Rare Manuscripts of the Moroccan Royal Library: An Introduction and Overview

A lecture by Dr. Khalid Zahri (Royal Library, Rabat, Morocco)

Monday, February 05, 2018
4:30 PM
Humanities, Room 365

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The Royal Library in Rabat, known also as al-Khizāna al-Ḥassania is among the oldest libraries in the world. It houses precious documents and rare manuscript volumes acquired by ruling elite of Morocco. This lecture will describe some of the rare holdings of al-Khizāna al-Ḥassania, discuss issues related to Maghribi paleography, codicology, and art, imagery, and the symbolism and significance of color used in selected manuscripts. The lecture will also offer advice for potential researchers and suggest fruitful avenues for research in manuscripts at the Ḥassania Library.


Dr. Khalid Zahri is Assistant Director, Curator, and researcher for the manuscript collection of the Hassania Royal Library in Morocco. He travels widely to share his expertise in manuscript preservation and publication of glosses and commentaries. He has presented lectures and facilitated workshops across the Arab world, Southeast Asia, and Western Europe. He is an established expert in Muslim theology (kalām), Sufism, and the methodology of Islamic law (uṣūl al-fiqh). He has published close to 100 academic works in Arabic and French on a range of topics including "Kalām", "Uṣūl al-Fiqh", 'Taṣawwuf", "Bibliography", "Cataloguing" (Fahrasah) and "Codicological and Philological studies", among them more than 20 books, including Maghribī Ashʿarī Sources (2017); From ʿIlm al-Kalām to Fiqh al-Kalām (2017), The Arabic Manuscript: New Horizons in Codicology, Philology, and Cataloging within the Islamic Manuscript Tradition (2017). He received his Diplome des Études Supérieurs (DES) (1992) and his PhD (2001) from Muhammad V University in Rabat at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. He has worked at the Hassania Royal Library from 2002-present, and at the National Library in years prior (1999-2002).

Sponsor(s): Center for Near Eastern Studies, Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, Islamic Studies, This event is made possible through the generous support of the Dean of Humanities Office.