Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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Oval bezel seal with kufic inscription



  • kufic

    A term denoting various styles of angular Arabic script. Emerged in the early centuries of Islam, kufic soon became the preferred hand to copy holy texts.


    • currently in research collection

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Publications online

  • Islamic Seals and Talismans by Ludvik Kalus

    Catalogue of Islamic Seals and Talismans

    Cornelian; bezel, bevelled towards the front; oval; back angle slightly rounded. The surface of the inferior face is divided into an oval field (A) and a border (B), these two units being separated by one oval line, doubled by the base line of the exterior kufic inscription. Three (A) and one (B) lines of kufic script; without dots. The reading of the exterior line (B) starts on the top of the right.

    A - (1) 'As God will! ما شاء الله
    (2) There is no power except in God!' (Qur. XVIII, 37/39) لا قوة الا بالله
    (3) I ask pardon of God! استغفر الله

    B - Muḥammad, ‘Alī, Fāṭima, al-Ḥasan, al-Ḥusayn, ‘Alī, Muḥammad, Ja‘far, Mūsā, ‘Alī, Muḥammad, ‘Alī, al-Ḥasan, al-Khalīf[?] Muḥammad
    محمد على فاطمة الحسن الحسين على محمد جعفر موسى على محمد على الحسن الخليف [؟] محمد

    This seal could perhaps be classified as late classical period (I.1).

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