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Qisas al Anbiya' - Select Bibliography


قصص الانبياء

Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā'

Stories of the Prophets

Select Bibliography of Primary  Arabic, Persian, Turkish and other Qisas al-anbiya texts and secondary writings related thereto.

IN PROGRESS (Ohio Univ. 2007-8).

Stephen Lambden UC Merced.

In progress and under revision 2014-6 (UCMerced).


Among the earliest, now lost examples of Islamic history writing are a number of works detailing the lives of pre‑Islamic prophet figures.  In various ways they were seen as typologically anticipating and predicting the advent of Muhammad and Islam. Attributed to Ka`b al‑Aḥbār (see below), for example, are an early  Book of Adam and Eve,  a Wafāt  Mūsā  (Passing of Moses) and a Sīrat al‑Iskandar  (Life of Alexander). Wahb b. Munabbih and others produced similar works (Donner, 1998:299‑306)  Early sagas about the Ḥimyarī kings mixed with tales of pre‑Islamic biblical and other figures including Abraham, Noah, Luqmān son of `Ād, Khiḍr, and Bilqīs (the Queen of Sheba) are apparent in Wahb’s K. Al‑mulūk  wa’l‑akhbār al‑māḍīn  (Wahb, K. Tījān, 1347/1928) as extant in the recension of Ibn Hīshām  (d. 213/828) entitled K. al‑Tījān fī mulūk Ḥimyār  (The Book of the Crowned Kings of Ḥimyār). Norris has referred to this work as a "rich mine of Arabian fable, legend and garbled chronicles" in which can be seen "the influence of Rabbinical, Syriac and Persian lore in both poetry and prose" (CHAL 1:385).

Listed below in a very loose chronological order are various Arabic, Persian and Turkish Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā' (Stories of the Prophets) primary sources as well as related academic and other articles. I am now in the process of correcting, updating and supplementing this very provisional list of pertinent primary and secondary sources.

Wahb ibn Munabbih, Abū `Abd-Allāh Wahb b. Munabbih (b. Sana c. 34 / 654-5 - d. c. 110 / 728  or 114 114 / 732?).

  • Kitab al-Isrā’īliyyāt [lost ?]
  • Qiṣaṣ al‑anbiyā’  [lost ?]

Wahb ibn Munabbih was probably a Yemenite Jew of Persian descent. He was an important  early Islamic authority on Abrahamic scripture and legend, especially South Arabian lore. Though perhaps another name for part of his K. al-mubtadāī (Book of Creationī), K. al-Isrā’īliyyāt is the title of one of his several lost books (Duri, 1983:128f). It appears to have been a work whose contents were acquired from Yemenite Jewish hakhamim and Christians (Hirschberg, EJ16:241-2). These works of Wahb b. Munabbih are attested as early as 229/843-4 (Rosenthal, 1968:335 fn.2) and in even earlier streams of the Tafsīr tradition. Other works evidence his wide interest in Isrā’īliyyāt as Abrahamic fables, folklore and history. Among works ascribed to him is a Ḥikmat ("Wisdom book") associated with the sage Luqmān, a version of the Zabūr (Psalter) entitled Mazāmīr Dāwūd (Psalms of David) and a Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā’ (Stories of the Prophets) work.
Also attributed to Wahb b. Munabbih is a Tafsīr (Q. commentary) and a Sīrat al-nabī (Treatise on the Life of the Prophet), a Maghāzī Rasūl Allāh (Account of military expeditions of the Messenger of God) and a compilation entitled K. al-qadr (Book of Destiny). A recension of his K. al-Mulūk .. min Ḥimyar... (The Book of the Himyarite Kings...) by Ibn Hishām, known as the K. al-Tijān fī mulūk al-Ḥimyar (The Book of the Crowned Kings of the Himyarites) has been described as "a rich mine of
Arabian fable, legend and garbled chronicles" in which may be seen "the powerful influence of Rabbinical, Syriac and Persian lore in both poetry and prose." (Norris, CHAL 1:385). Muhammad is said to have stated that God bestowed ḥikma (wisdom) upon Wahb b. Munabbih (Ibn Sa`d, Tabaqāt, V:395). Numerous respected Muslim authorities, including Ibn Isḥāq, al-Ṭabarī and al-Kisāī cite him approvingly though some modern Muslim anti-Isrā’īliyyāt authorities regard him as unreliable. Adang has recently referred to Wahb b. Munabbih as the "foremost transmitter of biblical
narratives" (1996:10).

