[ILLUSTRATED ALPHABET / EARLY REPUBLICAN VISUAL CULTURE / PROPAGANDA / CHILDREN’S BOOK] Resimli alfabe: Ilk kira’at dersleri [i.e., Illustrated alphabet: The first reading lessons]

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Kitabhâne-i Hilmi / Hilâl Matbaasi, Istanbul, 1927.

Original pictorial wrappers. Roy. 8vo. (23 x 16 cm). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters). 80 p., richly b/w illustrations reproduced by clichés. Occasional fading and foxing on cover and pages, wear to spine. Otherwise, a good copy.

Scarce one of the early editions of this profusely illustrated alphabet book published with permission by an expert report of the Ministry of Education in 1926. The book was prepared for first-grade primary school students. 

This book for children teaching the Turkish alphabet with Arabic letters before the 1928 Letter Revolution, also including some basic reading passages and nationalist poems, prepared according to the political view of the period, which also turned into propaganda material in terms of visuals and content. 

The calligraphic title on the cover and title page is drawn by Ottoman / Turkish calligrapher Hamid [Aytaç] (1891-1982). In the tradition of the great calligrapher Ali bin Hilal known as Ibn al-Bawwab, Aytaç was acknowledged as the leading calligrapher by the Arab world, and when he passed the age of 90 years, the mantle was passed onto his former student, Hashem Muhammad al-Baghdadi, who would the last of the classical calligraphers. In handing over the role of a leading calligrapher, Aytaç, in a clear reference to the importance of the medieval Baghdad School, said of al-Baghdadi, "The line grew up in Baghdad and ended there.

The drawings are signed by “R. S.” and “Galibi”. 

Not in Özege.; As of May 2024, we couldn’t trace any copies in OCLC and KVK.