Some preliminary thoughts on the question of medieval qāḍī court archives

At the moment, I am enjoying Marina Rustow’s recently published tome The Lost Archive. Traces of a Caliphate in a Cairo Synagogue. The author is speaking to a number of points which interest me, but today I will concentrate on her discussion of Hallaq’s argument about archiving at qāḍīs’ courts.

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Time to talk about book stamps

Instinctively, what comes to mind when you hear the word ‘book stamp’? Is it an Ex Libris with a careful inscription and perhaps an illustration as well? Or is it a functional tool that serves basically the same function as an ownership note? In contrast to those, there is little literature on book stamps, and maybe that is why this post deserves to be written—and published?

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The Umayyad Mosque: A Review of sorts

One, if not the, major publication on the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus was published by the French Institute (Ifpo) in 2018: Le waqf de la mosquée des Omeyyades de Damas. Le manuscrit ottoman d’un inventaire mamelouk établi en 816/1413. It is a study and edition of a 1518 document on the mosque’s endowment which, in turn, had been established in 1413. This book is massive at 741 pages and the result of the collaboration of three eminent experts in the field: Mathieu Eychenne, Astrid Meier, and Élodie Vigouroux. But because the book is in French, it might not have received all the attention it deserves. Let’s change that.

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