See Wahb b. Munabbih, K. al-Tijān ; Norris, CHAL 8:381. On Wahb see GAL. Sup.1:101-2+ refs. ; Sezgin, GAL I:306-7; Horowitz, EI IV:1084-5; Guillaume, 1955:xv, xviii; Khoury, 1972; Abbott, 1977; Hirschberg, EJ 16:241-2 [CD]; Schwartzbaum, 1982: 58-61; Duri, 1983:30-32+ index; Brinner EAL2:801-2; Adang,1996:10-12; Donner, 1998 [index]).


 Ibn al-Mulaqqin, 'Umar ibn 'Alī (ADD /ADD).

  • Qisaş al-Anbiyā' wa-Manāqib al-Qabã'il min al-Tawḍīh li֊-Sharḥ al-Jāmi' al-Ṣaḥīḥ. ed. Ahmad Hajj Muhammad 'Uthman. Mecca: 1998.

Ibn Wathīma = Abū Rifā`a al-Farisi `Umāra Ibn Wathīma al-Fasawi (d. 289/902).

  • K.Bad` = K. Bad’ al‑khalq wa qiṣaṣ al‑anbiyā’.  ed. Raif Georges Khoury as Les légendes prophétiques dans l’Islam.  Wiesbaden:Otto Harrassowitz.1978*
  • 1978 K. Bad’ al-khalq wa qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā’.  Trans. Raif Georges Khoury as Les légendes prophétiques dans l’Islam.  Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz*
  • Kitâb bad' al- khalq wa-qiṣaṣ al-anbiyâ', trans. R.G. Khoury, in  Les légendes prophétiques dans l'Islam depuis le Ier jusq'au IIIe siècle de l'Hégire, avec édition critique du texte, Wiesbaden 1978.
  • [2000] `Umāra b. Wathīma.  EI2 Vol X.  835‑836.*

Kinanī, Maḥmūd ( ADD/ADD).

  • Mizaj al-Tasnīm fī Qiṣaş al-Anbiyā' wa'l-Mursalīn wa mā Ba'da Dhālika ilā   Yawmina Hādhā, ed. 'Abdallah Farûqî. al-Zarq'a',  1987.

Mujmal al-tawarikh wa'l-qiṣaṣ. (written c. 520/1126).

  • Mujmal al-tawarikh wa'l-qiṣaṣ.  ed. Mahmoud Omidsalar and Iraj Ashar. Tehran: 2005. Composed c. 520/1126 (so M. Qazvini). A world history from creation until the year 520/1126. Facsimile reproduction of a mss. copied in 751/1350-1 and in the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin Preussischer Kulturbesitz. Orìentabteilung (HS or 2371)

"Persian Manuscripts in Facsimile NO.1 In Memory of M.Taqi Bahār MUJMAL AL-TAWARIKH WA-'LQISAS Composed circa 520 AH (1126 AD), copied in 751 AH (1350 AD) Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin ֊ Preussischer Kulturbesitz. Orìentabteilung (HS or 2371) Funding by Society for Promotion of Persian Culture (S. P. P. C), Indiana.  Editors Mahmoud Omidsalar JFK Memorial Library California State University, Los Angeles.  Iraj Atshar Tehran University (Emeritus)".

