Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān

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Heaven and Sky
(1,351 words)

The expanse or firmament arching over the earth. The Arabic al-samʾ, from the root s-m-w, denotes the upper part of anything, such as a roof, sky or heaven (Ṭabarī, Tafsīr, i, 151; Lane, iv, 1434). In the masculine it means roof or sky or heaven, in the feminine, sky or heaven. In the Qurʾān, it is attested 120 times in the singular, and 190 times in the plural ( samāwāt). In a special usage of the term, God swears by heaven ( q 51:…

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Jarrar, Maher, “Heaven and Sky”, in: Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān, General Editor: Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Georgetown University, Washington DC. Consulted online on 21 October 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1875-3922_q3_EQCOM_00082>

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