QA. 111A

QAYYŪM AL-ASMĀ' 

Part  CXI [111]

 سورة  المؤمنين

Sūrat al-Mu'minīn

(The Surah of the Believers)

on

Qur'ān 12:111  

        The final surah 111 (CXI) of the provisional translation of the Qayyūm al-asmā’ (= QA) of the Bāb (mid. 1844/1260) with brief introduction and selective notes consists of a full versified English translation of the Sūrat al-mu'minin (The Surah of the Believers). This translation was initiated in the early 1980s though not from any critical edition. 

   The versification of the surahs of the QA is often uncertain. The Bāb himself stated that there should be forty verses in each surah of the QA as accords with the  abjad  numerical value of lī meaning "before me"  in Q. 12:4b  (Ar. لۑ  = l + ī = 30+10= 40= +2 for the "Sun" and the "Moon" = 42) though I often cannot always see quite how this figure is arrived at. In QA1 I tentatively count ADD verses and retain versification for the sake of reference and commentary. At times the versification of surahs of the QA at forty verses each may well be symbolic rather than a clear setting down of 40 bayts (verses) of rhymed prose (saj`),  though this seems to hold good in QA1 and QA5.

         The final Surah, QA 111, opens with the basmala  followed by the citation of Q.12:111 upon which it briefly comments in rewritten fashion in the course of the Surah of the Believers (Sūrat al-mu'minīn). The three qur'anic isolated letters (ḥurufat al-muqaṭṭa`ah)  A-L-M open the Surah proper, the letters   Alif-Lam-Mim which have an abjad numeral  of 1+30+40 = 71). This succession of  3 letters occurs six times in the Q.  The last  Surah of the QA ends, like the first, in a distinctly neo-qur'anic fashion. Though A-L-M is found in six qur’anic surahs (= Q. 2+3+29+30+31+32) there are ADD  occurrences of isolated letters which seem expansions of A-L-M in the QA including A-L-M- Ṣ (Q.7) and A-L-M-R (Q. 13). The fourfold isolated letters A-L-M-` occur eight or nine times in the QA., prefixing surahs 5+10+30+43+72+82+103 and also perhaps QA107. The isolated letter  (`ayn) only occurs as an isolated letter in the qur’anic quintuple group of isolated letters K-H-Y-`-Ṣ which letters prefix Q. 19 (Mary). The addition of this `ayn to the A-L-M in various surahs of the QA., might be seen to extend them with this letter `ayn in that this is the first component of the Bāb’s parentally bestowed name, `Alī (also that of the first Shī`ī Imam ) not that this the “correct” or the only possible explanation of these isolated letters.   Aside from being creatively neo-qur’anic the exact significance of A-L-M-` in QA 10 is unclear. For further details see my (unpublished) MESA., 2000 paper `Some Aspects of the Bābī-Bahā’ī interpretation of the Isolated letters (al-ḥurūfāt al-muqaṭṭa`ah) of the Qur’ān’ which deals in detail with the isolated letters of the QA and other writings of the Bāb (forthcoming on this website).