Ibn al-Bawwab

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Ibn al-Bawwab
Ibn al-Bawwab - Qur'anic Manuscript.jpg
Ibn al-Bawwab script seen here is the earliest existing example of a Qur'an written in a cursive script, Chester Beatty Library
Died 1022
Known for Islamic calligraphy
Movement Naskh Thuluth muhaqqaq

Ibn al-Bawwāb was a Persian calligrapher and illuminator who lived during the time of the Buyid dynasty. He most likely died around 1022 AD in Baghdad.[1]


Ibn al-Bawwāb was from a poor family. The name he is known by means literally “son of the doorkeeper.” Nevertheless, he received a thorough education in law and is said to have known the Qurʾān by heart. Ibn al-Bawwāb’s interest in calligraphy was inspired by students of Ibn Muqlah. Altogether, Ibn al-Bawwāb reputedly produced 64 copies of the Qurʾān by hand. One of the most beautiful in the rayḥānī script is in the Laleli Mosque in Istanbul, a gift of the Ottoman Sultan Selim I (1470–1512). Ibn al-Bawwāb was recognized as a master in his own time; his school of calligraphy lasted until Baghdad fell to the Mongols more than two centuries after his death.[1]


One of his largest achievements was the perfection of the al-Khatt al-Mansub (literally, the well-proportioned script) style of Islamic calligraphy. He also contributed to the development of many of the early cursive scripts including rayḥānī, naskh, tawqīʿ and muhaqqaq.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Ibn al-Bawwāb brief bio". Retrieved 2012-09-14.