You are on page 1of 3

Ab tim al- Rz

(936 words)
Ab tim Muammad b. Idrs b. al-Mundhir b. Dwd b. Mihrn al-Rz al-anal (al-Jazz alGhaafn) (195-Shabn 277/810 or 811890, in Rayy) was an Iranian adth scholar; his epithet alanal is said to have come from one of his ancestorsa mawl of the Ban Tamm b. anala alGhaafn or of the Ban Tamm b. anala b. Yarbor from the Darb al-anala, a street in Rayy.
His family came from the village of Jazzcalled by al-Dhahab (d. 748/1348) Jarknin, which is
identified by the editors as Jurwn (13:250)in the district of Isfahan, and he was born in Rayy, in
northern Iran.
He began to write adth at the age of fourteen (in 209/8245) and at fifteen was chosen as a dictation
secretary (mustaml) (Ibn Ab tim, Taqdima, 3667).
Ab tim described to his son Abd al-Ramn two of his journeys in quest of knowledge (alab alilm), with their attendant hardships. On the first, he left Rayy in 213/2289 and returned in 221/836.
He visited: Kufa, where he attended the lessons of Ab Nuaym al-Fal b. Dukayn (d. 219/834), one of
al-Bukhrs (d. 256/870) most important masters (al-Dhahab, 10:145; al-Subk, 2:207); Basra, for
eight months, where he suffered hunger and had to sell his clothes; and Baghdad, Medina, Mecca, alBarayn, Egypt, Ramla, Jerusalem, Ascalon, Tiberias, Damascus, Homs (im), Bessan (Baysn, Bet
Shean), Antioch, Tarsus (in 217 or 218/8324), Raqqa, Baghdad, and Wsi. On the second, he left
Rayy in 242/8567 and returned in 245/85960. He performed the pilgrimage four times, in 215/8301,
235/84950, 242/8567, and 255/8689 (Ibn Ab tim, Taqdima, 35961, 3636). He had many
students, among them his son Abd al-Ramn (see the list in al-Mizz, 16:578; al-Subk, 2:208).
According to the anaf jurist Ab Jafar al-aw (d. 321/933), the three greatest traditionists of the
time resided together in Rayy (hence their epithet al-Rziyyn): Ab Zura, Ibn Wra (d. 270/884),
and Ab tim (al-Dhahab, 13:29). Ab tim and Ab Zura, who were related by blood, were
considered the two imms in adth in Khurasn, especially for their expertise in the discipline of
assessing the reliability or unreliability of transmitters (al-jar wa-l-tadl) (see the list in Juynboll,
165). It is said that the two agreed in most of these assessments, without providing any evidence of the
source of their knowledge, just as both minters and jewelers recognise what is counterfeit (Ibn Ab
tim, Taqdima, 34951). If they disagreed, each simply referred to his adth and remained silent
(Tarkh Baghdd, 2:76). Ab tims assessments of transmitters were transmitted by his son Abd alRamn in al-Jar wa-l-tadl and Ilal al-adth.
A brief creed has been transmitted from Ab tim (Ibn Ab Yal, 1:286; Laoust, 15); it differs from
another creed transmitted from both him and Ab Zura al-Rz (al-Llak, 1:197204; trans.
Abrahamov, 547). The former is clearly anbal in its theological orientation (d. 241/855; both Ab
tim and Ab Zura were students of Ibn anbal). The influence of Ab tim, Ab Zura, and Ibn

Ab tim in the establishment of Sunn doctrine after the inquisition (mina) extended far beyond
Rayy and Khursn (van Ess, TG 2:6367).
Ab tim is not credited with any published books except a Kitb al-zuhd (Book of renunciation)
attributed to him (GAS 1:153). His son and the traditionist Ab Uthmn al-Bardh (d. 292/905; GAS
1:163) transmitted his views and those of Ab Zura on the quality of adth transmitters (al-Hshim).
Claude Gilliot

Ab tim al-Rz, Min Kitb al-Zuhd li Ab tim Muammad b. Idrs al-anal al-Rz, ed. mir
asan abr, 2 vols. in 1 (Beirut 1422/2001), 199
al-Dhahab, Siyar alm al-nubal, ed. Shuayb al-Arna and usayn al-Asad (Beirut 19818),
Ibn Ab tim al-Rz, al-Jar wa-l-tadl, 8 vols., Hyderabad 136072/194153, repr. Beirut n.d., 9
vol. (with Taqdima)
Ibn Ab tim al-Rz, Taqdimat al-marifa li-Kitb al-jar wa-l-tadl (Hyderabad 1371/1952), 349
Ibn Ab tim al-Rz, Ilal al-adth, ed. Muibb al-Dn al-Khab, 2 vols. in 1, Cairo 1343/1925,
repr., with index vol. by Ysuf al-Marashl, Beirut 19856
Ibn Ab Yal b. al-Farr, abaqt al-anbila, ed. Muammad mid al-Fiq (Cairo 1371/1952, repr.
Beirut n.d.), 1:2846, no. 390
al-Khall, Kitb al-irshd f marifat ulam al-adth, ed. Muammad Sad b. Umar Idrs (Riyadh
1409/1989), 2:6813
al-Llak, Shar ul itiqd ahl al-sunna wa-l-jama, ed. Amad b. Sad b. amdn al-Ghmid
(Riyadh 1418/19975), 1:197204 (creed of Ab Zura and Ab tim)
al-Mizz, Tahdhb al-Kaml f asm al-rijl, ed. A. A. Abd and . A. gh (Beirut 1414/1994),
16:5662, no. 5637
al-Samn, al-Ansb, ed. Abdallh al-Brd (Beirut 1988), 2:58 (s.v. al-Jazz)
al-Subk, abaqt al-shfiiyya al-kubr, ed. Mamd Muammad al-in and Abd al-Fatt
Muammad al-ulw, 10 vols. (Cairo 196476), 2:20711, no. 53
al-Khab al-Baghdd, Tarkh Baghdd, ed. M. Sad al-Irq, 14 vols. (Cairo 193149, repr. Beirut
194080), 2:737, no. 455
Ibn Askir, Trkh madnat Dimashq, ed. Muibb Gharma al-Amraw (Beirut 19892000), 52:316,
no. 6072.

GAS 1:153
Binyamin Abrahamov, Islamic theology. Traditionalism and rationalism, Edinburgh 1998
Eerik Dickinson, The development of early Sunnite adth criticism. The Taqdima of Ibn Ab tim alRz, Leiden 2001
Sad al-Hshim, Ab Zura al-Rz wa-juhduhu f l-sunna al-nabawiyya, 3 vols., Medina 1982,
Cairo and Medina 19892
Gautier H. A. Juynboll, Muslim tradition, Cambridge 1983
Umar Ri Kala, Mujam al-muallifn, Damascus 195761, repr. Beirut n.d., 15 vols. in 8
Muammad Kharbt, Ab tim al-Rz wa-juhduhu f khidmat al-sunna al-nabawiyya, Marrakech
Henri Laoust, Les premires professions de foi hanbalites, in Mlanges Louis Massignon (Damascus
1957), 735
Christopher Melchert, The formation of the Sunn schools of law. 9th10th centuries C.E., Leiden 1997
van Ess, TG
al-Zirikl, al-Alm, 8 vols., Beirut 19794.
Cite this page

Gilliot, Claude. "Ab tim al-Rz." Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE. Edited by: Kate Fleet, Gudrun
Krmer, Denis Matringe, John Nawas, Everett Rowson. Brill Online, 2015. Reference. Emory
University. 27 November 2015
First appeared online: 2011