Notes on Three Arabic Manuscripts in the British Museum

Three_MSS.pdf NOTES ON THREE ARABIC MANUSCRIPTS IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM 1. MS Or. 7698, entitled Adab al-muridin, was attributed by A. G. Ellis and E. Edwards 1 to 'Ubaidullah b. Mul}.ammadb. 'Abd al-'Aziz al-Samarqandi. The text begins on fol. 13a and is preceded in the MS by the 'Aja'ib al-qulUb of al-Samarqandi. A rather late note on the front page, by a hand different from that of the scribe of the two treatises, gives the contents of the MS as , Risala fi 'aja'ib al-qulub Ii-'Ubaidillah b. Mulj,ammad b. 'AM al-'Aziz alSamarqandi quddisa sirruhu: Kitab Adab al-muridin '. Ellis and Edwards erroneously assumed that like the 'Aja'ib al-qulub the Adab al-muridin was also by al-Samarqandi. In fact, however, the author of the Adab al-muridin is J;>iya'aI-Din Abu'lNajib 'Abd al-Qiihir al-Suhrawardi (A.H. 490-563). Comparing the explicit of the British Museum MS with the explicit ofMS Tiibingen 89 i, and the contents of the MS with the description of al-Suhrawardi's work given by H. Ritter in Der Islam, xxv, 1939, 35, the authorship of al-Suhrawardi can be established with certainty. The explicit of the British Museum MS reads as follows: ... wa-'a~amana min aijawahish mii ~aharaminha wa-mii batana wa-waffaqana li-talab marifiitihi mii khafiya minha wa-mii 'aluna wa-nafa'ana wa-jami'a'lmuslimina bimii jama'nii wa-la yaj'aIhu 'alayna man na~ra fihi waoolan wa-la yaj'al lj,a~~na min dhalika jama'h wa-hif~h duna isti'miiIih wa-mutaba'atik bijildih wa-si'at rahmatih innah 'azza ismuh qarib mujib. A few folios are missing at the beginning; the text begins on fol. 13a as follows: ... wa-in quita ayna fa-qad taqaddama hua 'ala'l-makiin .... The MS (16 X 12 cm.) was copied by Hibatulliih b. Mul}.ammadaI-Ants i in A.H. 743, as stated at the end of the MS (fol. 56b). Ritter writes that the Adab al-muridin is an important treatise and is the most famous work of al-Suhrawardi.2 Fr. Meier classifies it as a comprehensive description of f;!iifismfrom the point of view of the adab 3 (contrary to Kubrii., who deals only with manners of behaviour). 2. The MS of the Kitab al-FarJil, Or. 6499 (fols. 94a-143b), was described by Ellis and Edwards as ' a book of witty utterances in prose and verse, compiled about A.H. 300 '. The title of the book is indicated in the MS, fol. 93b, as follows: 'Hadha'lkitab al-musammii bi-K itab al-FarJil4fi funun al-balaghawa-'I-bara'a wa-anwa' aZ ijaz wa-'Ija~aha '. The title mentioned at the end of the book (fol. 143b) differs, however, from the title on the front page: al-Kitab al-musammii biU A descriptive list of the Arabic MSS in the British Museum, London, 1912. In Der Islam, xxv, 1939, 35, as quoted above. 3 Fr. Meier, 'Ein Knigge fur $ufi's', Rivista di Studi Orientali, XXXII, 1957, 491; cf. the quotations given in Meier's article. , In the MS: al-Fuzil. 1 2 391 NOTES ON THREE ARABIC MANUSCRIPTS Kitiib al-Fai/iIfi §iJat al-adab al-kamil. The title given on fol, 93b is connected with the description of the book given by the author in his preface: ... fa~ana'tu laka kitiiban ji-'I-baliigha wa-'I-iJaz wa-'I-bara'a (fol, 94a). The title at the end of the book is apparently derived from the statement of the author on fol, 94b, 1. 