Katip Çelebi

Katip Çelebi

Katip Çelebi, Mustafa bin Abdallah, Haji Khalifa or Kalfa, (1609, Istanbul - 1657 Istanbul) was an Ottoman scholar. Among his best-known works is the "Kashf al-zunun'an asami al-kutub wa al-funun", ("The Removal of Doubt from the Names of Books and the Sciences"), a bibliographic encyclopedia, written in Arabic, which lists more than 14,500 books in alphabetic order.

The son of a soldier, he himself was a soldier for ten years until a heritage made him turn to a more contemplative life. He performed his Hajj in 1635. He became a government official (ikindji khalif) while continuing to write his encyclopedic contributions. The best known being the "Kashf al-zunnun", a bibliographical dictionary in the Arab language with over 14.500 entries in alphabetical order. This work served as basis for the "Bibliothéque Orientale" of Barthélemy d'Herbelot de Molainville.

Among his other works: -"Fadhlakat al-tawarikh" (1639), a chronology up till 1639, of which the list of 1300 sources was lost from the unique manuscript. -"Takwim al-tawarikh", a chronology from Adam up till 1648, translated in Italy by Rinaldi Carlo as "Cronologia historica"..." Venice 1697.

He also translated Latin texts in cooperation with a French convert to Islam known as shaykh Mehmed Iklāsī: -"Rawnak al-sultana", ="Historia rerum in Oriente gestarum" Francfurt 1587. -"Tariq-i-Firengi", ="Chronique de Jean Carrion" Paris 1548.

Also to be noted is his study and partial translation of the "Atlas Minor" by Gerardus Mercator and Jodocus Hondius.

For full reference see a.o. "Encyclopédie de l'Islam", tome IV, 1978, s.v. Katib Celebi (p. 791-792).

External links

*http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9044843?query=sci-fi&ct=eb


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