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A Leaflet on the Sources of Law

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In the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate.

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1 — Legal science and its roots

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Here are some pages encompassing information on various subdivisions of ‘the roots1 of legal science’. That is a phrase composed of two distinct parts, ‘roots’ and ‘legal science’. A root is that on which something else is built, whereas a branch is that which is built on something else. Legal science is awareness of those revealed legal values that are arrived at by diligent inquiry.

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Key terms

  • information, awareness: maʿrifa
  • root: aṣl
  • legal science: fiqh
  • branch: farʿ
  • revealed: sharʿī
  • legal value: ḥukm
  • diligent inquiry: ijtihād
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Notes

  1. Uṣūl could be translated in many ways, including sources, roots, foundations, or principles. I have rendered it roots so that the contrast with branches will make sense, but al Juwaynī’s own definition suggests instead the idea of foundations. ↩
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Source: http://waraqat.vishanoff.com/e/e1/