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Book Review: "Corrections in Early Qur'an Manuscripts"

Reader comment on item: Developments in Syria and Turkey
in response to reader comment: More disasters for our dear Fork and this time from Tafsir al-Jalalyin and Q7:169

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), Jan 7, 2020 at 11:30

Dr. Pipes,

The author of the book is Daniel Alan Brubaker, Ph.D. He is a "scholar in the history of the Qur'an particularly its early manuscript tradition."

Dr. Brubaker examined very early Quranic manuscripts located at Bibliotheque nationale de France, Paris, Cairo al-Hussein Mosque, Dar al-Mukhatatat, San'a', Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, National Library of Russia, St. Petersburg, Russia and Topkapi Palace Library, Istanbul, Turkey.

He defines "corrections" in a manuscript as: "physical changes" in the manuscript.

A correction can be:

1. Something added (insertion).
2. Something removed (erasure).
3. Replaced (erasure overwritten, taping overwritten or overwriting without erasure).
4. Or (perhaps) hidden

He was able to find many such corrections in the manuscripts that he examined. However, in this book he examines only 20 corrections

Then he explains his methodology including how these manuscripts are dated, provenance and "consonantal variants"

Here is an example and the reader can check a copy of the Cairo Qur'an (1923-1924) 42:5

In the Cairo Qur'an it is:

ان الله هو الغفور الرحيم

Or "and Allah is the forgiving the merciful"

However in the manuscript it is

ان الله هو الغفور

or " and Allah is the Forgiving"

And the word الرحيم or the Merciful was added to the text.

He suspects that the word الرحيم was added to the text because "its absence throws off the standard rhythm as the expectation is usually for a pair of attributes of Allah. He also believes that the word added or الرحيم or al-Rahim fits the rhyme pattern of the other verses in this chapter.

So much for the claim by Muslim apologists, and to quote Daniel B. Wallace: "the Qur'an's manuscript tradition is pristine and perfect, without ever a mark out of place, much less a variation involving whole words or phrases. Brubaker's fascinating study demonstrates that this is not quite so."

I would like to add that Gerd Puin wrote in his review of the book: "Familiarity with Arabic is not even necessary to follow his arguments."

However, I urge the reader to have a copy of the Cairo Qur'an in Arabic for reference

Great book and I give it 5 stars

PS: Here is a video of a recent interview of Prof Brubaker by CIRA International


I urge your readers to subscribe to CIRA's Youtube page. They do amazing work and they deserve our support, and no I do not work for or speak on behalf on CIRA International.


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