1: .. , wa-tarjamtuhu bi-Kitiib al-Fai/iIIiJaijIihi 'ala kulli kitiibin kamil. The MS (29 X 19 cm.) was copied in A.H. 1217 in Basra in a clear, legible script. It is divided into two parts and contains 25 lines on every page. The MS begins as follows: A(ala Allah fi 'fill afya'l-salama baqdka, walJ,ajaba'an ghiyar nawa'ib al-dahr na'miika, wa ja'alaka Ii-mutawakhkhi subUgh al-ni'am ma'kilan. The MS is identical with the MS mentioned by Muhammad Abu'l-Fa<;llIbrahlm in his introduction to the Kitiib al-Fai/il of al-Mubarrad.' The al-Fai/il of Mubarrad is, however, quite different from the book al-Fai/il preserved in the British Museum and the Istanbul MSS. The BM and Istanbul texts are identical with the text contained in the MS described in Lughat al-'Arab, IX, pp. 282, 337, 674.2 After an examination of the BM MS and its comparison with the description in the Lughat al-'Arab it may be stated that the author of the book is al-Washsha' (d. A.H. 325), the author of the Kitiib al-Muwashshii. The variants of the title may be mentioned: al-Fai/i1min al-adab al-shamil3 and al-Fai/il min al-adab al-kiimil.4 3. The MS of the Makarim al-akhlaq, Or. 7598, attributed in the descriptive list of Ellis and Edwards to Ibn Abi'l-Dunyii, contains in fact the text of Radt al-Din Abu'I-Nasr b. Amin aI-Din al-Tabarsl's Makarim al-akhlaq.5 The MS begins as follows: AI-bab al-awwalfi khaIqihi wa-khuIuqihi,' khamsat fu~ul. A11a~1 al-awwal fi khaIqihi wa-khuIuqihi wa-siratihi ma'a juIasa'ihi bi-riwiiyat al-lJasan wa-'I-lJusayn, corresponding to p. 5 of the printed edition, Cairo, A.H. 1300. Thus the contents of the first five pages of the printed edition are missing in the MS. On fol. 85b the copyist, Mirza 'Ali al-Sultanl, states that he copied nine chapters of the book Makarim al-akhlaq by al-Tabarsl in the month of Muharram 966; the three chapters forming the rest of the book are found in fols. 97a-llOb and 115a-201a. The copyist states that he finished the copying of the whole book on the day of Nayruz 966, while he was far from his family and relatives. On fol. 89b the copyist mentions that he carried out his work in the' town of the Unitarians (baidat al-muwahhidin), Qazwln '. Fols. 86a-96 and 111-14 contain interesting Shi'ite traditions, the sources of which are supplied. These traditions are scattered all over the book in the printed editions. Fo1. 86a contains quotations from Qutb al-Dln alRawandj's Tafsir and his al-Khara'iJ wa-'I-jara'ih. Fols. 87a-89b contain traditions about the behaviour of a man on his journey. Fol. 90a contains a tradition Ed. al-Maymani, Cairo, 1956, p. 'd '. • cf. also Brockelmann, GAL, I, 124, Suppl., I, 189. 3 Brockelmann, GAL, I, 124. , Brockelmann, Suppl., I, 189. • Brockelmann, GAL, I, 405 (al-Tabarsl, 5), Suppl., I, 709. 1 NOTES ON THREE ARABIC MANUSCRIPTS 392 read by AbU Dii'iid al-Sijistiini in Baghdad in A.H. 307 in a public assembly. The tradition is quoted on the authority of al-Asbagh b. Nubata and records the orders of 'Ali about the fate of Ibn Muljam. The tradition is copied from the book al-Riyarf, al-?iihira. Fol. 91 contains 'Ali's remarks about merchants in the markets and is told on the authority of Ibn Nubiita. Fol. 92 deals with qualities of different fruits and vegetables and is copied from Kitiib al-Firdaws (by Abu Shujii' Shirawaih al-Dailami I). Fol. 93 contains details about the manners of the Prophet and is copied from the K itab al-N ubuwwa. The tradition about manners of dining is given on the authority of Muhammed b. Ja'far al'Ai?imand is copied from the Kitab al-Ba§a'ir (fol. 94). The tradition about 'Ali on fol. 95 is taken from the book of ' Zuhd ' of the Commander of the Faithful. Fol. 96 contains traditions about blessings of sheep, cocks, and hens. Fol. 112 deals with begging forgiveness from God for sins and advice to the believers. Fol. 114 is about values of food and vegetables. Fols. 202-10 contain a treatise about prayers and invocations; the script is somewhat different, but is signed by the same copyist, Mirza 'Ali al-Sultani. The treatise was copied from the Manahij al-§alah fi-mukhta§ar al-Mi§bah. The last fols. (211-13) are a beginning of a treatise about repentance. The small MS (9 X 17 cm.) is written in a nice, clear miniature Persian script. On the margin the copyist added explanations of words and expressions. M. J. KISTER

