Transcriptions of Arabic manuscripts from northern Somalia. They includeIslamic texts, poetry and history, the originals were largely held in theprivate libraries of Somali sheikhs. The copies were made by local researchassistants for Ieuan Lewis in the Somaliland Protectorate between 1955 and1957. His intention was to document the literate Islamic tradition whichunderpins the essentially oral Somali culture. The collection consists of 33pieces of which 2 are printed pamphlets. A description of the collection byBW Andrzejewski and IM Lewis entitled New Arabic documents from Somalia isshelved with the collection plus an offprint by the same authors fromEthiopia e Oltre, Studi in Onore di Lanfranco Ricci, Naples 1994.
The collection consists of thirty-three bound manuscripts, listed innumerical sequence, and includes:
- MS 1 A group of short "qasida" which are sung at religious meetings, in partwith the accompaniment of drumming.
- MS 3 and MS 4 Names of sheikhs venerated as saints and the locations of theiractivities.
- MS 5 Four prayers sung by women in the Somali poetic genre called"buraanbur"
- MS 12 A sequence of pious invocations which may be such as used in leatherpouches worn as phylacteries on arm or neck.
- MS 14 A list of books in MS form written by sheikhs Ali Ibrahim. The bookslisted are collections of "qasidas" and prose works on religious subjects.
- MS 18. Account of a discussion between sheikh Abd Allah bin Mu'allim Yusufal-Qutbi and Boqor Uthamn Mahmud about Sayyid Muhammad Abd Allah Hasan. In itthe sheikh attacks the Sayyid's fatwa that those Somalis who had joined himin the holy war against the Christians governing Somalia.
- MS 27 Account of the wars conducted against the invasions of Muslimterritories in the Horn of Africa by the Portuguese, Italians and Ethiopians.