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Resuming the Hadith Narrative – Imam Abu Mus’ab Ahmad b. Abu Bakr az-Zuhri (d.242H)


Abu Khuzaimah Ansari


Imām Abū Muṣʿab Aḥmad b. Abū Bakr az-Zuhrī (d.242H)

He was the pioneering Imām of the Ahl al-Ḥadīth and Ahl al-Sunnah.

Ḥāfiẓ al-Dhahabī introduces him as ‘al-Imām al-Faqih’ – The leader and Jurist, the Madanī, from the formidable and versatile scholars and the Shaykh of the people of Madīnah, their Qāḍī and Muḥaddith. He was born in the year 150H. He accompanied [Imām] Mālik and learnt jurisprudence from him.

He narrated and studied [Ḥadīth] from Mālik and Ibrāhīm b. Saʿd, Yūsuf b. al-Mājishūn and many others. The six canonical compilers of Ḥadīth use his Ḥadīth transmissions and [Imām] al-Nasāʿī narrates directly from him. This also includes the likes of [Imām] Abū Zurʿah and [Imām] Baqī b. Makhlad. [from his students was] Ibrāhīm b. ʿAbd al-Ṣamad al-Hashimī who was the last one to die at the age of 92.

ʿAbd Allāh b. Muḥammad b. Faḍal al-Ṣaydāwī said:

Once there were a group of people with [Imām] Abū Muṣʿab who informed him that they had an individual with them in Baghdad who believed and would say ‘Lafẓī bil-Qurʾān Makhlūq’ – his recitation of the Qurʾān was created.’ [Imām] Abū Muṣʿab said: ‘This is evil filthy speech’.

[Imām] al-Dāraquṭnī said:

Abū Muṣʿab is trustworthy in transmitting the Muwaṭṭāʾ.

[Imām] Ibn Ḥazm said:

The last people to narrate the Muwaṭtāʾ from [Imām] Mālik were Abū Muṣʿab and Abī Ḥuzafah and both transmit 100 aḥadīth more compared to others.

Zubayr b. Bakkār said:

Abū Muṣʿab was the unrivaled jurist of Ahl al-Madīnah.

He died in 242H in Ramaḍān while he held the post of the Qāḍī.

Imām al-Shams al-Dīn Muḥammad al-Dhahabī, Tazkirrah al-Ḥuffāẓ 2:482-483 no.697 the 8th Tabaqah (Beirut: Dar al-Kotob al-Ilmiyyah, 1419H/1998)

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