Did the Qurʾān borrow from the Syriac Legend of Alexander?

Note: It is recommended that this article be viewed in PDF format. Click here. Introduction In 2007, an article appeared in Gabriel Said Reynold’s ‘The Qurʾān in its Historical Context’ titled ‘The Alexander Legend in the Qurʾān 18:83-102’, authored by Kevin Van Bladel. This article has proven to be a substantial contribution to understanding the … Continue reading Did the Qurʾān borrow from the Syriac Legend of Alexander?

Updates (February 2020) – the Syriac Legend of Alexander

As usual, it has been a while since this site has received an update, but for the last few months I have been fortunate enough to be given some time to focus on some research. The next post (to be released in a few days) will be on the Syriac Legend of Alexander, and its … Continue reading Updates (February 2020) – the Syriac Legend of Alexander

Mary, daughter of Amram, sister of Aaron: A Qur’anic error or deliberate allusion?

An interesting phenomenon that has gained much attention in contemporary Qur’anic studies is the regular allusion to Judeo-Christian tradition and biblical material. This essay explores the terminology surrounding Mary, the mother of Jesus, and explains how the Qur’an is applying a particular Christian literary genre to this New Testament figure. The primary purpose of this … Continue reading Mary, daughter of Amram, sister of Aaron: A Qur’anic error or deliberate allusion?

The “Dye of God”, baptism, and Qur’anic interaction with Christian themes.

I read an excellent paper by Sean Anthony, titled "Further Notes On The Word  Ṣibgha in Qur'an 2:138." I thought I'd comment on some of the content in the paper which I found quite significant. I encourage those interested to have a look at the full paper. The verse 2:138 of the Qur'an uses a … Continue reading The “Dye of God”, baptism, and Qur’anic interaction with Christian themes.

Some thoughts on “allusions” in the Qur’an common to Syriac (and other pre-islamic) tradition.

I am currently enjoying reading through Joseph Witztum’s thesis on the Qur’an and the Syriac tradition. Witztum’s aim is rather simple; he wishes to show that there is a background of Syriac tradition present in the Qur’an. Syriac Christians were quite prolific preceding and continuous with the Islamic period, producing thousands of works (many of … Continue reading Some thoughts on “allusions” in the Qur’an common to Syriac (and other pre-islamic) tradition.

Interesting article on the sensitivity to context of Qur’anic words

I always found some word choices in the Qur'an somewhat puzzling, or rather, difficult to understand, when I read Qur'anic translations. Abdel Haleem, in his recent article, "The Role of Context in Interpreting and Translating the Qur'an," explores how context gives generic Qur'anic words, such as al-Rahman, meanings that slightly diverge from the generic usage. As … Continue reading Interesting article on the sensitivity to context of Qur’anic words