This beautiful scroll attests that Maymunah, daughter of Muhammad ibn 'Abd Allah al-Zarli, made the pilgrimage to Mecca and visited the tomb of the Prophet Muhammad in 1432-3 (836 in the Islamic calendar).
Once in his or her lifetime every Muslim who is able to do so must journey to Mecca and perform the prescribed rites of hajj. This is always done in the 12th month of the Islamic calendar, Dhu al-Hijjah, to which the pilgrimage had given its name.
The scroll belongs to a tradition of illustration which was concerned to represent accurately and in detail the Muslim holy places, and the artist has depicted and labelled each of the tombs and other venerated landmarks. These include the sanctuary of the Ka’bah at Mecca, the hill al-Marwah (shown here as a series of concentric circles), the shrine of the Prophet Muhammad at Medina, and the sole of the Prophet’s sandal, on which is written one of his sayings.
The calligraphic bands of Arabic script are quotations from the Qur’an concerning the pilgrimage. While the Prophet’s tomb at Medina is not a prescribed part of the pilgrimage, pilgrims do visit other places associated with the Prophet.