The Levant is an approximate historical geographical term referring to a large area in the Eastern Mediterranean in Western Asia. In its narrowest sense, it is equivalent to the historical region of Syria. In its widest historical sense, the Levant included all of the eastern Mediterranean with its islands; the term entered English in the late 15th century from French. It derives from the Italian Levante, meaning "rising", implying the rising of the sun in the east, is broadly equivalent to the term Al-Mashriq, meaning "the east, where the sun rises". In the 13th and 14th centuries, the term levante was used for Italian maritime commerce in the Eastern Mediterranean, including Greece, Syria-Palestine, Egypt, that is, the lands east of Venice; the term was restricted to the Muslim countries of Syria-Palestine and Egypt. In 1581, England set up the Levant Company to monopolize commerce with the Ottoman Empire; the name Levant States was used to refer to the French mandate over Syria and Lebanon after World War I.
This is the reason why the term Levant has come to be used more to refer to modern Syria, Palestine, Israel and Cyprus. Some scholars misunderstood the term thinking. Today the term is used in conjunction with prehistoric or ancient historical references, it has the same meaning as "Syria-Palestine" or Ash-Shaam, the area, bounded by the Taurus Mountains of Turkey in the North, the Mediterranean Sea in the west, the north Arabian Desert and Mesopotamia in the east. It does not include Anatolia, the Caucasus Mountains, or any part of the Arabian Peninsula proper. Cilicia and the Sinai Peninsula are sometimes included; the term Levant was used to describe the region from the 18th to the mid-19th centuries, has had steady but lower usage since the late 19th century. Both the noun Levant and the adjective Levantine are now used to describe the ancient and modern culture area called Syro-Palestinian or Biblical: archaeologists now speak of the Levant and of Levantine archaeology; the Levant has been described as the "crossroads of western Asia, the eastern Mediterranean, northeast Africa", the "northwest of the Arabian plate".
The populations of the Levant share not only the geographic position, but cuisine, some customs, history. They are referred to as Levantines; the term Levant, which appeared in English in 1497 meant the East in general or "Mediterranean lands east of Italy". It is borrowed from the French levant "rising", referring to the rising of the sun in the east, or the point where the sun rises; the phrase is from the Latin word levare, meaning'lift, raise'. Similar etymologies are found in Greek Ἀνατολή, in Germanic Morgenland, in Italian, in Hungarian Kelet, in Spanish and Catalan Levante and Llevant, in Hebrew. Most notably, "Orient" and its Latin source oriens meaning "east", is "rising", deriving from Latin orior "rise"; the notion of the Levant has undergone a dynamic process of historical evolution in usage and understanding. While the term "Levantine" referred to the European residents of the eastern Mediterranean region, it came to refer to regional "native" and "minority" groups; the term became current in English in the 16th century, along with the first English merchant adventurers in the region.
The English Levant Company was founded in 1581 to trade with the Ottoman Empire, in 1670 the French Compagnie du Levant was founded for the same purpose. At this time, the Far East was known as the "Upper Levant". In early 19th-century travel writing, the term sometimes incorporated certain Mediterranean provinces of the Ottoman empire, as well as independent Greece. In 19th-century archaeology, it referred to overlapping cultures in this region during and after prehistoric times, intending to reference the place instead of any one culture; the French mandate of Syria and Lebanon was called the Levant states. Today, "Levant" is the term used by archaeologists and historians with reference to the history of the region. Scholars have adopted the term Levant to identify the region due to it being a "wider, yet relevant, cultural corpus" that does not have the "political overtones" of Syria-Palestine; the term is used for modern events, states or parts of states in the same region, namely Cyprus, Iraq, Jordan, Palestine and Turkey are sometimes considered Levant countries.
