The Project Gutenberg ebook of The Koran



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MECCA.�25 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
WHEN the Heaven shall have SPLIT ASUNDER
And duteously obeyed its Lord;1
And when Earth shall have been stretched out as a plain,
And shall have cast forth what was in her and become empty,
And duteously obeyed its Lord;
Then verily, O man, who desirest to reach thy Lord, shalt thou meet him.
And he into whose right hand his Book shall be given,
Shall be reckoned with in an easy reckoning,
And shall turn, rejoicing, to his kindred.
But he whose Book shall be given him behind his back2
Shall invoke destruction:
But in the fire shall he burn,
For that he lived joyously among his kindred,
Without a thought that he should return to God.
Yea, but his Lord beheld him.
It needs not therefore that I swear by the sunset redness,
And by the night and its gatherings,
And by the moon when at her full,
That from state to state shall ye be surely carried onward.3
What then hath come to them that they believe not?
And that when the Koran is recited to them they adore not?
Yea, the unbelievers treat it as a lie.
But God knoweth their secret hatreds:
Let their only tidings4 be those of painful punishment;
Save to those who believe and do the things that be right.
An unfailing recompense shall be theirs.

_______________________


1 Lit. and obeyed its Lord, and shall be worthy, or capable, i.e., of

obedience.


2 That is, into his left hand. The Muhammadans believe that the right hand of

the damned will be chained to the neck; the left chained behind the back.


3 From Life to Death, from the Grave to Resurrection, thence to Paradise.
4 The expression is ironical. See Freyt. on the word. Lit. tell them glad

tidings.


SURA C.�THE CHARGERS [XXXIV.]
Mecca.�11 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
By the snorting CHARGERS!
And those that dash off sparks of fire!
And those that scour to the attack at morn!
And stir therein the dust aloft;
And cleave therein their midway through a host!
Truly, Man is to his Lord ungrateful.
And of this he is himself a witness;
And truly, he is vehement in the love of this world's good.
Ah! knoweth he not, that when that which is in the graves shall be laid bare,
And that which is in men's breasts shall be brought forth,
Verily their Lord shall on that day be informed concerning them?

SURA LXXIX.1�THOSE WHO DRAG FORTH [XXXV.]


MECCA.�46 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
By those angels who DRAG FORTH souls with violence,
And by those who with joyous release release them;
By those who swim swimmingly along;
By those who are foremost with foremost speed;2
By those who conduct the affairs of the universe!
One day, the disturbing trumpet-blast shall disturb it,
Which the second blast shall follow:
Men's hearts on that day shall quake:�
Their looks be downcast.
The infidels will say, "Shall we indeed be restored as at first?
What! when we have become rotten bones?"
"This then," say they, "will be a return to loss."
Verily, it will be but a single blast,
And lo! they are on the surface of the earth.
Hath the story of Moses reached thee?
When his Lord called to him in Towa's holy vale:
Go to Pharaoh, for he hath burst all bounds:
And say, "Wouldest thou become just?
Then I will guide thee to thy Lord that thou mayest fear him."
And he showed him a great miracle,�
But he treated him as an impostor, and rebelled;
Then turned he his back all hastily,
And gathered an assembly and proclaimed,
And said, "I am your Lord supreme."
So God visited on him the punishment of this life and of the other.
Verily, herein is a lesson for him who hath the fear of God.
Are ye the harder to create, or the heaven which he hath built?
He reared its height and fashioned it,
And gave darkness to its night, and brought out its light,
And afterwards stretched forth the earth,�
He brought forth from it its waters and its pastures;
And set the mountains firm
For you and your cattle to enjoy.
But when the grand overthrow shall come,
The day when a man shall reflect on the pains that he hath taken,
And Hell shall be in full view of all who are looking on;
Then, as for him who hath transgressed
And hath chosen this present life,
Verily, Hell�that shall be his dwelling-place:
But as to him who shall have feared the majesty of his Lord, and shall have

refrained his soul from lust,


Verily, Paradise�that shall be his dwelling-place.
They will ask thee of "the Hour," when will be its fixed time?
But what knowledge hast thou of it?
Its period is known only to thy Lord;
And thou art only charged with the warning of those who fear it.
On the day when they shall see it, it shall seem to them as though they had

not tarried in the tomb, longer than its evening or its morn.

