Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 9.djvu/306

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ⅬⅩⅤ, 11-ⅬⅩⅥ, 2.
the qurʼân.

reminder ; — an apostle to recite to you God’s manifest signs; — to bring forth those who believe and act aright from darkness into light ! and whoso believes in God and acts right He will bring him into gardens beneath which rivers flow, to dwell therein for ever and for aye ! God has made goodly for him his provision !

God it is who created seven heavens, and of the earth the like thereof. The bidding descends between them, that ye may know that God is mighty over all, and that God has encompassed all things with His knowledge !

The Chapter of Prohibition[1].

(ⅬⅩⅥ. Medînah.)

In the name of the merciful and compassionate God.

O thou prophet ! wherefore dost thou prohibit what God has made lawful to thee, craving to please thy wives ? but God is forgiving, compassionate !

God has allowed you to expiate your oaths ; for

  1. This chapter was occasioned by Mohammed’s liaison with the Coptic girl Mary (see Introduction, p. ⅹⅼ), with whom he lay on the day due to ʿÂyeshah or ʿHafsah. The latter was greatly enraged, and Mohammed to pacify her swore never to touch the girl again, and enjoined ʿHafsah to keep the matter secret from the rest of his wives. She, however, revealed it in confidence to ʿÂyeshah ; when Mohammed, annoyed at finding his confidence betrayed, not only divorced her, but separated himself from his other wives for the space of a month, which time he passed in Mary’s apartment. The chapter is intended to free him from his oath respecting Mary, and to reprove his wives for their conduct.