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Showing papers in "Der Islam in 2020"


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors discuss eventual Qurʾānic allusions to Zoroastrian texts by using the example of zamharīr (Q 76:13), which has frequently been interpreted as a punishment in hell.
Abstract: Abstract This article discusses eventual Qurʾānic allusions to Zoroastrian texts by using the example of zamharīr (Q 76:13). In the early tafsīr and ḥadīth-literature the term is most commonly understood as a piercing cold, which has frequently been interpreted as a punishment in hell. This idea, it is argued, has significant parallels to the concept of cold as a punishment in hell or to the absence of cold as a characteristic of paradise in the Avestan and Middle-Persian literature. In addition, Christian and Jewish texts that emphasize a similar idea and have not been discussed in research so far are brought into consideration. The article thus aims to contribute to the inclusion of Zoroastrian texts in locating the genesis of the Qurʾān – or early Islamic exegesis – in the “epistemic space ” of late antiquity.

32 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, a case study of the binding of Leiden Or. 122 was presented, which preserved letters, decrees, and lists from Egypt and Syria at the beginning of the Mamluk reign.
Abstract: Abstract The nature and place of archives in the premodern Islamicate world is a much debated topic and various explanations are offered for the relative scarcity of preserved material as well as the regional imbalance in the record. One factor that stands out in this discussion is the general prominence of counter-archival practices for the survival of what we are studying today. This contribution is the first to examine one such practice that has led to the preservation of a great number of documents: the reuse of discarded papers for the production of bindings. The case study looks at the binding of Leiden Or. 122, which preserved letters, decrees, and lists from Egypt and Syria at the beginning of the Mamluk reign. They likely belonged to a large household in Cairo, more precisely located in the Ayyubid palace Iṣṭabl al-Quṭbiyya. The article offers an edition of the material with an analysis of the historical circumstances, namely the eventful early years of Mamluk rule in Egypt and Syria.

13 citations



Journal ArticleDOI
Aaron M. Hagler1
TL;DR: In this article, the authors explore the literary-narrative strategies Ibn Kathīr employs to alter the narrative so as to counteract the implications of the pro-ʿAlīd versions of the story he found in his sources, especially al-Ṭabarī's Taʾrīkh al-Rusul wa-l-mulūk.
Abstract: Abstract In the era of the “Sunnī Revival” and the couple of centuries following, scholars engaged in a large historiographical project aimed at rehabilitating the reputation of the Umayyad dynasty and Syria’s role in the early Islamic narrative. One of Ibn Kathīr’s historiographical missions in his history Kitāb al-Bidāya wa-l-nihāya was specifically the defense of the Companions of the Prophet. As such, the narrative of ʿAlī ibn Abī Ṭālib required some manipulation to answer Shīʿī narratives that cast some of the most important Companions (especially those associated with the Umayyads and Syria) in a rebellious light. This article explores the literary-narrative strategies Ibn Kathīr employs to alter the narrative so as to counteract the implications of the pro-ʿAlīd versions of the story he found in his sources, especially al-Ṭabarī’s Taʾrīkh al-Rusul wa-l-mulūk.

10 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The following paragraph is closely based on the biography in "Paul Kunitzsch 70 Jahre" in Sic itur ad astra as discussed by the authors, and it might be useful to have the complete information in English now.
Abstract: 1 The following paragraph is closely based on the biography in “Paul Kunitzsch 70 Jahre,” in Sic itur ad astra. Studien zur Geschichte der Mathematik und Naturwissenschaften. Festschrift für den Arabisten Paul Kunitzsch zum 70. Geburtstag, edited by Menso Folkerts and Richard Lorch, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 2000, 1–6. Since it is written in German, it might be useful to have the complete information in English now.

