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The Legal Epistemology of Qur’anic Variants: The Readings of Ibn Masʿūd in Kufan fiqh and the Ḥanafī madhhab

Dr Ramon Ibrahim Harvey


Ramon Harvey
Ebrahim College

Citation Information: Journal of Qur’anic Studies, Volume 19 Issue 1, Page 72-101, ISSN 1465-3591 Available Online Mar 2017




This article provides a detailed analysis of four variant Qur’anic readings of the Companion Ibn Masʿūd (d. 32/652-53) with legal implications. These readings are classified by their use within the statements and writings of early Kufan jurists and members of the Ḥanafī school who grappled with how to understand their legal weight and non-canonical status. By tracing these developments against the history of Ḥanafī legal theory, this study also reveals broader developments in the epistemology of revelation, abrogation and transmission of the Qur’an.

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About Dr Ramon (Ibrahim) Harvey

Dr Harvey received his MA and then PhD in Islamic Studies from SOAS, University of London, specialising in linguistic and thematic interpretation of the Qur’an under the supervision of Professor M. A. S. Abdel Haleem. Alongside his academic training, he has spent a number of years studying with Muslim scholars in the UK, as well as intensive programmes at Al-Azhar in Cairo and the Hijaz. He received his ‘alimiyya from Al-Salam Institute in London after examination by Shaykh Akram Nadwi. He has previously worked as a Senior Teaching Fellow at SOAS, lecturing in Qur’an and Hadith, and as a Research Fellow at the Cambridge Muslim College. He has published on the history of Qur’anic qira’at and is completing his first book entitled The Qur’an and the Just Society with Edinburgh University Press. His current research interests are Qur’anic hermeneutics, Maturidi theology and legal theory, contemporary ethical theory and political philosophy.

At Ebrahim College, Dr Harvey lectures on early Muslim sects, Western approaches to the Qur’an and Hadith, and the history of political philosophy, as well as teaching academic writing and research methods. He is also closely involved with the academic development of the College and its research division.


June 9, 2017

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