--- In proletar@yahoogroups.com, "Jusfiq HADJAR" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:

Dr. Christoph Heger
Mar 13 1999, 10:00 am   hide options
Newsgroups: soc.religion.islam
From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] (Dr. Christoph Heger) - Find 
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Date: 1999/03/13
Subject: Gerd-R. Puin's position on the Yemeni Qur'ans
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Greetings to all,

    In Toby Lester's article "What is the Koran?", published in the
    January 1999 issue of The Atlantic Monthly, a German scholar, Dr.
    Gerd-R. Puin, played a prominent role, as he is researching on
    the old Yemeni Qur'an manuscripts. Since he felt that his
    position concerning Qur'an scholarship could be misunderstood
    from this article (and especially its various erroneous Arabic
    translations) he asked me to share with this list his following
    paper. He himself has no access to the Internet and its mailing

Kind regards,
Christoph Heger

Dr. Gerd-R. 
FR 7.2 Orientalistik
Universitaet des Saarlandes
D-66111 Saarbruecken

January, l999

    My position concerning my work on Yemeni Koran fragments: 

    I have been lucky - and still I am - to study many of the oldest
    Yemeni Koran manuscripts written in the most archaic "Hijazi"

    In these I found variants and peculiarities which are not
    recorded in the traditional Arabic books on qira'at (variant
    readings), or in the books on rasm al- masahif (orthography of
    the Koran[s]) nor in those on the ti'dad al-ayat (counting
    [systems] of verses). 

    The Hijazi Korans show more variants than those recorded as the
    Seven, Ten or Fourteen Readings, they show more patterns of
    "counting" - i.e. definitions of what is to be understood as a
    verse - than the two dozen "schools" of counting would accept,
    finally, the sequence of how the surahs were arranged in early
    times, was even more variegated than Ibn Nadim's account on the
    sequence of surahs in the Korans of Ubayy or Ibn Mas'ud suggests! 

    If I had not had access to Yamani Koran fragments preserved in
    the Dar al-Makhtutat al-Yamaniyyah, San'a', I could have possibly
    found similar variants and peculiarities in Hijazi fragments of
    the Koran kept outside the Yemen in many libraries or museums,
    e.g. in France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, or Kuwait. A most
    spectacular (complete??) Hijazi Koran can be admired in the
    Islamic Museum of Cairo, only a few meters from the entrance, in
    a special vitrine to the right of the main route; this treasure
    is in Egypt since 1300 years or so, but I know of no
    investigation, of no publication on its peculiarities! 

    There is, on the Muslims' side, no interest in textual research
    on the Koran since 900 years! Except from some western semitists
    who, from time to time, detect the etymology of one Koranic
    expression or another, most of the Arabists feel reluctant to
    make up their minds on the genesis of the Koran. The reason for
    this kind of negligence is quite clear: Both the Muslims and most
    of the Arabists conceive any early deviation from the Koranic
    scripture (as is represented by the Cairo print edition) for a
    lapsus calami, a mere scribal error. 

    Yet, if "scribal errors" happen to occur with the same words,
    more often than twice, in the same manuscript or even in two or
    three, then it is common (philological) sense to look out for a

    This is my position: taking recurrent deviations from the
    (printed) Koran for serious and not for insufficiencies of the
    early scribes! 

    The Koran, being the biggest Arabic text corpus extant from late
    antiquity, even in its actual printed edition bears witness of
    all stages of orthographic reforms through which the text passed
    down to us. I feel confident that an insight into the development
    of Koranic orthography will at least lead to a different notion
    of the text in some cases, and to a better understanding in many
    many more passages. 

    This will not, I'm afraid, bring about the breakthrough in the
    understanding of the Koran, but it might contribute to show that
    the Koran has a history, not only in the sense of asbab al-nuzul
    ("causes for revelation"). The breakthrough might come along with
    the answer upon the question: What is the language of the Koran?

    Meanwhile, I stick to the manuscripts. 

Dr. Gerd-R. Puin 

Jusfiq Hadjar gelar Sutan Maradjo Lelo

Orang Islam tipikal kudu sadar bahwa al-Mushaf itu TIDAK berbukti
berisi wahyu Allah
dan hadits itu mustahil ada yang sahih

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