9 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The earliest products of those donations, still identifiable on the ground, are the mausoleum built by the order of Sultan Baybars (r. 1260-1277) in the early days of the Mamluk era and the manara (minaret) and the riwāq (open arcade) added by the Order of Sultan al-Ashraf Qytbāy (r 1468-1496) toward the end of that era as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: Abstract Maqām al-Nabī Mūsā, situated just off the route connecting Jerusalem to Jericho and to Amman further to the east, was a meeting place for thousands of pilgrims that gathered around the shrine during the mawsim (festival). Sultans, clerks, muftis, and wealthy families, who sought the saint’s blessing, put efforts into building facilities for those pilgrims. The earliest products of those donations, still identifiable on the ground, are the mausoleum built by the order of Sultan Baybars (r. 1260–1277) in the early days of the Mamluk era and the manāra (minaret) and the riwāq (open arcade) added by the order of Sultan al-Ashraf Qāytbāy (r. 1468–1496) toward the end of that era. Both building phases bear the imprint of local masons who were active in building Mamluk Jerusalem. Those masons developed their own regional style that differed from that of their counterparts in major Mamluk centers like Damascus and Cairo. A concomitant theme in this article is thus regional styles in architecture.

7 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: For more than four decades, Axel Havemann was a steadfast presence at the Institut für Islamwissenschaft in Berlin this article and introduced generations of students in Berlin and at other universities where he taught the history of Lebanon since the 19th century and the social and economic history of the Early and Middle Islamic periods, fields where he was well known as leading researcher.
Abstract: On October 11, 2019, Axel Havemann passed away in Burgas, Bulgaria, at the Black Sea.1 For more than four decades, he was a steadfast presence at the Institut für Islamwissenschaft in Berlin. He introduced generations of students in Berlin and at other universities where he taught the history of Lebanon since the 19th century and the social and economic history of the Early and Middle Islamic periods, the fields where he was well known as leading researcher. The fortunate students and colleagues were fascinated by his deep erudition, and the unfortunate ones could hardly pass by his particular mix of being a well-read scholar, and having a rough but hearty Berliner charm which comes with a certain kind of crankiness. One of the first impressions everybody was aware of was his accent, designating him undoubtedly as a native from Wedding in Berlin, an accent not necessarily associated with an erudite intellectual, who he was.

6 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, an attempt was made to explain this gap in the pre-Islamic historical tradition, this "strange historical (or national) amnesia" in the cultural memory of the Iranians, with the help of a theory on the structure and modality of oral tradition, based on field research, by the Belgian historian and anthropologist Jan Vansina.
Abstract: Abstract It is well known that the pre-Islamic “national history” of Iran (i. e., the indigenous secular historical tradition, transmitted orally over many centuries) knows nothing at all, or as good as nothing, about the dynasties and empires of the Medes, Achaemenids, Seleucids, and Parthians (ca. 700 BCE–226 CE). It is first with the Sasanians (226‒651 CE) that Iran’s “national history” evinces more detailed knowledge. Instead of reports on the historical Medes and Achaemenid dynasties, accounts of mythical and legendary dynasties, the Pīšdādians and Kayānians, are found. In this essay, an attempt will be made to explain this “gap” in the pre-Islamic historical tradition, this “strange historical (or national) amnesiaˮ (Ehsan Yarshater) in the cultural memory of the Iranians, with the help of a theory on the structure and modality of oral tradition, based on field research, by the Belgian historian and anthropologist Jan Vansina. The structure in question concerns a tripartite perception of the past: a wealth of information about antiquity (traditions of origin or creation and reports on culture heroes) – plenty of information, too, on the recent and most recent times – and lying between them, a “gap” in the accounts. Vansina described this phenomenon as the “hourglass effect.” This is exactly the narrative structure of Iranian national history; it is evident that the Achaemenids and the other pre-Christian dynasties fall into the “gap” described by Vansina. The same phenomenon can also be detected on the level of Sasanian history. We find there a plethora of information on the founder of the dynasty, Ardašīr (reigned 226‒241 CE); meanwhile, very few details are known of the kings following Ardašīr, and it is only as of Kavād I (reigned 488‒496 and 499‒531 CE) that we have outstanding historical information.

