MARBAS is the initiative of a group of faculty from across the Humanities committed to teaching the techniques at the core of humanistic research.
At the center of our research and teaching are manuscripts, archival documents, early printed books and other textual artifacts produced before 1600.
Based on the Library’s holdings of the recently-digitized al-Madani collection of over 1,000 volumes, this talk will combine an illustrated overview of general characteristics of Arabic manuscripts with specific examples of unusual and interesting details. Features which will be covered include binding, decoration, ownership marks, paper, illustrations, watermarks, and more.
The ancient Greek Elements of Euclid and Almagest of Ptolemy saw continuing study and usage for centuries after their creation. This talk will jump ahead to the thirteenth century and Naṣīr al-Dīn al-Ṭūsī's project to produce revised editions of the Elements, Almagest, and other curricular texts. Through these editions we will explore the composition of the medieval mathematical manuscript and the various strategies of editor and reader.