Manuscripts: Gujarati and the Khojki Script

The Library has one of the most outstanding collections of manuscripts in Gujarati and the Khojki script.


Khojkiinfo-icon, a special script adopted and used almost exclusively by the Ismaili community of the Indian subcontinent, was employed primarily to record its religious literature. The earliest manuscripts in this corpus contain works written in languages as diverse as Sindhi, Punjabi, Gujarati, Urdu-Hindi, Arabic and Persian, all transcribed in the Khojki script. Some of the more recent manuscripts are in Gujarati.


Ginans are the most significant genre represented in this collection. Written in both prose and poetry, these compositions are of immense importance in understanding the development of Ismaili thought, literature and history. Besides the ginans, the manuscripts preserve other works including selections from the Holy Qur’aninfo-icon and traditions of the Prophet, numerous prayers, as well as devotional poetry in praise of the Imams. Many writings of prominent mystic poets, of both the vernacular Indian and Persian traditions, are also preserved in these manuscripts. Among the Khojki manuscripts in the Institute's collection are: