Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc.
Seeking Advancement of Knowledge through Spiritual and Intellectual Growth

International ConferenceAbout IRFIIRFI CommitteesRamadan CalendarQur'anic InspirationsWith Your Help

Articles 1 - 1000 | Articles 1001-2000 | Articles 2001 - 3000 | Articles 3001 - 4000 | Articles 4001 - 5000 | Articles 5001 - 6000 |  All Articles

Family and Children | Hadith | Health | Hijab | Islam and Christianity | Islam and Medicine | Islamic Personalities | Other | Personal Growth | Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) | Qur'an | Ramadan | Science | Social Issues | Women in Islam |

Islamic Articles
Islamic Links
Islamic Cemetery
Islamic Books
Women in Islam
Aalim Newsletter
Date Conversion
Prayer Schedule
Q & A
Contact Info


Woman's Dress in the Qur’an


By (Marwan Boustany) مروان البستاني


Key words: -


خمار (Khimar): - 


Lisan Al Arab (لسان العرب): -


والخِمَارُ للمرأَة، وهو النَّصِيفُ، وقيل: الخمار ما تغطي به المرأَة  رأَْسها، وجمعه أَخْمِرَةٌ وخُمْرٌ وخُمُرٌ [1]

(From a Lisan Al Arab word document I have)


Lane’s Lexicon: -


A woman's muffler, or veil with which she covers her head and the lower part of her face, leaving exposed only the eyes and part or whole of the nose, such is the خمار worn in the present day: a kind of veil which in Turkish is called يشمق; a woman's head-covering.




(I own Lane’s Lexicon in hardback and Adobe)


Dictionary of the Holy Qur’an* (لغة القران), by ‘Abdul Mannan‘Omar: -


Head cover, scarf, covering and especially a woman’s head veil, screen.”


(I own this dictionary)


So a خمار is: -


A veil that covers the head.[2]


جلباب (Jilbab): -


Liasan Al Arab (لسان العرب): -


والجِلْبابُ: القَمِيصُ. والجِلْبابُ: ثوب أَوسَعُ من الخِمار، دون  الرِّداءِ، تُغَطِّي به المرأَةُ رأْسَها وصَدْرَها؛ وقيل: هو ثوب واسِع، دون المِلْحَفةِ، تَلْبَسه المرأَةُ؛ وقيل: هو المِلْحفةُ. قالت جَنُوبُ أُختُ عَمْرٍو ذي الكَلْب تَرْثِيه:  تَمْشِي النُّسورُ إليه، وهي لاهِيةٌ،  * مَشْيَ العَذارَى، عليهنَّ الجَلابِيبُ  <ص:273>  معنى قوله وهي لاهيةٌ: أَن النُّسور آمِنةٌ منه لا تَفْرَقُه لكونه  مَيِّتاً، فهي تَمْشِي إِليه مَشْيَ العذارَى. وأَوّل المرثية:  كلُّ امرئٍ، بطُوالِ العَيْش، مَكْذُوبُ، *  وكُلُّ من غالَبَ الأَيَّامَ مَغْلُوبُ  وقيل: هو ما تُغَطِّي به المرأَةُ الثيابَ من فَوقُ كالمِلْحَفةِ؛ وقيل:  هو الخِمارُ. وفي حديث أُم عطيةَ: لِتُلْبِسْها صاحِبَتُها من جِلْبابِها أَي إِزارها. وقد تجَلْبَب. قال يصِفُ الشَّيْب:  حتى اكْتَسَى الرأْسُ قِناعاً أَشْهَبا، *  أَكْرَهَ جِلْبابٍ لِمَنْ تجَلْبَبا(1)  (1 قوله «أشهبا» كذا في غير نسخة من المحكم. والذي تقدّم في ثوب أشيبا. وكذلك هو في التكملة هناك.)  وفي التنزيل العزيز: يُدْنِينَ علَيْهِنَّ من جَلابِيبِهِنَّ


(From a Lisan Al Arab word document I have)


Lane’s Lexicon: -


جلباب; (S, A, Mgb, Msb, K, &c.) and جلباب; (K;) the latter mentioned ms an ex. of form by Sb, and thought by Seer to be syn. with the former, but not explained by any one except the author of the K; masc. and fem.; (TA;) A [woman's outer wrapping garment called] ملحفة: (S:) or this is its primary signification; but it is metaphorically applied to other kinds of garments: (El-Khafajee, TA:) or a shirt, (K, TA,) absolutely: or one that envelopes the whole body; (TA:) and a wide garment for a woman, less than the ملحفة: or one with which a woman covers over her other garments, like the ملحفة: or the [kind of head-covering called]  خمار: (K :) so in the M: (TA:) or a garment wider than the خمار., but less than the رداء , (Mgh, L, Msb,) i with which a woman covers her head and bosom:  (L:) or a garment shorter, but wider, than the خمار; the same as the مقنعة  (En.Nadr,TA:)  or a woman's head-covering: (TA:) or the [kind of wrapper called] ٳزار : (1Aar, TA:) or a garment with which the person is entirely enveloped, so that not even a hand is left exposed, (Har p. 102, and TA,) of the kind called ملاءة  , worn by a woman: (TA:) or a garment, or other thing, that one use as a covering: (IF, Msb:) pI. جلابيب (S, Mgh, Msb.) [3]




Dictionary of the Holy Qur’an* (لغة القران), by ‘Abdul Mannan‘Omar: -


“Loose outer covering; Over-garment; Woman’s gown; Smock; Large outer covering worn by women; Outer cloak; Women’s outer wrapping garment.”


So a Jilbab (جلباب) is either: -


  • A large gown worn as clothing.


  • A large cloak worn over other clothes.


زينة (Zeenat): -


Dictionary of the Holy Qur’an* (لغة القران), by ‘Abdul Mannan‘Omar: -


“From زان, زينا, يزين…  To adorn, deck. Zinatun زينة : Ornament (as apparel or jewel); Pomp.  Zayyana زين : II. To adorn, prepare, deck, make a thing appear pleasing.  Izzayyan ازين for Tazayyan:  To be adorned.”


An important usage of this word is in the sense of something being (made) desirable, beautiful, alluring etc…  Examples of this kind of usage are to be found at: -



2:212, 18:46, 28:60, 35:8, 41:25, 47:14, 48:12, 49:7… etc… in the  Qur’an.


(These are in different contexts and have different meanings)


Understanding this usage of the word allows us to properly comprehend the usage of زينة in 24:31, 60, to mean that which makes the women desirable, beautiful, pleasing etc…

(What things or Zeenath  in the men,  makes men desirable, handsome, pleasing etc. for  WOMEN?)


* Based upon Lisan Al Arab, Taj al-‘Arus, Lane’s Lexicon etc…


Key Verses: -


يَا بَنِي آدَمَ قَدْ أَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمْ لِبَاسًا يُوَارِي سَوْءَاتِكُمْ وَرِيشًا وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىَ ذَلِكَ خَيْرٌ ذَلِكَ مِنْ آيَاتِ اللّهِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُونَ


O children of Adam! We have bestowed unto you the garments to cover your nakedness and as plumage; but the garment of righteousness is best. This is among the signs of God, that they may pay heed



  • The garment of righteousness is the first level of modesty and it is most important, because a covered up woman who acts immorally/immodestly is useless.


يَا نِسَاء النَّبِيِّ لَسْتُنَّ كَأَحَدٍ مِّنَ النِّسَاء إِنِ اتَّقَيْتُنَّ فَلَا تَخْضَعْنَ بِالْقَوْلِ فَيَطْمَعَ الَّذِي فِي قَلْبِهِ مَرَضٌ وَقُلْنَ قَوْلًا مَّعْرُوفًا


O wives of the Prophet! you are not like any other of the women if you fear (Allah)/are righteous; so (if you are righteous) be not soft in (your) speech lest he in whose heart is a disease yearn (for you); and speak appropriate speech.



  • Do not speak softly and in a manner that may attract a man.  This is the second level of modesty which grows from the first above.
  • This is not only directed at the wives of the prophet as: -
    • That restriction is not made, consider for example that the prophet was allowed to marry more than 4 women, Allah then explicitly made the restriction that this was only for the prophet (33:50)
    • The wives of the prophet are the ‘mothers’ of the believers (33:6), and they are believers, so why should women not follow their example as commanded by Allah?
    • The Qur’an Guides to the right way (2:185, 17:9) and it is a guidance to the righteous (2:2) in all that it says, unless Allah makes the exception.
    • As an example: -  Does (5:32) only apply to the Jews?  It was stated to them, and not to us.  So…
    • One is required to give good logical and consistent reasons, not just assertion against this.
    • The warning in this ayah is to tell the wives of the prophets that they should not speak softly/meekly (as a result of being righteous) in case they are desired by someone in whose heart is a disease, so for people who say that this applies only to the wives of the prophet, does it mean that it is ok for other women to speak softly and have men in whose heart is a disease -desire/yearn for- them?
      • Consider, Allah commands that we protect our modesty, that we lower our gaze, that woman cover their beauty, but allows women to speak in a manner which would allure men?
  • The above logic on the acceptance of the directive of (33:32) and more applies to (33:33).


قُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَغُضُّوا مِنْ أَبْصَارِهِمْ وَيَحْفَظُوا فُرُوجَهُمْ ذَلِكَ أَزْكَى لَهُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا يَصْنَعُونَ


Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and (thus) guard their chastity. That is purer for them. Lo! God is aware of what they do.



  • For men: - Do not stare or look at the opposite sex, instead lower your gaze; this is the third level of modesty which grows from the first.


وَقُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنَاتِ يَغْضُضْنَ مِنْ أَبْصَارِهِنَّ وَيَحْفَظْنَ فُرُوجَهُنَّ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَلْيَضْرِبْنَ بِخُمُرِهِنَّ عَلَى جُيُوبِهِنَّ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا لِبُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ آبَائِهِنَّ أَوْ آبَاء بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَائِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَاء بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ إِخْوَانِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِي إِخْوَانِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِي أَخَوَاتِهِنَّ أَوْ نِسَائِهِنَّ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُنَّ أَوِ التَّابِعِينَ غَيْرِ أُوْلِي الْإِرْبَةِ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ أَوِ الطِّفْلِ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يَظْهَرُوا عَلَى عَوْرَاتِ النِّسَاء وَلَا يَضْرِبْنَ بِأَرْجُلِهِنَّ لِيُعْلَمَ مَا يُخْفِينَ مِن زِينَتِهِنَّ وَتُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ جَمِيعًا أَيُّهَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ


And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and (thus) guard their chastity, and not to make apparent (i.e., hide) their beauty (or those parts which contribute to her beauty) (zinah) except what (normally) becomes apparent thereof and to draw their head-coverings over their bosoms.

And [also tell them] not to reveal their

beauty save to their husbands or their fathers or their husbands' fathers, or their sons or their husbands' sons, or their brothers or their brothers' sons or their sisters' sons, or their womenfolk, or their servants, or male attendants who have no physical desire, or (pre-puberty) children as yet unaware of women's nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to draw attention to what they hide of their beauty. And turn unto God, O believers (both men and women), in order that you may prosper



  • For women: - Do not stare/look at the opposite sex; this is the third level of modesty which grows from the first.
  • Women must not display their beauty (or those parts which contribute to their beauty), except what either normally is apparent or what would need to be apparent.  A little thought would indicate the following: -
    • It’s clear that something is considered to be apparent, at least potentially or normally.  Either due to awkwardness or necessity.  For example: -
      • Covering all the face can make eating and drinking outside difficult.
      • In hot environments it could make the face very uncomfortable.
      • It could impair vision and hence make walking dangerous.
  • The head covering would at least cover the head region in and around the hair area.




    • Women are told to use their head coverings to cover over their bosoms.

(The Author of this article has not explained the reasons (Asbab un-Nuzool) for the Qur'anic command to cover their bosoms.)


    • This would imply that it is now covering the head and the sides of the face and has its end wrapped around her neck so that the ends of the veil cover her bosoms.



    • Its clear that understanding it in this manner is acceptable Qur’anically, especially considering: -

(The Author of this Article is  justifying his personal, subjective interpretation using the word "Qur'anically")

      • 24:30, telling men to reduce their gaze, implying that something was exposed.  And this is most logically/likely the face or some part thereof.
      • The fact that Allah makes clear that some of the woman’s beauty may/will be exposed (24:31).

       (The Author of this Article has failed to explain what beauty a woman can show to her family members and  what beauty a woman should not show to non-family members. What is the meaning of  "that a woman should not show her beauty  to…"or male attendants who have no physical desire, or (pre-puberty) children as yet unaware of women's nakedness"   which is in the Qur'an 24:31 )

  • They must draw their HEAD COVERINGS around and over their bosoms.
    • It is disingenuous and illogical to say that they must/can remove their head coverings to cover their bosoms because: -

(This is the personal subjective opinion of the author of this article)

      1. There is no need to do so in order to fulfill the command.
      2. The hair of a woman is a part of her beauty, of what makes her attractive.  So it must be covered.

(This is the personal, subjective opinion of the author of this article. This is not there in the Qur'an)

    • It’s like saying (within the context of modesty) “I was told to cover my naval with my top… so I took off my top and wrapped it around my belly”…  Illogical.  But this is the position of the liberal Muslim, they say (by analogy), well Allah only said to cover the naval, so covering anything else must be a cultural thing that we can choose to do or not do.

(This is like comparing Apples to Oranges ( no to Cactus Fruit). This is lopsided Logic.  A woman's breast is a private part, whereas the hair of a woman is not a private part. The hair of a woman is not defined as Zeenath or beauty in the Qur'an. Why the Awrah of a man is between the naval and the knee?  Is a man allowed to show his naval?).

    • To say that you are not told to cover your head is also disingenuous, because if you are told to cover your bosoms with your head covering (within the context of modesty), it is taken for granted that you are covering your head, so there is no need to explicitly state it.

(This is the personal subjective opinion of the author of this article)

    • The Qur’an makes the practice of the headscarf covering the head and the bosoms into a rule.

(This is the personal subjective opinion of the author of this article)

  • Consider: - 
    • Allah nowhere explicitly says that a woman’s back must be covered by clothing.
    • Allah nowhere says that ¾ of a woman’s leg cannot be exposed
    • Etc…
    • But they are unambiguously implied by the command to hide a woman’s beauty (and what contributes to it) and by the command to cover themselves with a Jilbab and to use the Khimar to (also) cover their bosom.  So the argument that the head is not mentioned explicitly (within the context of covering beauty and the mention of the khimar (head cover)) is merely a biased tactic to avoid wearing the head cover.

(The Qur'an explicitly states to cover the bosom with the Khimar, for a very  good reason and does not say to keep the Khimar on the head)

  • Women can show part of their beauty to the list mentioned
    • But they must hide their nakedness and not stamp their feet to expose what they hide of their beauty.
      • That is, when a woman stamps her feet, her breasts will shake as may her bottom/hips…
    • So they may relax their clothing a bit, but they do not have to.

يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ قُل لِّأَزْوَاجِكَ وَبَنَاتِكَ وَنِسَاء الْمُؤْمِنِينَ يُدْنِينَ عَلَيْهِنَّ مِن جَلَابِيبِهِنَّ ذَلِكَ أَدْنَى أَن يُعْرَفْنَ فَلَا يُؤْذَيْنَ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا


O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to

bring down/lower over their bodies of their cloaks/gowns (Jalabeebihinna, Jalabeeb being the plural of Jilbab). That is better for being recognized and not being annoyed/harmed. God is ever forgiving, merciful.


(The author of this article, has failed to explain the meaning of the Qur'anic words  "… being recognized and not being annoyed/harmed" ). THERE IS A REASON WHY THIS AYAH WAS REVEALED. Visit


  • Women are to cover themselves with a Jilbab, which is a large garment/cloak that can cover the clothes beneath. 
  • This is to make the woman recognizable as a Muslim woman

(What happens if a woman is not recognized as a Muslim woman?)

    • And this will be across time and cultures, so the argument that women will dress according to times or in a manner suitable to the times is false. 
    • This is the command of Allah not a culturally variable tradition.
  • And to help decrease the chance of her being annoyed/hurt.  Annoyed why?  Obviously due to the men who would desire them if they saw the beauty of the women.  Feminists may not like accepting this reality, but that is their problem.

( This is the personal, subjective,  male chauvinistic opinion of the author of this article  and he does not know the reason why this Ayah was revealed or Asbab un-Nuzool). Visit the website


وَالْقَوَاعِدُ مِنَ النِّسَاء اللَّاتِي لَا يَرْجُونَ نِكَاحًا فَلَيْسَ عَلَيْهِنَّ جُنَاحٌ أَن يَضَعْنَ ثِيَابَهُنَّ غَيْرَ مُتَبَرِّجَاتٍ بِزِينَةٍ وَأَن يَسْتَعْفِفْنَ خَيْرٌ لَّهُنَّ وَاللَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ


... The elderly women who have no desire to get married commit nothing wrong by laying aside their(outer) garments without making a show/display of their beauty (or those parts which contribute to her beauty) (zinah). And to refrain from this is better for them. Allah is hearer, knower



This would imply that the elderly/postmenstrual woman can take off her Jilbab (the large outer covering), as long as her remaining clothes do not -show off/make a display of- her beauty (or those parts which contribute to her beauty) مُتَبَرِّجَاتٍ here meaning making a display or show as opposed to يُبْدِينَ and ظَهَرَ in (24:31) which means what is apparent or allowing to appear.  If we did not understand it in this way (i.e., no Jilbab/outer covering), then it would imply that Allah is saying older women can take off their normal clothes in a way that somehow does not show off their nakedness…  Absurd.

(The author of  this article did not explain what is the meaning of beauty in 24:60)


وَقَرْنَ فِي بُيُوتِكُنَّ وَلَا تَبَرَّجْنَ تَبَرُّجَ الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ الْأُولَى وَأَقِمْنَ الصَّلَاةَ وَآتِينَ الزَّكَاةَ وَأَطِعْنَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ لِيُذْهِبَ عَنكُمُ الرِّجْسَ أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ وَيُطَهِّرَكُمْ تَطْهِيرًا


And reside in/associate with your houses and do not -display/make a show of- yourselves like the displaying of the ignorance of former times; and keep up prayer, and pay the poor-rate, and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying. (33:33)


  • Married women should have as their primary social focus the home.
    • This has support in the Qur’anic conception of the husband and wife dynamic.
    • The reason this verse is applicable was stated briefly in the discussion of (33:32)
  • They should not make themselves up to look good or to display themselves when they go out.


Some examples of Clothing: -



















As an example, this style of clothing is fine, but without the inclusion of the coloured bands as they are there to beautify which does not fit with the command of modesty as described in the Qur’an.

 (This is the personal subjective opinion of the author of this article)


The actual way that Hijab is used in the Qur’an: -



يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَدْخُلُوا بُيُوتَ النَّبِيِّ إِلَّا أَن يُؤْذَنَ لَكُمْ إِلَى طَعَامٍ غَيْرَ نَاظِرِينَ إِنَاهُ وَلَكِنْ إِذَا دُعِيتُمْ فَادْخُلُوا فَإِذَا طَعِمْتُمْ فَانتَشِرُوا وَلَا مُسْتَأْنِسِينَ لِحَدِيثٍ إِنَّ ذَلِكُمْ كَانَ يُؤْذِي النَّبِيَّ فَيَسْتَحْيِي مِنكُمْ وَاللَّهُ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَإِذَا سَأَلْتُمُوهُنَّ مَتَاعًا فَاسْأَلُوهُنَّ مِن وَرَاء حِجَابٍ ذَلِكُمْ أَطْهَرُ لِقُلُوبِكُمْ وَقُلُوبِهِنَّ وَمَا كَانَ لَكُمْ أَن تُؤْذُوا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَلَا أَن تَنكِحُوا أَزْوَاجَهُ مِن بَعْدِهِ أَبَدًا إِنَّ ذَلِكُمْ كَانَ عِندَ اللَّهِ عَظِيمًا


O you who believe! do not enter the houses of the Prophet unless permission is given to you for a meal, not waiting for its cooking being finished-- but when you are invited, enter, and when you have taken the food, then disperse-- without seeking to remain for conversation; surely this gives the Prophet trouble, but he forbears from you, and Allah does not forbear from the truth. And when you ask of them (the prophet’s wives) any goods, ask of them from behind a partition/barrier (hijab); this is purer for your hearts and (for) their hearts; and it does not behove you that you should give trouble to the Messenger of Allah, nor that you should marry his wives after him ever; surely this is grievous in the sight of Allah.



