What's New and Updated?

Updates for the years 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013.


24th December 2009

Addition of M. 1572 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra. This manuscript belongs to what is commonly known as the ‘Mingana Collection’. Manuscript on parchment. It is written in the ḥijāzī script. The codex has 9 folios. The pages have been wrongly folded, so that the text is disordered. The consonants are differentiated by dashes. The muṣḥaf is partly vocalised with red dots with a later(?) hand. Red punctuation dots and zigzag lines with ink dots separating sūrahs (fol. 1r) and barbed red design (fol. 3r). Six or three oval dots usually punctuate the verses. Every tenth verse is marked by a hollow circle surrounded by dots.

Ms. Or. Fol. 4313 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra is now updated with the contents of all the folios that are currently extant.

These are in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


4th December 2009

Addition of QUR-1-TSR A Qur'ānic Manuscript At The Tareq Rajab Museum, Kuwait, From 1st Century Of Hijra. Manuscript on parchment. Written in the ḥijāzī script. The muṣḥaf is not vocalised. The consonants are frequently differentiated by dashes. Seven set of dashes with the first two ranked in a pair mark the end of verses. There are 26 lines to page. Only one folio exists.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


19th November 2009

With the recent publication of Codex Parisino-Petropolitanus by François Déroche, fuller information regarding some early manuscripts of the Qur'an has become generally available. We have thus taken the opportunity to provide the first interim update to our article Concise List Of Arabic Manuscripts Of The Qur'ān Attributable To The First Century Hijra. One will observe the addition of three new manuscripts, namely Marcel 17, Marcel 18 and Marcel 19, as well as the realisation of the constituent parts of a few other manuscripts. All the relevant statistics and tables have been updated accordingly.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


4th November 2009

Addition of The Arab-Byzantine “Three Standing Imperial Figures” Dīnār From The Time Of Umayyad Caliph ʿAbd al-Malik, 72-74 AH / 692-694 CE. This is the Umayyad imitation of the Byzantine prototype - both of them consist of three standing imperial figures on the obverse side. Reverse field: Staff ending in globe in steps. Reverse margin: bism Allāh lā-ilaha il-Allāh waḥdahu Muḥammad rasūl Allāh ("In the name of God. There is no god but God alone. Muḥammad is the messenger of God"). This full shahada is perhaps the earliest surviving physical record of it.

This is in the section The Islamic Coins.


25th September 2009

Addition of The “Qur'ān Of ʿUthmān” At The Türk ve İslam Eserleri Müzesi (Turkish and Islamic Art Museum), Istanbul, Turkey, From 1st / 2nd Century Hijra. A manuscript written in the kufic script on gazelle skin, and contains 439 folios. Interestingly, on the last folio of the manuscript is written in kufic script “Katabahu ʿUthmān bin ʿAffān fī sanat thalathyn” (“ʿUthmān bin ʿAffān wrote in the year 30 AH”). However, the script and ornamentation negates this possibility.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


6th September 2009

Continuing with our addition of Qur'anic manuscripts, we now present The “Qur'ān Of ʿUthmān” At The Egyptian National Library (Dār Al-Kutub Al-Misrīyya), Cairo, Egypt, From 1st / 2nd Century Hijra. A monumental Qur'anic manuscript on parchment showing a well-formed kufic script. Total number of folios are 306. The script is slightly sloping backwards with tall ascenders and is strongly reminiscent of the type of well executed kufic script exhibited during the Umayyad period. There is no vocalisation and a very limited amount of consonantal pointing (i.e., diacritical marks) – on some folios there are no diacritical marks at all. Multi-coloured (e.g., red, green, black, brown) diagonally arranged dashes are usually used to indicate verse-endings. Groups of five verses are marked with medallions and square cartouches containing quatrefoil emblems are used to indicate groups of ten verses. There are some arcaded bands that separate sūrahs without mentioning the name of the sūrah, some containing triangular-shaped crenellations.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


27th August 2009

Addition of The “Qur'ān Of ʿUthmān” At The Al-Hussein Mosque, Cairo, Egypt, From 1st / 2nd Century Hijra. This monumental Qur'anic manuscript on parchment showing a well-formed kufic script, written in dark-brown ink with sparse diacritical marks and no ornamentation. Total number of folios are 1087. Size: 57 cm x 68 cms. The height of the muṣḥaf is 40 cm and weighs 80 kgs. The extant folios contain more than 99% of the text of the Qur'an.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


24th August 2009

Ramaḍān Karim to our readers.

Addition of the Arab-Sassanian Coin Of Al-Ḥajjāj Bin Yūsuf, 77 AH / 696-697 CE. Typical late Arab-Sassanian bust with the name "al-Ḥajjāj bin Yūsuf" written in Arabic on the right hand side of the bust. Obverse margin: bism Allāh / lā-ilaha il- / Allāh waḥdahu Muḥammad / rasūl Allāh ("In the name of God. There is no god but God alone. Muḥammad is the Messenger of God"). This is a very unique coin. The shahāda is arranged in striking fashion radially in the obverse margin. As far as we are aware, no other coin from 1st century of hijra which shows this feature. The Arab-Sassanian and Arab-Byzantine coins which show either full or partial shahāda, show its arrangement running along the obverse margin.

