Ayah

Word by Word
فَٱنطَلَقَا
Then they both set out
حَتَّىٰٓ
until
إِذَا
when
لَقِيَا
they met
غُلَٰمٗا
a boy
فَقَتَلَهُۥ
then he killed him
قَالَ
He said
أَقَتَلۡتَ
Have you killed
نَفۡسٗا
a soul
زَكِيَّةَۢ
pure
بِغَيۡرِ
for other than
نَفۡسٖ
a soul
لَّقَدۡ
Certainly
جِئۡتَ
you have done
شَيۡـٔٗا
a thing
نُّكۡرٗا
evil
فَٱنطَلَقَا
Then they both set out
حَتَّىٰٓ
until
إِذَا
when
لَقِيَا
they met
غُلَٰمٗا
a boy
فَقَتَلَهُۥ
then he killed him
قَالَ
He said
أَقَتَلۡتَ
Have you killed
نَفۡسٗا
a soul
زَكِيَّةَۢ
pure
بِغَيۡرِ
for other than
نَفۡسٖ
a soul
لَّقَدۡ
Certainly
جِئۡتَ
you have done
شَيۡـٔٗا
a thing
نُّكۡرٗا
evil

Translation

Then they proceeded: until, when they met a young man, he slew him. Moses said: "Hast thou slain an innocent person who had slain none? Truly a foul (unheard of) thing hast thou done!"

Tafsir

So they set off, after leaving the ship, making their way on foot, until, when they met a boy, who had not yet reached puberty, playing with [other] boys, among whom his face was the fairest - and he, al-Khidr, slew him, by slitting his throat with a knife while he lay down, or by tearing his head off with his hand, or by smashing his head against a wall, all of which are [different] opinions (the coordinating faa' [of fa-qatalahu, 'and he slew him'] is used here because [it indicates that] the slaying took place after the encounter; the response to idhaa, 'when' is [the following statement, qaala .]) - he, Moses, said, to him: 'Have you slain an innocent soul, that is, a pure one that had not reached the age of [legal] responsibility (a variant reading [for zaakiya] has zakiyya), [one slain] not in retaliation for another soul?, in other words, one that has not slain any soul. Verily you have committed an dreadful thing' (read nukran or nukuran), that is to say, an abomination.

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