and fourteen, but according to our view Suras xciii and xciv form one; Suras cv and cvi
also form one; Suras viii and ix 1 form one, and he who attributes to us a
Qur'an different from this is a liar.'
As already explained, the Shi'ahs defend the assent given to 'Uthman's recension by
the assertion of their belief that the hidden parts will be made known to the whole Muslim
world by Imam Mahdi. Still some of the more fanatic Mullas2 of the Shi'ah sect,
hold that certain passages are even now authoritative, and charge 'Umar and 'Uthman
with having suppressed or altered them. They describe the defects in the present Qur'an as
(i) Omission of certain words and phrases.3
Thus, in Sura an-Nisa' (iv) 164, we read: 'God is Himself witness of what He hath
sent down to thee concerning 'Ali;' in Sura al-Ma'ida (v) 71, 'O Apostle!
proclaim all that hath been sent down to thee from the Lord concerning 'Ali;'
in Sura an-Nisa' (iv) 136, 'Of a truth those who believed and then became unbelievers,
then believed and again became unbelievers, and then increased their unbelief with
regard to the family of Muhammad and their rights, it is not God who will pardon
them'; and in Sura ash-Shu'ara (xxvi) 228, 'But they who treat them, the family of
Muhammad and their rights, unjustly shall know what a lot awaiteth them.'
(ii) Alteration of verses or passages.