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The Status of Woman in Islam

The Status of Woman in Islam by Dr. Jamal Badawi
June 4, 2008




PREFACE


Family, society and ultimately the whole of mankind is treated by
Islam on an ethical basis. Differentiation in sex is neither a credit
nor a drawback for the sexes. Therefore, when we talk about status of
woman in Islam it should not lead us to think that Islam has no specific
guidelines, limitations, responsibilities and obligations for men. What
makes one valuable and respectable in the eyes of Allah, the Creator of
mankind and the universe, is neither one’s prosperity, position,
intelligence, physical strength nor beauty, but only one’s
Allah-consciousness and awareness (taqwa). However, since in the Western
culture and in cultures influenced by it, there exists a disparity
between men and women there is more need for stating Islam’s position on
important issues in a clear way.
Dr. Jamal Badawi’s essay, The Status of Women in Islam, was
originally published in our quarterly journal, Al-lttihad, Vol. 8, No.
2, Sha’ban 1391/Sept 1971. Since then it has been one of our
most-demanded publications. We thank Br. Jamal for permitting us to
reprint his essay. We hope it will clarify many of the misconceptions.
Anis Ahmad,

Director Dept. of Education and Training

MSA of U.S. and Canada

P.O. Box 38 Plainfield, IN 46168 USA
Jumada al Thani 1400 April 1980


I. INTRODUCTION


The status of women in society is neither a new issue nor is it a fully settled one.


The position of Islam on this issue has been among the subjects presented to the Western reader with the least objectivity.


This paper is intended to provide a brief and authentic exposition of
what Islam stands for in this regard. The teachings of Islam are based
essentially on the Quran (God’s revelation) and Hadeeth (elaboration by
Prophet Muhammad).
The Quran and the Hadeeth, properly and unbiasedly understood,
provide the basic source of authentication for any position or view
which is attributed to Islam.
The paper starts with a brief survey of the status of women in the
pre-Islamic era. It then focuses on these major questions: What is the
position of Islam regarding the status of woman in society? How similar
or different is that position from “the spirit of the time,” which was
dominant when Islam was revealed? How would this compare with the
“rights” which were finally gained by woman in recent decades?
II. HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES


One major objective of this paper is to provide a fair evaluation of
what Islam contributed (or failed to contribute) toward the restoration
of woman’s dignity and rights. In order to achieve this objective, it
may be useful to review briefly how women were treated in general in
previous civilizations and religions, especially those which preceded
Islam (Pre-610 C.E.). Part of the information provided here, however,
describes the status of woman as late as the nineteenth century, more
than twelve centuries after Islam.
Women in Ancient Civilization


Describing the status of the Indian woman, Encyclopedia Britannica states:


In India, subjection was a cardinal
principle. Day and night must women be held by their protectors in a
state of dependence says Manu. The rule of inheritance was agnatic, that
is descent traced through males to the exclusion of females.
In Hindu scriptures, the description of a good wife is as follows: “a
woman whose mind, speech and body are kept in subjection, acquires high
renown in this world, and, in the next, the same abode with her
husband.”
In Athens, women were not better off than either the Indian or the Roman women.


“Athenian women were always minors, subject to some male – to their father, to their brother, or to some of their male kin.


Her consent in marriage was not generally thought to be necessary and
“she was obliged to submit to the wishes of her parents, and receive
from them her husband and her lord, even though he were stranger to
her.”
A Roman wife was described by an historian as: “a babe, a minor, a
ward, a person incapable of doing or acting anything according to her
own individual taste, a person continually under the tutelage and
guardianship of her husband.”
In the Encyclopedia Britannica, we find a summary of the legal status of women in the Roman civilization:


In Roman Law a woman was even in historic
times completely dependent. If married she and her property passed into
the power of her husband . . . the wife was the purchased property of
her husband, and like a slave acquired only for his benefit. A woman
could not exercise any civil or public office . could not be a witness,
surety, tutor, or curator; she could not adopt or be adopted, or make
will or contract. Among the Scandinavian races women were:
under perpetual tutelage, whether married
or unmarried. As late as the Code of Christian V, at the end of the
17th Century, it was enacted that if a woman married without the consent
of her tutor he might have, if he wished, administration and usufruct
of her goods during her life.
According to the English Common Law:


