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Lots 41 and 42 are single leaves from a twenty-volume Qur'an, ILLUMINATED ARABIC MANUSCRIPT ON PINK PAPER
[Andalusia, 13th century]Provenance: both leaves are from the Qur'an section formerly in the collection of maréchal Lyautey (1854-1934) -- sold Hotel George V, Paris, 30 October 1975, lot 488 -- sold Sotheby's, 14 April 1976, lot 247. Further leaves from this manuscript have been offered in these Rooms, most recently a single folio on 8 April 2008, lot 17 and a bifolium, 6 October 2009, lot 41. Other leaves and sections exist in public and private collections, see, for example, Toby Falk (ed.), Treasures of Islam, exhibition catalogue, Geneva, London: 1985, p.39.
The attribution of this manuscript to Spain is based on the use of paper. In North Africa parchment remained the preferred material for the writing of Qur'ans into the 19th century. Spain, however, had been manufacturing and using high quality paper for manuscripts of all kinds for some time. The manuscript is notable for the use of pink paper and for the freely written manner in which the script is used, with the terminals of the letters sweeping over the page, in contrast to the very precise way in which the vocalisation and illumination is handled.