Arguably one of the most important moments in a Muslim’s life, the Hajj, also known as the big pilgrimage, constitutes one of Islam’s five principal pillars. Mandatory for all believers—if they are financially able and in relatively good health— the compulsory religious gathering is a tradition that has been stretching for centuries and is to be performed at least once in a person’s lifetime.
According to the Islamic calendar, this year, pilgrims will be expected to head to the holy city of Mecca to show their devotion to their faith starting from July 7. And to celebrate this unique period, New York-based publishing house Assouline is releasing an exclusive collection of archives, vestiges, and relics for you to discover from the comfort of your own home.
In paper form, “Hajj and the arts of pilgrimage,” written by Qaisra M. Khan and forwarded by Professor Sir Nasser David Khalili, features around 5,000 objects covering all-encompassing aspects of the Hajj. Recording elements from the eighth to the 21st centuries, and geographically from China to India through Morocco and the United Kingdom, the extensive piece of historical work uncovers years of tradition, faith, and travel, which includes illustrated manuscripts, scientific instruments, textiles, coins, paintings, and prints as well as early photographies of the holy site.
Shedding light on a religious matter many tend to leave to the latter parts of their lives, the collection delves into the age-old history of pilgrims through rarely seen before artifacts and objects all while honoring its legacy and honing its profound impact.