A Koran is found...which may be older than Muhammad!!! Watch

Gnomes&Knights
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One of the oldest texts of the Qur’an in the world, on parchment that was possibly made within the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad, has been found in the collection of the Cadbury Research Library at the University of Birmingham.

The two well-preserved leaves of parchment, closely written in an elegant script, have been radiocarbon-dated to between AD568 and AD645, a result regarded by the scientists who tested it at Oxford as near certain – 95.4% accurate.


We knew it was going to be a good date, but when we actually got the dates it was just an ‘oh my goodness’ moment,” Susan Worrall, director of the special collections of the library, said. “You don’t get very many days like that in a career.
Muhammad is generally thought to have lived between AD570 and AD632. His teachings were transmitted orally or partially recorded in writing, and soon after his death all the texts that could be found were collated.

The Birmingham text may be among these earliest writings, which became part of one of world religion’s great holy books, or from the text of the first authorised version, believed to have been written in AD650.

The text is almost identical to that used today, but the parchment is so old that scholars may reconsider the accepted date for the compilation of the definitive text.

The parchment came to the library with a mass of other early Middle Eastern manuscripts collected in the 1920s by the scholar, theologian and Chaldean priest Alphonse Mingana, but it is not known where he found it. However, the parchment and the beautiful early Arabic script closely resemble other fragments in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris from the earliest mosque in Egypt, founded in AD642.

The significance of Birmingham’s leaves, which hold part of Suras (chapters) 18 to 20, was missed because they were bound together with another text, in a very similar hand but written almost 200 years later.

The two odd leaves were spotted by a PhD student, Alba Fedeli, who has been working on the Mingana manuscripts.

We know her very well, she has been working away for some time on the Mingana collection. When she brought this to us and said she thought two leaves came from another manuscript, and we looked closely at them, we could see that she was right,
Worrall said.

At first glance they look identical to the other pages, but once you know you can see that the text does not flow. The script is wonderful, still legible to anyone who can read Arabic today.
She said the university turned down a request some years ago from a German institution to test the manuscript, but in view of Fedeli’s discovery, decided to fund the tests and conservation work itself.

The verses are incomplete, and believed to have been an aide memoire for an imam who already knew the Qur’an by heart, but the text is very close to the accepted authorised version.

David Thomas, professor of Christianity and Islam, and the Nadir Dinshaw professor of interreligious relations at the university, called the discovery “one of the most surprising secrets of the university’s collections”. He said it supported the view that the version of the Qur’an in use today had hardly changed from the earliest recorded version, and the Muslim belief that the text represented an exact record of the revelations delivered to the Prophet.

They could well take us back to within a few years of the actual founding of Islam. According to Muslim tradition, the Prophet Muhammad received the revelations that form the Qur’an, the scripture of Islam, between the years AD610 and AD632, the year of his death,
Thomas said.

Qur’anic materials were at first held in memory or written down on materials including parchment, stone, palm leaves and the shoulder blades of camels. It was Caliph Abu Bakr, the first leader of the Muslim community after Muhammad, who ordered their compilation into a book with the final, authoritative written form completed and fixed under the direction of the third leader, Caliph Uthman, in about AD650.

Muslims believe that the Qur’an they read today is the same text that was standardised under Uthman and regard it as the exact record of the revelations that were delivered to Muhammad,
Thomas said.

The tests carried out on the parchment of the Birmingham folios yield the strong probability that the animal from which it was taken was alive during the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad or shortly afterwards. This means that the parts of the Qur’an that are written on this parchment can, with a degree of confidence, be dated to less than two decades after Muhammad’s death.
Muhammad Isa Waley, a senior curator at the British Library, called the discovery “news to rejoice Muslim hearts”.

He said the early Muslim community was not wealthy enough to stockpile the number of animal skins required to make a Qur’an, and so the text must have been written soon after the parchment was made. The very early date from the radiocarbon tests could mean that the text pre-dated the creation of the authorised text of the complete Qur’an, or that the definitive version was created earlier than scholars had believed.

