The Quran about headscarf

In the name of God, the Gracious, the Merciful

With the growing influence of religion on society, the confrontation between secularism and religious symbolism is increasing more and more. To date, food for discord between secular authorities and adherents of traditional Islam is the form of Muslim clothing. In particular, the Western establishment has a sharp aversion to the scarf and burqa of Muslim women. In response, there is even more reactionary behavior of believers, fueled by their “wise” leaders. Both sides are actively defending their interests. Without touching upon the arguments of the opponents of the Muslim head cover, we will try to deal with this topic in the main legislative code of the Islam – the Quran.

Traditionally, a scarf on the head of a woman is called “hijab” – “veil, curtain, screen”. Consider passages where this term is applied.

And between them will be a veil (hidjaaban), and on elevations are men who recognize all by their mark. And the companions of the garden will call, “Peace be upon you!”, – to those who did not enter it, although they desired. (7:46)

And when you recite the Literature (Quran), We put between you and those who do not believe in the hereafter a concealed veil (hidjaaban). (17:45)

And she (Mary) took, in seclusion from them, a screen (hidjaaban). Then We sent to her Our Spirit, and he represented himself to her as a well-proportioned man. (19:17)

O you who have believed! Do not enter the houses of the prophet except when you are permitted for a meal, without awaiting its readiness. But when you are invited, then enter; and when you have eaten, disperse without seeking to remain for conversation. Indeed, that was troubling the prophet, and he is shy of you. But God is not shy of the truth.

And when you ask his women for something, ask them from behind a veil (hidjaabin). That is purer for your hearts and their hearts. Do not cause the messenger of God unpleasant feelings and never enter into an intimate relationship with his spouses after him. Indeed, that would be in the sight of God an enormity. (33:53)

And he (Solomon) said, “Indeed, I gave preference to the love of good over the remembrance of my Lord until they disappeared behind the curtain (bilhidjaabin). Bring them back to me.” And he began to pass his hand over their legs and necks.” (38:32)

And it is not for any human being that God should speak to him except by suggestion or from behind a veil or that He sends a messenger and suggests to him, by His permission, what He wills! Indeed, He is Most High and Wise! (42:51)

And they say, “Our hearts are within coverings (akinnatin) from that to which you invite us, and in our ears is deafness, and between us and you is a screen (hidjabin), so work; indeed, we are working.” (41:5)

In this place, in addition, the term “akinnatun“, which root is “kinaanun“, is used, which means “canopy, cover“.

Analysing the above excerpts, we have to state that the word “hijab” in the Quran does not apply as a veil for a believing woman.

God’s specific command for women with regard to their appearance is the following passage below:

And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and guard their private parts. And not expose their adornment except that which appears thereof. Let them cover with veils (bihumurihinna) the cuts (dzhuyubihinnna) of their dresses. And not expose their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers, their brothers’ sons, their sisters’ sons, their women, the ones dependent on them, or those male attendants having no physical desire, or children who are not yet aware of the private parts of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to God in repentance, all of you, O believers! That you might succeed! (24:31)

This passage encourages believing women to cover the cut of the dress with blankets. In order to clearly show the Creator’s dictation about the veil rather than the headscarf, the transcription of the Arabic equivalent, which is formed from the root of “hamara” and means “cover, hide,” is shown in parentheses. There is no mention of any head cloth or about the command of covering the head. Until now, Arabs use this word for different kinds of objects: curtains, material, table or bed covers, etc. In the passage, information is given on the function of the cover, which can be performed by any cape, scarf, shawl, etc.

The next commandment of the Lord is s33a59:

O prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to bring down over themselves their outer garments (jaliyabibihanna). That is more suitable that they will be known and will not cause unpleasant feelings. And ever is God Forgiving and Merciful. (33:59)


In this passage, the word “dzhilbab” is used, which is translated from Arabic as “a long dress, a long shirt, a long robe.” And in this case there is no question of covering the head of women.

The source of the obligation to wear a headscarf on the head for believing women is the tradition that has survived since ancient times.

How did it come about?

Prior to sending down the Quran, the Arab women wore a headscarf, mostly tied at the back of the head. The headscarf served as a sign of a free woman. Slaves were forbidden to tie a headscarf to the head, violation of the prohibition was punished. With the attainment of faith, the appearance of the Arabs has not changed. Only after the Prescription of God to cover the cut of the dress, they simply dropped the ends of the headscarf on the front section of the dress with the least resistance. As a result, their appearance became as the one we see in the present.

According to the Creator’s plan, the Prescription is oriented toward thinking, meditating people. Many of Muhammad’s contemporaries, like in our time, were hindered by the tradition, against which the Quran was directed. Surprisingly, today’s believers repeat the error of previous generations, not separating the divine from the human, considering all the Muslim tradition that has come down to us as the command of the Most High.

Of course, no one has the right to prohibit wearing a headscarf, but to say that this is a PRESCRIPTION of God, no one has the right as well.