Monday, March 20, 2006

US Library of Congress - Global Gateway: Islamic Manuscripts from Mali Collection

US Library of Congress - Global Gateway: Islamic Manuscripts from Mali Collection - This site features 22 manuscripts from the Mamma Haidara Commemorative Library and the Library of Cheick Zayni Baye of Boujbeha, both in Timbuktu, Mali.

One example is Risalah ila al-Qaba'il al-Mutaqatilin (Letter to the Warring Tribes). In it, the author urges warring factions to make harmony and live in peace. He supports his argument with quotations from the Koran and examples from the practice of Muhammad and his companions.

From the site:

The manuscripts presented online are displayed in their entirety and are an exemplary grouping that showcase the wide variety of subjects covered by the written traditions of Timbuktu, Mali, and West Africa.

The manuscripts are written in various styles of the Arabic script. These styles were developed in Timbuktu and the surrounding regions of Mali and West Africa.

There are special presentations of maps, photographs, and other information about the Mamma Haidara Commemorative Library. These presentations provide a fuller picture of the culture and society which produced and preserved these valuable artifacts of human endeavor.

Digital images of the manuscripts were donated by Abdel Kader Haidara, owner and director of the Mamma Haidara Commemorative Library. The Library of Congress will include additional manuscripts in the future as new digital images are received.

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