Ādam: A Study of Some Legends in Tafsīr and Ḥadīth Literature

Adam.pdf ADAM: A STUDY OF SOME LEGENDS IN TAFSIR AND HADIT LITERATURE* M. J. KISTER To my wife Zahava Stories and tales about the prophets, and about pious, ascetic, and righteous people of bygone days, the so called qisas al-anbiya', circulated widely in the Muslim community already in the first century of Islam. The origin of these stories, as stated by T. Nagel, must be traced back to pre-Islamic Arabia; they were disseminated in that period by Jews and Christians. i The recently published papyrus of Wahb b. Munabbih,2 the papyri edited by the late Nabia Abbott3 and the papyri of Hirbet Mird edited by A. Grohmann bear evidence to the fact that already in that early period of Islam there were elaborate stories about prophets, sages, and saints which were widely circulated. The Tafsfr of Muqatil b. Sulayman5 and the Tafsfr of 'Abd al-Razzaq6 contain valuable material of the qisas al-anbiya', and reflect the way in which these stories were absorbed and incorporated into the exegetical compilations of the Quran. The important work ofIshaq b. Bisr(d ..206 H.) Mubtada' al-dunyawa-qisasal-anbiya', until recently considered lost,7 has been rediscovered and, I am told, is • One part of this pafer was published in A. Rippin (ed.), Approaches to the History 0f the Interpretation of The Qur'an, Oxford 1988. I T. Nagel, ~Kisasal-anbiya', Ef. 2 Raif Georges Khoury, Wahb b. Munabbih, Der Heidelberger Papyrus PSR Heid Arab 23, Wiesbaden 1972. 3 Nabia Abbott, Studies in Arabic Literary Papyri I (Historical texts) and II (Quranic Commentary and Tradition), Chicago 1957, 1967. 4 Adolf Grohmann, Arabic Papyri from Hirbet Mird, Louvain 1963. 5 Muqatil b. Sulayman, Tafsir al-Qur'an, MS Saray, Ahmet Ill, 74, I-II: idem, op. cit. vol. I, ed. 'Abdallah Mahmud Sahata, Cairo 1969 (including the first six suras). 6 'Abd al-Razzaq b. Hammam, Tafsir al-Qur'an, MS Cairo, Dar al-kutub tafsir 242. 7 See Nabia Abbott, op. cit., 1,46 sup.: (Document 2, Story of Adam and Eve) " ...there is a strong possibility that the papyrus with its rather 'unique'text could belong to this somewhat discredited and lost work ... " 114 M.J. Kister now being prepared for a critical edition.8 The importance of this early compilation was pointed out by T. Nagel in his Inaugural Dissertation, Die Qisas al-anbiya';9 Nagel devoted five pages to an examination of the personality of Ishaq b. Bisr and to a detailed scrutiny of the sources of the Mubtada'.10 The MS, which contains the first part of the composition, consists of 218 folios, and ends with the death of Abraham. Nagel's high view of the significance of this rich early source is entirely justified. The Quran contains a great many reports concerning prophets and sages, but these are usually formulated in vague terms and frequently do no more than mention an event or refer to a person who is not further specified. The transmitters of the tales aimed at widening the scope of the stories; they availed themselves of the lore contained in local traditions current in the Arab Peninsula in the period of the Gahiliyya, in Christian narratives concerning the life of Jesus, the Apostles, the martyrs and the monks, in Jewish Biblical legends, and in the utterances of sages and ascetics. 