The two manuscripts unveiled at the ceremony last week were “Al-Jumal”, written in Arabic by Muhammad ibn Namawar Khunji in 624 Hijri and “Adab al-Bahth and Munazira” (manners of discussion and debate) written in Arabic by sixth-century scholar Muhammad ibn Ashraf Samarqandi.
Both of them have been scribed in 742 Hijri in Mecca by Muhammad ibn Ahmed ibn Saqar ibn Salam Tadmuri Shafei.
Participating at the ceremony via a video conference from Saudi Arabia, Hojat-ol-Islam Hossein Waseqi, an expert in Islamic and Shia works, admired the role of the holy shrine’s Central Library in preserving these works, and said: “This library has played a significant role in terms of standard maintenance of manuscripts and it has always been great in cooperating with and offering most services to the researchers”.
He added, “The manuscript center of the library in which these two newly unveiled works have been kept has also lots of works many of which I benefited from in writing my works.”
Speaking in the same ceremony, Mohammad Vafadar, an expert of ancient handwritten works, referred to manuscript writings in different regions and said India’s Heyderabad is also one of the major cities in the area of writing manuscripts.
“Many scholars wrote valuable works during the time of Qutb Shai dynasty in the peninsula there,” he added.
Vafadar further referred to the two unveiled books and said the “exquisite works haven been dedicated by the Heyderabad Library to Imam Reza shrine’s Central Library in past centuries. Haj Sheikh Mohammad Momen in 1657 and Amir Jebreel, in 1627 were the two figures who dedicated the works to the Imam Reza shrine hundreds of years ago”.
Seyed Reza Sedaqhat Hosseini, another expert attending the ceremony said, “Isfahan, Tehran, Mashhad, Najaf, Shiraz, Karbala, Qazvin, and Mecca are the cities where most of the existing manuscripts in Iran come from.”
He added, “According to an official list of Iranian manuscripts, there are 293 manuscripts in Iran that have been produced in Mecca, 31 of which are kept at Imam Reza holy shrine’s Central Library and two of them are the oldest manuscripts in Iran.”