The 20 Versions of the Qur'an today. (7 are recorded in the Hadith.)

Qur'an of today is different than what Muhammad revealed!

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Islam: Truth or Myth? start page



The Muslim Claim that the Qur'an is unchanged:

No other book in the world can match the Qur'an ... The astonishing fact about this book of ALLAH is that it has remained unchanged, even to a dot, over the last fourteen hundred years. ... No variation of text can be found in it. You can check this for yourself by listening to the recitation of Muslims from different parts of the world. (Basic Principles of Islam, Abu Dhabi, UAE: The Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahayan Charitable & Humanitarian Foundation, 1996, p 4)

Many Variant Readings of the Quran

  1. "Muslims attack the Bible on the grounds that it sometimes has conflicting wording from different manuscripts. Yet this is exactly the case with the text of the Quran. There are many conflicting readings on the text of the Quran as Arthur Jeffery has demonstrated in his book, Material for the History of the Text of the Quran" (New York, Russell F. Moore, 1952).
  2. Mentions Variant readings in the Koran: Dashti, 23 Years, p. 28
  3. Mentions Variant readings in the Koran: Mandudi, Meaning of the Quran, pp. 17-18
  4. Mentions Variant readings in the Koran: McClintock and Strong, Cyclopedia, V152).
  5. "[the Koran] had a large number of variants, not always trifling in significance" (Islam, p. 189).
  6. "It is interesting to note that in scholarly Muslim journals, there is beginning to be a grudging acknowledgment of the fact that there are variant and conflicting readings on the text of the Quran" (One example would be Saleh al-Wahaihu, "A Study of Seven Quranic Variants," International Journal of Islamic and Arabic Studies, Vol. V (1989), #2, pp. 1-57).
  7. "The Muslin accounts of the history of the Quran texts are a mass of confusion, contradiction and inconsistencies" (Burton, Collection, p. 231).
  8. "Abdollah renounced Islam on the ground that the revelations, if from God, could not be changed at the prompting of a scribe such as he. After his apostasy he went to Mecca and joined the Qorayshites" (Dashti, 23 Years, p. 98).
  9. "There being some passages in the Quran which are contradictory, the Muhammadan doctors obviate any objection from thence by the doctrine of abrogation; for they say that God in the Quran commanded several things which were for good reasons afterwards revoked and abrogated" (E. Wherry, A Comprehensive Commentary on the Qurun, p. 110).
  10. "It is to us astounding how so compromising a procedure can have been permitted to be introduced into the system by friends and foes (Canon Sell in his work, Historical Development of the Qura, Madras: Diocesan Press, 1923, pp. 36-37).
  11. "When Muhammad died there existed no singular codex of the sacred text" (Caesar Farah, Islam: Beliefs and Observations, New York; Barrons, 1987, p. 28).
  12. "One thing only is certain and is openly recognized by tradition, namely, that there was not in existence any collection of revelations in the final form, because, as long as he was alive, new revelations were being added to the earlier ones" (The Shorter Encyclopedia of Islam p. 271).

The proof the Muslim claim is false, is in this book:

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Translation of front cover:

Making Easy the Readings of What Has Been Sent Down

Muhammad Fahd Khaaruun
The Collector of the 10 Readings
From Al-Shaatebeiah and Al-Dorraah and Al-Taiabah

Revised by
Muhammad Kareem Ragheh
The Chief Reader of Damascus

Daar Beirut

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As you can see, the boxed text is the text of the Qur'an and the margins at the left and the bottom are variant readings. There are more known variants than this book includes. Even worse, there are more than readers in existence, but this book limits the variants to only these 10 readers.

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What Muslim and non-Muslim scholars say about the known variations/versions within the Qur'an being used in the world today:

(C)ertain variant readings existed and, indeed, persisted and increased as the Companions who had memorised the text died, and because the inchoate (basic) Arabic script, lacking vowel signs and even necessary diacriticals to distinguish between certain consonants, was inadequate. ... In the 4th Islamic century, it was decided to have recourse (to return) to "readings" (qira'at) handed down from seven authoritative "readers" (qurra'); in order, moreover, to ensure accuracy of transmission, two "transmitters" (rawi, pl. ruwah) were accorded to each. There resulted from this seven basic texts (al-qira'at as-sab', "the seven readings"), each having two transmitted versions (riwayatan) with only minor variations in phrasing, but all containing meticulous vowel-points and other necessary diacritical marks. ... The authoritative "readers" are:

Nafi (from Medina; d.169/785)
Ibn Kathir (from Mecca; d.119/737)
Abu `Amr al-'Ala' (from Damascus; d.53/770)
Ibn `Amir (from Basra; d.118/736)
Hamzah (from Kufah; d.156/772)
al-Qisa'i (from Kufah; d.189/804)
Abu Bakr `Asim (from Kufah; d.158/778)

The predominant reading today, spread by Egyptian Koran readers, is that of `Asim in the transmission (riwayah) of Hafs (d. 190/805). In Morocco, however, the reading is that of Nafi` in the riwayah of Warsh (d. 197/812) and Maghrebin Korans are written accordingly. (Cyril Glassé, The Concise Encyclopedia of Islam, San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1989, p 324)

20 versions of the Qur'an!

Here is a list of the ten readers, each of which have two versions

The Readers and their Transmitted Versions

The Reader

The Transmitter

"The Seven" readers




Ibn Kathir



Abu `Amr al-'Ala'



Ibn `Amir


Ibn Dhakwan







Abu Bakr `Asim


Ibn `Ayyash

"The Three" readers

Abu Ja`far

Ibn Wardan

Ibn Jamaz

Ya`qub al-Hashimi



Khalaf al-Bazzar


Idris al-Haddad

There are even more Readers than these but these are considered the most authoritative.

Seven different version of the Koran:


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