‘I had an affair with al-Hassun and became pregnant.’

Karima al-Wuhsha, a rich Jewish businesswoman, had a scandalous love affair with a married man, Hassun from Ashqelon. When she became pregnant, she worried that he would deny the affair. So, to ensure her child would have a named father, she arranged for them to be discovered in the act, and the witnesses subsequently testified to what they saw. She was eventually excommunicated from her synagogue because of her scandalous behavior, but generously left sums of money to all the synagogues of Fustat in her will. To the father of her child, she left nothing, ‘not even a penny’.

Fustat, 12th century

Judaeo-Arabic, paper

T-S 10J7.10