The newly conserved leaves will go on free public display for the first time in October, at the university’s Barber Institute of Fine Arts, and Birmingham’s city museum is also interested in creating an exhibition around them. Because their significance was not then recognised, the parchment leaves were not included in a major British Library exhibition in 2007 of some of the earliest religious texts – but Worrall said she expects to have many applications from museums to borrow them in the future.
http://www.theguardian.com/world/201...ham-university
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Anunaki
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I hope it comes to the UK one day, I'd love to see it in real life.
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PostGrad221
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(Original post by Anunaki)
I hope it comes to the UK one day, I'd love to see it in real life.
top banter
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Bill_Gates
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The most famous book to come out of the University of Birmingham was the lord of the rings. This will never change!
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Good bloke
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(Original post by Anunaki)
I hope it comes to the UK one day, I'd love to see it in real life.
Where, exactly, do you think Birmingham is?
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Gladiator12345
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I read an article on it and it looks amazing
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MsFahima
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It's amazing. I would love to go see them.
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ChampEon
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Pretty damn cool. I would love to see an early version of the Torah or Bible to see if their content is as well preserved through the ages as the Quran.
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Arbolus
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Very interesting. It would be good to find out more.

However:

The text is almost identical to that used today
I think the key word here is "almost". If it differs even slightly, even by a single word, it would cast serious doubt upon the claim that the Quran has been completely unchanged since Muhammad's time.

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_Fergo
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(Original post by Good bloke)
Where, exactly, do you think Birmingham is?
:rofl:

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Studentus-anonymous
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(Original post by Raymat)
*Interesting Historical Stuffs*
Neat!
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aamirac
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I want to go see it! It's so interesting to see some of the ayaats written from the earlier years still preserved thousands of years later!
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Reformed
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very interesting , it seems a lot of unknown pages of the qruan have been popping up, previously the most contraversial was the saana manuscript in yemen. now one pops up in the uk. Although it seems given the furore over the saana discovery, the article is playing down the significance that these animal skin pages show verses 18-20 written by an unknown imam, are incomplete ( or in different sequence) compared to the current and later Uthman version
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simon_g
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(Original post by Good bloke)
Where, exactly, do you think Birmingham is?
judging from its look alone, a third world country.
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mariachi
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For anyone who wants to check on this subject, here are the Qur'anic transcriptions produced by Alba Fedeli for her PhD thesis (Birmingham 2015), as compared to other ancient manuscripts http://purl.org/itsee/fedeli/
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Reformed
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(Original post by ChampEon)
Pretty damn cool. I would love to see an early version of the Torah or Bible to see if their content is as well preserved through the ages as the Quran.
the early version of the torah would ostensibly be maybe 3 times the age of the quran, and probably written on stone tablets, not parchments.
mohammed was not able to leave an original version of the quran, and had to leave it to various caliphs after his death - it was they that had to set a standard version of the quran
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i<3milkshake
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http://metro.co.uk/2015/08/31/pieces...ngham-5369142/

http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/601...ophet-Muhammad

A Koran has been found which may well be older than Muhammad. I'm not sure how important Muhammad is to the Koran, you know whether he was supposed to have written it under inspiration from God...

However, if true, surely it puts a bit of a dent in Islam? I mean an absolute con that has been going on all this time but is actually a load of lies?

The Bible is something which is placed under much scrutiny; however, is the Koran even worth placing under scrutiny since it may be completely false right from the start, let alone reading to and debating its contents...
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vis break
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It was found at Birmingham Uni, but carbon dated at Oxford. Ouch lmao gg brum
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CelticBeast
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(Original post by i<3milkshake)
http://metro.co.uk/2015/08/31/pieces...ngham-5369142/

http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/601...ophet-Muhammad

A Koran has been found which may well be older than Muhammad. I'm not sure how important Muhammad is to the Koran, you know whether he was supposed to have written it under inspiration from God...

However, if true, surely it puts a bit of a dent in Islam? I mean an absolute con that has been going on all this time but is actually a load of lies?

The Bible is something which is placed under much scrutiny; however, is the Koran even worth placing under scrutiny since it may be completely false right from the start, let alone reading to and debating its contents...
Brace yourselves.....Muslims are coming
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childofthesun
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Obviously just a test
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