The foundations of the house (Q 2: 127)

Joseph Witztum*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


In Quran 2: 127 Ibrīhīm founded "the house" (most probably a reference to the Ka'ba) together with his son Ismā'īl. This scene does not appear in the Bible and none of the attempts to find a literary precedent for it are satisfactory. This paper argues that this scene reflects post-biblical traditions concerning Genesis 22. The argument is based on a comparison of the Quran, quranic commentaries, rabbinic sources and Syriac homilies on Gen. 22. After suggesting an origin for the story, the paper analyses the ways in which the Quran adapted and appropriated the story to its needs. The replacement of Isaac with Ismā'īl is a central point addressed in this context.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)25-40
Number of pages16
JournalBulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2009
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'The foundations of the house (Q 2: 127)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this