As can be seen, Hijab (حجاب) is here used as a screen and barrier (as it usually is in the Qur’an).  So if anything, the usage of this word with regard to the head covering is a cultural innovation in Islam, but not the concept of covering the head.



Conclusion: -


The two main conclusions are: -


  1. The covering of the beauty of a woman, and all that contributes to it, is mandated in the Qur’an.  Specifically: -
    1. Headcover wrapped over the bosoms is mandated in the Qur’an.
    2. The wearing of a Jilbab which will cover the body/clothes is mandated in the Qur’an.
    3. In short the covering of the whole body except for what would normally appear, like the face (which according to the rules of modesty and not making a show of beauty, should not have make up).
  2. Claims of Hijab (as a head dress) being a cultural creation in Islam are true only in the sense of head covering being called hijab, but not in the sense of the covering of the head in itself.

(This is the personal subjective opinion of the author of this article)


Those who would try to say that hijab is not mandated in the Qur’an and so women do not need to wear it (i.e., leave their heads uncovered) are playing with words and they are working with impure intensions and flawed logic.


[1] For a bit more from Lisan Al arab in this section:

والخِمَارُ للمرأَة، وهو النَّصِيفُ، وقيل: الخمار ما تغطي به المرأَة  رأَْسها، وجمعه أَخْمِرَةٌ وخُمْرٌ وخُمُرٌ. والخِمِرُّ، بكسر الخاء  والميم وتشديد الراء: لغة في الخمار؛ عن ثعلب، وأَنشد:  ثم أَمالَتْ جانِبَ الخِمِرِّ  والخِمْرَةُ: من الخِمار كاللِّحْفَةِ من اللِّحَافِ. يقال: إِنها لحسنة  الخِمْرَةِ. وفي المثل: إِنَّ الْعَوَانَ لا تُعَلَّمُ الخِمْرَةَ أَي  إِن المرأَة المجرّبة لا تُعَلَّمُ كيف تفعل. وتَخَمَّرَتْ بالخِمار  واخْتَمَرَتْ: لَبِسَتْه، وخَمَّرَتْ به رأْسَها: غَطَّتْه. وفي حديث أُم  سلمة: أَنه كان يمسح على الخُفِّ والخِمار؛ أَرادت بالخمار العمامة لأَن  الرجل يغطي بها رأْسه كما أَن المرأَة تغطيه بخمارها، وذلك إِذا كان قد  اعْتَمَّ عِمَّةَ العرب فأَرادها تحت الحنك فلا يستطيع نزعها في كل وقت فتصير  كالخفين،، غير أَنه يحتاج إِلى مسح القليل من الرأْس ثم يمسح على العمامة  بدل الاستيعاب؛ ومنه قول عمر، رضي الله عنه، لمعاوية: ما أَشبه عَيْنَك  بِخِمْرَةِ هِنْدٍ؛ الخمرةُ: هيئة الاختمار؛ وكل مغطًّى: مُخَمَّرٌ. وروي  عن النبي، صلى الله عليه وسلم، أَنه قال: خَمِّرُوا آنِيَتَكُمْ؛ قال  أَبو عمرو: التخمير التغطية، وفي رواية: خَمِّرُوا الإِناء وأَوْكُوا  السِّقَاءَ؛ ومنه الحديث: أَنه أُتِيَ بإِناءِ من لَبَنِ فقال: هلاَّ  خَمَّرْتَه ولو بعود تَعْرِضُه عليه.  والمُخَمَّرَةُ من الشياه: البيضاءُ الرأْسِ، وقيل: هي النعجة السوداء  ورأْسها أَبيض مثل الرَّخْماءِ، مشتق من خِمار المرأَة؛ قال أَبو زيد:  إِذا ابيض رأْس النعجة من بين جسدها، فهي مُخَمَّرة ورَخْماءُ؛ وقال الليث:  هي المختمرة من الضأْن والمِعْزَى. وفرس مُخَمَّرٌ: أَبيضٌ الرأْس وسائر  لونه ما كان. ويقال: ما شَمَّ خِمارَكَ أَي ما أَصابَكَ، يقال ذلك للرجل  إِذا تغير عما كان عليه.  