Sacred Texts  Islam  Index 
Hypertext Quran  Unicode Quran  Pickthall  Palmer Part II (SBE09)  Yusuf Ali/Arabic  Rodwell 
Previous  Next 

The Holy Quran, tr. by Yusuf Ali, [1934], at

p. 1002


Qaṣaṣ, or the Narration.

In the name of God, Most Gracious,
Most Merciful

1. . Sīn. Mīm.

2. These are Verses of the Book
That makes (things) clear.

3. We rehearse to thee some
Of the story of Moses
And Pharaoh in Truth,
For people who believe.

4. Truly Pharaoh elated himself
In the land and broke up
Its people into sections,
Depressing a small group
Among them: their sons he slew,
But he kept alive their females:
For he was indeed
A maker of mischief.

5. And We wished to be
Gracious to those who were
Being depressed in the land,
To make them leaders (in faith)
And make them heirs,

p. 1003

6. To establish a firm place
For them in the land,
And to show Pharaoh, Haman,
And their hosts, at their hands,
The very things against which
They were taking precautions.

7. So We sent this inspiration
To the mother of Moses:
"Suckle (thy child), but when
Thou hast fears about him,
Cast him into the river,
But fear not nor grieve:
For We shall restore him
To thee, and We shall make
Him one of Our apostles."

8. Then the people of Pharaoh
Picked him up (from the river):
(It was intended) that (Moses)
Should be to them an adversary
And a cause of sorrow:
For Pharaoh and Haman
And (all) their hosts were
Men of sin.

9. The wife of Pharaoh said:
"(Here is) a joy of the eye,'
For me and for thee:
Slay him not. It may be

p. 1004

That he will be of use
To us, or we may adopt
Him as a son." And they
Perceived not (what they
Were doing)!

10. But there came to be
A void in the heart
Of the mother of Moses:
She was going almost to
Disclose his (case), had We
Not strengthened her heart
(With faith), so that she
Might remain a (firm) believer.

11. And she said to the sister
Of (Moses), "Follow him".
So she (the sister) watched him
In the character of a stranger.
And they knew not.

12. And We ordained that he
Refused suck at first, until
(His sister came up
And) said: "Shall I
Point out to you the people
Of a house that will nourish
And bring him up for you'"
And be sincerely attached
To him?"...

13. Thus did We restore him
To his mother, that her eye
Might be comforted, that she
Might not grieve, and that
She might know that the promise
Of God is true: but
Most of them do not understand.

p. 1005


14. When he reached full age,
And was firmly established
(In life), We bestowed on him
Wisdom and knowledge: for thus
Do We reward those
Who do good.

15. And he entered the City
At a time when its people
Were not watching: and he
Found there two men fighting,—
One of his own religion,
And the other, of his foes.
Now the man of his own
Religion appealed to him
Against his foe, and Moses
Struck him with his fist
And made an end of him.
He said: "This is a work
Of Evil (Satan): for he is
An enemy that manifestly

16. He prayed: "O my Lord!
I have indeed wronged my soul!
Do Thou then forgive me!"
So (God) forgave him: for He
Is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

p. 1006

17. He said: "O my Lord!
For that Thou hast bestowed
Thy Grace on me, never
Shall I be a help
To those who sin!"

18. So he saw the morning
In the City, looking about,
In a state of fear, when
Behold, the man who had,
The day before, sought his help
Called aloud for his help
(Again). Moses said to him:
"Thou art truly, it is clear,
A quarrelsome fellow!"

19. Then, when he decided to lay
Hold of the man who was
An enemy to both of them,
That man said: "O Moses!
Is it thy intention to slay me
As thou slewest a man
Yesterday? Thy intention is
None other than to become
A powerful violent man
In the land, and not to be
One who sets things right!

p. 1007

20. And there came a man,
Running, from the furthest end
Of the City. He said:
"O Moses! the Chiefs
Are taking counsel together
About thee, to slay thee:
So get thee away, for I
Do give thee sincere advice."

21. He therefore got away therefrom,
Looking about, in a state
Of fear. He prayed:
"O my Lord! save me
From people given to wrong-doing."


22. When, when he turned his face
Towards (the land of) Madyan,
He said: "I do hope
That my Lord will show me
The smooth and straight Path."

