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Rifā‘ah Badawī Rāfi‘ aṭ-Ṭahtāwī: The Egyptian Revivalist1

  • J. Heyworth-Dunne
Extract

Rifā‘ahbey, for by this name is he generally known, was born at Ṭahṭā, in the province of Girgā, in 1801. His genealogy goes back to Muḥammad al-Bāḳir b. ‘Alī Zain al-‘Ābidīn b. al-Ḥasan b. Fāṭimah, the daughter of the Prophet Muḥammad. His ancestors had been well-to-do but when Rifā‘ah was born, his parents were in great pecuniary difficulties. They were apparently affected by the confiscations by Muḥammad ‘Alī of the iltzamāt during the early part of his reign. Rifā‘ah’s father was compelled to go from one place to another in order to seek hospitality. At one time the family stayed with relations at Mansẖa’at an-Nīdah, near the town of Girgā these peregrinations, the young Riā‘ah began to memorize the Ḳor’ān under the care of his father.,

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This account has been based on Ṣālih Majdī's Ḥilyat az-Zaman fī Manākib ǣẖādim al- Watan, a MSS. in my possession and on ‘Abdar-Rahmān ar-Rāfi‘ī’s account in the 3rd vol. of his Ta'riẖā al-Ḥarakat al-ḳaumiyah, pp. 470–514. The article in the Encyclopædia of Islam omits the latter reference and gives only the more popular works. There are also several errors in the article; Rifā‘;ah was never paymaster to the education mission and al-‘Aṭṭar’s name is Ḥasan not Ḥassan.

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1 This account has been based on Ṣālih Majdī's Ḥilyat az-Zaman fī Manākib ǣẖādim al- Watan, a MSS. in my possession and on ‘Abdar-Rahmān ar-Rāfi‘ī’s account in the 3rd vol. of his Ta'riẖā al-Ḥarakat al-ḳaumiyah, pp. 470–514. The article in the Encyclopædia of Islam omits the latter reference and gives only the more popular works. There are also several errors in the article; Rifā‘;ah was never paymaster to the education mission and al-‘Aṭṭar’s name is Ḥasan not Ḥassan.

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Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
  • ISSN: 0041-977X
  • EISSN: 1474-0699
  • URL: /core/journals/bulletin-of-the-school-of-oriental-and-african-studies
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