The Dots and Tashkeel in the Mushaf: ibn Taymiyah

Sheikh al-Islaam ibn Taymiyah wrote:

المصاحف التي كتبها الصحابة لم يشكلوا حروفا ولم ينقطوها ; فإنهم كانوا عربا لا يلحنون ثم بعد ذلك في أواخر عصر الصحابة لما نشأ اللحن صاروا ينقطون المصاحف ويشكلونها وذلك جائز عند أكثر العلماء وهو إحدى الروايتين عن أحمد وكرهه بعضهم والصحيح أنه لا يكره ; لأن الحاجة داعية إلى ذلك ولا نزاع بين العلماء أن [ حكم ] الشكل والنقط حكم الحروف المكتوبة فإن النقط تميز بين الحروف والشكل يبين الإعراب لأنه كلام من تمام الكلام . ويروى عن أبي بكر وعمر أنهما قالا : ” إعراب القرآن أحب إلينا من حفظ بعض حروفه ” فإذا قرأ القارئ { الحمد لله رب العالمين } كانت الضمة والفتحة والكسرة من تمام لفظ القرآن . ـ

The mushafs which the Sahabah wrote did not have any tashkeel [vowel marking] or dots on its letters, for the Sahabah were native Arabic speakers who did not make grammatical mistakes. But later during the end of the era of the Sahabah, they added the dots and tashkeel to the mushafs due to the errors in grammar that arose [i.e. among all the non-Arabic speaking people who entered into Islam].

And that is something permissible according to most scholars, and it was one of two positions reported from Imam Ahmad, though some scholars disliked this. However the correct position is that it not something to be disliked since there is a need which calls for it.

And there is no disagreement among the scholars that the tashkeel and the dots take the same ruling as the written letters themselves.

The dots allow one to distinguish between otherwise similar letters, and the tashkeel make the grammar plain and clear – for Allah’s speech is the most complete and perfect speech. And it has been transmitted from Abu Bakr and ‘Umar that they said, “Reading the Qur’an with the correct grammar and pronunciation is more beloved to us than memorizing some of its letters.” So if a reciter recites:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all creation [1:1]

then pronouncing the dhammah, fathah, and kasrah and putting them in the correct places is part of articulating the Qur’an correctly and completely.

[Majmoo’ al-Fataawaa 12/576]

See also: A Brief History of the Preservation of the Qur’an: Sheikh ‘Abd al-Muhsin al-‘Abbaad

See also: The Great Attention that the Salaf gave to the Qur’an: Ibn al-Jazari

See also: Preservation of the Wordings and Meanings of the Qur’an among the Salaf: Tafsir ibn Kathir

See also: Learning the Qur’an – Both Wordings and Meanings: ibn Taymiyah

See also: Why do the Qiraa’aat Differ?: Makki ibn Abi Taalib

4 thoughts on “The Dots and Tashkeel in the Mushaf: ibn Taymiyah

  1. Pingback: A Brief History of the Preservation of the Qur’an: Sheikh ‘Abd al-Muhsin al-‘Abbaad | Tulayhah

  2. Pingback: Clarification on the Ahruf and Qiraa’aat of the Qur’an: ibn Hajr | Tulayhah

  3. Pingback: Why do the Qiraa’aat Differ?: Makki ibn Abi Taalib | Tulayhah

  4. Pingback: Where Do the Differences in the Qiraa’aat Come From?: ibn Taymiyah | Tulayhah

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