Muhammad Ibn Khavandshah Mirkhwand
Mirkhwand, Muhammad Ibn Khavandshah
Born 1433, in Balkh; died Feb. 24 (according to other sources, June 22), 1498, in Herat. Iranian historian; representative of the school of historiography founded at the Timurid court in Herat; member of the literary group of Ali Shir Nava’i.
Mirkhwand is known for his seven-volume history of the world “since creation” through the end of the 15th century, entitled The Garden of Purity. In Iran and Central Asia this work was considered a model of historiography, and for European researchers it remained for many years virtually the only source on the history of these countries. However, only part of the sixth volume and all of the seventh, which was edited, completed, and carried through to 1522 with a geographic appendix by Mirkhwand’s grandson, Khwandamir, are original, containing descriptions of events contemporary to the author’s life. The remainder of the work is a compilation and is of interest only insofar as some of the works used have not come down to us in any other form. (A listing of editions of Mirkhwand’s works can be found in A. E. Krymskii, Istoriia Persii, ee literatury i dervisheskoi teosofii, vol. 3, Moscow, 1917.)