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A Very Concerned Reader: Checking Mustafa Khattab's translation of the Qur'an

Reader comment on item: A Saudi Prince's Threat to the Obama Administration
in response to reader comment: Qur'an 21:91 and 66:12 : The misconception of the conception/Readers must know that Muslims don't even know what's written in their holy scriptures!

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), Mar 28, 2021 at 09:37

>A very concerned reader:

And a spoiler alert: I'm not impressed with Mr. Khattab's translation.

Here is an example and it is Q:52:1 and the verse says:

والطور

Transliteration: Wa al-Tur

This can be rendered as: And the Tur (notice that I left this word untranslated because this is not an Arabic word)

Now, al-Tabari tells us that: والجبل الذي يُدعى الطور or And the mountain that is called al-Tur. Notice that he does not tell us where is that Tur mountain!

Then he tells us: (والطور) قال الجبل بالسُّريانية. Or: He said the word al-Tur (is a loan word from) in Syriac!

This means that this is a foreign word in the Qur'an and it means mountain.

Just a reminder the word al-Tur appears 8 times in the Qur'an!

https://www.islamweb.net/ar/fatwa/57613/

Now, here is the word Mountain in Syriac ܛܘܪܐ or Tura (the last /a/ is the Syriac definite article) and here is the word in a dictionary (with vocalization)

http://www.assyrianlanguages.org/sureth/dosearch.php?searchkey=5051&language=id

And here is the word Tura in wikitionary including the Arabized الطور

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%DC%9B%DC%98%DC%AA%DC%90

So the Quranic word الطور is a loan from Syriac

This brings us back to the verse and it can be rendered as:

And The Mountain

Notice that the letter Waw و in this verse means: And

In Arabic grammar the letter waw, in this case would be called Harf 'Atf or حرف عطف (conjunction)

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D8%AD%D8%B1%D9%81_%D8%B9%D8%B7%D9%81

To make it simple: This is an incomplete sentence!

al-Mufasereen tell us Allah is "swearing", in this case, by the mountain, as bizarre as it sounds. Notice that the verse does not tell us that Allah يقسم (he swears).

Here is multiple translations of the verse

https://corpus.quran.com/translation.jsp?chapter=52&verse=1

So the verse says: And the Mountain (the word al-Tur is a loan word from Syriac)

So what does this verse mean? Only Allah knows

So how did Mr Khattab come to the conclusion that the verse in English should be: By Mount Tur? Or By Mountain The Mountain!

https://quran.com/52/2

Now, if we turn to Quran 95:2 the verse says:

وطور سنين

This can be rendered as: And Tur Sinin

Notice that I left the words Tur and Sinin untranslated because both words are not Arabic words. However, as was explained the word Tur is the Syriac word for mountain.

How about the word Sinin? There is no Arabic word called Sinin and it must be a misreading of the Arabic word for Sinai or سيناء or Sina' . Now if we check the word Sinai in Syriac it is: ܣܝܢܝ or Sine. Now if the ya at the end of the word is written as N the word would become ܣܝܢܢ and to an untrained eye Syriac letter Ya (if located at the end of a word) can be read as N instead and this is most likely what happened. The scribe must have been reading a Syriac text and misread the Syriac letter ya for the Syriac letter N and now the word سيناء or Sina' (Sinai) becomes the Quranic Sinin

Here is Mr Khattab funny translation: And Mount Sinai

This means that his previous translation of the word Tur as a name for the mountain is not true.

https://quran.com/95/2?translations=131

And as usual al-Tabari is guessing about what is exactly "The Mountain of the Sinai."

http://quran.ksu.edu.sa/tafseer/tabary/sura95-aya2.html

So how did Mr. Khattab come up with his: Mount Tur?

We have to turn to 19th and 20th century Egypt where there was a quarantine station in the Sinai Egypt for Muslim pilgrims coming back to Egypt after visiting the holy sites in Mecca and Medina and the station's name is: جبل الطور or Gabal al-Tur (the Mountain of the Mountain)!

https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?msa=0&ie=UTF8&t=k&ll=28.950476000000005%2C33.65112300000001&spn=2.547421%2C3.24646&z=8&source=embed&mid=1VA5uK2EVDMl01w91yMp59AOKDaM

So far Mr. Khattab gets a ZERO

Submitting....

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