23. And when he arrived at
The watering (place) in Madyan;
He found there a group
Of men watering (their flocks),
And besides them he found
Two women who were keeping

p. 1008

Back (their flocks). He said:
"What is the matter with you?"
They said: "We cannot water
(Our flocks) until the shepherds
Take back (their flocks):
And our father is
A very old man."

24. So he watered (their flocks)
For them; then he turned back
To the shade, and said:
"O my Lord!
Truly am I
In (desperate) need
Of any good
That Thou dost send me!"

25. Afterwards one of the (damsels)
Came (back) to him, walking
Bashfully. She said: "My father
Invites thee that he may
Reward thee for having watered
(Our flocks) for us." So when
He came to him and narrated
The story, he said:

p. 1009

"Fear thou not: (well) hast thou
Escaped from unjust people."

26. Said one of the (damsels):
"O my (dear) father! engage
Him on wages: truly the best
Of men for thee to employ is
The (man) who is strong and trusty"…

27. He said: "I intend to wed
One of these my daughters
To thee, on, condition that
Thou serve me for eight years;
But if thou complete ten years,
It will be (grace) from thee.
But I intend not to place
Thee under a difficulty:

p. 1010

Thou wilt find me,
Indeed, if God wills,
One of the righteous."

28. He said: "Be that (the agreement)
Between me and thee:
Whichever of the two terms
I fulfil, let there be
No ill-will to me.
Be God a witness
To what we say."


29. Now when Moses had fulfilled
The term, and was travelling
With his family, he perceived
A fire in the direction
Of Mount Ṭūr. He said
To his family: "Tarry ye;
I perceive a fire; I hope
To bring you from there
Some information, or a burning
Firebrand, that ye may
Warm yourselves."

30. But when he came
To the (Fire), a voice

p. 1011

Was heard from the right bank
Of the valley, from a tree
In hallowed ground:
"O Moses! Verily
I am God, the Lord
Of the Worlds…

31. "Now do thou throw thy rod!"
But when he saw it
Moving (of its own accord)
As if it had been a snake,
He turned back in retreat,
And retraced not his steps:
"O Moses!" (it was said),
"Draw near, and fear not:
For thou art of those
Who are secure.

32. "Move thy hand into
Thy bosom, and it will
Come forth white without stain
(Or harm), and draw thy hand
Close to thy side
(To guard) against fear.
Those are the two credentials
From thy Lord to Pharaoh
And his Chiefs: for truly
They are a people
Rebellious and wicked."

33. He said: "O my Lord!
I have slain a man

p. 1012

Among them, and I fear
Lest they slay me.

34. "And my brother Aaron—
He is more eloquent in speech
Than I: so send him
With me as a helper,
To confirm (and strengthen) me:
For I fear that they may
Accuse me of falsehood."

35. He said: "We will certainly
Strengthen thy arm through
Thy brother, and invest you both
With authority, so they
Shall not be able to
Touch you: with Our Signs
Shall ye triumph,—you two
As well as those
Who follow you."

36. When Moses came to them
With Our Clear Signs, they said:
"This is nothing but sorcery
Faked up: never did we
Hear the like among our fathers
Of old!"

p. 1013

37. Moses said: "My Lord
Knows best who it is
That comes with guidance
From Him and whose End
Will be best in the Hereafter:
Certain it is that
The wrong-doers will not prosper."

38. Pharaoh said: "O Chiefs!
No god do I know for you
But myself: therefore,
O Haman! light me a (kiln
To bake bricks) out of clay,
And build me a lofty
Palace, that I may mount up
To the god of Moses:
But as far as I am concerned,
I think (Moses) is a liar!"

39. And he was arrogant and insolent
In the land, beyond reason,—
He and his hosts: they thought
That they would not have
To return to Us!"

40. So We seized him
And his hosts, and We
Flung them into the sea:
Now behold what was the End
Of those who did wrong!

p. 1014

41. And We made them (but)
Leaders inviting to the Fire;
And on the Day of Judgment
No help shall they find.

42. In this world We made
A Curse to follow them:
And on the Day of Judgment
They will be among
The loathed (and despised).


43. We did reveal to Moses
The Book after We had
Destroyed the earlier generations,
(To give) Insight to men,
And Guidance and Mercy,
That they might receive admonition.

p. 1015

44. Thou wast not on the Western
Side when We decreed
The Commission to Moses,
Nor wast thou a witness
(Of those events).

