Qur'an Facts
Qur'an Facts

50 Inspiring Facts about the Quran

By Nathan James, Associate Writer
Published February 25, 2018
  • Muslims believe the Quran to be the word of God as given to the archangel Gabriel, who in turn revealed those same words to the Prophet Muhammad.[8]
  • Orthodox Muslims believe the Quran is infallible.[2]
  • The Quran uses the term “Allah” for God; it emphasizes the supreme Divinity rather than the tribal or ethnic gods worshipped by Muhammed’s contemporaries.[8]
  • In addition to the Quran, Muhammad’s followers believed that everything Muhammad did or said came from divine inspiration. The records of his words and acts, or "Hadiths," are held to be second in importance only to the Quran itself.[7]
  • Together, the Quran and the Hadiths make up the “shari’a,” which means holy law.[7]
  • Al-Qur'an is an Arabic word meaning “the reading” or “the recitation.”[6]
  • Koran Gabriel
    The angel Gabriel plays a large role in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic theology
  • In the year 610 AD, when Muhammad was 40 years old, it is said he was visited by the angel Gabriel, who ordered him three times to recite something. When Muhammad asked what he should say, he was given the first revelation of what would later form the Quran. Muhammad received intermittent revelations for the remaining 23 years of his life.[6]
  • Muslims believe that the Old and New Testaments were written by prophets, including Jesus, who were charged with bringing their specific revealed book. Muhammad, however, was held to be the last and greatest prophet, so his book supersedes all the rest.[7]
  • Muslims believe that the Quran was God’s final revelation to humanity before the end of the world comes.[8]
  • A Quranic revelation was distinguished from a Hadith in part by observing whether or not a physical change had come over Muhammad when he made the statement. If he seemed different, he was considered to be reciting God’s word exactly as he received it from the angel Gabriel.[9]
  • Unlike most legal systems, which develop laws through legislative bodies, the Islamic world relies upon the Quran and Hadiths for their legal authority; judges only interpret.[7]
  • Tradition states that Muhammed was illiterate. He recited the words of the Qur’an to his followers, who would then record them.[8]
  • The Quran consists of 114 chapters called surats. The chapters are not arranged in the order in which they were first recited by Muhammad, but are instead in the re-arranged order that Muhammad placed them in after they were all written down.[8]
  • In 1992, Dr. Amina Wadud published The Qur'an and Woman, suggesting a merciful reinterpretation of the Quran from a feminine perspective.[2]
  • Quran woman facts
    The relationship between Quranic law and women gives rise to many delicate questions

