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Banū Isrāʾīl
(1,867 words)

Banū Isrāʾīl (‘The Children of Israel’) are mentioned some forty times in the Qurʾān as a general designation for the Jewish people. The term was exclusively used during the Meccan period (the term al-Yahūd, ‘Jews’, being used in verses from the Medinan period), and mostly in reference to the story of Moses—this may help explain the form of the phrase, ‘children of Israel’, which parallels the usage bnei-yisraʾel (בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל) in the Book of Exodus. However, the Banū Isrāʾīl are not depicted in the Qurʾān simply as the historical people of Moses, but also…

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Khani, Hamed and Khaleeli, Alexander, “Banū Isrāʾīl”, in: Encyclopaedia Islamica, Editors-in-Chief: Wilferd Madelung and, Farhad Daftary. Consulted online on 14 December 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1875-9831_isla_COM_00000063>
First published online: 2013
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004246911, 20131209

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