…all real property which a wife held at
the time of a marriage became a possession of her husband. He was
entitled to the rent from the land and to any profit which might be made
from operating the estate during the joint life of the spouses. As time
passed, the English courts devised means to forbid a husband’s
transferring real property without the consent of his wife, but he still
retained the right to manage it and to receive the money which it
produced. As to a wife’s personal property, the husband’s power was
complete. He had the right to spend it as he saw fit.
Only by the late nineteenth Century did the situation start to
improve. “By a series of acts starting with the Married women’s Property
Act in 1870, amended in 1882 and 1887, married women achieved the right
to own property and to enter contracts on a par with spinsters, widows,
and divorcees.” As late as the Nineteenth Century an authority in
ancient law, Sir Henry Maine, wrote: “No society which preserves any
tincture of Christian institutions is likely to restore to married women
the personal liberty conferred on them by the Middle Roman Law.”
In his essay The Subjection of Women, John Stuart Mill wrote:


We are continually told that civilization
and Christianity have restored to the woman her just rights. Meanwhile
the wife is the actual bondservant of her husband; no less so, as far as
the legal obligation goes, than slaves commonly so called.
Before moving on to the Quranic decrees concerning the status of
woman, a few Biblical decrees may shed more light on the subject, thus
providing a better basis for an impartial evaluation. In the Mosaic Law,
the wife was betrothed. Explaining this concept, the Encyclopedia
Biblica states: “To betroth a wife to oneself meant simply to acquire
possession of her by payment of the purchase money; the betrothed is a
girl for whom the purchase money has been paid.” From the legal point of
view, the consent of the girl was not necessary for the validation of
her marriage. “The girl’s consent is unnecessary and the need for it is
nowhere suggested in the Law.”
As to the right of divorce, we read in the Encyclopedia Biblica: “The
woman being man’s property, his right to divorce her follows as a
matter of course.” The right to divorce was held only by man. “In the
Mosaic Law divorce was a privilege of the husband only …. ”
The position of the Christian Church until recent centuries seems to
have been influenced by both the Mosaic Law and by the streams of
thought that were dominant in its contemporary cultures. In their book,
Marriage East and West, David and Vera Mace wrote:
Let no one suppose, either, that our
Christian heritage is free of such slighting judgments. It would be hard
to find anywhere a collection of more degrading references to the
female sex than the early Church Fathers provide. Lecky, the famous
historian, speaks of (these fierce incentives which form so conspicuous
and so grotesque a portion of the writing of the Fathers . . . woman was
represented as the door of hell, as the mother of all human ills. She
should be ashamed at the very thought that she is a woman. She should
live in continual penance on account of the curses she has brought upon
the world. She should be ashamed of her dress, for it is the memorial of
her fall. She should be especially ashamed of her beauty, for it is the
most potent instrument of the devil). One of the most scathing of these
attacks on woman is that of Tertullian: Do you know that you are each
an Eve? The sentence of God on this sex of yours lives in this age: the
guilt must of necessity live too. You are the devil’s gateway: you are
the unsealer of that forbidden tree; you are the first deserters of the
divine law; you are she who persuades him whom the devil was not valiant
enough to attack. You destroyed so easily God’s image, man. On account
of your desert – that is death – even the Sop of God had to die). Not
only did the church affirm the inferior status of woman, it deprived her
of legal rights she had previously enjoyed.






III. WOMAN IN ISLAM


In the midst of the darkness that engulfed the world, the divine
revelation echoed in the wide desert of Arabia with a fresh, noble, and
universal message to humanity: “O Mankind, keep your duty to your Lord
who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate (of same
kind) and from them twain has spread a multitude of men and women”
(Quran 4: 1).
A scholar who pondered about this verse states: “It is believed that
there is no text, old or new, that deals with the humanity of the woman
from all aspects with such amazing brevity, eloquence, depth, and
originality as this divine decree.”
Stressing this noble and natural conception, the Quran states:


He (God) it is who did create you from a
single soul and therefrom did create his mate, that he might dwell with
her (in love)…(Quran 7:189)
The Creator of heavens and earth: He has made for you pairs from among yourselves …Quran 42:1 1


And Allah has given you mates of your own
nature, and has given you from your mates, children and grandchildren,
and has made provision of good things for you. Is it then in vanity that
they believe and in the grace of God that they disbelieve? Quran 16:72
The rest of this paper outlines the position of Islam regarding the
status of woman in society from its various aspects – spiritually,
socially, economically and politically.
1. The Spiritual Aspect


