Imams of al-Baqi'
Imāms of al-Baqiʿ (Arabic:أئمَّة البَقيع) refers to four Shiite Imams buried in al-Baqi' Cemetery in Medina including Imam al-Hasan (a), Imam al-Sajjad (a), Imam al-Baqir (a) and Imam al-Sadiq (a). The graves of Imams (a) had tombs and shrines built upon them which were demolished in 1344/1926 by Wahhabis.
Al-Hasan b. Ali (a): He was the second Shi'a Imam and the son of 'Ali ibn Abi Talib (a) and Lady Fatima (s). He became Imam and caliph of Muslims at the age of 37 and accepted the Peace Treaty with Mu'awiya in 41/661. Imam al-Hasan (a) was the caliph of Muslims for six months and three days. After the peace treaty, Imam (a) moved to Medina where he lived for ten years and finally was martyred. His body was buried in al-Baqi' Cemetery.
Ali b. al-Husayn (a): He is known as Imam al-Sajjad (a) and Zayn al-'Abidin and is the fourth Imam of Shi'a Muslims. His Imamate lasted for 34 years. Imam al-Sajjad was present in the Battle of Karbala. He was kept as captive and moved to Kufa and Syria along with other captives. According to Shi'ite narrations, Imam al-Sajjad (a) was poisoned and martyred by the order of Walid b. Abd al-Malik. He is buried next to the grave of his uncle, Imam al-Hasan (a).
Muhammad b. Ali (a): He is known as Imam al-Baqir (a). Imamate of the fifth Shi'a Imam lasted for about 19 years. Imam al-Baqir (a) was poisoned and martyred by the order of Hisham b. 'Abd al-Malik. He is buried next to his father's and his uncle's graves.
Ja'far b. Muhammad (a): He is known as Imam al-Sadiq (a). Imamate of the sixth Shi'a Imam lasted for 34 years. Imam al-Sadiq (a) passed away at the age of 65 and is buried next to his father's grave in al-Baqi' Cemetery.
Tombs and Shrines
The grave of 'Abbas b. 'Abd al-Muttalib and a grave attributed to Lady Fatima (s) or Fatima bt. Asad are located near the graves of Imams. Abbasids built a tomb on 'Abbas's grave which covered the graves of Imams as well. Tombs and shrines were built on the graves of the aunts and wives of Prophet Muhammad (s) beforehand. After the 6th/12th century other tombs and shrines were built on the graves of the other famous people.
As Ibn Jubayr, the Andalusian Muslims tourist, has stated, the tombs built on the graves of Imam al-Hasan (a) and Abbas b. 'Abd al-Muttalib were high. In addition, Ibn Batuta (probably narrating from Ibn Jubayr's book) described the tomb on Imam al-Hasan (a) and Abbas's graves as high and glorious, in the first half of the 8th/14th century.
Based on the travel accounts of Farhad Mirza, the Qajar prince, in 1293/1914 and Muhammad Husayn Khan Farahani in 1303/1924, tombs and shrines were built on the graves of the four Shi'a Imams in Al-Baqi' Cemetery before their demolition.
Demolition of Shrines
- Main article: Demolition of al-Baqi'
The tombs and shrines built on the graves of Imams were demolished by Wahhabis in 1221/1805. However 'Abd al-Hamid II, an Ottoman Sultan ordered to rebuild the shrines. But again they were demolished by the orders of Amir Muhammad, the governor of Medina, and the order of his father, 'Abd al-'Aziz, the Saudi king.
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