6 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The career of al-Ṣāḥib b. Shukr (548-622/1153-1225), the most important vizier of Ayyubid Egypt, is described in this article.
Abstract: Abstract This is a description and assessment of the career of al-Ṣāḥib b. Shukr (548–622/1153–1225), the most important vizier of Ayyūbid Egypt. Born in the Delta, and raised in an influential family, he studied to become a jurist. After serving as a judge (qāḍī), he entered the administration of Saladin and subsequently became the vizier of two Ayyūbid sultans, al-ʿĀdil and his son al-Kāmil. His ruthlessness in raising money for them by transforming the Egyptian vizierate into a fund raising institution was a critical factor in their ability to stay in power, and in saving Egypt from the Fifth Crusade. At the same time he patronized the religious class and built the first Mālikī law school (madrasa) in Cairo. His vizierate represented a nexus of administrative and religious authority in Egypt.

6 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
Roy Vilozny1
TL;DR: In this article, the authors argue that the juxtaposition of Ibn Taymiyya's portrayal of Immī Shīʿism in Minhāj al-sunna with both the information in Imāmī Shiʿi sources reveals that he had a comprehensive acquaintance with a variety of Shíʿī tenets and historical developments.
Abstract: Abstract Minhāj al-sunna al-nabawiyya fī naqḍ kalām al-shīʿa al-qadariyya is Ibn Taymiyyaʼs (d. 728/1328) famed voluminous response to Minhāj al-karāma fī maʿrifat al-imāma, a significantly shorter treatise by his Imāmī contemporary, al-ʿAllāma al-Ḥillī (d. 726/1325). Focusing on parts of Minhāj al-sunna in which Ibn Taymiyyaʼs perception of Imāmī Shīʿism comes to the fore, this article sets out to evaluate to what extent his criticism of this manifestation of Islam was founded. Despite the obvious polemical nature of this work, I argue that the juxtaposition of Ibn Taymiyyaʼs portrayal of Imāmī Shīʿism in Minhāj al-sunna with both the information in Imāmī Shīʿī sources until his time and current academic research on Shīʿism reveals that he had a comprehensive acquaintance with a variety of Shīʿī tenets and historical developments. This observation is particularly interesting and important in view of al-Ḥillīʼs alleged dismissive reaction to Ibn Taymiyyaʼs counterwork and the general contemptuous attitude toward Minhāj al-sunna in Imāmī scholarly circles.

