Surah Kauthar – Translation, Meaning and Hadith

Surah Kauthar, or Kawthar, appears in the 30th juz (part) of the Quran and is 108th in order.  It has 3 verses and is the shortest surah in the Quran in terms of a number of words and letters.  It is also known as An-Nahr which means to slaughter a camel specifically.

Other surahs have 3 verses too but they have more words. 

Listen to surah kauthar

Read surah in Arabic

Surah Kauthar arabic

When was the surah revealed?

There are different sayings as to whether it was revealed in Makkah or Madinah.  Many opinions say surah Kauthar was revealed in Makkah after the death of Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) son Abdullah (RA), in response to the taunts of the disbelievers during this event.  They were mocking the Prophet (SAW) stating that he does not have an heir and his lineage will be broken.

Number of Verses3
Place of RevelationMakkah
Chapter Number108

What is the meaning of Surah Kauthar?

It comes from the word katheer which means a lot. The name Kauthar means abundant giving and is dedicated to what Allah gave the Prophet (SAW) in this world and the next.  It also means giving of only abundant goodness, without any deficiency. 

Kauthar is one of the three surahs that address the Prophet (SAW) exclusively.  In this surah, Allah mentions five positive qualities of a person including believing in the unseen, generosity, being consistent and steadfast on his/her salaah, being sincere in the worship of their Lord and being kind to the people.

To list some of the abundant goodness that Allah gave to the Prophet (SAW):

  • The river in Paradise, An-nahr
  • The fountain or cistern of Hawd
  • Al Maqam ul Mahmud – the elevated position
  • Islam
  • Prophethood
  • Quran
  • Abundance of followers
  • Elevation of the mention of his name
  • The conquest of Makkah
  • And much more

Lessons from Surah Kauthar

Kauthar comes from the root letters that also mean obedience.  So it shows that receiving abundance comes from being obedient to Allah, the more obedient, the more you will receive.

In times of sadness and distress, you should think about and spread positivity among the people.  Both this surah and surah duha were revealed during distressing times in the Prophet’s (SAW) life but they both begin with positivity.

To be thankful for the blessings, pray Salaah as it is the greatest form of physical worship and gratitude.

Each person of his Ummah benefits from the Kauthar that Allah has bestowed on the Prophet (SAW) whether it is drinking from the Hawd, or being Muslim, attachment to the Quran etc.  So how to thank Allah for this?  First is to identify and acknowledge the blessings of our Creator.  This is when we start to recognise who Allah is.

Remember that Allah gave you this blessing so thank Him for it.  That same blessing, if He wills can become a source of punishment.

Hadith about Surah Kauthar

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, “A chapter was just revealed to me.” The Prophet recited, “In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful. Verily, We have given you the Abundance,” (108:1) until he finished it. The Prophet said, “Do you know what is the Abundance?” They said, “Allah and His Messenger know best.” The Prophet said, “Verily, it is a river that my Lord Almighty has promised me in Paradise.”  Sunan Abī Dāwūd

Al-Tirmidhi narrated from Ibn ‘Umar (RA) that the Prophet (SAW) said: “Al-Kawthar is a river in Paradise. Its banks are made of gold and its bed is of pearls and rubies…” (Tirmidhi)

‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr (RA) said: The Prophet (SAW) said: “My Cistern is (as big as) the distance of a month’s (journey). Its length and width are equal and its water is whiter than milk and its scent is better than musk. Its drinking vessels are like the stars of the sky and whoever drinks from it will never thirst again.” (Bukhari and Muslim)