The Quran provides clear-cut evidence that woman in completely
equated with man in the sight of God in terms of her rights and
responsibilities. The Quran states:
“Every soul will be (held) in pledge for its deeds” (Quran 74:38). It also states:


…So their Lord accepted their prayers,
(saying): I will not suffer to be lost the work of any of you whether
male or female. You proceed one from another …(Quran 3: 195).
Whoever works righteousness, man or
woman, and has faith, verily to him will We give a new life that is good
and pure, and We will bestow on such their reward according to the
their actions. (Quran 16:97, see also 4:124).
Woman according to the Quran is not blamed for Adam’s first mistake.
Both were jointly wrong in their disobedience to God, both repented, and
both were forgiven. (Quran 2:36, 7:20 – 24). In one verse in fact
(20:121), Adam specifically, was blamed.
In terms of religious obligations, such as the Daily Prayers,
Fasting, Poor-due, and Pilgrimage, woman is no different from man. In
some cases indeed, woman has certain advantages over man. For example,
the woman is exempted from the daily prayers and from fasting during her
menstrual periods and forty days after childbirth. She is also exempted
from fasting during her pregnancy and when she is nursing her baby if
there is any threat to her health or her baby’s. If the missed fasting
is obligatory (during the month of Ramadan), she can make up for the
missed days whenever she can. She does not have to make up for the
prayers missed for any of the above reasons. Although women can and did
go into the mosque during the days of the prophet and thereafter
attendance et the Friday congregational prayers is optional for them
while it is mandatory for men (on Friday).
This is clearly a tender touch of the Islamic teachings for they are
considerate of the fact that a woman may be nursing her baby or caring
for him, and thus may be unable to go out to the mosque at the time of
the prayers. They also take into account the physiological and
psychological changes associated with her natural female functions.
2. The Social Aspect


a) As a child and an adolescent


Despite the social acceptance of female infanticide among some
Arabian tribes, the Quran forbade this custom, and considered it a crime
like any other murder.
“And when the female (infant) buried alive – is questioned, for what crime she was killed.” (Quran 81:8-9).


Criticizing the attitudes of such parents who reject their female children, the Quran states:


When news is brought to one of them, of
(the Birth of) a female (child), his face darkens and he is filled with
inward grief! With shame does he hide himself from his people because of
the bad news he has had! Shall he retain her on (sufferance) and
contempt, or bury her in the dust? Ah! What an evil (choice) they decide
on? (Quran 16: 58-59).
Far from saving the girl’s life so that she may later suffer
injustice and inequality, Islam requires kind and just treatment for
her. Among the sayings of Prophet Muhammad (P.) in this regard are the
following:
Whosoever has a daughter and he does not
bury her alive, does not insult her, and does not favor his son over
her, God will enter him into Paradise. (Ibn Hanbal, No. 1957).
Whosoever supports two daughters till
they mature, he and I will come in the day of judgment as this (and he
pointed with his two fingers held together).
A similar Hadeeth deals in like manner with one who supports two sisters. (Ibn-Hanbal, No. 2104).


The right of females to seek knowledge is not different from that of males. Prophet Muhammad (P.) said:


“Seeking knowledge is mandatory for every Muslim”. (AlBayhaqi).


Muslim as used here including both males and females.


b) As a wife:


The Quran clearly indicates that marriage is sharing between the two
halves of the society, and that its objectives, beside perpetuating
human life, are emotional well-being and spiritual harmony. Its bases
are love and mercy.
Among the most impressive verses in the Quran about marriage is the following.


“And among His signs is this: That He
created mates for you from yourselves that you may find rest, peace of
mind in them, and He ordained between you love and mercy. Lo, herein
indeed are signs for people who reflect.” (Quran 30:2 1).
According to Islamic Law, women cannot be forced to marry anyone without their consent.


