Articles Qur'an Translation Glossary
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Untitled Document
EMBROYOLGY Article(s)  
Historical background
Since Aristotle had summed up the prevailing theories in his age relating to the creation of the embryo, controversy continued among the supporters of the theory of the full dwarf embryo existing in man’s sperm and those of the theory of the full dwarf embryo created out of the woman’s menstrual blood coagulation (thickening).
The sperm
The sperms are formed in the testicles, which in turn are created, as proved by embryology, from cells underneath the kidneys at the back and then go down to the lower abdomen at the last weeks of pregnancy....
Leech-like clot (al-alaqa)
The stage of Alaqa starts on the 15th day and ends on the 23rd or 24th day, after which the embryo is gradually developed and looks like a leech, which lives in ponds (Figure 1). Alaqa hangs to the lining of the uterus by the umbilical cord. Blood is then formed in the vessels at the shape of closed islands, and is not circulated in blood vessels, thus having the image of clotted blood.
Chewed-like lump of flesh
The embryo is transformed from the stage of alaqa to the beginning of the stage of mudgha on the 24th day to the 26th day, which is a very brief period if compared with the period of the nutfa changing to alaqa.
The stage of bones
During the 6th week, the cartilaginous skeleton starts to spread in the body. Yet, we do not see the human image features except at the beginning of the 7th week, where the shape of the embryo takes the look of the skeleton.
The stage of Muscles
This stage is characterized with muscles encircling and tightly surrounding the bones. With the completion of clothing the bones with lahm (muscles and flesh), the human image starts to be more clear, as human parts are appropriately connected. After completion of myogenesis (muscle formation), the embryo can start to move.
The stage of nash’ah
By the end of the 8th week, a new stage starts where important processes occur. The rate of developing accelerates compared with the previous one. The embryo transforms into another creature, as the sizes of head, body and limbs start to be balanced and regular between the 9th and 12th week. At the 10th week, external genital organs appear, and the skeleton develops structure from soft cartilaginous to hard calcic bones at the 12th week. Limbs and fingers are distinguished at the same week. The gender of the embryo is manifest with the clear appearance of genitalia.
The stage of labour
After the passing of 9 lunar months (38 weeks), the foetus completes growth in the uterus. It is time now to go out after the end of this specified period. Allah says; “And We cause whom We will to rest in the wombs for an appointed term ” (Qur’an 22:5).
Conclusion
The miracle of human creation in the holy Quran is one of many other medical miracles. Having reviewed previous detailed statements of Quranic verses and scientific analysis of the embryonal stages, it is evident that these Quranic verses give an accurate description of the main stages the embryo encounters during creation and formation until delivery. ...

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