Several researchers include the island of Cyprus in Levantine studies, including the Council for British Research in the Levant, the UCLA Near Eastern Languages and Cultures department, Journal of Levantine Studies and the UCL Institute of Archaeology, the last of which has dated the connection between Cyprus and mainland Levant to the early Iron Age. Archaeologists seeking a neutral orientation, neither biblical n
The Colonna family known as Sciarrillo or Sciarra, is an Italian noble family. It was powerful in medieval and Renaissance Rome, supplying one Pope and many other Church and political leaders; the family is notable for its bitter feud with the Orsini family over influence in Rome, until it was stopped by Papal Bull in 1511. In 1571, the heads of both families married nieces of Pope Sixtus V. Thereafter, historians recorded that "no peace had been concluded between the princes of Christendom, in which they had not been included by name". According to tradition, the Colonna family is a branch of the Counts of Tusculum — by Peter son of Gregory III, called Peter "de Columna" from his property the Columna Castle in Colonna, Alban Hills. Further back, they trace their lineage past the Counts of Tusculum via Lombard and Italo-Roman nobles and clergy through the Early Middle Ages — claiming origins from the Julio-Claudian dynasty; the first cardinal from the family was appointed in 1206, when Giovanni Colonna di Carbognano was made Cardinal Deacon of SS.
Cosma e Damiano. For many years, Cardinal Giovanni di San Paolo was identified as a member of the Colonna family and therefore its first representative in the College of Cardinals, but modern scholars have established that this was based on false information from the beginning of the 16th century. Giovanni Colonna, nephew of Cardinal Giovanni Colonna di Carbognano, made his solemn vows as a Dominican c. 1228 and received his theological and philosophical training at the Roman studium of Santa Sabina, the forerunner of the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, Angelicum. He served as the Provincial of the Roman province of the Dominican Order and led the provincial chapter of 1248 at Anagni. Colonna was appointed as Archbishop of Messina in 1255. In 1248, after having dedicated her entire life to serving God and the poor, Margherita Colonna died. A member of the Franciscan Order, she was beatified by Pope Pius IX in 1848. At this time, a rivalry began with leaders of the Guelph faction.
This reinforced the pro-Emperor Ghibelline course that the Colonna family followed throughout the period of conflict between the Papacy and the Holy Roman Empire. In 1297, Cardinal Jacopo disinherited his brothers Ottone and Landolfo of their lands; the latter three appealed to Pope Boniface VIII, who ordered Jacopo to return the land, furthermore hand over the family's strongholds of Colonna and other towns to the Papacy. Jacopo refused; the Colonna family declared that Boniface had been elected illegally following the unprecedented abdication of Pope Celestine V. The dispute led to open warfare, in September, Boniface appointed Landolfo to the command of his army, to put down the revolt of Landolfo's own Colonna relatives. By the end of 1298, Landolfo had captured Colonna and other towns, razed them to the ground; the family's lands were distributed among his loyal brothers. The exiled Colonnas allied with the Pope's other great enemy, Philip IV of France, who in his youth had been tutored by Cardinal Egidio Colonna.
In September 1303, Sciarra and Philipp's advisor, Guillaume de Nogaret, led a small force into Anagni to arrest Boniface VIII and bring him to France, where he was to stand trial. The two managed to apprehend the pope, Sciarra slapped the pope in the face in the process, accordingly dubbed the "Outrage of Anagni"; the attempt failed after a few days, when locals freed the pope. However, Boniface VIII died on 11 October, allowing France to dominate his weaker successors during the Avignon papacy; the family remained at the centre of religious life throughout the late Middle Ages. Cardinal Egidio Colonna died at the papal court in Avignon in 1314. An Augustinian, he had studied theology in Paris under St. Thomas of Aquinas to become one of the most authoritative thinkers of his time. In the 14th century, the family sponsored the decoration of the Church of San Giovanni, most notably the floor mosaics. In 1328, Louis IV of Germany marched into Italy for his coronation as Holy Roman Emperor; as Pope John XXII was residing in Avignon and had publicly declared that he would not crown Louis, the King decided to be crowned by a member of the Roman aristocracy, who proposed Sciarra Colonna.
