The Project Gutenberg ebook of The Koran

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thirsty dreameth to be water, until when he cometh unto it, he findeth it not

aught, but findeth that God is with him; and He fully payeth him his account:

for swift to take account is God:

Or like the darkness on the deep sea when covered by billows riding upon

billows, above which are clouds: darkness upon darkness. When a man reacheth

forth his hand, he cannot nearly see it! He to whom God shall not give light,

no light at all hath he!

Hast thou not seen how all in the Heavens and in the Earth uttereth the

praise of God?�the very birds as they spread their wings? Every creature

knoweth its prayer and its praise! and God knoweth what they do.
God's, the Kingdom of the Heavens and of the Earth: and unto God the final

Hast thou not seen that God driveth clouds lightly forward, then gathereth

them together, then pileth them in masses? And then thou seest the rain

forthcoming from their midst; and He causeth clouds like mountains charged

with hail, to descend from the heaven, and He maketh it to fall on whom He

will, and from whom He will He turneth it aside.�The brightness of His

lightning all but taketh away the sight!
God causeth the day and the night to take their turn. Verily in this is

teaching for men of insight. And God hath created every animal of water.15

Some go upon the belly; some go upon two feet; some go upon four feet. God

hath created what He pleased. Aye, God hath power over all things.

Now have we sent down distinct signs.�And God guideth whom He will into the

right path:

For there are who say "We believe on God and on the Apostle, and we obey;"

yet, after this, a part of them turn back.16 But these are not of the

And when they are summoned before God and His Apostle that He may judge

between them, lo! a part of them withdraw:

But had the truth been on their side, they would have come to Him, obedient.
What! are they diseased of heart? Do they doubt? Are they afraid that God and

His Apostles will deal unfairly with them? Nay, themselves are the unjust

The words of the believers, when called to God and His Apostle that He may

judge between them, are only to say, "We have heard, and we obey:" these are

they with whom it shall be well.
And whoso shall obey God, and His Apostle, and shall dread God and fear Him,

these are they that shall be the blissful.

And they have sworn by God, with a most solemn oath, that if thou give them

the word, they will certainly march forth. Say: swear ye not: of more worth

is obedience. Verily, God is well aware of what ye do.
SAY: Obey God and obey the Apostle. Suppose that ye turn back, still the

burden of his duty is on him only, and the burden of your duty rests on you.

If ye obey Him, ye shall have guidance: but plain preaching is all that

devolves upon the Apostle.

God hath promised to those of you who believe and do the things that are

right, that He will cause them to succeed others in the land, as He gave

succession to those who were before them, and that He will establish for them

that religion which they delight in, and that after their fears He will give

them security in exchange. They shall worship Me: nought shall they join with

Me: And whoso, after this, believe not, they will be the impious.

But observe prayer, and pay the stated alms, and obey the Apostle, that haply

ye may find mercy.

Let not the Infidels think that they can weaken God on His own Earth: their

dwelling place shall be the Fire! and right wretched the journey!

O ye who believe! let your slaves, and those of you who have not come of age,

ask leave of you, three times a day, ere they come into your presence;�before

the morning prayer, and when ye lay aside your garments at mid-day, and after

the evening prayer. These are your three times of privacy. No blame shall

attach to you or to them, if after these times, when ye go your rounds of

attendance on one another, they come in without permission. Thus doth God

make clear to you His signs: and God is Knowing, Wise!
And when your children come of age, let them ask leave to come into your

presence, as they who were before them asked it. Thus doth God make clear to

you his signs: and God is Knowing, Wise.
As to women who are past childbearing, and have no hope of marriage, no blame

shall attach to them if they lay aside their outer garments, but so as not to

shew their ornaments. Yet if they abstain from this, it will be better for

them: and God Heareth, Knoweth.

No crime17 shall it be in the blind, or in the lame, or in the sick, to eat

at your tables: or in yourselves, if ye eat in your own houses, or in the

houses of your fathers, or of your mothers, or of your brothers, or of your

sisters, or of your uncles on the father's side, or of your aunts on the

father's side, or of your uncles on the mother's side, or of your aunts on

the mother's side, or in those of which ye possess the keys, or in the house

of your friend. No blame shall attach to you whether ye eat together or

And when ye enter houses, salute one another with a good and blessed greeting

as from God. Thus doth God make clear to you His signs, that haply ye may

comprehend them.

Verily, they only are believers who believe in God and His Apostle, and who,

when they are with him upon any affair of common interest, depart not until

they have sought his leave. Yes, they who ask leave of thee, are those who

believe in God and His Apostle. And when they ask leave of Thee on account of

any affairs of their own, then grant it to those of them whom thou wilt, and

ask indulgence for them of God: for God is Indulgent, Merciful.

Address not the Apostle as ye address one another.18 God knoweth those of you

who withdraw quietly from the assemblies, screening themselves behind others.

