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Darwish, A. (1955) Al-Khalil ibn Ahmad and the evolution of Arabic lexicography. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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This work consists of two volumes. The first deals with the development of Arabic lexicography. The second consists of extracts from the text of the earliest Arabic dictionary, i.e., al-'Ain by al-Khalil. PART I deals with the first stage in the development of Arabic lexicography, in which dictionaries were arranged in the "Anagrammatical" order. This order was founded by al-Khalil. The first chapter gives a biographical sketch of al-Klialil and discusses the plan of his dictionary. The second deals with lexicographers following al-Khalil's model in the East, and the third with those in the West. PART II deals with the second stage in Arabic lexicography, which is that of the "Qafiyah" order. These three chapters deal with the following topics: (1) Early works, (2) Late works, (3) Shidyaq's rebellion against that order. PART III deals with the third stage, in which dictionaries are arranged according to a "strict alphabetical" order. Its four chapters deal with the following headings respectively; (1) The vocabulary of the Quran and Hadith, (2) Early Works, (3) Late Works, (4) The attempt to compile a major Arabic lexicon. PART 17 deals with the text of al-'Ain. It has three chapters which deal with the following topics: (1) The controversy over the authorship of al-'Ain, (2) The question of the real author of that work, (3) Karmali and al-'Ain, and (4) The -process of editing al-'Ain, VOLUME II This volume comprises some sections chosen from al-'Ain to serve as a specimen of the text. As every letter of the alphabet is dealt with by al-Khalil under seven heads, we have selected sections from different parts of the book, each representing one such head. The sections selected are representative of the beginning, the middle and the end of the book to emphasise the structural unity of the text. These heads are: (1) Reduplicated bilateral words, (2) Trilateral words with three radical consonants, (3) Trilateral words with one weak letter, (4) Trilateral words with only one strong consonant, (5) (Quadrilateral words, (6) Quintiliteral words, and (7) Words containing no consonants as radicals, but only weak letters. There is no comprehensive account of the development of Arabic lexicography from its beginning to the present day, and it is hoped that this thesis will make a contribution to our knowledge of this important field of Arabic literature.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 15:06

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