In honor of this event, the Colonna family was granted the privilege of using the imperial pointed crown on top of their coat of arms. The celebrated poet Petrarch, was a great friend of the family, in particular of Giovanni Colonna and lived in Rome as a guest of the family, he composed a number of sonnets for special occasions within the Colonna family, including "Colonna the Glorious, the great Latin name upon which all our hopes rest". In this period, the Colonna started claiming. At the Council of Constance, the Colonna succeeded in their papal ambitions when Oddone Colonna was elected on 14 November 1417; as Martin V, he reigned until his death on 20 February 1431. Vittoria Colonna became famous in the sixteenth century as a figure in literate circles. In 1627 Anna Colonna, daughter of Filippo I Colonna, married Taddeo Barberini of the family Barberini. In 1728, the Carbognano branch of the Colonna family added the name Barberini to its family name when Giulio Cesare Colonna di Sciarra married Cornelia Barberini, daughter of the last male Barberini to hold the name and granddaughter of Maffeo Barberini (son of Tadde
The Athenaeum (British magazine)
The Athenæum was a literary magazine published in London, England from 1828 to 1921. Initiated in 1828 by James Silk Buckingham, it was sold within a few weeks to Frederick Maurice and John Sterling, who failed to make it profitable. In 1829, Charles Wentworth Dilke became part editor. In 1846, he resigned the editorship and assumed that of the Daily News of London, but contributed a series of notable articles to the Athenaeum; the poet and critic Thomas Kibble Hervey succeeded Dilke as editor and served from 1846 until his resignation due to ill health in 1853. George Darley was a staff critic during the early years, Gerald Massey contributed many literary reviews – on poetry – during the period 1858 to 1868. Theodore Watts-Dunton contributed as the principal critic of poetry from 1875 until 1898. Frederic George Stephens was art editor from 1860 until 1901, when he was replaced by Roger Fry because of his unfashionable disapproval of Impressionism. Arthur Symons joined the staff in 1891. Editor from 1871 to 1900 was Norman MacColl.
During the 19th century, the Athenaeum received contributions from Lord Kelvin. During the early 20th Century, its contributors included Max Beerbohm, Edmund Blunden, T. S. Eliot, Robert Graves, Thomas Hardy, Aldous Huxley, Julian Huxley, Edith Sitwell, Katherine Mansfield, Virginia Woolf. From 1849 to 1880 Geraldine Jewsbury contributed more than 2300 reviews, she was one of few women who reviewed for the Athenaeum and started submitting her reviews by 1854. She rated novels that showed character morality and were entertaining, she criticized the "fallen woman" theme, common in Victorian literature. During the second half of the 1850s, Jewsbury was entrusted with editing the "New Novels" section. A letter from J. S. Cotton printed during 1905, definitively tells of the first-ever reference to the playing of a match of cricket in India. In 1921, with decreasing circulation, the Athenaeum was incorporated into its younger competitor: the Nation, becoming The Nation and Athenaeum. In 1931, this successor publication merged with the New Statesman, to form the New Statesman and Nation, eliminating the name Athenaeum after 97 years.
James Gillray Demoor, Their Fair Share: Women and Criticism in the Athenaeum, from Millicent Garratt Fawcett to Katharine Mansfield, 1870–1920. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2000. ISBN 978-0-7546-0118-0 Graham, Walter James,'The Athenaeum', "English Literary Periodicals". New York: T. Nelson, 1930, pp. 317–21. Hancock-Beaulieu, Micheline. "Indexing The Athenaeum: aims and difficulties". The Indexer. 17: 167–172. Marchand, Leslie A. "The Athenaeum: A Mirror of Victorian Culture". Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1941. Sullivan, Alvin, ed.'The Athenaeum', "British Literary Magazines. Volume 3". Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1983-, pp. 21–24. A selection of Gerald Massey's literary reviews for the Athenaeum The Athenaeum Projects: Centre for Interactive Systems Research, City University, London - an index of all literary reviews from 1830-1870 - and all scientific reviews from 1828-1830. Athenaeum review of George Eliot's The Mill on the Floss by Geraldine Jewsbury
Islam is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion teaching that there is only one God, that Muhammad is the messenger of God. It is the world's second-largest religion with over 1.8 billion followers or 24% of the world's population, most known as Muslims. Muslims make up a majority of the population in 50 countries. Islam teaches that God is merciful, all-powerful and has guided humankind through prophets, revealed scriptures and natural signs; the primary scriptures of Islam are the Quran, viewed by Muslims as the verbatim word of God, the teachings and normative example of Muhammad. Muslims believe that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith, revealed many times before through prophets including Adam, Abraham and Jesus. Muslims consider the Quran in its original Arabic to be the final revelation of God. Like other Abrahamic religions, Islam teaches a final judgment with the righteous rewarded paradise and unrighteous punished in hell. Religious concepts and practices include the Five Pillars of Islam, which are obligatory acts of worship, following Islamic law, which touches on every aspect of life and society, from banking and welfare to women and the environment.
