ḤOBAYŠ B. EBRĀHIM B. MOḤAMMAD TEFLISI, author of numerous scientific works (d. ca. 600/1203-04) who lived in Anatolia. Ḥobayš’s exact name is uncertain, since he seems to have used a number of versions in his various writings, including the pennames Ḥabeš, Ḥasan, Ḥosayn, Šaraf-al-Din, Jamāl-al-Din and Kamāl-al-Din. In a copy of his work entitled Kefāyat al-ṭebb (Bursa Orhan Gazi Library, no. 1120), he refers to himself as Kamāl-al-Din Badiʿ-al-Zamān Abu’l-Fażāʾel Ḥobayš b. Moḥammad b. Ḥobayš al-Ḡaznavi, but in another work entitled Kāmel al-taʿbir (Beyazıt State Library, no. 1905/1), he uses Abu’l-Fażl Ḥosayn b. Ebrāhim b. Moḥammad Ṭeḡli.


Ḥobayš’s origins were from Tiflis, but his date of birth is unknown. Since he wrote his work Qānun al-adab in 548/1153 and he was most probably in his twenties at least by this time, one could speculate that he was born before around 525/1130. For this reason, Katib Çelebi’s claim (II, p. 1379) that he died around 1231-32 is implausible. There is no information available about Ḥobayš’s family nor about the circumstances of his arrival in Anatolia. It is not known when he became attached to the sultan Qelej-Arsalān II (1156-92), to whom he dedicated most of his works. He was most probably in Konya in 1150, when he wrote Qānun al-adab, and in 1155, when he wrote Kefāyat al-ṭebb. It is also reported that Qelej-Arsalān II arrived in Malatya in 1181 with a person whose scientific opinions he greatly respected (Michel Le Syrien, pp. 390-91). This individual, who is also said to have prevailed in religious debates, must surely have been Ḥobayš. In 1186 Ḥobayš was dismissed from the office of chief astrologer by the sultan, because of his erroneous calculation of the Flood. However, after the death of the sultan, he became attached to his son Qoṭb-al-Din, to whom he dedicated his book Kefāyat al-ṭebb. According to Brockelmann, Ḥobayš died in around 1203, which seems the most plausible date (GAL, SI, p. 893).


Persian works. 1. Kāmel al-taʿbir, a book on dream interpretation written for Qelej-Arsalān II. It has been published in Iran (Teflisi, 1970) and in Tajikistan under the title Khobnoma (Teflisi, 1993).

Turkish translations. (1) translations for Governor General Karaca Bey during the reign of Morād II (Bursa Museum Library, no. E4/1251), for Sultan Selim I (Revan Kiosk, no. 1769), for Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent (Süleymaniye Library, Hekimoğlu, no. 591), and for Qāżi-’l-Qożāt Çelebi (Istanbul Laleli Library, no. 2926). (2) Bayān al-ṣenāʿāt, a work consisting of twenty chapters giving practical information about alchemy, jewellery, coloring crystals and glass. A manuscript it of this work is also found at the Süleymaniye Library. It has been published by Irāj Afšār (FIZ V, 1957, pp. 279-458. (3) Bayān al-nojum, a work on astronomy and astrological sciences, no copy of which has yet been traced. (4) Qānun al-adab, a work on grammatical rules which provides references to forty-eight other works. A copy of it is held at the Mehmed Hafid Efendi Library (no. 434). (5) KetābMadḵal elā ʿelm al-nojum, a work on astrology which consists of seven chapters and one hundred and thirty-four sub-chapters with an alphabetical index. General information about astrology is provided in the foreword for the non-specialist reader. A copy of this work is held at Nuruosmaniye Library (no. 2803/1, leaflet 1b-137). (6) Malḥama-ye Dāniāl, a work which recounts the auguries made after solar eclipses, storms, and other meteorological incidents; manuscript at Süleymaniye Library (Ayasofya, no. 2706). (7) Tarjomat al-qawāfi, a work on prosody written for Kılıçarslan II’s son Qoṭb-al-Din. (8) Wojuh al-Qorʾān or KetābTalḵiṣ ʿelal al- Qorʾān, an exegesis of the Koran. An edition of this work has been published (ed. Mehdi Moḥaqqeq, Tehran, 1992). (9) Kefāyat al-Ṭebb, a work on medicine dedicated to Qoṭb-al-Din. A copy is held at the Bursa Orhangazi Library (no. 1120; see also Dietrich, 1966, pp. 160-61; Fonahn, 1910, pp. 15-16).

