Qurʼanic verses


This calligraphic fragment contains verses 34‒40 of the 79th chapter of the Qurʼan entitled al-Nāziʻāt (Those who tear out). The text continues with the surah’s last verses (42‒46) and the chapter heading of the 80th chapter ʻAbasa (He frowned) on the fragment's verso. This fragment belongs to a series of three folios cut out from the same manuscript now in the Library of Congress: these provide a number of verses from chapters 78 and 79 of the Qurʼan. S̄urat al-Nāziʻāt is a Meccan surah containing 46 verses, the penultimate lines of which appear on this fragment. These verses are concerned primarily with eschatological themes such as Heaven and Hell, as well as the signs that herald al-saʻat (the hour) of God's judgment. This fragment is written in thuluth script with gold outlined in black ink. The text is fully vocalized in gold with sukuuns (silence marks) in blue ink, probably added at a later date. The ayah (verse) markers consist of gold rosettes with eight petals. The marker between verses 36 and 37 visually stands out as its shape differs from the other verse markers. It is pear-like, outlined in blue ink, and contains a central tri-lobed motif executed in gold. All around the folio appear truncated inscriptions in black ink on a piece of paper that seems to have been utilized to strengthen this particular fragment. The script (thuluth) executed in gold and outlined in black, the text layout (five lines per page), the verse markers, and the marginal medallions all bear resemblance to a Qurʼan made in the Jazirah region (Upper Mesopotamia) during the 13th century, now held in the Khalili Collection of Islamic Art in London.

Last updated: February 6, 2018