Ibn Abbas reported that a girl came to the Messenger of God, Muhammad
(P.), and she reported that her father had forced her to marry without
her consent. The Messenger of God gave her the choice . . . (between
accepting the marriage or invalidating it). (Ibn Hanbal No. 2469). In
another version, the girl said: “Actually I accept this marriage but I
wanted to let women know that parents have no right (to force a husband
on them)” (Ibn Maja, No. 1873).
Besides all other provisions for her protection at the time of
marriage, it was specifically decreed that woman has the full right to
her Mahr, a marriage gift, which is presented to her by her husband and
is included in the nuptial contract, and that such ownership does not
transfer to her father or husband. The concept of Mahr in Islam is
neither an actual or symbolic price for the woman, as was the case in
certain cultures, but rather it is a gift symbolizing love and
affection.
The rules for married life in Islam are clear and in harmony with
upright human nature. In consideration of the physiological and
psychological make-up of man and woman, both have equal rights and
claims on one another, except for one responsibility, that of
leadership. This is a matter which is natural in any collective life and
which is consistent with the nature of man.
The Quran thus states:


“And they (women) have rights similar to those (of men) over them, and men are a degree above them.” (Quran 2:228).


Such degree is Quiwama (maintenance and protection). This refers to
that natural difference between the sexes which entitles the weaker sex
to protection. It implies no superiority or advantage before the law.
Yet, man’s role of leadership in relation to his family does not mean
the husband’s dictatorship over his wife. Islam emphasizes the
importance of taking counsel and mutual agreement in family decisions.
The Quran gives us an example:
“…If they (husband wife) desire to wean
the child by mutual consent and (after) consultation, there is no blame
on them…” (Quran 2: 233).
Over and above her basic rights as a wife comes the right which is
emphasized by the Quran and is strongly recommended by the Prophet (P);
kind treatment and companionship.
The Quran states:


“…But consort with them in kindness, for
if you hate them it may happen that you hate a thing wherein God has
placed much good.” (Quran 4: l9).
Prophet Muhammad. (P) said:


The best of you is the best to his family and I am the best among you to my family.


The most perfect believers are the best in conduct and best of you are those who are best to their wives. (Ibn-Hanbal, No. 7396)


Behold, many women came to Muhammad’s
wives complaining against their husbands (because they beat them) –
those (husbands) are not the best of you.
As the woman’s right to decide about her marriage is recognized, so
also her right to seek an end for an unsuccessful marriage is
recognized. To provide for the stability of the family, however, and in
order to protect it from hasty decisions under temporary emotional
stress, certain steps and waiting periods should be observed by men and
women seeking divorce. Considering the relatively more emotional nature
of women, a good reason for asking for divorce should be brought before
the judge. Like the man, however, the woman can divorce her husband with
out resorting to the court, if the nuptial contract allows that.
More specifically, some aspects of Islamic Law concerning marriage
and divorce are interesting and are worthy of separate treatment.
When the continuation of the marriage relationship is impossible for
any reason, men are still taught to seek a gracious end for it.
The Quran states about such cases:


When you divorce women, and they reach
their prescribed term, then retain them in kindness and retain them not
for injury so that you transgress (the limits). (Quran 2:231). (See also
Quran 2:229 and 33:49).
c) As a mother:


Islam considered kindness to parents next to the worship of God.


“And we have enjoined upon man (to be
good) to his parents: His mother bears him in weakness upon weakness…”
(Quran 31:14) (See also Quran 46:15, 29:8).
Moreover, the Quran has a special recommendation for the good treatment of mothers:


“Your Lord has decreed that you worship none save Him, and that you be kind to your parents. . .” (Quran 17:23).


A man came to Prophet Muhammad (P) asking:


O Messenger of God, who among the people
is the most worthy of my good company? The Prophet (P) said, Your
mother. The man said then who else: The Prophet (P) said, Your mother.
The man asked, Then who else? Only then did the Prophet (P) say, Your
father. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim).
A famous saying of The Prophet is “Paradise is at the feet of mothers.” (In Al’Nisa’I, Ibn Majah, Ahmad).


“It is the generous (in character) who is good to women, and it is the wicked who insults them.”


