131-90; idem, Shuʿarāʾ ʿAbbāsiyyūn, i, 105-196; see also Ibn Wakīʿ Tinnīsī, Munṣif li-l-sāriq, for many quotations of his poems; cf. Marzubānī, Muwashshaḥ, 347-348; Sezgin, gas, ii, 585.

77

Iṣfahānī, al-Imāʾ al-shawāʿir, 66; idem, Aghānī, x, 310-311; Ibn al-Jawzī, Dhamm al-hawā, 226.

79

Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabā’, 1977; he is mentioned as one of the ʿulamāʾ and aʿyān al-shuʿarāʾ.

81

Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 532; Ibn al-ʿAdīm, Bughyat al-ṭalab, iii, 1220-1222.

84

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 194.

96

Ibn al-Nadīm, Fihrist, 147, 148; Yāqūt, Muʿjam al-udabāʾ, 2583; Sbath, Choix de livres, nr. 431.

100

Ibn al-Jawzī, Quṣṣāṣ, 323.

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