The Koran, the most important sacred text of Islam, was originally written in Arabic, and some Muslims argue that it should only be read in Arabic, as translating it to other languages would mar the sacredness of the text. However, the Arabic language itself has surely evolved in the time since the Koran was written, probably enough that the idea of "translation" from the original Arabic to modern Arabic would make sense, and I'm unsure whether such a translation would be considered to preserve the holiness, if the language is essentially the same but the words are different.

Are new editions of the Koran published in Arabic as it's spoken today, or are they fully faithful to the original form of Arabic in which it was first written?

  • 1
    Wikipedia has an interesting section on Quranic orthography. Does that count as writing in a (slightly?) different form of Arabic?
    – muru
    Aug 30, 2017 at 4:00
  • @muru To be honest, I'm expecting an answer opening with "It's more complicated than that" - my dichotomy between modern Arabic and the original Arabic of the Koran is almost certainly overly simplistic. Fingers crossed for a really nice answer explaining the history of Koran publications in the context of the evolution of Arabic!
    – Rand al'Thor
    Aug 30, 2017 at 10:25
  • 2
    If you mean the language itself yes, that has never changed, but if you mean the written form no that has made some improvements. Note that today nobody or in no country people speak fasih or what is called standard Arabic, this language has been more and more put aside in favour of local slangs, so the Arabic of the qur'an my be found at schools and in newspapers and on tv in the news, even in chats and online it is vanishing.
    – Medi1Saif
    Aug 30, 2017 at 13:39
  • I had the impression that a major reason for reading it in the original is the untranslatability of poetry. Sep 1, 2017 at 18:47
  • Yes they are fully faithful to the original form of Arabic in which it was first written
    – Casanova
    Sep 4, 2017 at 6:25


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