AED 60 million-plus worth of ancient texts and artefactswill decorate SBA’s ‘Tales from the East’ exhibition

Open to the public from April 28-May 7, exhibition highlights include the first issue of the 23 volumes of Description of Egypt

Sharjah, April 26, 2021

Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), organisers of the ‘Tales from the East’ exhibition, has announced that an estimatedAED 60 million-plus worth of early written material including booksand manuscripts, and a collection of rare artefacts, will be showcased at its headquarters in Sharjah from April 27 to May 3, 2021.

Open to the public from 8pm to midnight startingWednesday April 28, the exhibition will also feature a series of cultural sessions and panel discussions where eminent history and archaeology experts will discuss the role of manuscripts in unveiling the scientific and cultural achievements of humankind and address the importance of its preservation for future generations.

Speaking about the week-long event, HE Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of SBA, said: “Through the extensive collection of written material and manuscripts,‘Tales from the East’ exhibition will enable visitors to journey hundreds of years back in time and witness the events and innovations that have shaped the course of our history. This unique exhibition is being held in line with  the vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, which affirms that acquiring knowledge is a continuous and cumulative journey, and that exploring history is vital to creating a better future.”

Al Ameri added: “The exhibition not only explores the formative work of scientists, innovators and thought leaders over several centuries but also highlights the meticulous art of creating books in the ancient days and the relentless efforts that have gone into developing civilisations. The priceless works on display here will serve as an inspiration for the young generations to work harder and recognise that harnessing knowledge is the key to serving their nations and humanity.”

On display at the‘Tales from the East’ exhibition will be the first edition and first issue of the Description of Egyptcomprising of 23 volumes andillustrated with 935 plates. This colossalworkof history is the result of the collaboration betweenscientists, artists, and technicians who followed Napoleon Bonaparte to Egypt. It is the most monumental workever dedicated to a people, and is still considered a prime documentary source.

Visitors can also view the first edition of KatibÇelebi’s masterpiece,The Mirror of the World, published in Constantinople by Ibrahim Müteferrika in 1732 and illustrated with 40 coloured maps and plates including the famous map of the Arabian peninsula drawn by Ahmed Al-Qirimi.It also contains astrological models of the universe, and climate and wind maps, among others.

The exhibition will also house Journey to Persia, pennedby orientalist Adrien Dupré and published in 1819. This book documents his travels through Asia Minor, Mesopotamia, Turkey, Armenia and Persia.

The exhibition will also feature globes from the 17th to the 20th centuries, including an exceptional andrare pair of terrestrial and celestial 49cm coluredparquet globes by MattaheusGreuterreleased in Roma in 1632 and 1636. A large collection of antique posters,illustrated books and atlases, and a host of rare manuscripts will also be on display at the exhibition.

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