45. But We raised up (new)
Generations, and long were the ages
That passed over them;
But thou vast not a dweller
Among the people of Madyan,
Rehearsing Our Signs to them;
But it is We Who send
Apostles (with inspiration).

46. Nor wast thou at the side
Of (the Mountain of) Ṭūr
When We called (to Moses).
Yet (art thou sent)
As a Mercy from thy Lord,
To give warning to a people
To whom no warner had come
Before thee: in order that
They may receive admonition.

47. If (We had) not (sent thee
To the Quraish),—in case
A calamity should seize them
For (the deeds) that their hands
Have sent forth, they might say:
"Our Lord! why didst Thou not

p. 1016

Send us an apostle? We
Should then have followed
Thy Signs and been amongst
Those who believe!"

48. But (now), when the Truth
Has come to them from Ourselves,
They say, "Why are not
(Signs) sent to him, like
Those which were sent to Moses?"
Do they not then reject
(The Signs) which were formerly
Sent to Moses? They say:
"Two kinds of sorcery,
Each assisting the other .
And they say: "For us,
We reject all (such things)!"

49. Say: "Then bring ye
A Book from God,
Which is a better Guide
Than either of them,
That I may follow it!
(Do), if ye are truthful!"

50. But if they hearken not
To thee, know that they
Only follow their own lusts:
And who is more astray
Than one who follows his own
Lusts, devoid of guidance
From God? For God guides not
People given to wrong-doing.

p. 1017


51. Now have We caused
The Word to reach them
Themselves, in order that
They may receive admonition.

52. Those to whom We sent
The Book before this,—they
Do believe in this (Revelation);

53. And when it is recited
To them, they say: "We
Believe therein, for it is
The Truth from our Lord:
Indeed we have been Muslims
(Bowing to God's Will)
From before this.

54. Twice will they be given
Their reward, for that they
Have persevered, that they avert
Evil with Good, and that
They spend (in charity) out of
What We have given them.

55. And when they hear vain talk,
They turn away therefrom
And say: "To us our deeds,
And to you yours;

p. 1018

Peace be to you: we
Seek not the ignorant."

56. It is true thou wilt not
Be able to guide every one;
Whom thou lowest; but God
Guides those whom He will.
And He knows best those
Who receive guidance.

57. They say: "If we were
To follow the guidance with thee,
We should be snatched away
From our land." Have We not
Established for them a secure
Sanctuary, to which are brought
As tribute fruits of all kinds,—
A provision from Ourselves?
But most of them understand not.

58. And how many populations
We destroyed, which exulted
In their life (of ease and plenty)!
Now those habitations of theirs,
After them, are deserted,—
All but a (miserable) few!
And We are their heirs!"

p. 1019

59. Nor was thy Lord the one
To destroy a population until
He had sent to its Centre
An apostle, rehearsing to them
Our Signs; nor are We
Going to destroy a population
Except when its members
Practise iniquity.

60. The (material) things which
Ye are given are but
The conveniences of this life
And the glitter thereof;
But that which is with God
Is better and more enduring:
Will ye not then be wise?


61. Are (these two) alike?—
One to whom We have made
A goodly promise, and who
Is going to reach its (fulfilment),
And one to whom We have
Given the good things of this
Life, but who, on the Day
Of Judgment, is to be among
Those brought up (for punishment)?

p. 1020

62. That Day (God) will
Call to them, and say:
"Where are My 'partners'?—
Whom ye imagined (to be such)?"

63. Those against whom the charge
Will be proved, will say:
"Our Lord! These are the ones
Whom we led astray:
We led them astray, as we
Were astray ourselves: we free
Ourselves (from them) in Thy presence:
It was not us they worshipped."

64. It will be said (to them):
"Call upon your 'partners'
(For help)": they will call
Upon them, but they will not
Listen to them; and they
Will see the Penalty (before them);
(How they will wish)
'If only they had been
Open to guidance!'

65. That Day (God) will
Call to them, and say:
"What was the answer
Ye gave to the apostles?"

66. Then the (whole) story that day
Will seem obscure to them
(Like light to the blind)
And they will not be able
(Even) to question each other.

p. 1021

67. But any that (in this life)
Had repented, believed, and worked
Righteousness, will have hopes
To be among those who
Achieve salvation.

