Manuscript/Mixed Material Qur'anic verses
About this Item
- Qur'anic verses
Created / Published
- 14th century
- - Calligraphy, Arabic
- - Manuscripts, Arabic--Washington (D.C.)
- - Egypt
- - Arabic script calligraphy
- - Illuminated Islamic manuscripts
- - Islamic calligraphy
- - Islamic manuscripts
- - Naskh
- - Mamluk era Qur'an, made in Cairo, 14th or 15th centuries.
- - Dimensions of Written Surface: Recto: 16 (w) x 16.5 (h) cm. Dimensions of Written Surface: Verso: 17 (w) x 23 (h) cm.
- - The left margin of the folio includes a decorative anse to mark off the page as the beginning of a surah. It contains a decorative gold leaf and bulb motif on a blue group, a design whose palette and composition echoes the chapter's heading in the top and bottom rectangular panels.
- - The script in the main text frame is naskh, a cursive style preferred in Qur'ans made in Cairo during the 14th and 15th centuries. This particular naskh contains more angular strokes used for the letters qaf (q) and 'ayn (glottal stop), and the loops of the 'ayns are filled in with black ink. The main text, executed in six lines and provided with ayah markers in the shape of six-petalled gold flowers, is outlined in cloud cartouches and set on a background decorated with medium brown interlacing scrolls containing now worn yellow and blue leaves. Below the scrollwork appear a number of parallel vertical striations, creating a delicate striped pattern as the text's backdrop. Both the scrollwork and striations can be found in a number of Mamluk Qur'ans made in Egypt during the first half of the 14th century (see Lings 2004, pl. 117; Lings and Safadi 1976: 52-53; and James 1988, cat. no. 5). Some Qur'ans of the period also place the text in cloud cartouches on a ground hatched in red (James 1992b: 58-61, cat. no. 13).
- - The title of the chapter, executed on a blue and gold background in the top and bottom rectangular panels, gives the name of the surah and the total number of verses (286), words, and letters. The interest in counting the total number ayahs, words, and letters in various chapters and throughout the Qur'an not only provides an indexing apparatus for the Holy Book, but also may serve various practices concerned with letter mysticism or the esoteric sciences of letters ('ilm al-huruf).
- - The verso of this folio contains verses 5-16 of the second chapter of the Qur'an entitled al-Baqarah (The Cow). It is the last of five folios belonging to a dispersed Qur'an manuscript now held in the collections of the Library of Congress.
- - These first four verses include the two abbreviated letters lam (l) and mim (m), followed by a discussion stating the the Qur'an gives guidance to the believer in God, Divine Revelation, and the Afterworld. The double letters lam-mim appear in six chapters of the Qur'an (2-3, and 29-32).
- - This folio contains the verses 1-4 of the second chapter of the Qur'an entitled al-Baqarah (The Cow). It is the fourth of five folios belonging to a dispersed Qur'an manuscript now held in the collections of the Library of Congress. The other four folios are: 1-88-154.168 R and V, 1-88-154.8a, and 1-88-154.8b V. Together, these folios constitute the first five folios of a beautiful, albeit damaged, 14th-century Mamluk Qur'an.
- - Verses 5-16 of Surat al-Baqarah stress the importance of true faith and belief in God and warn of the consequences of false conviction. Unfortunately, verse 5 at the top of the folio and the last few lines of text at the bottom of the folio have been lost due to water damage.
- - Script: naskh
- - 1-87-154.8b
- 1 volume ; 23. (w) 5 x 28.5 (h) cm
- Library of Congress African and Middle Eastern Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA
Library of Congress Control Number
Additional Metadata Formats
IIIF Presentation Manifest
Rights & Access
The contents of the Library of Congress Selections of Arabic, Persian, and Ottoman Calligraphy are in the public domain or have no known copyright restrictions and are free to use and reuse.
Credit Line: Library of Congress, African and Middle East Division, Near East Section Persian Manuscript Collection
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Chicago citation style:
Qur'anic Verses. 14th Century. Manuscript/Mixed Material. https://www.loc.gov/item/2019714492/.
APA citation style:
Qur'anic Verses. 14th Century. [Manuscript/Mixed Material] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2019714492/.
MLA citation style:
Qur'anic Verses. 14th Century. Manuscript/Mixed Material. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/2019714492/>.