Page images
PDF
EPUB

bound themselves by oath to kill God's Apostle if they saw him, or die in the attempt. It is related that a person said to az-Zuhri : “Was thy ancestor pre

sent at the battle of Badr?” and that he replied : “Yes; but on the other

side;" meaning that he had been in the ranks of the infidels. Muslim, az-Zuhri's father, was a partisan of Mosab Ibn az-Zubair.— Az-Zuhri remained constantly with Abd al-Malik (2) till that khalif's death, and he then continued with Hisham Ibn Abd al-Malik. (The khalif) Yazid Ibn Abd al-Malik chose him for kâdi. He died on the eve of Tuesday, the 17th of Ramadân, A. H. 124 (July, A.D. 742), (others say, A. H. 123, or 105), at the age of seventy-two, some say, seventy-three years. It is stated, I know not with what degree of truth, that he was born A. H. 51 (A. D. 671). He was interred at Adâma, or Adama, a farm which belonged to him. This place is situated on the other side of Shaghb and Bada, which are valleys (some say villages,) between al-Hijáz and Syria, on the line of separation between these two provinces. It is mentioned, in the Kitâb at-Tamhid (3), that he died at his house in Naaf, a village near those we have just named, and the same at which Omm Hazra, the wife of al-Jarir (v.1. p. 294), expired. That poet alludes to the circumstance in the following line from one

of his poems :

Was a valley at Naaf, covered with mouldering stones, a fit companion (for thee) who wast the dearest object I possessed?

The tomb of az-Zuhri was placed at the road-side, so that every person who passed by might pray for him.- Zuhri means belonging to Zuhra Ibn Kilàb Ibn Murra, a great branch of the Koraish tribe, the same branch which produced Aamina, the mother of the Prophet, and a great number of the Companions.Speaking of Shaghb and Bada, Kuthaiyir (vol. II. p.529), the lover of Azza, said:

It was thou who madest me love the region between Shaghb and Bada, although 634 another country was my native land. When my eyes drop tears, I pretend that it is the dust which makes them water; but that dust is Azza, if the doctor knew it! She dwelt for a season at the one, then at the other, and, from her, both these valleys have derived their perfume.

This passage seems to prove that they are valleys, not villages.

(1) The life of Mak’hůl is given by Ibn Khallikân.

(2) We must perhaps read: With Yazid Ibn Abd al-Malik. The printed text agrees, however, with the manuscripts in giving the reading translated here.

(3) Hajji Khalifa indicates a number of works bearing this title; see Fluegel's edition, tom. II. p. 422, 423.

MUHAMMAD IBN ABI ’L-LAILA.

Muhammad Ibn Abd ar-Rahman Ibn Abi Laila Yasår (alias Dawûd) Ibn Bilål Ibn Ohaiha Ibn al-Jullâh al-Ansari was a native of Kûfa. We have already spoken of his father (vol. II. p. 84). Muhammad was one of those imâms who decided certain points of law by their own private judgment (1), and he exercised the functions of kâdi at Kûfa for thirty-three years ; first, in the name of the Omaiyides, and afterwards, in that of the Abbâsides. He was also a jurisconsult and a mufti. Speaking of his father, he said: “I know nothing of

my father, except that he had two wives, and two green jars in each of which “ he made nabid, on alternate days (2).” He studied the law under as-Shàbi (v. II. p. 4), and gave lessons to Sofyan ath-Thauri (v. I. p. 576). Ath-Thauri said : “Our jurisconsults are Ibn Abi Laila and Ibn Shuburma (vol. I. p. 539).” Muhammad Ibn Abi Laila relates as follows: “I went in to Atâ (vol. II, p. 203) ) " and he began to consult me, on which one of the persons present disapproved " of what he did and spoke to him on the subject, but he replied : “ He is more " learned than I.'A slight degree of coolness subsisted between him and Abû Hànifa. It is related that, as he was one day returning from the mosque at Kûfa, wherein he had been sitting in judgment, he heard a woman say to · a man : “ Thou son of a prostitute and a fornicator (Ya Ibn az-Zâniyain)!” on which he caused her to be arrested, and, having returned to his tribunal, he ordered her to be flagellated twice, inflicting on her each time the number of strokes prescribed by law, and this punishment she underwent standing. When Abû Hanifa was informed of his proceeding, he said : “In “ this single affair, the kâdi has committed six faults: first, in returning to his

