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say, This then will be a return to loss.* Verily it will be but one sounding of the trumpet, and, behold, they shall appear alive on the face of the earth. Hath not the story of Moses reached thee? When his LORD called unto him in the holy valley Towa," saying, Go unto Pharaoh; for he is insolently wicked: and say, Hast thou a desire to become just and holy; and I will direct thee unto thy LORD, that thou mayest fear to transgress. And he showed him the very great sign of the rod turned into a serpent; but he charged Moses with imposture, and rebelled against God. Then he turned back hastily; and he assembled the magicians, and cried aloud, saying, I am your supreme LORD. Wherefore GOD chastised him with the punishment of the life to come, and also of this present life. Verily herein is an example unto him who feareth to rebel. Are ye more difficult to create, or the heaven which God hath built? He hath raised the height thereof, and hath perfectly formed the same: and he hath made the night thereof dark, and hath produced the light thereof. After this, he stretched out the earth, whence he caused to spring forth the water thereof, and the pasture thereof; and he established the mountains, for the use of yourselves, and of your cattle. When the prevailing, the great day shall come, on that day shall a man call to remembrance what he hath purposely done: and hell shall be exposed to the view of the spectator. And whoso shall have transgressed, and shall have chosen this present life; verily hell shall be his abode; but whoso shall have dreaded the appearing before his LORD, and shall have refrained his soul from lust, verily paradise shall be his abode. They will ask thee concerning the last hour, when will be the fixed time thereof? By what means canst thou give any information of the same? Unto thy LoRD belongeth the knowledge of the period thereof: and thou art only a warner, who fearest the same. The day whereon they shall see the same, it shall seem to them as though they had not tarried in the world longer than an evening, or a morning thereof.+




The prophet frowned, and turned aside, because the blind man came unto him :" and how dost thou know whether he shall peradventure be cleansed

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"Assuredly this resurrection is chimerical."-Savary.

Viz., the second or third blast, according to different opinions.

Or, they shall appear at the place of judgment. The original word al Sâbira is also one of the names of hell.

See chap. 20, p. 256.

* Which had been created before the heavens, but without expansion.

"It shall seem unto men, as if that they had abode but an evening, or a morning, in the tomb.”—Savary.

This passage was revealed on the following occasion. A certain blind man,

* Jallalo'ddin.


from his sins; or whether he shall be admonished, and the admonition shall profit him? The man who is wealthy, thou receivest respectfully; whereas it is not to be charged on thee, that he is not cleansed: but him who cometh unto thee earnestly, seeking his salvation, and who feareth God, dost thou neglect. By no means shouldst thou act thus. Verily the Korán is an admonition (and he who is willing retaineth the same;) written in volumes honourable, exalted, and pure; by the hands of scribes honoured, and just. May man be cursed? What hath seduced him to infidelity ?* Of what thing doth GOD create him? Of a drop of seed doth he create him; and he formeth him with proportion; and then facilitateth his passage out of the womb afterwards he causeth him to die, and layeth him in the grave; hereafter, when it shall please him, he shall raise him to life. Assuredly, He hath not hitherto fully performed what God hath commanded him. Let man consider his food; in what manner it is provided. We pour down water by showers; afterwards we cleave the earth in clefts, and we cause corn to spring forth therein, and grapes, and clover, and the olive, and the palm, and the gardens planted thick with trees, and fruits, and grass, for the use of yourselves and of your cattle. When the stunning sound of the trumpet shall be heard; on that day shall a man fly from his brother, and his mother, and his father, and his wife, and his children. Every man of them, on that day, shall have business of his own sufficient to employ his thoughts. On that day the faces of some shall be bright, laughing, and joyful and upon the faces of others, on that day, shall there be dust; darkness shall cover them. These are the unbelievers, the wicked.




WHEN the sun shall be folded up;† and when the stars shall fall; and when the mountains shall be made to pass away; and when the camels ten named Abdallah Ebn Omm Mactûm, came and interrupted Mohammed while he was engaged in earnest discourse with some of the principal Koreish, whose conversion he had hopes of; but the prophet taking no notice of him, the blind man, not knowing he was otherwise busied, raised his voice, and said, O apostle of God, teach me some part of what God hath taught thee; but Mohammed, vexed at this interruption, frowned and turned away from him; for which he is here reprehended. After this, whenever the prophet saw Ebn Omm Mactum, he showed him great respect, saying, The man is welcome, on whose account my Lord hath reprimanded me; and he made him twice governor of Medina.3

Being transcribed from the preserved table, highly honoured in the sight of God, kept pure and uncorrupted from the hands of evil spirits, and touched only by the angels. Some understand hereby the books of the prophets, with which the Korân agrees in substance."

