Eşrefoğlu’s Müzekki’n-nüfûs

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Bill Hickman



Eşrefoğlu Rumi was a Sufi master and poet from the time of the Ottoman sul- tan Mehmed II (Fatih, The Conqueror). His principal writings, a small collection of poems (divan) and a treatise Müzekki’n-nüfûs (Disciplining the self), are both still popular today. Numerous manuscripts of both works survive from the late sixteenth century onward. But there is a substantial gap in the transmission his- tory—no manuscript copy of either work survives from the century following his death, which should be considered anomalous in comparison to other writers of his time. A curious sentence found in some old copies of his Müzekki’n-nüfûs offers an unexpected look into the politics of the day—and, quite probably, an explana- tion for that gap.

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