Raḥmān is an Arabic term that is commonly translated as "compassionate" or "beneficent". In the Islamic context; definite Al-Rahman is a name of God in Islam. There is debate as to whether this is also the name of a pre-Islamic Arabian deity, or if it simply an epithet of God as Al-Rahim "the Merciful" definitely is. The Quraish appeared to be confused as to why Muhammad used this term. The pagan, Suhail ibn Amr, asked Muhammad to replace his insignia, "By the Name of God, Al-Rahman, the most Merciful," (b-ismi-llāhi r-raḥmāni r-raḥīmi) with "By Your Name O Allah!" (b-ismika yā -llāh!) Furthermore, Suhail said, "As for 'Rahman,' by Allah, I do not know what it means." It is thus unlikely an elative of Raḥim.
Surah 19 is the Surah in which the name Al-Rahman is mentioned most frequently (16 times). In verse 18 of this Sura, Maryam (Mary) says: "I seek refuge in Al-Rahman, that you may be righteous." Mary asks for protection from Al-Rahman against one whom she perceives as a man entering her private chambers, but who in fact is the Archangel Jibrāʾīl (Gabriel). In 19:45, Abraham says to his father, a disbeliever and idol-worshipper: "I fear you could be struck with the wrath of Al-Rahman, then become an ally of the devil."