Fakhr al-Din Razi’s Tafsir, The Great Exegesis, also known as Mafatih al-Ghayb, is one of the great classics of Arabic and Islamic scholarship. Written in the twelfth century, this commentary on the Qur’an has remained until today an indispensable reference work. The Great Exegesis is a compendium not only of Qur’anic sciences and meanings, but also Arabic linguistics, comparative jurisprudence, Aristotelian and Islamic philosophy, dialectic theology and the spirituality of Sufism.
The present volume is the first ever translation into English from The Great Exegesis and focuses on the first chapter of the Qur’an, the Fatiha. This scholarly yet accessible translation gives readers a thorough understanding of the most commonly recited chapter of the Qur’an; it also opens up for readers a window into the thought and practice of one of Islam’s greatest theologians. This volume includes a foreword by Professor M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, King Fahd Professor of Islamic Studies, University of London.
Fakhr al-Dīn al-Razi (d. 1210) was a leading Islamic scholar of the twelfth century. He was a prolific author on theology and jurisprudence but is best known for his commentary on the Qur’an, The Great Exegesis.
Sohaib Saeed is director of the Centre for Advanced Study of the Quran and its Interpretation (CASQI). He is a graduate of philosophy (University of Edinburgh) and Islamic theology (Al-Azhar), with specialism in Qur’anic studies. He took his PhD at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.
‘Razi’s Tafsir is a monument to Islam’s great tradition of learning and an incredibly rich pathway into it. Making it accessible to an English-speaking audience, by a translator who is a scholar himself, is a great contribution that will be appreciated by many for many years to come.’
Jonathan AC Brown, Georgetown University, USA.
‘Dr. Sohaib Saeed offers us a meticulous and readable translation of a masterpiece of Qur’anic exegesis by the great Muslim intellectual Fakhr al-Din al-Razi, whose goal was to illuminate every possible shade of meaning of the Muslim Revelation, from moral-ethical and legal, to rational and allegorical-mystical, not to mention linguistic, grammatical and historical. A must-read for every serious student and connoisseur of the Qur’an.’
Alexander Knysh, Professor of Islamic Studies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA.