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Reader comment on item: Uncovering Early Islam
in response to reader comment: Arabic Qur'an? Or is it a Syriac Qeryana? and how can we decide that a Quranic word is loan from Syriac

Submitted by Ali (United States), Feb 7, 2013 at 22:19

The Arabic language was still developing as Muhammad preached. Of course their were Greek, Syriac and Abyssinian influences in his Quraishi dialect. This dialect is what the Quran is referring to. The Jews, Christians and Pagans who conversed with Muhammad all spoke this dialect and were familiar with these 'foreign' terms. The Quran addresses this issue because they accused him of learning foreign books (i.e. Syriac Peshitta), with a foreign teacher.

I think 'Tur-Sineen' actually became an Arabic proper noun, not a 2 word compound. It's kind of like Americans saying Cherokee. They have no idea what it linguistically means but know what it refers to. This is the case for Tur, as well as 19 prophets.

There are some words like 'Mirhab' which are Abbysynian but it doesn't really matter because the Quraish were well acquainted with that word and what it referred to. It is Clear Arabic, but specifically to the Quraish. As for the Iraqis(like Tabari) and others, it is a different dialect, so the Ayat does not apply to them.


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