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Muslim Historiography

Encyclopaedia of Ismailism by Mumtaz Ali Tajddin

The term historiography means writing of history or written history. J. Sanford firstly coined this term in 1597, resembling the Arabic word ilm al-tarikh. The Koranic phrases asatir al-awwalin (writing of the ancient) also gives notion of historiography, vide 6:25, 8:31, 16:24-26, 23:83-85, 25:5-6, 27:68-70, 46:17, 68:15, 83:13, etc.

The Muslims knew no importance of history at early stage, and could not differentiate the tales, miracles, biography and history with one another. They made their acquaintance with the systematic classification of the branches of science being inspired mostly from Rasail Ikhwan as-Safa. Yet the Arabs did not assign a special place to history.

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