Chester Beatty Library – Collections – The Islamic Collection – The Arabic Collection | The Islamic Arabic Collection, Chester Beatty Library Arabic Collection
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The Arabic Collection

Most of the manuscripts of the Qur'an, Persian, Indian and Turkish Collections have exquisite calligraphy and are magnificently illustrated and illuminated. In contrast to these manuscripts, however, are the approximately 2,650 manuscripts of the Arabic Collection, few of which contain any decoration at all.

These were collected by Chester Beatty for their texts, many of which are unique and preserved only in the Chester Beatty Library.

They embrace a vast range of topics: religion, jurisprudence, history, geography, medicine, astronomy, mathematics and linguistics to name but a few, as well as many early translations into Arabic of the works of the ancient Greeks.