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Holy Quran, Manuscripts and Books

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    Most beautiful printed Holy Quran (Part 30). The Arabic Text is typeset using the Thesaurus Islamicus Foundation’s Fouad typeface and is arranged to match exactly the Mushaf al-Madinah an-Nabawiyyah produced by the King Fahd Complex for the Printing of the Holy Qur'an. Fully illuminated throughout, the design of this edition is based on, and inspired by, Mamluk and Ikhanid Qur'an illumination, such as that found in the Qur'ans produced under the patronage of Ilkhanid Sultan Uljaytu. The title page, frontispieces and closing pages are richly decorated with calligraphic, geometric and arabesque designs. The chapter names are written in ornamental kufic and set in panels adorned with marginal palmettes. The text itself is printed in a finely outlined gold ink, set on a traditional background of a waye design that originated in the Far East and was popular in Mamluk illumination. M. Marmaduke Pickthall’s English translation is included in the margins. This translation has been chosen on the recommendation of the late Dr. Martin Lings († 2005), who considered it the best available English translation of the Qur'an on account of its accuracy as well as its fidelity to the highest standards of classical English prose. The English text is typeset in a typeface inspired by the hands used in early Celtic gospels. While this style of type can slow down reading, which is not a bad thing itself in a contemplative text, it has the benefits of calling to mind the traditions of sacred book arts in the British Isles and of integrating the English text more readily with the visual language of the Arabic text and Illumination.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 190
     
    Book Type: Qur'an; ʿJuz' Amma (30th section)
    Calligraphy: Matches the Mushaf al-Madinah an-Nabawiyyah
    Illumination: Inspired by Mamluk and Ikhanid Qur'an illumination 
    Width:  21.5 cm
    Length: 30.5
    Height: 1.5
    Pages: 33

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    Rumi's Garden humbly presents copies of the Holy Quran, with very clear, easy to read script. The cover of the Holy Quran is made of thin marquetry woodwork made in Syria.


    The craft of inlaying goes back thousands of years. Many museums around the world display inlaid objects of Assyrian and ancient Egyptian origin – some over 3000 years old. When the Muslims in the 7th century established Damascus as the capital of their empire, the Umayyad rulers encouraged the art of mosaics. Under their sponsorship in the early 8th century, the city’s Umayyad Mosque became the first structure in the Islamic world where the art of inlaying was practised on a large scale. From this first experience in inlaying, when mostly Byzantine artisans were employed, the art of mosaics developed in Damascus and became an honoured profession.

    After the Ottomans occupied Damascus, the Arabs lost political power, concentrating thereafter on industry and the crafts. Among these vocations were all types of inlaying in metal and wood – trades for which the city remains famous.

    The art of inlaying reached Europe through Moorish Spain and Sicily. The technique became known as intarsia – a name believed to have been derived from the Arabic tarsi’ (the act of inlaying, from the verb rassa’a – to inlay). Others derive the word from the Latin interserere (to insert). On the other hand, marquetry (a mosaic of veneers), another name used for wood inlaying, comes from the French marquetor (to mark).

    Intarsia or inlays of contrasting patterns, still practised extensively in Damascus, are designs set into all types of wood. Forms are sunk into the wood according to a prearranged design. In the past, the hollows were then filled with pieces of different wood like ebony, lemon, oak, walnut or bone, and mother of pearl.

    Detailed Description:

    Item Number: 456

    Book: Holy Quran
    Material: Paper and Wood
    Workmanship: Handmade
    Width: 17.3 cm
    Length: 24.8 cm
    Height: 3.3 cm

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    Handwritten Qur’an manuscript from Kashmir dated 1207 AH (1792 AD). It is one single paper with two pages, and contains verses from Surat Al-Ankabout (The Spider). The text is written with beautiful Arabic Calligraphy and bold letters. The leaf exhibits foxing, damage on the borders, and some worm holes. It also shows some dirt and ink blotches; but he text is not seriously affected.

