The Holy Qur'an/Useful Works Of Reference

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THE wide compass of the Qur’an makes it necessary to consult works of reference on almost every conceivable subject, to enable us to elucidate the various points that arise. To deal adequately with such a Book, the widest reading is necessary as well as the most varied experience in life. But the interests of readers require that a handy Commentary should not roam too far afield. Bearing this in view the three essential kinds of books would be: (a) Previous Commentaries; (b) previous Translations; (c) Dictionaries and General Works of Reference, easily accessible. I have set out (a) and (b) in the previous tow Notes. I note a few under (c): -

  1. Imam Abdul-Qasim Husain Ragib’s Mufradat: a concise Arabic dictionary of words and phrases in the Qur’an. Already mentioned under Commentaries.
  2. The well-known Arabic Dictionary, Qamus.
  3. The well-known Arabic Dictionary, Lisan-ul-Arab.
  4. The concise Arabic-Persion Dictionary, Surah.
  5. J. Penrice’s Dictionary & Glossary of the Koran.
  6. E. W. Lane: English-Arabic Lexicon.
  7. Imam Jalal-ud-din Suyuti’s Itwan fi ’ulum-il-Qur’an: a veritable encyclopædia of Quranic sciences.
  8. Nöldeke under Schwally: Geschichte des Qorans. A German Essay on the Chronology of the Qur’an. Its criticism and conclusions are from a non-Muslim point of view and to us not always acceptable, though it is practically the last word of European scholarship on the subject.
  9. Encyclopædia of Islam. Nearly completed. Very unequal in its various parts.
  10. Encyclopædia Britannica, 14th edition. A great advance on previous editions, as regards the attention it devotes to Arabic learning.
  11. Hughes’s Dictionary of Islam. Out of date, bul still useful.
  12. Ibn Hisham: Sirat-ur-Rasul. A fairly detailed Life of the Messenger.
  13. Maulvi Shibli Nu’mani (d. 1914 = 1334 H.): Sirat-un-Nabi (an Urdu Life of the Messenger).
  14. Fath-ur-Rahman, an Arabic Concordance to the Qur’an, by Faidh-ullah Bik Hasani, printed in Cairo in 1346 H. Full and well arranged, and easy to use.