13

It seems to be an often-repeated saying that "there are no camels in the Koran".

But I just repeated this factoid in the presence of a guy from Syria who insisted it's not true and that there is a sura about camels in the holy book of Islam.

So I googled a bit and there were lots of inconclusive hits, the best being a quote from Jorge Luis Borges, but I still don't know the truth.

So are camels ever mentioned in the Qur'an or not? Is there a whole sura about them?

  • His wikiquote page cites Borges as saying that the claim was made in Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire". Maybe someone could verify if the book made such a claim. – Andrew Grimm Feb 22 '15 at 11:32
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    Borges is quite renowned for referencing nonexistant books and authors as well as actual ones. He quite possibly indulged in intentional misattribution too even if the author and book are real. But it also may be a real quote from a real book by a real author (-: – hippietrail Feb 22 '15 at 11:48
  • I wonder whats the relevance in the absence of camels in the Qur'an. Because there are in the holy bible? – jean May 24 '18 at 10:53
33

There are a few mentions (although a bit less than one would expect):

91:13 And the messenger of Allah said: It is the she-camel of Allah, so let her drink!

[...]

7:73 And to (the tribe of) Thamud (We sent) their brother Salih. He said: O my people! Serve Allah. Ye have no other God save Him. A wonder from your Lord hath come unto you. Lo! this is the camel of Allah, a token unto you; so let her feed in Allah's earth, and touch her not with hurt lest painful torment seize you

[...]

11:64 O my people! This is the camel of Allah, a token unto you, so suffer her to feed in Allah's earth, and touch her not with harm lest a near torment seize you.

Etcetera

See this google search for more examples.

0

There are about two dozen mentions of camels in the Quran, depending on the translation. For instance, there are mentions of "naga" which are female camels; and "camel packs" which in some translations are "saddle bags."

Re: Borges, he essentially got it wrong. In Volume 5, Chapter L, footnote 13 Gibbon writes, "Mahomet himself, who was fond of milk, prefers the cow, and does not even mention the camel. . . . "

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