Biography of Imam Suyuti

By Dr. G. F. Haddad (source)

`Abd al-Rahman ibn Kamal al-Din Abi Bakr ibn Muhammad ibn Sabiq al-Din, Jalal al-Din al-Misri al-Suyuti al-Shafi`i al-Ash`ari, also known as Ibn al-Asyuti (849-911), the mujtahid imam and renewer of the tenth Islamic century, foremost hadith master, jurist, Sufi, philologist, and historian, he authored works in virtually every Islamic science. 

Born to a Turkish mother and non-Arab father and raised as an orphan in Cairo, he memorized the Qur’an at eight, then several complete works of Sacred Law, fundamentals of jurisprudence, and Arabic grammar; after which he devoted himself to studying the Sacred Sciences under about a hundred and fifty shaykhs. 

Among them the foremost Shafi`i and Hanafis shaykhs at the time, such as the hadith master and Shaykh al-Islam Siraj al-Din Bulqini, with whom he studied Shafi`i jurisprudence until his death; the hadith scholar Shaykh al-Islam Sharaf al-Din al-Munawi, with whom he read Qur’anic exegesis and who commented al-Suyuti’s al-Jami` al-Saghir in a book entitled Fayd al-Qadir; Taqi al-Din al-Shamani in hadith and the sciences of Arabic; the specialist in the principles of the law Jalal al-Din al-Mahalli, together with whom he compiled the most widespread condensed commentary of Qur’an in our time, Tafsir al-Jalalayn; Burhan al-Din al-Biqa`i; Shams al-Din al-Sakhawi; he also studied with the Hanafi shaykhs Taqi al-Din al-Shamni, Shihab al-Din al-Sharmisahi, Muhyi al-Din al-Kafayji, and the hadith master Sayf al-Din Qasim ibn Qatlubagha. He travelled in the pursuit of knowledge to Damascus, the Hijaz, Yemen, India, Morocco, the lands south of Morocco, as well as to centers of learning in Egypt such as Mahalla, Dumyat, and Fayyum. He was some time head teacher of hadith at the Shaykhuniyya school in Cairo at the recommendation of Imam Kamal al-Din ibn al-Humam, then the Baybarsiyya, out of which he was divested through the complaints of disgruntled shaykhs which he had replaced as teachers. He then retired into scholarly seclusion, never to go back to teaching.

Ibn Iyas in Tarikh Misr states that when al-Suyuti reached forty years of age, he abandoned the company of men for the solitude of the Garden of al-Miqyas by the side of the Nile, avoiding his former colleagues as though he had never known them, and it was here that he authored most of his nearly six hundred books and treatises. Wealthy Muslims and princes would visit him with offers of money and gifts, but he put all of them off, and when the sultan requested his presence a number of times, he refused. 

He once said to the sultan’s envoy: “Do not ever come back to us with a gift, for in truth Allah has put an end to all such needs for us.” Blessed with success in his years of solitude, it is difficult to name a field in which al-Suyuti did not make outstanding contributions, among them his ten-volume hadith work Jam` al-Jawami` (“The Collection of Collections”); his Qur’anic exegesis Tafsir al-Jalalayn (“Commentary of the Two Jalals”), of which he finished the second half of an uncompleted manuscript by Jalal al-Din Mahalli in just forty days; his classic commentary on the sciences of hadith Tadrib al-Rawi fi Sharh Taqrib al-Nawawi (“The Training of the Hadith Transmitter: An Exegesis of Nawawi’s `The Facilitation'”); and many others. 

A giant among contemporaries, he remained alone, producing a sustained output of scholarly writings until his death at the age of sixty-two. He was buried in Hawsh Qawsun in Cairo. In the introduction to his book entitled al-Riyad al-Aniqa on the names of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him — he said: “It is my hope that Allah accept this book and that through this book I shall gain the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — intercession. Perhaps it shall be that Allah make it the seal of all my works, and grant me what I have asked Him with longing regarding the Honorable One.”

The editors of the Dalil Makhtutat al-Suyuti (“Guide to al-Suyuti’s Manuscripts”) have listed 723 works to al-Suyuti’s name.1 Some of these are brief fatwas which do not exceed four pages, like his notes on the hadith “Whoever says: `I am knowledgeable,’ he is ignorant”2 entitled A`dhab al-Manahil fi Hadith Man Qala Ana `Alim; while others, like the Itqan fi `Ulum al-Qur’an or Tadrib al-Rawi, are full-fledged tomes.