This is in the section The Islamic Coins.


17th July 2009

The study of ancient manuscripts of the Qur'an is steadily gathering pace. In decades past, a few scholars have compiled lists of Qur'anic manuscripts attributable to the 1st century hijra. Although helpful, these lists contain only the barest details, usually only the name of the manuscript concerned or sometimes even less. With this in mind, we have constructed a Concise List Of Arabic Manuscripts Of The Qur'ān Attributable To The First Century Hijra, that contains additional details providing further insights into these valuable manuscripts, accompanied by full bibliographic references. A discussion of how scholars date early Qur'anic manuscripts and an assessment of the value of these manuscripts is also provided along with some detailed mathematical calculations. Should one ponder over this list, they will come to the appreciation scholars involved in this field of study suffer from an embarrassment of riches. Quite simply, there is no other work from the Late Antiquity that comes close to the Qur'an in terms of the number of their earliest manuscripts including textual content.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


9th July 2009

Addition of Ms. Or. Fol. 4313 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra. Written in the ḥijāzī script. The codex has 8 folios. Manuscript on parchment. The muṣḥaf is not vocalised. The consonants are differentiated by dashes. Six oval dots ranked in three pairs usually punctuate the verses. Every tenth verse is marked by a hollow circle surrounded by dots. Folios located at Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, Germany and Dār al-Kutub al-Misriyya, Cairo.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


5th June 2009

Addition of Inv. No. LNS 19 CAab – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra. This manuscript bears a striking resemblence to the British Musuem Ms. Or. 2165. Just like the latter, the former is not vocalised. The consonants are frequently differentiated by dashes. Six oval dots ranked in three pairs punctuate the verses. Every tenth verse is marked by a red hollow circle surrounded by dots. Even the size of the folio is same as those found in Ms. Or. 2165. Thus, it can be said with reasonable certainty that both Ms. Or. 2165 and LNS 19 CAab belong to the same codex. There is one folio in this collection. Located at Dār al-Athar al-Islāmiyyah, Kuwait.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


1st June 2009

Addition of Codex TIEM ŞE 12995 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 2nd Century Of Hijra. Written in the ḥijāzī script. The interesting part of this manuscript is the use of different colour of inks. Four varieties of ink have been used for the copy of the text. In addition of the most common used brown ink, the scribe also employed a red, an orange and a green one. These inks are not connected with the beginning or the end of sūrahs. The usage of inks does not follow any rule or sequence. However, an interesting patterning of the coloured inks is applied to the last three lines of a sūrah and the first three lines of the next one. For example, the end of sūrah al-Nisā is written in green and contrasts wiith the first and third lines of sūrah al-Mā'idah which are written in red, the second one being also in green. Only 22 folios of this codex survive. It is written in the reading of Ibn ʿĀmir and this information has been added in The Qirā'āt Identified In The Qur'ānic Manuscripts. The manuscript is located at the Türk ve İslam Eserleri Müzesi (Turkish and Islamic Art Museum), Istanbul, Turkey.

These are in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


28th May 2009

Addition of The “Damascus Umayyad Qur'ān” TIEM ŞE 321 – 1st Century Of Hijra. This manuscript was dated by Déroche using art-historical methods to the time after 72 AH / 691-692 CE or more probably during the last quater of the 1st (early 8th) century AH. It is written in Kufic or perhaps late ḥijāzī script. The letters are spread over the entire page due to an extensive use of elongation of horizontal connections or to a regular spacing of the letters or groups of letters irrespective of being part of the word or not. The sūrah headings are illuminated. The illumination of this Qur'an relies on motifs which find their parallels with the mosaics at the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. The codex has 33+ folios and is located at the Türk ve İslam Eserleri Müzesi (Turkish and Islamic Art Museum), Istanbul, Turkey.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


23rd May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-29.2 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 2nd Century Of Hijra. This beautiful codex is one of the two Qur'ans found in Ṣanʿāʾ which resemble the monumental codex from Syria, the “Great Umayyad Qur'ān” (Codex Ṣanʿāʾ – DAM 20-33.1). Their similarity in size, proportion, number of lines, script and illumination suggest that the “Great Umayyad Qur'an” may have served as a model. The fragments from this codex reflect the Syrian codex in quality rather than features. The letters are spaciously distributed and once connected individual letters tend to blend with their neighbours. The total number of folios in this codex are not known but 10 of them have been published so far. Located at Dār al-Makhtūtāt, Ṣanʿāʾ, Yemen.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


21st May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-32.1 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 2nd Century Of Hijra. Written in the late ḥijāzī script. About 12 lines per page. It has few diacritical marks but the vocalization is probably contemporary. The style bears many features common to both ḥijāzī and early Kufic, or perhaps show a transition from the former to the latter. The total number of folios in this codex are not known but 7 of them have been published so far.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


