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Fundamental analytical tools in the Kitāb

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Chapter Summary

This chapter deals specifically with the relationship between the Kitāb and the linguistic activity with which it was contemporaneous. The interrelatedness between grammar and both fiqh (jurisprudence) and tafsir (Qurʾānic exegesis) is also clear in the early grammatical activity leading to Sībawayhi?s Kitāb. The Kitāb does not emerge from vacuum. It builds on grammatical activity of which we have direct information from the Kitāb itself and indirect knowledge from later sources. It is, nevertheless, the first coherent and exhaustive description of Arabic grammar, especially syntax and morphology. It is also one of the earliest authored works in any Islamic discipline; that is, it is not the product of oral communication between a teacher and his disciples, but a real attempt at composing a coherent whole which has a beginning and an end, and which systematically examines the material defined by the discipline.

Keywords: Arabic grammar; early grammatical activity; fiqh; Islamic discipline; Kitāb ; Sībawayhi; tafsir

10.1163/ej.9789004168138.i-338.5
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004168138.i-338.5
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