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Search for tag "A.L.M. Nicolas"

from the chronology

date event locations tags see also
1864. 27 Mar Birth of A. L. M. Nicolas, who later became an important European scholar on the life and teachings of the Báb, in Rasht. [BBR516] Rasht; Iran; Europe A.L.M. Nicolas; Births and deaths
1902 (In the year) The publication of Le Livre des Sept Preuves in Paris by A. L. M. Nicolas. It was a French translation of the Báb's Dalá'il-i-Sab'ih. [BBR39] Paris; France Bab, Writings of; Seven Proofs; A.L.M. Nicolas; Translation; Publications
1905 (In the year) A.L.M. Nicolas published his book Seyyed Ali dit le Bab. It was the first work by a western author dedicated entirely to the Báb.
It is "(a) history of the Bábí movement up to 1852. Nicolas gives a list of sources for this book on pp. 48-53. It is interesting to note that among his oral sources are four of the leading Bahá'ís of that period, who had been designated by Bahá'u'lláh as 'Hands of the Cause': Mírzá 'Alí-Muhammad, 'Ibn-i-Asdaq: Mullá 'Al-Akbar-i-Sháhmírzádí, Hají Akhund; Mírzá Muhammad-Táqíy-i-Abharí, 'Ibn-i-Abhar; and Mírzá Hasan-i-Adíb. The other two oral sources named are Siyyid 'Ismu'lláh, who was presumably Siyyid Mihdíy-i-Dihají, and Mírzá Yahyá, Subh-i-Azál." [BBR38-39]
  • The preamble to his book has an image that is supposedly of the Báb, but the portrait does not seem to be an authentic representation.