_______________________
1 This Sura obviously consists of three portions, verses 1-14, 15-26, 27-46,

of which the third is the latest in point of style, and the second, more

detailed than is usual in the Suras of the early period, which allude to

Jewish and other legend only in brief and vague terms. It may therefore be

considered as one of the short and early Suras.
2 Or, By those angels which precede, i.e., the souls of the pious into

Paradise. Or, are beforehand with the Satans and djinn in learning the

decrees of God.

SURA LXXVII.�THE SENT [XXXVI.]


MECCA.�50 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
By the train of THE SENT ones,1
And the swift in their swiftness;
By the scatterers who scatter,
And the distinguishers who distinguish;
And by those that give forth the word
To excuse or warn;
Verily that which ye are promised is imminent.
When the stars, therefore, shall be blotted out,
And when the heaven shall be cleft,
And when the mountains shall be scattered in dust,
And when the Apostles shall have a time assigned them;
Until what day shall that time be deferred?
To the day of severing!
And who shall teach thee what the day of severing is?
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
Have we not destroyed them of old?
We will next cause those of later times to follow them.2
Thus deal we with the evil doers.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
Have we not created you of a sorry germ,
Which we laid up in a secure place,
Till the term decreed for birth?
Such is our power! and, how powerful are We!
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
Have we not made the earth to hold
The living and the dead?
And placed on it the tall firm mountains, and given you to drink of sweet

water.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!


Begone to that Hell which ye called a lie:�
Begone to the shadows that lie in triple masses;
"But not against the flame shall they shade or help you:"�
The sparks which it casteth out are like towers�
Like tawny camels.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
On that day they shall not speak,
Nor shall it be permitted them to allege excuses.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
This is the day of severing, when we will assemble you and your ancestors.
If now ye have any craft try your craft on me.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
But the god-fearing shall be placed amid shades and fountains,
And fruits, whatsoever they shall desire:
"Eat and drink, with health,3 as the meed of your toils."
Thus recompense we the good.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
"Eat ye and enjoy yourselves a little while. Verily, ye are doers of evil."
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture!
For when it is said to them, bend the knee, they bend it not.
Woe on that day to those who charged with imposture
In what other revelation after this will they believe?

_______________________


1 Lit. by the sent (fem.) one after another. Per missas. Mar. Either angels

following in a continued series; or, winds, which disperse rain over the

earth; or the successive verses of the Koran which disperse truth and

distinguish truth from error.


2 Sura xliv. 40.
3 Maimonides says that the majority of the Jews hope that Messiah shall come

and "raise the dead, and they shall be gathered into Paradise, and there

shall eat and drink and be in good health to all eternity."�Sanhedrin, fol.

119, col. I.

SURA LXXVIII.�THE NEWS [XXXVII.]
MECCA.�41 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Of what ask they of one another?
Of the great NEWS.1
The theme of their disputes.
Nay! they shall certainly knows its truth!
Again. Nay! they shall certainly know it.
Have we not made the Earth a couch?
And the mountains its tent-stakes?
We have created you of two sexes,
And ordained your sleep for rest,
And ordained the night as a mantle,
And ordained the day for gaining livelihood,
And built above you seven solid2 heavens,
And placed therein a burning lamp;
And we send down water in abundance from the rain-clouds,
That we may bring forth by it corn and herbs,
And gardens thick with trees.
Lo! the day of Severance is fixed;
The day when there shall be a blast on the trumpet, and ye shall come in