3. The Economic Aspect


Islam decreed a right of which woman was deprived both before Islam
and after it (even as late as this century), the right of independent
ownership. According to Islamic Law, woman’s right to her money, real
estate, or other properties is fully acknowledged. This right undergoes
no change whether she is single or married. She retains her full rights
to buy, sell, mortgage or lease any or all her properties. It is nowhere
suggested in the Law that a woman is a minor simply because she is a
female. It is also noteworthy that such right applies to her properties
before marriage as well as to whatever she acquires thereafter.
With regard to the woman’s right to seek employment it should be
stated first that Islam regards her role in society as a mother and a
wife as the most sacred and essential one. Neither maids nor
baby-sitters can possibly take the mother’s place as the educator of an
upright, complex free, and carefully-reared children. Such a noble and
vital role, which largely shapes the future of nations, cannot be
regarded as “idleness”.
However, there is no decree in Islam which forbids woman from seeking
employment whenever there is a necessity for it, especially in
positions which fit her nature and in which society needs her most.
Examples of these professions are nursing, teaching (especially for
children), and medicine. Moreover, there is no restriction on benefiting
from woman’s exceptional talent in any field. Even for the position of a
judge, where there may be a tendency to doubt the woman’s fitness for
the post due to her more emotional nature, we find early Muslim scholars
such as Abu-Hanifa and Al-Tabary holding there is nothing wrong with
it. In addition, Islam restored to woman the right of inheritance, after
she herself was an object of inheritance in some cultures. Her share is
completely hers and no one can make any claim on it, including her
father and her husband.
“Unto men (of the family) belongs a share
of that which Parents and near kindred leave, and unto women a share of
that which parents and near kindred leave, whether it be a little or
much – a determinate share.” (Quran 4:7).
Her share in most cases is one-half the man’s share, with no
implication that she is worth half a man! It would seem grossly
inconsistent after the overwhelming evidence of woman’s equitable
treatment in Islam, which was discussed in the preceding pages, to make
such an inference. This variation in inheritance rights is only
consistent with the variations in financial responsibilities of man and
woman according to the Islamic Law. Man in Islam is fully responsible
for the maintenance of his wife, his children, and in some cases of his
needy relatives, especially the females. This responsibility is neither
waived nor reduced because of his wife’s wealth or because of her access
to any personal income gained from work, rent, profit, or any other
legal means.
Woman, on the other hand, is far more secure financially and is far
less burdened with any claims on her possessions. Her possessions before
marriage do not transfer to her husband and she even keeps her maiden
name. She has no obligation to spend on her family out of such
properties or out of her income after marriage. She is entitled to the
“Mahr” which she takes from her husband at the time of marriage. If she
is divorced, she may get an alimony from her ex-husband.
An examination of the inheritance law within the overall framework of
the Islamic Law reveals not only justice but also an abundance of
compassion for woman.
4. The Political Aspect


Any fair investigation of the teachings of Islam o~ into the history
of the Islamic civilization will surely find a clear evidence of woman’s
equality with man in what we call today “political rights”.
This includes the right of election as well as the nomination to
political offices. It also includes woman’s right to participate in
public affairs. Both in the Quran and in Islamic history we find
examples of women who participated in serious discussions and argued
even with the Prophet (P) himself, (see Quran 58: 14 and 60: 10-12).
During the Caliphate of Omar Ibn al-Khattab, a woman argued with him
in the mosque, proved her point, and caused him to declare in the
presence of people: “A woman is right and Omar is wrong.”
Although not mentioned in the Quran, one Hadeeth of the Prophet is
interpreted to make woman ineligible for the position of head of state.
The Hadeeth referred to is roughly translated: “A people will not
prosper if they let a woman be their leader.” This limitation, however,
has nothing to do with the dignity of woman or with her rights. It is
rather, related to the natural differences in the biological and
psychological make-up of men and women.
According to Islam, the head of the state is no mere figurehead. He
leads people in the prayers, especially on Fridays and festivities; he
is continuously engaged in the process of decision-making pertaining to
the security and well-being of his people. This demanding position, or
any similar one, such as the Commander of the Army, is generally
inconsistent with the physiological and psychological make-up of woman
in general. It is a medical fact that during their monthly periods and
during their pregnancies, women undergo various physiological and
psychological changes. Such changes may occur during an emergency
situation, thus affecting her decision, without considering the
excessive strain which is produced. Moreover, some decisions require a
maximum of rationality and a minimum of emotionality – a requirement
which does not coincide with the instinctive nature of women.
Even in modern times, and in the most developed countries, it is rare
to find a woman in the position of a head of state acting as more than a
figurehead, a woman commander of the armed services, or even a
proportionate number of women representatives in parliaments, or similar
bodies. One can not possibly ascribe this to backwardness of various
nations or to any constitutional limitation on woman’s right to be in
such a position as a head of state or as a member of the parliament. It
is more logical to explain the present situation in terms of the natural
and indisputable differences between man and woman, a difference which
does not imply any “supremacy” of one over the other. The difference
implies rather the “complementary” roles of both the sexes in life.






