Are there any verses and chapters that were sent down in both Makkah and Madinah?

Details of the Question

- How true is a deduction that the same verse/verses were sent down both in Makkah and Madinah due to similar needs?

- Are there any salaf scholars who hold this view, if yes, will you give information about their books?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

According to the majority of tafsir and methodology scholars, the verses that were sent down before the Migration are called Makkan (Makki) verses and after the Migration, Madinan (Madani) verses.

There are also scholars who say the verses sent down in Makkah are Makki and in Madinah are Madani whether sent down before or after the Migration and scholars who say the verses addressing Makkans are Makki and addressing Madinans are Madani.

It is not appropriate to deduce a decree through rational deduction that a verse was sent down in both Makkah and Madinah. For, this issue can be proved only through nass.

Some scholars say that some verses may have been sent down in both Madinah and Makkah because they see a necessity in terms of meaning; however, it is not definite knowledge but a reasonable probability. 

In this context, the view that the chapter of al-Fatiha was sent down in Makkah belongs to the majority of the scholars. Mujahid says it was sent down in Madinah. Some scholars say the chapter of al-Fatiha was sent down in both Makkah and Madinah in order to compromise the different views. However, this view is weak.  (see Suyuti, Itqan, 1/47, 131)

According to the majority of the scholars, the verse Bismillahirrahmanirrahim was sent down in Makkah once. However, according to some scholars including Imam Shafii, it was sent down repeatedly at the beginning of every chapter. There are narrations reported through sound chains of narrators by famous hadith scholars like Hakim, Bayhaqi and Daraqutni regarding the issue. (see al-Itqan, 1/268-271) Accordingly, Bismillahirrahmanirrahim was sent down in both Makkah and Madinah many times.

There are also scholars who say that the chapter of al-Ikhlas was sent down in both Makkah and Madinah. (see al-Itqan, 1/55)

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