Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān

Get access Subject: Middle East and Islamic Studies
General Editor: Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Georgetown University, Washington DC

The Encyclopaedia of the Qur’ān Online is an encyclopaedic dictionary of qur’ānic terms, concepts, personalities, place names, cultural history and exegesis extended with essays on the most important themes and subjects within qur’ānic studies. The Encyclopaedia of the Qur’ān Online is the first comprehensive, multivolume reference work on the Qur’ān to appear in a Western language.
Encyclopaedia of the Qur’ān Online includes direct access to 62 Early Printed Western Qur’āns Online and the Electronic Qurʾān Concordance, a unique online finding aid for textual research.

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(1,146 words)

Author(s): Firestone, Reuven
An ancient tribe, mentioned twenty-six times in the Qurʾān, counted among many peoples who rebelled against God and his messengers (see messenger; prophets and prophethood). The story of Thamūd forms part of a repeated trope of human rebellion (q.v.) and subsequent destruction (see punishment stories; generations) appearing in reference to other lost peoples such as the ʿĀd (q.v.) and the people of Lot (q.v.), Noah (q.v.), Midian (q.v.), Pharaoh (q.v.), Tubbaʿ (q.v.), Iram (q.v.) and the asḥāb al-rass¶ (see people of the thicket ; see also geography ). Most often the Thamūd are mentio…


(6 words)

 see gratitude and ingratitude Bibliography

The Collection of the Qurʾān

(6,097 words)

Author(s): Burton, John
The assemblage, ordering and recording of the textual material of the Qurʾān. Muslim reports on the collection of the Qurʾān must, like any other ḥadīth, be tested by exposure to the wider background of Islamic definition from which they emerged. It was held by the most influential commentators and by a majority of the legal scholars that the entire Qurʾān was never collected. This view has been echoed by Western scholars following Nöldeke's Geschichte of 1860 ( gq1, 43; gq2, i, 47; ii, 44). From this perspective it is important to note a basic verbal distinction: By Qurʾān ¶ was meant all t…


(935 words)

Author(s): Lowry, Joseph E.
The unlawful taking of another's property (q.v.) entailing, in some cases, a punishment stipulated by the Qurʾān (see also chastisement and punishment; law and the qurʾān; lawful and unlawful; sin, major and minor). One of the better-known legislative passages in the Qurʾān provides: “As for the thief, whether male or female, for each, cut off the hands in punishment for what they did, as an exemplary punishment ( nakālan) from God” ( q 5:38). The Arabic wa-l-sāriq wa-l-sāriqa fa-qṭaʿū aydiyahumā closely parallels the syntax of another qurʾānic legislative pronouncement co…

Theology and the Qurʾān

(12,243 words)

Author(s): Nagel, T.
The Qurʾān displays a wide range of theological topics related to the religious thought of late antiquity and through its prophet Muḥammad presents a coherent vision of the creator, the cosmos and man. The main issues of Muslim theological dispute prove to be hidden under the wording of the qurʾānic message, which is closely tied to Muḥammad's biography (see sīra and the qurʾān ). Preliminary remarks Dealing with theology and the Qurʾān means looking in two different directions at the same time. On the one hand, the qurʾānic message plays an important role in …


(733 words)

Author(s): Mir, Mustansir
Visible appearance of God. In the Qurʾān, the closest one comes to a visible appearance of God is in q 7:143. Moses (q.v.) expresses his wish to see God, who replies: “You shall not see me. Look at the mountain, though; if it stays in its place, then will you see me.” The verse continues: “So, when his lord (q.v.) manifested himself ( tajallā) to the mountain, he flattened it, and Moses, thunderstruck, collapsed. When he came to, he said, ‘Glory to you! I turn toward you in repentance, and I am the first of the believers’” (see repentance and penance; glorification of god). The hairsplitting disc…


(7 words)

 see people of the thicket Bibliography


(4 words)

 see theft Bibliography


(6 words)

 see food and drink Bibliography

Thread, White and Black

(7 words)

 see ramaḍān Bibliography

Throne of God

(982 words)

Author(s): Elias, Jamal
Qurʾānic (and biblical) image related to God's sovereignty. The two terms used most commonly in the Qurʾān and exegetical literature for the throne of God are ʿarsh and kursī, although the latter has often been understood not as a seat but as a footstool or other accessory to the throne itself. The word ʿarsh appears twenty-five times in the Qurʾān with reference to God's throne, ¶ as well as the thrones of others: the seat on which Joseph (q.v.; Yūsuf) placed his parents (q.v.) is referred to as an ʿarsh ( q 12:100), as is the throne of Bilqīs (q.v.), the Queen of Sheba (q.v.; q 27:23, 38, 41, 42). Wh…

Throne Verse

(9 words)

  see verses; throne of god Bibliography


(5 words)

  see weather Bibliography


(7 words)

  see news; good news Bibliography


(7,788 words)

Author(s): Böwering, G.
The successive continuum of events and its measurement. The Qurʾān employs a rich terminology for aspects of time but uses these terms ad hoc and at random, in concrete and practical ways, rather than systematically and methodically addressing abstract and theoretical notions of time. This qurʾānic vocabulary does not include the principal technical terms for time, zamān, and eternity (q.v.), qidam, which are widely used in Islamic philosophy (see philosophy and the qurʾān ), nor does the Qurʾān contain typical philosophical terms such as mudda for extent of time and dawām for durati…


(5 words)

 see sleep; sabbath Bibliography


(4 words)

 see almsgiving Bibliography