crowds,
And the heaven shall be opened and be full of portals,


And the mountains shall be set in motion, and melt into thin vapour.
Hell truly shall be a place of snares,
The home of transgressors,
To abide therein ages;
No coolness shall they taste therein nor any drink,
Save boiling water and running sores;
Meet recompense!
For they looked not forward to their account;
And they gave the lie to our signs, charging them with falsehood;
But we noted and wrote down all:
"Taste this then: and we will give you increase of nought but torment."
But, for the God-fearing is a blissful abode,
Enclosed gardens and vineyards;
And damsels with swelling breasts, their peers in age,
And a full cup:
There shall they hear no vain discourse nor any falsehood:
A recompense from thy Lord�sufficing gift!�
Lord of the heavens and of the earth, and of all that between3 them lieth�the

God of Mercy! But not a word shall they obtain from Him.


On the day whereon the Spirit4 and the Angels shall be ranged in order, they

shall not speak: save he whom the God of Mercy shall permit, and who shall

say that which is right.
This is the sure day. Whoso then will, let him take the path of return to his

Lord.
Verily, we warn you of a chastisement close at hand:


The day on which a man shall see the deeds which his hands have sent before

him; and when the unbeliever shall say, "Oh! would I were dust!"

_______________________
1 Of the Resurrection. With regard to the date of this Sura, we can only be

guided (I) by the general style of the earlier portion (to verse 37, which is

analogous to that of the early Meccan Suras; (2) by verse 17, which pre-

supposes lxxvii. 12; (3) by the obviously later style of verse 37 to the end.


2 See Sura ii. 27. This is the title given by the Talmudists to the fifth of

the seven heavens.


3 This phrase is of constant recurrence in the Talmud. Maimonides, Yad Hach.

i. 3, makes it one of the positive commands of the Rabbins to believe "that

there exists a first Being . . . and that all things existing, Heaven and

Earth, and whatever is between them, exist only through the truth of his

existence."
4 Gabriel.

SURA LXXXVIII.�THE OVERSHADOWING [XXXVIII.]


MECCA.�26 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Hath the tidings of the day that shall OVERSHADOW, reached thee?
Downcast on that day shall be the countenances of some,
Travailing and worn,
Burnt at the scorching fire,
Made to drink from a fountain fiercely boiling.
No food shall they have but the fruit of Darih,1
Which shall not fatten, nor appease their hunger.
Joyous too, on that day, the countenances of others,
Well pleased with their labours past,
In a lofty garden:
No vain discourse shalt thou hear therein:
Therein shall be a gushing fountain,
Therein shall be raised couches,
And goblets ready placed,
And cushions laid in order,
And carpets spread forth.
Can they not look up to the clouds, how they are created;
And to the heaven how it is upraised;
And to the mountains how they are rooted;
And to the earth how it is outspread?
Warn thou then; for thou art a warner only:
Thou hast no authority over them:
But whoever shall turn back and disbelieve,
God shall punish him with the greater punishment.
Verily to Us shall they return;
Then shall it be Our's to reckon with them.

_______________________


1 The name of a bitter, thorny shrub.

SURA LXXXIX.�THE DAYBREAK [XXXIX.]


MECCA.�30 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
By the DAYBREAK and ten nights.1
By that which is double and that which is single,
By the night when it pursues its course!
Is there not in this an oath becoming a man of sense?
Hast thou not seen how thy Lord dealt with Ad,
At Irem adorned with pillars,
Whose like have not been reared in these lands!
And with Themoud who hewed out the rocks in the valley;
And with Pharaoh the impaler;
Who all committed excesses in the lands,
And multiplied wickedness therein.
Wherefore thy Lord let loose on them the scourge of chastisement,2
For thy Lord standeth on a watch tower.
As to man, when his Lord trieth him and honoureth him and is bounteous to

him,
Then saith he, "My Lord honoureth me:"


But when he proveth him and limiteth his gifts to him,
He saith, "My Lord despiseth me."
Aye. But ye honour not the orphan,
Nor urge ye one another to feed the poor,
And ye devour heritages, devouring greedily,
And ye love riches with exceeding love.
Aye. But when the earth shall be crushed with crushing, crushing,
And thy Lord shall come and the angels rank on rank,
And Hell on that day shall be moved up,3�Man shall on that day remember

himself. But how shall remembrance help him?


