Appendix

A Glossary of Some Islamic Terms,

Retrieved on December 7, 2012 from  http://www.theabodeofpeace.com/english.html

abd = slave, a slave to God. The English word “slave” or “servant” is entirely adequate. Man is Allah’s abd on earth. = Man is God’s servant on earth.

ayah = a verse of the Koran. The English word “verse” is adequate in most instances. I have memorized an ayah of the Quran. = I have memorized a verse of the Koran.

Hajj = the pilgrimage to Mecca. The English word “pilgrimage” is an adequate replacement in most instances but the word “Hajj” is increasingly familiar to educated English speakers. I am going on the Hajj to Makkah.= I am going on the pilgrimage to Mecca.

khalifah = deputy, God’s representative. The English word “deputy” or “representative” is an adequate substitute in most cases, but “caliph” with a “c” is an established English word, especially when used to refer to the institution of the Caliphate.  Man is Allah’s khalifah on Earth.= Man is God’s representative on earth.

masjid = a mosque, a place of assembly for prayer. The word “mosque” is well-established in English and is usually preferred to the Arabic “masjid”. Muslims make salah in a masjid. = Muslims pray in a mosque.

mu’min = believer, a Muslim. The English word “believer” is a ready substitute. He is a true mu’min. = He is a true believer.

mushallah = a prayer room. A place of prayer. In most cases “prayer room” is an adequate replacement. I am going to the musallah.= I am going to the prayer room.

Qu’ran = Koran, the Recitation. The spelling “Koran” is well-established in English and is preferred to pseudo-Arabic renderings such as “Quran”.

rakah = a unit of salah prayer. The English word “unit” or “cycle” is an adequate replacement in most cases.

salah = liturgical prayer, the formal prayer of Islam. There is no single English word that is a perfect replacement but “prayer” is usually adequate. Mu’min make salah five times a day. = Believers pray five times a day.

surah = A Chapter, the major division of the Koran. A collection of verses. There is no completely satisfactory English equivalent but the word “chapter” is adequate in most cases. The plural in Arabic is “surat” but “surahs” is commonly used by English speakers.

zuhr = noon, the noon prayer. The English word “noon” can be used in most cases.

Go Back to: References

Return to Parent: Muslim English in the Anglosphere

Return to Blog: Ben Royston

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s