Saturday, January 26, 2019

The Testament Of Omar Bin Said

In Washington Post, 1/25/19 metro section there is a story recounting that the Library of Congress of the US has acquired the only diary of an American slave written in Arabic by Omar bin Said  in 1831, originally from Senagal.  The completion of this world historical accesson will now be able to proceed now that the ridiculous US federal governmint shhutdown so stupidly ordered by Preisident Trump has come to an end for now

Omar bin Said was a deeply serious Islamic scholar up until his capture at age 37 in 1807, to be sent across the "Big Sea" into slavery in Charleston, SC, USA. He escaped from his initial captor only later to end up as the slave of the politically powerful Owen family of North Carolina, whom he remained owned by until his death at age 94 in 1864 in the midst of the US Civil War, just before the  freeing of all American slaves.

Omar's manuscript in Arabic opens with Surah 67 from the Qur'an, which affrims that the ultimate ruler and owner of all things in the universe is Allah. Michael A. Ruaae of WaPo reports that he said regarding his arrival in the USA, "And in a Christian language, they sold me. A weak small, evil man called Johnson, an infidel who did not fear Allah at all. bought  me."

Omar's later owners, who lived as he did fot thst later  portion of his life on the Cape Fear River in North Carolina, treated him well, and he was in fact treated with great respect, with most people there realizing that he was a deeply wise and scholarly man, with his later owners granting him many privileges and much respect. with him likewise praising them for their kind conduct towards him.  But he died their slave.

Barkley Rosser


Tom Hickey said...


Anonymous said...

Please, please include specific references. said...


Are you addressing me or Tom Hickey? I have put nearly all I know about this manyscript in my post, which came from the Washington Post. About the only further thing I have to add is that reportedly the Library of Congress will be putting this manuscript on public display at some point, but I do not know when that will be.

Calgacus said...

Here it is:Omar Ibn Said Collection said...

Thanks, Calgacus.