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Muslim Congresswoman to Use Jefferson’s Qur’an in Swearing-in Ceremony

DETROIT – As the first American Muslim Congresswoman, Rashida Tlaib has announced that she will use Thomas Jefferson’s personal copy of the Holy Qur’an in her ceremonial swearing-in next January 3, Detroit Free Press reported.

“It’s important to me because a lot of Americans have this kind of feeling that Islam is somehow foreign to American history,” said Tlaib, who also will become, with Minnesota’s Ilhan Omar, one of the first two Muslim women in the US Congress.

“Muslims were there at the beginning. … Some of our founding fathers knew more about Islam than some members of Congress now.”

Jefferson’s personal copy of the Qur’an is George Sale’s 1734 translation of the Muslims’ holy book into English, a two-volume work that resides in the Library of Congress.

Twelve years ago, US Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., used the same copy of the Qur’an for his swearing-in as Congress’ first Muslim member.

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“My mere existence, that I’m even of Muslim faith, is going to be a problem for them with or without me swearing in on any Qur’an,” Tlaib said.

The Qur’an is a revelation from God, the Creator of the worlds, so He is the original author.

There is only one Qur’an which is in Arabic and many translations of the Qur’an in several languages.

There could be multiple translations by different authors in the same language such as English.

The Qur’an was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) through the archangel Gabriel who used to make the Prophet memorize the Qur’an and made him revise it every year in the month of Ramadan, the fasting month.

Jefferson’s Qur’an dates to his days in law school

That Qur’an — otherwise known in Sale’s work as the Alcoran of Mohammed — is an edition that represents the first English translation of the text in North America and one that Jefferson purchased as a law student at the College of William & Mary in 1765.