We have presented a number of texts from Shia scholars and mujtahidin of every era to establish this relationship before the respected readers. Nine of these are from the canonical works of the Shia and are the statements of the infallible Imams. There are countless other narrations which document this union, which rise to the level of mash-hur. Despite the countless narrations and numerous statements of the mujtahidin on this subject, some people present a handful of narrations and a few statements of some scholars to the masses which reject this nikah. To remove this confusion, we would like to present before them one primary fundamental from their own scholars of usul regarding giving preference of some ahadith over others which will clarify this contradiction.
There are many reasons one narration is given preference over another. One reason is that the first narration has been narrated by numerous narrators while the second narration has very few narrators. In such a case, the first narration will be given preference and accepted, since a large number of people are safer from falling into error than a small number of people, and the second narration will be discarded.
This fundamental has been quoted from the book Ma’alim al Usul authored by Sheikh Jamal al Din Abu Mansur Hassan ibn Zayn al Din (d. 1011 A.H.), a reliable and authentic book in the eyes of the Shia.
منها الترجيح بالسند و يحصل بأمور الأول كثرة الرواة كأن يكون رواة أحدها أكثر عددا من رواة الآخر فيرجح ما رواته أكثر بقوة الظن إذ العدد الأكثر أبعد عن الخطأ من الأقل
Preference owing to sanad: This is obtained in various ways. Firstly, the abundance of narrators, i.e. the narrators of the one are more in number than the narrators of the other. Preference will be given to the narration with more narrators on the basis of a strong perception since a large number is further from falling into error than a small number.
It would be prudent to clarify that Sayyidina ‘Umar ibn al Khattab was married to Sayyidina ‘Ali’s daughter Umm Kulthum, whose mother is Sayyidah Fatimah radiya Llahu ‘anhum. He was not married to Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr. This fact is verified in both Sunni and Shia books.
To prove this, it is necessary to elucidate that:
We will now present substantiations from the books of the masters of genealogy.
Substantiations for the first point:
أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر … و أمها حبيبة بنت خارجة بن زيد بن أبي زهير من بني الحارث بن الخزرج و أم كلثوم ابنة أبي بكر هذه التي قال أبو بكر لعائشة بنته حين حضرته الوفاة إنما هو أخواك و أختاك قالت عائشة هذه أسماء قد عرفتها فمن الأخرى قال ذو بطن بنت خارجة قد ألقي في خلدي أنها جارية فكانت كما قال و ولدت بعد موته
Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr: Her mother is Habibah bint Kharijah ibn Zaid ibn Abi Zuhair from the Banu al Harith ibn al Khazraj. This Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr is the same person Abu Bakr alluded to when he told ‘Aisha his daughter on his deathbed, “It is only your two brothers and sisters.”
‘Aisha enquired with surprise, “This is Asma’ which I am aware of. So who is the other sister?”
He explained, “In the womb of Bint Kharijah. I have a strong feeling that it will be a girl.”
And it turned out as he had presumed. She was born after his demise.
Her lineage appears in Tabaqat ibn Sa’d as follows:
أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر الصديق بن أبي قحافة بن عامر … (التيمي) و أمها حبيبة بنت خارجة بن زيد بن أبي زهير … (الخزرجي)
Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr ibn Abi Quhafah ibn ‘Amir (al Taymi)… Her mother is Habibah bint Kharijah ibn Zaid ibn Abi Zuhair (al Khazraji).
Substantiations for the second point:
Ibn Qutaybah Dinawari writes in al Ma’arif while discussing the children of Sayyidina Abu Bakr al Siddiq radiya Llahu ‘anhu:
و أما أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر فخطبها عمر بن الخطاب إلى عائشة فأنعمت له و كرهت أم كلثوم فاحتالت له حتى أمسك عنها
As regards Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr, ‘Umar ibn al Khattab proposed to her via ‘Aisha. She handed over the decision to Umm Kulthum, who turned down the proposal. So ‘Umar backed down.
Ibn Jarir al Tabari while listing the children and wives of Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu writes:
قال المدائني و خطب أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر و هو صغيرة و أرسل فيها إلى عائشة … فقالت الأمر إليها فقالت أم كلثوم لا حاجة لي فيه
Al Mada’ini says: He sent ‘Aisha with a proposal to Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr while she was very young. ‘Aisha said, “She will decide on the matter.” Umm Kulthum said, “I do not wish to marry him.”
Ibn Abi al Hadid with reference to al Tabari states:
و روى الطبري في تاريخه أن عمر بن الخطاب خطب أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر فأرسل فيها عائشة فقالت الأمر إليها فقالت أم كلثوم لا حاجة لي فيه إلخ
Al Tabari reports in his Tarikh that ‘Umar ibn al Khattab proposed to Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr via the agency of ‘Aisha. ‘Aisha said, “She will decide on the matter.” Umm Kulthum said, “I do not wish to marry him.”
Substantiations for the third point:
Mus’ab Zubairi writes:
و أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر ولدت لطلحة بن عبيد الله زكريا و عائشة ابني طلحة ثم خلف عليها عبد الرحمن بن عبد الله بن أبي ربيعة … فولدت له عثمان و إبراهيم و موسى
Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr gave birth to Zakariyya and ‘Aisha for Talhah ibn ‘Ubaid Allah. Thereafter, ‘Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Abdullah ibn Abi Rabi’ah married her and she bore for him ‘Uthman, Ibrahim, and Musa.