Al-Tabarani stated that the hadith “Whoever says: `I am knowledgeable,’ he is ignorant” is not narrated except through the chain containing al-Layth ibn Abi Sulaym, who is weak. Al-`Ajluni in Kashf al-Khafa’ states that this hadith is narrated by al-Tabarani in al-Awsat from Ibn `Umar rather than the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –, and that al-Haytami said in his Fatawa Hadithiyya that it is actually a saying of (the Tabi`i) Yahya ibn Kathir. For his part, Ibn Kathir cites it from `Umar in his Tafsir in commentary of the verse: (Have you not seen those who praise themselves for purity?( (4:49) Three narrations are indeed mentioned from `Umar in Kanz al-`Ummal, but all are weak. Al-`Iraqi in his al-Mughni said that the part actually attributed to Yahya ibn Kathir is: “Whoever says: `I am a believer,’ he is a disbeliever,” while al-Haythami in Majma` al-Zawa’id cites it from Yahya ibn Kathir with a weak chain as follows: “Whoever says: `I am knowledgeable,’ he is ignorant, and whoever says: `I am ignorant,’ he is ignorant. Whoever says: `I am in Paradise,’ he is in the Fire, and whoever says: `I am in the Fire,’ he is in the Fire.” Al-Haytami further said: “It is established from countless Companions and others that they said they were knowledgeable, and they would not commit something which the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him — had blamed. A greater proof yet is Yusuf’s statement: `I am a knowledgeable guardian’ (12:55).” However, the narration of al-Layth is confirmed by the hadith of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –: “Islam shall be on the rise until traders take to the sea [carrying it], and horses charge in the cause of Allah. After that a people will come and recite the Qur’an, saying: Who recites it better than us? Who is more knowledgeable than us? Who is wiser than us?” Then he turned to his Companions and asked: “Is there any good in such as these?” They said: “Allah and His Prophet know best.” He said: “Those are from among you, O Umma! Those are fodder for the Fire.”2

What reconciles the two views is that the hadith of Ibn Abi Sulaym applies to those who claim knowledge either undeservedly, or proudly, and not to those who act out of sincerity and obligation. Ibn `Ata’ Allah said in his Hikam:

The root of every disobedience, forgetfulness, and desire is contentment with the self, while the root of every obedience, vigilance, and continence is your dissatisfaction with it. That you accompany an ignorant who is not pleased with his self is better for you than to accompany a knowledgeable person who is pleased with his self. And what ignorance is that of one who is dissatisfied with himself? And what knowledge is that of one who is satisfied with himself?

Imam al-Sha`rani in al-`Uhud al-Muhammadiyya (“The Pledges We Made to the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) said something similar:

The Prophet — Allah bless and greet him — took our pledge that we should not claim to possess knowledge except for a licit cause, and that we should never say: “We are the most knowledgeable of people” – not with our mouths, and not with our hearts. How could we say such a thing when we know full well that in our country, let alone our region, there is one who is more knowledgeable than we? But if it is one day ordained for us to claim knowledge, then we must immediately follow this with repentance and ask forgiveness lest punishment descend on us. This is a problem which no wise person ever faces, for there is no science which one has looked up except the scholars of knowledge anticipated him and wrote books about it – scholars whose pupil he might not even deserve to be.

Al-Suyuti’s student and biographer Shams al-Din al-Dawudi al-Maliki – the author of Tabaqat al-Mufassirin al-Kubra – said: “I saw the shaykh with my own eyes writing and finishing three works in one day which he himself authored and proofread. At the same time he was dictating hadith and replying beautifully to whatever was brought to his attention.” Sakhawi reproached him his plagiarism of past books, and others said that the profusion of his works made for their lack of completion and the frequency of flaws and contradictions in them. This is a charge commonly laid at the door of prolific authors, such as Ibn al-Jawzi and Ibn Taymiyya. Note also that there was some animosity between al-Suyuti and his shaykh al-Sakhawi, as shown by the former’s tract al-Kawi fi al-Radd `ala al-Sakhawi (“The Searing Brand in Refuting al-Sakhawi”) and his unflattering mention in the poem Nazm al-`Iqyan fi A`yan al-A`yan.

His chain of transmission in tasawwuf goes back to Shaykh `Abd al-Qadir al-Gilani, and al-Suyuti belonged to the Shadhili tariqa, which he eulogized in his brief defense of tasawwuf entitled Tashyid al-Haqiqa al-`Aliyya. In the latter book he states: “I have looked at the matters which the Imams of Shari`a have criticized in Sufis, and I did not see a single true Sufi holding such positions. Rather, they are held by the people of innovation and the extremists who have claimed for themselves the title of Sufi while in reality they are not.” In the Tashyid he also produces narrative chains of transmission proving that al-Hasan al-Basri did in fact narrate directly from `Ali ibn Abi Talib – Allah be well-pleased with him. This goes against commonly received opinion among the scholars of hadith,3 although it was also the opinion of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal.4

