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An Early Arabic Business Letter

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Chapter Summary

The papyrus discussed in this chapter belongs to the collection of the late Dr. Hassan Ragab and is now kept at the Centre of Papyrological Studies and Inscriptions (ACPSI) of Ain Shams University under inventory number 113. The document discussed in the chapter is a business letter and seems to have been addressed to a cloth-merchant by his agent or partner. The sender complains about the sluggishness of the textile market, and mentions one and a half pounds of pepper which he bought for or sent to the addressee. He then goes on to say that the gold which the addressee had sent with a certain Qays Ibn Ḥajar, whose name appears at the beginning of the letter, covers part of the payment price for the three garments that the sender has returned with the same Qays Ibn Ḥajar, and for one other garment.

Keywords: business letter; cloth-merchant; garments; Hassan Ragab; Qays Ibn Ḥajar; textile market



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