DUBAI: Remember the rare Koran on display at the US Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai? The 1764 English-language Koran will permanently adorn the Mohammed bin Rashid Library in Dubai, it was announced Thursday.
In a special donation ceremony held at the Emirates Airline Literature Festival, the US Mission to the UAE presented the Mohammad bin Rashid Library with the 1764 English translation of the Qur’an, which will be on permanent display in the library’s treasure library exhibit .
The event is organized by the Emirates Literature Foundation in partnership with the United States Mission to the UAE and the Mohammed bin Rashid Library.
This rare two-volume set is a copy of the second edition of the 1764 English translation of the Qur’an by British author George Sale. Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States, owns a copy of the same 1764 edition, on loan from the Library of Congress, on display at the US Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.
This is the first time this prized exhibit has stepped out of the U.S. Capitol and is one of the top attractions at the U.S. Pavilion.
Thomas Jefferson, who had a lifelong interest in world religions, purchased this edition at the age of 22 while studying law in 1765. A rare translation of the Qur’an has been secured to continue display at the US Pavilion after the copy owned by Thomas Jefferson was returned to the Library of Congress.
Celebrating the values that shaped the UAE
“We are here today to celebrate the values, tolerance, peace and harmony that shaped the United Arab Emirates; for the first time since the 18th century, this precious copy of the Qur’an has been transferred for permanent display at the region’s largest cultural center, Mohammad bin Rahi De Library, witnessing the birth of history,” said Isobel Abulhoul, Emirates CEO and trustee of the Literary Foundation.
“We are delighted and honored to be working with the US Mission to the UAE and the Mohammad bin Rashid Library to support the UAE’s mission to preserve Islamic and Arab heritage and strengthen its place in society and the world.”
This rare edition will be on permanent display at the library in the Library’s Treasures of the Library exhibit, which showcases unique rare volumes, atlases and manuscripts from around the world.
Welcoming the delegation, Mohammad Ahmed Al Mur, Chairman of the Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum Library Foundation, said: “It is my pleasure to welcome you to the Mohammad bin Rashid The Library, specifically the Library Treasures exhibit, which houses rare collections dating back to the thirteenth century. The Library Treasures exhibit features unique religious manuscripts, antique atlases, poetry collections, and other rare objects. The collection also includes the Qur’an rare copies of books, early printed editions of literary classics, Latin translations of Islamic Golden Age scholarship, and rare Arabic periodicals from the Arab world and beyond.”
“The rare translation of the Qur’an donated to the Mohammad bin Rashid Library is a valuable and important addition to the library’s exhibits of treasures, complementing a collection of classical literature publications that tell the story of decades of knowledge and civilization,” Al Murr added.
He thanked the U.S. delegation for the valuable gift, which reflects the depth and strength of the strategic and cultural relationship and partnership between the two countries.
symbol of respect
Sean Murphy, Chargé d’affaires ad interim at the U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi, said: “The U.S. Mission to the UAE is honored to present a rare English translation of the Qur’an and an Arabic map from 1764, which are on display in the U.S. at Dubai 2020 The Mohammed bin Rashid Library Pavilion during the Expo. This exhibition is a strong symbol of respect for religious diversity and our shared values of religious tolerance and coexistence.”
According to the mission, US Representative Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to the United States Congress, took his oath of office on Jefferson’s Quran in 2006 and noted it demonstrated that from the very beginning of the United States, there were people who were visionary , they are religiously tolerant and they believe that knowledge and wisdom can be gleaned from any source including the Qur’an.