(2,240 words)

Barzakh is a term used in Islam for an intermediate state of human existence between death and resurrection.

1. Barzakh in the Qurʾān and tafsīr

In two verses in the Qurʾān (25:53, 55:20), barzakh (perhaps from Persian farsakh, a measure of distance; Jeffery, 77) means a barrier between two seas. It is from a third verse that the meaning of barzakh as an intermediate state between life in this world (al-dunyā) and the next world (al-ākhira) is derive…

Cite this page
Lange, Christian, “Barzakh”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE, Edited by: Kate Fleet, Gudrun Krämer, Denis Matringe, John Nawas, Everett Rowson. Consulted online on 18 February 2019 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: 9789004203549, 2011, 2011-2

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