ḠAWṮĪ, MOḤAMMAD

ḠAWṮĪ, MOḤAMMAD, b. Ḥasan b. Mūsā Šaṭṭārī MANDOVĪ, author of Golzār-e-abrār, a Persian hagiographyof Indian saints (b. 11 Rajab 962/2 June, 1554 in Mandu, d. ?). Ḡawṯī received his earliest education from his father, a Sufi and Koran reciter (ḥāfeẓ) well-versed in religious sciences. His father died when he was eleven years of age. He later studied with Shaikh Kamāl-al-Dīn Qorešī, Shaikh Borhān-al-Dīn Kalpī, and Sayyed Moḥammadšāh. A romantic adventure brought him to Agra, where he spent five years. In 990/1582 he left for Gujarat and became a pupil of Shaikh Wajīh-al-Dīn ʿAlawī, whose seminary at Ahmadabad was a great center of learning (Jahāngīr, p. 211). In 994/1585 he returned to Mandu. As a Sufi he was a disciple of Shaikh Ṣadr-al-Dīn Barūdī Šaṭṭārī and his successor Shaikh Maḥmūd b. Jalāl. The Persian poet Naẓīrī Nīšābūrī reportedly studied Arabic with him (Nafīsī, Naẓm o naṯr, I, p. 429; Ṣafā, Adabīyāt V, p. 900).

Golzār-e abrār (comp. 1022/1613) is a hagiography of 612 saints (Ivanow, p. 97, refers to 575 entries, but his manuscript was incomplete), mostly from Gujarat, in an extremely ornate style divided into five sections (čamans) and dedicated to the Mughal emperor Jahāngīr. It throws light on the literary and cultural trends of his time and also contains an account of the Mughal campaigns in Gujarat based on personal observation. Oddly enough, Shaikh Aḥmad Serhendī’s account is dismissed in less than four lines, although, accorrding to Jahāngīr (pp. 272-73), his disciples had reached every town of India. Ḡawṯī was also a poet, but his poetry has not survived. Verses attributed to him cannot definitely be considered his (Storey, I, pp. 984-85).

Bibliography:

Golzār-e abrār, epilogue (containing author’s autobiography); Urdu tr. F. Aḥmad, Agra, 1326/1908.

Golčīn-e Maʿānī, Taḏkerahā II, pp. 703-7.

W. Ivanow, Concise Descriptive Catalogue of the Persian Manuscripts in the Collection of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, Calcutta, 1924, pp. 97-108.

Jahāngīr, Tozūk-e jahāngīrī, ed. S. Aḥmad Khan, Aligarh, 1864. Storey, I, p. 984.

(K. A. Nizami)

Cite this article: