Surah 12 Joseph - Yusuf, 111 verses (Makka)
In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
- A.L.R. These are the symbols (or Verses) of the
- We have sent it down as an Arabic Qur'an, in order
that ye may learn wisdom.
- We do relate unto thee the most beautiful of
stories, in that We reveal to thee this (portion of
the) Qur'an: before this, thou too was among those who
knew it not.
- Behold! Joseph said to his father: "O my father! I
did see eleven stars and the sun and the moon: I saw
them prostrate themselves to me!"
- Said (the father): "My (dear) little son! relate
not thy vision to thy brothers, lest they concoct a
plot against thee: for Satan is to man an avowed enemy!
- "Thus will thy Lord choose thee and teach thee the
interpretation of stories (and events) and perfect His
favour to thee and to the posterity of Jacob - even as
He perfected it to thy fathers Abraham and Isaac
aforetime! for God is full of knowledge and wisdom."
- Verily in Joseph and his brethren are signs (or
symbols) for seekers (after Truth).
- They said: "Truly Joseph and his brother are loved
more by our father than we: But we are a goodly body!
really our father is obviously wandering (in his mind)!
- "Slay ye Joseph or cast him out to some (unknown)
land, that so the favour of your father may be given to
you alone: (there will be time enough) for you to be
righteous after that!"
- Said one of them: "Slay not Joseph, but if ye must
do something, throw him down to the bottom of the well:
he will be picked up by some caravan of travellers."
- They said: "O our father! why dost thou not trust
us with Joseph,- seeing we are indeed his sincere
- "Send him with us tomorrow to enjoy himself and
play, and we shall take every care of him."
- (Jacob) said: "Really it saddens me that ye should
take him away: I fear lest the wolf should devour him
while ye attend not to him."
- They said: "If the wolf were to devour him while we
are (so large) a party, then should we indeed (first)
have perished ourselves!"
- So they did take him away, and they all agreed to
throw him down to the bottom of the well: and We put
into his heart (this Message): 'Of a surety thou shalt
(one day) tell them the truth of this their affair
while they know (thee) not'
- Then they came to their father in the early part of
the night, weeping.
- They said: "O our father! We went racing with one
another, and left Joseph with our things; and the wolf
devoured him.... But thou wilt never believe us even
though we tell the truth."
- They stained his shirt with false blood. He said:
"Nay, but your minds have made up a tale (that may
pass) with you, (for me) patience is most fitting:
Against that which ye assert, it is God (alone) Whose
help can be sought"..
- Then there came a caravan of travellers: they sent
their water-carrier (for water), and he let down his
bucket (into the well)...He said: "Ah there! Good news!
Here is a (fine) young man!" So they concealed him as a
treasure! But God knoweth well all that they do!
- The (Brethren) sold him for a miserable price, for
a few dirhams counted out: in such low estimation did
they hold him!
- The man in Egypt who bought him, said to his wife:
"Make his stay (among us) honourable: may be he will
bring us much good, or we shall adopt him as a son."
Thus did We establish Joseph in the land, that We might
teach him the interpretation of stories (and events).
And God hath full power and control over His affairs;
but most among mankind know it not.
- When Joseph attained His full manhood, We gave him
power and knowledge: thus do We reward those who do
- But she in whose house he was, sought to seduce him
from his (true) self: she fastened the doors, and said:
"Now come, thou (dear one)!" He said: "God forbid!
truly (thy husband) is my lord! he made my sojourn
agreeable! truly to no good come those who do wrong!"
- And (with passion) did she desire him, and he would
have desired her, but that he saw the evidence of his
Lord: thus (did We order) that We might turn away from
him (all) evil and shameful deeds: for he was one of
Our servants, sincere and purified.
- So they both raced each other to the door, and she
tore his shirt from the back: they both found her lord
near the door. She said: "What is the (fitting)
punishment for one who formed an evil design against
thy wife, but prison or a grievous chastisement?"
- He said: "It was she that sought to seduce me -
from my (true) self." And one of her household saw
(this) and bore witness, (thus):- "If it be that his
shirt is rent from the front, then is her tale true,
and he is a liar!
- "But if it be that his shirt is torn from the back,
then is she the liar, and he is telling the truth!"
- So when he saw his shirt,- that it was torn at the
back,- (her husband) said: "Behold! It is a snare of
you women! truly, mighty is your snare!
- "O Joseph, pass this over! (O wife), ask
forgiveness for thy sin, for truly thou hast been at
- Ladies said in the City: "The wife of the (great)
'Aziz is seeking to seduce her slave from his (true)
self: Truly hath he inspired her with violent love: we
see she is evidently going astray."
