al-Mushaf al-Sharif attributed to Ali b. Abi Talib (The copy of Sana’a)
This is a facsimile edition of the copy (Mushaf) of the Holy Quran which is attributed to the time of Ali b. Abi Talib and located in Sana’a, Yemen. It comes out as a third publication in IRCICA’s series of editions of oldest copies of the Quran. Earlier IRCICA had published editions, accompanied by descriptive and comparative studies, of two Quran copies that are attributed to the time of Othman b. Affan namely the copies of Topkapı, Istanbul and al-Mashhad al-Husayni, Cairo. The other copies attributed to the same period are in the following cities: Istanbul (the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts, edition published by ISAM, Istanbul, 2008); London; Paris; St. Petersburg, and Tashkent. There are other editions of Quran copies that IRCICA published outside this series. One of them is the copy dated 582 H/1186 and known as the Fazil Pasha (Sherifović) Mushaf, which is located in Gazi Husrevbegova Library, Sarajevo. Another edition, supervised by IRCICA, is the reprint of the Mushaf of Kazan dated 1803 which is known to be the first copy printed in the Muslim world; it was reprinted in cooperation with Kazan Municipality in the year 2005 corresponding to the millennium of Kazan city. By publishing these editions, with studies in the case of the former ones, IRCICA aims to contribute in preserving them and making them known and accessible to all.
The Sana’a copy is located at the Grand Mosque of Sana’a. The elaborate Introduction to the edition is a study by Dr. Tayyar Altıkulaç, specialist of the history of copies of the Quran and ex-Head of Religious Affairs in Turkey. The study is a concise history of the dissemination of the Holy Quran through its copies and of the developments relating to script, orthography, punctuation, locations, etc. of the copies. It examines, describes and analyses the characteristics of the Sana’a copy as to script, orthography, binding, etc. It also describes the other copies attributed to the period of Othman b. Affan as well as the copy printed by the King Fahd Complex for the Printing of the Holy Quran, Medina, which is known to be in conformity with the orthography of the time of Othman b. Affan.
IRCICA planned to publish this edition during the 2010-2011 period which, at the suggestion of IRCICA, was designated by the 2010 meeting of the OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers as the “1400th Year of the Revelation of the Holy Quran”. The Council had invited all OIC member countries and Muslims’ associations and institutions world-wide to commemorate this anniversary of the beginning of the revelation with cultural and scholarly activities that would contribute in diffusing a correct and deeper understanding of the Holy Quran. IRCICA for its part is honoured to have been able to record this publication among its activities related to the said Year.