Kitāb Dhamm al-Dunyā
Ibn Abī Dunyā, the prolific author, traditionist and compiler of adab works lived in Baghdad in the ninth century CE. The original Arabic text of his "Condemnation of the world" (Kitāb dhamm al-dunyā) is published here for the first time from three manuscripts. The book contains edifying traditions, anecdotes, parables, dreams, visions and verses of poetry, all around the broad topic of Muslim asceticism (zuhd).
In her introduction, the editor provides a brief biography of the author who served as tutor to several ʿAbbāsī princes. She points out that while Ibn Abī Dunyā's works abound in passages extolling asceticism, he was not addressing an esoteric circle of ascetics, but rather aimed at improving the society at large. His purpose was to serve as a bulwark against the moral deterioration of society which was not averse to the pleasures of the world.
The edition includes a critical apparatus of variant readings in the manuscripts, as well as copious references to parallel passages in other sources and details about personalities mentioned in the text. There is also an extensive bibliography and indices.