This Surah consists of 36 verses, 169 sentences, 730 letters and 1 Ruku’.
It is derived from the very first verse; Wayl-ul-lil mutaffifin.
The style of the Surah and its subject matter clearly show that it was revealed in the earliest stage at Makkah, when surah after surah was being revealed to impress the doctrine of the Hereafter on the people's minds. This Surah was revealed when they had started ridiculing the Muslims and disgracing them publicly in the streets and in their assemblies, but persecution and manhandling of the Muslims had not yet started. Some commentators regard this as a Madani Surah. This misunderstanding has been caused by a tradition from Ibn Abbas according to which when the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) arrived in Madinah, the evil of giving short weight and measure was widespread among the people there. Then Allah sent down Wayl ul-lil mutaffifin and the people began to give full weight and measure. But, as we have explained in the introduction to Surah Ad-Dahr, the common practice with the Companions and their successors was that when they found that a verse applied to a certain matter of life, they would say that it had been sent down concerning that particular matter. Therefore, what is proved by the tradition of Ibn Abbas is that when after his emigration to Madinah the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) saw that the evil was widespread among the people there, he recited this Surah before them by Allah's Command and this helped them mend their ways.
The theme of this Surah too is the Hereafter. In the first six verses the people have been taken to task for the prevalent evil practice in their commercial dealings. When they had to receive their due from others, they demanded that it be given in full, but when they had to measure or weigh for others, they would give less than what was due. Taking this one evil as an example out of countless evils prevalent in society, it has been said that it is an inevitable result of the heedlessness of the Hereafter. Unless the people realized that one day they would have to appear before God and account for each single act they performed in the world, it was not possible that they would adopt piety and righteousness in their daily affairs. Even if a person might practise honesty in some of his less important dealings in view of "honesty is the best policy", he would never practise honesty on occasions when dishonesty would seem to be "the best policy". Man can develop true and enduring honesty only when he fears God and sincerely believes in the Hereafter, for then he would regard honesty not merely as "a policy" but as "a duty" and obligation, and his being constant in it, or otherwise, would not be dependent on its being useful or useless in the world.
Thus, after making explicit the relation between morality and the doctrine of the Hereafter in an effective and impressive way, in vv. 7-17, it has been said: The deeds of the wicked are already being recorded in the black list of the culprits, and in the Hereafter they will meet with utter ruin. Then in vv. 18-28, the best end of the virtuous has been described and it has been laid that their deeds are being recorded in the list of the exalted people, on which are appointed the angels nearest to Allah.
In conclusion, the believers have been consoled, and the disbelievers warned, as if to say: "The people who are disgracing and humiliating the believers today, are culprits who, on the Resurrection Day, will meet with a most evil end in consequence of their conduct, and these very believers will feel comforted when they see their fate."
Bismi Allahi alrrahmani alrraheemi
83 : 1
1. Waylun lilmutaffifeena
Woe to those that deal in fraud –
83 : 2
2. Allatheena itha iktaloo AAala alnnasi yastawfoona
Who demand to be given the full measure when they take merchandise from the others -
83 : 3
3. Wa-itha kaloohum aw wazanoohum yukhsiroona
But tamper with the weights and the measures when they give merchandise to the others!
83 : 4
4. Ala yathunnu ola-ika annahum mabAAoothoona
Do such men realize not that they are sure to be raised again -
83 : 5
5. Liyawmin AAatheemin
To face a momentous Day, -
83 : 6
6. Yawma yaqoomu alnnasu lirabbi alAAalameena
The Day when the whole of mankind will stand before the Lord of the Worlds?
83 : 7
7. Kalla inna kitaba alfujjari lafee sijjeenin
Indeed, the record of the wicked is kept in Sijjin!
83 : 8
8. Wama adraka ma sijjeenun
And what will convey to you what Sijjin is!
83 : 9
9. Kitabun marqoomun
A record written down and sealed!
83 : 10
10. Waylun yawma-ithin lilmukaththibeena
Woe on that Day to the repudiators!
83 : 11
11. Allatheena yukaththiboona biyawmi alddeeni
Those who prevaricate the Day of Judgement!
83 : 12
12. Wama yukaththibu bihi illa kullu muAAtadin atheemin
Which none prevaricate save the utmost arrogant.
83 : 13
13. Itha tutla AAalayhi ayatuna qala asateeru al-awwaleena
Who, when you recite to him Our revelations, say : 'Tales of the bygone!'
