The Holy Qur’an (pronounced [qurˈʔaːn]; Arabic: القرآن al-qur’ān, literally “the recitation”) is the central religious verbal text of Islam,also sometimes transliterated as Quran, Koran, Qur’ān, or Al-Qur’ān. Muslims believe the Qur’an to be the verbal book of divine guidance and direction for mankind, and consider the original Arabic verbal text to be the final revelation of God
Islam holds that the Qur’an was repeatedly revealed from Allah to Muhammad orally through the angel Jibrīl (Gabriel) over a period of approximately twenty-three years, beginning in 610 CE, when he was forty, and concluding in 632 CE, the year of his death. Followers of Islam further believe that the Qur’an was memorized, recited and written down by Muhammad's companions after every revelation dictated by Muhammad. Most of Muhammad's companions, tens of thousands, learned the Qur’an by heart, repeatedly recited in front of Muhammad for his approval or the approval of other Sahaba Muhammad approved and also compiled it in written form while he was alive. Muslim tradition agrees that although the Qur’an was authentically memorized completely by tens of thousands verbally, the Qur’an was still established textually into a single book form shortly after Muhammad's death by order of the first Caliph Abu Bakr suggested by his future successor Umar. Hafsa, Muhammad's widow and Umar's daughter, was entrusted with that Quran text after the second Caliph Umar died. When Uthman, the third Caliph, started noticing differences in the dialect of the Qur’an, he requested Hafsa to allow him to use the Qur’an text in her possession to be set as the standard dialect, the Quraish dialect aka Fus'ha (Modern Standard Arabic). Before returning that Qur'an text to Hafsa, Uthman immediately made several copies of Abu Bakar's Qur’anic compilation and ordered all other texts to be burned. This process of formalization of the orally transmitted text to Abu Bakar's Qur'anic text is known as the "Uthmanic recension". The present form of the Qur’an text is accepted by most scholars as the original version compiled by Abu Bakr.
Tajwīd (تجويد) is an Arabic word for elocution, meaning proper pronunciation during recitation, as well as recitation at a moderate speed. It is a set of rules which govern how the Qur'an should be read. It is derived from the triliteral root j-w-d, meaning to make well, make better, or improve. It is required by fard. There are Ten (tawatur) schools of Recitation, the most prevalent of which is the recitation of Imam 'Asim as transmitted by Imam Hafs.
An Ottoman Empire Qur'an circa 1536
Ali Husayni Sistani (Arabic: علي الحسيني السيستاني), born August 4, 1930, is an Iraqi Usuli marja in Iraq and the head of many of the seminaries (Hawzahs) in Najaf. Sistani was born in 1930 to a family of religious clerics, his father was Muhammad Baqir al-Sistani. Sistani himself claims to have been born in Mashhad, Iran, then moved to Mashhad as a child due to Iran not issuing birth certificates in its eastern provinces until decades later. After doing studies in Mashhad and Qom, In 1951, He traveled to Iraq to study in Najaf under Grand Ayatollah Abu al-Qasim al-Khoei. Sistani rose to the Usooli clerical rank of 'mujtahid' in 1960. When Grand Ayatollah Khoei died in 1992, Sistani ascended to the rank of Grand Ayatollah through traditional peer recognition of his scholarship. His role as successor to Khoei was symbolically cemented when he led funeral prayers for Khoei; he also inherited Khoei's network and following.
Close-up of the Birmingham Quran manuscript