(The Mohammedans are faithful to this precept: they transcribe the Koran with the greatest exactness, and preserve it with the profoundest veneration.)Savary.

* "Perish the wicked! Who hath had the power to render him unfaithful?”— Savary.

As a garment that is to be laid by.

"When the sun shall be covered with darkness."-Savary.

'Jallalo'ddin, al Beidawi. 4 Al Zamakh.

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months gone with young shall be neglected; and when the wild beasts shall be gathered together; and when the seas shall boil and when the souls shall be joined again to their bodies; and when the girl who hath been buried alive shall be asked for what crime she was put to death; and when the books shall be laid open; and when the heavens shall be removed;d and when hell shall burn fiercely; and when paradise shall be brought near; every soul shall know what it hath wrought. Verily I swear by the stars which are retrograde, which move swiftly, and which hide themselves; and by the night, when it cometh on; and by the morning, when it appeareth;* that these are the words of an honourable messenger, endued with strength, of established dignity in the sight of the possessor of the throne, obeyed by the angels under his authority, and faithful and your companion Mohammed is not distracted. He had already seen him in the clear horizon: and he suspected not the secrets revealed unto him. Neither are these the words of an accursed devil.< Whither, therefore, are you going? This is no other than an admonition unto all creatures; unto him among you who shall be willing to walk uprightly but ye shall not will, unless GOD willeth, the LORD of all


See the Prelim. Disc. sect. iv. p. 59.

See ibid. pp. 59 and 61.

b See ibid. p. 59.

For it was customary among the ancient Arabs to bury their daughters alive, as soon as they were born, for fear they should be impoverished by providing for them, or should suffer disgrace on their account. See chap. 16, p. 218.

d Or plucked away from its place, as the skin is plucked off from a camel which is flaying; for that is the proper signification of the verb here used. Marracci fancies the passage alludes to that in the Psalms, where, according to the versions of the Septuagint and Vulgate, God is said to have stretched out the heaven like a skin.

Or, I will not swear, &c. See chap. 56, p. 437, noted. (Savary prefers this reading.)

Some understand hereby the stars in general; but the more exact commentators five of the planets, viz., the two which accompany the sun, and the three superior planets, which have both a retrograde and a direct motion, and hide themselves in the rays of the sun, or when they set.

"By the night, when it spreads its shades; by the dawn, when it expands in new-born fires."-Savary.

i. e., Gabriel.

See chap. 53, p. 427.

Some copies, by a change of one letter only, instead of dhananîn, read danînin; and then the words should be rendered, He is not tenacious of, or grudges not to communicate to you, the secret revelations which he has received.

* Who has overheard, by stealth, the discourse of the angels. The verse is an answer to a calumny of the infidels, who said the Korân was only a piece of divination, or magic; for the Arabs suppose the soothsayer, or magician, receives his intelligence from those evil spirits who are continually listening to learn what they can from the inhabitants of heaven.

18 Psalm civ. 2




WHEN the heaven shall be cloven in sunder; and when the stars shall be scattered; and when the seas shall be suffered to join their waters; and when the graves shall be turned upside down: every soul shall know what it hath committed, and what it hath omitted. O man, what hath seduced thee against thy gracious LORD, who hath created thee, and put thee together, and rightly disposed thee? In what form he pleased hath he fashioned thee. Assuredly. But ye deny the last judgment as a falsehood. Verily there are appointed over you guardian angels,1 honourable in the sight of God, writing down your actions; who know that which ye do. The just shall surely be in a place of delight: but the wicked shall surely be in hell; they shall be cast therein to be burned, on the day of judgment, and they shall not be absent therefrom for ever. What shall cause thee to understand what the day of judgment is? Again, What shall cause thee to understand what the day of judgment is? whereon one soul shall not be able to obtain any thing in behalf of another soul and the command, on that day, shall be God's.