  • William Miller also reproduced Nicolas’s image on page 17 of his polemical work, The Bahá'í Faith: Its History and Teachings. (South Pasadena, CA: William Carey Library, 1974). [‘The Bab in the World of Images’, Bahá'í Studies Review, vol. 19, June 2013, 171–90.]
  • See also WOB83 for other missionaries who wrote polemics against the Bahá'í Faith.
  • Paris; France Bab, Writings of; A.L.M. Nicolas; Criticism and apologetics; William McElwee Miller; Babism; First publications; Publications
    1905 (In the year) The publication of Le Beyan Arabe in Paris by A. L. M. Nicolas. It was a French translation of the Arabic Bayán. [BBR39] Paris; France Bab, Writings of; Bayan-i-Arabi (Arabic Bayan); A.L.M. Nicolas; Translation; Publications
    1911 - 1914 The publication of Le Beyan Persan in Paris by A. L. M. Nicolas. It was a French translation of the Persian Bayán and was published in four volumes. [BBR39] Paris; France Bab, Writings of; A.L.M. Nicolas; Bayan-i-Farsi (Persian Bayan); Translation; Publications
    1936 (In the Year) The publication of Massacres de Babis en Perse by A.L.M. Nicolos. Paris; France A.L.M. Nicolas; Massacres de Babis en Perse; Publications
    1939 28 Feb The passing of Louis Alphonse Daniel Nicolas, signing A.L.M. Nicolas , (b. March 27 , 1864 in Rasht, Iran) in Paris. He was an historian and French orientalist, official interpreter of the Legation French abroad, and France's consul general in Tabriz.
          After reading Gobineau's Trois ans en Asie, 1855-1858 he checked all the information Gobineau had written in his book, corrected some of it, and then began to translate the writings of the Báb. Seduced by this young doctrine, he converted to Bábism and thus became the first Western Bábí. He wrote various works Seyyed Ali Mohamed dit le Báb (1905) and was the first to translate a work of the Báb into French: the Arabic Beyan and the Persian Beyan, an Essai sur le Chéikhisme (1911) and several articles in newspapers such that Review of the Muslim World. Nicolas became knight of the Legion of Honour in 1909.
  • Moojan Momen says of him, "No European scholar has contributed so much to our knowledge of the life and teachings of the Báb as Nicholas. His study of the life of the Báb and his translations of several of the most important books of the Báb remain of unsurpassed value." [BBR36]
  • His important collection of manuscripts were auctioned and the items relevant to the Bahá’í and Bábí Faiths are purchased by the Bahá’í World Centre.
  • See BW8p885-887 for An Interview with A. L. M. Nicolas of Paris by Edith Sanderson.
  • See a short biography by Nader Nasiri Moghaddam in Encyclopaedia Iranica Online.
  • A chronological list of his publications:
    • Le Livre des Sept Preuves [Dalá'il-i-Sab'ih translated from Persian into French], Paris, 1902, 68 pp.
    • A propos de deux manuscrits 'Bábís' de la Bibliothèque Nationale, Revue de l'Histoire des Religions, Paris, volume 47, 1903, pp. 58-73
    • Le Béyan Arabe [Bayán al-'arabiyya translated from Arabic into French], Paris, 1905, 235 pp.
    • Seyyed Ali Mohammed dit le Báb [biography of the Báb, selections translated into English in this volume], Paris, 1905, 458 pp.
    • En Perse : Constitution [translation by A.L.M. Nicolas], Revue du Monde Musulman, Paris, volume 1, 1907 (décembre 1906), p. 86-100
    • Sur la Volonté Primitive et l'Essence Divine d'après le Báb, Revue de l'Histoire des Religions, Paris, volume 55, 1907, pp. 208-212
    • Essais sur le Chéïkhisme, 4 volumes :
    • Cheïkh Ahmed Lahçahi, Paris, volume 1, 1910
    • Séyyèd Kazem Rechti, Paris, volume 2, 1914
    • Le Chéïkhisme. La Doctine, Paris, volume 3, 1911 [extract from Revue du Monde Musulman]
    • La Science de Dieu, Paris, volume 4, 1911
    • Le Club de la fraternité [translation of an article by Atrpet by A.L.M. Nicolas], Revue du Monde Musulman, Paris, volume 13, 1911, pp. 180-184
    • Le Dossier russo-anglais de Seyyed Ali Mohammed dit le Báb, Revue du Monde Musulman, Paris, volume 14, 1911, pp. 357-363
    • Le Béyan Persan [Bayán-i-fársí translated from Persian into French], four volumes, 1911-1914
    • Abdoul-Béha et la situation, Revue du Monde Musulman, Paris, volume 21, 1912, pp. 261-267
    • Le Béhahis et le Báb, Journal Asiatique, Paris, volume 222, 1933, pp. 257-264
    • Massacre de Babis en Perse, Paris, 1936, 42 pp. [A Short Biography of A. L. M. Nicholas by Peter Terry 2008]
  • Rasht; Iran; Paris; France A.L.M. Nicolas; In Memoriam; Births and deaths; Translation; First believers; Nader Nasiri Moghaddam; Edith Sanderson
    1942 (The early 20th Century) Bahá'í Scholarship

    The publication in 1865 of the Comte de Gobineau’s (1816-1882),Les Religions et Les Philosophies dans l'Asie Centrale created an interest in Europe. A scholar that was inspired by Gobineau was E.G.Browne. He travelled to Iran and also visited Bahá’u’lláh in Akka in the latter days of His life. He translated two histories of the new religion and published two other books as well as a number of articles. He also made an important collection of manuscripts that he gave to Cambridge University Library. Bahá'ís have criticized Browne's work for being too sympathetic to Azal, Baha'u'llah's half-brother and implacable enemy. One of the books that Cobineau for Les Religions... was Násikhu't-Taváríkh (the 'history to abrogate all previous historiies') by Lisánu'l-Mulk. This book had been condemned by Bahá'u'lláh as a falsification of history one which even an infidel would not have had the effrontery to produce. [SUR36-37]      

    A.L.M. Nicolas (1864-1939) was a French consular official in Iran who researched and wrote a biography of the Báb as well as translating three of the Báb's major works into French.

         Just as the Báb was the centre of the scholarly interests of Gobineau, Browne and Nicolas, some Russian scholars who were more interested in Bahá'u'lláh. Baron Viktor Rosen (1849-1908), the director of the Oriental Department of the University of St. Petersburg was assisted by Aleksandr Tumanski (1861-1920). He spent a great deal of time with the Bahá'í community of Ashkhabad and with Mirza Abu'l-Fadl Gulpaygani. Although he did not write as much as Browne or Nicolas, what he did write was derived from a very deep and thorough investigation. [L&E43-83]

      See An Officer and an Orientalist: Alexander Grigorevich Tumanskii and His Contribution to Russian Historiography on and Policy towards the Babi-Baha’i Religion by Soli Shahvar, Bahá'í Studies Review 20 (1), 3-19

         There was much interest in scholarship in the early days of the Faith because almost all of the most important disciples of the Báb were Islamic religious scholars, as were many of the leading converts to the Bahá'í Faith in later years. The most important of these was the above mentioned Mirza Abu'l-Fadl Gulpaygani (1844-1914). He was learned in the Zoroastrian and Jewish scriptures and spent some time in the Christian West at the request of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá prior to His visit.

         During the 1930s to 1960s, a second generation of Iranian Bahá'í scholars, such as Fadil Mazandarani (1881-1957), 'Abdul-Hamid Ishraq-Khavari (1902-1972), and 'Azizu'llah Sulaymani (1901-1985) systematized Bahá'í theology and law, developed aids for scholars such as dictionaries of Bahá'í terminology, and wrote histories and biographies. This was of course a more traditional style of scholarship than is current in the West, but it continues to be useful to all present scholars.

         The above-described initial flurry of interest in the Bábí and Bahá'í religions in the West was not sustained and from the 1920s to the 1970s, there were no Western scholars who were as deeply engaged as the above-named ones and only a handful of studies that can be said to have done much to advance knowledge. From the 1970s onward, there gradually emerged a new stream of scholars who can be said to be a fusion of the above two groups, the Western and the Bahá'í scholars. This new generation of scholars mostly began as Bahá'ís, although some have subsequently left the religion. They use Western academic methodology and most operate from within Western universities but they have access to insider information and resources. Apart from these individuals, the Bahá'í Faith has been very little studied by Western scholars of religion.

         A word must also be said about what passes for scholarship on the Bahá'í Faith in Iran and to a lesser extent in the rest of the Middle East. Bahá'ís have been persecuted in many Middle Eastern countries and rejected by Islamic leaders, and one form of this discrimination has involved the manipulation of information. For most of the last 100 years, deliberately distorted or falsified information and documents have been created mostly by some within the Islamic religious establishment and then distributed as though these were facts about the Bahá'í Faith. Since the Bahá'ís have had no ability to respond to this material in the Middle East, these distortions have gradually become accepted in the Middle East as the truth. One example is the forged memoirs of Count Dolgorukov, the Russian ambassador to Iran in the 1840s to 1850s. This and other contradictions were so clearly spurious that even some Iranian scholars debunked them when they were first published in the 1940s. But despite this, they are often regularly cited by Middle Eastern writers up to the present day as though they are a reliable source for the history of the religion.

         Since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, this manufacturing of disinformation and forged material has increased greatly with programs in the media, articles, and books appearing on a frequent basis, especially in the government-run media. The result is that there is almost nothing published in the Middle East that has reliable information about the Bahá'í Faith in it. A little of this sort of scholarship has also appeared in the West; some Christian missionaries, notably Reverend William McElwee Miller(1892-1993)(Also see WOB83) have written anti-Bahá'í material and ex-Bahá'ís have published academic work that is calculated to make the Bahá'í community resemble a cult as portrayed in the anti-cult campaigns that were carried out in the Western media in the 1980s. [The above was copied from the website Patheos and has been edited for brevity. It was contributed by Dr. Natalie Mobini]

  • See as well the publication of Der Bahā'ismus, Weltreligion der Zukunft?: Geschichte, Lehre und Organisation in Kritischer Anfrage (Bahá'ísm-Religion of the Future? History, Doctrine and Organization: A Critical Inquiry) by Francesco Ficicchia under the auspices of the Central Office of the Protestant Church for Questions of Ideology in Germany.
  • Bahai studies; Babism; Comte de Gobineau; Edward Granville Browne; A.L.M. Nicolas; Baron Rosen; Alexander Tumansky; Mirza Abul-Fadl Gulpaygani; Mirza Asadullah Fadil-i-Mazandarani; Abdul-Hamid Ishraq-Khavari; Azizullah Sulaymani; Reverend William McElwee Miller; Francesco Ficicchia; Baron Viktor Rosen

