Hedayat al-Motealemin fi Teb: the Oldest Medical Treatise in the Persian Language

Document Type: Original Article


1 Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran

2 Student Research Committee, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

3 Student Research Committee, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran


“Hedayat al-Motealemin fi Teb”, written by Abobakr Ebn Ahmad Akhaveini in the Fourth century, (AH) is his only book left to the present time. From historical prospective, it is, by far, the first medicine book written in Farsi. Today, there are only three copies of the book kept in Badlyan libraries of Oxford, Fateh library of Istanbul and Malek library of Tehran. The reviews done on the three copies assert that the Bodlyan version is the oldest version and the closest one to the original book. From linguistic point of view, the book, containing a lot of information in fields of writing and orthography, verifies the power of Persian language in that era to fully fulfill the needs for writing a comprehensive medical text. Since the scientific aspect of this precious medical book has not been fully investigated, a review of the book will not only show the high status of Akheveini in medical history but also provide novel information on Akhaveini’s therapeutic methods , leading to the studies which help to invent new complementary treatment methods in medicine. In this study, we will review the book , taking linguistic viewpoints and the texture of the book into account. This is followed by discussing the bibliography of the three copies, and finding their differences. Finally, after illustrating the scientific features of the book, we provide some evidence, witnessing the status of this book in the history of medical sciences.