arabic

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Constantinus Philo
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arabic

Post by Constantinus Philo »

I'm just wondering if Arabic could be added to the section on other classical languages.
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jeidsath
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Re: arabic

Post by jeidsath »

Let's get some threads on classical Arabic going here in the Open Section, and if there are good threads, as there were with Coptic, then let's create the section.
"Here stuck the great stupid boys, who for the life of them could never master the accidence..."

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Constantinus Philo
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Re: arabic

Post by Constantinus Philo »

I'm mostly interested in Arabic translations of Aristotle so when I finish with Stephanus I will read Hunayn's translations of De Interpretatione and I'm sure there will be interesting things to discover especially in terminology.
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NolanusTrismegistus
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Re: arabic

Post by NolanusTrismegistus »

Is your interest just in Aristotle, or his reception more broadly in medieval Arabic / Islamic philosophy*? I'm very interested in this subject as a whole, and I would love to follow your progress and collaborate. My Arabic in its current state though is nothing to write home about, but I've read a significant amount of the scholarship in this area.

Some things you might want to consider as you're reading Hunayn ibn Ishaq's translations of Aristotle into Arabic:
  1. Hunayn ibn Ishaq may not have been translating Aristotle directly from Greek editions exclusively, but also from Syriac Aramaic editions. The philosophical and literary traditions of Eastern Christians of this period that Hunayn ibn Ishaq belongs to are significant for the origins of what was to become Arabic/Islamic philosophy. (Eastern Christians are also known to have been teachers of al-Kindi, al-Farabi, al-Tabari, and other early Abbasid scholars). This is something that is woefully understudied and merits more attention.
  2. Aramaic already has had a long history of influencing the Arabic language long before the House of Wisdom in Baghdad, appearing in the Qur'an itself, even back in Old Arabic inscriptions, so there's already a precedence being built upon here. Again, the influence of Aramaic on Arabic (especially on Quranic Arabic, which is the basis of the kind of Arabic used in philosophy) is understudied and needs way more attention in the scholarly literature.
  3. The writings of Neoplatonists like Plotinus, Porphyry and Proclus came down to the Arabs under the book "Theology of Aristotle". As such, they thought these were the writings penned by the hand Aristotle, thus giving their perception of him a strong Neoplatonic flavour, no doubt influencing translations.
  4. The commentary tradition played an important role in Aristotle's reception for the Arabs. For example, Alexander of Aphrodisias was translated into Arabic and his influence was profound. (many of his writings are only extant in Arabic)
*I'm not a huge fan of the phrases "Arabic philosophy" or "Islamic philosophy", given the contributions to the tradition of people who were neither Arabs (Avicenna a Persian) nor Muslims (Hunayn ibn Ishaq a Christian), indeed even people working in the tradition who were openly hostile to religion (ibn al-Rawandi an atheist).... But I'll make due of these terms for convenience.

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Constantinus Philo
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Re: arabic

Post by Constantinus Philo »

Since I do not know Aramaic, I will limit myself to Arabic works pertaining to Aristotle.
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