Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Precious Gift - Tuhfat - alNafis

The Precious Gift - Tuhfat-al-Nafis

In 1896, Raja Haji Ali (Tengku Selat) bin Raja Haji Muhammad (Tengku Nong) presented a copy of the Tuhfat-al-nafis that he had personally transcribed - to the then retiring Dutch Resident General A.L. van Hasselt. This was a copy from the shorter version which was used by Virginia Matheson as her base text for her doctorate dissertation that was forwarded to Monash University, Australia in 1973.

In 1903 van Hasselt handed it to the KITLV library in Leiden.

This copy was catalogued by Ph. S. van Ronkel in 1937 under "Catalogus der Maleische Handschriften... VBG 57 1909".

Apart from this copy, there are three other copies in existence:

  • A copy that was given to W. Maxwell and transcribed in 1890. This copy received was from a certain Syamsudin bin Imam Musa of Kelang. Copy now in Royal Asiatic Society, London.

  • A copy that was borrowed by A.C. Blagden from Tengku Fatimah binti Sultan Abu Bakar, Johor. Richard Windstedt used this version to print a Jawi copy.

  • And another copy that is kept in the Dewan bahasa dan Pustaka, Kuala Lumpur.