Calligraphy Qalam: An Introduction to Arabic, Persian and Ottoman Calligraphy uses interactive tools to interest new audiences in the traditional art forms of Arabic, Ottoman and Persian calligraphy.

This calligraphic fragment includes four verses of poetry in Persian describing the simple mark and sound of insanity (i.e., the chain). The text is written in nasta'liq script in white ink on a red ground. The verses read:

I and the chain that / Were walking and lamenting together / (that is what) causes the separation between craziness / and enjoyment and wisdom.

Calligrapher: Munshi Ram (attr.). India. 18th century. 10 x 18.1 cm. Nasta'liq script. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, African and Middle Eastern Division.

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