This essay demonstrates how maritime qirad, as conducted in the Muslim world prior to the emergence of the Italian communes, influenced the lex mercatoria maritima. It contends that the medieval Latin accomendatio (commenda) likely owes its inception to the qirad/mudaraba institution, already prevalent in pre-Islamic Arabia, contrary to the commonly believed theory that it is rooted to the Byzantine chreokoinonia, comprised by article III:17 of the Nomos Rhodion Nautikos. On the eve of the European Commercial Revolution, through trade between the Christian north and the Islamic south, qirad practices and techniques were further developed from the pre-Islamic period and incorporated into Islamic legal digests, as well as transformed by non-Muslim merchants' guilds and societies. Legal principles and practices governing maritime qirad appear to have been uniform and universally accepted by jurists across the Islamic Mediterranean and beyond, as evinced by the early tenth-century CE treatise Kitab Akriyat al-Sufun, as well as earlier jurisprudential queries.

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