The adhan (Arabic: أَذَان[ʔaˈðaːn]), also written as adhaan, azan, azaan, or athan, also called ezan in Turkish,[1] is the Islamic call to prayer, recited by the muezzin at prescribed times of the day. The root of the word is ʾadhina أَذِنَ meaning "to listen, to hear, be informed about". Another derivative of this word is ʾudhun (أُذُن), meaning "ear".

Adhan is called out by a muezzin from the mosque five times a day, a whole day long in the event of religious holidays (i.e. Eid al-Fitr or Eid al-Adha), traditionally from the minaret, summoning Muslims for obligatory (fard) prayer (salat). A second call, known as the iqamah then summons Muslims to line up for the beginning of the prayers. The main purpose behind the multiple loud pronouncements of adhan in every mosque is to make available to everyone an easily intelligible summary of Islamic belief.[citation needed] In modern times, loudspeakers have been installed on minarets for this purpose.[citation needed]

The Adhan recites out loud the Takbir (Allah is greater)[2] followed by the Shahada (There is no divine being except Allah[3], Muhammad is the messenger of Allah).[4] This statement of faith, called the Kalimah, is the first of the Five Pillars of Islam.

Adhan
Arabicأَذَان
Romanizationaḏān, azan, athan, azaan, adhaan, athaan
Literal meaningcall to prayer

Muezzin

The minaret in Tunisia's Great Mosque of Kairouan. Historically, the meuzzin would call to prayer from the minaret.

The muezzin (Arabic: مُؤَذِّنmuʾaḏḏin) is the person who recites the Adhan[5]:470 from the mosque. Typically in modern times, this is done using a microphone: a recitation that is consequently broadcast to the speakers usually mounted on the higher part of the mosque's minarets, thus calling those nearby to prayer. However, in many mosques, the message can also be recorded. This is due to the "call to prayer" has to be done loudly and at least five times a day. This usually be done by replaying previously recorded "call to prayer" without the presence of a muezzin. This way, the mosque operator has the ability to edit or mix the message and adjust the volume of the message while also not having to hire a full-time muezzin or in an event of absence of a muezzin. This is why in many Muslim countries, the sound of the prayer call can be exact identical between one mosque to another, as well as between one Salah hour to another, as is the case for London Central Mosque. In the event of a religious holidays like Eid al-Fitr, for example in Indonesia, where the Kalimah has to be recited out loud all day long (extremely exhausting for the duty to be carried out by a muezzin), mosque operators uses this recording method to create a looping recital of the Kalimah.[citation needed]

The muezzin is chosen for his ability in reciting the Adhan clearly, melodic and loudly for all Muslims to hear. This is one of the important duties in the mosque, as his companions and community rely on him in his call for Muslims to come to pray in congregation.[weasel words] The Imam leads the prayer five times a day. The first muezzin in Islam was Bilal ibn Rabah, a freed slave of Abyssinian heritage.[6][page needed]

Text

Details of what is recited and how many times
Recital
By
Sunni[a]
[7][8][9][10]
By
Shia
[9][10][11]

By
Zaydi

Arabic
Qurʾanic Arabic
Transliteration Translation
4x or 2x[b]
4x

8x or 4x

ٱللَّٰهُ أَكْبَرُ ʾAllāhu ʾakbaru Allah is greater
2x
2x

2x

أَشْهَدُ أَنْ لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا ٱللَّٰهُ ʾašhadu ʾan lā ʾilāha ʾillā -llāhu I bear witness that there is no deity but Allah
2x
2x

2x

أَشْهَدُ أَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُولُ ٱللَّٰهِ ʾašhadu ʾanna Muḥammadan rasūlu -llāhi I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah
None
2x[c]

None

أَشْهَدُ أَنَّ عَلِيًّا وَلِيُّ ٱللَّٰهِ ʾašhadu ʾanna ʿAlīyan walīyu -llāhi I bear witness that Ali is the Vicegerent of Allah
2x
2x

2x

حَيَّ عَلَىٰ ٱلصَّلَاةِ
حَيَّ عَلَىٰ ٱلصَّلَوٰةِ
ḥayya ʿalā ṣ-ṣalāhti Hasten to the prayer (Salah)
2x
2x

2x

حَيَّ عَلَىٰ ٱلْفَلَاحِ
حَيَّ عَلَىٰ ٱلْفَلَٰحِ
ḥayya ʿalā l-falāḥi Hasten to the salvation
None
2x

2x

حَيَّ عَلَىٰ خَيْرِ ٱلْعَمَلِ ḥayya ʿalā khayri l-ʿamali Hasten to the best of deeds
2x
(Fajr prayer only)[d]
None

None

ٱلصَّلَاةُ خَيْرٌ مِنَ ٱلنَّوْمِ
ٱلصَّلَوٰةُ خَيْرٌ مِنَ ٱلنَّوْمِ
aṣ-ṣalātu khayrun mina n-nawmi Prayer is better than sleep
2x
2x

2x

ٱللَّٰهُ أَكْبَرُ ʾAllāhu ʾakbaru Allah is greater
1x
2x

1x

لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا ٱللَّٰهُ lā ʾilāha ʾillā -llāhu There is no deity but Allah
  1. ^ The same Adhan is used by Ahmadiyya Muslims.
  2. ^ Traditionally 4x.[12] Followers of the Maliki madhhab also repeat this line four times.
  3. ^ According to Usuli Twelver Shia scholars, this phrase is not an obligatory part of Adhan and Iqamah, but is recommended (Mustahabb). Akhbari Twelver Shia, however, consider it as an obligatory part of Adhan and Iqamah.[13] Fatimid, Ismaili, Alavi Bohras and Dawoodi Bohra believe and include and recite this at same place, twice in main adhan, but not in Iqama. They also recite Muḥammadun wa ʿAlīyun khayru l-basar wa itaratu huma khayru l-itar (Muhammad and Ali are the best of mankind and their progeny is the best of progenies) twice after the 6th part (Ḥayya ʿala-khayri l-ʿamal). This tradition is continued from their first Da'i al-Mutlaq, Zoeb bin Moosa (1132 CE), after their 21st Imam, At-Tayyib Abi l-Qasim, and claim this is true Fatimid tradition.[14][15][16]
  4. ^ Followers of the Maliki madhhab say this line twice and repeat the following two lines before line four times, as noted in Sahih Muslim, Book 4, Ch. 2, No. 0740.

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