This is an important article on missing folios of the Ṣan‘ā’ Quranic palimpsest appearing at auction houses. Yemen’s heritage is being sold to the highest bidder, an incredible travesty on top of the humanitarian crisis. Below is the leaf that was sold in 2008 for £2,484,500.
There is a translation just published by Stanford University Press of the 19th century travel account of Hayyim Habshush. This is entitled A Vision of Yemen: The Travels of a European Orientalist and His Native Guide, A Translation of Hayyim Habshush’s Travelogue. The translator is Alan Verskin. Details are here.
If you study any aspect in Yemeni studies and are looking for online pdfs of Arabic texts on Yemen in history, politics and Islam, there is a major resource at k-tb.com. This includes classic chronicles, Yemeni contributions to the study of the Quran and traditions and a number of writings of Muqbil al-Wādi‘ī.
The anthropologist John Kennedy, who wrote an early study (The Flower of Paradise) on the use of qāt in Yemen, also took a number of videos in Ṣanā’ in 1975. Several of these are now online on Youtube. Most deal with making the qamariyya windows, but there is also one on architecture, another on Bab al-Sabāḥ and another on a walk through the old suq. The quality of the filming and its reproduction online is poor, but it is well worth watching. The soundtrack is also a useful guide to the actual sounds and dialogue.
Here are the links:
Between 1825 and 1828 an English lady named Anne Katharine Elwood accompanied her husband, a colonel in the British service, to India. On this trip they stopped at Hodeidah an Mocha on the Red Sea coast of Yemen. Her account is quite detailed, including her visits with women in Hodeidah and Mocha. Her full text, published in 1830, is entitled Narrative of a Journey Overland from England by the Continent of Europe, Egypt, and the Red Sea to India, including a Residence There, and Voyage Home, in the Years 1825, 26, 27, and 28. The discussion of Yemen is in Volume 1, which is available at archive.org.
For Part #1, click here. For Part #2, click here. For Part #3, click here. For Part $4, click here.