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Medieval Authors about East Africa
By Pieter Derideaux
No Books have appeared on this subject for many years. This is strange as a number have appeared concerning West Africa. To fill this void I try making these texts available to everybody. When using these texts;(in e.g. articles or on a website) please mention my name; I worked years on collecting - translating them. No commercial use allowed.
South East Asian States
Neighboring African States
-Al Tabari (922)
-Zahariya al Razi (925)
-Al Battina (929)
-Sri Mpu Sindok (931)
-Ibn Durayd (d933)
-Abu I Tayyib M. al-Washsha (d936)
-Al Kulayni (d939)
-Liu Xu (940)
-Note on Zangi Slaves
-Kitab Ikhwan as-Safa (950)
-Hu Kiao (953)
-Buzurg notes and conclusions
-Note on Ambergris
-Li fang (and Kunlun) (980)
-Jnatadharmakatha Suryaprajnapti (after 980)
-Muhammad Bal'ami (10th cent)
-Akhbar al zaman (1000)
-Constantine Porphyrogenitis (10th cent)
As illustration only are added here some examples of the finest manuscripts from the Swahili. They are not connected with the list of authors on the left side of the page.
On top, first 20 verses of the popular poem Utendi composed by Mwana Kupona (±1858); MS H 58 copied by the scribe Muh’d Kijuma in ±1915, Asia-Africa-Institute, UHH. Under a page from another manuscript of the same poem.
Old hand written Bible in Kiswahili Arabic script. It’s over a hundred years old. It has a beautiful binding of Elephant skin with very good Islamic calligraphy. It has 86 pages. The inside part which looks like a sticker reads in Kiswahili Arabic “kitabu hiki nimali yangu mimi John Williamson” which means “this Bible belongs to me John Williamson”. AND THE INSIDE CALIGRAPHY IN WREATH READS in kiswahili kama ilivyoitwa injil Yohana which means like it was mentioned in the Gospel of John.
Copyright 2002-2005 Pieterderideaux
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