The Quran
The JM Rodwell Translation
With text notes



1 I
2 The Cow
3 Family of Imran
4 Women
5 The Table
6 Cattle
7 Al Araf
8 The Spoils
9 Immunity
10 Jonah, PUBH
11 Houd
12 Joseph, PUBH
13 Thunder
14 Abraham, PUBH
15 Hedjr
16 The Bee
17 The Night Journey
18 The Cave
19 Mary
20 TA. HA
21 The Prophets
22 The Pilgrimage
23 The Believers
24 Light
25 Al Furkan
26 The Poets
27 The Ant
28 The Story
29 The Spider
30 The Greeks
31 Lokman
32 Adoration
33 The Confederates
34 Saba
35 The Creator
36 YA. SIN.
37 The Ranks
38 SAD
39 The Troops
40 The Believer
41 The Made Plain
42 Counsel
43 Ornaments of Gold
44 Smoke
45 The Kneeling
46 Al Ahkaf
47 Muhammed
48 The Victory
49 The Apartments
50 Kaf
51 The Scattering
52 The Mountain
53 The Star
54 The Moon
55 The Merciful
56 The Event
57 Iron
58 She Who Pleaded
59 The Emigration
60 She Who is Tried
61 Battle Array
62 The Assembly
63 The Hypocrites
64 Mutual Deceit
65 Divorce
66 Forbidding
67 The Kingdom
68 The Pen
69 The Inevitable
70 The Steps
71 Noah
72 Djinn
73 The Enfolded
74 The Enwrapped
75 The Resurrection
76 Man
77 The Sent
78 The News
79 Those Who Drag
80 The Frowned
81 The Folded Up
82 The Cleaving
83 Those Who Stint
84 The Splitting
85 The Starry
86 The Night Comer
87 The Most High
88 The Overshadow
89 The Daybreak
90 The Soil
91 The Sun
92 The Night
93 The Brightnetss
94 The Opening
95 The Fig
96 Clots of Blood
97 Power
98 Clear Evidence
99 The Earthquake
100 The Chargers
101 The Blow
102 Desire
103 The Afternoon
104 The Backbiter
105 The Elephant
106 The Koreisch
107 Religion
108 Abundance
109 Unbelievers
110 Help
111 Abu Lahab
112 The Unity
113 The Daybreak
114 Men


MECCA.–55 Verses

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

O THOU, ENWRAPPED in thy mantle!

Arise and warn!

Thy Lord–magnify Him!

Thy raiment–purify it!

The abomination–flee it!

And bestow not favours that thou mayest receive again with increase;

And for thy Lord wait thou patiently.

For when there shall be a trump on the trumpet,2

That shall be a distressful day,

A day, to the Infidels, devoid of ease.

Leave me alone to deal with him3 whom I have created,

And on whom I have bestowed vast riches,

And sons dwelling before him,

And for whom I have smoothed all things smoothly down;–

Yet desireth he that I should add more!

But no! because to our signs he is a foe

I will lay grievous woes upon him.

For he plotted and he planned!

May he be cursed! How he planned!

Again, may he be cursed! How he planned!

Then looked he around him,

Then frowned and scowled,

Then turned his back and swelled with disdain,

And said, “This is merely magic that will be wrought;

It is merely the word of a mortal.”

We will surely cast him into Hell-fire.

And who shall teach thee what Hell-fire is?

It leaveth nought, it spareth nought,

Blackening the skin.

Over it are nineteen angels.

None but angels have we made guardians of the fire:4 nor have we made this to be their number but to perplex the unbelievers, and that they who possess the Scriptures may be certain of the truth of the Koran, and that they who believe may increase their faith;

And that they to whom the Scriptures have been given, and the believers, may not doubt;

And that the infirm of heart and the unbelievers may say, What meaneth God by this parable?

Thus God misleadeth whom He will, and whom He will doth He guide aright: and none knoweth the armies of thy Lord but Himself: and this is no other than a warning to mankind.

Nay, by the Moon!

By the Night when it retreateth!

By the Morn when it brighteneth!

Hell is one of the most grievous woes,

Fraught with warning to man,

To him among you who desireth to press forward, or to remain behind.5

For its own works lieth every soul in pledge. But they of God’s right hand

In their gardens shall ask of the wicked;–

“What hath cast you into Hell-fire?”6

They will say, “We were not of those who prayed,

And we were not of those who fed the poor,

And we plunged into vain disputes with vain disputers,

And we rejected as a lie, the day of reckoning,

Till the certainty7 came upon us”–

And intercession of the interceders shall not avail them.

Then what hath come to them that they turn aside from the Warning

As if they were affrighted asses fleeing from a lion?

And every one of them would fain have open pages given to him out of Heaven.

It shall not be. They fear not the life to come.

It shall not be. For this Koran is warning enough. And whoso will, it warneth him.

But not unless God please, shall they be warned. Meet is He to be feared. Meet is forgiveness in Him.


1 This Sura is placed by Muir in the “second stage” of Meccan Suras, and twenty-first in chronological order, in the third or fourth year of the Prophet’s career. According, however, to the chronological list of Suras given by Weil (Leben M. p. 364) from ancient tradition, as well as from the consentient voice of tradionists and commentaries (v. Nöld. Geschichte, p. 69; Sprenger’s Life of Mohammad, p. 111) it was the next revealed after the Fatrah, and the designation to the prophetic office. The main features of the tradition are, that Muhammad while wandering about in the hills near Mecca, distracted by doubts and by anxiety after truth, had a vision of the Angel Gabriel seated on a throne between heaven and earth, that he ran to his wife, Chadijah, in the greatest alarm, and desired her, perhaps from superstitious motives (and believing that if covered with clothes he should be shielded from the glances of evil spirits–comp. Stanley on I Cor. xi. 10), to envelope him in his mantle; that then Gabriel came down and addressed him as in v. I. This vision, like that which preceded Sura xcvi., may actually have occurred during the hallucinations of one of the epileptic fits from which Muhammad from early youth appears to have suffered. Hence Muhammad in Sura lxxxi. appeals to it as a matter of fact, and such he doubtless believe it to be. It may here be observed, that however absurd the Muslim traditions may be in many of their details, it will generally be found that where there is an ancient and tolerably universal consent, there will be found at the bottom a residuum of fact and historical truth. At the same time there can be no doubt but that the details of the traditions are too commonly founded upon the attempt to explain or to throw light upon a dark passage of the Koran, and are pure inventions of a later age.

2 The Arabic words are not those used in later Suras to express the same idea.

3 Said to be Walid b. Mogheira, a person of note among the unbelieving Meccans. This portion of the Sura seems to be of a different date from the first seven verses, though very ancient, and the change of subject is similar to that at v. 9 of the previous Sura.

4 This and the three following verses wear the appearance of having been inserted at a later period to meet objections respecting the number of the angels who guard hell, raised by the Jews; perhaps at Medina, as the four classes of persons specified are those whom Muhammad had to deal with in that city, viz., the Jews, Believers, the Hypocrites, or undecided, and Idolaters. These are constantly mentioned together in the Medina Suras.

5 That is, who believe, and do not believe.

6 As the word sakar disturbs the rhyme, it may have been inserted by a mistake of the copyist for the usual word, which suits it.

7 That is, death. Beidh. Comp. Sura xv. 99.