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Reading the Qur'ān in Latin Christendom, 1140-1560 / Thomas E. Burman.

By: Burman, Thomas E.
Material type: TextTextSeries: Material texts: Publisher: Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007Description: vi, 317 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 9780812240184; 0812240189.Subject(s): Koran -- Translating | Koran. Latin -- Versions -- History | Koran -- Criticism, interpretation, etc. -- Europe -- History -- Middle Ages, 600-1500 | Koran -- Criticism, interpretation, etc | Koran -- Reading -- Europe -- History | Koran -- Manuscripts -- History | Christianity and other religions -- Islam | Church history -- Middle Ages, 600-1500DDC classification: 297.1/22571
Contents:
A Note on Matters of Form Introduction: Qur'an Translation, Qur'an Manuscripts, and Qur'an Reading in Latin Christendom Translation, Philology, and Latin Style Latin-Christian Qur'an Translators, Muslim Qur'an Exegesis Polemic, Philology, and Scholastic Reading in the Earliest Manuscript of Robert of Ketton's Latin Qur'an New Readers, New Frames: The Later Manuscript and Printed Versions of Robert of Ketton's Latin Qur'an The Qur'an Translations of Mark of Toledo and Flavius Mithridates: Manuscript Framing and Reading Approaches The Manuscripts of Egidio da Viterbo's Bilingual Qur'an: Philology (and Polemic?) in the Sixteenth Century Conclusion: Juan de Segovia and Qur'an Reading in Latin Christendom, 1140-1560 Four Translations of 22:1-5 Abbreviations and Short Titles
Review: "Most of what we know about attitudes toward Islam in the medieval and early modern West has been based on polemical treatises against Islam written by Christian scholars preoccupied with defending their own faith and attacking the doctrines of Islam. Christian readings of the Qur'an have in consequence typically been depicted as a tedious and one-dimensional exercise in anti-Islamic hostility." "In Reading the Qur'an in Latin Christendom, 1140-1560, Thomas E. Burman looks instead to a different set of sources: the Latin translations of the Qur'an made by European scholars and the manuscripts and early printed books in which these translations circulated. Using these largely unexplored materials, Burman argues that the reading of the Qur'an in Western Europe was much more complex. While their reading was certainly often focused on attacking Islam, scholars of the period turned out to be equally interested in a whole range of grammatical, lexical, and interpretive problems presented by the text. Indeed, these two approaches were interconnected: attacking the Qur'an often required sophisticated explorations of difficult Arabic grammatical problems." "Furthermore, while most readers explicitly denounced the Qur'an as a fraud, translations of the book are sometimes inserted into the standard manuscript format of Christian Bibles and other prestigious Latin texts (small, centered blocks of text surrounded by commentary) or in manuscripts embellished with beautiful decorated initials and elegant calligraphy for the pleasure of wealthy collectors." "Addressing Christian-Muslim relations generally, as well as the histories of reading and the book, Burman offers a picture of how Europeans read the sacred text of Islam."--BOOK JACKET.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
BP131.15.L37 B87 2007 (Browse shelf) Available 0000002142008

Includes bibliographical references (p. [289]-302) and indexes.

"Most of what we know about attitudes toward Islam in the medieval and early modern West has been based on polemical treatises against Islam written by Christian scholars preoccupied with defending their own faith and attacking the doctrines of Islam. Christian readings of the Qur'an have in consequence typically been depicted as a tedious and one-dimensional exercise in anti-Islamic hostility." "In Reading the Qur'an in Latin Christendom, 1140-1560, Thomas E. Burman looks instead to a different set of sources: the Latin translations of the Qur'an made by European scholars and the manuscripts and early printed books in which these translations circulated. Using these largely unexplored materials, Burman argues that the reading of the Qur'an in Western Europe was much more complex. While their reading was certainly often focused on attacking Islam, scholars of the period turned out to be equally interested in a whole range of grammatical, lexical, and interpretive problems presented by the text. Indeed, these two approaches were interconnected: attacking the Qur'an often required sophisticated explorations of difficult Arabic grammatical problems." "Furthermore, while most readers explicitly denounced the Qur'an as a fraud, translations of the book are sometimes inserted into the standard manuscript format of Christian Bibles and other prestigious Latin texts (small, centered blocks of text surrounded by commentary) or in manuscripts embellished with beautiful decorated initials and elegant calligraphy for the pleasure of wealthy collectors." "Addressing Christian-Muslim relations generally, as well as the histories of reading and the book, Burman offers a picture of how Europeans read the sacred text of Islam."--BOOK JACKET.

A Note on Matters of Form vii -- Introduction: Qur'an Translation, Qur'an Manuscripts, and Qur'an Reading in Latin Christendom 1 -- 1 Translation, Philology, and Latin Style 12 -- 2 Latin-Christian Qur'an Translators, Muslim Qur'an Exegesis 36 -- 3 Polemic, Philology, and Scholastic Reading in the Earliest Manuscript of Robert of Ketton's Latin Qur'an 60 -- 4 New Readers, New Frames: The Later Manuscript and Printed Versions of Robert of Ketton's Latin Qur'an 88 -- 5 The Qur'an Translations of Mark of Toledo and Flavius Mithridates: Manuscript Framing and Reading Approaches 122 -- 6 The Manuscripts of Egidio da Viterbo's Bilingual Qur'an: Philology (and Polemic?) in the Sixteenth Century 149 -- Conclusion: Juan de Segovia and Qur'an Reading in Latin Christendom, 1140-1560 178 -- Appendix Four Translations of 22:1-5 199 -- Abbreviations and Short Titles 205.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Only a modern-day Renaissance scholar could have written this book: mastery not only of Arabic and Latin was required, but also of translation methodologies, library science, Christian-Muslim relations, intellectual history, and a host of other relevant areas such as the indigenization of scripture. Burman (history, Univ. of Tennessee) completed this task admirably, not only pulling together the complexities of how books are formatted for reading, but also doing justice to the personalities and mind-sets of the four centuries under consideration. It is a mark of this work's superior scholarship that knowledge of neither Arabic nor Latin is necessary to understand the issues presented and discussed, although a certain degree of linguistic competency is certainly beneficial for readers approaching this subject. One wonders how the four main medieval and Renaissance "characters" of this work--Robert, Mark, Flavius, and Egidio--would have reacted had they seen what this book says about them. Burman certainly does them justice, and admires these scholars for what they accomplished and how they influenced future Western approaches to Islam and its scripture. The result is gratifying. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-level undergraduates and above. S. P. Blackburn Hartford Seminary

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Thomas E. Burman is Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

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