83 : 14
14. Kalla bal rana AAala quloobihim ma kanoo yaksiboona
By no means! Their evil deeds have cast a veil over their hearts!
83 : 15
15. Kalla innahum AAan rabbihim yawma-ithin lamahjooboona
Nay! On that Day they will be veiled from the countenance of their Lord!
83 : 16
16. Thumma innahum lasaloo aljaheemi
Then they will surely be cast in hell!
83 : 17
17. Thumma yuqalu hatha allathee kuntum bihi tukaththiboona
And (it will be said to them) : 'This is that which you used to refute!'
83 : 18
18. Kalla inna kitaba al-abrari lafee AAilliyyeena
On the contrary, the record of the righteous is kept in Illiyyeen!
83 : 19
19. Wama adraka ma AAilliyyoona
And what will convey to you what Illiyyeen is!
83 : 20
20. Kitabun marqoomun
A record written down and sealed!
83 : 21
21. Yashhaduhu almuqarraboona
Attested by those who have attained propinquity of their Lord.
83 : 22
22. Inna al-abrara lafee naAAeemin
Verily the righteous will be in a state of bliss,
83 : 23
23. AAala al-ara-iki yanthuroona
On couches, gazing!
83 : 24
24. TaAArifu fee wujoohihim nadrata alnnaAAeemi
You can see the radiance of contentment reflected on their happy faces.
83 : 25
25. Yusqawna min raheeqin makhtoomin
They are regaled with salubrious wine stored in casks, -
83 : 26
26. Khitamuhu miskun wafee thalika falyatanafasi almutanafisoona
The seal of which is musk, - and for such bliss, let those who aspire strive -
83 : 27
27. Wamizajuhu min tasneemin
And blended with water drawn from Tasnim -
83 : 28
28. AAaynan yashrabu biha almuqarraboona
A celestial spring from which only those brought closest to Allah drink!
83 : 29
29. Inna allatheena ajramoo kanoo mina allatheena amanoo yadhakoona
Verily at one time the sinful used to laugh in the faces of those who believed -
83 : 30
30. Wa-itha marroo bihim yataghamazoona
And wink at one another when they passed them by -
83 : 31
31. Wa-itha inqalaboo ila ahlihimu inqalaboo fakiheena
And when they returned to their own folk, they returned filled with derision!
83 : 32
32. Wa-itha raawhum qaloo inna haola-i ladalloona
And whenever their paths crossed, they said about the believers : 'Verily these people have gone mad!' -
83 : 33
33. Wama orsiloo AAalayhim hafitheena
Though they were not sent as guardians to watch over them!
83 : 34
34. Faalyawma allatheena amanoo mina alkuffari yadhakoona
This Day, it is the believers who have the last laugh at the disbelievers -
83 : 35
35. AAala al-ara-iki yanthuroona
On raised couches, gazing!
83 : 36
36. Hal thuwwiba alkuffaru ma kanoo yafAAaloona
Are not the disbelievers aptly requited for all that which they used to do? (R)
1. Woe to Al-Mutaffifin [those who give less in measure and weight (decrease the rights of others)],
2. Those who, when they have to receive by measure from men, demand full measure,
3. And when they have to give by measure or weight to men, give less than due.
4. Think they not that they will be resurrected (for reckoning),
5. On a Great Day,
6. The Day when (all) mankind will stand before the Lord of the 'Alamîn (mankind, jinns and all that exists)?
7. Nay! Truly, the Record (writing of the deeds) of the Fujjâr (disbelievers, sinners, evil-doers and wicked) is (preserved) in Sijjîn.
8. And what will make you know what Sijjîn is?
9. A Register inscribed.
10. Woe, that Day, to those who deny [(Allâh, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Day of Resurrection, and Al-Qadar (Divine Preordainments)].
11. Those who deny the Day of Recompense.
12. And none can deny it except every transgressor beyond bounds, (in disbelief, oppression and disobedience of Allâh, the sinner!)
13. When Our Verses (of the Qur'ân) are recited to him he says: "Tales of the ancients!"
14. Nay! But on their hearts is the Rân (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn .
15. Nay! Surely, they (evil-doers) will be veiled from seeing their Lord that Day.
16. Then, verily they will indeed enter and taste the burning flame of Hell.
17. Then, it will be said to them: "This is what you used to deny!"
18. Nay! Verily, the Record (writing of the deeds) of Al-Abrâr (the pious who fear Allâh and avoid evil), is (preserved) in 'Illiyyûn.
