Thursday, July 23, 2015

Patricia Crone, 1945-2015

REST IN PEACE: Patricia Crone, Questioning Scholar of Islamic History, Dies at 70 (Sam Roberts, NYT).
Patricia Crone, a scholar who explored untapped archaeological records and contemporary Greek and Aramaic sources to challenge conventional views of the roots and evolution of Islam, died on July 11 at her home in Princeton, N.J. She was 70.

The Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, where she was a professor from 1997 until her retirement last year, said the cause was cancer.

Fred M. Donner, a professor of Near Eastern history at the University of Chicago, said Professor Crone had “made it clear that historians of early Islam had failed to really behave as historians — that is, had failed to challenge the validity of their sources, but rather had accepted complacently what I call the ‘traditional origins narrative’ created by the Islamic tradition itself.”

Some of Professor Crone's work has been noted by PaleoJudaica here. Cross-file under Aramaic Watch.