Kātib or muwaṯṯiq? New Approaches to the Writing of Private Arabic Documents in Granada

In: Arabica
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  • 1 Universitat Pompeu Fabra

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Abstract

The particular style of the Granadan notaries (muwaṯṯiqūn) incorporates atypical letters, graphs and symbols that give their documents a formal and original character that is more befitting of the works of the secretaries (kuttāb). The presence of these features in documents within an official and administrative environment (dīwān al-inšāʾ) yields the question of whether the training of Granadan notaries, in their function as scribes, was the same as that of the kuttāb. The aim of this article is to analyze the graphical peculiarities of Granadan notarial documents and to see to what extent these features are present in the chancellery documents or works commonly attributed to the kuttāb. This includes a review of the paleographic features of the notarial documents in contrast to the Maghribi script standards.