Arabic works. (1) Taqwim al-adwia, a work about medicine written with reference to Galen’s well-known complete works on medicine entitled in Arabic al-kotob al-setta. A copy can be found at the Ayasofya Library (no. 3600/1). For details of further copies, see GAL, SI, p. 893; Šešen, Akpınar and İzgi, eds., pp. 197-98. (2) Ṣeḥ-ḥat al-abdān, a work on medicine which is not extant, and was only referred to in his Kāmel al-taʿbir. (3) Awdiat al-adwia, a work about various drugs used for medicinal purposes, which can be found at the Beya-zıt State Library (Valiyeddin, no. 2540/foll. 13-131. (4) Eḵteṣār foṣul al-Bokrat, an abridged version of the aphorisms of Hippocrates. (5) Taḥṣil al-ṣeḥḥa be’l-asbābal-setta, a work on medicine comprising four pamphlets, one set of which can be found at the Musul Yahya Pasha al-Calili medrese (no. 236). The other copy is at the British Library (no. 829). (6) Ketāb Menhāj al-ṭebb. No manuscript of this work has been located, but he is believed to have written it before Wojuh al-qorʾān. (7) Taqdema al-ʿelāj wa badraqat al-menhāj, a detailed inventory of medicines. There are copies at the Brill Library in Leiden (no. 715, 1715) and at Princeton University Library (Arabic manuscripts, no. 1108). (8) Romuz al-men-hāj wa konuz al-ʿelāj (see Brockelmann, GAL, SI, p. 893). (9) Ṣeḥḥat al-abdān. No copy of this work has ever been located, although it is referred to in the foreword of the Kāmel al-taʿbir. (10) Naẓm al-soluk, a kind of medicinal codex of therapeutic methods. A copy of this work is held at the British Library (no. 4937).



Ahmet Ateš, “Hicri VI-VII (XII-XIV) asırlarda Anadolu’da Farsça eserler,” in Türkiyat Mecmuası, Istanbul, 1945, VII-VIII, part 2, pp. 47-101.

Idem, “Anadolu Kütüphanelerinde mühim yazma eserler,” Tarih Vesikaları 1, N.S., 1955, pp. 163-64.

Katip Çelebi, Kašf al-ẓonun, Istanbul, 1941, I, pp. 261-62; II, pp. 1310, 1379.

Esmāʿil Bāšā Baḡdādi, Hadiyat al-ʿārefin asmāʾ al-moʾallefin wa āṯār al-moṣannefin, Istanbul, 1955, I, p. 263.

Idem, Izāh al-maknun fi al-zayl ʿalā Kašf al-ẓonun, Istanbul, 1947, II, p. 64.

R. Šešen, Cemil Akpınar, and Cevat İzgi, eds., Fihrist mahtûtât al-tıbb al-Islami bi lugat al-arabiye ve al-türkiye ve al-farsiye fi mektebat türkiye. Istanbul, 1984, pp. 197-98.

Albert Dietrich. Medicinalia Arabica. Studia über arabischen handschriften in Turkischen und Syraischen Bibliotheken, Göttingen, 1966, pp. 159-61.

Adolf Fonahn, Zur Quellenkunde der persischen medizin, Leipzig, 1910, pp. 15-16.

Abu’l-Fażl Ḥobayš Teflisi, Kāmel al-taʿbir, ed. M. Ḥosayn Roknzāda-Ādamiyat, Tehran, 1970.

Idem, Wojuh-e Qorʾān, ed. Mehdi Moḥaqqeq, Tehran, 1992.

Idem, Khobnoma [Kāmel al-taʿbir], Dushanbe, 1993.

M. Th. Houtsma, Catalogue d’une Collection de manuscripts arabes et turcs appertenant à la maison E. J. Brill à Leiden, Leiden, 1886, nos. 715, 1715.

Lucien Leclerc, Histoire de la medecin Arabe, II, Rabat, 1980, p. 321.

Michel Le Syrien, Chroniques, ed. and tr. J.-B. Chabot, Paris, 1905, pp. 390-91.

Ḥosayn-ʿAli Maḥfuẓ, “Āṯār Ḥobayš al-Teflisi,” Majmaʿ al-loḡat al-ʿarabiya 50, 1979, pp. 392-406.

Ḏabiḥ-Allah Ṣafā, Tāriḵ-e adabiāt dar Irān, Tehran, II, 1981, pp. 998-99.

Manfred Ullman, Die Medizin im Islam, Leiden, 1970, p. 178.

(Tahsin Yazici)

Originally Published: December 15, 2004

Last Updated: March 22, 2012

This article is available in print.
Vol. XII, Fasc. 4, pp. 415-416