11 This huge mass of material started to infiltrate into the realm of /Jadi! and ta/sfr very early on in the Islamic period, and from the terse reports and utterances, combined with the additional material derived from other sources, a rich tapestry of lively and plastic narrative was woven. As the advent ofIslam and the mission of the prophet Muhammad were, according to the concepts of the Muslim community, part of God's predestination, as Mley were contained in God's prior knowledge and heralded by the prophets of all ages, the stories of the prophets became an integral part of the books of history, and were duly embedded in the preamble (the mubtada" bad', or ibtida') with which, as a rule, these compilatons began. The Muslim community was eager to learn of the biographies of the prophets, of the past, because the Prophet was identified I Bodleian Library. MS Huntingdon 388. For using this MS lowe thanks to Mrs. Ruth Lieber. who is working on its edition. 9 Tilman Nagel. Die Qi~~ al-anb~I'ii'. Ein Beilrag zur Arabischen lileralurgeschichle. Bonn 1967. 10 Nagel. Die Q~% pp. 113-118; and see additional details about Is\1aq b. Bisr: Ibn 'Adiyy. al-Kamil ft t!u'ajii' al-rigal, MS Saray. Ahmet III. 2943. I. fols. 118b-119a; Ibn J:libblin aI-Busti, al-Magrul;tfn. ed. Ma\1miid Ibrlihim Zliyid. Cairo 1976. I. 135-137; Ibn 'Asiikir. Ta'ri1} Dimasq (Tah Another tradition says that God revealed to him 40 17 See e.g., Nar aI-DIn al-Haytamt, Magma' al-zawii'id wa-manba' al-fawii'id, Beirut 1967, 1, 196, 197, VIII 198: ...a-nabiyyan kana adam? qiila: na am; al-Suyutl, Gamri1J. Bodley., Marsh 288, p. 27. MS 31 AI-Mas'iidr. AlJblir al-zamlin, ed. 'Abdallah Ismen aI-~awi. Cairo 1357/1938. p. 51. 26 27 Adam 119 after his disobedience and expulsion he spoke Syriac.P These injunctions and prohibitions seem to have formed the sari at Adam, the binding law of Adam. The Prophet is said to have acted before his Call according to the sarra of Adam.33 Before his death Adam summoned SIt, ordered him to hide his will (wa~iyya) from the progeny of QiibTland instructed him as to the injunctions and penalty laws enjoined by God, (al-sarii't" wa-/l)udud).l4 The Sri version of the transfer of the will is slightly more detailed. According to it, God ordered Adam to hand over to SI1 (=l;IibatulUih) the True Name of God tal-ism al-a'zami, the Ark of Covenant (rabur) in which the Knowledge (al-'ilm) and the Will (wG.,I"iyya) had to be deposited. Adam enjoined SI1to avoid contact with the progeny of QabI1.3s There are many reports about the ginn and the angels who ruled on earth before Adam and who had to be replaced by the rule of Adam. We have mentioned above the view that the announcement made by God that He was installing a halifa was directed at the angels who were in the company of Iblis. Abu Hayyan indeed says that God addressed the angels who fought the ginn on the side of Iblis: God intended to lift them to Heaven and replace them by Adam and his progeny. Abu Hayyan gives a short report about the rule of the ginn on earth and says that a force of angels was dispatched under the command of Iblis to fight them;" The reports recorded by Ishaq b. Bisr in his M ubtada' contain interesting details about the role of Iblis and give us an idea as to the notions concerning the ginn that were current in the early period of Islam. An account given on the authority of Ibn 'Abbas tells the following story about angels and ginn. The ginn were inhabitants of the earth, the angels were in the Heavens. Every heaven had its angels, who performed their special prayers and glorifications of God; the higher the Heaven, the more powerful was the worship, the glorifications, and prayer. According to some they inhabited the earth for 2,000 years, according to others, for only 40 years and "God knows