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Ibn Battuta

Geburtstag: 24. Februar 1304
Todesdatum: 1377

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Abū ʿAbdallāh Muhammad Ibn Battūta war ein muslimischer Rechtsgelehrter und Autor des vermeintlich autobiographischen Reiseberichtes تحفة النظار في غرائب الأمصار وعجائب الأسفار . Letzterer berichtet über Battūtas Pilgerfahrt nach Mekka und seine anschließende Reise von mehr als 120.000 km Länge durch die gesamte islamische Welt und darüber hinaus. Während Battūtas Reise nach wie vor als bedeutendes literarisches Werk gilt, ist sein Inhalt zumindest teilweise als Fiktion oder Plagiat zu betrachten.Fast alle bekannten Informationen über das Leben Ibn Battūtas stammen aus einer einzigen Quelle – nämlich Ibn Battūta selbst. Die nachfolgende Zusammenstellung beruht auf seinem hinsichtlich seiner Authentizität umstrittenen Reisebericht.

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„One day I rode in company with ‘Alã-ul-mulk and arrived at a plain called Tarna at a distance of seven miles from the city. There I saw innumerable stone images and animals, many of which had undergone a change, the original shape being obliterated. Some were reduced to a head, others to a foot and so on. Some of the stones were shaped like grain, wheat, peas, beans and lentils. And there were traces of a house which contained a chamber built of hewn stone, the whole of which looked like one solid mass. Upon it was a statue in the form of a man, the only difference being that its head was long, its mouth was towards a side of its face and its hands at its back like a captive’s. There were pools of water from which an extremely bad smell came. Some of the walls bore Hindî inscriptions. ‘Alã-ul-mulk told me that the historians assume that on this site there was a big city, most of the inhabitants of which were notorious. They were changed into stone. The petrified human form on the platform in the house mentioned above was that of their king. The house still goes by the name of ‘the king’s house’. It is presumed that the Hindî inscriptions, which some of the walls bear, give the history of the destruction of the inhabitants of this city. The destruction took place about a thousand years ago…“

—  Ibn Battuta
Travels in Asia and Africa (Rehalã of Ibn Battûta), Lahari Bandar (Sindh) . The Rehalã of Ibn Battûta translated into English by Mahdi Hussain, Baroda, 1967, p. 10.

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