And let those who transgress his command beware, lest some present trouble

befall them, or a grievous chastisement befall them, hereafter.

Is not whatever is in the Heavens and the Earth God's? He knoweth your state;

and one day shall men be assembled before Him, and He will tell them of what

they have done: for God knoweth all things.


1 With this verse commences the reference to the scandal against Ayesha, to

which verses 6-9 read like a later addition. See His. 731 ff. Albuhari,

passim. Muslim ii. 628 ff. Tirm. 524. Tabari and Weil, p. 151.
2 Said to refer to Hilal ben Umaiya (Muslim i. 886. Tirm. 523. Annasai, 409

f. Assamarq.) who had accused his wife of adultery. Two of these

commentators, however, give the name of another Muslim as the person


3 Comp. Numb. v. ii, 31, with which Muhammad must have been acquainted.
4 The rumour of improper intimacy between Ayesha and Safwan Ibn El Moattal,

during Muhammad's return from the expedition against the tribe of Mostaliq

(an. Hej. 9), in which he was separated from her for an entire day, which she

passed in the company of Safwan, who had found her when accidentally left

behind. Verses 4-26 were revealed shortly after the return.
5 Whose characters are cleared.
6 Abdallah Ibn Obba. (Abulf. p. 83.)
7 Comp. verse 10, 11 (n.).
8 Abubekr had been desirous to punish one of his relatives, Mestah, who had

propagated the scandal against Ayesha, by refusing him gifts or alms.

9 "The very members of a man shall testify against him, for thus we read

(Jer. xliii. 12), Ye are yourselves my witnesses saith the Lord." Chagiga,

16. Thaanith, 11a.
10 It was the custom in Arabia, before Islam, to enter houses without

permission. Freyt. Einl. p. 216.

11 That is, the anklets. Comp. Isai. iii. 16, 18
12 On account of poverty.
13 Comp. Deut. xv. 12 15.
14 The meaning probably is, that the scandal raised against Ayesha resembled

the scandal in the case of Joseph in Egypt, and of the Virgin Mary, detailed

in previous suras.
15 An idea perhaps derived from Gen. i. 20, 21. Comp. Tr. Cholin, fol. 27a.
16 Verses 46-56 obviously refer to a period, perhaps that between the battle

of Ohod and the end of the war of the Ditch, when Muhammad's prospects were

overclouded and the confidence of his followers shaken.
17 This verse was intended to relieve the scruples of the Muslims, who.

following the superstitious customs of the Arabs, thought that they ought not

to admit the blind, etc. to their tables, to eat alone, or in a house of

which they were entrusted with the key, etc.

18 Lit. make not the calling of the Apostle among you, like the calling of

some of you to others, i.e., address him by some respectful and honourable

title. Thus in the Talmud, "It is forbidden to a disciple to call his Rabbi

by name even when he is not in his presence;" and again: "Neither is he to

salute his Rabbi, nor to return his salutation, in the same way that

salutations are given and returned among friends." "Whoever despises the wise

men hath no portion in the world to come." See Hilchoth Torah, c.5.


MEDINA.�22 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
God hath heard the words of HER1 WHO PLEADED with thee against her husband,

and made her plaint to God; and God hath heard your mutual intercourse: for

God Heareth, Beholdeth.
As to those of you who put away their wives by saying, "Be thou to me as my

mother's back" their mothers2 they are not; they only are their mothers who

gave them birth! they certainly say a blameworthy thing and an untruth:
But truly, God is Forgiving, Indulgent.
And those who thus put away their wives, and afterwards would recall their

words, must free a captive before they can come together again. To this are

ye warned to conform: and God is aware of what ye do.
And he who findeth not a captive to set free, shall fast two months in

succession before they two come together. And he who shall not be able to do

so, shall feed sixty poor men. This, that he may believe in God and His

Apostle. These are the statutes of God: and for the unbelievers is an

afflictive chastisement!
Truly they who oppose God and His Apostle shall be brought low, as those who

were before them were brought low. And now have we sent down demonstrative

signs: and, for the Infidels is a shameful chastisement.
On the day when God shall raise them all to life, and shall tell them of

their doings. God hath taken count of them, though they have forgotten them!

and God is witness over all things.
Dost thou not see that God knoweth all that is in the Heavens and all that is

in the Earth? Three persons speak not privately together, but He is their

fourth; nor five, but He is their sixth; nor fewer nor more, but wherever

they be He is with them. Then on the day of resurrection He will tell them of

their deeds: for God knoweth all things.
Hast thou not marked those who have been forbidden secret talk, and return to

what they have been forbidden, and talk privately together with wickedness,

and hate, and disobedience towards the Apostle? And when they come to thee,

they greet thee not as God greeteth thee:3 and they say among themselves,

"Why doth not God punish us for what we say?" Hell shall be their meed:4 they

shall be burned at its fire: and a wretched passage thither!