  • Although no one is certain why Muhammad placed the revelations in the order he did, it is the case that, in general, the longer revelations can be found at the beginning of the Quran and the shorter towards the end.[8]
  • In the 19th century, Quran was spelled “Koran.” Although the correct transliteration into English is “Qur’an," some people still use “Quran” because English does not normally put apostrophes in the middle of words.[5]
  • Muslims consider the original Arabic words in which the Quran was given to be sacred; for this reason, translations of the Quran into other languages are not considered to be the complete or authentic Quran.[8]
  • Perhaps surprisingly, neither the words of the five daily prayers recited by devout Muslims nor the specifications for observance of the Ramadan fast are included in the Quran.[2]
  • To Muslims, “scripture” goes beyond the Quran to include anything said or done by the Prophet Muhammad.[2]
  • When the Quran was first printed, a prominent Muslim leader gathered a committee that included Muslims who had memorized the entire Quran during the prophet’s lifetime, to compare what was collected with what they had memorized.[9]
  • Koran Facts
    The Quran is held by Muslims to be the literal word of God
  • Every aspect of a Quran is considered to be holy, including the paper upon which it is written, the letters of the Arabic words on the page, and even the sounds that are made when one is reading the Quran out loud.[8]
  • Muslims will usually first perform the ablutions necessary to be ritually clean before they will even touch a copy of the Quran.[8]
  • Tradition from Muhammad's time determines the way the Quran should be recited, including when a speaker should pause or use certain intonations for specific words.[8]
  • Because the Quran so profoundly influenced spoken Arabic for centuries, many schools call Classical Arabic "Quranic Arabic."[8]
  • The individual words and letters of the Quran are also thought to possess ta’wil, inner meanings, that express metaphysical and cosmological truths.[8]
  • Muhammad claimed to have received his first Quranic revelation during an isolated retreat he made into the desert to fast and pray.[8]
  • The Quran wasn’t officially formed until 20 years after the death of Muhammad, when all of his revelations were gathered together.[2]
  • Koran city facts
    Muhammad moved his followers from Mecca to Medina
  • The revelations of the Quran can be divided into two groups: those which were received when Muhammad lived in Mecca and those from after his migration to Medina.[8]
  • Throughout Islam's history, it was not uncommon for male Muslim youth to memorize the Quran word-for-word before they were seven years old.[2]
  • The verses within a given surat of the Quran are not divided according to sentences but according to the rhythm of the words when spoken.[9]
  • According to orthodox Islamic doctrine, the Quran is uncreated and therefore eternal, unlike everything else in the universe, which is created.[1]
  • Many of the titles of the individual chapters (surats) of the Quran are taken from a word or image within that revelation that was surprising to the listeners. This explains titles such as “The Cow,” “He Frowned,” or “Iron.”[9]
  • Because the Quran taught that all questions of how to live a faithful life would be decided by the word of revelation through Muhammad, Muhammad’s death left his followers unsure of how to proceed. The resulting conflict about who would have authority to interpret God’s word laid the foundations for the division between Sunni and Shi’ite Muslims.[2]
  • Islam has no formal priesthood, so the Quran is interpreted by a scholarly class of individuals who possess a knowledge of the sayings and doings of the Prophet Muhammad through a succession of teachers held to go all the way back to the time of the Prophet.[2]
  • The Quran contains many laws and prescribed punishments for various crimes. For instance, in 5:38 the Quran states that an appropriate punishment for a thief is to cut off their hand.[10]
  • In 6:145, the Quran forbids the eating of pork; yet in 2:173 it states that it can be consumed in cases of necessity.[10]
  • The Quran encourages Muslims to use their reason in order to understand the world, but it also cautions against relying too heavily upon reason when it comes to the things of God. A Muslim should place the revelations in the Quran above their own ideas.[2]
  • The Quran contains revelations concerning universal ethics and metaphysics, but it also includes God’s practical counsel advising Muhammad about immediate, contemporary affairs, such as when the community should prepare to go to battle or what to do with captured prisoners.[1]
  • Quran Jerusalem
    The holy cities of Islam include Jerusalem, Medina, and Mecca
  • Originally, Muslims used to say their five daily prayers facing Jerusalem; in what became the second chapter of the Quran, however, the direction was changed to be towards Mecca, and that’s how it has remained ever since.[1]
  • Most of the Quran addresses very general issues: encouraging trust in God, promising heaven for those who obey God, discouraging sin, and threatening judgment and hell for the unyielding. The more rigorous practices and rituals of a Muslim’s religious life come from tradition, not the words of the Quran.[1]
  • In making a ruling concerning what a Muslim should or shouldn’t do, Islamic scholars and judges first consulted the Quran; if that didn’t hold the answer, they then looked to the Hadiths (sayings and doings of the Prophet Muhammad as recorded by his contemporaries); if those failed, then analogical reasoning based on Quranic or Hadith sources was applied; then the community was consulted to seek a consensus; only when all of those were exhausted could a scholar apply thought based wholly on their individual reasoning.[1]
  • Throughout Islamic history, students who showed talent in Quranic scholarship could become teachers, adminitrators of religious endowments, or judges who made rulings on social issues.[1]
  • Medieval Muslim aristocrats made great efforts to pay scholars and philosophers to collect and translate into Arabic books from Greek, Indian, Chinese, and Persian philosophy and religion, so that these texts could be compared to the theology contained in the Quran.[1]
  • The earlier revelations of the Quran concern doctrine, particularly of one God, and ethical questions; the later ones involve legal and political matters of Muhammad’s present day, perhaps because he lead a large community of believers.[6]
  • Koran Muslim Facts
    Muslims around the world see in the divine Quran a source of strength and faith

  • In the medieval period, a group of theologians called the Mu’tazilites argued that the Quran couldn’t be “eternal and uncreated,” because for it to be so would mean there was something other than Allah that was divine—which would be blasphemous to think. Ibn Hanbal, a scholar who opposed this view, was beaten, tortured, and imprisoned.[1]
  • In some passages, the Quran attributes anthropomorphic characteristics to God, such as eyes and hands, but it also claims that God is an indivisible whole, a unity that cannot possess particular attributes. Reconciling such differing claims has been the work of many Muslim scholars throughout the centuries[1]
  • The Sufis are Islamic mystics who originally lived on the edges of society, constantly reading the Quran or reciting prayers as a means for direct experiences of Allah.[1]
  • The Quran was banned in the Soviet Union from 1926 to 1957.[4]
  • The world's largest Quran was created by Afghan calligrapher Mohammed Sabeer Hussani and a team of students and artists. They worked five years for 18 hours a day to create the 1,102 pound book.[11]
  • Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein commissioned a Quran to be written in his own blood.[3]
  • Fascinating Quran Facts INFOGRAPHIC
    Koran Infographic Thumbnail
References

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