- When she heard of their malicious talk, she sent
for them and prepared a banquet for them: she gave each
of them a knife: and she said (to Joseph), "Come out
before them." When they saw him, they did extol him,
and (in their amazement) cut their hands: they said,
"God preserve us! no mortal is this! this is none other
than a noble angel!"
- She said: "There before you is the man about whom
ye did blame me! I did seek to seduce him from his
(true) self but he did firmly save himself
guiltless!....and now, if he doth not my bidding, he
shall certainly be cast into prison, and (what is more)
be of the company of the vilest!"
- He said: "O my Lord! the prison is more to my
liking than that to which they invite me: Unless Thou
turn away their snare from me, I should (in my youthful
folly) feel inclined towards them and join the ranks of
- So his Lord hearkened to him (in his prayer), and
turned away from him their snare: Verily He heareth and
knoweth (all things).
- Then it occurred to the men, after they had seen
the signs, (that it was best) to imprison him for a
- Now with him there came into the prison two young
men. Said one of them: "I see myself (in a dream)
pressing wine." said the other: "I see myself (in a
dream) carrying bread on my head, and birds are eating,
thereof." "Tell us" (they said) "The truth and meaning
thereof: for we see thou art one that doth good (to
- He said: "Before any food comes (in due course) to
feed either of you, I will surely reveal to you the
truth and meaning of this ere it befall you: that is
part of the (duty) which my Lord hath taught me. I have
(I assure you) abandoned the ways of a people that
believe not in God and that (even) deny the Hereafter.
- "And I follow the ways of my fathers,- Abraham,
Isaac, and Jacob; and never could we attribute any
partners whatever to God: that (comes) of the grace of
God to us and to mankind: yet most men are not
- "O my two companions of the prison! (I ask you):
are many lords differing among themselves better, or
the One God, Supreme and Irresistible?
- "If not Him, ye worship nothing but names which ye
have named,- ye and your fathers,- for which God hath
sent down no authority: the command is for none but
God: He hath commanded that ye worship none but Him:
that is the right religion, but most men understand
- "O my two companions of the prison! As to one of
you, he will pour out the wine for his lord to drink:
as for the other, he will hang from the cross, and the
birds will eat from off his head. (so) hath been
decreed that matter whereof ye twain do enquire"...
- And of the two, to that one whom he consider about
to be saved, he said: "Mention me to thy lord." But
Satan made him forget to mention him to his lord: and
(Joseph) lingered in prison a few (more) years.
- The king (of Egypt) said: "I do see (in a vision)
seven fat kine, whom seven lean ones devour, and seven
green ears of corn, and seven (others) withered. O ye
chiefs! Expound to me my vision if it be that ye can
- They said: "A confused medley of dreams: and we are
not skilled in the interpretation of dreams."
- But the man who had been released, one of the two
(who had been in prison) and who now bethought him
after (so long) a space of time, said: "I will tell you
the truth of its interpretation: send ye me
- "O Joseph!" (he said) "O man of truth! Expound to
us (the dream) of seven fat kine whom seven lean ones
devour, and of seven green ears of corn and (seven)
others withered: that I may return to the people, and
that they may understand."
- (Joseph) said: "For seven years shall ye diligently
sow as is your wont: and the harvests that ye reap, ye
shall leave them in the ear,- except a little, of which
ye shall eat.
- "Then will come after that (period) seven dreadful
(years), which will devour what ye shall have laid by
in advance for them,- (all) except a little which ye
shall have (specially) guarded.
- "Then will come after that (period) a year in which
the people will have abundant water, and in which they
will press (wine and oil)."
- So the king said: "Bring ye him unto me." But when
the messenger came to him, (Joseph) said: "Go thou back
to thy lord, and ask him, 'What is the state of mind of
the ladies who cut their hands'? For my Lord is
certainly well aware of their snare."
- (The king) said (to the ladies): "What was your
affair when ye did seek to seduce Joseph from his
(true) self?" The ladies said: "God preserve us! no
evil know we against him!" Said the 'Aziz's wife: "Now
is the truth manifest (to all): it was I who sought to
seduce him from his (true) self: He is indeed of those
who are (ever) true (and virtuous).
- "This (say I), in order that He may know that I
have never been false to him in his absence, and that
God will never guide the snare of the false ones.
- "Nor do I absolve my own self (of blame): the
(human) soul is certainly prone to evil, unless my Lord
do bestow His Mercy: but surely my Lord is
Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful."
- So the king said: "Bring him unto me; I will take
him specially to serve about my own person." Therefore
when he had spoken to him, he said: "Be assured this
day, thou art, before our own presence, with rank
firmly established, and fidelity fully proved!