  • Other mss. of this work are found, for example, [1] in Paris - Bibliotheque Nation  (Ancien fonds Persan, 62) dating to 813/1410; [2] in Dublin - Chester Beaty Lib. dated 823/1420 and [3] in Germany - the Heldelberg Library  dated 906/1500 CE.

al-Kisāʼī, ʻAlī ibn Ḥamzah (d. XXX/804-5??).

كسائي , علي بن حمزة.

  • متشابه القرآن : أول معجم مفهرس للقرآن الكريم
  • لأبي الحسن علي بن حمزة الكسائي = Mutashābih al-Qurʼān : awwal muʻjam mufahras lil-Qurʼān al-Karīm / li-Abī al-Ḥasan ʻAlī ibn Ḥamzah al-Kisāʼī ; ḥaqqaqahu wa-qaddama la-hu Ṣubayḥ al-Tamīmī..Ṭarābulus, al-Jamāhīrīyah al-ʻUẓmá : Kullīyat al-Daʻwah al-Islāmīyah wa-Lajnat al-Ḥifāẓ ʻalá al-Turāth al-Islāmī, 1402/ ‬1994. 224pp.
  • al-Kāfī fī qirāʼat al-Imām al-Kasāʼī / iʻdād khirrījāt al-dufʻah al-ḥādiyah wa-al-arbaʻūn lil-faṣl al-dirāsī al-awwal lil-ʻām 1417 H, Jāmiʻat al-Imām Muḥammad ibn Saʻūd al-Islāmīyah, Kullīyat Uṣūl al-Dīn, Qism al-Qurʼān wa-ʻUlūmih. al-Riyāḍ : Lajnat Aṣdiqāʼ al-Marḍá bi-al-Ghurfah al-Tijārīyah bi-al-Riyāḍ, 1419/ ‬1998. 506pp.‬

Eisenberg, Isaac, [ed. 1922-3]  كسائي، محمد ابن عبدالله، ت. القرن ١١. ايزنبرغ، اسحق

  • Die Propheten legenden des Muhammad ben `Abdallah al-Kisa'i. Kirchhain : Max Schmersow, 1898.
  • Vīta Prophetarum auctore Muhammed ben 'Abdallah al-Kisa'i, pars secunda. Lugduni-Batavorum: E. J. Brill, 1923. *
  • ed. Eisenberg, Vita Prophetarumauctore Muhammed ben 'Abdallah al-Kisa'i, Lugduni-Batavorum: E. J. Brill.  2 vols. 1922-3. *
  • [1971-2] Hebrew :Jerusalem : Aviva Shusman (listed in World Cat.)
  • ‏סיפורי התנ״ך במסורת המוסלמית :‏ ‏מבחר טכסטים מתוך ״קצץ אלאנביא״ מאת אלכסאאי ; לתרגיל של ... אביבה שוסמן.
  • Sipure ha-Tanakh ba-masoret ha-Muslemit : mivḥar ṭeksṭim mi-tokh "Ḳitsats al-anbiya" me-et al-Kisaʼi : le-targil shel Avivah ‏אלכסאאי. Muḥammad ibn ʻAbd Allāh Kisāʼī; Aviva Schussman.  Publisher: ‏האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים, הפקולטה למדעי הרוח, המכון ללימודי אסיה ואפריקה ,‏ Yerushalayim : ha-Universiṭah ha-ʻIvrit bi-Yerushalayim, ha-Faḳulṭah le-madaʻe ha-ruaḥ-- ha-Makhon le-limude Asyah ṿe-Afriḳah, 732 [1971 or 1972]

Thackston, W. (Jr.) trans.