    Most scholars maintain that al-ʿ Ankabūt is a Makkan sūrah, although many of those say the first ten verses were revealed in Madinah. A minority maintain that it is Madinan, but some say that the first ten verses were the last verses revealed in Makkah. According to several sources, among them the Prophet’s wife ʿ Āʾ ishah, the Prophet would recite Sūrah s 29 and 30 together in his prayers, sometimes followed by Sūrah 36. The sūrah takes its name from the use of the spider’s house as a metaphor for the frailty of this world in v. 41: The parable of those who take protectors apart from God is that of the spider that makes a house. Truly the frailest of houses is the spider’s house, if they but knew . This verse evokes the central theme of this sūrah, that human beings are not aware of the true nature of God and the Hereafter and that in taking protectors other than God, they take the frailest of positions and thus are not prepared for what will transpire after death. Al-ʿ Ankabūt begins by challenging the believers who think that their faith or belief alone will save them from the trials of this life, reminding them of the difficulties of this life and that one must continue to strive in the way of God, since truth rarely prevails without great effort and sacrifice (vv. 1– 13). It then provides examples of previous communities, such as those of the prophets Noah, Abraham, Ḥ ūd, and Ṣ āliḥ , who disobeyed the messengers God had sent to them (vv. 14– 43). After discussing the Quran and its purifying efficacy, while reaffirming its transcendent Source (vv. 44– 51), the sūrah responds to the objections posed by the disbelievers and addresses the nature of their beliefs (vv. 52– 63). It concludes with a meditation on the ephemerality of this world, assuring those who believe in God and the Hereafter that by remaining thankful and striving for God, they will be rightly guided (vv. 64– 69).

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 487
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Ankabout (The Spider)
    Age: 1792
    Length: 17.0 cm x 21.0 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    Ottoman era leaf that is a remnant of an old handwritten Qur’an manuscript which was partially damaged during a war and dated 1221 AH (1806 AD). This is 1 leaf with 2 pages, and represents verses from Surat Al-Munafiqun (The Hypocrites). The text is written with beautiful Arabic Calligraphy. The text is framed in a red border and written with black and some red ink. The leaf shows foxing, some dirt and worm holes. There is no damage on the borders. The leaf condition is very good.

    Surat Al-Munafiqun (The Hypocrites) is a Madinan sūrah. al-Munāfiqūn takes its name from the discussion of the hypocrites who attested to the prophethood of Muhammad and swore fealty to him, but continued to ally themselves with his enemies. It can be seen as a contrast to the previous sūrah, al-Jumu ʿ ah, which addresses the believers. During the Friday congregational prayer, the Prophet is reported to have frequently recited these two sūrah s together— al-Jumu ʿ ah in the first cycle of the prayer as encouragement for the believers and al-Munāfiqūn in the second cycle as a rebuke to the hypocrites (Āl). Most of the sūrah warns of the treachery of the hypocrites (vv. 1– 8). Then, like the final verses of the previous sūrah (62:9– 11), the final verses of this sūrah (vv. 9– 11) enjoin the believers not to allow the responsibilities and desires of this world to distract them from remembering God. In this way, the placement of this sūrah also serves as a reminder of the more subtle forms of hypocrisy that can distract those who believe from the proper fulfillment of their religious obligations.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 482
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Munafiqun (The Hypocrites) 
    Age: 1806 (Ottoman)
    Length: 23.0 cm x 16.0 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran dated 1722 AD (1135 Hijri). This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat  al-Naḥl (The Bee). The beautiful handwritten script represents the classical Maghrebi style of North Africa. 


    A late Makkan sūrah, al-Naḥl was likely revealed shortly before the migration to Madinah. The sūrah takes its name from the discussion of God’s revelation to the bee in vv. 68–69. According to al-Qurṭubī, some refer to this sūrah as al-Niʿam (“The Blessings”) because of the many references to the blessings God has given to human beings. This sūrah is one of the most important of those in the Quran that point out the spiritual significance of nature. Substantial parts of this sūrah are devoted to the wonders of the natural world and to rehearsing the specific blessings that God has bestowed on human beings through natural phenomena, including various kinds of livestock and their benefits and uses, crops and vegetation, the celestial bodies, the sea and its bounties, and the mountains, streams, and other natural landmarks that guide human beings’ travel. Later the sūrah mentions the four drinks with which God has blessed human beings (water, milk, drink derived from the fruit of the vine, and honey; as well as the blessings of spouses and children and various kinds of dwellings and protections.

    Detailed Description:

    Item Number: 480

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Naḥl
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: 1722
    Height: 16.5 cm 
    Length: 11.5 cm
    Frame: Brown with green mount

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    Two pages from an Islamic handwritten manuscript that is part of a larger booklet titled “Hijab Al Mu’min” by Sheikh Ahmed bin Abdul Rahman Al Basri and dated 1259 AH (1843 AD). This 1 leaf with 2 pages is a powerful protection against the evil eye. People of faith usually frame this Amulet-Hijab and hang it on the wall of an entrance. The text is beautiful and written with black and red ink. The script says “La Ilaha Illa Allah" (No God Allah is the only God) - (لا اله الا الله). The leaf shows no damage or worm holes. Foxing is minimal. It measures 11.7 cm x 8.2 cm.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 479
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Dala'il al-Khayrat by al-Jazuli
    Calligrapher: Muhammad Amine Bin Ahmad
    Age: 1843
    Length: 11.7 cm x 8.2 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

     

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran from 1300 Hijri (1882 AD). This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents the ending verses of Surat al-Raḥmān (The Compassionate) and the first verses of al-Wāqiʿah (The Event). It is in Maghrebi style (North African). The calligraphy is beautifully scripted in different colours. It measures approximately 20.0 cm x 16.5 cm.