68. Why by Lord does create and choose
As He pleases: no choice
Have they (in the matter):
Glory to God! and far
Is He above the partners
They ascribe (to Him)!

69. And thy Lord knows all
That their hearts conceal
And all that they reveal.

70. And He is God: there is
No god. but He. To Him
Be praise, at the first
And at the last:
For Him is the Command,
And to Him shall ye
(All) be brought back.

71. Say: See ye? If God
Were to make the Night

p. 1022

Perpetual over you to the Day
Of Judgment, what god
Is there other than God,
Who can give you enlightenment?
Will ye not then hearken?

72. Say: See ye? If God
Were to make the Day
Perpetual over you to the Day
Of Judgment, what god
Is there other than God,
Who can give you a Night
In which ye can rest?
Will ye not then see?

73. It is out of His Mercy
That He has made for you
Night and Day,—that ye
May rest therein, and that
Ye may seek of His Grace;—
And in order that ye
May be grateful.

74. The Day that He will
Call on them, He will say:
"Where are My 'partners'?—
Whom ye imagined (to be such)?"

75. And from each people
Shall We draw a witness,
And We shall say: "Produce
Your Proof": then shall they
Know that the Truth is in
God (alone), and the (lies)
Which they invented will
Leave them in the lurch.

p. 1023


76. Qārūn was doubtless,
Of the people of Moses; but
He acted insolently towards them:
Such were the treasures We
Had bestowed on him, that
Their very keys would
Have been a burden to
A body of strong men.
Behold, his people said to him:
"Exult not, for God loveth not
Those who exult (in riches).

77. "But seek, with the (wealth)
Which God has bestowed on thee,
The Home of the Hereafter,
Nor forget thy portion in this

p. 1024

World: but do thou good,
As God has been good
To thee, and seek not
(Occasions for) mischief in the land:
For God loves not those
Who do mischief."

78. He said: "This has been given
To me because of a certain
Knowledge which I have."
Did he not know that God
Had destroyed, before him,
(Whole) generations,—which were
Superior to him in strength
And greater in the amount
(Of riches) they had collected?
But the wicked are not
Called (immediately) to account
For their sins.

79. So he went forth among
His people in the (pride
Of his worldly) glitter.
Said those whose aim is
The Life of this World:
"Oh! that we had the like
Of what Qārūn has got!
For he is truly a lord
Of mighty good fortune!"

80. But those who had been granted
(True) knowledge said: "Alas
For you! The reward of God
(In the Hereafter) is best
For those who believe
And work righteousness: but this

p. 1025

None shall attain, save those
Who steadfastly persevere
(in good)."

81. Then We caused the earth
To swallow up him and
His house; and he had not
(The least little) party
To help him against God,
Nor could he defend himself.

82. And those who had envied
His position the day before
Began to say on the morrow:
"Ah! It is indeed God
Who enlarges the provision"'
Or restricts it, to any
Of His servants He pleases!
Had it not been that God
Was gracious to us, He
Could have caused the earth
To swallow us up! Ah!
Those who reject God
Will assuredly never prosper."


83. What Home of the Hereafter
We shall give to those
Who intend not high-handedness
Or mischief on earth:

p. 1026

And the End is (best)
For the righteous.

84. If any does good, the reward
To him is better than
His deed; but if any
Does evil, the doers of evil
Are only punished (to the extent)
Of their deeds.

85. Verily He Who ordained
The Qur-ān for thee, will bring
Thee back to the Place
Of Return. Say: "My Lord
Knows best who it is
That brings true guidance,
And who is in manifest error."

86. And thou hadst not expected
That the Book would be
Sent to thee except as
A Mercy from thy Lord:
Therefore lend not thou support
In any way to those

p. 1027

Who reject (God's Message).

87. And let nothing keep thee
Back from the Signs of God
After they have been revealed
To thee: and invite (men)
To thy Lord, and be not
Of the company of those
Who join gods with God.

88. And call not, besides God,
On another god. There is
No god but He. Everything
(That exists) will perish
Except His own Face
To Him belongs the Command,
And to Him will ye
(All) be brought back.

Next: Sūra XXIX. ‘Ankabūt, or the Spider