About the Collections | The Un-cataloged Collections

The Mervyn Hiskett Collection: Consists of approximately 100 items representing the personal collection of the late Dr. Mervyn Hiskett (1920-1994), who taught at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Hiskett was a pioneering scholar of the Hausa literary tradition in Northern Nigeria, with a special interest in ajami literature (Hausa written in Arabic script). During his career he collected various documents and materials related to the history and culture of Islam in West Africa, and northern Nigeria in particular. The collection contains Hiskett's personal books, theses by Nigerian scholars that he supervised, photocopies of manuscripts, and market editions and printed editions of writings of Nigerian, Ghanaian, and Senegalese authors focusing on religious and historical issues. The latter are mostly in Arabic, although some are in Hausa (in both Roman script and ajami), and contain notations by Hiskett.

Moroccan Manuscripts: 12 handwritten manuscripts from Morocco, including volumes of hadith and fiqh works, some dating from the eighteenth century.

Brenner Photocopies: 20 photocopies of Arabic books by Malian and Senegalese authors, published in the 20th century. They were obtained from the personal library of Louis Brenner of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. They treat Islamic matters such as interpretation of the Qur’an, Sufism, and law.

John Rylands Library Collection: John Hunwick obtained from the University of Manchester (U.K.) John Rylands Library a microfilm of a collection of Arabic manuscripts (books and documents), originating from Kano in northern Nigeria. The microfilm of these 200 items was then printed and donated to the Herskovits Library's Arabic collection.