He shall say, Oh! would that I had prepared for this my life! On that day

none shall punish as God punisheth,


And none shall bind with such bonds as He.
Oh, thou soul which art at rest,
Return to thy Lord, pleased, and pleasing him:
Enter thou among my servants,
And enter thou my Paradise.

_______________________


1 Of the sacred month Dhu'lhajja.
2 Or, poured on them the mixed cup of chastisement.
3 The orthodox Muhammadans take this passage literally. Djelal says that hell

will "be dragged up by 70,000 chains, each pulled by 70,000 angels," as if it

were an enormous animal or locomotive engine.

SURA LXXV.�THE RESURRECTION [XL.]


MECCA.�40 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
It needeth not that I swear by the day of the RESURRECTION,
Or that I swear by the self-accusing soul.
Thinketh man that we shall not re-unite his bones?
Aye! his very finger tips are we able evenly to replace.
But man chooseth to deny what is before him:
He asketh, "When this day of Resurrection?"
But when the eye shall be dazzled,
And when the moon shall be darkened,
And the sun and the moon shall be together,1
On that day man shall cry, "Where is there a place to flee to?"
But in vain�there is no refuge�
With thy Lord on that day shall be the sole asylum.
On that day shall man be told of all that he hath done first and last;
Yea, a man shall be the eye witness against himself:
And even if he put forth his plea. . . .2
(Move not thy tongue in haste to follow and master this revelation:3
For we will see to the collecting and the recital of it;
But when we have recited it, then follow thou the recital,
And, verily, afterwards it shall be ours to make it clear to thee.)
Aye, but ye love the transitory,
And ye neglect the life to come.
On that day shall faces beam with light,
Outlooking towards their Lord;
And faces on that day shall be dismal,
As if they thought that some great calamity would befal them.
Aye, when the soul shall come up into the throat,
And there shall be a cry, "Who hath a charm that can restore him?"
And the man feeleth that the time of his departure is come,
And when one leg shall be laid over the other,4
To thy Lord on that day shall he be driven on;
For he believed not, and he did not pray,
But he called the truth a lie and turned his back,
Then, walking with haughty men, rejoined his people.
That Hour is nearer to thee and nearer,5
It is ever nearer to thee and nearer still.
Thinketh man that he shall be left supreme?
Was he not a mere embryo?6
Then he became thick blood of which God formed him and fashioned him;
And made him twain, male and female.
Is not He powerful enough to quicken the dead?

_______________________


1 Lit. shall be united. In the loss of light, or in the rising in the west.�

Beidh.
2 Supply, it shall not be accepted.


3 Verses 16-19 are parenthetic, and either an address to Muhammad by Gabriel

desiring him (I) not to be overcome by any fear of being unable to follow and

retain the revelation of this particular Sura; (2) or, not to interrupt him,

but to await the completion of the entire revelation before he should proceed

to its public recital. In either case we are led to the conclusion that, from

the first, Muhammad had formed the plan of promulging a written book. Comp.

Sura xx. 112.
4 In the death-struggle.
5 Or, Therefore woe to thee, woe! And, again, woe to thee, woe. Thus Sale,

Ullm. Beidhawi; who also gives the rendering in the text, which is that of

Maracci.
6 Nonne fuit humor ex spermate quod spermatizatur.

SURA LXXXIII.�THOSE WHO STINT [XLI.]