The cities of Mecca and Jerusalem are home to the three holiest sites in Islam. Aside from the theological narrative, Islam is believed to have originated in the early 7th century CE in Mecca, by the 8th century the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate extended from Iberia in the west to the Indus River in the east; the Islamic Golden Age refers to the period traditionally dated from the 8th century to the 13th century, during the Abbasid Caliphate, when much of the Muslim world was experiencing a scientific and cultural flourishing. The expansion of the Muslim world involved various caliphates, such as the Ottoman Empire and conversion to Islam by missionary activities. Most Muslims are of one of two denominations. About 13 % of Muslims live in the largest Muslim-majority country. Sizeable Muslim communities are found in the Americas, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Europe, Mainland Southeast Asia, the Philippines, Russia. Islam is the fastest-growing major religion in the world. Islam is a verbal noun originating from the triliteral root S-L-M which forms a large class of words relating to concepts of wholeness, submission and peace.
In a religious context it means "voluntary submission to God". Islām is the verbal noun of Form IV of the root, means "submission" or "surrender". Muslim, the word for an adherent of Islam, is the active participle of the same verb form, means "submitter" or "one who surrenders"; the word sometimes has distinct connotations in its various occurrences in the Quran. In some verses, there is stress on the quality of Islam as an internal spiritual state: "Whomsoever God desires to guide, He opens his heart to Islam." Other verses connect Islam and religion together: "Today, I have perfected your religion for you. Still others describe Islam as an action of returning to God—more than just a verbal affirmation of faith. In the Hadith of Gabriel, islām is presented as one part of a triad that includes imān, ihsān. Islam was called Muhammadanism in Anglophone societies; this term has fallen out of use and is sometimes said to be offensive because it suggests that a human being rather than God is central to Muslims' religion, parallel to Buddha in Buddhism.
Some authors, continue to use the term Muhammadanism as a technical term for the religious system as opposed to the theological concept of Islam that exists within that system. Faith in the Islamic creed is represented as the six articles of faith, notably spelled out in the Hadith of Gabriel. Islam is seen as having the simplest doctrines of the major religions, its most fundamental concept is a rigorous monotheism, called tawḥīd. God is described in chapter 112 of the Quran as: "He is God, the One and Only. Muslims repudiate polytheism and idolatry, called Shirk, reject the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. In Islam, God is beyond all comprehension and thus. God is described and referred to by certain names or attributes, the most common being Al-Rahmān, meaning "The Compassionate" and Al-Rahīm, meaning "The Merciful". Muslims believe that the creation of everything in the universe was brought into being by God's sheer command, "Be, it is" and that the purpose of existence is to worship or to know God.
He is viewed as a personal god who responds whenever a person in distress calls him. There are no intermediaries, such as clergy, to contact God who states, "I am nearer to him than jugular vein." God consciousness is referred to as Taqwa. Allāh is the term with no plural or gender used by Muslims and Arabic-speaking Christians and Jews to reference God, while ʾilāh is the term used for a deity or a god in general. Other non-Arab Muslims might use different names as much as Allah, for instance "Tanrı" in Turkish, "Khodā" in Persian or "Ḵẖudā" in Urdu. Belief in angels is fundamental
Sanskrit is a language of ancient India with a history going back about 3,500 years. It is the primary liturgical language of Hinduism and the predominant language of most works of Hindu philosophy as well as some of the principal texts of Buddhism and Jainism. Sanskrit, in its variants and numerous dialects, was the lingua franca of ancient and medieval India. In the early 1st millennium CE, along with Buddhism and Hinduism, Sanskrit migrated to Southeast Asia, parts of East Asia and Central Asia, emerging as a language of high culture and of local ruling elites in these regions. Sanskrit is an Old Indo-Aryan language; as one of the oldest documented members of the Indo-European family of languages, Sanskrit holds a prominent position in Indo-European studies. It is related to Greek and Latin, as well as Hittite, Old Avestan and many other extinct languages with historical significance to Europe, West Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, it traces its linguistic ancestry to the Proto-Indo-Aryan language, Proto-Indo-Iranian and the Proto-Indo-European languages.
