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Collection Overview

Miller, William McElwee
William McElwee Miller Collection of Bābī Writings and Other Iranian Texts
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
47 Volumes
Persian Arabic


Consists of 47 bound volumes of chiefly Babi texts in Arabic and Persian composed or copied between 1846 and 1923 and purchased by William McElwee Miller, a Presbyterian clergyman and a missionary in Iran from 1919 to 1962.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of 47 bound volumes chiefly of Babi texts in Arabic and Persian composed or copied between 1846 and 1923 in a numbered series of 45 octavo and two quarto bound books. This collection was purchased by Miller from Saʻid Khan Kurdistani (Dr. Saeed Khan). See the notes in William McElwee Miller papers, 1931-1979, C0385, Box 4. One volume is a blue line copy of an original text; another volume is a lithograph. Some volumes contain multiple texts.

Collection Creator Biography:

Miller, William McElwee

William McElwee Miller was a Presbyterian clergyman, a missionary in Iran from 1919 to 1962, and an author of several books on aspects of Islam and Persian culture.

Collection History


Gift of William McElwee Miller (1892-1993).

Custodial History

Formerly owned by Saʻid Khan Kurdistani (Dr. Saeed Khan).


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

Finding aid written in 2010.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

William McElwee Miller Collection of Bābī Writings and Other Iranian Texts; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
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(609) 258-3184

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Related Materials

William McElwee Miller papers, 1931-1979, C0385, Box 4.


The following works were consulted in identifying texts and authors: Āghā Buzurg al-Ṭihrānī, M. Al-Dharīʻah ilá Taṣānīf al-Shīʻah. Maṭbaʻat al-Ghará: Najaf, 1936. Browne, E. G. Catalogue and Description of 27 Bábí Manuscripts, in Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society (1892), p. 433-499, 637-710. Browne, E. G. Some Remarks on the Bábí Texts Edited by Baron Victor Rosen, in Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society (1892), p. 259-322. Browne, E. G. Materials for the Study of the Bábí Religion. Cambridge University Press, 1918. A Descriptive Catalogue of the Oriental Mss. Belonging to the Late E.G. Browne. Ed. Reynold A. Nicholson. Cambridge University Press, 1932. Jānī, M. Kitab-i Nuqṭat al-Kāf. Ed. E. G. Browne. E. J. Brill: Leiden, 1910. McCants, W. and Milani, K. The History and Provenance of an Early Manuscript of the Nuqtat al-Kaf Dated 1268 (1851-1852), in Iranian Studies 37:3 (Sept. 2004), p. 431-449. McEoin, D. The Sources for Early Bābī Doctrine and History: A Survey. E. J. Brill: Leiden, 1992. Notes on Babi Manuscripts by Dr. Saeed Khan and Miscellaneous Correspondence; 1955-1982; William McElwee Miller Papers, Box 4, Folder 8; Manuscripts Division, Special Collections, Princeton University Library. Link to Notes. Writings published on H-Bahai web site (accessed July 2, 2010). Writings published on Hurqalya Publications web site (accessed July 2, 2010). Writings published on The Religion of Bayan web site (accessed July 2, 2010).

Subject Terms:
Arabic language -- Inflection.
Bahai faith.
Iran -- Politics and government -- 19th century.
Genre Terms:
Manuscripts, Arabic.
Manuscripts, Persian.