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the experience of reading in Britain, from 1450 to 1945...

Reading Experience Database UK Historical image of readers
 
 
 
 

Record Number: 33583


Reading Experience:

Evidence:

'In the evening I would take one or the other of my companions [...] to the harims I knew, to meet again the sayyid's lovely wife, and the singers from Ghurfa, and the Learned Sherifa, affectionate as ever and very pretty with her full red lips and dark eyebrows, in spite of enormous black-rimmed spectacles on the very tip of her nose. Her plump little hands still waived about in explanation of such exciting things as the difference between a noun and a verb, or the relations of the heart to the five senses [...] in her own house she showed us, reverently and without touching it, for she had not washed her hands, a page from the Quran copied on parchment ("the skin of a gazelle") in beautiful Cufic, written - and who would contradict here? - by the hand of 'Ali Abu Talib himself, and sent as a present to her brother by the Imam Iahya of Yemen.'

Century:

1900-1945

Date:

Between 1 Nov 1937 and 24 Nov 1937

Country:

Yemen

Time

evening
night

Place:

city: Tarim
county: Tarim
specific address: Palace of Seiyid Bubakr al Kaf
location in dwelling: Harem (women's quarters)

Type of Experience
(Reader):
 

silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Type of Experience
(Listener):
 

solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown


Reader / Listener / Reading Group:

Reader:

Freya Stark

Age:

Adult (18-100+)

Gender:

Female

Date of Birth:

31 Jan 1893

Socio-Economic Group:

Professional / academic / merchant / farmer

Occupation:

Travel writer

Religion:

Christian

Country of Origin:

England

Country of Experience:

Yemen

Listeners present if any:
e.g family, servants, friends

n/a


Additional Comments:

n/a



Text Being Read:

Author:

[n/a] [n/a]

Title:

Koran

Genre:

Other religious

Form of Text:

Manuscript: Sheet, Parchment

Publication Details

Single hand-copied parchment sheet

Provenance

read in situ
In the harem (women's quarters) of the palace of Seiyid Bubakr al Kaf, ruler of Tarim in the Kathiri State of Seiyun


Source Information:

Record ID:

33583

Source:

Print

Author:

Freya Stark

Editor:

n/a

Title:

A Winter in Arabia: A Journey through Yemen

Place of Publication:

London

Date of Publication:

1972

Vol:

n/a

Page:

25

Additional Comments:

Pagination is from the 2011 IB Tauris edition. The book was first published by John Murray in London in 1972.

Citation:

Freya Stark, A Winter in Arabia: A Journey through Yemen, (London, 1972), p. 25, http://www.open.ac.uk/Arts/reading/UK/record_details.php?id=33583, accessed: 24 January 2020


Additional Comments:

Dame Freya Madeline Stark, Mrs Perowne, (31 January 1893 9 May 1993) was a British explorer and travel writer. Reading took place in the harem of the place of Seiyid Bubakr al Kaf, ruler of Tarim in the Kathiri State of Seiyun. The 'Learned Sherifa' is the Sultan's sister, Sherifa Alawiya, who Stark knew well from her previous stay in Tarim.

   
   
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