  • The Tales of the Prophets of al-Kisa'i. Translated and annotated by W. M. Thackston Jr. Boston: Twayne, 1978.
  •  Trans. al-Kisai The Tales of the Prophets (Qisas al-Anbiya') of al‑Kisa'i.  Boston:Twayne Publishers. 1976. *
  • Trans. al-Kisai The Tales of the Prophets (Qisas al-Anbiya') of al‑Kisa'i. Kazi Publications, 1997. 378pp. ISBN-10: 187103101X ISBN-13: 978-1871031010
  •  [ed.1998] بدء الخلق وقصص الأنبياء بكسائي   
  • = Kitab Bad` al-Khalq wa Qiṣaṣ al-Anbiyā' li'l-Kisā'ī. ed. / Dr. Ṭāhir ibn Muhammad al-`Amwarī / Dr. Ṭāhir ibn Sālimah. Tunis : Dār Nuqūsh `Arabiyya, 1998 (447pp.) ISBN: 997376451X *
  •  [ed.2004]  كسائي، محمد ابن عبدالله. تاليف أبي عبد الرحمن الكسآئي 

= Muḥammad ibn ʻAbd Allāh Kisāʼī :

  • قصص وموالد الانبيآء  
  • Qiṣaṣ wa mawālid al-anbīyāʼ [ed.]  ؛ تحقيق خالد شبل ed. Khālid Shibl. Beirut: Dar al-Kutub al-`Ilmiyya, 2004.  ISBN: 2745139819 9782745139818

al-Kisā'ī, Muhammad b. `Abd-Allah : [d. 10th/11th cent. CE?)

كسائي، محمد ابن عبدالله،

[wrongly identified with `Ali b. Hamza, d. c. 189/805 ].

  • [ed. 1851?] كتاب المبتدات في خلق الارضين والسموات واحوال النبيين والمرسلين
  • Kitāb al-Mubtadaʼāt fī khalq al-araḍīn wa al-samawāt wa aḥwāl al-nabīyīn wa al-mursalīn
     كسائي، محمد بن عبد الله للشيخ الامام العالم العلامة مفتي المة الكسائي = Muḥammad ibn ʻAbd Allāh li'l-Shaykh al-imam  al-`alim al-`allamah Mufti Alma al-Kisāʼī  (sic.) Publisher: ?  [1851] ?? Listed in World Cat.

Ali ibn al-Ḥasan ibn Hibat Allah ibn `Abd Allah, Thiqat al-Din, Abū al-Qasim. 

Ibn `Asākir al-Dimashqi al-Shafi`i al-Ash`ari (499-571/ d. 1175)

Ta'rīkh Madīnat Dimashq (=TMD).

"One of the fascinating aspects of Ibn ʿAsākir’s Taʾrīkh madīnat Dimashq... is that he includes no fewer than twenty-nine biblical and extrabiblical prophetic or sacred figures in his Taʾrīkh madīnat Dimashq—twenty-three men and six women. What we have, then, with respect to pre-Islamic sacred women are biographies of Eve [TMD 69:101-111], Sarah [TMD, 69:180-90] Hagar [TMD 70:144-6], 20 Mary [TMD 70:75-122],  Raḥma (Job’s wife) [TMD 69:120-8], and Bilqīs (queen of Sheba) [TMD 69:67-78]." (Lindsay 

Important papers and details of the publications history of this extensive and extremely important Arabic work can be read in  James E. Lindsay (ed), Ibn `Asakir And Early Islamic History, Princeton, New Jerdey: The Darwin Press, 2001. See especially, Suleiman A. Mourad, `Appendix A. Publication History of the TMD' pp.127-133.

Ta'rīkh Madīnat Dimashq. ed. `Umar ibn Gharama al-`Amrawi and `Ali Shiri. 80 vols. Beirut: Dar al-Fikr, 1995-2001. 

  • CDRom version  of the above was published in Amman (Jordan), Dar al-Turath, 200?.

  • Ta'rīkh Madīnat Dimashq. ed. `Alī Āshūr (76 vols. in) 40 vols. . Beirut: Dar al-Ihya al-Turath al-`Arabi, 2001. 

