15: Stoneland (Hijr)
Here we have 99 quite early Meccan verses arranged in six sections (except for V,37 which dates from Madina). The title refers to a community north of Madina to whom Thamud came, which lived in a stone or rock city like that at Petra. It lay on the route from Madina to Syria, as we see in the last section of the chapter, and may have been near Tayma') in Midian.
This reference is preceded by mention of the early prophets. Abraham (IV) who gave his name to the previous chapter, and Lot (V). This chapter is important for its cosmogony or the description of how the world was formed. Diabolis is present at man's creation too (III).This chapter was revealed after Joseph 12 and before Livestock 6, and is the last of the older group from Mecca, as can be seen by the initials at the beginning of the first verse. This mood can be sensed in the style and differing rhythm of the first verses. The chapter becomes quite personal towards the end, and sounds almost like a cry of distress uttered by someone seeking solace; it ends with a short hymn in this vein.