mosque after the sitting was ended, which it was not requisite for him to “ do; secondly, by inflicting the punishment of flagellation in the mosque, a

66

thing expressly forbidden by the blessed Prophet; thirdly, by flagellating “ her, and she standing, whereas women should be flagellated in a sitting “posture and their clothes on; fourthly, by inflicting the flagellation twice, “ whereas the calumniator incurs only one flagellation, even if he address the

insulting word to a number of persons; fifthly, were the double flagellation “ incurred, he should have waited, before inflicting the second, till the

pain caused by the first had ceased; sixthly, he sentenced her to be flagel“ lated, although no prosecutor had made a complaint against her.” When this came to the ears of Muhammad Ibn Abi Laila, he sent this message to the governor of Kûfa : “ There is here a youth, called Abû Hanifa, who attacks my

judgments, and gives opinions in opposition to them, and insults me by say

ing that I have erred.' I wish you would prevent him from so doing.” On this, the governor sent to Abû Hanîfa, ordering him not to give opinions on points of law. They then relate that Abû Hanifa was one day in his house, with his wife beside him, and his daughter, and his son Hammâd, when his daughter said to him : “ Papa ! I am keeping a fast (of abstinence), and some “ blood has come out from between my teeth, but I spat it out till my

saliva " came clear, without any trace of blood. Should I break the fast if I swal“ lowed my saliva now?” To this her father replied : “Ask thy brother Ham“ måd, for the governor has forbidden me to give opinions on points of law." This anecdote is cited as an example of Abû Hanifa's signal merits and of his respectful obedience to the constituted authority; so much so, that he obeyed even in private, and abstained from giving an answer to his daughter; this is the utmost extent to which obedience could be carried.— Muhammad Ibn Abi Laila was born A.H. 74 (A.D. 693-4), and he died at Kúfa, A. H. 148 (A.D. 765-6). He held the post of kâdi up to the moment of his death, and the place was then conferred on his nephew by (the khalif) Abû Jaafar al-Mansûr.

(1) As'hab ar-Rai. See vol. I, 634.

2, This is cited as a proof that he never acquired any legal information from his father, Abd ar-Rahmân Ibn Abi Laila, the celebrated Tabi, although it would have been natural to suppose the contrary.

VOL. II.

74

MUHAMMAD IBN SIRIN.