When one of his shaykhs, Burhan al-Din Ibrahim ibn `Umar al-Biqa`i (d. 885), attacked Ibn `Arabi in a tract entitled Tanbih al-Ghabi ila Takfir Ibn `Arabi (“Warning to the Dolt That Ibn `Arabi is an Apostate”), al-Suyuti countered with a tract entitled Tanbih Al-Ghabi fi Takhti’a Ibn `Arabi (“Warning to the Dolt That Faults Ibn `Arabi”). Both epistles have been published.5 In his reply al-Suyuti states that he considers Ibn `Arabi a Friend of Allah whose writings are forbidden to those who read them without first learning the technical terms used by the Sufis. He cites from Ibn Hajar’s list in Anba’ al-Ghumr, among the trusted scholars who kept a good opinion of Ibn `Arabi or counted him a wali: Ibn `Ata’ Allah al-Sakandari (d. 709), al-Yafi`i (d. 678), Ibn `Abd al-Salam after the latter’s meeting with al-Shadhili, Shihab al-Din Abu al-`Abbas Ahmad ibn Yahya al-Malwi al-Tilimsani (d. 776), Siraj al-Din Abu Hafs `Umar ibn Ishaq al-Hindi al-Hanafi (d. 773) the author of Sharh al-Hidaya and Sharh al-`Ayni, Najm al-Din al-Bahi al-Hanbali (d. 802), al-Jabarti (d. 806), the major lexicographer al-Fayruzabadi (d. 818), Shams al-Din al-Bisati al-Maliki (d. 842), al-Munawi (d. 871), and others. Of note with regard to the above is the abundant use of Ibn `Arabi’s sayings by al-Munawi in his commentary of al-Suyuti’s Jami` al-Saghir entitled Fayd al-Qadir, and by Fayruzabadi in his commentary on Bukhari’s Sahih.

Al-Suyuti was Ash`ari in his doctrine as shown in many of his works. In Masalik al-Hunafa’ fi Walidayy al-Mustafa (“Methods Of Those With Pure Belief Concerning the Parents of The Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) he says:

The Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — parents died before he was sent as Prophet and there is no punishment for them, since (We never punish until We send a messenger (whom they reject)( (17:15 ). Our Ash`ari Imams among those in kalam, usul, and fiqh agree on the statement that one who dies while da`wa has not reached him, dies saved. This has been defined by Imam al-Shafi`i.. . . Some of the fuqaha’ explained that the reason is, such a person follows fitra or Primordial Disposition, and has not stubbornly refused nor rejected any Messenger.6

Al-Suyuti was taken to task for his claim that he was capable of independent scholarly exertion or ijtihad mutlaq. He explained: “I did not mean by that that I was similar to one of the Four Imams, but only that I was an affiliated mujtahid (mujtahid muntasib). For, when I reached the level of tarjih or distinguishing the best fatwa inside the school, I did not contravene al-Nawawi’s tarjih. And when I reached the level of ijtihad mutlaq, I did not contravene al-Shafi`is school.” He continued: “There is not in our time, on the face of the earth, from East to West, anyone more knowledgeable than myself in hadith and the Arabic language, save al-Khidr or the Pole of saints or some other Wali – none of whom do I include into my statement – and Allah knows best.”7 He also said of himself: “When I went on hajj I drank Zamzam water for several matters. Among them: (I asked) that I reach, in fiqh, the level of Shaykh Siraj al-Din al-Bulqini and in hadith, that of the hafiz Ibn Hajar.”8

Below are the titles of some of al-Suyuti’s works in print kept in the Arabic collection of the University of Princeton in the State of New Jersey (USA). The most recent date has been given for works with more than one edition:

