Lot 12
  • 12

TWO QUR'AN LEAVES IN KUFIC SCRIPT ON VELLUM, NORTH AFRICA OR NEAR EAST, 9TH-10TH CENTURY

Estimate
3,000 - 5,000 GBP
bidding is closed

Description

  • 22.5 by 32cm. and 19.5 by 28.6cm.
Text: Surat al-Zukhruf (xliii), vv.: 32-33 and Text: Sura Yunus (x), vv.78-80



5 lines per page written in fine, flowing kufic script in brown ink on vellum, letter-pointing consisting of thin diagonal brown ink dashes, vocalisation of red, blue and yellow dots, "sura yunus" leaf contains verse divisions marked with a gold floret




 



 




 

Provenance

surat al-zukhruf (xliii), vv.32-33:
Formerly in the collection of Habib Anavian

sura yunus (x), vv.78-80:
Formerly in the collection of Philip Hofer

Catalogue Note

These are very fine examples of the mature stage of Qur'anic manuscript production under the Abbasids and their contemporary dynasties during the ninth and early tenth centuries A.D. The vellum is of fine quality and the script is an extremely elegant, spacious and controlled kufic with great attention paid to the distribution of the text over the page, creating a balance of active and passive space. Other leaves from this Qur'an have been sold in these rooms, 12th October 2000, lot 6 and 15th October 1998, lot 2. They carried gold rosettes for every verse and a stylised letter ha accompanied by a large illuminated roundel in the margin to mark fifth verses, and a large illuminated marginal device to mark the tenth verses. On this basis the sura headings and the opening and closing illumination of each section must have been spectacular.

They can be compared closely with a section sold in these rooms 16th October 1996, lot 8, which included the opening and closing illumination of the juz giving us an idea of what other leaves of the present piece might have looked like. Further related leaves and manuscripts are as follows: Musée des Arts Islamiques, Qairawan (Carthage, no.331; Lings and Safadi, no.10); Iran Bastan Museum, Ms.4289, Tehran (Lings, 1976, no.5); Nasser D. Khalili Collection, London, KFQ65 (Deroche, 1992, no.25, p.76); Sotheby's, London, 4th April 1978, lot 94; Christie's, London, 27th April 1993, lot 20; 10th October 1989, lot 301; and 11th October 1988, lot 37.
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