From my understanding, the Quran was an oral tradition (for a generation or so) and then it was finally written down. Now obviously, while Arabic has been standardized, the various dialects of Arabic may differ on pronunciation. Is there a stringency for vocalization when reading from the Quran in a public setting (possibly as an obligation under Sharia law) or is the Quran more important as a printed text?

For example, pretend that one Islamic community in India will read from the Quran in Arabic (again, possibly to fulfill some religious obligation). However, they do not differentiate between an 3ayin and alif (the 3ayin becomes silent, like the alif). Are there legal consequences for this?

1 Answer 1


The Quran was written down during the time of the Prophet along with it being memorized. Rasolullah had around 40 scribes to write down whatever was recited and taught to the people. To see further on the preservation, you can read the book "Kuttaab an-Nabi" by Mohamed Mustafa al-Azami who gives all the historical evidences.

As for the different dialects of Arabic. The Quran was revealed in seven different ways and all of these ways have been orally preserved through the concept of tajwid/tartil.

There are also books written on how to recite the Quran and where each recitation may differ from the next, however these were all taught by the Prophet.

The example you gave about 'Ayn and Alif is not dialect, it's mispronunciation that's related to tajwid also, which is preserved.

But if a person recites the Quran and doesn't know how to properly pronounce a letter, it's possible that they can change the meaning of the word and the entire context. So it's obligatory to learn how to recite the Quran properly.

For more information, you can refer to the book "Kuttaab an-Nabi" and other books on the science of tajwid like "Ahkam Tajwid al-Quran"

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