    Most scholars take all of al-Raḥmān to be a Makkan sūrah. It takes its name from the mention of the Divine Name the Compassionate at the opening, the only Divine Name to be directly equated with the Name AllāhThis sūrah is known to many Muslims as “The Bride of the Quran” after a well-known yet unauthenticated ḥadīth that says, “For everything there is a bride, and the bride of the Quran is Sūrat al-Raḥmān”.

    All commentators consider al-Wāqiʿah to be a Makkan sūrah. The sūrah takes its name from the mention of the Event in v. 1, a reference to the Day of Judgment. The central theme of this sūrah is the nature of the Hereafter for three different classes of people, the foremost, the companions of the right, and the companions of the left.

    Detailed Description:

    Item number: 336

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Raḥmān and al-Wāqiʿah
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: 1882
    Length: 20.0 cm 
    Width: 16.5 cm
    Frame: Gold with a green mount

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran dated 1766 AD (1180 Hijri) from Turkey. This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat Ar-Rum (The Byzantines). The text is framed inside a colored frame and verses are separated with red dots. It measures approximately 21 cm x 14 cm.

    All commentators agree that al-Rūm was revealed during the Makkan period. The sūrah takes its name from the mention of the defeat of the Byzantines, or Romans, al-Rūm. The sūrah’s central theme is the abundance of signs of God in the created order and the inability of many human beings to understand them, because they follow caprice rather than knowledge.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 341
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Rūm
    Country of Origin: Turkey
    Age: 1766
    Length:  21 cm
    Width: 14
    Frame: Gold with a green mount

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran dated 1722 AD (1135 Hijri). This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat  al-Naḥl (The Bee). The beautiful handwritten script represents the classical Maghrebi style of North Africa. It measures approximately 16.5 cm x 11.5 cm.


    A late Makkan sūrah, al-Naḥl was likely revealed shortly before the migration to Madinah. The sūrah takes its name from the discussion of God’s revelation to the bee in vv. 68–69. According to al-Qurṭubī, some refer to this sūrah as al-Niʿam (“The Blessings”) because of the many references to the blessings God has given to human beings. This sūrah is one of the most important of those in the Quran that point out the spiritual significance of nature. Substantial parts of this sūrah are devoted to the wonders of the natural world and to rehearsing the specific blessings that God has bestowed on human beings through natural phenomena, including various kinds of livestock and their benefits and uses, crops and vegetation, the celestial bodies, the sea and its bounties, and the mountains, streams, and other natural landmarks that guide human beings’ travel. Later the sūrah mentions the four drinks with which God has blessed human beings (water, milk, drink derived from the fruit of the vine, and honey; as well as the blessings of spouses and children and various kinds of dwellings and protections.

    Detailed Description:

    Item Number: 339

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Naḥl
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: 1722
    Height: 16.5 cm 
    Length: 11.5 cm
    Frame: Gold with green mount

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    Handwritten leaf of an old Quran manuscript dated 1262 AH (1845 AD) . The text is framed inside a colored border and written with beautiful Arabic calligraphy. The verses are separated with red dots. This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat Al-Saffat (The Rangers). There is significant foxing at the borders and some ink blotches. There is little worming and no damage. The paper's condition is very good.