19. And what will make you know what 'Illiyyûn is?
20. A Register inscribed.
21. To which bear witness those nearest (to Allâh, i.e. the angels).
22. Verily, Al-Abrâr (the pious who fear Allâh and avoid evil) will be in delight (Paradise).
23. On thrones, looking (at all things).
24. You will recognise in their faces the brightness of delight.
25. They will be given to drink pure sealed wine.
26. The last thereof (that wine) will be the smell of musk, and for this let (all) those strive who want to strive (i.e. hasten earnestly to the obedience of Allâh).
27. It (that wine) will be mixed with Tasnîm.
28. A spring whereof drink those nearest to Allâh.
29. Verily! (During the worldly life) those who committed crimes used to laugh at those who believed.
30. And whenever they passed by them, used to wink one to another (in mockery);
31. And when they returned to their own people, they would return jesting;
32. And when they saw them, they said: "Verily! These have indeed gone astray!"
33. But they (disbelievers, sinners) had not been sent as watchers over them (the believers).
34. But this Day (the Day of Resurrection) those who believe will laugh at the disbelievers
35. On (high) thrones, looking (at all things).
36. Are not the disbelievers paid (fully) for what they used to do?
YUSUFALI: Woe to those that deal in fraud,-
PICKTHAL: Woe unto the defrauders:
SHAKIR: Woe to the defrauders,
YUSUFALI: Those who, when they have to receive by measure from men, exact full measure,
PICKTHAL: Those who when they take the measure from mankind demand it full,
SHAKIR: Who, when they take the measure (of their dues) from men take it fully,
YUSUFALI: But when they have to give by measure or weight to men, give less than due.
PICKTHAL: But if they measure unto them or weight for them, they cause them loss.
SHAKIR: But when they measure out to others or weigh out for them, they are deficient.
YUSUFALI: Do they not think that they will be called to account?-
PICKTHAL: Do such (men) not consider that they will be raised again
SHAKIR: Do not these think that they shall be raised again
YUSUFALI: On a Mighty Day,
PICKTHAL: Unto an Awful Day,
SHAKIR: For a mighty day,
YUSUFALI: A Day when (all) mankind will stand before the Lord of the Worlds?
PICKTHAL: The day when (all) mankind stand before the Lord of the Worlds?
SHAKIR: The day on which men shall stand before the Lord of the worlds?
YUSUFALI: Nay! Surely the record of the wicked is (preserved) in Sijjin.
PICKTHAL: Nay, but the record of the vile is in Sijjin -
SHAKIR: Nay! most surely the record of the wicked is in the Sijjin.
YUSUFALI: And what will explain to thee what Sijjin is?
PICKTHAL: Ah! what will convey unto thee what Sijjin is! -
SHAKIR: And what will make you know what the Sijjin is?
YUSUFALI: (There is) a Register (fully) inscribed.
PICKTHAL: A written record.
SHAKIR: It is a written book.
YUSUFALI: Woe, that Day, to those that deny-
PICKTHAL: Woe unto the repudiators on that day!
SHAKIR: Woe on that day to the rejecters,
YUSUFALI: Those that deny the Day of Judgment.
PICKTHAL: Those who deny the Day of Judgment
SHAKIR: Who give the lie to the day of judgment.
YUSUFALI: And none can deny it but the Transgressor beyond bounds the Sinner!
PICKTHAL: Which none denieth save each criminal transgressor,
SHAKIR: And none gives the lie to it but every exceeder of limits, sinful one
YUSUFALI: When Our Signs are rehearsed to him, he says, "Tales of the ancients!"
PICKTHAL: Who, when thou readest unto him Our revelations, saith: (Mere) fables of the men of old.
SHAKIR: When Our communications are recited to him, he says: Stories of those of yore.
YUSUFALI: By no means! but on their hearts is the stain of the (ill) which they do!
PICKTHAL: Nay, but that which they have earned is rust upon their hearts.
SHAKIR: Nay! rather, what they used to do has become like rust . upon their hearts.
YUSUFALI: Verily, from (the Light of) their Lord, that Day, will they be veiled.
PICKTHAL: Nay, but surely on that day they will be covered from (the mercy of) their Lord.