Sanskrit is traceable to the 2nd millennium BCE in a form known as the Vedic Sanskrit, with the Rigveda as the earliest known composition. A more refined and standardized grammatical form called the Classical Sanskrit emerged in mid-1st millennium BCE with the Aṣṭādhyāyī treatise of Pāṇini. Sanskrit, though not Classical Sanskrit, is the root language of many Prakrit languages. Examples include numerous modern daughter Northern Indian subcontinental languages such as Hindi, Bengali and Nepali; the body of Sanskrit literature encompasses a rich tradition of philosophical and religious texts, as well as poetry, drama, scientific and other texts. In the ancient era, Sanskrit compositions were orally transmitted by methods of memorisation of exceptional complexity and fidelity; the earliest known inscriptions in Sanskrit are from the 1st-century BCE, such as the few discovered in Ayodhya and Ghosundi-Hathibada. Sanskrit texts dated to the 1st millennium CE were written in the Brahmi script, the Nāgarī script, the historic South Indian scripts and their derivative scripts.
Sanskrit is one of the 22 languages listed in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution of India. It continues to be used as a ceremonial and ritual language in Hinduism and some Buddhist practices such as hymns and chants; the Sanskrit verbal adjective sáṃskṛta- is a compound word consisting of sam and krta-. It connotes a work, "well prepared and perfect, sacred". According to Biderman, the perfection contextually being referred to in the etymological origins of the word is its tonal qualities, rather than semantic. Sound and oral transmission were valued quality in ancient India, its sages refined the alphabet, the structure of words and its exacting grammar into a "collection of sounds, a kind of sublime musical mold", states Biderman, as an integral language they called Sanskrit. From late Vedic period onwards, state Annette Wilke and Oliver Moebus, resonating sound and its musical foundations attracted an "exceptionally large amount of linguistic and religious literature" in India; the sound was visualized as "pervading all creation", another representation of the world itself, the "mysterious magnum" of the Hindu thought.
The search for perfection in thought and of salvation was one of the dimensions of sacred sound, the common thread to weave all ideas and inspirations became the quest for what the ancient Indians believed to be a perfect language, the "phonocentric episteme" of Sanskrit. Sanskrit as a language competed with numerous less exact vernacular Indian languages called Prakritic languages; the term prakrta means "original, normal, artless", states Franklin Southworth. The relationship between Prakrit and Sanskrit is found in the Indian texts dated to the 1st millennium CE. Patanjali acknowledged that Prakrit is the first language, one instinctively adopted by every child with all its imperfections and leads to the problems of interpretation and misunderstanding; the purifying structure of the Sanskrit language removes these imperfections. The early Sanskrit grammarian Dandin states, for example, that much in the Prakrit languages is etymologically rooted in Sanskrit but involve "loss of sounds" and corruptions that result from a "disregard of the grammar".
Dandin acknowledged that there are words and confusing structures in Prakrit that thrive independent of Sanskrit. This view is found in the writing of the author of the ancient Natyasastra text; the early Jain scholar Namisadhu acknowledged the difference, but disagreed that the Prakrit language was a corruption of Sanskrit. Namisadhu stated that the Prakrit language was the purvam and they came to women and children, that Sanskrit was a refinement of the Prakrit through a "purification by grammar". Sanskrit belongs to the Indo-European family of languages, it is one of the three ancient documented languages that arose from a common root language now referred to as the Proto-Indo-European language: Vedic Sanskrit. Mycenaean Greek and Ancient Greek. Mycenaean Greek is the older recorded form of Greek, but the limited material that has survived has a ambiguous writing system. More important to Indo-European studies is Ancient Greek, documented extensively beginning with the two Homeric poems. Hittite.
