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Haverford College
Quaker and Special Collections
Harris
Paper manuscript containing the Qu'ran written in a circular style, bound in Oriental leather stamped in gold, but with no date.

J. Rendel Harris Collection

J. Rendel Harris was brought to Haverford at the end of the 19th century from Cambridge University as a Professor of Biblical Languages by then-President, Isaac Sharpless. He spent as much time in the Middle East as possible, and during a leave of absence in 1889-90, he purchased 47 Hebrew, Latin, Arabic, Syriac, Armenian and Ethiopic rolls and codices dating from as early as the 13th century on biblical and grammatical themes. Harris, with Walter Wood, class of 1867, presented these manuscripts to the College. Asked about the source of the documents, Harris replied that "they were all acquired by the lawful, though sometimes tedious, processes of Oriental commerce." Another 25 items have been added to the original collection by various donors.

Online Guide

Guide to the J. Rendel Harris Collection