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  Arabic NACO Manual
Arabic NACO Manual
 Classical names

What is a classical author?

How to establish a classical author

Choosing the first element

If the author is very well-known, or if the classical person is not an author, reference sources such as the Encyclopedia of Islam, Encyclopaedia Britannica, etc. may be consulted and their data (dates, etc.) quoted in headings as they appear. In general, consult at least one reference source aside from the piece in hand.

  • When consulting Zirikli, choose the element(s) in the entry-heading as the first element. (note: if forename surname is given, enter under surname and add forename and father-patronymic as usual)
  • When consulting Brockelmann, choose the italicized element(s) as the first element.
  • When consulting Kahhalah, if the entry/heading contains an element which is not a forename, use this as the first element (i.e., Haymi in the heading Muhammad al-Haymi). If the elements in the entry/heading are all forenames, choose the element(s) in the article or in the piece in hand designated by a phrase such as "al-shahir bi-" or "al-maruf bi-" for the entry element if such a phrase occurs.
  • If the author is not found in any of these sources, choose as the entry element a surname in this order:
    • any unusual surname (i.e., not derived froma place-name or a madhhab)
    • a surname derived from a place-name (i.e., Baghdādī)
    • a surname derived from a madhhab (i.e., Ḥanafī)
    If there are no surnames, choose the element(s) following the ism and father-patronymic, if any (i.e. Ibn al-Lamish in ʻUmar ibn Ṣādiq ibn al-Lamish). If there are no such elements, enter the ism and father-patronymic in direct order.

NOTE: In cases where the first consulted reference source disagrees with data from the resource being cataloged or if it seems inappropriate or inaccurate, catalogers may choose to consult a second reference source.

Choosing essential parts of the name

The entry element must be determined before additional elements are chosen. According to F.1.1.3, if the entry element is not the ism or a patronymic derived from the father, these elements should be included in the heading "unless they are not customarily used in the name by which the person is known"--i.e., unless his name is well-known and short like that of Suyūṭī, Abū Nuwās or Jāḥiẓ.

This rule also calls for the addition of "an additional name, descriptive epithet, or term of honour that is treated as part of the name if it aids in identifying the individual". LC practice is to add additional names very seldom, apparently in accord with the statement, "Generally omit other parts of the name, particularly patronymics derived from anyone other than the father."

Determining the order of parts

One the first element and the essential parts have been determined, the first element is placed first--place a comma after the first element unless it is the first part of the name. Give the other parts in the following order: khiṭāb, kunyah, ism, patronymic, any other name.