Adam Mestyan is Assistant Professor at the History Department of Duke University. His first monograph was Arab Patriotism – The Ideology and Culture of Power in Late Ottoman Egypt (Princeton University Press, 2017).
How old is the world? This question was a central problem for Muslims, Christians, and Jews in the face of the new scientific discoveries in the nineteenth century. This book introduces the answer from a Muslim point of view, outside of official institutions. The extended introduction – a microhistory in the Middle East – explores the life and œuvre of a forgotten Egyptian intellectual and poet, Muṣṭafā Salāma al-Naǧǧārī (d. 1870). Next, A. Mestyan provides the English translation and Arabic transcription of the surviving fragments of al-Naǧǧārīʼs manuscript, .