The Forms of Commentaries

By Felicitas Opwis As my previous posts illustrated, commentaries take different forms in length and scope. The commentator selects which topics and points found in the underlying matn he wants to elaborate, explain, and dispute. There is no linear or chronological development of constant growth and enlargement, but a seemingly random variation in breadth and … Continue reading The Forms of Commentaries

The Commentary as Platform for Debate, Change, and Authority Construction

By Felicitas Opwis As presented in the previous post, the discursive tradition of commentaries involves extensive intertextuality. This intertextuality is not only a dialogue between matn and sharḥ, but a discourse that engages previous commentaries on the same matn as well as the Shāfiʿī school’s intellectual output more generally. Sometimes, the arguments and positions referenced … Continue reading The Commentary as Platform for Debate, Change, and Authority Construction

The Content of Commentaries

By Felicitas Opwis In the previous post I mentioned the vibrant commentary tradition on Abū Shujāʿ’s compendium of Shāfiʿī law, which indicates that Muslim scholars deemed it necessary to comment on the past, making it relevant to their present and incorporating whatever changes have occurred or were deemed desirable. It also allows us to gain … Continue reading The Content of Commentaries

Commentary :: Raziya bt. Abdallah v. Hafiza bt. Receb: A Former Concubine Wins her Manumission in Court

Case: Translation of the Court Record The woman called Radiya bt. Abd Allah, of Georgian origin and medium stature, appeared in the courthouse. She is known as the former slave of her recently deceased master, Küçük Hasan Beşe. She initiated a claim against [fakhr aqranihi – pride of equals] al-Hajj Sinan Beşe ibn Hasan, the … Continue reading Commentary :: Raziya bt. Abdallah v. Hafiza bt. Receb: A Former Concubine Wins her Manumission in Court

The Discursive Tradition of Commentaries (shurūḥ) – Lessons from Matn Abī Shujāʿ

By Felicitas Opwis The study of commentaries (shurūḥ) and glosses (ḥawāshī) has rightly received attention and appreciation in recent years. The scholarship of Asad, El Shamsy, Saleh, Wisnovsky as well as El-Rouayheb, Bauer, and Messick[1] are correcting the previously invoked image of intellectual stagnation and decline of the so-called post-classical period as advocated most forcefully … Continue reading The Discursive Tradition of Commentaries (shurūḥ) – Lessons from Matn Abī Shujāʿ

A Commentary

By Mahmood Kooria The most renowned commentary of the Minhāj is Tuḥfat al-muḥtāj written by Ibn Ḥajar al-Haytamī (1504-1567), an Egyptian scholar who built up a successful career in Mecca. This commentary, too, represents the internal dynamics of the discursive traditions within the Shāfiʿī school as well as its historical trajectories expanding to unprecedented lands. … Continue reading A Commentary

Commentarial Ocean

By Mahmood Kooria The postclassical commentarial literature of Islamic law, once ignored for being repetitive and inauthentic, now has been receiving considerable scholarly attention. Through the processes of canonization, codification, regionalization, synthesis and transregional connections; forms such as core texts, commentaries, supercommentaries, autocommentaries, glosses, translations and summaries; and contents such as substantive laws, contextual selections … Continue reading Commentarial Ocean