    from the main catalogue

    1. A Propos de Deux Manuscrits "Babis" de la Bibliotheque Nationale, by A.L.M. Nicolas, in Revue de l'histoire des religions, 47 (1903). Regarding the correct titles/classification of two versions of the manuscript "Histoire de la secte des Bâbis" from the library of Comte de Gobineau. [about]
    2. 'Abdu'l-Bahá and Mírzá Ghaffár Zanúzí: ALM Nicolas's 'Abdoul-Béha et la situation', 1912, by A.L.M. Nicolas, in Online Journal of Bahá'í Studies, 1 (2007). A translation of ALM Nicolas’s ‘Abdoul-Béha et la situation’ (1912) reproducing letters by 'Abdu’l-Bahá and Mírzá Ghaffár Zanúzí. [about]
    3. Arabic Bayan, The: From A.L.M. Nicolas' French translation, by Báb, The (1980). [about]
    4. Le Béyan Persan, by Báb, The (1911). French translation of the Persian Bayán, one of the principal writings of the Báb. [about]
    5. Les Béhahis et le Bâb, by A.L.M. Nicolas, in Journal Asiatique, vol. 222 (April-June) (1933). [about]
    6. Massacres de Babis en Perse, by A.L.M. Nicolas (1936). On events in 1903 in Rasht, Isfahan, Yazd, and Tehran, written by a French consul in Iran. [about]
    7. Monsieur Nicolas - the French: Extracts from Tarikh-i Azarbeyijan, by Haji Mirza Haydar Ali Uskui (1950). Exracts from an unpublished manuscript by the author of the "History of Faith in Azerbayijan" about A.L.M. Nicolas's background, his involvement with the local Bahá'í community in Azarbeyijan, and his links with Tomanski. [about]
    8. Nicolas, Alphonse (A.-L-.M. Nicolas), by Nader Nasiri-Moghaddam, in Encyclopaedia Iranica (2021). Brief excerpt, with link to article offsite. [about]
    9. Pause to Reflect on Dustbins, A: Records of [A.L.M. Nicolas] Found amongst a Pile of Thrown-Away Writings, by Mahmoud Rouh-ol-Amini, in Ganjineh Asnad, 3:39/4:40 (2001). Brief discussion in Persian of papers of Nicolas found in the trash in Paris, with reflections on things discarded, written by Mahmoud Rouholamini. Includes background by Yves Monteil, who discovered the papers (1998) and scanned the later article (2001). [about]
    10. Persian Bayan ("Exposition"): From A.L.M. Nicolas' French translation, by Báb, The (2020). Bayan-i-Farsi ("Persian Exposition"), translated from the original Persian into French by A.L.M. Nicolas (as Le Beyan Persan), then translated into English by Anonymous. [about]
    11. Persian Bayan, The: From A.L.M. Nicolas' French translation, by Báb, The (2001). Four short chapters from The Báb's book of laws. Translation of Nicolas’s Le Beyán Persan, translated from the French, with reference to the Persian, by Ismael Velasco. [about]
    12. Prophet in Modern Times, A, by Peter Terry (2008). Partial translation of A.L.M. Nicolas' Seyyed Ali Mohammed dit le Bab, with extensive notes and explanations. [about]
    13. Qourrèt-oul-Aíne [Qurratu'l-`Ayn], by A.L.M. Nicolas, in Tahirih in History: Perspectives on Qurratu'l-'Ayn from East and West, ed. Sabir Afaqi (2004). First publication in English translation of early accounts of the life and death of Táhirih. These passages are from Seyyed Ali Mohammad dit le Bab (1905) by A.-L.-M. Nicolas, French diplomat and author. [about]
    14. Seven Proofs, The, by Báb, The (2008). English translation by Peter Terry of Nicolas' French translation of The Báb's "Seven Proofs." [about]
    15. Seyyèd Ali Mohammed, dit le Bâb, by A.L.M. Nicolas (1905). The first detailed biography of The Bab written in a Western language. [about]
    16. Work of A.L.M. Nicolas (1864-1937), The, by Moojan Momen, in The Bábí and Bahá'í Religions: Some Contemporary Western Accounts (1981). Short bio, including list of the works of Nicolas. [about]
     
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