Tafsir (Qur'anic exegesis)

One of the major Islamic sciences, concerned with the interpretation of the Qur'an.  Classically it took the form of sequential verse-by-verse or word-by-word commentaries on the entire Qur'an.  Such commentaries ranged in size from the one-volume gloss of the two Jalals (al-Jalalayn:  Jalal al-Din al-Mahalli [d. ca. 1460], and Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti [d. ca. 1505]) to enourmous works such as the Tafsir of al-Tabari, which takes up 30 volumes.

There are many approaches to writing tafsir, which evolved over the centuries:

 

 


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