The Qurra Papyrus - Instruction Concerning A Claim For Repayment Of A Debt - Egyptian National Library Inv. No. 339, 91 AH / 710 CE

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First Composed: 25th December 2005

Last Modified: 25th December 2005

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Assalamu ʿalaykum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:



Figure: (a) Picture of the papyrus and (b) the content of the papyrus.

[] encloses letters supplied to fill a lacuna.


Ṣafar, 91 AH / December - January, 710 CE.


44.5 cm x 18.6 cm.

Light brown, tolerably fine papyrus. The letter, of which 17 lines are preserved, is written by Muslim b. Lubnān in black ink on recto at right-angles to the horizontal fibres. Diacritical points are added sparingly, words are written freely divided at the end of the line. Verso blank. With the exception of the lost heading the letter is very well preserved.

Accession No.

Inv. No. 339.


The translation is given below:

  1. [In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.]
  2. [From Qurra bin Sharīk to Basil, administra]tor [of Ishqauh].
  3. [I praise G]od, [besides whom] there is no
  4. there is [no] god.
  5. As to the matter in hand. Victor, son of Jamul,
  6. has reported to me that he has a claim of
  7. eleven dīnārs against a peasant from among
  8. the [pe]ople of thy district;
  9. and now he says that he has deprived him
  10. of his right. Now when there comes to thee
  11. this letter of mine, if he brings
  12. [proo]fs of what he has reported to me
  13. procure him his right(s), and to thy
  14. servant must no wrong be done, save
  15. [th]at his matter be otherwise.
  16. So write to me about it.
  17. And [pe]ace be upon him who foll[ows]
  18. the [gui]d[ance]. And Muslim [b.]
  19. [Lub]nān has written (it), and al-Ṣalt has copied (it)
  20. i[n] Ṣafar of the year ninet[y]-one.


Egyptian National Library, Cairo, Egypt.

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[1] A. Grohmann, Arabic Papyri In The Egyptian Library, Volume III (Administrative Texts), 1938, Egyptian Library Press: Cairo, No. 155, Plate V, pp. 33-35.

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