Guru Granth Sahib with Ink Recipe

ca. 18th century
Dr. Gurpal Singh Bhuller collection

The final page of a very old copy of the Guru Granth Sahib with an older style of writing letters such as the 'lulla' and 'ehra'. In a separate paragraph at the end of the manuscript the scribe has meticulously recorded the recipe for the ink that he used. As manuscripts were copied from other manuscripts this would be very helpful information for any scribe. The ink used has stood the test of time and is still stable 300 years after its initial preparation and use.

The Swastika's and Ik Onkars are records of Akhand Paath's (complete continuous readings of the entire Guru Granth Sahib over a 48 hour period) that took place at important occasion such as a weddings, funerals or religious festivals during the lifetime of this Granth.

Technique to Make Ink

Grind one head of kajjal (black antimony sulphide). 1. Utter. 2. Gum of Acacia tree. One ratti (small measurement=0.12 grams) purple colour.

One ratti (0.12 grams) gold. Water of tumeric. In a copper pot. Bark of Nim tree (Melia azadirachta).

Black sulphide of antimony from afar. Grind for 20 days. Keep in a tight box.


Additional Images