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Riqa is one of the six scripts of Arabic calligraphy. Riqa was used for private correspondence on small papers or nonreligious books and texts.


'Thuluth' comes from the Arabic word meaning 'one-third' and derived its meaning from the one-third slope of the letters. It is most challenging to write, and it is one of the types of creative Arabic calligraphy that needs skill in writing. This type of calligraphy needs to be mastered according to the rules and commitment while writing it because it needs much control. 

Naskh is a smaller, round script of Islamic calligraphy. Naskh is one of the first scripts of Islamic calligraphy to develop, commonly used in writing administrative documents and for transcribing books, including the Qur’an, because of its easy legibility.

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Learn about the terms of Islamic arts


One who recites and sings poetry.

Dīn is an Arabic word with three general senses: judgment, custom, and religion.



An ijazah is a license authorizing its holder to transmit a specific text or subject issued by someone already possessing such authority.


Tezhip is a decorative art form, which means “ornamenting with gold.” It can be used to adorn books, calligraphy, manuscripts, religious texts, or a standalone art form — an art that requires years of practice and dedication.

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From Istanbul to Timbuktu-Ink Route

© Tombouctou Manuscripts Project, University of Cape Town

"The field of Islamic Calligraphy is a subject as fascinating as it is vast. Our aim here is to offer a glimpse into the origins of this art, in order to provide a context for the different styles of calligraphy displayed in this exhibition..."

The Art of Islamic Calligraphy: Rituals and Traditional Art

by Khalid Pablo Casado

"When you start studying calligraphy, you never know when you will finish your career. The art of Islamic Calligraphy is lifelong learning; it is a journey where you don’t just learn how to write letters, but you study some different aspects of human experience such as humility, patience, self-discipline, or “adab” (manners)..."

Calligraphy is Persistence: Profile of Calligrapher Shahryanshah Sirajuddin

“Benjamin Franklin once said, “energy and persistence conquers all things.” If there is a calligrapher that embodies those words, Shahryanshah Sirajuddin is one. We begin a new year of artist profiles with someone whose determination and love of calligraphy brought him to Turkey, all the way from Indonesia..."

"On this website you'll find a variety of interactive tools and information to help you learn more about calligraphy in the Arab, Ottoman and Persian traditions."

Introduction to Arabic, Ottoman & Persian Calligraphy

from Elisabeth Kvernen

Video Resources

Videos For Registered Students 

Support the Legacy of Islamic Fine Arts

Support the Legacy of Islamic Fine Arts

Support the Legacy of Islamic Fine Arts

Support the Legacy of Islamic Fine Arts

Calligraphy Ijaza Ceremony with Hasan Çelebi Hoca

Amina Nawaz – Session 2: Islamic Calligraphy & Cultures of Craft with Dr Bilal Badat

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