SHAKIR: Nay! most surely they shall on that day be debarred from their Lord.
YUSUFALI: Further, they will enter the Fire of Hell.
PICKTHAL: Then lo! they verily will burn in hell,
SHAKIR: Then most surely they shall enter the burning fire.
YUSUFALI: Further, it will be said to them: "This is the (reality) which ye rejected as false!
PICKTHAL: And it will be said (unto them): This is that which ye used to deny.
SHAKIR: Then shall it be said: This is what you gave the lie to.
YUSUFALI: Day, verily the record of the Righteous is (preserved) in 'Illiyin.
PICKTHAL: Nay, but the record of the righteous is in 'Illiyin -
SHAKIR: Nay! Most surely the record of the righteous shall be in the Iliyin.
YUSUFALI: And what will explain to thee what 'Illiyun is?
PICKTHAL: Ah, what will convey unto thee what 'Illiyin is! -
SHAKIR: And what will make you know what the highest Iliyin is?
YUSUFALI: (There is) a Register (fully) inscribed,
PICKTHAL: A written record,
SHAKIR: It is a written book,
YUSUFALI: To which bear witness those Nearest (to Allah).
PICKTHAL: Attested by those who are brought near (unto their Lord).
SHAKIR: Those who are drawn near (to Allah) shall witness it.
YUSUFALI: Truly the Righteous will be in Bliss:
PICKTHAL: Lo! the righteous verily are in delight,
SHAKIR: Most surely the righteous shall be in bliss,
YUSUFALI: On Thrones (of Dignity) will they command a sight (of all things):
PICKTHAL: On couches, gazing,
SHAKIR: On thrones, they shall gaze;
YUSUFALI: Thou wilt recognise in their faces the beaming brightness of Bliss.
PICKTHAL: Thou wilt know in their faces the radiance of delight.
SHAKIR: You will recognize in their faces the brightness of bliss.
YUSUFALI: Their thirst will be slaked with Pure Wine sealed:
PICKTHAL: They are given to drink of a pure wine, sealed,
SHAKIR: They are made to quaff of a pure drink that is sealed (to others).
YUSUFALI: The seal thereof will be Musk: And for this let those aspire, who have aspirations:
PICKTHAL: Whose seal is musk - for this let (all) those strive who strive for bliss -
SHAKIR: The sealing of it is (with) musk; and for that let the aspirers aspire.
YUSUFALI: With it will be (given) a mixture of Tasnim:
PICKTHAL: And mixed with water of Tasnim,
SHAKIR: And the admixture of it is a water of Tasnim,
YUSUFALI: A spring, from (the waters) whereof drink those Nearest to Allah.
PICKTHAL: A spring whence those brought near (to Allah) drink.
SHAKIR: A fountain from which drink they who are drawn near (to Allah).
YUSUFALI: Those in sin used to laugh at those who believed,
PICKTHAL: Lo! the guilty used to laugh at those who believed,
SHAKIR: Surely they who are guilty used to laugh at those who believe.
YUSUFALI: And whenever they passed by them, used to wink at each other (in mockery);
PICKTHAL: And wink one to another when they passed them;
SHAKIR: And when they passed by them, they winked at one another.
YUSUFALI: And when they returned to their own people, they would return jesting;
PICKTHAL: And when they returned to their own folk, they returned jesting;
SHAKIR: And when they returned to their own followers they returned exulting.
YUSUFALI: And whenever they saw them, they would say, "Behold! These are the people truly astray!"
PICKTHAL: And when they saw them they said: Lo! these have gone astray.
SHAKIR: And when they saw them, they said: Most surely these are in error;
YUSUFALI: But they had not been sent as keepers over them!
PICKTHAL: Yet they were not sent as guardians over them.
SHAKIR: And they were not sent to be keepers over them.
YUSUFALI: But on this Day the Believers will laugh at the Unbelievers:
PICKTHAL: This day it is those who believe who have the laugh of disbelievers,
SHAKIR: So today those who believe shall laugh at the unbelievers;
YUSUFALI: On Thrones (of Dignity) they will command (a sight) (of all things).
PICKTHAL: On high couches, gazing.
SHAKIR: On thrones, they will look.
YUSUFALI: Will not the Unbelievers have been paid back for what they did?
PICKTHAL: Are not the disbelievers paid for what they used to do?
SHAKIR: Surely the disbelievers are rewarded as they did.