Dar An-Noor

Islamic Education And Heritage Center

Dar An-Noor

Islamic Education and Heritage Center 

Arabic Writing & Calligraphy

Arabic calligraphy is the artistic practice of handwriting and calligraphy based on the Arabic alphabet. It is known in Arabic as khatt (Arabic: خط‎), derived from the word ‘line’, ‘design’, or ‘construction’. Kufi is the oldest form of the Arabic script.

From an artistic point of view, Arabic calligraphy has been known and appreciated for its diversity and great potential for development. In fact, it has been linked in the Arabic civilization to various fields such as religion, art, architecture, education and craftsmanship, which in return have played an important role in its advancement.

Although most Islamic calligraphy is in Arabic and most Arabic calligraphy is Islamic, the two are not identical. Coptic or other Christian manuscripts in Arabic, for example, have made use of calligraphy. Likewise, there is Islamic calligraphy in Persian or the historic Ottoman language. Source: Wikipedia

Arabic Calligraphy has been inscribed as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity by UNESCO in 2021

Arabic Calligraphy Courses

  • ISA100 Arabic Writing
  • ISA101A Riq’ah  (This is a prerequisite to ISA101B and up)
  • ISA101B Maghrib (Student may take this course concurrently with ISA101A subject to level assessment)
  • ISA102A Diwani
  • ISA102B Diwani Jali
  • ISA200A Kufi Mushafi
  • ISA200B Kufi Qadim
  • ISA200C Kufi Fatimi
  • ISA200D Kufi Murabba
  • ISA200E Kufi Qayrawani
  • ISA201A Ta’liq
  • ISA201B Ta’liq Jali
  • ISA301 Naskh
  • ISA302 Ijazah
  • ISA303A Thuluth
  • ISA303B Thuluth Jali
  • ISA303C Maghribi Thuluth
  • ISA305 Muhaqqaq

ISA101 Riq'ah script

Riqʿah or Ruqʿah (Arabic: رقعة‎) is a calligraphic variety of Arabic script. It comes from the way the script was used, written on small pieces of cloth or paper. It is the most common type of handwriting. It is clear and legible, and is the easiest script for daily handwriting. It is known for its clipped letters composed of short, straight lines and simple curves, as well as its straight and even lines of text. It is ideal for blocks of text and very easily convert to digital format. It was probably derived from the Thuluth and Naskh styles. Developed in the 18th century, it is still used today.

Maghribi (North African) Script

Maghrib means North Africa in Arabic. Developed in the 10th century, Maghribi is normally found in script in Spain and mostly in Morocco. The Maghribi script is used in writings and architecture – but not really found as much in Middle East and Arabian Peninsula. he style, which is decorative and easy to read, is often used for titles.

Diwani Script & Jali Diwani Script

Diwani comes from the word diwan, which was the name of the Ottoman chancery. The script used for official documents, it is still used today even though it was developed in the 16th century. The form today has changed since there were some refinements to the script in the 19th century. Diwani has beautiful, curved letters and come together to form decorative forms. It was invented by Housam Roumi and reached its height of popularity under Süleyman I the Magnificent (1520–1566). It was labeled the Diwani script because it was used in the Ottoman diwan (chief revenue officer of a province) and was one of the secrets of the sultan's palace. The rules of this script were not known to everyone, but confined to its masters and a few bright students. It was used in the writing of all royal decrees, endowments, and resolutions. Diwani is marked by beauty and harmony, and accurate small samples are considered more beautiful than larger ones. It is still used in the correspondence of kings, princes, presidents, and in ceremonies and greeting cards. and has a high artistic value. Since it is complex, it is more difficult to use it for long blocks of text, but a simpler version is available for a calligrapher if that is required.

Ta'liq Script

Ta'liq means suspension in Arabic. The script was developed in the 11th century and refined in Persia in the 13th century. It is still used today. The words hang together and are connected – and the letters are curvy and rounded. The legibility of the script is not great so the lines have great distances between them to allow the reader to identify the words and letters.

Farsi Script

Farsi (also known as Nastaʿlīq) is one of the main calligraphic hands used in writing the Perso-Arabic script, and traditionally the predominant style in Persian calligraphy. It was developed in Iran in the 8th and 9th centuries. It is sometimes used to write Arabic-language text and is mainly used for titles and headings, but its use has always been more popular in the Persian, Turkic, Urdu and other South Asian spheres of influence. Nastaʿlīq has extensively been (and still is) practiced in Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan for written poetry and as a form of art. It is amongst the most fluid calligraphy styles for the Arabic alphabet. This script combines the short verticals of Naskh with no serifs, and the long curvy horizontal script of Ta’liq.

Naskh Script

Naskh (Arabic: نسخ‎) is a calligraphic style for writing in the Arabic alphabet, thought to be invented by the calligrapher Ibn Muqlah Shirazi. The root of this Arabic term nasakh-a means "to copy". It either refers to the fact that it replaced its predecessor, Kufi script, or that this style allows faster copying of texts. With small modifications, it is the style most commonly used for printing Arabic, Persian, Pashto and Sindhi languages. This type of script was derived from Thuluth by introducing a number of modifications resulting in smaller size and greater delicacy. It is written using a small, very fine pen known as a cava pen, which makes the script eminently suitable for use in book production. It was and is a very widely used form of script. Computers typically use Naskh or a Naskh-like script.

Thuluth Script

The pen used to create this script is what gave it it’s name – Thuluth, Thuluth (from Arabic: ثلث‎ ṯhuluṯh "one-third") is a script variety of Islamic calligraphy invented by the Persian Ibn Muqlah Shirazi, which made its first appearance in the 11th century CE (fourth Hijri) during the Abbasaid dynasty and was further refined during the Ottoman dynasty.. The straight angular forms of Kufi script were replaced in the new script by curved and oblique lines. In Thuluth, one-third of each letter slopes, from which the name (meaning "a third" in Arabic) comes. It is a large and elegant, cursive script, used in medieval times on masjid decorations. It was used to write the Quran and also in architectural scripts in the Islamic empire. Various calligraphic styles evolved from Thuluth through slight changes of form.

Kufic script

Kufic script is one of the first used. It consists of a modified form of the old Nabataean script.The script, which developed in the 7th century, developed during the Umayyad (661 – 750 CE) and Abbasid (750 – 1258 CE) dynasties and played an essential role in the documenting the Qur’an. The script was in common use until the 13th century. The origin of the name Kufic, comes from a city in Iraq called Kufa. Kufic script did not include dots in the beginning and the diacritical marks (Taskheel) were also added later. Since the inscriptions are angular and vertical, it made it more difficult to write long content – as a result, the script was mostly used for architectural decoration and less for long texts. Until about the 11th century it was the main script used to copy Qur'ans. Square or geometric Kufi is a very simplified rectangular style of Kufi widely used for tiling.

Kufi Fatimi Script

Kufi Murabba'

Kufi Khairawani

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