An outstanding scholar of linguistic sciences and of Qur’an exegesis, Abul’-Qasim Mahmud b. ‘Umar al-Zamakhshari (1075-1144) is studied in this notice from the viewpoint of his contribution in Arabic grammar and philology, and as a proponent of the Arab cause vis-à-vis the Persophile partisans of the Shu‘ubiyya.  The author stresses his studies in Mecca and his adhesion there to Mu‘taziliyya.  He also casts lights on al-Zamakhshari’s arguments against the Shu‘ubiyya, notably that Arabic grammar is the source of all sciences.  The notice then proceeds with al-Zamakhshari’s grammatical works:  Focusing on the often commented Mufassal, the author stresses its innovative arrangement of the material, divided according to the three parts of speech (nouns, verbs and particles).  Al-Zamakhshari’s contribution in lexicography is more rapidly analysed, the author of the present notice insisting on the quality of its information on Khwarezmian, the Iranian language of al-Zamakhshari’s country of birth.

The Redaction
CER: I-6.3.D-610