Tue, 11.10.2022 17:00

Oriental Manuscripts in the Saadian Collection

Webinar series "Pre-modern Islamic manuscripts"

Online ZOOM lecture by Dr. Lbachir Tahali | Agadir University, Morocco & Dr. Motia Zouihal | Collège de France

The Saadian library (currently in the Escorial library in Spain) holds manuscripts copied both in the Eastern and Western parts of the Islamic World. The collection belonged to Sultan Aḥmad al-Manṣūr of Morocco (r. 1578-1603), who obtained many of the ‘oriental’ codices from Cairo. However, while the capital of Egypt was the centre from where these manuscripts were transported to Marrakesh, many of these books were produced in various cities of the Middle East and, in some cases, centuries before the Sultan acquired them. Some of the books in the Saadian Collection had previously belonged to ancient Khizāna or libraries founded by princes or dignitaries who were supposed to be 'prestigious collectors'. Their presence on the shelves of the Saadian library restores the prestigious status they had at the time of their production. Others were owned by private Oriental collectors or simply produced to be sent to Marrakesh where they could find place in the dynastic library. The paratexts of these manuscripts, in particular colophons, possession or reading marks, provide information on their origins, the use they have had, the names of their owners and their moves from one owner to the next. They thus provide an accurate picture of the history of these books and the diversity that characterizes them. The present talk focuses on these aspects and seeks to highlight the diversity of the Oriental manuscripts in the Saadian collection. 

recording (MP4)


Please register with https://oeaw-ac-at.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_0u1na018Sp-g3TOl_mUgQw

This lecture is the second in this year's Webinar series organised by the NoMansLand research project (FWF Y 1232) dedicated to the study of Islamic manuscripts in pre-modern Iran and Central Asia.

Convenor: Project team "Nomads' Manuscripts Landscape"

For a list of upcoming lectures in the webinar series, please see Webinar series "Pre-modern Islamic manuscripts"


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