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The fake, the replica and the copy. Islam VIIth-XXth century

Le faux, le simulacre et la copie. Islam VIIe-XXe siècle

Documents & History. Session III

« Documents & Histoire » session III

*  *  *

Published on Friday, November 15, 2013 by Luigia Parlati


Ces journées d’étude constituent le volet III de la série « Documents & Histoire » dont la première édition a eu lieu en 2008. Le volet I a mis en avant l’importance d’une approche totale du document et de l’analyse de ses déterminations physiques de l’objet. Le volet III part directement de ce constat. Il couvre la période allant du VIIe au XXe siècle et porte sur la problématique du faux, la développant et la déclinant en trois termes : le faux, le simulacre et la copie.



This study day is the third in the series entitled “Documents & History”.

Session I (2008) covers the period from the seventh to the sixteenth century. Session II (2011), was dedicated to the “Materia medica: materials of ancient and medieval medicine of documentary value”.

Session I emphasized the importance of a total approach to the document. We demonstrate the importance of full analysis of the physical determinants of the object to the analysis of the document (“Introduction. Qu’est-ce qu’un document ? », in: A. Regourd (ed.), Documents & History. Islam VIIth-XVIth c., I, EPHE, Geneva, Droz).

Session III of “Documents & History” is a direct development of this conclusion. It covers a longer period, from the seventh to the twentieth century, and focus on the issue of falsity through consideration of three conceptions: the fake, the replica and the copy.

The term fake applies to documents that were intentionally created to look completely real, but are not.
By “replica,” we mean the cases of objects that try to pass themselves off as what they are not, i. e. true, or that recalls an original while not trying to be the original itself. They are “just like” the real thing.
The topic of “copying” raises first and foremost the question of models. These include both calligraphy and illumination of manuscripts as much as epigraphic objects.
We do not claim, of course, to exhaust the possibilities offered by the topic…

These issues are normally associated with archaeologists and art historians; that they are also shared by historians, codicologists, epigraphists and papyrologists, has largely gone ignored. Therefore, it is fervently hoped that the methods or the procedures used to defeat the fake and to escape from the difficulties raised by the replica and the copy will be discussed; but preferably methods where the characteristics of the physical object contribute as much to this as do the contents of the text.

Organisation : with the support of Paris, CNRS (UMR 7192, IISMM), in collaboration with the British Museum organised by Anne Regourd, CNRS, UMR 7192


14 novembre

08h30. Registration

09h00. Welcome address: Bernard Heyberger, Dir. IISMM

09h10. Introduction :

  • Anne Regourd, organisatrice des Journées/Study Day organiser
  • Sophie Yin, musée de la Contrefaçon de l’Union des fabricants

09h20-09h50. Café/Coffee

09h50-11h50. Making the fake

Panel chair: à confirmer/TBC

  • Venetia Porter, British Museum, Londres/London

Fake amulets from the Cabinet de Blacas

  • Robert Irwin, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), Londres/London

Fakes, Forgers and the Arabian Nights

  • Jan Just Witkam, Leiden University Centre for the study of Islam and Society (LUCIS), Leyde/Leiden

The useful frauds of Father Vella

12h00-13h30. Lunch

13h30-15h30. Original & Copy

Direction de session/Panel chair: Marie-Geneviève Guesdon, Bibliothèque nationale de France

  • Oliver Watson, Khalili Research Centre for the Art and Material Culture of the Middle East, Université d’Oxford/University of Oxford, Londres-Oxford/London-Oxford

Problems from the past: interpreting awkward objects

  • Nuria Martínez de Castilla Muñoz, Université Complutense/University Complutense, Madrid

Les tribulations d’un manuscrit morisque en exil

  • Zeren Tanındı, Sabancı University, Sakıp Sabancı Museum, İstanbul

On the Fourth Volume of Siyar-ı Nabi (late 18th century)

15h30-16h. Café/Coffee

16h-18h. Questions of authorship

Panel chair: à confirmer/TBC

  • Régis Morelon, emeritus, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Paris

Nouvelle rédaction au XIIIè siècle d'un texte scientifique arabe du IXè siècle

  • Joshua A. Sabih, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, Université de Copenhague/University of Copenhagen, Copenhague/Copenhagen

Copyright in Medieval Judaeo-Arabic text dissemination

  • Kinga Dévényi, Académie des Sciences/Academy of Sciences, Budapest

Questionable Authorship: Manuscripts versus Popular Tradition, the case of al-Maqṣūd fī l-ṣarf attributed to Abū Ḥanīfa

19h30. Dinner

Vendredi 15 novembre

08h30-09h50. Making the Illusion

Panel chair: TBC

  • Jean-Charles Ducène, Ecole pratique des hautes études (EPHE), Paris

Les fausses relations de voyage dans la littérature géographique arabe médiévale : typologie et procédés narratifs

  • Christine Jungen, Institut interdisciplinaire d'anthropologie du contemporain (IIAC, CNRS), Paris

Le « flou authentique » et ses techniques : originaux, copies et fac-similés

09h50-10h20. Coffee

10h20-13h00. Strategies of falsity

Panel chair: Noha Sadek, Independant Scholar

  • Ahmad Nazir Atassi, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston

Early Islamic Genealogies: Imperial Invention vs. Social Reality

  • Sarah Z. Mirza, College of Wooster, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Copies of documents attributed to the Prophet: medieval and modern functions of authenticity

  • Warren C. Schultz, DePaul University, Chicago

Counterfeits, Forgeries, and Imitations: Problems of Authenticity in Medieval Islamic Numismatics

  • Sabine Saliba, Centre d’études interdisciplinaires des faits religieux (CEIFR, CNRS), Tours

Actes de fondations pieuses waqfs contestés : le cas de la montagne libanaise (XVIIe-XIXe siècles)

13h00. Concluding remarks

13h15. Closing Lunch


  • Salle Maurice et Denys Lombard - 96, bd Raspail
    Paris, France (75006)


  • Thursday, November 14, 2013
  • Friday, November 15, 2013


  • faux, fake, reproduction, art, imitation, authenticité, copy, Islam


  • Anne Regourd
    courriel : jws744 [at] hum [dot] ku [dot] dk

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Anne Regourd
    courriel : jws744 [at] hum [dot] ku [dot] dk

To cite this announcement

« The fake, the replica and the copy. Islam VIIth-XXth century », Study days, Calenda, Published on Friday, November 15, 2013, https://calenda.org/265549

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