The “Servant of Bahá”, Abbás Effendi (1844–1921), the
eldest son and appointed Successor of Bahá’u’lláh, and the
Centre of His Covenant.
The ancient Arabic system of allocating a numerical value
to letters of the alphabet, so that numbers may be
represented by letters and vice versa. Thus every word has
both a literal meaning and a numerical value.
Literally the “Gate”, the title assumed by Mírzá ‘Alí-Muḥammad
(1819–1850) after the Declaration of His
Mission in Shíráz in May 1844. He was the Founder of the
Bábí Faith and the Herald of Bahá’u’lláh.
Bahá means Glory. It is the Greatest Name of God and a
title by which Bahá’u’lláh is designated. Also, the name of
the first month of the Bahá’í year and of the first day of each
The “Glory of God”, title of Mírzá Ḥusayn-‘Alí (1817–1892),
the Founder of the Bahá’í Faith.
The Bayán (“Exposition”) is the title given by the Báb to
His Book of Laws, and it is also applied to the entire body
of His Writings. The Persian Bayán is the major doctrinal
work and principal repository of the laws ordained by the
Báb. The Arabic Bayán is parallel in content but smaller
and less weighty. References in the annotations to subjects
found in both the Persian Bayán and the Arabic Bayán are
identified by use of the term “Bayán” without further
The “Right of God”. Instituted in the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, it is
an offering made by the Bahá’ís through the Head of the
Faith for the purposes specified in the Bahá’í Writings.
Literally “the Dawning-place of the praise of God”, the
designation of the Bahá’í House of Worship and its
A unit of weight, equivalent to a little over 3 1/2 grammes,
used in the Kitáb-i-Aqdas with reference to quantities of
gold or silver for various purposes, usually in amounts of 9,
19 or 95 mithqáls. The equivalents of these in the metric
system and in troy ounces (which are used in the
measurement of precious metals), are as follows:
This computation is based on the guidance of Shoghi
Effendi, conveyed in a letter written on his behalf, which
states “one mithqál consists of nineteen nákhuds. The
weight of twenty-four nákhuds equals four and three-fifths
grammes. Calculations may be made on this basis.” The
mithqál traditionally used in the Middle East had consisted
of 24 nákhuds but in the Bayán this was changed to 19
nákhuds and Bahá’u’lláh confirmed this as the size of the
mithqál referred to in the Bahá’í laws (Q and A 23).
- 9 mithqáls = 32.775 grammes = 1.05374 troy ounces
- 19 mithqáls = 69.192 grammes = 2.22456 troy ounces
- 95 mithqáls = 345.958 grammes = 11.12282 troy ounces
A unit of weight. See “mithqál”.
The Báb’s commentary on the Súrih of Joseph in the
Qur’án. Revealed in 1844, this work is characterized by
Bahá’u’lláh as “the first, the greatest, and mightiest of all books”
in the Bábí Dispensation.
Shoghi Effendi (1897–1957), Guardian of the Bahá’í Faith
from 1921–1957. He was the eldest grandson of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
and was appointed by Him as the Head of the Faith.
Literally “the Black Pit”. The dark, foul-smelling, subterranean
dungeon in Ṭihrán where Bahá’u’lláh was
imprisoned for four months in 1852.