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Major Books of Hadith
Transcript of Major Books of Hadith
The most authentic book of hadith.
Compiled by Muhammad ibn Ismai'l Al-Bukhari.
Life & Times of Imam Bukhari
Born in 194H in Bukhara, Uzbekistan
Memorized the Qura'n and available ahadith by the age of 10.
Begun travelling at 16.
Traveled to Makkah, Madina, Iraq, Syria and Egypt to study with the greatest scholars of his time
Started compilation of Sahih Al-Bukhari at 23
Spent 16 years collecting, writing and perfecting his book
Passed away at 62, in 256H in Samarqand
Imam Bukhari collected around 600,000 Ahadith out of which he selected only 2,607 most authentic to include in the Saheeh.
Sahih Bukhari has been translated in numerous languages
Imam Bukhari's Teachers
Imam Bukhari studied under many renowned scholars including Muhammad ibn Salaam, Abdullah ibn Muhammad Musnadi, Is'haq bin Rahway and Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal amongst others.
Shaikh Is'haaq bin Rahway suggested to Imam Bukhari to compile a book of sound ahadith because it was a time when many ahadith were being forged or altered to please the kings or the people
Layout Of Sahih al-Bukhari
The book breaks up ahadith or even sections of ahadith, based on the theme, law or lesson that is learnt from it.
The total number of narrations in the book is 7,763 because Imam Bukhari breaks up and repeats the ahadith.
Compiled by Imam Muslim bin Hajjaj al-Nishapuri.
Second most authentic book of hadith.
Life and Times Of Imam Muslim
Born in Nishapur, Iran in 206H.
Student of Imam Bukhari and Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal
Traveled extensively for 15 years collecting hadith.
His Saheeh was reviewed by several scholars including Imam Abu Zar'ah ar-Razi.
Passed away in 261H.
Imam Muslim learnt around 300,000 ahadith, out of which only 2,846 are present in Saheeh al-Muslim
Differences in the layout of Saheeh Bukhari and Saheeh Muslim
Imam Bukhari focused on collecting ahadith from outstanding or 'A+' narrators but Imam Muslim did not focus exclusively on 'A+' narrators but included 'A' narrators' narrations as well.
Saheeh Bukhari focuses on the fiqh or law and lessons of the ahadith where as this is not present in Sahih Muslim.
There are two main reasons for Sahih Bukhari being considered more authentic than Sahih Muslim:
Muwatta' of Imam Malik
Compiled by Imam Malik bin Anas al-Asbahi, grandson of the Sahabi Abu Amir al-Asbahi.
Considered to be most comprehensive after Sahih Bukhari and Muslim.
Muwatta' means 'the thing made easy (to understand)'.
Life and Times of Imam Malik
Born in 93H in Madina.
One of the four major imams in islam.
Lived his life in Madina.
Compiled the muwatta' with 10,000 narrations and revised it annually with the end result being only 1,594 ahadith.
Was the teacher of Imam Shafi'i
Passed away in Madina in 179H.
For most ahadith, the Muwatta' does not have a connected chain of narration because Imam Malik spent his entire life in Madina so he recorded many ahadith well-known in Madina with out a connected or properly recorded chain of narrations.
Musnad of Imam Ahmed
Compiled by Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal, founder of the Hanbali school of thought.
Al-musnad means 'the book of hadith that includes the proper chains of narration'.
Compiled by Imam Muhammad bin Isa at-Tirmidhi
The book is very comprehensive, containing about 3,965 ahadith out of which only 600 have been repeated.
The Life and Times of Imam Tirmidhi
Was born in 209H in Termez, Uzbekistan
He was a student of Al-Bukhari, Muslim and Abu Dawood
Became a well-known scholar of hadith
Was known for his Taqwa and piety
Lost his eyesight towards the end of his life due to crying in fear of Allah
Passed aways in Termez, Uzbekistan in 279H
Methods Incorporated in Compilation of Sunan at-Tirmidhi
Categorization of ahadith based on their main themes
Indication and explanation of any problems in the chain of narration of the hadith
Grading system for each hadith based on its over-all strengths and weaknesses
Clarification of the names and nicknames of the narrators
Summarization of the biographies of narrators i.e. if their narrations were weak or strong
Differentiation between narrators who actually met the Prophet (s.a.w.) and those who didn't
Mentioning of opinions of scholars on different fiqh related issues
Summarization of the number of chains of narration of ahadith
Sunan Abu Dawood
Compiled by Abu Dawood Sulayman ibn Ash'ath al-Azdi al-Sijistani
Life and Times of Imam Abu Dawood
Born in Sejstan, Afghanistan in 202H
Was a student of Imam bukhari and Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal
Amongst his students were Imam Tirmidhi and Imam Nisa'ee
Traveled to Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Makkah, Madina, Nishapur and many other locations in search of ahadith and islamic knowledge
Passed away in 273H
Imam Abu Dawood summarized his book from around 500,000 ahadith to only 4,800. The number is around 3,784 if repititions are unaccounted for.
