Marmaduke Pickthall, The Meaning of The Glorious Koran. An Explanatory Translation (1930)
Al-Ḥijr (which I take to be a place-name) is so called from vv. 80–84, where the fate of the dwellers at that place is described. The date of revelation is earlier than that of any of the Meccan Sûrahs which precede it in the arrangement of the Book, though the subject and the tone are similar, which accounts for its position. Nöldeke places it in his middle group of Meccan Sûrahs, that is (as far as one can judge from the inclusions), those revealed after the eighth year and before the third year before the Hijrah, and in so doing but confirms the judgment of the best Muslim authorities, though some Muslim authorities would place it among the earliest revelations.
It belongs to the middle group of Meccan Sûrahs.
1. Alif. Lâm. Râ.1 These are verses of the Scripture and a plain Reading,2
2. It may be that those who disbelieve wish ardently that they were Muslims.3
3. Let them eat and enjoy life, and let (false) hope beguile them. They will come to knowl
4. And We destroyed no township but there was a known decree for it.
5. No nation can outstrip its term nor can they lag behind.
1 See Sur. II, v. 1, footnote.
2 Ar. Qur’ân.
3 Or “those who have surrendered.”