the truth. "37 The other report recorded by Ishaq b. Bisr is also given on the authority of Ibn 'Abbas and contains some new details about the classes of the ginn and their activities. When God created Sawrna, the father of the ginn - it was he who was created from the smokeless fire (marig) - God said to Anonymous, Siyar al-anbiyd', MS Br. Mus. Or. 1510, fol. 19b. Ibn l;Iagar al-HaytamI. al-Faliiwii al-lJadiJiyya, Cairo 1390/1970. p. 153. J4 Anonymous, Siyar al-anbiyiP, MS Br. Mus. Or. 1510, fol. 22a. J5 AI-Mas'udI, I!biil al-wasiyya, Najaf 1374/1955, pp. 16-17. J6 Abu l;Iayyan, op. cit., I, 140 ult.-14I,1. I; al-SuYU!, 1.44--45; al-Kisii'i, 'Agii'ib al-malakia, MS Hebrew Univ., AR 8° 63, fol. 39b. 37 Is1,1aq Bisr, Mublada' al-dunyii wa-qisas al-anbiyii', MS Bodl. Huntingdon 388, fol. b. 38b. J2 JJ 120 M.J. Kisler him: "(say) what is your desire?" Sawmi answered: "I wish that we should see but remain unseen, that we should disappear in moist ground (al-lart1) and that our people of ripe age should be turned young." These wishes were granted: ginnfs see but remain unseen, the dead disappear in moist ground, a ginnf of ripe age never dies before being turned into a young ginn.)8 This report is followed by a short passage: When God created Adam He asked him about his desire; Adam said that he desired horses (al-l.Jayl), which were indeed granted to him.39 The story about the revolt of the ginn on earth and about the expedition of warriors from heaven against them is given in the following passage: God created the ginn and ordered them to inhabit and build up the earth. They did so and worshipped God for a very long time. But afterwards they became disobedient toward God and shed blood; amongst them was an angel called Ynsuf; they killed him. Then God dispatched against them a military force of the angels who dwelt in the Lower Heaven isamd' al-dunyii); this force was of the division of the l;rinn.40 Among them was Ps. A~ma'I, Qila~ al-anbiyii', MS Br. Mus. Or. 1493, fol. 5b; al-SibIr, Akam ai-margan, 18 p.85. 39 ls~liq b. Bisr, op. cit., fol. 38b; this and the following are recorded in Muhammad b. 'Abdalilih al-SibJrs Akom ol-morgon ji gorii'ibi l-olJbor wo-oJ.!komi I-gonn, ed. 'Abdalllih Muhammad al-Sadiq, Cairo 1376, pp. 9-11; the author quotes the source: Abu ~uqayfa Is~aq b. Bisr's al-Mubtada". The name of the "father ofthejinn" is given as Sawmayo; the editor remarks that Burhan al-Halabt records the name in his 'lqd al-margiin (see Brockelmann, GAL, II, 307, SIl, 82) as Sawmayli. And see al-Qalyubi, Nawadir, Cairo 1371/1955, p. 125 (whether the creation of the horse preceded the creation of Adam). And see al-$affuri, Nuzhat ol-magolis wa-muntahab al-na/ii'is, Beirut n.d., p. 227: when God showed Adam all the creations He allowed him to choose one of them; Adam chose the horse. Then he was told that he had chosen glory and power ('izz) for himself and for his progeny. And see Ibn ~agar al-Haytami, al-Fatowa al-I)adiliyya, p. 65. Some reports stress the differences between the ginn and the angels; the angels do not eat, drink or copulate; the ginn eat, drink and copulate (al-Haytamt, op. cit., p. 63). And see al-Haytami, op. cit., p. 71 (the ginn die like human beings; Iblis grows old, but turns to be young like a person of 30 years) . • 0 Isl)aq b. Bisr, op. cit., fols. 38b-39a; The hinn are defined as the lowest class of the ginn; they are nicknamed kiliib ai-ginn; al-SibIr, Akiim, p. 6 inf. and see al-FayriizabadI, al-Qomiis al-mul)f{, Cairo 1371/1952, IV, 218, s.v. I,Inn: wa-l-hinn bi-l-kasr hayyun mina I-ginni minhumu I-ki/obu l-sildu l-buhmu aw safilatu I-ginni wa-tfu
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