    A Makkan sūrah, al-Ṣafāt is believed to have been revealed directly after Sūrah 6, al-Anʿām. It takes its name from the reference to those ranged in ranks in vv. 1 and 165, both of which refer to the angels. The sūrah can be seen as connected to the previous sūrah in that it tells the stories of several generations or civilizations that were destroyed for rejecting God’s messengers, material upon which readers or listeners are enjoined to reflect in 36:31: Have they not considered how many generations before them We destroyed, such that they return not unto them? After a brief reaffirmation of God’s Oneness and Omnipotence (vv. 1– 5), al-Ṣ āf āt describes the futility of the efforts of those who attempt to obtain knowledge of the Unseen through the jinn (vv. 6– 10). It then chastises the disbelievers for rejecting the Oneness of God, the prophethood of Muhammad, and the Resurrection, warning of the ignominious end they will face in the Hereafter and of the manner in which they will challenge and question one another regarding the fate that has befallen them (vv. 11– 39). This is followed by a description of the rewards God’s sincere servants receive in the Garden (vv. 40– 49) and the exchange they will have with the disbelievers they had known in this world, who are now in Hell (vv. 50– 60). A description of the punishments in the form of food and drink given to the denizens of Hell (vv. 61– 68) is followed by an explanation of their fate (vv. 69– 73). The sūrah then provides accounts of several prophets and the blessings God bestowed upon them: Noah (vv. 75– 82), Abraham (vv. 83– 113, a passage in which the near sacrifice of his son is also discussed, vv. 101– 8), Moses and Aaron (vv. 114– 22), Elias (Elijah; vv. 123– 32), Lot (vv. 133– 38), and Jonah (vv. 139– 48). In these accounts, it is only in the story of Jonah that the people repent (vv. 147– 48); the people associated with all the others are destroyed for having rejected God’s messenger. The discussion of the prophets is followed by a challenge to the worldview of the idolaters of the Prophet Muhammad’s time (vv. 149– 63) and a refutation in particular of the Divine powers they ascribe to the angels (vv. 164– 66). The sūrah concludes with a final address to the disbelievers and a promise
    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 488
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat  al-Ṣafāt
    Age: 1845
    Length: 14.0 cm x 20.0 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    Handwritten Ottoman Qur’an  manuscript dated 1298 AH (1880 AD). It is one single paper with two pages, and contains verses from Surat al-Muʾminūn (The Believers). The text is written with beautiful Arabic Calligraphy and bold letters. The condition of the paper is very good. The leaf exhibits foxing and worming. There is damage due to heavy metal in the ink but the text is not affected. 


    Considered to be from the Makkan period (Q), Surah al-Muʾminūn begins by describing the virtues and righteous actions of those who believe; it then moves to a reminder of humanity’s origin from clay and, reminiscent of 22:5, recounts a human being’s development starting from a clot of blood and culminating in another creation (vv. 12– 14). After several verses describing the blessings of the world, the sūrah narrates the story of Noah, his struggles with the denial and rebuke of his people, and his journey in the ark (vv. 23– 41). Brief mention of Moses and Jesus follows, after which the sūrah dwells upon the human tendency to divide into religious groups (vv. 42– 54). Having mentioned the difficulties presented to previous messengers, al-Muʾminūn turns to the opponents of the Prophet Muhammad; their reasons for opposition are similar to those voiced by the people of Noah, and the Prophet’s people are reminded that he is no stranger to them (vv. 55– 69). The opposition to prophets by the affluent and powerful is a recurrent theme in this sūrah, something also seen elsewhere in the tendency of the “notables” to oppose the prophets (see also 7:59– 136; 7:60– 62c). The idolaters are addressed in a passage consisting of questions and answers regarding the relationship between God and creation (vv. 84– 89); this passage provides a linear argument, a form uncommon in the Quran in general, against believing in multiple gods. The sūrah concludes by warning of the impending Day of Judgment and the punishment of disbelievers who, upon coming face-to-face with the reality of their perdition, will desire to go back to the world in order to do good instead of evil, though it will be too late for them (vv. 99– 118). The grand and awesome nature of the Hereafter will make their life in the world seem to them as a day or part of a day (v. 113).

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 486
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al- al-Muʾminūn (The Believers)
    Age: 1880
    Length: 14.5 cm x 20.0 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    Ottoman era leaf that is a remnant of an old handwritten Qur’an manuscript . It is one single paper with two pages, and is part of a larger book dated 1296 AH (1878 AD). It contains verses from Surat Al-Tawbah (Repentance). The text is framed in a red colored border and done with bold letters. The dots between verses are made of gold. The leaf exhibits foxing and no worming.


    The name of this sūrah, al-Tawbah, comes from the reference to repentance in v. 3, though some connect it with God’s “relenting” toward the Prophet and the believers as mentioned in vv. 117– 18 (Āl), since “repent” and “relent” render the same verb with a different preposition following it. Another common name for this sūrah is al-Barāʾ ah (“The Repudiation”), a word that appears in its first verse, and several other names are also mentioned by commentators. This Madinan sūrah contains some of the most important passages in the Quran concerning the conduct of war and political relations during peace time, opening with a passage about how and why the believers should fight the idolatrous Arabs and also certain groups among the People of the Book (vv. 1– 29), which is followed by a criticism of the corruption of religious leaders (vv. 29– 32). A long passage describes the trials and disagreements that took place within the community over setting out on a military campaign and expands upon the dissension created by the hypocrites in Madinah who did not wish to go out to fight alongside the Prophet (vv. 38– 106, 117– 27). Loyalty and allegiance are major themes in the latter part of this sūrah and are applied to the attitudes of the nomadic Arabs (vv. 97– 101), the efforts of some hypocrites to establish a competing mosque in Madinah (vv. 107– 110), and the wavering and weakness of some Muslims in their commitment to following the Prophet into battle (vv. 117– 18). The rules governing the zakāh, or alms, and the giving of charity also figure prominently in this sūrah (vv. 58– 60, 103– 4). This is the only sūrah of the Quran that does not begin with the basmalah, the formula In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful . It is reported that Ibn ʿ Abbās asked ʿ Alī ibn Abī Ṭ ālib why there was no basmalah at the start of this sūrah . He responded that the basmalah is a statement of security, and this sūrah begins with the severing of a covenant and a declaration of conflict, which indicate the opposite of a state of security. When it was pointed out to him that the Prophet sent letters beginning with the basmalah to call various hostile groups to embrace Islam, ʿ Alī ibn Abī Ṭ ālib responded that this was precisely a call to God, not the rescinding of a pact; the former leads to peace, the latter to war. Commentators note that it was a custom, even in pre-Islamic times, to omit In the Name of God in a message breaking a treaty.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 485
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Tawbah (Repentance)
    Age: 1878
    Length: 17.5 cm x 24.5 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green
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    Handwritten Qur’an manuscript dated 1262 AH (1845 AD). It is one single paper with two pages, and contains verses from Surat Ya Sin. It also contains the heading and first verses of Sura Al-Saffat (Those Ranged in Ranks). The verses are separated with red dots. There is significant foxing at the borders and some ink blotches. There is little worming and no damage.

    There is consensus among all scholars that Yā Sīn is a Makkan sūrah from the early part of the middle Makkan period. Some maintain that the whole of the sūrah is Makkan, though many commentators believe that v. 12 is from the Madinan period. The sūrah takes its name from the mention of the Arabic letters yāʾ and sīn in the opening verse. Some also refer to it as “The Heart of the Quran,” after a well-known ḥadīth: “Everything has a heart, and the heart of the Quran is Yā Sīn . Whosoever recites Yā Sīn, God records for him the recitation of the Quran ten times for his recitation of it”. Seen as the heart of the Quran, this sūrah plays a very important role in traditional Islamic piety. Many Muslims recite Yā Sīn regularly as part of their supererogatory devotions, and it is often the only sūrah longer than a page or so that Muslims have memorized in full. A famous ḥadīth says, “Recite Yā Sīn over your dead”. It is thus recited for those who are close to death, those who have just died, and at the graves of loved ones. It is also recited for those who are sick, for another ḥadīth states, “Verily in the Quran there is a sūrah that intercedes through its recitation and forgives through its being heard— indeed, that is Sūrat Yā Sīn ”. Yā Sīn is also recited by many Muslims after the performance of the obligatory prayers in the morning and the evening. Regarding the latter, another report, sometimes recorded as a ḥ adīth , states, “Whosoever recites Sūrat Yā Sīn at night, desiring the Face of God, is forgiven during that night”. Although many believe that the exhortation to recite Yā Sīn in the morning is a ḥ adīth , it most likely derives from a saying attributed to Ibn ʿ Abbās: “Whosoever recites Yā Sīn when he awakens is given ease for his day until the evening comes. And whosoever reads it in the midst of the night is given ease for his night until he awakens”. Several scholars maintain that Yā Sīn is the heart of the Quran because it addresses its central teachings regarding God, prophethood, and the Hereafter. The sūrah begins with an address to the Prophet that clarifies both his mission and the nature of revelation (vv. 1– 12) followed by a parable regarding those who reject prophets (vv. 13– 30) that segues into a discussion of Resurrection and the signs of it in the natural world (vv. 31– 44). Responses to various objections common to the disbelievers and the consequences of them (vv. 45– 52) then lead into a discussion of the disparate ends of the disbelievers and the believers (vv. 53– 68), which concludes with another reflection on the nature of Muhammad’s prophethood (vv. 69– 70). The final section returns to a discussion of the signs in the created order that serve to inform one of God’s creative Power and ability to resurrect (vv. 71– 81) and concludes with an affirmation of God’s Omnipotence (vv. 82– 83).

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 484
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Ya Sin and Sura Al - Saffat (Those Ranged in Ranks)
    Age: 1845
    Length: 14 cm x 20 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    Ottoman era leaf that is a remnant of an old handwritten Qur’an manuscript . It is one single paper with two pages, and is part of a larger book dated 1296 AH (1878 AD). It contains verses from Surat Al-Tawbah (Repentance). The text is framed in a red colored border and done with bold letters. The dots between verses are made of gold. The leaf exhibits foxing and no worming.