 Ibn Manẓūr (d. XXXX/1311)

Mukhtaṣar taʾrīkh dimashq li-Ibn ʿAsākir, ed. Rawhīyah al-Nahhās, Muḥammad Mutiʿ al-Ḥāfiz, and Riyāḍ ʿAbd al-Ḥamīd, 29 vols. Damascus: Dār al-fikr, 1984-91.

    Fada'il ashab al-hadith i (11 vols);  Fadl al-Jumu`a;  Fadl Quraysh; Fada'il al-Siddiq, Fada'il Makka; Fada'il al-Madina; Fada'il Bayt al-Muqaddas, Fada'il `Ashura';  Fada'il al-Muharram; Fada'il Sha`ban.

    Lindsay, James E. 

    • “Caliphal and Moral Exemplar? ʿAlī Ibn Asākir’s Treatment of Yazīd b. Muʿāwiya,” Der Islam, 74 (1997): 256-7.

    • `ʿAlī Ibn ʿAsākir as a Preserver of Qiṣaṣ al-Anbiyāʾ: The Case of David b. Jesse,” Studia Islamica, 82 (1995): 47-50.

    Mourad, Suleiman A.

    •  “Jesus According to Ibn ʿAsākir,” in Ibn ʿAsākir and Early Islamic History, 24-43.

    Little, Donald P.

    Fada'il Bayt al-Maqdis wa al-Khalil wa-fadal'il al-Sham. Reviews the book `Fada'il Bayt al-Maqdis wa al-Khalil wa fada'il al-Sham,' by Abu al-Ma ali al-Musharraf Ibn al-Murajja Ibn Ibrahim al-Maqdis, edited by Ofer Livne-Kafri. in Journal of the American Oriental Society; Jul-Sep 1999, Vol. 119 Issue 3, pp. 549.

      Morray, David

       Review of  `Fada'il Bayt al-Magdis wa-al-Khalil wa-fadal'il al-Sham,' edited by Ofer Livne-Kafri  in  Journal of Semitic Studies; Autumn 96, Vol. 41 Issue 2, pp. 360,-3. 
      ISSN: 0022-4480

        Kennedy, Hugh (Review)

        Abu 'l-Ma'ali al-Musharraf b. al-Murajja b. Ibrahim al-Maqdisi

        • Fada'il bayt al-maqdis wa al-khalil wa-fada'il al-sham by Ofer Livne-Kafri,  Review in Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London), Vol. 62, No. 1 (1999), p. 206.

        Ibn Kathir = 'Imād al-Dīn Abu'l-Fiḍā' Ismā'il ibn 'Urnar ibn Kathīr (701/774 = 1301-1373).

        ابن كثير، إسماعيل بن عمر


        Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā’ (Stories of the Prophets).

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā’. Beirut:  Dār al Qalam. 1405/1985. 
        • Qisas =  Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā’. Beirut:  Dār al Qalam. 1405/1985.  *
        • Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyāʼ  lil-Imām Abī al-Fidāʼ Ismāʻīl ibn Kathīr ; taḥqīq Muṣṭafá ʻAbd al-Wāḥid. [Saudi Arabia] : 1408/1988.
        • Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyāʼ lil-Imām Abī al-Fidāʼ Ismāʻīl ibn Kathīr ; taḥqīq wa murājaʻah nukhbah min al-ʻulamāʼ, bi-ishrāf al-nāshir. Published Beirut : Dār al-Qalam, 1991. 634pp.
        • Qiṣaṣ al‑`anbiyā’, ed. Yūsuf 'Alī  Bidīwī.  Damascus: 1992.
        • Qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā' - lil-Imām `Imād al-Dīn Abī al-Fidā' Ismā`īl ibn Kathīr al-Qurashī al-Dimashqī ; i`dād wa taqdīm Muḥammad `Abd al-Raḥmān Mar`ashlī. 2 vols. in 1. Beirut : Dār Iḥyā' al-Turāth al-`Arabī, 1417/ ‬1997.‬
        • Qiṣaṣ al‑`anbiyā’, ed. Muhammad Ahmad `Abd al-Azīz.  Cairo: Dar al-Hadith, 1423/2002. (520pp.). *

