The word "Sijjil" is mentioned three times in the Qur'an: once in the story of the army of the elephants and twice in the story of the people of Lot (a). The literal meaning of "sijjil" is "shale". It originally entered Arabic language from Persian. Exegetes interpreted it as "shale" with which God punished the people of Lot (a) and the army of elephants. 'Allama Tabataba'i argues that some sources interpret it as fire and some others said that it originated from "sijill" ( meaning "book" ) thus its usage in the Qur'an could imply that they had been stones with writings. It is reported that on every piece of rock, flocks of birds rained down on the army of Abraha, name of the head of the army of elephants was written.
- Qurʾān, 105:4.
- Qurʾān, 11:82; 15:74.
- Ibn Manẓūr, Lisān al-ʿArab, vol. 11, p. 327.
- Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 282; Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 10, p. 344-345.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 10, p. 344-345.
- Abū l-Futūḥ al-Rāzī, Rawḍ al-jinān, vol. 20, p. 410.
- Abū l-Futūḥ al-Rāzī, Ḥusayn b. ʿAlī. Rawḍ al-jinān wa rawḥ al-janān. Edited by Muḥammad Jaʿfar Yāḥaqī & Muḥammad Mahdī Nāṣiḥ. Mashhad: Bunyād-i Pazhūhishhā-yi Islāmī-yi Āstān-i Quds-i Raḍawī, 1408 AH.
- Ibn Manẓūr, Muḥammad b. Mukarram. Lisān al-ʿArab. Edited by Aḥmad Fāris. Beirut: Dār al-Fikr, 1414 AH.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, Muḥammad Ḥusayn. Al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Qom: Daftar-i Intishārāt-i Islāmī, 1417 AH.
- Ṭabrisī, Faḍl b. al-Ḥasan al-. Majmaʿ al-bayān. Edited by Muḥammad Jawād Balāghī. Tehran: Nāṣir Khusru, 1372 Sh.