Orient- und Islamwissenschaft

The Commentary Ḥall muškilāt aš-Šuḏūr

It is very likely that Ibn Arfaʿ Raʾs himself wrote a commentary on his Šuḏūr aḏ-ḏahab, which in the surviving manuscripts usually bears the title Ḥall muškilāt aš-Šuḏūr ("The Explanation of the Difficult Passages in Šuḏūr"). However, other titles have also been handed down. Among these are Šarḥ Šuḏūr aḏ-ḏahab, Šarḥ muškilāt Šuḏūr aḏ-ḏahab, Šarḥ al-muškilāt aš-šuḏūrīya and Kitāb Laṭīf fī ḥall rumūz at-taṯlīṯ.
We are currently aware of 31 manuscripts. All manuscripts were written at a later date, they mostly date to a period between the tenth to twelfth/sixteenth to eighteenth centuries, some even from the early fourteenth/late nineteenth century. Ibn Arfaʿ Raʾs mentions that he considered Ḥall muškilāt aš-Šuḏūr a short commentary and that he intended to write a second, longer one. However, we have not yet found evidence that he ever followed up.
Ḥall muškilāt aš-Šuḏūr is a very eclectic commentary. Ibn Arfaʿ Raʾs usually comments on selected verses only. Since Ḥall muškilāt aš-Šuḏūr is a dialogue between the author himself and his student Abū l-Qāsim, we cannot exclude that the student present in the dialogue and not the master himself wrote this work. Nonetheless, it seems to contain what was generally accepted as Ibn Arfaʿ Raʾs' own ideas.
Juliane Müller, using the 27 manuscripts to which we had access, will publish a critical edition of the text.