1. Abwab al Sa`ada Fi Asbab al-Shahada <1987> (“The Gates of Felicity in the Causes of the Witnessing to Oneness”) 
2. Al-Ashbah wa al-Naza’ir fi Furu` al-Shafi`iyya (“Similarities in the Branches of the Law Within the Shafi`i School”) 
3. Al-Ashbah wa al-Naza’ir fi al-`Arabiyya (“Similarities in Arabic”) 
4. Al-Ahadith al-Hisan fi Fadl al-Taylasan <1983> (“The Beautiful Narrations Concerning the Merit of the Male Headcovering”) 
5. Al-Fawz al-`Azim fi Liqa’ al-Karim <1994> (“The Tremendous Victory in Meeting the All-Generous”) 
6. Alfiyya al-Suyuti al-Nahwiyya <1900> (“The Thousand-Line Poem on Philology”) 
7. Alfiyya al-Suyuti fi Mustalah al-Hadith <1988> (“The Thousand-Line Poem on Hadith Nomenclature”) 
8. `Amal al-Yawm wa al-Layla <1987> (“Supererogatory Devotions for Each Day and Night”) 
9. Al-Itqan fi `Ulum al-Qur’an <1996> (“Precision and Mastery in the Sciences of the Qur’an”) 
10. Anis al-Jalis <1874> (“The Familiar Companion”) 
11. Al-`Araj fi al-Faraj <1988> (“A Commentary on Ibn Abi al-Dunya’s `The Deliverance’,” a work on hope and joy) 
12. Al-Arba`un Hadith fi Qawa`id al-Ahkam al-Shar`iyya <1986> (“Forty Narrations on Basic Legal Rulings”) 
13. Asbab al-Nuzul <1983> (“Causes of Qur’anic Revelation” verse by verse) 
14. Asbab Wurud al-Hadith <1988> (“Causes and Circumstances of Hadith”) 
15. Isbal al-Kisa’ ala al-Nisa <1984> (“Women and the Donning of Cover”) 
16. Asrar Tartib al-Qur’an <1976> (“The Secret in the Ordering of the Qur’an”) 
17. Al-Aya al-Kubra fi Sharh Qissa al-Isra’ <1985> (“The Great Sign: Commentary on the Story of the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — Night Journey”) 
18. `Ayn al-Isaba fi Istidrak `A’isha `ala al-Sahaba <1988> (“Exactitude Itself in `A’isha’s Rectification of the Companions”) 
19. Azhar al-Mutanathira fi al-Ahadith al-Mutawatira <1951> (“The Most Prominent of the Reports Concerning the Narrations of Mass Transmission”) 
20. Al-Bahir fi Hukm al-Nabi Salla Allah Alayhi wa Sallam <1987> (“The Dazzling Light of the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — Rulings”) 
21. Al-bahja al-mardiyya fi sharh al-alfiyya <1980> (“The pleasing beauty: commentary on Muhammad ibn `Abd Allah Ibn Malik’s (“d. 1274 CE”) Alfiyya or thousand-line poem on grammar”) 
22. Bulbul al-rawda <1981> (“Chronicle on al-Rawda, Egypt”) 
23. Bushra al-Ka’ib bi liqa’ al-Habib <1960> (“The consolation of the sad with the meeting of the Beloved”) 
24. Al-Dibaj ala Sahih Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj <1991> (“Two-volume commentary on Sahih Muslim”) 
25. Al-Durar al-Muntathira fi al-ahadith al-mushtahara <1988> (“The scattered pearls of famous narrations”); also published as al-nawafih al-`atira fi al-ahadith al-mushtahara <1992> (“The fragrant scents of famous narrations”) 
26. Al-durr al-manthur fi al-tafsir bi al-ma’thur (“The scattered pearls: A commentary of Qur’an based on transmitted reports”) 
27. Duruj al-munifa fi al-aba’ al-sharifa <1916> (“The outstanding entries concerning the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — ancestors”)
28. Fadd al-wi`a’ fi ahadith raf` al-yadayn fi al-du`a <1985> (“The emptying of the vessel concerning raising the hands when making supplication”) 
29. Al-ghurar fi fada’il `Umar <1991> (“The blazing highlights of `Umar’s merits”) 
30. Al-haba’ik fi akhbar al-malaik <1985> (“The celestial orbits or the reports concerning the angels”) 
31. Haqiqa al-sunna wa al-bid`a aw al-amr bi al-ittiba` wa al-nahi `an al-munkar <1985> (“The reality of Sunna and innovation or the ordering of obedient following and the prohibition of evil”) 
32. Al-Hawi lil-fatawi fi al-fiqh wa-`ulum al-tafsir wa-al-hadith wa-al-usul wa-al-nahw wa-al-i`rab wa-sa’ir al-funun <1933> (“The collected legal decisions in jurisprudence, Qur’anic commentary, hadith, principles, language, and other sciences”) 
33. Al-hujaj al-mubayyana fi al-tafdil bayna makka wa al-madina <1985> (“The proofs made manifest concerning the superexcellence of Mecca and Madina”) 
34. Husn al-maqsid fi amal al-mawlid <1985> (“Excellence of purpose in celebrating the birth of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) 
35. Husn al-samt fi al-samt <1985> (“The merits of silence”) 
36. Ihya’ al-mayyit bi fadail ahl al-bayt <1988> (“Giving life to the dead, or: the merits of the Family of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) 
37. Ikhtilaf al-madhahib <1989> (“The divergences among the schools of law”) 
38. Al-iklil fi istinbat al-tanzil <1981> (“The diadem: the extraction of rulings from the revealed Book”) 
39. Inbah al-adhkiya’ fi haya al-anbiya <1916> (“Notice to the wise concerning the life of the Prophets [i.e. In the grave]”) 
40. Al-iqtirah fi `ilm usul al-nahw <1978> (“The authoritative discourse concerning the science of philology”) 
