What does the discovery of the world’s oldest Quran tell us

For the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims, the idea that the Quran is a seventh century text disseminated by Islam’s founder, the Prophet Muhammad, is neither news, nor particularly controversial.

But in academia the history of this holy text is much more opaque. For researchers in Islamic studies, historical evidence dating the Quran back to Islam’s foundational era has proved elusive. This has led to hotly contested academic debates about the early or late canonisation of the Quran, with...

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