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 Post subject: آية /æ:,jæ/
PostPosted: 18 Aug 2009, 02:43 
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This topic was split from the translation topic of 2:104-107.

Linguistic wrote:
آية means "sign" in Arabic, not "verse." All verses of the Quran are signs pointing to God. That's why God uses the word to refer to verses of the Quran. But there are more signs in the universe than the verses of the Quran.

I agree with the general meaning of آية, but in certain contexts it has acquired the meaning of verse (thru the Quran really).



IMHO, when the meaning is clear that we are talking about a verse, آية should be translated to verse since this is what conveys the meaning most accurately to the English speaker. Of course we can discuss whether it is clear that this is the meaning of آية in the current verse.

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 2:104-107
PostPosted: 18 Aug 2009, 04:07 
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Pragmatic wrote:
IMHO, when the meaning is clear that we are talking about a verse, آية should be translated to verse since this is what conveys the meaning most accurately to the English speaker. Of course we can discuss whether it is clear that this is the meaning of آية in the current verse.

I agree that آية should be translated "verse" when the context makes it clear. The example you quoted, however, 16:101, seems to suggest "verse" because of the use of the verb ينزل which means "to send down." Closer inspection, however, weakens that suggestion. Consider


So, my inclination is to translate آية as "sign" unless the context makes no doubt that the reference is to a verse, such as

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 Post subject: Re: آية /æ:,jæ/
PostPosted: 06 Jun 2010, 07:26 
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In his book استحالة وجود النسخ بالقرآن. Ihab Hasan Abduh propounds the various meanings of the word Aaya on page 284 quoting, in a footnote, Ibn Manzoor of the landmark Arabic dictionary, Lisaan Al-Arab. Those meanings are: Sign, lesson, crowd, wonder, proof, and miracle.

Indeed, all those meanings share one thing in common: something that causes one to pause and ponder. Since that is what most English speakers think of when they hear the word sign, especially in the context of a scripture, I like to translate آية as sign, unless the context indisputably suggests it means a verse. A verse is a sign by the above definition and that is why it is so called by God, IMHO.

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