O Believers! when ye hold private converse together, let it not be with

wickedness, and hate, and disobedience towards the Apostle; but let your

private talk be with justice and the fear of God: aye, fear ye God unto whom

ye shall be gathered!

Only of Satan is this clandestine talk, that he may bring the faithful to

grief: but, unless by God's permission, not aught shall he harm them! in God

then let the faithful trust.
O ye who believe! when it is said to you, "Make room in your assemblies,"

then make ye room. God will make room for you in Paradise! And when it is

said to you, "Rise up," then rise ye up. God will uplift those of you who

believe, and those to whom "the Knowledge" is given, to lofty grades! and God

is cognisant of your actions.
O ye who believe! when ye go to confer in private with the Apostle, give alms

before such conference. Better will this be for you, and more pure. But if ye

have not the means, then truly God is Lenient, Merciful.
Do ye hesitate to give alms previously to your private conference? Then if ye

do it not (and God will excuse it in you), at least observe prayer, and pay

the stated impost, and obey God and His Apostle: for God is cognisant of your

Hast thou not remarked those who make friends of that people with whom God is

angered? They are neither of your party nor of theirs; and they swear to a

lie,5 knowing it to be such.

God hath got ready for them a severe torment: for, evil is that they do.
They make a cloak of their faith, and turn others aside from the way of God:

wherefore a shameful torment awaiteth them.

Not at all shall their wealth or their children avail them aught against God.

Companions shall they be of the fire: they shall abide therein for ever.

On the day when God shall raise them all, they will swear to Him as they now

swear to you, deeming that it will avail them. Are they not�yes they�the

Satan hath gotten mastery over them, and made them forget the remembrance of

God. These are Satan's party. What! shall not verily the party of Satan be

for ever lost.
Verily, they who oppose God and His Apostle shall be among the most vile. God

hath written this decree: "I will surely prevail, and my Apostles also."

Truly God is Strong, Mighty.
Thou shalt not find that any of those who believe in God, and in the last

day, love him who opposeth God and His Apostle, even though they be their

fathers, or their sons, or their brethren, or their nearest kin. On the

hearts of these hath God graven the Faith, and with His own Spirit hath He

strengthened them; and He will bring them into gardens, beneath whose shades

the rivers flow, to remain therein eternally. God is well pleased in them,

and they in Him. These are God's party! Shall not, of a truth, a party of God

be for ever blessed?

1 Khaula, daughter of Thalaba, who had been divorced by the formula in verse

2, which was understood among the Arabs to imply perpetual separation. This

Muhammad had asserted in her case; but in consequence of the woman's prayers,

etc., a relaxation of the law, on fulfilment of the conditions mentioned in

verses 4, 5, was hereby allowed. None of the earlier traditions fix any date

for this Sura, though later authorities (Weil, 184) fix the end of Hej. 6, or

the beginning of Hej. 7.�The subject matter is in part similar to that of

Sura xxiv.

2 See Sura [ciii.] xxxiii. 4.
3 Instead of saying, Es-salam aleika, "Peace be on thee," the Infidels and

Jews said, Es-sam aleika, "a plague, or poison on thee." See Geiger, p. 18.

4 Lit. sufficiency.
5 The Jews swear that they are Muslims.


MEDINA.1�78 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
O MEN of Mecca, fear your Lord. Verily, the earthquake of the last Hour will

be a tremendous thing!

On the day when ye shall behold it, every suckling woman shall forsake her

sucking babe; and every woman that hath a burden in her womb shall cast her

burden; and thou shalt see men drunken, yet are they not drunken: but it is

the mighty chastisement of God!

There is a man2 who, without knowledge, wrangleth about God, and followeth

every rebellious Satan;

Concerning whom it is decreed, that he shall surely beguile and guide into

the torment of the Flame, whoever shall take him for his Lord.

O men! if ye doubt as to the resurrection, yet, of a truth, have We created

you of dust, then of the moist germs of life, then of clots of blood, then of

pieces of flesh shapen and unshapen, that We might give you proofs of our

power! And We cause one sex or the other, at our pleasure, to abide in the

womb until the appointed time; then We bring you forth infants; then permit

you to reach your age of strength; and one of you dieth, and another of you

liveth on to an age so abject that all his former knowledge is clean

forgotten!3 And thou hast seen the earth dried up and barren: but when We

send down the rain upon it, it stirreth and swelleth, and groweth every kind

of luxuriant herb.

This, for that God is the Truth, and that it is He who quickeneth the dead,-

and that He hath power over everything:

And that "the Hour" will indeed come�there is no doubt of it�and that God

will wake up to life those who are in the tombs.

