Early Latin-Arabic edition of pre-Islamic poetry

Zuhair ibn Abi Sulma. Zohairi carmen templi Meccani foribus appensum nunc primum ex codice Leidensi Arabice editum Latine conversum et notis illustratum.

Leipzig, Breitkopf, 1792.

4to (207 x 245 mm). (2), 70 pp. 19th century red morocco-backed boards, ruled in gilt.


A Latin and Arabic edition of one of the most famous pre-Islamic poets of the Arab world, Zuhair ibn Abi Sulma (ca. 520-609), featuring an interesting example of 18th century European typesetting of Arabic.

Zuhair was a member of the Banu Muzaina and is referred to as one of the seven so-called Hanged Poets whose work was, per legend, hung in honour at the Kaaba in Mecca. Zuhair's poems are consequently found in the collection Mu'allaqat ("the Suspended"), excerpted here. His Mu'allaqat poems were on the subject of tribal relations, composed on the occasion of the reconciliation of the Abs and the Dhobyan and in honour of the mediators who worked to conclude the peace.

The editor of this work was German Protestant theologian Ernst Friedrich Karl Rosenmüller (1768-1835), and it was partly on the strength of this particular edition and translation, which also includes extensive notes in Latin, that Rosenmüller made his reputation as a scholar of the Arabic language, the study of which he promoted assiduously as a professor at the University of Leipzig.

Light exterior soiling and slight dampstaining. With the library stamps of the École Sainte-Geneviève and the Maison Saint-Louis in Jersey, Great Britain.


Schnurrer p. 197f., no. 205. OCLC 7481861. Cf. GAL S I, 47f., 4.