MECCA.�36 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Woe to those who STINT the measure:
Who when they take by measure from others, exact the full;
But when they mete to them or weigh to them, minish�
What! have they no thought that they shall be raised again
For the great day?
The day when mankind shall stand before the Lord of the worlds.
Yes! the register of the wicked is in Sidjin.1
And who shall make thee understand what Sidjin is?
It is a book distinctly written.
Woe, on that day, to those who treated our signs as lies,
Who treated the day of judgment as a lie!
None treat it as a lie, save the transgressor, the criminal,
Who, when our signs are rehearsed to him, saith, "Tales of the Ancients!"
Yes; but their own works have got the mastery over their hearts.
Yes; they shall be shut out as by a veil from their Lord on that day;
Then shall they be burned in Hell-fire:
Then shall it be said to them, "This is what ye deemed a lie."
Even so. But the register of the righteous is in Illiyoun.
And who shall make thee understand what Illiyoun is?
A book distinctly written;
The angels who draw nigh unto God attest it.
Surely, among delights shall the righteous dwell!
Seated on bridal couches they will gaze around;
Thou shalt mark in their faces the brightness of delight;
Choice sealed wine shall be given them to quaff,
The seal of musk. For this let those pant who pant for bliss�
Mingled therewith shall be the waters of Tasnim�2
Fount whereof they who draw nigh to God shall drink.
The sinners indeed laugh the faithful to scorn:
And when they pass by them they wink at one another,�
And when they return to their own people, they return jesting,
And when they see them they say, "These are the erring ones."
And yet they have no mission to be their guardians.
Therefore, on that day the faithful shall laugh the infidels to scorn,
As reclining on bridal couches they behold them.
Shall not the infidels be recompensed according to their works?

_______________________


1 Sidjin is a prison in Hell which gives its name to the register of actions

there kept, as Illiyoun, a name of the lofty apartments of Paradise, is

transferred to the register of the righteous.
2 Derived from the root sanima, to be high: this water being conveyed to the

highest apartments in the Pavilions of Paradise.

SURA LXIX.�THE INEVITABLE [XLII.]
MECCA.�52 Verses
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
The INEVITABLE!
And who shall make thee comprehend what the Inevitable is?
Themoud and Ad treated the day of Terrors1 as a lie.
So as to Themoud,2 they were destroyed by crashing thunder bolts;
And as to Ad, they were destroyed by a roaring and furious blast.
It did the bidding of God3 against them seven nights and eight days together,

during which thou mightest have seen the people laid low, as though they had

been the trunks of hollow palms;
And couldst thou have seen one of them surviving?
Pharaoh also, and those who flourished before him, and the overthrown cities,

committed sin,�


And disobeyed the Sent one of their Lord; therefore did he chastise them with

an accumulated chastisement.


When the Flood rose high, we bare you in the Ark,
That we might make that event a warning to you, and that the retaining ear

might retain it.


But when one blast shall be blown on the trumpet,
And the earth and the mountains shall be upheaved, and shall both be crushed

into dust at a single crushing,


On that day the woe that must come suddenly shall suddenly come,4
And the heaven shall cleave asunder, for on that day it shall be fragile;
And the angels shall be on its sides, and over them on that day eight shall

bear up the throne of thy Lord.


On that day ye shall be brought before Him: none of your hidden deeds shall

remain hidden:


And he who shall have his book given to him in his right hand, will say to

his friends, "Take ye it; read ye my book;


I ever thought that to this my reckoning I should come."
And his shall be a life that shall please him well,
In a lofty garden,
Whose clusters shall be near at hand:
"Eat ye and drink with healthy relish, as the meed of what ye sent on

beforehand in the days which are past."


But he who shall have his book given into his left hand, will say, "O that my

book had never been given me!


And that I had never known my reckoning!
O that death had made an end of me!
My wealth hath not profited me!
My power hath perished from me!"
"Lay ye hold on him and chain him,
Then at the Hell-fire burn him,
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