A man there is who disputeth about God without knowledge or guidance or

enlightening Book,

Turning aside in scorn to mislead others from the way of God! Disgrace shall

be his in this world; and on the day of the resurrection, We will make him

taste the torment of the burning:�
"This, for thy handywork of old! for God is not unjust to His servants."
There are some who serve God in a single point. If good come upon one of

them, he resteth in it; but if trial come upon him, he turneth him round (to

infidelity) with the loss both of this world and of the next! This same is

the clear ruin!

He calleth upon that beside God which can neither hurt him nor profit him.

This same is the far-gone error!

He calleth on him who would sooner hurt than profit him. Surely, bad the

lord, and, surely, bad the vassal!

But God will bring in those who shall believe and do the things that are

right, into gardens 'neath which the rivers flow: for God doth that which He

Let him who thinketh that God will not help His Apostle in this world and in

the next, stretch a cord aloft as if to destroy himself; then let him cut it,

and see whether his devices can bring that4 to nought at which he was angry!
Thus send we down the Koran with its clear signs (verses): and because God

guideth whom He pleaseth.

As to those who believe, and the Jews, and the Sabeites,5 and the Christians,

and the Magians, and those who join other gods with God, of a truth, God

shall decide between them on the day of resurrection: for God is witness of

all things.

Seest thou not that all in the Heavens and all on the Earth adoreth God? the

sun and the moon and the stars, and the mountains, and the trees, and the

beasts, and many men? But of many is chastisement the due:
And whom God shall disgrace there shall be none to honour: God doth that

which pleaseth Him.

These, the Faithful and the Infidels, are the two disputants who dispute

concerning their Lord: but for those who have disbelieved, garments of fire

shall be cut out; the boiling water shall be poured down upon their heads:
All that is in their bowels, and their skins, shall be dissolved: and there

are maces of iron for them!

So oft as they, for very anguish, would fain come forth thence, back shall

they be turned into it: and�"Taste ye the torment of the burning."

But God will bring in those who shall have believed, and done the things that

are right, into gardens 'neath which the rivers flow. Adorned shall they be

therein with golden bracelets and with pearls, and their raiment therein

shall be of silk;

For they were guided to the best of words; guided to the glorious path!
But those who believe not, and seduce others from the way of God, and from

the Holy Mosque which we have appointed to all men, alike for those who abide

therein, and for the stranger;
And those who seek impiously to profane it, we will cause to taste a grievous


And call to mind when we assigned the site of the House6 to Abraham and said:

"Unite not aught with Me in worship, and cleanse My House for those who go in

procession round it, and who stand or bow in worship:"�
And proclaim to the peoples a PILGRIMAGE: Let them come to thee on foot and

on every fleet7 camel, arriving by every deep defile:

That they may bear witness of its benefits to them, and may make mention of

God's name on the appointed days,8 over the brute beasts with which He hath

supplied them for sustenance: Therefore eat thereof yourselves, and feed the

needy, the poor:

Then let them bring the neglect of their persons to a close,9 and let them

pay their vows, and circuit the ancient House.

This do. And he that respecteth the sacred ordinances of God, this will be

best for him with his Lord. The flesh of cattle is allowed you, save of those

already specified to you. Shun ye, therefore, the pollutions of idols; and

shun ye the word of falsehood;

Sound in faith Godward, uniting no god with Him; for whoever uniteth gods

with God, is like that which falleth from on high, and the birds snatch it

away, or the wind wafteth it to a distant place.
This do. And they who respect the rites of God, perform an action which

proceedeth from piety of heart.

Ye may obtain advantages from the cattle up to the set time for slaying them:

then, the place for sacrificing them is at the ancient House.

And to every people have we appointed rites, that they may commemorate the

name of God over the brute beasts which He hath provided for them. And your

God is the one God. To Him, therefore, surrender yourselves: and bear thou

good tidings to those who humble them,�

Whose hearts, when mention is made of God, thrill with awe; and to those who

remain steadfast under all that be-falleth them, and observe prayer, and give

alms of that with which we have supplied them.
And the camels have we appointed you for the sacrifice to God: much good have

ye in them. Make mention, therefore, of the name of God over them when ye

slay them, as they stand in a row; and when they are fallen over on their

sides, eat of them, and feed him who is content and asketh not, and him who

asketh. Thus have We subjected them to you, to the intent ye should be


By no means can their flesh reach unto God, neither their blood; but piety on

your part reacheth Him. Thus hath He subjected them to you, that ye might

magnify God for His guidance: moreover, announce to those who do good deeds�
That God will ward off mischief from believers: for God loveth not the false,

the Infidel.

A sanction is given to those who, because they have suffered outrages, have

taken up arms; and verily, God is well able to succour them:

Those who have been driven forth from their homes wrongfully, only because

they say "Our Lord is the God." And if God had not repelled some men by

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