This volume of Encyclopaedia Islamica is the fifth of a projected 16-volume publication, consisting of an abridged and edited translation of the Persian Dāʾirat al-Maʿārif-i Buzurg-i Islāmī, one of the most comprehensive sources on Islam and the Muslim world. One unique feature of this work of reference lies in the attention it gives to Shiʿi Islam and its rich and diverse heritage, which makes it complementary to other encyclopaedias. In addition to providing entries on important themes, subjects and personages in Islam generally, it offers the western reader an opportunity to appreciate the various dimensions of Shiʿi Islam, the Persian contribution to Islamic civilisation, and the spiritual dimensions of the Islamic tradition.

This volume contains articles on the great Iranian polymath, Abū Rayḥān al-Bīrūnī, Sayyid Ḥasan Bujnūrdī, the prominent Shiʿi scholar of the Najaf seminary, the Khurāsānī ascetic and Sufi Bishr al-Ḥāfī, and the Muʿtazilī theologian Bishr b. al-Muʿtamir. It also contains a host of other articles on topics as diverse as the history of cities of Bukhārā and Cairo, the famous poem known as the Burda written in praise of the Prophet Muhammad, a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the institution of the Caliphate, the life and work of the great 20th-century French Islamologist Henry Corbin.

The Encyclopaedia Islamica is available in print and at Brill Online.