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Alghamdi, Abdul-Wahab M. (2019) A Study of Ġarīb in the Qurʼān Over a Period of Ten Centuries, Fom 213 To 1182 AH. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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The Qur’an was sent bi lisānin ‘arabiyin mubīnin (Q. 26:195) ‘in clear Arabic’ to explain to people matters of religion. Arabs from multiple tribes all over Arabia, and some non- Arabs accepted Islam. Some words of the Qur’an were found to be difficult to understand. These became known as ġarīb al-qur’an. Some Companions asked about the meanings of some such words and the numbers of words so described increased with time and the spread of Islam. Scholars began to isolate such words and explain their meanings. Thus, the genre of ġarīb al-Qur’an became established and continued to accumulate. The reasons suggested for the appearance of such words are various. Some seemed difficult because words have various meanings, depending on their context; some words had their origins in other languages, and others were used by some Arab tribes in localized meanings and seemed unfamiliar to readers of other tribes. In the present work consisting of six chapters, I have surveyed the most important works of ġarīb, investigated how the words of the Qur’an have been identified as ġarīb and the criteria for identifying them. Specifically, in this study, all words identified over ten centuries as being ġarīb were collected and divided into five different categories, namely, (i) words agreed upon as being ġarīb by six scholars, (ii) words agreed upon as being ġarīb by seven scholars, (iii) words agreed upon as being ġarīb by eight scholars, (iv) words agreed upon as being ġarīb by nine scholars and, (v) words agreed upon as being ġarīb by ten scholars. a sufficient sample from these categories was studied and analysed in more depth. In conclusion, identification was made of at least seven reasons for classification as ġarīb: rarity, homonymy, morphology, peculiar style, differences in usage, confusion with other words, different levels of expertise among the classifying scholars. It is hoped that this study gives a clear picture of the important field of ġarīb al-Qur’an.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses
Supervisors Name: Muhammad Abdel-Haleem
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2020 10:44

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