        Extant English Translations are often unreliable including,

        • Stories of the Prophets by Imam Ibn Kathir... Translated by Mustafa Gemeiah Office of the Grand Imam Sheikh al-Azhar edited by  A.A. Mischler, Mansoura, Egypt: El-Nour, n.d. (c. 1998) (444pp.). *
        • Stories of the Prophets, Qisaasul Anbiya [sic.] Imam Abi al-Fidaa Isma'il bin Kathir (701-114 H) Revised by Ash Shaikh Khalil al-Mays trans. Duraid & Faiz Fatoohi. Delhi: Adam Publishers and Distributors,  rev. ed. 1999+2001 (419pp.). *

        al-Bidāya wa-l-nihāya ("The Genesis and the Culmination [ of History]")

        • al-Bidaya wal-Nihāya, vols. 1-2. Beirut: Maktabat al-Ma'arif, 1966.
        • Bidaya = al-Bidāya wa-l-nihāya, 14 vols., Beirut/ Riyadh 1966; repr. Beirut 1988
        • Bidaya = al Bidāyah wa al nihāyah. Ed. Aḥmad Abu Māḥim et. al. n.p.: Dār al kutub al ‘ilmiyyah, 1992/1412.
        • Bidaya = al-Bidāya wa-l-nihāya, 14 vols., Beirut/ Riyadh 1966; repr. Beirut 1988.
        • al-Bidāya wa'l-nihāya. 2 vols. Beirut: Dar Ibn Hazm. 1426/2005. Vol.1 = 1748+30pp. Vol.2 = 1749-3488pp.. ISBN 9953-81-055-9. *

        al-Joveiri / Juvayrī [Ḥuwayzi?] Muhammad (fl. 4th/10th cent. CE??) = Muhammad ibn al-Ḥasan al-Daydūzamī (13th cent. CE).

        See Tehrani, Dhari`a 17: 576; Marzolph 2001:257-8

        Erroneously considered a Persian translation of the Arabic Qisas al-anbiya' of al-Kisa'i,  this is probably the  7th/13th cent. Persian work of Muhammad ibn al-Ḥasan al-Daydūzamī.  Lithograph editiond were printed at least  4 times in 19th cent. Persia. and India :

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā. Pub. Ghulam Husayn Shirazi, Zayb al-Abidin ibn Aqa Hadi al-Khvansari, 1276/1859.

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā. Tabriz: Mulla Hasan ibn Aqa Muhammad, 1289/1872.

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā  Tabriz:  Aqa Mir Mustafa, printer `Ali-Kuli-Khan, 1297/1879.

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā. ??  1307/1889.

        • Qiṣaṣ al anbiyā' wa siyar al-mulk.

        • Nafā'is al-arā'is wa qiṣaṣ al-anbiyā' (Gems of the Brides and Stories of the Prophets) an alternative title to the above (see Milstein 1999:12-13).

        Kister, M. J.

        • 1972  `Haddithu 'an israila we‑la haraja: a Study of an Early Tradition,` IOS 2: 215‑39. *
        • 1988 `Legends in Tafsīr and Hadīth Literature: the Creation of Adam and Related Stories,’ in Rippin, ed., Approaches to the History of the Interpretation of the Qur'an, 82‑114. * 
        • 1974 `On the Papyrus of Wahb b. Munabbih,’  BSOAS 37:  545‑71.*
        • `The Sirah Literature," in Beeston et al., eds., CHAL 1:  352‑57.*

         Knappert, Jan,

        • Islamic legends: Histories of the Heroes, Saints, and Prophets of Islam, 2 vols. Leiden: E.J. Brill: 1985.