    The name of this sūrah, al-Tawbah, comes from the reference to repentance in v. 3, though some connect it with God’s “relenting” toward the Prophet and the believers as mentioned in vv. 117– 18 (Āl), since “repent” and “relent” render the same verb with a different preposition following it. Another common name for this sūrah is al-Barāʾ ah (“The Repudiation”), a word that appears in its first verse, and several other names are also mentioned by commentators. This Madinan sūrah contains some of the most important passages in the Quran concerning the conduct of war and political relations during peace time, opening with a passage about how and why the believers should fight the idolatrous Arabs and also certain groups among the People of the Book (vv. 1– 29), which is followed by a criticism of the corruption of religious leaders (vv. 29– 32). A long passage describes the trials and disagreements that took place within the community over setting out on a military campaign and expands upon the dissension created by the hypocrites in Madinah who did not wish to go out to fight alongside the Prophet (vv. 38– 106, 117– 27). Loyalty and allegiance are major themes in the latter part of this sūrah and are applied to the attitudes of the nomadic Arabs (vv. 97– 101), the efforts of some hypocrites to establish a competing mosque in Madinah (vv. 107– 110), and the wavering and weakness of some Muslims in their commitment to following the Prophet into battle (vv. 117– 18). The rules governing the zakāh, or alms, and the giving of charity also figure prominently in this sūrah (vv. 58– 60, 103– 4). This is the only sūrah of the Quran that does not begin with the basmalah, the formula In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful . It is reported that Ibn ʿ Abbās asked ʿ Alī ibn Abī Ṭ ālib why there was no basmalah at the start of this sūrah . He responded that the basmalah is a statement of security, and this sūrah begins with the severing of a covenant and a declaration of conflict, which indicate the opposite of a state of security. When it was pointed out to him that the Prophet sent letters beginning with the basmalah to call various hostile groups to embrace Islam, ʿ Alī ibn Abī Ṭ ālib responded that this was precisely a call to God, not the rescinding of a pact; the former leads to peace, the latter to war. Commentators note that it was a custom, even in pre-Islamic times, to omit In the Name of God in a message breaking a treaty.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 483
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Tawbah (Repentance)
    Age: 1878
    Length: 17.5 cm x 24.5 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green
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    Two page handwritten leaf of an old Quran manuscript dated 1237 AH (1821 AD). The text is framed inside a colored border and written with beautiful Arabic Calligraphy. The verses are separated with red dots. This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat al-Anbiyāʾ (The Prophets). There is significant foxing at the borders and some ink blotches. There is little worming and no damage.

    al-Anbiyāʾ, a Makkan sūrah, receives its name from the many stories of prophets told in it. The first section recounts the various accusations of falsehood and expressions of incredulity directed at the Prophet by the Quraysh and offers a reminder that peoples before him had been destroyed and could do nothing to stave off their punishment. The impossibility of God taking a consort or having a child and the absurdity of more than one divinity in the universe are explained, followed by a section asking human beings to contemplate the cosmos. Human beings are reminded that all souls will taste death and will then be judged. After a brief mention of Moses and Aaron, a longer account of Abraham is given that includes his ruse of blaming the largest of his people’s idols for destroying the smaller ones to show them how empty their worship was and the attempt by his people to burn him alive in retaliation. After mentioning Lot and Noah, the sūrah narrates a story of David and Solomon in which David’s judgment is overturned by that of his son. This is followed by accounts of Job; Ishmael, Idrīs, and Dhu’l-Kifl; Jonah; and Zachariah, John, and Mary. The last part of al-Anbiyāʾ addresses the end of the world and the coming of the Hereafter. A reminder of the tendency of religious communities to fragment when their members disagree among themselves is followed by an account of the coming of Gog and Magog, the ultimate end of idolaters and their idols in Hell, and the destruction of the cosmos and its renewal for the righteous. The sūrah ends with a statement that the Prophet is a mercy to all creation, and a reminder both that he has given fair warning of what is to come and that he does not know when the final doom will come to pass.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 481
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al - Anbiya' (The Prophets)
    Age: 1821
    Length: 14.8 cm x 19.8 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

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    Two pages from an Islamic handwritten manuscript that is part of a larger booklet titled “Hijab Al Mu’min” by Sheikh Ahmed bin Abdul Rahman Al Basri and dated 1259 AH (1843 AD). This 1 leaf with 2 pages is a powerful protection against the evil eye. People of faith usually frame this Amulet-Hijab and hang it on the wall of an entrance. The text is beautiful and written with black and red ink. The script says “La Ilaha Illa Allah" (No God Allah is the only God) - (لا اله الا الله). The leaf shows no damage or worm holes. Foxing is minimal. It measures 11.7 cm x 8.2 cm.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 478
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Dala'il al-Khayrat by al-Jazuli
    Calligrapher: Muhammad Amine Bin Ahmad
    Age: 1843
    Length: 11.7 cm x 8.2 cm
    Frame: Dark brown wood
    Mount: Green

     

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    This book, Shama'il of the Prophet, is a compilation of hadith – reports of the sayings or actions of the Prophet Muhammad together with their traditional chains of transmission. The word shama’il means a description of a person’s beauty on all levels, ellaborating the details of their physical appearance, moral character, day to day behaviour, spiritual manner and so on. Shama’il is that which characterises or encompasses a person.

