Re: Bidev 1979 typescript on playing cards' origin

Maybe you have this already ...

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1096&p=16865&hilit ... 417#p16865
264. Cf. L. A. Mayer, Mamluk Playing Cards, ed. R. Ettinghausen and O. Kurz (Leiden 1971, The L. A. Mayer Memorial Studies I), and R. Ettinghausen, in Gatherings in Honor of D. E. Miner, 51-78 (Baltimore 1974). The word kanjifah appears on fig. 23 of Mayer's publication. The gambling story is reported in Ibn Taghrībirdī, Nujūm, anno 820/1417-8, cf. also W. Popper (Ibn Taghrī Birdī's) History of Egypt, Part III, 50 (Berkeley and Los Angeles 1957, University of California Publications in Semitic Philology 17).
I remember, that Ross once had a sort of text, but I've difficulties to locate it. Too long ago. Or? I find at one of our pages:
Simon Wintle reports the following (page version October 2003):

1400 EGYPT:
A passage in Ibn Taghri-Birdi's "Annals of Egypt and Syria" (dealing with events of the year 1417-1418) mentions that the future sultan al-Malik al-Mu'ayyad won a large sum of money in a game of cards. This confirms that playing cards were known in Mamluk Egypt not long after they first appeared in Europe. The text reads:

"The reason for the seizure of the aforementioned Akba'i [the governor of Syria residing in Damascus] was that the Sultan al-Malik al-Mu'ayyad [reigned from 1412 to 1427] had, in the days when he was emir, purchased a youth for 2000 dirhams which he had won playing 'kanjafah' [or 'kanjifah']. Al-Malik al-Mu'ayyad was at that time a qa'id and he was playing cards with one of his comrades and had won many dirhams from this man. Then the aforementioned Akba'i was brought into his presence together with his dealer. He [al-Mu'ayyad] was taken with him and he purchased him. The dealer then sought out his [al-Mu'ayyad's] bursar in order to collect the price of the aforementioned Akba'i, but he could not find him; so al-Mu'ayyad himself paid him the price from the dirhams which he had won gambling..."

The name of the game -- 'Kanjafah' -- is apparently of Persian origin, and from this extract it can be seen that it was a gambling game involving high stakes. Al-Mu'ayyad was appointed emir in 1399, and elected sultan in 1412, and so the account refers to somewhere within these dates."
Maybe the red part is that, what you search.

Re: Bidev 1979 typescript on playing cards' origin

Thanks Huck! 'Tis the red part indeed. I thought it was about when he was an Emir (and thus prior to 1412), but wasn't sure. It must have been earlier on during his Emirship, for Shaykh Mahmudi to have bought him, raised him, freed him and made him his treasurer (Khazandar) and then went through a series of promotions up to Amir Akba'i Na'ib of Damascus (الأمير آقباي نائب الشام).*

*transliteration: alamyr (the am'ir) agbay (Aqba'i) nayb (na'ib - deputy) alsham (sham=damascus)
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

Re: Ibn Hajar on Kanjifa (16th Century)

for Shaykh Mahmudi to have bought him, raised him, freed him and made him his treasurer ...
Perhaps he thought it propitious to make a slave he bought from winnings at Gencefe his gencver (treasurer -- both words were used in turkish, probably originally as loan-words from Persian. They are found in several Turkic languages, such as Ottoman Turkish, Azerbaijan, Daiqan, Dipchak...)

As an Amir Mahmudi was mainly based in Syria (Aleppo and Damascus), for some periods in Tripoli. Akbai's positions seem to locate him for the most part in Aleppo or Damascus. So, more than likely that the game of Kanjifa in which Mahmudi bought Akba'i as a young boy was in the regions of Syria (Damascus and/or Aleppo) than Egypt?

Re: other Arabic references to kanjifah, one we know well enough already but include for completion sake:

Ibn Hajar al-Haytami said in Tuhfat al-Muhtaaj Sharh al-Minhaaj:

"It is haraam to play with dice according to the correct view because of the report of Muslim: “Whoever plays with dice, it is as if he were dipping his hand in the flesh and blood of a pig.” And according to a report narrated by Abu Dawood, “[he] has disobeyed Allaah and His Messenger.” Dice games are based on conjecture and guesswork that lead to a great deal of foolishness. al-Raafa’i said: The point here is that dice are an analogy for all other types of games that are similar. Everything that is based on conjecture is haraam. That includes kanjafah, which are cards on which there are pictures."

Ibn Hajar al-Haytami in Az-Zawajir an Iqtirafal-Kabayir II, 191. said:

“Forbidden is the game called by the common people at-tab wa-d-dukk,* for it depends on what is brought out by the four rods, there is some possible reservation, if it is free from gambling and foolishness, but leads to them. Something like it has been mentioned in the Khadim.** He said, And comparable to it is the kanjifah.”

*On the game of at-tab wa-d-dukk, see ... &q&f=false
** az-Zarkashi, Khddim ar-Rafi'i wa-r-Rawdah

Ibn Hajar appears to have added the comments re: Kanjafa himself (it is not in al-Rafi'i (12th century) nor az-Zarkashi (14th century)). By 'comaparable' he means in terms of the legal arguments for it being forbidden.
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

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