635

Abû Bakr Muhammad Ibn Sirin was a native of Basra. His father was a slave to Anas Ibn Malik (1), but redeemed himself by giving him a written bond for forty, some say twenty thousand dirhems, the amount of which he finally paid up. He was one of the captives taken at Maisân (vol. I. p. 372, n. (8) ); others say, at Ain at at-Tamr (2). Sirin bore the surname of Abû Amra; he belonged to Jarjarâyâ and was a maker of copper pots (for cooking); having gone to Aîn at-Tamr, he there followed his trade till made prisoner by Khalid Ibn al-Walid, along with forty young men not natives of the place. (This circumstance they represented to Khalid,) but he refused to believe them, and, on their saying that they belonged to good families, he distributed them as slaves to persons (in his army) (3). Saliya, the mother of Abû Bakr Ibn Sirin, was a mawla to (the khalif) Abû Bakr. (Preparatory to her marriage, she was perfumed by three of the Prophet's wives, and they also invoked God's blessing on her; eighteen of the Prophet's Companions who had fought under him at Badr were present at the marriage ceremony; one of them, Obaiyi Ibn Kaab, offered up prayers, and the rest said Amen. Muhammad Ibn Sirin delivered Traditions on the authority of Abû Huraira (vol. 1. p. 570), Abd Allah Ibn Omar (vol. I. p. 567, Abd Allah Ibn az-Zubair, Imrân Ibn Husain (4), and Anas Ibn Mâlik ; Traditions were learned from him and delivered to others by Katáda Ibn Diâma (vol. II. p. 513), Khâlid al-Haddà (5), Aiyûb as-Sakhtiyani (6), and others of the imâms. He was one of the jurisconsults by whose opinions the people of Basra were guided, and one of the persons of that age the most noted for their piety. He went to al-Madàin to see Abida as-Salmani (7), and (speaking of this interview) he said: “I prayed with him, and, when he had finished “his prayer, he called for breakfast; on which, bread and milk and butter were “ brought in. He eat thereof, and we eat with him, and we remained sitting “ till the hour of the afternoon prayer. Abida then rose up, and having pro" nounced the izûn and the ikûma (8), he said with us the afternoon prayer ; " and yet neither he nor any of those who breakfasted with him had made an - ablution between the two prayers (9).” 'Muhammad Ibn Sirin was a friend of al-Hasan al-Basri (v. I. p. 370), but they at length came to a rupture, and, on al-Hasan's death, Ibn Sirin absented himself from the funeral. As-Shâbi (vol. II. p. 4) used to say (to students of the law): “Stick to that deaf man!” meaning thereby Ibn Sirîn; because he was dull of hearing. Ibn Sirin possessed great skill in the interpretation of dreams. He was born (in A. H. 33, A. D. 653-4) two years before the death of the khalif Othmân, and he died at Basra on Friday, the 9th of Shawwal, A.H. 110 (January, A. D. 729); one hundred days after the death of al-Hasan al-Basri. He was a draper by profession, but, having fallen into debt, he was imprisoned. He had thirty sons by the same wife, and eleven daughters; none of them, however, survived except Abd Allah. He died thirty thousand dirhems in debt, but his son Abd Allah paid off the whole, and, before his own death, his property was estimated at three hundred thousand dirhems. Muhammad Ibn Sirîn had served Anas Ibn Mâlik in the capacity of a secretary when in Persia (10). Al-Asmâi (vol. II. p. 123) used to say: “ Al-Hasan al-Basri

(was, in furnishing Traditions, like) a generous prince; but when the deaf man “ (meaning Ibn Sirin) furnishes Traditions, retain them carefully; as for Ka“ àda, (he was, as a collector of Traditions, like) one who gathers fire-wood in “ the dark, (picking up both bad and good).” Ibn Aủf (11) relates as follows: “When Anas Ibn Malik was on his death-bed, he desired that Ibn Sirin " should wash his corpse and say over it the funeral prayers. As Ibn " Sirin was then in prison, their friends went to the governor of the city, " who was a member of the tribe of Asad, and obtained permission for him

to go out. Ibn Sirin then went and washed the body, and shrouded it, and

prayed over it in the castle at at-Taff (12), where Anas made his residence, " and then returned directly to prison without going to see his family.” I must observe, however, that Omar Ibn Shabba (vol. II. p. 375) says, in his History of Basra, that the person who washed the corpse of Anas Ibn Mâlik was Katan Ibn Mudrik al-Kilâbi, the governor of Basra ; and a similar statement is made by Abů Yakzàn (vol. II. p. 578, n. (6)).— Maisân is the name of a village situated in the lower part of the territory of Basra. Of Ain at-Tamr we have already spoken (vol. I. p. 202).

(1) Abû Hamza Anas Ibn Malik Ibn an-Nadr (grisill) Ibn an-Najjár al-Ansari, surnamed the servant of God's Apostle khadim rasůl illah), was one of the most eminent among the Companions. When a boy, bis

« PreviousContinue »