IV. CONCLUSION


The first part of this paper deals briefly with the position of
various religions and cultures on the issue under investigation. Part of
this exposition extends to cover the general trend as late as the
nineteenth century, nearly 1300 years after the Quran set forth the
Islamic teachings.
In the second part of the paper, the status of women in Islam is
briefly discussed. Emphasis in this part is placed on the original and
authentic sources of Islam. This represents the standard according to
which degree of adherence of Muslims can be judged. It is also a fact
that during the downward cycle of Islamic Civilization, such teachings
were not strictly adhered to by many people who profess to be Muslims.
Such deviations were unfairly exaggerated by some writers, and the
worst of this, were superficially taken to represent the teachings of
“Islam” to the Western reader without taking the trouble to make any
original and unbiased study of the authentic sources of these teachings.
Even with such deviations three facts are worth mentioning:


[list=1]

  • The history of Muslims is rich with women of great achievements in all walks of life from as early as the seventh century (B.C.)
  • It is impossible for anyone to justify any mistreatment of woman by
    any decree of rule embodied in the Islamic Law, nor could anyone dare to
    cancel, reduce, or distort the clear-cut legal rights of women given in
    Islamic Law.
  • Throughout history, the reputation, chastity and maternal role of
    Muslim women were objects of admiration by impartial observers.
  • [/list]
    It is also worthwhile to state that the status which women reached
    during the present era was not achieved due to the kindness of men or
    due to natural progress. It was rather achieved through a long struggle
    and sacrifice on woman’s part and only when society needed her
    contribution and work, more especial!; during the two world wars, and
    due to the escalation of technological change.
    In the case of Islam such compassionate and dignified status was
    decreed, not because it reflects the environment of the seventh century,
    nor under the threat or pressure of women and their organizations, but
    rather because of its intrinsic truthfulness.
    If this indicates anything, it would demonstrate the divine origin of
    the Quran and the truthfulness of the message of Islam, which, unlike
    human philosophies and ideologies, was far from proceeding from its
    human environment, a message which established such humane principles as
    neither grew obsolete during the course of time and after these many
    centuries, nor can become obsolete in the future. After all, this is the
    message of the All-Wise and all-knowing God whose wisdom and knowledge
    are far beyond the ultimate in human thought and progress.






    BIBLIOGRAPHY


    The Holy, Quran: Translation of verses is heavily based on A. Yusuf
    Ali’s translation, The Glorious Quran, text translation, and Commentary,
    The American Trust Publication, Plainfield, IN 46168, 1979.
    Abd Al-Ati, Hammudah, Islam in Focus, The American Trust Publications, Plainfield, IN 46168, 1977.


    Allen, E. A., History of Civilization, General Publishing House, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1889, Vol. 3.


    Al Siba’i, Mustafa, Al-Alar’ah Baynal Fiqh Walqanoon (in Arabic), 2nd. ea., Al-Maktabah Al-Arabiah, Halab, Syria, 1966.


    El-Khouli, Al-Bahiy, “Min Usus Kadiat Al-Mara’ah” (in Arabic), A 1-
    Waay A l-lslami, Ministry of Walcf, Kuwait, Vol.3 (No. 27), June 9,
    1967, p.17.
    Encyclopedia Americana (International Edition), American Corp., N.Y., 1969, Vol.29.


    Encyclopedia Biblica (Rev.T.K.Cheynene and J.S.Black, editors), The Macmillan Co., London, England, 1902, Vol.3.


    The Encyclopedia Britannica, (11 th ed.), University Press Cambridge, England, 191 1, Vol.28.


    Encyclopedia Britannica, The Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc., Chicago, III., 1968, Vol.23.


    Hadeeth. Most of the quoted Hadeeth were translated by the writer.
    They are quoted in various Arabic sources. Some of them, however, were
    translated directly from the original sources. Among the sources checked
    are Musnad Ahmad Ibn Hanbal Dar AlMa’aref, Cairo, U.A.R., 1950, and
    1955, Vol.4 and 3,SunanIbnMajah, Dar Ihya’a Al-Kutub al-Arabiah, Cairo,
    U.A.R., 1952, Vol.l, Sunan al-Tirimidhi, Vol.3.
    Mace, David and Vera, Marriage: East and West, Dolphin Books, Doubleday and Co., Inc., N.Y., 1960.


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