        Kohlborg, Etan.

        • 1980 `Some Shī`ī Views of the Antidiluvian World' Studia  Islamica  LII:  41‑66. *
        • 1991  Belief and Law in Imāmī Shī`ism. Aldershot: Variorum Reprints [Roman numbers = article].  *          
        • 1992  A Medieval Muslim Scholar At work, Ibn ṭāwūs and his library  (= Islamic philosophy theology and science, Texts and studies Ed. H. Daiber and D. Pingree Vol. XII. Leiden:E.J.Brill.*

        Kraus, Paul.

        • 1931 `Hebräische und syrische Zitate in ismā`īlitischen Schriften’, Der Islam   19 (1931), 243‑263*

        Kugel, James L.

        • The Bible As It Was. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1997.

        • In Potiphar's House: The liitcr/'rc/i/'c Lifi՛ of Biblical Te.\ts. San Francisco: HarperCollins. 1990.

        Lassner, J.

        • 1993 Demonizing the Queen of Sheba. Chicago: University of Chicago  Press.*

        • 1993a`The "One Who had knowledge of the Book" and the "Mightiest Name" of God. Qur’ānic Exegesis and Jewish Cultural Artifacts’ in Nettler (ed.): 59‑74.*
        • 1993b  Demonizing the of the Queen of Sheba, Boundaries of Gender and Culture in Medieval Islam. Chicago, London: The University of Chicago Press. *

         Lewis, B

        • 1938 `An Isma’ili Interpretation of the Fall of Adam’ BSOAS 9 (1938), 691‑704. + P.M. Holt ( eds.). *

        Lindsay, James E. 

        • 'Ali Ibn 'Asakir as a Preserver of "Qisas al-Anbiya'": The Case of David b. Jesse' in Studia Islamica, No. 82 (1995), pp. 45-82.

        Milstein, Rachel Karin Ruhrdanz, Barbara Schmitz,

        • Stories of the Prophets...Mazda Publishers, 1999: vii+261pp., 45 color plates, 72 black & white plates, bibl., index. Islamic Art & Architecture Series, No. 8. ISBN:1-56859-064-4 (cloth) ( $65.00)

        "This volume presents a detailed iconographic and stylistic study of a group of profusely illustrated manuscripts, from 1570's-80's. This group comprises 21 copies of three Persian texts, all entitled Stories of the Prophets. The lives and deeds of mostly biblical figures, considered by Muslims as prophets, are mentioned briefly in the Koran. They are then developed and enlarged upon in the writings of religious scholars, historians, sufi poets, and popular storytellers. The variation of literary details reflect the differences between Muslim religious trends and the debts of Islamic thinking and art, to pre-Islamic traditions and the syncretism of these various traditions with Islamic theology.
        Textual and visual analysis in this book show that in spite of the language and the Persian style of decoration, most of the manuscripts were copied and illustrated by a group of unidentified painters in the Ottoman Empire rather than Iran. The iconographical study reveals ideological programs and cliche typical of the Ottoman polemical discourse with its Shi`ite rival in Iran, and its Christian neighbors in the West.
        The non-royal style of the miniatures suggests the existence of a hitherto unknown Ottoman school of painting, either in the provincial town, or in the bazaar of Istanbul. It raises new questions and offers new ideas concerning the organization of non-royal workshops and the role of religious art in various social cycles. These questions of cultural identity and social context of the illustrated manuscripts are studied in this volume. Also discussed are a literary and visual presentation of the individual stories, a reconstruction of a hypothetical model for the iconographic cycle, and a checklist of the manuscripts." (DJ).

        Nagel, T.

        • Die Qisas al‑anbiya'. Ein Beitrag zur arabischen Literaturgeschichte. Bonn: Selbstverlag des orientalischen Seminars der Universitat Bonn. 1967 .*

         Nagel, Tilman.

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