The sixth word of verse (37:102) is divided into 3 morphological segments. A vocative particle, noun and possessive pronoun. The noun is masculine and is in the nominative case (مرفوع). The noun's triliteral root is bā nūn yā (ب ن ي). The attached possessive pronoun is first person singular.
The analysis above refers to the 102nd
verse of chapter 37 (sūrat
Sahih International: And when he reached with him [the age of] exertion, he said, "O my son, indeed I have seen in a dream that I [must] sacrifice you, so see what you think." He said, "O my father, do as you are commanded. You will find me, if Allah wills, of the steadfast."
19th January, 2010
Isn't "bunay+ya" a diminutive form of "ibn+i", i.e. "mi little son". "Bunay" has the structure of an irregular diminutive (irregular due to the presence of "weak" letters in the root). If I'm right, that'd be worth mentioning.
It's the only diminutive I can remember in the Qur'an.
Salam Samir. Thats quite good to know. Just out of interest, do you happen to know a published reference for this (e.g. book, paper, etc?) That would be quite helpful with regards to including this type of annotation on the website.
Of the seven translators, only Pickthall tries to convey the meaning expressed by the dimunitive form when he translates as "O my dear son" i.e. to express endearment. (See Wright, (3rd Edition), Vol. 1, pg 166.)
20th January, 2010
3laykum salam ya Kais. To be frank, I always thought it was a diminutive just because of the vowel sequence (e.g. like husein is morphologically the dim. of hasan, hureira - hirrah, kulaib - kalb, etc.) but unfortunately I never could confirm it.
Thanks Abdul Rahman for the Pickthall's reference. For some reason Pickthall translates "dear son" instead of just "son". He's perhaps putting the possible diminutive in context. I'll try to find translations to alternative languages (my first language is Spanish). Anyway, the problem here is not only if the text means "dear son", "little son" or just "son", but if yabunay-ya is "morphologically" a diminutive, and if there's another diminutive at all in the rest of the Quran. I think these two questions very much belong in a project like this, regardless of the meaning.
Let me add that I was induced also by the context and the way this ancient story is told in the Quran compared to other narrations. The story of Ibrahim and Ismael is also in the Genesis (although Abraham's only son at the time is contradictorily presented as Ishaq). In the Genesis, Abraham tells his son they're going to sacrifice an animal as usual. This way he tricks him into going to his own sacrifice. In the Quran, Ibrahim tells his son from the beginning the terrible dream he's just had and it's Ismael who thinks Allah has ordered the sacrifice and exhorts his father to proceed.
There is no "sentimentalism" in the Quran, but in this particular ayah we can almost feel the immense pain of Ibrahim. I always thought the purpose of the diminutive was to strenghten the idea of a suffering father addressing his dear son, his little dear son, with such news. Ibrahim uses only ten devastating words and Ismael answers also with just ten words.
The article "Textual criticism of the Koran" by James A. Bellamy seems to deal with diminutives concerning 9:30:3 ( عزير ). You may have on line access for free through the university:
'Uzair has a diminutive structure, although Bellamy seems to state diminutive is not intended.
Mazhar A. Nurani
The same word is also in 11:42; 12:05; 31:13; 31:16; 31:17. "O my dear son" suits at all these places instead of "little".
Wa alaykum assalam, brothers. This is a very interesting conversation. Samir, I very much agree that the dimunitive form is certainly relevant for this project, given its morphological focus.
Does anyone know equivalent terminology in arabic (not English) beacuse I am hoping to further research this and track down any further examples of the grammatical diminutive form in the Holy Quran. As Mazhar indicates there could certainly be others, possibly for other different nouns?
The Arabic term is "al-taSgheer" (ta sad ghain ya ra).
21st January, 2010
Its plural version is 2:132:6; 12:67:2;12:87:1.
plural without prefixed vocative 14:35:10
baniyya is plural diminutive or just plural?
Perhaps Just plural, Noon dropped because of Idhafa [Muzaf + Muzaf alahi first person pronoun]
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