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Select Translation What is This? Selections include: The Koran Interpreted, a translation by A.J. Arberry, first published 1955; The Qur'an, translated by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, published 2004; or side-by-side comparison view
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The Qurʾan What is This? A current English-language version of the Qur'an, published in 2004
Translation by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem

90. The City (1 – 20)

Revealed in Mecca. The point of this sura is that man is created to work and be judged. He should therefore seek to do good deeds rather than indulge in arrogance and wastefulness.

In the name of God, the Lord of Mercy, the Giver of Mercy

1I swear by this citya Mecca.2and you [Prophet] are an inhabitantb Hillun bi can mean ‘fair game’ for the disbelievers, even in this inviolable city, ‘resident’, ‘free to live’; some see that it means the Prophet is a temporary resident, others that it prophesies his return after emigration to Medina. of this city—3[I swear] by parent and offspring, 4that We have created man for toil and trial. 5Does he think that no one will have power over him? 6‘I have squandered great wealth,‘ he says. 7Does he think no one observes him? 8Did We not give him eyes, 9a tongue, lips, 10and point out to him the two clear ways [of good and evil]? 11Yet he has not attempted the steep path. 12What will explain to you what the steep path is? 13It is to free a slave, 14to feed at a time of hunger 15an orphaned relative 16or a poor person in distress, 17and to be one of those who believe and urge one another to steadfastness and compassion. 18Those who do this will be on the right-hand side, 19but those who disbelieve in Our revelations will be on the left-hand side, 20and the Fire will close in on them.

Notes:

a Mecca.

b Hillun bi can mean ‘fair game’ for the disbelievers, even in this inviolable city, ‘resident’, ‘free to live’; some see that it means the Prophet is a temporary resident, others that it prophesies his return after emigration to Medina.

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