Facts of Qur’an
1] Qur’an is
divided into 30 sections (Ajza)
2] There are 114 Surahs of the Qur’an. Longest is Surah Al Baqrah (286 Verses),
the shortest is Surah al-Kawthar (”Abundance” with 3 verses)
3] Prophet Muhammad received
the first revelation in 610AD at the Cave of Hira (Ghar ul Hira)
4] There are a total of 6236 verses in the Qur’an
5] The revelation continued for a period of 22 years, 5 months and 14 days
approximately until the demise of the Prophet in 633AD or 11 AH (After Hijrah –
the migration of Prophet Muhammad from
Mecca to Medina)
compilation of the Qur’an:
passed through 4 stages:
1 – Upto the death of Prophet Muhammad PBUH
- A great number of
Companions (Sahaba) committed the Qur’an to memory.
- The various Surah’s of
the Qur’an were written down on parchment, wooden tablets, soft stone,
palm leaves and bits of leather.
- Therefore during the
lifetime of the Prophet the Qur’an was preserved by both memory and by
writing in various forms. One of which validated and authenticated the
- Since Prophet Muhammad could
not read or write himself, he memorised the Qur’an whilst his Companions
both memorised and wrote it down.
- During the Ramadhan
before his demise, the Qur’an was rechecked and reconfirmed twice
2 – The Caliphate of Abu Bakr (ra) (died 634AD)
- Abu Bakr (ra) asked Zaid
bin Thabit (ra), one of the scribes of the revelation to put the Qur’an
together in a single volume.
- The instructions of
arranging the order of the Qur’an in terms of it’s surahs was well known
due to the clear instruction of our beloved Prophet Muhammad during
his lifetime to his Companions.
- Zaid (ra), in
consultation with the various Sahaba, collated a single ‘Mushaf’ or copy
of the Qur’an. The process of validating and authenticating what was
written was facilitated by Zaid’s rigourous approach in ensuring that
nothing was written down until certain test were carried out in the
interest of legitimacy by at least two witnesses i.e. the document itself
provided by a Companion supported by the evidence of other Companions who
had committed it to memory.
- Therefore the first
Mushaf was compiled during the Caliphate of Abu Bakr (ra)
- It was written on sheets
and was tied with strings
3 – The Caliphate of Umar (ra) (Died 644)
- Concerted efforts were
made to learn the Qur’an through the process of memorization
- Abu Darda (in Syria)
alone assisted 1600 students in his Qur’anic classes
- The Mushaf, the first
copy of the Qur’an came into the possession of Umm Ul Mumineen Hafsa (ra),
the widow of the Messenger of Allah during
4 – The Caliphate of Uthman ibn Uffan (ra) (Died 655AD)
- By approval of our
beloved Prophet Muhammad ,
a dialectal variation related to some of the words of the Qur’an had been
practiced among the various Arab tribes.
- As Islam spread, this
caused much confusion especially after the expansion of Islam into
- Also, there were still
occurrences whereby some Companions wrote down what they heard from the
Prophet and did not have it verified. This obviously introduced an element
of risk that mistakes, grammatical or otherwise could have crept into
these ‘personal’ writings of some of these people
- Uthman (ra) , quite
rightly sanctioned the preparation of a single Qur’an for all the Muslims.
Once again, Zaid bin Thabit (along with 3 other Companions of our beloved
Prophet Muhammad was
engaged in comparing the Mushaf in the possession of Umm Ul Mumineen Hafsa
(ra) with existing copies in the custody of other Companions. As instructed
by Uthman, wherever a dialectical version was noticed, it was replaced by
the dialect of the Quraish, the tribe of Prophet Muhammad .
- Seven or Eight copies of
this Mushaf was distributed to the major Muslim centers in the Islamic
World. All other copies were recalled and destroyed. Any further copies
were made on the basis of these seven or eight.
- Two copies of the
original Mushaf of Uthman still exist. One in Topkapi Museum in Istanbul,
Turkey and the second at Tashkent in Uzbekistan. The national library of
Karachi in Pakistan have a copy of the Mushaf which is in Tashkent which
was presented to Ayyub Khan in 1965 on a visit to Russia (Uzbekistan was
then part of the former USSR)
- Muslims continue to
read, learn and memorise the same Qur’an.
- Although a number of
symbols were introduced into the Qur’anic script, notably during the reign
of Hajjaj bin Yusuf, the meaning of the Qur’an has not changed. These were
introduced to make the reading and recitation of the Qur’an easier for non
- The Qur’an has been
preserved through both it’s written and memorised form. Today it is
available on a range of media, i.e. CD’s, MP3, Audio Cassette etc.
- From Singapore to Spain,
the same Qur’an is recited, with the same meaning as the original.
promised in the Qur’an :
have, without doubt, sent down the Message; and We will assuredly Guard it (from corruption).
of Muhammad Shafiq