This is the earliest-recorded of all Indo-European languages, distinguishable into Old Hittite, Middle Hittite and Neo-Hittite. I
Antonio Starabba, Marchese di Rudinì
Antonio Starabba, Marquess of Rudinì was an Italian statesman, Prime Minister of Italy between 1891 and 1892 and from 1896 until 1898. He was born in Palermo into an aristocratic Sicilian family. However, his family was of a more cultured, liberal disposition than many of their contemporaries. In 1859, he joined the revolutionary committee which paved the way for Garibaldi's triumphs in the following year. After spending a short time at Turin as attaché to the Italian foreign office, he was elected mayor of Palermo. In 1866, he displayed considerable personal courage and energy in quelling an insurrection of separatist and reactionary tendencies; the prestige thus acquired led to his appointment as prefect of Palermo. It was. In 1868, he was prefect of Naples. In October 1869 he became minister of the interior in the Menabrea cabinet; the cabinet fell a few months and although Starabba was an elected member of parliament for Canicattì, he held no important position until, upon the death of Marco Minghetti in 1886, he became leader of the Right.
Early in 1891, he succeeded Francesco Crispi as premier and minister of foreign affairs, forming a coalition cabinet with a part of the Left under Giovanni Nicotera. His administration proved vacillating, but it initiated the economic reforms by virtue of which Italian finances were put on a sound basis and renewed the Triple Alliance, he was succeeded by Giovanni Giolitti. Upon the return of his rival, Crispi, to power in December 1893, he resumed political activity, allying himself with the Radical leader, Felice Cavallotti; the crisis consequent upon the disastrous battle of Adowa enabled Rudinì to return to power as premier and minister of the interior in a cabinet formed by the veteran Conservative, General Ricotti. He signed the Treaty of Addis Ababa that formally ended the First Italo–Ethiopian War recognizing Ethiopia as an independent country, he endangered relations with Great Britain by the unauthorized publication of confidential diplomatic correspondence in a Green-book on Abyssinian affairs.
Di Rudinì recognized the excessive brutality of the repression of the Fasci Siciliani under his predecessor Crispi. Many Fasci members were released from jail, he made. Di Rudini’s minister of the treasury Luigi Luzzatti passed two measures of social legislation in 1898; the industrial workmen’s compensation scheme from 1883 was made obligatory with the employer bearing all costs. To satisfy the anti-colonial party, he ceded Kassala to Great Britain, thereby provoking much indignation in Italy, his internal policy was marked by continual yielding to Radical pressure and by persecution of Crispi. During his second term of office, he thrice modified his cabinet without strengthening his political position. By dissolving the Chamber early in 1897 and favoring Radical candidates in the general election, he paved the way for the outbreak of popular uprisings about rising prices in May 1898. Rudinì declared the state of siege at Naples, Florence and Milan, the suppression of the riot resulted in a bloodshed in Milan.
Indignation at the results of his policy left him without support of both the Left – who blamed him for the bloodshed – and the Right – who blamed him for the permissiveness that had promoted the uprisings and led to his overthrow in June 1898. Di Rudinì retained his seat in Parliament until his death in 1908. Has reputed to be grand seigneur. One of the largest and wealthiest landowners in Sicily, he managed his estates on liberal lines, was never troubled by agrarian disturbances; the marquis, who had not been in office since 1898, died at Rome in August, 1908, leaving a son, who married a daughter of Henry Labouchere. In many respects Rudinì, though leader of the Right and nominally a Conservative politician, proved a dissolving element in the Italian Conservative ranks. By his alliance with the Liberals under Nicotera in 1891, by his understanding with the Radicals under Cavallotti in 1894-1898. Many books have been written about his life, including La settimana dell'anarchia del 1866 a Palermo by Gaspare di Mercurio.
