Contentment of the Seeker Regarding the Most Famous Arabic Compositions Printed by Eastern and Western Printing Presses


Edward Van Dyck was an American diplomat and author who served as consular clerk and vice-consul in Lebanon and Egypt from 1873 to 1882. He was the son of the missionary Cornelius Van Dyck, a medical doctor who was professor of pathology at the Syrian Protestant College (which became the American University of Beirut), but who is well known for his Arabic edition of the Bible. Kitāb iktifā' al-qanūʻ bimā huwa matbuʻ min ashhar al-ta'ālīf al-arabīya fī al-maṭābiʻ al-sharqīya wa al-gharbīya (Contentment of the seeker regarding the most famous Arabic compositions printed by Eastern and Western printing presses) is a bibliographic dictionary of printed works in Arabic, published by Edward Van Dyck in 1896.  The book consists of an introduction and three sections. The first section is on "the interest of Europeans in the Arabic language." The second is on "Arabic literature from its origins to shortly after the fall of Baghdad." The third section covers Arabic literature from "the 13th to the 17th century [CE]." The book includes an index of the literary works discussed in the text and an index of authors. The main body of the book was completed on September 9, 1896; however, the indices were not completed until the following year. Following them is a statement: “The indices were finished and the printing completed in April 1897.” The author’s afterword is dated March 1897, so the publication date of 1896 printed on the cover of the entire work appears to be an error. The book was edited by Muḥammad ʻAlī al-Bablawī, and was published by Maṭbaʻat al-ta'ālīf (al-hilāl), in Cairo.

Date Created

Publication Information

al-Hilāl, Cairo


Title in Original Language

كتاب اكتفاء القنوع بما هو مطبوع من أشهر التأليف العربية في المطابع الشرقية والغربية

Type of Item

Physical Description

677 pages ; 25 centimeters

Last updated: October 17, 2014