6 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the reception of parabiblical narratives in hadith literature and Islamic historiography is investigated, taking the Testament of Abraham as a case study, and analyzing a particular literary motif shared by this text and an early version of the miʿrāǧ (Ascension) of the Prophet Muhammad.
Abstract: Abstract This brief note aims at contributing to the study of the reception of parabiblical narratives in hadith literature and Islamic historiography. Taking the Testament of Abraham as a case study, it sets out to analyse a particular literary motif shared by this text and an early version of the miʿrāǧ (Ascension) of the Prophet Muhammad. The comparative analysis demonstrates that the Testament of Abraham could have provided a number of elements for the redaction of at least one particular section of the miʿrāǧ. This hypothesis finds support in other cases of textual correspondence between several sections of the Testament of Abraham and other Islamic works such as the Tafsīr of Muqātil ibn Sulaymān (d. 150/767), the unedited Kitāb Mubtadaʾ al-dunyā wa-qiṣaṣ al-anbiyāʾ of Abū Ḥuḏayfa al-Buḫārī Isḥāq ibn Bišr (d. 206/821) and Ibn ʿAsākir’s Taʾrīḫ madīnat Dimašq (d. 571/1176). The examined material thus throws additional light on the continuity between late antique apocrypha and nascent Arabic literature.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examines the history of the term Türkmen in western Asia, and asks how its significance changed with the spread of Ottoman and Safavid power in the early modern era.
Abstract: Abstract This essay examines the history of the term Türkmen in western Asia, and asks how its significance changed with the spread of Ottoman and Safavid power in the early modern era. Although it always maintained its core connotation of uncouth tribes, the meaning of the term became more complex (and at times conflicting) after the Mongol period, a dynamic which this paper highlights by comparing it to the Oghūz identity. Poets and court historians developed novel ways of deploying both terms to explain the political dominance of Turkish speakers in the region. When Türkmen gained new import as a political label during the Aq Quyūnlū period, it came to have two contradictory connotations: tribal rebellion and the state-building aspirations of the Anatolian Türkmen dynasties. Both were marginalized by the subsequent establishment of Ottoman and Safavid power in the 16th century. However, the term continued to be widely used to describe Turkish-speaking tribes in the region, and manuscripts from the Caucasus version of the Köroğlu epic tradition show how it came to represent an autonomous tribal alternative to the new imperial status quo of the 17th century.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The Ordnung des Weges (Naẓm as-sulūk) as discussed by the authors is a mystische Ästhetik in Sufismus, in which each Sufist beschreibt, wie der Mensch die göttliche Schönheit (ǧamāl) erkennen kann, die sich in der irdischen Schönía (ḥusn) manifestiert.
Abstract: Abstract Ibn al-Fāriḍ (gest. 632/1235), einer der bedeutendsten Dichter des Sufismus, entwickelt in seinem großen Lehrgedicht „Die Ordnung des Weges“ (Naẓm as-sulūk) eine mystische Ästhetik, indem er beschreibt, wie der Mensch die göttliche Schönheit (ǧamāl) erkennen kann, die sich in der irdischen Schönheit (ḥusn) manifestiert. Beide arabischen Begriffe haben in seinen Versen keine moralische Konnotation, worin er sich von anderen Sufis unterscheidet. Es ist ein Prozess der sinnlichen Wahrnehmung, an dem Geist (rūḥ) und Seele (nafs), sowie alle Sinnesorgane beteiligt sind. In diesem Prozess nehmen die Sinne die irdische Schönheit wahr und melden sie der Seele. Diese gibt die Botschaft an den Geist weiter, der allein imstande ist, die göttliche Essenz in der Materie zu erkennen. Am Ende des mystischen Weges, den Ibn al-Fāriḍ aus eigener Erfahrung schildert, hat er selbst die Stufe der kosmischen Einheit erreicht. Dort ist jede Trennung in Mikrokosmos und Makrokosmos aufgehoben. Im Mikrokosmos, im Menschen, fallen alle körperlichen Funktionen zusammen, sind austauschbar. Auf der Ebene des Makrokosmos sind die irdische Schönheit und die göttliche Schönheit eins geworden.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors explore the origin of an Ifrqiyan historical school active in the middle of the 9th century throughout the unfortunately lost work of the chronicler ʿĪsā b. Muḥammad b. Abī l-Muhājir Dīnār.
Abstract: Abstract This paper tries to explore the origin of an Ifrīqiyan historical school active in the middle of the 9th century throughout the unfortunately lost work of the chronicler ʿĪsā b. Muḥammad b. Sulaymān b. Abī l-Muhājir Dīnār. This paper opens with a gathering of all the excerpts of this list work which have been copied by other writers. Apart from the study of the historical importance of those “new” fragments, we’ll try to understand the nature of this work and the strategies of its composition.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the location of the paintings in the Caliphal Palace of Samarra has been analyzed and the authors have shown that the paintings were found in both private areas of the complex and in a few public ones.
Abstract: Abstract The mural paintings discovered in the Caliphal Palace of the ʿAbbāsid city of Samarra constitute a rare example of figural decoration in an urban Islamic palace as well as one of the most important testimonies to Medieval mural paintings that have come down to us from the region. However, as with the rest of the Samarra finds, these paintings suffered significant damage and were published several years after their excavation (Herzfeld, E., Die Malereien von Samarra, Berlin 1927). Although valuable in many respects, this publication presents a breach of methodology, as it does not attend to either the archaeological or architectural contexts. It also contains several information gaps and inaccuracies. One of the main issues not properly addressed is the exact location of the paintings within the building. Researching various archival and museum collections and taking into account studies on the interpretation of the palace layout, this analysis has shown that the location of the paintings is much more complex than indicated in the publication; these were found in both private areas of the complex and in a few public ones too. This is confirmed by some medieval texts, which provide important information for the study of this material.