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A facsimile copy of the Koran of Osman will be handed over to the people and government of Uzbekistan


The facsimile copies of the Koran, stored in the collection of the Institute of Oriental Manuscripts of the Russian Academy of Sciences, will be handed over to the government and the people of Uzbekistan in the coming days. Thus, many years later in Uzbekistan there will be a complete collection of parts of one of the rarest specimens of the world-famous Koran of Osman.

A few decades ago the full version of this manuscript, dated the last quarter of the VIII century and executed by an unknown calligrapher, is one of the oldest and unique lists of the Koran that survived to this day, was kept in the mazar of the sheikhs of the Ishkiyya brotherhood in the village of Katta-Langar (Kashkadarya region). However, due to various reasons, I parted by parts in collections.

In Uzbekistan, four fragments (16 sheets in total) are recorded, related to the general list of the Koran in St. Petersburg. One sheet, enclosed in a binding of black leather such as mukavva, is in the collection of the Institute of Oriental Studies named after Abu Rayhan Beruni. Two sheets are kept in the collection of the Bukhara Regional Library named after Abu Ali ibn Sino. Yet 12 sheets in a red morocco cover, with traces of restoration and decoration exactly as the
St. Petersburg fragment, are kept in the mazar of the sheikhs of the Ishkiyya brotherhood in the village of Katta-Langar (Kashkadarya region). Finally, one sheet belongs to the library of the Spiritual Directorate for Muslim Affairs of Uzbekistan.

Most of the original of this sacred book (81 sheet) is now carefully preserved in the collection of the Institute of Oriental Manuscripts of the Russian Academy of Sciences. For the collection it was purchased by Academician I.Y. Krachkovsky in 1936 for the Institute of Oriental Studies of the USSR Academy of Sciences. Within the framework of the project "Cultural heritage of Uzbekistan: masterpieces of written monuments of the East" it was decided to make a facsimile copy of this part of the relic. The project was implemented with the help of a well-known Australian printing house, which allowed to create a copy with high accuracy, virtually indistinguishable from the original.

The transfer of this unique facsimile copy will take place on November 28 in the framework of the International Media Forum "The Crossroads of Times: The Great Legacy of the Past - the Basis of an Enlightened Future".

In addition to the general cultural value of these documents, their enormous scientific importance should be noted. Paleographic analysis of the text allows,
in particular, to trace the history of the development of styles of calligraphic writing and the book culture of the Muslim East as a whole.
A fundamental study of the unique list was conducted by prof. E.A. Rezvan.

During the study of the manuscript it was found that the sheets of the St. Petersburg fragment contain almost 40% of the Koranic text. These texts are
44 surahs, of which the total is 22. The list of sheets as a whole is well preserved, but there are also severely damaged, with lost fragments (corners of parchment).
The manuscript serves as an excellent example of the high level of unification of the Qur'anic text that was reached by the Muslim community by the end of the
VIII century.
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