- (Joseph) said: "Set me over the store-houses of the
land: I will indeed guard them, as one that knows
- Thus did We give established power to Joseph in the
land, to take possession therein as, when, or where he
pleased. We bestow of our Mercy on whom We please, and
We suffer not, to be lost, the reward of those who do
- But verily the reward of the Hereafter is the best,
for those who believe, and are constant in
- Then came Joseph's brethren: they entered his
presence, and he knew them, but they knew him not.
- And when he had furnished them forth with
provisions (suitable) for them, he said: "Bring unto me
a brother ye have, of the same father as yourselves,
(but a different mother): see ye not that I pay out
full measure, and that I do provide the best
- "Now if ye bring him not to me, ye shall have no
measure (of corn) from me, nor shall ye (even) come
- They said: "We shall certainly seek to get our wish
about him from his father: Indeed we shall do it."
- And (Joseph) told his servants to put their
stock-in-trade (with which they had bartered) into
their saddle-bags, so they should know it only when
they returned to their people, in order that they might
- Now when they returned to their father, they said:
"O our father! No more measure of grain shall we get
(unless we take our brother): So send our brother with
us, that we may get our measure; and we will indeed
take every care of him."
- He said: "Shall I trust you with him with any
result other than when I trusted you with his brother
aforetime? But God is the best to take care (of him),
and He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy!"
- Then when they opened their baggage, they found
their stock-in-trade had been returned to them. They
said: "O our father! What (more) can we desire? this
our stock-in-trade has been returned to us: so we shall
get (more) food for our family; We shall take care of
our brother; and add (at the same time) a full camel's
load (of grain to our provisions). This is but a small
- (Jacob) said: "Never will I send him with you until
ye swear a solemn oath to me, in God's name, that ye
will be sure to bring him back to me unless ye are
yourselves hemmed in (and made powerless). And when
they had sworn their solemn oath, he said: "Over all
that we say, be God the witness and guardian!"
- Further he said: "O my sons! enter not all by one
gate: enter ye by different gates. Not that I can
profit you aught against God (with my advice): None can
command except God: On Him do I put my trust: and let
all that trust put their trust on Him."
- And when they entered in the manner their father
had enjoined, it did not profit them in the least
against (the plan of) God: It was but a necessity of
Jacob's soul, which he discharged. For he was, by our
instruction, full of knowledge (and experience): but
most men know not.
- Now when they came into Joseph's presence, he
received his (full) brother to stay with him. He said
(to him): "Behold! I am thy (own) brother; so grieve
not at aught of their doings."
- At length when he had furnished them forth with
provisions (suitable) for them, he put the drinking cup
into his brother's saddle-bag. Then shouted out a
crier: "O ye (in) the caravan! behold! ye are thieves,
- They said, turning towards them: "What is it that
- They said: "We miss the great beaker of the king;
for him who produces it, is (the reward of) a camel
load; I will be bound by it."
- (The brothers) said: "By God! well ye know that we
came not to make mischief in the land, and we are no
- (The Egyptians) said: "What then shall be the
penalty of this, if ye are (proved) to have lied?"
- They said: "The penalty should be that he in whose
saddle-bag it is found, should be held (as bondman) to
atone for the (crime). Thus it is we punish the
- So he began (the search) with their baggage, before
(he came to) the baggage of his brother: at length he
brought it out of his brother's baggage. Thus did We
plan for Joseph. He could not take his brother by the
law of the king except that God willed it (so). We
raise to degrees (of wisdom) whom We please: but over
all endued with knowledge is one, the All-Knowing.
- They said: "If he steals, there was a brother of
his who did steal before (him)." But these things did
Joseph keep locked in his heart, revealing not the
secrets to them. He (simply) said (to himself): "Ye are
the worse situated; and God knoweth best the truth of
what ye assert!"
- They said: "O exalted one! Behold! he has a father,
aged and venerable, (who will grieve for him); so take
one of us in his place; for we see that thou art
(gracious) in doing good."
- He said: "God forbid that we take other than him
with whom we found our property: indeed (if we did so),
we should be acting wrongfully.
- Now when they saw no hope of his (yielding), they
held a conference in private. The leader among them
said: "Know ye not that your father did take an oath
from you in God's name, and how, before this, ye did
fail in your duty with Joseph? Therefore will I not
leave this land until my father permits me, or God
commands me; and He is the best to command.
- "Turn ye back to your father, and say, 'O our
father! behold! thy son committed theft! we bear
witness only to what we know, and we could not well
guard against the unseen!
- "'Ask at the town where we have been and the
caravan in which we returned, and (you will find) we
are indeed telling the truth.'"
