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).
Item Number: 487
Manuscript Leaflet: Surat Al-Ankabout (The Spider)
Length: 17.0 cm x 21.0 cm
Frame: Dark brown wood