Words of Wisdom

Anecdotes relating to the character of Sayyidah Fatimah bint Hussain
December 2, 2019
Statements of the scholars
December 2, 2019

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Words of Wisdom


Undoubtedly a person such as Sayyidah Fatimah bint Hussain rahimaha Llah, who drank from the sweet fountain of Prophetic eloquence; one would find her speech brimming with wisdom, eloquence, and acumen. When the words of Sayyidah Fatimah bint Hussain rahimaha Llah are analysed deeply, one would see the unmistakeable impression of Sayyidina Hussain ibn ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu. These are but the effects of the house she was raised in. It would be her aunt Zainab bint ‘Ali—the wise woman of the Banu Hashim—that had the greatest effect on her. Amongst her sayings which have been recorded:

Ibn ‘Asakir reports with his chain of narration from Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Uthman:

O my sons, verily—by Allah—there is not anything the foolish people have obtained through their foolishness, likewise there is no passion that they have fulfilled, but that the people of dignity have obtained the same through their dignity. Therefore always remain in the cover of the concealment of Allah.[1]


Ibn ‘Asakir reports with his chain of narration from Yahya ibn Abi Ya’la:

When the wealth—from the crops of a hamlet in Khaybar—arrived and the one-fifth of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was with Abu Bakr ibn Hazm[2]; he distributed it amongst the Banu Hashim, each of them receiving 50 Dinars. Fatimah bint Hussain summoned me and instructed me to write. I wrote:

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious Most Merciful.

To the servant of Allah, ‘Umar Amir al Mu’minin from Fatimah bint Hussain.

Peace be upon you, I praise before Allah Who alone is worthy of worship.

May Allah assist Amir al Mu’minin in what he has been appointed and preserve his din. Verily Amir al Mu’minin wrote to Abu Bakr ibn Hazm instructing him to distribute the wealth from the hamlet amongst us. In so doing he sought to follow the practice of the Rightly Guided Rulers before him. Know well that it has reached us and has been divided amongst us. May Allah grant proximity to the Amir al Mu’minin and reward him with the best reward He has showered upon any leader. Verily, we had been afflicted and desired to be treated justly. I take an oath by Allah before you, O Amir al Mu’minin, you have assisted from the family of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam those who had no assistant, you have clothed those who were naked, and spent on those who had nothing to spend…[3]


Also amongst her eloquent words is the manner in which she described her son before Hisham ibn ‘Abdul Malik. Ibn ‘Asakir reports with his chain of narration from Muslim ibn Yasar:

When Fatimah bint Hussain wed her daughter from ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Uthman[4] to Hisham ibn ‘Abdul Malik, she entered into his presence along with Sukaynah [bint Hussain, her sister].

Hisham said to her, “Describe for us, O daughter of Hussain, your sons from your cousin [Hassan al Muthanna] and also describe to us your sons from our cousin [‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Uthman].”

So she began with the children of Hassan and said, “As for ‘Abdullah (al Mahd); he is our leader, most honourable of us, and obeyed the most. As for Hassan [al Muthallath]; he is our orator and defender. Ibrahim [al Ghamr] resembles the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam most of all people in his habits, gait, and features. When the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would walk he would tread lightly, his heel hardly touching the ground. As for the two sons from your cousin; verily Muhammad is our beauty who we take pride in, and Qasim is our barrier with which we ward off, and he resembles closely ‘As ibn Umayyah in his voice and nature.”

Hisham replied, “By Allah, you have described them most excellently, O daughter of Hussain.”[5]


NEXT⇒ Statements of the scholars

[1] Tarikh Dimashq, 74/18; Tahdhib al Kamal, 25/519, under the biography of Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr, # 5364.

[2] He is Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Amr ibn Hazm, the Muhaddith and appointed governor of Madinah twice. He was appointed Qadi by ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz. His biography can be found in all the books of biographies.

[3] Tarikh Dimashq, 74/18-19.

[4] ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Uthman rahimahu Llah and Fatimah bint Hussain rahimaha Llah were blessed with four daughters: ‘Abdah, Aisha, Umm Sa’id, and Ruqayyah they in turn were each wed to one of the Umayyad Khalifas, Walid ibn ‘Abdul Malik, Sulaiman ibn ‘Abdul Malik, Yazid ibn ‘Abdul Malik, and Hisham ibn ‘Abdul Malik. It is the marriage of Ruqayyah that is referred to here.

[5] Tarikh Dimashq, 74/17. An abridged version can be read in Tahdhib al Tahdhib, 2/263, # 486, biography of Hassan ibn Hassan ibn Hassan ibn ‘Ali.