- Jacob said: "Nay, but ye have yourselves contrived
a story (good enough) for you. So patience is most
fitting (for me). Maybe God will bring them (back) all
to me (in the end). For He is indeed full of knowledge
- And he turned away from them, and said: "How great
is my grief for Joseph!" And his eyes became white with
sorrow, and he fell into silent melancholy.
- They said: "By God! (never) wilt thou cease to
remember Joseph until thou reach the last extremity of
illness, or until thou die!"
- He said: "I only complain of my distraction and
anguish to God, and I know from God that which ye know
- "O my sons! go ye and enquire about Joseph and his
brother, and never give up hope of God's Soothing
Mercy: truly no one despairs of God's Soothing Mercy,
except those who have no faith."
- Then, when they came (back) into (Joseph's)
presence they said: "O exalted one! distress has seized
us and our family: we have (now) brought but scanty
capital: so pay us full measure, (we pray thee), and
treat it as charity to us: for God doth reward the
- He said: "Know ye how ye dealt with Joseph and his
brother, not knowing (what ye were doing)?"
- They said: "Art thou indeed Joseph?" He said, "I am
Joseph, and this is my brother: God has indeed been
gracious to us (all): behold, he that is righteous and
patient,- never will God suffer the reward to be lost,
of those who do right."
- They said: "By God! indeed has God preferred thee
above us, and we certainly have been guilty of sin!"
- He said: "This day let no reproach be (cast) on
you: God will forgive you, and He is the Most Merciful
of those who show mercy!
- "Go with this my shirt, and cast it over the face
of my father: he will come to see (clearly). Then come
ye (here) to me together with all your family."
- When the caravan left (Egypt), their father said:
"I do indeed scent the presence of Joseph: Nay, think
me not a dotard."
- They said: "By God! truly thou art in thine old
- Then when the bearer of the good news came, He cast
(the shirt) over his face, and he forthwith regained
clear sight. He said: "Did I not say to you, 'I know
from God that which ye know not?'"
- They said: "O our father! ask for us forgiveness
for our sins, for we were truly at fault."
- He said: "Soon will I ask my Lord for forgiveness
for you: for he is indeed Oft-Forgiving, Most
- Then when they entered the presence of Joseph, he
provided a home for his parents with himself, and said:
"Enter ye Egypt (all) in safety if it please God."
- And he raised his parents high on the throne (of
dignity), and they fell down in prostration, (all)
before him. He said: "O my father! this is the
fulfilment of my vision of old! God hath made it come
true! He was indeed good to me when He took me out of
prison and brought you (all here) out of the desert,
(even) after Satan had sown enmity between me and my
brothers. Verily my Lord understandeth best the
mysteries of all that He planneth to do, for verily He
is full of knowledge and wisdom.
- "O my Lord! Thou hast indeed bestowed on me some
power, and taught me something of the interpretation of
dreams and events,- O Thou Creator of the heavens and
the earth! Thou art my Protector in this world and in
the Hereafter. Take Thou my soul (at death) as one
submitting to Thy will (as a Muslim), and unite me with
- Such is one of the stories of what happened unseen,
which We reveal by inspiration unto thee; nor wast thou
(present) with them then when they concerted their
plans together in the process of weaving their plots.
- Yet no faith will the greater part of mankind have,
however ardently thou dost desire it.
- And no reward dost thou ask of them for this: it is
no less than a message for all creatures.
- And how many Signs in the heavens and the earth do
they pass by? Yet they turn (their faces) away from
- And most of them believe not in God without
associating (other as partners) with Him!
- Do they then feel secure from the coming against
them of the covering veil of the wrath of God,- or of
the coming against them of the (final) Hour all of a
sudden while they perceive not?
- Say thou: "This is my way: I do invite unto God,-
on evidence clear as the seeing with one's eyes,- I and
whoever follows me. Glory to God! and never will I join
gods with God!"
- Nor did We send before thee (as apostles) any but
men, whom we did inspire,- (men) living in human
habitations. Do they not travel through the earth, and
see what was the end of those before them? But the home
of the hereafter is best, for those who do right. Will
ye not then understand?
- (Respite will be granted) until, when the apostles
give up hope (of their people) and (come to) think that
they were treated as liars, there reaches them Our
help, and those whom We will are delivered into safety.
But never will be warded off our punishment from those
who are in sin.
- There is, in their stories, instruction for men
endued with understanding. It is not a tale invented,
but a confirmation of what went before it,- a detailed
exposition of all things, and a guide and a mercy to
any such as believe.
Surah 11 Hud
Surah 12 Joseph
Surah 13 The Thunder