Are Fats and Bones of a Swine Prohibited?
The Dietary Shari‘ah
Question asked by .
Answered by Dr. Shehzad Saleem

The Qur’ān explicitly forbids the flesh of swine. Does this include the fat and bones of the animal as well? The question arose in my mind because the Qur’ān, in one of its verses, specifically talks about the fact that fat was forbidden for the Jews. In one of your answers, you mentioned that Allah in the Qur’ān only forbade those edibles which He thought might confuse human beings to figure out for themselves. If everything related to swine were forbidden why didn't Allah explicitly say so in the Qur’ān? Please clarify.


The style adopted by the Qur’ān in prohibiting the swine is what we call synechdoche in linguistics, that is  "to imply the whole while referring to the part". In other words, by referring to the part (lahm: meat) the whole (everything which can be eaten from a pig's body) is implied. Therefore, its fat, bones or any other part of its body which can be eaten is forbidden.

Such linguistic styles are found in every language. For example, we say in Urdu: Bakray kā gosht halal hay (a goat's meat is halal). The statement does not mean that the meat only of a goat is halal while its bones and fats are forbidden. What we are actually implying here is that a goat is a halal animal as a whole.

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