    The book is intended for both a scholarly audience and a general Arabic reading Muslim audience, and is compiled and fully indexed in accordance with the strict requirements of hadith scholarship making it a valuable reference work for experts in the field.

    Detailed Description:

    Item Number: 472

    Book: Hardcover of Shama'il of the Prophet

    Pages: 408
    Length: 30.5cm
    Width: 22cm
    Height: 3cm

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    Most beautiful printed Holy Quran (Part 30). The Arabic Text is typeset using the Thesaurus Islamicus Foundation’s Fouad typeface and is arranged to match exactly the Mushaf al-Madinah an-Nabawiyyah produced by the King Fahd Complex for the Printing of the Holy Qur'an. Fully illuminated throughout, the design of this edition is based on, and inspired by, Mamluk and Ikhanid Qur'an illumination, such as that found in the Qur'ans produced under the patronage of Ilkhanid Sultan Uljaytu. The title page, frontispieces and closing pages are richly decorated with calligraphic, geometric and arabesque designs. The chapter names are written in ornamental kufic and set in panels adorned with marginal palmettes. The text itself is printed in a finely outlined gold ink, set on a traditional background of a waye design that originated in the Far East and was popular in Mamluk illumination. M. Marmaduke Pickthall’s English translation is included in the margins. This translation has been chosen on the recommendation of the late Dr. Martin Lings († 2005), who considered it the best available English translation of the Qur'an on account of its accuracy as well as its fidelity to the highest standards of classical English prose. The English text is typeset in a typeface inspired by the hands used in early Celtic gospels. While this style of type can slow down reading, which is not a bad thing itself in a contemplative text, it has the benefits of calling to mind the traditions of sacred book arts in the British Isles and of integrating the English text more readily with the visual language of the Arabic text and Illumination.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 473
     
    Book Type: Qur'an; ʿJuz' Amma (30th section)
    Calligraphy: Matches the Mushaf al-Madinah an-Nabawiyyah
    Illumination: Inspired by Mamluk and Ikhanid Qur'an illumination 
    Width:  21.5 cm
    Length: 30.5
    Height: 1.5
    Pages: 33

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    A double sided antique Arabic leaf from the famous book Dala'il al-Khayrat (meaning the Waymarks of Benefits and the Brilliant Burst of Lights in the Remembrance of Blessings on the Chosen Prophet). This inspired text is a famous collection of prayers on Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), which was written by the Moroccan Islamic scholar Muhammad Sulaiman al-Jazuli ash Shadhili (died 1465). This particular manuscript leaf of Dala’il al-Khayrat was calligraphed by Muhammad Amine Bin Ahmad approximately 150 years ago. The text is written with bold letters and beautiful calligraphy. The leaf shows no damage, minimal foxing, and no worm holes. It measures 21.5 cm x 14.5 cm.


    The Dala’il al-Khayrat is the first major book in Islamic history which compiled litanies of peace and blessings upon the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ). It is also the most popular and most universally acclaimed collection of litanies asking God to bless him. Among some Sunni religious orders, most notably the Shadhili-Jazuli order, its recitation is a daily practice. The work begins with the ninety nine names of God, and then the a collection of over one hundred names of Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ). It is popular in parts of the Islamic world amongst traditional Muslims - specifically North Africa, the Levant, Turkey, the Caucasus and the South Asia and is divided into sections for daily recitation.

    The legend behind the origin of the Dala’il al-Khayrat claims that al-Jazuli once awoke late for his morning prayers and began to look in vain for pure water to perform ritual ablutions. In the midst of his search al-Jazuli encountered a young girl who was aware of al-Jazuli's famed religiosity and was bewildered on why al-Jazuli could not find pure water. The girl then spat into a well which miraculously overflowed with pure sweet water for al-Jazuli to perform ablutions. Consequent to performing prayer, al-Jazuli inquired to the means by which the girl achieved such a high spiritual station. The girl replied it was simply by "Making constant prayer for God to bless the best of creation by the number of breaths and heartbeats." Al-Jazuli then resolved to write a work collecting litanies of prayers asking God to bless and show mercy and kindness to Muhammad  (ﷺ).

    Al-Jazuli then moved east to Medina where he would recite the whole of the Dala’il al-Khayrat twice daily at the Prophet Muhammad's  (ﷺ) grave in Al-Masjid an-Nabawi. The Dala'il Khayrat has since been seen as a testament of love and passionate longing for Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ).
     