Compiled by Imam Ahmed bin Shuaib an-Nasa'ee
Life and Times of Imam Nasa'ee
Born in Nasa, Turkmenistan in 215H
Was a student of Imam Abu Dawood
Traveled to Iraq, Syria, Makkah, Madina and Egypt
Compiled around 11,950 ahadith in 'Sunan al-Kubra'
Passed away in Palestine in 303H and was buried in the graveyard in al-Quds.
An-Nasa'ee wrote many books regarding grading ahadith and summarized his 'Sunan al-Kubra' into a book called 'al-Mujtaba' in which he documented around 5,662 of the narrations. When repetitions are not counted, they number 2,515
Compiled by Imam Muhammad ibn Yazeed ibn Majah
Life and Times of Imam Ibn Majah
Was born in 209H in Qazvin, Iran
Collected ahadith pertaining to the sunnah of the prophet (s.a.w.)
Traveled to Makkah, Madina, Iraq, Iran, Syria and Egypt
His teachers include Shaikh Abubakr bin Abi Shaybah
Passed away in 273H
Sunan Ibn Majah contains around 4,341 ahadith, out of which around 3,002 are narrated in the other five books of hadith. Imam ibn Majah provides chains of narration that are often not found in other books so his narrations act as supporting evidence
Life and Times of Imam Ahmed
Born in 167H in Baghdad, Iraq
Traveled extensively around Makkah, Syria, Yemen, Algeria, Morocco and Persia
Was the student of Imam Shafi'ee
Compiled the Musnad
Passed away in 241H in Baghdad
Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal compiled around 27,363 ahadith in his collection, of which 9,340 are unique. Imam hanbal memorized over 750,000 ahadith and filtered them down to just above 9,300 mentioned in the Musnad.
Quotes from the Imams
Imam Malik: ' I have met people in this city (madina) who, if they were asked to pray to Allah for rain, it would rain. They have also studied and learned many ahadith. I did not narrate a single hadith from them.'
Imam Muslim: (to Imam Bukhari) '' there are none like you in this world"
Imam Ahmed was once asked about all of his travel to learn ahadith, "If a man documents 30,000 ahadith isn't it enough for him?" The Imam was silent. "60,000?" The Imam was again silent. "100,000?" Imam Ahmed said, "Then this person would know something."
Imam Tirmithi said:" I wrote my book and presented it to the scholars of Hijaz, and they accepted it. And I presented it to scholars of Iraq, and they accepted it. And I presented it to the scholars of khurasan, and they accepted it. Whoever has this book in his house, it is as if he has a messenger from Allah talking to him."
Imam ath-Thahabi said:" No one memorized more hadith than an-Nasa'ee at the start of the 3rd century of Islam. He was comparable to Al-Bukhari."
Apart from these famous books of hadith, there are others which are used as references in matters of religious importance.
Sahih Ibn Hibban
Compiled by Abu Hatim Muhammad ibn Hibban al-Busti
Life and Times of Ibn Hibban
Born in Bust, Khurasan.
Student of An-Nasaee, al-Hasan ibn Sufyan and ibn Khuzaymah amongst others.
He acted as a judge in Samarqand.
He had a vast understanding of law, jurisprudence, astronomy and medicine.
Died in 965 A.D.
The actual name of the book is Al-Taqasim wa al-Anwa'
The book has an unconventional arrangement of material, opening with the chapter and then type of hadith.
Compiled by Abdullah ibn Abdurrehman ad-Darimi
Life and Times of ad-Darimi
Born in Samarqand, Khurasan, 181 A.H.
Belonged to the tribe of Banu Darim.
He was blessed with a great memory.
Passed away in 255 A.H.
Ad-Darimi's Sunan is considered to be the 9th most important book of hadith.
Amongst ad-Darimi's students were Imam Muslim, Iman at-Tirmidhi and Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal.
Compiled by Imam Tirmidhi, who also compiled the book Sunan at-Tirmidhi.
This book is not a conventional book of hadith as it only contains details of the noble characteristics and physical attributes of the Prophet (pbuh). It also covers the daily manners and rituals of the Prophet.
The book contains 397 narrations and is divided into 55 chapters.
As of yet there is no complete translation of this book in English or any other language.
Kanz al Ummal
Collected by Ali ibn Abdulmalik al-Hindi in the 16th century.
Life and Times of Al-Hindi
Born in Burhanpur, India in 1472.
He was instructed in Tassawuf (Sufism).
Earned his living as a scribe.
Travelled to Multan and Makkah to study with prominent religious scholars of his time.
This book was first published in Hyderabad Deccan in India.
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