19th May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-18.3 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st / 2nd Century Of Hijra. Written in the late ḥijāzī script. The codex consists of 16 folios. Few diacritical marks but no vocalization. The vertical format is a common feature of most Qur'ans written in the ḥijāzī style. This example is an exception, where the horizontal format contradicts somewhat vertical features of the script.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


17th May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-30.1 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 2nd Century Of Hijra. It is written in the late ḥijāzī script. There are about 32 lines per page. Few diacritical marks but no vocalization. The indication of the end of every tenth verses has been added later. The total number of folios in this codex are not known but 9 of them have been published so far. Located at Dār al-Makhtūtāt, Ṣanʿāʾ, Yemen.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


14th May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-29.1 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra. Written in the ḥijāzī script. This codex was probably written by at least two different copyists as the scripts differ in various folios. There are few diacritical marks but no vocalization. The sūrahs are separated by simple ornaments. The are 9 published folios of this codex but it is believed that others also exist. Located at Dār al-Makhtūtāt, Ṣanʿāʾ, Yemen.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


12th May 2009

Addition of Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-25.1 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st Century Of Hijra. Written in the ḥijāzī script. The codex consists of 29 folios. There are few diacritical marks but no vocalization. The verses divisions indicate the beginning of the usage of simple ornamentation which is nothing but adjacent strokes. An interesting feature of this early ijāzī manuscript is the presence of sūrah al-Fātiḥah which is followed immediately by sūrah al-Baqarah. The presence of sūrah al-Fātiḥah is rare in the Qur'ans from first century hijra, the only other known example being the “Great Umayyad Qur'ān”, DAM 20-33.1, also from Ṣanʿāʾ.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


10th May 2009

We have now started to systematically arrange all the early Qur'anic manuscripts from Dār al-Makhṭūtāt, Ṣanʿāʾ, Yemen. The first on the list is Codex Ṣanʿāʾ DAM 01-28.1 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st / 2nd Century Of Hijra. The codex consists of 60 folios.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


7th May 2009

Addition of A Qur'anic Leaf In The Ḥijāzī Script On Vellum, 1st Century Of Hijra. It is written in the ḥijāzī script in brown ink on vellum. No vocalization, verses indicated occasionally by four dots; a few dots and angled dashes indicating diacritical marks and consonants.

This is added in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


8th April 2009

With fraud prevalent these days resulting in some of the countries going bankrupt or some on the verge of bankruptcy, it is worthwhile reminding ourselves to be honest, give just measure and not to cheat customers. Glass vessels used in business, perhaps as standard measures for liquids, from early Islamic period precisely emphasize this fact. The update Glass Vessel With Stamp At Beit Shean From The Time Of Sulaymān Bin ʿAbd al-Malik, 98 AH / 716 CE deals with dated and undated glass vessels from the Umayyad times which remind people of honesty and justice when dealing with customers.

This is present in the section The Arabic & Islamic Inscriptions.


21st March 2009

The article Raḥmānān (RḤMNN) - An Ancient South Arabian Moon God? has been enlarged with refutation of silly polemics of Christian missionaries. Added are a new section dealing with al-Raḥmān in the Qur'an, an excursus on Abraha and the Murayghan inscription and a further refutation of the claim that Raḥmānān in this inscription should be translated as "power".

This article is in the section Refutation Of The Borrowing Theories Of The Qur'an.


9th March 2009

Based on a variety of internet webpages the Christian missionaries argue that the Queen of Sheba and her subjects worshipped the Moon as their main deity. Subsequently the missionaries insist that Muslims influenced the text of a Christian composition known as the Kebra Nagast – which states the Queen of Sheba worshipped the Sun – so that it now comports with their beliefs as documented in the Qur'an. Due to their wholly inadequate attempts to research the topic properly, the missionaries have utterly confused themselves and in the process weaved together a strange unsustainable combination of events that are unsupported when viewed in light of the extant archaeological evidence and scholarly studies on the literary sources of the Kebra Nagast. The article The Queen Of Sheba And Sun Worship discusses the issues raised in the light of modern archaeology and literary evidence.

This article is in the section Refutation Of External Contradictions In The Qur'an.


23rd January 2009

Was crucifixion as a method of punishment known in ancient Egypt? When can we observe the first recorded instances of crucifixion in antiquity? Based on a string of faulty self-made definitions, the Christian missionaries think crucifixion defines a method of execution used by the Romans. The article Crucifixion Or ‘Crucifiction’ In Ancient Egypt? discusses the concept of "cross" and "crucifixion" in conjunction with crucifixion terminology and suspension. Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic evidence is considered along with some examples of crucifixion in ancient Egypt, making reference to the precise expression of this punishment.

This article is in the section Refutation Of External Contradictions In The Qur'an.


19th January 2009

Addition of Codex Mixt. 917 – A Qur'ānic Manuscript From 1st / 2nd Century Hijra. This manuscript was written in either the late ḥijāzī or kufic script and contains 105 folios. The extant folios contain about 27% of the text of the Qur'an. A rare form of punctuation is also displayed in this manuscript corroborating its eighth century CE dating.

This is in the section The Qur'anic Manuscripts.


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