    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 340
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Dala'il al-Khayrat by al-Jazuli
    Calligrapher: Muhammad Amine Bin Ahmad
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: Over 150 years
    Length:  21.5 cm

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran from the Maghreb. It is part of a larger book dated 1296 Hijri (1878 AD) . This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat al-Anfāl (The Spoils). The text is contained in a red colored frame and is calligraphed with bold letters. The dots between verses are gold.  It measures approximately 17.5 cm x 24.5 cm.


    Al-Anfāl takes its name from the reference to spoils in v. 1. It is an early Madinan sūrah. A major theme of this sūrah is the Battle of Badr, fought a year after the hijrah (the migration from Makkah to Madinah), the first major military confrontation between the Muslim community and the Quraysh of Makkah, who had continued their hostility toward the Muslim community after it had moved to Madinah. It discusses also the matter of the spoils of war and their just distribution, a topic that did not need to be addressed in the days when Muslims were an oppressed minority in Makkah. The spiritual dimensions of battle are also treated, including the assistance of angels and the Will of God in determining victory, as in the famous statement from v. 17, You did not slay when you slew, but God slew them, and thou threwest not when thou threwest, but God threw.

    Detailed Description:

    Item number: 337

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Anfāl
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: 1878
    Width: 17.5 cm 
    Length: 24.5 cm
    Frame: Brown wood with green mount

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    A double sided antique Quranic manuscript leaf dated 1821 AD (1237 Hijri). This 1 leaf with 2 pages presents verses from the chapter al-Māʾidah (The Table Spread). The text is contained inside a colored frame and verses are separated with red dots. It measures approximately 19.8 cm x 14.8 cm.


    al-Māʾidah is a Madinan sūrah that contains verses that are considered to be among the last that the Prophet Muhammad received, and all of its verses were revealed after the conquest of Makkah in 8/630. The sūrah itself is one of the last complete sūrahs revealed to the Prophet (ﷺ). The triumphant line in v. 3, This day I have perfected for you your religion, and completed My Blessing upon you, and have approved for you as religion, Submission (Islam), is one of several individual verses variously reported to be the last that the Prophet received before his death. This verse and several others in the sūrah were reportedly revealed in the course of the Prophet’s parting sermon during the Farewell Pilgrimage in 10/632. According to several reports, the Prophet received this sūrah while he was riding on a camel. The camel could not bear the weight of its descent, however, and the Prophet (ﷺ) had to dismount. The sūrah takes its name from the miraculous table spread with food (al-māʾidah) that God sends down to Jesus and his apostles at their request.

    Detailed Description:
     
    Item Number: 342
     
    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Māʾidah
    Country of Origin: Turkey
    Age: 1821
    Length: 19.8 cm
    Width: 14.8
    Frame: Gold with a green mount

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    A double sided antique Arabic manuscript leaf from the from the Holy Quran.  It is part of a larger book dated 1296 Hijri (1878 AD) . This 1 leaf with 2 pages represents verses of Surat al-Aʿrāf (The Heights). The text is contained in a red colored frame and is calligraphed with bold letters. The dots between verses are gold.  It measures approximately 17.5 cm x 24.5 cm. 

    al-Aʿrāf is late Makkan sūrah. The content of the sūrah primarily concerns the serious consequences of rejecting the signs and messengers of God. In this context, it recounts the sacred history of prophets who had been rejected by their people and the consequent suffering and destruction of these people in this world and the next. The sūrah takes its name from the reference to the Heights (alaʿrāf), variously identified as a high place in Paradise or between Paradise and Hell.

    Detailed Description:

    Item number: 338

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat al-Aʿrāf
    Country of Origin: Morocco
    Age: 1878
    Height: 24.5 cm 
    LengthL 11.0 cm
    Frame: Brown wood with green mount

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    A double sided antique Ottoman Quranic manuscript leaf dated 1847 AD (1264 Hijri). This rare 1 leaf with 2 pages presents verses from the chapter al-Qasas (The Story) and was calligraphed by Mustafa Al-Khalusi. The text is contained inside a gold frame and verses are separated with gold dots. It measures approximately 17.0 cm x 11.0 cm.

    Most commentators consider al-Qaṣaṣ to be an entirely Makkan sūrah. It takes its name from the story (qaṣaṣ) Moses tells his future father-in-law in regarding his flight from Egypt.

    Detailed Description:

    Item Number: 335

    Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Qasas
    Calligrapher: Mustafa Al-Khalusi
    Country of Origin: Turkey
    Age: 1847
    Height: 17.0 cm 
    LengthL 11.0 cm
    Frame: Gold with green mount

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