Translating the Qur'an in the Dutch Republic
Keywords:Early Enlightenment, Qur'an, translations, intellectual history, Cartesianism, Orientalism
This article compares the first two Dutch translations of the Qur’an printed in the Dutch Republic: De Arabische Alkoran (1641) published by Barent Adriaensz Berentsma and Mahomets Alkoran (1657) published by Jan Rieuwertsz. It builds upon previous bibliographic research by quantifying the abbreviation of the Surahs in the two editions, identifying the sources of the paratexts, and describing the different strategies for translation. This analysis reveals how different editing choices reflect contradictory ideological attitudes among the publishers and translators involved. These producers of the first Qur’an translations echoed the widespread hostility towards Islam in Western discourses while also highlighting the peaceful nature of Muhammad and the similarities between the Bible and the Qur’an. This ‘Orientalist ambivalence’ not only resonated in local debates about freedom of conscience among Amsterdam Mennonites, but also signalled a more fundamental epistemological uncertainty following the rise of Cartesianism in the Dutch Early Enlightenment.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2022 Lucas van der Deijl
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with EMLC agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0) or a Creative Commons NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0) that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
Authors are explicitly encouraged to deposit their article in their institutional repository.