What others say about Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah...

Last updated: 6 October 2017 From the section Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah

I consider it to be a great fortune that I know you.

Suniti Kumar Chatterji, Professor of Indian Linguistics and Phonetics and author of magnum opus "The Origin and Developments of the Bengali Language" (1926)

Dr. Shahidullah was a polyglot [someone who knows or uses several languages] and an expert in philology. He knew many languages and thus had access to the treasures of many different literature.

The Daily Star (Bangladesh)

Fazlul Huq Hall Mosque was on the second floor of the indoor recreation center of the hall [at Dhaka University]. Occassionally, Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah would come to this mosque to say his Friday [Jummah] prayers.

He was then a Professor Emeritus of the Bangla Department. He was very old and lived a kind of retired life. After the prayers, he would take up serious Islamic topics for general discussions. A good number of students would always crowd around this Professor of Bangla to listen to his scholarly discourse on Islam.

Dr. Shahidullah was a renowned linguistic scholar of the subcontinent. He had learned 18 languages of the world including Bangla, Urdu, Arabic, Farsi, Sanskrit, English, German, French and many others. He obtained a doctorate degree in phonetics from France.

Though he had learned a lot on Islam because of his proficiency in the Arabic language, he was a true secularist. He believed in Bengali nationalism. He propagated the philosophy that Muslims, Hindu, Buddhist living in Bengal were all Bengali.

He was proud of the Bengali language and culture. He campaigned for the celebration of the Bengali New Year [Pohela Baishakh], which he thought to be a part of the Bengali culture. As the result of this campaign, the Bengali New Year celebration began in the cities.

He was one of the pioneering minds who inspired the movement for the recognition of Bangla as a state language.

Nurun Nabi, author of "Bullets of '71: A Freedom Fighter's Story" (2011)

This special volume of dissertations is published from the Asiatic Society of Pakistan, Dacca, to felicitate Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah...a founder-member and an eminent Ex-president of the society, on completion of the 80th year of his life on 10 July 1965. Perhaps no other occasion would have been more suitable for this purpose.

Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah is well known in the Indo-Pakistan sub-continent, nay, much beyond its limit, as an eminent oriental scholar, whose intellectual activities spreading over three successive generations of our people, have been a constant source of inspiration to us. In fact, we regard him as a living symbol of scholarship and research. By honouring him, the Asiatic Society of Pakistan, Dacca, desires to honour scholarship in general and oriental lore in particular...

Muhammad Enamul Haq in the 'Editor's Note' of the Asiatic Society of Pakistan's felicitation on Dr. Shahidullah (1966)

Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah was not only a mine of knowledge but also an ideal teacher, and was devoted to profession. It is pertinent to mention here that the vast knowledge he acquired made him a simple, well-versed and dignified person. His main aim in life was to attain perfection through acquisition of knowledge, both spiritual and mundane.

Muhammad Abdul Mazid, a former secretary and Chairman National Board of Revenue

His work is both voluminous and great. It is a testimony to his patience and devotion, for intelligence alone cannot go a long way without their accompaniments.


Dr. Shahidullah was a true Muslim, non-communal and tolerant. A person like him is very rare nowadays.

Dr. Anisuzzaman, Professor Emeritus, University of Dhaka