Al-Monitor | : “Without this Quran manuscript, darkness would prevail and bitterness would replace blessing,” said Tawfiq, who has spent his entire life in Negel, a Sunni Muslim village of some 4,000 residents in Iran’s Kurdistan province.
Sitting at a high altitude overlooking a deep valley less than 60 miles from the Iraqi border, Negel connects the provincial capital of Sanandaj to the border city of Mariwan. The village owes much of its distinction not to the natural beauty of the landscape, but to what it is home to: a manuscript of Islam’s holy book, the Quran, kept at the Abdullah bin Omar Mosque.
In the absence of any official documentation to shed light on the origins of the manuscript, the most common account is the one that has been orally passed on from the Kurdish villagers’ distant ancestors. It is a well-structured story with mythological and miraculous elements and has remained unaltered over the centuries.
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