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 Post subject: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 07 Jun 2009, 07:58 
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Suggested translation1,2:


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1This translation may have been updated from the original suggested translation as a result of the discussions that follow.
2Click on the {verse number} of a translation to see other good translations of the verse.

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 12 Jun 2009, 23:41 
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Quote:
{3:1} Alif, Lam, Meem.

{3:2} God - there is no deity except Him, the Ever-Living, the Sustainer of existence.

{3:3} He has sent down upon you, [O Muhammad], the Book in truth, confirming what was before it. And He revealed the Torah and the Gospel.

{3:4} Before, as guidance for the people. And He revealed the Quran. Indeed, those who disbelieve in the verses of God will have a severe punishment, and God is exalted in Might, the Owner of Retribution.

A couple of comments:

2. "Al-Qayyoom" القيوم does mean the sustainer of existence, but the Arabic word is an "exaggeration pattern" from "Qayyim" قيِّم which means supervisor. So, a closer translation is needed. Any ideas?

3,4. "Nazzala" نزَّل does mean "sent down" but in stages, pieces or gradually. Thus a better translation would be "has been sending down." "Anzala" أنزل means "sent down" or "has sent down" but not "revealed".

4. The word God used in 3:4 for the Quran is Al-Fruqaan الفرقان. The translation should reflect that, so I suggest "and sent down the discernment" or "and sent down the discerning [book]."

4. "Aayaat" آيات does not mean verses, it means signs. I suggest "those who disbelieve in the signs of God..."

4. "`Azhaab" عذاب does not mean punishment. It means torment. Punishment is a good translation for "`Iqaab" عقاب. Also, "Shadeed" شديد means strong or robust. I'd like to reserve "strong" to translate "Qawiyy" قوي. I therefore suggest "will have a robust torment."

4. "`Azeez" عزيز really means one who cannot be beat. "Exalted in might" is a good translation, but I'd like to find another word to translate "`Azeez," perhaps "Unbeatable?"

4. "Owner of retribution" is a good translation of "Zhuntiqaam" ذو انتقام, but why not translate it closer, i.e., "has retribution" or "has vengence?"

Thus, to summarize the above comments, I suggest this translation:

{3:1} Alif (A), Laam (L), Meem (M).

{3:2} God - there is no deity except Him, the Living, the Supreme Maintainer.

{3:3} He has been sending down upon you [, O Muhammad,] the Book in truth, confirming of what is before it and sent down the Torah and the Gospel.

{3:4} Before, as guidance for the people. And He sent down the Discernment (the Quran). Verily, those who have disbelieved in the signs of God - for them is a fierce torment, and God is Almighty, with retribution.

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 18 Jun 2009, 10:29 
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Linguistic wrote:
Quote:
{3:3} He has sent down upon you, [O Muhammad], the Book in truth, confirming what was before it. And He revealed the Torah and the Gospel.

3,4. "Nazzala" نزَّل does mean "sent down" but in stages, pieces or gradually. Thus a better translation would be "has been sending down." "Anzala" أنزل means "sent down" or "has sent down" but not "revealed".

Point well taken about "Nazzala" نزَّل versus "Anzala" أنزل , but I think the present perfect "has sent down" mitigates the objection a bit and perhaps "has been sending down" would be an overkill.

Linguistic wrote:
Quote:
{3:4} Before, as guidance for the people. And He revealed the Quran. Indeed, those who disbelieve in the verses of God will have a severe punishment, and God is exalted in Might, the Owner of Retribution.

4. The word God used in 3:4 for the Quran is Al-Fruqaan الفرقان. The translation should reflect that, so I suggest "and sent down the discernment" or "and sent down the discerning [book]."

Totally agree about "the discernment."

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 18 Jun 2009, 20:11 
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Pragmatic wrote:
Point well taken about "Nazzala" نزَّل versus "Anzala" أنزل , but I think the present perfect "has sent down" mitigates the objection a bit and perhaps "has been sending down" would be an overkill.

Only problem with "has sent down" is that it may be understood that the sending has ended, which at the time of this chapter was not true. Thus, some other expression is needed to imply that there would be more to send down.

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 29 Jun 2009, 11:15 
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Linguistic wrote:
Only problem with "has sent down" is that it may be understood that the sending has ended, which at the time of this chapter was not true. Thus, some other expression is needed to imply that there would be more to send down.

I didn't think of that. I am now OK with "has been sending down." I wish there was a less elaborate substitute, but I can't think of one.

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 Post subject: Re: Verses 3:1-4
PostPosted: 22 Jul 2012, 22:57 
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I was reading these verses last night, and it occurred to me that verses 2 and 3 use a style that conveys the moral of the text! This style is used prominently in Chapter 30. The style ends a verse before the sentence ends! It conveys that even though it may seem the text ended, it hasn't; there is more.

In the case of 3:3-4, God is telling us that He sent down the prior scriptures, the Torah and the Gospel, but that they were not the end of His revelations, as the Jews or Christians believe. And while they were guidance for people, people disputed about them and split into factions. God then sent the decisive criterion (Al-Furqaan) to settle those disputes.

Translating the Quran requires translating its style as well!

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