41. Al-izdihar fi ma `aqadahu al-shu`ara’ min al-ahadith wa al-athar <1991> (“The flourishes of poets related to the Prophetic narrations and sayings of the Companions”) 
42. Jam` al-jawami` al-ma`ruf bi al-jami` al-kabir <1970> (“The collection of collections, known as the Major Collection”) 
43. Jami` al-ahadith al-jami` al-saghir wa zawa’idi <1994> (“The Minor Collection and its addenda”) 
44. Jany al-jinas <1986> (“The genera of rhetoric”) 
45. Jazil al-mawahib fi ikhtilaf al-madhahib <1992> (“The abundant gifts concerning the differences among the schools of law”) 
46. Al-kanz al-madfun wa al-falak al-mashhun <1992> (“The buried treasure in the laden ship: An encyclopedia of Islamic history”) 
47. Kashf al-salsala `an wasf al-zalzala <1987> (“The transmitted expositions concerning the description of the Earthquake of Doomsday”) 
48. Al-Radd `ala man akhlada ila al-ardi wa jahila anna al-ijtihada fi kulli `asrin fard <1984> (“Refutation of those who cling to the earth and ignore that scholarly striving is a religious obligation in every age”) 
49. Kitab al-shamarikh fi `ilm al-tarikh <1894> (“The book of date-heavy stalks: a primer on historiography”) 
50. Kitab al-shihab al-thaqib fi dhamm al-khalil <1992> (“The piercing arrows, a commentary on `Ali ibn Zafir’s (“d. 1226? CE”) “The Healing of the Parched concerning the castigation of one’s dear friend,” a book on the ethics of friendship”) 
51. Kitab al-tabarri min ma`arra al-ma`arri wa Tuhfa al-zurafa’ bi-asma’ al-khulafa’ <1989> (“Poetry on the names of the Caliphs”) 
52. Kitab al-tadhkir bi al-marji` wa al-masir <1991> (“Book of the reminder of the Return to Allah”) 
53. Kitab asma’ al-mudallisin <1992> (“The book of narrators who omit certain details while narrating”) 
54. Kitab bughya al-wu`a fi tabaqat al-lughawiyyin <1908> (“The must of the sagacious concerning the biographical layers of lexicologists and philologists”) 
55. Kitab ham` al-hawami` sharh jam` al-jawami` fi `ilm al-nahw <1973> (“The rushing floodgates, or commentary on the Collection of collections on the science of philology”) 
56. Kitab husn al-muhadara fi akhbar misr wa al-qahira <1904> (“The excellent lectures concerning the chronicle of Egypt and Cairo”) 
57. Kitab itmam al-diraya li qurra’ al-nuqaya <1891> (“The perfection of knowledge for the elite among readers”) 
58. Kitab lubb al-lubab fi tahrir al-ansab <1840> (“The kernel of kernels concerning the editorship of genealogies”) 
59. Tazyin al-mamalik bi manaqib sayyidina Malik <1907> (“The adornment of slaves with the virtues of Imam Malik”)
60. Kitab tuhfa al-mujalis wa nuzha al-majalis <1908> (“The jewel of every fellow student and the pleasant gatherings”) 
61. Laqat al-marjan fi ahkam al-jann <1989> (“The gleanings of coral: rulings concerning the jinn”) 
62. Lubab al-nuqul fi asbab al-nuzul <1981> (“The best of narrations concerning the circumstances of revelation”) 
63. Al-luma` fi khasa’is yawm al-juma` <1986> (“The merits of The day of jum`a”) 
64. Ma rawahu al-asatin fi `adam al-maji’ ila al-salatin <1992> (“The reports concerning not appearing at the courts of rulers”); together with Dhamm al-maks (“The blame of taxes and tolls”) 
65. Manahil al-safa fi takhrij ahadith al-shifa <1988> (“The Springs of Purity: Documentation of the hadiths mentioned in Qadi `Iyad’s `The Healing'”) 
66. Manaqib al-khulafa’ al-rashidin <1890> (“Virtues of the well-guided Caliphs”) 
67. Manhaj al-sawi wa al-manhal al-rawi fi al-tibb al-nabawi <1986> (“The straight path and quenching spring: the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — medicine”) 
68. Al-maqamat al-sundusiyya fi al-nisba al-mustafawiyya <1916> (“The resplendent stations concerning Prophetic ancestry”) 
69. Al-masabih fi sala al-tarawih <1955> (“The lanterns of the “prayer of rests” [Tarawih]”) 
70. Masalik al-hunafa’ fi waliday al-mustafa <1993> (“Method of those of pure religion concerning the parents of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) 
71. Al-matali` al-sa`ida sharh al-suyuti `ala al-alfiyya al-musamma bi al-Farida fi al-nahw wa al-tasrif wa al-khatt <1981> (“Suyuti’s commentary on his own thousand-line poem entitled “The unique pearl” on philology, conjugation, and calligraphy”) 
72. Matla` al-badrayn fiman yu’ta ajrahu marratayn <1991> (“The rising of the two full moons: those who are rewarded twice [i.e. Sincere Christians who accept Islam]”) 
73. Miftah al-janna fi al-i`tisam bi al-sunna <1993> (“The key to paradise which consists in clinging to the Sunna of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) 
74. Mufhimat al-aqran fi mubhamat al-qur’an <1991> (“The elucidations of the peers for the obscurities of the Qur’an”) 
75. Al-muhadhdhab fi ma waqa`a fi al-Qur’an min al-mu`arrab <1988> (“The emendation concerning the foreign words and phrases in the Qur’an”) 
76. Mu`jiza ma`a karama fi kitab al-Sharaf al-muhattam : fima manna Allah ta`ala bihi `ala waliyyihi Ahmad al-Rifa`i <1965> (“The miracle and gift concerning the book of “The paramount honor” [by al-Rifa`i] and what Allah has bestowed in it upon His Friend Ahmad [ibn `Alu] al-Rifa`i [d. 1182 CE]”) 
77. Mukhtasar sharh al-jami` al-saghir li al-munawi <1954> (“The abridged commentary of the minor collection by al-Munawi”) 
78. Muntaha al-`amal fi sharh hadith innama al-a`mal <1986> (“The goal of all practice, or the commentary on the hadith: Actions are according to intentions”) 
79. Musnad fatima al-zahra’ radiya allah anha wa ma warada fi fadliha<1994> (“The narrations traced back to Fatima the Radiant and the reports concerning her virtues”) 
80. Mustazraf min akhbar al-jawari <1989> (“The graceful reports concerning women slaves”) 
81. Mutawakkili fima warada fi al-Qur’an bi al-lugha al-Habashiyya wa al-Farisiyya wa al-Rumiyya wa al-Hindiyya wa al-Siryaniyya wa al-`Ibraniyya wa al-Nabatiyya wa al-Qibtiyya wa al-Turkiyya wa al-Zanjiyya wa al-Barbariyya (“My reliance concerning what has been mentioned in the Qur’an in Ethiopian, Farsi, Greek, Hindi, Syriac, Hebrew, Nabatean, Coptic, Turkic, African, and Berber”) 
82. Nashr al-`alamayn al-munifayn fi ihya’ al-abawayn al-sharifayn <1916> (“The proclamation to the two outstanding worlds [mankind and jinn] concerning the ressuscitation of the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — parents”) 
83. Natija al-fikr fi al-jahr bi al-dhikr <1950> (“The conclusion of reflection upon loud remembrance of Allah”) 
84. Nazm al-iqyan fi a`yan al-a`yan <1927> (“Who’s who in the ninth Hijri century”) 
85. al-Nukat al-badi`at `ala al-mawdu`at <1991> (Suyuti’s critique of Ibn al-Jawzi’s collection of forged narrations) 
86. Nuzha al-julasa’ fi ashhar al-nisa’ <1986> (“The recreation of student gatherings concerning famous women poets”) 
87. Nuzha al-muta’ammil wa-murshid al-muta’ahhil: fi al-khatib wa-al-mutazawwij <1989> (“The recreation of the fiancÈ and the guide of the married”) 
88. Nuzha al-`umr fi al-tafdil bayna al-bid wa al-sumr <1931> (“The recreation of life about establishing preference between the white and the black in complexion”) 
89. Nuzul `Isa ibn Maryam Akhir al-Zaman <1985> (“The descent of `Isa ibn Maryam at the end of time”) 
90. Al-qawl al-jali fi fada’il `ali <1990> (“The manifest discourse on the virtues of `Ali ibn Abi Talib – Allah be well-pleased with him -“) 
91. Al-rahma fi al-tibb wa al-hikma <1970> (“Arabic medicine and wisdom”) 
92. Al-rasa’il al-`ashr <1989> (“The ten epistles”) 
92. Rasf al-la’al fi wasf al-hilal <1890> (“The stringing of the pearls in describing the new moon”) 
93. Al-rawd al-aniq fi fadl al-siddiq <1990> (“The beautiful garden of the merit of Abu Bakr al-Siddiq – Allah be well-pleased with him -“) 
94. Risala al-sayf al-qati` al-lami` li ahl al-i`tirad al-shawa’i` <1935> (“Epistle of the sharp and glistening sword to the Shi`i people of opposition”) 
95. Al-riyad al-aniqa fi sharh asma’ khayr al-khaliqa sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam (“The beautiful gardens: explanation of the names of the Best of Creation [the Prophet Muhammad, blessings and peace be upon him]”) 
96. Sawn al-mantiq wa al-kalam `an fann al-mantiq wa al-kalam <1947> (“Manual of logic and dialectic theology”) 
97. Shaqa’iq al-utrunj fi raqa’iq al-ghunj <1988> (“The citron halves: or, the delicacy of women”) 
98. Sharh al-sudur bi sharh hal al-mawta wa al-qubur <1989> (“The expanding of breasts or commentary on the state of the dead in the grave”) 
99. Sharh al-urjuza al-musamma bi `uqud al-juman fi `alam al-ma`ani wa al-bayan <1955> (“The commentary in rajaz [“surging”] meter entitled: The pearl necklaces related to the world of meanings and precious discourse”) 
100. Sharh shawahid al-mughni <1904> (“Commentary on the proof-texts of `Abd Allah ibn Hisham’s (“d. 1360CE”) Mughni al-labib or “The sufficient knowledge of the sensible one””) 
101. Shurut al-mufassir wa adabuh <1994> (“The criteria to be met by commentators of Qur’an and their ethics”) 
102. Siham al-isaba fi al-da`awat al-mustajaba <1987> (“The arrows that hit their target: About the prayers that are fulfilled”) 
103. Subul al-jaliyya fi al-aba’ al-`aliyya <1916> (“The manifest paths concerning the lofty ancestors [of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –]”) 
104. Ta`aqqubat al-Suyuti `ala mawdu`at Ibn al-Jawzi <1886> (“Suyuti’s critique of Ibn al-Jawzi’s collection of forged narrations”) 
105. Tabaqat al-mufassirin <1976> (“The biographical layers of Qur’an commentators”) 
106. Tabyid al-sahifa bi manaqib al-imam abi hanifa <1992> (“The whitening of the page: or, the virtues of Imam Abu Hanifa”) 
107. Al-tadhyil wa al-tadhnib `ala al-Nihaya fi gharib al-hadith wa-al-athar <1982> (“Marginal annotations on Ibn al-Athir’s `The goal'”) 
108. Tadrib al-rawi fi sharh taqrib al-nawawi <1994> (“The training of the hadith transmitter: an exegesis of Nawawi’s `The facilitation'”) 
109. Tahdhib al-khasa’is al-nabawiyya al-kubra <1989> (“The emendation of al-Suyuti’s book entitled `the awesome characteristics of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –‘”) 
110. Tahdhir al-khawass min akadhib al-qussas <1932> (“Warning the elite against the lies of story-tellers”) 
111. Takhrij ahadith sharh al-mawaqif fi `ilm al-kalam <1986> (“The documentation of the hadiths mentioned in “The commentary of the stopping-places in dialectical theology,” a work by al-Qadi `Adud al-Din `Abd al-Rahman ibn Ahmad Ayji al-Shirazi (“d. 756”) 
112. Tamhid al-farsh fi al-khisal al-mujiba li-zilal al-`arsh <1990> (“The characteristics that guarantee the shading of the Throne”) 
113. Tanbih al-ghabi fi takhti’a ibn `Arabi <1990> (“Warning to the ignorant who imputes error to Muhyi al-Din Ibn `Arabi [a reply to al-Biqa`i’s `Warning of the ignorant that Ibn `Arabi is a disbeliever]'”) 
114. Tanwir al-hawalik sharh `ala muwatta’ malik <1969> (“The enlightenment of intense blackness: commentary on Malik’s “Trodden path””); together with Is`af al-mubatta’ fi rijal al-muwatta’ (“The succor of the stalled concerning the narrators of Malik’s “Trodden Path””) 
115. Tanwir al-miqbas min tafsir ibn `abbas <1951> (“The enlightenment of torchlights from the Qur’anic commentary of Ibn `Abbas”) 
116. Tanzih al-anbiya’ `an tashbih al-aghbiya’ <1916> (“Declaring the Prophets far above the comparisons ignorant people make of themselves with them”) 
117. Taqrir al-istinad fi tafsir al-ijtihad <1983> (“Establishing authoritative ascription in the course of scholarly striving”) 118. Al-ta`rif bi adab al-ta’lif <1989> (“The etiquette of authorship”) 
119. Tarikh al-khulafa <1993> (“History of the Caliphs”) 
120. Tartib suwar al-qur’an <1986> (“The disposition of the suras of the Qur’an”) 
121. Tasliya al-aba’ bi-fuqdan al-abna’ al-musamma al-Ta`allul wa al-itfa’ li-nar la yutfa’ <1987> (“The consolation of parents who have lost their children, also known as: The extinction of the fire that cannot be extinguished”) 
122. Tawq al-hamama <1988> (“The flight of the dove”) 
123. Ta’yid al-haqiqa al-`aliyya wa tashyid al-tariqa al-shadhiliyya <1934> (“The upholding of the lofty truth and the buttressing of the Shadhili sufi path”) 
124. Al-ta`zim wa al-minna fi anna abaway rasul alla fi al-janna <1916> (“That the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — parents are in Paradise”) 
125. Tuhfa al-abrar bi nukat al-adhkar li al-nawawi <1990> (“Commentary on Nawawi’s “Supplications””) 
126. Tuhfa al-`Ajlan fi Fada’il `Uthman <1991> (“The merits of `Uthman ibn `Affan”) 
127. Tuhfa al-Nujaba’ <1990> (“The gem of patricians [a work on language]”) 
128. `Uqud al-Zabarjad `ala Musnad al-Imam Ahmad <1987> (“The chrysolite necklaces on Imam Ahmad’s collection of narrations traced to the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –“) 
129. `Uqud al-Zabarjad fi I`rab al-Hadith al-Nabawi <1994> (“The chrysolite necklaces on the grammatical analysis of the Prophet’s — Allah bless and greet him — narrations”) 
130. Al-Wasa’il fi Musamara al-Awa’il <1986> (“The means for conversation with the ancients”); also published as al-Wasa’il ila Ma`rifa al-Awa’il <1990> (“The means to the acquaintance of the ancients”) 
131. Wusul al-Amani bi Usul al-Tahani <1987> (“The attainment of one’s hope in the etiquette of well-wishing”) 
132. Al-Zajr bi al-Hijr <1950> (“The reprimand by means of the reminder of what is unlawful”) 
133. Zubda al-Laban Fawa’id Lughawiyya wa Hadithiyya <1989> (“The cream of the milk: miscellaneous benefits related to language and hadith”) 
134. Akhlaq Hamala al-Qur’an <1987> (“Manners of the carriers of Qur’an”) 
135. Badhl al-Himma fi Talab Bara’a al-Dhimma (“Directing one’s energies to pursue clearness of conscience”); contained in the collective volume entitled: Thalath Rasa’il fi al-Ghiba <1988> (“Three epistles on slander”) 
136. Al-la’ali’ al-Masnu`a fi al-Ahadith al-Mawdu`a <1960> (“The artificial pearls or forged hadiths”) 
137. Daqai’q al-akhbar fi dhikr al-janna wa al-nar <1961> (“The subtleties in the reports that mention Paradise and the Fire”) 
138. Al-ithaf bi hubb al-ashraf <1900> (“The present concerning love of the nobility [i.e. Descendants of the Prophet — Allah bless and greet him –]”) 
139. Hay’a al-saniyya fi al-hay’a al-sunniyya <1982> (“Treatise on astronomy”)

Main sources: Ibn Fahd, Dhayl Tadhkira al-Huffaz p. 6-10; al-Suyuti, Tarikh al-Khulafa’, introduction p. 5-10; Nuh Keller, Reliance of the Traveller p. 1100.


1Muhammad ibn Ibrahim al-Shaybani and Ahmad al-Khazindar, eds. Dalil Makhtutat al-Suyuti, 2nd ed. (Kuwait: Manshurat Markaz al-Makhtutat, 1995).

2Narrated from `Umar by al-Bazzar with a sound chain as stated by al-Haythami.

3See, for example, al-Sakhawi’s words in his Maqasid, in the entry khirqa.

4Ibn Abi Ya`la, Tabaqat al-Hanabila (1:192): “My father (al-Qadi Abu Ya`la) narrated to me in writing: `Isa ibn Muhammad ibn `Ali narrated to us: I heard `Abd Allah ibn Muhammad (Imam Abu al-Qasim al-Baghawi) say: I heard Abu `Abd Allah Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Hanbal say: `al-Hasan did narrate (qad rawa) from `Ali ibn Abi Talib.'” `Abd al-Razzaq in his Musannaf (7:412) narrates that `Ali even consulted al-Hasan in a certain judicial case. For the listing of the chains of transmission establishing that al-Hasan narrated from `Ali see al-Suyuti’s Ta’yid al-Haqiqa al-`Aliyya wa Tashyid al-Tariqa al-Shadhiliyya and Ahmad al-Ghumari’s al-Burhan al-Jali fi Tahqiq Intisab al-Sufiyya ila `Ali.

5Al-Biqa`i, Masra` al-Tasawwuf, aw, Tanbih Al-Ghabi Ila Takfir Ibn `Arabi, ed. `Abd al-Rahman al-Wakil (Bilbis: Dar al-Taqwa, <1989>); al-Suyuti, Tanbih Al-Ghabi Fi Takhti’a Ibn `Arabi, ed. `Abd al-Rahman Hasan Mahmud (Cairo: Maktaba al-Adab, 1990).

6It is related that some of the Ash`ari imams such as al-Qurtubi, al-Subki, and al-Sha`rani said that Abu Talib, the Prophet’s uncle, was also saved, according to Shaykh Ahmad Zayni Dahlan in his epistle Asna al-Matalib fi Najat Abi Talib (Cairo: Muhammad Effendi Mustafa, 1305/1886) who cites Imam al-Suhaymi and the Hanafi Mufti of Mecca Shaykh Ahmad ibn `Abd Allah Mirghani to that effect. They mention, among other evidence, the narration of al-`Abbas – Allah be well-pleased with him -: Ibn Sa`d said in his Tabaqat al-Kubra (1:118): `Affan ibn Muslim told us: Hammad ibn Salama told us: From Thabit [ibn Aslam al-Bunani]: From Ishaq ibn `Abd Allah ibn al-Harith [ibn Nawfal] who said: al-`Abbas said: “I said: `O Messenger of Allah, do you hope anything for Abu Talib?’ He replied: `I hope everything good from my Lord.'” The above narrators are all trustworthy and their transmission is sound, except that the meaning of the hadith is unspecific. Further, al-Qurtubi in his Tafsir (for verses 6:26 and 9:53) and Ibn al-Subki in Tabaqat al-Shafi`iyya al-Kubra (1:91-94) hold different positions than those ascribed to them above, and the sound evidence to the contrary is explicit and abundant but Allah knows best.

7Al-Suyuti, al-Radd `ala man Akhlada ila al-Ard (p. 116).

8Al-Suyuti, Husn al-Muhadara fi Akhbar Misr wa al-Qahira (p. 157).

 Allah’s blessings and peace on the Prophet, his Family, and his Companions.

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