Pearls of the Faith

Ian Whiteman

pearls-of-faith-cover

A book that recently left my desk to the printers after sitting in my computer for over ten years is the book illustrated above: Pearls of the Faith by British Victorian journalist and traveller Sir Edwin Arnold. First published in 1884 it was an attempt to present Islam in an appealing and intelligent manner to a world steeped in prejudice and colonial disdain for Islam. When I first saw the text ten years ago it seemed archaic and written in a kind of verse that reminded me of the stories of Rupert Bear, an illustrated childrens’ story book told in verse form which I had grown up with. I didn’t really understand Hamza Yusuf’s motives in wanting to republish it but after ten years and a now very different world that we live in, it actually makes a lot of sense to re-present it to the public. After careful editing involving many spelling changes and the addition…

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