Al-Mansur's Book On Hunting

BookAl-Mansur's Book On Hunting

Al-Mansur's Book On Hunting


November 1st, 2001





The original manuscript of On Hunting was presented to the Hafsid Sultan of North Africa al-Mustansir bi-Allah, known as al-Mansur, in 1247. He was a passionate hunter with Saluqis, falcons and other predators on his estate at Bizerte. The complete book apparently dealt with all aspects of hunting and falconry but only Parts VII and VIII of Volume IV of the original seven volumes remains, which Abdulhafedh Mansour of Tunis University published as an edited text in Arabic in 1989. This book covers in particular the selection, breeding, feeding and training of Saluqis for hunting, and the treatment of canine diseases. It also deals with hunting with other predators, such as cheetahs, and by other means. It concludes with a long catalogue of animals and birds suitable for hunting. This work draws heavily on earlier classical sources probably in Arabic translations and combines the essence of the medieval Arab view of both the theoretical and practical sides of preparing the Saluqis and other predators for the chase and on the objects of the chase themselves. It is therefore a fascinating window on both the medieval Arabic world, and the history of hunting and dogs.

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