Ibn Sa’d writes in the biography of Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr:
تزوجها طلحة بن عبيد الله بن عثمان بن عمرو بن كعب بن سعد بن تيم فولدت له زكريا و يوسف مات صغيرا و عائشة بني طلحة فقتل عنها طلحة بن عبيد الله يوم الجمل … ثم تزوجت أم كلثوم بعد طلحة بن عبيد الله عبد الرحمن بن عبد الله بن أبي ربيعة (المخزومي) فولدت له إبراهيم الأحول و موسى و أم حميد و أم عثمان …
Talhah ibn ‘Ubaid Allah ibn ‘Uthman ibn ‘Amr ibn Ka’b ibn Sa’d ibn Taym married her. She gave birth to his children Zakariyya, Yusuf―who passed away in infancy, and ‘Aisha. Talhah ibn ‘Ubaid Allah was killed on the day of Jamal. Thereafter, ‘Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Abdullah ibn Abi Rabi’ah (al Makhzumi) married Umm Kulthum after Talhah ibn ‘Ubaid Allah’s death. She gave birth for him to Ibrahim al Ahwal, Musa, Umm Humaid, and Umm ‘Uthman.
Abu Jafar Muhammad ibn Habib al Baghdadi writes under the sons-in-law of Sayyidina Abu Bakr al Siddiq radiya Llahu ‘anhu:
و طلحة بن عبيد الله كانت تحته أم كلثوم بنت أبي بكر الصديق و عبد الرحمن الأحول بن عبد الله بن أبي ربيعة المخزومي خلف على أم كلثوم بعد طلحة
And Talhah ibn ‘Ubaid Allah: Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr al Siddiq was in his wedlock. And ‘Abdul Rahman al Ahwal ibn ‘Abdullah ibn Abi Rabi’ah al Makhzumi married Umm Kulthum after Talhah.
All the above quotations from the masters of genealogy prove beyond doubt that Sayyidina ‘Umar ibn al Khattab radiya Llahu ‘anhu was in fact married to Umm Kulthum bint ‘Ali al Murtada, and not Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr al Siddiq radiya Llahu ‘anhum.
Hereunder, we wish to summarise this discussion.
Sayyidina ‘Umar and Sayyidina ‘Ali’s radiya Llahu ‘anhuma relationship was further strengthened with this connection. All praise belongs to Allah that this loving relationship was maintained and preserved.
The ‘Ulama’ have recorded that this blessed union was formed in Dhu al Qa’dah 17 A.H and the stipulated dowry was 40 000 dirhams. Umm Kulthum gave birth to Sayyidina ‘Umar’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu children, one son by the name of Zaid and one daughter by the name of Ruqayyah who got married to Ibrahim ibn Nuaim al Nakham al ‘Adawi after coming of age. Some historians have recorded another daughter by the name of Fatimah, but this is disputed.
Zaid ibn ‘Umar ibn al Khattab was in his youth. Once, a fight broke out at night within the Banu ‘Adi tribe. Zaid advanced in the midst of the fight to calm things down and reconcile. Due to the darkness that covered them, a person mistakenly injured Zaid. He was severely wounded on his head, which was incurable. He remained bed ridden for few days and his mother Umm Kulthum bint ‘Ali also fell ill. Coincidentally, both mother and son passed away at the same time. It could not be ascertained as to who passed away first. ‘Ulama’ state that this is one of the amazing rulings, where neither of the two inherited from the other.
Thereafter, both their biers were lifted at the same time. Some say that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar al Faruq radiya Llahu ‘anhuma led their Salat al Janazah while other assert that it was Sa’id ibn al ‘As al Umawi, the governor of Madinah.
Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were present at the time in the rows of worshippers. Zaid ibn ‘Umar’s bier was placed close to the Imam while Umm Kulthum’s bier was placed at a little distance away from the Imam in the Qiblah direction. And this is how the Salat al Janazah was performed.
The Islamic historian ‘Allamah al Dhahabi writes at the end of the biography of Umm Kulthum bint ‘Ali:
و ذلك في أوائل دولة معاوية
This took place in the initial stages of Muawiyah’s reign.
There remains absolutely no doubt on the certainty of this marriage. It is accepted by the narrations of the Ahlus Sunnah and attested to by the reports of the Shia. It is a historical fact backed by the corroborations of the masters of genealogy.
Due to this blessed union, the following links between Sayyidina ‘Umar and Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were established:
These are ten complete.
Beloved readers, adopt fairness and observe impartiality for Allah’s sake and decide whether these are anecdotes of friendship or tales of hatred? We have presented the reality before you. The ball is now in your court to apply your logic and reason.
وَيَهْدِيْ مَنْ يَشَاءُ إِلىٰ صِرَاطٍ مُّسْتَقِيْمٍ
And He guides whom He wills to a straight path.
 Ma’alim al Usul, matlab 9, old Iran print, 1290 edition.
 Nasab Quraysh, pg. 278, under the offspring of Taym ibn Murrah, Egypt print.
 Tabaqat ibn Sa’d, vol. 8 pg. 338, biography of Umm Kulthum, Leiden print, Europe.
 Al Ma’arif, pg. 76, the children of al Siddiq, Egypt print.
 Tarikh al Tabari, vol. 5 pg. 17.
 Sharh Nahj al Balaghah, vol. 3 pg. 231, discussion on the Faruqi demerits, demerit 5, Beirut print.
 Nasab Quraysh, pg. 278, Abu Bakr al Siddiq’s children.
 Tabaqat Ibn Sa’d, vol. 8 pg. 339, biography of Umm Kulthum bint Abi Bakr al Siddiq, Leiden print, Europe.
 Kitab al Muhabbar, pg. 54, Hyderabad Dakkan print.
 Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, vol. 3 pg. 330, biography of Umm Kulthum bint ‘Ali; Tarikh Madinat Dimashq, vol. 2 pg. 80, conditions of the Masajid.
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