Download Arabic Literature to the End of the Umayyad Period (The by A. F. L. Beeston, T. M. Johnstone, R. B. Serjeant, G. R. PDF

By A. F. L. Beeston, T. M. Johnstone, R. B. Serjeant, G. R. Smith

Initially released in 1983, The Cambridge historical past of Arabic Literature used to be the 1st basic survey of the sector to were released in English for over fifty years and the 1st tried in such aspect in a multi-volume shape. The volumes of the background offer a useful resource of reference and realizing of the highbrow, literary and non secular background of the Arabic-speaking and Islamic international. This quantity starts its insurance with the oral verse of the 6th century advert, and ends with the autumn of the Umayyad dynasty centuries later. inside of this era fall significant occasions: the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad, the founding of the Islamic faith, the nice Arab Islamic conquests of territories open air the Arabian Peninsula, and their assembly, as overlords, with the Byzantine and Sasanian global. members to this quantity talk about an array of themes together with the affects of Greeks, Persians and Syrians on early Arabic literature.

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There is one curious anomaly in the system. Except in the Muslim west and in modern times, the name of the tribal ancestor Bakr has never in historical times been used as an ism. Yet the kunyah form Abu Bakr exists (but cannot imply the possession of a son named Bakr), and it is also anomalously (but very commonly) used as an ism: it was in fact the ism of the first caliph. Besides Abu Bakr, the only type of ism compounded of two words is the series of which the first member is 'Abd, "servant of", followed either by Allah or by one of the many epithets of God: 'Abd al-Rahman " servant of the Merciful", 'Abd al-Jabbar "servant of the Almighty", and so on; and among Christians one finds 'Abd al-MasIh, "servant of the Messiah".

Two particular points arise in connection with the Arabic "definite article" prefixed to many names. This is in Arabic always spelt <*/-, but when it precedes a letter pronounced with the tip of the tongue, the / is "assimilated" in pronunciation to the initial letter following: the spelling al-Samarqandi thus conceals the pronunciation as-Samarqandl; and some European works reproduce the sound and not the spelling. Secondly, even within Arabic writing itself there is variation in practice as to the inclusion or omission of this element.

More probably, the copies in circulation were sections, each comprising perhaps a bulk approximately equal to one of the thirty "sections" (JUZ') ^ n t o which the Qur'an is divided for purposes of recitation on a monthly rota. For nearly a century, these Qur'an codices remained the only books in Arabic, though we have from the same period a fair quantity of documentary texts, such as letters and business contracts, mostly written on papyrus. But it is very unlikely that any of the surviving literary papyri are so ancient.

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