Surah Abasa >> Currently viewing Surah Abasa Ayat 1 (80:1)

Surah Abasa Ayat 1 in Arabic Text

عَبَسَ وَتَوَلَّىٰٓ
Abasa wa tawallaa

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 1

Sahih International
The Prophet frowned and turned away

Yusuf Ali
(The Prophet) frowned and turned away,

Abul Ala Maududi
He frowned and turned away

Muhsin Khan
(The Prophet (Peace be upon him)) frowned and turned away,

He frowned and turned away

Dr. Ghali
He (The prophet) frowned and turned away,

Abdel Haleem
He frowned and turned away

Quran 80 Verse 1 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Abasa ayat 1, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.


(80:1) He frowned and turned away

There is no commentary by Abul Maududi available for this verse.


1. He frowned and turned away. 2. Because there came to him the blind man. 3. And how can you know that he might become pure 4. Or he might receive admonition, and the admonition might profit him 5. As for him who thinks himself self-sufficient, 6. To him you attend; 7. What does it matter to you if he will not become pure 8. But as for him who came to you running, 9. And is afraid. 10. Of him you are neglectful and divert your attention to another. 11. Nay; indeed it is an admonition. 12. So, whoever wills, let him pay attention to Him (it). 13. In Records held in honor, 14. Exalted, purified. 15. In the hands of ambassadors (Safarah), 16. Honorable and obedient.

The Prophet being reprimanded because He frowned at a Weak Man

More than one of the scholars of Tafsir mentioned that one day the Messenger of Allah was addressing one of the great leaders of the Quraysh while hoping that he would accept Islam. While he was speaking in direct conversation with him, Ibn Umm Maktum came to him, and he was of those who had accepted Islam in its earliest days. He (Ibn Umm Maktum) then began asking the Messenger of Allah about something, urgently beseeching him. The Prophet hoped that the man would be guided, so he asked Ibn Umm Maktum to wait for a moment so he could complete his conversation. He frowned in the face of Ibn Umm Maktum and turned away from him in order to face the other man. Thus, Allah revealed,

﴿عَبَسَ وَتَوَلَّى – أَن جَآءَهُ الاٌّعْمَى – وَمَا يُدْرِيكَ لَعَلَّهُ يَزَّكَّى ﴾

(He frowned and turned away. Because there came to him the blind man. And how can you know that he might become pure) meaning, he may attain purification and cleanliness in his soul.

﴿أَوْ يَذَّكَّرُ فَتَنفَعَهُ الذِّكْرَى ﴾

(Or he might receive admonition, and the admonition might profit him) meaning, he may receive admonition and abstain from the forbidden.

﴿أَمَّا مَنِ اسْتَغْنَى – فَأَنتَ لَهُ تَصَدَّى ﴾

(As for him who thinks himself self-sufficient. To him you attend;) meaning, `you face the rich person so that perhaps he may be guided.’

﴿وَمَا عَلَيْكَ أَلاَّ يَزَّكَّى ﴾

(What does it matter to you if he will not become pure) meaning, `you are not responsible for him if he does not attain purification.’

﴿وَأَمَّا مَن جَآءَكَ يَسْعَى – وَهُوَ يَخْشَى ﴾

(But as for him who came to you running. And is afraid.) meaning, `he is seeking you and he comes to you so that he may be guided by what you say to him.’

﴿فَأَنتَ عَنْهُ تَلَهَّى ﴾

(Of him you are neglectful and divert your attention to another.) meaning, `you are too busy.’ Here Allah commands His Messenger to not single anyone out with the warning. Rather, he should equal warn the noble and the weak, the poor and the rich, the master and the slave, the men and the women, the young and the old. Then Allah will guide whomever He chooses to a path that is straight. He has the profound wisdom and the decisive proof. Abu Ya`la and Ibn Jarir both recorded from `A’ishah that she said about,

﴿عَبَسَ وَتَوَلَّى ﴾

(He frowned and turned away.) was revealed.” At-Tirmirdhi recorded this Hadith but he did not mention that it was narrated by `A’ishah. I say it is reported like this in Al-Muwatta’ as well.

The Characteristics of the Qur’an

Allah says,

﴿كَلاَّ إِنَّهَا تَذْكِرَةٌ ﴾

(Nay; indeed it is an admonition.) meaning, this Surah, or this advice in conveying knowledge equally among people, whether they are of noble or low class. Qatadah and As-Suddi both said,

﴿كَلاَّ إِنَّهَا تَذْكِرَةٌ ﴾

(Nay; indeed it is an admonition.) “This means the Qur’an.”

﴿فَمَن شَآءَ ذَكَرَهُ ﴾

(So, whoever wills, let him pay attention to Him (it).) meaning, so whoever wills, he remembers Allah in all of his affairs. The pronoun could also be understood to be referring to the revelation since the conversation is alluding to it. Allah said:

﴿فَى صُحُفٍ مُّكَرَّمَةٍ – مَّرْفُوعَةٍ مُّطَهَّرَةٍ ﴾

(In Records held in honor, exalted, purified.) meaning, this Surah or this admonition. Both meanings are connected to each other. Actually, all of the Qur’an is in honored pages, meaning respected and revered.


(exalted) meaning, elevated in status.


(purified) meaning, from impurity, additions and deficiency. Concerning Allah’s statement,

﴿بِأَيْدِى سَفَرَةٍ ﴾

(In the hands of ambassadors (Safarah),) Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Ad-Dahhak, and Ibn Zayd, all said, “These are the angels.” Al-Bukhari said, “Safarah (ambassadors) refers to the angels. They travel around rectifying matters between themselves. The angels when they descend with the revelation of Allah, bringing it like the ambassador who rectifies matters between people.” Allah said,

﴿كِرَامٍ بَرَرَةٍ ﴾

(Honorable and obedient.) meaning, they are noble, handsome, and honorable in their creation. Their character and their deeds are righteous, pure and perfect. Here it should be noted that it is necessary for one who carries the Qur’an (i.e., the angel) to be following righteousness and guidance. Imam Ahmad recorded from `A’ishah that the Messenger of Allah said,

«الَّذِي يَقْرَأُ الْقُرْآنَ وَهُوَ مَاهِرٌ بِهِ، مَعَ السَّفَرَةِ الْكِرَامِ الْبَرَرَةِ، وَالَّذِي يَقْرَؤُهُ وَهُوَ عَلَيْهِ شَاقٌّ، لَهُ أَجْرَان»

(He who recites the Qur’an proficiently, will be with the noble, righteous, ambassador angels, and the one who recites it with difficulty will receive two rewards.) This Hadith was reported by the group.

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