Styles of Arabic/Islamic calligraphy


Are you looking to buy Islamic calligraphy online? Do you want in your home or office, or do you want to gift a loved one or a friend or a colleague or a neighbour Islamic calligraphy art?

Are you looking to buy Islamic calligraphy online? Do you want in your home or office, or do you want to gift a loved one or a friend or a colleague or a neighbour Islamic calligraphy art? Perhaps it would help to get a bit of a backgrounder on this heritage form of art, in particular the different styles of writing the Arabic script.

Islamic calligraphy as a form of art took off because of the prohibition of drawing of human and animal figures in Islam. So, people expressed their art in the form of text. When that text was derived from the Quran, it also became an expression of their beliefs or faith. It helped Islamic calligraphy that Arabic is a naturally beautiful script. That said, as Muslims conquered or settled in different parts of the world, new, regional Arabic calligraphy styles came into being, some of which have been discussed below.

  1. Kufic: Among the oldest styles of writing Arabic, Kufic was developed in the seventh century AD in Kufa, Iraq. It is also said to have been among the earliest fonts in which the Glorious Quran was transcribed. It is also believed that at that time, there weren’t any diacritical marks in Arabic. Kufic is characterised by very long or very short horizontal strokes and round characters with small counters.

As Arabs took control over non-Arab lands, and non-Arabs began entering into the fold of Islam, the Kufic font slowly stopped being used for the purpose of transcribing the Holy Quran. It was replaced by the Naskh font which will be discussed later in this article.

Kufic, however, thrived in use for decorative crafts such as ceramic plates. It diversified into floral, foliated, plaited or interlaced, bordered, and squared forms.

  1. Naskh: Naskh is a cursive font, unlike its angular predecessor, Kufic. It is also comparatively easy to read and write, and its use of diacritical marks, made it the preferred font in which the Holy Quran was transcribed. It is also the standard font of writing modern Arabic, and is used in newspapers, magazines, and official documents.
  2. Thuluth: Thuluth is an Arabic word that means ‘one third’. In Thuluth font, one-thirds of the a letter is written straight. It has long lines, broad strokes, and emphatic dots and diacritical marks. All of this gives Thuluth an overall grand, decorative look, fit for carving on walls of mosques and buildings. It is also easy to read, notwithstanding its decorativeness.
  3. Nast’aliq: This font originated in Iran, and was used for non-religious purposes as well like writing court papers. The word ta'liq means “hanging”, as the letters in the script slant slightly leftward. It is also used for writing Farsi and Urdu. In fact, it is the standard font used in Urdu newspapers.
  4. Diwani: This font was developed during the period of the Ottoman sultanate in the 16th A decorative, intricate and elaborate font, Diwani has slanting letters, the spaces between which are profusely filled with small decorative dots or other symbols. It is very suitable for Islamic calligraphy art. Now, with this basic backgrounder, it would be easier for you to buy Islamic calligraphy online.