Single Folio from a Qur’an

ink, gold and opaque watercolour on vellum; 19th-century borders of pink and gold-sprinkled dark-blue paper

copied in maghribi script, incidentals in Kufic; 9 lines to the page

29 x 22.6cm

The folio is from a dispersed manuscript, which must have been one of the finest North African Qur’ans of the 13th and 14th centuries and was very probably a royal commission in Morocco, or even in Nasrid Granada. Its fine script is written in gold with black outlines, with handsome verse markers and even more elaborate marginal roundels indicating each five and ten verses. Differences in the script of the surviving pages suggest that the Qur’an may have been the work of two or more scribes.

D. James, The Master Scribes. Qur’ans of the 10th to 14th Centuries AD, The Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, volume II, London 1992, cat.53, pp.214–15.

J.M. Rogers, The Arts of Islam. Masterpieces from the Khalili Collection, London 2010, cat.67, pp.78–9.