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The Quran English kor-AHN ; Arabic: القرآن al-qurʾān, IPA, literally meaning "the recitation", also transliterated Qur'an or Koran, is the central religious text of Islam, which Muslims believe to be the verbatim word of God (Arabic: الله, Allah). It is widely regarded as the finest piece of literature in the Arabic language. Muslims believe the Quran to be verbally revealed through angel Gabriel (Jibril) from God to Muhammad gradually over a period of approximately 23 years beginning on 22 December 609 CE, when Muhammad was 40, and concluding in 632 CE, the year of his death. Muslims regard the Quran as the main miracle of Muhammad, the proof of his prophethood and the culmination of a series of divine messages that started with the messages revealed to Adam, regarded in Islam as the first prophet, and continued with the Scrolls of Abraham (Suhuf Ibrahim), the Tawrat (Torah or Pentateuch) of Moses, the Zabur (Tehillim or Book of Psalms) of David, and the Injil (Gospel) of Jesus. The Quran assumes familiarity with major narratives recounted in Jewish and Christian scriptures, summarizing some, dwelling at length on others and in some cases presenting alternative accounts and interpretations of events. The Quran describes itself as a book of guidance, sometimes offering detailed accounts of specific historical events, and often emphasizing the moral significance of an event over its narrative sequence. The Quran is used along with the hadith to interpret sharia law. (via Freebase)