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The Family of Imran
|Structure||20 rukus, 200 verses, 3503 words, 14605 letters|
|Opening muqatta'āt||Alif Lam Mim|
The 3rd surah consists of 200 verses divided into 2 equal halves each 100 verses long. The first 99 verses is tripartite in 33 verse sections, with the story of Mary taking up the mid-section framed on either side by proofs and arguments with the Jewish and Christian peoples of Medina. While the first 100 verse are set in the background of the victory at the battle of Badr alluded to in verse 13, the second 100 verses primarily encourages the believers and engages the hypocrites after the devastating battle of Uhud.Imran in Islam is regarded as the father of Mary. This chapter is named after the family Imran, which includes Imran, Saint Anne, Mary, and Jesus. The chapter is believed to have been revealed in Medina and is either the second or third of the Medinan suras as it engages both the event of Badr in its first section and the battle of Uhud at its end. Almost all of it also belongs to the third year of the Hijra with the possible exception of verse 61, which mentions Mubāhalah and therefore might have been revealed during the visit of the Najrān Christian deputation which occurred in the 10th year of the Hijrah. This chapter primarily focuses on the departure of prophethood from the Mosaic dispensation. Another speculation is that since the event of Mobahela is the highlight of this surah, Al Imran refers to the ancestry of Mary who is named by her mother it could also refer to the progeny of Abu Talib ibn ‘Abd al-Muttalib, whose name has been reported as Imran by Shi'i commentators. Either way the Quran juxtaposes the male lineage of the family of Abraham and the distinctly feminine lineage of Jesus and the family of Imran as a challenge to the Jews and Christians of Medinah.
The first 7 verses are notable for the way in which the creation of humankind is given a feminine origin "It is He Who forms your shape in the wombs of the mothers as He pleases." The Quran itself is given a feminine heavenly source in "the mother of the Book" in verse 7. This awakens the listener to the surprise births about to be revealed in later events of the surah. Firstly the unexpected female birth of Mary and in turn to the miraculous conception and birth of Jesus. It is noticeable that all the miracles of Jesus presented here, breathing life into clay birds, healing the sick are nurturing, caring and feminine in character.
- Some Qur'anic verses are to be understood by others
- Some verses are allegorical
- It includes a disclaimer against misrepresenting the allegorical verses as factual.
- It states that a set of people are to be consulted, those firmly rooted in knowledge.
- Surah Ali-Imran (Complete text in Arabic with English and French translations)
- Al-Quran browser Āl ʿImrān (The Family of Imran)
- Ali-Imran at Quran.com
- Surah Aal Imran at Thequranrecitation.com with English, Arabic and Urdu Text Recitaion.
- A fragment showing verses 85-88 from the World Digital Library
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