Changes: On 18 September 1897, Giovanni Codronchi became Minister of Public Education, substituting Emanuele Gianturco Fiorenzo Bava-Beccaris Umberto I Gaetano Bresci Sarti, Roland. Italy: a reference guide from the Renaissance to the present, New York: Facts on File Inc. ISBN 0-81607-474-7 Seton-Watson, Christopher. Italy from liberalism to fascism, 1870-1925, New York: Taylor & Francis, 1967 ISBN 0-416-18940-7
The Quran is the central religious text of Islam, which Muslims believe to be a revelation from God. It is regarded as the finest work in classical Arabic literature; the Quran is divided into chapters. Muslims believe that the Quran was orally revealed by God to the final Prophet, through the archangel Gabriel, incrementally over a period of some 23 years, beginning on 22 December 609 CE, when Muhammad was 40, concluding in 632, the year of his death. Muslims regard the Quran as Muhammad's most important miracle, a proof of his prophethood, the culmination of a series of divine messages starting with those revealed to Adam and ending with Muhammad; the word "Quran" occurs some 70 times in the Quran's text, other names and words are said to refer to the Quran. According to tradition, several of Muhammad's companions served as scribes and recorded the revelations. Shortly after his death, the Quran was compiled by the companions, who had written down or memorized parts of it; the codices showed differences that motivated Caliph Uthman to establish a standard version, now known as Uthman's codex, considered the archetype of the Quran known today.
There are, variant readings, with minor differences in meaning. The Quran assumes familiarity with major narratives recounted in the Biblical scriptures, it summarizes some, dwells at length on others and, in some cases, presents alternative accounts and interpretations of events. The Quran describes itself as a book of guidance for mankind 2:185, it sometimes offers detailed accounts of specific historical events, it emphasizes the moral significance of an event over its narrative sequence. Hadith are additional written traditions supplementing the Quran. In most denominations of Islam, the Quran is used together with hadith to interpret sharia law. During prayers, the Quran is recited only in Arabic. Someone who has memorized the entire Quran is called a hafiz. Quranic verse is sometimes recited with a special kind of elocution reserved for this purpose, called tajwid. During the month of Ramadan, Muslims complete the recitation of the whole Quran during tarawih prayers. In order to extrapolate the meaning of a particular Quranic verse, most Muslims rely on exegesis, or tafsir.
The word qurʼān appears assuming various meanings. It is a verbal noun of the Arabic verb qaraʼa, meaning "he read" or "he recited"; the Syriac equivalent is qeryānā, which refers to "scripture reading" or "lesson". While some Western scholars consider the word to be derived from the Syriac, the majority of Muslim authorities hold the origin of the word is qaraʼa itself. Regardless, it had become an Arabic term by Muhammad's lifetime. An important meaning of the word is the "act of reciting", as reflected in an early Quranic passage: "It is for Us to collect it and to recite it."In other verses, the word refers to "an individual passage recited ". Its liturgical context is seen in a number of passages, for example: "So when al-qurʼān is recited, listen to it and keep silent." The word may assume the meaning of a codified scripture when mentioned with other scriptures such as the Torah and Gospel. The term has related synonyms that are employed throughout the Quran; each synonym possesses its own distinct meaning, but its use may converge with that of qurʼān in certain contexts.
Such terms include kitāb. The latter two terms denote units of revelation. In the large majority of contexts with a definite article, the word is referred to as the "revelation", that, "sent down" at intervals. Other related words are: dhikr, used to refer to the Quran in the sense of a reminder and warning, ḥikmah, sometimes referring to the revelation or part of it; the Quran describes itself as "the discernment", "the mother book", "the guide", "the wisdom", "the remembrance" and "the revelation". Another term is al-kitāb, though it is used in the Arabic language for other scriptures, such as the Torah and the Gospels; the term mus'haf is used to refer to particular Quranic manuscripts but is used in the Quran to identify earlier revealed books. Islamic tradition relates that Muhammad received his first revelation in the Cave of Hira during one of his isolated retreats to the mountains. Thereafter, he received revelations over a period of 23 years. According to hadith and Muslim history, after Muhammad immigrated to Medina and formed an independent Muslim community, he ordered many of his companions to recite the Quran and to learn and teach the laws, which were revealed daily.
It is related that some of the Quraysh who were taken prisoners at the Battle of Badr regained their freedom after they had taught some of the Muslims the simple writing of the time. Thus a group of Muslims became literate; as it was spoken, the Quran was recorded on tablets and the wide, flat ends of date palm fronds. Most suras were in use amongst early Mu