Separate leaf from a Kufic manuscript on vellum.
170 x 263 mm. With gilt rosette and numerous gilt floral ornaments between the letters and in the margins. Vocalisation marks (dots) in red. 5 lines.
Illuminated leaf from a once-magnificent Quran manuscript with fine gilt flower and leaf illustrations as space fillers and ornamental border around the large Kufic script written in black ink (line height ca. 25-30 mm). The ornamentation mainly consists in leaf designs with the occasional blossom. Illumination of this type is exceedingly rarely encountered among the preserved Abbasid Kufic manuscripts pre-dating the year 1000. The script style belongs to subgroup D.I, according to Déroche's classification. Manuscripts in this style are normally dated to the 9th century CE (cf. François Déroche, The Abbasid Tradition, London 1992. The Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, Vol. I, nos. 19-23, pp. 67-71). The red dots are vocalisation marks: diacritic marks were not used until later.
Some browning and staining. Brittle in places due to ink corrosion (slight loss to individual letters). Verso rubbed, but still legible.
Cf. Fingernagel (ÖNB 2010), p. 33.