We find some texts which have recorded the praise of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu regarding the Ahlul Bayt as in al Isti’ab of Ibn ‘Abdul Barr:
كان معاوية يكتب فيما ينزل به ليسأل له علي بن أبي طالب رضي الله عنه عن ذلك، فلما بلغه قتله قال: ذهب الفقه والعلم بموت ابن أبي طالب
Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to take notes regarding certain situations he was faced with so that he may ask ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib regarding them. When the news of the martyrdom of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu reached him, he said, “Fiqh and knowledge have gone with the demise of ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib.”
Imam Ahmed also narrated with a chain of narrators from Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu:
رأيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يمص لسانه أو قال: شفته، -يعني الحسن بن علي – وإنه لن يعذب لسان أو شفتان مصهما رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم
It is narrated from Asbagh ibn Nabatah:
دخل ضرار بن ضمرة النهشلي على معاوية بن أبي سفيان رضي الله عنه، فقال له: صف لي علياً؟ قال: أو تعفيني؟ فقال: لا، بل صفه لي.
قال ضرار: رحم الله علياً! كان والله فينا كأحدنا، يدنينا إذا أتيناه، ويجيبنا إذا سألناه، ويقربنا إذا زرناه، لا يغلق له دوننا باب، ولا يحجبنا عنه حاجب، ونحن والله مع تقريبه لنا وقربه منا لا نكلمه لهيبته، ولا نبتديه لعظمته، فإذا تبسم فمثل اللؤلؤ المنظوم
فقال معاوية: زدني في صفته. فقال ضرار: رحم الله علياً كان -والله- طويل السهاد، قليل الرقاد، يتلو كتاب الله آناء الليل وأطراف النهار…
قال: فبكى معاوية وقال: حسبك يا ضرار! كذلك والله كان علي، رحم الله أبا الحسن
Once, Dirar ibn Damirah al Nahshali came to Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu asked him, “Describe ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to me.”
Dirar asked to be excused from this task but Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu refused and told him again, “Describe him to me.”
Dirar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “May Allah have mercy on ‘Ali. He was like one of us when he was amongst us. When we came visit to him, he called us close to him. When we asked him questions, he answered it. He made us feel close to him when we visited him. There was no locked door between us and him. There was no barrier between us and him. Despite our closeness to him, we still were not able to talk to him due to his awe. We would not begin the conversation due to his greatness. When he smiled, his teeth shone like a string of pearls.”
Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “Tell me more!”
Dirar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “May Allah have mercy on ‘Ali. He would stay awake for long periods of time and would sleep very little. He would read the Qurʾan day and night.”
Asbagh ibn Nabatah says, “Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu started crying and said, ‘Stop O Dirar, By Allah, ‘Ali was like that. May Allah have mercy on him.’ ”
Ibn Kathir narrates in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah from ‘Ikrimah that he said:
لما مات ابن عباس رضى الله عنهما سمعت معاوية رضى الله عنه يقول: مات والله افقه من مات ومن عاش.
When Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma passed away, I heard Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu saying, “By Allah, The person who had the most understanding from all people has passed away.”
The following is recorded in Siyar A’lam al Nubala’ of al Dhahabi:
أن يزيد بن معاوية فاخر الحسن بن علي فقال له أبوه: أفاخرت الحسن قال: نعم قال: لعلك تظن أن أمك مثل أمه أو جدك كجده
Yazid ibn Muawiyah prided himself above Hassan ibn ‘Ali. His father asked him, “Do you pride yourself above Hassan?”
Yazid replied, “Yes,”
Muawiyah said, “Do you think your mother was of the same status like his mother or your grandfather was of the same status like his grandfather?”
The following narration from Ibn Abi Shaybah is also recorded in Siyar A’lam al Nubala’:
لأجيزنك بجائزة لم أجز بها أحدا، فأجازه بأربع مائة ألف فقبلها
Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu came to Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Upon seeing him Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “I want to gift you with something that I have not gifted anyone before.” He proceeded to give him four hundred thousand and Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu accepted.
Ibn ‘Asakir narrates his praise regarding ‘Abdullah ibn Jafar in Tarikh Dimashq from ‘Abdul Malik ibn Marwan from his father, who said:
سمعت أبي يقول سمعت معاوية يقول بنو هاشم رجلان رسول الله (صلى الله عليه وسلم) لكل خير ذكر وعبد الله بن جعفر لكل شرف لا والله ما سبق أحد إلى شرف الا سبقه وإنه لمن مشكاة رسول الله (صلى الله عليه وسلم) والله لكأن المجد نازل منزلا لا يبلغه أحد وعبد الله نازل وسطه.
I heard Muawiyah saying, “Banu Hashim consisted of two prominent people: The Rasul of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, who is worthy of being described in every good way. The second is ‘Abdullah ibn Jafar who is worthy of every honour. There isn’t anyone who beat him to any type of honour. Verily, he is from the lamp of the Rasul of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. By Allah, it is as if greatness is descending at a certain place and no one is able to reach it, and ‘Abdullah is in the middle of it.”
Al Isti’ab, Biography # 1871
 The narrator is not sure what was said.
 Musnad Ahmed, #16894 Al Arna’ut classified it as Sahih.
 Bihar al Anwar, vol.14 pg. 41; Amali al Saduq, #624
 Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, vol. 8 pg. 301. Shu’ayb al Arna’ut classified the chain of narrators as Sahih.
 Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, vol. 3 pg. 260.
 Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, vol. 3 pg. 269. The researcher of the book classified the chain of narrators as Sahih.
 Tarikh Dimashq, vol.29 pg. 179. A point worthy of note is that there are three Khulafa’, one after the other, in this chain of narrators, viz. Muawiyah, Marwan, and ‘Abdul Malik.Back to top