وخَمِرَ عليه خَمَراً وأَخْمَرَ: حَقَدَ. وخَمَرَ الرجلَ يَخْمِرُهُ:  استحيا منه. والخَمَرُ: أَن تُخْرَزَ ناحيتا أَديم المَزَادَة ثم تُعَلَّى  بِخَرْزٍ آخَر. والخُمْرَةُ: حصيرة أَو سَجَّادَةٌ صغيرة تنسج من سَعَفِ  النخل وتُرَمَّلُ بالخيوط، وقيل: حصيرة أَصغر من المُصَلَّى، وقيل:  الخُمْرَة الحصير الصغير الذي يسجد عليه. وفي الحديث: أَن النبي، صلى الله  عليه وسلم، كان يسجد على الخُمْرَةِ؛ وهو حصير صغير قدر ما يسجد عليه ينسج  من السَّعَفِ؛ قال الزجاج: سميت خُمْرة لأَنها تستر الوجه من الأَرض. وفي  حديث أُم سلمة قال لها وهي حائض: ناوليني الخُمْرَةَ؛ وهي مقدار ما يضع  الرجل عليه وجهه في سجوده من حصير أَو نسيجة خوص ونحوه من النبات؛ قال:  ولا تكون خمرة إِلاَّ في هذا المقدار، وسميت خمرة لأَن خيوطها مستورة  بسعفها؛ قال ابن الأَثير: وقد تكررت في الحديث وهكذا فسرت. وقد جاء في سنن  أَبي داود عن ابن عباس قال: جاءت فأْرة فأَخذت تَجُرُّ الفَتِيلَة فجاءتْ  بها فأَلقتها بين يدي رسولُ الله، صلى الله عليه وسلم، على الخُمْرَةِ التي  كان قاعداً عليها فأَحرقت منها مثل موضع درهم، قال: وهذا صريح في إِطلاق  الخُمْرَةِ على الكبير من نوعها.  قال: وقيل العجين اختمر لأَن فطورته قد غطاها الخَمَرُ، وهو الاختمار.  ويقال: قد خَمَرْتُ العجين وأَخْمَرْته وفَطَرْتُه وأَفْطَرْتُه، قال:  وسمي الخَمْرُ خَمْراً لأَنه يغطي العقل، ويقال لكل ما يستر من شجر أَو  غيره: خَمَرٌ، وما ستره من شجر خاصة، فهو الضَّرَاءُ.  والخُمْرَةُ: الوَرْسُ وأَشياء من الطيب تَطْلي به المرأَة وجهها ليحسن  لونها، وقد تَخَمَّرَتْ، وهي لغة في الغُمْرَةِ. والخُمْرَةُ: بِزْزُ  العَكَابِرِ  (* قوله: «العكابر» كذا بالأَصل ولعله الكعابر). التي تكون في  عيدان الشجر.  واسْتَخْمَر الرجلَ: استعبده؛ ومنه حديث معاذ: من اسْتَخْمَرَ قوماً  أَوَّلُهُمْ أَحْرارٌ وجِيرانٌ مستضعفون فله ما قَصَرَ في بيته. قال أَبو  عبيد: كان ابن المبارك يقول في قوله من استخمر قوماً أَي استعبدهم، بلغة  أَهل اليمن، يقول: أَخذهم قهراً وتملك عليهم، يقول: فما وَهَبَ المَلِكُ من  هؤلاء لرجل فَقَصَرَهُ الرجل في بيته أَي احتبسه واختاره واستجراه في  خدمته حتى جاء الإِسلام وهو عنده عبد فهو له. ابن الأَعرابي: المُخامَرَةُ  أَن يبيع الرجل غلاماً حُرّاً على أَنه عبده؛ قال أَبو منصور: وقول معاذ  من هذا أُخذ، أَراد من استعبد قوماً في الجاهلية ثم جاء الإِسلام، فله ما  حازه في بيته لا يخرج من يده، وقوله: وجيران مستضعفون أَراد ربما استجار  به قوم أَو جاوروه فاستضعفهم واستعبدهم، فلذلك لا يخرجون من يده، وهذا  مبني على إِقرار الناس على ما في أَيديهم.  وأَخْمَرَهُ الشيءَ: أَعطاه إِياه أَو مَلَّكَهُ؛ قال محمد بن كثير: هذا  كلام عندنا معروف باليمن لا يكاد يُتكلم بغيره؛ يقول الرجل: أَخْمِرني  كذا وكذا أَي أَعطنيه هبة لي، ملكني إِياه، ونحو هذا.  وأَخْمَر الشيءَ: أَغفله؛ عن ابن الأَعرابي.  واليَخْمُورُ: الأَجْوَفُ المضطرب من كل شيء.  واليَخْمُورُ أَيضاً: الودع، واحدته يَخْمُورَةٌ.  ومِخْمَرٌ وخُمَيْرٌ: اسمان. وذو الخِمَار: اسم فرس الزبير بن العوّام  شهد عليه يوم الجمل.  وباخَمْرَى: موضع بالبادية، وبها قبر إِبراهيم  (* قوله: «وبها قبر  إِبراهيم إلخ» عبارة القاموس وشرحه: بها قبر إِبراهيم بن عبدالله المحض بن  الحسن المثني بن الحسن السبط الشهيد ابن علي إلخ. ثم قال: خرج أي بالبصرة  سنة ؟؟ وبايعه وجوه الناس، وتلقب بأمير المؤمنين فقلق لذلك أَبو جعفر  المنصور فأرسل إليه عيسى بن موسى لقتاله فاستشهد السيد إبراهيم وحمل رأسه إلى  مصر اهـ. باختصار). بن عبدالله بن الحسن بن علي بن أَبي طالب، عليهم  السلام

