A Unique Qur’an Manuscript Copied by Abdullah al-Sayrafi (D. after 746H/1345-46AC) The Artistic Features of the Calligraphy of Abdullah Al-Sairafi: An Analytical Study

Nassar M. Maansour


Abdullah al-Sayrafi is one of the most distinguished calligraphers of the 8th and 9th H/14th and 15th AC centuries who followed the way of Yaqut al-Musta'simi (d. 698H/1298AC) and helped spreading it in the eastern part of the Islamic world. His way of writing was adopted by Sheikh Hamdullah al-Amasi (d. 926H/1520AC); the head calligrapher of the Ottoman school of calligraphy which is considered the most mature and popular at the present time.
We know not much about the life of al-Sayrafi same as for most of the 8th century calligraphers particularly those who were known as ‘the six masters’. Nevertheless, the few and rare manuscripts written by him are obvious evidences on his high mastership.
This paper presents a comprehensive study of the life and works of al-Sayrafi through what calligraphy references have offered of information with an attempt to list down what remains of his writings. It analyses his way in writing naskh script which he mastered the most through presenting detailed samples of his unique manuscript which have recently appeared in some private collections. It includes an index for the form of the individual letters in naskh script which were extracted from the manuscript.


Sayrafi, Naskh script, Quran manuscript, the six masters, pupils of Yaqut, Chain of calligraphy.

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