Juma Al Majid Center for Culture and Heritage in Dubai, in cooperation with Leiden University in the Netherlands and the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, organized a virtual lecture entitled “The Explosion of Eyes by Ibn Nabata: An Arab Book’s Journey Around the World,” presented by Dr. Peter Webb, Professor of Arabic Literature at Leiden University, the Netherlands. .
The lecture dealt with the issue of bilingualism in the Middle East during the Ottoman era through a careful analysis of a Persian phrase contained in the manuscript of “Sarh al-Uyun”. Did the readers care to understand it? He stated that there are references in the manuscripts to the extent of the effectiveness of bilingualism at the level of the average reader in that period.
Dr. Peter said: Despite the lack of popularity of the book Sarh al-Uyun at the present time, it is one of the most widely circulated literary books in the hands of people from the ninth until the twelfth century AH, and its manuscripts have spread throughout the House of Islam from Mali in the west to India in the east, and there are many Such manuscripts afforded us excellent possibilities for examining many important issues related to the reception of Arabic literature in those centuries and how the manuscripts were used and read.