A polemic against Judaism by a convert to Islam from the Ottoman period: Risalat Ilzam al-Yahud fima za amu fi l-Tawrat min qibal ilm al-kalam

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Abstract

In this contribution a translation is presented of Risālat Ilzām al-Yahūd fimā za'amū fi l-Tawrāt min qibal 'ilm al-kalām ("Epistle forcing the Jews [to admit their error] with regard to what they contend about the Torah, by dialectical reasoning"), a polemical tract against Judaism by Salām 'Abd al-'Allām, a Jew who converted to Islam during the reign of the Ottoman sultan Bayezid II (regn. 886/1481-918/1512). The epistle contains virtually no autobiographical details, so that we know next to nothing about the author's profession or whereabouts. On the basis of a limited number of biblical passages, the author argues that the Jews should admit that the Torah has been abrogated by the new dispensation of Islam and accept the prophethood of Muhammad.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-151
Number of pages21
JournalJournal Asiatique
Volume297
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009

Keywords

  • Abrogation
  • Biblical testimonies to the Prophet Muhammad
  • Jewish converts to Islam
  • Jews in the Ottoman Empire
  • Muslim polemics against Judaism

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