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The History of Quran, Appearance of its Terminology and Records PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 23 September 2012 00:56

The History of Quran, Appearance of its Terminology and Records
                                                                                      Majid Maaref
Abstract: The history of Quran is a new course that includes description and explanation of collecting Quran from the beginning of its descending tills its contemporary writing and printing.  When we refer to the historic and scientific sources, we find that the Quranic studies are not new! These subjects have been discussed by the Islamic researchers, especially interpreters and Quranic scholars, and they have created various works. The previous researchers have discussed all the sciences, of Quran and all related subjects under the “Quranic sciences” topic. But today they try to consider studies of Quran as “history of Quran”. In the present article we read about researchers introducing “Quranic sciences” and the “history of Quran”.
hat’s the difference between the “Quranic sciences” and the “history of Quran”? There is not an exact answer to this question. Because there are common subject and studies in the “Quranic sciences” and “history of Quran”. Consider “the time” is as an important factor of their differences. In other words, the subjects that relate to a definite time, such as- the time of descending, collection of Quran in different periods, the manner of writing and its transformation are subjects of the Quran history. Those Quranic researches that can be done without any relation to a definite time, such as- firm or multiple possible meanings abrogating and abrogated verses implicit or explicit meaning, general or specific indications, the Quran guidance, the Quranic miracles and its dimension.... are in Quranic sciences subjects.
The opinions about the first person who used the “history of Quran” term are various. Some researchers believe that the German professor Theodor Nöldeke and the French professor Régis Blachère recommended the title of “Quran history”-or according to the Iranian researchers “the story of Quran”- in recent century. This opinion was agreed in other research.
The Theodor Nöldeke’s History of Quran is his doctoral research, that he defended it in 1858, published it when one of his students edited it again. The second publication of the book was in 1919. In this book, Theodor Nöldeke has tried to organize the verses according to their descending and he says about the collection and writings of the Quran. He organizes the verses and surah in two parts: “the Meccan” (the verses descended in Mecca) and “Medanese” (the verses descended in Medina.). He also has discussed about the content of surah, the stages of descending, and arrangement of the surahs.
 Some scholars believe that using of “Quran history” term by some Orientalists. And they wanted to pretend that Quran, like other books, such as the Gospels is gathered years after the holy Prophet Muhammad (as) death. As we study their works, find that they have had this opinion in their “history of Quran”. On the contrary, the Muslim researchers have adopted a different meaning for this term. They have accepted it and wrote books with “Quran history” title– that explain it. Some others without using the title accepted the existing of a history for Quran and believe that this history is clear and doubtless. Allameh Tabatabaie wrote:
“The history of Quran is completely clear from the day of its descending till now. The chapters and verses of Quran are habitual phrases to Muslim, and go from one generation to the other continuously. All of us know that the holy Quran that is available now, is the one that gradually descended to the holy Prophet Muhammad (as) 14 centuries ago. With this description, the holy Quran doesn’t need the history for its validity. Its history is clear because it claims that it is the words of God and for its exclamation says to refer to its texts. And it wants all humans and jinni to bring one verse like Quran, and their disability is obvious. It does not need any reason and witness because it is clear that it is the wording of God and it has not been distorted so far. For its validity, it does not need any confirmation of persons or officials. The brightest proof of the Quran are the descriptions and advantages that the holy Quran says about itself; is exists now as it was. Then Allameh with using of Quran verses has mentioned to the most of its characteristics are the secrets of Quran eternal. At the end, he concluded that:
 “According to circumstance of these verses, the holy Quran is free from distortion because it is recalling of Allah and guiding of Allah instructions, so far the reason it is protected by Allah that is free from any fault and impression of the Divine promise (the protection verse) that keep the holy Quran free from distortion in fourteen century, despite of millions enemies and thousands it is the only scripture book that has existed in a long time among human beings.”
Anyway, “the Quran history” is accepted among Muslim scholars and as the name of book, has been used for some Quranic researches. As we will mention, some of the Shia and Sunni scholars have produced Quranic works with this title in the recent decades.

The dimensions of the discussion of the history of Quran
          The researchers have discussed about the Quran history from two points:
1- Some of them have considered independent subjects for the Quran history, and have searched about them briefly or in detail. They have published their works as the Quran history, the Quran story and sometimes “discussions about Quran”.
2- Some others have discussed about “Quran history” discussions as a by- research. For example, Ayatollah Khoei in “the protection of Quran from distortion” has discussed about the collection of Quran and has shown the differences among these narratives; he has suspected the collection of Quran in AbuBakr period, and has confirmed its collection in Osman period.
Other examples of interpreters are from the Quran verses, as Allameh Tabatabaei said in interpretation of  Al-Hajr: 9 again he is saying about the problem of collecting Quran after the death of the holy Prophet Muhammad (as)  and has expressed about  various stages of collecting Quran. Other discussions are some interpretation of the primary verses of “Al-Ghadr” and “Al- Dokhan” or “Al- Baghare, 185”, i.e. “Baghare”.  It is possible to mention some books that is about the history of Quran such as, “ Quran and madrasatin” written by  Morteza Askari, “ collection of Quran” written by Ali Koorani Ameli, “ Haghaegh Hamma Howla AlQuran” written by  Jafar Morteza Ameli and “ Quran in Islam” Written by Allameh Tabatabaie.