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Collection Islamic Manuscripts from Mali

Enhanced Version of the Annotated Document Sullam al-Atfal fi Buyu al-Ajal

Enhanced Version of the Annotated Document Sullam al-Atfal fi Buyu al-Ajal (The Protection of Individuals in Commercial Transactions)

ALTERNATE TITLE(S) Laws of Commerce in Verse

This volume delineates the obligations of various parties to commercial exchanges and contracts. The author focuses on sales and protection for individuals loaning money in such transactions. Poetic verse is used to aid in memorizing the text.

Annotations placed between the lines of poetry clearly indicate that this document was used as a “textbook” to train students. The teacher first read the text to the student. The student, who sat facing the teacher, then annotated the text, thus the annotations are upside down when compared to the primary text of the document.

Rotating the text on the screen allows the viewer to see the document from the position of either the teacher or the student.