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This script, also called Ruq’ah (small sheet), evolved from Naskh and Thuluth. Although Riq’a has a close affinity with Thuluth, Riq’a developed in a different direction. Riq’a became simplified. The geometric forms of the letters are similar to those of Thuluth but are smaller with more curves. Riq’a is rounded and densely structured with short horizontal stems, and the letter alif is never written with barbed heads.

Riq’a was one of the favorite scripts of Ottoman calligraphers and underwent many improvements at the hand of Shaykh Hamdullah al-Amasi. Later, Riq’a was revised by other calligraphers and went on to become the most popular and widely used script. Today, Riq’a is the preferred script for handwriting throughout the Arab world.


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