Its primary signification when referring to a woman (as found in the Qur’anic context) is without any doubt, the veil.

[2] Many liberal Muslims try to say that as a khimar can mean various things (refer to endnote 1 above), like a cover or anything which covers, and so they say that we should not limit it to just the meaning of veil.  Hence, they say, unless we take a backward cultural interpretation of khimar, we have no reason to interpret it as a head covering.  My answer to this is: the correct understanding must be derived from the context in which the word is, in this case the ayah and the Qur’an as a whole.  The ayah context is something that the women would have with them, that can be drawn over their breasts, which has a predominant meaning of headscarf/ veil.  The Qur’an and ayah context is of modesty and concealing the beauty of a woman.  We must note also that when we look up the word khimar (خمار) in the classical dictionaries, the most obvious and foremost meaning is that of the veil/headscarf.

To say that Khimar (خمار) means table cloth or some random sheet is illogical within the language/ayah/Qur’an context above (why would women be carrying around random covers?).  To say that the khimar is mentioned only as a cultural fashion with no religious significance ignores the -modesty/hiding what contributes to beauty- context as well as unnecessarily ignores the establishment of a normative practice of 1) Maintaining and using the veil  and 2) Covering the breasts with it(‘s ends).  Consider, instead of Allah telling the women to pull their cloaks or dresses over their breasts (i.e., hide their cleavage), hence leaving them free to wear or not wear a veil, Allah tells them to use THEIR veils to cover their breasts/cleavage (which within the liberalist context would just be an extra unnecessary bit of clothing).  This has a dual function 1) It clarified for the women (Some? All?) who wore it at that time with the cleavage exposed (according their culture (Ibn Kathir)) to wrap it around so that they covered the cleavage and it clarified for all later generations that the veil should be put on the head and wrapped around below the neck to cover the breasts.

[3] Jilbab can also refer to veil/headscarf that covers the chest (Lisan Al Arab), but Allah uses the word khimar for this meaning (a woman’s veil being the predominant meaning for khimar) and the word jilbab for the gown worn over the woman and some clothes she may have below it, which Allah tells women to draw down/lower (the Jibab) on their bodies (them selves) as opposed to they breasts in the verse referring to the khimar.


Editorial Comments:

The words in this article which are highlighted in Blue colour  are done by the Managing Editor of IRFI and his comments are posted in Blue color in parenthesis.  Readers are encouraged to read 55 articles posted on the topic of Hijab to get a balanced view at our website


Please report any broken links to Webmaster
Copyright © 1988-2012 All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer

free web tracker