A ‘Heretical’ Translation of the Qur’ān
Question asked by .
Answered by Dr. Shehzad Saleem

At www.Bibliomania.com, a translation by an Iraqi Jew called NJ Dawood can be found. He’s changed the order of the Sūrahs to suit his own fancy. His introduction casts doubt on the provenance of the Qur’ān. This translation has been decried by Muslim scholars all over the world. We should write to the webmaster of the site to remove it. It is really hurting our feelings. I think that you should also raise a voice against it.


A hard copy of this translation has been under my study for almost twelve years. It does suffer from the flaws you have pointed out -- but do not forget that it is not from a Muslim. He wrote what he found to be correct in his opinion.

From what I know of the Arabic language, Dawood’s grasp of Qur’ānic Arabic is exquisite and so is his command on English. So the correct way is to ignore the flaws and benefit from the qualities. I am afraid that the general attitude of Muslims is of total rejection or acceptance in religious issues. This I think is not the correct approach. Human endeavours can never be perfect. Even efforts based on the best of intentions can result in mistakes. So instead of rejection, selective acceptance is perhaps the right way in such matters.

Consequently, I do not think that Muslims should press the webmaster of the site to remove this translation.

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