Irshād al-aql al-salīm ilā mazāyā al-kitāb by Ebussud Effendi

This study aims to briefly introduce Ebussuud's monumental work, Irshād al-aql al-salīm ilā mazāyā al-kitāb, within the scope of an article and to reveal its place and value in the history of tafsir (exegesis). Well-recognized and revered in the intellectual and political circles of its time, Irshād had become the most popular tafsir on Ottoman territories after Keşşaf and Envârüt-Tenzil. The hundreds of its manuscript copies in Istanbul and world libraries and the presence of many related hâshiyas (commentary), taliks (annotations), theses, dissertations and research all bear strong testimony to its high prestige. Besides including a variety of narrative material such as the causes of revelation, the virtues of surahs and aspects of reading, it was considered to be the best of its genre in terms of its careful analysis of the Sunni doctrines and the new, perfected style of studying the Qur'anic inimitabilities (icaz) and literal perfections. While it attributes a special importance to the relations between surahs and verses, there is no emphasis on mystic comments and Sufi tastes. The Irshad was regarded by scholars as a good example of the rational-literal exegesis largely due to its style following Razi especially in theological and philosophical explanations. Moreover, it was considered to belong to a grammatical-literary genre because of its focus on the subtleties of meaning, wide coverage of linguistics and successfully discovering the icaz and literal perfections of the Qur'an.


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