Folio from a Qur’an, Sura 5, verses 68-69

Detached folio from a dispersed copy of the Qur’an; recto: Sura al-Ma’idah (the Table spread) 5:68, recto begins with “kathira”; verso: sura 5:68 and part of 69, verso begins with “falatas”; Arabic in black muhaqqaq script with gold floral border in kufic script and medallion in the corners; vocalized in black; interlinear Persian translation in black naskh; one column; three lines of text.
Border: The text is set in gold floral border with kufic script on a cream-colored paper.

Historical period(s)
Delhi Sultanate period, 14th-15th century
Medium
Ink, opaque watercolor and gold on paper
Dimensions
H x W (overall): 28.8 x 18.6 cm (11 5/16 x 7 5/16 in)
Geography
India?, Anatolia
Credit Line
The Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection
Accession Number
S1997.102
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Manuscript
Type

Detached manuscript folio

Keywords
Delhi Sultanate (1206 - 1526), eastern kufic script, illumination, India, Islam, kufic script, muhaqqaq script, naskh script, Qur'an, sura 5, WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Previous Owner(s)

Philip Hofer
Rudolf Meyer-Riefstahl II
Ralph and Catherine Benkaim
Terence McInerney Fine Arts Ltd.

Description

Detached folio from a dispersed copy of the Qur'an; recto: Sura al-Ma'idah (the Table spread) 5:68, recto begins with "kathira"; verso: sura 5:68 and part of 69, verso begins with "falatas"; Arabic in black muhaqqaq script with gold floral border in kufic script and medallion in the corners; vocalized in black; interlinear Persian translation in black naskh; one column; three lines of text.
Border: The text is set in gold floral border with kufic script on a cream-colored paper.

Label

Qur'ans were frequently transported from one part of the Islamic world to another, encouraging the dissemination of certain calligraphic styles and formats. This folio was originally part of a now dispersed, thirty-volume copy that was transcribed in an unusual hybrid script, referred to by scholars as "thuluth verging on muhaqqaq." The text, notable for the size of the script in relation to that of the folio, is framed with a kufic inscription set against a gold, floral scroll. While scholars generally agree that the kufic band was added in India, the origin of the text itself is less clear. On the basis of a number of other Qur'ans in a similar script and format, some specialists have attributed these folios to Anatolian Turkey, Iran, or Central Asia, while others have claimed that both the text and the borders were done in India. The three lines are from sura 5, "The Tablecloth."

Published References
  • Thomas Lawton Thomas W. Lentz. Beyond the Legacy: Anniversary Acquisitions for the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. vol. 1 Washington, 1998. pp. 144-147, fig. 3.
Collection Area(s)
Arts of the Islamic World
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum