Ibn Hajar al-Haytami

For other uses, see Ibn Hajar (disambiguation).
Not to be confused with al-Haythami.
Ibn Hajar al-Haytami
Born 909 AH
Mahallat Abil-Haytam in Western Egypt[1]
Died 974 AH[1]
Ethnicity Arab
Religion Islam
Denomination Sunni
Jurisprudence Shafi'i[1]
Creed Ashari[1]
Main interest(s) Fiqh, Hadith

Shibab al-Dīn Abū al-ʿAbbās Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad ibn ʿAlī ibn Hajar al-Haytamī al-Makkī al-Ansārī[1] known as Ibn Hajar al-Haytami al-Makki (Arabic: ابن حجر الهيتمي المكي) was a famous[2] Muhaddith and theologian of Islam. Ibn Hajar was specialized in Islamic Jurisprudence and well known as a prolific writer of the Shâfi'î school.[2][3] With al-Imām Aḥmad al-Ramlī, he represents the foremost resource for fatwa (legal opinion) for the entire late Shâfi‘î school.[4]


Birth and education

Ibn Hajar al-Haytamī was born in 909AH in the small village Abū Haytam in western Egypt.[1] When he was a small child, his father died and his upbringing was left to the charge of his grandfather. His grandfather was known to the locals as the "stone" because of his pious nature. The nickname came from people saying he was "silent as a stone". This was due to the fact that he seldom spoke and when he did it was greatly revered for his religious knowledge. His grandfather died, however, shortly after his father and his father’s teachers Shams Dīn b. Abi'l-Hamā'il and Shams al-Dīn Muhammad al-Shanāwī became his caretakers. As a child he began his studies with the memorisation of the Qur'an and Nawawi's Minhaj.[1] His caretaker al-Shanāwī decided that al-Haytamī should continue his elementary education at the sanctuary of Sayyid Ahmad al-Badawī in Tanta.[1]


After completing his elementary education, Ibn Hajar al- Haytamī continued his schooling at al-Azhar[1] where he studied under many noteworthy scholars, the most predominant one being Zakariyyā’ al-Ansārī.[1] He also studied under the famous Shafi'i scholar Shihab al-Din al-Ramli.[1]

Migration to Mecca

Al-Haytamī performed the Hajj in the year 1527 with one of his teachers al-Bakri. It was during this trip that al-Haytamī decided to begin writing fiqh. He returned to Mecca in 1531 and stayed there a year before returning home again. During this visit al-Haytamī worked on a compilation of notes which he would later use in his authorship to write commentaries. The last time he traveled to Mecca was in 1533, this time he brought his family and decided to permanently reside there. His life dedication in Mecca began to be writing, teaching, and issuing fatwa. He authored major works in Shāfiʿī jurisprudence, hadīth, tenets of faith, education, hadīth commentary, and formal legal opinion. It was at this time he wrote his most notable work, which was called “Tuhfat al-muhtaj bi Sharh al-Minhadj”. This work was a commentary on Imam Nawawi’s writing “Minhadj al-talibin”. Ibn Hajar al-Haytamī’s commentary became one of the two authoritative textbooks of the Shafi’i school. He wrote many other works, some of which are listed in the “works” section of this page.


Ibn Hajar al-Haytamī died in 973 in Mecca.[5] He was buried in the cemetery of Ma'lat.[6]




  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Aaron Spevack, The Archetypal Sunni Scholar: Law, Theology, and Mysticism in the Synthesis of Al-Bajuri, p 77. State University of New York Press, 1 October 2014. ISBN 143845371X
  2. 1 2 Arendonk, C. van; Schacht, J.. "Ibn Ḥad̲j̲ar al-Haytamī." Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Brill Online, 2014. Reference. 16 November 2014
  3. Ghaly, Mohammad, "Writings on Disability in Islam: The 16th-Century Polemic on Ibn Fahd’s al-Nukat al-Zirâf", Arab Studies Journal, George Washington University, Fall 2005/Spring 2006, vol. XIII no. 2/vol. XIV no. 1, pp. 9- XIII no. 2/vol. XIV no. 1, pp. 9-38.
  4. J. Schacht and C. van Arendonk, "Ibn Hajar al-Haytami" in Encyclopedia of Islam, vol. III, p. 779.
  5. 1 2 El-Rouayheb, Khaled. "Sunni Islamic Scholars on the Status of Logic, 1500-1800". Islamic Law and Society 11 (2004), p 217.
  6. http://www.at-tawhid.net/article-ahmad-ibn-hajar-al-haytami-al-makki-m-974-106818325.html
  7. Music and Singing in Islam - page two
  8. http://www.sunnah.org/tasawwuf/scholr33.htm
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