Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān

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Language, Concept of
(887 words)

The uniquely human faculty of (primarily) verbal expression. In the Qurʾān, the concept of language is expressed by the word lisān (lit. tongue). The other common term for language, lugha, which is well-attested in classical and modern standard Arabic (see arabic language ), does not appear in the Qurʾān; one encounters only the related words laghw and lāghiya, which express exclusively the connotation of “vain utterance.”

There are twenty-five occurrences of the word lisān in the Qurʾān, fifteen in the singular and ten in the plural (alsina; the other plural, alsun, is not attested …

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Larcher, Pierre, “Language, Concept of”, in: Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān, General Editor: Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Georgetown University, Washington DC. Consulted online on 21 October 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1875-3922_q3_EQSIM_00255>



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