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Polosin V. To the Method of Describing Illuminated Arabic Manuscripts // Manuscripta Orientalia. Vol. 1, No 2, October 1995. Pp. 16-21.

The publication of two fine catalogues — by F. Deroche and by G. Schoeler — marks the beginning of a new stage in descriptive arabistic archaeography, the development of a new branch of this discipline, practically non-existent before but prepared, sometimes consciously, sometimes by intuition, by several publications appearing during the last decades. We bear in mind the shift of archaeographic interests from texts represented by some particular copies to manuscripts as they are, which means a basic renewal of the object described in catalogues of Arabic manuscripts.

A period of some confuse of the genre producing a series of catalogues with too simplified descriptive schemes which preceded the birth of this new tendency was followed by the appearance of descriptive works marked with certain innovations. This tendency is most clearly revealed in the catalogues by F. Deroche and G. Schoeler. Due to the specific interests of their authors and, to some extent — to a great number of codicologically significant photographic illustrations supplementing the descriptive part, these catalogues became really significant as publications of objects of material and artistic culture. Without these photographic supplements the catalogues would have lost much not only in volume but first of all in their scientific and methodological significance.

Among the practical results of the appearance of catalogues, where much space is dedicated to the description of decorative elements present in manuscripts, was the understanding (which came, partly, due to their appearance) of how little has been done so far by arabistic archaeography in the field of describing illuminated manuscripts...


The entire paper


Arabic manuscripts
arabistic archaeography
Manuscripta Orientalia, selected papers

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