It is a day




WOE be unto those who give short measure or weight: who, when they receive by measure from other men, take the full; but when they measure unto them, or weigh unto them, defraud! Do not these think they shall be raised again, at the great, day, the day whereon mankind shall stand before the LORD of all creatures? By no means. Verily the register of the actions of the wicked is surely in Sejjîn." And what shall make thee

(Zamakhshari says, that the believer who shall read this chapter shall receive a divine favour for every drop of water which falls from the clouds, and another for each grave upon the face of the earth.)-Savary.

1 See chap. 50, p. 421; and the Prelim. Disc. sect. iv. p. 51. "Thou canst not doubt of it."-Savary.

Sejjin is the name of the general register, wherein the actions of all the wicked, both men and genii, are distinctly entered. Sejn signifies a prison; and this book, as some think, derives its name from thence, because it will occasion those whose deeds are there recorded to be imprisoned in hell. Sejjin or Sajin is also the name of the dungeon beneath the seventh earth, the residence of Eblis and his host; where it is supposed, by some, that this book is kept, and where the souls of the wicked will be detained till the resurrection. If the latter explication be admitted, the words, And what shall make thee to understand what Sejjin is? should be enclosed within a parenthesis.

• Jallalo'ddin, al Beidawi. See the Prelim. Disc, sect iv. pp. 55, 56.


Woe be

to understand what Sejjîn is? It is a book distinctly written. on that day, unto those who accused the prophets of imposture; who denied the day of judgment as a falsehood! and none denieth the same as a falsehood, except every unjust and flagitious person: who, when our signs are rehearsed unto him, saith, They are fables of the ancients. By no means: but rather their lusts have cast a veil over their hearts. By no means. Verily they shall be shut out from their LORD on that day; and they shall be sent into hell to be burned: then shall it be said unto them by the infernal guards, This is what ye denied as a falsehood.* Assuredly. But the register of the actions of the righteous is Illiyyun :" and what shall cause thee to understand what Illiyyun is? It is a book distinctly written: those who approach near unto God are witnesses thereto. Verily the righteous shall dwell among delights: seated on couches they shall behold objects of pleasure; thou shalt see in their faces the brightness of joy. They shall be given to drink of pure wine, sealed; the seal whereof shall be musk:P and to this let those aspire, who aspire to happiness: † and the water mixed therewith shall be of Tasnim, a fountain whereof those shall drink who approach near unto the divine presence. They who act wickedly laugh the true believers to scorn: and when they pass by them, they wink at one another: and when they turn aside to their people, they turn aside making scurrilous jests; and when they see them, they say, Verily these are mistaken men. But they are not sent to be keepers over them. Wherefore one day the true believers, in their turn, shall laugh the infidels to scorn:t lying on couches they shall look down upon them in hell. Shall not the infidels be rewarded for that which they have done?



"At the day of judgment, God shall envelop them in a veil, and shall plunge them into hell. Behold, will he say unto them, the torments which you treated as a chimera!"-Savary.

"The word is plural, and signifies high places. Some say it is the general register wherein the actions of the righteous, whether angels, men, or genii, are distinctly recorded. Others will have it to be a place in the seventh heaven, under the throne of God; where this book is kept, and where the souls of the just, as many think, will remain till the last day. If we prefer the latter opinion, the words, And what shall make thee to understand what Illiyyun is? should likewise be enclosed in a parenthesis.

• Or, Are present with, and keep the same.

Pi. e. The vessels containing the same shall be sealed with musk, instead of clay. Some understand by the seal of this wine, its farewell, or the flavour it will leave in the mouth after it is drunk.

"Let those who aspire to this happiness exert themselves to merit it."-Savary. Tasnîm is the name of a fountain in paradise, so called from its being conveyed to the highest apartments.

For they shall drink the water of Tasnim, pure and unmixed, being continually and wholly employed in the contemplation of God; but the other inhabitants of paradise shall drink it mixed with their wine.s

i. e. The infidels are not commissioned by God to call the believers to account, or to judge of their actions.

When they shall see them ignominiously driven into hell. It is also said that a door shall be shown the damned, opening into paradise, and they shall be bidden to go in; but when they come near the door, it shall suddenly shut; and the believers within shall laugh at them.

7 Jallalo'ddin. See the Prelim. Disc. ubi sup.

8 Al Beidâwi.

• Idem.

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