Saturday 8 August 2020 \

 

More than 113 thousand manuscript pages digitized in Dagestan

Photo Credit: RIA Novosti
One year has passed since Russia's tycoon Ziyavudin Magomedov's Peri Charitable Foundation began implementing manuscripts digitization project with the Dagestani Institute of History, Archeology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences, RIA Novosti news agency reports. 
 
To date, 493 manuscripts with a total of 113173 scanned sheets have already been digitized. All manuscripts are dust-free and cleaned.
 
In addition, cataloguing for 900 manuscripts including identification, archaeographic description and compilation of a database was carried out. Each manuscript was assigned a number, with such fields in the description as language of the text, the title of the composition, the subject, the author, date and place of copy.
 
Descriptions are given in Arabic and English. The English language is chosen taking into account a wider readership so that the scanned manuscripts and their descriptions become available, including but not limited to European researchers. Arabic names of the works more accurately convey the composition of the manuscript, their generally accepted names in the world catalogs and themes of genres. The description of manuscripts takes into account the experience of creating electronic catalogs of the world's largest libraries where Arabic-language manuscripts are kept (British, Alexandrian, Berlin, Leiden, Jerusalem and others).
 
Currently, all the digitized manuscripts are written, and after the editorial processing will be ready to be placed in the public domain. For the time being all the digitized materials are copied to the server.
 
Earlier last year, within the framework of the "Cultural Heritage 2.0" International Program, the Peri foundation started digitizing the Center's Eastern manuscripts. For this purpose a unique large-format scanner was designed and delivered to Dagestan. In addition, a high-tech server was purchased for storing, processing and cataloging purposes, capable of storing 75 trillion of digitized books (a volume equal to 16,000 DVDs or 18 500,000 high-quality photographs).
 
The Foundation plans to purchase an additional mobile scanner for digitizing other unique manuscripts that are stored in mosques, madrassas and private collections throughout in Dagestan.
 
On May 17 last year, the Peri Foundation also opened a unique laboratory at the Institute of HEA to preserve and restore ancient monuments of written culture. It is equipped with the most modern equipment and materials. During the restoration and conservation of manuscripts, each stage of painstaking work with manuscripts is recorded by a digital camera (cleaning, dedusting, restoring paper, blocks, stapling blocks, making bindings, etc.). The laboratory equipment makes it possible to produce paper for the restoration of manuscripts in place, taking into account the color, properties and characteristics of the document to be restored. This high-tech process using exclusively natural ingredients is unique in Russia.
 
The partner of the Foundation in this project is the Center for Culture and Heritage of Juma Al-Majid (United Arab Emirates). The UAE Center has trained several restoration artists from Dagestan at their facilities last year. 
 

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