ous, raises their value, kindles their fire, augments their power by rousing souls, summons hearts towards them, stirs up breasts with fervent longing and love, and subjugates dispositions through ardent passion and zeal.
For if [what is intended] is praise, [the allegorical comparison makes it] more splendid and magnificent; and more sublime and august; it excites the emotions more, familiarizing the meanings more swiftly, causing more joy; [it is] more effective on the praised, a more powerful intercessor for the praiser; more judicious will be his gifts and presentations, easier on the tongue and pleasanter to mention; more efficacious at causing the heart to cleave to the meaning, and worthier.
And if [what is intended] is censure, the [comparison’s] touch is more biting, its branding more caustic, its impact severer, its sharpness keener.
And if it is argument and disputation, the [comparison’s] proofs are more illuminating, its power is more cogent, its exposition more dazzling.
And if [what is intended] is pride and vainglory, its aspiration is farther reaching, its honour more serious, its tongue more vehement.
And if [what is intended] is apology or excuse, [the comparison] is closer to hearts and better at cajoling them, dispelling hatreds more gently, extinguishing anger more effectively, more captivating in its spells, leading to a better return
And if [what is intended] is admonishment, [the comparison] is better healing for the breast, more conducive to thought, more eloquent in cautioning and restraining, better at disclosing the aim, revealing the purpose, absolving the ailing, healing rancour.
If you investigate the kinds and varieties of speech and study its categories and branches, you will see that this is indeed the case.
(Here end al-Jurjani’s words)
The following verses contain evidences of the Qur’an’s miraculousness and the mysteries of its eloquence. We are mentioning them because of their relevance to the matters discussed in the forthcoming introduction:
An example of an allegorical comparison given by the Qur’an in the station (maqām) of praise is that concerning the attributes of the [Prophet’s] Companions:
“And their similitude in the Gospel is like a seed which sends forth its blade, then makes it strong; it then becomes thick, and it stands on its stem, [filling] the sowers with wonder and delight.(48:29)
In the station of censure are the verses, “His similitude is that of a dog: if you attack him, he lolls out his tongue, or if you leave him alone, he [still] lolls out his tongue.”(7:176) “The similitude of those who were charged