Letter: T-S Misc.25.62

Letter T-S Misc.25.62



Letter from Abū l-Khayr b. ʿIwāḍ, in Alexandria, to Nahray b. Nissim, in Fustat. In Judaeo-Arabic. The sender, an Ifrīqiyyan merchant, describes his problems with the capitation tax and notes that after Nahray’s intervention he paid two dinars this year, which he would not have minded, if others had been treated in the same way. Furthermore, “the tax-gatherers (ḥushshār, “ralliers”) and the director of the jaliya (ṣāḥib al-jawālī) are not to be blamed; all this is entirely the work of the Jews.” (Information from S. D. Goitein, Mediterranean Society, 2:385, 611; and Esther-Miriam Wagner, “The Weakening of the Bourgeoisie,” in From a Sacred Source: Genizah Studies in Honour of Professor Stefan C. Reif,” ed. Ben Outhwaite and Siam Bhayro, Brill, 2010, 345–46.) EMS

T-S Misc.25.62 1r



S. D. Goitein, unpublished editions.


  1. בשמך רחמנא
  2. כתאבי אטאל אללה בקא מולאי אל שיך אל גליל ואדאם עזה ותאיידה וסעאדתה
  3. ונעמתה וממא אעלמה אן מן וקת אן מצית מן ענדנא מא גרא עלי
  4. קליל מן אגל אלגאליה ופי אלבלד מן אקראני כתיר לם יפעל בהם מא
  5. יפעל בי כל יום נגרגר ווכלו עלי וקאלו תזן אלגאליה כאמלה וירידו
  6. יכתבוני באק(?) ואנת תעלם אן ואלדי מא כאן אלא טארי ואלדי יאכדוה
  7. מני יגעלוה ען קום אכרין עגזוהם מן אלגרירה והם קום כמא
  8. לא יכפא ענך והאדי אלגמל אלדי פעל מעי לאגל וציתך בי
  9. יגי וזני פי האדי אלסנה קריב דינרין ערפתך דלך ולו כאן אלדי
  10. יחל בי יחל בגירי לכאן יברד קלבי ואלחשאר וצאחב אלגואלי מא
  11. לה פי האדי שי והאדי כאמל פעל אליהוד אללה יכאפיהם פי

recto - right margin

  1. ארוחהם וולאדהם
  2. ערפתך דלך קראת
  3. עליך אלסלאם ועלי
  4. ולדך אלסלאם
  5. ואנא מהני לך בדכול
  6. אלטפלה אללה

recto - upper margin

  1. יחילך(?) אלי פרח אבו סעד
  2. ושלום


Amel Bensalim, Unpublished translations.


  1. In the name of God, the Merciful
  2. I am writing – May God prolong the permanence of my master, the splendid elder, and perpetuate his glory, his support , his happiness
  3. and his benefaction –  to inform [you] that since the time you left us, I have had not
  4.  a little trouble on account of the jālah [i.e. jāliya]. In town, few of my acquaintances are going through 
  5. what I have gone through. Every day I am dragged [to prison]. They summon me and tell me to pay the entire jāliya. They want to 
  6. register me as they would you [i.e. as a local]. But you know that my father was only a newcomer. Whatever they take
  7. from me, they credit to another group [in the register] and exempt them from the offence [of tax delinquency]. They are a group
  8. whose nature is not unknown to you. The favour that was done on my behalf due to your intervention
  9. brought my payment this year almost 2 dinars, as I informed you.
  10. My heart would be soothed if others were treated the way I was treated. The hushshār and the collector of the jāliya  
  11. have nothing to do with this. This is entirely the work of the Jews, may God recompense them

Recto - right margin

  1.  their souls and their children. 
  2. I informed you of that. I prayed for 
  3. your wellbeing and for that of
  4. your son.
  5. I congratulate you on the arrival
  6. of the little girl – may God

Recto - upper margin

  1. grant you the happiness of Abū Saʿd (?).
  2. Peace.

T-S Misc.25.62 1v


verso - address

  1. מולאי אלשיך אבי יחיי נהראי בן נסים
  2. זצל
  3. אטאל אללה בקאה ואדאם סעאדתה
  4. שאכר תפצלה אבו אלכיר  بن בן עואץ נע

Verso - address

  1. [To] my master the elder Abū Yaḥyā Nahray ibn Nissīm,
  2. The memory of the righteous is a blessing
  3. May God prolong his permanence and perpetuate his happiness
  4. [From] the one thankful for his favour, Abū al-Khayr ibn ʿAwwāḍ, may his [ʿAwwāḍ's] rest be in Eden. 
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